Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Experience

The Experience

Tonight I went to Rouge for the Maurice Kirya Experience.  The Maurice Kirya Experience takes place every last Tuesday of the month and has been taking place for over a year; however, this was the first time that I took to opportunity to attend.  What did I think?  Honestly?  Well, I love Maurice.  I've seen him perform in the past, and I've always left impressed.  Overall, I think the Experience is a great way to spend a Tuesday night.  Maurice describes his music as 'fusion soul', and I think that is a very appropriate description.  He sings in five languages and blends together various styles.  My favourite song is one he sings in Luganda.  I wish I knew more Luganda  so I could tell you more about the song.  Tonight, he performed a song in English that reminded me of Positive K's I've Got a Man.  It was a great song, and the way he delivered it, with so much theatrics, was fun.  

I was not so interested in the other acts.  There was this one guy with really bad hair, but he was very entertaining on the guitar.  But he went a bit too far with his whole pulling a keyboard down, banking a cacophony on it and then throwing it on the floor.  This guy, -ozi-something had a decent voice, but he just didn't do it for me.  I thought the live backing band was GREAT.  

It was nice to go to Rouge.  I ran into  several old friends--people I'd not seen in almost a year.  I've only been to Rouge a hand full of times, but tonight was a great night to be there.  The Maurice Kirya Experience is worth catching.   See you there in July!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Mauritian Wine

I've just arrived home from a 13-hour work day.  For crying out loud:  I'm a school teacher. Who does that?  Ok, some of you new, first-years might claim that feat, but I've been at this for a while.  Yuck!  Well, you might say that I signed up for it, that I volunteer to be on the board of governors.  Yes, it's true.  But I did not sign up for management meetings and board meetings on the same night.  

So how was my day?  Let me rate it on a scale from Mauritain wine to bacon.  Definitely Mauritian wine.

On a lighter, more positive note, I'm going through another Elle Woods phase.  Legally Blonde is my New Year's inspirational movie that I must watch on, well, New Year's Day.  It's kind of like blacked-eyed peas (not the music group, note:  no capital letters); they bring me luck and set the tone for the year.  But I sometimes need the perkiness and sticktoitiveness of our blonde heroine to inspire me and keep me (or put me back) on track.  This particular phase was triggered by the soundtrack to the now-closed Broadway musical version.  Right now, I need to be positive, keep it positive, and get whipped into shape.  Omigod you guys!  I don't want to be overly negative or slap her to the floor, but I do some days fantasize of running away to, perhaps, Ireland.  Ok, that's enough Legally Blonde association.  The soundtrack is good stuff. And I will not be defeated.  

I'm just plowing through Wednesday, then I'll be home free... I hope.  I plan to do a bit of coasting after that.  And, no, I'm not getting lazy.  Believe me, I've earned that privilege. Remember:  Mauritian wine.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

All Day Sucker
It's Sunday evening, and I'm just relaxing at home after a not-so-eventful-yet-pleasant weekend.  I'm lying on my back on the sofa, laptop in lap listening to Stevie sing/play Songs in the Key of Life (which, by the way, was released the year I was born).  I'm trying to decide if I want to eat supper tonight or if I'll just call it an early night, grab a book and head to bed.

After spending most of yesterday in my bedroom brooding, I put myself to task and prepared dinner for five and invited over some friends.  Originally, it was to be a dinner for three, but the other two each brought along one more.  Stuffed pork steaks (the ones with blue cheese, bacon and apples) were my original plan, but that plan was slightly altered when I discovered one of the last-minute guests of a guest was Muslim.  But as fate would have it, I'd bought chicken breasts while at the supermarket, so stuffed chicken breasts (with blue cheese and apples, no bacon) were added to the menu.  I cooked my first carrot cake (success).  The supermarket did not have cream cheese, so I substituted plain yogurt to make the topping.  It was not as thick as I would've like (hence the name change from icing to topping), but it tasted great.  I had a fantastic evening with John, Leo and friends.  

Today started with a good 10 km run.  I hate to begin a run, but once I'm out on the road, I just can't get enough; I love those endorphins.  They make me happy, and happy people don't go around killing people.  I ended the run at the new Nakumatt shopping center.  Since I had a bit of cash in my pocket, I decided to take care of this week's 'taking care of me' activity.  I have a plan where I try to do one pampering (taking car of me) activity each week.  It might be a hair cut, a pedicure, a massage, etc., just something that is not absolutely crucial, but makes me feel good--lets me unwind and takes care of my mental health.  I'm the kind of person who holds a lot in and gets stressed over small things because I'm on an unattainable never-ending quest for perfection.  Today I was a bit short of cash, so I went for a manicure.  I decided to try the new Salon Ultra in the shopping center.  The place appeared to really need the business; it was empty.  Overall the manicure was good.  However, I prefer Sparkles at Garden City.  The guys at Sparkles really seem to know what they are doing there; however, I think they could pay more attention to detail when doing nail work.

(If you can't love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love someone else?)

By the way, As is playing right now.  I cannot hear this song and not think of Taye Diggs singing it to Eric McCormack on Will & Grace.

This afternoon was spent between going to some friends' farewell barbeque and episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I finished season 1 and began season 2.  Buffy is one of those shows I can watch over and over again.  I'm getting into the season 8 graphic novels.  I've read the first one and the second one has been ordered from Amazon.com. I'm anxiously waiting its arrival.  

Well, maybe not dinner, but a bowl of cereal might be enough.

Hatcher out.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Memories and Michael

I've been in my bed all day.  Reading and reading and reading some more.  All about MJ.  Oh, and I've also been making my credit card company and iTunes very happy by downloading songs that are a part of the soundtrack of my life.  True, I already have a good collection of  Jackson's hits, but there are a few songs that I love that I let slip between the cracks, plus there are some favourites that were never 'hits' so they did end up on later compilations.  

"Thriller" is a 7-year-old buying his first album with his own money he'd save.  It beat out the "Flashdance" soundtrack.  "Beat It" is Dana's elementary-school talent show performance, sequined glove and all.  This is the year before she scandalized the PTA with her pre-pubescent performance of "Like a Virgin."  The "Bad" album is my brother Steven and Christmas 1987.  I cannot hear "Man in the Mirror and not think of Kristi K.' s 1988 birthday party when we all loaded up her mom's car and were driven around town to toilet paper some friends' yards.  "Smooth Criminal" is study hall in the 7th grade.  We tried to figure out how Michael and his dancers could lean over so far without nails through their shoes.   "We Are Here to Change the World" is my sister, Melissa, and I enjoying Epcot Center in 1994 before I went off to college.  It was the final family holiday before our family was irreparably severed.   "You Rock My World" is a frustrating and lonely volunteer experience in El Salvador.  "The Way You Make Me Feel" is me wishing that Britney would sing live.  "Speechless" is, well, BMac.  Peace Corps Uganda (2002-2004)!

With all his flaws, I loved MJ.  I didn't do my usual morning browse of the online newspapers yesterday morning before I went to school because I overslept.  I was stunned when I saw the notice written on the board in the staff room:  Michael Jackson has died... a genius.  I really thought it was some very unfunny joke.  I refused to go online at work yesterday.  I didn't want the news to be real.  Of course I didn't know him personally (but I did know one of the dancers from the "The Way You Make Me Feel" video who is now a foreign service officer) but it did seem like I lost someone important in my life.  I waited until I got home to deluge myself with internet news and speculation.  

Good or bad, like it or not, this man had a huge impact on the world.  At this moment, I choose to focus on the positive contributions.  He will be missed.

(I think this is an amazing photo of Liza.  Her makeup is simple but fantastic.)

Thank you for the music.
My whole life is just one big song.