Friday, May 6, 2011

Elections, IKEA & Good Art

      Well I was pretty surprised (and a bit disappointed) with the election results last week. I've been upset at the tone of current political discourse in Canada - attack ads, name-calling, fear-mongering (mainly on the part of the Conservatives under Harper), along with a disregard for parliamentary procedures/rules. I agreed with a Maclean's writer that a message needed to be sent that we the people don't support this kind of behaviour. But obviously very few people felt that way, or else there were other more important issues for voters, or maybe they just voted locally and really liked their Conservative candidate. I've been saying for a while now that I don't mind minority governments as then members have to learn to work together and even make compromises. I'm less comfortable with one party having complete power to make decisions that affect the whole country. At any rate things have definitely changed and I guess we'll see how things work now. It certainly is interesting to see the results - Liberals on a steep decline, most women MPs ever, youngest MP in history (19 years old and making over $150,000!).
     On Monday we went to IKEA and I've decided I don't like that store much at all. It just seemed to be one problem after another. You write down what aisle and bin to look in for items in the warehouse but when we got down there several things were sold out. The worker wasn't helpful, leading us to look for something else that was nothing like what we wanted. Near the end of our time there we were looking for aisle 41 and when I asked someone (around aisle 36) she told us it was back at the beginning, beside aisle 1! And of course once you get your furniture home you spend hours putting it together yourself. Fortunately we were shopping for Josh and Joel so the construction fell to them.
     I'm really enjoying a book that was recommended by musician Tom Prasada-Rao called "Crossing to Safety." It's about the special friendship between 2 couples back in the 1930's. The husbands are university professors and one wife ends up with polio. The author really captures cottage life (one of the settings) and reminded me of the years I enjoyed at Fairy Lake near New Liskeard. He writes lovingly about the intricacies of the relationships and how they deepen over the years. It makes me want to appreciate the friendships I have, and grow even closer to others - which really means simply spending more time with people.
      In that friendship vein, I read a great quote today: “The unpayable debt that I owe to him was not ‘influence’ as it is ordinarily understood, but sheer encouragement. He was for long my only audience. Only from him did I ever get the idea that my ’stuff’ could be more than a private hobby.” J.R.R. Tolkien, on his friend, C.S. Lewis
     Listened to Mark Heard's "Mosaics" this week and realized (again) what a great songwriter he was. Plus his cover of T-Bone Burnett's 'The Power of Love' is just that - powerful. That led me to listen to some old T-Bone - "Trap Door" (6 song EP which is great) and "Behind the Trap Door" (6 song EP which is not so great). That's not much music for this week so that means I must not be doing enough walking.

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