Armoury

DSC03552Indeed, I am the pessimist
Who despises all holidays
Celebratory of all things ‘exclusive’
Dated,
Waited.
Are they reminder of our flaws,
Our shortcomings
Where jokes, only for April
Finding ‘extra’ on Thanksgiving
Or when we,
Become ‘changed’ persons by January.
But how many deaths are required
Bitter reminders of our own lives
Yesterday, belittled
Grandiose, the next
How many does it take
Fired bullets or ceasing breaths
Will strike us alive
Open our eyes
To see constant appreciation
In both good and bad.
I am victim to such flaws
Wish immune from complaints
And small talks;
In need of a brighter mind
And shoulders bare,
Bear a little lighter
Because why must we carry such heavy weights
Let’s adjust a little
Change,
Slow, if need be
In removing our protective armouries.


There are so many simultaneous feelings that have been lingering in me and the overwhelming weight of all such things has been dragging me down. There is a constant battle between pessimistic tendencies overpowering optimism, but why does the news of death cause a sudden reverse (optimism over the other) that in the end, makes me feel more or less guilty. Simply put, I want to find a little more appreciation in life without needing reminders, nor incentives. I feel as though we are all wearing armoury we do not require, bearing weight that is heavier than we really have.

Music Recommendation: Tegan and Sara

T&S

My fan art

Tegan and Sara is an indie rock duo, most specifically twin sisters, hailing from Calgary! They have such distinct voices that it’s hard to miss. My ‘brother’ introduced them to me and they are one of the first artists that has got me falling for Canadian music! What I love about their music is their tunes are catchy though the lyrics are quite the opposite. I’m all about juxtaposition! I find that I like their live, acoustic sessions best. I have yet to see them in person and it’s a pity I missed them just this summer. One day….


Favourite songs and lines:

1) Call It Off: “I won’t regret saying this
This thing
That I’m saying
Is it better than
Keeping my mouth shut.”

2) The Con: “I am moving past this giving notice
I have to go
Yes I know the feeling,
Know you’re leaving.”

3) Fix You Up: “Well there’s not a lot for you to give if you’re giving in
And there’s not a lot for you to feel if you’re not feeling it.”

4) Where Does the Good Go: “It’s love that leaves and breaks the seal of always thinking you would be
Real, happy and healthy, strong and calm, where does the good go
Where does the good go.”

5) I’m Not Your Hero: “Hanging on to parts of me, hanging on at all
I was used to seeing no future in my sight line.”

Website: http://www.teganandsara.com/

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

We Have Grown

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESHow quickly time has passed
Did we realize we were a few inches taller
Younger siblings with phones, much bolder
Our tongues have become accustomed to things bitter
Beer, but never bittermelon.
We are still kids at heart
And that, our parents will always know
But we cannot stop conversations from changing
How old have we gotten to mention such things:
Like jobs, rings and heavy shoulders
As the world weighs heavier by the minute
Populated with better and better.
Though I know I will always be lucky
To know I still have friends and family to support me
To enjoy amidst a storm,
To smile against all the worries,
To find time in busy,
And learn to accept all changes
Because we have grown…
We have grown.

University Must Haves & Tips!

sam_1801Winter is Coming and first year students are shivering in both excitement and worry! But fear not, I’m here to give you tips on how to survive this big transition.

1) There’s nothing worst than forgetting your bus pass and getting ticketed for it. I’ve been there. To avoid this accident from happening, find a wallet that has a window ID. I found this functional and chic Michael Kors wallet that has the window ID at the back, a keyring and multiple compartments. Its small size is ideal for tight spaces.

2) At first you would think that having pizza or burgers everyday is a dream come true since fast food is very accessible in most campuses, but I must warn you that your health, wallet and tastebuds will not like you in the long run. It’s not a sin to have the occasional greasy, overpriced food from campus, although I highly suggest that you bring food from home/dorm most of the time. This glass Lock&Lock container is a must in my list as it’s the perfect size, is BPA free, microwave, freezer and dishwasher safe and best of all, has a locking system that seals it air and water tight!

3) If you so prefer and your professor allows it, laptops and iPads are good ways to remain eco-friendly and sharing notes will be easier. However, I personally find these options distracting because who wouldn’t be tempted to check social media when sat in lecture for hours? I’m going to be honest, I plead guilty to such crime! To avoid this, try it old school. This cute trio from Studio-Oh! that I found from Chapters will do the trick! Also, despite paying overpriced tuition, don’t expect luxurious, oversized tables. It’s most probable that you will find very small desks so aim to buy small notebooks. Lastly, binders will be your enemy!

4) What’s paper without writing utensils? As tempting as it may be to buy those pens and pencils that come in 12s, trust me, you don’t need any more than one. Invest in one good, expensive pen & pencil because it will last you longer and you don’t have to worry about asking it back from that unprepared classmate. Unless you intend to make ‘sharing’ into flirting with that cute guy/girl in class, then perhaps you can save an extra one ; ) I highly recommend brands such as Pentel, Pilot and Staedtler.

5) You may think that school books are more than enough of a read, but if you’re like me who enjoys leisure reading, you’d probably find yourself procrastinating with other books. There is nothing wrong with that because at the very least, this option expands your knowledge and you’re less likely to fall into the trap of pulling an all-nighter because you were too distracted with the internet and all its glory! Bookmarks are very helpful in both leisure and school reads. This feather bookmark is from a local market but you can buy ones similar to it on Etsy!

6) As organized as day/weekly planners may be, there are too bulky and incompatible with my preferences. I like post-it notes better and as a fan of Hello Kitty, these are perfect for those short notes, reminders and to-do lists!

7) Earphones are necessary not only for your favourite tunes in those daily bus rides, but also for when you need peace & quiet when studying. You are likely to encounter a person who prefers studying in groups but as friendly and fun as that may seem, it can sometimes get distracting. Plugging in your earphones, even without music playing, is the ultimate ‘Do not disturb’ sign. If they are really persistent or you just happen to be in a noisy environment, consider noise-cancelling headphones such as the ones I own from Sony.

8) If you are lucky enough to experience dorm life like I did, decorating your own room for floormates/housemates to visit is exciting! Those first few weeks will feel a little lonely, but adding personality into your space will attract people that share common interests and you’ll eventually find some good folks, possibly even lifelong friends. So don’t be afraid to show your inner geekiness and with that, I chose this Game of Thrones Stark Stein! You know nothing, Jon Snow”.


I hoped this post was informative for you freshmen. Which school are you attending and what field of study? Good luck and take care!

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

 

Music Recommendation of the Week: Coeur de Pirate

My fan art!

Coeur de Pirate is the Amélie of French music, at least in Canada. Béatrice Martin is the Canadian singer-songwriter behind Coeur de Pirate, hailing from Québec. The first song I heard from her was Comme Des Enfants (“Like Children”), a sweet composition that plays with the listener’s youthful feelings about love.

As a fan of all things French and a learner of its language, I appreciate Martin’s music because of her clear enunciation, making it easier to understand for a beginner such as I. But more importantly, her songs are full of emotions and is almost all narrative. She has a charming voice and is best accompanied with piano as instrumentation. Rarely does she tour outside the East Coast so I’m hoping that one day, I’ll be able to see her when I have the chance to go to Québec!


Favourite songs and lines:

1) Comme des Enfants: Et on se prend la main, comme des enfants
Le bonheur aux lèvres, un peu naïvement
Et on marche ensemble, d’un pas décidé
Alors que nos têtes nous crient de tout arrêter.

2) Adieu:Je t’ai aimé, mais je t’assure que c’est la fin. 

3) Place de la République: Je sais, ton cœur est habité
Par une ou d’autres filles qui t’ont marqué
Moi je suis moins forte que les autres
Mais j’espère tant te manquer, tant me démarquer.

4) C’était Salement Romantique: Et au sud de mes peines, j’ai volé loin de toi
pour couvrir mon cœur d’une cire un peu noire
Que tous les regards lancés à mon égard
j’ai tenté de voler loin de toi
J’ai tenté de voler loin de toi.

Website: http://www.coeurdepirate.com/en/

Come back for next week’s recommendation!

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

 

Music Recommendation of the Week: Lucy Rose

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My fan art

Lucy Rose is an English, indie folk singer-songwriter who released her first album in September 2012. I came across her music when searching for new artists through YouTube. I was captivated (with a hint of jealousy) by her crystal clear voice and mostly acoustic songs. 

British artists differ immensely from American artists. I find that they have more intimate lyrics and attempt to showcase their voices, rather than be overshadowed by the instrumental background. As much as I can appreciate the technicality in Adele’s big voice, I was never a fan of that sort of style. I find better appreciation in soft, unique voices such as that of Lucy Rose. Her enunciation and style in singing is definitely inspiring and something I strive to achieve. If she were a male artist, she would be comparable to Dallas Green!

It’s a pity that I’ve not seen her live yet, although I’m positive that I would be on the look out for her next tour schedule. 


Favourite songs and lines:

1) Shiver: And I loved the way you looked at me
And I miss the way you made me feel
When we were alone
When we were alone

2) Be Alright: It’s taken me a while to tell you
Exactly how I feel inside
The words, they seem so simple right now
But they took a while to find

3) Night Bus: She takes the night bus home
She’s not faced by the darkness in her soul

4) Gamble: And you said to me
Can’t we work it out?
Won’t you talk to me?
What’s this all about?

5) First: You’ve got that way of making me feel
Oh so scared and safe at once
I didn’t know that this was real

Website: http://www.lucyrosemusic.com/

Come back for next week’s recommendation! Sorry I missed last week’s. I was very busy.

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

‘Missed’ Calls

Imported liquor
At the tip of my tongue
4:30, thirsty
Ringing, on silent
To tell me no one’s on the other end of the line.
But the screen suddenly beams
As did her smile
At the nameless stranger
Who’s anticipated words
Will act like compass
To inform her in the change of winds
Direct,
Elsewhere but here.
Here,
There she was
Finally compassed
Compressed, by suffocating air
Greetings
As darkness envelopes
Welcomes her
Here,
Back here,
Where she spends another night hoping
Hopelessly hoping,
For (a dear) life.


Like most people, the first encounter with poetry (music aside) is during our early days of elementary school in English class. I was not particularly a fan of poetry: limericks, haikus, acrostic… very structured and specific poetry. However, even though these types of poems are structured, I did not find them difficult to write. But what I did find challenging was free verse. The oddity in this may already question your mind and in response to your curiosity, it’s simply because there’s no limit to writing free verse. It’s open to any subject, structure and nothing is deemed incorrect.

At the time, even if free verse was my cup of tea, I did not find reason to write outside of class assignments. I suppose I was busy with indulging in mischievous and childish acts instead.

If I remember correctly, it wasn’t until grade 11 when poetry reintroduced itself. This time, it was when slam poetry was beginning to emerge outside four corners and into YouTube videos. My sister was the first person to send me a link and to this day, the feeling of thrill and respect I had when I first watched/listened to a slam, remains the same.

From that year on, I kept writing poetry. I found that writing short free verses (such as the one above) came naturally and quickly. However, I always desired to write beyond my forté and to this day, I have yet to write a slam poem. I don’t know if I’ll ever get there but to be honest, just posting my poetry online is already a huge step for me.

My poetry is very personal and intimate, making it difficult to share with the world. I’ve made several attempts to publish my poetry in blogs, but I always find myself deleting or keeping them under ‘only me’ privacy settings. I suppose it’s difficult to share them with an audience that knows me and since poetry is open to interpretation, judgment inevitably lingers. If I speak for everyone, judgment is unpleasant. But, not criticism.

Very little people enjoy poetry or even understand it. To some extent, even if poetry (as I mentioned) is open to interpretation, there is still a ‘right’ interpretation: the author’s. I seldom find people to share poetry with and even if I do, it’s scary to reveal yourself in such a manner. Therefore, after some ‘logical’ thinking, sharing my poetry through the internet may put me better at ease in desiring to ‘put myself out there’ and hopefully, receive constructive criticism for it.

I don’t know how much attention this post (or my blog entirely) will even receive, but if there’s at least one person out there that enjoys it, I may consider publishing more in the future. Don’t be scared, I accept comments.

Oh, before you leave (you nameless stranger who never called me… I kid), I just thought I’d share my excitement for a poetry class I signed up for in the upcoming school year. I am heavily convinced that it leans towards a more analytical approach as opposed to writing, but no good writer exists without becoming a good reader first. And that’s my gift of optimism to you after such a gloom poem.

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

Music Recommendation of the Week: Hey Rosetta!

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My fan art

Hey Rosetta! is a six-member indie rock band from St. Johns Newfoundland and Labrador, led by Tim Baker. I first heard Hey Rosetta! when searching for new music in the internet. What captivated my attention was the unique transitions and eventual blending of various instruments: from electric and acoustic guitars, mandolin, piano, drums, cello, the violin and to the unexpected tinkling of the xylophone.

Tim Baker, who is (ehmm) such a beau, is the lead singer. His voice is charmingly masculine with an incredible range and dynamics, switching effortlessly from low to high notes. But on certain songs where some of the members harmonize or play backing vocals, it becomes pure eargasm.

Their songs are mostly danceable but ironically, contrasts with the usual melancholy and poetically inclined lyrics. Thus, it’s no surprise that I’m such a fan.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Hey Rosetta! at Calgary Folk Fest 2014

Just last week, I was able to see them for the first time at Calgary Folk Festival. I was in awe, jaw dropped (figuratively) at their incredible, lively stage presence. The balance of sounds resonating from their instruments, perfect in volume from each, was music to my ears (well duh…). On occasion, Tim encouraged the crowd to sing along and guess who poured their heart out? Who cared about the embarrassment I must’ve received from doing so? The sing along was well worth the confused looks, especially when they played my favourite, Bandages! I cannot wait to see them again!


Favourite songs and lines:

1) Carry Me Home: “But I’d give my food and drink
To see my home again
To see my mother’s hand
Against her apron edge.”

2) Yer Spring: “Am I rising up?”

3) Young Glass: “Even though – I thought I was – all alone – I was wrong
Even though – I thought I was – all alone – I am not.”

4) Red Heart: “Were you born a closed book,
full of secret lines? (and bound so tight)
or did you learn to lock it,
as not to break your spine? (oh! you were bound so tight)
Cause you shut up
and you’re all shut inside.”

5) A Thousand Suns: “These are twisted times when trust and truth collide
When a stranger’s love could make your heart explode
I want to give it all back!”

6) Bandages: “That half of the bed
Empty like a page
All the cursive claims you’ve yet to make.”

Website: http://www.heyrosetta.com/

Come back for next week’s recommendation!

A plus tard et avec l’amour!

 

Bright Hue

This morning, I made the mandatory visit to Sephora to receive my yearly, free gift. In order to do so, I must purchase an item and since I’ve been wanting to try an orange lipstick, I braved ahead to finally do it. There were so many choices but I was particularly captured by none other than Marc Jacobs, especially after seeing the newly released line of lipsticks that looked like crayons. Not only was the packaging adorable, the bright hue of Crush perfectly matched my unexpected style. I tried it on and fell in love!

The consistency of the lipstick is smooth and hydrating and the matte finish is perfect for its vibrancy.  Aside from this, it is ‘kiss-proof’, leaving no stain in my glass cup. It won’t be a surprise if I come back to purchase another lipstick from this collection!

I did receive my free gift at the checkout and an additional freebie, a DKNY perfume. I was very impressed with the free gift: a MAKE UP FOR EVER lipstick and mascara, the mascara containing a generous amount!  image

1) DKNY My NY Eau De Parfume | 2) Make Up For Ever Lipstick in Rouge Artist Natural N9 and Mascara | 3) Marc Jacobs Lipstick in Crush


I did not bother removing the lipstick after trying it on and now, I’m probably blinding some of the customers’ eyes while I work.
imageA plus tard et avec l’amour!