Weekend Writing Prompt #76 – Unlock

OK, OK, so I’m cheating.  It’s no longer the weekend but now is when I can so, now is when I do.

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Word Prompt

Unlock

Challenge

Words,

Words brought them together

His, swirling and provocative, coloured in metaphors

Hers, straightforward but honest, not given to fluff

Mutual admiration expands for the other’s style

 

This exchange of words, innocent and light

At times a comedic or snarky repartee

Becomes an exchange of ideas, a baring of souls

Trust given and received sans fear

Unlocking the possibilities

For so much more

 

Impasse – Friday Fictioneers

Thanks to my oh-so noisy kids, I am up way before I want to.  Showers, breakfast making, frying pans landing not too softly on the stove…

Instead of tossing and swearing and turning and cussing, I got up and decided to see if I can make it on the first line of Friday Fictioneers!  Thanks always to Rochelle for keeping us ducks in a row and this week, she even supplied her own photo…

Join in on the madness by clicking on the blue frog below and adding the link to your story.  It’s fun and a great exercise in “removing the unnecessary fluff”.

Get the frog for your blog

Impasse

“We’ve reached an impasse,” Sofia said stonily.

“Come on!  We can work this out.  It will be a great project,” Ryan cajoled.

“No,  I’m not interested.  It’s not going to happen.  You can’t change my mind.”

“It’s been in my family for years.  I don’t want to just give it up.”

“Then don’t.  Keep it.”

“But I want you with me in this!”

“No way in hell I am helping you turn this cold, dank, windowless pile of stone into a B&B.”

“It has so much potential.  We can make it work.”

“Enjoy your project.  Call me when it’s finished.”

Why I Love CBC Radio 2 – Tom Allen

It took the death of another icon, Montserrat Caballé, to remind me I had this post in my “drafts folder”…

When did I write the “intro“?  25 July, 2017!  Sheesh.  Won’t bother chastising myself.  That said, I have not so much made a resolution as made a promise to myself to finish what I started.  An issue I have.  We Aries are fabulous at starting things, but finishing them?  Not so much.  And I know, I know, I am generalising because there are plenty out there who do finish what they start…

Without further ado, my main reason for loving CBC Radio 2 is the fabulous Tom Allen –  not the English comedian Tom Allen, who was born after I graduated high school (which I discovered while Googling) – but the Canadian broadcaster/musician/writer/storyteller/et al, Tom Allen, who was born just a few years before moi.  😉  I originally got to “know” him when he was hosted the morning classical program called “Music and Company”, way back in 1998, and which he continued to host until 2008, when the program changed to “Radio 2 Morning” for about a year.

Things moved and shifted big time at CBC Radio 2, morning people got moved to afternoon, afternoon people go moved to week-ends and I thought, that’s it, I won’t be tuning in…  Nope, nope and nope.  I found there were many things to enjoy.  Tom Allen was no longer the morning guy, but we could still catch him now on Shift, a perfect programme for him (probably designed by him 😉 where he shifts from classical to contemporary rock without you even noticing…

I mentioned in my intro post how much I enjoyed Tom’s stories and, in Googling him to find recordings and whatnot to share with you, (and having to sift between the other guy’s stuff), was reminded of so many other things.

Seriously, I had always enjoyed classical music but he has brought an extra oomph to it with his stories.  Here are three to entertain you…

 

I once tweeted to him, following some comparison between musicians like Metallica and Chopin, (not really, I can’t remember who he was comparing but it was just as far-fetched), that he was the Alton Brown of Music.  Cool thing?  He tweeted me back with a “That’s good, right?”  And I responded with a “He is to cooking what you are to music…”  The man is a seemingly endless fount of musical information.  From classical to heavy metal.  He blows me away pretty much every day.

He is a musician, a storyteller, an author, a producer, a musical host… oodles of talents that I shall have to explore further.

Thank you, Tom, for making classical music so very approachable and fun.  I love to tune in from 1 till 3:30 pm… It ain’t long enough, but I’ll take what I can get!!

Oh hell… one more 😉

 

Portuguese Tapas and Scandalous Affairs

I am subscribed to the Place des Arts newsletter.  Which is great because I know what’s coming, what’s on pre-sale, what’s on special…  I say great but not sure if this is a good or bad thing! Ka-Ching!  On September 20th they had a 45% price reduction on Les Grands Ballets Canadiens’ “Lady Chatterley’s Lover”.  Hmmm….  I checked to see what sorts of seats were available then contacted my ever-willing- partner-in-all-things-cultural, Julie, to see if she was interested.  If she wasn’t, I was going to go it alone.  However, it is always way more fun to share these things.  Lucky for me, she said yes and I purchased the tickets in a loge.  Number 13.  Maybe that should have been a warning.

We agreed to meet just outside of the interior parking lot (both of us felt lazy) around five-ish giving us a good almost three hours to eat and catch up.  But where to go?  Many options in that hood, lemme tell you!

There are two restaurants, one in back of the other, built right on the sidewalk of Jeanne Mance Street.  They are like glassed-in “pop-up” style restaurants. Only permanent.  At least, I think they are!  Coolest thing ever.  Both of them are the “offsprings” of high-end restaurants in the city.  We stopped first at Brasserie T (baby of Toqué!), checked out the menu… looked interesting.  We decided to check out the second one.  There was no menu posted outside so we had to go in and ask to look at it.  This one is Taverne F (baby of Café Ferreira).  We chose this one.

The hostess asked us if we had a reservation.  You see, on nights where there are events going on at PdA, they are booked solid.  However, if we were willing, there was a place at the bar.  Ever the uncomplicated peeps we are, Jules and I accepted.  What a great thing that turned out to be!

Our barman/waiter, Simon-Pierre, was excellent, plus he had a little of the Chris Pratt look to him 😉  It was suggested we order 2-3 items per person.  So we ordered 6 in all.  He then suggested a bottle of red (Boina) to go with.  I have no knowledge of Portuguese wines so his suggestion, based on our tastes, was essential.  No.  I did not take any pictures of our food (d’oh!) however should you wish to, just click on the link above and you can see all sorts of beautiful pictures.

We started off with Pastéis de Bacalhau (the quintessential cod fritters with a red pepper piri-piri sauce), Sardinhas (roasted sardines with pickled veg) and Camarão e Amêijoas (shrimp and clams).  Perfect trio to start us off and we had lots of time to enjoy, so we did!

Simon-Pierre asked if we wanted a little break before the next three and we agreed….  We then had Polvo (grilled octopus with potatoes, confit tomato, chouriço and shery vinaigrette), Feijoada (lima bean cassoulet with chouriço sausage and fried pork) and finally, Arroz de Marisco (seafood rice, sofrito, calamari, shrimps and mussels).  With a little (maybe more than a little) bread to sop up the various sauces – for both trios – we were feeling just perfect.  Not too much, not too little.  We leisurely finished off our wine and chatted away.

It was then suggested we have a little dessert.  Looking at the time, we still had over half an hour to kill.  What the hell! Pastéis de Nata is a classic Portuguese pastry (custard tartlet, cinnamon, caramel sauce) and then that handsome feller went and gave us each a glass of Moscato!

Simon-Pierre in action

Now we were properly stuffed!  We made our way back to PdA and settled into our seats.  They were not as great as I had hoped.  If we had been on the other side of the theatre, we would have seen everything.  We did have a great view of the orchestra pit.  Snark, snark. The stage was built on an angle, to represent hills, so any action happening on the left-hand side was out of our view.  Thankfully, not too much happened in that corner, but still.  Quite annoying.  During the second half, the two sitting ahead of us and to the right (where the water bottle is and which had a better view) did not show up and we considered taking their seats but by the time we realised they were not returning, we, didn’t want to disturb…

View from our seat

I was a good girl and did not take any pictures of the ballet.  It was a pretty ballet but it was so slow in the beginning, us two chicas, satiated on food and wine, both struggled to stay awake (I was relieved at intermission when Julie admitted to me she was struggling as much as I was!)  A bottle of sparkling water each and we were ready for the second half!

I have to admit to not having read D.H. Lawrence’s book – yet – so I did not know the storyline, except for the obvious part.  I also like to NOT read the synopsis of the ballet because I like to see if I can figure out what is going on.  And I did, mostly, so that says a lot for the choreographer, Cathy Marston.  It was easy enough to figure out who was who except for two characthers:  Lady Chatterley’s sister – though I was fairly certain that’s who she was.  (A little aside on this character… At intermission, I turned to Julie and asked:  “Have you ever seen such a busty ballerina?” To which she responded: “I know, right?  I couldn’t help but notice, too!”  One of those stupid things you can’t help but comment on because it truly is outside the “norm”.)  There was another dancer that we thought was maybe a lady of the evening but, it turns out, was the lover’s (Mellors) former wife.  Oops. My bad.

Taking a bow

All in all, we did enjoy it – way more than the last one we saw which was Stabat Mater – a whole lotta hype that disappointed us.

What we both were wondering is why in the hell do they put this image on the cover of the programme and all other advertisements?  We kept waiting to see this superbe costume!  Nope.

They do the same with their videos… not anywhere near what we saw, costume-wise…

 

Kintsukuroi – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wed… oh dear… it’s past midnight!  So, good Thursday, my friends.  Today’s Friday Fictioneers had me stumped somewhat.  Well, I knew where I wanted to go but the words eluded me.  Nothing like taking a step back and letting it swirl around, hoping to make it somewhat coherent…

Thank you, always, to Rochelle for keeping us wanting to come back week after week.  And this week, thank you to Sandra Crook for this wonderful photo.

Do join in by clicking on the blue frog below and adding your own interpretation.  It’s fun!

 

Add the Frog to your Blog

Kintsukuroi

He stood there, stunned, chunks of his heart strewn about like shells tossed back from the ocean.

He bent down, determined to pick up the pieces, when a wave of anger overtook him.  He balled up his fist, prepared to slam it down and destroy what was left.

He felt two hands wrap themselves around his fist, stopping further destruction.  Surprised, he looked up and found her there.  Her intense gaze kept him prisoner as did her hands.

“Kintsukuroi,” she said.

“What?”

“It’s not over.  What seems permanently broken, is not.  Let me be the gold that makes you shine.

**********

I don’t usually on these posts, but Hey Rosetta has a lovely song that just fit…

 

Don’t Dismiss (or Diss) the Kiss

La beauté n’a pas d’importance. Quand on est un homme aimable, on finit par avoir une beauté dans le regard, dans la manière d’être en vieillissant.¹

— Charles Aznavour

The lyrics, in both French and English, are here Qui Who

Il faut savoir, coûte que coûte, Garder toute sa dignité Et, malgré ce qu’il nous en coûte, S’en aller sans se retourner Face au destin qui nous désarme.²

— Charles  Aznavour

Helluva preamble to my post, eh?  Lemme explain myself before I continue.  Yesterday, the world lost the fabulous French/Armenian singer, Charles Aznavour – also known as the “Frank Sinatra of France”.  You can’t really feel bad.  The man was 94 and had a most prolific life.  If you click on his name, you have access to a wonderful article on his life as well as a link to his most famous English song “She”.

But I digress…

Because of his passing, I ended up on YouTube to listen to my favourite tunes by him, such as “La Bohème” and “Emmenez-moi” (the latter being, by the way, IMPOSSIBLE to sing along to in a Karaoke session.  Trust me.  I’ve tried) and left YouTube to do its thing and play whatever it felt like… well.

Along came Cesária Évora and her sultry voice singing “Besame Mucho”.  My Spanish is so-so but passable enough to know that Besame had to do with kissing.  So, of course, the Google came into use when I searched the English translation of the song for confirmation.  While I continue blathering on, g’head, enjoy the late great Cesaria…

 

I started thinking about kissing.  And how much I love it.  And miss it.  I think we don’t spend nearly enough time kissing, to tell the truth. I’m not talking about those pecks on the cheeks or those chaste, dry, barely-there touches of lips, unless those are just to lead up to the real thing.  I’m talking about those deep, long, slow kisses that turn your insides to liquid mercury.  I’m talking From Here to Eternity beach kiss scene…

Those mornings when we kiss and surrender for an hour before we say a single word.”
David Levithan

When you first start dating, you spend so much time just kissing:  while taking a walk, while doing dishes, while sitting on the couch.  It doesn’t matter where but you sneak them in  wherever and whenever you can.  You can’t seem to get enough.  And it’s not automatically a foreplay of foreplay, either.  Not saying that it can’t be, mind you… You kiss just to feel connected to your partner.  You’re getting to know them on an intimate level.  The dance appeals, you keep on dancing.

“If we’re going to kiss, it has to be book-worthy.”
Colleen Hoover

Now, what I write here is my own personal experience and I am totally generalising but somehow, I am sure many can relate.

After a while, your relationship falls into that long term category.  Kissing is still very enjoyable but the spontenaity has decreased.  As has duration of most kisses.  They are not so deep and long.  You may still find yourselves kissing for kissing’s sake but let’s face it, it is now more of a foreplay to foreplay.

“A kiss is a lovely trick designed by nature to stop speech when words become superfluous.”
Ingrid Bergman

Years pass and you are happily coupled – married or not, same diff, to me…  Kissing somehow has taken a backseat.  No matter how much love is between you, those long, slow, deep kisses are now reserved for the bedroom as foreplay.  Or maybe they start in the living room or kitchen (if you’re lucky) but they’re still an invitation to make your way to your love nest.  And they don’t last that long anymore.  Mind you, my circumstances made that I didn’t get a chance to find out what happens when the children leave the family home… Does your kissing game go up a notch?  Do you do like those silly movies and transform your son’s bedroom into a “play room”?  I sure like to think so.  I like to imagine that you rediscover that freedom you had when you first met.

I’m not saying some couples don’t kiss and kiss often.  But do they last more than a few seconds?  Rarely.  But hey, they are still good.  Kudos to the couples who have kept up their kissing game.

“Now a soft kiss – Aye, by that kiss, I vow an endless bliss.”
John Keats

One last thing.  Another reason I decided to write this post it this:  I never thought to find myself back “on the market”, so to speak at my age.  Thanks, Mick.  Dammit.

That said.  I will TOTALLY judge you on your kiss.  If you don’t try to kiss me on our first date, that might be okay, depending on how the date went…. then again, it will show me you are not that into me.  Cool.  We move on.

If you do kiss me?  I will decide then and there if we move on to the next stage.

 

——————

¹ Beauty has no importance.  When we are a lovable man, we end up with a beauty in our gaze, in our way of being while growing older.

² One must know, no matter the cost, how to keep one’s dignity.  And, despite the personal cost, to move forward, without looking back and face the destiny that disarms us.

Weekend Writing Prompt #74 – Brandish

I mostly need a nudge of some kind to write something. Thank you, Sammi!

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend. How you use the prompt is up to you. Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like. Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise. If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Word Prompt

Brandish

Challenge

Some feel it necessary to brandish their good deeds about

Like a Dolce & Gabbana logo splashed across their chests

A scream of “Look at me! Look what I did!

Can you see me? Are you impressed ?”

Yes, the deeds are appreciated for what they are

A meal, a ride, a giving of things

A kindness not echoed in the eyes nor resonating sincerity

All about appearances.

Requiring zero investment in self

Along you come

Not seeking a return on your investment

Not drawing attention to your deeds

Not wanting other than to show your love

Giving from the heart with sincerity

No questions asked

You do get a return

Love