The Calgary Journal
The Calgary Journal

Voices

"Center of the Universe" not a horrible place

western-look-toronto-tb As I descended the dank and narrow stairwell, two things ran through my mind, "If this is the end, I guess I had a good run." And, "Am I ever glad I'm thin, or I would have been stuck five steps ago." After reaching the bottom, I was glad to find it was indeed the underground clothing store I was lead to believe and not the drug den of my nightmares.

What I just described was one of many journeys into downtown Toronto. I spent just over two months living and working in and around "The Big Smoke." As I am sure you are aware, the city is just massive. Coming from Calgary, I had an idea as to what to expect, but like most experiences my expectations were nowhere near reality.

TAROTFACE2thumbI'm scheduled for a mammogram, I have an appointment with a cardiologist and apparently I have high cholesterol.

Why? Because I had my tarot cards read at Stampede.

I'll backtrack. My girlfriend has a Stampede tradition where every year she makes her way into the exhibition hall and has her tarot cards read. Celebrating this year's centennial with her, I was coerced into having my cards read as well. Why not? I thought.

Sure, I read my horoscope daily and I'll wish on a star here or there but do not for a moment think I go to psychics to diagnosis my medical conditions.

Trip to Asia leads to a new perspective on fitness and body image

india-bodyimage-tbWe leave behind the three young girls on the ghats at Varanasi. I'm examining the careful lines of drying henna they've drawn on my palm. I feel decorated, ornamental and finally a part of the place.

Between the heat and illness and an aversion to the food, I've lost 15 pounds over the month of travel in India. I feel confident and healthy. And when a group of young men walk by me and my pal Corinne, I feel friendly enough to smile.

bieber thumbI get it.

I should be ashamed of my love for “the Biebs,” my pet name for Justin Bieber. I’m almost 30. But I’m not at all embarrassed of my love for him.

In fact, going through the Starbucks drive-thru a couple days back, I had Bieber’s “Believe” blaring in my car as I rolled up to the window. While the barista handed me my latte, I asked her if she had yet to hear the new Bieber. She replied, “I don’t know if you’re joking or serious right now.”