All posts in the Crazy category

Mr. Northern-Town

Published May 5, 2014 by inanortherntown

In attempting to regain my sense of humour and get back into the blogging groove, for the month of May, I’m going to be blogging about the vast topic “Things That Amuse Me”….

I would be remiss if I didn’t write about Mr. Northern-Town and how he amuses me. No one can make me laugh like he does and he puts up with me – so that’s amusing to me 🙂

*He rarely, if ever, flinches when I exclaim “I’ve just had THE BEST idea….”
*He is a willing participant in my healthy experiments – A couple of years ago, I asked him to go vegan for a month to see how he felt. (Hungry, he felt hungry)

He is kind:

July 2002 was scorching hot and I had been pregnant with our only child for approximately 5 years; we found ourselves walking for miles to try to dislodge the tenant when we passed an ice-cream store. “This is perfect!” I exclaimed, “I need to use the washroom and the baby needs an ice cream cone.” We entered a very quaint old-fashioned ice cream store and I asked to use the facilities. The store clerk warned me that it was an extremely narrow room. They both watched as I entered bathroom, said nothing as I backed out of the very narrow single stall bathroom, still kept quiet as I turned around to back into the extremely narrow single stall bathroom. When I emerged, Mr. N-T had a double chocolate ice-cream cone and tissue ready to dry my eyes. Only much later did he tell me my muffled sobs could be heard throughout the store.

He doesn’t keep grudges:

Through a series of unfortunate events, I accidentally lit his head on fire and then added insult to injury by kicking him out of the way so I could flee to safety.

It’s not as bad as it sounds and I still consider myself mostly blameless.

We had made friends with a hairdresser who specialized in hair extensions. She wanted to branch out to the Caucasian market and I booked both of us an appointment so she could experiment. It was the summer of ’99, we had no kids, no responsibilities, and no reason not to have long braided hair.

The stylist gave him braids similar to this but longer:
Hair on Fire

The position that he held at the time required him to wear a hard hat which rubbed against his braids and his natural hair began to poke through. We called up the stylist and she instructed us to cut the braids up to where the natural hair began to poke out and then seal up the braid by using a lighter to melt the “fake” hair. It sounded like a reasonable solution. Armed with dogged determination, scissors and an extra robust lighter, I set to work.

What we forgot to take into account was the highly flammable anti-itch spray we had both been using because hot damn! beauty can be painful.

I sat on the couch and he sat on the floor directly in front of me. I took a deep breath and cut the first braid. Then holding the lighter in one hand and the freshly cut braid in the other, I sparked the lighter and watched in horror as his head lit up.


Instinctively, I placed one foot on his back and vaulted across the room before he knew what was going on. The man on fire had to stop, drop, roll and frantically pat the flames out while I rocked back and forth in the corner of the room.

Much later, when the smoke settled and we untangled the charred remains of the hair, he graciously accepted my apology and much much later allowed me to share the story. He doesn’t mind that I collapse with laughter half-way through the telling and he has to finish what I started.

He really is a keeper ❤


Electo Math!

Published February 19, 2013 by inanortherntown

We were literally down to the wire before the science project reached its shocking conclusion!

In case you ever need to complete a Grade 5 science assignment – I present to you (no charge)
Simple Circuits for Grade 5 Science

Electo Math – has 8 questions and 8 answers glued onto the presentation board:

Electo Math

Close-up view – there are brass fasteners placed at the end of each question and beginning of each answer:

Close up Electo Math

Here is the simple circuit using two 6-volt flashlights (would you believe it if I told you that we bought the last two 6-volt flashlights in town? Believe it. I was almost to the point of having someone FedEx us some flashlights. Seriously.)

Electo Flashlights

We placed everything in a simple white box – so it would be a look less re-volt-ing during the presentation.

In action – correctly answer the question and the board lights up 🙂

Electo Ta Da

Behind the scenes – the snarl of wires:

Snarl of Wires

Tonight our school board made the decision NOT to shorten our school week to 4-day (Monday to Thursday) week but keep it at the current 4.5 day schedule. I am very pleased about this decision – a shorter school week would mean more of these type projects on top of everything else.

This project is due tomorrow complete with a report and schematic drawing. On Thursday, the King Tut report and PowerPoint presentation is due. Is this a crazy amount of homework? What happens to the poor kid who doesn’t have the resources and/or parental time in order to shop, plan, create, and complete these huge projects?

I’m getting all amped up.

I’ll pull the plug on this rant and step off the lecture circuit.

Good night!


A Rant About Drivers #1

Published February 9, 2013 by inanortherntown

parking example

I saw this picture tonight on Twitter tonight from @Jon_Tupper remarking on another “parking hero” in the city and it reminded me that I have something to tell you – I drove over a meridian in the mall parking lot today.

Allow me to explain.

The traffic here is a nightmare; there is so much construction that even if the roads were clear of snow, there are no lines painted on the pavement and it seems to be one big free-for-all. For example, sometimes when driving in a one lane formation, with cars in front of me and behind me but NOT beside me, I’ll pass a construction sign saying “Left lane MUST turn left” and I’ll have a massive freak-out because – am in the left lane? I thought it was only one lane? I don’t think I want to turn left?

Not only is driving a nightmare – you should see the parking. There are piles of snow everywhere, there are no visible parking lines, and it has devolved into a free-for-all: cars are simply abandoned, sideways, front ways, taking up the space for two vehicles. It’s obviously insane. I mean just look at that picture – you get it, this is clearly not normal behaviour.

Anyway, I was at the mall this afternoon and I reversed out of my parking spot when I realized that this great big F150 on steroids had parked in the lane that I had to use to exit the parking lot. I’m totally not making this up. There were cars trying to take my spot (think mall city parking at Christmas) and I was blocked in. I did what any sensible person would have done and I drove over the lane meridian across oncoming traffic and then calmly turned onto the street to head home.

I have only been here a month – what is happening to me?

Driving Me Insane

Published January 31, 2013 by inanortherntown

I used to think that I had the smartest car in the world. Harken back to a time when I lived in a temperate rain forest and frolicked in green parks filled with gigantic evergreen trees – an almost mythical place filled with bountiful coffee shops, delicious sushi bars and cheap pedicure salons. Sob.

I digress.

Anyway, back when I drove the golden streets of the magical kingdom, two or three times a year an extreme weather warning was issued for the temperatures would dip dangerously low to zero degrees, my smart and brave car would gently notify me that I might encounter “Possible Icy Roads”. “What a miracle of modern technology” I would say to myself, “a vehicle that really cares about my family’s wellbeing.”

Now that I have been banished to the frozen tundra, I know better. This car is pure evil and will take every opportunity to mock me mercilessly.

The first time I drove here and a “Possible Icy Roads” warning was issued – I snorted ironically. “Possible Icy Roads”? Really? What gave it away? The sheets of pure ice masquerading as roads? The fact that I am reading articles like “Walk Like A Penguin“?

Still the car continued on its daily quest to shake my sanity. When I started the car, the warning would appear; then it started appearing when I would try to turn left – the warning would appear AND the back end of the car would decide to go in another direction. Now it just randomly appears: driving, attempting to turn left, waiting at traffic lights, and recently when I’ve been sitting on the couch, I can feel the car taunting me from the garage.

Icy Roads

“Possible Icy Roads” – bring it. It’s going to take more than that to unhinge me.

Walk On

Published January 25, 2013 by inanortherntown


Well today took a turn sideways.  The junior member of the family woke up with an unmistakeable need to be seen by a family physician. Nothing too worrisome but we had to find a walk-in clinic.

I located the address of a walk-in clinic and then our adventure started. It turns out it wasn’t a “walk-in” clinic per se but the second floor of a mall with about 12 medical clinics all in a row. We arrived at the door of the first clinic and was greeted by a strident note instructing us to “REMOVE YOUR DIRTY BOOTS“.   Entering the clinic in my stocking feet, I asked if the sickie could be seen only to be told that I could book an appointment for February 5th. Apparently, in this area – walk-in means walk-in and see if there has been a recent cancellation in the schedule of a physician who is taking new patients and is amenable to the idea of fitting another patient onto the list. In other words, take your filthy boots & your nasty germs and get out.

I walked the entire floor in my stocking feet holding my boots; it was mildly disconcerting.  We ended up in Emerg. 

The Canadian healthcare system is just as cumbersome here as anywhere.

Currently Reading: “Drop Dead Healthy” by A. J. Jacobs.  Pretty ironic to be reading it in the Emerg Department. There is a very touching anecdote about Mr. Jacobs’ grandfather and Barack Obama Sr.  I have loved this author ever since reading “The Year of Living Biblically” which hysterically documents his journey to enlightenment.

All told, the day is ending nicely – we are all cozied up together and cheering on the Canucks. Let’s go!

May cause liver damage

Published January 14, 2013 by inanortherntown

In all my years of being the mother of an elementary school student, I have been fortunate enough to miss the insanity that is the after-school pick-up. Do you know about this? It’s bedlam.

Here school finishes at 3:40PM on Mondays through Thursdays and 12:20PM on Fridays.

The school is 3KM from our house but along busy roads so not conducive to walking. There is a bus route; however, I thought that I would let the weather to warm up before we experience the “I missed the bus” routine.

Through trial and error, I’ve discovered that to park even remotely close to the school, I have to leave home at 3:00PM. THREE O’CLOCK. FIFTEEN HUNDRED HOURS. This is pure madness. All children, mine especially, function at the speed of snail. I can be parked and sit in that car for 50 minutes waiting for the bell to ring and the stragglers to straggle forth.

Also, in order not to die of frostbite, the car needs to be kept running. Can you imagine living on that block? Every day for an hour you are held hostage in your house with your driveway blocked by crazy parents.

Here’s one of the homeowners letting us know what she thinks about the situation:


Today I thought, I shall intentionally arrive late and beat the rush. Dumb, dumb, dumb. It took me 10 minutes to turn onto the school’s street. It was pure zombie apocalypse. Cars abandoned with the engines running, parents standing in the middle of the street attempting to stop traffic and kids crossing everywhere.

I’ve been warned that moving this far north could lead me to start abusing alcohol. I would like to suggest that if I ever find myself in need of a secondary liver it will be as a direct result of the after-school pick-up.

I best call the school bus company first thing in the morning.

Bureaucrazy is alive and well

Published January 7, 2013 by inanortherntown

The unpacking is going so slowly – so slowly in fact, that I’m bored to death with the subject. I started out with the best of intentions to unpack and display everything beautifully. I’m now at the point of setting fire to the remainder of the unpacked boxes.

Way back in 2012, when we knew that we were moving I immediately googled the schools in the area and found out that I could register ONLINE. “How fabulous”, I thought, “a school district living firmly in the future”.


We arrived at school today at 9AM – I was so glad for the first day of school, I almost skipped to the office. However, paper shuffling and technical bureaucracy greeted me promptly.
#1 – Despite the fact, that there had been a thank you for submitting the online forms email and then a personal welcome email from the school office administrator, no one had any idea that we were coming.
#2 – After finding the emails as PROOF that yes indeed we had registered – We were informed that those online forms were “old” and the “government won’t allow us to accept these documents”. We dutifully completed the reams of paperwork by HAND.
#3 – Since they weren’t prepared for us, we were requested to go home and come back tomorrow. I’ve never seen my girl move so fast in my life. She hightailed it out of the office before anyone had a chance to reconsider that particular course of action.

Can’t wait to see what tomorrow’s hijinks entails.

On a lighter note, when do you think I can start BBQ-ing?

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