January 31, 2015

The Beer Jar: Beerdel Test Pt. 4 (3 Belgian Beers)


Balancing these beers on a railing was probably the most stressful thing I've experienced this month (December), other than my Orgo exam.

This was written in December; I just dug it up last Saturday.

I have been accused of not trying hard enough to find a legitimately good lady's beer. In an effort to correct this, this episode of The Beer Jar: Beerdel Test will be commenting on not one, not two, but three entire beers, because more variety means a higher chance of finding The One. And not only are they three entire beers, but they are three entire Belgian beers - Affligem Blond, Chimay pères Trappistes: Ale Forte, and Pauwel Kwak.

Ladies, take a seat (to lessen the distance fallen when swooning from the horror), grab a bottle or three, and get ready to sip delicately.

I'm actually hugely excited to try these, and was supremely chuffed to find them at the LCBO. I've heard good things about them.

Affligem Blond

You know a beer's special when the first language on the back of the bottle is Dutch (then English, then French, then Spanish, then Italian, then Slovenian [I think]). The bottle's lovely and slim, as a bottle should be, with a simple design and easily identifiable colours that, I must warn you, can be appealing to the male [hive] mind. The alcohol content was, sadly, a little higher than your average pale ale macrobrew, which ladies should always keep as the industry standard for lady beers and frat boy classics.

January 24, 2015

Riley and Ivy


Baldwin and Sir Lafontaine talking srs bsns at Parliament.
From my May 2012 archives.

Wow, this is really late! Good thing I'm not being marked for it. I have so much schoolwork that it feels like exam season already; I'm thinking of changing updates to once a week for this semester.

Also, I ran into some severe writer's block, so I cranked out this little turd about... well, I think it's about something. It took me over a week to write this. It's barely 500 words!

Riley and Ivy

       "Right o'er 'ere, luv!" the old man said. "Th' wall."

     Riley plopped down in front of it. "This is good," she said, "Just leave me here, it's fine."

     The old man gave her a strange look, but she didn't mind. She had something to do. He grunted and left.

     The wind whispered sweetly over the crumbly brick, divulging the secrets of a butterfly on the other side of the planet. Ivy's leaves trembled, laughing at the odd joke.

     Outside their little world, time meandered by.

       "Tell me," said Riley. "Tell me everything."

There once was a plant who loved a wall.

Of course, the wall couldn't love it back. It was a wall.

The plant didn't mind. This was the price of love.

     How can a plant love?

     Through the little gestures. Supported from an early age by a flat, solid surface, it grows long and strong. It learns to embrace, creeping up and into every tiny nook, searching for vineholds to anchor itself more tightly. And then, at some point, the plant realises that it really, really wants to go to the local diner and split a slice of strawberry shortcake with its wall. Exchange letters in bottles. Share a chocolate milkshake. Things like that.

     Plants are teenage romantics.

   "Let's dance," Ivy told the wall, grabbing its hands. "I'll sing:

"How we waltz through our world of dirt
Flailing through life
Toying with hurt
We outline our shadows 
And laugh without mirth
As we dry out our lives
To sully the earth..."

     Clutch the wall. Hold on as if your life depended on it. Tell it to never leave; if it does, you'll die. Wrangle it back to you every time you argue. If it leaves, you'll die. Scream at your wall, and order it to prove that it loves you as much as you love it. One day, it will recognise the emotionally abusive relationship. It will cut its losses. Split your ends into infinitives, and never let go. If it leaves, you'll die.

     Tentative, powdery pink rays reached up from the horizon, as if God was poking the night away with light fingers. Riley frowned. "When did the sun set?"

       "Well," Ivy said, a little breathless from dancing, "it didn't."

     The last sunset was 27 years ago. It's been nothing but a 'sky of steel' ever since.

     Please don't shout for more cowbell. It's obnoxious.

       "I—" Riley said, "I... don't know what's happening."

     Ivy abruptly stopped dancing with the wall.

  Sometimes, when it's late at night
    When the moor is silent, when the wind's just right
  The faintest hint of a cowbell's call
    Floats o'er the hills and hits a wall

     It crumbled a little more from the impact. Dust trickled down the cracks, through the plant's tendrils. Those who've given up are those who let sound waves break them.

       "Do you have to go?" Ivy asked.

     Riley nodded, then remembered that plants don't have eyes. "Yes."

     She left.

       "But if you leave, I'll die."

The End

First of the Globetrotter Stories. Second, third, and fourth installments.

January 17, 2015

How to Appear Slimmer


End result inspired by this.

January 13, 2015

Anchor, and a Scene from the Bedroom


Oh Five Regular Readers, I am struck with laziness again. Since I'm a shameless self-promoter and also working on a much bigger post, I will share this track - a cover of Anchor, by Mindy Gledhill - I recorded 4 years ago for a school project. I suggest wearing a good pair of headphones to listen to it.

When I tried showing my dad the recording, he asked me what made it worth a listen. Excellent question, Dad. I will answer it shortly in list form, because lists are easy to write.

Note: One deterrent may be my inability to hit the F, which was at the bottom of my range at the time. It isn't anymore. I won that battle.

Note 2: Mindy Gledhill, I only found out much later, is a Republican. This doesn't impact her music (much), but still. Oops.

Onwards to the reasons why you should give it a listen!

January 10, 2015

The Beer Jar: Beerdel Test Pt. ? (Trail Mix Edition)


The price sticker says "Men's", but I couldn't find a bag of it.

I realise this has nothing to do with beer, but I just titled it "The Beer Jar" for consistency's sake.

While walking around at a Shopper's Drug Mart, I spotted a bag of "Women's Vitality Mix", aka The Perfect Companion for Lady Beers. Grabbing this wonderful opportunity by its neck, I stole my mum's phone (I don't have a proper camera in mine) and snapped a quick photo.

I'll just take a moment to point out that this is a "Women's Vitality Mix", while the sticker below says "Men's Energy Mix". This distinction had to be made because "Energy" is such an inherently masculine term that if it were ever paired with the word "Woman", Fenrir would break free and Ragnarok would be upon us. Similarly, "Vitality" is so feminine that if it were ever placed beside "Man", Cthulhu's great and awful tentacleness would rise from R'lyeh and give everybody beauty tips.

So, what exactly does the Women's Vitality Mix contain?

January 06, 2015

Conversations With My Parents II


"Wow," she said, "so many ducks."
They're not ducks, they're geese, Mum.

To clarify, my parents are speaking Cantonese. I've translated the best I can.


In a restaurant

                     Hey Dad, why are green bass and
                     garupa  so  soft  when  they're
                     cooked, but salmon's so tough?

Tory's Dad
                       (mimes swimming)
                     Salmon have more exercise.


At home

Tory's Mum
                       (opens curtains facing the
                     Wow, so many ducks.

                       (laughs for five minutes

Tory's Mum
                     Why is that so funny?


Tory's Dad
                       (enters living room)

                       (still laughing)
                     Dad, why is it so funny?

Tory's Dad
                     Who, you?

January 03, 2015

On Angels


Here's a passage from a Mormon author (no, not the one who wrote that thing, this is a different one):

"Once, a woman claimed a revelation for the guidance of the Church. According to her account, a heavenly being appeared to her and personally gave the alleged instructions. The Prophet Joseph [Ed. I literally just snorted out some energy drink. My sinuses are now burning.] asked her the one question, "What was the colour of the angel's hair?" And when her reply was "Red," the Prophet remarked, "There are no red-headed angels."
- William E. Berrett, Teachings of the Doctrine and Covenants

Oh William. You'll always be my redheaded angel, even if you're neither a redhead nor an angel.