Veggie Tali

Earlier today I wanted to go use the Lincoln Alexander (westwood) track to do some jogging. I couldn’t because the police had blocked off much of the school, about 7-10 police cars. There are always cops at that school, because the teens there are always getting into trouble. Guns, gangs, violence. They are so dumb. They ruin it for the good kids that want to do well in life.

October has been a whirlwind month.

Last night I had dinner with Tim at an Indian restaurant in Mississauga. We had really good food and it was dirt cheap. I felt bad paying such low prices for such good food during a dine in experience. David was there and I met his son for the first time.

I find that us young adults who pursue Jesus are all in the same boat. We work, we go to school, we handle our families and our lives, our successes and failures and dreams all in the same day. It’s nice to know other people similar to me. As crazy as I am there are other crazy people out there similar to me.


This is how I usually do Thanksgiving. I got to the restaurant at 5pm and the place was packed beyond capacity. I mean they have a 200 person capacity and there wasn’t one empty spot, even kids sitting on parents laps. The place is owned by Jimmy, a Christian who has done this kind of thing for years. He makes his restaurant completely free on Thanksgiving day from 5-10pm so that people in the community can come and have a delicious meal. What a blessing! I was a busboy at first, busing tables, which means cleaning them off and getting them ready for the next people who would be seated. There were waiters and waitresses who took food orders and delivered the food.

We served about 650 meals at least, probably more. The food was great, we had dozens of kinds of non-alcoholic drinks and great food and pumpkin pie. It was truly exhausting cleaning up and serving so many people in 5 hours. I mean the work just went on and on and never ended, I didn’t think I would make it through the night.

The paid staff there was really hard working and we had volunteers from several great churches in the Toronto area. One of the long time paid staff named Peter has a 2 year old son, he works like this 16 hours a day to provide for his family. He’s a really good guy.

It was so crowded there was hardly any place to walk and we had to move fast to get everything done in time. There were a lot of lonely people there. A lot of people who simply had nobody. Families with children who you could see were poor. Sweet people. One man got up and played guitar for an hour outside on the patio. He was very soft spoken and had a good sound.

There were a few people who were there all alone. I felt extra for them. I know how that is. We took time to chat with the people and give them smiles. There was so much pain in some of their eyes. One elderly lady, probably 75 years old, ate alone. Another younger Asian man, maybe 25 years old ate alone. He stayed for a couple of hours actually. I’m glad he did. There were all kinds of people there.

Later on in the evening I met 2 of the Toronto Argonauts who showed up to sign autographs. I don’t watch sports except for boxing and martial arts, but I was glad to meet Claude Harriott who was born in Jamaica and gave his life to Jesus. He served people their food and helped us out a lot. Signed lots of autographs especially for the children. Him and I sat down at the bar and we talked for a long while about how Jesus is changing the lives of people we know in the carribean.

Around midnight I started my drive home and I was thanking God for such a great evening and opportunity. I live for stuff like this.

You Can Be Well Educated And Still Stupid

Last night my very well educated friend was trying to tell me she thinks the rich have a secret investment that is low risk yet super high yield. For instance she says, they invest $5,000 (five thousand dollars) and gain $2,000 per month in income, zero risk. LOL. I gave her a good lecture but she refuses. From the way she responds I feel she wants to hang on and chase that false dream. One thing many people don’t understand is that if you take low risks, you get low gains. If you take high risks you get high gains. Of course you can also get high losses.

Helping Sarah Move

Happy birthday Canada!

Last week I was worried. My cellphone was not on for 5 full days because I hadn’t loaded money on it (it’s prepaid) and I was waiting for Sarah to call me regarding helping her move. Also I had no money for gas and the gas light was on. Saturday afternoon I paid the cell phone and got it turned on, filled the gas tank ($57 LOL) and paid my self-storage fees which were overdue. I was hopeful that I didn’t miss out on an opportunity to help a new friend. I was more upset about missing out on that opportunity than I was about not having money.

I worked till around 1, then I left to do my errands. At 2pm I was at Sarah’s. Paul was there also. I figured it would take about 2 hours. It took 8.

I got there and we started loading things into the car. I figured 2 or 3 trips. It took about 6 trips to Sarah’s, 2 to Paul’s, 1 to Sarah’s dad’s. Moving is always hard work, and I know how hard it is so that’s why I’m helping a near stranger move. It’s important for me to do this.

The first trip we met Sarah’s landlord. We moved in some stuff then went back to load more stuff into my car, which is a compact car but really has a lot of space. We had some good conversations, but an especially good one when we took a break for about 30 minutes while waiting for the new landlord to come back home from running some errands. We talked about some of our favourite hobbies including film making. Sarah and Paul like Anime and I’m not certain what that is.

Actually, before I forgot – I only just met Paul and Sara like 2 weeks ago. Also I found out that Paul used to go to my old church and we were both scammed by the same person and I told him that even though he lost more money than I did, I was screwed over just as much because I was left with a bad reputation.

We went to Paul’s house to deliver a gecko lizard, which I held in my hands. Yes, I Asif held a lizard in my hand. Paul has an awesome bedroom with drums and a computer and a tv with video games. He used to clean out houses and some of the things he’s found from the abandoned ones include ammunition, a sniper scope and a spent rocket, I won’t lie, seeing shotgun shells in his room didn’t bother me but I was a bit taken aback by the rocket even though it was disarmed.

Sarah and I drove to her dad’s house, even though it was a short drive away (and it was now dark) it felt like we were up north in cottage country. We lugged the bed and another (much nicer) desk up a what seemed like endless stairs.

We were all so exhausted!

We drove back, picked up Paul and then I dropped them off at Paul’s house. I drove straight to Lick’s but they were closed as soon as I walked in so I settled for Macdonalds.

I thanked God for giving me such an opportunity to help my new friends and I consider it good will to help someone who would have otherwise struggled really hard to move on their own. I know what that’s like. I really know what’s that like.

Today I’m just back to work as normal, actually it’s a holiday but yeah – I feel better doing at least a few hours of work.

I slept really well last night. Like, really well.

My Old Friend Gabriel

We had about 300+ people for service and I know some of them made decisions to serve God in a greater way. We usually have about 75 but this was a special event. Saturday and Sunday I did lots and lots and lots of chores. Yesterday I cleaned up the car, made it shiny and new looking, it took hours to clean the interior but I also fixed up some broken items and replaced things that needed to be. It really looks good on the inside now.

Gabriel and I had a chance to talk yesterday after about 8 years. LOL. He just walked right up to me. I met Gabriel not long after I gave my life to Christ and we went camping together with our church group back in like 1999 or something in Bancroft. We had to drag him kicking and screaming but he had a good time, I still have photos of the trip. He moved back to Newfoundland and spent many months in the hospital because he had tumours growing on his spine. It’s so odd to know people and then have them disappear for years only to see them again and then hear their extraordinary stories of survival and faith. Because there were so many people I couldn’t talk to him for very long and I’m afraid I didn’t get his contact information properly so I hope to see him again soon.

Singing In The Snow

So I’ve had the flu the last few days and I’ve been having a hard time keeping up with my chores. Tonight is Shan’s last night here, she’ll move out tomorrow morning, actually all her stuff is already moved. Another roommate moved out last week and a new roommate will move in the week after next so I’ll enjoy some peace and quiet while I can. There’s a nice little snow storm on right now, big fat snowflakes covering everything and I like walking around in the snow fall.

Asif The Monkey

Shan’s husband asked me to help her get a job so I’ve been going with her to different places recommending her. Tonight she came home and told me about a job she applied for on her own, she said it like this: “Asif, they wanted a reference so I wrote Asif the monkey.” I laughed at her and told her that they would not hire her for that very reason.

They did hire her though, they thought it was hilarious.

The Circumcision of Asif Zamir

I remember it vividly. I was 4 years old. It was Guyana, South America. I was living at my grandmothers house which was built in the 50’s for $500 USD. The house sat upon tall stilts because the rainy season would bring floods that would wash away houses and farms. Several of our neighbors houses were washed away and were simply piles of sticks they lived in. You could walk clearly under the house, which was dirt floors. Red ants would crawl up your legs and bite you hard, it would hurt. I like to ride my tricycle which was from the city dump. My uncle made 2 wooden rear wheels for it because we couldn’t find the wheels when we took the trike. We had lot of chickens and a goat. Once in a while the neighbors cows would break into our property and scare me, mooing loudly. Wild South American foxes and dogs would get in our property and kill our animals. More than one were killed with an ax.

One day I was minding my own business playing, and I was invited inside and asked to lay on the bare floor, which I did with a giggle at first. Then 2 cute ladies held me down, each one holding both an arm and a leg. The doctor (I would hope he was a doctor) removed my pants and underwear and grabbed hold of my wiener. That’s when I started to panic. I mean I really started to panic. I tried my damn hardest to get free and run away but they had a good grip on me. I even threatened to beat the women up. I tried making up an excuse that I needed to go relieve myself. For the life of me I couldn’t figure out what this guy was trying to do to me. Living in Guyana, in our town, part jungle, part farmland, you had to become street smart fast. People would be killed in the street and bad things would happen all the time. Kids would be killed or go missing walking to school in the morning.

You could pay a hit-man $200 USD to kill someone, far cheaper than the rates in Canada. I saw a lot in Guyana. But I had never seen anything like this. The doctor (I really hope he was a doctor) circumcised me. I felt the initial cut and screamed probably as loud as I ever remember screaming.

No pain medicine, no anesthesia. Not even a comfortable bed to lay on. When he was done I was to tired to fight. I went to sleep or fainted or something. When I came to, I got up and walked around in severe pain. What the hell just happened? I was minding my own business, living my life, doing what I do and all of a sudden I’m in this brand new situation.

Fast forward to today and I don’t remember the circumcision as a negative event, but a positive one. The doctor (I no longer care if he was a doctor) did a really, really great job. I remember the pain, and the suffering and lack of hope and it helped to mold me into a man today. This is exactly how I feel today. I wake up, have my bible time, prayer time, worship time, I go to work, run my errands, go to church, come home and eat dinner, do my prayers and go to sleep. I’ve acted with good will and in good faith towards everyone and yet all of a sudden, I’m in this brand new situation. Everything that can collapse has collapsed in 2007. Everything that can go wrong has gone wrong for me in 2007.

This year I worked everyday. I pushed myself harder than ever. I put in at least 1,000 hours of useful volunteer work. I reached hundreds and maybe thousands of precious souls for Jesus and participated in a small handful of quality missions projects that saved lives. I did the best I could, but it wasn’t enough. Church ministry went well, but work was a nightmare.

If I told you every bizarre event that happened to me in previous years, you might believe me because there were logical explanations for each situation.

But this year there are no logical explanations. Everything that can go wrong in life has gone wrong. Loss of money, friends, even self respect. In December of 2005 I had less than $400,000 in debt and a decent income. Today as I write this I’m in $3,000,000 of debt and my income is almost $0. None of my clients can pay me, there is talk all over about a deep recession worldwide. I’m suffering from a slight depression that I’m sure will catch up to me and kick my ass.

And yet in a way, I’m moving forward as planned.

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. – Exodus 14:15

The 90’s Were So Much Better To Me

One of my good friends from the 90’s, Rachel is married, her 2 children are doing well, she’s in Georgia for now but considering moving to Alaska. Jenn is doing well. We chatted for a bit and that was a fun walk down memory lane.

After talking to Rachel, I can’t help but feel hurt that the 90’s was so much better for me than this decade.

Michael (not the archangel, the other one)

In 1988 I was in Brandon Gate public school. Mr. Wood’s class. There was a black boy one grade ahead of me, in the same classroom (We used to share “pod’s” with another grade for some reason) his name was Michael. He was a rough and awful person at the time. He would get into fights and arguments and trouble all the time. One time he was fighting and he kicked a female teacher very hard in the neck. He was a huge dark skinned boy, bigger than the biggest bullies at our school. At least that’s how I remember it. Mrs. Leahy is the name of the teacher that got kicked. I thought he was such a loser and I always remembered him that way. Until now.

Fast forward to 2005, when I would regularly pray for people I went to school with, even though I don’t remember them all by name, I remember certain events or little things here and there. I was flipping through the channels and I saw Michael, of all people, on tv, giving his testimony about how Jesus changed his life. I was floored. I mean honestly I had to sit down. I was literally praying for the guy, and now here I was watching him on tv.

Just a few months later in 2005 I met him in Longo’s while doing grocery shopping. I re-introduced myself, of course he didn’t remember me from such a long time ago. I praised God for being so amazing. He takes the people who we think will never be different and he changes them. I shook Michael’s hand and went about my day. Who would think that I would ever shake his hand? He was an animal the last I remembered him. He beat up my friend Gidget’s brother Charlie. I met Gidget in 1986 while jogging. She was a champion jogger at the time.

Fast forward to last night, August of 2007, I was flipping through the channels here, the reception is very poor but sometimes but I can wiggle back of the tv and sometimes I get lucky.

On CBC the host was interviewing an ‘educator’ who was proclaiming that there is no God. I change channels and there is Michael, yes Michael on a major game show. He won over $150,000 and was giving half to his new ministry, which will help troubled youth stay off the streets via sports programs.

Jesus is amazing! Oh yeah, I forgot – I met Gidget in Woodbine center in 1997. She gave her life to Jesus to. And I’ve started going through my old yearbooks which are safe in storage, turns out a number of my old friends who were Atheists, Muslims, Hindus, etc are turning their lives over to Jesus and their lives are being transformed.

Money is gone friends are gone

This is the way life works in every country in the world: Lots of money, lots of friends. Little money, little friends.

Polish Girls Are Taller Than Me

Caroline and I went for a 3 hour bike ride on Saturday. I’ve sold almost all my valuables to make ends meet this week.

A Couple Of Turkeys

Last week Thursday Mason walked to my house after work. Took him 2 hours. I told him to enjoy that kind of energy while it lasts.

Anyway I figured we should reward ourselves with a trip to the local art gallery. It was really neat, but some art is extremely overpriced. We looked at fine art, photography, clay, wood sculptures. My favorite was a massive 8ft x 5ft play dough sculpture. Mason accidentally slammed the door on some painters painting what I believe to be a half horse half human figure.

And Mason and I found the coolest arboretum to hang out in. We sat there for like 30 minutes or more just relaxing and chatting it up. It’s like our new hang out spot in Burlington. We talked about how life would be 20 years from now, with wives and children and our own giant arboretum (with big screen tv and snack kitchen).

January and I’m Already Tired

On Friday my sister came home from school for a few days. I picked her up and then we picked up Mason and Eggbert and went to church. At church we had a fun service with worship and prayer and discussions. After we all came back to my place for a sleepover. Mason fasted from food Wed / Thur / Fri and I fasted Thur / Fri. Eggbert fasted Fri.

We watched a movie and went to bed. I slept in the kitchen and pretended I was in a space ship. The next morning I woke up and did my prayers, I made them all toast, eggs, sausages, pancakes. We then went to A&P and purchased $70 in ingredients, then bake lots of goodies for the church bake sale. I don’t believe in church bake sales, they aren’t a good idea. You spend more money on the products than you bring in. In my opinion, just give the money to church.

After we relaxed and watched some tv, ate roti and curry for dinner that we got from Bramalea City Centre. We showered and I took a nap.

Around 930pm (Yes the day went FAST) we went to watch a movie at the theatre, something I rarely do these days. Sis and Eggbert watched something with Hillary Swank (Freedom Writers) and Mason and I watched The Hitcher which is a horror. Don’t know how girls watch such boring movies. Around 1am we drove them home, and went home.

Sunday I dropped sis off to school in Waterloo and then went off to church. I took the LONG way unfortunately so it took forever.

When I got there we had a nice service, and then we sold our $70 in goodies for like $30. LOL. Church math.

My Sis is Roommates with Roaches

Sunday Sept 3, we woke up, drove gramma home, packed up Freddy’s SUV, and then drove sis to school for year 2. Her apartment (which she described to us as gorgeous with dishwasher and amenities) was a disgusting dump with roaches crawling everywhere. The poor girl apparently saw several apartments, and one was gorgeous but she signed the lease for this one. I feel bad for her.

We unpacked her stuff, setup her desk, chair, bed etc. We spent a few hours there, ate at pizza hut and then left. She slept over at Katie’s that night, and I suspect she’ll be sleeping over at Katie’s many more nights.

The next day (labor day) I worked and then went over to visit Mason and Eggbert, who had just moved back.

Mason and Eggbert and I visited sis to see how she was doing. I was disappointed that her apartment was still not cleaned or organized, and that her roommates seemed to be party animals. My sister had broken the mirror I made in 1994 shop class (grr), and she said Freddy did it. That’s what made me more angry. Is there anything I can do that my family won’t destroy and then blame on someone else?

Any way. I dropped out of high school to work so we could have some money, and I started college without getting a high school diploma. I realized that I need to get a GED in order to get my bachelors degree. So after a few years of talking about my GED (high school equivalency) I signed up for it 2 months ago. It was being held at 2180 Young Street in Toronto – the TVOntario office on the 7th floor. When I saw the big TVOntario logo on the wall I was reminded of some of my favorite childhood tv shows, and wiggling that tv antenna around so I could watch them clearly. Cucumber Club, Polka Dot Door, Today’s Special, Read All About It, Dear Aunt Agness, Elephant Club with Sharon Louis and Bram and what else…I can’t remember but there were more.

On Friday I left one hour early, but because of traffic I was one hour late for the exam. I pleaded to take the exam instead of re-scheduling, because I really didn’t know when I would have the time to come back. They accidentally put me down for the French exam so I was a bit flustered by that. Luckily I wrote my answers in English and I was able to use an English question book even though the rest of it was in French.

I did my exam and left about 1.5 hours early that Friday nite.

The next morning I woke up and left at 8am to get there for 8:45. I did my portion of the exam, finished early and then left and ate breakfast at McDonald’s. I then came back and did the next portion. There were breaks in between portions. After I had 1.5 hours to spare so I walked around downtown. I then came back and did the final portion of the exam. Leaving about 3 hours early. I thought I did pretty well, I’ll find out in a few weeks.

I drove home and then showered. I purchased a super cheap guitar at Walmart and I hope to fill another goal by it – to learn guitar.

Now honestly, this was really just half the stuff that happened these past 17 days.

Decent Weekend

I had a really nice weekend. It’s Monday now, but Saturday morning I woke up, made a good breakfast, then showered and left for Freddy’s niece’s confirmation party. The Catholics are always looking for a reason to party lol. We drove for about 2 hours in traffic because of a rain storm and corresponding accident. When we got there it was a bit weird at first because of all of the 50+ people I didn’t know, just sitting around tables chatting in Italian. We sat down, met some people and then ate for about an hour. Okay, let me say this – us brown people, maybe have 5 things at our feasts and all involve curry. These Italians, probably had 65 delicious food items. I walked around for about an hour to burn off some calories, then we sat outside for about an hour, then I came back inside for about an hour, having conversations with different people.

I even saw a young lady that looked just like Lorili Gilmore from the Gilmore Girls!

We stayed about 4 hours and then left, driving towards Casino Rama. When we got there I decided to spend about $40 (I ended up spending $60). I won nothing.

What surprised me about that casino was that there is a high roller room, where you can do a max bet of $300 per spin on a slot machine! One guy had about $4000 and was doing $60 spins at a time.

Anyway, after that we left and drove home. We had some really good conversations and it was fun. We got home and went to sleep.

On Sunday I relaxed most of the day, but put in a good 8 hrs doing laundry, chores and the dreaded – computer reformat. I finally upgraded to Windows XP. About 4 years after everyone else. I still miss Windows 3.11

Today I’m just dreading my work. Working, and dreading it! Nothing is going right. From broken down computers to orders gone missing to stupid stupid employees who are doing mostly the wrong things, I’m just not succeeding.

I love buffets

I woke up, had a small breakfast, showered and left around 10:30am. Mom, Freddy, sis and I drove to London Ontario and arrived around 12:30 only to find Eggbert was working till 2! How annoying. She told us to be there at 12. Well anyway we drove around a bit doing some sight seeing and hit a huge hail storm. I got it all on video camera.

We went to Mason’s around 2:20pm and sis worked on Eggbert’s hair until 5pm while we all chatted with her family. My hair takes 5 minutes to do, why a girls hair takes so long, I don’t know and I don’t care. We spent the time reminiscing.

Around 5pm we took some photos of Eggbert and then left. From 5-7 we drove home having some good conversations but I know some of us were getting headaches from all the driving.

We went home, I washed my face and then left to pickup Lauren and Jordyn. We brought them home to my mom’s place where we all ate a delicious lasagna dinner while Jordyn had fun running around. She was a bit fussy because it was way past her bed time. I remember when Jordyn was still learning to wiggle around on the ground, here she is walking and running and she knows a few words here and there.

We talked, took photos and video, played with Jordyn and played piano, sang songs. We tried to watch a movie (Derailed, 2005) however Jordyn was too fussy. So Mason and I took Lauren and Jordyn home. We spent some time at Lauren’s which was fun. I thought to myself – it’s been about 2 years since we’ve done this. We used to hang at her place all the time. As life goes on, these kinds of things happen less and less.

Mason and I left, picked up my sis and we went home, and slept. Mason slept over.

June 4:
Church, then lunch at a Chinese buffet. After some more good conversation mom and Freddy left for Lakeshore and Mason and I dropped sis at Joanne’s house. Mason and I drove home, where I showered and had to do a work phone call. Anyway, we started driving around, and we went downtown Toronto to do some sight seeing. Unfortunately everything was closed, and at the the last minute we decided to visit his new college campus. We had just enough time to drive back down Young Street, eat a sausage and then see Mason back on the bus towards London.

It took me a good hour to drive home as usual, but I got to listen to some fantastic songs on the car radio. Some jungle songs I haven’t heard in about 10 years. It brought back good memories.

Mason and Eggbert

Thursday May 18, it’s been about 10 weeks since I’ve seen Mason and Eggbert, a far cry from when I used to see them every day. Since they’ve moved almost 2 years ago I’ve probably seen them 3 times.

Thursday night I decided to take a nice long walk around Brampton, and I used a calling card to call Mason. Him and Eggbert were taking a walk also and I was on speakerphone enjoying their company. We discussed past adventures, and the possibility that they may move to Oakville for school. We walked for about 1.5 hours together.

Saturday the 20th, I worked until about 5pm. Mason and Eggbert arrived around 2pm downtown Toronto, and hung out with Katie (aka Skatie) while waiting for me. They went to the museum and had a lot of fun. I on the other hand was having an awful day. Nothing was going very well and I really needed some rest. At 5 I cut off from work and then prepped the house, doing chores etc. I then prepped the car. Finally at 8pm I was able to leave for downtown to pick them up. I was so tired, and so frustrated from my bad day that I got lost. Mason and Eggbert had to take a taxi to meet me where I was. I finally got meet this Katie girl after like 4 years. We drove her close to her home so she wouldn’t have to take the subway alone. We got lost as usual but it was still fun, because it was among good friends.

Around 11pm we got Katie home, and then we got home around 11:30. We then went to my mom’s to borrow her cooler and then to blockbuster and rented Chicken Little. We then went to A and P to get some food. We watched that while chatting, and my sis came home and we watched some more while chatting. It wasn’t much of a movie, more for children. We all went to bed around 2:30am.

Sunday 21st, We all woke up around 9am, relaxed a bit, went to Denny’s for breakfast, ate some good food till around 10:30, showered and prepped till about 12:30, went to A&P to get picnic supplies in the rain. We were finally on the road at 2pm. LOL. We had a fun drive through Toronto and then through Peterborough where Mason took over the driving. We shared fun stories and took photos and videos. Along the Trans Canada Highway we stopped at an old gas station. I mean super old. Using the bathroom was scary because it was so dirty.

We got into Bancroft around 5:15pm and stopped right at the Chinese restaurant I went to in 1999 when I was a young Christian. As soon as I saw it, dozens and dozens, if not hundreds of sweet, pleasant memories flooded my brain and my body, reminding me about a time when I was young and full of energy and my life was so darn simple compared to today. If I did get that $5 million last year and God asked me to trade it to go back to 99, I would.

C and her sister met us there and we all followed her to her house where we looked at a really nice lake and a graveyard. The lake was on one side, and the graveyard on the other. We took time to enjoy both the lake, and then the graveyard, reading the tombstones. We then ate some good food. We played a great game where you had to pick out instructions from a bowl and do the funny thing instructed. I had to sing a song, and hop up and down while patting my head. We all had to either do something funny or say something funny. C’s sister is hilarious! She said when her brothers make her mad she just sits on their head! Afterward we left to do some sightseeing, and Mason did a terrible thing by sitting to close to a waterfall. We were worried he could get swept up.

Anyway, we left there, came back and had a nice campfire roasting marshmallows and hot dogs. This might have been the high light of the trip. It was good, and I got some great footage on the camcorder of us all around the campfire chatting and having fun.

At 9:30 we decided to head home. We thanked everyone for the good time and gave C hugs. Her mom asked us to please sleep over the night but we couldn’t, we had to go :(

We then left with Mason driving again. It was dark, and about 45 minutes into the drive we almost hit a doe. We slowed down and shooed it off the road with the car. This was important because there were other cars on the road also and we didn’t want it or anyone getting hurt.

The drive was fun, we had some good laughs and good conversations, a few arguments. My sister and I can’t talk about politics AT ALL or it WILL start a fight, even if we are in agreement. Anyway, we kept driving, and we got lost as usual. We pulled home around 1:30am and watched some TV, and went to sleep.

Monday morning at 9:30 we let sis sleep in (we later learned she didn’t want us to) and we left for downtown Toronto. We got lost and ended up in Scarborough but quickly found our way to the station. We ate some hotdogs and McDonald’s.

At the bus station a little girl, around 8 years old was alone with all her bags. Here dad had left her in the bus line alone to get a hot dog. She was noticeably upset so I helped her take her bags to the bus and kept her company while her dad was away. Mason and Eggbert were on their way home and then after the little girl’s dad came back and they left on their trip.

I drove home and just relaxed for the rest of the day. I realized how important it is for me to have these relaxing times. And I need to do them more often and not feel guilty that I’m relaxing. It’s because I can rest and relax that I can do so much when I’m doing so much, you know?

More Missions

Dana wrote this and is allowing me to use it.
Saturday’s adventure at the missions convention was the greatest! :) B and Jon accompanied me to Toronto to take in as many of the workshops as we could. While there we unexpectedly ran into some friends!!

Asif and I had been planning for a while to meet up, but somehow we ended up not connecting before I hit the road on Saturday. So, imagine my surprise when I see Asif appearing just ten feet in front of me in one of the isles in this huge exhibition hall packed full of thousands of people!! How awesome was that?! Well, Beck and Jon ran into a couple surprise friends and family of their own in this same exhibition hall (including our uncle, a pastor in the Toronto area), so as they chatted with some of those folks, Asif and I took off to look through the gazillions of mission organizations and information booths crammed throughout the hall. As an aside, I was absolutely famished at the time, but when I heard that a tuna sandwich cost $7.75 I decided to starve instead. As Asif later commented, if I wanted to pay that much for a sandwich I could have gone to the movie theatre instead.
I was glad to see so many health and development organizations represented here, Habitat for Humanity Toronto, International China Concern, Living Water Canada, Mercy Ships (Canada), and many more.

Cambridge friends: We ran into a number of church friends from Cambridge as well. Among them was Alan whose heart is incredibly dedicated to overseas missions – he’s truly an inspiration!! We also ran into H, a social work student from church who I actually just met for the first time at MissionFest! We hit it off really well, so I look forward to chatting with her some more in the near future. :)

Half the fun of these events are always these surprise meetings with likeminded friends and family. So seeing familiar faces really gave the day a community atmosphere – I loved every minute of it!

Toronto Auto Show 2006

This is from Dana regarding the Toronto Auto show of 2006 which I finally went to. I typically plan these things month’s in advanced and then cancel at the last minute, but this time I just upped and left.

The Toronto Auto Show, as you’ve probably already heard, was a blast. (Dana wrote most of this part but I’ve taken out some names because I didn’t ask if I could use them).

I was joined by my cousins, and our friend Jay from church. Our party of five left town around 4pm so we knew we’d be arriving in Toronto during rush hour, but our spirits weren’t dampened at all. The five of us took Becky’s beautiful new Civic for its first road trip, and what better way to celebrate than by taking it to a car show!

I was really looking forward to meeting my friend, Asif, for the first time. Asif and I have known each other for three and a half years but only in a virtual context, since we originally met online. We’ve been there for each other chatting through the good times and supporting each other through the roughest times as well. Until the car show, however, we had never met in person so naturally this was going to be huge!! :)

We had also planned to meet Niagara P at the show. The poor guy, he took the GoTrain into town and walked several blocks in the wrong direction due to some misinformation from a T.O. local. He arrived at the SkyDome irked and somewhat tired. So shortly after meeting up with P at the Suzuki section (I specifically requested Suzuki as a meeting place – gotta start off right!!) he accompanied Beck, J, Ja, and Jay to the nearby Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) north building to find some reasonably priced food, while I returned to Suzuki to meet Asif.

Meeting him was SO cool!! We hit it off quite naturally…I’ve met a number of internet friends in person over the years, and I must say that meeting Asif felt the most natural. We happily conversed as we made our way through a long tunnel from the SkyDome to the MTCC to meet the others. I found Asif’s perspective on the first half of the evening quite funny, actually. Here it is, posted with his permission – naturally!

In a nutshell: It’s our first meeting and the first chunk was walking through these long tunnels and then this empty concrete tunnel then standing beside a car engine for like 45 minutes. [At which point in the conversation I made a comment that 45 minutes sounded a bit long, to which Asif responded]: Okay maybe it was at least 30 minutes but you should still call it the 45 minute story.

You got it, Asif! ;) He continued: If I had a public blog I would write about how you are much more fantastic in person and super cute!!! My favorite time was when we were walking through those concrete tunnels in the skydome – you know those ramps. I could make a whole movie right there!! I can do a comedy about people who are having adventures while trying to find their friends at the auto show.

Asif was actually referring to what happened when we reached the MTCC and met with Becky, John, Ja and Jay. We were waiting for P in the Ford section, beside that engine Asif was talking about. (I’m embarassed to admit we chose that as a meeting place; sorry to you Ford fans out there…). Anyway, after we’d had enough waiting we decided to go find him. The last we’d heard P was “drooling” in the Mazda section, so when we finally went to get him he was gone. Thank goodness Asif was there, who proposed that we split up to look for him. Asif had never met P before, but thanks to my trusty digital camera I showed him a picture from earlier that evening, and thus began our search through the sizable MTCC building. Finally, just as someone was trying to sell Asif a credit card in the Lamborghini section, Asif found P and promptly called me with the joyous news!

Little did I know our adventure would spark an idea in Asif’s sharp, entrepreneurial mind: Start an adventure game based on the events of that night!! People [will] pay money to re-live our fun adventures at the Auto Show. There will be actors and staged adventures they will have to go through. We would charge them $1000 for a 3 hour evening. Per person. (Asif: Okay okay, the pricing needs work) [We’d include] scavenger hunts [such as] finding Niagara P because he has some kind of clue about something important. Plus at the same time they have to run from possible fake zombies. Michael Douglas did a movie about it and in the movie he pays $1,000,000 for like a one week fantasy vacation [referring to the movie, “The Game”].

Part three: Soon after finding P, Asif left for home and the rest of us continued taking in the show – we checked out all kinds of cars, we laughed, we hung out, we relaxed. Ja drove us home and entertained everyone along the way. He’s a driving instructor, so he had lots of stories to tell! Unfortunately I was so exhausted that I slept for most of the trip home, but I periodically woke up to the group laughing at some joke of his… I was too tired to catch his jokes, but I smiled anyway. It was such an awesome night! – End

Okay back to me (Asif Zamir) Ha ha! What a great time I had. I picked up Freddy around 5:30 and we left for downtown. Parking was difficult to find but we found some in a hotel down the street. Anyway we took the free shuttle to the dome, paid our $20 admission fee’s and headed inside with 0 (zero) wait time. What was hillarious to me was the people who paid $18 on the internet for convenience ended up in an overcrowded slow moving lineup to redeem their tickets. I heard one guy complain that he was waiting in line for over 35 minutes. All to save $2! What’s wrong with these people? I would glady pay triple to bypass a line anyday. Anyway I ended up spending most of the time looking for Dana and then standing by this 750 horsepower Ford engine. I really didn’t get to look at many cars. Doh! It was super fun and I hope to do it again.


I watched a fantastic Hungarian film (English subtitles) called Kontroll (1993). The storyline was about a group of friends who worked in the Hungarian subway systems as ticket checkers. In Hungary there are no turn-styles or official way to verify someone has paid for a ticket other than to have someone else check. Well it’s a very dangerous job, they get poked with needles, beaten up and at least threatened by people who have not purchased a ticket or who simply do not want to show their ticket stub. (sounds like a typical night walking around Malton) I told a bunch of my friends that we could all go and work there for a while to have adventures. They reminded me that they should go, but that I should stay here because my life has already had too much adventure. I agreed.

Then today I thought up of another fun adventure we could all have: If we had a large cruise ship it could double as a treasure hunting ship. I heard there are more than 1,000,000 ships that sunk and have not been discovered. I wish I could leave for this job tomorrow. Things at work are really unstable.

I hear that every month, 1500 pastors quit their job in North America. Burn out being the number one reason. I’m there. I want to help save everyone around me and in return I myself will need saving. I’m there.

God Bless America!

I woke up in the morning, ate breakfast and headed straight to work. There is always too much to do. In fact I had to switch my “to do” list from small note paper to large note paper.

I did my emails, my phone calls, paperwork, computer work, research and errands (banking, post office etc.) I find that sitting in heavy traffic wastes about 2 hrs a day of my time.

Around 3pm I was finished working. Way behind schedule, though satisfied that I did a good amount of work for the day. Lingering in the back of my head is the thought “I wish I had done even more this week.”

I packed my clothes into my new suitcase which at the time of purchase was super cute, however way to small. I unplugged my water fountain and was on my way.

By 4:30pm I was on the road. Headed down the 401 toward Mason. I made a detour in London to finally meet my 83 year old pen pal of 8 years, Daphne. We’ve been snail mailing regularly since the 90’s and she’s so fun to talk to. We exchanged photos and did a few phone conversations here and there. What does a mid 20’s brown man and a mid 80s white lady have in common? Thanks to Jesus we have tons in common. At her apartment we ate cookies and drank instant coffee while chatting about all sorts of great adventures from her past, and my future plans. Daphne is amazing, she showed me her binders of missions work, with over 7,000 (yes seven thousand) total pages of adventures for God. My binder only has a few hundred pages. Over the years she’s saved all the letters I’ve sent her, and I’ve saved all of hers in my treasure box. She’s lived her entire life for God. Her husband died a few years ago and she no longer drives but she dreams about maybe going to Australia for one last mission trip. I prefer being friends with people like Daphne over people my age who only drink and go clubbing. Older people have a better perspective on life.

Around 7:30pm I left and picked up Mason who lives way out into the country. We were driving off when he asked if I’d like to go say goodbye to his mom and Eggbert.

Around 8pm Mason and I were on the road. He kept asking where we were staying, and along the way we would see “Holiday Inn” everywhere so I told him we would stay at Holiday Inn. I actually did think we were staying there because I thought that’s what I booked online.

Anyway, we got to the USA Michigan border around 9:30pm and they asked us to pull over while they searched our car. I was nervous because we weren’t allowed to be present while they searched our car and I was wondering what would happen if they simply stole our $500 in cash or planted something on us. I obviously watch too many movies about this stuff. It happens to others I’m sure. 95% of the people waiting for their car to be checked were non-white. Just saying.

Anyway, we were on our way about 30 minutes later and the border officials were perfectly nice. We toured through Michigan, and then a long drive through Ohio HWY I-80. Wow! It was fantastic. It was really really good. Nothing better than a long drive in the middle of nowhere, it really clears your mind. Since Mason moved we’ve been mostly chatting online, you’d think that we’d be chatting the whole way but for this long stretch of road there was complete silence as both of our lives are at turning points.

What was hilarious was that we stopped at a toll booth for a toll road, which was unexpected. I was worried that it would cost us about $150 in tolls because in Canada we have Highway 407 which is extremely expensive. Mason and I drove on it (407) for about 45 minutes and it cost about $40.00. And today we were to drive on this US toll road for about 3 hours! Well needless to say I was worried. Anyway I asked the lady in the booth approximately how much we might have to pay and she calculated for about a full minute with a calculator. I thought “Oh boy it’s going to be a lot”. Well anyway, she finally told us “It might be up to $2.30”. Oh we laughed and laughed. I think I may have even said out loud “God bless America”.

We stopped at a truck stop to get some food because we wanted to make our road trip official – but it was really nasty in there. We couldn’t stand it so we left, but before I did, I purchased a lotto ticket from a vending machine, which is something we can’t do in Canada (that I know of). I won $2 on a $1 ticket however they wouldn’t let me cash it in because apparently the business hours were closed for cashing in lotto tickets in Ohio.

Anyway about 50km later we were at a familiar sight – McDonald’s. It was great. Vending machines of all sorts, a shoe buffer in the bathroom. We took some fancy Indiana catalogs from a display rack and then ordered our food. The worker took our order with pencil and paper, and then added it up that way. At first we thought we were in real Amish town but later found out the cash registers were down for the day. He looked Amish so I’m not sure what to believe. I also remember the lady in the tollbooth used a hand held calculator and didn’t have a modern register. She used a pen and paper also.

Anyway, as we sat down to eat, Mason showed me the Holiday Inn brochure he picked up and went on and on about how cool it was with the pool and hot tub and Internet and arcade etc.

Anyway we continued our drive and had to take a big detour through some Ohio city because of construction. It was fun but we were really behind schedule.

We pulled into long straight Indiana Amish roads about 2:30am. It was so peaceful and nice. About 3:30am we pulled into the Holiday Inn and the lady there explained that all of her reservations were checked in already. LOL. Anyway I was beginning to worry. We went right across the street to Ramada Inn and finally got some closure – we had a real reservation there! Ha!

At 4am I was in bed trying to sleep, but I couldn’t. Anyway around 6:30am my pal Margaret called, she was in the lobby with donuts (yuck, she didn’t realize that I can’t stand sugar in the morning). Well I told her we had barely slept a wink and we would meet up with her later. I felt extremely bad about this. See she was there because I promised her we would help her with her ministry that hands out coffee and donuts to people in the morning and saying nice things to them. It’s part of a church initiative. I can’t explain how badly I felt for not being able to do it. It wasn’t just the lack of sleep that night, but so far this year I haven’t been getting the sleep I need. I’m over working like crazy. I’ve gone overboard and it’s making me sloppy.

We slept for a few more hours and though still extremely exhausted from the long drive and not-so-good sleep, we woke up, showered and got ready for our day.

I walked through the hallway towards the lobby, and saw Margaret fidgeting with something in her jacket. (A hat she had knitted for me.) We exchanged hugs and talked for a few minutes before heading back to my room to meet Mason. Well, after that Margaret drove us to her house where we got the grand tour, and met with Emily: a friend who works in a factory by day and lives in a beautiful house she commissioned herself. Emily is full of spunk. I learned later on she even does such things as skydiving! Wow! I won’t even jump on a trampoline.

We met Anna, we met Sarah, a black girl who reminded me of Lauren. We then spent a few minutes deciding where to eat lunch while I took pictures of one of the super fat cats they owned.

They decided on a Chinese buffet. At the buffet we ate some really good food, had some good conversations about Indiana, Canada, road trips, street gangs, Jane and Finch and a whole page of other conversations. American people have heard of Jane and Finch which is really sad for Canada. After we ate one of the most sumptuous buffet meals ever in a really nice place, the bill came, and I figured once again that it would be just like Canada – about $45.00 each person. Wrong again, It was $6.00 per person including taxes and drink. I realized that some places in the world simply have a lower cost of living. Obviously if we were in New York City we’d be broke by now. But honestly, God bless America.

We paid and then left for our next destination: The Old Bag Factory. It was closed when we got there. Apparently everything closes early in Goshen during the weekends. So we went to a nearby store that was very interesting. This store had products from all over the world, but paid the creators fair prices for their work. The store was non profit and was run by volunteers.

Anyway after spending a good hour there I was really bored (not to mention exhausted). We went to a Christian coffee house to meet Trea and her baby, Gav. I had a strawberry smoothie while we all chatted, for about an hour or more. It was so nice to meet all of these people especially since I had heard so much about them over the months. Also, a christian coffee house – only in America. This kind of store wouldn’t survive 1 year in the Toronto area, no way. Rights activists would have it shut down for one reason or another.

After all of this we headed over to Blockbuster to pickup some videos. It seems like Blockbuster in Indiana had way more of a selection that Blockbuster here in Canada. I’m not quite sure. Anyway, it took about another hour to get our videos because they had to sign me up with a new membership card because my Canadian card wasn’t valid here. We then went to a large grocery store to get snacks, another errand that took about an hour. I wanted to get some fresh cut fruit however Mason wanted some junk food. Well they had had a huge selection because they had 1 isle dedicated to sugary drinks, another isle dedicated to chips and another isle dedicated to candies. Massive 3lb bags of candies even! Is there a health crisis in America yet? Oh yes and I shouldn’t forget, they have 3ltr bottles of soda here compared to our 2lr bottles! Wow! And you can even purchase real liquor in the grocery store, something you can’t do in Canada that I know of. It’s just right there in the regular isles. Not that we purchased any.

Anyway after our amazement we left and went to the hotel, nobody else was going to be joining us because they all had previous plans. I was too tired to argue about it.

We watched the first movie called 11:14 (2003). An excellent dark comedy with many twists and turns. After we started a zombie movie which really sucked. Half way through that Sarah called us and invited us to Steak and Shake for a snack. I was almost too tired to go but I went anyway. I had a tuna melt, Margaret had cheese fries, Mason had cheese fries also (I think). Anyway we then met Sarah’s ex boyfriend who now does work for Comedy Central. We chatted for about another hour, and then Margaret drove us home. The steak and shake was packed. Groups of friends just eating and chatting. I like to eat and watch tv. Margarets group likes to do this thing where you pay for your meal and you pay for a strangers also, and if possible give them a note that says God loves you. So we did that, it was neat and I promised to do it more often.

My goal was to take about 100 photos during the trip, however as luck had it I took about 20 photos and only 5 came out nice.

Well when Mason and I got to the hotel, we finally had a chance to look around. We toured around to see the gigantic swimming pool, the well stocked arcade, and other amenities including bunny rabbit and bird-in-a-cage. Mason logged onto the hotels internet on his Palm Pilot so we could look up a good map to use for tomorrow’s driving home. He’s so into technology and I’m not really anymore. Not so much these days. Give me a good old paper map, a pad of paper and pen.

Around 11pm I eased into bed while watching “Unique Whips”. Unique Whips is about an auto customization company in New York called Unique Autosports. They do all kinds of car customizations. I try to watch that show every time it’s on now.

Sunday morning: We woke up around 8am. Still with a sleep deficit but at least it’s not that big anymore. We ate some toast in the breakfast room then I showered (by the way, awesome hotel for the price, unbeatable). Mason and I packed our things, tidied up the hotel room, and checked out.

We warmed up my gorgeous 1998 Mercury and it sputtered for a while, made me a bit nervous (it was cold out) and then as it warmed up it started to sound beautiful (for a car that is). You know the car didn’t give an ounce of trouble the whole trip, I was so glad. With my luck we should have gotten 5 flat tires. Margaret pulled up about 9:35am and we followed her on a 30 minute drive into the city for church. We pulled up to a large building and as we were walking in, I gave Margaret a Canadian loonie and toonie. For 15 months she didn’t believe that those were the real names so I was finally able to prove it to her.

It’s funny how something can be very real to one person and complete nonsense to someone else.

While coming into the church we were greeted with handshakes, coffee, donuts, a bulletin (which I might still have). Apparently visitors even receive a welcome package with a music cd. I was very impressed. Talk about VIP welcome. The worship was really good. One of the songs I couldn’t get out of my head went like this:

The highest of heights to the depths of the sea
Creation’s revealing Your majesty
From the colors of fall to the fragrance of spring
Every creature unique in the song that it sings
All exclaiming

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God
All powerful, untameable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim
You are amazing God

Who has told every lightning bolt where it should go
Or seen heavenly storehouses laden with snow
Who imagined the sun and gives source to its light
Yet conceals it to bring us the coolness of night
None can fathom

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name
You are amazing God
All powerful, untameable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim
You are amazing God
You are amazing God

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God
All powerful, untameable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim
You are amazing God
Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God
Incomparable, unchangeable
You see the depths of my heart and You love me the same
You are amazing God
You are amazing God
The song is called Indescribable by Christ Tomlin

Now came time for communion. They got out a big cup filled with juice and a giant stick of bread. I’ve done communion hundreds of times but this was different. I leaned over to Margaret and asked “are we all going to drink out of that cup?”. She laughed and explained that everyone breaks off a piece of bread and then dips it into the cup. I was relieved. Margaret later told me she saw the look of fear on my face when I was asking her about it.

The pastor gave a fantastic sermon from the heart. I was impressed that nobody in this church of about 500 adults wore a suit. Mason was the fanciest dressed haha! The pastor talked about real Christianity vs. people who just say they are a Christian / Catholic. After the service we took a tour of the church while wishing it was my own home church. Mason said that he wants to move to Indiana just to go to church there. I agreed. A good church will do that. It makes people sell their homes and move. I wonder how many people moved because Jesus lived in a certain place. I bet a lot. The bible says that people came from all over the world just to meet King Solomon. How much more would they want to hear from the Lord Himself.

After church we all drove to Blimpies which was like a Subway Restaurant, (Mason now doing all of the driving). We met Jimmy and ate some subs. I had the tuna again. I know, I need to try new things. We listened to Mariah Carrey on the Blimpie stereo system. Afterward we went to Emily’s to finally see her custom made house I’ve been hearing about for the past 15 months. I got the grand tour and I was extra impressed. She had about an acre of property backing right onto the forest, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, hardwood and plush carpeting. Beautifully furnished with old woods. A modern home with old world charm. The backyard view was amazing. What impressed me the most was that this young American girl was such a go getter. She wasn’t concerned with finding a man, she just worked hard, built up her own house, her own land, her own furnishings. She follows God and nobody bosses her around.

Every road trip has to come to an end. I was sad because it was 1pm and time to leave if we were to stay on schedule. I took some more photographs, gave Margaret a hug, and then we left. Mason had an easy time driving through I-80, then I-69, a different route than which we came with. The fact that it took me 15 months to do this trip concerns me. During the drive home, I was sad, to tell you the truth. I wished my friends lived closer to me. Even Mason lives about 2 hours away now days. Worst than this, years before my friends and I would just drop everything on a whim to hang out, that’s not the case today. So many responsibilities, so much to do, so many conflicting schedules. Everyone has to check their calendar. Emergencies come up, some friends have children, others have cancer.

We got to the Canadian border around 6pm, however there was a massive traffic jam there so we didn’t pass through till about 7pm. Frustrating to just wait in traffic!

We stopped for gas and got some donuts / coffee which I figured I would need. I was fairly quiet along the ride home except for going on and on to Mason about how excellent the trip was. Our long drive there was awesome, meeting excellent people who I had been hearing about and the simple fun we had.

I dropped off Mason to his house around 8:30pm and left right away. Eggbert had really wanted me to stay for dinner, she tried and tried to convince me but I was too tired and I had work the next day.

On the way home I was mostly silent except for my praises to God. It was a special weekend for me. A much needed mini vacation and some spiritual therapy. I kept singing the verses of the new song I learned;

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God

I picked up some fast food and pulled into my house around 10:30pm. Exhausted but so refreshed spiritually.

Permanent Solutions

A friend told me this story recently. I don’t know if it’s real or not.

There was this guy, kind of a bully who was acting a fool. Thinking that he could say whatever and do whatever to whoever, he went about his terrible ways month after month, year after year. Unfortunately for him the person he was mistreating had some interesting friends.

One day those interesting friends paid the guy a surprise visit. When they arrived they tried to reason with him for hours. But the guy couldn’t be reasoned with. So they handcuffed him and pointed 2 guns at him, a handgun and an M16 assault rifle. They asked, no, they pleaded with the guy to be nicer. The guy agreed.

Daydreaming in Art Class

When I was 16 years old I sat in the office of this newish company listening to one of the founders going on and on about what he was going to do. He used to call me up and ask me for business tips. I would give him the best tips I could think of. I had nobody to call and ask for help. I was on my own from day one. This is why it’s so important to use a business consultant. Today I saw in the news that his company generates sales of over $350 Million. I don’t know if he makes a profit from that, but if he kept to his plan, he could be earning upwards of $35 Million after taxes every year. Wow. I went to his brand new building which is along hwy 401 going towards Toronto, it’s almost unbelievable to me. He’s only leasing it but still, I remember his old office with stained up drywall and old carpet and now this gorgeous little glass building. Again when I was 16 years old there was another company in Markham that used to boast to me about how they made $500 Million in annual sales at the time. I told them that they were so mean to people that they probably won’t last. This month I found out they went bankrupt and lost their beautiful building.

Mason visited this month, I met him at a mall and we watched The Corps Bride. I’ve become concerned about my prostate health. Art classes are going well. The class is small, but a lot of fun. It’s like a mini vacation for me. My teacher is a full time artist, he earns his income from art. When I was a child, my teachers thought I would earn my income from my paintings. So did I. But those dreams were dashed, and probably for the best. Although my teacher says his cheapest painting is $1,000. Hmmm.

I sit in art class and I daydream about everything. Which is the same as in high school, I daydreamed during art class then to. My childhood, my current life, my future. Important people in my life, possible wives. My art teacher in high school was super awesome, she liked to listen to the Cranberries on cassette tape and she let me have my own personal tape player so I was always in my own world. My friend Steve lent me some of his music, a style of music called Jungle, and then Nirvana. Another girl gave me an REM tape to borrow. My friend Tony gave me his old radio that had AM, FM and shortwave. This whole month has been about me daydreaming the “what if’s” of life.

Go asif, go asif, go go go asif!

In high school one of the math teachers, who was also a computer science teacher and also a gym teacher wanted me on the track team, but I couldn’t, I had way too much on my plate already.

I frequently jogged on the schools track though. My schoolmate Danny had a house not far away, overlooking the track. As I would run, he would yell out the window “go asif, go asif, go go go asif!”. I wish I had that motivation now. I feel like I’ve lost some of my passion. I’ve been getting paid constantly from the consulting project I finished almost 12 months ago and although I am working hard during the day, I’m not really pushing for anything like I used to. I’m just coasting. I have several things going but I’m not as on fire for my work like before. Part of the reason is that I’ve been working 7 days a week for the last 2 years on a project that’s taken everything out of me and will hopefully pay off very well.

I have an investment project from 2001 that is finally going to conclude at the end of this year plus I have several other ideas for projects I’d like to start, but I’m sort of just dragging my feet. I go to my mailbox every week to pickup cheques. I’m doing some neat missions projects as usual.

I’ve been working like a madman since what, age 6 or 7. So maybe a short slowdown is nothing to be concerned about. I’ll just try to enjoy it.