Vive La Différence!

rose colored glasses

When we’re young, we seek out the opposite sex, definitely wearing our rosiest glasses, while we check each other out.  Both sides are on their best attraction-behaviour, utilizing all the skills available in their arsenals, presenting the most advantageous image possible, because we are looking for “The Right One For Me.”  True love!  They lived happily ever after!  Yeah.  Right.  Don’t get me wrong – I count myself blessed to have had the greatest husband in the world – for me, at least.  It was NOT because he agreed with everything I thought, felt, said, or did.  (Because he didn’t. And I’m glad he didn’t.)

We’re not only careful of how we look, act, and react, we’re also carefully watching Him or Her to see how they handle all situations and events.  We watch every gesture, every action and reaction as to what was said or done, or what we hope was really meant by what was said or done.  Then we can rehash all this information privately, sifting through it, and measuring our compatibility.  We can learn from these encounters, adjusting how we see things, do things, to put ourselves in the best possible light to be totally accepted by our chosen ones.

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Well, some of us do.  Some of us DO go through all those rituals above, while “looking”, but some of us do not make a choice based on what we have found out about the one under observation.

Some of us are instead hit with a double whammy of a lighting bolt and voilá! We instantly know that He’s the One!  She’s the One!. No testing required! The whole search issue goes away if both feel the same lightning bolt at the same time.  I think True Love At First Sight is real, but rare.  I know that’s what my husband and I experienced when we first became aware of each other.  (Although, to be honest, he did tell me he was kind of following me around and checking me out, and well – stalking me, I guess you would say, for several weeks before we actually met.)

Maybe our meeting wasn’t so fated after all — maybe it was the result of meticulous planning on his part, but hey!  I still felt the lightning bolt, and if he felt his lightning bolt earlier than I did, who’s to say it wasn’t the same lightning bolt with a time-delay?

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So, having been lucky enough to have met each other and Knowing, and acknowledging that there was no more shopping to be done, except where and when to go for the Happily-Ever-After part of our lives, you would think there would never be any problems between us, right?

Well, almost.  People spend all that time in searching for each other – not to find someone who is the same as they are, but to find someone who is different, but compatible.  They want someone who makes up for their shortcomings;  who finds it easy to fix the plumbing or the car, if they can’t;  who handles the finances well, if they can’t budget, who has good social skills, or a sense of humour, – whatever’s missing in the partner.  Whatever each one lacks, he or she seeks in the other, to complete themselves so they can work as a powerful, united unit. They may not even consciously know this is what they’re doing, but it’s part of the ritual mating game, part of the plan.  The result should provide a huge dose of mutual admiration and attraction for each other, that never wavers, and that is the magical, successful formula for the “happily ever after” part, right?

Right.  So why would we want to change our partner so that he or she thinks, acts, responds to and does things in the same way we ourselves would?  Yet, people do this, all the time, alas.  Each time they do, they brush off a little of the magic foo-foo-dust that makes things work so well in the beginning.

4063be125c37db1886027dd8d06a185cI had wise parents, both strong, totally compatible, a rock-solid, ulta-romantic team, for sixty years.  Mom said to me, “You’re in a corporate partnership now, where sometimes shares can change hands, so that one time he’s the right person in charge, and another time you are, according to the situation and your abilities to manage the day-to-day marketplace of life.”  Or words to that effect.

Dad said to me, “Marriage is like pushing a square block down the side of a mountain.  At first it will bounce all over the place, changing direction, with chips flying everywhere, but as it progresses down the mountain, it begins to round itself out, and starts to run smoothly down a straight path to the bottom.”  It’s the flying chips you have be careful of, naturally.

We were lucky enough and canny enough to realize that when two strong people marry, there really isn’t room for two CEO’s, so we each held onto the roles we were best suited for, and the square block started getting rounder.  We stayed a team throughout our marriage – maybe not as perfect as Mom and Dad did, but pretty solid all the same.

BUT… that having been said — there are still some questions that haven’t been answered for me.  They don’t really make too much difference in our day-to-day lives, but they are a little bit weird to me. And these “differences” seem to be universal, when I speak to my married female friends.

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Why does the male of the house absolutely HAVE to control the remote for the T.V., the VCR, the sound system, or any other gadget with a control?  It’s almost as if Crazy Glue comes with the remote and when the package is opened, he immediately applies the glue and says, “Can’t help it.  It’s just glued to my hand.  Guess it has to stay there.”  And to make his point, I think he would actually walk out of the room with it, take it to bed with him, if there was any dispute.

Why can’t a man ask for directions?  When travelling in unknown territory, in the middle of a rainstorm, with visibility at near-zero, towards a destination that must be reached by a specific time, knowing that you are already a little late… why can’t a man ask for directions?  And why, if the wife is the designated navigator is it her fault is he didn’t follow her directions?

Why, when clothing hampers were made to throw our soiled clothes into, do they end up in front of, behind, beside or on top of, but never inside?

The toilet seat.  ‘Nuff said.

Why do these hale, hearty men, disintegrate into whiny little kids when they get a cold? (“I’m sick, take care of me.”) Accompanied by moaning, ghastly throat and cough sounds….

Why do men never put things back in their proper place?  From clothing to dishes to garden tools? And then ask their wives to find it for them?

But on the other hand, I know my husband had a few questions of his own.

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Fotolia_31549298_Subscription_XXL1Why do women have such a shoe fetish?
Why do I have to have to tag along on her endless shopping or window shopping sprees?
Why do women want to talk all the time?
Why do women cry at the drop of a hat?
Why do women always have to have the last word?
Why are women on a life-long diet?
Why do women say “nothing” when you ask them what’s wrong?

I think the differences between us are the real strengths that keep us together.  In time, as that square block is rolling along, chips flying here and there, sides getting smoother and rounder, I believe the reason for the harmony is that we accept the differences, and ignore them, or genuinely admire them, or fondly – I said fondly – make fun of them – in a very gentle, non-antagonistic way, of course. When our beloved absolutely knows he or she is loved for who they are and what they think and do, and vice-versa, that stone just keeps on rolling.

So, accept the differences, tolerate them, live with them, and Vive! them.

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And keep on, keepin’ on

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WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID:

A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs. A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she does not need, but it’s on sale.

A man has six items in his bathroom. A toothbrush, toothpaste, razor, soap, shampoo and towel. The average number of items in a typical woman’s bathroom is 337. A man can only identify 20 of these.

A woman has the last word in any argument.  Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.

A woman worries about the future until she has a husband. A man doesn’t worry about the future until he gets a wife.

A successful man is one that makes more money than his wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man.

A woman marries a man expecting he will change but he doesn’t. A man marries a woman expecting that she won’t change but she does.

A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the trash, answer the phone, workout, read a book and go to the mall. A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.

A woman knows everything about her children. She knows about dentist appointments, romances, best friends, favourite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams. A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.

Women are never wrong.  Apologizing is the man’s responsibility.

Women do NOT want an honest answer to the question, “How do I look?

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WHY A MAN HAS GOOD REASON TO BE HAPPY

–    Their last name stays put.
–    The garage is all theirs.
–    Wedding plans take care of themselves.
–    Wedding dress $5000.  Tux rental $100.
–    Chocolate is just another snack.
–    He can never get pregnant.
–     He can wear a white t-shirt to a water park
–    He can wear NO shirt to a water park
–    Car mechanics tell him the truth.
–    He doesn’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt.
–    For a man, wrinkles add character.
–    People never stare at his chest when he’s talking to them.
–    New shoes don’t cut, blister or mangle his feet.
–    He has one mood all the time.
–    His phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat.
–    He knows stuff about tanks.
–    A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase.
–    He can open all his own jars.
–    If someone forgets to invite him, he or she can still be his friend.
–    His underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack.
–    Three pairs of shoes are more than enough.
–    The same hairstyle lasts for years, even decades.
–    He only has to shave his face and neck.
–    He can play with toys all his life.
–    He has one wallet and one pair of shoes in one colour for all seasons.
–    He can wear shorts no matter how his legs look.
–    He can “do” his nails with a pocket knife.
–    He has freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.
–    He can do Christmas shopping in 25 minutes for 25 relatives at noon on December 24th.  (N.B. – but someone else does the wrapping, of course).

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(Ok, I admit I wrote this quite awhile ago, when chips were still flying off that rolling rock…)

WHY THE MEN SHOULD NOT BE SHOT
or
CREATION

When God first made the world, my dear,
He fooled with this and that,
And, just for fun, pulled Adam out
Of His celestial hat.

’Twas just a joke, all women know,
(I’m sure you will agree —)
and as to why man’s still around?
Well, listen, dear, to me.

With animals, God fixed and patched
To make them all just right;
And God left Adam to the last,
Then settled for the night.

When, in the morning, God awoke,
It was a lovely day.
He fashioned Eve’s perfection
From celestial modelling clay.

He was so proud of how she looked –
His masterpiece, at last!
So Gabriel raised his golden horn
In mighty trumpet blast!

God then returned to Adam,
To crush him back to dust –
But Eve, with pity, stayed His hand
From it’s downward thrust.

She pleaded for companionship,
She pleaded for a toy,
She asked God, “Let me be a girl,
And let him be a boy.”

His eyes full of compassion
For His plaything of the day,
God said, “Oh, what’s the harm in it,
If I let him stay?”

And so He took from Eve, and gave
to Adam what he’s got —
That one and only reason why
The men should not be shot.

© E. J. Finn / Collie

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Hello again. It’s EJ’s daughter here with a few of “Vive La Différence!” themed tunes for you. First we have a great Irving Berlin song “Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)”, written for the 1946 Broadway musical comedy, “Annie Get Your Gun”.  The story is a fictionalized version of the life of Annie Oakley and her romance with fellow sharpshooter Frank Butler, who both starred in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. This version is from the 1950 movie of the play.

1950 – Betty Hutton and Howard Keel battle it out with “Anything You Can Do” (lilithip/YouTube)

I love SuperHero/SuperVillian movies so I couldn’t pass up this version of the same tune played over scenes from the 2013 movie “Thor: TheDark World”- starring Chris Hemsworth (Thor) & Tom Hiddleston (Loki).

2013 – “Thor & Loki * Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)”. Hope you get a chuckle out of this video with brothers Thor and Loki showing their sibling rivalry!  (DailyAsgardianNews/YouTube)

This next song was a 1967 hit for Johnny Cash and June Carter. It’s called “Jackson”, written in 1963 by Billy Wheeler & Jerry Leiber.  The version I picked was a live performance on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show in 1980. It’s about a couple in the midst of breaking up, but Johnny and June share a kiss at the end just to let you know it’s all just in fun!

1980 – Johnny Cash & June Carter perform “Jackson” live on TV (Johnny Carson/YouTube)

For my final pick, I’ve chosen another “blast from the past” with “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off” from the 1937 movie musical “Shall We Dance”. I love Fred Astair, especially when paired with Ginger, hope you do too.

1937 – Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers singing & (roller-skate) dancing to “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off” (PepsiPrime/YouTube)

Paws for Awhile

After all is said and done, I think the ideal mate (or at least best friend forever) is — a rabbit!  Differences just don’t seem to matter to them – they not only get along with each other, they get along with everybody!

Bunny and cat

Bunny Rex and cat in HobbitlandRex bunny and cat (looking for Hobbits perhaps?)

bunny and chicks(bestfunnychannel)Bunny and chicks (bestfunnychannel.blogspot)

Bunnies and chickens (milkandhoneyfarm)Bunnies and chickens (milkandhoneyfarm)

bunny and dogBunny and Dog

Bunny and ElephantBunny and Elephant

Bunny Ben and fawn Bambi (Svetlana Harper)Bunny and FawnBunny and Frog (Cottonginny)Bunny and Frog (Cottonginny)

bunnies and goatsBunnies and goats

Bunny and Guinea Pig (cute-overload)Bunny and Guinea Pig (cute-overload)

bunny and hedgehog

Bunny and Hedgehog

Bunny and HorseBunny and Horse

Bunny and Simba lion cubBunny and Simba the lion

bunny and monkeyBunny and the Monkey

Bunny giant and pygmy pigsBunny giant and pygmy piglets (Richard Austin)

Bunny Champis herding his sheepBunny “Champis” herding his sheep

Bunny and SquirrelBunny and Squirrel

Bunny and SwanBunny and Swan

bunny and turtleBunny and Turtle

rbunny and wallaby (mygratefulness)Bunnies and Wallaby (my gratefulness)

And I’ll leave you with that note…..

until next time

xxoo ej

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Ice Is Not Nice

The Ice-Is-Not Nice Storm

Okay, I’ll admit that sometimes ice is nice.

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In a drink, or a rink, or a snow-cone, popsicle, ice cream. As an icicle, or a sculpture in a winter festival. On a sprain, on a hot day in any way, shape or form. It’s even beautiful on trees and shrubs and other things, especially when you’re in a warm house or car, looking out.

2013-12-22 21.13.30_2In fact, the beauty of ice-coated limbs and twigs can be breathtaking!

Toronto Ice Storm 3 Roozbeh Rokni

But ice is definitely not nice when it heavily coats power lines and breakable tree branches which land on those power lines and crash through the rooftops of houses and car windows. Or on people, cats, dogs, or bunnies.

1085The power went out the Saturday before Christmas here in Toronto. I thought to myself “not nice!”  The power had flickered around 11:00 p.m., but settled back down again, and I dozed a little in my comfy chair.  I awoke to darkness at 2:15 a.m. (battery clock).  Power off, I groped for the small LED flashlight on my keychain, and headed for the stairs, figuring “I’ll just check on Mickey (my bunny), go to bed, and the power will be back on in the morning.”  Only, of course, it wasn’t….

2013-12-28 12.22.47I called my daughter (phones were okay), and found they, and an awful lot of Ontario were without power too.  Not nice.  We couldn’t get through to Toronto Hydro, the t.v. and computers weren’t working, of course, but we had land line and cell phones. My daughter reminded me that we both have a portable local and short wave radio (for when the power is out….)  – with a light – and which runs on batteries (I have plenty), and after a brief search, voilá!  I was once again connected with the world.  680 news assured me they would keep me up-to-date with the latest news on the storm.  But there were no updates on Scarborough – none at all.

Toronto Ice Storm 1 (Roozbeh Rokni)My son-in-law drove my daughter to my place, to keep me company for the “short duration of the power outage.”  (Yeah, right!)  Being the great guy that he is, he made more than one visit over the next two days, bringing us hot food and drinks from Tim Horton’s and Country Style donuts (a couple of very few places in Scarborough with power), and for our sakes, he stayed in long line-ups, sometimes almost an hour.  Greater love hath no husband / S-I-L!  He’s a keeper.  He stayed with bunny (Cooper) at their apartment, as it was cooling off slower than my house. My car was buried in about three inches of ice – all over, and it was way, way too cold to try to chip it free.

2013-12-23 11.25.15 2They told me their first trip to my house was like running a dangerous gauntlet at every knocked-out traffic light.  Snow and ice-sheeted streets – branches down all over the place, weird and wacky driving from panicked motorists – and in the areas with downed power lines there were no street lights or stop lights. In spite of the weather, traffic was still heavy, intersection crossings (with no police to direct drivers) were nightmarish.  It was a severe storm, people!

2013-12-28 12.23.03 2That’s when it hit home hard that ice was NOT nice.  Although power was out province-wide, there were pockets where people weren’t affected at all — even here in Toronto.  Since they weren’t talking on the news about Scarborough outages, we assumed (correctly) that we were probably hit the worst, and would be the last to have power restored (also correct). I recall a Provincial government spokesperson telling us that  Mississauga (pop. 713,443) was quickly having their power restored from 500,000 to 50,000, to 5,000 then 500 – but there was still no word about Scarborough (pop. 625,698) and whether even one person had their power restored… I think the same spokesperson told the radio interviewer that if people couldn’t get through to the Hydro by phone, (believe me, they couldn’t) they could turn on their computers and visit their website.  (Whaaa???) I also really enjoyed hearing the Toronto Hydro spokesperson assuring us that he could positively state they couldn’t positively state when the emergency would be over.  (Duh!)

2013-12-23 09.22.05Day two we found candles – big ones, small ones, slender ones, fat ones and stubs.  We also found matches, even if it took ten to get one that would strike. But in a weird, shadowy way, it was kind of beautiful, in the candlelight, assisted by the portable radio light.  We even felt a teeny bit of warmth.  Teeny.  We took turns (in our bundled up bodies) holding Mickey, all wrapped up in a cuddly soft towel, and he seemed to enjoy it immensely.

2013-12-23 09.24.16Because there was no wind (thank goodness) the house temperature just dropped degree by degree, not all at once.  Our wonderful next-door neighbour ran a big generator from his truck and offered to split a line for us, to provide us with some basic power.  I was thinking “small heater, toaster oven and fridge.”  We thanked him and figured we’d be okay until morning, when he said he’d come and set us up.

In the middle of the night, my daughter heard the generator go out (lack of sound woke her up) and in the morning we found out from our neighbour that thieves had taken the generator.  He went out and bought another ($1500), because he was temporarily housing other people at his place, with lots of kids.  Unfortunately, this generator wouldn’t be able to provide power for my house.  I have no words to express my contempt for the thieves who stole this (or any) generator.  To make matters worse, by that time, we had been told to expect the power to be out until the Saturday after Christmas.  Those thieves knew that generator was a lifeline for others – but they just didn’t care.

Members of our family in Peterborough phoned to find out if we were okay, and on learning our situation, insisted we pack up immediately (with both bunnies) and head for the north country.  Which we did.  Which was wonderful.  Which was one of the best, most memorable Christmases we’ve ever spent.  Although we found out from our neighbour that power on our street had been restored on Thursday, we decided to accept  the generous invitation from our hosts to stay until the weekend, which we did.

2013-12-27 14.07.09Later, in checking with other family members, I found one of my nephews not only had the power off for several days, but had a water pipe burst in a radiator, in their 113-year old beautiful house, and one of the downed tree limbs took out a side mirror on their car.  They spent a lovely Christmas day with another nephew and family (also without power) by cooking their delicious turkey on the BBQ.

Friends north and south of us had no power outage at all.  I even got one email back from friends who reminded me that they were “down south”, toasty-warm on a Panama Canal Cruise…. “you silly girl….”.

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And now we might be heading back into more and more ice storms to come?  Will we have to learn to build igloos? (I know, I know – a lot of people south of the border think we already live in them…)

igloo-village2-600x374We’re a little more prepared than a lot of our neighbours to the south, say I, smugly.  We’re the hardy ones who have been doing winter for a long, long time.  We know how to drive on winter roads, use snow and ice for pleasure – ice sculptures, ice skating, skiing, snowmobiling, snowboarding, skidooing, making snow angels, snowmen, and growing Christmas Trees.  And, bottom line, Santa Claus lives at our North Pole.

PALETAART – so much beauty in the world…..

After the many nasty run-ins we’ve had with our recent “Ice-Is-Not-Nice” ice storm, I think we might all enjoy looking at ice from a different, more artistic point-of-view!

Since 2006 there’s been a wonderful annual event held in Toronto called the Bloor-Yorkville IceFest.  2014 finds Toronto continuing the tradition and hopefully you will be able to attend the Ninth Annual Icefest on either Saturday February 22nd or Sunday February 23rd.  Better yet, come for the whole weekend and enjoy all of the festivities and celebrate winter in the city!  This years sculpting theme is “Heat Wave”. The location is Yorkville Park in the Bloor/Yorkville area (Bellair St. & Cumberland) and the time is from 12 noon until 5 pm both days.

I’ve selected some beautiful sculptures from previous years (below) to give you a taste of what’s to come in the upcoming Bloor-Yorkville IceFest!

Bloor-Yorkville IceFest 2014 for web

This link will take you to the the 2013 IceFest site for a feel of what you will see if you attend this year…  Bloor-Yorkville IceFest

The 2014 Bloor-Yorkville IceFest will feature an array of spectacular ice sculpture displays, events and demonstrations for the public to enjoy. See the magic of ice come to life as artists put the finishing touches on this amazing winter scene, crafted from an astounding 20,000 lbs. of ice.

image-5-mainCome marvel at this year’s “Heat Wave” ice display, bringing the tropics to Toronto! Ice sculptures will range from palm trees, tropical flowers, and parrots, to a sail boat, schools of tropical fish, a sea turtle, or maybe even a tiki bar!

image-5-main-1The 2014 14th Annual Sassafraz Ice Carving Competition starts Saturday at noon.  Visitors can watch, and are invited to cast their vote for the People’s Choice Sculpture, to be announced at 5:15 p.m. Saturday.

image2-mainThe Festival will also include ice carving demonstrations throughout the neighbourhood and street closure both days on Cumberland Street and Bellair Street. There will be a live DJ on the street with music provided by “Bellosound.”image14-mainFebruary is Heart Month and the Bloor-Yorkville BIA supports the Heart and Stroke Foundation during IceFest. For a donation of $2, visitors can sample tasty “Maple Syrup Taffy” from 1 pm – 4 pm each day. “Iced Kiddie Cubes” with a collectible toy inside will be distributed at 2 pm each day for a $2 donation.

image7-mainThis is an all ages, family friendly, FREE event, all you have to bring is warm clothes, a hearty winter spirit, and maybe a camera to capture the moments in ice forever!image5-mainFor more information you can contact the Bloor-Yorkville BIA Director of Marketing, Rick Kaczmarek – Phone: (416) 928-3553 ext. 24, Fax: (416) 928-2034 or email: marketing@bloor-yorkville.com

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POETRY CORNER

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Cold 

Trees were draped in silver lace;
Air was brittle, fine snow-crackled.
The sky had donned a hazy face —
…..And the cold crept in.

The room was warmed by firelight’s glow;
The shadows danced, and sounds were muted.
The golden lamps were all turned low —
…..Then the cold swept in.

Her face was calm and manner proud;
Her eyes unblinking, smile unmoving;
But where her heart was wrapt in shroud —
…..The cold slept in.

Perhaps on balmy springtime day,
When flowers bloom, when memories sweeten,
Her icy crypt will no more say —
…..Where cold wept in.

© E Joyce Finn/Collie

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SOME MUSIC FROM ICELAND

Björk

BjörkBjörk Guðmundsdóttir: born 21 November 1965, known as Björk, is an Icelandic singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. Her first public appearance was on Icelandic Radio One in 1976. Her first solo album was released in 1977 (when she was 12 years old.)  Her musical style is eclectic and she has achieved recognition in alternative rock, jazz, electronic dance music, classical, and avant-garde.  Before her solo career Björk was a member of a number of Icelandic bands, most notably The Sugarcubes. Three of Björk’s 1990s singles charted in the UK Top 10.  Her record label, “One Little Indian”, reported that by 2003, she had sold more than 15 million albums worldwide.  Awards:  four BRIT Awards, four MTV Video Music Awards, one MOJO Award, three UK Music Video Awards, and (2010) the Polar Music Prize from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music in recognition of her “deeply personal music and lyrics, her precise arrangements and her unique voice.”  She has been nominated for 14 Grammy Awards (and two for art direction on her album sleeves, done by others), one Academy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards. She won the Best Actress Award at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival for her performance in Dancer in the Dark. Ranked twenty-ninth in VH1’s “The 100 Greatest Women in Music”, eighth in MTV’s “22 Greatest Voices in Music“, and sixtieth in Rolling Stone’s “100 Greatest Singers of All Time“.

Here’s “It’s Oh So Quiet” from her 1995 album “Post” on YouTube page BjörkTV:

Sigur Rós

Sigur RósSigur Rós is an Icelandic post-rock band with melodic, classical, and minimalist aesthetic elements. Sigur Rós was formed in 1994 in Reykjavík by singer and guitarist Jón Þór Birgisson, bassist Georg Hólm and drummer Ágúst Ævar Gunnarsson.  Sigur Rós is known for its ethereal sound, frontman Jón’s falsetto vocals, and the use of bowed guitar. The band is named after Jón’s sister Sigurrós Elin.  International acclaim came with 1999’s Ágætis byrjun (“A Good Beginning”). The album’s reputation spread by word of mouth over the following two years. Soon critics worldwide hailed it as one of the great albums of all time, and the band was playing support to established acts such as Radiohead. To date they have completed seven studio albums, one remix album, three extended plays, one soundtrack album, fourteen singles, nine music videos and two video albums.  Their music has been featured in both film and television and they continue to record and tour extensively.

Here’s their song “Hoppipolla (Jumping In Puddles)” from their 2005 album “Takk…” along with a beautiful BBC Planet Earth video collage posted by Masroor on YouTube:

Agent Fresco

Agent FrescoAgent Fresco are an Icelandic band, combining the pop, alternative, art and math-rock genres. The band consists of Arnór Dan Arnarson – Vocals, Þórarinn Guðnason – Guitar / Piano, Vignir Rafn Hilmarsson – Electric Upright Bass / Bass / Synth and Hrafnkell Örn Guðjónsson – Drums.  The band formed in 2008 just weeks prior to competing in the Músíktilraunir (An Icelandic version of Battle of the Bands) which they won. They also won ‘best guitar’, ‘best drumming’ and ‘best bass playing’.  In 2009 Agent Fresco were also named as the best new artists at the Icelandic equivalent of the Grammies – the Íslensku Tónlistarverðlaunin.  Agent Fresco are currently working on their second album.

Here is “Implosions” from their 2011 debut album “A Long Time Listening” form the Agent Fresco YouTube channel:

(with a nod and thanks to Wikipedia for most of the above artist info)

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ICY QUOTES

THE ICE HAVE IT……

– A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul.  (Franz Kafka)
– Civilization is like a thin layer of ice upon a deep ocean of chaos and darkness.  (Werner Herzog)
– Eternity is a glorious word, but eternity is ice.  (Degan Stojanovic)
– Europe was a horrible place,  There was nothing on TV.  The food was terrible.  And they don’t even have ice.  Who doesn’t have ice?  (Johnny Ramone)
– Fighter pilots have ice in their veins….. (Buzz Aldrin)
– He who cannot put his thoughts on ice should not enter into the heat of dispute. (Friedrich Nietzsche)
– How do you say no when a little kid is asking you for ice cream?  (Jimmie Johnson)
– I always wake up at the crack of ice.  (Joe E. Lewis)
– I was the happiest guy in the world when I was on the ice.  You’re being paid to play a game!  (Bobby Orr)
– Ice burns, and it is hard to the warm-skinned to distinguish one sensation, fire, from the other, frost.  (A. S. Byatt)
– Ice contains no future, just the past, sealed away.  As if they’re alive, everything in the world is sealed up inside, clear and distinct.  Ice can preserve all kinds of things that way – cleanly, clearly.  That’s the essence of ice, the role it plays.  (H. Murakami)
– Ice is fascinating to me. Ice is the one thing in our world that went from an agricultural product to being manufactured.  (Alton Brown)
– If I offer you a glass of water, and bring back a cup of ice, I’m trying to teach you patience.  And also that sometimes you get ice with no water, and later you’ll get water with no ice.  Ah, but that’s life, no?   (Jarod Kintz)
– In skating over thin ice our safety is in our speed.  (Ralph W. Emerson)
– It’s a strange world of language in which skating on thin ice can get you into hot water.  (Franklin P Jones)
– Life is only a flicker of melted ice.  (Dejan Stojanovic)
– Like fragile ice anger passes away in time.  (Ovid)
– Like there’s actually a need for Greenland.  You can get ice at 7-Eleven.  (S. Kluger)
– One of the reasons there are so many terms for conditions of ice is that the mariners observing it were often trapped in it, and had nothing to do except look at it.  (Alec Wilkinson)
– Sea ice conditions have remained stable in Antarctica generally.  (Ian Allison)
– She had never known that ice could take on so many shades of blue:  sharp lines of indigo like the deepest sea, aquamarine shadows, even the glint of blue-green where the sun struck just so.  (Malindo Lo)
– Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice.  (Robert Frost)
– The ice was here, the ice was there, The ice was all around;  It cracked and growled, and roared and howled, Like noises in a swound!  (Samuel Taylor Coleridge)
– The only drink I like ice in is water, because you can’t water down water.  (Jarod Kintz)
– The sound of the blades on the ice in the morning is like smelling fresh coffee.  (Tara Lipinski)
– There’s nothing pretty about ice.  Ice grows nothing.  But we’ve got this in our minds that we’ve got to make everything cold.  (Don Young)
– They say blood is thicker than water, but I say ice can be more solid than blood, when times get cold.  (Anthony Liccione)
– Thou art all ice.  Thy kindness freezes.  (William Shakespeare)
– Three feet of ice does not result from one day of cold weather.  (Chinese proverb)
– We were the only pulsating creatures in a dead world of ice.  (Frederick A. Cook)
– When the wires are all down and your heart is covered with the snows of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then, and only then, have you grown old.  (Samuel Ullman)
– You are ice and fire the touch of you burns my hands like snow.  (Amy Lowell)

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PAWS FOR AWHILE……

(Eavesdropped on some bunny conversations during the ongoing ice storm……..

2013-10-28 11.47.21_2Cooper:  “Would this be a good time to try out my new sled?”  P1030115   Mickey:  “I think it’s a better time to hunker in my bunker…”

2014-01-02 04.02.09_2Mickey:  “Or hide behind it…. whatever…”P1000238Cooper:  “Mickey…. are you in there?”

P1030088Mickey:  “I’m right here, Cooper.  What’s up?”

2013-12-26-17-30-52_4aCooper:  “Let’s just relax together and read the papers.”
Mickey:  “Whatever….  But stay ready to run….and hide”

Signing off ….. ej