Friday, January 28, 2011

Toying With Your Head

Taking some of his inspiration, I'm sure, from Escher, you will do a double take at some of these amazing images. .......I thought I was pretty decent with Photoshop until I looked at these.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Thawing Out

Last week was so challenging. It seemed to be a week full of small frustrations--each of which I could have handled well; but to have them all attack me at once felt draining and unfair. By Thursday, I was completely irate with the world. I was tired of an unbalanced work schedule, I was tired of snow and cold, I was tired of dealing with drivers on icy roads, I was tired of spending upwards of 3hrs a day on those roads, and I was tired of the every day glitches that were being thrown at me in between all of that.

Driving to work on Thursday morning, I told God, "You need to get me out of this! I don't know how I am supposed to continue to handle this!" And I left it at that.

One at a time, I handled the glitches that I could. Voice mails at work reassured me that this coming week, things could be sorted out and a sense of equilibrium restored. It finally stopped snowing. And the sun even came out.

This evening, the graters came through my neighbourhood and plowed the streets. As grateful as I was that they did this, it was the second time that they left a pile of snow rubble across the entrance to my driveway. The last pile I was able to drive through. This pile was twice as high and had larger chunks. I found myself slightly frustrated; although notably, not nearly as frustrated as I would have been if this had been a few days ago. I was able to calmly accept the fact that after supper I would go out and spend some time tossing chunks of snow aside. And then, just before I headed to the kitchen, I glanced out the living room window. The rubble was gone. A small Bobcat was a couple driveways down. He had cleared out the rubble that the graters had left behind. And not only that, but in doing so he had also cleared the mound that had been remaining from the previous blockage. The entrance to my driveway was completely clear. And flat.

Weeks of building dissatisfaction, frustration, and patience-testing have been dissipated with a weekend's worth of blessing. Sleeping in, thawing out, spending time with those I love. And a clear path to drive back out into the world.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Stars and the Starmaker

I was maybe nine or ten when I discovered the Zodiac. I quickly identified with my sign, Capricorn, and even as an adult who doesn't take astrology seriously, I find some of the characteristics of the Capricorn to be eerily accurate. So when the recent news craze appeared stating that the dates delineating the Zodiac signs has shifted, even I--who don't put my faith in such things--resisted the idea that I now have to call myself a Sagittarius.

I started thinking... if even I get unnerved about the idea that I have to change my sign, then how disconcerting must it be for those who form their identity and live out their lives based on astrological signs? If everything is shifting--if the stars no longer line up the way they used to--how does that change how one lives? And how does one keep track?

At this point, I was washed over with a great sense of relief.

Finally, I thought, a point for Christianity. ...My God never changes.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Unexpected

It snowed last night. Which means drivers everywhere today are moving more slowly on the slick roads; cautious drivers would be driving backwards if they went any slower. I was following one such car this afternoon on my way to respite. While several drivers around me were driving at ten km/h under the posted limit--acceptable for the snowy road conditions--this guy was twenty km/h under. Surely we can do a little better than this, I thought. So, in typical Edmontonian fashion, I pulled into the left lane to pass him.

Now, I think it is human habit to glance at the driver of the car that you are passing as you go by. Don't try and tell me you haven't. We seem to have this urge to see who the heck was slowing us down. "Grandpa." "Crazy woman driver." "Punk teenager." "Dude on his cell phone." This afternoon, I was betting on the Grandpa stereotype, given the make of the car. ...I was wrong.

I start gaining on him. I am almost parallel with his vehicle. I'm there. I glance discreetly to the right. And as happens every so often, he glances back at me. No grandpa. No punk. No cell phone.


Full on white make-up, goofy painted smile, big hat, and red nose clown.

Suffice it to say, I was caught off-guard. I think I had fully passed him before my brain registered what it had seen. And since my brain didn't quite know how to respond (the normal "I knew it" or "sigh, winter drivers" response didn't apply), laughter came out instead.

Which I suppose is the purpose of a clown.