September 20, 2007

Sad Tales From the Kitchen

I'm home alone again so on Monday I attempted to cook myself some rice pilaf. I found myself a simple recipe in one of my cookbooks and starting whipping up the dish. It was starting to smell and taste great but the rice wasn't quite ready yet. I was getting impatient because it was taking too long and I just turned the stove a bit higher and left it for 5 minutes. When I came back however, all I could smell was burning and a 1-inch layer of burned rice had cake itself to the bottom of the pot. Most of the rice looked fine and unharmed, but it had absorbed all the burning scent so that it overpowered the nice aroma from the onions and spices. Even though the rice tasted like burning, I ended up eating a whole bowl because I had no other food in the house :(

The next evening Christian and I attempted to make our own butter chicken and ratatouille. The only reason I wanted to make ratatouille was because of the movie — I didn't even know what it was before. The ratatouille turned out great, but the butter chicken.... not so much. It didn't taste much like butter chicken but rather more like tomato sauce that left a sour aftertaste. Apparently we picked out a really sour yogurt that we used in the recipe. The consistency was too thick so it wasn't as saucy as the ones I've had at restaurants. Bah, how am I supposed to survive on my own?

I'll post up the recipes later but here are some nice pictures:



Last night our hockey team, Puck Off, had our first game of the season. We won 6-3, with the first goal scored by yours truly :P I'm really looking forward to this season- Christian gathered all our CS friends from school so it'll be so much fun, plus we're actually not bad!

Posted by mich at 4:55 PM | return | dreams [0]

August 25, 2007

Cramming Summer into 3 Weeks

I can't believe summer's already almost drawing to a close. I feel like I still haven't done many summery activities still — it was only over the last few weeks that I've been trying to pack it all in.

There was one week where Christian, my youngest sister, and my cousin visiting from HK all had their birthdays that same week, so it became a whole week of family dinners and pigging out at b-day dinners: all-you-can-eat Japanese, 3-course "Bunaglicious" meal at Bungalow Café, and a huge family BBQ dinner complete with Baskin ice cream cake. To work it all off Christian and I set off on a 20km rollerblading ride from Queen/Ossington all the way to the beaches and back. It took about 3 hours in total with a 1/2 hour break in the middle. I already developed blisters on each foot only halfway to the beach, but I still managed to truck along, but by the end I was in so much pain that Christian had to help push/pull me along. I fared much better though the weekend after when we rollerbladed around all the islands from Hanlan's Point to Ward's Island and back to Centre Island, where we played on the kiddie rides at Centreville. I can never tire of bumper cars or the ferris wheel! :)

Last week there was the Toronto Fashion & Design Festival, so on Thursday evening I headed down to Yonge-Dundas Square to check out the Highlight Toronto fashion show featuring Toronto designers and set to a live performance by King Sunshine, who were absolutely fabulous. It so was my first time seeing a real fashion show with a catwalk and everything I thought it was pretty cool. I was able to slide my way through the crowd to the very end of the catwalk, where I had an unobstructed view to snap away on my camera. It was too bad I missed the I Heart Kyoto: Ethical Fashion Show earlier that evening because from the photos I saw later on, it was wild: mohawks with punk/rock glam.


The next evening I went to High Park to catch the Shakespeare play A Midsummer Night's Dream. The set was like a steel jungle gym, which didn't really make sense to me in the context of the play, but the fairy costumes were colourful, bright and whimsical. The costume styles were set in the 80's and during the play some characters broke out into hilarious rap while still reciting Shakespeare's prose. Despite the rain that resulted in a 30 minute pause of the play, it was a highly enjoying evening.

I went to Buskerfest on Sunday with Christian and Lilly but we couldn't see any of the performers over the mass of heads crowding around. Instead we scoured the area for food stalls and picked up some scrumptious fried dumplings and 3 huge bags of kettle corn, which I'm now obsessed about. It's the perfect combination of salty and sweet. I only first discovered it this year at the Waterloo dragon boat festival, and I craved it when I saw it again at the London regatta but that time they closed up shop before I had the chance to pick up a bag.

On the subject of dragon boat, our team won gold in Division B at London! I actually thought we we were going to lose our gold medal because although we came in first in the final race, we received a 1 sec. penalty before the race even started, which would have put us 0.4 seconds behind the 2nd place team. At the start our boat came so close to the one in the next lane so we were trying to adjust our position, but since we were at the furthest lane the officials didn't know what was going on so he penalized us for wasting time. When we contested the call after the race, they changed their story and said we were trying to get a huge running start ahead of the other boats and were set on the decision. To officially contest the decision would have costed $50 so we didn't bother. However, during the medal ceremony, to everyone's surprise they announced Banana Boat as the first place team. We got our gold medal after all!

Posted by mich at 6:40 PM | return | dreams [0]

July 18, 2007

It's a Miracle I Didn't Catch Pneumonia

Last Saturday my dragon boat team raced at the Waterloo regatta, which turned out to be the most miserable one to date. Not only was it cold and windy the whole day (and I was so under dressed), it started raining a lot in the afternoon. Yet, we still had to paddle! I probably gave my abs a great workout from shivering and hunching over so much. Amazingly, we did our first race in 2:12, which put us in the platinum division (!!!), but our races after that went so horrible, we ended up gaining 10 seconds by the time we reached our third race, aiya. This was the first regatta where my dragon boat team didn't win a medal. And wouldn't you know, the weather warmed up and the sun started shining after the entire festival was over. BAH.

Also last week I went out with Kris, Sandra and Christian for a lovely Summerlicious lunch at Fieramosca located in the Annex. They had some great bread and bruschetta, but their salad and linguine with mushrooms, shrimp and chicken were nothing to write home about. The best part of the meal was the gigantic slab of tiramisu we got for dessert. There was a bit too much whipped cream inside, but boy was it delish! As Kris was leaving for Australia the next day for 6 months, it was the last time I would be seeing her for a long time, and the last time all 4 of us would be together for who knows how long! Yes Sandra, we're all leaving you, LOL :P

I had the chance to catch the Argentina vs Poland game for the FIFA U-20, and it was exciting! It was the first time I've attended a live sporting event (that snoozfest of a Jays game last year didn't count). The crowd was wild and energetic, and the Argentinians were fabulously entertaining. I can't wait to go see the final games this Sunday!

Posted by mich at 1:00 PM | return | dreams [0]

June 7, 2007

Back in the Groove

During the last half of my trip last week I was feeling pretty unhealthy and gross from eating out all week and getting no exercise. So I set on biking 50km instead of 25km for the Becel Ride for Heart that was happening the morning after I returned. Unfortunately I caught a cold the night I got home and the next morning when I woke up at 5:30am I felt horrible — I didn't even want to get out of bed let alone bike. I guess I'm a bit crazy but I forced myself to go and completed the 25k, which felt great after a week of pigging out. My legs felt surprisingly fine after biking hard but my poor nose suffered.

After taking an hour break upon returning to the starting point I biked up to Bloor for the architectural preview of Libeskind's crystal at the ROM as part of the Luminato festival. I had to wait 20 in line to get a free ticket, which had a certain entry time at which I could actually go in. So I returned in line 1.5 hours later to wait in line for another 30 minutes before finally getting into the ROM. Since the preview was to just allow visitors to explore the architectural space, no exhibits were installed yet, which was great. The final structure itself wasn't exactly how I expected it to turn out... I had preferred Libeskind's initial proposal that had the crystal structure made mostly out of glass, but due to technical and environmental factors it wasn't the most feasible solution. Nonetheless it remains a pretty cool piece of architecture and it still allows for some transparency that connects the interior of the museum to the public. I love all the skewed geometries throughout the building: the random cuts of glass slits on the facade, the criss-crossing ceiling lighting in the lobby, the slanted columns that go through each floor, and the interesting bridge walkways that intersect and cross through a dark and empty space (very reminiscent of the Void in Libeskind's Jewish Museum in Berlin). I'm looking forward to see how the space will be filled with the exhibits along with the completion of the rest of project phases.

Last year at TIFF the film Brand Upon the Brain! was screened once in Toronto that ended up selling out so fast and was a huge hit. It returned again to show for its second time here, this time for Luminato, and I was ecstatic that I was able to score tickets for Christina and I. It was playing at the Elgin Theatre and the director Guy Maddin made an appearance to introduce the film. It was the most unique film-going experience I've had, mainly because it was integrated with a live performance. The film was shot in the style of a 1920's black & white silent movie and the entire soundtrack was performed right in the theatre — there was the Toronto Symphony Orchestra for the background score, 3 foley artists for all non-musical sounds and effects, a narrator, and a castrato (although I've read that it was a joke since there are no living castrati, and that the "castrato" was actually lip-synching to a recorded woman's voice). The sound effects brilliantly executed and timed that sometimes I even forgot there were live performers. The film itself was erratically yet beautifully shot, but poor Kris got a bit motion sick from the flashing and jumping images. The storyline looked at the teen detective genre through the eyes of a young Maddin, who placed himself on an island where his evil parents kept a lighthouse that housed orphans for a bizarre purpose — it was all at once intriguing, playful, hilarious, wildly imaginative, mysterious and absurd. My favourite line of the movie was just as random as all the rest: "What's a suicide attempt without a wedding?" In one scene where the characters are trying to bend a stiff corpse back into place, the imagery along with the sound was so grotesque that I was cringing, but when I took a look over at the foley artist creating the crunching sound, he was simply twisting a stalk of celery in half, which made me burst of laughing along with the rest of the audience.

Posted by mich at 9:57 PM | return | dreams [0]

February 13, 2007


Hooray, my FlickrMOO MiniCards have finally come in! I chose a different picture for each of the 100 cards so they are all unique. The print and paper quality are surprisingly really good. Aren't they so cute? It's pretty fun giving these out since I get the greatest reactions when they first see the cards and pick through the pile.

Blue Mountain Weekend
Last weekend was spent up at Blue Mountain, where the weather was absolutely perfect: not too cold and lots of snow. We stayed at one of the resorts in the village, which was pretty cool. I even tried the outdoor hot tub; even though I had to endure a few seconds of having to run out in the cold to the tub, it was all worth it! I spent Saturday skiing and went for my 2nd attempt at snowboarding on Sunday. My first time boarding was 3 years ago, so it felt like I had to basically re-learn everything. But on this occasion, I was finally able to do S-curves!! I still fell a lot: on my knees, butt, wrists, hip, and even my head, but I survived. The next day though I felt like I was hit by a bus... I could barely get out of bed and I couldn't walk down the stairs without looking like loser. Even the front of my neck hurt so it was painful to yawn. I'm still quite sore but I hope I can recover in time for some yoga on Thursday.

Posted by mich at 11:36 PM | return | dreams [0]

January 17, 2007

My First Shiner

Yesterday was our team's first benchball game of the season. I fared pretty well in the beginning and even scored a goal, woo! But in the middle of the game while I was sitting out on the gymnasium stage, the other team had kicked the ball real high. I was watching the ball coming towards me in slo-mo, but I couldn't move. I received a nice slam in the face by the ball, knocking off my glasses and giving me a couple of throbbing cuts and a nasty bruise. My first thought after the initial "OWWWWIE!!!!!!!" was that my mom was gonna kill me. One reason being that I thought my glasses were completely busted, but luckily I was able to bend it back into a decent shape. But after I took a look at myself in the mirror, I knew I was in trouble. She hates it when I play sports; she even scolds Christian for playing too whenever he gets injured. So once I got home I stayed away from my mom and iced myself in my room. It still hurts when I squeeze my eyes together >_<

In other bad news... Hosu is on my list of banned restaurants. As I had posted back in December, I encountered a cockroach incident at the Queen Street West location. Well, two weeks ago, Christian and hit up the Yonge/Eglington location when our first restaurant choice was closed for renovation. I had ordered a bowl of udon noodles and was eating it contently, when near the end I saw a bunch of black dots floating about in the soup. Most of them were specks of pepper, but one of them looked a bit funny. Upon closer inspection, the pepper bit actually had legs and a head. Ew ew ew! It was a tiny cockroach. Seriously, 2 incidents in my last 2 visits at different locations?? We brought it up with the management and they were really apologetic, but after seeing my pouting face the rest of the evening they offered ice cream (um, no thanks) and no charge for the food. I loved you Hosu, but this is goodbye.

Posted by mich at 5:40 PM | return | dreams [1]

December 14, 2006

Christmas in the Springtime

It's halfway through December and it's been unseasonably warm with temperatures hovering between 5-10 degrees. Crazy global warming- I want my snow! I should get moving along on my holiday duties. Aside from having only just mailed out some Christmas cards, I haven't started any of my Christmas shopping or decorated my tree (but it's up!) I can't help it, I don't get into the mood until crunch time. I actually found a fun site called Simon Sez Santa which is an interactive video version of the game Simon Says. Santa will do some hilarious things if you give him the right command. My favourite is "kill rudolph".

In Flight

A couple of weekends ago I had my In Flight exhibit opening at Pearson Airport's Terminal 1. It was the public preview day for the new Pier F that will handle transborder flights (Terminal 1 will continue to expand until eventually replacing Terminal 2 entirely). The new space was really nice and the long pier led to an open space where a massive steel sculpture called Tilted Sphere The most impressive aspect of the piece was when you go into the middle or through the side passages you could hear some really great echoes resonating all around you.

The unfortunate thing about my exhibit was that the pieces were in glass frames which where then all displayed behind another sheet of glass so there was a lot of glare coming at the viewer. In any case, it was exciting to be a part of the exhibit and I ended up taking a bunch of photos of my piece along with the other works on display. Our final stop for the day was the artist reception, where we got to pig out on many delectable goodies.

Intersection of Memory


Ball hockey season ended on Monday with our final playoff game against 1maniacs (aka "whine" maniacs). That team played so rough and their guys were even body checking us girls, which was peeving me off. I was still harbouring some anger from our previous match against them in which I was tripped to the ground, body checked by guys twice my size, slashed in the ankle and elbowed in the face. So during this week's game, when one of the guys flicked up my stick to keep from hitting the ball, my stick flew up near his face. He starting whining that I was high sticking and that I almost hit him in the face. I was like, dude, you inflicted that on yourself! Yet he wouldn't stop complaining and yelling at me, so then I proceeded to call him a jerk :O No more miss nice girl. The rest of the game continued on with their ridiculous antics. We were originally losing but near the end we started to come back for a tiebreaker. I played so hard like I had never played before and we finally won in sudden death! Whoopee, all that work for 2nd last place :P Victory is oh so sweet!

Posted by mich at 10:22 PM | return | dreams [0]

August 25, 2006

Back To Cleanliness

This past weekend I went up to a rented cottage on Lake Simcoe with a bunch of friends. It wasn't really what I expected- the place was very musty and dingy and furnished with the tackiest sofas and trinkets left over from the 70s. Camping would have been nicer; at least I would have been in a clean tent rather than sleeping on on sketchy mattress (thank goodness for my sleeping bag!) Both nights were a bit rainy, but on our second night we were so set on roasting marshmellows over campfire that we had a campfire regardless of the weather. Mmm, yummy marshies. Overall the weekend was pretty relaxing... actually a bit boring, considering there was nothing really to do at Sibbald Point Provincial Park besides a 30 minute hiking trail and canoe/kayak rentals were unavailable across the island. We amused ourselves with football by the beach and a frisbee game called Cups. The rest of the time was occupied by watching videos on the laptop, a long game of Trivial Pursuit, Poker, and cooking. And no, I didn't poison anyone with my french toast or omelettes!

Here are other events that happened since my last post:

Taste of the Danforth - I went down to the Harbourfront with my family and Lilly for a free boat tour on the Kajama ship, but it was all booked up for the rest of the day :( So we headed up to the Danforth for a late lunch and stuffed ourselves with chicken pita, pork skewers, watermelon, and ice cream crêpes. I don't think I've ever eaten so much on the Danforth, or had such good food (thanks to Lilly, who knew all the good food stands)! We later went to the Eaton Centre where Lilly and I teared up the stores... we make good shopping buddies: we go fast! The evening invovled more eating; this time at New Sky restaurant in Chinatown (one of the only downtown restaurants that can rival uptown), where my parents treated Christian to a birthday dinner. What a day of WAY too much food!

Birthday party at Raq 'n Waq - The evening started off great; I was having a fun time seeing friends I haven't seen in a while and having JT played (just for Mike) :P ... until someone started having a little too much fun and I played babysitter for the rest of the night and the next day. *hai* No more birthday parties for him!

Oakville Dragonboat Festival - My team won another medal! This time we got gold in Division C. In our last race we shaved off a whopping 10 seconds from our first 2 races. We even beat the time of the winners in Division B! The most classic part of it was having our whole team go up and perform the Carlton Dance when we accepted our medals.

Visitor from California - Jason was in town last week so we got together and chatted over iced capps. I hadn't seen him in 2 years since my trip to California, so it was great to catch up. He told me he got a job in Hawaii (!!!!) that he'll be starting soon. I'm so happy for him! And now I have a place to stay in Honolulu :P

And finally, after having spent the enire summer looking for it, my mom's friend found my LeSportsac fanny pack at an outlet store in the states, and for less than half the retail price! It will be perfect for when I volunteer at the Film Fest. I'm ecstatic!

Posted by mich at 9:30 AM | return | dreams [0]

July 16, 2006

Silver and Bronze

Yesterday was our dragonboat team's first race, which took place in Waterloo. I'm proud to say that our teams won both silver and bronze medals out of 60 teams... WOOOO! My boat, the Assailants, was the beginner team, so to take away a bronze medal at our first race ever having only practiced 4 times had us jumping for joy. We raced 3 times in total, coming in 4th, then 3rd, and finally, 1st in the bronze race. But holy crow, that race was SO close... we won by 7 milliseconds. Throughout the day between races from 7:30 am to 8pm we killed time playing soccer, frisbee, and football. We were probably a little overzealous with the extra activity because I was all tuckered out before my second race. On top of that, right after the second race, I had to sub in for the intermediate team, the Assassins. Not only was I completely dying from my race, I was made to paddle on the right side of the boat, which I had never tried before o_O OMG, my left arm and shoulder were already burning within the first 30 seconds; I don't know how I lasted that race. We came in first, but it was definitely no thanks to me, haha! Later in the day after all our races, I was approached by some random team that was asking me to drum for their boat in the platinum championship race. I had always wanted to try drumming, but I wasn't sure how long my team was staying at the site for, so I declined. I totally regretted it though because it turned out we were staying til the end to pick up medals anyway. AND if that team won, I would have gotten a platinum medal too!! Gah!

I spent today at the Beach for my dodgeball team's beach picnic party. It was loads of fun playing soccer, dodging water balloons, and playing some great team-building games organized by the Branco, May and Jade. We had a 3-legged race where one person had to go backwards, then a 7-legged race, a limbo competition (which I won!), water balloon hot potato, and a team obstacle course. During one of our soccer games, a couple of weird, sweaty, and hairy men wanted to join our games. One of them was crazy and kept yelling at our teammates. I took him on to try to get the ball, and in the midst of kicking the ball, his sweaty knee banged down on my shin. Gross. That put me out of commission for the rest of the game. Hopefully it doesn't swell up any more ... otherwise I'll be out of commission for tomorrow night's dodgeball game.

Posted by mich at 11:03 PM | return | dreams [0]

June 25, 2006

Batch Update

It's been a busy week leaving me with no time to write. So here it is.

Last Saturday I watched 2 World Cup games during the day before heading downt to Little Italy for the Taste of Little Italy. It was pretty fun walking down the street becuase of all the flags being waved by the football fans. Many of the Italian restaurants were jam packed with long wait times so Chris and I had dinner at Utopia for sandwiches and burgers. In the evening I skipped out on my dragonboat team's fundraiser event at Touch Lounge for Sam's farewell party at Up Lounge for one last get together before he left for Dallas.

Sunday morning Chris and I went to Little Italy for brunch at Sicilian Sidewalk Café in Little Italy and to watch the match between Brazil and Australia. The game was good, but the service at the cafe was absolutely lousy: our waitress never brought the ketchup we ask for, she didn't bring the bill until 30 min after we had asked for it, she insisted that my hot water should be charged as tea, and then wouldn't give me back the proper change because she didn't have enough money on her. What is that?? Afterwards I went into a gelato shop for some tiramisu gelato- my first taste of frozen dessert goodness in over a month! It was heaven. That evening I took my parents and relatives for Father's Day dinner at Pacific mall, where we saw our old family friends from Ottawa for like the third time in a row. What crazy coincidences- that's the only place we ever see bump into them.

Monday night was my dodgeball team's last playoff game where we completely creamed our opponent. In the end we finished 3rd out of 11... not too shabby. After that I rushed home to watch the taped Spain game, which was absolutlely thrilling. Behind a goal in the first half, then a total comeback with 3 goals!

Tuesday after work I met up with Kris to go to Sandra's convocation. Afterwards we tried out the new Tibetan/Indian restaurant on Queen called Everest. We shared samosas, a Tibetan dish of tofu, mushrooms and other veggies, and a dish of butter chicken. We met up with Janine later for the TSO performance Last Night of the Proms. It was, without a doubt, the most fun and lively evening I've ever had at the symphony. The first piece was Mavis in Las Vegas, which was full of so many different styles, from big band jazz to wedding chapel music, as it took you on a journey through the many parts of Vegas. Happy Birthday was played in different variations of styles like Hadyn, Mozard, Beethoven, Wagner, 30s film, and Hungarian folk dance. Then came the ever popular Rule Britannia, which got everyone waving their British and Canadian flags, and even doing the wave around the whole auditorium. During Fantasia on British Sea Songs, one cellist used his bow to play a saw, which sounded like music being played underwater. It was so amazing to watch him play the saw so beautifully and be able to hit all the notes with such precision. Then came Pomp and Circumstance, which had the starting brass section playing so aloof, out of sync and somewhat off-key as if they were in a high school band. Sitting above them was the choir acting as bored graduates fanning themselves and throwing pieces of crumpled paper down into the orchestra. Then came the showoff solo clarinetist who got exasperated sighs from the band members before the orchestra finally went full force into the piece. It was such an unforgettable experience.

After work on Friday I learned how to play sqaush at Goodlife. It took me a while to get the hang of the non-bouncy ball, but in no time, I was a killah! Chris and I walked over to Café Cinquecento for Cass' farewell dinner before she headed off to HK. Afterwards I dragged Chris and Cass to walk me to Union to catch the GO bus before they would head off to the Drinks Show with the rest of the party. But the walk was so long that they didn't want to walk all the way to the CNE, so we decided to hang out at the Royal York's Epic restaurant for drinks and dessert. Cass and I both ordered virgin strawberry cocktails, and the three of us shared a cake dish with 3 tiny portions of cute miniature cakes. One was this brownie tower that oozed out fudge when you pierce it, another was a vanilla mousse on caramelized waffle, and the third was a hollow timbit-like sugared pastry with chocolate coated on the inside. They were all so delectable!

Last night I went to the TSO concert with Kris and her friend Jonathan to see Shakespeare in Love. After that I met up with Chris to go to May's birthday party at Up Lounge, which was a pretty fun time. The DJ played too much hip-hop and reggae though and not enough house. Bah! Woke up early this morning and went to the Canadian Opera Company's open house event. I went on a guided tour that took us onstage and backstage to see the rich people lounge, costume rooms and ballet studio. The ballet company is performing Sleeping Beauty in November and we got to see the costumes- they're 34 years old and they still look impecable (and the dress for Aurora was worn by Karen Kain when she performed in the production way back when). Pictures coming soon!

I went home in the afternoon to catch the Portugal vs Netherlands game. Is anyone as shocked as I was with the events that unfolded? You thought the Italy vs US game was bad, this game was nasty. One player injured twice, 2 fight break-outs, a head butt, 12 people booked, 4 red cards, and a captain that may very well have to deal with FIFA sanctions after the game. Oy. Hopefully Portugal still has enough in them to send England packing.

Posted by mich at 10:12 PM | return | dreams [0]

June 17, 2006

Series of Unfortunate Events

It's been a long week and I'm glad that it's over. It was packed with some fun activities, but sprinkled with suckiness.

Last Friday I went to the Mod Club with Kerry to see Tokyo Police Club perform with a bunch of other artists under the Paperbag Records label. They were great live and I loved all the energy they brought onto the stage. The next two bands were a waste of my time: Cities in Smoke were absolutely horrible and ear splitting, and Uncut was nothing remarkable. Magneta Lane finally came just before midnight and they totally rocked out. I'm not a big fan of their music except for one song, but they are one talented bunch of chicks. The final band was controller.controller - I love their songs but I was quite disappointed by their live performance the last time I saw them - but I didn't stay to watch because I felt like I was going to pass out from tiredness.

The next morning I went to the Goethe-Institut to watch the film 108 - Walking through Tokyo as part of the soundaXis festival. The sound collage by the soundscape artist was really nicely done as it seamlessly weaved the sounds of various places throughout Tokyo. The images, however, left me unsatisfied. Out of a huge collection of photographs that could have been selected, only a handful were chosen to match with the sounds, and many of those were repeated throughout the film. I was left either looking at the same photo for either minutes on end, or staring into darkness.

Sunday afternoon was my dragonboat/dodgeball team's BBQ party at Ashbridge's Bay. I wanted to bring my Lomo Smena 8m, but realized it was still not fully fixed when the lens popped off last year. So I took the whole thing apart and tried constructing it part by part. I had everything put back together except the very last thing to control the depth of field. I just cannot screw the lens back on without getting it stuck when I try to adjust the DOF- quite annoying. Grrrr. So I left home without it. I ended up playing volleyball all afternoon which gave my nasty purple spots on my forearms... ouch. That evening I went out for Viet food with Cass, Angela and a couple of their friends.

Monday night was our dodgeball team's first playoff game against the top ranked team. Even though our first game against them a few weeks back was sooo close, we were creamed this time around (and physically too). I was beamed in the eye with the ball while sitting on the bench, and one of my teammates was attacked by so many balls at once that he fell badly on a ball and broke his foot/ankle so I had to help drive his car back home. Later that night I went on to order the Rolleiflex MiniDigi. What should have been a 5 minute process turned into 45-minutes of pure aggravation when my wireless signal kept dying on me and I had to restart my order over and over. When I finally pushed the submit button, it was taking forever to process and finally I a message saying that the order didn't go through. OMG was I mad *huff* Then I went down to the basement to order on the other computer and shipped it to the states since they don't ship to Canada. Fine, done. On Wednesady I got a call from Saba saying she already received the camera. Yay. But that night when I checked my e-mail, I got 2 e-mails from Amazon saying I had ordered the same product twice, as well as 2 seperate invoices from the third party vendor for my 2 orders. WTH?! I was freaking out but I couldn't send e-mails or check my orders page on Amazon because my stupid wireless connect was going down again and would only come back up for a few seconds before dying again. In my fury I started banging my mouse - hard - before that died on me too. What can I say, I hate computers and computers hate me.

Thursday I had planned to go see the TSO performance with Ben Heppner, but the tickets were already sold out. According to Christina, it was fabulous. I'll just have wait until it's aired on CBC radio, bah.

Friday evening I went to the patio of Peter Pan for dinner with Chris, Christina, and Wen San before Kris and I headed over to the brand new Four Seasons Centre for a night of the opera. Although the building is pretty nice, as a piece of modern architecture that's supposed to house spectacular and extravagant performances I was pretty disappointed by the plainness of the space. It's one thing to be minimalist (and be able to make a bold statement), but quite another to be bland. Nonetheless, the actual show itself was amazing. I was completely blown away by Aline Kutan's breathtaking performance of Der Hölle Rache where it seemed like she hit the highest note on a piano. Seriously. The celebratory show ended at 9:20 so I tried to rush to Union to catch the 9:40 GO bus back to Richmond Hill. Unfortunately I missed it by 2 minutes. The ride would have been super quick :( And when I started walking to the TTC to catch the subway, I realized I had left my beloved water bottle at the opera house, noooooo. Man, double whammy.

Posted by mich at 12:54 PM | return | dreams [0]

June 7, 2006

In a World of Pain

My body's only just starting to recover from a painful last few days. Sunday morning was the Becel Ride for Heart along the Gardiner and DVP. Christian and I woke up at 6:45am and biked down to the CNE to meet with his corporate team. We had a small breakfast then hit the Gardiner at 9:15 and reached the halfway point of the 25km route at 10. We rested for 30 min waiting for the rest of the team and took a bunch of group pictures before turning around to head back to the CNE. Thank goodness I didn't do the 50km this year; even though the 25 route doesn't have the massive rolling hills like the 50, I was still getting a bit grumpy. I did not want to repeat my miserable mood from last year's 50k- I don't think I even looked at my bike for a month afterwards. This time was a bit better- a week break from my bike shall suffice :) We finished the ride at around 11am and rested and ate while waiting for the rest of the team. A few of us later biked to Old York restaurant for a filling brunch where I had some french toast covered in apple compote with fresh fruit.

As if we weren't already exhausted enough, Chris and I headed over to Queen/Sherbourne for a double dragonboat practice- one hour pool training and one hour dry training. In the pool we were taught proper paddling technique. I had no idea how strenuous it is to paddle... there's no way I can do a whole race! My back and shoulders were killing me after that. Dry training was even worse: 2 laps around the soccer field, 5 laps around the gym, situps, push-ups, 2 minute plank, then a game of tag and dodgeball. In the evening our whole team had a BBQ at one of the captain's backyard, so that was a nice relaxing break to end the day.

The next morning, I kept waking up from my sleep every time my body moved because it HURT SO MUCH every time I moved an inch. Can we say itai!!! I literally had to roll out of bed since I could not bend anything in my body. I had a dodgeball game that night and I was so pumped to play even though I was aching all over, but come the afternoon exhaustion and a headache had set in. I really should have just gone home, but the crazy person in me still told me to play. And I did play, just not that hard :P The upside was that playing made my headache go away... or maybe I was just so much more sore that I forgot about the headache o_O

Needless to say, my initial plan to play badminton on last night was scrapped. And Eyal had actually wanted to bike downtown to work with me this morning, but I was like helllllllll nooooo. This girl's gotta rest. ZZZzzzz...

Posted by mich at 9:44 PM | return | dreams [1]

May 17, 2006

Hardcore Dodgeballer

On Monday our dodgeball team had a 9:30pm game all the way over by Yorkdale Mall. We usually play at Bloor/Dufferin in a nice big gymnasium. This time however, our gym was about half the length of our normal one. Balls were crashing against the walls at a million miles per hour. Needless to say, I was quite scared when watching the other teams play before us. Since only 2 girls on our team showed up that night, both of us had to play every single game (at least 2 girls have to play a game). Couldn't even break for more than 5 minutes... boy, was I exhausted. >_< Now I have some scrapes and bruises on my knees to tend to, waaah.

Last night I went to the ROM for a lecture titled "In the Skin of a Building" that discusses the importance of a building's envelope to the overall design and how it supports the architecture's programme. They had representatives from 3 architectural firms taking about their designs for the ROM Crystal, U of T's Pharmacy Building, and U of T's Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research. It was a pretty enlightening presentation from the U of T building designers, but the lifeless ROM guys almost put me to sleep talking about construction building materials and showing pictures of freakin' steel rods and bolts being installed.

Hm, how was my weekend? Saturday night I went to Sam's birthday party at his condo, then headed downtown at 10:30 pm for Christian's friends' Jack & Jill party. I tried my hand at blackjack and won a bunch of hands, wooo! Much better luck here than in Las Vegas, haha. On Sunday I built my IKEA Malm Drawer all by myself!!! I also wielded a hammer without any supervision, yup yup! I'm so proud of myself! *beams* But I just realized last night as I was trying to fit in my top drawer that they gave me wrong screws for that one drawer and now it won't fit into the drawer opening. Now I have to go back to IKEA to get the proper ones from them. Oh well, now I can also pick up a Benno CD Tower and some more Lant chips (yum). That night for Mother's Day I took out my whole family for dinner at Restoran Malaysia, where we had an appetizer platter, golden chicken curry, roti, beef rendang, and pad thai. And O.M.G. my dad actually said the food was "okay la!"... no complaints, it's a miracle!

Posted by mich at 10:55 PM | return | dreams [0]

April 30, 2006

I Climbed the CN Tower!

Yesterday was the CN Tower Climb for the WWF. I went downtown with Christina, Hershey, and Cathy at 7am. It was such a zoo down there with so many different lineups that we didn't get to start climbing until 9:15. My final time was 22:28... better than what I expected :) Although, I felt my lungs were going to burst afterwards. I ended up raising $150, so a big thanks to everyone who sponsored me!

After the climb I had lunch with Christian in Chinatown, then went to see the Frank Gehry: Art + Architecture exhibit at the AGO. It was a fabulous showcase of Gehry's latest projects: Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA, DZ Bank in Berlin, MIT's Stata Center (who wouldn't mind coding 24/7 in this playground of a site?!) in Cambridge, Millennium Park, in Chicago, and our own Art Gallery of Ontario. The large models of the exterior and interior designs are truly spectacular in their detailing and expression of Gehry's ideas (and reminded why I hated model construction so much because of the tediousness). There were also walls of Gehry's sketches that were just simple scribbles and lines but were so expressive and informative all at once. I even saw a huge photograph of Frank Gehry with my first-year architecture prof (also the dean of U of T's school of architecture), which was pretty neat. During our visit at the gallery though, I was really starting to feel the effects of the climb taking a toll: I was struggling to keep my eyes open during the videos and I developed quite a nasty headache. After the gallery Chris and I walked back along Queen Street W. and stopped at a vacant residential apartment just west of Ossington to check out an exhibition called Generated Habitats created by A Collection of Foreign Objects, a Canadian collective of artists that was founded in Japan. The idea of displaying their art responding to a residential environment is pretty interesting, but while I was doing a walkthrough of the space, I couldn't ignore the dinginess and dirtieness of the place (Christian apparently saw piles of rat poop all over the place).

When we finally returned to Christian's place I had to crash for 1.5 hours before heading out again for dinner. We chose a trendy Malaysian restaurant/lounge that was at the corner of Queen and Shaw. Since I wasn't that hungry we decided to split an appetizer platter of veggie puffs, tuna rolls, taro frites, and pork belly, plus a beef and shrimp rendang entrée. For an appetizer that costs $20, you'd have expected something substantial, but there were only 2 or 3 things of each item. The rendang was delicious, but again the portion was so miniscule. I don't think I've ever paid so much for Asian food, omg. Especially after having tried Malaysian food at Restoran Malaysia, where the food is amazing and so cheap, I think I'll just stick with uptown restaurants for my Asian fix.


I'll just do a small recap of other recent events of my past week... last Saturday I went to the David Duncan House for Cass and Vanessa's birthday dinner. The restaurant is in a gorgoues Victorian-styled mansion and they serve up some amazing steak. Normally I don't like steak unless it's cooked by my dad, but this place has me converted. If anyone goes, they need to try out the peppercorn steak (yummmmy). The tiramisu I ordered for dessert was a bit disappointing however since it was mostly cream and barely had any taste of expresso. I should have gotten Sam's "award winning" chocolate raspberry mousse cake- that was some amazing cake!

Yes, after all that eating, a girl's gotta work out. I joined a dodge ball league with Christian that plays every week. Last Monday was our very first game, and we kicked butt (12-2, baby)! It turns out that there's a guy from my OAC chem class who's on my team, but he thought my name was Michelle Kwan, haaaar. I also bumped into one of my old high school friends outside the gym, who turned out to be on another dodge ball team playing in the gym next door. Small world!

Posted by mich at 11:37 AM | return | dreams [0]

April 21, 2006

CN Tower Climb

On April 29 I'll be walking up 1776 steps for World Wildlife Fund Canada's CN Tower climb. I'd appreciate it if anybody can sponsor me for the great cause! :)

Posted by mich at 12:24 AM | return | dreams [0]

January 16, 2006

Spanish Treat

I found a Spanish recipe for Toasted Bread with Bittersweet Chocolate in the Toronto Star a while back and decided to test it out. It was quick and simple and I didn't mess it up this time! The olive oil and sea salt really add a nice twist to the chocolate.

I'm back at Extreme Fitness after a few months hiatus. I tried out Goodlife too but it just doesn't compare at all, especially when it comes to their classes (I love Extreme's yoga and pilates!) And upon going back to the gym, maaan, I found out how much fatter I got. I'm not talking like how all girls say they're "fat"- I was told by a computerized machine *sigh*. That's the ugly consequence of baking too many holiday treats.

Toasted Bread With Bittersweet Chocolate

16 thin slices (each about 1/2-inch) baguette
4 oz (120 g) bittersweet chocolate
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Spread bauguette slices on baking sheet. Bake 8 inches under pre-heated broiler until toasted, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Turn slices over. Set equal portions chocolate on each. Broil just until bread is golden and chocolate is beginning to melt, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Transfer toasts to serving plate. Generously drizzle each with oil. Lightly sprinkle each with salt. Serve immediately.

Posted by mich at 9:36 PM | return | dreams [0]

August 2, 2005

I Said I Hated The Beach, But...

I'm hooked on beach volleyball now. I played it for the first time yesterday at Ashbridges Bay and it was so much fun. The only icky part was falling a bunch of times and getting sand stuck to my sweaty back. Played in the water, played some frisbee... good times :) After the beach, Christian came over and we made Vietnamese Beef and Herb Rice Paper Rolls for dinner. They turned out pretty well, but I forgot to take my food picture! The recipe is in the 'continue reading' section for anyone who's interested.

Hm, what else happened over the past 2 weeks? Went to the controller.controller concert at Lee's Palace, Summerlicious dinner at Innocenti, watched Kid Koala at Harbourfront's Dim Sum Festival (he was soooo amazing), watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on IMAX, Justine's b-day at Windy O'Neil's, lunched with Nelson on a stay from HK, BBT'd with San, Tony and Chris, casted a model for a fashion shoot, played at Centreville on Centre Island on Saturday (where I won a stuffed toy for both myself and Christian :P), went to the driving range on Sunday and had an evening of foosball competitions, and beach bummed yesterday. Whew.

Now back to learning how to Flash.

Vietnamese Beef and Herb Rice Paper Rolls

1 stalk lemon grass
2 shallots, sliced
1 medium onion, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon fish or soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
500 g sirloin or fillet steak
1 tablespoon oil
12 rice paper wrappers
12 lettuce leaves, washed and dried
30 g mint leaves
20 g fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves

Other suggested veggies:
cucumber, bell peppers, bean sprouts, carrots

1. Cut off the thick bottom one-third of the lemon grass stalk. Discard the rest. Blend the lemon grass, shallots, garlic and sugar to a smooth paste. Add some fish/soy sauce if the mixture gets too dry.

2. Transfer to a bowl then add the remaining fish/soy sauce, sesame oil, pepper, sesame seeds, onion and beef. Set aside to marinate for 1 hour.

3. Heat the oil in a frying pan. Pan-fry the meat on very high heat for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until done to taste. (Instead of pan-frying, you can barbeque the beef on a table-top grill greased with oil.)

4. Transfer to a plate to cool. Once the meat has cooled, slice thinly.

5. Dip 1 sheet of rice paper in a bowl of warm water for 3-4 seconds. Remove and place on a tea towel, smoothing the rice paper with your fingers.

6. Place 1 lettuce leaf on each sheet.

7. Add some beef, mint, coriander leaves, and other vegetables you prefer. Fold one end over the filling, then fold the sides, and roll up tightly, pressing to seal.

8. Cut in half and place on a serving plate.

Repeat until all the ingredients are used up. Make sure the rolls do not touch each other or they will stick. Serve with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce.

Makes 12 rolls.

Posted by mich at 11:12 PM | return | dreams [0]

June 6, 2005

Dead Jor La!

Yesterday was the Becel Heart & Stroke Ride For Heart for which I had to wake up at 6am in order to make it to the Exhibition Place by 8am. My dad didn't think that the DVP would be closed so early in the morning so we were in for a surprise when we were forced onto the 401 to head east. We ended up going all the way downtown via Victoria Park and then along Queen Street, which took forever. Christian and I biked from his house to the Ex and met up with Charles, Liang and Mark. We started riding at around 9:20... at first it was so cool to ride along the Gardiner and admiring the Toronto skyline, then fatigue hit going uphill on the DVP and seeing all the bland scenery. From the Exhibition Place across the Gardiner, up the DVP to York Mills and all the way back to the Ex, we finished at around 12:20. 50km!! I can't believe I finished it alive... I was only planning on doing the 25km considering I never bike. We had lunch at the Ex and hung out until 2:30, then Charles, Chris and I set towards the Harbourfront in search for ice cream that I was craving during the race. Biking after the 50k was so brutal- my knees were throbbing, my bum was sore and I could have fallen asleep while on my bike. But alas, we made it to Queen's Quay Terminal to have super yummy homemade ice cream (I had Mom's Apple Pie) :D And as if I hadn't tortured my body enough, we biked all the way to campus to eat at Einstein's. Then it was back to Chris' place to bash my bike in the shed, never to bring it out to see the light again. Haha ok, maybe it'll be a few weeks before I touch it again... after my bum says its alright.

Posted by mich at 4:57 PM | return | dreams [1]

January 29, 2005

It's Time!

Oooooh Michael Bublé's coming out with a new album. I love him... he's like a young Frank Sinatra with a smooth swingin' voice. Can't wait can't wait! *drool*

Tonight was the first time I played dodge ball since frosh week of 1st year. Super fun, so tiring, massive injuries (Christian's beating me up afterwards didn't help! :P), and a dodge ball nazi who was soooo hardcore. Jeez, it was as if she was training us for dodge ball in the military. Yelling at us for either not playing fast enough or not going to fight for the ball and getting us to shush up whenever we were laughing!! Was is too much to ask to just have a little fun when we play a GAME?

Posted by mich at 1:40 AM | return | dreams [0]