Thursday, October 18, 2007

Friends, Romans and Assorted Abyssinians

Ah the old days of easy publishing.

A story was told around Ryerson Polytech, my old college, that the Daily Ryersonian was so short on copy that anybody could get in as an author, even if he/she were to publish a football schedule with the "author"'s name under it.

Those days are, of course gone as Ryerson has now become the prime radio and TV arts college of Canada and you almost need a pedigree to just get in.

Ryerson has become the royal road to Hollywood, networkd broadcasting and media writing.

So, staying with that older tradition of easy publishing, and with tongue well out of cheek, I will now offer the following "football schedule" instead of a blog .(The actual schedule is that of an anti-poverty rally in Newmarket, Ontario, where I was asked to make a few brief comments.

Here is how it all worked:

Hello Ivan,
My name is Tom Pearson, I am Mabel's son. I am hosting an event at Fairy Lake Park on Oct 17, The International Day for The Eradication of Poverty. Please see attached to get familiar with the day/event. I'm looking for someone to speak from a seniors perspective (about 5 minutes) about living as a lower income senior and I have in the past respected your comments/thoughts in regards to local issues (via the newspapers), and thought this type of opportunity might befit you.
I realize it's short notice however the other person I had slated to speak from a seniors perspective is a little aprehensive about speaking with a crowd, thus my call to you. You can check out more about the group organizing this (and the event history), PACC, of which I am the Chairperson at


Itinerary Oct 17 Part II

Speakers / (new) program, agency, advocacy/aid groups/ announcements

6:10 - Senior’s Speaker – Author, longtime Y.R. resident, Ivan Prokopchuk

6:15 – 6: 20 – Rep - York Region Alliance to End Homelessness update/introducing Brent Mackinnon - Street Kids International - Streetjibe

6:20 - 6:25 - (Councilor) Victor Woodhouse – RE: Inn From The Cold program

6:25 – 30 - Rep from Mulock Village Development Committee speaks about the toy gun exchange and programs (as featured on A Channel). Group dedicated to enriching the lives of lower income residents. Featuring single mom and son who inspired the idea.
6:30 – 40 – York Regional Police – Free Youth initiatives – 1 & 3 district Youth Coordinator - Constable Sarah Jane Riddell and youth commission members

6:40- 45: Betty – Mother of homeless family as featured recently in The Newmarket-Aurora Era-Banner

6:45-50 Announcing! “Operation Sparrow”- Rep speaker Chris Robinson –- Brand new fund offering opportunities for kids and youths of lower income families residing in Newmarket and Aurora – to participate in organized activities such as drama, karate, and sports - including transportation!

6:50 Kristine, community development facilitator, will speak about the community development projects and the new alliance between (soon to be) 4 lower income neighbourhoods, forming a group united to better the community development in York Region’s lower income communities

6:55 - Final Feature Act - “Hurricane” Mike Thompson

7:05 to 7:30 - Open Mic for walk-on speakers and performers (related to poverty).

7:30 Final word by Host Tom Pearson

Please note times and itinerary may be subject to change

Well, I came, I saw and I spoke:

"Friends, Romans and assorted Pakistanis..."

Well, it wasn't quite like that though I did come out with my favourite anecdote about the poor in Keswick, Ontario who tried to smoke whitefish in a l973 Datsun up on blocks...but you know me.



eric1313 said...

I hope the speaking engagement went well for you.

Rhetoric is the original self publication.

Now we have friends, Romans, and fellow Bloggineers.

At least you have a good source of gigs with all your old connections. said...


It seemed to go well, though the Mayor of Keswick (in attendance) said that it was his l973 Datsun up on his front lawn on blocks, and he insisted that he will keep on smoking whitefish in that old wreck. :)

Josie said...

Wow, good for you, Ivan. I'll bet you wowed them.

BTW, thank you for your kind(!) words on TomCat's blog. Wow! Very nice :-)

Josie said...

Thanks, Josie.

I think all went well.

Wow. The roar of he greasepaint, the smell of the crowd...

And not a single long-haired hip-eye freak!

The homeless should have come to collect. We were all there!

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

Yes josie he said wonderful things and I am jealous.... but then I knew you were beautiful. See told ya I should look like you... want to trade bodies?

TomCat said...

That sounds like you had a good time, and congrats on finally getting your site up again. It's been a while.

Josie said...

TomCat's avatar cracks me up. I feel an epileptic episode coming on every time I look at it. And I don't have epilepsy. Ha..!

Tara, trust me, you don't want to change with me. You're so beautiful...! Ivan was just being nice to me on TomCat's blog because I told him I would break both his kneecaps otherwise. Heh.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

lol I do not believe that for a minute... maybe I am not the style men want.

But thank you for the compliment... I still think I would rather be you.

Josie said...

Tara, I just got royally dumped. What is the saying they used to have in the logging town where I grew up? Oh yes, screwed, blued and tattooed. Heh.

Trust me, you don't want to be me, my friend :-)

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

It is better to love, then never love at all or something like that anyway.

I think josie you have a nice life besides our daughters, which we both need to chain up lol, you have the better. For at least you were loved. said...


Ah, the cat came back. The very next day. said...

"Screwed, blued and tattooed?"


Josie said...

In that order.

Tara, yes *sigh* I guess I should be happy with my small blessings? I should actually be happy that I was dumped by that particular person, too. He's a bit of a ....creep. said...

I can't keep track of the creeps.

That's the married guy, right?

eric1313 said...

I've smoked a lot in old Datsuns.

Not whitefish, though...

eric1313 said...

My first girlfriend had one of those tiny Datsun pick-up trucks, "love trucks", they were called. Many a night of long conversations and silences in between, driving or just sitting in the rain.

By the way, I loved the term Abyssinians. Nothing like getting technical while adressing the citizenry of hell.

eric1313 said...

First 'real' girlfriend, anyway.

Those relationships of fourteen and fifteen don't really count, you know? Even if at the time, I thought they were as real as you can get.

But when your first kiss gets interupted by somebody's mom, yelling out their front door for them to come home for dinner, it's just not what one woupd call serious, even if you think your trying. said...


You have slept in old cars as well?

Once I took up residence in one. said...


Yep. The people of present-day Ethiopia are in hell.

What was all that noise about Haile Selasse, The lion of Juda in World War II?

Oh yeah, I remember now.

The excellent Savoia-Marchetti Regia Aeronautica fighter planes would come back with spears through the fuselage.

The Abyssinians had defeated the Italian Air force.

eric1313 said...

I read the story, Ivan.

It was very good. That bar at the top with all the links you put in it doeas not go to waste.

Dumpster Diving was ver poignant. I had to live in my oldsmobile this summer. I read "Disgrace" by JM Coetzee while parked under a street lamp.

Everything OK lately? I know I haven't been myself. Sorry if I offended you with the crazy stuff.

eric1313 said...

Oh, those Abyssinians... the real life ones.

Yes, I always liked that part of the histories, how the Italian modern army made some headway, but was stymied by the Ethiopians.

I meant citizens of the biblical Abyss. Guess I threw a bad curve there, ehh? said...

"When I was seventeen
It was a very good year." said...

I have a great fascination for the Biblical Abyss, the Mesopotamian rag.
Everybody in the same hot tub after the flood.

eric1313 said...

That's a funny way of putting it.

I always thought it was ridiculous, that the Prince of Peace would battle the Dragon, triumph, and cast it into the abyss--for a thousand years. A thousand years. Then it would be released one last time to take as many souls with it as it could to final judgement.

Why play games with the devil, even if you are god?

WTF? said...

You might have to read C.G. Jung's ION.
As I recall it, the devil can not forever stay tamped down.

Ah well. I used to have a friend who was a certified schizo, but, like all schizos, he was highly intelligent.

He would go,

"Evil did not begin with us, nor will it end with us."
He then added something that sounded Russian:

Praying kneads no dough.


And for all of that, Microsoft is playing games with me and f*cking up my site.

eric1313 said...

Damn microsoft to the Abyss for a thousand years. I understand why you seemed upset earlier.

You were pissed at the microsoft gods for fucking with you.

Got any Vodka over there? I'll do a shot with you, before I crash out for the night. Got a tiny little bottle of it here, a half pint. Smirnoff. And one last cigarette. Half a smoke, actually.

Ever pick up and shake the ash out of your keyboard? I have to do that occasionally.

eric1313 said...

I've seen Jung's ION. I wondered what it was about. Now I know to snag it if I see it at the used book store. said...

Like a Calcutta Pavement Dweller, I have to do it all with my brain tonight...How many mystics would be nipped in the bud if they only had some vodka and didn't have to do it all with their about poverty.
...So, a shot of pseudo-vokda.

Ah well. I have worked on my tiles and my abode is starting to look brighter.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

I feel like an ignored peasant sitting in a rainy doorway. Ha! said...

Afternoon, Tara.

Do you really want to join us Calcutta pavement dwellers?

Hey, we have sex in the open air, right in the town square! :) said...


I led you astray a bit.

The title of Jung's essay, inside "The Portable Jung" is EON and not ION as I had previously said.

I got EON confused with a Latin spelling for a concept that goes from a period of about 800 million years to an idea of a life-force.

So it's EON not ION, as I had erroneously said.

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Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

Ivan... as the movie line read.... "Take me to bed or lose me forever"... Ha!

Josie said...

Good grief! I never know what the h*ll is going on over here on Ivan's blog.

*blush* said...


Oh how many times did I not go "soon enough". said...


Wee seem to go from the Upanishads to Monty Python over here.

Remember the professor and the demonstration model in "The Meaning of Life"? :)

Josie said...

Did you get my e-mail?

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

Enough to lose me forever I am guessing. said...

Got it, thanks.

Left a comment on that blog. said...


We are four hundred miles apart.

Now do you want me to slowly walk towards you?

Hey, that's size!

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

That would depend on you. Want to walk slowly, or do you want me to drive? ::raises eye brow::: interesting that you used "inside" instead of the norm.

400 miles is nothing. I drove the every weekend when I was first married, just for 2 days of pleasure. It was worth it then.

TomCat said...

LOL, Ivan. It's hard to put the cat out. ;-)

Josie and Tara, since your're arguing about your comparative bodies, perhaps some expert evaluation might help.

{{I think I'd better run, now!}} said...


I've got to leave, just as the party is getting interesting.

Gotta go and hunt.

Rock on wihout me for a bit.


Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

LMAO Tommcat!!! You are a nut and so much fun.

And I can run you know. I am not that old!!!! So run, run fast!

eric1313 said...

Top of the morning to ya, Ivan.

Just got back from tthree silly job interviews. Nothing, crap and gimeabreak.

All I want to do is write a modern Veda. That's it.

And I even have readers in Calcutta. She said it's fine rainy weather to do the not so Hokey Pokey standing in the street.

Think I'll fly there on my chariot of the gods.


Hello, everybody. Have a great weekend!

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

I am thinking Josie is correct and somene likes to play scared!

::looks for tommycat:: I know you are hiding somewhere!

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...


What are you qualified to do? There quite a few openings here in GR for manufacturing and odd work places. But it would be something until you found what you want.

Wait, are you still in Lansing? Or back in the big D?

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
eric1313 said...

I'm still in Lansing.

I've heard rumors that there are more jobs on the west side of the state.

What am I qualified to do?

I have five years experience with building maintenance (basic electric, carpentry and plumbing) (handy and poetic, a rare combination indeed)

I've tutored English, ESL, Literature, Mythology, Arts history, Western History, Astronomy, Poli Sci, and Debate. Three years of that at Macomb.

I was an employee of the Roseville Public Library, as well as the Macomb Community College Library, from shelving and organizing, to clerical.

And a clean driving record. Always a plus.

eric1313 said...

You still there, Tara?

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

I am here Eric.

eric1313 said...

Good to talk to you. Glad to know the tonados left you unscatheed. That was some bad weather we had last night. We had three tornados touch down around here.

Yeah, the work situation is getting pretty desperate. Manufacturing? I'm sure I could adjust my resume to try and look good for them. Anything right now might be good.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...


Then redo that resume and get your butt to GR. Also, you might want to submit your resume to the talent bank.... the URL is,

As for the storms, sweet of you to be concerned. Glad to hear you are fine as well. We didn't have anything like that , but it rained so hard that while I was driving I couldn't see the road. My daughter freaked, kept telling me to pull over. The roads were flooded and I was ready to build an Ark.

I hope the link helps.

eric1313 said...

Thanks for the input, Tara. said...


Tara's got the creeps tonight in Detroit.
Some prowler in a truck circling her propterty. Alse weird dudes about.

I told her, throught Josie's blog
To make a non-emergency call to the local police station.
Maybe they'll send a cruiser out--but it's Detroit on a Friday night. They're busy!

Ivan said...


Tara's got the creeps tonight in Detroit.
Some prowler in a truck circling her propterty. Alse weird dudes about.

I told her, throught Josie's blog
To make a non-emergency call to the local police station.
Maybe they'll send a cruiser out--but it's Detroit on a Friday night. They're busy!

Ivan said...


Tara's in Grand Rapids MI and not Detroit.

Anyway, some creeps cruising around her new house.

Hope she's safe and sound.


Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

I am here Ivan. I am so tired... I think I may try to sleep... Thank you for caring and keeping me company. said...

Sounds like all is well.

Make sure the bugs don't bite.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

To sleep, passes the time. Perhaps I will dream away the man inside that truck. You, Josie, and Eric are wondeful.

I hope you all know this...night loves.

eric1313 said...


Now that's sweet. You too. If you weren't great, well, we'd worry anyway. But you are, so no problem.

eric1313 said...

Hope she rests easy. The world can be a dangerous place.

How's the writing going? Got a new post in the works for us?

I guess we'll see in the morning.

How about that obnoxious anonymous spammer? That cracked me up when I read that.

And your answer was top notch. It set a tone for all the communication to follow...

E said...

Well, now that everybody's tucked in, and teh moon waxing, I'm going to settle down for a nice, quiet trembling fit.

No smokes!

Ah, but there are, um, butts.

And some Stroh's high octane in the fridge.

There is hope.

Oh man, have I got a life.

Watch the Baby Blue movie and knock myself out. said...

How am I going to put a blog together if I'm not suffering.

Thinking of that old Beverly Hills bit where some guy gets a load of cement dumped right on top of his BMW.

Says Jethro, or somebody to the talented yuppie:

"You are an aritst. You need to suffer.

Man, are you going to suffer when you see what they've done to your brand new BMW.

Oh what the hell. The only hemlock I can find tonight is the tree outside.
Will have to settle for Stroh's Old English, high octane beer.

One drink and you're cured...But that one drink is an entire magnum in a bottle.

G'night all.

eric1313 said...

g'night, Ivan.

I'll finish of the last of this tiny little bottle of smirnoff in your honor.

If I think of some good lines later, I'll write them down here.

peace out.

JR's Thumbprints said...

Hey, at least you got to speak first ... that way you could duck out of there. The only speech I was asked to give was at a convict GED graduation; however, after my boss read the speech, she decided to deliver it afterall ... then didn't.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

Morning Ivan and everyone.

Morning has brought all the neighbors out. Seems we had a peeping tom and he visited a few of us.

I need to say thank you for everyone keeping me ccompany and making sure I was all right. It was very sweet and I am thankful.

Tara said...


A belated ein prosit to you.

I used to have an english prof, Jack Hersh, a fellow- alumnus of Leonard Cohen and Mordecai Richler at Baron Byng high school in Montreal.
Sort of a nervous, tentative guy (he had great competition) who kept giving me low marks in Drama but liked my first novel nevertheless. (He hated my second and gave it back to me as if it were a bag of fish).
Anyway, Jack took it upon himself to write me this really nice letter while I was abroad doing still another novel.
He said, "I'm having a glass of claret, which I will now raise to you."
Jack would never do that in person.
Too high strung, divorce-ridden and socially insecure--or so it seemed to me.
I got to hugely like the guy, though he was mostly put off by my bibilousness and company of strange women.
Anyway, Jack had said, "Here's to you." So I guess I'll pass the the good will along. said...


Oh how well you know these things.

After my speech, I shook the mayor's hand and ducked out of there on the pretence of getting food.
I hardly had a word left.

Quit while you're ahead, I thought to myself. If I'd spent time with the crowd afterwards they might fing out what an arsehole one really is. :) said...

Morning Tara.

Ah, free trade and NAFTA.

You get Peiping Tom.

Seriously, it's a good thing you went out to talk to a neighbour.
This galvanized the community.
Now you know it wasn't just your.
There really was a peeping tom, and If I were a woman with young children I'd have been apprehensive as well.

Cheech and Chong:

Cheech: "Cops never come when you call them."
Chong: "Sure they do.
"Wath this. Hey Pig!