Monday, 19 March 2018


Batman's there looking beautiful in brown shoes, grey pants and a medium brown shirt. He looks rich, is what he looks. You don't need to see labels to know everything is expensive, you can just tell by the glow of the leather, the drape of the cloth, the stitching on the button holes. He wears an Apple watch but no other jewelry but he's neither had a haircut nor shaved in a week or two which gives him a slightly old-fashioned look. His eyes are so patient. He's always had all the time in the world for me and is one of the few people who doesn't try to micromanage my movements or order me around. He doesn't strongarm my life and instead offers and waits. Some things I take, most things I leave.

This morning he offered coffee and croissants. I know where he gets his croissants from. They are delivered to the house on Mondays and Thursdays and they're worth the cost so I accepted.

In the kitchen?

Yes, of course. I hear laughter in his voice. I'll be waiting. 

Give me ten minutes. I hang up and scramble to get ready. Rose gold hoops. Skinny jeans. T-shirt that says IRISH across the front, emblazoned in green on white. I throw on Ruth's Adidas superstars and I look and feel about fifteen years old, tops save for the dark circles under my eyes and the tattoos.

At the last minute I grab my sweater and pull it around me for warmth.

When I arrive the coffee is just ready and Batman looks like he's about to run out the door anyway. He only works from home in between projects and never seems to actually relax.

You look..uh, he catches himself, young today. Like this, I mean. 

I don't have to work today. 

Actually I need you to. 

With no notice?

This is your notice. Could you help Jacob with his taxes this afternoon? He's missed the deadline to have them sent to the accountant. 

The accountant doesn't have a deadline for this. 

For our terms, he does. Please be a help and do this for me. It is within the scope of your work here. 

Right. Batman hasn't actually called me to work for months. I though I was home free.

I like your shoes. 

Thank you. They're Fluevog. 

I noticed. Look, I'm not really prepared for staying to do tax work today-

I can send him over whenever. He needs a keeper, Bridget. He has this household in perfect order while his own is a mess. 

What do you mean? 

You'll see. 

A kind smile all but dismisses me so I take the last sip of my coffee, eat the last bite of my croissant and reach across the counter to pick up the box of croissants that is still half full.

You don't need these. They're so bad for you. He grins as I wink at him, nodding his permission for me to steal his expensive pastries. The very least he can do if he's going to foist Jay on me this afternoon is to load me up with butter and fat first.

Sunday, 18 March 2018

But seriously. I'm okay.

My car came out of storage today. To celebrate I came out to go for the first drive of the season, and glitter blew out the vents in my eyes. The boys didn't know that I use cosmetic and sometimes even food-grade glitter to protect people from exactly that but there you have it. No permanent damage, life goes on, I won't accept any apologies for something they didn't know about in the first place and also I don't have to make dinner now.

It was fucking funny though. 

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Yesssssss! Maple Leafs shut out the Habs 4-0! Keep it going boys! Yea!

Monsters have feelings too. I keep forgetting this part.

Caleb's having an ego day, a day where he licks his perceived fatal wounds at the decided lack of mention of him in the last post, good or bad.

It wasn't a 'Bridget's Deepest and Darkest Secrets' list, it was just a stupid flighty collection of random things about me. People like that, or so I thought and now I wake up to find that everyone is disappointed and bored. Remind me not to waste my time again. 

The only person truly happy with that list today is PJ, I think. 

Yeah, probably. I laugh.

What's amusing? 

You are. What did you want me to say about you? 

Oh, I don't know, Bridget. Maybe something about my skill or my steadfastness or my consistency in your life. Maybe something about how hard I worked to see that you and by default all of our friends have everything they'll ever need. Instead I get to read an exhaustive list of things everyone already knows.

Do your own writing then. Grandstand. Or better yet, take the advice I give to everyone who complains about my content: DON'T READ. 

Or you could make another list of all the things you love about each one of us. 

I don't see that happening. Besides, if someone has a particular feature or trait I adore I tell them to their face. I'm not shy about crowing my appreciation for my friends. 

You've never said things to me. 

You're different. My voice drops to a bare whisper. You're my monster. 

His whole face softens with grief as he nods. This is what we have to fix. I don't care what else happens. I'm not going to spend my entire life in that role for you. 

Friday, 16 March 2018

100 things (you probably didn't know).

Just because PJ still dares me to try this stuff years later and with a cash offer if I can pull it off, why wouldn't I? Besides, he'll never know what's true or false (hint: it's all true).

(I started this post in 2005 and some of it might seem off because I've moved a bit, changed a bit. You know.)

  1. I hate crepes. They seem like thin soggy pancakes to me. Pancake-fails. So people dress them up and call it 'dessert'. No thank you.
  2. I had the lyrics to Still Remains by Stone Temple Pilots tattooed in the center of a large cameo on my back. I had them removed (mostly) a few years back The cameo is all but empty now and I don't know what to do there. I have my wings above it now and I just don't feel like getting any more tattoos. 
  3. I am addicted to affection, lip gloss and security. Blame Lochlan for all of it.
  4. I'm allergic to food coloring and the sun, sunscreen, nail polish, fabric softener, shellfish, hair color and everything from LUSH, suddenly. Boo. Also cats I don't know well and my own sweat. Go figure.
  5. I don't like shrimp, or fish with bones. Not big on clams but I do love biting the legs off tiny little deep fried octopi. Oysters aren't great either.
  6. I grow sunflowers but the sun is a rarity and it's tough.
  7. I actually don't like it here very much. Sure it's pretty. Well, some of it is. 
  8. The things I miss the most about home (Nova Scotia) are the people, the donairs and oceans without tankers.
  9. I still consider myself the world's most fragile mermaid. Not a great swimmer. 
  10. I love to paint skulls. LOVE IT. Have dozens of them up now.
  11. One of my monikers in the freakshow was Firebaby. There. Google that. No, wait, don't. Actually it's fine. Thank God for life before Internet.
  12. I was a vegetarian for over twenty years but it's only been the past few that I can actually take a bite of a chicken wing without putting it on a plate and pulling the bones out first. 
  13. I love turnip. Mashed turnip with real butter and salt.
  14. I think I'm crazy but certain things keep me grounded enough to deal with life without flying right off or curling up like a Swedish fish: writing, running, sex, sleep and bourbon. 
  15. I'm afraid of bicycles, blooming teas, undomesticated electricity and revolving doors. Escalators, elevators and morgues.
  16. Sometimes I'm afraid of Christian but only because it's sort of like being accepted by the cool kid and then wondering when they're going to drop you. I don't get it, he doesn't either. 
  17. I steal Daniel's shirts and then lie and blame it on Schuyler/John/Andrew, insisting they must be in the wash/wrong closet when they're in my bed. I like to sleep in them. They're warm and not as big as the others. 
  18. I've grown so comfortable with black bears that when I see one I take out my phone and try and capture it's soul with the camera. Then I just shoo it away. 
  19. I hate shoes. Jake, you were right.
  20. I'm a raging minimalist, except for handbags and bracelets.
  21. I don't actually wear a lot of jewelry considering how much I have.
  22. I forgot to empty the steam cleaner last month and OH MY FUCK. GROSS.
  23. I have to have knee surgery. 
  24. I had adenoid surgery once.
  25. Caleb has offered me plastic surgery. Whatever I want. I know what he would choose to have done on me but it varies wildly with what I would chose. 
  26. I have never and would never actually have plastic surgery.
  27. Batman's really freaking famous. People scream out loud when they recognize him. 
  28. Ben is not so famous unless he's in his stage clothes. Surprise. You wouldn't actually recognize him unless you're a superfan or a stalker. No, he's not in Gwar.
  29. Loch actually had groupies at one point. They were the other people who worked the show though. Everyone loves him.
  30. We once stole the whole cash box and ran. 
  31. We once slept outside on a hillside in Romania because we couldn't afford a room. With goats.
  32. I used to fear being killed by gypsies. Or goats.
  33. I sleep with my doors locked now but my windows open.
  34. I'm astounded that you can't buy actual Marshmallow Fluff countrywide.
  35. I can't each as much candy as I used to be able to because I get canker sores in my mouth when I do.
  36. I slept with PJ. A few times now. He's quite a powerhouse of a guy.
  37. I refused drugs for the first ten hours of labor with Ruth. On Labour Day. Thirty-seven hours from water breaking to the emergency c-section. Fun times. A week in the NICU.
  38. I used to figure skate competitively in regional competitions. 
  39. Batman had a painting of me hanging in his public office. He would tell people it's his late wife. 
  40. Once I got so scared of the dark that I just closed my eyes and cried until Lochlan came back. I was eleven. Then I did it again when I was thirty-eight.
  41. I'm a damned good aerialist.
  42. I'm a better freak. 
  43. My hearing aids are amazing but I'm still overwhelmed by things like clocks and wind in the trees.
  44.  I think every 'caught on tape' is a staged prank but believe every conspiracy theory around. 
  45. I love scarves. Big pashminas. They make me happy. Over the years they have doubled as blankets, tablecloths, bags, legwarmers and truck bed liners. 
  46. I put honey on my toast. Raised by hobbyist beekeepers.
  47. I still can't drink from a can and never finish a can of pop. The metal makes my teeth hurt. 
  48. I sneezed in the middle of a video shoot once for a band during A Very Big Scene which involved traffic and angel wings and pyrotechnics. That sneeze cost twelve thousand dollars. They had to start over.
  49. I can't sit in the back seat of a moving vehicle or I throw up within eight minutes flat.
  50. My makeup routine has been condensed to mascara and lipgloss and nothing else. Fuck it. I'm done with most of that crap. Strangely enough my Sephora VIP Rouge membership is good through like 2028 thanks to the boys with long hair and all the spendy hair products and man perfumes I buy them. 
  51. I spend the odd weekend with Schuyler and Daniel. We don't get out of bed. I get hooked on things like Spanish General Hospital reruns and chai tea. 
  52. I eat ringalos by loading them on my fingers until I look like the Thing from Fantastic Four and then I gnaw them off my knuckles one by one. 
  53. I eat onion rings the same way. It's messier though. 
  54. I have no patience for shitty music production. 
  55. I have a tiny Pandora bracelet addiction that took over from the Cartier bracelet one. I've been collecting charms for almost four years. I have dozens.
  56.  Every professional photograph of me ever produced (except for the ones Cole took) has been missing the checkmark scar under my nose that some kind editor has airbrushed out. I send them back to have it returned to me. 
  57. I'm slow to warm up. Case in point, I resisted Cormac McCarthy's writings for the first several decades of my life and now I can't get enough. 
  58. Batman was the first sugar daddy and the most consistent. A long time ago he hired Cole to do some work for him and asked for me as well. It was a hell of a lot of money involved. We kept it pretty quiet. 
  59. My favorite season would be thought to be summer, with its promise of no school, lax rules and warm weather but instead it's fall because everyone always disappeared from the beach and it became all mine again. 
  60. I use three emojis virtually all of the time. The monkeys. The see no evil, speak no evil and hear no evil ones on the apple keyboard. 
  61. I used to wear earplugs to listen to Ben's former band. Not to protect what's left of my hearing but because otherwise I would visibly flinch. They're very loud.
  62. When I get up I turn on the stove first to boil water for coffee. Then I let the dog out. 
  63. If a horror movie takes place in the woods then I want to see it.
  64.  I will watch any horror movie though. Even bad ones.
  65. My fetishes included being held down/up and hockey players in their arrival suits.
  66. When I go into a really fancy restaurant I still wonder if I'm supposed to work to impress the staff and fear they might reject me as a customer because it's for adults only. 
  67. Morphine has no effect on me whatsoever. Ditto valium. Disco drugs work well though.
  68. I'm a narcoleptic. Hi!
  69. If I'm awake after ten at night it's usually a special occasion.
  70. I don't like mint anything. Even toothpaste.
  71. I really really tremendously dislike the song Fairytale of New York. Someone told me if you're of Irish descent and you love Christmas it's a given. Well it's not.
  72. Don't ask me about hard drugs.
  73. If you say 'tats' or 'ink' with regards to tattoos I'll probably roll my eyes and correct you.
  74. I let my children swear. Always have. I know. Horrible mother, right?
  75. I still can't pronounce 'library' without pausing to think it through. My mouth says liberry and then just keeps on running.
  76. I'm allergic to Costco. No, really, I'm sure I am. I hate it. I hate crowds. I hate bulk purchasing. I hate the very idea of the place and I had a membership once. I hated it.
  77.  I have a perpetual headache and a lovely frown line that runs directly between my eyebrows because when I'm not grinning or crying I frown like the dickens. 
  78. I can do the entire Thriller dance. Yes, still.
  79. I would have been a Juggalette, but I'm not and I wasn't and camping at music festivals isn't my thing.
  80. I can eat about eighteen thousand grapes in one sitting. Ditto McDonalds french fries. Ditto licorice. Ditto Pixy Stix. Scallops. Glasses of bourbon. I'm like a bird with rice at a wedding. You never know, I might explode.
  81. I wish I had blue eyes. Always have. As much as I love my greens, I wanted blue. The grass is always greener, isn't it? Or in this case, bluer. 
  82. I love the smell of hospitals, bandaids, iodine, gasoline, grass, peat and yeast. I don't know if there's a word for that. Gross, maybe?
  83. I will never visit the Canadian territories thanks to 30 Days of Night. I think it was filmed in Winnipeg though. I'll check and get back to you.
  84. Mosh pits make me jealous. They look like SO MUCH FUN but then violence and shoving.
  85. I want to crowd surf but then I'll probably get molested and raped. What if I wore an inflatable sumo-suit? That's my answer for everything now. 
  86. I'm suddenly very concerned about what tapioca pearls are made of because no one has given me a straight answer so I figure it's cadmium and/or lead.
  87. My favorite bowling ball is a big-ass size '12er with three holes. I can barely lift it but it does a very good job and rolls very slowly without a twist or a slice. My bowling score remains under forty. No worries, it's even lower if I use a ball for someone my size.
  88. I read four books a year. I love books. I love reading. It's fantastic but I just have to touch the cover and I fall asleep. I think books are like some sort of Pavlov's Dog experiment for me. Ditto buying movie tickets now. I pay twelve bucks for a nap.
  89. August had me hooked on Kombucha. It's 16 grams of sugar and it has a host or a mother or something floating at the bottom. I didn't understand but it's like a spicy vitamin water only fancier and way more expensive.
  90. If I could only have one food on a desert island it would be Keema Naan. At least this week it would. Next week it will probably been something else. (Because bird.) (POOF.)
  91.  I want to spray-paint a freight train.
  92. I used to be a Suicide Girl. Now I hate at least eighty percent of my tattoos.
  93. Glitter is a huge part of my life. It's a decoration, a beauty routine, a sport, a prank and a weapon all rolled into one. Usually it's food-grade around here, just for safety's sake.
  94. I would be a greater minimalist, miser, squeezer of coins if only they would let me. 
  95. I don't like owning new cars. It's a worry with the digs and the lemons and the risk. It's much easier to me to drive an ancient yet mechanically sound piece of crap and park next to a Ferrari.
  96. I burn incense constantly. Mostly nag champa or patchouli but also some christmas campfire blend I got at the Vancouver German Christmas market that everyone loves and I didn't stock up on this year so I hope I can make it last. 
  97. I'm lactose intolerant but mildly so one milk product a day is fine but two will destroy me. So if I have cheese toast I can't have yogurt or ice cream later. Not a big deal. I don't run screaming from dairy but I'm amazed at what havoc it wreaks.
  98. I'm double-jointed, I'm a witch. I'm a Taurus. I'm a natural redhead.
  99. I grieve for him every single day, you know.
  100. I finished it. PJ owes me five thousand dollars now. Oh yeah. I love to make it rain. It's been engineered once and it's about to happen again. I danced for money once. Alright it was a few times. 
Have a great day. This may not be up for long. Too much information. Not useable, just personal, I mean.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Cave periculum, quod non ultra Martias Idus proferretur.

I’m not gonna let you become a martyr
I’m not gonna let you pickup the gun
I’m gonna make this a whole lot harder
Won’t make it easy for you to run

Don’t go and blow it all, it’s bad enough baby
I don’t wanna hear you saying it’s not you, it’s me
If there’s blood on my hands, you should let me know
If you’re done with a dance, you should let me go
Oh, baby you said it all,
There’s nothing you can say to break my fall
The disasters are here, sewn into the seams of the blanket I pull over me to keep them close, sewn with double stitching, thread made of tragedy and heartbreak, material consisting of one hundred percent contempt as I turn away from you, away from the light, and suffocate myself when all I had to do was listen harder. I can't hear you. The noise inside my skull is always too loud. I always want to be somewhere else. I always want to be someone else. Just let me sleep.


No. Get up, Peanut. It's Thursday. 

What's today again? 

What do you want it to be? 

I flip the blanket right off the bed, letting contempt smother grief instead. I want it to be a happy day. 

And what would make you happy? 


What else? 

An extra cup of coffee after the first one. Like one to wake me up and then one to savour. 

What else?

I don't want to see the Devil today. 

Easy. Okay. Let's go find that coffee. What about for the afternoon?

Let's lament the Canucks not making it into the playoffs. JUST KIDDING. We knew that would happen.

We didn't know you would be so gleeful about it. 

It's just one more chance for the Leafs, if you ask me. 

The Leafs aren't going to make it eith-


Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Dresses as triggers.

It's Easter and I'm waiting in the driveway for my parents. We're going to church. I'm smashing at the snow that remains on the side of the pavement to melt it by breaking it up faster than the sun will do it. It's freezing cold but I'm in my thin spring coat, new spring dress and new shoes. My hair is pinned back. It's so long but since it's cold I asked my mom not to braid it like usual. Ten-year-olds have weird little autonomies they don't even recognize as such. Give them a little control and they become monsters.

Caleb comes out of his house across the street and down four. I wave but he doesn't see me. He's in dress pants, dress shoes and a shirt with buttons. His hair is combed. Cole comes out briefly, whipping a snowball at the car that Caleb just started to warm up for his parents. Caleb is eighteen now and home for Easter weekend. He gets out and sees me at last and waves, walking up the street.

Nice dress. 

Thank you! It's new for Easter. You look nice too. When do you have to go back to school? 

Monday night. 

How is it? 

Great. I have a room I share with a guy from Ontario, and we both like jazz so it's great. I'm taking law and commerce.

Good, I say. I don't know what those are. Do you miss it? 

Miss what?

Being home?

Only the people. And he smiles at me as I think what people? before he clarifies. I miss you a lot. 

Really? Why?

Because you're funny and you're always around so when you're not it's too quiet. How is grade five?

Good. I have to finish a book report on The Return of the Great Brain. 

Did you like the book?

Yes. It reminded me of Lochlan. 


Because he's smart too. 

Caleb laughs and lights a cigarette. That's great. Your hair has gotten long. 

You're just used to seeing it braided. 

Yeah. I like it. 

Why? I am suspicious now.

It makes you look older. 


But then the door opens across the street and Lochlan comes out in a white shirt, dress pants and a jacket. He is fifteen and still not allowed to start the truck before church but he can shovel the walk. I take off running the minute I see him and forget that Caleb came over to talk to me specifically. Three-quarters of the way I remember and slow down to turn back to wave goodbye but he's already disappeared back into his house. My smooth shoes hit ice on the road and down I go.

My hands get scraped up and my knee rips a hole in my new dress. Lochlan picks me up and puts me on my feet, blowing on my hands to get rid of the grit and because they sting now. Gotta get those battle scars, Bridge. You'll be okay. I hear holey dresses are in now. 

My eyes fill but I'm brave because he's here. I nod and he looks into my eyes kindly. That's my girl. 

The approval sends me reeling with happiness. His girl. The brain's girl. Happily so even though I am lightyears from it. He kisses my hands and tells me to run inside and get fixed up and maybe we'll sit together if I'm allowed. I turn and start to run and he yells,

WALK, Bridget. Jesus. Don't fall again. But I don't hear the last part and go down again on the slippery stones of my front walk. I spring up like a jack in the box though. I don't feel a thing except the weird butterflies inside my chest.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

A thousand steps to nowhere.

We sat in the waiting room, starting, stopping the conversation multiple times after what seemed like an endless silence. Not a busy place this morning as waiting rooms are wont to be, because I make appointments early so as not to have to think about things and rather get them over with. I am profoundly grateful that Caleb came with us this morning. Henry was in the exam room, just having a checkup after a minor surgery earlier last month and though Lochlan legally is Henry's father and Jacob his biological father, his de facto Dad? It's Caleb.

Why must you report on every transgression I make? I'm trying here and now you're dredging up a couple of party weekends in which we may have used some illicit drugs-

I'd like to see how you spin the rest of history, Diabhal. 

Going to detail all of it? 

What if I do? 

I'll sue you and take back everything.

From prison? 


How about we just leave sleeping dogs lie for now?

Because if I have to live under your threats you can live under mine. 

I already do from the random violence you still dole out to try and keep your control over me-

Is that what you think I'm doing? 

I don't think it. It's a fact.

Jesus Christ, Bridget.

We don't have a good history, Cale-

We can change it.

It's too late.

Monday, 12 March 2018

Not through love but through revenge (I don't want to do this anymore).

I told Sam this morning that I was incredibly heartened that he used the term we yesterday to describe being left here. We were left here alone. I wasn't. I have company. I have help. Sometimes Sam's words are the best words but most often they're better when he's just being himself and not a messenger from God.
Boy look at you, looking at me
I know you don't understand
You could be a bad motherfucker
But that don't make you a man
Now you're just another one of my problems
Because you got out of hand
We won't survive
We're sinking into the sand

All I wanna do is get high by the beach
Get high by the beach, get high
All I wanna do is get by by the beach
Get by baby, baby, bye, bye

The truth is I never
Bought into your bullshit
When you would pay tribute to me
'Cause I know that
All I wanted to do was get high by the beach
Get high baby, baby, bye, bye
I also found a song that I love that Caleb absolutely HATES. Glory bee, it's fun to piss him off. You'd think he'd be happy that I climbed out of my little black hole at last but no.

Turn that off, Bridget. He tightens his hands around the steering wheel.

Hell, no. I think I've found my theme song.

This isn't amusing.

Yes it is. This is great.

He reaches out and turns off the stereo. For a man who used to take eighteen-year-old me to Vegas, hold me down and shoot me full of fun (every chance he got) this is a complete surprise.

Too close to home is it?

Neamhchiontach, stop talking or I'm just going to drive off a cliff and blame my broken heart.

I text PJ. If he kills us it was intentional

PJ returns almost instantly. WTF Where are you

Who are you talking to?, Caleb orders.


He relaxes, visibly, and that makes me sad in a whole different way.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Grief doesn't have an Instagram filter. Sorry.

This is what real life is like sometimes. Am I supposed to apologize for it? Move on if you don't like it.
I don't belong here
I gotta move on dear
Escape from this afterlife
'Cause this time I'm right
To move on and on
Far away from here
We got to church exceedingly early, me carpooling with Sam, his favourite assistant on a day that sees everyone else magically busy. It's cold inside and nothing is ready so he drops his coat on the pew, not even taking the time to open his office and rushes off to prepare. He tells me to stay put (wonder where he gets that from) and then I can't hear whatever else he says. I don't wear my hearing aids in the hole. It's easier to keep everything muted, underwater, unintelligible.

I take his coat and pull it over me like a blanket, lying down. I close my eyes and then I hear him yell my name, alarmed, clear as day. I bolt upright and his face relaxes instantly.

I thought you left.

No, just tired.

Here. Drink this. He puts a hot cup of coffee in my hands, wrapping them around the cup for warmth. The heat should spool up now. It'll be fine in a few minutes.
Got nothing against you
And surely I'll miss you
I can't turn my brain off and so I close my eyes and the cup wobbles dangerously. Sam stares at me, his concern boring right through my face, infiltrating my brain. I don't want him in there, it's not a day for this, I don't want the memory thief taking all that I have left.

Instead he just walks around, closing doors, opening the blinds to let in the sun while he gently speaks but a born orator, he can throw his voice so I hear him perfectly. As long as I concentrate.

His words are a life raft in a sea of unwelcome waves, safety in the face of danger, and I won't even tell you what they are. He moves his coat to wrap it around my shoulders and then sits down beside me. Then he jumps back up and walks out quickly but is back in an instant, his own cup of coffee in hand. He puts an arm around me and I rest my head on his shoulder.

Sometimes I really miss him, Sam. Tears squeeze out of my eyes, fall off my chin, landing in my cup.

Me, too. He wraps his arm around me tighter still, kissing the top of my head. I didn't think we'd be left here but here we are.
This place full of peace and light
And I'd hope you might
Take me back inside when the time is right