Best of 2008 Laurier Street
NOVEMBER/DECEMBER ARts + LifestylE
54 Contents BEST OF 2008 Music 29/ Alex Chinien 30/ Katie Kotler
24/ Ben Klein
Art 26/ Iliana Antonova 28/ Ben Klein 32/ 33/ 34/ 34/ 35/
Photography MikhailWassmer Alain Astruc Emma Novotny Karin Demeyer Nik Mirus Memories
46/ Prose by a selection of young writers
Where We’d Rather Be
84 INSIDE 09/ Contributors 10/ The Editor’s Letter 14/ November/December Events Calendar 40/ Food 43/ Recipes 91/ Horoscopes
POINT OF VIEW 16/ Videogames 37/ Movie Column 86/ Sex Column 89/ Gay Column 84/ Travel
FASHION and BEAUTY 54/ 60/ 64/ 69/ 68/
Respect Your Elders by Dan Popa The Good Old Days by Ollie Smith Diner Dreams by Karin Demeyer Bubby Bling by Katie Kotler Look of the Issue: Antique Rose
ART & DESIGN
12/ My Metro
21/ Old School Design 18/ We Salute the Polaroid 72/ Found Art 84/ Anathema by Wes
MUSE OF THE ISSUE Alix Stoicheff passed by our loft last month to see some photos we had on show. She was disarming and sweet, with thick wavy hair in a braid and the prettiest beauty spot under her eye. In her final year of undergraduate History at McGill, Alix is also currently a stage star, performing in an oncampus production with an ensemble cast of 6. A real pro in our studio, Alix thrust forth the chosen locket on our cover for almost an hour of shooting, and never complained once. For all that, she is SNAP! Magazine’s Muse of the Issue. COVER PHOTO BY OLLIE SMITH · WWW.OLLIESMITH.COM SPECIAL THANKS TO ZOÉ RENAUD DROUIN FOR LENDING US HER PORCELAIN AND A PHOTO OF HER GRAND-PARENTS. SPECIAL NOTE: THE KITTEN ABOVE (MINI) IS OUR OFFICIAL
All contents of this magazine are copyrighted ©2008 SNAP Inc. 1/4064 St. Laurent, Montreal, QC, H2W 1Y8 or third party-party content providers. SNAP Inc. assumes no responsibility for content of advertisement. Reproduction of editorial is strictly prohibited without prior permission of SNAP Inc. SNAP! will not hold itself responsible for unsolicited contributions.
VANDA DAFTARI, AGE 1
Contributors Independent Publisher and Editor Shayl Prisk HANNAH BYRNE, AGE 2
Art Direction Vanda Daftari
SHAYL PRISK, AGE 4
Design Vanda Daftari, Xavier Tolentino, Hannah Byrne Writing Shayl Prisk, Alexandre BelandBernard, Hannah Byrne, Alex Chinien, Katie Kotler, Ben Klein, Iliana Antonova, A.J. Little, Sarah Brideau, Jay Watts III, Rashi Bindra, Keith DIEMER, Marilis Cardinal, Lauren Jane Heller, Roberto Cialdella, Christina Vincelli Artwork Natalie Reis, Shayl Prisk, Keith DIEMER, Cedric Taillon, Wes Furlotte, Nizar Shorbagi Photography Ollie Smith, Karin Demeyer, Dan Popa, FABRICE M, Alain Astruc, Robby Reis, Mikhail Wassmer, Emma Novotny, Nik Mirus, Shayl Prisk, IAN ROGERS, BRENDAN SMITH, RAFAEL GOLDCHAIN, Vanda Daftari, Marilis Cardinal LEAD STYLIST Cianne Lechat Marketing and Communications Hannah Byrne Web Editor Hannah Byrne Web Director Jeff Traynor SNAP! TV Directors Alexandre LeBlanc and Julien Gregoire Gallery Ariane Gregoire, Armance Brandenburg Printers Marquis Book Printing Advertising Information 514 576 7867 Offices 4064 St Laurent Blvd, Suite 1, MontrĂŠal QC H2W 1Y8 www.snapme.ca
Editor’s Letter For this issue’s ‘Found Art’ section (page 72) I visited a few of my favourite antique shops in the city and asked to see what vintage postcards they had in stock. I looked through literally hundreds of postcards, from mediocre to kitschy to the rare vintage gem. Most of these flimsy cards, worth at the time probably a few cents at best, were now being sold to me for 3 or 4 dollars each, sometimes more. Their value has increased just by virtue of their age, even though in truth most of the postcards being kept in these boxes will never be sold. In this issue we are looking back and celebrating the faded beauty of past eras, grandmas and grandpas, Polaroids, antique finds, old wisdom and vintage style. We are also remembering the best of 2008 in local arts via a variety of writers and photographers in our Belle Province. We hope this little collection of memories strikes a chord with you or at the very least gently reminds you of the value of old school charm, cracked and weathered as it may be beside gleaming malls, billboards and fake Christmas trees. See you in 2009. SP
What did you think? Let us know. email@example.com
#04 photographs by emma novotny www.flickr.com/photos/enovotny
My Metro Every issue we ask a photographer to capture a metro moment. These images are by Siraj Chew-Bose www.flickr.com/photos/thefluxcapacitor
The Grey Cup Olympic Stadium
Mark Berube › Le Divan Orange
Nov 9·16 Coup de Coeur music festival › Around town
2 Daylight Savings end
'A Jihad for Love' Cinema Politica › Concordia University
Calexico › Théâtre National
‘Power Within’ by Bill Clinton › Le Palais des Congrès
Bob Dylan › Bell Centre Nov 18·19 Mtl International Game Summit › Palais des Congrès
Deerhunter and Times New Viking › Theatre Plaza St. Hubert
5 Nov 5 · Dec 13 'Observations I' › SBC Galerie of Contemporary Art
Nov 26 · Dec 30 The Promise of Reality by Cheryl Sourkes and Marion Wagschal › Division Gallery
Nine Inch Nails › Bell Centre
Nov 12 · Dec 1 Francine Simonin › Galerie Orange
Feist › Bell Centre
Nov 6·12 ›'Things Change' by Hayden Menzie › The Emporium Gallery Nov 6·15 › 'Recent Work' by Nik Mirus › Visual Voice Gallery
Plants and Animals › La Tulipe
Nov 20·30 Image + Nation · gay and lesbian film festival › Around town Sam Roberts Band & The Stills › Theatre National
Nov 13·23 RIDM · International Documentary Meet in Montréal › Around the city
Nov 6·16 › Cinemania Film Festival › Cinema Imperial Nov 7·9 Salon Passion Chocolat › Palais des Congrès de Montréal
The Acorn & Ohbijou & Belleisle › Sala Rossa
Roadsworth: The Spot · Cinema Politica › Concordia University
Nov 14·15 Flaveurs, Bieres et Caprices › Le Windsor Ballrooms
World Diabetes Day
Girl Talk › Club Soda
Throw Poetry Collection › Ctrl Lab
Nov 21·22 Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance› Place des Arts
The Art of Charisma Institute NHC
Little Birdie › Casa del Popolo
MUSIC ART RANDOM
NOVEMBER For more detailed info, visit our site www.snapme.ca Keep us informed by emailing event listings to firstname.lastname@example.org
Dec 22·29 Chanukkah
Dec 15 · Jan 4 Christmas at the Garden › Montreal Botanical Gardens
Tina Turner Bell Centre
Id al Adha (Feast of Sacrifice)
What Would Jesus Buy? · Cinema Politica › Concordia University Neil Young & Wilco & Everest › Bell Centre
The Australian Pink Floyd Show › Bell Centre
News Years Eve
The Black Dahlia Murder › Le National
Duran Duran › Metropolis
Human Rights Day
Trans-Siberian Orchestra › Bell Centre
Dec 11·14 Souk @ SAT
Dec 4·18 The Stamp Show › Visual Voice Gallery
School Holidays start
Priestess › Sala Rossa
Martha Wainwright & Jason Bajada › Metropolis
Disney on Ice · High School Musical › Bell Centre
26 Boxing Day
Les Zapartistes › Metropolis
Zébulon › Club Soda
Dec 13·30 The Nutcracker › Place des ArtsRights Day
19th Anniversary of the École Polythechnique de Montreal massacre
VIDEO GAMES by alexandre beland-bernard
This time around, SNAP! Magazine’s videogame columnist presents us with brief descriptions of the games he is most anticipating right now.
Fallout 3 photos #3
Left 4 Dead
‘Oblivion with guns’ is how everyone is describing this new title from RPG maestros Bethesda Software. Don’t let this fool you too much, however. The venerable devs claimed that the game would fix a lot of what Oblivion did wrong – like providing real dialogue trees (rather than the strange mood-picking mini-game that used to stand for dialogue). This makes the world a smaller but denser place and of course, helps it stay true to the Fallout series by including vast amounts of gory violence and drug use (which nearly got the game banned in Australia).
After completely dominating the teambased multiplayer shooter market with last year’s Team Fortress 2 (which I, among others, am still playing religiously), Valve is now seeking to conquer the (relatively) uncharted territory that is the cooperative multiplayer shooter. And what better setting to express cooperative gameplay than the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse, where small groups of players seek to survive a never-ending horde of undead?
Reserve your place in the Vault today! Fallout 3 is developed and published by Bethesda Software. Released on October 28 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC platforms.
Farcry 2 photos #2, 4 Those of you who remember 2004’s wideopen shooter, as well as its console spinoffs, will most likely have fond memories of stalking enemies through the jungle (or being stalked by them). This year, you will be able to relive much of that experience, but this time transposed to the African savannah. The development team went all-out with this game, and have, if one were to believe all the hype, created a game that truly pushes the boundaries of interactive storytelling. With its dynamic narrative style and use of a ‘buddy’ system, it is said to keep you involved beyond simply shooting everything in sight. But really, as long as they like destroying enemies and blowing stuff up, every self-respecting gamer should thoroughly enjoy this brand-spanking new ultra-polished offering from Ubisoft Montreal.
If Valve can maintain the quality they got gamers used to with their previous releases, such as Half-Life 2 and Portal, gamers can definitely look forward to blasting zombie heads off their sockets with their friends later this fall. Just beware of friendly fire! Here’s to hoping the chainsaw made it. Remember: it ain’t a zombie if you can’t chop it in half with a chainsaw. That’s a rule. Left 4 Dead is developed by Valve, published by Electronic Arts. Released on November 20 for Xbox 360 and PC platforms. Look for it on Steam!
The Best Game of 2008 Mass Effec photos #1
For me, the best game of 2008 was definitely the PC version of Mass Effect. Not only fixing many things that were wrong with the 2007 original (in terms of controls and interface, mostly), the devs also improved graphics and performances, making it pretty much the perfect interactive space opera experience. Mass Effect for PC was developed by Bioware, ported to the PC by Demiurge Studios and published by Electronic Arts. Simply must be experienced on the PC.
Farcry 2 is developed by Ubisoft Montreal, published by Ubisoft. Released on October 21 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC platforms. 17/
POLAROIDS FADE TO BLACK 1 to 4 by alain astruc 5 by robby reis
Given than they are now being phased off the market, it was intriguing how much attention the news of Polaroid's demise received. With its own particular aesthetic and playful approachability, the Polaroid picture symbolizes more than just a point on the pre- or post-digital timeline. Instantly gratifying and with the strange ability to turn a mundane image into a dream-like vision, soon all we will have left are ultra high resolution digital images that leave nothing to the imagination save for some post production nip-tucks. Ah, days gone byâ€Ś 5/
snap! Get SNAPPED!
will find a blank polaroid. On the back of this page you fence, town on a wall, sign, poster, und Cut it out and put it up aro barn... park bench, door, dog, roof, @snapme.ca. salon to it d sen Take a photo and pla e cement.Oh SNAP! Big prizes for the most creativ
Le Vieux St. Laurent 3993 St. Laurent
Faded Glory design by xavier tolentino photos by ian rogers
The faded ghost signs and vintage plastic ads that are dotted around Montreal help remind us of the aesthetics of different eras. They also hint at the spending habits of those who lived here before us. Today’s glossy Guess Jeans or Chanel perfume was yesterday’s Farine Five Roses or 2 in 1 boot polish. Soda was huge. And cigarettes. Back in the day it seems there were car washes on every corner; in fact cars and auto maintenance, tyres and brakes make up the backbone of the skeleton signs you will see when you start paying attention to the brick facades of many old buildings. In keeping with this metaphor, bakers were likely the hands and butchers the burly arms. Cheap motels with rooms for the hour were the
pelvis, while bars and breweries made up the stocky legs. A great number of the best new logos and signage emerging in Montreal today come from bars and nightspots. We can only surmise that Montreal will always be a drinker’s town. Some of our favourite new designs that show a great flair as well as a forward style include the logo for the Blue Dog Motel bar 4042 St. Laurent Romeo restobar 285 Mont-Royal east and Marché 27 27 Prince Arthur west. www.flickr.com/photos/greynotgrey/
0 best of
Agent of Chaos words by ben klein illustration by cedric taillon
I’ve been getting mixed receptions for saying this, but I think the new Batman movie 'The Dark Knight' is one of the best films ever. It’s because of the Joker. I haven’t stopped thinking about the Joker since I saw the movie. As a side note, let’s acknowledge Heath Ledger’s shattering performance; but recognize that his tragedy should not prevent us from throwing out the vulgar sentimentality about how he was killed by the role. We also need to realize that ‘the Joker’ is also in the character’s lines and the direction. Even more it’s the context of the whole film, and the compelling and bizarre history of the character itself. The Joker started out as a murderer and thief of brilliance in the 1940’s and later became a hapless and goofy criminal. Then he seemed, at the time, to reach his apogee in Jack Nicholson’s campy psycho ‘Pop Art’ portrayal. Ledger’s Joker, as they say of 9-11, changed everything; in fact I think there’s a more than superficial link between our various, real world terrors and those of fictional Gotham. Al Qaeda and the Joker both delight in forcing us to see that what we took to be the ethical norm is in reality nothing but an illusion we numbly accept. The war in Iraq and the Joker both belong to the law of unintended consequences, and exist because of moral inertia on the part of the powers that be, and the unexamined notion that force can be preemptively used to police the world in good conscience. The Joker and Neo-Conservatism are both emanations of a zeitgeist that disregards all trigger locks: it will henceforth be normal to use torture, since the enemy does: how come we were so slow to ‘get tough’? The Joker tortures his victims, and Batman tortures the Joker. The Joker abducts people; so does Batman. I’ve got to admit, watching the Joker burn that huge pile of money
was exhilarating. “It’s not about money, it’s about sending a message”. At the present time, his point is unmistakable. He is both the cause and the effect of chaos. “Introduce a little anarchy, upset the established order, and everything becomes chaos…” The insight implied in this statement is that violent misrule is always the true reality; the order people impose on the surface of things is a mask and a lie. It implies that we believe in order, in the full and irrational sense of belief: we ignore contradictory evidence because of paralyzing terror. To look over our shoulder is to be murdered in the dark. Therefore, to expose the disorderly and devastating truth is as easy as pulling off a mask. Or putting one on. The Joker, when he’s accused of being crazy calmly answers that no, he’s not. We never can say whether or not he is delusional, like Iago in ‘Othello’, in part because he’s too smart for us. He’s always ahead of everyone, and his evolution, from idea to idea, is a dizzying abyss to contemplate. He lies and kills for pleasure; he tells persuasive, contradictory stories about himself to people, indistinguishable from possible truths. Why? It’s unclear whether he has any desires per se. He likes to “savor the little emotions” before his victims die. It’s clear that he doesn’t care if he dies; at moments, he wants to. But he wants to prove something, and has fun trying. If one is unafraid of the consequences, and lives, like the Joker, without any ‘rules’, one becomes, as he says…an Agent of Chaos. The contradiction in terms is fitting. And if anything, the Joker is more intelligent than either Al Qaeda or the Bush administration, in recognizing that he, like they, are without ‘rules’. They think "they think"… he “knows the truth”.
THE COLOR BALL WORDS BY ILIANA ANTONOVA PHOTO BY RAFAEL GOLDCHAIN
The mercurial intelligence of Scott Lyall has settled once again, fortuitously, as the season’s inaugural exhibition at the Power Plant in Toronto. His latest endeavor, suitably entitled ‘The Color Ball’ is a take on the Power Plant gallery’s own yearly fundraising event, ‘The Power Ball’; consequently the piece reflects the artist’s views on the state of contemporary art institutions, using as a starting point and subject, the emergence of the fashionable contemporary art ‘gala’. Upon entering the gallery, the viewer is confronted by something familiar: party residue. In the center of the room are three sculptural elements; three individual rectilinear volumes placed in a triangular formation. These volumes uncannily reference various popular culture and art historical sources. They bring to mind, for example, the ever-fleeting contemporary fashion world, while at the same time referencing canonized art historical moments, such as Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party or minimalist sculptural forms of the 60’s. The three triangularly positioned volumes are not enclosed, but rather, they are broken so as to encourage the visitor to weave in and out of the composition, in turn, providing a multitude of possible views of what Lyall calls the ‘landscape’ of the installation which encourages as subjective an experience as possible. These central sculptural masses, alongside the eerie presence of the mechanized spotlights, formally anchor the rest of the installation while at the same time directing the visitor’s physical movement through the space of the exhibition. Around these central forms are various scattered, seemingly arbitrary objects: banquet rental articles, tablecloths, sound equipment, wilted flowers, oversized champagne flutes; not to mention a cheeky red heart emblazoned with the art-
ist’s own signature creeping out from behind a DJ mixing console. These elements act as cultural signifiers and communicate the subject of the work; that of an arts social function aftermath– but upon spending time within the space of the installation, the viewer experiences something curious: as loaded as these various objects are with cultural residue, they seem to function first and foremost as formal components to the overall composition of the work. The result is the experience of a constant back and forth between the objects themselves, their relation to the space as well as to one another; just as one identifies a particular object, one quickly becomes aware of its overriding function as a formal element of the whole of the composition. Due to the multitude of functions these objects serve, the spectator’s focus is consistently disturbed. As the spectator ’s eyes scan across the space zooming in on details and zooming out to experience the entirety of the work, it comes as a surprise when components take on an entirely new meaning and serve a different function when revisited. Even though the chaos of the work could be interpreted as its subject, the viewer soon comes to realize that every component has been methodically placed and arranged. The work reflects chaos when read symbolically and order when read formally. As a result, the viewer is left with the overriding sensation that there are two sides to every story and every experience, while having to somehow negotiate a position. Scott Lyall’s, ‘The Color Ball’ is on view until Nov 23rd at the Power Plant Contemporary Art gallery, 231 Queens Quay West Toronto
Andy Says words by BEN KLEIN
The Andy Warhol show at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is both eye and ear opening. The premise of the show ‘Warhol Live: Music and Dance in Andy Warhol’s Work’, is that Warhol absorbed cutting edge ideas from the fields of music and dance, and spliced them into the sphere of visual arts. The outer limit of this view, carried to its logical conclusion is that it was the re-imagined implications of those contemporary disciplines that enabled him to revolutionize the art of his time (at least from the perspective of his most admiring critics). Warhol’s position, broadly speaking, was Structuralist as opposed to Existentialist; maybe we can say that it was Deconstructionist before its time. He would not be pinned down artistically or in conversation, but calmly went about the multiplication of bizarrely resonant images that continually seem, to this day, to become all the stronger the more we notice that they are self-questioning. He deadpanned, and all the while seemed to stress an impersonal, de-natured, and systemic worldview, in which concepts shaped people and events, and not the other way around. He was a master of evasive rhetoric; so much so, that smart people wondered for years whether he knew what he was achieving, even as they recognized his genius. If later on he seemed to become a special-pleader, and a careerist, even then (the exhibition appears
to prove) it was true that nobody could do it better: and now Warhol, the scoffed-at society portraitist of the squalid Palaeobushic Reagan era appears to be having the last laugh. And another thing: I think the show correctly identifies Warhol as venturing the idea that pop music and avant-garde dance are equal to any other supposedly higher forms of expression within their fields; but that the reason isn’t the formally intrinsic qualities of the work judged from within those mediums (Warhol was perhaps the first true anti-Modernist). It was the critical and ideological structure of songs by the Velvet Underground for instance that qualifies them to us as great music. Arguably, Lou Reed learned from Andy how to use his medium to compress sophisticated but accessible data into a format that seems unlikely at first, but yields more and more content as you go along with it. The Velvet Underground are harshest when they are the most tender; the bluntest when the most clever: and constantly push the rock envelope technically with tricks they picked up from John Cage, Merce Cunningham, even maybe John Ashberry. Who else has ever recorded a song with two singers simultaneously singing two different lyrics; except maybe Warhol the painting rock star, whose overlapping Elvises kind of hum. If he didn’t invent it, Warhol at least identified fame as we know it; it exists independently of any direct reason or merit (even for those of some kind of distinction), basically just 'cause. And the MMFA’s beautifully put together show makes an excellent case that Warhol both explicitly knew that, and that he managed to universalize this strange insight by taking from, and affected other art forms in a new way; one which we all now take for granted, and often call Interdisciplinary. There were always those who did more than one thing, but putting them together in the way we take for granted now was, very possibly, more Andy’s idea than anyone else’s. Wow. warhol live is showing at the Musée des beaux arts located at 1380 sherbrooke w. from sept 25 2008 to jan 18 2009.
A-Trak and Ratatat words by ALEX CHINIEN photo by brendan smith
Whatever issues you might have with the city of Montreal, whether they concern the municipal government, the police department, the cyclists, the drivers, the men, the women or even the children... put them far, far aside. Why? Because the sum of all these charming and not so charming elements is a city that does festivals like no other can. It should be no surprise then, that both of the shows that stood out the most to me this year happened during the week of the notorious Pop Montreal festival. I remember where I was when I realized that Pop Montreal 2008 was fast approaching. I was rifling through a chest of t shirts at Old Gold when I was interrupted by a dude. Not short, not tall or even particularly good looking but he was carrying two large stacks of Pop Montreal schedules to leave in the store. The employees said they’d probably only need one stack, to which the dude immediately replied,
“just take two, I’m not going to be coming by every week”. This man’s brazen pseudo swagger reminded me that I had already bought tickets to a Pop Montreal Event. Months earlier at that, for the Ratatat show at Club Soda, which I correctly assumed would sell out hella fast. As the night of the show approached, I took a look at the Pop Montreal event on Facebook and was delighted to see a myriad of desperate cries for tickets strewn across the wall. Offers for a ticket ranged from seventy dollars (originally around 20 dollars) to a first born son, but I was far from tempted. It would be worth it. It was. I’ve seen bands incorporate visuals into live shows before but never with as much bravado and outright success as Ratatat did on the night of October 3rd. To begin with, a series of projectors were mounted at stage level and pointed upwards so that their shadows were cast upon a menagerie of altogether badass images behind
them. What could be more badass then looping footage of two lanky Brooklyn kids beating hand drums so hard that they burst into flames? Nothing... apart from the sight of the band belting out hand drum jams every third or fourth song. Calculated theatre, I suppose as these guys are now seasoned vets. The set list they played here was the exact same as their New York gig - and I’m not surprised by that because the Montreal show was exactly the meticulous audio visual extravaganza the sold out crowd had been waiting for. My next and most pressing question is are there plans for another rap remix album as they’ve done with amazing success in the past?
I’d be a real jerk if I wrote anything about music in this city and didn’t mention ATrak Winning the DMC World DJ Championship at the tender age of 15. Every time A-Trak gets a chance to come home and play a show, it’s always worth checking out. I say that because between running Fools Gold Records and DJing for the Kanye West machine, he doesn’t play as many shows here as he should. Although the Telus Theatre on St Denis is pretty much the worst venue for a DJ, A-Trak made it a fun show. His set was heavier on Hip Hop than I’ve ever heard from him, but it was entirely appropriate as he was sharing the bill with the overwhelmingly electronic Boys Noize. You could guess that the only complaint I had about A-Trak’s set was that it wasn’t long enough; it never is. There is a definite sense of familiarity when A-Trak plays Montreal which transcends the rift between a DJ and an audience that big. It’s a refreshing change from the tired rhetoric of rock bands that promise that every city they play in is their favourite. The show was called Attack of the Unibros which is a joke about the famous Boys Noize unibrow. I have to say I was surprised by their outright commitment to that theme. The unibrow graphic was projected on every available wall. A few times during the Boys Noize set, A-Trak even took it upon himself to face the audience with an authoritative finger held high across his brow. Maybe this will catch on? Let’s hope it doesn’t. see alex on page 62
SIGNAL words by Katie kotler
The best show that I saw in 2008 was Signal, a New York-based Steve Reich tribute band. I know that this sounds lame because tribute bands usually suck. Maybe it was the circumstances of how I arrived at the show that made it better, because it’s always when these things are unexpected that they seem better, or maybe it was a good show, perhaps even the best of 2008. I had just moved to New York and was spending my first Saturday walking around the Lower East Side, handing out postcards for the film, “Wild Combination:
A Portrait of Arthur Russell”. While trying to pay for an Odwalla smoothie, I realized that I’d lost my wallet and spent the next few hours on the phone with TD Canada Trust. Hungry, poor and and disillusioned, I decided to continue my night, because going home seemed too depressing. As instructed by the film’s distributors, I walked over to Le Poisson Rouge to hand out flyers to people who were going to the Wordless Festival, a week devoted to bringing together both ‘high’ and ‘low’ forms of music. I waited about ten minutes and gave two girls who were standing outside the door the usual spiel, “Arthur Russell was a disco-cellist man who played with Allen Ginsburg, Philip Glass and the Talking Heads...” One of the girls asked if I was coming to see the $25 show. Explaining my dire situation, she said; “Well, we have a plus one so come in with us.” Inside, Signal began playing Reich’s 1974 piece, 'Music for 18 Musicians.' For those who are not familiar with Reich, he is one of the creators of 1960’s minimalism in music. Having studied the drums in Ghana, Reich’s fascination with repetition led him to be the first to use tape loops to create rhythms. Signal, I later learned, is headed by Brad Lubman and features members of the Lincoln Center ’s Society for Chamber Music, Gutbucket, SoPercussion, Alarm Will Sound and a few other ensembles. They are known for their performances at the Bang on a Can marathon, a series of concerts that was described by Vanity Fair as “Lollapalooza advised by the ghost of John Cage”, with guests ranging from Sonic Youth to Iannis Xenakis.
Two guys started out on separate xylophones, banging away on the same notes. Soon, with at least two people each on the same instrument, about fifteen people were singing, playing violins, cellos, marimbas, bass clarinet, pianos, metallophones and maracas. Each instrument weaved in and around the constant banging of the xylophone. The other instruments would play out tiny harmonies and melodies, while eventually the xylophones began to double in on themselves and harmonize. Similar to other pieces of Reich’s music, it sometimes felt offbeat, but nonetheless enveloping. This was way better than any recording of Reich’s that I had heard in any electroacoustics class I had taken. It conjured up the best part of any eighties movie, particularly my favorite, 'Risky Business', when Tom Cruise and Rebecca DeMorney get it on in a 'Reel Train.' I saw the audience, (mostly white people aged between thirty and sixty) transform from being self-conscious and chin-stroking to smiling to themselves with their eyes closed, dancing with their hands in a prayer position. After about a minute of hearing the music, I had begun to feel like Voltaire’s Candide, my luck having drastically improved so quickly. 'Music for 18 Musicians' is divided into fourteen pieces, starting and ending with 'Pulses'. The xylophones remained throughout the hour-long piece, moving from one chord to eleven. This piece is known to be Reich’s most difficult to perform and was done so wonderfully. I walked out of Le Poisson Rouge in a bit of a daze, feeling optimistic about what New York has to offer and confident that being broke doesn’t matter. That much.
â€˜I spent the past year in New York and during that time I attended my fair share of parties. The party at which I took this photo was surely one of the most memorable. The sock was removed at a later point in time and the gentleman got orally pleasured by a transvestite on stage.â€™ Mikhail Wassmer
'I took this photo during the last big snow storm in March. It was snowing so hard there was nobody in the streets. On my way I met a group of othodox Jews who were going to the synagogue on rue St Viateur. They were chanting in the storm. They all greeted me as I was struggling with the focus and the battery.' Alain astruc
2008PHOTO best of
‘To me, this photo represents summer adventures with friends in a great city.’ Emma novotny
‘The photo was taken in Coney Island this September when I visited New York for the first time with my mother.’ Karin Demeyer
'Itâ€™s part of an ongoing series of portraits of treeplanters. Theyâ€™ve got kind of a figurine feel to them as if they were shot in a little set. Someone once told me that they look like tough little action figures. I like that.' Nik mirus
Nik's work is currently showing at The Visual Voice Gallery. To see more of his photography visit nikmirus.coM.
FILMY RESIDUE Words by A.J. Little Illustration by Natalie Reis
My evenings were always casual… like the bedroom lives of the polyamorous, they consisted mostly of movie-watching and cigarette smoke. For a time I fell in with a man whose particular peccadilloes made him hold my hand in platonic pederasty. Often we watched the same films ad nauseam. He would regale me with stories of old, stirring in me a futile longing for times I would never be a part of. Always speaking in mid-century aphorisms, denoting some specific truth... all liberally borrowed from the pictures we saw. I had a dense love for the world he came from. I wanted nothing more than to live in the past. 'The Last Picture Show' was one of the last films that we saw together. 'The Last Picture Show' is a saga set in a post-war west Texas town, and spans the end of one football season to the beginning of the next. The story concerns the loves and tribulations of high-school seniors Duane and Sonny. Duane, played by a pre “Dude” Jeff Bridges, is a roughneck
of equal parts charm and smarm. While he has easy good looks, he becomes little more than a rapacious dullard in the face of his love Jacey (Cybill Shepherd). Sonny (Timothy Bottoms) on the other hand, contrives a sad puppy dog idiom. He holds a very controlled laconic stance until the sudden death of his mute friend. Even though they share some of the same traits and desires and are very much alike, Sonny is clearly the antithesis of Duane. Nonetheless the two boys both desire Jacey Farrow, a character as stunning as she is devilish. Jacey is more in touch with her sexual desires than the emotional responses that accompany them. When she is alerted to Sonny’s affair with Ruth Popper, the coach’s wife, she becomes saddened that his inward romantic attention is no longer focused on her. Jacey decides to throw herself at Sonny, promising marriage and all the thrills a pretty rich girl can offer. Jacey’s mother is a bored house wife cuckolding her husband with one of his rough-
neck labourers (a tradesman that Jacey eventually has a casual tryst with, on a pool hall billiard table). The pool hall itself is owned by Sam, the shared paternal figure of Sonny and Duane. Sam the Lion- as he is affectionately known- seems to be the last remnant from that era and exudes a rustic and benevolent ideal. His key speech beside the water tower that wistfully details the transitory nature of things, has always given me pause. My companion for this movie night seemed to squeeze my hand tighter with each syllabic punch, as Sam uttered: “...I suppose I am just as sentimental as the next fella when it comes to old times...old times.” Before she had danced with stars, Cloris Leachman appeared as forgotten housewife Ruth Popper. Ruth finds fulfillment in the company of a younger man, Sonny. There is a scene nearing the end of the film, where Ruth lets fly a tirade of emotion. She spills her longing and hurt feelings all over the twisted posture and messy hair of Sonny, like a coffee cup that she tossed to the wall, splitting its contents over the wall paper. I watched this scene with transfixed intent. I watched it as though I were Sonny and Ruth simultaneously. I was Ruth being slighted by some one she desired. I felt, as Sonny, awash in mistakes and youthful wreckage. I was him, reaching out, waiting to be absolved for the relationship I ruined. I was Ruth, chewing out someone for treatment not even suited to a mongrel dog. I was there for the tossed cups, and solemn hand holding, for the insistence that every thing would be alright and to never mind about the past. I was at once both a character and an active participant in their torment. When the screen fades on the dusty town and on the picture show gone the way of the buffalo, I always feel a genuine sadness at the state of that sleepy west Texas town.
The last time I watched the film, my dear friend and I sat in contemplation as it ended. He continued to hold my hand, rubbing my fingers as Ruth had done to Sonny after her emotional release. We sat teeming in the type of silence that makes most folks uncomfortable. I thought about the past, about generational ideas. I thought about
Cybil Shepard most, and her portrayal of Jacey. She reminded me of girls I went to high school with. In fact most every one in that movie corresponded with people I had known. I realized that the past that I had pined for was an apparition, and the only real difference between the good old days and now is fashion and architecture. My companion looked over at me....“That Cybill Shepard was a real bitch huh?” I nodded in agreement and left the picture show humming Hank Williams.
In a cinema near you: SNAP! gives you a heads-up on some cool flicks coming soon.
The Road / November 26 Based on a novel by Cormac McCarthy ('No Country For Old Men', 'All The Pretty Horses) the story is set in a post-apocalyptic world a'nd focuses on the struggles of a father (Viggo Mortensen) and his son. Also starring Charlize Theron, Guy Pierce and Robert Duvall the film promises to be gritty and brutal. Cannibalism anyone?
Australia / November 26 'Moulin Rouge'/'Romeo & Juliet' director Baz Luhrmann decides to make a film about the outback and boldly names it Australia… because there aren’t enough sweeping generalizations and misconceptions about Oz as it is. The film is receiving a lot of hype but it would have been nice if Baz had cast some interesting new Aussie faces and not the same old tired ones.
The Brothers Bloom / December 19 Mark Ruffalo and Adrien Brody play debonair conmen on their last jaunt to swindle a rich siren (Rachel Weisz). Also starring Rinko Kikuchi as Bang Bang (love it) this adventure comedy was filmed all over Europe and Asia and promises to please the same crowd that ate up P2 and Brick.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button / December 19 This film was shot in our very own Montreal last year and looks to be an unconventional fantasy drama starring Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett and Tilda Swinton. What’s so curious about Benjamin is that he ages backwards… sounds intriguing.
Here are three versions we tried:
4040 St. Laurent (corner Duluth)
words AND PHOTOS by shayl prisk
That old favourite for sleepy Sunday nights and easy snacks, the grilled cheese sandwich can be as simple or as decadent as you like.
Well none of us could disagree that this gourmet version was pretty fantastic. The grilled porto cheddar on nut bread with kalamata tapenade created an amazing flavour blend. $6.50
2. ALTO 3462 Parc Avenue (in the McGill ghetto)
Toasted on thick white sliced bread with butter and two layers of mild cheddar, it was thick and chewy and delicious. $3.35
3. JAVA U 4914 Sherbrooke West (and other locations)
Grilled on round white panini bread with a classic cheddar filling, these two crispy thin semi-circles were the most simple take on the standard. $4.99
Notables: CafĂŠ Pi 4127 St. Laurent Lâ€™Etranger 680 StE. Catherine West 41/
GRANDMA’S RECIPES PhotographS by shayl prisk
I had a Sicilian grandmother and family gatherings involved lashings of spaghetti, fried eggplant, biscotti, wine, brawling grownups and cousins in every which direction. This recipe is my all time favourite and received hearty accolades from friends at a recent dinner party. Prego prego! ~ Hannah Byrne Fry garlic in oil. Add oregano, bay leaves, sugar, salt and balsamic vinegar and fry at a low heat. Add the can of tomatoes, tomato paste, and raw piece of meat. Bring to a low heat and simmer for as long as possible – a day is ideal. Stir occasionally. Turn off the heat and remove the piece of meat once it is cooked (it’s just for flavouring). Stir in the chopped basil and serve with tubular spaghetti and parmesan cheese. Buon appetito!
Nanna’s Spaghetti 3 · 4 Garlic cloves 2 Bay leaves 1 tbs Sugar 3 tbs Balsamic vinegar 1 can Tomatoes 3·4 tbs Tomato paste 1 Pork chop or duck leg Olive oil Dried oregano Fresh basil Salt to flavour Olives optional Parmesan for garnishing 43/
GRANDMAâ€™S RECIPES CONTINUED from previous page
My Japanese grandmother taught me how to cook a lot of great, traditional dishes. This recipe is a dressed up version of her classic miso soup. ~ Phillipe Carbone In a small pot, add Hon-Dashi to boiling water. Take off heat, wait 3 minutes. In a bowl mix miso paste with a cup of fish stock, stir and return to pot. Put pot back on very low heat. Add lemongrass, lemon, ginger, curry and coconut milk. Simmer very lightly (Miso paste should never boil). Garnish with green onions, cillantro and serve. Other garnish options include leeks, tofu, lemon zest, shido (Japanese basil/ mint).
Lemongrass & Coconut Milk Miso Soup 5g Hon-Dashi (Bonito fish stock) 3tbs Red Miso paste (good quality) 1tbs Grated ginger 1 Finely chopped green onion 1tbs Grated lemon zest 1 Crushed lemongrass bulb 2tbs Minced cillantro 11/2 tsp Mild curry paste (tomato based) 1/4 Cup coconut milk 1L Water
MEMORIES SARAH M. BRIDEAU Remembering Who I Was
A few weeks ago it was my birthday, and for the occasion my mother got someone to transfer all of our old family videotapes to DVD. These tapes date as far back as 1988, the days when I was a mere four year old child. They were all there, all of those “important” moments: the piano recitals, the choirs, the band, Ringuette tournaments, Girl Scout promises and of course, all the vacations and birthdays. My favourite one by far is the ballet-jazz dance show, when I was 6 or 7 years old, dancing to Pink Cadillac. Tiny me, looking at what the others are doing and trying to follow their steps. Seeing that clip made me laugh hysterically, to the point of actual tears. I grew up in the country, and these videos begin with something that I can still recollect vividly: loading up hay bails onto the tractor with the entire extended family helping out. These were times when my family was still a solid unit. This was before adult life took my mother’s siblings to different cities… before I had the slightest concept of what was really going on in the world of grown ups. There is something strange and almost voyeuristic about watching yourself on films from over 20 years ago. What was I thinking? What am I going to say next? I look at the body language to get a read on the familiar child in the images. I listen carefully not to miss a single word. It’s almost like doing a bizarre anthropological study of your own self. The childhood scenes are of course followed by the more awkward ones dating back to my pre-teen years. All of those years of mega-dorkiness that you so desperately try to wipe away as you get older. All the stupid things you start saying. How you’re always trying to catch everyone’s attention with a complete lack of subtlety and charm. Some of these moments in the videos were so terribly awkward that I felt a profound discomfort in watching them. The scene where I start yelling at my
friends not to blow out my candles made me realize that I was an even more dangerous control-freak in my past than I am today. How confronting and embarrassing it is to see yourself on video, not just being cute and smiley, but also showing your darker sides. Still, this is precisely why it’s so fascinating to watch. Children have absolutely no perception of all the social conventions that force us to conform and be polite. What were we when we were still 100% raw, unfiltered, and unrefined? It’s while watching the earlier videos, the ones from when the whole family was still around, that I realized how lucky I was to have lived the first five years of my life with such a strong and present family: all of my mother’s siblings living right across the field. We were all stronger for being together I think, and immortalized in film are the memories of the better days, like that scene in the fields, or one where my dad is spinning me around in his arms. In another clip he’s throwing snowballs at the windshield before getting into the car gasping with laughter, looking happier than I ever remember seeing him. There are the Christmas parties the way I remember them, when uncles and aunts were younger than I am now. Then there is the shot of me going down the slide and into the bananapool with the cat, confused as to why he keeps running away. Things started to get rough in my family after we moved away in 1989. From that point the videos morph away from the good times and start being a subtle reflection of the bleak reality of a family that is falling apart. They turn into some weird attempt to prove that at least one member of our family was at that time somewhat happy. All the birthdays, vacations, and holidays were shadowed by a very tangible tension. I had let myself forget what that child felt like for a while.
MEMORIES Memory and perception are such superbly selective tools. At which point did I stop being that person who didn’t know and started being the one who forgets? Between the two there is a sharp and painful realization that progressively turns the “happy child that didn’t know” into a damaged individual trying to survive. I even changed my name at one point, desperately trying to put so much of that little girl away. I haven’t been able to bear anyone calling me by my old name (other than family) since then. Though I had to “kill” a part of me in order to live with myself, that little girl still lives in the videos. No matter how painful it can be to testify to the ways in which we have changed, the “self” is a whole. And though we stack some parts of ourselves away as we grow older, the dark and the light is how we become who we are. Between the laughter and the tears, I got to remember a bit of who I was, and a little bit more of who I am now.
When I was a teenager I refused to be photographed. I was surly and cold and had no problem ruining birthday parties if I felt like someone went too far and got their camera in my face one too many times. Typical of my mother, and perhaps because of my violent resistance to it, the only thing she ever requested at Christmas was a photograph of me. When I look at these images now they are like bizarre artifacts in a life I don’t entirely lay claim to. Who the hell was I? A total bitch, yes. Cruel and silent, skin ghost white and hair dyed black. I was the typical rebellious teen but Christ, where did I get off? For the life of me I can’t justify it, or even explain it. I was a stripper for about 6 months of my life, in various seedy clubs in my old city. I did it to make enough money to see a boy who lived in the States. I loved him. But when I think about it now, I wonder who that girl was- expressionless, all business, doing her thing and then collecting the wads of cash.
When I was 20 I got drunk and went skydiving with a bunch of people I barely knew. To this day I cannot wrap my head around it. I am terrified of heights. But on that cold October morning I got suited up, filed into a rickety old plane and without a second thought launched myself out of a hole in the craft, plummeting to the ground. There was one photo of that day, taken without me knowing it. I was smiling. I haven’t seen it in years. I think my ex boyfriend has it. Memories aren’t seamless- at least mine. They are conflicting and crazy and sometimes horrifying. I have some great memories of my sisters. We are soul mates. And I have fond recollections of my first best friend. We were inseparable even though today I’m not sure I would recognize her if she passed me on the street. I will never forget our old dog, Rebby. The sweetest soul I ever knew. I remember the deaths. Some of the births. I remember reunions in the airport. But there are big blanks too. I suppose they account for the times when I didn’t know who I was, what I was doing. A stranger in a foreign city just drifting through. I suppose I am a little more on track now, and the last two years are filled with happy memories. I miss my family, though. I’m working on being a better person. Apologizing for the years that I tainted. I send my mother emails and every now and again I attach a recent photo of myself. Usually I am smiling.
Although my grandfather is from India, he has always been a man who followed the British system of life. Besides education and discipline, being a world traveler is important to him. He lives for the day, to take everything that life gives him with his arms wide open. About 10 years ago when I was 12 my family migrated to Montréal, a city unknown to me at that time. We stopped at Bombay (now known as Mumbai in India) and dur-
ing the month-long stay amongst the fuss and shopping my grandfather handed me a book. It was called 'Freedom at Midnight'. I read this book a few years after receiving it, as at 12 my reading interests revolved around Nancy Drew and The Baby-Sitter’s Club. I wanted to experience the western way of life. One night struggling with an economics problem, I caught sight of the old hardcover. I had many fond memories of my last visit home: the morning tea I shared with my great grandfather, the evening news, and stories I heard my grandfather tell. He told me to do my best in life and to make the most out of any situation. I picked up Freedom at Midnight, and read. The book describes in extensive detail the events that led to India’s independence and the partition of India as a predominately Hindu state and Pakistan as a predominantly Muslim state. After I finished I made an honest attempt to make my bonds with my grandfather stronger. I texted, emailed and tried to share every achievement big or small with him. I still feel today that I owe him for helping me appreciate my history and where I came from.
I was a little bit of a late bloomer when it came to music. As a 13 year old, I enjoyed the music preferences of a man three my age. My father. My personal music collection consisted of several cassettes: ‘The Sound of Music,’ ‘The Tales of Benjamin Bunny’ by Beatrix Potter, and ‘Sparky and His Magic Piano.’ Sparky was a particular favourite. It told the story of a boy who had no real interest in practicing his piano until, to his surprise, it comes to life. The two tour the world, Sparky pretending to play while his piano actually performs. Unfortunately I was left to the devices of my piano teacher Daphne Davies. Her hands were so plump it was a wonder she could squeeze out any notes at all. ‘Hate’ is a strong word but I think I probably hated her.
I spent time browsing music stores with my family and given my lack of knowledge, I hovered around the good old favourites. I was a little upset that Paul Simon wasn’t recording much new work and that Peter, Paul, and Mary weren’t even listed in the charts. My father played a big part in my discovery of music. I remember lying on the floor in the dark as he played the vinyl records of Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois, and Pink Floyd’s ‘Dark Side of the Moon.’ My brothers left for university and on their trips home, would bring new music. I quickly added Oasis, the Fugees and Nirvana to my list of favourites. Cornerstorer’s ‘Brimful of Asher’ was high on my playlist and mixed tapes included The Sex Pistols and Daft Punk. I have a vague memory of parading around the house in faux-military style while blaring ‘God Save the Queen.’ I felt pretty rebellious. At 17 I moved away for university. Most of my friends stayed in our hometown and semi-friendless, I spent the first six months in music stores. I spent hours listening to everything from Iggy Pop to Shania Twain. I became obsessed with Trance and fell in love with Paul Van Dyke at a rare appearance outside of Europe. I considered a career as a DJ but setup costs were expensive and my parents weren’t overly supportive. Coldplay was my first real music love and I say that without a hint of embarrassment. I love them and no matter how similar their albums sound, I always will. My best friend and I played ‘The Scientist’ 27 times straight, the day war broke out in Iraq. The two events were unrelated but my brother counted. These days I consider myself quite the music connoisseur. Looking through the POP Montreal lineup I had heard of at least 7% of the bands. Not bad, eh? Myspace increased my music knowledge, as I’m sure it did to many, and I can spend hours prowling through band profiles. Movie soundtracks have also played a part in my musical education. The Trainspotting soundtrack made a big impression as did those from The Mission, Requiem for a
MEMORIES Dream, Baraka, 24 Hour Party People and Apocalypse Now. I like to keep a finger on the pulse of the Montreal music scene and try to make it out to shows when I can. But at the end of the day, there is nothing quite like coming home to some good old Bob Dylan. Old habits die hard. And now you’ll have to excuse me as I go and try and get my hands on ‘Sparky’. I have some memories to re-live.
JAY WATTS III
At a certain time in a man’s life, generally when he has reached a point of material success and the specter of mortality begins to invade his thoughts, he begins to reflect on the long and strange voyage of his life - how he came to be who he is and who he could have been. Thankfully, the big players in Hollywood have already addressed such late-life regrets, not the least in films like Mr. Donner’s 'Scrooged' or Mr. Lubitsch’s 'Heaven Can Wait,' and so I feel little to no obligation to express regret or remorse over any of my actions in the past. Instead, I will take this opportunity to settle old scores, and fling vitriol at those who, I imagine, have neither the ability nor the sufficient courage to respond. To the meddling neighbour (Mr. Don Holloway) who convinced my father of the need to sell the family cow in the village market at a significant loss on the eve of my 12th birthday party, impoverishing the family and forcing cancellation of my soiree, thus causing me to lose much face with my peers, I wish nothing more than that he may be remembered as a squint-eyed fool of questionable taste, untrustworthy in business manners. I am only sorry that he has long since passed from this earth, so that I may not give him the thrashing he so richly deserved. One hopes his widow reads SNAP! Magazine.
To the assembly of vulgarians and philistines (primarily Kevin Wall, Matthew Spencer, Dustin Lloyd, and Tyler King) who failed to recognize me in my tenth grade
performance of Shylock (the genius of an original and moving talent), I only would let them know that they aborted the career of a thespian who would have been a true star of the footlights, and thus deprived much of the English-speaking world of my theatrical mirroring technique. I have yet to set foot in another theatre, though the call of the greasepaint ghetto haunts my every waking hour. To the terribly common and low-minded usurers (Visa, Mastercard, Wachovia and the Central Bank of the Bahamas) who at every turn have thwarted me in my not unreasonable attempt to hold a credit card, I hex them and their offspring, and wish them to know that it is entirely their fault that I have little taste of the delights of Ebay. Having marked me as a 21st century outsider, the contemptible money-changers did me further insult by turning down the applications I made under my pen-names. Jay Watts may not be the most well respected debtor, but I find it suspicious that Saul Isaac Schwatzberg (a man who has earned grand sums from the tables of Monaco) be so slighted. Having unburdened myself of these few preliminary festering wounds, I would recommend such a process to any of the readership of SNAP! Magazine - it is bracing and brisk, like a Finnish sauna, and I am now lighter on my feet, more upright in posture, and attractive to members of both sexes.
The sight of a prosthetic metal hook pushing against a thick hairy cow skull is an image I’ll never forget. My grandfather, Charles A Diemer, was a dairy farmer his whole life. In a tragic accident, the lower part of his arm was ripped off while fixing a silo. As children, we always imagined him as some kind of farming cyborg. It must have been the combination of the shiny metal hook and seeing him work 16hour days. All the hard work moulded his posture to a hunch like state over the years. But don’t be fooled by his humble appearance, the man still embodies the strength of a mule. I drew this portrait as a way to remember what great will my grandfather possesses. I’ll be lucky to match half of it one day... keithdiemer101.blogspot.com
respect your elders
Photos by Dan Popa Styling by Shayl Prisk
Jeremy wears Trovata Wolfe shirt, $190, from Rooney Nastassia wears multi-toned print gloves, $18, from Urban Outfitters.
c e s o n r u o ep y
. n a le
't b i you te r na ils.
Tuck your shirt in. Jeremy wears Trovata Wolfe shirt, $190, from Rooney Nastassia wears H&M ruffle blouse in rose, $39 and Toemale boots, $110, from Simple Shoes.
Wear sensible shoes.
Corpus shirt with pockets, $140. RVCA stripe shirt, $110 Both from Rooney.
Colcci leather boots, $189, from Onze.
Simple Topaz flats, $50, from Simple Shoes.
Two tone gloves in blue, $24, from Urban Outfitters.
Crochet gloves, stylistâ€™s own.
THE GOOD OLD DAYS
PHOTOS BY OLLIE SMITH STYLING BY SHAYL PRISK & CIANNE LECHAT All items in this shoot unless otherwise specified were generously lent to us by Kitsch & Swell, 3968 St. Laurent.
JAY WATTS III DJ, writer, man about town. To read some of Jayâ€™s lively anecdotes in our Memories prose section, turn to page 50 You can also check out his blog squarequotes.com Vintage shirt, $34.95 Duck, $64.95
Vintage blouse, $25, from Unicorn, 5135 St. Laurent. Wall hanging, $42.95 JULIA PYPER Student, writer, SNAP! intern.
ALEX CHINIEN Student, music enthusiast, videogame tester. Read Alexâ€™s vote for the best live shows of 2008 on page 29. You can also check out his blog theheartattackclub.com for local music reviews and general musings updated regularly.
Vintage shirt, $34.95 Antique clock, $44.95
JEN H. Student, prettiest girl at HMV.
White Eve Gravel cardigan, $116, from Unicorn, 5135 St. Laurent. Poodles, $34.95 for the set. hat and purse, stylist's own.
Photos and styling by Karin Demeyer model tiphaine duriez dresses from eva b. special thanks to la belle province
Antique Rose She smelled of lavender and always had velvety warm cheeks when you kissed her… and today grandma is playing muse with a number of Winter ‘08 shows re-interpreting the feminine and rosy glow of yesterday’s beauty. Warm powder blushes and soft, simple updo’s compliment retro shift shapes and cocktail dresses as well as shawls, gloves and hats all but ready for Sunday church or afternoon tea time. Bring out your inner dame with demure pinks on cheeks, eyes and lips. Some shows which featured this rosy palette include Anna Sui, Threeasfour, Narciso Rodriguez and Michael Kors. Shown: Inguna at Michael Kors Winter ‘08.
Chic, affordable and practically unavoidable. words by katie kotler photos by shayl prisk
Recently when a friend recalled watching 'Betty Boop' cartoons at her Bubby’s as a child, it hit me just how seminal a role grandmothers can have in the development of a girl’s sense of style. To this day, Betty Boop’s overt sexuality continues to influence my friend’s attitudes towards femininity, sex and fashion, as do any other cartoon ladies with big boobs, lips and curvy legs. I on the other hand, still tend to veer toward patterns I saw my Romanian grandmother and her sisters wear at their peak in the sixties. On a trip to Eastern Europe a few years back, I returned with a second-hand mini polka dot dress and striped shirt that I knew, if Meta Singer were still alive, would make her proud.
Whether it be the lavish outfits worn on special holidays, the dresses that are sewn for parties or the gifts given or found during visits to grandma’s apartment, a sense of femininity is presented, constructed and reconstructed by little girls. They are treated with cookies, hot pink nail polish and feathered hats when left in the care of their grandmothers, and it is in between these lines of tackiness and sophistication that girls relish playing dress-up. First in the safety of the lounge room, they eventually venture outside of the house in certain combinations that were once considered too eccentric for the public eye.
Trips to the mall, jewelry stores and lessons on applying makeup are simultaneously wondrous and silly. Amidst shoulder pads and animal prints, grandmothers offer these teachings, albeit not always aware of their potential impact. My friend Maddie agrees: “I pretty much only wear my Bubby’s scarves, gloves, sunglasses and jewelry: clip-ons, long beaded necklaces and broaches with clocks on them, from a time when women weren’t supposed to wear wrist watches. My old roommate called it my “Bubby bling” and I constantly get compliments on it all, which is especially amusing since she was a Ukrainian socialist who never bought any real jewelry; the compliments are on costume stuff. Still, it’s all holding up much better than anything I’ve bought in my lifetime, outlasting my Vans sunglasses by about thirty-five years...I also throw in a bit of grandpa stuff too, like sock garters.” The dictionary defines gaudy as leading to “a false allure or promise.” When worn two generations down, this ‘allure’ can represent a nostalgia for a time when women were immigrating to the ‘New World’, designing their own clothes and redefining their identities both as citizens and women. Occasionally lost in translation, European women’s style
occasionally conflicted with their new peers. Maddie admits that having arrived in Canada via Austria in the 70's, her other grandmother’s “sense of style was different from the middle-class suburban moms. With puffy hair and sequins, she was in a tight bun and a well-cut black dress. It was she who inspired me to take risks and respect fashion as art.” There are times, however, when tawdriness overrides sophistication. Rachel recounts how she received a charm belonging to her grandmother with a menorah
on it. “My sister got the one with ballet shoes.” There is also the issue of timing. Not everyone can wear the styles that, as Maddie says, “are so hot on sweet young things like ourselves but ridiculous and often-times embarrassing on the original wearers.” Audrey reflects on her Polish grandmother’s laissez-faire attitude: “There is a time and place for everything including getting all dolled up. I respect her [current] lack of effort more than some older women who try way too hard; that’s tacky.” If we prefer our grandmothers’ fashion sense because it seems more authentic, our attraction is also based on a healthy rebellion against our own parents. This begs the question, will our daughters purposely wear the notoriously unflattering ‘mom jeans’ and crocs in the years to come? Will they sport yoga pants and velour sweatsuits in attempts to rekindle the yummy mummy spirit? As my Ukrainian grandmother used to say, “Uch, phoo-ya.”
Montreal Stockists: La Baie - La Mansarde Bleue - Three Monkeys - Fly - Madras - Crazy Lily - Route 66 - Agence Ka - Oelano
sent from CAPBRETO N FRANCE, JULY 21, 19 53
sent from SAN DIEGO, AUGUST 12, 1976
sent from PAIGNTON UK, SEPTEMB ER 12, 1969
sent from tokyo, august 12, 1975
sent from WISCONSIN, JULY 21, 1939
Greetings from another lovely trip to Japan- wish you were here- as I always do- au revoir next year - during the Olympics- I have 3 weeks in Montreal- will you be home? Love Lisa
sent from ACAPULCO MEXICO, NOVE
MBER 19, 1952
sent from GUADALUPE, MAR
sent from DISNEYLAND FL, NOVEMBER 21, 1971
CH 4, 1962
sent from SICILY, 1947
sent from BORDEAUX, 1941
FOUND ART In The Mail sent from ATLANTIC CITY, JUIN 28, 1950
sent from MIAMI BEACH, NOVEMBER 21, 1968
words by shayl prisk photo by vanda dAFTARI
Have you ever stumbled across an old crumpled note or letter and found yourself wondering who penned it, what they looked like, or where they are now? Reading a postcard sent in 1932 evokes something far superior to this mild curiosity. It also makes all those cheap glossies we send while on trips look pretty lame in comparison. My motto: if it won’t end up an antique gem, and if the message doesn’t seem like a poignant line from an old mov73/ ie, then don’t mail it.
88QueenSt.com NEW SHOP ONLINE! www.88QueenSt.com | offer valid until 12路31路08
mention SNAP! and get a 15% discount on all purchases over 150$.
Street Guide Laurier
First impressions: diverse; Francophone; full of trees; scenic. Aside from having a homeless man yell at me it felt like I was strolling through a friendly little family of smiling faces and happy shoppers. The residential stretch running east from Mentana to Brebeuf that makes up Park Laurier seemed to have a higher concentration of gleeful dogs playing than any other place in the city. The West side, particularly from Parc to Bloomfield, is kind of like the Westmount of the Mile End. Lots of big name boutiques and people happy to drop 6 dollars on a latté. Every second store carries toys and clothes for infants, and there are plenty of boutiques catering to the rich homeowner looking to buy home-wares and gifts. In contrast the eastern edge from Lanaudiere to Parthenais is all specialty food stores, cafes and hair salons. It’s very relaxed and quiet and slow-paced.
Up to this point, I think I can only recall three brief encounters with Laurier that I have had in the last five years. No, I am not one of you that call the Plateau home, and aside from when I was looking at a couch being sold through Craigslist and having a few short sojourns through the Mile-End, I had never explored it properly.
Words and Photos by Shayl Prisk
It’s one of the easiest east-west walks in Montreal. It has it’s own Metro station. The rent is (usually) tolerable. You can find 4 dollar burgers at old-school Quebecois diners and you can find 400 dollar dresses at BCBG Max Azria. In part because of this diversity, and in part because we are always aspiring to new heights here at SNAP! Magazine, we have divided Laurier by blocks to present you with a glimpse of the various neighbourhoods that exist on this street. We hope you find a hidden gem or two, ‘cos there are plenty of them!
De L’Épée to Parc FOOD & DRINK Au Pain Dore /1145 La Pâtisserie Belge Inc. /1075A Anjou Quebec Boucherie /1025 Restaurant CoBa /1124 Gourmet Laurier /1042 Les Steak Frites St. Paul /1014 Juliette & Chocolat /377 Chez Lévêque /1030 Rifka /1058 Leméac /1045 Open until midnight 7 days a week, this modern French-style bistro serves some of the best cuisine on Laurier. Great for night-owls or those wanting good food after10pm, the $22 after 22.00 menu presents fresh inventive dishes for a considerably reduced price. Features a heated outdoor area and 100 seat dining room. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday from 10.30 am to 3 pm.
FASHION Nanou /1087 Masska /1083 Bijouterie Agatha Paris /1054 BCBG Max Azria /1020 Michel Brisson /1012 Tristan /1001 Lyla /400 5ième Avenue /396 Tilley /1050 Henriette L /1031 Isabelle Elie /1090 Vivian Dubreuil /1081 La Maison D’Emilie /1073 Amelis /1066 Valérie Simon Homme /366 Divine /1060
GIFTS & HOME Casa /1101 Il Était une Fois /1089 Décor Marie Paule /1090 HOME /1061 Cache Cache /1051 Jacadi Paris /1127 Des Longchamps /1007 La Cornue France /371 Le Belle Boutique /1068
ASSORTED Bui Optometrists /1068 La Boîte Noire /380 Multimags /370 SAQ /390 Ça Va De Soi Tricot /1062
STYLIN' Bella Snella /1120 Diffusion Stephanie /1110 L’Occitane /1000 Diva /360 Lise Watier /392 Claudel et Sophie Salon /1069
ASSORTED FASHION Dolce Uomo, Dolce Donna /277 La Canadienne /273 Mimi & Coco /198
Esplanade to Parc FOOD & DRINK Chez Van /288 L’Autre Bar /278 Toi Moi et Café /244 Bistro-style café serving breakfast, light snacks and meals as well as coffee roasted and ground in house. A favourite to many in the neighbourhood with a casual ambiance and a friendly atmosphere.
De Gascogne /277 La Petite Ardoise /222 Eggspectation /198
Fleurs Exotiques /232 Closed on Mondays, this florist still manages to charm the passerby with it’s in-house black cat, often seen sunning itself in the window.
This boutique sells the Italian label of the same name. Featuring some beautiful wool and cotton pieces, the clothing is made in a contemporary Italian style with rich use of colour and seasonal patterns. Also stocking high quality basics and underwear with a small line for men and children.
Tola Antiques /235 Boutique Citroulle /206 Royer Objets et Trouvailles /207
GIFTS & HOME
Raymond Therien Fleuriste /257
Rodin /281 Comme la Vie Avec un Accent /251 Bouton Jaune /240 Mémoire des Sens /220
Somewhere between a gallery and a store this boutique contains items made locally, in particular jewelry and designer ornamentals. Stocking a large variety of beautiful pieces with friendly staff.
STYLIN’ Orbite /215
Esplanade to St. Laurent
ASSORTED Claude Andre Hebert Parfums /125 BIOTFUL /104 Esprithé /112 Galerie D’Avignon /102 Sun Source /90 Jet Setter /66 Les Touilleurs /152
FOOD&DRINK Chez Vuvian /142 Cocoa Delices /123 Baldwin Barmacie /115 One of the ‘it’ Montreal nightspots, Baldwin has the buzz and reputation as well as the unique appeal of an old pharmacy setting. Known most for their choice music and impressive drink selection, Baldwin’s attracts locals during the week and the trendier young professional crowd for weekends.
Dieu du Ciel! /29 Phayathai /107 Chao Phraya /50 Raza /114 La Chronique /99 Juni /156
FASHION Pierre, Jean & Jacque /158 Argent Tonic Bijoux /138 Billie /141 Galerie Noel Guyomarche /137 Chaussures Maritz /123A Boutique Mousseline /120
GIFTS & HOME Anaya /134
A mecca for chefs and food enthusiasts, this large showroom slash store stocks the best international tools for cooking as well as hosting demonstrations, classes and degustation.
Tampas Interieurs /100
STYLIN’ De Molinard Spa /111 Noir /97 Blitz Esthetique /98
St. Laurent to St. Denis
St. Denis to Brébeuf FOOD&DRINK La Boîte Gourmande /445 Small and friendly, the café serves home-made breakfast and sandwich fare as well as some frozen meals perfect for those walking home or coming back from the nearby Metro Laurier.
Pâtisserie Fous Desserts /809 A great little secret serving amazing croissants as well as great lattes and homemade chocolate.
La Gaudriole Cuisine Metissee /825
Thai Grill /5101 Rhumm Café /201 Resto Midi Xpress /250 Chez Claudette /351
A favourite diner for those in the area, they serve great omelettes and are famous for their poutine and hot sandwiches.
ASSORTED Budo Ninjutsu /189
Bikram Hot Yoga /435 Marie Vermette Floriste /801 Torrefiction /807 Kankala Buddhist Meditation Centre /835
STYLIN’ Studio Coiffure /817 Kaaz Coiffure /900
Brébeuf to Lanaudière FOOD&DRINK El Zaziummm /1276 Fromager /5101 Chambord Le Toasteur /1310 Cool little diner in a cute, narrow space that serves tasty meals and freshly squeezed juices.
Vincent Sous Marins /1325
FASHION Tchango /1322 Solo Echantillons /1328 A great little fashion boutique tucked away on a quiet corner. A number of local designer items as well as an assortment of choice casual pieces and accessories.
STYLIN’ Bobby Pin /1320 Tous Les Garcons et Les Filles /1312
Fabre to Papineau FOOD&DRINK La Maison de Cackao /1546 Fabre Montréal Café /1546 Frite Alors /1552 Les Entretiens Café /1577
FASHION Mariane Alexandre /1397 Stunning jewelry pieces from a small selection of designers. Subtle and contemporary pieces worth taking a look at.
GIFTS & HOME Le Fouvrac /1451 Olive + Olives /1389
Lanaudière to Fabre FOOD & DRINK Le Fromentier /1375 Les Saveurs du Plateau /1479 Byblos /1499 Large café-style restaurant serving Persian dishes like purées and meat rolls, Pirojki (small meat, vegetable or cheese filled pastries) and sandwiches with feta, herbs and fresh vegetables like cucumber and tomato.
Truffert Bistro de Christophe /1481
With over 50 varieties of Spanish olive oil as well as some labels from around the world, this store is a good destination for gift shoppers or seasoned gourmets who believe that fine oil is as good as fine wine.
Charming sunny café with local art on display, homecooked food with a vegetarian bent and a relaxed homely setting, including a piano guests can play on at will. Great soup and salads as well as breakfast all day long.
Yoshi Sushi /1601 Les Saveurs /1602 Tri Express /1650 Chez Mailan /1708
GIFTS&HOME Encardement des Cèdres /1557 Gaia /1590 De Billy /1677 Antique-style gift store with various trinkets and larger items for sale including dishes, ornaments, lamps and bags.
Ylva de Laurier /1493
ASSORTED Video Super Choix /1375 Zouvrac /1487 Le Réveil du Maître Gourmet /1520
STYLIN’ Esthétique à Pro-Peau /1450
ASSORTED Librairie Le Quai de Livres /1565 C’est la Vie /1584 Pascal Veraquinn /1656
STYLIN’ Cleo Hair /1668 Hairtime /1675
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I’d rather be in Berlin... words and photos by Marilis cardinal
By the time you get out of the airport and figure out which bus to take, get lost after a long conversation consisting only of sign language with a German family and then drag your highly overweight luggage up and down the metro stairs twice and then 10 blocks across the cobblestones to your hostel, stop at a corner store desperate for a cold bottle of water but accidentally end up with a lukewarm litre of fizzy sweet liquid, you’ll feel pretty unsettled and confused. By lunchtime of the next day, however, you’ll be following pick-up trucks filled with DJs playing minimal techno, a beer in hand, dancing along the streets of the city in a daytime outdoor rave called the “Fuck Parade”. By day 3, you’ll start a love affair with the bakery across the street, with the little bar around the corner, with the park you walked by on your way to that great museum you spent hours in. By day 4, you’ll never want to leave again. And by day 5 you’ll be letting family and friends know that you’ve changed your return ticket and are looking into a work visa to plan a more permanent move. At least, if you’re anything like me.
It took me exactly a week to realize that Berlin is most probably the greatest city on earth. Clearly I was not the only one with this epiphany. In three weeks time, out of the two dozen or so people that I met, only 2 of them were actually German. It seems that in a short amount of time, kids from Sweden, Poland, Denmark, and well, Canada have come to their senses and regrouped in this city that never, ever sleeps. After a couple of days, your stamina will get a major boost and Italo-disco will be your new favourite jams to dance to until it’s time for a big German breakfast in the parc the next morning. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is about Berlin that makes it such a desirable place to escape to. It might have to do with the fact that you can buy bottles of Vodka and Jäger at the falafel stand. It could also be the fact that taking a walk in virtually every part of Berlin makes you feel like you’re living in a historical novel. It’s not unusual that fancy restaurants and hotels are sandwiched by rundown buildings that still stand as a testimony of World War II, most likely taken-over by squatters or converted into illegal art studios. Berlin is in a constant turnover, continuously renewing itself. Hotspots are only open long enough to remain new and as soon as something catches on, it’s replaced by something even better. The international quality of Berlin makes it an amazing place to discover new artists; there’s an artist having their first vernissage every night. Good places to shop are numerous and full of what dreams are made of: stores filled with soft jerseys, dreamy fabrics and elaborate prints. In Berlin, every single street holds your potential future apartment. Every train car is the one that will be carrying you home in the middle of the night after you just spent hours losing your mind on the dancefloor. Every stoop and balcony is where you’ll possibly be having your next espresso with a smoke, wondering what to do that day. pregnantgoldfish.wordpress.com
Monique Gabriela Dorniak
Silence. I lay on my back staring at the ceiling. Being pregnant would change everything. I had decided only months before that I was now old enough and responsible enough, that should I get knocked up by accident, I would have it. I just never believed that it would actually happen.
Makin’ Babies A sex column by Lola Vertigo When I was nineteen I bought a home pregnancy kit that I never used. My crazy Irish drug-dealer boyfriend had been in town for a visit a few weeks prior, and although my body was a little erratic at that stage, I was outside my normal unpredictable range. I bought the kit. I remember sitting in my room, staring at it. I had been told it is best to do these tests first thing in the morning, so I left it, carefully stowed away in the bathroom mirror. That night, to my great relief, I bled. Six years later, I finally used the little plastic tube. A very faint pink line appeared next to the darker one. It was practically invisible. But it was there. I read the instructions again. “A second pink line, no matter how faint, indicates a positive result.” My heart suddenly relocated to my throat. I had told my partner the evening before that I was late. He responded to this statement with a look of pure elation.
“You mean you might be pregnant?” “No. Well, maybe.” “We made a baby?” “I don’t know!” “Oh my God.”
My man gently cupped my face in his hands and turned it toward him. “We might be having a baby,” he grinned at me. “Yup.” I am not making this up. I know that only a few months ago I was writing about jumping into the single life and enjoying multiple simultaneous relationships, but hey, life can change really quickly. The chef turned out to be the one. I am in the privileged position of being able to say that I, without a shadow of a doubt, have found the person I intend to spend the rest of my life with. And I didn’t even have to look for him. I just walked into his kitchen. Hollywood movies, romance novels and society at large have us believing that unless we’re coupled up, there’s something wrong with us. Granted there is also a biological imperative, but with divorce rates around 50%, why do so many people pick the wrong mates? I think it’s surprisingly simple. Most people look for happiness in the wrong places. You can’t be happy with someone else if you’re unhappy with yourself. News flash: it is not your partner’s job to give your life meaning. Ten months ago I was a total disaster. I was definitely enjoying life, but in an erratic,
unhealthy way. Partying, drugs, miscellaneous hook-ups: all fun for the split second they lasted, but ultimately soul-sucking and pointless. Wondering why I was feeling so bipolar, I realized that I needed to get my shit together and figure my life out. It was much easier than I had imagined. What it took to find the one was finding myself first. I accepted who I am. Nobody’s perfect. There are things that you can change for the better – your lifestyle, the choices you make, the people you spend time with – but there are certain things that simply are. Why fight it? You’ll be a lot happier if you’re honest with yourself and the people in your life anyhow. I also learned to change how I react in situations. If someone else is having a shitty day and feels inclined to dump on me, I don’t need to let it get to me. Anger, shame, jealousy -- they’re all imposed on us by other people. It’s amazing how powerful it is to acknowledge the shitty emotions as they come and just let them slide off you.
Water off a duck’s back, as they say. It’s not easy, but then again, what is? When I started spending time with my man I had just figured this out. I had started to accept who I was and make better choices. He was on a quest to get his life in order. There was no pretence or attempt to win the other over. We were honest, and goofy, and despite the fear I felt about telling him that I don’t believe in monogamy, and that I have a tendency to change my mind every two minutes, once it was out there, it was all fine. In fact, it was great. You don’t really need anyone else. When you find yourself, you might just discover that the person for you has been around the corner all along. Or you may simply want to be on your own and happy that way. Timing is everything. So while finding out that I was up the duff less than four months after kissing my new man could have been the most horrible shock of my life, it’s actually pretty freaking awesome.
I kissed a girl and I liked it. words by roberto cialdella
I kissed a girl and I liked it.
Believe you me when I tell you I cringed while typing the title. Much as I revile songstress Katy Perry (her other song to receive any airplay is titled ‘Ur so gay’) no other piece of pop phenomena currently embodies the incongruities between today’s liberal society and sexuality, especially when it comes to flexible sexuality. Given its longevity in the charts, her song has been hailed as the song of the summer, while ladling praises for dealing with issues of sexual experimentation. Meantime, today’s gossip mags are replete with images of Lindsay switching sides and television series like Sex In The City and The O.C. have tapped into the cultural curiosity. Girls just want to have fun, right? The majority of people view female bisexuality or girl-on-girl experimentation as acceptable, normal fun, and the apex of a man’s fantasy. Why is it that the flip side- a man experimenting with another man- is unanimously categorized as latent homosexuality? In bizarro-world terms, Madonna and Spears’ commentary on gay marriage through a shared kiss on live television just would not translate the same, at this point in society, if Timbaland and Timberlake were the ones swapping spit. Ask anyone and they will keenly comment that homosexual behaviour in a straight man is tantamount to him being homosexual. For many reasons I’ve become simply inquisitive: Why the double standard? No
one dares suggest that a gay man who experiments with a woman means he is in fact secretly straight. This is flawed logic at work. LGBTer’s, straight women and men alike frown upon, in various ways, the idea of straight men experimenting with other men. Straight women, who most likely engaged in such activity at least once in their life, despise the idea as it presents another viable threat to their relationships and gay men see it as another closet case in denial. I speak from experience. No one likes, pardon my French, to be the butt end of someone’s (drunken) experimental phase, be it for one night or a month, especially if one feels profound attraction or affection for the person in question. Seeking to be fairly objective on the subject I will consider that a number of studies and tests actually suggest that a woman’s sexuality is indeed more fluid and ambiguous than a man’s. A 2004 experiment involved women and men made to watch video clips while a machine verified genital arousal at all times. The men reacted accordingly to their orientation but women reacted to the level of sensuality on display rather than gender. A New York Times article published on the matter in June, entitled ‘Straight with an asterisk’ contributes that it ‘adds to a growing body of scientific evidence that places female sexuality along a continuum between heterosexuality and homosexuality, rather than as an either-or phenomenon’. Experimentation amongst women has gained such momentum that a term has been coined on some American college campuses: ‘LUG’ or Lesbian until graduation. OK. Women more than surely DO follow such tendencies. But commencing with historical data and trickling all the way down to proven scientific facts, studies and experiments put forth by pioneers such as Kinsey, Krafft-Ebing and Freud: we can all agree experimentation is not exclusive to the feminine sex. The famous Kinsey scale, in tandem with the Klein sexual orientation grid, indicated most of us rank somewhere in between either exclusively heterosexual or homosexual. Freud firmly believed adolescent homosexuality simply served to include another person in aiding in the pro-
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cess of self-discovery. Well, may one ask, is our view on the matter skewed because the better part of our media and politics are engineered by straight men? In 2001, the AFA (American Family Association) Online gathered information about the ‘homosexual agenda’ along with a supposed new wave of statistics regarding what they call homosexual recruitment. It quotes the work of researchers at the Kinsey Institute who have found “a strong relationship between those whose first experience was homosexual and those who practiced homosexuality later in life.” Gee, how groundbreaking to notice that many men who experiment first with another man tend to be homosexuals. Is it too obvious to state that all men who do so do not turn out to be gay? I know I’ve been labeled as self serving for believing most people are not 100% hetero. Therein lays my main gripe with the situation. I’ve listened to arguments from the far right accusing gay activists of encouraging experimentation amongst children and teens. I’ve read Christian blogs that determine that legalizing gay marriage will lead to further same-sex experimentation and into confusing people that they are gay and so forth. It would not be unthinkable to parallel the double standard at play here to anal sex and how many straight men use that to discriminate against me, when in fact straight couples engage in such activity nearly as much. When it comes to men, being ‘open with your sexuality’ or ‘liberated’ are qualities that magically cease to exist. It’s all part of a narrow mentality that is also obviously at the root of discrimination against gays and, as we can see here, just about everyone else... How erroneous anyway, of people in general to qualify sexual experimentation as a current fad or a mark of liberation in today’s stance towards sexuality. Go ahead. Kiss a boy, you might like it. Or not.
The Cynic’s Astrology Nov·Dec 2008 Horoscope words by lady nox cadaver illustration by nizar shorbagi
Aries (March 21 - April 19)
That double-edged sword in your pocket cuts both ways. Take care how you use this weapon. Sever limbs with one side and butter your bread with the other, but always remember to clean it with soap and water after every use so as to not propagate germs or nasty infections.
Taurus (April 20 - May 20) You may not feel like standing by as some half man, half animal dude weigha your heart against a feather to see whether you’ve had a worthy exis-
tence. First make sure you’re not tripping. Second, pull out the dusty Samaritan jacket. If you don’t feel like putting it on bring it to the nearest Salvation Army.
Gemini (May 21 - June 20) Sure, your knight in shining armor might appear sooner rather than later, but why wait? They could hinder your progress, what with you being all starry-eyed and dumbstruck. Start your journey now and meet them halfway. Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Stop acting all wishy-washy and set limits for yourself. You may be feeling confined yet you are all over the place. Stop, breathe, and take a step back to consider what you have going for yourself. You can relate to other people without losing your own individuality.
Leo (July 23 - August 22) There is such a thing as evolving in the wrong direction – or not at all! That immaturity level of yours might not have improved but gotten worse. If you have an idea or passion that you are running with, your attitude might not past the test. Work on that professionalism.
Virgo (August 23 - September 22) Your philanthropic efforts are certainly the key to great karma. If you keep on supplying your money and personal information to various charities, you’ll end up with five associations you’ve never even heard of asking you to help support the “Foot and Mouth Bakers of Canada.”
Libra (September 23 - October 22)
Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
Time to let go of the classical rules you hold on “Life, Status, and Power” or just stop imposing your views on others. You can’t make rules for people and expect them to comply. You are not employed by the government, and if you are you can’t have many friends around these parts. Especially if you’re Harper.
You are headed forward at the speed of light. Be prepared with extra light bulbs, but please remain conscious of your energy consumption. Halogen lights are best, or use solar powered panels if your trip takes you nearer to the sun. Have a nice flight.
Scorpio (October 23 - November 21) Watch what you say or you’ll leave those incredibly sensitive and unaccustomed to your out of the ordinary banter completely appalled and afraid. They might be so inclined as to cut off your tongue. Lucky for you it’s not 1692 and this isn’t a Salem witch trial so the procedure will be quite clean.
Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21) With a perpetual ebb and flow of gains and losses, you have succeeded in maintaining a mediocre past few months. Congratulations. I hope you’ll experience something intensely gratifying fairly soon.
Capricorn (December 22 - January 19) An opportunity will present itself that will allow you to take the reigns on an important issue. Have fun wielding control. Who knows what you’ll be getting yourself into. You’ll never know until you try though, right? Have the first aid kit handy.
Pisces (February 19 - March 20) If you feel like you are unable to escape a certain predicament DON’T PANIC. There is always a way out. Throw yourself against a bookcase or jump into a fireplace with hope that either will spin you into an adjacent room. I absolve myself of any responsibility if these actions result in broken appendages of any kind or second-degree burns.
AnATHEMA art by w. Furlotte