Tuesday 30 September 2014

I'm a cryptkeeper (again)

I did it back in 2012, officially, did a countdown to Halloween with fellow bloggers at the invitation of this blog.Well the countdown starts again tomorrow and I have decided to become a crypkeeper again. I say decided, but in fact it is officially, as I do a countdown to Halloween officiously every year, regularly in October when I blogged about the holiday at least once a day (when I can blog) and pretty much every other day in the previous weeks and even months. But anyway, this year I'll be an official cryptkeeper, with the logo and all, which has the face of the Creature from the Black Lagoon, which you can see in, well, that movie. A classic I have seen once. But anyway, watch this space, I will blog more on my favourite holiday.

Gelée de pommettes

Mon père m'a envoyé, à ma demande, cette photo de la gelée de pommettes maison qu'il a faite. Délicieuse sur des toasts pour déjeuner le matin. Les pommettes, c'est pour moi le fruit méconnu de l'automne et celui que j'associe le plus aux récoltes. Et je mets la photo ici juste pour vous donner faim.

Musing on the last day of September

Today was busy and hellish at work, I was busy like I had not been in months. Because it is the end of the month and thus it is as usual busy and because September is a busy month. I was feeling dazed and confused, to a colleague from IT who always wears weird, geeky t-shirts, I asked him: "Is this the second t-shirt you have been wearing today?" He said no, but he looked as confused as me and said: "You know you are the second person today that asked me that question." I did not say what I wanted to say: "It is reassuring that I am not the only one turning mad here." An unsaid great unknown line, if you ask me.

But something else did not escape me: almost everybody, including me, is wearing t-shirts. At this time of year. It has been, or so I have heard on the news, the driest and warmest month of September in recorded history. No wonder I am turning mad: September for me is and should be autumnal, the temperatures should cool down and the clothes I wear should be heavier. Instead, we have been having an almost perpetual Indian summer. And I am not used to it. Too warm, not enough autumnal colours, it has been a very disappointing September. Far more than most of the ones I lived so far here and I usually find them underwhelming. But it is supposed to change soon, according to the weather forecasts. I am looking forward to it. There is one thing, however, that shows autumn is here already: the sun goes down earlier.

Septembre et Vraie Fiction

Une fois que j'aurai cliqué sur "Publier" (enfin "Publish" dans mon interface), j'aurai publié 73 billets ce mois de septembre, alors qu'il se termine. Depuis hier, septembre est déjà le mois où j'ai le plus publié cette année. Morale de cette anecdote: l'automne m'inspire particulièrement.

Monday 29 September 2014

Bedtime Procrastination (a new Tale of Mere Existence)

I don't watch these little animated gems as often as I used to, but I just saw this recent episode of Tales of Mere Existence. This is very exaggerated and I am not nearly that bad, partially because even I understand that I need to get as much sleep as I can, but I have to admit: I do spend far too much time on YouTube, especially before bedtime. Even tonight, looking for some music to upload here. Instead, I watched this video. So here it is. You know you have been there before. Tell me I am not alone.

Lundi des damnés

C'était (c'est encore pour quelques heures) le dernier lundi du mois de septembre aujourd'hui. J'ai déjà blogué sur le premier samedi de septembre cette année. Le dernier lundi de septembre, c'est un peu le contraire: une fin infernale, en tout cas quand on travaille. Et aujourd'hui c'était en effet infernal au bureau: le rythme était infernal, la quantité de travail et en plus j'ai un rhume qui n'en finit plus de finir. Les fins de mois sont souvent endiablées, septembre est un mois occupé déjà. Alors j'avais l'impression d'être un damné en train de subir son tourment. Et ça risque d'être pire demain. Misère...

Sunday 28 September 2014

Reading ghost stories in the train

This picture was taken in the steam train between Totnes and Buckfastleigh during my last holidays in Devon. Not the most impressive picture, but I took it because of the unique setting and because I was even then thinking about this post. The steam train journey was one of my favourite moments of all the holiday there. I posted about it here. But I digress... I have uploaded it because this is what I read at the moment in the train. Not this particular book, but ghost/horror stories. In the upcoming weeks leading to Halloween, which is only a bit more than a month away now, I read plenty of horror stories, old and new. And I often read them in the train. While it is not as romantic an experience as reading it in an old steam train or an old train station, it is still an atmospheric setting for such readings. Supernatural literature and railways have developed simultaneously, almost hand in hand, and trains and ghosts sometimes met in fiction, if not, for those who believe in them, in real life. I do not believe in ghosts, but I do think that if I was to write a horror story featuring them, or any supernatural creature really, I would seriously consider using the train and/or a train station as a setting. In any case, as a reading place for horror stories, the train is great.

Mafalda aura 50 ans demain

Je l'ai déjà mentionné, mon frère PJ me l'a rappelé avec cet article dans La Presse, la plus grande petite dame de l'Argentine fêtera ses 50 ans demain. Vous ai-je dit à quel point j'admire Mafalda? Je veux avoir une fille comme elle, c'est bien simple. Alors voilà, lisez des gags de Mafalda demain, pour célébrer.

David's Tea's designs

I love David's Tea, but sometimes I wonder if it is not more for its tea accessories and more particularly the aesthetic of its mugs than the teas themselves. Maybe I am a complete slave of fashion. Take these Perfect Tea Mugs for instance, from their new autumnal collection. I found the picture on their Facebook page. One with migrating geese, one with autumn leaves, the last one with apples. Lovely. And there are other ones too, which I might mention in another post. I already have my autumnal mug from David's Tea. I have actually two perfect tea mugs already. There is no room for more. Yet I would love to own the flock of geese mug. Because the geese are beautiful and they change colours. I mean how cool is that? I look at their designs, and they keep getting better and better. Especially since tea is such an autumnal drink, these designs simply fit the drink so well. I wish I could spoil myself, even though there is no room for more mugs here.

Marcher dans le Parc Lafontaine

Je ne sais pas si j'ai déjà téléchargé cette photo, mais qu'importe. Il faut trop chaud pour une journée d'automne aujourd'hui. Comme d'habitude ces temps-ci, en fait. Ca m'énerve un peu. Ca me fait penser à l'année dernière, lorsque j'étais allé à Montréal et qu'il faisait un temps estival en octobre. Sommes-nous dans un été indien, donc? Enfin bref, je pense beaucoup à l'automne dernier t l'expérience que j'en ai eu sur le Plateau. Je me promènerais bien au Parc Lafontaine. Même en plein été indien, le Parc Lafontaine est toujours agréable à traverser. Je m'en ennuie beaucoup. Il y a bien des parcs ici et de très plaisants, mais ça serait bien une balade à marcher sur les feuilles mortes (tout en évitant la merde de chien) dans un parc dont la verdure commence à roussis avec l'automne qui s'installe.

Saturday 27 September 2014

The Heron Valley Organic Apple Juice

Tonight, I am plugging a drink I discovered in Devon: the apple juice from Heron Valley. I have been waiting a long time to promote it, now it is the right time: it is autumn, the season of harvest, apple may be the most autumnal fruit there is. Almost the same time last year, I plugged another brand of organic apple juice. I don't know which one of the two is the best, but what I love about both is the taste of apples, which is pretty much pure, untouched, simply liquefied. It might sound silly, but too often the taste of the fruit changes when it is turned to juice. Not here. It is pne the most refreshing, tasty apple juice I drank.

Les orignaux

Ces orignaux ont été pris grâce à une caméra infrarouge par mon père, il y a un an. C'est la saison des amours, et donc la saison de la chasse. L'automne, c'est aussi ça. J'ai donc décidé de télécharger une photo des orignaux, juste parce que c'est un aspect de l'automne que je n'avais pas encore mentionné cette année.

The Detective Tales cover for September

The month is almost over, and I had not yet uploaded a cover from Detective Tales. It is time to follow the tradition again. So here it is. The cover from September 1937. I am wondering about its story, because there is something ambiguous about it, or one of its character. Most of them are easy to identify: the blonde heroin, the square jawed hero at the center. In periphery, two thugs: one holding a butcher's knife, in butcher's clothes looking every bit the brute he is, guarding the exit the heroes are trying to get through, and one further away, being gunned by the hero. But it is the figure that the blonde is holding that makes me wonder. The tall, thin, ageing man with white hair. He has been hit on the head and is unconscious. But was he kidnapped by the thugs and the heroes are rescuing him, or is he a villain that the heroes are kidnapping? The tuxedo is often the suit of choice for criminal masterminds in pulp fiction, always more elegant than their minions. Yet he could be an innocent victim. So tell me what you think.

À propos du Salon du Livre du Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean

Mon frère PJ m'a refilé cet article du Devoir sur le Salon du Livre du Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean. Il bat son plein en ce moment, jusqu'à demain inclusivement. Je plogue encore une fois: allez-y. Mes compliments au Devoir pour faire découvrir à tout le Québec un Salon du Livre rérional et montrer sa pertinence et son mérite. Deux anecdotes afin de finir ce billet: 1)Hervé Bouchard y est. C'est l'un de mes anciens profs de cégep. On avait vraiment (et il y a encore) une équipe d'enseignants de qualité en Lettres au Cégep de Chicoutimi. 2)J'ai gagné le prix du Lecteur de l'année il y a presque vingt ans, ce qui me donne un laisser-passer gratuit pour le Salon. J'apprends dans l'article que le prix d'entrée est de... 2$. Il n'y a pas de petites économies. Cela dit, à ce prix-là, allez-y, c'est comme qui dirait donné.

Friday 26 September 2014


This picture was taken at the Natural History Museum. It shows rooks, a member of the corvids family. Well, stuffed rooks really. I particularly like stuffed animals, I think they have some kind of old-fashioned charm. I thought about this picture this week as I saw a few crows here and there and maybe even some ravens. I used to dislike corvids as a child, but not anymore. Anyway, I do not know much about rooks, but I know that like all corvids they are smart. Anyway, I wanted to upload this picture for a while, so tonight I thought I would do it, for no particular reason.

Quoi ne pas faire en fin de semaine

Parce que c'est vendredi, parce que je veux que l'on se dilate la rate, parce que c'est un clasique instantané, voici Quoi ne pas faire en fin de semaine, chronique de LFDMEÀ7H. Absurde et génial.

Thursday 25 September 2014

Crossing rivers and casting dices

My brother PJ wrote on his Facebook wall, for an unknown reason (to me at least): "Alea iacta est", the immortal line attributed to Julius Caesar. Somebody asked him if he crossed the Gatineau river. Which PJ does every day. And the Ottawa river. So I said: "It is not as classy as crossing the Rubicon and far more mortifying." I still don't know what my brother meant by it, but I think I wrote another great unknown line. Not nearly as great as Caesar's line, but this one is all mine, not merely attributed to me. And it cannot be truly great referring to the Gatineau and Ottawa rivers. But great unknown lines are not meant to be truly great, if not they wouldn't be unknown. Anyway, I find it funny that crossing the river can be something usually very banal, yet it can take such a dramatic importance and has such symbolic ring to it. Moral of the story: I miss Caesar.

Une lager de McAuslan?

J'ai découvert ça sur leur page Facebook, d'où j'ai pris la photo promotionnelle. Alors bon voilà, la Brasserie McAuslan brasse aussi de la lager. Ils l'ont faite pour l'Oktoberfest. Je ne sais pas quoi en penser: ma brasserie préférée, qui brasse mes bières préférées... Et qui maintenant brasse la sorte de bière que j'aime le moins. Oui, oui, je sais, la lager quand c'est pas le truc insipide américain, c'est supposé être très honorable. Mais ça porte quand même le nom de lager, cette étiquette qui est devenue synonyme de ça goûte rien. Bon, c'est McAuslan, alors je boirai, et ce sera sans doute même très bon. Mais de la lager? Enfin bref...

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Paris again

It has been confirmed today: as I am the French speaker of the team, I will go on a conference held by my company in Paris. Again. Not only has it been confirmed, but tickets and booking has already been done. I am not the biggest fan of Paris and this will be a short stay, so no time to truly discover and rediscover the city. On the plus side, I think I found a far better hotel than last time, and the venue will be in a nicer neighborhood. However short my stay, it might actually be enjoyable. In any case, it will be nice to speak French in a French speaking city.

Question existentielle (239)

Cette question fait un peu écho à la 216. J'y pensais depuis mon billet de samedi sur Kanuk. Alors là voilà:

-Est-ce que Kanuk, c'est une marque pour les snobs en général et les habitants du Plateau Mont-Royal en particulier?

Tuesday 23 September 2014

The Autumn Equinox

Today is the autumn equinox and if I didn't know already Google would have told me. It was a lovely Google Doodle. Well, now it is officially autumn, for everyone. For me, it truly starts with the first day of September, as I often say here. Nevertheless, the day needs to be commemorated and celebrated. On this blog at least. I thought to put the Google Doodle, but I wanted something more original and more personal. So instead I have downloaded a picture of fruits harvest, apples and crabapples, and apple and crabapple jellies, with flowers, in a basket. And yes, I have downloaded similar pictures on this blog before. Because autumn is of course associated with harvest. This is a sort of horn of plenty and it fits the day perfectly.

La fin des conservatoires?

J'ai lu hier cet article qu'une amie de Facebook avait mis sur sa page. J'ai dû partager. Si cela se confirme, c'est une très mauvaise nouvelle. Comme la contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux, interviewée dans l'article, j'ai étudié au Conservatoire de Saguenay, alors Conservatoire de musique de Chicoutimi. En fait, on a dû se croiser, étant donné son âge et l'année où elle y est entrée. Je n'ai pas fait très long feu, étant un musicien assez moyen, mais je reconnais l'importance des conservatoires de musique et d'art dramatique. Car ils ont permis de former des générations d'artistes. Je sais que les temps sont durs, et tout, et tout, et tout. Mais abolir les conservatoires, c'est étrangler un peu l'avenir de la musique et du théâtre au Québec. Ce n'est rien de moins que tragique.

Monday 22 September 2014

The omelette of Fat Lemons

I blogged about a month ago (in fact almost a month ago) about an item of the menu of Fat Lemons in Totnes, which was my big gastronomical revelation during our holidays there. Well, okay maybe not, I had others, but it was one I did not expect to love so much. It occurred to me today that I had forgotten to promote the menu of a restaurant or a pub this past weekend, like I try to do, so I thought I would do it today, to cheer my readership up on a probably dreary Monday. Ironically enough and be warned now: Fat Lemons is only opened a few hours on Monday.

I had this omelette, made with North Devon organic cheddar and free range eggs on our second visit there. It was too late for breakfast, but I hadn't eaten so I had this as a brunch. It was one of the best omelette I ever had, in fact far better than the omelette I ate in Paris earlier on this year. This is THE thing I love about Fat Lemons: they do so well the simplest dish.

Le Salon du Livre du Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean

Pour ceux qui vivent ou visitent le Saguenay, je vous rappelle que c'est le Salon du Livre du Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean à partir du 25 septembre, dans trois jours donc. Parce qu'il se passe des choses en région, notamment dans ma région et parce que c'est le 50e anniversaire, je vous invite à y aller. Vous n'avez pas d'excuse et je vous envie. Petit détail intéressant: parmi les finalistes dans les Prix Littéraires 2014, il y a Larry Tremblay pour L'Orangeraie. C'est un détail intéressant parce que je l'ai lu. Pas que ce soit extraordinaire en soi, je ne suis pas un grand critique, mais c'est extrêmement rare que je lise des romans écrits dans l'année. Alors non seulement vous pouvez si vous êtes dans le coin aller à un évènement culturel toujours plaisant (dis-je avec l'accent), mais vous pourrez peut-être aussi voir l'un des plus grands écrivains du Québec contemporain, qui est aussi un gars de la région.

Sunday 21 September 2014

Almost an equinox

Today is the 21st of September, but I have learned on the calendar that it is not the autumnal equinox just yet: it will only happen on the 23rd of September, two days from now. All the same, I consider all of September to be autumn and I certainly cannot wait for two thirds of it, let alone two more days, to consider that autumn is here. And today was very autumnal: the wind was blowing nicely, the sun seemed to bring little warmth and less light and coloured leaves were scattered on the ground. I went to the nearby park I went to yesterday, again to pick up conkers. I stayed for ages, just enjoying this autumnal day, maybe the first true autumn day we had since the beginning of the month. Almost an equinox.

La ronde des jurons

Nous sommes dimanche, jour du Seigneur, alors j'ai décidé de télécharger un peu de blasphèmes bien placés. La ronde des jurons de Georges Brassens. Parce que l'on peut jurer sans gêne quand on le fait avec verve comme c'est ici.

The eyes of a cat

I recently received two compliments from the daughter of a friend of my wife two of the nicest compliments someone ever gave me. Seriously. The girl is eight or nine years old, a tomboy who loves horror stories and monsters, especially vampires. A week ago, my wife and I were at their place and she told me: "You have the exact same eyes as Buffy!" Buffy is her beloved kitty cat, named after... well, this Buffy. It was partially a clever manipulation: she said this right after she had told us she could open the window of her bedroom wide open and sit on the edge of the window, which we were telling her was really dangerous. Eager to change topic, she said that thing. We told her parents afterwards, to make sure she wouldn't do something dangerous.

Anyway, I thought it was sheer manipulation from her part and that she would keep a grudge at me not falling for it, but later on this week I saw her and her dad when I was walking home. I asked for a cuddle and to my surprise (and her dad's) she gave me one. Later on, her mum said to my wife that she never even give cuddles to her own grandmother, or to many adults apart from her parents. When asked by her mother why she did that, she answered: "Because Guillaume is like the man version of me." Which I may have found even more touching. Anyway, two compliments, one about a cat, the other one about a likeness to her, and the context of these compliments make me qualify them as great unknown lines.

Un canon

Cette photo a été prise à Dartmouth Castle lors de nos vacances dans le Devon. Forteresse datant de l'époque médiévale, mais c'est l'âge d'or de la piraterie qui est utilisée pour attirer les visiteurs, surtout les enfants et qui est au centre de leurs démonstrations thématiques. Les enfants semblent fascinés par les canons, je ne sais pas trop pourquoi. Je l'étais aussi enfant. Peut-être à cause de cette association entre l'arme et la piraterie. Mais bref, j'ai vraiment aimé cette visite à Dartmouth, comme ailleurs dans d'autres châteaux, sauf que je crois que c'est une visite à faire avec des enfants.

Saturday 20 September 2014

The evening with Don Giovanni

I found this image on Facebook recently, ironically enough a few days before I went to see Don Giovanni. I blogged about it before, I promised to give more details about the evening, so as promised, here is the post giving you the account of my experience (and it was an experience). And I thought this image would be very fitting, even though I already uploaded the overture on a different post. It took Mozart one night to compose its overture, and what an overture it was. But I digress...

I think it would be pointless to write this post as a review. I don't do reviews very well. Don Giovanni is the greatest opera that ever was, in my opinion, however limited the means, however poor the production may be, the music and the story can lift them and turn it into not only an enjoyable night, but an experience. It was a production of limited means: no chorus, only the characters. No orchestra, only a piano. A small stage, minimalist decor, the theater an old barn. Some scenes were cut, even. But nevertheless, it was my first live experience of the classic. I love Don Giovanni for many reasons, maybe the main one is that it is because it is not merely edgy, it is the most revolutionary, iconoclast, anti-establishment piece of lyrical fiction there is. The main character and antihero is a blasphemer, an agent of chaos, a philanderer who does not shy away from rape and murder to satisfy his lust, who openly mocks both the law of men and God, and threatened by eternal damnation accepts his fate rather than repenting, out of fear or remorse. So however humble the setting, the core of the opera was channeled properly.

The intermission was longer, as there was a picnic/supper. We shared our table with a mother and her daughter. The mother was American, her daughter half British from her father, she was 20 and they had settled back to England after a few years in Italy. Very friendly people: they offered us a few glasses of their rosé, they chatted with us and we had a lovely conversation among connoisseurs. I had met two people who shared my love of Italy, my love of opera and my love for Don Giovanni. In fact, the daughter told us that it was the first opera she ever saw. A revelation to her: she knew she wanted to become an opera singer at that moment. I told my wife later that I was so happy about it, thata girl her age and her generation had decided to live her dreams and become an opera singer. It meant that there was hope for the form of art, that it could still touch and marvel new people. And it was very reassuring: we were with them among the youngest people there. Most of the people around us were elderly, "white heads" as my father would say. And I am not that young to begin with!

So that was my evening. I would not end a post about Mozart without his music. So I decided to upload here the ball scene, near the end of the first act of Don Giovanni. With Samuel Ramey in the title role. It has Viva la Liberta in it, that is the main reason I chose this bit. When I say the opera is revolutionary, that is what I mean.

Le catalogue Kanuk

Petite nouvelle bête afin de ploguer une gamme de produits québécois. De vêtements de plein-air pour être plus précis: le catalogue 2014-2015 de Kanuk est sorti. Ca veut dire pleins de beaux manteaux avec le hibou Kanuk dessus. Je sais que ça fait peut-être tendance et Plateau Mont-Royal et un peu trop Montréal pour certains, mais moi j'aime leurs produits pareil. Parce qu'ils sont élégants sans l'être et que ce sont des produits de qualité. Alors allez acheter des Kanuks. Voilà.

Spider repellent

As an answer to the recent home invasion of arachnids, which I have blogged about here, I went to the nearest park this afternoon to get conkers. It has, among other virtues, the capacity to repel spiders. I was skeptical about it at first, but when I went a while ago to the DIY shop to buy spider repellent, I discovered that it was made of, and smelled of, conkers. So I thought this year, I'd go for the natural thing. It is cheaper, it does not smell nearly as strong and it is a good excuse as any to have a walk in a park on a day when it is finally starting to look and feel like autumn. There was a father and his daughter doing the same thing as me. I am not sure it was for the same reason, but anyway. There was this huge chestnut tree in the park and plenty of conkers to share. So I took a pocket full of them. Now I will have to scatter them around the flat.

Le temps des betteraves

La semaine dernière, j'ai mangé des chips (crisps comme on les appelle ici) de betteraves (donc où la betterave remplaçait les patates) achetées à Marks & Spencer. C'était bon, paraît même que ça donnait une portion de fruits et légumes si on mangeait le contenu du sac de chips/crisps au complet, mais ce n'était pas aussi bon que des vraies bettes (comme on dit au Québec). Et ça m'a fait penser que c'est le temps de les récolter et de les mettre en conserve, en ce moment. Enfin, peut-être qu'on les récolte avant: je me rappelle qu'on allait chercher les betteraves dans le jardin de mon oncle avant la rentrée des classes. Mais c'est quand même un légume automnal, à mon sens, en tout cas qui commence à se consommer en conserves à l'automne.

Friday 19 September 2014

Another sign of Halloween

I took this picture in a local pub, in June. A beer mat of the Hobgoblin from Wychwood Brewery, with a pint of Hobgoblin on it (mine). You see the hobgoblin holding two jack o'lanterns and of course you can read their claim/motto, the it is "The Unofficial Beer of Halloween". Whenever I see this beer mat, it makes me think that Halloween is coming, whatever the time of year, but more so when autumn starts.

Premier rhume de la saison

Ca m'agace ça n'a pas de sens: je suis enrhumé solide pour la première fous depuis des mois. La dernière fois, c'était en janvier je crois. Là, j'ai une gorge qui est constamment traversée d'éclats de verre. On le dirait en tout cas. En septembre, alors qu'il y a un été indien dehors et des chaleurs estivales qui me mettent en rogne. J'aime les automnes frais, voyez-vous. Et j'exècre être malade en automne, encore plus qu'à d'autres moments.

Thursday 18 September 2014

The Scottish Hour

I could not avoid blogging about it, however controversial it is. Not where I live, not now. Because it is the only thing people talk about here in the UK. Tonight's the night. History might be made. Until tomorrow, this household is divided, as I said on Facebook. I am talking of course of the referendum on Scotland's independence. And guess where I stand? I may be the only one around here. At work, people are full on hostile to it. I was asked why I was on the side of those who wanted to break up a country. I replied the same thing: Scotland is already a country, just not an independent one. Even the Life in the UK test says it is a country, I know, I have passed it. What would break tonight is a kingdom, and even then not so much, as the Scots would keep the British monarchy. So it is a De-united Kingdom we may have tomorrow.

So why am I for it? Because Scotland is a country and country should have all powers to decide for themselves what is good for them. And I find ironic that so many people here in England are against Scotland's separation, but want to separate from the EU, too much of a federation for their taste. And I have sympathy for the underdog, for a project that goes against the British establishment, from the right to the left. But then again, if I am being honest, I don't think it will happen. And if I am more honest, I admit that I would be far more enthusiastic if there was a referendum for the abolition of the monarchy. My one gripe against Scottish nationalism is that it is not a republican one.


C'est le prix que m'a coûté ce hamburger. C'était dans un restaurant parisien, enfin un café, en mai, lors de la conférence où je suis allé dans le cadre de mon travail. Mon premier repas parisien en six ans. Quand j'ai montré la facture à mon manager, il n'en revenait pas à quel point j'avais mangé pour pas cher. Pourtant, ce n'était pas un souper frugal: pleins de frites et de salade, sans compter le burger. Mais c'était assez médiocre côté saveurs. Ca goûtait ce que ça valait, et vice versa. Et je regarde cette et je me dis que je n'ai pas particulièrement hâte d'y retourner.

Wednesday 17 September 2014

The fear of arachnids

That was the big conversation today at work: this Daily Mail articles about spiders getting bigger. I recently blogged (in French) about some eight legged intruders that were indeed huge and decided to squat in the flat. Well, I started talking about it and others brought their own anecdotes and spiders invasion was on everybody's lips. One of my colleagues mentioned a huge spiders that crawled on her while she was showering and she said the strangest thing, so matter of factly that it was quite spooky: "Their body is mostly brains. They are thinker, and when they look at you, they are saying they know they will get you." I don't like spiders much, but not to this level of contempt. But I find arachnophobia fascinating. And this particular display of it, so developed, was even more so. Anyway, I think her vision of spider's anatomy psychology may have been all wrong, nevertheless it deserves to be a new great unknown line.

Bruno Blanchet et la graisse de baleine

On est mercredi, le mercredi c'est plate, alors j'essaie d'égayer votre soirée avec l'humour absurde de Bruno Blanchet, lors de l'époque bénie de La fin du monde est à 7 heures, ou LFDMEA7H. Ou La fin du monde est à n'importe quelle bordel de h, comme le disait Marc Labrèche parfois. De l'absurde à son meilleur.

Tuesday 16 September 2014

Autumnal pub

I took this picture a few weeks ago, when I was walking back from the train station. I blogged about this pub before, it is the pub by the train station, an old building that used to be the station hotel. On my first day in this town, when I came for a job interview, it is where I stopped. It is for me the welcoming spot of this town. I also think it might be the setting of one of the ghost stories of E. Nesbit. I have no way to be certain, but I will investigate it. It is a warm and very atmospheric pub, especially in autumn, I always thought that it could be the setting of a Halloween story, even before I read the ghost story of Nesbit. The walls are covered with leaves which get fiery colours. When I find the weather too warm, like these days, the leaves on the pub remind me that autumn is truly here, at least in colours.

Concert nocturne d'hélicoptères

Après le concert de motos dimanche dernier, nous avons eu droit hier soir, après minuit, à un concert d'hélicoptères. Il passe souvent des avions par ici car nous sommes  relativement près d'Heathrow. Il passe aussi des hélicoptères, d'habitude de jour. Parfois de soir aussi. Mais au beau milieu de la nuit, c'est aussi rare qu'incongru. Outre que ça a gâché un sommeil aussi fragile que léger (je suis insomniaque). J'ai donc apprécié encore moins que les motos. Et je me demande bien ce que les hélicoptères faisaient la nuit dernière.

Monday 15 September 2014

About wallpapers, the Bayeux Tapestry and Iran (among other things)

A Facebook friend (I will not mention who, not unless she allows it, she is a celebrity) invited her Facebook friends today to come and tear down the wallpapers of her home. She lives in London, so the invitations was for Londoners or people living nearby, who could go to her place on a Monday. I could not show up of course, but I answered this:

"Sadly I do not live in London and I work on Monday. I hate wallpapers (they haven't made decent ones since the Bayeux Tapestry), stripping them down too, but it is a necessary evil, and I'd do this for tea and cakes. And since you have Iranian blood, you must know how to serve tea properly."

In three sentences, I mention London, wallpapers, I make one terrible, awful, trivial comparison with the Bayeux Tapestry, to the Iranian origins of my FB friend, their tea drinking tradition and I think because of this amount of topics, it deserves to be a great unknown line.

To be or not to be (la photo du mois)

Le thème ce mois-ci a été très inspirant pour moi, d'une désarmante inspiration en fait. C'était To be or not to be, choisi par Lavandine. Avec le 450e anniversaire de la naissance de Shakespeare en plus, et le fait qu'Hamlet a été la première pièce que j'ai lue de lui et a longtemps été ma préférée... J,ai déjà vu plus difficile sujet. Il fallait trouver la bonne photo cependant. Alors voilà ce que j'ai trouvé dans les archives, une photo prise au Parc Lafontaine du Théâtre de Guignol. Il colle au thème pour une série de raisons: 1)c'est un théâtre, donc un endroit où l'on joue des pièces. 2)c'est un théâtre de marionnettes, donc des personnages qui existent sans exister, qui sont et ne sont pas des humains, qui les représentent sans être, tout en étant un peu, en existant comme personnages. 3)c'est un théâtre qui n'est pas actif, parce que fermé, du moins lorsque la photo a été prise. 4)cela dit, c'est malgré tout un théâtre qui est, car il existe. 5)il est peut-être aussi parce qu'il est peut-être ouvert des fois et donc des pièces y sont peut-être produites. Donc, est-il ou n'est-il pas?

Allez voir ce que les autres ont répondu à cette question, ou comment ils l'ont posée:

A chaque jour sa photo, A'icha, Agathe, Agnès, Agrippine, Akaieric, Alban, Alexinparis, Alice Wonderland, Ann, Anne, Arwen, Aude, Autour de Cia, Ava, Bestofava, BiGBuGS, Blogoth67, Blue Edel, Brindille, Cara, Cécile - Une quadra, Cécile Atch'oum, Céline in Paris, CetO, Champagne, Chat bleu, Christophe, Claire's Blog, Crearine, Cricriyom from Paris, Dame Skarlette, DelphineF, E, El Padawan, Elsa, Eva INside-EXpat, Fanfan Raccoon, François le Niçois, Frédéric, Galinette, Gilsoub, Giselle 43, Gizeh, Guillaume, hibiscus, Homeos-tasie, Isa de fromSide2Side, Isa ToutSimplement, Isaquarel, Josiane, Julia, KK-huète En Bretannie, Krn, La Berlinoise, La Dum, La Fille de l'Air, La Nantaise à Paris, Lau* des montagnes, Laulinea, Laurent Nicolas, Laurie, Lavandine, Lavandine83, Les bonheurs d'Anne & Alex, Les Filles du Web, Louisianne, Lucile et Rod, Lyonelk, magda627, Mahlyn, Mamysoren, Maria Graphia, Marie, Marmotte, MauriceMonAmour, Milla la galerie, Mimireliton, MissCarole, Morgane Byloos Photography, Nanouk, Nicky, Nie, Philae, Photo Tuto, Pilisi, Pixeline, princesse Emalia, Renepaulhenry, Rythme Indigo, Salon de Thé, Sandrine, Sephiraph, Sylvie, Tataflo, Testinaute, Thalie, Tuxana, Vanilla, Xoliv', Yvette la Chouette, Zaza

Sunday 14 September 2014

The dress code for the evening

I mentioned recently on this blog that I am going to see Don Giovanni on the stage. It is tonight. I am looking forward to it, except one small detail: the dress code. Because there is a dress code. I love to wear whatever I want to wear for the weekend, or indeed any day. And for men, it is written that they ask for jackets and ties, stressing "please no jeans!" I could understand the no jeans, even though I already paid good money to see the performance, but jacket and tie? I wear them at weddings, funerals and job interviews. For Mozart, I thought the music would be elegant enough. I guess I am not used to posh evenings, but for me opera is not about the dress code, it is about the story and the music. And that kind of irks me a bit.

Concert de motos

Je viens d'être témoin d'un phénomène qui affecte surtout durant le dimanche tranquille (veuillez noter l'ironie et le sarcasme ici): une longue file de motards en Harley Davidson qui sont passés sur la rue adjacente à la mienne. Pleins de motos, bien entendu bruyantes, qui passaient par là à un de ces rendez-vous dominicaux pour adeptes de shows de boucane. Ce n'est pas la première fois, mais heureusement c'est rare. Sauf que dimanche, je trouve que c'est trop souvent ça: pas un jour tranquille, mais celui de la circulation qui n'arrête pas même dans les petites villes, celui des réunions de motards et des shows de boucane. Peut-être que je me fais vieux, peut-être que j'associe trop la mote à la guerre des motards.

Saturday 13 September 2014

Dragon Slayers

In the end, other things happened so I did not go to the autumnal walk. Not in the woods anyway, just in town. But I thought I would download an autumnal picture to put some colours on this blog. And it also struck me that I had not bothered... I mean told my readership about Dungeons & Dragons in a while. So I decided to do like last year and download an autumnal image from artist Larry Elmore which I associate with D&Dr. This one is called Dragon Slayers and Proud of It. Maybe one of my favourite of all his work. It has the forest in autumn in the background. But more interestingly, it is a hunting picture, with the green dragon instead of the deer and the bows, arrows and swords instead of guns. The two men by the dragon even look like modern hunters! You have here a classical D&Dr party: the fighters, the spellcaster and the priest (the one holding the warhammer, it is a dead giveaway he is a priest). Oh and you even have the treasure of the creature, a small amount of golden jewelry.

Like I mentioned last year, our first quest as a party (which was very different than this one, both in number and in character classes) was mainly set in a forest, in autumn. I think my brother PJ, who was the Dungeon Master, must have been influenced by this image: we had to fight at the very end of the adventure a dragon (although a black one) and he had plenty of gold and jewellery in treasure chests scattered around the room where he was dwelling. It was the first dragon we killed, becoming thus dragon slayers. Every time I look at this picture, I think about it.

La migration des araignées

Il y a un autre signe qui me rappelle que nous sommes bien en automne, malgré le temps doux: les araignées qui envahissent la maison. Celle-ci n'était que la seconde en liste, sur trois, depuis le début septembre. Trois araignées aussi grosses et vilaines que celle-là, en tout et par tout, que j'ai dû chasser. Enfin, foutre à la porte.Par là, je veux dire jeter à la fenêtre, parce que ma femme ne me permet pas de les tuer, même si elle est dégoûtée par celles-ci. Surtout grosses et laides comme cette arachnide. Mais enfin bref, les araignées migrent de l'extérieur vers les chaumières quand elles sentent l'automne arriver. Et moi, je n'aime pas les squatteuses, bon.

An autumnal walk in the woods?

This is what I will probably do today: take a good walk in the woods. It will be my first autumnal walk. I know the equinox has not happened yet, but I consider the beginning of September as the starting point of autumn. I say this and autumn is not in full bloom yet. It is still far too warm for the season and the leaves have barely started changing colours. It might be different in the woods though. But I don't think it will be as idyllic as in this painting. I took it more than a year ago, in May or July I think, hoping to use it for a post. This is how I see an autumn walk: fiery colours, cool temperatures and a bed of leaves on the path. I wish I could have bought it, but I cannot hang it on the walls here, since I don't own this place.

Pas de commentaires?

Moment d'angoisse ici: je n'ai pas eu de commentaire en français sur Vraie Fiction depuis dimanche dernier. Ca arrive parfois, surtout dans mes billets en français et quand ça arrive ça m'angoisse toujours. Est-ce dû au faible lectorat francophone, puisque j'écris de l'Angleterre? Dans tous les cas, il me faudra trouver un moyen de redresser la situation.

Friday 12 September 2014

Blueberry brownies from Sugar Moon

I blogged before an enthusiastic "review" (more like a plug) about Sugar Moon's brownies, made by Mozart's Girl (well, Rachel is her real name). On Sugar Moon's Facebook page, she asked for suggestions about new brownies mixes, and I immediately came up with fresh blueberry. It was mainly out of pure regional pride: the blueberry is the emblematic berry of the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean. I also knew chocolate and blueberries make for a delicious mix. Rachel I think was skeptical at first, but she baked the blueberries brownies in the end and was generous enough to send me some complimentary samples. I was unworthy of this generosity, but here they are. I can only repay this by saying that I had my first one last night and it was even better than I thought it would be. I say it with some pride, as I came up with the idea. I just knew it. She blogged on her own blog about them. All I can say is that I hope she will make more of them.

Le mot du jour: franchouillard

Tiens, on y va avec un mot du jour, un que j'ai déjà utilisé sur ce blogue parfois et que j'aime bien utiliser quand un ou des Français m'énervent (exemple ici). Je parle bien entendu de l'adjectif franchouillard. Définition du Larousse: "Qui présente les défauts traditionnellement attribués au Français moyen (en particulier chauvinisme, étroitesse d'esprit)." Des fois, il faut utiliser les termes péjoratifs.

Thursday 11 September 2014

9, 11, 13

Today was and is the 13th anniversary of 9/11. I do not have much to say I didn't say before on this blog. I have blogged some of the posts I am most proud of about 9/11. This one in 2008. In 2009 too. This year, I will only mention it. No song commemorating it, no smart title, no musing about murder, blood and madness. Just these numbers. It is the true 13th year of the millennium, the true moment when it started, on September 11, 2001.

La morale de l'histoire

"Nous pouvons conclure de là
Qu'il faut faire aux méchants guerre continuelle.
La paix est fort bonne de soi,
J'en conviens ; mais de quoi sert-elle
Avec des ennemis sans foi ?

Je cite encore une fois cette année Les Loups et les Brebis de La Fontaine. C'est la seconde fois que je cite sa conclusion et la morale de la fable. J'avais cité aussi le début l'année dernière. C'est de loin ma fable préférée. Je la cite parce que c'est l'anniversaire du 11 septembre 2001. Et que si cette date a un sens, c'est malheureusement celui-ci. Bien sûr, toutes les guerres ne sont pas faites avec des armes. Il y a des guerres d'idées aussi. Celle contre le fondamentalisme religieux, pas seulement le fondamentalisme islamiste, est d'abord et avant tout une guerre d'idées. Enfin, c'est la morale de l'histoire.

Wednesday 10 September 2014

Tasteless tea?

Well, I love David's Tea, as you know. I discovered today on their Facebook page that they have a blend called Organic Cold 911, for the treatment of cold. Like, emergency treatment of cold. It is the tea of the day... today. Knowing that tomorrow is the anniversary of 9/11, I wondered if it was not a bit tactless. I don't think there is anything malicious in their intention, I think have seen 911 on display in their shop after all. In any case, I love David's Tea too much to have any grudge. Heck, I'd drink some if I had a cold! Maybe gallons of it. But in September, especially this week, I wonder if it was a smart marketing move.

Mafalda et une allégorie

D'habitude, lorsque je mets sur Vraie Fiction des gags de Mafalda, ils passent inaperçu, mais comme ce sera le 11 septembre demain, j'ai pensé à ce gag. Plus qu'un simple gag, c'est une allégorie de ce qui s'est passé il y a treize ans et sur ce qu'est la liberté à notre époque. Ca aurait pu être écrit hier. Mafalda n'a pas pris une ride.

Tuesday 9 September 2014

Wild geese flying

Be warned: this is another seasonal post. I saw today another piece of evidence that autumn, however elusive, is very much here. Yes, it is still warm in daytime, but there is something cool in the air that is very autumnal. But anyway, this morning, I saw the piece of evidence flying: a flock of wild geese, grey ones, quaking very loudly, were flying in fairly low altitude. I could see them very well. So yes, they were migrating of course. Wild geese have a particular significance to me, read this post from last year for more. And I was very happy to see this sign of autumn, still early in the month.

L'odeur du romarin

J'ai pris cette photo dans le jardin du Totnes Museum. C'est assez brillant dans un musée, qu'il y ait un jardin. J'aime bien le romarin, son odeur en particulier. Je l'ai déjà mentionné il y a quelques années. J'ai posé récemment une question existentielle (pas encore répondue, d'ailleurs) demandant quelles plantes faire pousser dans un jardin. Le romarin en ferait vraisemblablement partie.

Monday 8 September 2014

An evening with Mozart

As you know, I am trying to spend some evenings out to see plays (as I did recently). This weekend, it will be an evening of a slightly different type, albeit on a stage: an evening watching and listening to Don Giovanni, my favourite opera. I have seen many operas live on stage, but never this one, believe it or not. It will be the first time.

So anyway, a few months ago I saw a poster in one of the local charity shops about this production of Don Giovanni, for a charity organization, in a nearby town. It has a longer interval, so the audience can have a picnic as dinner/supper. My kind of evening. But in any case, only because of the opera, I knew I had to see it. Getting the tickets was a bit of a pain and slow: I actually had to send a cheque by mail, they do not accept other payments. Nevertheless, I received the tickets today. So I can barely wait. To illustrate this post, I have uploaded an image from this book. An image that would fit Le Nozze di Figaro better, but since we are going to have a meal with the performance, it does fit at least the circumstances. And to celebrate this upcoming evening, I have decided to upload here the overture of the opera I love so much.

Une anecdote linguistique sur les orchidées

Ca m,est venu en tête ce soir: la racine étymologique d'orchidée vient du latin orchis, qui veut dire... testicule. D'où le terme médical orchidectomie, par exemple. Je le savais déjà de mon père, qui collectionne les orchidées (pas de mauvaise blague, je vous prie). J'imagine souvent que l'orchidée a une forme sinistre. Son apparence peut apparemment évoquer une toute autre chose. Et enfin bref, ça m'est venu à l'esprit ce soir.

Sunday 7 September 2014

Longing for a fireplace

This picture was taken at the Totnes Museum or, to be accurate, the Totnes Elizabethan House Museum. And yes, this post is a cheap excuse to upload another picture from my holiday in Devon. But anyway, my father told me over the phone that the temperature had dramatically dropped these last few days. Here, although it is looking more and more like autumn, it is still very warm during daytime. And of course I have started to long for colder days, for when the day will feel like it looks. Which leads me to fireplaces. I would love to have one to be able to lit a fire and read right next to it, or just simply watch the flame. I have of course nine at home, but there are a few pubs around here that have one. I guess I could just do this when the temperature goes down. Anyway, it struck me today: I miss a good old fireplace.

Question existentielle (238)

Il semblerait que je sois porté sur les questions existentielles sur le chez-soi et le home sweet home ces temps-ci, directement ou non. Voici celle de ce soir:

-Quelles plantes faire pousser dans un jardin?


This picture was taken at my request by my father. The content of this harvest, which was mainly root vegetables, cabbages, potatoes and sweet corn, was used to make what we called in Québec a bouilli, basically the Québec version of a pot roast. You can see a picture of meal my parents make here. We often associate autumn harvest with fruits, but for me it also means sweet corns, carrots and, well, the content of a pot roast, the meal that marks for me the beginning of autumn. So I thought I would upload this picture as a sort of horn of plenty. I wish I could have a bouilli tonight.

Nouveaux voisins

Cette photo a été prise à Montréal, pour être plus précis sur le Plateau Mont-Royal, par conséquent loin de là où l'inspiration du billet m'est venue, et par là je veux dire ici, en Angleterre. Cela dit, elle illustre le sujet, car c'est une photo du bloc de condos que j'habitais lorsque je vivais à Montréal. etit détail amusant aujourd'hui: je viens de voir arriver de nouveaux voisins. Enfin, il y avait une voiture remplie de bagages. Ca doit être la troisième fois en un mois que je vois du nouveau monde arriver ici. Nous avons eu des changements de voisins assez régulièrement ces temps-ci, depuis le début de l'année. J'en suis heureux pour une raison: les nouveaux voisins semblent sensiblement plus jeunes que les anciens, qui étaient surtout du troisième âge. Il n'étaient pas tous méchants et teigneux comme la sorcière, loin s'en faut, mais ça donnais au bloc l'air d'une maison de retraite. Et puis ça crée un potentiel pour de nouvelles amitiés. Bon, je suis rarement ami avec mes voisins, mais ça arrive parfois.

Saturday 6 September 2014

Feline predatorism

I took this picture a few months ago during my last visit at the Natural History Museum. It is a display explaining predatorism and reports between species, showing in an attic full of grain a cat preying on rats, themselves eating the grain. There was also an owl on the display, which picture I have uploaded here. All animals were stuffed, still life models. There is nothing I find more sad than a dead cat, yet this one, for what it represented and for its educational use, I did not mind.

And I loved the display, as it showed an aspect of cats' nature I love: they are fierce predators. I have a silly, uncontrollable fear of little rodents in general and rats in particular. That cats hunt the vermin is one of their use as a species I particularly love. So in sum, I am more scared of the hunted than I will ever get scared of the hunter. And this is why I love feline predatorism.

Eurêka pour la photo du mois

Le thème de la photo du mois cette année est "To be or not to be", peut-être la citation la plus connue de Shakespeare, du moins pour les francophones. Ca tombe bien, c'est l'année de son 450e anniversaire de naissance. Mais je ne savais pas quelle photo trouver ou prendre. Et puis j'ai eu un moment cette semaine où j'ai crié eurêka. Je ne peux rien dire pour le moment, mais je crois que c'est inspiré.

That morning the sun rose in the West

This is not what happened, obviously. The title of this post is in fact the whole short story, one short, (very short in fact) story. According to Anthony Burgess, it is the shortest science-fiction short story of all time. I will go further: it IS maybe the shortest short story of all time, never mind the genre. I do not know who invented it, I suspect it was Burgess himself. In any case, I wanted to share it with my readers.

Premier samedi de septembre

Évidence bête: nous sommes le premier samedi de septembre. Ca n'a l'air de rien comme ça, mais le premier samedi de septembre a une certaine importance, pour ne pas dire une importance certaine. Alors que les vacances sont officiellement terminées avec le début de l'année scolaire (l'année commence et termine avec le début et la fin des classes, peu importe que l'on y soit toujours ou non), c'est la première vraie fin de semaine de l'année. On peut y apprécier les premiers signes des changements saisonniers, cet automne qui en ce moment est encore assez timide. Voilà pourquoi j'ai une appréciation particulière pour le premier samedi de septembre. Suis-je le seul?

Friday 5 September 2014

Hipster Traps

Do you like Hipsters? Do you hate hipsters?My brother Andrew loathes them. And one of his very good friends posted on Facebook this article saying there are hipster traps in New York. I have to confess: I know close to zilch about hipsters. Not even sure if it takes a capital H or a small h. But I just dislike the name. It is an ugly, weak, sloppy, faux cool word. Hipsters. Almost obscene. So I commented on the post of my brother's friend (she is also my Facebook friend, albeit I know her less). I said: "As long as it kills them." I think it deserves to be a great unknown line. And, for the record, I don't think anyone should die. I was speaking figuratively.

Un nouveau dessert pour PS

Bon, Prof Solitaire a repris les hostilités avec des photos de pure food porn, sur ce billet. Alors je réplique avec cette photo prise au restaurant Cranks à Dartington dans le Devon. Une institution végé. Et puis moi, je l'ai mangé ce gâteau au chocolat. Délicieux.

Thursday 4 September 2014

Medea tonight

I came home early from work today, as this evening I will see the National Theatre's production of Medea, by Euripides, with Helen McCrory in the title role. Since the beginning of the year, I have rediscovered stage work and classics. This will be a completely new play to me though, as I am very familiar with the myth and Greek mythology, but I have neither read nor seen Medea. I can barely wait.

Un souvenir de rentrée scolaire

Tiens, je ne sais pas trop pourquoi, ça m'arrive parfois, mais j'ai eu ce souvenir de rentrée scolaire. C'était en deuxième année, il faisait un temps splendide, et le la chanson-thème de la rentrée s'appelait "Chapeaux sur têtes" enfin un truc du genre, particulièrement stupide. On avait paradé dans la cour d'école, classe par classe, année par année, avec des couvre-chefs faits par nous-même (lire: j'avais mis un macaron sur ma casquette) en chantant la chanson-thème stupide. Je ne sais pas pourquoi, mais de toutes les rentrées scolaires, celle-ci me vient le plus en tête. Peut-être parce que même à l'époque je trouvais la chanson, comme les chapeaux, ridicules. Et vous, vous avez un souvenir de rentrée du genre?

Wednesday 3 September 2014

Earliest sign of Halloween

This picture was taken during my holidays in Devon, in the Morissons in Totnes. I saw this magazine. It was near the two thirds of August. Well, what can I say? It got me in a good mood. I wouldn't buy such magazine, and indeed I didn't buy it. I love Halloween, but I cannot see myself being to make these cupcakes. I do not have this talent. But in August, to see such sight, I always find it encouraging. Yes, it is awfully early, but maybe not so much. Of course, magazines are prepared and published months in advance of the holidays/seasons they feature, as they want to cash in early. But I am happy with this one. Because it is Halloween, my favourite holiday and because I am already getting in a Halloween state of mind. So this was the earliest sign of Halloween I saw this year. And just for this reason, it deserved to be remembered.

Les 25 ans de McAuslan

Bon, deuxième plogue sur un anniversaire en deux jours, celle-ci sur la Brasserie McAuslan, dont j'apprends, via sa page Facebook, qu'elle fête ses 25 ans. La Griffon rousse, c'est peut-être ma bière québécoise préférée (et oui, je réutilise une photo publiée avant). Je m'ennuie de chez moi et des bières de McAuslan. Alors j'invite tous ceux qui ont la chance de pouvoir acheter les produits McAuslan de prendre une de leurs bières à leur santé... et à la mienne.

Tuesday 2 September 2014

Astronomy Domine

I thought I would put a bit of Pink Floyd on this blog, since I haven't done so for more than a year and since Vraie Fiction needs a bit of music. It is from their first album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn and it is Astronomy Domine. Quality psychedelic music like they don't make it anymore. For me, Pink Floyd is the Alpha and the Omega of rock music. Of modern music, period.

Les 50 ans du Salon du Livre

Je m'y prends tôt encore une fois cette année pour faire de la publicité d'un évènement régional (lire: saguenéen et jeannois). Le Salon du Livre du Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean aura 50 ans cette année. Il aura lieu du 25 an 28 septembre. Comme le dit l'image de droite, que j'ai empruntée (hum, hum!) de leur page Facebook. L'oiseau choisi pour souligner l'anniversaire est franchement laid, mais bon. Je le mets ici par amour pour l'évènement et pour ma région. J'aurais aimé le logo habituel, beaucoup plus élégant, avec deux livres/masques souriants. Mais enfin bref... Le Salon du Livre, j'y ai un laisser-passer à vie depuis que j'ai gagné le Concours du Lecteur de l'Année catégorie cégep en 1995. J'ai dû l'utiliser deux fois, peut-être moins. Mais enfin, je m'ennuie du Salon, de ma région et j'aurais aimé y être pour cet anniversaire.

Monday 1 September 2014

Bring on September!

For once, I am glad it is Monday! No, not because it is Labor Day, as I live in a country that does not have Labor Day this time of year. You can read my thoughts on Labor Day in this post from last year, or from this one I wrote in French earlier on. I am glad it is Monday, or rather I do not mind it today, as it is the first day of September. And for me, September means autumn. My favourite season starts on the first of September, not the 21st or 22nd or whatever. And the signs are already here. More so then when I blogged about them two weeks ago. The leaves especially, that are taking more and more their fiery colours. So bring on September.

Fêter le Travail

Nous sommes le premier septembre, le premier lundi de septembre, c'est donc la Fête du Travail... Sauf ici. Ici, on ne la fête pas, la Fête du Travail. Alors c'est une journée de... travail comme une autre. Et puis bon, je me demande comme ça si je l'ai jamais vraiment fêtée. J'en ai parlé l'année dernière sur un billet anglais. Je n'ai jamais vécu ce jour férié en tant que travailleur: j'étais toujours sans emploi le premier lundi de septembre quand je vivais encore au Québec. Ce n'est qu'au cours de septembre que je me trouvais un emploi (et jamais du travail valorisant). Dans le fond, quand on ne travaille pas, on est plutôt le laissé-pour-compte de cette journée. Et maintenant, ironiquement, alors que je suis permanent dans la job la plus avantageuse de ma vie (du moins financièrement) bien je ne célèbre pas la Fête du Travail.