On Sunday, December 30, 2012 I boarded a plane and took off for Montreal. It was there I was to meet, for the very first time in person, Le Clown and The Ringmistress. In the real live non-virtual world of walking talking human beings, it is much more normal/less creepy to address them as Eric and Sara.
My first encounter with Le Clown was on August 30, 2012 during his infamous Blogroll Challenge (in which I did not sleep for 2 days and ignored my children in order to over-indulge my highly competitive and obsessive nature.) We were kindred spirits, and before long we were emailing and Facebooking like old drunken college buddies. Turns out we had a lot in common, and we both loved to push the envelope farther and farther with each other trying to find the line which never existed. It is safe to assume we have exchanged no less than 587 fuck-you’s lovingly to one another. Then I got to know Sara, who is both talented and The Funniest Girl I Know (Sara told me to say that, but she really is funny, especially after 3 glasses of wine.) Who would have guessed that exactly 4 months later I would be flying to Canada to ring in the New Year with them, and that the word Mimestry even existed? John Edwards, naturally.
When I landed at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport in Montreal, I was swamped for autographs as I waited in line for customs. As I messaged Eric on the other side, apparently he was doing the same thing. This was our code for not really being recognized at all because we were only pretend famous in our own minds.
Once through, I saw him sitting with his laptop, and I screamed out loudly for his autograph to appease his ego. We hugged as only a Canadian internet clown and F-bomb dropping American blogger could, and began dragging my entirely too large and over-packed American suitcase to the car. He asked if it was filled with guns. I told him yes, and to go fuck himself. We laughed as only a Canadian internet clown and F-bomb dropping American blogger could.
The parking area resembled the frozen tundra. I don’t know what the temperature was because not only do they speak French, but they do things in celsius and liters and kilograms, which is stupid, but it was so cold that my actual vagina was frozen. They had just had a huge snow storm and the rows of buried cars went on forever. So here we were, dragging carry-on, a huge American rolling suitcase filled with American guns, my purse, his laptop, and that fucking clown could not find his car. Seriously. He handed me his laptop and told me “wait here” and began running his Canadian ass up and down the aisles trying to find his car as the blustering wind sent me into hypothermic shock. Welcome to Canada!
4 hours later, and by 4 hours I mean 5 minutes, Le Clown found his car and I was in for my first nauseating experience of what’s known as Montreal Driving. There is snow and ice all over the highway and he’s driving his Honda Civic as if he’s Mario Andretti on meth with his period if boys got periods. It was Awesome™, and by Awesome™ I mean not Awesome™ at all. But I was with Le Clown, so it was funny.
We arrived at his home, and the minute I was in the door, I shouted “Honey, I’m home!” and Sara and I embraced like only a Canadian artist with undiagnosed bi-polar disorder and American F-Bomb dropping blogger could, and all was right with the world. Then in ran their 2-year-old daughter Poppy who is made of cotton candy, baby unicorns, rainbows, starbursts, glitter and moxie, and gave me a huge kid hug as if she’d known me all of her little life. I decided then and there she was coming home with me in my huge American suitcase filled with guns.
We sat down in their cozy living room and began catching up like old college buddies.
Did I mention it was cold? Don’t worry, I’ll mention it about 527 more times before I’m through. Smoking was almost joyless, but not quite. I still had to get that nicotine in, and apparently Eric had to photograph me doing it. I’m super glad he did not catch me on the toilet. I tried to look European, just for you.
They took me to their favorite little diner down the street for dinner, or as they call it, “supper.” To me, “supper” sounds like something an apron-clad Mama standing on a porch rings a loud bell for in order to summon the family working in the fields. “Supper” would be cooked in lard and served with slices of white bread and gravy, after you wash your hands and say a prayer. But that’s not at all what it was.
I was introduced to my first poutine, and my cherry was popped. It was love at first bite. For those of you who don’t know what poutine is, which I did not, it’s basically a big bowl of fat french fries smothered in what they disgustingly call “cheese curds” and gravy. “Cheese curds” made me dry-heave a little, but they were in fact just pieces of magically delicious melted cheese having a big messy orgy with the gravy and fries. It almost made me wish I drank again, just so that I could have a mean hangover and eat it. This is the quintessential hangover food. If you are ever hungover, please eat it and think of me.
I knew I had found my people when we returned home, and without speaking a word, all went/bolted to our respective rooms and emerged in pajamas in 14 seconds flat. It was the unspoken understanding that Life Is Better Without A Waistband Or Bra. We took our spots on sofa’s and chairs, covered up with cozy blankets, Sara stole my slipper socks, and pulled out our respective laptops and began Facebooking each other like only Canadian internet clowns, undiagnosed bi-polar disorder artists, and F-bomb dropping American bloggers could. We laughed the night away.
The next day was New Years Eve. Let me tell you something about myself, I am as easy-going as they come. If they had told me that we would be sitting on the couch for 3 days straight I would have been beyond totally cool with that. I told them they did not have to feel obligated to drag me all over their freezing ass town to show me the sights. We had a child-free day ahead of us and they had the perfect plan. After much coffee, I was feeling very European so I skipped a shower and began layering myself in clothing and boots and hats and scarves and gloves and long puffy coat to brave the outdoors. Sara wore a light jacket. It was above zero so this was apparently considered bathing suit weather.
We drove into town and had One Of The Best Breakfasts I Have Ever Ingested at L’Avenue. It was a totally hipster kind of place, where the waiters wore sunglasses, which is gay. The Johnny Depp lookalike escorted us to our table, and I pretended that I could read the french menu. After ordering, it was painfully obvious that not only could I not speak french, but that I was retarded, because I said “Gracias” which from what I understand, is not at all french.
I did, however, try my best to look European, although it was ruined when we broke out our cameras and started taking pictures. At least it gave me a break from signing autographs, and by signing autographs, I mean not signing autographs at all.
Sara ordered a goat semen and banana smoothie, because she’s a hippie.
Then we had to take turns going into The Bathroom That Makes You Think You Dropped Acid And Are Actually In A Club.
We bundled back up and began strolling around the city to gather our provisions for the evening, which consisted of entirely too many cheeses, Italian prosciutto, fresh baguette, green apples, wine for Sara so that the 2 alcoholics could watch her get drunk and laugh at her, non-alcoholic beer for me so that I could feel cool without actually ruining my sobriety, and sparkling water for the clown. After going to the 47 stores required to acquire said purchases, Eric and Sara got really excited about showing me “The Hill”!!! We piled in the (clown) car and began the most nauseating climb up the winding, pothole-ridden road at 128 miles, or fucking kilometers per hour while I choked down my own vomit in the back seat. Hooray! This was the best!
At this point in our adventure, I find it imperative to point out that I had not pooped since Sunday morning. I know you had been wondering about that. You see, flying does this to me, every time, without fail. It turns my intestines to cement where I am forced to create an intestinal food baby for the duration of my trip. It is a real joy. I will now list for you my stomach contents in said amount of time:
A shit ton of coffee, a blueberry muffin, an enormous salad topped with grilled chicken, a cheeseburger, a poutine, 2 eggs, bacon, french toast and fruit. You’re welcome.
All of this was sloshing around inside of me in the backseat. They way they talked about The Hill, aka Mount Royal you would have thought there would be a dozen bronzed Adonis’ up there, just waiting to pleasure me as I signed autographs. But no. It was a scenic overlook where you could stand next to other nauseated, frozen, and disappointed camera-toting tourists and take pictures. Which we did, because I needed to get the fuck out of the backseat before I vomited my very long list of stomach contents. And have I mentioned that it was so cold that my actual vagina was frozen?
After that amazing ride to the top of The Hill, my life was complete. So complete in fact, that when we returned home, I went immediately to lie down and sleep for an hour. We were all in pajama bottoms by 4pm, which was way more awesome than that stupid hill would ever be. Sara went to pick up The Popster and more coffee drinking ensued as we discussed our big plans for the evening. Eric disappeared, and when he returned into the room looking like this, I knew exactly what time it was, and I had brought my striped shirt for such an occasion.
I’ll let this little photo montage do the talking:
See, totally normal. Poppy didn’t blink an eye, apparently she is quite used to The Mimestry taking over her house. Then we made a nifty little video:
After all that face paint, laughter, and hard work, we washed up, pajama’d up, and ate cheese, bread, meat and chocolate like bulimics without actually throwing it up. Sara got looped on like 3 glasses of wine and actually referred to me as “Mom” a few times accidentally as she was busy facebook stalking her own photos. I asked her at one point if she would like some coffee, to which she replied, “uh, no, because I would be up for the world.” It was my kind of New Year’s eve. We struggled, but we made it until 12:03, said a big fuck you to 2012, and called it a night.
New Year’s Day was spent mostly in pajamas, eating leftover cheese and chocolate and drinking copious amounts of coffee, as you should on New Years Day. Around 2:00 I took My First Canadian Shower then played Hairstyles with Sara’s mane. She sat down and said, “let me move my computer”…and this is what she was referring to:
Apparently she was still a bit fuzzy from the night before, and sort of sluggishly corrected herself by saying, “I mean, the xylophone”. But it was funny as fuck, so I started banging away on it saying things like “let me check my email” and “let me look at all my facebook pictures of myself.”
We then ventured out to go to The Underground Mall to exercise Poppy and walk off some of the cheese. It was cold as fuck, even colder than the previous days, it hurt your face. It made me cry frozen tears. That and the fact that my groundhog had apparently seen it’s shadow and decided it would be winter for a few more months. Groundhog is a metaphor for poop. Remember my stomach content list? The 40 pounds or grams or whatever of cheese I ate was probably not a great idea, but still, no poop since last year, back in America. Hooray! I was 5 months pregnant! Let’s go to a restaurant and eat again!
And we did, Eric and Sara took me to a lovely place called Reuben’s where I ate as much roughage as I could shovel in, and Eric ate the most gigantic meat sandwich in 4.7 seconds. It was amazing, and by amazing I mean disgusting. See for yourself:
Again, fast forward, arrive home, pajamas faster than you can say I Still Have Not Pooped. It was a mellow evening, and the next morning we packed up the (clown) car for my last nauseating ride to the airport. It was a bittersweet goodbye, I had made Real Live Friends out of Internet Friends and it sucked that we didn’t live closer. As they drove off, I thought how incredibly lucky I was to have met these people. What are the odds, out of all the people on the planet, that we would cross paths through blogging, develop an immediate friendship that would be realized a few short months later. These are good people, I mean really good people. They are warm and kind, smart and hilarious, honest and loving. It was awesome to feel their rhythms for a few days, to get to know them as people not just avatars attached to comments on the computer. To get to know their kids, their life, their slice of the world. It was a rich and fulfilling experience, and I am a better person for knowing them.
I encourage you to foster these internet connections, there is so much potential for your world to become so much larger from friendships borne through wi-fi. It’s a big world, and my backyard just got a lot bigger.
Happy New Year everyone, I hope it is, in the words of Le Clown, Fucking Magical.
*sidenote: I did not give birth to my poop baby until I was safely back on American soil. He was 8lbs 5oz and his name was Pierre Eliot Trudeau. You’re welcome.