June 2005

Last night was an unsuccessful round one of me versus the D-Link

wireless router belonging to my friend Leesh’s parents. Normally,

Leesh’s husband, my old University buddy George would handle this, but he lives in New York. I’m all too happy to lend a hand to my best man’s in-laws.


For the technically inclined, it keeps timing out before getting an IP

address from Rogers Cablesystems’ DHCP server. I know it’s not a

problem at Rogers’ end, because the ‘net is accessible if you simply

run cat-5 directly from the cable modem to the computer works. The

firmware in the D-Link is up-to-date, too.

Earlier this year, I hooked up a Linksys wireless router to my Mom’s

Rogers cable broadband service without any problems; it just worked. I may bring mine over to Leesh’s parents’ place this Sunday and see if it works.

By sheer coincidence, I have a free trial of Roger’s cable braodband

service at my current house. I’ve taken the D-Link home to noodle with

it in the meantime.


Speaking of cable modem difficulties, those of you who are familiar

with the nuances of swearing in Quebecois French will probably enjoy this

recording of an irate cable modem subscriber unloading much bile upon a

poor tech support rep at Quebec cable provider Videotron [576KB, MP3, language warning if you speak Quebecois French]. Even if you can’t understand a word, this guy’s mile-a-minute delivery of venom is priceless.

(Need a Quebecois swearing guide? Try here and here.)

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Hugh Always Nails it on the Head

by Joey deVilla on June 23, 2005

You do read Hugh McLeod’s business card-sized comics on his blog gapingvoid, don’t you?

Comic: Hugh McLeod's 'gapingvoid': 'Let's laugh at people who buy stuff we can't afford!'

Click the the comic to see the entry in which it appears.

Comic: Hugh McLeod's 'gapingvoid': What a happy coincidence. God hates the same people I do.

Click the the comic to see the entry in which it appears.

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Visitors

by Joey deVilla on June 22, 2005

Since my landlord lives in London, England and my apartment is in a

house in downtown Accordion

City,

he’s paying me nicely to place classified ads and show the place to

potential renters. I enjoy schmoozing, the apartment is quite nice and

the applicants have largely been trios of very charming young women,

so

it’s no great hardship.

Thus far, the visitors are all responding to a posting I made in the

Toronto edition of

Craigslist, in which I point to this blog and specifically

the

entry with a lot of photos of the house.

A number of them have gone on to read other parts of the blog, as at

least half the visitors have congratulated me on my engagement. One

even enjoyed the Worst Date Ever

series of stories!

The best line to come from a potential renter thus far came from a

young woman, who took a peek inside my closet, saw its contents and

exclaimed “Look at you, Mister

Clothes!“

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A Landlord You Might Want to Avoid

by Joey deVilla on June 22, 2005

Here’s a poster that’s been making the rounds in a neighbourhood just a

little bit northeast of downtown. It’s subtly but bum-clenchingly

creepy:

Photo: Strange poster found in Toronto.

I wonder if the person who posted this poster is Indecent Proposal sleazy or Single White Female nutty.

(By the bye, did you know that Single White Female 2 — a made-for-TV movie — is in post-production? As FARK.com would put it, “Hollywood is out of ideas.”)

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Balut!

by Joey deVilla on June 20, 2005

[via I Got Two Shoes] Hey, a Filipino delicacy plays a role in Fear Factor!

I don’t normally eat the stuff — I only do it to freak out non-Filipinos. But other dishes like bopis (shredded fried pig lung) and dinuguan (pig blood stew)? Tasty, and will earn the respect of anyone into Klingons!

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"The Girls from Ipanema are Not Impressed"

by Joey deVilla on June 20, 2005

Even though I am retiring from dating at the top of my game, I still

find articles on the topic fascinating. So does Richard over at Just a

Gwai Lo, who found a New York Times article titled The Girls from Impanema are Not Impressed.

In the article, three young women who’ve come to New York from Brazil

talk about their dating experiences with American men, and precious

little of them are good. The key excerpt:

Forget getting a job, learning English, finding an apartment. The

true challenge for the young, single and foreign-born who arrive in New

York is cracking the code of the dating scene.

For Brazilian

women, who come from a place where public displays of affection are a

way of life and men rarely lack for amorous gusto, the task is

particularly confounding. Ask Brazilian women what they think about

American men, and most respond precisely the same way: with gales of

laughter. Then they tell disturbingly similar tales of men who fear

making advances lest they be accused of date rape and who coldly

calculate how many days they need to wait between meeting a woman and

asking her to dinner.

There’s a bit of a culture clash here. Brazil — like my

native country, the Philippines — is a

Latin culture. I’ve never been to Brazil, but I’ve gone clubbing in the

Philippines, and if you’re a guy, you have to dance and you have to

approach the ladies directly. On the other hand, the U.S. and Canada

are WASP cultures, and as the

joke goes…

Q: What do WASPs say after sex?

A: “Thank you much. I’m sorry. It won’t happen again.”

An aside: my former housemate Paul is currently in Prague and observes in a recent entry on his site:

I first noticed on the tram, girls sitting on guys laps,

and I thought maybe they didnt want to take up two seats. But then I

saw it on otherwise completely empty park benches. And people nuzzling

each other while waiting for the subway, kissing in the street; boys

with arms around girls shoulders. None of the

we-musnt-show-affection-in-public of north america. So cool.

Another source of the problem: universities and colleges.  The university dating scene

circa the early 1990s — remember, this wasn’t much long after the late

1980s explosion of “political correctness” and Marc Lepine’s evil rampage in Montreal — was a social minefield. At Crazy Go Nuts University,

“Every man is a potential rapist” was a popular phrase used at womyn’s

(note the spellyng) empowerment gatherings and most

socio-politico-complexo-migraino discourse had been pretty much reduced

to people saying “We’re white, we’re straight, we’re sorry!” Still, we were dating paradise next to Antioch College, who passed a student code of conduct that required explicit consent for each sexual act. It’s every policy studies professor’s wet dream — they effectively turned sex into a series of negotiation meetings!

Along with the good things that university feminism teaches is at least one very bad thing:

that “gender is solely a social construct”, or more simply: a man is just a woman

with a penis and an attitude problem.

I am donning my flame-proof accordion as I write this. Let me be

clear that I am not advocating date rape or any form on non-consensual

sex nor am I advocating viewing women solely as sex objects. I am also

not advocating everything in the Brazilian Man Repertoire, asthe women in the interview did say that:

American men have other good qualities – their faithfulness, for

example. Brazilian women often say that Brazilian men are safados

shameless – and love to chase the fairer sex. Americans actually mean

what they say (at least more often than Brazilians do). And they are

sweet.

What I am advocating is understanding that men and women are different,

and as my gay and lesbians friends would say, “we’re born that way.”

Anyone who doesn’t believe me should watch toddlers, who haven’t had

enough time for much social conditioning, play.

Simply put: more Astrid Gilberto! Less Cathy!

In the meantime, until such a social revolution comes, guys may want to

start taking up the accordion and carrying it when they go out. It

requires confidence (and upper body strength) to tote one about,

teaches you the fine art of The Swagger, gives you an excuse to be more

forward and lends you the power of the Electra Complex (“Oh! My dad/grandfather used to play the accordion!”)


Want to read that article? It’s available, but hidden behind the New York Times registration wall. Failing that, the blog

agádoisesseóquatro has it transcribed in this entry.

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…is to get a nickname that ends with “Guy”.

Being the Accordion Guy has worked for me, and having a “Guy” moniker has worked for others, as this Toronto Craigslist posting shows:

Dear Portuguese Chicken Guy,

I hear that you are a Jehovah’s Witness and that you attend Kingdom Hall once a week. While I don’t understand your “religion” I have to admit that I do enjoy seeing you dressed up in a suit on a weekly basis when I walk by your “church” bound for the YMCA. Your dedication to that organization must be your only flaw, because other than that you are, in a word, perfection.

The evidence of my burning passion is abundant. Sitting on the College streetcar with my hand pressed up against the glass, I gaze into your shop as I sail by silently with 40 others. I linger outside your window a little when I am on my way to some College St. attraction. I know you like to flirt and when I say that I like the sauce on the chicken to be like me, hot and sweet, I am sure you know that’s a hint. If all that evidence isn’t enough, surely you have noticed the flame in my eyes when I watch you slather breasts and thighs in the sauce of my choosing.

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