Crowdsourcing My Online Dating Profile

Thank you to everyone for checking out my Open Letter the other day. Really reinforces that I know I’m right about this one. I may not be right about a lot of things, but I am about this. And for those inquiring minds, he tried to text me yesterday. I just deleted it. 😉

As promised, I’m asking for your help in writing my online dating profile. I’ve been putting it off and after this latest fiasco, I’m not delaying another minute. So friends, what would you write in my profile?

Have to add a few photos of course, so which ones would you add and which one would you use as the primary?

Alternatively, I’ve had an offer to re-do some head shots. Might need to do that sooner rather than later. 😉

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Growth

Weekly Photo Challenge: Growth

One of the first nights in Hong Kong for the exchange program, a few of us wanted to go for karaoke. Amazing how the group grows when you tell a few friends. It was 5 years ago today that I went on this trip.

The first night of karaoke in Hong Kong

The first night of karaoke in Hong Kong

#FF Julia Merlini

Julia and I have known each other for about 10 years. She’s quite a bit younger than I am, but we get along great. A few months ago, she mentioned something about getting onto Twitter and how she wasn’t sure how it worked. I gave her a few pointers, but the biggest one: Jump In.

She attended a few events that I dragged her to and when the time came for her to attend her own through Twitter, she wasn’t sure that she should go. I urged her to attend and she hasn’t stopped since.

You will usually find her sharing some fashion Instagram photos of her funky boots (she has quite the collection), or some beach photo. She does a great job of it and has even helped me out on a fashion dilemma or two. I wasn’t sure if I was going to go to the party ending of a conference and she was the one who said: “You’ve been at all the seminars, why shouldn’t you go to the party?”. I knew there was a reason I kept her around. 😉

She’s heading off to San Francisco this fall for a new adventure in her life, so you guys better keep an eye on this dynamo. Look after my #grasshopper, Jules Merlini.

Julia aka. Jules in Fleurs

Julia aka. Jules in Fleurs

 

What I Want To Be Remembered For

Topic: What do you want to be remembered for?

I attended a funeral yesterday for a woman that had lived a very long, fruitful and successful life. I had only seen her a few times, but her son is a friend of my brother’s. One thing that everyone said about her is that no matter how much pain she was in, or what kind of day she was having, she would ask, “How are YOU doing?” It made me think about how I conduct myself in meeting new people and in those I already know. I have changed that immediately.

There were two pieces that were read at her funeral that I believe exemplified who she was. Here they are:

She Is Gone

You can shed tears that she is gone
Or you can smile because she has lived

You can close your eyes and pray that she will come back
Or you can open your eyes and see all that she has left

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her
Or you can be full of the love that you shared

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday

You can remember her and only that she is gone
Or you can cherish her memory and let it live on

You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back
Or you can do what she would want: smile, open your eyes, love and go on.

written 1981
David Harkins 1959 –
Silloth, Cumbria, UK

Philippians 4:8-9
New International Version (NIV)

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

I’m not a religious person, but I’m spiritual. The first one celebrates the life that this woman has led, not her death. The second describes a king leaving his people and though he is gone and may not return, they will be able to continue because of the lessons he has taught them.

I should only be so lucky as to have my life memorialized in such a way. That the lives I’ve touched have been forever changed and hopefully enriched by having done so. Peace.

Assemble your dream dinner guest list

Assemble your dream dinner guest list.

This shows most likely how this dinner party would turn out to be

This shows most likely how this dinner party would turn out to be

The Challenge asked for 6. I’ve decided to go with 12. Here’s my list:

1. Miyamoto Musashi – the best swordsman that ever lived. Much of what I train in was derived from him. Would bring wonderful insight.

2. Jeremy Piven – One of my favourite comedians (and there are a few here). One of my favourite roles was when he played Cupid in a show of the same name. My favourite quote: “Coffee without caffeine? That’s like sex without the spanking!”

3. Gordon Korman – I have always loved his books and his I would never put down. My favourite: No Coins Please.

4. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – One of my favourite characters of all time is Sherlock Holmes, so why not invite his creator. I could see him, Musashi and Christie all chatting over a drink somewhere.

5. John Cusack – I never miss one of his movies. He and Jeremy Piven are like the Fry and Laurie of North America. Can’t invite one without the other.

6. Agatha Christie – Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple are next to Sherlock in my books (no pun intended). Can’t have a dinner party without her.

7. Stephen Fry – He and Hugh Laurie are geniuses of our era along with Rowan Atkinson in comedy. Putting these three in a room is sure to be a hoot.

8. Hugh Laurie – Been mentioned already, but really adore his comedy with Stephen Fry.

9. Lynda Carter – My female idol from having played my favourite comic book character, Wonder Woman.

10. Simon Pegg – British comedy for the new generation. Rowan, Hugh and Stephen are more my generation if not a little older. Simon brings the new comedy.

11. Rowan Atkinson – Not because he was Mr. Bean, but more for his work in Black Adder and more for his skits in various stage productions such as “We Are Amused”.

12. Zhang Ziyi – A wonderful actress. I never miss one of her performances whether in Chinese or English.

I Believe…

A Birth Certificate shows that we were born
A Death Certificate shows that we died
Pictures show that we live!
Have a seat. Relax . . .
and read this slowly.

I Believe…
That just because two people argue,
It doesn’t mean they don’t love each other. And just because they don’t argue, It doesn’t mean they do love each other.

I Believe…
That we don’t have to change friends if
We understand that friends change.

I Believe….
That no matter how good a friend is,
they’re going to hurt you, every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.

I Believe…..
That true friendship continues to grow,
even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.

I Believe…
That you can do something in an instant
That will give you heartache for life.

I Believe….
That it’s taking me a long time to become the person I want to be.

I Believe…
That you should always leave loved ones with Loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I Believe….
That you can keep going long after you think you can’t.

I Believe….
That we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.

I Believe…
That either you control your attitude or it controls you.

I Believe….
That heroes are the people who do what has to be done, when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.

I Believe….
That my best friend and I can do anything or nothing and have the best time.

I Believe….
That sometimes the people you expect to kick you when you’re down will be the ones to help you get back up.

I Believe…
That sometimes when I’m angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn’t give me the right to be cruel.

I Believe…
That maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you’ve had and what you’ve learned from them, and less to do with how many birthdays you’ve celebrated.

I Believe…..
That it isn’t always enough, to be forgiven by others. Sometimes, you have to learn to forgive yourself.

I Believe…
That no matter how bad your heart is broken, the world doesn’t stop for your
grief.

I Believe….
That our background and circumstances
may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.

I Believe…
That you shouldn’t be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.

I Believe….
Two people can look at the exact same thing and see something totally different.

I Believe…
That your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don’t even know you.

I Believe…
That even when you think you have no more to give, When a friend cries out to you, you will find the strength to help.

I Believe…
That credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

I Believe…
That the people you care about most in life are taken from you too soon.

I Believe…
That you should share this with all of the people that you believe in.

I just did.
‘The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything;
They just make the most of everything they have.

My Fun Saturday – The Teaser

It was definitely a busy day yesterday. On Friday I just chilled out knowing that it was certainly going to be a whirlwind on Saturday. And I was right! I got full use out of my metropass!

My day started out with a great event at the Art Gallery of Ontario. It was intended to get feedback from the public about the Gallery. I’ll be posting more on it tomorrow, but you can certainly follow the discussion on Twitter by watching the hashtag #AGOChat. The photos from that event are posted here. I know that Rannie will certainly have wonderful photos posted from the event soon. As a thank you, we walked away with some pretty cool swag. Definitely setting the bar on that one!

My Andy on his first day out

After finishing at the AGO, I rushed over to the Liberty Noodle for the HTML5

Barbecue. This was done jointly with the Toronto Google Technology Users Group which I attended two weeks ago where I won my Andy. Unfortunately, I didn’t get there until it was almost finished, so I won’t have much on that except to say that it was a packed room and a great bunch of people. Even after the presentations were done, there were some great discussions and of course cool swag. 😉 You can follow the Yorkville Media Centre for more details on this, the #TOGTUG group and of course, AndroidTO coming up in October.

I’ve posted the photos from the Stella Artois Block Party here. Please feel free to tag at your leisure. This was another great event where I got to see some old friends and meet some new people that I might have seen on Twitter, but hadn’t had the chance to meet in person. Many thanks to @StellaArtoisCAN for throwing this great event. Follow the hashtag #BlockParty from last night to see some craziness.

I’ll be writing on these topics more in the coming days so stay tuned!

What Would You Like To See Me Write About?

Quill PenAfter reading a post about How To Get More Traffic, I decided to look into at least one thing that I had not yet done and that was ask you, my readers, what you would like to see me write about?

I have such a diverse background and have great stories to tell. I’ve been doing a lot of Post A Day from WordPress, which I have thoroughly enjoyed, but is it what you want to see?

Many of you have heard me tell a story or two (or more). What story would you like me to tell? Is it one I’ve already told? Is it one that you haven’t heard before, or one for which you didn’t hear the ending? That doesn’t mean that I’m going to change everything, because I will still write a thing or two from Post A Day.  Maybe I’m missing a story about my personal endeavours or my work experience. You tell me.

What I Learned in Traffic Court

If you have to go to court, be prepared and be respectful!

If you have to go to court, be prepared and be respectful!

I had the misfortune of getting caught going through a red light back in October of last year. And before you ask, yes, it was in the car for the campaign, with the candidate in the car. I went in to request the trial within the two weeks and received my notice to appear in court a short time later.

I spoke to a friend who had been in this situation a couple of times before and his advice was amazing! This was the first time I was appearing in court as a defendant and I haven’t had an issue on my driving record in over 15 years.  He suggested that I go at least an hour in advance of the court time and speak to the prosecutor. They will set up a table outside the court at which time, I could try to negotiate for a quick trial and a potential settlement. I was forewarned that an offence of this type is usually viewed as being more severe than other offences, including speeding.

The Joe Pantalone Smart Car

The car I was driving when I was pulled over for failing to stop at a red light.

As suggested, I arrived an hour in advance, with my ticket, my notice to appear and a photo of the car, just in case. The gentleman said there was nothing he could do about the three points that would be taken off my licence, but that the fine might be reduced. I asked if there was anything that could be done to which he replied: “No.” He said that I would have to wait in court until my name was called and that I needed to understand that I would in fact be pleading guilty to the charge. I said that I did and waited until the judge came in.

I’ve watched enough court shows to know that there are formalities and procedures to be followed. I was also taught that if you are going to appear in court, you should dress appropriately. I saw people coming in wearing flip-flops, t-shirts and shorts. When some people addressed the judge, they had their hands in their pockets, even though they were instructed not to do so. At least two men did this.

In one case, a representative of the defendant was in front of the judge asked for a continuance because he had been retained the day before court. The offence was around the same time as my own, the judge granted it, but asked that it be noted on the file that this was highly improper and that the defendant should have been prepared long before one day prior to the trial date.

There was one man in the back row near me who was leaning over in his seat. The judge actually stopped court and told this young man to sit up. “This is a court of law and it should be respected,” said the judge, pointing at the shield behind him. As the young man sat up, the judge noted the coffee in his hand. “Young man, you are not allowed to have coffee in the court! Please, sir, remove it from the court,” the judge scolded, then turned to everyone else. “There is no coffee, food, water or any thing of that nature allowed in here.” After the man came back into the court, he sat back down and the judge asked the prosecutor for the next case. Guess who? Yep. Same guy. When he stood up, the judge said, “You? You’re the next case? No, have a seat, sir. We’ll deal with you later.”

One thing I observed was that when a case was called, the prosecutor may turn around, ask for a badge number and if the officer was not present, the prosecutor would ask that the case be withdrawn. This seemed to be planned or at least was known in advance of the prosecutor and the defence being in front of the judge.

Eventually, after all the lawyers had been dealt with, my case was called. Seeing them go first, I at least could see what might or might not be appropriate to say. I had a pretty good idea, but mostly from US television shows, so it couldn’t hurt to see the differences between there and here at home. I moved as quickly as possible without fumbling over everything and remained calm. I put my briefcase on the floor and put my hands behind my back, not in my pockets. I was asked to state my name for the court, which I did. The judge at least gave a small smile indicating that he was pleased with my actions and attention. The prosecutor then asked his honour if he could have the case withdrawn. Did I miss something? Did he even ask if the officer was present? Before I knew it, the judge stated that my case was withdrawn and that I was free to go. I thanked his honour and the prosecutor, wished them all a good weekend (since it was a Friday) and left. I couldn’t believe my luck and I wasn’t sticking around in case they changed their minds. I asked a young woman sitting outside if I should expect anything in the mail or whether that was it. She said that no, it’s entered into the record and that’s all there is. Looks like my karma ran over my traffic ticket!

The lesson here is simple: Show some respect, do what you are supposed to do, be prepared, speak only when asked to do so and say as little as is needed. As long as I did these things, I had no difficulty. It seemed to me that these things were common knowledge when you go to court, but after this event, I’m not so sure anymore. So take note if you ever have to appear before a judge, even if it’s just a traffic ticket.