April's Real Blog

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Mom goes "Edgewise"

Hey, so did NE1 catch the latest ish of the Clarion Weekly? U mite know abt my bro's column, "Edgewise." Well, looks like they got a guest author 4 the most recent edition:


Michael Patterson

Editor's note: Due to family obligations, Michael Patterson has had to take a break from his series on "What has gone wrong with Portrait Magazine since I left." Our guest columnist this week is Michael Patterson's mother Elly.

Hello, Michael's readers! I am so honoured to be my brilliant son's substitute for this week's column! I know that Michael considers you all his friends, and any friend of Michael is a friend of mine.

With that in mind, friends, I would like to address something serious that occurred to me recently. Even though we'd just finished selling our house to Michael and his lovely wife Deanna, while buying a new home of our own, we had not yet moved out. And some damage to our new home, from a wayward tree, was delaying that process. Despite all the turmoil, I still took the time to compost the skins from the spuds I'd peeled for my family's dinner. A potato a day keeps the doctor away, I say!

Lovingly, I bundled cardboard for recycling. I took the cardboard and plastic bottles out in the appropriate recycling bins, and then I went through the entire house and replaced the incandescent bulbs with low-energy compact flourescents. In every bathroom, I hung a sign with "this house saves water," to remind every member of this household to take fast showers, turn off the faucet when brushing teeth, flush only for the "big stuff," and employ other water-preserving techniques.

After all that, I had some shopping to do, but instead of taking my Crevasse sportswagon, I took one of those buses that say "Conserve: Take Public Transit" on them. And I felt awfully virtuous. Until the bus pulled onto that stretch of highway where all the smokestacks are. The one we in Milborough refer to as "Smokestack Row." Then I became depressed, thinking that all of my efforts were nary a "drop in the bucket."

But this is where you come in, dear readers! If you all adopt the eco-friendly strategies you've seen me outline in this column, you can help me make the Greater Toronto Area, and even the world, a better place. Won't you join me? Well, you're Michael's friends, and Michael's a good boy. So I'm sure any friends of his will do the right thing. Oh, and of course, if you have any environmentally friendly practices of your own, please feel free to write in to the paper, c/o this column. I am sure Michael will be happy to devote column space to making our planet a "greener" place!

Elly Patterson, guest columnist
Jeremy, U weren't kidding when U sed Honoria gets xxcited watching U work the equipment 4 sound an' lite @ Koolhaus. Don't worry, Honoria, it's really not nec. 2 apologize 4 "breaching decorum." NEway, thanx [4 reals this time] 4 the tix last night, Jeremy. Ger and I both had fun, even tho he knows he's on probation and I'm not sure how I feel abt him!


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  • At 11:13 AM, Anonymous michael patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. “Family obligations” is one way to put it. Penance is another. Having never taken a bus to Toronto before, mother was fit to be tied (and not like corrugated cardboard for recycling) when she didn’t know how to get back to Milborough. Or rather I should say, she didn’t seem to understand why the bus driver didn’t obey her commands “Take me to Milborough” and he kept on saying “This bus goes to Etobicoke” and he had to remove her from the bus, when she started shrieking. That method of getting what she wants works with most people, but apparently not with Toronto bus drivers.

    I had to drive out to Toronto to find her and drive her back, which infuriated her because she said, “This defeats the whole purpose of my Earth Day demonstration, if you are wasting petrol and polluting the air to get me. You should have taken the bus.” When I said, “Earth Day was back in April,” it made her even madder. I told her I would let her demonstrate her annual environmentalism in my weekly column and that satisfied her, at least until she started writing her column on the table and the legs buckled from where she had climbed on top of it to change the light bulb. While I was repairing that little problem (an addition to my huge list of home repairs), mom finished up the column.

    At least, formerly little sis, we won’t have to worry about mom’s environmental message for another year, and we will back to her old method of peeling potato skins being thrown all over the floor.

    Michael Patterson

  • At 2:59 PM, Blogger Zandra Larson said…

    Hi April,
    I ran into Duncan at the Tim Hortons after I went to the Loblaws to get more carrots for Wilco (now that my uncle and Wilco are back staying with us). I told Duncan about what happened to Arne's apartment and how Wilco seemed to have something to do with it. He said that something similar happened to your parents' new house. I suggest you forgot about acts of God and take a look at what your rabbit's been doing. Of course, maybe Zapata's right and God really does have a sick sense of humour.


  • At 3:17 PM, Blogger duncan anderson said…

    Hey, Zed,

    I saw the Head @ Horny Ts 2day talking 2 the director, he said mayb Puck shld b special needs & how much does it cost 2 rent a wheelchair.

    L8r, mayb


  • At 3:22 PM, Blogger duncan anderson said…

    Hey, Apes,

    Y did yr mom take a GO bus 2 Burlington? Did she have a secret meeting w/ the Sobinskis? Its not rilly secret nemore cos lotsa peeps saw yr mom @ the GO station. They say she had no clue how 2 use it & keep asking peeps 4 directions.



  • At 3:45 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    hey does ne1 think it wd b wrong of me 2 vote 4 my mom as worst canadian? b-sides mike that is.

    dunc, i dunno what my mom was up 2 w/her bus trip. 4 all i know, she got confused and got on the wrong bus. she really doesn't have much xxperience w/the skeds an' routes.

    zandra, hm, gd pt abt bunny sabotage. i don't think butterscotch wants 2 move!

    mike, i did notice mom suddenly handling the potato peeling differently. i'm suspicious that the composter is a rental.

    oh, btw, liz got really upset when mike was going thru sum old foto albums and remembered sumthing that happed when liz was six yrs old. this was when uncle phil and aunt georgia were planning their wedding, and liz asked mom if she [mom] thot liz wd get married sumday. mom sed that she did think so. liz was all, "just think, sumwhere out there is a kid who will grow up 2 b my husband!" an mike remembers opening the door and yelling, "run, kid! run while u still have the chance!" liz is now moping and saying that mike cursed her chances of getting married and/or scared off the kid who was supposta grow up 2 b her hubby.


  • At 4:22 PM, Blogger duncan anderson said…

    Hey, Apes,

    Its cube 2 vote 4 yr mom. U get 3 votes, so u can vote 2X more. Mayb u shld give the Witch 1 of yr votes. I wont vote 4 the Witch cos I wldnt of met Eva & Mr & Mrs Abuya w/o her.

    I went 2 the Beaver page & voted 4 Brian Mulroney, Mike Harris & Stephen Harper. I dunno y. I felt like sum1 else was controlling me but it wasnt the Witch this time.



  • At 4:24 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…


    Dearest future sister. It speaks well of your mother that she is so energy conscious. My Mater is energy conscious too, except for different reasons, I suspect. Our house is so white that it fairly glows in the dark, and under any substantial light, I fear it would cause permanent blindness. Oftentimes, I have to go to my bedroom in the wine cellar just to get some ocular relief.

    My Jeremy flower did do an excellent job with the sound last night at the Koolhaus, but I should probably explain my "breach of decorum" since you are my future sister and I don't want to keep secrets from you. I was sitting by Jeremy flower during one of the times when you were dancing with brother and not me, and I noticed these red marks on my Jeremy flower's ears. I asked my Jeremy flower where the red marks came from and he said, "You don't want to know the answer to that." I insisted I did. Well, Jeremy explained to me that during your last trip to Corbeil you drank some Koolaid which affects your moods and sometimes you have flashbacks and one of those flashbacks usually involves you and my Jeremy flower's ears. He didn't seem to be bothered by it. He said it was one of those things you did from time to time and both you and he knew you didn't mean anything by it.

    Well, I didn't want brother to see Jeremy's ears and ask him about them, because you know my brother would probably get mad and spread rumours or try to punch Jeremy or say something awful about you. So, I had to do a few obvious, unladylike things where brother could see, so if he saw Jeremy's ears he would think I was the only source of its redness. You have told me so much about the people in Corbeil controlling your every move, I didn't want you to take the blame for something those awful people did to you. Not only that, but I learned that there are some areas of personal hygiene for ears, my Jeremy flower needs to begin doing, no matter how much water it takes. The next time you have a flashback involving my Jeremy's ears, it should not be as disgusting as it, no doubt, was for you once you regained control of your actions and realized what was happening.

    This afternoon, my Jeremy is making modifications to an old, used motorized wheelchair for that very, tall, chesty, red-headed girl in the Shakespeare play. He said something quite odd, and maybe you can understand it. The girl needs her arms for acting and her costume covering the chair, so she can't have her hands reaching for a directional control. So, Jeremy is making the control one where a highly-trained rabbit can run the chair motion. Does that make any sense to you?

    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

  • At 4:39 PM, Anonymous jeremy jones said…

    april, i voted 4 my dad az worst canadian. that wuz an ez choice. i finished riggin' a chair 4 zandra larson 2 play puck in a midsummer night's dream. i just need her & her rabbit 2 give it a test drive. ur mom wud proud i evn used those nrg-savin' light bulbs 4 the lightin' fx on the chair.

  • At 5:06 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…


    The worst Canadians were not difficult for me to choose. There is Howard Bunt who attacked Liz, or Kortney Krelbutz who threatened to attack you, or Mr. Gluttson who has single-handedly destroyed Portrait Magazine by creating a situation where it was necessary for me to sacrifice myself in order to save my fellow employees' jobs. I am sure Mr. Gluttson will get lots of votes from my former coworkers on Portrait Magazine.

    Also, formerly little sis, I am terribly sorry I was going through those old photo albums when the Lizardbreath was in the house. I think she was almost ready to leave the house for her new apartment, when she saw those pictures and ran back to your room for some more crying. Some good news is that Deanna plans to remove the sign about the water mom put in the washroom, as soon as mom has officially moved out.

    Michael Patterson

  • At 5:09 PM, Blogger howard said…


    Don't tell your brother, but most of his former co-workers at Portrait Magazine are going to vote him as worst Canadian. As you may know, since your brother used the Portrait Magazine offices and facilities to write his book, there is a bootleg copy of it going about. Anyone who was on the fence about who was the worst Canadian was easily convinced after reading his book and learning he got a $25K advance from the first publisher to whom he submitted it.

    As for me, I was tempted for give my vote to Stephen Harper, but I decided Frank Buchman and his Moral Re-Armament group with its rampant gay-bashing deserved it more.

    Howard Bunt

  • At 6:58 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    honoria, zandra's uncle arne has a highly trained rabbit. and it's a good thing u r helping jeremy w/his ear hygiene. no offense, j.!

    dunc, i ended up voting 4 my mom, the witch, and stephen harper.

    mike, liz has been totally sobbing abt u having ruined her life. u really shd b careful abt yr reminiscing around her!


  • At 11:29 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. Your slightly older sister, the Lizardbreath can cry all she wants about reminiscing. I find that aside from working on my novel #2, Breaking the Windjammer, my second highest priority is reminiscing. For some reason, I have been developing it as a strong passion as if I may be doing a lot of it for the rest of my life. It’s interesting how important the old things your life grow more more important as you get older. For me, it’s things that happened from 1979 to 1985 primarily, as if there are huge numbers of people who never been exposed to that aspect of me, who are anxiously awaiting the opportunity to hear about that time. I won’t reminisce exactly as it happened though. I plan to add extra details to the background of what happened to make it seem more like art, instead of like the pen scratchings of a middle-aged woman who had been handed the career opportunity of lifetime for no other reason than she was a woman who could draw. I have this feeling those people who want to hear about my history will greatly appreciate those extra backgrounds. My feelings are pretty strong on this issue, so the Lizardbreath is going to have to watch out for my reminiscences, and not the other way around.

    Michael Patterson


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