Brave–Rose McGowan

This is one of those books that I shove at everyone I meet telling them they need to read it. 

Rose spoke with so much love and honesty, and I love how she peeled back the face of Hollywood and ripped into people that deserved it and told her own story without embellishment. There was so much content to sift through and feel and the one thing that stuck out to me (and I’m sure a lot of people) was about her trauma with Harvey Weinstein and the aftermath of dealing with that and how she move forward. 

Mostly with help from others and also with now trying to take him down. Which is commendable as fuck.

What I remember from reading this is that people blamed Marilyn Manson for her dark turn, etc etc. And piecing things together with what she’s said about him (that he was kind and helped her through her darkest time) and from reading things on-line about their relationship and painting that picture in my head, their past relationship feels lovely and I’m very glad she had someone there who was kind and helped her.

If you remember, I also read Marilyn Mansons book, which was jarring but interesting. So to read those two books within the same year and have them talk about each other and things that happened, once you know about the trauma then it all is like a very big  “Ohhhhh this all makes sense.” moment.

I just love her. I always have.

She tells it like it is. 

And it’s dark.

I wanted to hug her and cry with her and fight with her. 

I still do. 

She’s a smart and brilliant human who deserves more than she ever got. 

I loved her story-telling, she really brings you into her heart and the moment. 

And it hurts. It all fucking hurts. 

Constant vigilance.



Tranny–Laura Jane Grace

It is essential that everyone reads this book. 

If you have transgender friends and want to know more about their struggle of identity: read this book.

If you don’t know anyone who is trans but want to know more about that side of the universe: read this book.

If you like autobiographies: Read this book.

If you like music: Read this book.

If you like Against Me! : Read this book.

If you don’t know who the hell Against Me! is then, you got it: Read this book. 

If you are human and want to human better: Read this book. 

I literally just want to Oprah the hell out of people and go around handing this out. 

Because honest to God: This book is so well written, so poignant for our time, and so touching and honest and brutal, and watching the journey Laura Jane Grace has taken is so raw and beautiful and *mindblown emoji*. 

Now, I’ve never fully listened to Against Me! (at the time and I listened throughout the book as the music was suggested or mentioned by the author and now I am a fan), my friend (who has been a fan for awhile) read this book and it spoke so hard to his soul that if he was a violent man he would’ve thrown it at me and told me to read it. 

Instead he forked it over after adamantly stressing how amazing this book is and then whispered “Goooooo reeeeeeead.” in my ear. 

Okay, he didn’t do that last part. Well, not in my ear anyway, I am a violent person and would’ve punched him for being creepy. 


I cannot imagine the life and struggle and guilt and relief and stress and secrecy and then finally openness it takes to be a transgender person. They go through so fucking much that I,  as a CIS woman, will never have to go through or fully understand or be able to gage on any sort of yard stick. 

But I can take my white privilege and my CIS privilege and quite frankly, my Canadian privilege, and do better about stepping into someone else’s shoes. I can take the time and see what’s up with other genders and beyond.

I can check in on my fellow humans. 

Because that’s all we all are. A bunch of meat sacks running around trying to figure shit out. 

Laura Jane Grace (and I will continue to use her full name here because she fucking EARNED it.) is a beautiful writer, musician, and human. This book is now a part of my heart and I need it to be a part of others hearts too. 


Constant vigilance!

The Long Hard Road Out of Hell–Marilyn Manson

“What the fuck did I get myself into?”

This is the thought that came up the most when I read this book. 

Look, I know who Marilyn Manson is. I’ve heard some of his music, I’ve read stories about what the fuck he gets into. I know he has beef with Justin Beiber about some t-shirts. 

I don’t know why I know that but I do. 

I know he was married to Dita Von Teese (who I adore.), dated Rose McGowan, and that he’s in general a pretty fucking weird guy. 

I didn’t realize how gross he was. 

This book was traumatizing in its brilliance, but also just gross because of gross things he did. He would scare me every other page with a startling pictures. Which I’m betting was the point. This guy is smart as hell and clever as a whip. And yes, for a while he was using his powers for evil and not good. But he took a long journey back to us (I’m sure he would resent that statement. Because who is “us”? The human race?)  and he’s finally becoming a human being. 

I think.

I don’t know.

This book was super messed up. His stories of his golden ages were really fucked up. As one would expect. 

And then he would hit you with a story of how it hurts that people would harm themselves or others in his name. And you’re like ‘You poor soul, let me hold you.”. 

Really think about it before you read this book. I didn’t . And I’m both worse and better for it.

It was intelligently thought out and executed in it’s contrasting unnerving you and making you love him at the same time.  

Constant vigilance.



I, Bificus–Bif Naked

Oh Biffy. 

What has happened to you. 

All the things. All the good and all the bad. And all the in-between things. 

I’ve loved Bif since I was teeny little preteen and so much of my early teens was filled with her music. And I’m so glad to finally read her words on the things that happened to her. 

And SOooooooOOooooo much happened to her. 


Just read this. It’s so goddamn good that I have no words for how good it is. 

I’ve literally tried to write extra paragraphs about it but I honestly have zero words. Just a feeling about this book. Like I want to grab her close and squeeze her tight.

So many bad things happen to people (duh) and she got more dollops than I have that’s for sure. Which makes me always feel like that Lady Gaga song “Come to Mama”.

Come to Mama. Tell me who hurt ya .

Constant vigilance.


Juliet, Naked–Nick Hornby

Music lovers listen up: this book is for you.

It was however, not for me.

It drags on in the beginning and then only got really good around the last 50 pages.

I want to like Nick Hornby’s stuff, but I just don’t think it’s in the cards for me. My sister had an unpleasant reading of one of his other books as well, and I don’t know if I’ll carry on with his books unless someone can suggest one that I’ll really REALLY like.

Anyway, this book was about a couple, Duncan and Annie, where Duncan is obsessed with a singer by the name of Tucker Crowe that just disappeared after a heated fight with his girlfriend in a public bathroom. 20 years ago.

Annie eventually begins to correspond with Tucker Crowe after she voices her opinion on a fan website that contradicts what all his “true” fans are saying about his new album ‘Juliet, Naked’ where it’s the stripped down version of the original album he made.

This was an okay book. Don’t get me wrong, I like music, but like Annie, I’m not IN that world or obsessive about it. Not like I am the world of cross stitch (which I’m well aware sounds incredibly insane.) . We all have our things and music, while amazing and soul-healing, isn’t something I’m GOTTA HAVE IT about when it comes to records or albums.

I just love it in the sense of what it makes me feel when it wanders into my life.

This book was difficult for me to focus on because of that.

Which is why I say: it’s for music lovers. You’ll be into it. Maybe.

I don’t know your life. Constant vigilance.


Through the Storm–Lynne Spears

You read that right. I read Britney Spears’ moms book.

The funny thing about that is: 1) I could care less about anything Lynne Spears has to say.
and 2) I found this book in a thrift store (surprise surprise) and found a ticket stub for a flight somewhere with a girls name on it from high school! And it turns out it was her book for real.

Tiny world.

Anyway, this book was the autobiographical musings of Lynne Spears and on Britney’s life and what exactly went down in 2007 when Brit Brit lost her shit shit.

It was actually really nice to read a book from her moms perspective and even though I’ll never know the truth of anything because I don’t actually know this family, it was nice to think that this was all the truth and that her mom was really trying to tell her side.

Overall: good beach book, semi-interesting excerpts from Britney’s life (if you’re a fan that is.), and Mama Spears doesn’t pull any punches. I wouldn’t recommend it outright, but I wouldn’t tell you NOT to read it if you were in the mood for something like it.

You know?

Constant vigilance.



Hawksley Burns For Isadora–Hawksley Workman

This has been on my shelf for so long it became a staple on the shelf of books to be displayed.

…But I had never read it. Shortest book on the planet and I’ve never read it! And I love Hawksley Workman (great Canadian musician if you’re ever looking!). Everything he does is so interesting and wonderful, and this did not disappoint!

Short, sweet, and artistically lyrical and stunning. This book of poems had me daydreaming of falling in love with mermaids and wishing that I was once again sitting in the front row of one of his concerts or one man musicals. (Which if it ever comes around again ‘The God That Comes’ is so incredibly cool to watch and listen to.)

I just adore him.

Here’s some music to listen to while you work. (Or not, he curses and talks about humping a lot.)

(#15 A Book of Poems 26BooksWithBringingUpBurns 2015)

Constant vigilance.


Keep Moving Forward: Fembots Have Feelings Too.

This week has been so overwhelming that I finally snapped last night after my lessons.

Now, I’m not someone who cries easily, it takes a lot to get me to bawl my eyes out and have an anxiety attack. So that should show it’s been a tough month.

We had a couple of hard things to deal with as a family, and just confusing emotions all around, and with family visiting from Italy and friends wanting to spend all summer doing stuff, weddings and events, friends who rely on me to help them with their own anxiety, add on lessons, practice, finding time to write while also having a full time job of entertaining children for 10 hours a day, spending time writing on here trying to be inspirational and funny, making cross stitches for everyone and their mothers, and then throw in a work out attempt at least once a day on top of trying not to get sucked in by the internet, it makes for a pretty stressful (but fun) summer.

Not an excuse, just my life.

I don’t think I’ve looked Doomsday in the eye for a month, guys.

Or seen my dogs that much this week besides seeing Goose on the stairs in the morning looking pathetic. I don’t even know what Artie looks like these days.

I’m fucking exhausted. Which if you’ve seen me in person and notice that not only am I not bothering with eyeliner anymore (one of my staples), but that my hair is thrown up in to some hot mess of a bun or braid, or the fact that nothing I wear lately even remotely goes together, you’d notice.

So when someone points out that you are slacking in some areas of your life while you had already been thinking that the one thing you are passionate about, the one thing that you want to be doing with your time, you were missing out on because of all this other stuff? Things don’t really go so well.

While Giles was not trying to make me feel bad while explaining that I needed to find an extra half an hour a day to suss out what I’m doing with my piano, he did. And to be 100% fair to him, he was being nice about it. Didn’t curse at me, didn’t talk down to me, didn’t throw a blunt object at my head. A nicer person in such a situation you couldn’t find.

And that’s probably what it upset me so much. He just had to be kind, didn’t he? That fucker.

It was the straw that broke the camels back and I ended up crying in my truck for an hour before I got home.

First I was pissed off. Then annoyed. And finally just broke down in tears because he basically made me feel like shit because I wasn’t giving a portion of my life enough attention. While pointing out that other people were making time for it. Other people were finding that extra half hour. Other people sell their beds and make room and are absolute perfection.

That’s not the point of this.

The point is that you only get to see small portions of people lives.

So don’t be a dick.

Okay, that wasn’t the point either.

I took the time to really think about what he was saying and how it extends passed my lessons and into what I had already been feeling this week.

I get being passionate about things. And the fact that I haven’t found the time to write this summer is actually eating at me more than not finding the time to practice piano. It’s actually the real reason I started crying. I don’t have time for my normal outlet and I feel like I’m walking around with all my pieces sewn together with silly string. The tears were just writing coming out my face instead of my hands.

Other people are encroaching on my time and while that just seems like an excuse to some, it’s not. My daily routine normally allows for that half hour and these past few weeks it didn’t.

I probably should’ve suspended lessons for the summer so this wouldn’t happen, but whatever, I’m not completely psychic.

Anyway, this is all my backwards way of summing up that I’m going to be dropping some things the rest of the summer in order to give attention to the important things.

Bye bye internet.

The internet is my biggest time suck and I need to detox anyway. I find myself aimlessly looking at Pinterest for hours, or online shopping and then ending up emptying my cart anyway.

Why not just cut myself off? Those are the hours I could be spending writing.

Which means for a couple of weeks I’m going to be taking time off from writing here. As much as this is one of my favourite things I’ve been dropping the ball anyway and it’ll be better to start up once things are all sorted.

I’ll also be saying bye to social media after this weekend. Aimlessly wandering around on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, or even Etsy, is essentially pointless.

So on this last day of us talking for a while I just wanted to say a few things to you:

There is always something you can do to help yourself. And while punching people in the throat is fun, I think that there are more constructive ways to go about that.

Like tossing them down the stairs. More limbs to potentially injure. Just kidding!

Take care of yourself, treat yourself with respect and speak kindly. Sort out the things that are wasting your time and keep going.

And if you are the person pointing out that someone is slacking in an area of her life, make sure you’re nice about it and not comparing them to other people. Everyone is different and some people are actually trying their best even when it looks like they are fucking everything up.

At the end of the day you are responsible for how you spend your time and no one should tell you how to spend it.

Try your best and forget the rest.

That’s a Paw Patrol quote. Thank Marshall for that one. That’s the pup in charge of fire safety. And I know that because I spend 10 hours of my day with children.

So I know what I’m talking about.

Keep moving forward. See you when I see you. And remember, it’s okay to cry. Tears are just your allergic reaction to horseshit.

For the record, Giles wasn’t being an ass, he is passionate about music. Obviously. And seeing other people not having a hard on for music is probably the equivalent of me seeing people who don’t read. What is this nonsense you speak of? Does not compute. Does not compute. Traitor to the throne! Traitor to our Queen! Exterminate! EXTERMINATE! ….I don’t know why we just became Daleks.

Bye Felicia.

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The God that Comes–Hawksley Workman

Instead of a regular book review I thought that for once I would review a show that I’ve seen recently since I actually managed to leave my hovel and go out in the Vancouver city.

I’m a huuuuuuuuuuge Hawksley Workman fan, our love affair began a million years ago when my sisters forced me to go and see him in concert in the town over from ours. I wasn’t a fan then, I was sick of his music because my older sister kept playing it over and over and over again and we were going through puberty so I was listening to the like of Backstreet Boys and Hanson and didn’t yet know what (real) good music was.

I didn’t even know what music was.

Not until I heard Hawksley live.

I had heard a few of his albums and I thought that everything was so over produced and his voice didn’t really sound like that. It was impossible. He wasn’t a goddamn God. He was just a man with a really good producer pressing all the right buttons. (I was an idiot at 16.)

Man am I glad that he proved me wrong. His voice is even better live. His voice IS from the Gods. His voice can actually echo like that and I have no idea how but it’s gorgeous and he IS music. He can take the simplest thing (like a moth) and turn it into a song. A song that resonates with you and makes you feel whole and light and everything all at once.

He was my first concert and still one of the best. I’ve seen Bon Jovi, Cyndi Lauper, Britney Spears, and Nicki Minaj since then and it’s all because Hawksley made  something  that was scary and overwhelming to me into something just shy of magic.

My sister and I had been bouncing back and forth on whether we could afford to see his ‘play’ when he came to Vancouver, and then just last week we decided (with her friend of 10 years, whom they had built their friendship on Hawksley and whiskey) to just do it and ignore how poor we are and just enjoy ourselves. We can worry about money later.

Thank. The. Gods.

We did ourselves the biggest favour of life.

That show was the GREATEST thing I’ve ever seen. And I saw Bon Jovi’s piano player playing two pianos at once. That’s pretty badass, right? Hawksley put on a show that was concert, play, and musical all at once. BY. HIMSELF. He sang for two people and one God. It was the story of Bacchus and his mountain, where everyone in this little town would go and explore themselves through drink and sex and violence. Naturally the king didn’t enjoy that his people weren’t being prudent and innocent, that they weren’t listening to him. Then he found out that his own mother was going to these parties. The king dresses as a woman and goes to find out what’s so great about it.

Then the wild mob kills him and his mom rips his head from his body.

I’m seriously not even giving a thing away about the actual performance because you need to know that story going in. And he tells you at the beginning.

The rest of the performance was so surprising, and lovely, and I’ve never laughed so hard in my life and I’ve never enjoyed myself more.

Not to mention Hawksley made eye contact with me and I nearly died. Mostly because he was saying ‘Tits’ at the time and it was hilarious. Okay, so we probably didn’t actually, but I was sitting at the front table and my sister is convinced that he definitely looked at us. (We may have been fangirling like dweebs. And yes, we’re 26 and 28. No. We are not adults.)

If you ever see one show in your entire life it should be anything with Hawksley in it because that man does not disappoint. He was just as brilliant and awe-inspiring as he was when I first saw him and I’ve never flown so high during and after a show.

I love him. Go see it. I’m going to lay on the floor of my room and listen to his albums and laugh about tits and Ukelady boys.

Thrift Store Saga

Today was an odd duck of a day.

I officially believe in curses and bad luck. And actually being able to feel the negative energy coming off of a person.

The reason I believe all of is because of three things that happened today:

1)I met a guy that people literally walked away from after they were in his general vicinity. The guy was such a ball of negative energy that every single person that came in contact with him walked right out of the store. I do not possess the kind of magical powers that my boss lady does in order to ferret out what was his deal and try to pull him away from it. So a bunch of people walked out of the store without buying anything because of it. Worst.

2)I was shanked by a mirror. I’ve decided that I’m no longer allowed near mirrors since last month I broke one just by holding it. While I was playing with a baby. Thankfully he wasn’t hurt. This time however I was just walking and sliced my leg on it but didn’t even notice that I had really hurt myself until I was walking around and my hand was wet and I was like What the hell?! Where did this blood come from?!… oh. My leg. Because I’m a jackass. Thank God I didn’t run into the mannequin with the wedding dress on like I’m prone to do. Fool.

3)That mirror is cursed. Or I am. Because when I was carrying it out to price and put away I stubbed my toe on something metal.

Oh, and to top it all off somehow I’m the only person in the store that manages to find porn in the donation boxes. (Ironic, no?) I’ve found nearly five pieces of pornography in different donation piles over the span of the two months I’ve worked there. Not to mention this giant painting of some naked dude on a swing. I don’t know what it is about me, but I think God really enjoys his pervy pranks on me.

After all that some kid and his family come into the store and he manages to find a nerf shotgun that he begs his mother for (he’s got to be at least 10) and proclaims that it’s only two dollars because it was in the bin of things you can fill a bag for two dollars for. He puts a bag on the barrel of the gun and I laugh hysterically because that’s just pure genius and his mother doesn’t notice. Nor did she notice that he donated the change in his pocket to our diabetes jar. Thankfully, after he shot his sister in the butt with it and she ran crying to her mom, his mother did hear him sincerely apologize and tell his sister that he’ll never use it on her again, he’ll use it to protect her.

He actually said the words “I will protect you.” Faith in future generations restored. Even though it took him five minutes to say it because he was laughing really hard at the word “butt”.

Oh! And Alfred and his lady love Amy (I think that’s her name, when he says it it sounds like Raimy) came in and he played me a tune on his harmonica, then the pair go to look at books and I hear him start again. Then he comes out from back there but the music is still playing, and he doesn’t have his harmonica. Dun dun dun.

He tells me it’s Amy on the organ in the back room! It was so beautiful! The pair of them are so talented it was amazing to hear! Then he tells me that some man told him he’d pay him $100 an hour to play the harmonica for cartoon background music and he declined because he was already committed to Amy he didn’t want to be committed to using up that time with some man just for a few bucks.

That’s my saga for the day, it was a good day!

Can’t wait to bust out the moustache bandaids for my leg tomorrow.

Constant vigilance, light and love.