Thursday, August 29, 2013

Trimming Your Nose Hairs….


Coincident to the subject, I’ve remembered a clever cartoon depicting a wife who was peering up at her taller husband and double-checking to confirm his nose hairs were not obvious. Being short, she was qualified to be the best judge!

One of the joys of being a REALTOR® is meeting and interacting with many people of all ages, sizes, and cultures. International travellers, especially businesspeople, are trained to become familiar with different customs of countries they visit – diplomatic affairs can be influence by one misplaced faux pas.

Most Canadians pride themselves on being polite world citizens, and our renowned civility is widely admired. Door-to-door canvassers mightn’t attest to that on occasion though! The “golden rule” of doing unto others seems to hold fast, except in two instances:  new-found wealth or old-wealth and simply no class.

A colleague reported back to me recently on the results of him showing one of my listings to prospective buyers. Oddly, the best part of the outing, for him, was the fact the fellow bottomed out on a rough road in his expensive car! Now this does not strike me as feeling particularly funny, there must have been extenuating circumstances that prompted such a remark…

Whether in the grocery store line up or other circumstances, when peering from under one’s eyebrows at a seemingly lesser being, anyone with a case of the “high and mighties” should remember not to stand too close.  

The unfortunate victim of your haughty demeanor may not treasure the memory of being forced to look upward and identifying that today’s first exercise should have been trimming your nose hairs.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Since then….

I noticed recently, when perusing the television schedule for a Saturday night movie, that films made in the mid-last half of the 20th century sometimes portrayed the hardships of female entertainers who had a long row to hoe.

Female vocalists travelled from gig to gig on a bumpy bus or overcrowded sedan – enduring miles of journeying without adequate rest or other niceties. Hard raw liquor, swigged out of a bottle shared by everyone, groping and other less discreet advances for favours seldom mentioned, little privacy and a lot of pressure from the band leader to perform well must have felt desperate – with little or no hope of changing the game.

In more modern times I wonder if there is much improvement in the lifestyle. Luxurious motor coaches, or custom-outfitted limousines may provide a smoother ride and more comfort – the toll however must be unrelenting and with infrequent relief. Taking one’s band “on the road” or heading to the promised land of stardom requires good fiscal and personal management, unswerving ambition and strength of character to resist adverse temptations.

When hysterical fans are a faceless crowd and home seems very far away, I think it must feel like an ever-running hamster on a wheel. Fame, fortune and adulation is measurable – the long and winding road leads past many a mile of new experiences and challenges.

Entertainment icons who historically have given back to their communities and continue to implement benevolence are more memorable than their starring roles or inevitable falls from grace.

Applause please; cheers and respect for the innumerable film stars and singers who somehow keep their eye on the ball and heads screwed on straight.

A lot has evolved in the entertainment industry since then.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Much Ado...

Trafalgar Castle
Trafalgar Castle

As a P.A.N.K. (Professional Aunt No Kids) I’m over the moon about forthcoming nuptials of Niece # 2 of 4. Coincidentally being celebrated on her maternal grandmother’s birthday, the various stages of planning and pre-scheduled completion dates are well in hand.

Engagement pictures in a beautiful setting; bridal shower with e-reply options; glorious and very personal wedding invitations with wax-seal on the envelope of Groom’s surname initial – it’s all the glitter and we’re a-twitter!

Princess of Cambridge and new mom Kate Middleton’s wedding to Prince William was termed the wedding of the century – for our family this is, thus far, the premier event.

The dress is fit for a queen, in fact the bride-to-be is affectionately thought of as a Queen Bee. Ruffles, bustles, a train and décolleté will undoubtedly make the groom swoon. A multitude of nose tissues will be flourished to dab at damp cheeks and ladies will blink quickly in hopes their eye makeup doesn’t smudge as we snuffle.

We’ve never seen such pomp and circumstance – reminiscing recently of more simple events with a ceremony at home, a hand-picked bouquet from the garden, pretty bridal attire that can be worn on other future occasions, and a smaller budget occasion.

The venue for the upcoming occasion is equally astonishing – a commoner’s castle with turrets and the appearance of a trumpeter would not be any surprise!

Everyone’s agog with Much Ado.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Remembering Sherman…

A jaunt northward to Haileybury Ontario to celebrate a niece’s college graduation has given recent cause to remember a long-ago experience in Temagami, on the Victoria Day weekend, in the early 1980’s.

The owner of the Temagami Inn at that time was a fellow named Paul Leitch. He was an established businessman and known to many. After hearing my musician husband playing piano in the lounge of a North Bay hotel, Paul thought him a good choice to spend a weekend at the Temagami Inn and play for the patrons.

We arrived early afternoon and made the acquaintance of the hostess at the Front Desk. Directing us to the bar area we proceeded to set up and complete the sound tests for microphones, speakers and amplifiers. During those years I played the drums, and we performed pleasing renditions of easy listening music, including light jazz and some vocals.

At 4:00 p.m., dressed in our finery, we descended from our upstairs room to start the first set. Eyes were wide – ours and theirs! We had never performed for a truly workingmen’s audience, and the off shift miners had never seen the likes of us either.
Feeling somewhat tremulous, I gathered my brushes and we launched into a spirited rendition of Sweet Georgia Brown. Silence hung too heavy in the air afterward and we sensed there would be little or no encouragement.

We offered to take any special requests – and somehow managed to play through distinct feelings of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Friday night was a ripsnorter and as the suds took hold the awestruck miners from the open pit iron ore facility found a soft spot for our efforts.

Nearly thirty years later I vividly remember the incredulous and incredible audience of hard-working men from the Sherman mine!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Confidence or Conceit?

In the world of real estate salespeople, as with other professions, individual traits are sometimes consciously subdued or repressed so as to not create an unbecoming impression. For example, one’s voice can be trained to be less strident to a listener, and more evenly modulated.

Many years ago there was a radio announcer in Montreal whose voice was widely recognized,in person however his appearance didn’t match the resonance and depth we heard over the airwaves; so the first aural impression superseded the visual actuality.

Well-established salespeople seem to eventually present themselves with more cockiness than in beginning years. They strut their stuff and – but may also be recognized as much for the perceived arrogance as their competence.
In fashion, women who hang on too tightly to younger styles in an effort to not look their age can be either admired or gently scorned, This occurs as well with gentlemen in their mid-life crisis who gasp in too-tight jeans and burn rubber at the stoplight in sporty/fast convertibles.

I noticed a big flashy pickup truck today in Bracebridge with several slogans painted on it. Nothing subtle either. One of them read “If I wanted a Hummer™ I’d call your sister”.. Hopefully it was a joke – the take-away though was a question of whether the owner was overdosed in confidence or conceit!