Thursday, November 25, 2010

Que Sera

Finally got word that my current contract position will not be extended. Up until now, there was some vague possibility that it would, and I admit, I hung onto that hope pretty tightly! Ah, c’est la vie. I will still be employed, but it means going back to a position that I’m less than enthusiastic about. It’s no shock, but still a disappointment.

Of course, just as I started to despair about this, a lovely little job posting showed up in my mailbox notices today. Time to refresh that resume again! Sometimes I just need a little sign to remain hopeful and positive, and I guess this is it, teeny tiny as it may be. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

So much work to do...

"My husband when he was alive would get violent. It was abusive. But it's okay - it's normal."

Monday, November 22, 2010

Beware those California Crazies!

I have to re-assess my clients twice a year. At that time they are given the opportunity to assess themselves and their own progress. They are given a questionnaire which they can fill out by themselves, or work through with my help. Some questions beg more interesting answers than others. A couple of my recent favourites to this question:

Is culture (heritage) an important part of your life?

(speaking to me)
-“Damn right!” (rolls up sleeve to show me tattoo of the Scottish flag)

(written answer returned to me)
-“Not really. You could be from California and still be mental.”

Friday, November 19, 2010

I can't believe I made it to...

Seriously.  I really didn't know if I would stick to it with this blog long enough, but I'm glad I have.  I still find it cathartic and enjoyable to post into the great nether-world of the web my daily notions and mutterings to an audience of whomever happens to stumble across it.  That's good enough for me! 

I thought that to mark this special occasion, some good news was in order.  Edmond Place in the Parkdale neighbourhood of Toronto will be having an open house this week.  This remarkable housing project was completed in only three years due to community collaboration and support from the municipal government.  The project is named for Edmond Yu, a man with paranoid schizophrenia who lived in the building when it was a derelict rooming house in the 1990's.  He was evicted, and was later shot and killed by police when he caused a disturbance on a city bus.  The building suffered a fire in 1998 leaving many more homeless. 

I sincerly believe that supporting people with mental illness to stay safely housed can help to avoid such tragedies.  Of course there are other benefits as well - Saving money to the health care system, safer neighbourhoods, community and dignity for the people living there.

I look forward to seeing more projects like this.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


...are the bane of my existence. I hate the look on people's faces when I tell them it will be a year until they can get service.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Free Giveaway

A client of mine was recently given a couch by a neighbour. It was in good shape, and she badly needed some new furniture. She had arranged said couch in her living room, and been enjoying it for a couple of hours, when she noticed the sound of some muffled meows.

This client does have a cat, but she could see him pleasantly napping on the other side of the room. After a few moments confusion, she realized what was going on – the neighbours cat was stuck IN the couch. She pulled off all the cushions and fished the poor thing out from within the structure of the sofa. Apparently, the feline was none the worse for wear, and was safely returned to his owners. The neighbours swore up and down that they had no idea he was in there.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Drinking and Driving (seperately of course)

Note to self: remove all Beer Store receipts from the passenger seat before transporting a client.


Monday, November 8, 2010


I updated the blogroll, which was loooong overdue. If anyone knows of some stellar mental health/social work-y themed blogs to suggest, I'm looking to add more.

Worth Reading?

We were lied to, it's true. The paperless society we were all promised sometime back in the mid-90's never came to be. Unfortunately, some people slacked off and decided that it wasn't worth developing legible handwriting since it was supposedly going to become obsolete. Not so, my friend. I only know who you are because your chicken scratch is so distinctive, and also because you refer to us frequently.

Since we are such good friends, maybe you could help me out. On the referral you sent for "Deerkani Ssghur", on "Oct 27/2u10", you indicate that the reason for referral is "To mountain mental lealth, stubilix, incrcase activation. You also note a primary diagnosis of "Dszchxtie NOS". Now, since I've known you and your handwriting for so long, I think I can make out most of what you meant, but please tell me, what are we activating? Admittely, I'm a little scared to find out.

Your cooperation is appreciated, and we look forward to working with you again in the future. Tkhks for yuur timme.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Who'll Be the Lucky Winner?

Following the disgusting and disturbing trend of cosmetic surgery as acceptable self-improvement method, à la Bridalplasty, I just heard a commercial on the radio advertizing that a local night club is offering free breast implants as a raffle prize tonight. Please note the picture of the conventionally attractive, slim, young, white woman with the breast that seems to be bigger than her head, apparently advertizing said prize. Message received: big boobs=HOT, and we women will should seize any opportunity to be HOT. It’s what WE really want. It makes us happy.

I can’t even begin to discuss this in a reasonable manner, so I’ll just assume everyone here understands why I think this is offensive and ridiculous, unless I’m informed otherwise.

I’d rather have the motorcycle.


I woke up. I was dark, and I had to pee. Shuffled my feet along the cold, cold floor with my eyes half open, making a point of not looking at the clock. I know that if I look at the clock and see the time, my brain will start calculating how many hours and minutes of sleep time are left, and I won’t GET back to sleep. I’ve learned this lesson well, and have my shuffle to the bathroom down pat at half-asleep mode.

Get to the bathroom, head back to bed and JUST (just!) lay my head down when the alarm goes off.

No kidding.

Downstairs a few minutes later and still more or less asleep, I poured juice onto my cereal. That’s what sort of day it’s setting up to be.

Daylight savings time cannot end soon enough!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Suggestions Needed!

Is there a proper term for the buzzers in apartment buildings? The other day I caught myself writing this in my client notes: “I buzzed Charles* unit, but there was no response.”

Uh, that does NOT sound right. I changed it to “I buzzed Charles apartment” which is definitely an improvement, but I’d still rather use another word! Since I tend to rely on repeating simple phrases as a way to make my note writing go more quickly, I can’t help but wonder how many times I’ve written that sentence in other client’s notes. Oh dear.

Help, anyone?

*obviously not his real name

Monday, November 1, 2010

Really? Cuz that would seem to take all the fun out of it.

“I would die to be a 30”

Overheard at work, one of my co-workers, participating in our office’s “Biggest Loser” challenge.

I find this type of statement so disturbing, particularly from social workers. Am I wrong to think we should know better?

Dia de la Muerte*

I think I have a halloween hangover.


It SNOWED yesterday, and was freezing cold, so we didn't get as many trick or treaters as last year. Lots and lots of left over candy. Too much of it consumed by me. At least I deserved it - I was more dressed up that a lot of the kids!

*which I realize is actually Nov 2 *shrug*