Author: chantale

Priorities

It is a new year and, as so many others do during the month of January, I am assessing my life and habits and looking toward making changes. These changes will not come in the form of resolutions. We all know what happens when we make those. No, instead, I will be making long term changes over the course of… Read more →

Organized Religion and Terror

On Friday, 27 November 2015, a gunmen entered a Planned Parenthood location in Colorado Springs, Colorado and began shooting. After killing 3 people and wounding 11 others, he was finally taken into custody and questioned. Over the weekend, much information has surfaced from his neighbours, former family members, and the general investigation. Of all the information given by these sources,… Read more →

What are you grateful for?

American Thanksgiving. A day to gather together with family and friends and eat massive amounts of carbs. A day to remember the Pilgrims and pretend that the very first Thanksgiving was festive for them AND the Natives. After all, rewriting history is what we are all about as a nation so why should today be any different? But that, actually,… Read more →

Before and After

Many things have changed over the years, but one thing has always remained constant. I love New York City and I have always thought that I would end up there eventually. There has never been a clear path to this goal, but the thought was always there. Waiting. Running in the background of every decision I have made. Each step… Read more →

Trying New Things aka Letting Go of the Past to Create a Better Future

Throughout my life I have been skeptical of pretty much everything.  I have been highly attracted to the mystical and spiritual side of life, but I have never fully bought into any of it. Each time I go to the bookstore, I end up in one of three sections; Sociology, Cultural Studies, or New Age/Spirituality. Self improvement has been something… Read more →

What Is Success?

Throughout my life I have had many different understandings of what success should look like. I have been able to see success through the lens of how other people achieve things, but never really see that in myself. When I was a teenager, I thought success was connected to fame. I wanted to sing and dance on Broadway and I… Read more →

Looking Inward

This is the year of 40. Although it does not happen until nearly the end, it is colouring all my decisions. It sounds like a sad occasion, but it is not. 40 has given me a clarity I did not realize I could have. My experiences leading up to this milestone birthday are helping me make key decisions for life… Read more →

The Future of Feminism

The future is bright for those in the feminist movement but our work is never done.  With that in mind, I feel it is a good time to put down my thoughts on the future of feminism and the next generation (are we going to call them 4th wavers?) of women and men that will keep the movement strong.  One… Read more →

Riot Grrrl: Better Late Than Never

The 90’s were a time of new music with an undercurrent (and sometimes blatant current) of radical feminism. L7, Sleater-Kinney, Bratmobile, and, the leaders of feminist punk, Bikini Kill. Back then, I listened to the music, but I wasn’t fully in the scene. Living in Niagara Falls and attending school in Buffalo removed me from the angst-ridden, raw intensity of… Read more →

Happiness

This week, at the office, we had a gentleman from the Wellness Institute of Greater Buffalo come in to do a seminar on happiness in the workplace and the home. It was slightly dry, at times, but still motivational. The thing that struck me the most was that the answer to almost any question about happiness is positivity. If you… Read more →

2014

20 years beyond 1984. What did we think it would be like? Flying cars? Food pellets? Cars that turn into briefcases? Or just Big Brother monitoring our every move? Well, we got one of those things. Unfortunately, it isn’t any of the cool, techie things that we thought it might be. We got the monitoring without the flying cars. I… Read more →

Being Bohemian

While walking through our favourite neighbourhood in Toronto, the writer and I strike up a conversation about bohemianism. I contend that he could “never be truly bohemian. Never just get up one morning, pack two bags, and leave.” By which he responds – “I could if there was a list and a plan” (presumably written before bed the night before… Read more →

Things I Learned at the Caffe

The scent of coffee lures you in, while the camaraderie you experience from the patrons makes you want to return and, perhaps, become a regular. In all public spaces, there are annoyances to be had, but in the caffe these annoyances become quirks. In this environment, all people are equal, and we co-exist in a space where improvement is inevitable.… Read more →

Find Your Calling

For 24 years, I have worked in customer service, in one capacity or another. With that many years under my belt, I can say that I have become pretty damn good at it. I am excellent at smiling through the bullshit of unreasonable requests. I am a master of making the people on the other side of the counter or… Read more →

With Liberty and Justice For Some

We live within the confines of our environment. Although there are dreamers amoung us, the majority of the human race just goes with the flow. This is why it is so hard to come up from our country’s racist past. Why is it so difficult to look at a situation and really see it for what it is? Mainly because… Read more →

Evolving Out of Racism

How do we live here? How can we continue forward knowing that this has happened and continues to happen. Paula Dean is not the first racist to be “found out” and she will not be the last. The problem lies in the fact that she cannot admit she was wrong. That is because she doesn’t believe that she was wrong.… Read more →

Quick post: Oregon

Within this world of coffee and eggs, the people sitting next to me are, in years, younger, but in attitude quite a bit older than me. They had their sandwiches, no coffee, and discussed where their next stop would be. First the Verizon store, then groceries, then the beer merchant. Oy. Yuppies in training. It isn’t the places, but the… Read more →

Words

Today, we saw change on a grand scale. DOMA was killed. Prop 8 was killed. LGBTQ folks can move forward with the struggle, with a little bit of it behind them. I am there too. Fighting for equality for ALL. Until we have it, there is no rest. Until we understad how our words pierce through others, we can never… Read more →

On Allies and Cataloging Practice

While watching my favourite weekend morning show, the Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, I was struck by the idea of cataloging practice and how it can be demonstrative of a critical point in social movements. This moment of clarity, however fleeting, made me giddy in knowing that I may have truly found my calling. Finally. So, to better demonstrate my… Read more →

What Is A Family?

This week, the supreme court will hear arguments to overturn both the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8. These two pieces of legislation have brought injustice to a segment of the population for many years now and it is time to end the inequality. A poll that came out this past week showed that in the 20… Read more →

The Scene That Was

“Through the fear of being real, through the fear of being really you…”  Tones on Tail – Go! When I was in college (the first time around, in the 90’s) I spent most of my time doing only a few things.  Singing, drinking coffee, working a crap job or two in the customer service industry, and going to bars.  Since… Read more →

What’s Wrong With Indiana?

This past week, in the State of Indiana, a new bill was introduced for consideration to again attempt to install the requirement of a transvaginal probe for women that are persuing an abortion. This is a travesty, considering it is an additional hurdle that needs to be overcome just to exercise the right to choose. Bigger than this, however, is… Read more →

Why I Am A Feminist

I am a feminist because I believe that people of all genders are equal. All human beings, no matter what gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or creed, are equal. We all live on the earth and we are all homosapiens. We also all have to perform basic bodily functions, such as eating, sleeping, hydrating, and eliminating waste, on a daily… Read more →

Finally

Five years. That is how long it has been since GBSB officially closed its doors. Even though First Niagara took over the GBSB customers, the culture and time of GBSB was over. Since February 2008, many things have changed in my life. Looking back now, I can see that I have been stuck in a haze that I have been… Read more →