Monday, October 27, 2008


What a difference a day makes – within the past 24 hours I’ve gone from normal, average Joe – to crazy pug lady.

It happened at the Doctor’s office, during a post-op check up. Everything was going really great, Dr. Hughes (a very talented surgeon with the bedside manner of House) assured me that my knee was healing nicely.

It all went horribly wrong when I tried to discuss my concerns over Tex’s reaction to my knee. Since having the surgery, he’s been obsessed with it, incessantly sniffing and trying to scratch it. If you’ve been reading my blog, you know this can’t be a good thing. It’s actually kind of freaking me out –think of the soundtrack from Jaws and you’ll have a pretty good idea of how I’m feeling.
Life Lesson - Some things are best not shared with your Doctor. Chances are, he’s not going to take your pug's concerns too seriously.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Day in the Life....

Today I decided to turn over a new leaf and make the most of what remains of my convalescence. Before getting out of bed this morning I gave myself a pep talk – after all it’s only Tuesday, with a little perseverance I can still make this work – and hey, they don’t call us the fighting Ryan’s for nothing.

The day got off to a good start; brushed my teeth, hugged the pugs, read the news, did my knee exercises, nine am and I had already crossed everything off my list. Looking for options that didn’t require walking, I decided that instead of turning on the TV or googling all of my old boyfriends, I’d take the high road and read a book.

I needed something to cheer me up, so I decided to skip War and Peace, opting instead for Marley and Me. A story about a naughty but lovable dog, who teaches his family a thing or two about life.

Fast forward five hours, poor Tom is dealing with a wife who not only is grounded, begging for a diet coke, but is now also weeping uncontrollably. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a wonderful book - it’s just that in my haste to make better use of my time, I forgot one of the universal rules of animal movies/books – there is never a happy ending.

Tomorrow, maybe I should just dedicate the day to the pugs. Pug spa treatments, pug treats, pug jazz appreciation, pug arts and crafts......

Monday, October 20, 2008

Keeping it Real

I hate to admit this , but I’m bored. Last Friday I had knee surgery - I’m home this week - following Doctor’s orders to rest and give my body time to mend.

The thing is, I’m not really in pain, but also not quite ready to 'bust a move'. There are so many productive things I could be doing, instead I’ve been watching way too much TV, reading magazines, and taking so many naps that I have a permanent print of the comforter on my cheek.

To top it all off, Tom is really getting on my nerves. If you’re reading this, please help me!!! You see, he’s decided to take advantage of my inability to shop for diet coke, insisting I go cold turkey. He's calling it tough love. If this continues, I’ll be curled up in fetal position, crying “make it go away”.

The truth is, I’m also feeling ubber guilty for being so whiny – I listen to myself talk, and can’t help but think that I must sound like Paris Hilton with a limp. When I get this way, I find that there’s nothing like making a list to put things into perspective. So here goes:

Mika’s knee list

  • Tex struggles with back pain on a daily basis, and never complains or expects to be entertained.
  • Thank god knee surgery is an option, if I had been born a few thousand years ago, chances are I would have been seperated from the herd - getting a lesson on what it really means to be part of the food chain.
  • By the time the Bush years come to an end, I should be able to do some serious moon walking.
  • Pay backs are hell. I’ll be so weak from lack of caffeine and exercise, that hiring a really hot trainer / physio guy will be a no brainer.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sending out an SOS

Shortly after Bush started his second term, I had an interesting conversation with one of the business writers at the Wall Street Journal. She said that Americans would have to lose their savings and retirement funds before they realized the true legacy of the past 8 years.

Maybe it’s just me, but the elections in Canada and American point to countries divided. I prefer to think of it as evolution - some of us are evolving – while others…..well, not so much.

In case you haven’t noticed, we’re in trouble people. We have crowds of people – not crazy people, but people who look an awful lot like me and you – openly threatening Obama’s life at Republican rallies. Not to mention that the religious right are just as scary as Extreme Muslims, using God to justify an agenda of fear and hate.

Chief Seattle said it best “Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connected.”

Monday, October 13, 2008

Finding My Way

Several weeks ago, the company I work for brought in a motivational speaker. He was a gentleman who had traversed the Sahara Desert in his youth, a journey that shaped the direction of his life. While inspirational speakers can be hit or miss, this guy really resonated with me.

One of the things that made a big impression was his suggestion that everyone needs a compass word. When you’re in the desert it’s very easy to lose your way, after all there are very few landmarks to guide you. Without a navigational tool, not only would it be impossible to find your way, but it also quickly becomes a life or death situation.

In life we also need a word to help us navigate our way through tough times. Sahara guy shared with us that his word was “be different”, a reminder that he was committed to a life of back roads and blue highways. I’ve thought about it for several weeks now and have decided that my new mantra is “be present”. A reminder to really see and hear the people who I encounter – the realization that the journey is more important than the end goal – to celebrate the wins without being blind to the difficulties – to love my family, friends, and colleagues in a way that honours and serves their best interest – the awareness that I am only a small ripple in the universe, not less or more than any other living creature.

Tom is still thinking about what his word should be, going back and forth in several directions. Suffice to say, if our recent bet is any indication, it 's probably not “be sensitive”.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Place Your Bets

This evening while watching a chick flick, Tom and I got into a discussion about sensitive men. It was a little strange as Tom normally doesn't do chick flicks - but lately he’s worried that I’m spending way too much time downstairs in my woman cave - and as a result he’s making a huge effort not to grab the remote and switch to CNN, sports or the history channel.

He tried to be a good sport, counting to 10 before mocking the actors, wondering why women have such a thing for sensitive men. To be honest I wasn't paying too much attention to his ranting, until he bragged that he could fool any woman into thinking he was a SNAG (sensitive new age guy). This act of male bravado was just too good to be true, so who can blame me for egging him on. The end result is Tom and I have a little bet - for the next month he has to be the ultimate SNAG.

To be honest, I’m concerned that we have two different ideas of what constitutes a sensitive man. After hearing his thoughts, I’m a little worried that when I come home tomorrow, I’ll find Tom wearing a puffy shirt and ponytail, writing poetry while baking organic pug treats. (Not to worry dear reader, if he does I’ll be sure to capture it on the flip).

All I can say is, fasten your seat belts Tex and Maggie, it's going to be a helluva ride.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

From One Woman to Another

Even though I’m not a huge Sarah Palin fan, watching her bumble through the debate and various high-profile media interviews has been a very painful experience. It’s obvious Sarah needs some coaching, and as I work with media on a daily basis - I’ve decided to step in and offer a little friendly advice.

Rule #1 – Do your homework.
I have no doubt that you are an intelligent person Sarah, it’s just that when you can’t seem to clearly answer some of the basic questions (Bush agenda, McCain’s record, Economics 101), you’re kind of scary. Silly me, but I sleep better at night knowing that the people who control the nukes actually have all of the information needed to make good, sound decisions.

Rule #2 – Keep it real.
I have no problem with your “Sarah from the block” message, and personally think that some of the best leaders come from humble backgrounds. However, you may want to do a little reality check before throwing words like elitist around. Here are a few simple tips to help you do the math:

McCain + rich wife + 12 houses + voting record = establishment / elitist.

Obama + south side of Chicago + raised by single mother = person with humble background who embodies the American dream.

Rule # 3 – Body language
Sorry Sarah, but unless you have tourette’s syndrome, the winking thing has really gotta go. If it’s any consolation, I don’t think any man or woman in the political arena could pull it off. Just think of it as a timing thing – a wink can actually be cute when telling a joke –not so cute when you’re talking about invading Russia. At the end of the day, you just can’t be taken seriously when you're winking, if you don’t believe me - ask your friend “Dubya” (wink).

Rule #4 – Don’t talk the talk, unless you can walk the walk.
Sorry Sarah, but you’re just not ready to represent. By calling yourself a Maverick you’re only going to draw attention to the negative - your support for the “bridge to nowhere” - the Wasilla sports centre - the current state investigation into unethical behavior – the fact that you really can’t see Russian from your front porch - and of course your attempt to ban books from public libraries. With that kind of record, you may really want to consider a more humble approach.

Rule #5 – More will be expected of you.
Because you’re a woman, you will be held to a higher standard than most of your male peers. I know it’s not fair, it’s just the reality of the world we live in. While playing cutesy may have been a good strategy in the past, it’s going to hurt you more than help you this time. Save your feminine wiles for your husband and learn from the women who have succeeded in politics, i.e. Madeleine Albright, Margaret Thatcher, Indira Gandhi - all strong women who could hold their own with any man.