Sayid can't feel anything. Sun's forgotten how to speak English. Claire is still crazy (although she's pretending she's not). Jin's been kindnapped by Charles Widmore's crew. Richard Alpert has his mojo back. War is coming to the island. That was this week's LOST in a nutshell.
Lost cast

And if you watch LOST on a regular basis you already know the basics:

* The island is a magical place which can be moved in space and time.

* People are drawn there by mysterious forces.

* A black smoke monster lives there.

* But pregnant women die.

* Benjamin Linus, leader of 'the others', is angry and controlling (and murderous)…until he isn't.

* Jack has what it takes.

* Kate loves Jack.

* Then she loves Sawyer.

* Then Sawyer loves Juliette until she dies.

* Locke is also dead.

* Hurley and Miles talk to dead people, but not to Locke.

Obviously LOST is one crazy show—crazy like a magic mushroom trip or a Lewis Carroll story. And yet somehow the writers persuade us to buy into their surreal vision week after week. Polar bears in a tropical jungle, smoke monsters inhabiting dead bodies, talking ghosts with hidden agendas and time travel back to 1973? Sure, we think. Why not? But on a lesser show all this trippy stuff would never fly. A lesser show would've run out of steam back when the tailies were eliminated or collapsed under the weight of its countless questions. So why does LOST work no matter how far out the storylines get?

I think that, like The X-Files' Fox Mulder, we want to believe. We want to believe because we genuinely like the Oceanic Survivors, whose weaknesses are as interesting as their strengths and who we can see struggling (and sometimes failing) to be better people. The characters have bonded in an entirely convincing way during their time on the island and we've bonded with them. One of LOST's biggest strengths is how tightly bound the characters' fates are to each other's. Charlie Pace didn't drown in the Looking Glass station trying to escape the island because of a burning personal desire to return home. He risked his life for Claire and for his friends. This show isn't about any one person being a hero or a villain. It's about surviving, together. “Live together, die alone.”

Not Penny's Boat

Three dimensional characters + adversity. That's no formula, just fantastic writing and distinguished acting. Man, I'm going to miss LOST.
I snapped these last week, during our bout of spring weather. The below facility used to be a nursing home but was used as a SARS centre in 2003. I hadn't set eyes on the building in years. It had already been boarded up the last time I'd seen it but now has been severely vandalized. Numerous windows have been entirely smashed out and furniture and office equipment from inside thrown out the windows. It's a creepy as hell scene, even in bright sunlight.

What a shame that the building and grounds were allowed to reach this post-apocalptyic looking state.

Wicklow Gap

A very Happy Paddy's Day to you!

There's no way around the fact that today I feel like I'm in the wrong place. My heart is in Dublin but physically I'm miles and miles away. {sob}

For those of you who'd like to watch Ireland's biggest St. Patrick's Day parade, RTE will be showing the Dublin parade live online at 12:25 GMT (8:25 EDT). And don't forget the shamrock shakes! I'll be venturing out to buy one this afternoon and I suppose I shouldn't complain about not being in Ireland too bitterly because it's going to be a gloriously sunny 17 degrees here in Toronto today. Be gone winter coats, mittens and warm boots, we have no need of you here! Now where did I leave my sunglasses?
Trawling YouTube in search of OLP footage from the March 12th and 13th Massey Hall concerts I noticed that one of the clips was loaded with the message, "OLP sounds exactly like they do on the album." You most likely won't be able to tell that from these clips but it's absolutely true. The quality of the sound blew me away.

I've mentioned previously (* All You Did Was Save My LifeAll You Did Was Save My Life Part 2 * Our Lady Peace Canadian Tour) that because I share an appreciation of Our Lady Peace with one of my characters, the band often makes me think of Finn from One Lonely Degree. For most of the concert I was too much in the moment to really think about anything but during Innocent and Clumsy, two songs I strongly associate with her, I definitely felt like I should be scanning the crowd for Finn which added another level of cool to an already amazing concert.

I admit to being acutely jealous of all the folks out there who live in towns OLP haven't hit on their current tour yet. If I had a pile of money lying around I'd be making plans to jet off to someplace like Regina for an encore concert!

Is Anybody Home, Massey Hall, March 13

Are You Sad, Massey Hall, March 13

Raine Maida climbing up to the balcony during
All You Did Was Save My Life, Massey Hall, March 13

The Story of 100 Aisles & Big Dumb Rocket, Massey Hall, March 12

Life, Massey Hall, March 12

I have to ask myself what the hell I was thinking when I decided to buy tickets for just one of the Our Lady Peace nights at Massey Hall. The Clumsy night was absolute brilliance—the energy level in Massey Hall last night was through the roof, both on OLP's part and the part of the fans. You could sense, from the moment the lights, went down that it was going to be a very special night.

And you know what's wrong with nights like that? They go by all too quickly! As soon as it was over I began lamenting that I hadn't picked up tickets for tonight's Spiritual Machines gig!

Anyway, here are my photos from last night's show:

Massey Hall, March 12, 2010

The view from my seat in the left balcony:

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

A full house, Massey Hall crowd on its feet:

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Raine Maida, having climbed up to the right balcony from the stage:

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

Our Lady Peace,  March 12, Massey Hall, Toronto

And here's the setlist:

First Set (entire Clumsy album)

1. Superman's Dead
2. Automatic Flowers
3. Carnival
4. Big Dumb Rocket
5. 4am
6. Shaking
7. Clumsy
8. Hello Oskar
9. Let You Down
10. The Story of 100 Aisles
11. Car Crash

Second Set

12. Monkey Brains
13. Innocent
14. Life
15. Is Anybody Home?
16. One Man Army
17. Paper Moon
18. The End Is Where We Begin
19. Somewhere Out There
20. Naveed / Kids (MGMT cover)
21. Are You Sad?
22. All You Did Was Save My Life


23. In Repair
24. Starseed

Will add YouTube clips soon if I spot any from last night's show! In the meantime, here's a bit from One Man Army from one of the Montreal shows a couple of days ago:

And a clip from 4 AM, also from Montreal:

Folks on a Queen Street patio, enjoying a warm March day. Sounds unlikely but this was the scene last Saturday.

Queen Street patio

Hot dogs & cheap bongs. And in the distance, cheap burgers (Mickey D's).

Bong sale sign

The King of Queen Street: this dog, lazing around in the middle of the sidewalk, was completely unfazed by the throngs of pedestrians (and their pets) ambling by him and really only started to take notice of me when I stooped to snap his (her?) photo.

dog lazing on Queen Street sidewalk

Osgoode Hall. Check out how blue that sky is.

Osgoode Hall

Snack time in the city, for both squirrels

Snacking squirrel

and people. Here's some free food being prepared and handed out on Queen Street.

Free food on Queen Street

Rocking mural on The Hideout.

Mural on The Hideout

Cameron House, good to see you too.

Cameron House

I couldn't figure out quite what these signs, near the south east corner of Nathan Phillips Square, were trying to say. Is there a wolf den at the bottom of these steps and are people also welcome?

Nathan Phillips Square wolf sign

A Queen Street tree stump transformed.

A Queen Street tree stump transformed

And this last snap obviously isn't from Queen Street. There's an aquasaur hanging out in my living room and who knew they had such a thing for carrots? They seem to be making him grow like crazy, he's molting like there's no tomorrow!

So not only is it the most gorgeous bright sunny weekend we've had in I don't know how long, I've also received the okay to talk about my newest book deal with Random House for a YA novel called My Beating Teenage Heart! The release dates for that and my original fourth book have been shuffled around a little so now My Beating Teenage Heart will be released in Sept, 2011 with Delicate to follow in May 2012.

Here's a bit of book info:

Seventeen-year-old Breckon Cody is tormented by the sudden death of his seven-year-old sister, a death he considers his fault and can't forgive himself for. Every time he breaks makes it that much harder to keep going. The only person who knows the true extent of his pain, his constant witness, is someone Breckon doesn't know exists, someone who can't remember the story of her own life.

More from me later. Can't waste this beautiful day. Have to get outside!

Happy March! I know we still have a bit of winter left but today the sun is shining and the temperature will climb above zero so I'm starting to believe spring is on the way. February, though it's a short month, tends to be my least favourite because it's usually so dreary and cold but thanks to the Winter Olympics I can't say that about this February. Vancouver & Whistler did an incredible job of hosting and congrats to our amazing Olympic team! From a Canadian point of view, I have to say these Winter Games felt really special, something I'll remember all my life.

I'm even going to miss the cute RBC ads with the guy in the bowler hat:

Yes, I'm in serious Olympics withdrawal!

But luckily Ashley over at Books Obsession had me over to distract me during this painful period. Thanks, Ashley, I especially appreciate the cupcakes! Anyway, if you want to head over there you can expect to find me answering questions about, amongst other things, guilty pleasures, the covers for my novels and which of my own book(s) I feel like I'll never really get over. I loved the questions, Ashley! And you have great taste in music!
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