But what do they WANT from us??

So tomorrow, I round out my first full week as a career woman… and while I haven’t done much actual “work” yet (besides listen to a butt-ton of motivational speeches where I learned to always “sit in the front row of life”; that “I can have it all”, I just can’t “have all of it at the same time”), I’m still pretty exhausted.
I do, however,  have two amazing things to look forward to this weekend:
  1. It’s Thanksgiving, which means I get Monday off… Holllaaaa
  2. My sister Marija and her friend Jackie are flying in from Nova Scotia to visit me for the weekend

    Vintage pic of the three of us from a trip we took in 2007... oh baby face, where have you gone?

I am very excited about fact #2 – mostly because it will give me the chance to put away my stuffed, pretend family I have positioned around various parts of my apartment in exchange for the REAL  variety for a few days (I wonder if I can still make them wear Pretend Family’s outfits though…. I worked really hard on those). Anyway, because I am so thankful for this, and the fact that my sister is enduring a flight on Air Canada’s rickety deathmobile known as the “Regional Express Line” to come and see me, I thought I would do a post in her honour.

I know, I know- feel free to let out a collective “AWWWWW”.

Done? Ok, lets move on.

Running a 10k together in 2010.. yah that's right, I can back all this shit up...

Marija (or Mazz, as we call her) is my big sis, and she and I are serious buds. We spend a lot of time together when I’m at home, cause we like to do a lot of the same stuff-  we run together, shop together, get our Zumba on, watch The Bachelorette and Big Brother, eat  Dill Pickle popcorn until we get canker sores (ohh but it hurts so good), make fun of people mercilessly,  and swap celeb gossip.  She also drives my ass around everywhere (if there was ever an Amazing Race: Errands Edition, we would totally win), and sometimes, she’ll slip me a $20, “just cause “(I secretly think this is her way of providing restitution for that time  in 2005 she pushed me because I was being too loud and woke her up in the morning….  I think by 2050 we might finally be all settled up ). 

However, I have learned that no matter how close you are with your siblings, there are bound to be a few differences. In fact, I like to think of the sibling relationship as being sort of a Venn Diagramif you will… in the middle are the things we share, i.e., all of those glorious past-times mentioned above, and then on either side, like a lone wolf howling at the moon, are the universe of things that are unique to our own personalities.

 It might look a little something like this:

What?? A little sangria in a bathtub never hurt anyone...

Marija, for example, doesn’t share my love of blogging… or indie music… or ethnic food. She is also generally much more responsible than I am, and doesn’t  often find herself getting drunk and making bad decisions.

Now our Venn Diagram is starting to look a little more like this:

Incredible dancing skills? CHECK

Her universe of unique characteristics on the other hand, is arguably somewhat more quirky, and decidedly more endearing than mine:

  • She possesses an attention to detail and organizational skills that would put even the most meticulous corporate lawyers (especially me) to shame;
  • She loves all sports- especially football- which pretty much makes her every man’s dream; 
  • She  has an affinity for using the proper term to describe things; like “vehicle” rather than “Car” (“Bree, will you go get my sunglasses? They’re in the glove compartment of my vehicle“); “prompt” instead of “on time”; and “discuss” rather than “talk”.

    Did I mention her amazing fashion sense already?

But the most important thing you need to know about Marija- the characteristic that, arguably, DEFINES her- is the fact that she possesses an enormous amount of knowledge, and  a respect, engendered by fear, for wild animals. More specifically, any animal that has a reputation for being menacing.  If it has been featured in a horror film; been given a significant amount of representation on the Discovery Channel; or been the cause of an outbreak, pandemic, or mass hysteria- then chances are, she knows everything about it. 

While all of these such creatures fascinate her to a certain extent- she seems to focus most of  her attention on what I like to call “The Big Three”: Groundhogs; Bees, and – most importantly- Sharks.

1. Bees

Perhaps solely due to the fact that there is a species which contains the word “killer” in its name,  Bees have been on Marija’s hit list for quite some time now. She often provides us updates as to where killer bees may have been spotted; and regularly practices making sting antitodes.

One day this summer, we were laying by the pool tanning, when all of a sudden I heard a high-pitched shriek and saw Marija jump up from her chair.

“BEE!! BEEE!!!!” she screamed, and ran into the house and slammed the screen door.

Since Bees and I have a deal, I was content to just stay where I was and continue getting my tan on. About 5 minutes later, I realized that Marija had not returned. I turned around to look for her, and noticed her shadow, still cowering in the house, behind the screen door.

“What are you doing??” I asked her “the bee is clearly gone at this point”

She looked at me, aghast, and replied: “well I can’t come back out now that he’s seen me, can I??? Don’t you know bees have facial recognition??”

I do now.

2. Groundhogs

This one is a recent development. Marija picked me up from the airport this summer, and as we were driving back to my parent’s place, she turned down the satellite radio, and said to me in a grave voice: “I just want to warn you… that you might want to be careful when you’re walking in the house tonight”.

“Why??” I asked

“Because…. “, she said, pausing to take a deep breath… (I’m freaking out at this point. The way she is delivering this is as if she’s  bracing me for the news that World War III has just begun….or that E! just cancelled “Keeping Up with the Kardashians“) 

“We’ve got a groundhog. He’s tunnelled under our front step”.   

Phew. “I think I’ll be ok”, I said, laughing.  

 “You don’t understand”, she persisted,  “Groundhogs are extremely aggressive. They can undermine building foundations; and they feed off lush vegetation. It could destroy our entire property “.

Well then. Clearly this was not a matter to be taken lightly.

The following weeks involved intensive strategizing as to how we could capture and dispose of this menacing creature (“G-Unit”, as we unaffectionately dubbed him). Obviously, safety was our #1 concern here. I’d like to say that in the end it was all a little more dramatic… but really it was as simple as purchasing a live trap and throwing in a piece of bread with peanut butter. (Come to think of it…maybe it was all a little too simple…… DUN DUN DUN)

WARNING: Some may find the following photograph TERRIFYING, and may experience nightmares; cold sweats; prolonged anxiety, or even death.

Actual photographic evidence of G-Unit's existence, and subsequent capture

3. Sharks

I saved this one for last, because to Marija, Sharks are the king of all creatures.

Marija has devoted, what I believe to be a significant portion of her life, to knowing all there is to know about Sharks. She can tell you, at any given moment, the average lifespan of a great white; where the latest shark attack has happened; or what information (species/age/sex) can be gleaned from a bite wound.  Shark Week is akin to a religious experience; and she has seen every movie about sharks ever made…. even that one where the shark comes out of nowhere and eats L.L. Cool J.

Poor LL... although Ladies Love him, sharks apparently, do not.

One day I walked into the living room and saw Marija sitting on the edge of the coffee table, eyes glued to the TV in a trancelike state.

“Mazz, what are you doing??” I asked.

“They’re coming closer”. She responded quietly, her gaze never wavering.

“What?? what’s coming closer??” I asked.

“The Great Whites. There was an attack…. just off the coast of Boston. Scientists previously thought it was too cold for them this far north; but not anymore. They’re adapting”.

“Im sure it’ll be fine”.. I said, slowly backing out of the room….

“No”, she said- breaking her gaze at the TV for the first time to meet my eyes:

“None of us are safe”.

Call her paranoid, but I think she might be onto something here….she is just  perceptive enough to pick up on what the rest of us have missed: Clearly all of the world’s Bees, Groundhogs, and Sharks are forming a SuperCoalition  to take over the world…. and when they do, she will simply look at us, and say, “I told you so”…. as one by one, we all meet the same fate as L.L….

Question of the Day: Do you have any siblings? What does your Venn Diagram Look like?

P.S. LOVE YOU, MAZZ!!! Thanks for having a great sense of humour and for being the best big sister a girl could ask for… well, besides my other big sister… ok you guys are tied.


12 thoughts on “But what do they WANT from us??

Add yours

  1. The wife recently captured a live raccoon on our back porch…WITH HER BARE HANDS! No, actually, that’s untrue. She had a wire trap cage like the one you employed. But, still…the raccoon could have had a GUN. Or worse: TWO guns.



  2. I like how the photo of g- unit is taken at the original site of capture. Groundhogs, as we learned on that fateful day, have gigantic bladders!

    Oh yeah- mazz and jazz…. Totally and completely jealous that I’m not going. Hope you all have a great visit. Please don’t screen my inevitable texts and phone calls this weekend… I just want to feel like I’m there!! 🙂

    Oh- and one more thing about mazz that few people outside our immediate family are privy to (and that has come in VERY handy for me the past week) is that she is a secret master elf to Santa!! Who knew???


  3. Too funny Bree, actually the bee episode happened in my backyard and you failed to mention Mazz was saving my life at the time. Unable to walk the bee recognized me from the day before and came after me and Mazz jumped up, cape and all and helped me inside. I too was unable to go back outside due to facial recognition. lol


    1. haha I stand corrected!! You were lucky to have made it out alive that day…. you should probably spend most of this off-tanning season creating a disguise for next year so as to avoid future attacks.


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