Monday, June 20, 2011

Two Plus One=How I Will Spend My Summer Vacation

The realization just hit me: I am going to spend my ENTIRE summer being the 3rd wheel. I just moved in with a couple, my best friend is smitten kitten over a guy that is finally out of super intense schooling. All of the people I am around seem to be part of a pair. If they aren't in a real couple, they are at least getting laid involved with that, to certain degree.

The interesting part isn't me being a tag-along, because I have little to no shame anymore in that regard, but more how my friends are reacting to having me around. It has made me more aware of the people I used to hang out with that were amazing at never making me feel bad about it.

I have one friend that was so good at hanging out with her bf and one other person that I often forgot she was in a relationship all together. It was something I would look forward to, hanging out with my couple friends. Somehow those days are long behind me. Now, PDA's are socially acceptable. I think its almost as bad as breast feeding too openly or allowing a too old child to run around naked through public parks. NOT COOL PARENTS!!!

My tolerance has gotten VERY low for couple-y shit when I am around. Don't make kissey faces and sit ALL over each other; you see each one another more than I see you. You should have stayed home if you wanted to maul each other. I don't need to be here for this.

Any kind of "us" attitude is a bummer when hanging out with a couple. Being courteous and complimentary to your significant other in front of friends is one thing. Sometimes it even gives me hope that one day I could have a functional relationship. Having a domestic or being too smoochy is just no good for anyone. We can all have drinks or do things as adults without making someone feel like the third wheel. Hell, I even enjoy spending time with a couple when they know how to balance their love for each other with being in public and acting like adults that enjoy each others company and the company of those around them.

I don't think I am asking for much. I do realize that this will be a very solitary summer if things keep up with the trend so far.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Alberto's Pizza And Wings: The reason I will not be wearing a bikini this summer.

Alberto's Pizza and Wings
1384 Bathurst Street,
M5R 3J1 Toronto,Ontario

I stumbled upon the easily passable Alberto's Pizza and Wings, very soon after moving into my new place. Upon closer inspection, not only was Alberto's going hit the spot for my pizza cravings but hopefully satisfy my love for...tex-mex? Tex-Mex!

The tex-mex/pizza joint has been a neighbour hood staple for the past twenty years.Clearly the combo has proved effective. Located on Bathurst, just south of Vaughn and St Clair, the restaurant is on a rather lonely block with no other food joints around it. This gives Alberto's a chance to shine, through process of elimination.

To be fair, I decided to order a few things off the vast menu of unhealthy deliciousness. How good can a place be that serves burgers, burritos, pizza and wings? With so many specialty shops around, it’s hard to imagine places left with such a large menu do any one thing really well. I went for the walk-in special, a medium peperoni pizza for $9.00, tax included. The pizza we had was delicious, with a tangy sauce and home-made dough. It wasn't thin crust, but a perfect balance between chain-store dipping crust and a good dough recipe. It still allowed lots of room for dipping your crust.

There are lots of walk-in specials for lunch under $10.00, and dinner from $10-$15 per person.There is room in the restaurant for patrons to dine-in, but it is clear that this is a place where the neighbours come to pick up dinner and eat at home.

I returned to Alberto's a few nights later to give their ground beef burrito a try. I called in to order it a few minutes before I wandered over. When I arrived, it seemed that Alberto's had forgotten about my order. I wasn't in a rush, so I wasn't bothered. They said it would be five minutes (ten or so in reality), which was pretty impressive for fresh food made to order.

The ground beef burrito, $12.95 with a small house salad, was more of an enchilada than a burrito. It came served in an aluminum take out container, instead of being wrapped as most take-out burritos are. Doused in a rather spicy (considering I forgot to ask for extra spicy) burrito sauce, baked with 3 cheeses and a few jalapenos on top. The inside held a pretty standard combination of Mexican rice, whole beans instead of re fried, cheese, tomato and ground beef. A generous helping of sour cream and guacamole were thrown into the mix on the side, potentially for free because of the initial mix up, making it a really filling dinner for under $15.

You can't really go wrong with a place that serves so many things. I don't anticipate any of them are bad but I would say trying the fish and chips here might be where I draw the line.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Moving and Packing Juice

Moving houses can be a big pain in the ass. It can be an emotional experience, but not always a sad one. You could be leaving a place in hopes of something new and exciting. Someone could be evicting you for being loud and annoying. Perhaps you just bought your first piece of real estate that you own and now you are really a grown-up.

OR you are me, and you just got rushed out of your apartment by a roommate that lives in her own world and can't be pinned down to commitment and a little Chinese couple that wants you out a day early. This type of moving is classified as "hectic and painful". One day may not seem too early, or like they are asking much. I would agree with you, had I had somewhere to go, or enough notice.

When I showed up to move on Tuesday afternoon, the landlords wife was already there moving my things out to the back yard. Impressive! I was being moved out and I had still paid to live there till midnight. I know the REALLY mature and civilized thing to do, is to arrange to move the last Saturday of the month.

That involves a LOT of coordinating with landlords and tenants for BOTH apartments. It gets REALLY tricky when there are people in the house before you get there. It gets really complicated when the house mate you live with is going traveling and packs two suitcases and goes, leaving behind a whole house full of clothes, toiletries, furniture and kitchenware. Its unfortunate that I had to remind her I wouldn't be dealing with this mess on her behalf and that I had to explain why it isn't "good faith" or "good karma" to leave a house full of your crap when you move out. As said by the passive stoners from high school "not cool man, not cool."

Once that was dealt with, I had to pressure my very nice, new landlords that have a very sweet three year old to juggle, between renovations to our new house and full time careers. The LAST thing I wanted to do was pressure them, but it had to be done. The alternative to moving into my place a day early was sleeping in a van with all my belongings or moving back to the other side of the city, then back downtown on the weekend. Did I mention my new house is a five minute walk up the same street from my old one? To move my belongings back the other side of the city and then back downtown was something I really didn't want to do. I also work downtown, so that added a few hours onto my commute; not the ideal situation.

The issue wasn't the moving out early or the accommodating other people. I consider myself to be an accommodating person. However, dealing with pushy landlords and housemates that don't know how to clean up their shit is not what I assumed I was signing up for at 25 years old.