Lain's Log

One weird week

May 1/12.

Mayday! Mayday!
Does that mean the first day of May? - or is it the emergency word used internationally as a distress signal in voice procedure radio communications? I don't have a clue! All I know is, voice-wise, today I have complete and total laryngitis! S.O.S! - Not fun. (Well, for about two hours, it actually WAS fun). Around midnight last night, I hit those two bewitching hours where my voice drops down into "sexy/low/throaty mode" and I could have auditioned for ANY hot commercial and scored it.

Click to hear how my voice sounded (but only temporarily!) ha ha!

Sadly, those hours don't last long before turning into a scratchy, broken record sound, (which is good for absolutely nothing!) Sort of a Demi Moore/Marlo Thomas/Brenda Vaccaro/Phyllis Diller hybrid of croaking.

While still in Velvet Fog mode, I recorded the deep voice on my new digital tape recorder, trying to sound like Peggy Graham from the old CKFM 99.9 radio days. (used to listen to her on overnights and wish I could steal that sultry voice. She was the best!)

Have skipped writing for a bunch of days. WAY behind! Will try to catch up.

Back to April 23 - Kate's 20th birthday! She's surrounded by admiring friends! How is it possible my daughter is 20??

Happy Birthday Sweet!

Somehow, the birthday brigade ended up with funny glasses, black moustaches and luscious red lips! Coolio!

Dessert delectables included strawberry shortcake from a bakery on the Danforth,

and tomato soup cupcakes, - yes, Henry, (centre), - they're REAL! - generously made and presented by Cadence (far right).

Pizza and dessert was followed by a selection of DVDs to choose from for the evening's entertainment. These were the rejects.

The winner? The Hot Chick starring Rob Schneider! He's hilarious. (Only my opinion, but he has the funniest facial reactions ever on screen! Always makes me laugh). Many would disagree, but I'm a lifelong fan of wacky expressions and overacting!

Altogether, this was a kinda strange day. Before the birthday bash, spent time at Women's College Hospital (where both my kids were born), to have a heart stress test, due to palpitations. (hence the loose clothing and running shoes I was instructed to wear). First you walk, then you walk faster, then, REALLY fast. Had to get my heart rate up to 165 beats per minute. Gak. I was pretty wiped after that.

Next? Over to the Hot Docs film festival headquarters at U of T's Victoria College (where my sister, Carrie used to attend as a teenager).

It was a gorgeous day on campus,

with students, (or Hot Docs employees?) out enjoying the sunshine, throwing a frisbee around.

It's been years since I've picked up accreditation for any festival!

Hot Docs media room. Fun to catch up with the reporting/critic gang again,

see the Hot Docs chalk board,

look at the old buildings and paintings,

including the portrait of the late literary critic/theorist Northrop Frye. (he taught at Victoria College for over 20 years and was also Chancellor there for 13 years.  Carrie was among his students and biggest fans).

I left the building, Hot Docs media pass in hand. Had to have it in order to get in to see the upcoming Rick Springfield movie An Affair of the Heart at the Bloor Cinema a few days later.

I parked at the Manulife Centre lot.

The flowers were in bloom!

The fancy Ashley's window display featured a photo of Downton Abbey to promote their classy china,

and the show (on Vision TV). Made me want to sit down on the sidewalk and pound out a freelance article, but didn't have a laptop, paper, pen, crayon or press notes handy, so, opted for a picture instead. (it'll last longer). The lack of proper materials had me hightailing it over to the lovely and elegant (?)

Gerrard Square. Since I'm finally attempting to relaunch my career - (this time, as a freelance entertainment writer, and possibly, a voice-over "artiste" - ha ha!),

I hit up The Source to buy my first digi-recorder, (a good friend of mine suggested SONY is the best),

and they had several,

but selected this one, because it was labelled "Easy Operation"! (Big selling point for me). Now, just have to read the instruction book and try to decipher it. (Easy? Hmmmmm, don't think so, at least, not for the technically-challenged)!

Next? Over to Metro. Yep, more groceries. I seem to LIVE in grocery stores, (which is strange, since I hate to cook).

(Would always much rather be playing with tape recorders than microwave ovens). - Also bought a recorder for phone interviews. I was SO happy on the way home, with not one, but TWO brand spanking new recorders. The last one I had finally broke down. I've been obsessed with recorders all my life.

Can you believe I bought my first one at the age of 11? It was a mini reel-to-reel that cost $20. Bought it at Em's Variety store on Mount Pleasant Avenue around Millwood. It was my favourite-ever possession. Still have it. (Just NEVER could part with the thing)! It's a Lloyds. (does that company even still exist?)

On Sunday April 29th,  in preparation for my interview with singer/songwriter/musician/actor/writer Rick Springfield, I'd read his revealing book,

then went to the premiere of his documentary film An Affair of the Heart at the Bloor Cinema,

The Rickaholic lineup snaked around the block.

Rick arrived at 8:15 p.m. along with cast & crew members, plus his film rep, Ryan Levey (right), who pushed hard to get me an interview with Rick. (thank you Ryan!) Thanks also to the Toronto team of VK & Associates!

I got to meet the man-of-the-evening just before the screening, (here with his extraordinary director, Sylvia Caminer, who has made a simply outstanding behind-the-scenes concert film),

and asked him a few questions at a mini-presser/scrum.

When I got home at midnight, transcribed the tape and wrote a little news story about the event for Filed it at 3 a.m. and a few hours later,

lo & behold, it showed up online, picture credits, byline and all. Sure felt good!

The next afternoon, I met Rick at the Sutton Place Hotel for a half hour, one-on-one, (my first personal interview in nine years since being unexpectedly sidelined by looking after my (now late) Mum during all her illnesses and challenges, and then my own year-long breast cancer journey). Had NO qualms at all about the interview. I knew he'd be great, (and he was), but worried about operating the new digi-recorder. Ended up DOUBLE recording it, just to be sure! All is well. As soon as I have a publishing date, will let you know where to see the interview. Rick is very honest about his "checkered past", as well as about his lifelong battle with depression. (and I can highly recommend the film).

Release date for An Affair of the Heart is still to be confirmed.

All of the above excitement was pulled off while working around some health issues concerning my amazing Mum-in-law who has been in and out of Sunnybrook Hospital. I was with her in emerg one afternoon and again today. Despite her own troubles, I was astounded when she asked about my interview with Rick and told me we all need to "Celebrate the GOOD times," (which brought tears to my eyes). Love you Mum.

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