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Mira Aleta

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Mira Aleta last won the day on March 3

Mira Aleta had the most liked content!

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About Mira Aleta

  • Rank
    Suburbanite

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    Ottawa, ON
  • Interests
    Reading, Kickboxing, Yoga, Music, Social Justice, Spending time with friends & family
  • Public Name
    Mira Aleta

Previous Fields

  • Amusing Quote or Song Lyric
    "I do it for the joy it brings, 'cause I'm a joyful girl, I do it 'cause the world owes me nothing, and we owe each other the world." -Ani Difranco
  • Favourite MG(B) Song
    I have to choose one?

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  1. At the risk of getting really deep in the weeds, I'd like to write about some of my perspectives on environmental concerns. We have been seeing the media take more notice of environmental concerns of late, and for good reason. Unless one holds a climate denial viewpoint close to heart, most of us are concerned to varying degrees about the environmental degradation that is being wrought by a mixture of extreme temperatures and weather events, rapidly melting glaciers, depletion of important ecological sites and the endangerment/extinction of plant and animal life therein, threats to the PH balance of the ocean, noise pollution on land and in the oceans, plastics accumulation in waters and on beaches, etc. The list goes on and on. I have been trying to sort through all of this in my head, while reading as much scientific evidence as my social service trained mind can reasonably absorb. I have come up with the following list of ways that I can contribute. There is some philosophy within each item, and some of it may hit close to your home: please know that what I offer is not meant to make anyone feel bad about their own choices, but encourage thought and discussion. 1) I am not a car owner. This is a big one. I have never owned a car and I have zero desire to own a vehicle. I am grateful that I have never found myself dependent upon the fossil fuel industry in this way. I live urban and can live without a vehicle: this is important to note. That said, I ride my bike, walk or take transit and note the congestion of traffic on city streets as I do so. As a cyclist, in particular, I find myself vulnerable for I have to cycle on busy city streets, replete with pot holes and storm grates and vehicles that sometimes think it's funny to play chicken with me. I see all of this traffic and I wonder how much of it is truly necessary? I live in an very well-to-do area: I live amongst the rich, though I would not describe myself as such. I see many in this area with bicycles strapped to their SUV's, ready for their weekend trips to the beauty of nature. Despite this desire to connect with nature and the proclivity towards activity, they drive the 2 blocks to the grocery store, the 6 blocks to the school to pick up and drop off their kids, the 4 blocks to the community centre for their workout. I find this fascinating; the incongruity of it all astounds me on many levels. My neighbor works 4 blocks from her house and yet she drives there everyday. She has a second job that is far enough that cycling and walking is out of the question, but it is a 40min trip on transit and the transit stop is one block from her workplace. Instead she drives in rush hour traffic, which doesn't save her any time at all. She needs the second job to pay for her car. I have heard my car loving family members tell me that a car is freedom. Is this true for my neighbor? If she decided to give up her car, walk the 4 blocks to and from work and give up her second job, think of the extra time and money she would have for other activities. Perhaps I am projecting, for the things that I have found truly valuable in life, such as hiring a personal trainer or going back to university or taking a trip to visit my family on the other side of the country, could only be achieved for me because I have never had to devote hundreds of dollars a month to paying for a car. This has been a win-win for me. If I take into account the fitness and activity that I have added into my every day due to the extra walking and cycling I do to get places, then we can add another "win" in there. If I count all of the fossil fuel emissions saved over the course of my life, there is yet another "win". 2) I don't have kids. Each living creature impacts the environment in a variety of ways. I didn't choose not to have kids for the sole purpose of saving that environmental impact. I've known since I was 11yrs old that I didn't want kids. One happy byproduct, however is that I have saved the earth that impact. One might posit that my (non-existent) kids might have been the innovators to save us all. I suppose that is possible. What I have seen in my family life (which feature a gaggle of kids courtesy of my brothers), is that while kids are wonderful and can be taught to be ecologically aware, they can also put a burden on a household in terms of time and financial resources that put the whole family in crisis mode that makes ecologically sound choices untenable. Let's take my brother, for example, who lives in the U.S.A. This is important to note because in the States, you have to live in a good school district lest your kids get their education from the school depicted in the movie "Dangerous Minds", or the TV show "The Wire". So they moved to a small house in a ritzy area; an area that has good schools. My brother and his wife both work in social services in areas that are only drive-able. While there is bus service available in their city, it is not set up to be truly useable or accessible in the way that the transit service is in my urban area. It would take them almost two hours to bus each way, and almost an hour to cycle each way. It is a 35min drive for each of them and they drop their kids off at school and pick them up because the school bus routes are not well planned. The year my nephew was in kindergarten he had to transfer school buses, with a 15min wait in between the two buses: is it any wonder that they choose to drive their kids? Due to fact that they live in the States, they also have things to pay for things like garbage pick-up (not provided by the municipality in their area) and (of course) health care, which costs them over a grand every month for their co-pay, despite the fact that my brother has a private insurance through his employer: this is the affordable option, and is the base rate available to them. As a comparison, I have a co-pay through my job which amounts to about $200 a year which gives me dental, prescription, optical, psychological counseling, chiropractic/physiotherapy/athletic therapy/massage therapy. This is in large part due to the difference in social safety net provided by these two very disparate governments. If my brother's family lived in Canada (which I still hope for), he would be able to live close to his workplace without having to worry about their kids getting a subpar education as the schools in Canada are much more stable in terms of the education delivered (though we have started to hear rumblings of this changing: a good reason for each of us to keep our eyes peeled). Their kids could take one school bus to school, or in high school take transit. My brother and his wife could also take transit, ride a bike or walk and have less time devoted to commuting and more time available for the things they love to do, such as spending time together. While commuting they could read a book (on transit), listen to music, or get some exercise in: things which they don't have the time, money or energy for currently. They also wouldn't have to pay over $12,000 a year, out of pocket, on basic health insurance. That is money that they could divert to other things which means that they could quit the side hustles they both have in order to make ends meet; side hustles that require many more miles in their cars. This is all to say that our core values surrounding the social safety net really do make a difference to the environment as well as people individually and families and. These advantages and benefits extend to families having more time to do things like recycle responsibly, hang their laundry (indoors or out) instead of using the dryer, garden, hunt through second hand stores as opposed to opting for fast fashion, learn how to sew and recycle garments (which also inspires ones' creativity). All of this in addition to needing to use their vehicles less, and maybe even make do with only one vehicle. 3) I vote. This may seem really silly, but I still believe in voting. I would really have liked to see the electoral reform that the Liberals promised to us take effect. Since it has not, there is one more thing to question, ponder and fight for. I try to be as aware as possible about what is going on in the world. I read a lot of articles and do so from a diverse set of sourcing (though I do have sources which resound with me more readily). I read books. Books are great because they have the benefit of exploring issues from a more complete set of facts. I find that it's harder to slant a whole book (at least one that is effectively and correctly sourced), than it is a single news article. I love discovering the historical content beneath the surface and seeing the same issue from a political perspective, a journalistic perspective, an artistic perspective as well as the perspective of the people living in the moment. History does tend to repeat itself: a fact which none of us can lose sight of in our current political climate. The trends that have emerged in the past will emerge again unless and until we all start taking this idea of democracy seriously. We all need to vote and we all need to understand who we are voting for and why we are voting for them. We all need to look at what has happened historically to ensure that we understand whether or not what is being promised is possible, probable or completely unrealistic given what has happened in the past. We need to understand how we are affected by the decisions made by our legislators and we need to understand who supports our legislators financially. All of this is a huge part of working towards more environmentally sound policies. We need to understand how the governments legislative decisions affect the protection of our ecologically important areas, our waterways, our ability to access services that help us live more eco-friendly lives (like strong transit, eco-friendly building practices and exploration of new and innovative ideas such as tiny house living, passive air exchange systems in homes and apartments, affordable and sustainable urban development such as planning for urban garden spaces and urban solar and wind generation that may help take some of the burden off of our electrical grid, encouraging farming practices that will allow us to keep our arable land healthy for generations to come, and so much more). We need to be curious about how much effect the funders of our legislators have on these legislative decisions and we need to question whether or not they are having too much influence. In short, we need to be informed beyond the sound bite of the day. 4) I'm serious about recycling. This year is the year of getting rid of single use plastics. I am still imperfect at this, but am trying. I love the Bulk Barn and now take jars in instead of using the plastic bags provided. I avoid plastic wrapped foods such as trays of sliced mushrooms and 4-packs of sweet peppers. I buy single apples and oranges instead of bags. It's tough, though. I love Haloom cheese, but it comes wrapped in single use plastic. I try to buy environmentally friendly hair care products, dish soap, and hand soap but who knows if these products are truly environmentally sound. I do my best to research but there is not always a clear answer on whether or not a product is harmful over the long term. So I try and then try again. That's it for now, but I appreciate the opportunity to share!
  2. Hi Everyone! I just got home from the Ottawa show and want to post the set list (as I remember it...I’m not always great with the song names so please feel free to correct me if you notice a mistake): Champions of Nothing, Prime Time Deliverence, Tripoli, Fearless, Empty Road, While We Were Hunting Rabbits, Born Losers, Symbolistic White Walls, Fated, The Fine Art of Falling Apart, Load Me Up, Apparitions, This is Night, Change of Season. Encore: Hello Time Bomb, Strange Days, Blue Skies over Badlands. This concert had a lot of songs that I haven’t heard played in concert for so many years that I can’t be certain that I ever heard them played in concert (not since he was burning monkey masks on stage)...or perhaps it is just the level of inebriation I was experiencing at those bygone concerts which keeps me from remembering. There was lots of talk about drinking at this concert and Matt did get visibly drunk to the point where I wondered if he forgot some of the words to Change of Season (of course my memory could be off, or he could legitimately changed the lyrics which he absolutely has the right to do). The drinking jokes seemed to get a mixed review and for my part I have overcome addictions myself and have family still mired in addiction so the chatter about alcohol doesn’t have the same shine it would have had in my younger years. That said, Matt seemed to be enjoying himself. I certainly felt that his demeanour was lighter and more cheerful than it has in past concerts and I wonder if this tour, with the more intimate venues is part of that. Whatever the case, I am happy that Matt seemed well: jokes about alcohol won’t keep me from his concerts now or ever. The venue was small enough for conversation between he and the audience and I know that’s true because I was in the cheap seats and yelled out to him at a silent moment and responded to what I yelled, which was pretty fun! The lighting and simplistic set design was gorgeous; simply breathtaking. The only one that rivalled it in my opinion was the lighting on his Lights of Endangered Species tour. The backdrop tonight was five vertical lights directly behind Matt which spanned from floor to ceiling. They reminded me of the neck of a guitar, whether or not that was the intent, I do not know. They shimmered and shone in a variety of different hues and rhythms. Whoever thought up the lighting deserves a raise. Finally, Matt’s voice is the best I’ve heard it in years. He was back to his true tenor self, even transposing some songs into higher keys which was unexpected as he seems to have been going to lower keys in past concerts. I wonder if it is easier on his voice to sing solo? I haven’t heard him this strong vocally since Vancouver. If I’ve posted stuff that others have already spoken about, I extend my apologies. I didn’t want spoilers so I haven’t read any of the concert feed. oh...if you are reading this before going to see him in concert: brush up on the lyrics to Load Me Up!
  3. I’m so happy to hear that! End of life care is incredibly important and misunderstood. While the experiences you have must be tough, I would guess that there is also much beauty attached to your work. I work in mental health care, with much focus on suicide. I talk about death all the time and find at least as much positive, as negative, though this is not the same as what you deal with day in and day out. Have you seen BJ Miller’s Ted Talk? It is my all time favourite Ted Talk, knocking both Brene Brown and Amanda Palmer off their long held positions at the top of my list. If not, here it is:
  4. This is a very tricky and personal issue. I wonder if you are concerned that you are not feeling the deaths of those around you more acutely? I feel this is an important question that can't be simply answered as this can shift and change over time. I have known many a person who has worked in the health care field and found themselves emotionally distanced by all of the tough stuff they face: deaths, traumatic accidents, assaults, etc; who then, at the end of their careers, or when their own lives take an unexpected shift, find themselves feeling a backlog of all that they have witnessed. I have also met and worked with people who have a very profound sense of spirituality that allows them to process their emotions without getting emotionally involved. I don't know what the right answer is in general, and certainly not for anyone else. I have found that in my personal life, I am quite able to separate myself from what other people are dealing with, and own only that which is mine; emotionally speaking. I lost a parent and two grandparents in the span of 18months, almost losing my other parent within that timeframe as well. I no longer have a fear of death myself, due to these events and have developed a strong sense of spirituality over the ensuing years. This helps me to feel the emotions that arise from the death of someone in my circle, without the death impacting me so acutely that I have trouble moving forward...so far, at least; life surprises me on a regular basis and it's possible that this would not be true were one of my core loved ones to die. Despite this distance I have from the acute effects of death, I do feel grief, loss, sadness, pain, joy, fear, discontent, shame, disquiet, curiosity, fatigue, energy, and so much love for my life, among other emotions. I try to stay away from tagging emotions with labels like "positive" and "negative" and think on them as important pieces to expressing myself authentically. I try to celebrate every moment, large and small. This, I think, is what allows me to keep waking up and moving forward each day with a smile on my face...a real smile; a beat in my feet, a song in my heart. Perhaps this sounds too shiny for some. I think that if we are looking within ourselves and allowing ourselves to feel what we need to feel, then we don't need to worry about what the world is telling us about how we should feel. We'll feel what we need to, when we need to feel it. That said, if you're wondering if there are emotions underlying your professional demeanor, then it might be worthwhile to dive a little deeper. You'll know when the time is right to do so: it will be a non-negotiable and you'll also see clearly how you want to move forward. Allow yourself to be surprised, and enjoy the ride: that's what life is all about!
  5. Bahahahaha! That's hilarious! I don't know that I have much of a right to comment on Matt stepping back from this site, or his other social media accounts as I was unaware of these occurrences...I was taking my own break from the wide world of web, as I often do. I will say that I find myself, a trauma survivor, to be in need of pulling back from all things tech related when I'm feeling a bit kicked by life. It's something that helps me take some time to look within and sort through all of the ridiculous nonsense that comes attached with having a pulse these days. I have often pondered my "relationship" with Matt: understanding that I met him once for 10min in person, meaning that we have no personal relationship whatsoever. That said, I feel as though there is a very personal quality to the way I feel about him, due to the manner in which I have bonded with his music. These days, I think of his music as a good friend: a stabilising force in my life when all else goes awry, and a source of joy in my quieter, calmer moments. When everyone else in my support network is inaccessible to me, his music is always there, in a variety of formats, including my memory which can play a wide variety of MG tunes with great aplomb. I want to be very clear about the fact that Matt's music is my friend; that I have no right to claim friendship with its creator. As much as he puts himself into his music, these are very small glimpses into who he is in the moment of the writing of the lyrics and music: a moment, flash frozen in time; not a clear indicator of the entirety of the man, himself, nor do I feel this contact affords me the right to comment on any of his life choices. Any opportunity I have to interact with Matt on social media is a bonus, and I consider it as such. I will also mention that I have been, for over a decade now, an adult educator in a variety of different ways, including working in the fitness industry where I am often placed on a stage with people who follow my every move and tend to bond with me in very surprising ways. I have been at a health clinic getting examined (with, quite literally, my pants down) and been told by the nurse how much my classes mean to her. I have been at the grocery store and had running commentary about the food in my shopping cart: for good, or for ill. I have been recognized at concerts, clubs, stores and gatherings and approached by those who knew me, but who I did not recognise; my time then monopolised by those individuals who feel I am their friend due to the classes they had taken with me. The total number of people I come in contact with in a month would not approach the number of people at an MG concert, let alone a social media site, though it has often given me pause to consider the way we treat those to whom we assign celebrity. I truly believe that each of us has the absolute right to set clear boundaries around our personal emotional space, no matter our celebrity status. I can understand, having lived in a microcosm of scrutiny, how we may push ourselves to a point of emotional tenuousness in an effort to keep life running 'as usual', to avoid the gossip that springs from what is perceived as 'disappearing', or just because our own internal wellness metre is a bit out of whack due to stressful life events. I would support anyone in their pursuit of mental and emotional equilibrium, regardless of how artless the 'exit stage left' might appear from the outside; recognising that an abrupt departure may be a sign of the necessity of the exit. Lastly, I will say that I felt very real care demonstrated in the comments on this thread, as well as a tinge of judgement. I wonder if the judgement may come from a lack of understanding of the factors contributing to a decision, or the effects it may have on our lives. The reality is that none of us know exactly why Matt, or anyone else, may make a decision, and while it may be comforting for us to know, or fulfill some curious part of ourselves, it's really none of our business.
  6. I ordered my copies of Loser Anthems, and Avalanche a few weeks ago. I found them on the MG site and had to wait several weeks so that I could get the white vinyl Avalanche. I had to order my copy of Audio of Being from Amazon as they were sold out on the MG site: it arrived the following day and kept me going until the other two vinyls arrived. When I (finally!) received my order of Loser Anthems and Avalanche, I opened them up to find that the Avalanche records were black vinyl. I emailed the MG site and asked them for instructions regarding how to send them back and get the white vinyl. I got a prompt response telling me to keep the black vinyl, and the sleeves in case the white vinyl copy they shipped out to me was in any way damaged (ie/ if the sleeves were bent). I clarified that I didn't have to send anything back and, much to my delight, they confirmed that I was going to be able to keep both copies! This was the highlight of my week, folks! I have spent thousands of dollars on MG merch (music, tickets, travel, etc) over the years, and am always happy to do so. This feels like a gift, however! The white vinyl arrived and it did, indeed have a tiny bend in one corner of the sleeve so I swapped out the albums and will keep the black vinyl for listening; the white vinyl will be displayed somehow. I have to say that I have been listening to Loser Anthems pretty obsessively since it arrived and it sounds AAAAH-MAZING on vinyl! I haven't even put on Avalanche yet (sacreligious, I know), so entranced have I been with Loser Anthems. I even put it on for a friend who was amazed that this music was Matt Good. I'm still catching people unawares with Matt's music: the radio plays really don't do justice to his wide ranging musical talents. I hope you're all having a great time listening to your copies! P.S. I found copies of Chaotic Neutral and Something Like A Storm in the discount bin at Sunrise Records: 25% off.
  7. It looks like no one has posted here in awhile but this thread has been pinballing around my brain for awhile, as I've encountered many people who are unfamililar with Matt's music and want to hear a 'sample' of his musical stylings. This always leads me to the question of how to define Matt's music. True, he is primarily a rock n' roller but he is so much more than just that: he has such excellent range musically, a fantastic lyricist and poet, not to mention that he is a strong advocate of mental health awareness, social justice as well as fierce critic of international politics. It's tough for me to encapsulate all that he is in a nutshell musically, or otherwise. I started thinking about what 5 songs I would offer to people that might capture a pretty accurate cross-section of his musical range. While this wouldn't address the other aspects of Matt's public personae, it would at least have the capacity to get people curious enough to follow up on their own. Here's the list I have come up with, but would love to hear others' thoughts on this: 1-Dancing Invisible 2-Something Like A Storm 3-Empty Road 4-Zero Orchestra 5-Garden of Knives Let me know what you think!
  8. I'm truly amazed and impressed by some of the swag that others on this site have managed to collect! Since the last time I posted on this thread I've acquired a hoodie from the most recent tour, a vinyl copy of Arrows of Desire (which would likely be one of the very few items I would risk my life to save in the event of a fire or zompocalypse), and vinyl copies of BM revisited (also on CD), and Something Like a Storm. I'm excited about the upcoming vinyl releases and agree that it would be great to see Lights re-released on vinyl (as I failed epically when I decided not to buy it on vinyl). I would really love to see White Light Rock N Roll Review on vinyl as Empty Road is the inspiration for one of my all time favourite MG quotes. Does a lyric tattoo count as swag?
  9. I feel ya! I did pretty much the same thing. I can say that I like the ACT of playing vinyl...a lot! I love carefully taking it out of it's sleeve and looking at it to see if there are any scratches, putting it on the record player, positioning the arm and hearing the music start to play. There seems to be a richer experience attached to the whole process; one which is calming. I find this kind of calm attached to organic experience in my reading as well. I always have a book loaded on the e-reader on my phone, in case I'm caught in a situation of boredom. That's always the back up, though. I would rather read an actual book: feeling the weight of it in my hands, examining the pages for wear and tear; existent or non-existent, the smell of the book wafting out from the pages. The entire process of reading an actual book is delicious, as it the process of listening to a record as opposed to clicking a button on my computer or cell phone. Somewhere along the line we got really comfortable with "easy" being a reasonable trade off for "experience"...or maybe it's just that the things I love most are those things which are being replaced by electronically simplified and dumbed down processes.
  10. I used to be a huge OLP fan too, then two things happened: first, I saw them play live and was suitably unimpressed. They didn't seem to be able to translate well from album to live concert. Secondly, I bought "Beautiful Midnight" on the same day as I bought "Happiness". At the time I was only a passing MG fan, and bought it as an afterthought more than anything, remembering some of his radio play songs. I put "Happiness" in and was so disappointed. I decided, with a sigh, to put in BM and was stunned. I listened to it about 27,000 times in a row. I remember that I was going on a trip for Thanksgiving with my family and took BM with me (back in the day of discmen) and it was the only CD I listened to for the entire trip. I actually love Naveed. I still think it's the best overall OLP album. I also love the song 4am. I know it's OLP's version of Apparitions in that it is so well known, and I'm sure he feels he has to sing it at every concert, but it's a classic in my mind and has lots of personal meaning for me as well. I was at the recent concert in Ottawa and had to leave abruptly and unexpectedly after Matt finished playing. I heard I missed out on a duet of Hello Time Bomb...did I miss out on anything else? What did you guys think of the concert? I am having a bit of an internal struggle because it seemed like more of a festival show, at concert venue pricing. I know that Matt has to play the big hits for the less intense of his fans, but felt like I would have at least liked to hear ALL of the new album.
  11. This is wonderful news! I came across it on Amazon a couple of weeks ago and am so excited to add them to my collection!
  12. I love so many of the songs that have been relegated to "skip button" on people's players, such as Change of Season, Song for The Girl, and all of White Light Rock'n Roll Review. I actually have a tattoo of some Empty Road lyrics: "Because this world's too old to hate you, And too young to give up spring", due to the manner in which these lyrics have pulled me and pushed me forward; coercing me into trying again when all I wanted to do was put on "Loser Anthems", pull the covers over my head and retreat...and then they dared me dream of a time when I could be happy with me, as is (and look...that's here, that's now). The two songs that I hit the skip button on are Hello Time Bomb (though the video was inspirational to me for other reasons), and Load Me Up. I find that both have been played so many times that I can't appreciate them the way I once did. For awhile I couldn't listen to the Future is X-Rated, until out of the blue I found myself imagining a complex stage act reminiscent of all things Burlesque and it shifted in my brain...I encourage you to try it!
  13. This is super sad! This is a story about a recent Canada 150 compilation that completely lacks any french language music: https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/music/2017/07/21/oops-six-cd-canada-150-box-set-has-no-french-songs.html I think it's too bad that there's not more focus Canadian music because we have some of the most consistently creative and inspired music out there, in my humble Canuck opinion. In fact, when I look through my disc cases (yes, I still have CD's folks!) there is a huge quantity of Canadian music of all different varieties. And if the Star were reporting on my music collection, it would also notice the dearth of french language tunes, which is really too bad as I am bilingual and love french Canadian culture! It would be great if I heard more on the radio!
  14. So...are there any rules about skipping one when we get stumped, or re-directing to another film? I see noone has replied to this in a looooong time. It's one of my favourite places to read and post!
  15. Hey! This is a bit off the thread's topic, but I didn't want to start a whole new thread for my plea: I am looking for a hard shelled banjo case. It is going to be a gift. The recipient has requested the exact same case as he currently owns, but it has been SO beaten up that I can't tell who made it, or find a model number. The pull tab on the interior part of the case, which holds the picks, etc has a leather pull tab on which is printed "T(something-maybe an R, or a K?)L", and it says it is made in Canada. All searches have turned up a TKL that is made in the states, but he really wants something Canadian made. I would appreciate any help!
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