Pushing Through Hard Days

Work days are the hardest days to blog. I feel like nothing happens that is worth blogging about. Someone yelled at me within the first 5 minutes of my shift today though, and I dragged the frustration of that around the city with me. It made for a super long day. Then I came home and had dinner and got ready for bed. I did however have a really important moment of self-discovery while recording today’s vlog.

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Battle It Out

I really wish that I was able to enjoy days off, but it always seems like there are so many tasks around the house that I need to get through. Today was no exception. I am suffering the consequences of having moved everything into the dining room and trying to get everything reorganized. My evening was wonderful as I had the opportunity to attend RuPaul’s Battle of the season with Mike T and then headed over to Club 200 for a drink afterwards. There was an interesting emotional moment that happened though when I realized that I was in a gay bar which I have always felt was my safe space.

What Day Is It?

 

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I bet that none of you are going to be able to guess what today’s blog post is going to be about…

HAPPY NEW YEAR!…pretty original right? In fact it is so original I actually just copied and pasted this introduction paragraph from last year because it happened to apply to this year yet again.

It also is kind of a special blog for me as this will be post number 150!  YAY for crossing yet another milestone.

Yesterday, as I scrolled through my friend’s Facebook pages I noticed a very common theme. I came across comment after comment from people saying how 2015 wasn’t such a great year, but it wasn’t bad either. It made me stop to reflect on my year and I began wondering what my overall feelings of the past year. There were a lot of changes in my world, and since I have the memory of a gold fish, I decided to go through my massive collection of photos to recall all the crazy things that happened.

January:

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As with every January, I started off with my resolution of blogging more, but as we saw that didn’t last very long. I did however pick up a new hobby of knitting.

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Mike and I also struggled with our mouse invasion and started setting up traps to try and evict our unwanted house guests.

February:

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Winter here gets so incredibly cold that the Red River freezes over completely. My family started off the celebration of my aunts birthday with brunch at the pop-up restaurant in the middle of the river.

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I also moved from knitting to crocheting as my crafting hobby grew and learned how to make slippers. I also finished off the month by getting hurt at work and ended up stuck in the house for the next six weeks.

March:

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Since I was unable to walk due to my injuries and had a lot of free time on my hands being off work, my crafting hobby moved up to a whole new level and I tackled my first baby blanket with matching baby hat which I gifted to Sarah and Jeff for their new little one.

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About half way through the month, I decided to move back out to the farm with my parents. It was awesome to spend some time with them and be able to cuddle Oskar, my puppy, every night.

April:

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I was finally able to return to work again progressing through reduced hours all the way up to full shifts as my body healed. As much as I complain about my job somedays, I sure am grateful for it cause overall I love what I do. Crafting became a much more slow process as I had much less free time, but I started on a full size afghan for my bed.

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April also brought with it springtime and the opening of the BDI (Bridge Drive-In) which meant the start of ice cream season.

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The snow had melted early and it was awesome to be able to enjoy all the outdoor activities.

May:

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I moved in with one of my best friends as being an adult living with my parents so far away from the city started to become tiresome. Shannon’s daughter had moved out and it was an awesome opportunity to move into the newly vacated space.

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Being single and having made a series of poor life choices, I finally hit my financial breaking point and had to make major changes. I said goodbye to my car and turned it over to the bank and have been carless since.

June:

 

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June started off with my birthday which this year was planned to be incredibly low key. Shannon, her brother, and Mama Mike kidnapped me to took me to the Half Moon out in Lockport, Manitoba.

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We had an amazing lunch together before we headed over for cake and a bonfire at Cori and Richard’s place. I am so blessed to have such amazing friends in my life that organized such a wonderful surprise day for me. June also marked the 100th subscriber to my blog (which really isn’t that big of a number when you look at most blogs, but it is still a huge blessing to know that 100 people have decided that my writing is worth actually following).

 

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June also is the month which we celebrate Pride. Shannon and I made Rainbow Jello Shooter Cake, but our annual before the parade brunch didn’t happen this year because I wasn’t hosting it (remind me that I am hosting brunch again next year). Shannon and I headed down to the parade anyway and had an awesome day together.

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I also started playing with my camera more and spent more time making videos for YouTube. I finished off June catching poison ivy. That was probably the worst part of my year because it was so incredibly itchy and took so long to heal.

July:

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I celebrated Canada Day (July 1) with Shannon and her family. We went over to her mom’s place to watch the fireworks from the top floor of their high-rise apartment.

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I also enjoyed the Bridge Party at The Forks with Jason, Jesse, Crystal, and some other friends which was a lot of fun spending the day hanging out on the bridge listening to awesome music.

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Then I broke my head open by running into a concrete beam. I ended up with a pretty bad concussion and spent most of my summer feeling way less smart after injuring my brain. That resulted in more time off work which meant the perfect opportunity to make another baby blanket as I found out my friend Mandy was expecting a new family member.

August:

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Apparently in August I developed a bit of a gambling addiction! Just kidding, I apparently had a whole stack of lotto tickets that I never checked. As it turns out, I actually won almost $100 on one ticket so that was a pretty awesome way to start the month.

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Then I went out to Calgary, Alberta to celebrate Jayme’s bachelorette party. It was awesome to see her and Tim and make some more new friends. We had a crazy weekend together and it brought back a lot of awesome old memories about living in Calgary the first time round.

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Shannon and I also couldn’t miss out on Folklorama which is the opportunity to celebrate all the different cultures in the world. Patrick, Tom, Adam and I also went to a few different pavilions later that week. August also ended with the beginning of the busiest time of year for volunteering for the board of Reel Pride as we started kicking everything into high gear for the annual film festival.

September:

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I can’t go a year without putting a 12 inch wiener in my blog at least once, and thanks to Mama Mike and a late night drive to Skinner’s out in Lockport, that mission was fulfilled.

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Reel Pride celebrated their 30th Anniversary of incorporation this year and thanks to Fame Night Club we had an amazing pearl themed birthday party to mark the occasion with the most amazing birthday cake from Chocolate Zen Bakery.

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Then I headed back to Calgary to visit Austin who has become a great friend and we had an amazing weekend doing things that I hadn’t done when I lived there like checking out Telus Spark and going to the Home Show at the BMO Centre.

October:

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Moving into October, I enjoyed two weeks of vacation from bus driving and spent two weeks volunteering to get all the last minute details organized for Reel Pride. The film festival was amazing and our programming committee selected some amazing films to feature once again this year. I am so excited to see what they come up with next year.

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I also had the opportunity to host David C. Jones and Paula Stromberg, two amazing short film makers who came from Vancouver to participate in the festival. It was awesome getting to be a tourist in my own city with them and enjoy eating at some of the fantastic restaurants we have here and touring the Manitoba Legislature, The Forks, and the Canadian Museum of Human Rights.

November:

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Patrick and I started out November with a road trip to the Whiteshell Provincial Park. We enjoyed an awesome snow-free day taking pictures of the amazing scenery provided by the park. November also marked for me an entire month of daily vlogging which felt like an awesome achievement to have accomplished. I feel like we were also extremely lucky last year as it didn’t snow until late November, which combined with the early spring resulted in a pretty awesome summer.

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Since I spent so much time vlogging, there is a definite lack of pictures to share with you for this blog, but you can check out my YouTube Channel to keep up with my adventures there as well.

December:

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After taking a month off from Reel Pride, it was time to step-up and start getting ready for next year. One of the biggest changes next year is the fact that we are probably loosing the Gas Station Arts Centre due to renovations. I took on the project of starting to scout out new venues for the board so that newly elected board at the Annual General Meeting in January will have the opportunity to have a confirmed space booked for the festival.

 

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I also finished one of the best kept secrets I’ve managed to pull off which was a hand made afghan for Brent and Chris as their Christmas/Wedding gift that I haven’t given them for the past two years. Between having to make sure all the pieces were hidden when they would visit and resisting the urge to post pictures about it, I managed to surprise them and I hope that they really liked it. I also decided to go back to knitting as I was getting bored with crocheting after doing a few large blankets.

Probably the most exciting part of 2015 is fact that I have moved into my own apartment solo back in Downtown Winnipeg. It was a little unexpected, but the opportunity to rent Mike’s condo popped up and I jumped at the chance to have my own space.

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I worked Christmas and Boxing Day, but enjoyed the traditional Boxing Day family dinner out at the farm with my extended family which is one my favourite part of the holiday season. New Year’s Eve was shared with Tracy and Sarah for Prime Rib Dinner at Club 200 for “One Night in Bedrock.” Unfortunately, I didn’t last until midnight as I am suffering from a bit of a cold and decided to go to bed early.

All things considered, 2015 was a pretty amazing year. There were absolutely highs and lows, but I have come to appreciate all the amazing people in my life so much more over the past year and can’t wait to make more amazing memories with all of you. Until then, have an amazing New Year’s Day, Happy 2016, and don’t forget to be kind out there!

Confusion About the Future

 What a grey rainy day off today has been. I have been pretending to be an adult and getting caught up on all my chores around the house.  I decided that it was time to take a break and sit down infant of my computer to write a blog post. I have been reflecting quite heavily about my previous post regarding the renewal of my blog site. It has been a challenging decision and I certainly am no where near coming to a conclusion about what it is that I am going to do with my blog.

Today I have actually sat down at the computer as opposed to writing on my cell phone which has been the traditional location for most of the blogs that I have written. Some of the things that I prefer about sitting down at the computer is that I can type on a traditional keyboard which allows me to type much faster. It allows me to write almost as fast as I can think as compared to the tiny keyboard on my cell phone. The downside to this is that my laptop is much less portable and I am unable to write a certain kind of blog post that can only be written out and about to share the emotion and experience I am feeling at the exact moment that I chose to blog. However, going forward I would certainly like to spend a bit more time writing at my desk rather than always blogging from a mobile platform.

I have been off work for the last two days following a seven day stretch of days worked in a row. It has been really nice having two full days to enjoy my life and refocusing myself on my goals and priorities post volunteering for Reel Pride 2015. I have organized the papers on about half of my desk (because I keep everything in a well organized and catalogued manner so that I can actually find things that I am looking for in the future and the mess that has been my desk for the past two months has been driving me absolutely insane). I have also been catching up on three weeks of untouched dirty laundry which is essentially done with the exception of a few items that need to be folded and put away because matching socks is absolutely the worst chore in the world.

I am looking forward to finishing all my chores today so that I will have a clean and well organized workspace to refocus myself towards the pursuit of my goals and dreams as we charge rapidly towards 2016. I am pretty sure that I am going to renew my blog as well as to continue to grow my youtube channel, but I want to make sure that it feels right before I commit to another year of my site as there are still a few days left to make the official decision.

I also want to quickly say thank you to everyone that has been a part of the making of the success of both my blog and vlog. This past summer my blog passed 5,000 views and my youtube channel is about to cross the same threshold. It is an indescribable feeling knowing that so many people have taken time from their life to read or watch the content that I have created and I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity to share my views and experiences of the world with you, so thank you. Below is today’s vlog as well for you that are interested in checking out my youtube channel.

Have a super day and I’ll talk to you tomorrow!

To Blog, To Vlog, or Both?

  

It has been two years since I first started blogging. The renewal notice for my website has once again arrived via email. The predicament that I am faced with is whether or not to renew. 

As you all know, I have been incredibly unfaithful to vlogging and blogging over the past year. Part of that had been to life circumstances, but most of it has been due to a lack of confidence in my creativity. That confidence is slowly coming back, but I am still very shaky about actually sharing the stories I have made. 

I have been finding more success with vlogging and have been posting videos to my YouTube channel more frequently than I have been sharing written stories. Part of the success with that is recording a 30 second video clip only takes a 30 second commitment from my day. However, making the time to write is a much more demanding task as it has taken me 5 minutes to get this far in this post, although is has probably only taken you about 30 seconds to read. 

I have also recently changed my focus away from trying to create the type of stories I think people want to read and have turned it more onto sharing the types of stories I want to share. I have been enjoying creating and sharing my work with you all much more since I adjusted my priority. 

I have one more week to decide what the future of supermattymatt.com is, but I’m not sure if this will be the end of my story telling as you know it. I am going to be contemplating this decision very throughly over the next few days. Stay tuned. 

All Things Must Come To An End

  

Good Morning Friends,

I have talked a lot lately about how much time I have been committing to Reel Pride. It has been an incredible festival and I so rewarding to experience being in the theatre with a group of people and sharing in the experience of watching these films. However, today marks the final day of the festival.

On Wednesday, I had the pleasure of being a part of the Short Film Selection Committee for the 12th Annual Canadian GLBTTQ* Short Film Competition. We had a record number of submissions which we were able to narrow down to a program of 17 different films. In the process of curating this program, building the program and testing the final projection copies of the disks to make sure the program was flawless I have seen the selected films many many times. I think the most fascinating aspect to watching the final program with an audience was how different the experience was. The reaction from the audience was incredible and made all the hard work that I have committed to the project totally worth the time and effort.

As a part of the Short Film Competition, two film makers were able to join Reel Pride this year from Vancouver. I had the pleasure of hosting David C. Jones and another lady graciously hosted Paula Stromberg. It was fun to be a tourist in my own city once again. I had the opportunity to go to the Winnipeg Art Gallery and the Canadian Museum of Human Rights. I have been so busy lately that I lost focus of my priorities (including blogging). Spending time with them certainly helped to refocus me on what is important to me as well as to inspire me to challenge myself both professionally and personally. I am really looking forward to building off the momentum that these two incredible people that I now have the pleasure of calling my friends have provided me.

Yesterday, I said goodbye to David at the airport and am back at the Gas Station Arts Centre enjoying the full day of programming which Reel Pride has provided. We have three films today as well as two other events taking place. Industry day was a wonderful experience to have a personal discussion with several people that have been successful in the film industry. I feel truly lucky to be in the position that I am and have the opportunity to learn the lessons that Reel Pride has been able to teach me and to make the amazing personal connections with the people that I have through my position on the board.

As I mentioned, today will be the closing day of the 27th Annual Reel Pride Film Festival. We are closing the festival with the film S&M Sally which has been given a PG rating. I am really looking forward to putting my feet up and enjoying this film from beginning to end without any interruptions (I have booked this film off of my volunteer shifts). Monday will be spent relaxing and recovering from my last 17 days of vacation from bus driving all of which have been donated to Reel Pride to contribute to the success of this amazing 30th festival.

With that I am going to wrap up by thanking all the close friends and family I have in my life for their patience with me for the lack of communication that I have had over the past few weeks leading up to the festival. I am looking forward to reconnecting with all of you now that my responsibilities are coming to an end. I also have to thank the friends that have provided me the encouragement to come back to blogging after being discouraged so many times by negative feedback.

Have an amazing day,

-SuperMattyMatt

Time to Change the Calendar Already?!?!?

  

Good Morning Friends,

Did I miss September? I only just changed my calendar from August to September last week (yeah, I missed the boat on that one a little bit). I totally didn’t realize it was October 1 today until the first passenger showed me their brand new shiny monthly bus pass. I almost corrected them before I realized that we are beginning another new month. 
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to watch the first film of the 2015 Reel Pride Pre-Festival Program at the University of Manitoba. The film was called A Gay Girl In Damasus: The Amina Profile.  It was an extremely interesting film portraying the online lesbian relationship between a woman in Montreal, Canada and a woman, Amina, who claimed to be from Damasus, Syria. Their relationship helped to fuel Amina’s blog as she shared stories about what it was like to be a lesbian in Syria during the government crackdowns. The story takes a strange twist when Amina is suspected of having been detained by Syria forces, but no one can find any record of her arrests. 

I’m not going to tell you anything more because the film is an absolute must see. The film was followed by a discussion led by Drs. Janice Dodds and Liz Millward. It was very interesting listening to all the different perspectives and interpretations of the film. I am so glad that I had the opportunity to participate in this event and it helped to remind me why I’m a part of Reel Pride’s board of directors. 

I just got home from work and finished setting up my new bed frame that Shannon, my roommate, rescued from her brother’s house that he was planning on throwing away. I am so happy with it and so thankful that Shannon is such an amazing friend!

I have to get ready to get back to work shortly for my second piece of work. I am really looking forward to seeing what October has in store. I also can’t wait for my Mom to finally start planning Thanksgiving Dinner because I am really looking forward to stuffing my face with her yummy home cooked food. 

On that note, I’m going to find breakfast. Have an awesome Thursday!  

-SuperMattyMatt