Lovely Blog Award

3 Sep

This is a fairly new blog, so it kind of came out of left field when my friend over at Playful Meanderings nominated me for a blog award. I’d never heard about these before, but it seems like a fantastic way to pay it forward to other bloggers you love.

And, of course, it’s the perfect opportunity for oversharing. My favourite!

Now for the rules:

1. Thank the person who nominated you.

Thank you! Oh, and the rest of you should go check out her blog, especially if you’re a book-lover. Her writing is wonderful and entertaining!

2. Add The One Lovely Blog Award to your post.

Done and done

3. Share 7 things about yourself.

(1) I have my cat Phantom’s ashes in my bedroom closet. He was the cat I had growing up, and he was just the best. I can’t even explain to you how great he was. One time he stole a whole pork chop off my sister’s plate! And he used to cuddle with me and try to groom me. Awww. I wish I could tell you SO MANY STORIES about him, but you’d probably get bored really fast.

I moved across the country to go to university when Phantom was 12 years old. He was already having health problems by then – arthritis and a heart murmur. He was supposed to be on a diet to lessen the pressure on his joints and his heart, but he was, like, a ninja master when it came to stealing food. One time he ate my sisters birthday cake (many of my stories about Phantom begin with “one time he ate”).

Every time I came home he would sleep in my bed, or, if I was home but out of the house, in my suitcase. As soon as I came through the door he forgot about the rest of my family and he went back to being a one-woman cat.

One day, in the spring of 2004, my phone rang. I picked up the receiver and heard my sister Catherine crying on the other end. Annie, she said, he’s gone.

I didn’t need to ask who, only when and how.

Tonight, she said, it was a heart attack. Annie, when it started he ran to your room. He ran under your bed. He was looking for you.

I never thought I would cry so hard over a cat.

That year, when I went home for Christmas, my mother asked me if I wanted Phantom’s ashes. No, I said, what would I do with his ashes? She told me if I didn’t take them, she’d throw them in the garbage.

On New Year’s eve, my train pulled into Halifax. Phantom’s ashes were tucked deep inside my suitcase, wrapped in a protective sweater.

They sit in my closet now. I don’t really know what to do with them; if I were to bury or sprinkle them, I would want to do it in a place he knew, but there are none of those close by to me. Besides, I’ve kind of gotten used to having him around. It’s weird, I know.

Sometimes, when I’m throwing a party, I’ll disappear into the bedroom after I’ve had a few drinks. When I come back out I’m clutching a little grey urn. You guys, you guys, I say, this is my cat Phantom. Want to hear about him?

I throw good parties. You should come to one sometime.

Phantom, in his livelier days

(2) When I was in second grade I faked being left-handed for a whole month because I thought it made me more interesting.

(3) I have an embroidered picture of Sylvia Plath hanging on my dining room wall. She’s so great! I like the way she glares at me while I eat breakfast.

Hey Annabelle, guess what? I eat men like air.

(4) Theo’s birthday is the day before my grandfather’s birthday. My grandfather was named Ernest Joseph, which are Theo’s middle names.

Grampy died of pancreatic cancer on November 3rd, 1999, at home. I flew to Nova Scotia for the funeral; the church pews were packed and people had to stand at the back.

The last fruit he ate was a pomegranate, shared with my Aunt Carolyn, which seems strangely symbolic somehow, I mean what with Persephone and Hades and all. Now, every year on November 3rd, I eat a pomegranate and think about him.

I still miss him, a lot.

Theo might look like his dad, but he obviously gets his snappy dresser genes from Grampy:

(5) My friend Jessica did this amazing sketch last night of me as a suffragette, beating up policemen.

(6) I eat Montreal bagels like they’re going out of style. I think anyone who eats New York bagels is wrong and gross. Kidding! Kidding. Sort of.

(7) I was almost picked up by the police in Halifax.

See, there was this really big snow storm (a snow bomb, they kept calling it). The city was totally shut down; trucks with food and supplies were even having a hard time getting in. I can’t even emphasize just how much snow there was. So the government decided that they would plow like crazy at night, and dump all of the snow into the harbour.

Of course, they didn’t want to, you know, accidentally kill anyone while plowing like crazy. So they instituted a curfew of 10 pm, and said that anyone out on the streets after that time would be subject to a $1,000 fine.

My friends and I decided to have a Fuck The Curfew party. The plan was that I would crash with my friend Kat, who was hosting the party, thus avoiding the whole, you know, fine thing. Naturally, after a few drinks I came to two conclusions: a) I really, really wanted to sleep in my own bed and b) I was invincible and would never be caught by the police.

I was most of the way through the Commons before a police car pulled up beside me. I started panicking when the door opened and a police officer stuck her head out.

You know you’re not supposed to be out, right?

Boy, did I know. Shit, what was I going to do? I did the only thing my plastered brain could come up with: I lied like a motherfucker.

Yeah, I know, I said. But, see, my boyfriend and I just had a fight. A really big one. He kicked me out. I just need to go home.

I started crying, partly out of mad acting skills, partly out of the realization that there was no fucking way I could afford that fine.

The officer sighed and told me to get in the car. She drove me home, and not a word was said about the fine. Thank God.

4. Pass the award on to 15 nominees.

I’m shortening this list to 10, because I really don’t know too many blogs yet.

Audra Williams – Audra is a superstar badass feminist who likes to kick ass and take names, but ALSO talk about feelings. She also wears awesome clothes. Those are the main reasons we’re friends.

The Yellow Blanket – a beautifully, anonymously-written blog about pregnancy loss and infertility. The post about the author’s mother’s death from alcoholism had me in tears.

Make Me A Sammich – more awesome, well-written feminist fun! Plus, her blog name is just the best.

Crates And Ribbons – and still MORE awesome feminist writing! I especially loved her post about Game Of Thrones.

101 Books – If you love books, you need to read this blog.

Toronto Nanny – L gives a fascinating perspective on the life of a nanny. If you have kids, you should check her out, because it’s pretty dang interesting! If you don’t have kids, you should also check her out because she’s a good writer.

Cristian Mihai – makes writing about writing truly interesting. I really love his blog. If you are a writer trying to get published, you should really check him out.

The Falco Project – a blog about a transexual man’s journey to pregnancy and parenthood. The best part is that he and his partner refer to their future offspring as Falco. Amazing! I feel like I’ve learned so much from this blog.

Mama To Bean – this is my sister-in-law’s sister-in-law, which makes her my sister-in-law-twice-removed? I dunno. She’s also my friend! She recently had an incredibly adorable baby, and I’m hoping that this will be a kick in the pants to her to start blogging again.

The Adventures of Trans Man – This is a hilarious and honest blog about a trans man (duh) and his family. I love reading it. I especially love the pictures of Keith Richards.

You should go check them out, they are all fantastic!

5. Include this set of rules.


6. Inform your nominees by posting a comment on their blogs

Will do!

7 Responses to “Lovely Blog Award”

  1. transparentguy September 3, 2012 at 11:53 pm #

    Wow. Poor Phantom … at least he is/was well-loved.

    Where does one acquire such a Sylvia Plath picture? That would also be lovely on a set of china.

    Thank you for the nomination. I have to be honest, though. I’m kind of lazy and easily distracted … I will try to honor this, but odds are I’ll go to look for the perfect photo and wind up looking up Evil Knieval’s jumps and forget what I was supposed to do.

    • bellejarblog September 4, 2012 at 7:52 pm #

      Yeah, Phantom definitely had a good life.

      The Sylvia Plath picture came from here: I want basically everything this woman has made.

      And no worries about reposting the award – I wasn’t sure I would do it, either, but then figured it was a good way to get people looking at other blogs I love. And, I mean, Evil Knieval – how can anything compete with that?

      • transparentguy September 5, 2012 at 2:30 am #

        That is an amazing site. The dedication to do the cast of The Outsiders is unreal. That’s the kind of person who would have been just fine as a monk in the middle ages or something.

  2. playfulmeanderings September 4, 2012 at 5:33 pm #

    Five reasons to FOLLOW Belle Jar: 1. Smart & hilarious (see number 7) 2. Sentimental and warm (see number 4) 3. Stares right back at Sylvia (see number 3) 4. gracious paragraph1 5. Makes me cry (see number 1).

  3. MamaToBean September 5, 2012 at 2:45 pm #

    Sometimes I think you and I share alternate universe lives of similar direction. Thanks for nominating me! 🙂 I had fun investigating the other blogs you nominated so it did not go to waste! 😀

    • bellejarblog September 7, 2012 at 1:47 am #

      It also did not go to waste because it made you post again! 😀

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