Monday, April 25, 2011

The Holy Grail of Thrifting

The holy grail of thrift stores exists in the deep, deep south... Past the Anderson train station, which was the farthest that you could go on public transit when I was a kid (and, as far as I'm aware, the farthest you'd ever need to go into the south anyway). Past that weird Russian grocery store. Past Fish Creek Park and that creepy little church. Past the hardware store where they give you free popcorn. On the edge of the city, hidden in behind a dirty strip mall, the Shawnessy Value Village is like a magical cave of treasures.
This weekend, I took the trip to the other side of the city, where I discovered a brand new Corona bathing suit; the exact bathing suit that I have been coveting since last May's trip to Mexico.
Beyond the several amazing clothing purchases that were found throughout the trip, the knickknack selections is truly out of control in this place.
There were all kinds of 80's hair gadgets:

A neckline slimmer, which probably totally works:
You want teen fad merchandise? You got it:

How about folksy pieces of advice? Done:

Racial stereotype figurines? Got that too:

Creepy clowns? Check:
My dream-phone in 1990? Yes, please:
Years ago, while saving to buy our house, we lived out in the direction of this store. We spent hours browsing the aisles for rare finds (and spending a bizarre amount of time hanging out in Superstore). Nowadays, it's totally worth the trip once a year. If not for the whimsy alone!

~sarah p.

p.s. It was also Easter, which meant one thing: side-by-side Easter candy comparison taste tests.

I'll give you guys a sneak peek of the results: the bunny with the red collar is significantly cuter, and the brand-name Creme Egg is the far more refined of the two.
Now, for the love of god, go grab yourself some discount Easter candy posthaste! The Peeps are getting stale already!

p.p.s. Next Saturday is both Stars & Muscles 11 and Araab Muzik @ Hifi. Holy shit. This is a conundrum that is going to require a scheme of Fred Flinstone proportions. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Five Totally True Facts You Should Know About Phil Collins (including bonus "Phil's Greatest Hits" photo montage!)

Originally from the dirty streets of Atlanta, urban artist Phillip Cawlins was told to shorten his name to Phil Collins and adopt a British accent to up his appeal with the "adult contemporary" crowd.

2. Fact: 'Sussudio' makes a great ring tone.
Fact: Phil Collins' preferred ring tone is Soulja Boy's 'Turn My Swag On'.

3. It is common knowledge that Phil Collins informed his wife of his desire to get a divorce via fax. What you may not know is that he divorced his third wife by way of birthday cake, and his first wife by dancing on her grave.

4. Phil Collins keeps a sledgehammer in the closet in case Peter Gabriel ever stops by.

5. At the age of thirteen, Phil Collins got his big break by playing the Artful Dodger in a London production of 'Oliver!'; a role that prepared him for the world of show business by teaching him how to steal both wallets and hearts.

~sarah p.

p.s. As promised, here are some of the finest Phil photos known to man:

p.p.s. That last one has nothing to do with Phil Collins, but look how cute he is with his little top hat and tie! Aw!

Monday, April 11, 2011


Hey Calgary! Let's get fat!
Correction: Let's get fat-TER than usual.

~sarah p.

p.s. Hey Lard-O, why don't you wash it all down with a Fat Elvis milkshake from Boogie's? Peanut butter and bacon, with a side of defibrillator. We Calgarians are risk-takers when it comes to our cholesterol levels.
Cardiac unit at the Foothills holla back. Cardiologists drive Bentleys in this town.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

This is real. (The Sarah Parsons Factor)

(click to enlarge)

Noooo kidding. This is a printout of an e-mail I honestly received. Some of the names have been altered (by way of Liquid Paper and fine-tip Sharpie), but this is real.
After last week's post, I'm sure you all understand how difficult it was to get myself through this massage in the first place. Imagine my surprise when I found this e-mail in my work inbox Monday morning. Daaaammmn.

Well, I say I was surprised, but not really. Now, I don't feel like I am an unlucky person, but there must be some sort of "Sarah Parsons factor" in the world... I am sure of it.
Every time I am desperately, optimistically excited about something, you can bet that there's going to be a "sour turn" at some point, so to speak.... A routine harsh to my proverbial buzz. It's like every time I believe in something with unwavering positivity, there is some sort of universal interception that says "you turn that frown back down, Smiley".

While I sit here and wait for the scabies to set in, here are a few prime examples of the "Sarah Parsons factor" over the years:

After being told, by a reputable home inspector, that our basement had "never seen a drop of moisture", we have had steady seepage every Spring since we bought the house. There is a few weeks out of each year dedicated to towels on floor. Laying down towels on the floor, checking towels on the floor, wringing out the towels on the floor, drying the towels on the floor... Towel hell.

A pair of expensive boots were found, at a significantly discounted price, at a store that was on it's way out of business. Upon opening them at home, I realized that they had packed a size 6 and a size 7 boot inside of the box. I called the store right back, only to find out that it was their very last day in existence, and they had already closed down forever. I still stuff the size 7s full of insoles, hoping that I can someday "pull it off".

Finally my family had listened to me: after years and years of begging, it was decided that we would go on a tropical vacation instead of celebrating the holidays. In the middle of December, two days prior to leaving for sunny Costa Rica, I ended up with the chest cold to end all chest colds. My cough kept neighbouring rooms up all night. Not only was I sick, but also very unpopular on the beach.

Two weeks prior to my birthday, I decided to renew my ID. I went to the registry, filled out the forms, took the photo, and dropped off my old card. They ensured me that, although I was currently ID-less, I would have my card for sure by my birthday. The day before my birthday, the registry called me: I had forgot to sign on one of the lines, and they had forgot to call me until just that moment. Another PG-rated birthday for me.

...And don't even get me started on the stories about dates gone wrong, and pricey tights, and airplane mishaps, and library books, and cabins full of bats. Half of the stories don't even make sense, but I've learned to anticipate the unpredictable. Often the most unlikely of events is what eventually conspires, so I've had to learn to just play along and deal with the consequences, no matter how shitty they may be.
Really, what can I say? That's life, kid.
Never a dull day.

~sarah p.

p.s. Scabies! Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. What is this, the 17th century???

p.p.s. When we were children, we went on an outdoor excursion for a few days. When we returned home, we began to break out into spots all over our body. My mom took us to the doctor, who told my mom we had lice. My mom rushed us home, and bathed us in foul liquids and washed everything in the house. After a couple of days, the spots still weren't going away. She took us back to the doctor, who told my mom to re-treat us and re-clean the entire house. The lice were still around. We went to the doctor again one more time before my mom bit the bullet and drove us to the hospital. The waiting room was packed with very sick children, and we were bumped to the back of the line, but my mom needed peace of mind. Why were her two daughters playing host to a race of super-parasites? We waited for almost eight hours, reading the same issues of Highlights for Children over and over and drinking expired juice from the vending machine. A doctor walked by whom just happened to know my mom. The doctor had us lift up our shirts while she examined our spotty stomachs right in front of the triage desk. "Chicken Pox," she said. "Go home".