throwback to 1998, the year i finished high school and entered university.  tori amos was a rude awakening for me about music snobbery -  in high school i was at my best friend`s house with my other besties when someone mentioned tori amos.  `ew!` i said.  `she`s weird!`  one by one my friends chimed in, `what? i love tori amos`, `me too, she`s awesome`, `i have all her cds`...  my ultra-conservative/religious folks had blocked the music channel so in truth, i`d never heard a damned thing by tori amos.  after that day, curiosity got the better of me.  i secretly bought a cd.  then another.  then another.  then one by one i spent all my hard earned piano-teaching money on each of her piano albums, which i would carefully hide for shame whenever my aforementioned besties would come over to visit.  one day i came home from school and my father was in my room, sitting on my bed listening to my tori amos cd`s and reading the lyric books with a frown on his face - `i don`t think this is appropriate for you to be listening to` he said.  by then i was already head over heels in the world of tori amos.  daughter of a preacher like myself, pianist, rebel.  i was on my way into my own rebellion.  her music inspired me to go to university to study piano performance, and i think the fact i spent most of my time in the practice rooms there secretly playing her songs instead of the classical pieces i was meant to work on may have contributed to my changing degrees, lol.

as i woke up this morning my spouse took our puppy out for a walk and i lay in the dark thinking about my favourite professor in the philosophy department when i was a student, and all the amazing female thinkers she had introduced me to - andrea dworkin, simone de beauvoir, bell hooks, betty friedan... etc. etc. etc.  i felt very inspired.  just yesterday i had asked my lovely university students , all 18-19 years of age, what they wanted to do after university.  i was shocked that most of the girls replied that they wanted to get married.  `why!?` i asked, incredulous.  `i want to be happy` they replied.  i myself never wanted to get married, it was just something that happened as a result of being from different countries as my partner.  i certainly never equated marriage with happiness.  i still think of all the things that i want to and have yet to accomplish in my life - marriage is not something i ever crossed off a list.  i think tori amos was one of many great role models for me.  she is so fearless, expressive and artistic.

in other things, i have started writing poems again and it`s so cathartic to let words move from your mind to rest on paper.  also very relaxing is the fact that we have to take the puppy for walks, we go by a river and the sound of the water is so soothing it actually melts away the day`s cares.  yesterday i treated myself to knitting, reading, and red wine and camembert after work.  it`s the first time i felt so relaxed in years.  i think having a job where i`m not working for myself has allowed me to relax on a level i never could working for myself.  as for letting go of cares, i saw this speech on social media yesterday and it really inspired me.  you can find the whole thing on youtube but i just chose this short clip.  he rocks.

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