Portrait of an Artist in Black Top Sneakers

The first time Javier Bardem appears on-screen in Vicky Christina Barcelona, a lusciously photographed film set in Barcelona, he’s leaning against a wall in an art gallery looking forlorn. And, he’s wearing sneakers. The black top-white shoelace kind of sneakers that you see in a movie set in Barcelona about an artist picking up women for a ménage trios weekend. Bardem, in the role of a painter, exudes sex just as his character Anton Chigurh in No County for Old Man oozed evilness. The sexy ooze and the black top sneakers accompany Bardem in every scene he’s in. Except, of course, when he’s in bed.

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Murakami’s perfect reader

Writers’ body parts don’t usually get media attention. The profile of Haruki Murakami in the Globe & Mail described a man with toned biceps and quadriceps.  What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, a memoir of Murakami’s running and sitting life. Murakami, a former jazz club owner and successful novelist prone to reclusiveness, took up marathon running to combat the sedentary life of writing. This resonated with me. As a production artist working at a computer for hours, my extra pounds stay on an upward trajectory along with my age.

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Blues and whips

Last week or so, I took a friend to the Cottage Bistro, a live music restaurant on Main Street, Vancouver, for a birthday dinner. The website indicated a motorbike event, so I called ahead to confirm the time and type of music. I was two months late with this dinner invite, so we decided to go ahead with our plans.

At the Cottage Bistro, I ordered the buffalo burger and my companion chose fish and chips. I don’t know how the venue managed to blow preparing rather simple food, but the food was a disappointment. And instead of blues, there was a heavy rock band. In such a small venue, the sound blasted me and my companion out of our seats and into the street. We passed a long line of patrons buying beer, and outside, parked motorcycles lined the street for a block or two.

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