November 19, 2018

Oh Canada!

I went home to Canada to surprise my niece for her birthday. I took the redeye last Thursday night, and came back to LA on Sunday. It was a wonderful, albeit far too short visit. Here’s the thing about going home though, even 5 minutes can feed your soul. I was surrounded by family, friends, nature, Canadian accents, and animals. I was in cottage country on Lake Simcoe, which is a glorious place.

I woke my niece up when I went in her room, and she simply stared at me, unsure what was happening. She then jumped up and hugged me like her life depended on it. She is a wonderful human being and I would love her even if she wasn’t family. I am very happy I went for the weekend. The truth is I would fly home every weekend if I could. There is no place like home, and home is Canada.

I played board games, read while relaxing in a hammock, watched the sun rise with a cup of tea sitting by the lake, and watched the sun set at a dinner table covered with delicious food and enveloped in good conversation and laughter. I tuned out the noise of life for a couple of days and slowed everything down. It was a terrific weekend and I was happy, which is a blessing often overlooked in the chaos of life.

Canadians are good people. There is inherent kindness and generosity. Not only that, but there is a genuine desire to talk to people. Whether you are at the grocery store, or sitting and waiting for your flight to be called, a Canadian will smile and engage in a way that is classically Canadian. I have lived in America longer than I lived in Canada, but Canada will always be what feeds my soul.

I cried when my brother dropped me off at the airport. Not a pretty tear down the cheek situation, but rather a bawling and gasping for breath type of thing. I flew home comforted by a bag of ketchup potato chips and a Coffee Crisp. When I miss my brother I will pull out my emergency stash of Aero, remember the weekend, and keep the faith.




Calendar Picks and Clicks for June 24–July 2, 2010


“Power, Perception and Prejudice: A Conversation With Jane Elliot” features a lecture by the teacher, activist and creator of the “blue eyes-brown eyes” training exercise, which promoted ideals of tolerance and social equality during the civil rights era. A Q-and-A with Elliot follows. Thu. 7:30 p.m. $20. Museum of Tolerance, 9786 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 772-2505.


Comedian, actress and author Sarah Silverman (“The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee”) joins writer and KPCC personality Sandra Tsing Loh for a Writers Bloc discussion. Fri. 7:30 p.m. $20. Writers Guild Theatre, 135 S. Doheny Drive, Beverly Hills.

British Iranian comic Omid Djalili (“Sex and the City 2”) plays a Muslim who suffers an identify crisis after discovering his birth mother was Jewish in “The Infidel,” which screens for the Tribeca Film Festival’s inaugural showcase in Los Angeles. Fri. Through July 1. 7:30 p.m. $11. Laemmle Sunset 5, 8000 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. (310) 478-3836.


Guitarist Dave Navarro (Jane’s Addiction, Camp Freddy) headlines Bet Tzedek’s 14th annual Justice Ball with DJ Skribble, who gained notoriety as the in-house spinner for MTV, and special guest DJ Alex Merrell. But wait, there’s more. The evening also features “Guitar Hero” and “DJ Hero” battles, JDate speed-dating sessions, a temporary-tattoo parlor, go-go dancers and a full bar. Sat. 9 p.m. $75 (general), $150 (VIP). Hollywood Palladium, 6215 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles.

Aaron, a butcher in Jerusalem’s ultra-Orthodox community, tries to deny his same-sex attraction to a young yeshiva student in director Haim Tabakman’s “Eyes Wide Open.” Once he surrenders, the father of four is torn between his religious responsibilities and his desires. Laemmle’s Sunset 5, 8000 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. (310) 478-3836.

Henry Jaglom’s “Just 45 Minutes From Broadway” follows Betsy Isaac, a practical woman who, despite her Yiddish theater lineage, hates show business. When Betsy brings her business-minded fiancé home to meet the folks, she finds her future husband drawn into the histrionics of her dramatic clan. Sat. Through Sept. 19. 8 p.m. (Fri. and Sat.), 5 p.m. (Sun.). $25. Edgemar Center for the Arts, 2437 Main St., Santa Monica. (310) 392-7327.



Director Joel Schumacher appears in person to introduce a 25th anniversary screening of “St. Elmo’s Fire,” his 1985 Brat Pack coming-of-age drama about seven friends struggling with the responsibilities of life after college. The event is part of American Cinematheque’s tribute to Schumacher. Sun. 7:30 p.m. $11. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica. (323) 634-4878.




Christopher Hitchens, a polarizing writer who turns subjects like the Clintons, Mother Teresa and God into targets, gets an introduction tonight from someone who’s no stranger to controversy: actor-director Sean Penn. In conversation with Steve Wasserman, former editor of the Los Angeles Times Book Review, Hitchens, who recently released his memoir, “Hitch-22,” tackles himself and shares his life story during ALOUD’s “An Evening With Christopher Hitchens.” Mon. 8 p.m. $17.50-$25. Aratani/Japan America Theatre, 244 S. San Pedro St., downtown. (213) 680-3700.


A new exhibition of oil paintings by Sephardic Jewish artist Renee Amitai relates the spiritual journey of a life spent in France, Israel and the United States. Thu. Through Aug. 8. Noon-5 p.m. (Wed.-Sun.). Free. LA Artcore Gallery at the Union Center for the Arts, 120 Judge John Aiso St., downtown. (213) 617-3274.

London-based singer-songwriter and alt-comedian Earl Okin, a veteran solo act with a cult fan base, brings his one-man music-comedy shtick to Los Angeles. Thu. 7:30 p.m. $25. Fields Pianos Recital Hall, 12121 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 476-6735.


Mix and mingle during a potluck Shabbat dinner (vegetarian/dairy) organized by Peter Small, a board member at Temple Isaiah in Newport Beach. Attendees enjoy a post-dinner Shabbat service as well as a special program in honor of Independence Day featuring live impersonations of American historical figures. Fri. 6 p.m. Free. Temple Isaiah of Newport Beach, 2401 Irvine Ave., Newport Beach. (949) 583-1905.