Category Archives: Books and Things

Five Things We Should Outgrow in 2015

Welcome to 2015 and to start the year on a potentially offensive note, here is a quick list of things we should really outgrow in the year 2015. Let’s begin!

1. Burlap

I’m SO done with everything being covered in dirty brown sheets designed to cover trees and hold potatoes.  This post-apocalyptic inspired style should have ended along with the Cold War. What’s next? Burlap Prom dresses?

Oh…well then…

As an actual person from the ‘country’ I’m hoping this ‘Redneck-Chic’ trend flies out the window with the bathwater. Speaking of bathwater….

2. Greige

Is it Grey? is it Beige? No one knows! How trendy, am I right?   I am not right…it’s terrible. If not having been exacerbated by every single interior photo on Pinterest, this “colour”, if I may use the term loosely, has been a constant soul shattering staple of 2014. Grey is fine, lovely cool tones are a really great way to add a clean and calm atmosphere to a room. Beige is great, a lovely warm variant of white that can add a homey feel to the most dismal of apartments. But ‘Greige’! Come on people…pick a side!

It just looks muddy and unflattering even in the best of lights. Like the powdered skin of the freshly deceased, we should probably bury this colour in the dirt, where it belongs.

3. Mason Jars

Who knew you could use them for so many different and useful things? I didn’t, because we cant! They’re used for, at the very best…canning, and the very worst, drinking out of when the rest of your dishes are dirty. I have some unfortunate news for you, those ‘cute’ make-up brush organizers you made in your bathroom? They’re ugly. Those lights you rigged up, hanging on your porch outside?…They’re also ugly. Those pencil holders, hand soap pumps, embossed vases, candle holders, terrariums, fucking blender attachments…guess what? They’re all UGLY.

If this were a post called ‘The top five ways to instantly cheapen the look of your home”, then by god this would be number one. You’re not on social assistance, don’t act like it’s cool if you were.

4. Chalkboard Everything

If you want to dust your home every single day, then by all means, go right ahead and paint that entire wall with chalkboard paint! While you’re at it, why not paint your cabinets, the television screen, THE FUCKING REFRIGERATOR!

I kid you not…someone thought instead of opting for a decent looking used fridge, they would buy the cheapest one they could find, and then spend however much they’re gouging us for on chalk paint, to paint a refrigerator.  I don’t even know what to say to these people. Maybe you should discipline your kids and not have them think it’s OK to write all over the walls and appliances. Guess who’s not getting invited to Christmas next year… Just sayin’.

5. Ratchet DIY and Up-Cycling

This has been an overarching theme of 2014 across the board.  Recovering and re-purposing the old, turning it into something magical and new. Which in theory is great…but in practice (and the wrong hands) is a disaster. Much like Communism.

The recession is over people, you don’t have to make jewelry out of bottle caps any more! Nor light fixtures out of wine bottles, or candles out of liqueur bottles! Your friends are going to start to think you have a drinking problem with all of the alcoholic paraphernalia littered throughout your home. And I specifically use the word ‘Littered’ here. As a personal connoisseur of alcoholic libations, I would much rather see these things actually recycled and put to better use, like refilled, with more booze, and given to me.

Those lights are incandescent anyway so you’re still not saving the environment!

It doesn’t end there my friends, a quick internet search will find you in the midst of junkyard chic apartments, couches out of oil drums, car tire ottomans, pop tab lamp shades, and cheese grater flower boxes. I am at a loss of words… Wait, that’s a lie, I’m never at a loss for words. I could do a whole post on the crazy things people come up with and feel compelled to share with the world. T-Shirt dresses, crayon lipstick, circuit board running shoes, piano bookshelf.  Those words don’t even go together?!

Essentially, it is all a matter of style and the occasional item can be reused in a new and useful way without being eye-bleedingly horrendous like that chair. I think the message I want to convey here is to ‘Think before you UpCycle.”

This has been the top five things that should be outgrown in 2015, I hope you find humour in my words and not be offended if you’re particularly into any of the above-mentioned crimes. Just know, an invitation to Christmas next year is on the table. Your choice.

Stay tuned for part 2, “Five Things We Should Keep around for 2015”

-Hailey Jane


And Now for Something Completely Different…

Huzzah! It is the hour to head towards the hectic holiday season, having hoards of happy hands held out behind hollering humans, hovering, haggling and heckling, hastily hurrying as if hounds hatched at their heels.


I, a hapless yet hopeful henchmen of a hypothetical heroic homage, henceforth honour a healthy hiatus of this hungry highlife and in happenstance, hope to have heaps of hypnotic hugs that heat the hesitant heart to hindered hindgut.

Happy Holidays!


From Coffee and Turtlenecks

xx – Hailey Jane


Q&A With the Turtleneck Lady

Greetings from the cafe!


I’m going to do things a bit differently today, it will be as if we’re having a chat, except that the conversation is going to be alarmingly one sided, because that’s how most of the internet works.

Oh, and I wanted to run a quick idea past you, if that’s alright?  I’ve gone out and sent away for a lovely and fantastic pastel pink, short, curly, synthetic lace front wig! Which I am aware is a lot of words to describe one thing. But anyway, I was wondering what everyone thinks about the two options for its use.

Option 1) Is to use it for Vlog posts, as a confidence boosting alter ego of sorts?

Option 2) I would bust it out when I embark on my next travelling adventure (this is assuming I get my funds and ethics in order) so I would be not only extremely recognizable out and about, but it would help with how nasty my hair gets when I travel. Let me explain.

I’m thinking a serious backpacking excursion across Europe, and even when I go to England for a few weeks at a time, I ALWAYS have a hard time finding somewhere reliable to wash/style my high maintenance hair while couch surfing. There isn’t enough dry shampoo in the world to sort out that mess on my head. Seriously…hear me out…This way I won’t have to deal with nasty, greasy, ratchet hair as often. Assuming this works, it will make me feel all that much better leading to a generally better experience. I clearly would still shower, but I would be less concerned with how my hair dries, or having to shower just to fix it…which, let’s be honest, is 100% why I shower every day or so when I’m at home. Not for cleanliness…but so my hair doesn’t look stupid. Cleanliness is a convenient by product. This is what my life is.

Let me know your thoughts…or any other ideas you have for the use of this marvellously colourful coiffure. Either way, I’m super excited, even if I only get to use it once, to channel Courtney Act at a friend’s Drag Queen Party. You know you love the idea. 😀

Question time!

Why Coffee and Turtlenecks?

“This is a very legitimate question, because it still doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. In truth, they are two things that I enjoy thoroughly that are also a great comfort to me. I wanted this place…this imaginary space on the wide web…to feel cozy, inviting and warm, which describes my chosen title just nicely. It’s also got a bit of a ring to it, which is a plus. I do feel like I don’t talk about turtlenecks enough, particularly because of the number of turtleneck related search terms sending people here. To be honest, there are only so many things you can say about a type of shirt before people stop listening and start worrying about your mental health, and I wouldn’t want to give too much away.”

Why haven’t you done any more Vlog posts?

“Also a legitimate question. It has a simple answer that can be narrowed down to the fact that my spontaneous two weeks of self confidence seems to have vanished, and I will get right back to making them as soon as it returns in the mail.”

Do you think Blogging is a self centered and narcissistic pastime and promotes those ideals in the current generation?

“I absolutely do, (betcha’ didn’t see that one coming!) and I am reminded of it every day when my boyfriend sees (catches) me Blogging. I push past that guilt with ferocity because I like to write, and I hope that what comes out is actually beneficial to the world or at least enjoyable. If you don’t think you’re good at what you do, then no one else is going to. And hey, even Van Gogh had a thing for selfies.”

Van Gogh

What advice do you have for someone who wants to start Blogging?

“I’m not exactly the person with the best collection of tips in this department. I would still call myself ‘starting out’ and I’ve been doing it on and off for nearly three years. Just update with thoughtful posts that you are proud of regularly, and see what happens. It’s luck mostly. My most popular posts are one’s that I’m not the most thrilled with, they just happen to have a thing people are searching for in them, like Spermaceti, Ian McEwan’s Atonement and PG Tips. Who knew the world wanted to know so much about whale oil, modern English Literature and tea.  Why do I know so much about whale oil, modern English Literature and tea? I guess I’m just awesome.”

Do you have Instagram?

“No, Apple products are dumb and I don’t believe in them, like unicorns. BBM me anytime though!  Also…on that note, social media sites kill SO much of my time and steal little tiny pieces of my soul daily. Lately the slow internet at home where I’m living has rendered tumblr useless, which is actually kinda refreshing. I imagine that’s what quitting smoking feels like. I am no longer a slave to the never ending roll of gifs and benign fandom updates. Now I just need to get off of Pinterest, Facebook and crack. Crack might be the easiest.”

What’s your favourite band?

“Right now, I’m in love with this English group from Norwich called Box of Light. I’ll link a video for you. It’s delightful and Melon is the bubbliest rockstar I’ve ever seen. I just want to snuggle her. They’ll be huge, I can feel it.”

Best book you’ve read this year?

“By far it has to be Nabokov’s Lolita. I didn’t just read this book,. I destroyed it. I wrote essays in the margins, I went back searching for passages to re-read. I watched several Ivy League lectures on the subject just to figure it out. I am now a Lolita expert! It’s so much more than what people think it is…Read it, you won’t regret it. If I get the time, and find the words to describe how magical it is justly, then I will do a post on it for you.”


One last question for you dear, do you think you will ever stop writing?

“I hope not. I’ve loved keeping a journal, writing short stories, really bad poetry (which you’ll never see because it’s THAT bad) since I was in grade school, I don’t think my life would feel right without it. I’ve got a serious story or two inside me, and until I can find a way to get them out properly, there’s not really an end in sight.”

Well that’s good news!

Thanks so much for stopping by, as always it’s been a delight!

-Hailey Jane


There’s Nothing Worse Than Getting What You Want

Life lesson time…

(Because I don’t have kids to instil this valuable knowledge into…and my dog doesn’t really seem interested.)

Noting my credentials as your friendly local Blogger, I would seriously ask you to reconsider making a living (or a small fraction of one in my case) off of what you like doing most. Your hobbies, your favourite things to escape into. Don’t, I repeat, DO NOT aspire to make it your day job.

Some arbitrary examples that in no way refer to things I’ve done in the past:

Say you’re around twenty one years old, and you really REALLY love books. Like…not just reading them, but searching them out, smelling them, particularly the old yellowing pages of volumes once loved by someone else for years. Your heart flutters at the feel of fraying bindings, and the rough texture of a hardcover that’s lived an exciting life. You think, “Gosh, I’d be infinitely happy if only I could be surrounded by these ageing bodies of wisdom and knowledge all day every day…My dream job would be to work in that there local used bookstore.”


All sounds fine and dandy as you dream about blowing the dust off of boxes of linguistic treasure, finding a new home for these magical collections of life stories, scientific texts and fiction that challenges the literary genius of Nabokov or Tolstoy. Then one day, you are made aware of an opening at said local used bookstore for part time work. This news makes your day. The friend of yours who worked there was moving on, which left a vacancy that you are tickled pink to have the chance to fill. She puts in a good word for you. Because why wouldn’t they want to hire you, you are vastly overqualified in both formal education and general knowledge of worldly things. And of course…you “Absolutely adore books” which is said at least twice during the interview that you are over the moon to receive. Regardless of the terrible hours and lack of government approved pay rate, you are happy to start your life as a clever purveyor of books, and  feel also like you are preforming an important social service, helping those in need find the words they are looking for that will change their life.

You start by shelving the ‘new intakes’, and a quick look at the box reveals that they are all absolute fluff. One hundred percent old lady porn. Romance novels all bent along the spine where the dirty bits are. You quickly learn that this particular shop specializes in a lending library sort of system where old books are bought and sold back to the store by old ladies who get their kicks reading about unrealistic love affairs between knights and princesses, long haired Fabio types and fragile female characters who can’t think for themselves. Hundreds come in and out every day. The other half of business is divided up between mystery novels, Sci-Fi, Grisham and Patterson type Fiction and whatever new releases you manage to get in. Which is approximately ten. Because no one sells their brand new books right away. There is a respite in the depressing Non-Fiction section in the back, but it unfortunately looks like a bomb went off and the dust only just settled. Stacks of DIY and irrelevant biographies lay everywhere and you better have a winning lottery ticket in your pocket if you’re looking for a specific book back there.

You learn your boss lives in the back room with his cat, and is not exactly the friendly, eccentric old bookstore owner that you imagined. But an angry easily perturbed man in the crisis point of his life, who takes groups fishing for too much money when the weather is nice. After being in charge of the store when a customer accidentally broke a lamp, and to then have a strip torn off you by the boss for it, you feel like maybe this five dollar an hour business isn’t exactly worth it.


Say you’re around twenty four years old, after months of applying for jobs in this new city you moved to nearly a year ago, and after a terrible bout working as a cashier at a grocery superstore which made you want to choke people with different kinds of produce, you get a chance to work at the Holy Grail of National book companies. The holder of the literary monopoly from Sea to shining Sea, the keeper of all that is new and exciting in the world of the precious book! Of course you’re going to say yes to a position at the helm of this (arguably, sinking) industry! Or at least you figure close to the helm, as who interviews you seems like they’re in charge (Spoiler: You are wrong). You agree to a minimum wage start, because it sounds like there is lots of opportunity for raise and promotion.

new bookstore

What they don’t tell you, is, you will get all of the worst shifts, be called in last minute nearly weekly and be criticized and humiliated if ‘heaven forbid’ you have plans on your day off. The person in charge is a megalomaniac from the BIG city who apparently only knows Business 101 Buzzwords like ” Our Process” and “Streamline” or “Zeitgeist”, “Paradigm Shift”, “Bundling”, “Synergy” and “Efficiency” which translate to “We will work you like a mule for hardly any pay,  until your soul pours out your nostrils and we can keep it in a jar in the office until you don’t recall you ever had one”.

They “forget” your six month review and hold off your first precious ten cent raise for months, they neglect to define your role so they can make anything “your job” on a whim and criticize you for not doing it. You get reamed out daily for not “Collecting (Re: Begging) enough cash Donations” which the company uses to a) look like a charitable organization and b) bestow as gift certificates that sell product at the regular horrifyingly marked up price. You eventually stop trying to get as many unsuspecting customers as possible to sign up for the loyalty program that tracks their purchases and encourages more thoughtless buying through annoying daily emails.

You stop believing that this was once a good place, where people could enjoy life and find a book to escape into, and you only see it as a place where someone can come up to beg you for a discount on a softcover you saw them deliberately rip the cover off of, they throw a fit and get the deal from a manager anyway, who made you look like a fool in front of them for talking a stand. You start to dread the day they might eventually ask you to sneak up behind unsuspecting customers and steal their wallets or car keys. You decide you need out. You need freed from the corporate mentality where you are just a number, a peon, 100% replaceable, which you are. Once your enthusiasm for useless products is gone, once you’ve been thoroughly disillusioned and realize it’s not a bookstore anymore and just a sanctuary for brightly coloured, cheap, useless crap, they the pick a fresh crop of smiling faces, ready and eager to have their soul extracted in the name of “A love for books”. They didn’t care if you knew a thing about books, as long as you could sell them. No measly 30% discount is worth that kind of mental torture. And you’re not even mentioning the Special HELL that is Christmas at the Mall.


Say you’re around twenty five years old, and after the spirit crushing experience with corporate Canada, you are offered a part time gig at a local independent cafe’ downtown. Hallelujah! You say! Finally the quaint and cozy job serving people hot cups of caffienated love day in and out. Happy people who are glad you drew a face in their latte’, couldn’t be happier you added an extra carrot on their sandwich plate, working for a person who’s face you see on a daily basis. That’s the life! And by god! Tips! You’ll make extra money! What a concept… It all looks like it will work out just fine!


You are trained on a gruelling schedule requiring memorizing more than you needed to in your four year University Science program. The assistant manager is an anal French perfectionist who is surprisingly terrible with customers, harbouring a strangely successful hate-hate relationship with them. You only see the Owner when you’re getting reprimanded for putting the napkins in upside-down and opening your mouth and talking to someone who wasn’t a customer, or when getting paid in cash which feels more like a drug deal then an exchange of services for fair wages. The latter event seems to happen less and less often, getting pushed weeks behind because he neglects to show up while you’re working. Your hours are cut back to less than the legal shift length, or cancelled all together an hour or two before you’re supposed to start. You’re not paid for the last half hour of your night shift because you only get paid half an hour after close, but there is still more work that needs done and it better be done the next morning or there will be a big scary French Cafe’-Nazi on your ass.

You exhaust yourself daily trying to find things to do to look busy when it’s slow or they will send you home and you won’t make enough to justify the travel costs to work. Free coffee doesn’t pay the rent, and the latte’ you get per shift is starting to lose it’s lustre’.  Getting to work with espresso eventually doesn’t make up for all of the foul smelling tuna and egg salad sandwiches you have to make for the daily regulars who somehow manage to have less of a social life than you. Regulars that are not happy about the extra carrot on their plate, and violently complain when it is no longer there. You go home smelling like pickles, coffee and sweat and the tips you made didn’t pay for the bus ride home, which you waited 45 minutes for in minus thirty degree weather, on a dodgy city street at midnight. You stepped over a puddle of human blood to get here…is this what you really want?


The fantastical idea of all of these different positions is in theory wonderful. All are appealing and have a way of attracting themselves to you by including something you love already, old books, new books, coffee. But now and forever these aspects of life will tainted by the experience of doing it for a living. Going for a hot drink at a local cafe’ will always come with a cringe and feeling of empathy towards the poor barista getting scolded for too much foam on a latte. A trip to the bookstore will be a horror or horrors, completely unenjoyable, watching mindless moneybags shop like toddlers throwing tantrums for things they really don’t need. And the used bookstore becomes a pit of old books no one wants anymore. A hole where the unwanted fall and rot for years collecting dust, and anything worth buying is lost on a shelf behind thousands of other volumes by no-name authors from the eighties.

I’m not saying you should stay away from being employed at these types of places, because everyone extracts what they want and need from each kind of situation. What I’m saying is try to avoid taking a job that has little merit other than it being something you enjoy doing in your free time. The niceties and pleasure you get from that activity will be changed forever, and if that job has no other merits, such as pay or pleasant people to work with, you may be in for a bumpy and uncomfortable ride.

Thanks for stopping by!

-Hailey Jane

A Painting and Words: My own Van Gogh and upcoming reads.


Hello friends!

Happy Tuesday…..Wednesday…it’s Wednesday…I’m special.  I’ve had some extra free time this week because my job doesn’t take me seriously whatsoever, so I felt the need to pretend I was useful. In all honesty I may have just ended up sitting at my desk thinking about doing something; basking in the glory of untapped potential, but the apartment maintenance man came in to fix the door, and I am alarmingly motivated when being watched.  I felt an extreme and deep need to show this random stranger that I was actually a productive member of human society.

You rarely would see me move so swiftly or gracefully. I glided over to where I kept my art supplies and before I had even really decided that I was going to paint something, I had the paint and canvas out, pencils and blotting paper collected, bowl of water ready to be dipped into and away I went.

The subject of this potential artwork came to me even more easily which is annoying because otherwise I would have sat and mulled over it until I eventually convinced myself not to do anything at all. For some reason earlier this week I decided I wanted a Van Gogh Sunflowers phone case for my new walking-talking device, and I had been trying to find one online (Which I did, but I didn’t feel like shelling out 20 bux plus shipping for it just now) But, the idea of having my very own Van Gogh seemed even more appealing! Unfortunately I didn’t have any trips to the National Gallery in London planned, and my thievery and espionage skills leave something to be desired. The easiest way really, was to paint one myself.

IMG_5133Ta Da!

IMG_5150Makes me happy, it does.

I also partook in some used book thrifting last Saturday, and found something I swear I’ve had in my Amazon basket for a year and a half now!  Bonus: It was only $3.95! Hells yeah! Here’s the stack:

IMG_5153All purchased at the Goodwill Bookstore, Lauzon Rd. Windsor ON.

In The Garden with Van Gogh – Merberg/Bober – A children’s board book, in the event I have a baby I want this to be their first book. There’s not chance I’m ever gifting this one ( .95 cents)

Animal Farm – George Orwell – A classic that for some horrifying reason I’ve not read yet. ($1.95)

London – Edward Rutherfurd – An epic about the ENTIRE history of the city….literally from when the earth formed the little island. It’s gonna be good! Might take me my whole life to read, but darn it I’m gonna do it! ($3.95)

The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul – Deborah Rodriguez – I’m not 100% sold on this one, I’m not exactly a fan of reading about war-torn countries, but I like the culture surrounding a coffee shop, so I think it might be inspiring. ($3.95)

Haunted – Chuck Palahniuk – This is the one I’ve been toying with paying full price for. I read a few of the stories while I was in High School and I know it’s strange and downright fucked up sometimes, but I really really love it. It’s life changing stuff right there. At least when you’re a confused 16 year old. We’ll see if it works the same nearly a decade later. ($3.95)

The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari – Robin S. Sharma – At first glance Chris saw this and proclaimed “Well that looks like it’s stupid!”, and I knew that was going to happen, as he is a narrow minded consumerist particularly obsessed with automobiles, but I think I will love it. It’s already a very successful book, so I imagine there’s got to be something good in there.  My only worry is, I’m not a fan of how ‘self-help-ie’ it has been laid out like. I would prefer more of a narrative, where you take what you want from the story, as opposed to having life lessons shoved down your throat. I’ll let you know when I finish. ($3.95)

Under the Tuscan Sun – Francis Mayes – I’ve also almost bought this book at least 4 times and I finally and broke down and handed over my 4 dollars.  Now it’s mine. I’ve seen the film at least 15 times, and I love everything about it. Sticking to the idea that the book is always better, I’m looking forward to enjoying this even more. Gotta love a good old fashioned mid-life-crisis induced life change! ($3.95)

Thanks for spending some time with me and my library!

Lots of love! xx

Hailey Jane


Mexico Tidbits and Rapid-Fire Beach Read Reviews!

Hellooo friends!

Darn this Hot Chocolate! My teeth are getting angry at me, whitened them last night and everything I try to eat hurts me. Blast!

Anywhoodle, I’ve been up to some trouble as of late gallivanting around the world in search of fun and exciting adventures. I was alarmingly successful in my exploration of Mexico with my family, we certainly got the most out of our trip to Puerto Vallarta. Here’s a sneak peak! Details and hilarious stories to follow!







Rapid Fire Book Reviews

Beach Read Edition!

Here are the novels I managed to finish reading while I was away on holiday.  In all honesty I started to have a bit of a personal emotional crisis while lying on the beach, reading away. I was overcome by crashing wave of feeling as if I was wasting my precious time in another country lumping about in an uncomfortable green beach chair instead of exploring and enjoying everything this magical place had to offer. But upon further reflection the down time was necessary and I believe I made up for the lack of activity during the days larking about at night.

The Paris Wife – Paula McLain

This lovely book was an impulse grab at my local charity bookshop back home. It was three dollars and I dare say it was three dollars well bloody spent! I’ve heard mixed reviews of this book, saying it’s novelization of real life events and characters didn’t translate well, but I liked it. I think they (she…Paula McLain) may have made Hadley seem more endearing and attractive for the purpose of the novel, but that aside it was a fun look at life in the 20’s, not just in Paris, but all over Europe and North America briefly as well. Mr. Hemingway makes a very interesting character and you love him as much as you hate how he lives and treats others around him. It is easy to identify with Hadley in this respect. Darn him and his all encompassing talent!!

One Day – David Nicholls

I cheated, I’ve seen the film already. It was a lovely film and I had hopes that the novel would be even better. Alarmingly, they were strikingly similar. Both good, both detailed and clever. I don’t know if I could chose between them if it came down to it. There were occasional characters and events omitted from the film for the sake of time, but I feel they weren’t terribly central to the story. Emma and Dex are a very unlucky couple, but 90% of that is all their own fault. At times you want it to work for them, others you get frustrated and think they deserve every second of this torture and overwhelming sexual tension. It’s the entirety of two separate lives tangled together in 400 pages, and it’s done beautifully. Being written by a male, I thought the female perspective was lacking a bit of relatability, and the little things that women do when secretly in love with someone their entire life, but overall it was charming, well written and temporally accurate as the story effortless glides through the decades. Yay England! I am also extremely biased when it comes to stories set in the UK, just a heads up. 😀

So this has been another long awaited instalment of Coffee and Turtlenecks. Thanks for joining me, follow and like if that’s your cup of tea. It would make me wonderfully happy.


-Hailey Jane

Book Review! ‘Bridget Jones, Mad About the Boy’ by Helen Fielding

Hello there ladies and gents! It’s that time of the week again! A Vlog post just for you!

This time I’m attempting to review (not at all objectively) the newest instalment in the life of Bridget Jones.  I also have another really cute mug that you should really go and see, because that alone is worth a click.  Like..seriously…it’s pretty freakin’ awesome and you have no idea the kind of brilliance you are missing.

And because it’s almost Valentines Day, here are some bonus V-Day cards! They are awesome in a sort of megalomaniacal way.



Miss Hailey Jane

I Have Now Explored Diabetes With Owls…

So there’s this book that I found….or rather, that found me. It was just staring at me at work one day, I work in a bookstore, so that’s really not all that unbelievable. What makes this an interesting occurence is that this particular book, out of the MILLIONS I literally trip over all day, was special enough to have me pick it up and investigate it.  I am going to say that the reason for this unlikely investigation may or may not be entirely because of the clever title, and that I may or may not be extremely guilty of harshly judging books by their covers. But hey, it’s worked for me so far.

Turns out…it was freaking amazing!  Though there is not a word in it about diabetic owls which is slightly upsetting..

Hoot Hoot!

This book so good that it has become my new Staff Pick at work. Sedaris has done it again, it’s hilarious, strange in that lovely and comforting kind of way, and is familiar enough that you can…or at least I could…relate to it, maybe a little more than I should have. I blame the mix of England, dead animals and the judgement of complete strangers; that gets me every time. The chapter called ‘Understanding Owls’ was my favourite by far, with ‘Mind the Gap’ being a close second. I don’t know what it is about taxidermy and popular modern literature, but it always seems to be there.

The reviews I read seemed unimpressed with the few small fiction entries, but I think they build on the work and add a little extra flavour. If you are easily offended, particularly by anything Liberal, non-religious or at all culturally diverse, I really wouldn’t recommend this book for you…and I’ve steered one or two of these people away from it and back to their Christian Fiction or Crossword Puzzles at the bookstore. Everyone else will most certainly LOVE it, I promise. If you like Augusten Burroughs or Jenny Lawson (which I do…deeply, and almost creepily), this will be right up your alley.

Now…I must find a way to acquire more!


-Miss Hailey Jane

Running Into Myself

Being nearly ready to embark on my first real vacation in almost two years, I have noticed myself thinking towards the past. In the time since my last adventure, I have started this blog, been through three very different jobs, moved twice, lost a friend, and more than likely have changed more than I know I have. There’s something really uncomfortable about being 24. I had hoped once I passed 21 all of the steaming awkwardness in life would have ended and things would start to make more sense. But they don’t. It’s worse. But people just don’t talk about it as much.

I found a journal last week that I had started when I was 17 years old. The first dated entry was on March 16, 2006, just about seven years ago. The handwriting is all too familiar, maybe a bit more loopy and teenage in style than it currently is now, but is a pleasant and heart warming sight, to recognize bits of oneself from a time when things were so different.

“Not panic, not frustration, not contempt, not happiness, not bliss, not satisfaction, no, definitely not satisfaction. It’s really not much of anything. I don’t know what to do, how to think, then again I never really do. I am an artist, need I over analyse this as well? I can’t paint a ‘pretty’ picture of this as I see it. Slightly less amazed as you can clearly see, let down perhaps, careless, that’s what it is. Careless. I said it was alright. Should I have? A little late now though, I know it’s not right, it can’t be.”

Other than the overuse of the comma it it not much different than something the me of today would come up with. Is there hope that I have not changed so much after all?

That was an important day in the making of the story of my life. Though so insignificant now, it was a dire crisis at the time. I wonder, will all of my crisis turn into the same hazy and faded memories, brought back to me in a chance thumb-through of an old random journal?

I press on, page after page, revealing temporally spaced entry’s, moments frozen and lost in the context of their time. April 2006, December 2009, August 2010, October 2010. Each it’s own little story of what I thought I was, in inconstant black scrawling letters. It fascinated me, this written record of my lowest points.

I did what felt right. I added a new entry.  February 27, 2013, another entry to forget about and discover at another time, as a different Hailey. A message for my future self, a gift of reflection. A promise of hope.

I put the little black book back on the shelf to once again collect a healthy coating of dust. And on some other unsuspecting day I will pick it up, and no doubt read all my entries then have the courage to add another.


-Miss Hailey Jane

Omorfos Aghora: Part Two

fancy line

As he stood there before her, charming and bedraggled, time was passing one second at a time. No slower than it otherwise would, but with each passing moment the present was approaching an invisible line of uncomfort.  To break the chain of inevitable silence, she put a hand into her bag slowly, and grasped her favourite blue and white lighter, tightly and in secret. Before she knew it the decision staring her in the face was already made without her actively deciding it, and with a bright flash, the quiet sizzle of the first inhale, the wave of satisfaction of its’ release and the sound of small stones crunching underfoot, he was away with little more than a nod of thanks.

She held her ragged paperback up to her face to hide the flush of emotion that felt as if it would foam out of her otherwise. She watched his form shrink down the narrow stone street, confidently striding along, with a power behind each step.  Until finally it turned a corner into a small alleyway and disappeared from sight. She thought at that last moment she could see the soft long muss of hair turn and swish to the side revealing a cheeky grin in her direction, as if he knew something she didn’t, but at this distance she couldn’t be sure. The heat of the day might have been getting to her already parched and famished mind. She gathered herself and went back into her storm beaten, customerless shop and began fussing with the latest project in silence.

After a quarter of an hour she found she could not concentrate enough to manipulate the small strands of metal into something worth looking at, or pick up and string a glass bead without allowing it to slip and bounce along the warped, uneven floor. Productivity seemed futile at this point and she began to tidy up what she had began. She stared at her once beautiful blue walls, at the cracked bubbling paint along the waterline, permanently stained with mud and silt. She felt as if all the beauty she had created in her life was washed away in that flood, and was now unable to restore it to its’ former glory. She mulled over repainting and buying and installing new flooring, but with the frequency of customers lately, she would never be able to pay it off let alone feed herself in the process. There was only one thing to do, and her sudden flush of new found confidence that was the result of the chance meeting earlier in the day gave her the nod in the right direction.


She began collecting what valuables she had left in the shop into a large cloth bag, her wire cutters, pliers, finest beads and strands of silver and gold were wrapped in a swath of silk as a makeshift kit for the road. With the tourists out of the picture, added to the collective damage that needed repaired, there really seemed to be nothing left for her in that small village on the edge of nowhere. No future, no family, no hope left. It was time to leave. She tied her yellow shawl around her waist, grabbed her bag, donned her wide brimmed hat and cleared the threshold into the street. She said goodbye to her shop on the way out, but to no one else, as she let the Aghora fade into the distance behind her. She did not so much as receive a second glance from the others passing around her. To them nothing was out of the ordinary, but to her it was new and exciting day.

-Miss Hailey Jane.

You can read Part One by clicking here.