“This is the beginning of the beginning” by Sasha at her desk

Thursday January 3, 2019
4:38pm
5 minutes
When Things Fall Apart
Pema Chödrön

More compassion, soft ears, green vegetables, dancing, reading, surrender to the mystery of it all, quiet, nature, calling far-away loved ones, patience, filing, writing, movement, sleep, boundaries.

Less judgement, sweet stuff, jaw clenching, catastrophic thinking, Instagram, tension, impatience, screen time, expectations.

“Can we burn something, babe?” by Sasha at her desk

Thursday November 23, 2017
11:29pm
5 minutes
Love On The Brain
Rihanna

Larry drinks a macchiato sitting at the bar drawing hangmen on a napkin waiting for Liz to arrive. She’s notoriously late. He’s spoken to her about it twice and each time she says that she’s sorry and that she’s trying to change. Maybe it’s because his father was in the army and if he was ever late for anything he’d get a slap on the side of the head maybe it’s because his father loathed him most of all more than his three brothers and one sister. He fumes. He checks his phone again and nothing from Liz nothing from Liz only the same old time and date and three unread emails he’s avoiding from work fucking Cathy and her meeting notes fuck fuck fuck.

“Rabies is a fatal disease” by Julia in her bed


Thursday August 17, 2017
12:19am
5 minutes
Health Tips for the Tropical Traveller

we all know the things we thought would kill us
if disturbed
when we were young
wasp nests
staircases
feral cats
rain storm
mouse traps
we all know we stayed behind
the line, worried
waiting
quick sand
mosquito pond
hot stoves
manholes
highways
all meant to be
left
alone

“Lipstick on your arsehole” by Julia at her desk


Thursday July 6, 2017
11:33pm
5 minutes
Dry Lips Oughta Move To Kapuskasing
Tompaon Highway

Tamara Matthews you better have a good reason why you’re late.
I do, but you definitely don’t want to hear it.
Sounds like an excuse to me.
Alright, my butthole was bleeding this morning and I wasn’t sure if I was going to die or what.
Oh.
Yes. So. It’s fine now thanks for asking. I’m not, as it turns out, dying. I just wiped too hard, you know?
Thank you. I get it.
I mean it’s happened to me before, but less. I thought this was a hemorrhoid which is no picnic because when my ex-boyfriend had one once, sitting down made him cry.
Okay, okay, go sign in.
Will do, sir. Will do.


“I thought you had it” by Julia on the 99


Monday July 3, 2017
4:49pm
5 minutes
overheard on the 99

Kelsey can’t find her wallet for the third time today and the next person who walks through the door is going to hear about it. Loudly.
She’s late, as usual, and thinking of Type A Andrea who always tsk tsks tardiness as if she has zero human flaws. Maybe it’s not easy for everyone to be on time, Andrea. Maybe some of us are burying a deceased bunny rabbit or deciding to floss for the first time in a year!
Andrea never says anything to Kelsey but her disapproval is as present as that fucking mole next to her nose. Kelsey can tell when she’s misplacing things: money, keys, glasses, blame, when she starts digging at her own friends.Your mole is adorable, Andrea, everybody fucking knows that.

“I waited twenty minutes, then thirty.” By Sasha at JJ Bean


Monday May 15, 2017
3:25pm at JJ Bean on Cambie
5 minutes
Ghostly Woman on The Rumpus
Zoe Bossiere


I do three shots of tequila before I walk the
seven blocks to the bar where I order a glass of
white wine and wait

and wait


and wait.

Eventually he arrives smelling of rum and sex
and man and rain and sweat

and man.

You’re late
I say
I got caught up
He says
I was about to leave
I say
He looks at me like no woman has ever
called his bluff no woman has ever met
him with a scowl
I’m here now
He says
You’re late
I say.

“Packing planner checklist” by Julia at Starbucks


Wednesday June 15, 2016 at Starbucks
7:35am
5 minutes
from the Uhaul website

I think T-Lite said she’d meet us at the train station but she didn’t say what time. If she doesn’t show up, we’re screwed, but I don’t want to tell that to Roy yet. He still thinks we’re escaping this place on some magic carpet, flying far far away. I look up at the departure board and Santa Monica has one coming up, the next one not for a few hours. If we’re late, I don’t know what happens to the ones we’re expected to pick up at the station. Roy yawns and takes his heart shaped sunglasses off to rub his eyes. We goin’ or what? He says. Let’s make moves! Yeah, I say, we are, hold tight. Maybe, he tells me, I’ll catch a few z’s before T-Lite gets here, ah? Yeah, find a little spot on the ground, I say. Check for wet. He brings his hands to prayer and bows his head in my direction. I look at my watch again. I sink a little: we are definitely not making this next train.

“awaken in the morning’s hush” by Julia at a Sichuan restaurant on West Broadway


Tuesday February 2, 2016
3:18pm
5 minutes
Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
Mary Elizabeth Frye


Over the years that I’ve known her, Shawna has never arrived anywhere on time. I don’t think she’s particularly proud of this habit, but I’ve also never seen her try to fix it. She apologizes, sure, don’t get me wrong, but she is always, always late. I wonder what she does every morning before she meets me or gets to her appointments. We meet at 11:30 because she can’t get there any earlier. I seriously wonder what her schedule looks like, what she prioritizes, what she lets slip away. I’ve also never once been to Shawna’s house. It’s so mysterious but perhaps I am more curious because I want to see if any of my speculations are true: does she make the bed twice because she can’t help but jump on it after she makes it the first time? Does she stay up all night, victim of insomnia, and finally catch her sleep when the rest of the world is waking up? Is she hiding a small family of raccoons in her basement that she doesn’t want anyone to see?

“Are you expecting us?” by Julia at DH Lodge in St. Jacobs


Tuesday, December 29, 2015 at DH Lodge
2:35am
5 minutes
from a Kitchener Utilities Pamphlet

Elliot sat on the couch digging into her scalp, searching for the patch of raised skull flesh she liked to play with when she was nervous. It was a quarter past four and her eyelids sometimes closed for longer than a blink while she waited up for Marco to get back. He was late. He told her he’d be back at midnight at the very latest. She had called him a total of seventeen times so far and counting. Elliot fingered the bump on her head and started to yank tufts of hair out with her finger nails, pulling slowly and firmly on a few strands from the root to the ends. Elliot thought about calling the police. The pendulum of the old cuckoo clock on the wall swung out of tune.

“train service is suspended” by Julia in her backyard


Friday June 6, 2014
2:28pm
5 minutes
A tweet by the TTC

When you have to be somewhere at a certain time and you’re already running late, it’s better always, always, always, to take a cab, stress it out in the backseat for a few minutes, then text whoever you’re supposed to meet and say “In a cab, so sorry” so they know that you are trying your best to be on time, you’re even paying real money to arrive as close to on time as possible, and that you feel bad about making them wait for you so you’re enduring the traffic stress of being in a cab in the first place to make up for it. Do not take the subway because subways have delays and trains get so busy because there aren’t enough to get everyone from point a to point b during the time you need. Do not take the streetcar because you probably won’t be able to sit and then you have to smell everyone’s hair and armpits while people crowd around you, yelling, or pre-drinking, or baby talking. Do not walk and think that when it gets down to crunch time you can just run and beat both the subway and the streetcar. You will get sweaty and you will get tired and you will think you can run all the way but you cannot because you decided that working out was a “rich man’s game” and that you’d much rather eat the whole box of Passion Flakies for breakfast instead of just one or two or none.

“Atlantic Ave.” by Julia on the 594 going east


Wednesday January 15, 2014
6:05pm
5 minutes
the 504 stop announcement

Darling where have you been? I’m sitting here under the weeping willow with a blanket and a bottle of wine concealed in an orange juice jug! I could have made sangria! I should have made sangria! You are very late which is unlike you. Ever since I’ve known you you’ve been almost annoyingly on time. Punctuality is always listed first on your resumes or in job interviews. You arrive early because you do not like to keep people waiting. I arrive late because I don’t like doing the waiting! It’s very selfish. And smart, you can give me that! Today I wonder if you’ve forgotten about me and our date? I wonder if you got held up on the bus. I wonder if you hurt your leg running to meet me. I wonder if you are purposefully late because you have a little shiny surprise in a little red box and you need the reveal to be even more dramatic because I tend to get overly excited about everything. It’s been a long time. I will never leave this spot, so don’t worry. Take your time and when it’s right, you will come to me.

“1 min away” by Julia on the 7 going north


Saturday December 7, 2013
10:16pm
5 minutes
A text message from Matthew Del Degan to Nadeem Umar Khitab

Her 2 inch heels clicked across the pavement with more intensity than she had hoped. Everyone seemed to be looking her up and down because of the noise she was making alone. Amanda was late, as usual, but she was trying to make up for lost time by running every few steps, keeping her walk at a clip, and trying to leave her phone in her pocket so she wouldn’t be distracted by the time or by communication of any sort. Amanda fixed her purse after it fell off her shoulder and found herself slowing down because of it. For a brief moment she considered throwing the entire bag into the river just to be free of it. She thought about taking out her wallet, her keys, her notebook, her pen. She didn’t have a place to put those things either. Her coat pockets were barely large enough to house her phone without bursting a button. She clipped on her way, the cobblestone reminding her of how far away she still was.

“The scent of perfume” by Julia at R Squared


Monday, December 3, 2012 at R Squared Espresso Bar
9:50am
5 minutes
The contained scent of perfume

Hillie and I are going to the opera tonight. She’s bringing me there as a birthday present. Hillie loves the opera. I, on the other hand, do not. Hillie bakes me zucchini bread every year because she’s convinced it’s my favourite. I try to tell her gently that I’m off sweets but Hillie is stubborn and crass at times. She tends to make spectacles and I’m not really interested in that kind of thing. I was told earlier to wear my best suit and I told her I only had one anyway. She laughed the way a muffin would laugh if it could. She said I was silly. It’s 6:06pm and Hillie is never late. She made sure I was ready by 5:59 just in case. I think about calling her to make sure she’s okay. I don’t. I enjoy the silence of the cool knowing that I’m ready before Hillie and that maybe the opera will be an afterthought instead of the only thought.
I look down at the silver watch Hillie bought me for Christmas last year and I look again to make sure. The opera begins at 7:00. It is now 6:48. How did the time pass: me in my silence?