Tuesday, January 22, 2013


This past weekend was not one of my favourites, but in the end I learned a lot of things about myself and reaffirmed the values that I have held onto so dearly over my lifetime.

Let’s start back at the beginning. On Saturday, I attended the funeral of my partner’s boss/mentor.  This man, David, meant a lot to Rob and me because he really took Rob under his wing at a time when job prospects seemed to be getting bleaker by the day.  Being a man looking for work in the serving industry is difficult and it’s hard to find employers who are willing to give you a chance when most restaurants want to hire pretty young women to do the majority of the serving positions.  David was the one who gave my partner a chance.  Rob and I were elated when he found a job in Ottawa’s night-life district and now things were certainly looking up for both of us. This simple opportunity restored us with a new-found optimism and saved Rob from having to work in the land of no tips and terrible bosses. Eventually that restaurant closed and Rob moved on to one of David’s other restaurants, again all thanks to David.

This is about the size of the bouquet
Needless to say, David’s passing hit Rob hard, so he and his fellow co-workers wanted to make a strong gesture of support for David’s family, and they worked hard to make a gorgeous bouquet.  On the morning of the funeral, we grabbed a cab on a terribly snowy/rainy day and swung by Rob’s friend’s place to pick up the bouquet.  I stepped out of the taxi into a nice little snow bank that was just high enough to get into my dress shoes and about a foot up my pants.

“No worries, just put on a smiley face for Rob and his friend and carry on.” I thought.  “They need you to be strong.”

While Rob got the cabbie to move the van around back, I followed his friend to the top floor of her apartment building and grabbed the massive bouquet, weighing well over 50 pounds. My arms were placed cumbersomely around the base of this massive pot and waddled my way down 3 flights of stairs holding this gargantuan creation.

It didn’t take many steps to realize that one of the reasons the floral arrangement was so heavy was because it was filled with water - water that proceeded to spill ALL over the front of my pants, particularly in the crotch area. There is no question that it looked like I had thoroughly soiled myself. 

Putting on a brave face for Rob and his friend, I brushed it off and thought again: “Don’t get pi$$ed off John, they worked really hard on this and didn’t think that the water would fall all over your crotch and if you would have just carried it with Rob as originally planned, this wouldn’t have happened in the first place.” Thus, I kept my composure and got down to the van.

While I waited (semi)patiently for the driver to open the hatch, the pot started to get heavier.  As soon as that door opened, I bent my knees, squatted to set the flowers down, and heard the worst sound you ever want to hear 20 minutes from your home and 15 minutes from a funeral – the ripping out of the butt in your pants. Yes, that’s right, as I set the bouquet down, the a$$ off my pants ripped from the top, ALL the way down to the bottom.

This is EXACTLY what happened. 
Panic swept across my face while some much needed laughter poured out of my partner and his friend.  We really needed a laugh, and I was glad to be there as the “butt” of the joke. I really hope you’re all laughing at this point, because we sure were!  Add in the fact that I was wearing the most colourful pair of underwear that I own to the mix, and it was painfully obvious that I had a huge rip in my trousers.

Now, Rob and his friend on the best of days, do not do very well in these kinds of situations, and when you add in the factor that they are 15 minutes away from going to celebrate the life of someone very near and dear to them, this couldn’t have come at a worse time.  However, after a little quick thinking, we found a needle and thread and we were off to the memorial service. 

The good news was that I was wearing a long peacoat, so no one had any idea that there was a full moon happening right next to them, so when we arrived, I was able to sneak past everyone into the nearest bathroom stall I could find.  Of course, when I finally found a stall, there was someone occupying the only other stall next to me, taking one of the rankest poops my nostrils had ever been subjected to.  To add to that, they were a nervous poo-er so instead of just getting it over with, flushing that down and moving on, he sat there while I had to take off my wet, ripped pants and start stitching up my butt crack. 

Meanwhile, as I am trying to move things along (keep in mind that the service was starting any minute) a line-up started to form outside of the stalls. Apparently pooping before church is the “thing to do” these days.  With the added pressure of people waiting, I ran out of thread and said to myself “F* it! Good enough!” and proceeded to get re-dressed.

After that entire ordeal, I only managed to get halfway done sewing up the seat of my pants. I guess you could say that I did the job “half-a$$ed”.  I had no choice but to keep my heavy winter coat on through the entire service, but I must say, being able to show a select few people (including David’s daughter) that I had blown the a$$ out of my pants, provided a much needed laugh on that sombre day.

Now, you might be asking yourself, what is the point to this story here on a financial blog? Well the answer is simple and it’s one that was part of a common theme found in all the speeches commemorating the life of David, stay positive.  David lived his life with a very infectious optimism that will live on with those he encountered in his life. 

As you go through your debt repayment journey, remember that sometimes things are going to come up that are out of your control and that you need to keep a clear head, make a plan, and stay positive.  Establish an emergency fund so that you’re not stuck struggling to stay afloat and don’t be afraid to reach out for help in a time of crisis. After all, you never know when you’re going to be stuck in the $hit trying to stitch everything back together.

Rest in peace David. You have meant more to Rob and I than you know, and we will be forever grateful. 

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