Monday, April 17, 2006


Leaving Ottawa means Sheena will be losing her favourite TV station. CCTV Channel 69, to be precise. Channel 69 is the view into my apartment lobby. It's grey and grainy and silent. The foreground is a big fern, a row of bright lamps and the planter just outside the door.

Channel 69 became part of my viewing habit last year, when I had a relative bunking with me for a few months. After living alone for a couple of years, was nice to have evening conversations with someone with a similar world perspective. Often we'd sit, have a bite to eat, crack open a merlot, or sometimes a six-pack and write our own screenplays. Part soap opera, part comedy, a dash of improv all rolled into one. We seriously toyed with the idea of producing our own little series, same time, same day, same channel. See if anyone would notice. Maybe use big cue cards like the old silent movies.

Highlights were often the guys who'd be standing at the intercom ringer. Buzzing, buzzing, buzzing. Not getting let in. Getting really pissed off. Agitated. We'd make up stories about why his girlfriend isn't letting him in. Alternating between ugly Lavalife blind date that she chickened out of after viewing Channel 69, or maybe he was a stalker, preying on random suites. We'd yell at the screen if somebody left the door open behind them and he got in without authorization. Jump up to make sure our door was deadbolted. Then we'd keep flipping back to the channel all night. See if any cop cars in front of the building.

We'd speculate on what the delivery guys had in their bags. If it was top-drawer pizza like Lorenzo's I'd tell my brother go take him out and grab his tip money for good measure. Late night video was particularly heeeelarious. The drunk and tired fumbling for lost keys. University students pawing each other over, as though they couldn't wait to rip off their clothes before they got upstairs.

Sometimes it would just be someone sitting on the bench. Waiting. (Memorable night "HEY! New couch in the lobby! Cool!). We'd watch them read the paper. Look up at the wall. Sometimes dig for booger gold.

Thinking nobody would notice.


At 7:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

when I lived at 1050 Broadview in tzip, they had the same feature plus a camera in the elevator behind a dome, I used to throw a tape into the vcr and review the night before, I made up a 'best of' dub but sadly it's gone missing.... oh Christl?

At 2:48 AM, Blogger ninepounddictator said...

so how was the trip?

At 9:00 AM, Blogger Sheena said...

The trip to New Mexico was great. Part work, part holiday. Highly recommend it as a vacation spot. Beautiful and pretty reasonable cost-wise once you get beyond Santa Fe.

But it was sort of just a warmup trip for my real vacation which starts next week.

Watch this spot.


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