(written by Holly Lee) Sushi Grass in Paradise (a story)

(25) Comparing Café Decor

(25) Comparing Café Decor
Yoji is less busy these days. He has finished editing the video he shot for the Japanese Cultural Centre a week ago. He called up George and Mr. Bento to meet at BMV Books in the Annex. This bookstore occupies all four floors of the building, buy and sell books, DVDs, comics, CDs, records and magazines. It is virtually Canada's largest bookstore for second-hand discounted books - and easily Toronto's most loved. The only reason Mr. Bento doesn't go there often is - he's afraid of buying more books. The bookstore claims that there are over a thousand different items being shelved everyday, plus unique finds, making every visit is a new experience, and it is impossible to come out empty handed.

(24) Things Birthday

(24) Things Birthday
As Mrs. Bento hurried out from No Frills to the mall every clothing store she passed by stood a discount sign board that ranged from 30% to 50% off. It is now deem "normal" for new merchandise to go on sale before the next season starts: cardigans, sandals, shorts, shirts and flip-flops. It felt like Summer already even though she just had her clock advanced by one hour last weekend. With all the discount hands smiling and waving at her Mrs. Bento was so tempted to visit one or two or, all the shops.

(23) The Little House of Something on Photography

(23) The Little House of Something on Photography
"I love the name!" Yoji says, as he sips a small mouthful of warm water from the glass marked TIME'S CHANGED. "Everything has becoming so big these days that nothing is touchable anymore. There were the days when a photo print worth no more than ten dollars, and you got what you really love. Those were the days when photographers would even give out prints, free, to friends who really appreciate them. It's the passion and respect the artist got as a reward. Now it's about investment, becoming commodity. I am not saying artists shouldn't be paid, what I try to say is the market has created an illusionary sense of value, $$$ driven, and changed the meaning of creating art to a whole new ball game." Yoji clears his throat and sips another mouthful of the warm liquid.

(22) A Party In The Room

(22) A Party In The Room
It was pouring outside. Mrs. Bento always worries when it rains this hard. It is about the building, especially the second floor - the east facing room. The exterior bricks around the window have deteriorated so much that, when the rain is substantially heavy and wind exceptionally strong, water would seep through the cracks, trapped inside the dry wall causing it to swell. The sight is not pleasant.

(21) Flying to the Moon

(21) Flying to the Moon
Now that George and Wandy have twenty-three million to spend on building a photo museum, got Bento to assist lining up a team of so called professionals, nevertheless, after the team's initial meeting they arrival at some basic but crucial points, the core issues around building Photo Museum YTT. Like any other business, it requires planning. To establish a museum one needs to understand the legal and tax obligations that come with running the organization, which will mostly be a nonprofit one.

(20) Photo Museum YTT

(20) Photo Museum YTT
Unable to find an appropriate name for the museum, they resolve to use the originally idea of Photo Museum, but adding the acronym YTT, which stands for "Yesterday Today Tomorrow". This promptly gives the Museum a bit more character, plus covering pretty much of every period of photography.

Before tonight's dinner, Mr. Bento did spend some sleepless nights sculpting the photo museum advisory board.

(19) The Pockmarked Wife

(19) The Pockmarked Wife
A panoramic lake and city view. George and Wandy's apartment overlooks east, sweeping a wide, nearly 270 degrees to the south-west of Lake Ontario, which guarantees spectacular scenes of sunrise and sunset. They know what they've got - a million dollar view. But somehow, they still feel overwhelmed by the generous supply of natural light - banks of windows that practically embracing the flat from ceiling to floor, like a solarium not to exaggerate.

(18) A better handyman

(18)  A better handyman
Ginger was still wiping her sweat as she climbed out of bed. Still disturbed by the terrible dream and the fate of her parents, and within the next minute, she heard a scream. It was from her mother.

"The kitchen sink is leaking!" cried Mrs. Bento frantically.

(17) Ginger's Dream

(17) Ginger's Dream
Ginger's heart was still pounding when she woke from the dream - so real that she thought she was in another dream as she struggled to open her half-closed eyes. After sobering for a while, she took a good hard look to see if it was her bedroom, and tried to move her legs if they could touch the floor. Yes, it was no doubt the reality and the universe she inherited. Not a parallel universe and not another self she entered into.

(16) Grazing ground

(16) Grazing ground
It was still an Ice and Fire trip, though Mrs. Bento and Ginger missed visiting any volcanoes in Iceland for fire, and any glaciers for ice in the must see list. First of all, both of them are not really the outdoor type, they lacked suitable clothes and gear for a trip that called for adventure. And second, they only had a week there and stayed mostly in the capital city Reykjavik, where they had more than enough to do.

(15) Paprika Plains

(15) Paprika Plains
"Sorry Vio, I got cut off from this phone call selling me more speed and bandwidth which I DON'T NEED. Let us get back to Paprika Plains. If it's too long and boring, just quit anytime.

Even though Blue is her most successful and beloved record, don't get stuck there. In fact her work got more and more interesting in the seventies. Joni was adventurous, brave and lucky. She was a magnet, attracted and surrounded by other talented musicians - either she looked for them or they came to her. The hard-to-settle woman jumped from one lover to another, not just because of mutual attraction, but also for inspiration and challenge to move forward.

(14) A Letter to Vio

(14) A Letter to Vio

The letter came from papers tucked inside a sketch book in the upstairs library. It was addressing to Violet but now landed on the hands of Mrs. Bento, which are slightly rough, and smell faintly of laundry detergent.

Vio my dearest,

There are so many aspects of Joni Mitchell that I can introduce you to I hardly know where to begin.