Poetry Corner – Jobless Masses

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Jobless Masses

You, the jobless masses are the scum of the earth
The disease of life
The losers that roam the streets in perpetual hopelessness
Depressive, downtrodden, delusional, destitute
Why not kill yourselves?
Life would be so much easier

No more hanging out at the local Tim Hortons
Staring into the oblivion of your stale coffee
No more asking for change on the frigid streets, bumming a cigarette
No more harassing the good, hardworking people of society
No more taking advantage of those who deserved to get where they are
No more Airbnb-ing the local library

If only street cleaners could brush you up off the sides of the streets
along with all the other discarded trash
If only you were jailed or shot
for being a bane on the rest of us

Stop bothering us!
Leave us alone!
Go get a job!
Go shave that disgusting beard!
Go take a shower!
Go write a resume!
Just leave me the fuck alone!

You’re the acne on a flawless face
The scar on a perfect body
The blemish on pristine skin
The callouses on soft hands
The dirt under our fingernails
The open sore on an infected wound
The herpes, syphilis and gonorrhea of the city
The waste running through the sewers

These thoughts enter my mind vicariously
As I look at the busy masses walking by
And I wonder
When will someone notice?

FreeStyle – Do You Think I’m Soxy?

FreeStyle

Do You Think I’m Soxy?

written by Cameron Brtnik for ContentDistribution.com

    Do you remember a time, long ago, when socks weren’t sexy? When they were just something you put on your feet if only for comfort, only to be tossed with disgust into the laundry bin at the end of the day. When they were just an extra in a Tide commercial, or something you “hung with care” over the fireplace on Christmas eve. Flash forward to 2014 when a couple of brothers, Albert and Boris Vaisman, started to think about socks differently, and built a little business called Soxy. 

    The trend has caught on – just inconspicuously check out your cubicle mate’s ankles, or lower your gaze next time you’re at a hobnob at your local haunt – and you’ll be sure to see metrosexual men sporting funky socks, a new form of “podiatry peacocking.” My best friend wears fashionable men’s socks and I feel it says a lot about his personality: quirky, charming, trendy. At first I didn’t understand it: why wear something fashionable that’s basically ninety percent covered up? Then I caught the “foot affliction” and began sporting my own pairs of fashionable foot covers. In high school all we wore were plain ol’ sweat socks. But now a fancy pair of socks has become a conversation starter, a snazzy accessory you can actually give more than a modicum of thought to, much like a fashionable fedora or flashy new kicks. Of course it’s always best to wear a pair of fashionable socks with an equally styling pair of shoes – and fortunately Soxy offers both!

Are You Ready To Look Cool?

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Try These On For Size!

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Mens Blue Big Stripes Bundle

    Whether you’re into striped, checkered, or funky patterns, Soxy has a line of sultry socks for everyone. The great thing is they can be worn in all sock-wearing seasons. We love the Mens Blue Big Stripes (https://www.soxy.com/collections/mens-striped-socks/products/mens-blue-big-stripes-bundle ) for their vibrant colors and bold statement. And really, stripes go with any outfit or occasion. Choose from other styles on their website such as Purple Camouflage and Autism for something really mind-bending.

Why Socks Are Fashionable:

  • They pair well with almost any wardrobe
  • They’re fun to mix and match with pants, shirts, and suits
  • They’re conversation starters
  • They show your uniqueness and originality

“But what can I wear with my funky new foot fashion?” The answer is: pretty much anything.

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What Color Pants With What Shoes?

    First off, you have to know what pants you’re wearing with what shoes before deciding on which socks. Here’s a few pairings we recommend for the more sartorially savvy.

THE BASICS

What Color Pants Should I Wear With Black Shoes?

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Black On Black

    The traditional answer is: black. It’s got a classic, professional look that’s never out of style, whether or not you’re wearing a suit. If you’re in the office or out on the town, you can’t go wrong with black on black. You’ve seen Orange Is The New Black? Well, Black is The New… Orange. Check out Fashion Beans for some great advice on black shoes (https://www.fashionbeans.com/article/best-shoe-colour-combinations-men/)

For The More Fashionable Fellows Among Us

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White Pants With Brown Shoes

    Want to make a statement? Go out and buy yourself a pair of skinny fit white pants and wear them with your swankiest pair of brown leather shoes. You will stand out like a Gucci model at state fair. Warning: you must be in decent physical condition to pull this one off.  All those who care more about ice cream than ice skating beware. For a perfect set of luxurious leathers check out Soxy’s Mens Brown & Blue Leather Wingtip Dress Shoes (https://www.soxy.com/collections/mens-wingtip-shoes/products/mens-brown-leather-wingtip-dress-shoes)

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White Pants With Black Shoes

    For something just as stylish with a more classic appeal, try pairing those tighty-whities with pair of black shoes. You’ll still stand out – but more like Picasso among plebeians. Just be careful you don’t sit on any freshly-painted benches. Try adding an extra touch with Soxy’s Mens Purple Camouflage Socks (https://www.soxy.com/products/mens-purple-camoflouge-socks?pr_prod_strat=description&pr_rec_pid=2665183051894&pr_ref_pid=2654572707958&pr_seq=uniform) and emulating Elvis wish their Mens Black & Blue Suede Driving Loafers (https://www.soxy.com/collections/mens-loafers/products/mens-black-and-blue-suede-driving-loafers).

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Black Pants With White Shoes

    Crisp, clean and summery – no I’m not talking about some new kale crazy. I’m talking about skinny black pants paired with plain old white sneakers. You’ll look hip, fresh, and cool in this aesthetic ensemble. Even cooler, complete this outstanding outfit with a crisp white t-shirt or button down. Pick up a pair of white runners with Soxy’s very own Mens White Leather Sneakers (https://www.soxy.com/collections/mens-sneakers/products/mens-white-leather-sneakers).

“But What About My Upper Half?”

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Black Shirt With White Shoes

    For something more subdued but still stylish, throw on a black blouse buttoned up to the top. This speaks “fashion conscious” without overstating it. Elegant and smart, you’re sure to draw attention from the cool crowd. Here’s a great article from our friends down at Outfit Trends on white shoes. Now study up. (https://www.outfittrends.com/men-outfit-with-white-shoes/)

REFRESHER

Wear Your Snazzy New Socks With:

  • Black pants + black shoes
  • White pants + brown or black shoes
  • Black pants + white shoes
  • Black shirt + white shoes
  • Naked (*remain indoors)

Still not sure what pants to pair with what shoes? Check out this chart

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Pant And Shoe Color Chart

Don’t worry ladies – we didn’t forget you!

    As you can tell, this article was written for men. But that doesn’t mean you’re not a significant other looking for a snazzy pair of stockings for the love of your life. Soxy makes some great gift ideas, and they’ve made it easy for you by putting together special packages. Try these out and we’re sure your beautiful beau will smother you with delectable kisses. Mens Autism Sock Bundle (https://www.soxy.com/products/mens-puzzlemania-bundle?pr_prod_strat=copurchase&pr_rec_pid=2654572773494&pr_ref_pid=2654572707958&pr_seq=uniform)

    Whether you’re looking to update your style or add to your already quirky collection of feet cozies, designer socks are in – and Soxy just made them sexy.

Follow Soxy on IG @soxy

Cameron Brtnik is a freelance writer living in Toronto. He now owns twelve pairs of Soxys, none of them matching

BLOG-Bits: Ramblings of a Madman – The Pub

BLOG-Bits
Ramblings of a Madman
the-flask
The Pub
10.23.19
    Nothing like a cool pint on a cold day… Sitting in a warm, dimly lit pub, in prohibition era red velvet chairs. With the first sip you can forget your worries… And the pub suddenly becomes your home: the dirty table, the stained chair, the dusty lamp. You could live here. The waiter is suddenly your best friend. The previously loud and annoying resident is suddenly a friendly neighbour. The loud noises are suddenly welcome. The smell of chicken wings is suddenly akin to the feeling of an organism. An overall sense of elation comes over you like there’s not a thing wrong in the world. All you worries, anxiety, depression – poof – gone. I could kiss my neighbour right now: a bearded hipster. This feeling feels like it could last forever. Is this how men become alcoholics? Did it all start with good intentions – a stress relief, a therapy, something to set the world straight? If I were dying I’d like to got out after a few pints. I wouldn’t be afraid of death. I would welcome it with open arms, like my mustachioed companion. Why can’t I always feel like this? I never want this feeling to end. Weed is good too. Why don’t they serve weed-infused beer pints? They’re missing a good business opportunity. Maybe I should start one: a pub that sells weed pints. I’d make a ton of money. Then I could buy as many pints as I like.

T0P 5: How To Meet People

T0P 5:

How To Meet People

written by Cameron Brtnik

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T0P 5: How To Meet People 

    Let’s see, what to do today… Go to work? Check. Pick up groceries on the way home? Check. Make dinner and put the kids to bed? Check. Read at least one page of that book I’ve had on the go for six months now… Sleep. Where in this whirlwind schedule of yours did you make time to meet people?

It seems the “art of meeting people” is lost on us. We’re too busy staring at our glowing, soothing screens (I know I know cliche, but also true). Too busy planning our artful escape off the elevator full of sweaty people we spent the entire ride trying not to make eye contact with. Too busy worrying about our home lives: I gotta talk to the husband, I can see Sophie’s going through some issues, when’s the last time I saw the dentist? Internal monologue that really wears us down mentally and physically. “Outside people” are seen as a threat to our own existence: “Don’t talk to me bub or you’ll screw up my mental grocery list.” But you know what’s fun? Getting outside your thoughts, and striking an “uncomfortable” conversation with your worried-looking neighbour in the elevator. Also chatting with that person behind you in the line at the grocery store as you’re paying for your Coffee Crisp. I guarantee at least one of you will leave the conversation feeling better about the world.

Without further ado, here’s my Top 5 Techniques on “How To Meet People and Break The Ice!” (or HTMPABTI)

1. Breaking The Ice – Don’t be shy; Approach people and you break the ice. Don’t open with the usual, “Hey, how you enjoying this party?” Rather offer something:a party trick, a funny anecdote, a compliment, or a corny joke. Once you become a person of value, this “just a second ago stranger” will be actually be interested in meeting you. Now go and Google “corny jokes.”
2. Keep the Conversation Interesting – Be outgoing, friendly, funny, gregarious… But don’t just talk about yourself (nobody likes a bragger…except other braggers); Bring up current news stories, talk about how you both know the host, share an embarrassing story, but most importantly ask questions about them!This person will be (happily) shocked that a stranger is so interested in getting to know more about him or her. Remember: Knowledge is power, and power is half the battle! Or something like that…
3. Ask Questions – Show you’re interested – I know I just stated this above, but it’s worth repeating. One way I engage people is not by telling them about me (although if they ask I will tell them) but rather by asking about them. Not just the usual: “What’s your name? What do you do? Have you been here before blah blah blah…” That’s interesting but not really engaging. Rather ask, “What are your interests?” See if you can bond over a common interest ie. sports, politics, your shared obsession in D&D. This is sure to keep the conversation rolling – at least until you tell them your nickname for the stuffed teddy bear you sleep with every night.
4. Name Game – Remember the person’s name! This is difficult (I do not now why it’s so difficult). My technique? I repeat the person’s name throughout the conversational least four times so I remember it. For example: What’s your name?”Daniella. “Pleasure to meet youDaniella. Daniella, do you enjoy waterskiing?” I’ve never been… “Haha that’s great, I can just picture you on a pair of skis on the lake like, ‘HeyDaniella! You have to be facing the boat!’ Well Daniella it was a pleasure chatting with you, how can we…” That was four times. It seems excessive when you read it, but it’s really not and she won’t even notice. And when you call her by her by her name at the end of the conversation, she’ll be impressed you actually remember it! Not like the last couple douchebags who didn’t and then expected to exchanges socials. Bam you win.
5. Keep In Touch – Rather than blatantly asking,What’s your phone number or Instagram?(this can feel intrusive especially if you just met) ask,”How can we continue this conversation?,”and let them offer their contact. A bit of reverse psychology for you!

Bonus: How to Remember a Name

  1. Repeat their name at least four times throughout the conversation.
  2. Think of a person you know with the same name who has a similar personality or hobby.
  3. Rhyme their name with something you’ll remember ie. Mike likes to hike, Suzy likes to drink boozy…

My Reading List:

  • The Game by Neil Strauss (Don’t knock it till you read it! Useful for men and women)
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

Cameron is a freelance writer based in Toronto and a passionate advocate of meeting strangers cbrtnik.com

Poetry Corner – Morning Commute

Morning Commute

    Tin snake, barely awake, twisted tunnels, pushed and funnelled, crammed in, tuna can, sea of frowns, furrowed brows, claustrophobic, body frozen, anxiety, stranger eyeing me, death stare, vacant glare, guy's sweaty, eyes heavy, morning breath, feel like death, faces glued to hand devices deathly afraid to look up for they may accidentally make eye contact: phone screens, Kindle screens, sudoku screens, newspaper screens, delay announcement, PA shouting, confused expressions, rising tension, gonna be late shit, won't make it, gonna be fired, brain is tired, missing my test, gonna get an F, Finch Station, arrived at my destination... A sigh of relief, now do it again five days a week

10P 10: How To Throw a GOOD Party This Summer

10P 10:

How To Throw a Good Party This Summer

written by Cameron Brtnik

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“Make it a Potluck”
    We’re finally into the summer party season, and you’ll no doubt be celebrating at your cottage up North, hitting a patio downtown, or throwing a backyard BBQ. You will surely be stocked with cold beers, coolers, freshly rolled joints and other party favours to help keep your guests inebriated. And let’s not forget the staples: juicy burgers, sausages, and some unidentifiable vegan choice. You’ll probably have a couple card games on hand like Cards Against Humanity, or Uno. And this would all seem like enough..but often, it’s not – not if you want to make your party memorable. Here are some ideas to add some originality, fun and excitement to your shindig, and ensure your parties will be the most talked about this summer!
1. Get Decor – Buy some decor at a store. I know it seems tacky, but it’s better than nothing! Eg: Streamers, balloons, and other party favours. Tip: These can all be bought at Dollarama.
2. Plan Some Games – This may seem childish, but as I’m sure you’re well aware, a drunken crowd is a childish crowd. Some ideas: Pin the Tail On the Donkey, Twister (this will turn x-rated pretty quick, unless it’s a family function), Truth or Dare, Card Drinking Games like Kings Cup
3. Have Prizes – Don’t forget to have prizes for the winners. I usually like to have cheesy prizes ie. stuff you can get from the dollar bin, as it makes it funnier, promotes good sportsmanship, and will ultimately save some $. Some favourites: Bag-o-nuts, a pair of socks, or some kind of childish toy. It’s probably good to have a real prize for the harder games like Trivia. For this you can have nicer items like a bottle of Tequila or a movie Gift Certificate. Tip: For a great prize (and to save you more $) you could make a “Dinner for two with Me and You” gift card where you invite that guest and a plus one for a dinner night. They will love it cause they’ll get to spend more time with you!
4. Host a Trivia Game – Everyone likes to play trivia at the pub, but how about in your own living room? And have guests answering questions you designed yourself? Tip: Make it theme related ie. On a trip to Chicago you could include trivia about that city, or for a birthday you can find out trivia about the birthday boy (ask his girlfriend the answers beforehand so it makes it super subjective!)
5. Play Kings Cup – I mentioned this in #2, but I felt this game needed a whole category in itself. You know it – it’s that game you played in college where, by the end, you were either throwing up in the bathroom or making out with a stranger. Kings Cup is still the king of drinking games (see what I did there?) and what I love about it is that you can tweak the rules or even make up new ones along the way. “Kings! From now on no one can use the word ‘drink’ during the game.” Good luck with that one.
6. Entertain Your Guests – Invite at least one talented friend. This could be a musician, a dancer, a clown, or even a chef. It doesn’t matter, as long as they’re prepared to be put on the spot at some point in the night to put on a show. It’s a win-win: They entertain your crowd for free and they get invited to the next party.
7. Play Match-Maker – Know a couple of stand-up individuals in your circle of friends who haven’t found the right one (yet)? Perfect! Act as matchmaker. Whether or not they hit it off by the end of the night, they’ll thank you for your well-meaning efforts. You never know – they may just name their baby after you.
8. Throw a Dance Party – Halfway into the night guests will be chilling on the patio, deck, or huddled inside if the weather’s chilly… That’s when you ask Alexa to throw on some party tunes! Watch as your normally shy friends bust out the Floss. Ah DMX never sounded so good.
9. Make It a Potluck – Make the party a Potluck Party and that will certainly take a lot of the stress off of hosting. You can designate one cook, or guests may use the grill to cook their own food (this comes with an obvious warning).
10. BYOB – Ask guests to “Bring Your Own Booze.” This seems evident but it’s worth mentioning. Imagine the PR nightmare if you ran out of booze halfway through the event – apocalyptic. If everyone brings their own booze, you can relax knowing there’ll be plenty to gulp down for the duration of the event (and even leftovers for dinner the next day!). Oh the joys of hosting. Tip: To make the party amusing put out a bowl of edibles. WARNING: Make sure your guests know they’re edibles! If they’ve never tried them advise doing just a little so your guests don’t disappear halfway through the night. I recommend gummy bears, but just the head.

Cameron is a freelance writer based in Toronto and part-time party planner cbrtnik.com

Poetry Corner – Starbucks

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Starbucks

I don’t even recognize this world around me. How am I supposed to be productive? Maneuvering on an unstable rock, an unknown planet, through an ever-evolving galaxy… Staring at the unfamiliar person across from me at a Starbucks, one of many, not special, drinking brown water, trying to find the inspiration at the bottom of the cup…

Multiple unimportant conversations fill the space around me, fleeting moments in a day that blends into the next, any other day really, not special, they’ve all been repeated before... People pretending to be busy, all the while thinking the same thoughts as me, feeling the same feelings, experiencing the same sense of dread…

Some people staring off into the distance, waiting for a reply on their phone, waiting for their partner to join them, waiting for an email, for a response, any response, waiting, always waiting… We are our gadgets and our gadgets are us. Coffee, Cappuccino, Americano, Chai Latte, Cold Brew, Iced Tea, Frappuccino, down the hatch, feeling wired, feeling tired, feeling happy, feeling sad, feeling hope, feeling hopeless...

Just another day at Starbucks.

SpotLight: Divine Light Wellness – Holistic Healing

SpotLight: Divine Light Wellness – Holistic Healing

Shannon Soules – Life Coach

Spiritual coaching and energy healing for personal growth and wellness

This was my first experience with meditation and Reiki. This is a true testimonial I wrote for her website. She is also the first to be featured in my new SpotLight series. If you are suffering from depression, anxiety or any mental or physical disorder, I sincerely recommend you try out her services. It really did work for me!

I’ve had two sessions with Shannon and…wow. It’s made a huge difference in my overall mood and mental state, and I’ve been much more clear-headed and focused. This year I’ve taken positive steps to get my life in order – mental health, career path, personal growth – by hiring a Life Coach and a Spiritual Coach and have been making incremental, yet great strides, in all three areas. I like the practical, straightforward advice from my life coach gives me which have produced immediate and perceptible results. To be honest, I was more skeptical of working with a “spiritual” coach, but at this point I was open to trying anything…

Shannon made the trip to Toronto for our first, in-person session. She has a nifty “mobile office” complete with massage table, sage and Tibetan bowls, so if you can’t make the trip to her in Georgetown she can come to you! She offered the whole gambit: guided meditation, Reiki and the mystical Tibetan Bowls, all of which were a first experience for me. If you’re a naturally skeptical person like me, right now you are probably saying to yourself, “Reiki? What the hell is that? Sounds like a Naruto jutsu.” But I knew that if I fully gave myself over to Shannon’s guidance and suggestions, I won’t regret it; it all works if you let your guard down and open yourself up to new experiences

One facet from our sessions I really appreciated was that Shannon took the time to transcribe everything I said and, more importantly, read them back to me; the strange thing is that it didn’t even sound like me! They were truly insightful reflections, all from deep within my own mind – if only we took time out of our “busy schedules” of watching Netflix and checking Instagram to meditate and do some self-reflection. If you have trouble focusing and meditating on your own like I do, booking a session with Shannon is the best way to begin! My ultimate goal is to eventually be able to do this on my own – but working with Shannon will inspire and get you motivated to start.

I had many insights in just two sessions – my second session was over Skype (this was “pre-zoom” era) as we couldn’t schedule a meetup that week. Yet surprisingly I was able to go into a meditative state as she guided me through our session over the screen. It was an equally gratifying session, although I still preferred our in-person session. I have since booked weekly sessions with Shannon, and I’m already looking forward to our next one. She has taught me that it’s possible to be still, even for just a moment, in this constantly engaging world and to start looking within.

Shannon also practices Poi and if you ask nicely, she may teach you! Check our her website here: http://www.divinelightwellness.com

Cameron is a freelance writer, blogger, and spiritual being based in Toronto. ***For your very own “SpotLight” just send me an email at cbrtnik@gmail.com or PM me on Instagram @instacam81

Upfront Reviews: Float Toronto

Upfront Reviews: Float Toronto

by Cameron Brtnik

    When you enter into Float Toronto, you’re entering into another world… If you haven’t “floated” yet, do yourself a favour and get buoyant! 

    If you haven’t tried it, you’ve most likely heard of it: known as “float pods,” “isolation tanks” or the more ominous sounding “sensory deprivation tanks,” they’ve started to amass a cult following amongst its practitioners. It has also been called “floatation therapy,” and is anecdotally said to cure a multitude of ailments. Joe Rogan claims he sleeps in one every night. As Float Toronto – one of the few venues that carry float tanks in Toronto – say in their promotional video, “Your experience in a float tank is about everything you won’t be doing.” I personally always go in with some intent: think on my goals, focus my energy, reflect on my actions or simply to meditate.

Welcome to Float Toronto!

    You are greeted by a chill receptionist who is more than happy to give you a tour of the spa. In fact, it’s more of a “do it yourself spa.” What comes to mind when you think of the word “spa?” Relaxation, meditation, and healing – and that’s exactly what you’ll get during your float. In fact, I’ve found floating to be far more relaxing than a traditional massage. I believe it’s because your body actually relaxes, I mean fully relaxes, without friction against your body, and your muscles for the first time can fully relax. That’s the problem with traditional massage: your body is still lying against another surface so it’s impossible for your body to completely relax. Because the water is heated to the same temperature as your body, you don’t really feel it after a while and your mind becomes “untethered” from the rest of you. As Joe Rogan says, “Your body is a distraction.” Now it’s time to travel to the centre of consciousness…

    As you enter your own private room complete with personal bench, tiled shower and your very own float pod, you’re overcome with a sense of relaxation before even stepping into the glimmering abyss… The dim lights and their sapphire glow make it feel as if you’re stepping into a spacecraft – and that’s exactly what you’re doing. After a soothing shower (there’s no rush as you have a whole hour to float), you step into your personal pod and it feels ethereal. At first you’ll feel slightly nervous to lie down on a bed of water. Don’t worry: each tank has a thousand pounds of epsom salt which gives the water a buoyancy akin to the Dead Sea. You fully lie back – yes you can even rest your head on the surface of the water – or you have the option of using the provided halo cushion for your neck. You have the option of earplugs if you get swimmer’s ear, soothing body cream to rub on your skin after your session, and your very own robe; you’ll feel like you’re staying at the Hilton. If you are claustrophobic, not to worry; the tanks are easy to exit at all times by just pushing up on the pod door. But don’t fret: Float Toronto’s tanks are much larger and voluminous than most, so even the most claustrophobic guest should’ve have a panic attack.

    There is heavenly zen music playing as you enter the glowing hull. As you descend into the warm glow of the lights, it’s nice to just lie in it for ten minutes to get fully immersed into the experience. You can control the settings from inside the tank if you want to control the lights and music, but this floater recommends trying the full experience: FULL SENSORY DEPRIVATION. Oh, and one very important tip: never rub your eyes! Don’t put your hands even near your eyes. Doing so will result in a disruption of your meditative state and quickly propel you back to reality. In case of this scenario, there is spray and a towel provided in the tank which will quickly remedy the situation. As you’re in a “sensory deprivation” tank, after about ten minutes you’re encouraged to turn all these distractions off…so you’re floating in pure blackness, like the blackness of space, the thick water fully supporting your weightless body. At first you may feel helpless, anxious, or even nervous…but slowly a relaxing feeling encompasses you like a warm blanket. As you lay there naked – oh yes, I forgot to mention you are encouraged to go “au naturel” to get the full experience – typically your mind will start racing to all the things you have to do that day: go to work, pick up milk, take the dog out, watch the season finale of Game of Thrones. In today’s age you may even have a full-on panic attack that you can’t whip out your phone to check your notifications and like your favourite insta posts. But eventually these thoughts fade and suddenly, for the first time in forever, your mind becomes empty…or at least void of any trivial thoughts. You begin noticing your environment and because there’s no light to “influence” your vision, you may even start hallucinating. I have envisioned that I am floating in space with stars hovering above me (these experiences are heightened by a quick hit on the ol’ vape before floating. I feel this enhances the experience but is not necessary.)

Top 5 Things I Like To Do While In The Tank 

  1. Listen to my knuckles crack underwater
  2. Hum and chant underwater. Your voice is intensified so that it sounds like it could fill a stadium. (One time floating with a friend he heard me chanting from an adjoining room. He thought he was hearing things in the tank!)
  3. Force myself to be creative. If I have an upcoming project that I haven’t reflected on yet, I simply focus on that one thing and – boom – ideas come streaming in
  4. Pretend I’m a frog swimming around in my own private pond
  5. Massage my body. The salty, viscous fluid helps with this

    Because you won’t be “fighting gravity,” it’s hard to tell where the water ends and your body begins… You became “one” with the water and the space around you, as if you’re a naked astronaut floating through space. I am usually fully relaxed halfway through the float, and that’s when my mind starts being creative. I like to use the tank time to think, create and brainstorm ideas – like a literal think tank! But each person’s experience is subjective, and you may prefer to just relax and enjoy the experience. With around twenty minutes to go, I often pass out due to feeling so relaxed. You may call that a waste of a float, but trust me when I say when you wake up you will feel like a new person, and I guarantee you will have never slept like that in a bed before. The music comes on again at the end, sort of like a heavenly alarm clock, to wake you. But if you find it hard to snap out of the trance you’re in, the water will start gushing around the tank to “nudge” you awake. You’ll want to take another shower to wash all that salt off your body. One thing you’ll notice is how smooth your skin feels: “Like a baby’s bottom,” is the best way to describe it. Another thing I find is that, ironically, my muscles are sore, almost like I just ran a marathon. I think it’s because they’ve never fully relaxed before. But it’s in a good way, like that feeling after a good workout at the gym.

    After getting dressed, you can enjoy some hot herbal tea in the lounge and share your experience with the staff. They even provide a journal where you can share your experience by writing a poem, drawing your visions, or writing a short diary of your experience. I’ve heard from people who have had very visual hallucinations (particularly one guy who did mushrooms in the tank. But I don’t recommend that, at least on your first float!), to those who have none and just find it to be a therapeutic experience. I recommend you book a float to find out what you’ll experience. They also sell bags of epsom salt in the lobby so you can enjoy the health benefits in the comfort of your own bath. Whatever your reasons for trying it are – therapeutic, spiritual or psychedelic – I believe floating is the best way to achieve it. Bon voyage!

Book your float here: https://float-toronto.com/ and use their online calendar

Recommendation: Book a package of ten floats and it’s almost half price! Tuesdays are “clean for float” days where you can volunteer to come in and clean for a few hours in exchange for a float! 

Float Toronto on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=3nHbY3lNOJI

Post-float reactions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jI_EL3IvmKQ

Joe Rogan on Sensory Deprivation Tanks https://player.vimeo.com/video/97880537

Cameron Brtnik is a freelance writer and blogger based in Toronto, and a practicing “floater”

Poetry Corner – Finding a Way To Love Everyone

Finding a Way
to love everyone

*Inspired by a homeless man's cardboard box sign with the quote, "Finding a way to love everyone" written on it

 Finding a Way to Love Everyone

 Finding a way to love Everyone, but alas I'm here on the street
 Finding a way to love Everyone, and I'm feeling exhausted and beat
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but I'm starving and in need of food
 Finding a way to love Everyone, acknowledge me no need to be rude 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but I have no shoes on my feet
 Finding a way to love Everyone, man I really need something to eat
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but it's cold and it's starting to rain
 Finding a way to love Everyone, my heart beats and shivers in pain 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but everyone just disappoints
 Finding a way to love Everyone, I'm trying but think what's the point?
 Finding a way to love everyone, but I'm tired and hungry as fuck
 Finding a way to love Everyone, could you spare some change, just a buck
 Finding a way to love Everyone, would you put something in my hat? 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, it'd be great if you'd stop to chat
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but not sure if I'll be here or how 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, there is no tomorrow, only now
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but I'm coughing and constantly sick 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, homeless or dead, take your pick
 Finding a way to love Everyone, but soon I'll be dead and gone 
 Finding a way to love Everyone, sadly realize life will go on

 ....

 I'm still trying to love Everyone.


Cameron is a writer living in Toronto and a volunteer with a local homeless outreach program. He is still "finding a way to love everyone."