life rattle Radio show no. 1133

Aired on CKLN FM 88.1 January 2, 2011


Hosted by Victoria Martinez



"The Christmas Decoration"
by Monique Massabki


"Family Dinner"
"The Hockey Team"
by Rachel Sa

tonight's writers and Stories

Monique Nadeau Massabki was born in 1966 in Toronto, the oldest of two children. Her father, a retired shipper-receiver, and her mother, a devoted stay-at-home mom, are both natives of Sudbury. After a couple of moves (first to Georgetown, then to Mississauga), the family settled in Schomberg, a small town north of Toronto; a place that Monique still thinks of as home. Monique speaks fluent Frenglish (a bastardized hybrid of French and English) which is widely spoken in Northern Ontario where her parents and brother now live. Monique is writing her first novel and also writes short stories on her blog under the pen name Monica Manning.

“The Christmas Decoration” is based on fact. In Grade One, Monique made a macaroni picture frame as a project. Her teacher, Mrs. Van Dyke, spray painted it gold, attached a ribbon to the back, and told the class to give their projects to their parents to hang on the tree. Monique’s mother hung her picture in the dining room where everyone could see it. She says she still has the picture frame somewhere, although many of the noodles have fallen off.

Rachel Sa was born the youngest of three in 1981 in Toronto. Her parents, both from Portugal, met and married in Toronto. The family moved to the suburbs west of the city when Rachel was 3 years old. She attended the University of Toronto at Mississauga, specializing in English literature and professional writing.

Rachel Sa picked up some valuable writing experience while at school by writing an “On Campus” column for the Toronto Sun. A collection of her columns, “What Rachel Sa” was published in 2002.

Rachel Sa still writes a weekly column for the Toronto Sun, and I myself enjoy reading her columns and even though we are quite far apart in our ages, I find myself agreeing with her points of view most of the time. As Lina Badih wrote in 2002, Rachel Sa’s columns bridge the gap between teens and parents.