Saturday, May 03, 2014

How does this work again?

Yes, things have lapsed. It has been well over two full years since I last thought about writing a blog post. In that time a lot has happened, but well, things really haven't changed much either. Still at the same job, still enjoying said job even with the regular ups and downs that comes with it. Work has never really been the focus of my writing here and I think the real reason is because I have other avenues in which I can vent about that already. I blow my steam when I need to and pour up a drink for the days I can't.

No, if I am going to do anything here it will have to be about something that has my passion. Lately, that has been mostly things to do with biking, be it advocating for better infrastructure in the city for bikes, debating wether helmets are worth it or not or just sharing pictures from any little adventures I have on the bike.

While this hardly qualifies as an 'adventure', I took this picture last Saturday while working some overtime at the office. I've always liked it when I'm alone at the office, it is quiet and it tends to be darker as I don't turn on all the lights. I have always liked this print that hides in one of the meeting rooms and thought it would make for a nice shot.

Anyway, I'm not sure if this post signals my return to blogging or not - honestly between reddit, twitter, facebook and all the other ways to share, I'm not really sure what I have left to say. Also, it bugs me that I don't know how to do things like have the text wrap around the photo, etc. like I used to be able to. Okay, that was easy to figure out. Nevermind!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Supporting Starbucks in an anti-boycott

I was reading the paper the other day and stumbled across this juicy article, where I learned that Christians in the US are actually boycotting Starbucks. They are doing this because Starbucks had supported a Washington State bill that legalized gay marriage in their state.

First things first: if you want to be a Christian and happen to believe that a gay lifestyle is not for you, fine. I am not here to object. Everyone should have the right to their own religious beliefs (or non-belief.) Everyone should have the right to determine their sexual orientation on their own and without outside involvement. The mere fact that I have to explicitly say these things boggles my mind.

Now for the other things: What we do not have the moral right to do is to impose restrictions on others who may, or may not share our religious views. This is oppression, especially when it is a majority applying restrictions against a minority. It is oppression to put forward a law that restricts others outside our community in ways that don't apply to ourselves. It is oppression to bully corporations who don't actively support these laws or beliefs. To boycott Starbucks is to actively punish a corporation because they actively stood up in support of basic human rights and equality for all.

To boycott Starbucks is to put yourself on the wrong side of a human rights debate. To boycott Starbucks is to illustrate a measure of hypocrisy, since Christianity is, at least on the face of it, supposed to be about forgiveness, acceptance and love - and this action is none of that.

Anyway, enough ranting. I need a coffee.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Canucks iPad app Fail

I have enjoyed watching the Vancouver Canucks regular season games on my iPad this year. I had to get a special app that would stream the games and it is geo-restricted to BC and Yukon. Being in Vancouver this was a restriction I could live with (although being able to follow my team while traveling seems kind of obvious to me).

Tonight however, I am frustrated. I got home shortly after the game started, fired up the iPad, launched the app only to discover that tonight's game (against the hated Chicago Blackhawks) was not being streamed. No reason was given, restarting the app doesn't 'fix' things, the option to watch the game just does not show up, making this app basically worthless for tonight's game.

This is the second time this has happened. As a customer I expect more visibility into which games will or will not be available for streaming. Actually, I expect that ALL the games for the season should be available through the app - that is basically the reason people get this app.

To be clear: this is not an anti-Apple rant. They merely supply the marketplace. This gripe is leveled at the NHL or possibly the company that was commissioned to write the app for the NHL. If you are not going to serve up some games this season , TELL ME WHICH GAMES I WILL MISS OUT ON FIRST. At this point I don't know if this app is going to work for the next game or not, or if they will withhold playoff games.

It's the uncertainty that puts a bad taste in my mouth more than anything else.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Almost six months with nothing to say

I am sitting here trying to post to a blog I have not used in almost six months, from my iPad, while partially covered in hives from antibiotics I was given to address a cold that would not go away. Yes, I am using run-on sentences purposefully although to what purpose I am not entirely clear. I just know that I wanted to say it that way.

I enjoyed blogging but after losing Louise I had to walk away from it for a while. I lost the taste for it. For a while, I lost my voice. I switched to twitter and other micro-posting venues and they were able to fill the diminished need I had to write. I didn't want to do any more than that and that was okay.

While it has felt like it for the past several months, I don't see this blog as dead. I see it as something that has fallen into disrepair and in need of some restoration. At what pace I set about resuming things I do not know and I don't care to know.

But it is not dead. Well it's might be if one considers the readership I currently get. No new content generally means no more page views and I am not seeing any exceptions here. But I still like the idea of having a forum to give voice to my thoughts so I expect to resume things again at some point.

I just don't know when.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Dog days of Summer

This month was a rough one, what with the passing of Louise and an unplanned visit to Holly's family for her grandfather's funeral. The timing of these two events somehow worked out beautifully, as it had us out of the house for a week when it felt the emptiest for us. Visiting family was just what we both needed.

Originally I wasn't going to post anything about Louise on this blog. I already did put up something to wrap up her site - which ran for six years - I'm a little proud of that - and felt that was enough, but I still felt the need to add something here. Please indulge me a little, I've spared you the worst of it by far.

There really hasn't been much else going on for us this summer - the weather is finally starting to feel like summer, but I've been in the office a lot this season so I've managed to stay extra pale this year. Our days have been filled with work, and wrapping up those ongoing arrangements for Louise - like cancelling her dog tag renewal, notifying her vet, etc.

My birthday is coming up this week, I'll be 41. We hope to have some friends over to celebrate but I am pretty sure that will be a low-key affair - this isn't some huge milestone in my life. Yet it's still a cause to celebrate and I feel that I need that a little more than usual this year. Many of the people attending are folks I haven't really seen much of this summer. Oh, and my birthday gift from Holly this year: a trip to Las Vegas this fall. (it's also going to be my gift to her, since her birthday follows shortly after mine.) Some of Holly's family have arranged to go, and it looks like we will be joining them there.

Now THAT will be a good time.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

No more anon comments

My wife started a 'blogging challenge', where she will blog something every day for thirty days. Just seeing her start this was enough to guilt me into at least looking at my dusty old blog.

I am not participating in the 30 day challenge.

If I was to name this first photo, I'd call it 'Humble Beginnings' because this is what we started with for plants on our patio. While we have a few more now too, we still are a long way from what we have envisioned. Spring being horrible is the only excuse that I have allowed myself, but it's a slippery slope. Anyway, what we have pictured here is rosemary, mint and 'holy basil'. That last one was picked up on a whim simply because apparently the basil leaves can be steeped into a tea - it's funny how I can think something is interesting because of an unexpected quality - even a quality I generally have little to no interest in. This basil is a classic example of that, as I don't usually go for green tea that often. Still, I might like it so I figured it was worth at least trying.

Next up is a picture of Sassy, our least photographed pet. Obviously with Louise having her own blog, she gets tons of pictures. With Sassy's black fur, one generally needs a bright sunny day to get a good shot, so that already reduces the number of picture opportunities. I got this one the other day when I was lazing on the sofa and Sassy figured she would join me.

Finally, we had our anniversary recently, and as usual that meant fireworks. We walked down to the water to take in the festivities, but honestly we found the city to be somewhat quiet. Maybe the cooler weather had something to do with that, or maybe we just were expecting more activity on Robson street, like years gone by. Either way, we kept things low key this year, which was nice.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Stanley Cup fever

I have to say, in previous years I have not bothered to watch the Stanley Cup Final games. Once my team (the Vancouver Canucks) was out of contention, I would usually stop watching. Every year I would get my hopes up and every year they would be dashed. But they kept at it and kept getting better. Now here we are in June and I am still watching hockey, more excited about it than ever.

I don't want to call it, so I'll just say this: I'm hoping my team is going to win it all. It's been fun to watch, both the games and the after-game celebrations around town. We live close enough that after the Canucks post a win, we are able to take a short walk and be in the midst of the action. I have seen the throngs of fans whooping it up on Robson and Granville Streets. Heck, I've been one of those fans on several nights. It's been fun, and is just one of the many little reasons I like living where I do.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Vertigo, again

It's been a long while, but over the weekend I had another case of vertigo. It was in the evening and at first we were blaming it on the extra large (venti) Mocha Chip Frappuccino I had. Even though it was made with decaffeinated coffee, it was still a lot of sugar. Looking back at it now though, I don't think the frap really had much to do with it at all.

Vertigo is a pretty weird thing to experience. Basically, every time I moved my head I would experience a strong 'spinning' sensation that would make me dizzy, even nauseous until I could get it settled down. It was worst when I would go from a standing position to laying down - or vice versa.

Luckily I didn't have the other, more worrisome symptoms that can sometimes go with vertigo - ones that might indicate something far worse, like stroke or multiple sclerosis. I was and currently can still move my eyes to look lower than the mid-point, I did not have any loss of feeling on one side of my body, etc. For me, this was just plain old boring vertigo. About the only other possible diagnosis might be Menier's Disease, but that's so rare that I don't even consider it a real possibility. Also, there is nothing temporary about my hearing loss (one of the symptoms).

It was something that was a little controllable too - I knew that if I was standing, I should stay standing, for example. I was able to run out to pick up some takeout food and made it back home without incident. Of course, I didn't plan on taking a nap at the restaurant, so I was ok. Also, after settling down on the bed again, I waited for the spinning to stop and then I was generally ok - I was even able to play some Minecraft without getting dizzy. It isn't something that was visually stimulated - it was stimulated by head movements.

Ok, that's probably more words than I thought I would write about my vertigo this weekend. I can't remember the last time it happened, so I figured I should post something here and tag it for future reference.