Sunday, May 31, 2009

Nice stuff

One thing that I really like about Victoria (and other places in Canada I've lived) is that people usually go out of their way to help an article of clothing find its owners again. People will pick up a dropped, forgotten or lost thing and put it in an easy to find place. Walking around, you might see scarves wrapped about tree trunks, mittens stuck over fence posts or a wee pair of socks pinned to a utility pole...

Petty theft does occur but generally it's not very common. In fact, there is a tradition in Victoria of leaving things you don't want on boulevards outside your home for other people who might want them, a very informal form of recycling. But the general culture of no petty theft means that you have to put 'free' signs on your stuff... or risk having no one take it.

And I thought my tv was old!

Anyways... I like that.

Friday, May 29, 2009

A poem.

I have trouble with poetry. I just don't get a lot of it. Often, when I read a poem, it just sounds all wrong to me. I still read poetry once in a while though cos sometimes I find something I like, like this...

just about anything

used to
approach women


on my good

that failed
i tried writing

i heard it



- Wayne Keon

It gave me a laugh and has been in my head for a few days now so I think that means that I like.

For my British friends...

In Victoria, BC...

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blog Whores

I've noticed three of my 'followers' appear on many other blogs. One 'follower' of mine in particular; his face shows up everywhere. As far as I can see it, these three followers have joined a kerbillion blogs to create a kerbillion links back to their own blogs. Just look at how long the lists of blogs they are following are. Avid readers?

Following a blog in itself is cool if you are genuine reader of that blog. I like my thirteen real followers and they've at least left a comment on my blog and visa-versa. But if some one's sole reason for 'following' is just to place a link then that's slimey, that's spamming, imo. They're like the Jehovah's Witnesses of the blogosphere. I don't want their slimey, spammy faces next to my real and lovely followers.

So, I am naming and shaming three of my followers:
- Ronnie Kerrigan
- Stephen Baird
- Skywind (who I've already asked twice to not spam my blog)

I'll give them a 24 hours to redeem themselves (yeah, right) before I give them the big 'fuck off!' ;-)

If anyone else notices some blog whores 'following' on their blogs or just anyone that they don't want following their blog, this blog entry on Roberto's Report is very helpful in explaining how to delete a follower (took me a flippin hour to find the info). Of course, if your blog is public anyone can still follow it, they can still read it, but they can't put their slimey, spammy faces and links in the 'following' gadget on your blog.

Ahhh, I love the power of being an autocrat! Until I rule the universe, I will rule my wee blog with an iron fist... at least until Blogger kicks me off. ;-)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

California poppies and moonies

The other day I was out photographing some California poppies. In the morning they have such a nice, curled up shape and then they open up as the sun gets higher. I just love them, they seem very happy to me.

I saw some poppies with various other wildflowers in a bend on the other side of the road and I thought it would make for a nice pic. While I was trying to take a photo, ten million cyclists streamed down the hill, interfering with my view. This road is a favourite of cycling clubs. I figured, just point the camera and take a few pics. I can crop the cyclists out.

Anyways... I was just looking at the photos. I was not surprised to get a few cyclists in my photos but what I was surprised by was the sheerness of this particular cyclist's shorts!

Puts a whole new spin on the term full moon cycle.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Nothing says, 'I have an inflated sense of my own self-worth' like...

Building a huge house for yourself and your family and calling it a castle.

This is Craigdarrock Castle in Victoria, BC. It's a big building with a lot of nice stuff in it and it's main function is to relieve tourists of their money.

Do I seem cynical? Well, I am a bit.

The man who built this house, Robert Dunsmuir, made his fortune by exploiting whomever he could; fellow immigrant miners from Britain, immigrant workers from China and Japan and local Aboriginal peoples, in a dangerous industry (coal mining) where death and injury were common. He has been described as one of British Columbia's most ruthless, avaricious employers and one of the earliest symbols of unbridled capitalism in BC. (These description are from a book. I'm trying to find the book. I can't find the feckin' book.)

I can appreciate the artistry and craftsmanship in various aspects of the building; especially the beautiful woodwork and stained glass. Here, on 'Victoria Daily Photo' are some excellent photos of the interior. I love the woodwork, windows and doo-dads; they are beautiful.

As is the neighbourhood, Rockland, that surrounds the castle. It's a lovely neighbourhood with some very gorgeous homes. Actually, much more beautiful and with far more charm than the castle, imo. I had intended to visit the castle on Saturday but after a very nice walk through Rockland, I felt ill seeing that monstrosity. I can't help it; there is something very distasteful, cold and inhuman to me about Craigdarrock Castle... Sorry. I couldn't be arsed to even cross the street, let alone, shell out ten bucks to go in. Bleugh...

I should work for the Tourism Board, eh?


Friday, May 22, 2009

Skyscrapers and slicers

A couple of pictures from Calgary, Alberta. I lived there, briefly.

I thought that this wonderful cloud looked like a huge skymonster about to gobble-up the downtown core or was that wishful thinking?

I'm not a fan of living in big cities but I do try to appreciate them for what they can offer; neat-o buildings is one of these things. This is the Nexen Building and while looking up at it one day I wondered, 'if that building fell right towards me, would I be crushed or sliced in two?' What do you think?

For more skies from around the globe, visit Skywatch Friday.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Veggies. Veg. Edible plant matter.

Do you like vegetables? Do you have any favourites? Do you like them cooked to within an inch of their lives or do you like them raw? roasted? stir-fried? etc? Are there vegetables that you've never tasted? Do you think vegetables are evil? Are there some vegetables that you can't stand? Do you eat your veggies? Any interesting vegetable tales to tell?

I love most vegetables and eat them all sorts of ways. Favourite: onions! Green, spring, sweet, firey, red, raw, roasted, soup-ed, stir-fried, roasted, tempura, bhaji, pickled at the bottom of a gin martini...

Brussels sprouts are evil! I hate them. Hate. Hate. Hate them! According to my poll, it looks like I'm out numbered but I have the science to justify my loathing (more later). I don't like eggplant/aubergine very much either. Or lotus root. Bleugh!

I'm sure there are many veggies I've yet to try or even know about!

Who's next?

BTW, the portrait in the top left is by a wonderful artist called Giuseppe Arcimboldo and the painting is called 'Vegetables In A Bowl Or The Gardener' depending on your perspective:

Monday, May 18, 2009

Book bothering.

This may seem petty but I hate this:

For my British friends...

In Calgary, Alberta...

...where only the brave order the all meat pizza!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Art of Finishing.

Does anyone remember this?

In January, I started a night school painting course and started about half a dozen paintings; each week we experimented with different subjects and/or techniques, so new canvas for each.

I've also been painting, painting over and then starting over again the big penis flower painting. And I'm also painting a gift for a friend.

Not finishing anything started to bother me but how do you know when a painting is finished? Well there are wise words written about that but today, I defined finished as: "good fucking enough!" ;-) and voila, a finished 'painting'...

It's not really a painting painting; it was an exercise (here and here). It's not something that I would choose to paint and it's quite 'flat' but I'm proud of my patience with painting those tiny precise shapes and those flippin' black lines and most of all I'm happy that it's just finished.

I've no idea what to call it. What should I call it?

Friday, May 15, 2009


A few hours ago, I had a very good mug of coffee. It's still lingering on my taste buds...

I practice mindfulness meditation (may blog about that later). Essentially it helps me to chill out and to pay full attention to the present, if I remember to that is. ;-)

This morning, I decided to make and drink a coffee, meditatively... mindfully... ohmmm-ally... haha...

It was one of the best cups of coffee that I've ever had. I love coffee!

Do you like coffee? How do you drink it? Or are you a tea (scrunches up nose) drinker? Do you drink coffee all day? Do you have favourite coffee bevies? Do you make of eat foods with coffee in them? Do you think coffee is evil?

I'm a 'two mugs a day and only in the morning, very strong Kick Ass, black, no sugar, first thing in the morning, prior to food' coffee drinker. When I go out food Vietnamese food, I always have a Vietnamese iced coffee and more than a few chocolate covered espresso beans have been munched (it's the only way I like chocolate).

Who's next?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Skywatch Friday... hurry! look up there!

Damn! You missed it!

If you had clicked on the link to this page earlier you would have seen a Red-Tailed Hawk.

Maybe you'll have better luck on other Skywatch Friday sites...


Happy Birthday...

To my friend Simon...


Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The definition of creepy.

Nightmare fodder for sale at a vendor's stall along Victoria's Inner Harbour:

Monday, May 11, 2009

That's My World Tuesday... bombs and balls.

Like many people, I love a nice walk through a park. Unlike many people, Beacon Hill Park does not like me walking through it. Recent examples...

SPLAT! Ugh! I'm hit! May Day! May Day!

Fucking shithawks!

Look at them... sitting up there, so smug, above me and ignoring my fist shaking! I give them a good telling off anyways and tried to make the most of the white streak down my black sleeve.

Honestly though, if I was a seagull, I'd be doing the exact same thing. ;-)

Onwards I go, walk for a while... Suddenly I hear: CRA-WRAAACK!!! LOOK OUT!! HEADS UP!!!


WTF was that?!


Fortunately, the ball didn't come too close but close enough for me to wonder why the hell do I visit this park?

Between the above and previous years of 'fun', which includes: stepping into fresh, and I mean still steaming, horseshit... while wearing sandals; tripping face first and completely into a duck pond and being followed around by a very vocal and very horny donkey... the place is a Bermuda Triangle of bad luck and embarrassment for me.

On the brightside, the view is inspiring (eh, Jayne?).

For more 'That's My World Tuesdays' - click the pic:

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Scotland People... help!

These are some screen captures of a DVD I was just watching (Visions of Scotland)... this building is in Scotland but where in Scotland? What is it? Can you visit it? etc...

I absolutely love this!

EDIT: Added these. These are screen captures, not my photos. They make me wish that I could fly.

There once was a man from...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Skywatch Friday...

'Best view from a phone booth' award goes to...

For more skies from around the globe, visit Skywatch Friday.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

That's My World Tuesday... spring blizzard!

Walking to the grocery shop... it's May and it's snowing.

Or, is it?

Ha ha ha... fooled you all, didn't I?
Humour me. ;-)

For more 'That's My World Tuesdays' - click the pic:

Monday, May 4, 2009


In BC, on May 12th, we are having a general election at the provincial level of government. I am struggling with my apathy around that...

But, what has grabbed my interest is that we are also having a referendum on electoral reform. BCers will be asked which electoral system British Columbia should use to elect members to the Legislative Assembly... the current First-Past-the-Post system (FPTP) or the single transferable vote system (BC-STV).

I've done my head in, reading about the pros and cons. I'm very much inclined to vote for the STV.

I'm blogging about this because I'm wondering if people here in BC and in different parts of the world have experiences, feedback, opinions, etc about the electoral systems used in their elections, especially if STV is used.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Help! Suggestions please...


So back in December the midst of xmas shopping hell, I decided that I would never purchase a gift for anyone ever again. Ever. So far, so good... until this morning when I flipped the calendar to May.

Oh crap, May 10th... in Canadaland, that's Mother's Day.

My Mom has always been the easiest person to buy a gift for because she never spent much on herself (except her cool new SMART car!). Not shopping for her has turned out to be a different matter!

After some thought, I decided that I will paint her painting. Not 16 inches of flowery Freudian phallus but something... well, something innocuous... something one would paint for their Mom, Mum, Mother... I can't think of what to paint though... any ideas??

I love my Mom and admire her good qualities; her keen sense of fun, she's very down to earth and her ability to cope with life since my Dad died. Still, she's my Mother, and (imo) it's normal to have issues with your Mother. I'm overly normal in this area, cos when I think about my relationship with my Mother what I would really like to paint is something like this:

haha! ;-)