Night Music: Florence & the Machine

September 30, 2015

Vancouver East All-Candidates’ Meeting

September 30, 2015

Here is an important date for your calendar.  Next Monday evening at 7:00pm at the former Astorino’s (corner Commercial & Venables) there will be an all-candidates’ meeting for the Federal Riding of East Vancouver.

Confirmed speakers include Jenny Kwan (NDP), Wes Regan (Green), and Edward Wong (Liberal).

Candidates will answer questions on Aboriginal issues, affordable housing, arts funding, health care, transit, refugee policy and, I am sure, anything else the audience wants to ask them about.

Just before the meeting, at 6:30pm, there will be a “how to” session on voter information and assistance.

The meeting has been organized by GWAC, SRA, Britannia, Ray-Cam, Inner City Safety and ALIVE.

Reconciliation in Action

September 29, 2015

There was a marvelous event at Britannia today. It was called Reconciliation in Action, part of the national Reconciliation movement in which the cultures of Canada’s aboriginal peoples are celebrated and the terrible wrongs this nation did to them are recognized and remembered.

The event took place throughout the greenway and the main Britannia square, with many groups, including the NO TOWER Coalition, hosting tables.  The primary events included drumming, singing, speeches, story-telling, and dancing, and there was an enthusiastic crowd throughout the afternoon.

Reconciliation in Action

The event was concluded with an open-air feast which, unfortunately, I was unable to stay for — but it sure smelled good as I left!

[select the image, then click again for a better view]

Image: Belize River #2

September 29, 2015

Belize River 2

Night Music: Lnda Ronstadt

September 28, 2015

Poem: Instructions For a 3 Minute 15 Second Poem

September 28, 2015

Read each word slowly.  Think about each word for 15 seconds. Read the next word.
















Happy Birthday Gems!

September 28, 2015

Today is the birthday of our beautiful and talented grand-daughter, Gemma, so far away.

She is a cake maker of extraordinary ability, and her success makes us proud and joyful.

The Eclipse, the Street Lamp, and the Dumpster

September 27, 2015

The ever-loving and I went out into the street to watch the eclipse.  Unfortunately, a street lamp was so bright that it obscured both the look and the colour.

The perfectly servicable house next door to our’s is about to be demolished and there is a huge dumpster parked outside (this is Vancouver after all). By bending down and using the dumpster as a screen against the street light, we finally got a great view as the crescent appeared and started to grow.

Odd what we have to do in the city to see nature.


September 27, 2015

My local greenspace is Salsbury Park, a tiny half-block area just east of Commercial Drive.  It is very popular locally, with a well-used children’s playground, excellent benches for us old folks, and one of the best sled slopes for the kids when it snows.  It is often the scene of small groups practicing stuff like fire dances and rhythmic chain swinging. But yesterday was something new, at least for me.


A chap had strung a slackline between two trees and was walking and bouncing and turning on it. I sat on a bench and watched him for a while. He fell off a few times, but just got back up and carried on. [select image for a better view].

Great fun and excellent cabaret for me!

Image: Red Blue Yellow

September 27, 2015

Red Blue Yellow

A Wonderful Day for Welsh Rugby

September 26, 2015

In Wales, rugby is the equivalent of hockey in Canada: it is a religion, a source of dreams, a topic of constant conversation. England, of course, is the old enemy.

Today, Wales played England in the Rugby World Cup in a game in which a defeat for either team could well mean the end of their hopes to proceed in the competition.  It was perhaps the most important game in Welsh rugby history for a very long time. As you can guess from the headline, Wales won!  But such a game it was.

during the 2015 Rugby World Cup Pool A match between England and Wales at Twickenham Stadium on September 26, 2015 in London, United Kingdom.

During the 2015 Rugby World Cup Pool A match between England and Wales at Twickenham Stadium on September 26, 2015 in London, United Kingdom.

Wales, although weakened by injuries, came storming out to a 10 point lead in front of 80,000+ mostly English fans at Twickenham. England quickly absorbed their attacks and then moved ahead. At the halftime break, England led by seven and moved further ahead early in the second half. Meanwhile, Wales were losing players to injury (three senior men were carried off the pitch) but were kept in the game by a perfect display of penalty kicking by Dan Biggar (who was himself in the game only because of an earlier injury to the main Welsh kicker).

With less than 10 minutes left, Wales scored a glorious opportunistic try, and the conversion brought them level at 25-25.  Just a few minutes later, England gave up another penalty and Biggar kicked it over to move Wales three points ahead. As the clock ticked down, England moved back down the pitch and eventually forced Wales into a penalty.  However, instead of kicking for the points and a draw, they chose to go for a try, and failed.  Wales held on and the game finished.

I don’t know about the players, but I was emotionally exhausted and couldn’t resist the urge to cry with joy. I had always hoped Wales would win, but the inspiring way in which they overcame so many injuries and refused to give up was overwhelmingly powerful.

No matter what happens as the tournament moves through the next three weeks, this Rugby World Cup will always be remembered by supporters of Welsh rugby for an historic fight back against enormous odds.

Vision of Vancouver’s Economy

September 26, 2015

The other day we were up at Victoria and 32nd (yes, eating dim sum at Western Lake yet again!) when I noticed this juxtaposition of stores in a retail strip (select image for a better view):

Vancouver economy

Here we have a land surveyor, a house builder, and a dope shop: a pretty good illustration of the main driver’s of Vancouver’s economy in 2015.

Night Music: Dear Mr. Fantasy

September 26, 2015

Image: Looking Out

September 25, 2015

Looking Out

Night Music: John Lennon

September 24, 2015

Image: Gazebo In Fall

September 23, 2015

gazebo in fall

Today is the start of Fall — my favourite season!

Yom Kippur 2015

September 22, 2015


To my Jewish friends and readers, best wishes to you as you celebrate Yom Kippur.

Android Evolution

September 22, 2015

The restaurant we went to this morning was busy and we had to wait for a while. It was a sunny day and we were happy to while away the time on the sidewalk along with a dozen or so other waiting diners. Neither the ever-loving nor I have a cell phone, but everyone else did and they were all looking down at their machines and typing away.

It occurred to me that the generation after next of humans may well look different from you and me: The front of their necks will disappear with the chin attached to the upper chest, the nape will lengthen and tip forward, while the thumb muscles will swell up like pork chops. Maybe the eyes will have to expand to be able to look forward and down at the same time, while ears will shrink to bud size.

It’s not a pretty picture.

Night Music: Dancing Queen

September 22, 2015

People’s Co-op Bookstore AGM

September 22, 2015

The People’s Co-op Bookstore, a vital component of the culture and character of the Drive, will be holding its 70th AGM on Friday at 7:00pm in the store at 1391 Commercial.

The Bookstore has been hanging on financially by a thread for some years, though I believe the situation has at least been stabilized recently.  They have new bookshelves and a thoroughly pleasant manager. The AGM is your chance to learn more about the Co-op, the help shape the next steps, and even to join their Board of Directors.

Come along on Friday evening!