Thursday, March 30, 2006

Pics from the Tropics

Here are the Hawaii pics!

A brief guide for the diverse audience of CaptainComicCanuck:

Kim wore a blue hat; Gila wore a pink hat; Bryan is the handsome thorn between 2 roses.

Gila's luggage didn't arrive for 2 days, hence the Walmart photos.

Yes, I am wearing high heels. Boredom at said Walmart. The heels accented my legs but hurt within 5 minutes -- *feigned outrage* clearly men designed those things!

The waterfall is Akaka Falls, on the north side of the Big Island. About 450 feet.

One photo has a sign that reads "the official swim start/run finish of the Ironman Triathlon World Championship". The promised land!

Among the activities depicted: snorkelling, surfing, and an old-fashioned Luau!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Photographers Are Exhibitionists

My friend, Jess, is making a name for herself in the St Louis "photog" community. When true artistic vision is married with the long, hard effort of perfecting a craft, that can only mean one thing: eBay! Buy her stuff now and cash in later on. I have a few pieces that are earmarked for materialistic destiny!

Check out her website and especially her 2nd exhibition in the upcoming event, Venus Envy. Venus Envy is an "organization run by women who's vision is to create female-produced arts events and outreach/education programs that strengthen feminine diversity and promote empowerment". Key dates for Venus Envy are April 14 and 15.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Rocky Raccoon Redux

Raccoon #3 was caught last night. Considerably larger than raccoon #2. She (?) just played in the trap and seemed relatively content -- certainly compared to the lil' furball cat that was caught over the weekend.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Bandits at 6 o'clock (am)

For a month now, there have been noises above my apartment. Due to the building design, no one lives directly above me: it's my neighbour's patio deck.

It is also a condo for raccoons. The noises occur between 4 and 6 am, clearly when the nocturnal noisemakers of noteriety were coming home from The Dumpster Buffet. I have been complaining to the apartment complex since March 3 or so. In that time, the pest control geniuses have done the following (no animals have been harmed, btw):

1. They set a trap that clearly inhibited the raccoon from getting out (even into the trap). It's hard to explain but the animals would use a hole through a wood panel that clearly swung open; the men stapled the panel shut.

2. They caught a cat (because they use tuna for bait -- from what I've read, I think they should be using berries/cherries. Raccoons love sweet berries; cats don't.)

3. They caught a raccoon and boarded up the deck. Upon my return from a long vacation, there were still noises, from a raccoon that seemed rather impatient to get out, considering it had been there for days.

4. After another 4 days, they open the deck again. The "pest control guy" drops by on Thursdays. I wonder when the fire dept "drops by"; if I have a fire, I want to schedule it accordingly. This one was my fault for not raising a bigger, err, stink as there might have been dying mammals in my abode.

5. This weekend, another young cat was caught. He wouldn't shut up so I let him out of the trap. Fiesty little bugger. No collar, and when released, he was off like a shot, up the shingled roof to the side of the decks. I suspect he was an alley cat. He didn't even stop to say thanks!

6. This morning, we have culprit #2. See the pic. But there were major noises around 6 am so I think Momma is still up there. Great.

Back in Black

I went to the YMCA (gym) for the first time this month. Given that it was March 26, that's not good. But thankfully I had a very active vacation including the 26.2 mile walk.

I swam 50 lengths and ran 8 miles (rather slowly). It was a relief because I was afraid that I was going to be completely out of shape. Note that for the hardcore triathletes (which I ain't), that is a warmup.


Did you know that "aloha" not only means "hello" and "goodbye" but also "love"? In Hawaii, the locals would often talk about the "aloha spirit".

I honestly think that this spirit is predicated by the stunning beauty of the island, and the perfect weather. Although a true good-old winter can forge the bonds of community (e.g. how often people help someone who is stuck in snow), it is tricky to stay cheery when it is -40 F and one has yet to shovel the driveway.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Back in The Lou

I've returned from a double-dream "field trip" with some dear, dear friends. I could write entire paragraphs of thank yous and "shout outs" but that seems pretentious, somehow. On the flight home, I decided to express emotion via brevity. Hopefully, I've already conveyed my feelings to everyone involved!

Stop #1 on the trip was The Big Island of Hawaii. Though it was really just a sidebar, I walked on the hallowed ground of _the_ premier Ironman Triathlon. I did NOT compete as (a) it's in October and (b) I'm more of a "Aluminium-Foil-Man" triathlete.

Stop #2 was the City of Angels: LA. With six brave souls, I walked (not ran) the LA marathon. 9.5 hours. It might sound like a bad day at the mall but it ain't easy -- I have a newfound respect for distance events, no matter what the speed.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


sixty-thousand steps
nomads marching, laughing, ache
child offers cup

Hawaii Haiku #5 (Snorkel)

Rainbows suspended
i am mere guest, alien,
Deaf, in nature's womb

Monday, March 20, 2006

Hawaii Haiku #4 (Hallelujah)

Pele's fire drowns
Warm rain sings Hallelujah
Green tendril unfurls

Friday, March 10, 2006

Gone Fishin'

This site will be quiet for awhile.... Going on a "field trip" of sorts!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

An E-List Celebrity

A local radio station has a comment-line where people call in and leave messages "we have you on at work all the time!".

I thought I would try a little schtick/comment of my own, and it schtuck -- The Arch 106.5 plays it fairly often (it's rare to hear repeated comments and esp. rare to hear a comment that is 15+ seconds). I called in early in the morning and with a baritone, deadpan voice, drawled something like:

" I'm driving in to work on my mind-numbing commute to my mind-numbing job listening to mind-numbing radio: a spectrum ranging from perky voices gossiping about celebrities to rude hosts with juvenile noises that make me feel like I'm thirteen. Then in this bleak, desolate landscape, I find an oasis -- a radio station that actually plays music in the morning -- and for one brief moment, I think maybe -- just maybe -- everything is going to be ok. "

Several dear friends in StL have heard it and have called me with joyful recognition... But the big question: can I follow-up? What if I left another message (a la serial commentary)... is this the start of something? Hmmmm..... (Btw, my job isn't mind-numbing)

Monday, March 06, 2006

Nous bloggons

Here are some friends' blogs...

What happens when a legal eagle marries a math/comp-sci geek and they raise a fashion princess with personality to spare? Hijinx ensues at the Rosenberger Three (I was a groomsman at Fred's wedding, just after Phil's wedding, in 2001)

The envy files: an intrepid Maritimer moves to Banff, Alberta to bring beauty tips, improv skills, and skiing shenannigans to affluent guests!

Though somewhat outdated, this one is from PEI... Dear to one's heart as this one is kin... Two Kids and a Fish (called Wanda?)

Finally, the blog that is sweeping the continent... Another interpid Maritimer documents her life in a small town near the Artic Circle. North of Nain

Thursday, March 02, 2006

No Oscar Awards for the Canines

A happier anecdote from NPR: a director of a film (Tsotsi, I think) was talking about the difficulty of filming with infants and especially dogs. One scene in the movie involves a dog who is injured. He said that they had a dozen "audition" dogs who had been trained to act as though they were injured. All of the dogs were very intelligent and performed excellently, with one major flaw: because they were trying to please their trainers, they all wagged their tails! :-)

The director ultimately chose a Doberman solely because it had a minimal tail...

Sights I'd Never Thought I'd See

Sir Paul visits Prince Edward Island! No doubt he will raise awareness about the seal hunt (which I always thought was a bigger deal in Newfoundland), but the big question: will he catch Anne of Green Gables at the Confed Centre? Pity that the seals don't calve in June...

As an aside, I always find our biases toward animal rights to be fascinating. Seal cubs are such an easy target for the media because they are so cute and fluffy and the hunt seems so violent. Yet I would take the fate of a baby seal over ducks (foie gras) or veal any day of the week. Also, KFC and others are notorious for ultra-efficient (and heartless) chicken farming. Where's the outrage for the chickens? My personal bias is for exotic animals -- there's no words for what I want to do to those who hunt tigers...

well this turned into a cheery entry!