Monday, September 30, 2002

Back from a weekend with the small Edwins... Melissa, Michael, and Madeleine.

Saturday, September 28, 2002

Back from an evening on Granville Island with Dean, fellow Hostelling International volunteer.

Friday, September 27, 2002

Flashbacks to Banff

Back from an evening with Lynn Santiago, an old friend from my days in Banff... we live in the same city, you would think we'd see each other more often! We met up at 7 o'clock at The Reef, and I've only just gotten home. We reminisced, her girlfriend Terri (Terry?) came by, and we had a great big ol' chat... we covered years in hours, and talked about places to travel, people I've run into, and of course the "Whatever happened to so-and-so??"

Thursday, September 26, 2002


Oh my goodness, I got the shock of my life this evening. We were all handed back a Philosophy paper that we submitted last week, and on mine was, "This is an odd topic. Why did you write about it?" What??????

Luckily, I implemented the CYA application I learned long ago... yes kids, you gotta Cover Your Ass at all times. I whipped out the e-mail I thankfully printed out and put into my binder, a communiqué between myself and the professor last week. This is how it went:

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, September 16, 2002 11:04 AM
Subject: Re: PHIL 231

The task is very simple: explain the passage, both internally and
externally. I.e.: what is the author trying to establish in the passage,
and how. And how does the passage fit into the author's larger project.


At 11:03 AM 9/16/02 -0700, you wrote:
>Dr. Hahn,
>I'm in your PHIL 231 class and had to leave at 9:00 last
>Wednesday, missing whatever you had to say about the paper which
>is due this Wednesday (18th, although it says 17th in the
>I understand the paper is a maximum of 750 words, based on the
>readings for weeks 1-3: Chapters 1-4, plus the handout "The
>Allegory of the Cave", but in Week 2 in the syllabus you mention
>'Readings: selection in Life and Death'. Are there additional
>readings that you gave which I missed??
>I'm also uncertain what you are looking for in the paper, if we
>are to take a topic and give our opinion, or how a topic pertains
>to daily life... ? I'm sorry to make you repeat this information,
>you probably went over it in great detail after 9pm. This is only
>my second Philosophy class (I also took Moral Philosophy one year
>ago), so I am still feeling very green.
>Thank you,
>Gail Edwin

... So, wasn't it obvious that he didn't read my e-mail at all??? Of course, I approached him afterwards, and showed him the e-mail, and he said, "Didn't you get the handout?" I said, "What handout??" So he apologized and said he would mark my paper.

Jeez Louise. All I can say is, COVER YOUR ASS.

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

I used a word today that I haven't used in YEARS: aggro. Such an Australian word, but so apropos.

St. Thomas Aquinas

So I'm trying to slog through St. Thomas Aquinas today. I started to last night, but the words were swimming in front of my eyes and doing backflips. I laughed out loud when I read the intro to the reading: "St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), the author of the Summa Theologica, was the greatest of the medieval philosophers and theologians. He has been since 1879 the official philosopher of the Roman Catholic Church."

Official philosopher? I can just imagine this man dressed in 'medieval theologian' garb, on a marquee for the Roman Catholic Church, the way you see the McDonald's arches on everything for the Olympic Games. Or at Times Square, NYC, at New Year's: "Kodak, official sponsor of the year 2002." So here we go: "Christianity -- brought to you in part by God, Jesus, and St. Thomas Aquinas." Too funny...

Valley Speak

Tonight's LING class was full of people trying to stay awake. Poor Cliff. It wasn't his fault, it was just one of those nights. It's pretty dry material, and it takes a herculean effort to make it more interesting. I passed an article over to him about a so-called dialect expert who says he can tell people from Vancouver because of the "valley-girl" tendencies. I can see that... people here say "like" ALL THE TIME.

Monday, September 23, 2002

Here's a random thought: yesterday, as I was driving to lunch at my dad's, I was thinking "You know what the best thing that came out of the 80's was? Breakdancing."

Family Weekend

So, I'm at my brother and sister-in-law's house, and I've just put the kids to bed. Surprisingly, it didn't quite resemble the mother-of-all-tantrums I was expecting it to be, what with Melissa and Michael deciding early on being put to bed = medieval torture. Post-bath -- and it was not easy getting them out of the bath in the first place -- Melissa was throwing a wobbly about her Pull-ups being on backwards. And she was blubbering on about fish....?? I said, "How could they be backwards?? Minnie Mouse is waving goodbye on the back! That's the way it's supposed to go!" That, of course, was a mistake, since ANYTHING I said was up for argument. (Plus, I didn't really want to argue with her since I've got this major bias against the Disney Corporation. Minnie Mouse shouldn't be on Pull-ups, or anything, for that matter.) For example, if I had said it was night-time, Melissa would immediately say, "No, it's not night-time!!" See, it's all about language at age 3. They've suddenly turned into prosecuting attorneys, and everything is turned into a question. I should be SO PROUD that Melissa knows how to argue with linguistic acumen at such a tender age, but when you're tired and you're putting a screaming child to bed, their budding linguistic skills are the last thing on your mind.

This is what a tantrum looks like. Posted by Hello

I had a bit of a nap this afternoon, but it was broken up into 5 minute increments between times when someone passed by and told the kids to stop jumping on me. Overall, I was fairly oblivious, but REM state was elusive. Nonetheless, I did play a whole lot of hide-and-go-seek, but the kids always hid in the same places, so I used it as an excuse to reinforce counting. And count they did.... I counted, I made them count, we counted together... both kids can count to 10 no problem! I took photos of the relatives and showed them on Dad's TV, showed them my photos of San Francisco, ate copious amounts of food all day long... it was a typical Filipino gathering.

Edwin boys Posted by Hello

Sunday, September 22, 2002

I am so screwed up! I feel like I shouldn't even be living in this time zone. It's after 2am, and I have been sleeping on and off all day. What's the matter with me?!? I managed to get going around 6pm, and decided to skip Guru at the Commodore, to give stopping by Milk (Lotus) -- to see Lynn -- a miss, to opt for a very cheap evening of Thai Away Home and "Insomnia" at Denman. I even read part of my LING textbook at Bread Garden afterwards. Not everything I needed to read but at least I made an attempt to not be a professional procrastinator.

Saturday, September 21, 2002

Went to the office yesterday, so when I got home last night, I wanted to do absolutely nothing... which I did!

And tonight, my plans changed a zillion times, but I ended up downloading a ton of songs off the Internet. I'm glad to be changing the mp3 list on my hard drive -- I haven't downloaded songs for ages, so I've been listening to the same stuff over and over. I'm using both computers to download, so I'll have bags of new music.

Thursday, September 19, 2002

So I made it through my first paper-panic of this Fall term. I don't think I've ever left it quite this late -- I was just so stumped. And so tired. But I think the paper I wrote this afternoon was alright and not the stinkbomb I was expecting it to be, considering I only finished the Philosophy readings this morning. As you can see from the posting below, my topic needed strength.

But I sat through tonight's class wondering how I am going to tackle the next paper, worth 30%. The number of theories we're covering in this class are dizzying, and there are people in the class throwing around names of philosophers -- Kant, Neitzsche, Hume, etc. -- like they're talking about pop musicians. Ai ya ya!

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

I vainly attempted to kip for an hour last night before getting into the Philosophy readings for this paper that's due today. Yeah right!! I was so dead last night even two alarms couldn't wake me up. I did manage, however, to wake up just after 6am to do the readings, at least. Now I have to formulate a 750 word paper... I decided to tackle St. Augustine's analogy of words comprising a sentence, i.e. parts of a whole, as compared to the existence of human beings (having a beginning and an end). Egads.

Linguistics, by Cliff Burgess

Thank God I gutted most of the apartment last night -- no more trace of Shaun, and I was totally ready when Ross dropped by to pick up the acetates for the Tembec presentation this afternoon. Ross & Lee have a cleaning lady, so they don't have to worry about an impromptu "inspection", but me on the other hand...! (I'd love to be a fly on the wall when Ross mentions my apartment to Lee.) (Sorry Crazy Chickens, I have no photo of Shaun... and you know I take pictures of everybody... just imagine a really young guy with glasses and a beard and long, matted hair. Your imaginations are fertile enough.)

I'm back from an evening with Cliff Burgess, Linguistics Professor Extraordinaire. I have never heard a class laugh so much before. You can tell people really love the class when almost one hundred people show up ON TIME -- although I must confess I'm one of the consistently tardy stragglers -- and nobody is chit-chatting during three hours of lecture. This is no mean feat!!!

Alas, the evening is not over, for I must read several chapters of "Life and Death" and write a small paper for my *dreaded* Philosophy class. It's not so much that I dread the class, it's just I am so confused. Plus, because of the heavy-duty cleaning and having to oust Sean in the middle of it, I pulled nearly an all-nighter last night and my eyes are begging for some sleep. Even though the lecture was scintillating, I was seriously fading around 8pm (I think I was actually leaning at that point), but luckily I was able to call out an answer to a question posed to the students -- which put me instantly on the "interested student" map -- and gave me a boost of energy. (Should I start a Scrabble tournament??) At least the answer was right instead of wrong!!

Tuesday, September 17, 2002

Shaun is G-O-N-E... one week of him staying here, and I got fed up...

Monday, September 16, 2002

Updates a-Coming

I'm going to update some of my previous posts, but right now I'll focus on the trip up to Kamloops the weekend of August 17-18. That was a whole month ago! I can't believe it! I figure if I leave it any longer, my memory is going to fail me and I'm going to draw big blank later on.


ooof, I'm beat... I'm sending out the Weekly report at the moment, also fixing some minor things on the Monthly report. Just got home from seeing the kiddies in Surrey -- I met up with Cheryl in New Westminster, and we couldn't think of anywhere to take the kids for dinner, so I suggested Earl's. It could've been a major disaster, but it wasn't too bad. Maddy threw some temper tantrums -- she's really good at those -- but other than that, no catastrophies.

Mischievous Madeleine. Posted by Hello

I knew it was going to be an evening requiring energy, so I took a two-hour nap to prepare! I was up until 4:30am talking to the Crazy Chickens, who I roused with a wake-up call on their Sunday morning.

Crazy Chickens. Posted by Hello

Christa drove all the way to Hamburg to meet up with Iris for the weekend, so we took the opportunity to catch up. The call took well over 3 hours! But then I had to wake up 4 hours later to do my 9-12 morning shift at the Downtown hostel. It was my first shift there since last year, since I pledged to do all my shifts at Jericho Beach. Darlene held the fort in the first bit while I grabbed a jolt of caffeine and nourishment at The Dish on Davie St. The shift passed really quickly, even without a lot of questions, and afterwards I headed down to London Drugs to pick up the mug that I left there on Friday night, drilled the staff on cell phones, and on the way home walked right by a little yard sale at an apartment building ... and who did I bump into? Meaghan, who worked a bit for Butler Research when I was there, and also happened to be in Krista's Anthropology MA programme as well. She's moving to Ottawa on Friday! We didn't have long to chat, but the guy who was selling stuff -- Meaghan's neighbour -- had this great Banana Republic messenger bag thing that was just the right size and didn't have any logos emblazoned on it, so I took it off his hands for a tenner.

Krista's farewell dinner at Tanpopo, on Denman St. (Meaghan's at the far left.) Posted by Hello

Sunday, September 15, 2002

Todd's Lunch

I'm already into Sunday morning... anyway, I almost forgot about (earlier) tonight -- saw "Todd's Lunch" at Lind Hall, Granville Island, part of the Vancouver Fringe Festival. The show was terrible! I did not have one single bellylaugh all through that show! The show from last week, "Mother's Milk", was much better.


Haven't written for a few days, so here's what's been up:

Friday, Sep 13:

It was a MUCH better day at work. Miles better. Kevin joined me going back into the city, which is great because we got to have a chat, which is rare since whenever I'm in the office it's rush rush rush. Erich called me from Horseshoe Bay to meet him for drinks there while he was waiting for the ferry to Nanaimo, but my ferry was over half an hour late, so we missed each other.

Went to pick up my travel mug from the Downtown hostel on Burnaby Street, only to leave it on the counter at London Drugs later!! Shaun and I did a grocery run at Safeway and ate some stuff on the beach at English Bay. On the way home along the seawall, I bumped into Raymond, who is also an infodesk volunteer. We stood there with our bags of groceries after midnight, chatting with him for ages.

Jericho Hostel infodesk. At left is Kelly, the Volunteer Coordinator. Posted by Hello

Thursday, Sep 12:

Organized a viewing of "Himalayan Visions and Tibetan Voices" at The Ridge, which turned out to be a big letdown for those who were expecting something IMAX-like in production value. I wasn't one of those, so I wasn't pissed off so much as concerned that SEVA's promotional vehicle would be stalled by major flaws in the presentation. Brian Harris is a great photographer, but he is a TERRIBLE speaker. I felt absolutely no connection with him as an audience member should have with a speaker who declares such a passion for his work, which has been to capture the Tibetan culture on film, something he's been doing for 15 years. I felt the best part of the show was the end, which was a series of photos set to music. I thoroughly enjoyed that part, and could have done without his droning narration. It's a shame, because The Ridge was PACKED to the gills -- I convinced Erich to park early because we didn't have enough time, so we got there before 6:30. It was already sold out, and there was a line for people who were on standby. I couldn't believe the turnout! So that's why it was such a shame that the presentation wasn't up-to-scratch, because obviously there are LOADS of people are interested in Tibetan culture.

Thursday, September 12, 2002

Am I in Way Over My Head?

The film "Underground Zero" was great... it was a compilation of 13 films, and they were hard-hitting in varying degrees; many of them stuck indelibly in my brain.

I had to escape out of class in a very inopportune moment to see "Underground Zero" -- we were discussing life and death. I don't know how well I'm going to do in this class, I feel like I'm in way over my head. It's very different from the first Philosophy class I took a year ago, partly by demographic and also the impression that many of the people in that class have taken a number of other PHIL courses. It delves into metaphysics, epistemology, dialectic reasoning, and this is where my head starts to swim... I know this course is good for me, and I'm going to learn a great deal, but realistically, I'm going to have to work very, very hard to get a good mark.

Wednesday, September 11, 2002

Underground Zero

Went over to Erich's last night to check out the photos from his trip to Hungary.

Tonight we go see "Underground Zero" at Pacific Cinematheque. I have to leave class about 9:00 to make it! Tomorrow night is "Himalayan Visions and Tibetan Voices" at The Ridge.

Tuesday, September 10, 2002

Today's a *new day*. Yesterday was utter shite. I won't even get into it, but let's just say I'm glad it's over. The weather is great today, and my apartment is halfway to being clean, so that's a good start.

Monday, September 09, 2002

The weather is ABYSMAL, to say the least... downpour pretty much all day, and I'm wondering what happened to our usual Indian summer???

Today was not in our favour... by the time I went to pick up Cheryl and the kids, it was after 4 o'clock, and I spent an HOUR trying to find Crash Crawley's, for the kids. I should have looked at my maps in the car, but I totally forgot I had them!! Where is my brain today?? Even at the infodesk this morning I was having a tough time trying to remember things. That's what I get for compromising on my sleep, although the Scrabble battle was well worth it, and I won the wager, which was a ticket to any show (under $70). Adrian's got to go, too!

Sunday, September 08, 2002

I just took two Edinburgh lads to the airport... I saw them walking down the street from the hostel with their bags in the rain, and decided to turn around and see if they wanted a lift. It seems I've been bitten by this "good host" bug that makes me do things like give lifts to people everywhere (I picked up yet another hitchiker on the Sunshine Coast on the way to the ferry, even though I was running late).

Saturday, September 07, 2002

Met even more people today: Tammy (Tami?), this girl at Will Rafuse's gallery (Joe Average's stuff is displayed there, too), who wanted to volunteer for A Loving Spoonful. I think I talked her into joining up. Then, this guy at the shop called Travel Trunk Imports trunk, whose sister is the owner. There was an album out front, with photos of travel, and he and I talked about travel for a while.

I have been talking to an extraordinary number of people lately, I don't know what it is ... I think it's the volunteering I've been doing for HI, it seems I am always in talking mode.
Saw "Mother's Milk" at this venue called the Bernard Lederer Gallery, an interesting new building that features a waterfall. A one-man show -- Wayne Harris -- gives insight into life as an African-American in the 60's, from the Midwest to California, in stages between childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. Here's a cut-and-paste from the Fringe Festival website:

“Sold Out” award winner at the 2001 San Francisco Fringe Festival, “Mother’s Milk” is a bitter-sweet story, populated by Baptist Preachers, Black Panthers and a wino named Saushy Lips. This is a coming of age story set against the background of the Civil Rights movement, breast cancer and a mother’s unconditional love for a prodigal son."
Oof -- another late night, then semi-early morning. I had a shift with Sarah, which SPED by, we were so engrossed in conversation. We helped a lot of people, too, so it's not like it was just a gab session, but we did cover a lot of topics. I'm thinking of having the quickest snooze ever before meeting up with Tom at 1:15 to see "Mother's Milk", a Fringe Festival show.
Returned from watching "Notorious C.H.O." at the Van East and then bubble tea... Margaret Cho is right up there with the likes of Janeane Garofalo. Their styles are totally different, but some of their themes are similar: self-esteem, the unrealistic standards of society, colonics (!).

Friday, September 06, 2002

Thank God it's Friday. These short weeks don't feel shorter, for some reason!

Thursday, September 05, 2002

Tonight was opening night for "The Meaning of Life" with Martin Hahn. I'm happy to discover that I finally get into a classroom upstairs, for a change of scenery. I've had enough of HC1700 and 1530 (?). It's a semicircular seating arrangement, with articulated chairs.

Wednesday, September 04, 2002

We watched "Baraka" at Eliza's place last night. It was then I realized that a small TV and no accompanying stereo greatly lessens the impact of this film.
It's the middle of Tuesday night, and I haven't really made any headway into getting this blog site caught up.

LING 110 with Cliff Burgess is miles better than it was with Nina Rasmussen. Night and day different.

Monday, September 02, 2002

Back From San Francisco

Tall Ships Festival
Originally uploaded by gailontheweb.
I'm back from San Francisco... what a weekend! I've got a gazillion photos (which I'm still downloading), and many of them will require explanation.

San Francisco photos on Flickr

Vanessa and Ritchie had a baby girl on August 31st! Her name is Leila. How exciting!