Archives 2007

Archives 2006

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Me brudder is 45
2006-07-31-- Posted by: allegra

And I'm not getting any younger myself.

Happy Birfday Ben
2006-07-30-- Posted by: allegra

Tom and Peggy's eldest scion has turned, or will shortly turn, an, uh, interesting and, uh, prime number roughly today or thenabouts. How's that for useless clues. Anyway, many happy returns of the day, whenever it is/was, young fella!

As for the gent what took a gun into the Jewish Community Center in Seattle and laid a woman in her grave, and put four others in hospital, a word of advice. Hate a Jew because he's a mamzer, not because he's a Jew! And if you can manage it, don't bother hating him at all, lest thou be cast into the outer darkness of those forever condemned to pay retail. Allegra has spoken.

Hi Reck. I'm sure if you are reading this you're shaking your head and smiling a sour little smile.

Keith and I are just about finished watching the Walking with Dinosaurs series from the BBC. The over the top narration by Kenneth Branagh has gone from being an irritant to being a sort of drinking game, where I try to predict (with about 70% accuracy) which adjective the scriptwriters are going to squeeze into the tired tired sentence. The animation goes from being flicking amazing to being SO FROMIDABLE (that's so cheesy you resort to French puns) that you don't know whether to laugh or cry. All told, I've actually learned something about dinosaurs, and I've learned that Kenneth Branagh pronounces those jaw cracking dinosaur names with the relish of an oenophile at a wine tasting.

Missed the Lantern Festival last night - could not deal with the notion of walking that much. Paul and John went on the bike. There was masses of food at Stef's place but Paul was the only person who showed up with wine, which was pleasant. Paul says it was more sparsely attended than last year (to which I can only say thank God, as it was WALLTOWALL last year) but the fireworks were wonderful and the ambience also.

Thunder and lightning last night! Very unusual for this part of the year; normally the only time you get thunder and lightning in Vancouver is (strangely enough) in February and March, towards the end of the wet season.

I note that the record high temperatures in the US continue to plague the frail elderly and those without access to air conditioning. I further predict that when the epidemiologists run the death rate stats for this past month they will find out that the number of people who died as a result of the heat will be at least 50% in excess of what appears in the papers currently. This is what happened in Chicago in 1980 when (get this) 1700 people died of heat related causes. That's a hell of a lot of people. (See Heat Wave, a Social Autopsy of a Disaster in Chicago for further details - a book I believe I have previously referenced in my blog (and no, I haven't read it but I read a detailed interview with the author.)) Chicago has a heat wave public health plan in place right now, and it would behoove other major American cities to do the same. One hundred and one in Minneapolis - whoda thunkit? Pic scanged from Google Images "Heat Wave".

Yet another sendoff....
2006-07-29-- Posted by: allegra

Venu left the company which cannot be named for a world class organization with lots of scope.... and we toasted him last night at the Golf Course. I snuck inside and paid for one of his beers. It was good to see the usual assortment of folk, and some folks from the engineering department. It was quite a cross functional showing - not as well attended as Lynne's but still a damned good showing for almost ten years of employment.

The indifferent service (Tammy, our usual server, wasn't there last night) was ameliorated by the appearance of an extremely skilled belly dancer, who had the hottest costume evah (black veils and gold tinkly coins) and danced like a personification of Ishtar for 25 minutes without breaking a sweat.

Then Paul and I headed over to Mike and Tori's - Paul got really tired and fell asleep, but I watched most of Kung Fu Hustle, and am looking forward to seeing the rest, as it is one of the most hilarious cultural mashups I have ever seen. I think the Landlady deserved a medal for her role. Then I IMDB'd her (her name is Qiu Yuen) and when I got her backstory I just about flipped. At the time she accepted the role (after Stephen Chow (writer/star/director) bugged her unrelentingly about taking it) she had been out of show biz for almost 30 years, and had only ever starred in one international production "The Man with the Golden Gun". Roger Moore as Bond, Blech-0-matic. She went to the audition to keep a younger friend company and the rest, as they say, is history. It is difficult to imagine someone else in the role, frankly. Anyway, she started life as a stunt double and martial arts type, learning from Jackie Chan's master, and when she could find any interesting roles got married and ditched the whole show biz scene. Like Renee Zellweger and Robert DeNiro before her, she went on a special diet to gain 40 pounds for the role. Man, the things people do for money; I've put on 40 pounds and nobody's asking me to star in anything, although I was once asked to be a stand in for GM Place.

Walkies
2006-07-28-- Posted by: allegra

Paul and I went for a walk last night. As we were just rounding the corner onto Wedgewood, part of our usual walking loop when we aren't going into Robert Burnaby Park down to Dinosaur Rock, I thought, Man! that guy sure walks like Tom U. And son of a gun, it WAS Tom. Then I noticed Mike, and they were walking Spud and Tasha together. Happy sigh. Paul was very happy too and immediately started picking Tom's brains about his Bion-X electric bike, and we walked all the way to Mike's place. I was walking like a hunchbacked ballerina by the time I got there, but I made it.

And then....

What should be in the fridge but my current third favorite kind of beer in the WHOLE WORLD, Mcauslan Apricot, (Ste Ambroise Blonde and Stella Artois still being my faves), and who should be there but Toribird, looking fine and foxy, if I do say so, in a black tailored shirt and a long camel skirt, and what should she be a-cooking but FRESH blackberry crumble (exactly enough for five people)? It was so amazing that I refused to let either beer or inferior snack foods pass my lips after I ate it, 'twould have been sacrilegious.

Then Tori and I slipped away into the computer room while the menfolks clacked away in the kitchen and we spent a happy hour reviewing the pictures she took of her mom and step-dad's Inuit and Newfoundland art collection; more than a couple of the pieces were very old and museum quality, and a lot of them were really interesting. There were two bone pieces in particular that I fell madly in love with, the use of material being so very fine and the execution being so subtle. There were a couple of lithographs (big ones, although you know they don't look as good on a screen) by Newfoundland artists, that I liked too. All in all a satisfactory evening.

I had been expecting that Paul would walk out to Edmonds with me and we'd catch a 106 bus, but he decided to call a cab instead, to which all I can say is thank God.

A broken night's sleep (I got COLD in the night, what an ingrate after this hot spell) and nevertheless, this morning I feel just fine.

Dreamed that Kira and another cat got into a bath full of warm water, but by the time Janice and I could take a picture, they'd gotten out and were drying themselves off. Cats; magisterial even in my dreams. The rest of the dream starred nobody I know, but I was busy chasing a tall female clown named Giraffe through the subway system of an unnamed city for reasons completely unknown. Damn! How do I put up with all this excitement???

Oh..... my ....... God.......
2006-07-27-- Posted by: allegra

Okay, when you look at this picture, I want you to be doing a mental mashup of two songs.... Frank Zappa singing Give Me Your Dirty Love and The Man on The Flying Trapeze. These two slugs are having sex while hanging from a thread of slime; I am assuming that this was as the result of long negotiations along the lines of I'm so tired of sleeping in the wet spot.

And one of the slugs said, hey, wait a minute! I have an idea!!! why don't we crawl up the side of somebody's house and do it til our eyestalks hurt!!!!

Credit Jan G in Courtenay. Honestly, Jan, you should take up wildlife photography professionally, seeing as how we keep finding the weirdest shiat in your yard.

It only remains to be added that the slug is the totem creature of my, uh, well, one of my family members; my morning, nay, perhaps my week, are made rapturously glorious by this photo.