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I Am Skooter
So here's us, on the raggedy edge.
And the eyes they were / a colour I can't remember / which says more / from verse to verse
— A.C. Newman, There are Maybe 10 or 12
August 30, 2004

Athens is over; long live Vancouver 2010!

The Athens Olympics are over, and our country is wringing its collective hands over the results: 12 medals, 2 fewer than in Sydney.

Should we be spending more money on athletics? Maybe. The Olympics - and events like them - are an important national stage. It’s not all about money though, and it’s not all about medals.

Continue reading "Athens is over; long live Vancouver 2010!"

Posted by skooter at 9:12 AM This entry is filed under Politics.
Tags: Olympics, Sports

August 29, 2004

Jim Harris stays on as leader of the Green Party

Which sort of counts as news, if only because your tax dollars are now paying for the Green Party’s operations.

What’s really fun though is that only 25% of Green members voted in the leadership race, which featured 2 additional candidates. Fun.

Harris made it a point during the last election of talking about how the Green Party motivates voters: essentially his argument was that people who voted Green were often people who wouldn’t vote at all for anybody else.

I guess, in hindsight, only about 25% of them are though.

Posted by skooter at 11:26 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

August 28, 2004

Online Lottery Ticket Sales for Charities are Banned

The Synergy Newsletter published by the Alliance for Arts and Culture in Vancouver had this note the other day:

2. Online lottery ticket sales banned
In other gaming news…
According to a recent report in The Vancouver Sun, BC gaming regulations have changed to prevent the sale of lottery tickets through the internet. The article reported that the Pacific National Exhibition, with its famous PNE Prize Home Lottery, expected to lose significant revenue as online sales accounted for 20 percent of total sales last year.

This, of course, is extremely interesting to me because of my involvement with the Earth Future Lottery which was intended to raise millions of dollars doing this very thing.

Continue reading "Online Lottery Ticket Sales for Charities are Banned"

Posted by skooter at 8:48 PM This entry is filed under Politics.
Tags: Charities, Lotteries, Technology

August 27, 2004

Joffre Lakes: Heaven On Earth?

I just got back from 2 days at Joffre Lakes and boy are my legs tired.

Seriously: my legs are killing me from the hike. Harder than anywhere else I’ve been.

I chose, as I so often do, to lug my entire Canon rig up to the lake. Boy was it ever worth it. More to come, but here’s a start.

The Stonecrop Glacier seen from Joffre Lake

Continue reading "Joffre Lakes: Heaven On Earth?"

Posted by skooter at 10:46 PM This entry is filed under Camera.

The words commitment & Martin don’t belong together

This according to today’s Globe and Mail

MPs want nominations guarantee
By JANE TABER
From Friday’s Globe and Mail
Ottawa — Liberal MPs, antsy about their re-election prospects and a quick election call, want Prime Minister Paul Martin to guarantee them their riding nominations now. Although Parliament won’t open until October, MPs are worried about the vulnerability of the minority government and the next election, which could come at any time.

“The concern is you can’t do your work in Ottawa if you’re worrying about what’s happening at home,” [Anita Neville] said. “And there were a number of my colleagues who expressed that as a concern.”

This falls under the category of stating the obvious, and leads one to wonder about the Liberal party leader.

Continue reading "The words commitment & Martin don’t belong together"

Posted by skooter at 7:07 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

August 26, 2004

Mountain Equipment Co-Op is the best place to shop

I’ve been a an MEC member longer than I can remember; sometime back in high school. I’ve always had a love hate relationship with the Co-Op; sure the prices are good, but for a long time the gear just looked so much like…well…gear. Not well designed.

They’ve gotten better over the years, but the Co-Op has absolutely the best customer service of any place I’ve ever shopped. The absolute best.

For about a year I’ve been carrying my laptop in an Arcterx Blade 21 pack; a really nice pack, and one that would carry just about any laptop and gear well. One of the zippers blew out on this thing, at the bottom, even though it’s never been anything close to overloaded.

So I swung by MEC today and just sort of asked; after having a little chat about the fact that yes this usually happens because things are overstuffed but no this bag hasn’t ever been (really only carried a laptop).

Without even seeing my receipt these guys took the bag and sent it out for repair at no cost to me.

That’s customer service that can’t be beat, and that’s why I shop there whenever I can.

But I still really like Patagonia stuff.

Posted by skooter at 8:08 PM This entry is filed under Inanities.

August 22, 2004

Movable Type/PHP

Movable Type 3.01D is now driving this thing full time; all of the primary can be viewed either through the default home page generated by Movable Type, or through the alternate home page based on the original PHP only architecture.

Why is this significant?

Continue reading "Movable Type/PHP"

Posted by skooter at 7:53 PM This entry is filed under Technology.

Premier Ladner?

Bill Tielman, in the most recent Georgia Straight, suggests that Peter Ladner may be interested in making a run as Premier when Gordon Campbell’s time in office comes to a close (prematurely or not.)

Let’s take a quick look at some of the highlights of Mr. Ladner’s time in office.

Continue reading "Premier Ladner?"

Posted by skooter at 12:37 AM This entry is filed under Politics, Vancouver.
Tags: NPA, Peter Ladner, Vancouver

August 19, 2004

Is It Civil Disobedience If You’re Stoned?

The leader of the B.C. Marijuana Party has been sentenced to jail time in Saskatchewan for possession. What a surprise.

Continue reading "Is It Civil Disobedience If You’re Stoned?"

Posted by skooter at 10:14 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

CBC 50 Tracks - Diversity in Music

Jian Ghomeshi is hosting 50 Tracks on CBC - an effort to assemble the greatest songs of century, 5 per decade.

This is a great exercise and one that could only happen on public radio - private, broadcast radio is far too format limited these days to be this interesting.

Last week was the 70s and this week is the 80s - my generation of music; the stuff that I know very well.

Continue reading "CBC 50 Tracks - Diversity in Music"

Posted by skooter at 10:49 AM This entry is filed under Music.
Tags: Bruce Springsteen, Joy Division, Moxy Fruvous, Music, Police, Public Enemy, Tragically Hip, U2

How the Mighty Have Fallen

Northern Telecom is laying off 3,500 workers - again. Is there an end in sight for this company?

Continue reading "How the Mighty Have Fallen"

Posted by skooter at 9:08 AM This entry is filed under Technology.

August 18, 2004

North Shore Views

West Vancouver at Night

Vancouver’s North Shore is probably the best place to live in the world; I miss it quite a bit, and hope to get back.

This is West Vancouver at night, taken from the pier near Ambleside Beach.

Posted by skooter at 10:58 PM This entry is filed under Camera, Vancouver.
Tags: Long exposures

Wards & Vancouver

Wards are coming to Vancouver; at least, that’s my prediction. I think the “Yes” forces will win, and our next mayor will be Larry Campbell running as an independent. I’d put money on both of those things at this point in time.

But I’m enjoying watching the campaign happen, and staying somewhat non-partisan; although I think wards would be good for the city, I’ll likely vote no.

Why?

Continue reading "Wards & Vancouver"

Posted by skooter at 10:04 PM This entry is filed under Vancouver.

On the Move

How’s this for commitment?

This site is moving to Movable Type; now that I’ve figured out the basics, it’s officially on the move.

So the old home page is here for now, but hopefully everything will relocate smoothly as we move along. For now, photo galleries (including Alaska) are staying static.

Continue reading "On the Move"

Posted by skooter at 9:49 PM This entry is filed under Inanities.
Tags: Alaska, Movable Type

August 17, 2004

Cruising (the Alaska variety, not the Oldsmobile one)

Alaska was a compelling destination; cruising was not necessarily my first choice of ways to do it, but it’s not a bad one either.

Posted by skooter at 10:38 PM This entry is filed under Camera.

Cormorants & Alaska go together after all

According to today’s Vancouver Sun, CFB Comox has twice dispatched Cormorant helicopters to remove passengers in emergency situations from Alaska bound cruise ships.

Traditionally, these rescues are done by airlift with the helicopter hovering over the deck of the ship, but on August 6th they did things a little differently:

“That was the first time a Cormorant has landed on the deck of a cruise ship and it was a good thing we did. The gentleman was oh, 300-pound-ish in size and a hoist would have been extremely difficult for him.”

There’s a lesson here, maybe two: first, if we’d had these Cormorant’s 11 years ago, think about how many lives might have been saved; second, there is such a thing as too many trips to the Lido buffet.

Posted by skooter at 6:18 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

August 16, 2004

50,000 Cars

50,000 cars; that’s the number, according to a friend of mine who works in Engineering at City Hall, of vehicles that pass by my window every day.

How is anybody supposed to live like this?

Continue reading "50,000 Cars"

Posted by skooter at 12:23 AM This entry is filed under Vancouver.

August 7, 2004

A Special Ending to Fireworks from the Vancouver Police

helicopter.jpg

It was fireworks time in Vancouver again, with all of the paranoia from the Vancouver Police about kids (kiddz?) and the problems they cause.

No sooner had the last shell exploded in the sky than the VPD helicopter started patrolling the night sky with its searchlight, presumably to encourage the crowd to (as they say) move along.

Posted by skooter at 11:31 PM This entry is filed under Vancouver.

Is A Conditional Discharge Real Punishment?

So Svend Robinson managed to get out of jail for free. (If not exactly free then at least without spending an any time actually in a jail.)

This is great, becuase I’ve always wanted a collection of Tag Heuer watches, and if the only risk I’m taking here is 100 hours of community service and a conditional discharge, it just may be worth it.

I’m not suggesting that this guy is a career criminal - although there are persistent rumours that he’s been a well known kleptomaniac for years now - but I don’t think it’s fair that Svend’s “public embarassment” is being used as an excuse not to give him jail time - does our criminal code actually list this as part of its sentencing criteria? If so, does that time that my bathing suit fell down in Florida in 1976 count towards a reduction of my jail time? It was pretty traumatizing. The horror. The horror.

Maybe I’m too cynical, but when I see the excessive delay in actually laying charges against Svend combined with a sentence this lenient, it’s hard not to be.

Posted by skooter at 10:36 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

August 5, 2004

an old letter about a candidate

I’m posting, long after originally printed, a letter about someone I know. This letter doesn’t even begin to touch on the many flaws and lies this person has told, and I won’t comment further here at this point. If you want to know more, email me. This was originally printed in the Vancouver Courier

Johl doesn’t represent this East Sider

Continue reading "an old letter about a candidate"

Posted by skooter at 11:48 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

August 1, 2004

Who Needs the Gas Tax Anyway?

I like this one; I really do.

First, this is in response to slightly old news - as a wonderful comment on the currect of TV “news” - my most commons source in recent weeks - versus newspaper news; I had no idea this was going on.

By now the Paul Martin government - your government - the same one that promised to share gas tax revenue with municipal governments (going as far as suggesting that he would share between 5 and 7 cents per litre) is saying that this will happen NEXT budget ; not this one, and certainly not at the next sitting of Parliament.

That 5 to 7 cents by the way, not has to be negotiated because “We want the deals to advance public policy…” [Globe and Mail, July 29, pp. A5.] So much for 5 cents, or even 7.

Far be it from me to criticize - I’ve got an acquaintance who thinks the primary problem with Canadian Government is that the people who vote don’t know enough - but you voted for this guy, and you got what you asked for - more waffling, more indicivisness, and more of Paul Martin. Good luck in the next 18 months.

Posted by skooter at 4:09 PM This entry is filed under Politics.