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I Am Skooter
So here's us, on the raggedy edge.
There's a fortune inside your head / All you touch turns to lead / You think you might just crawl back in bed
— Wilco, Misunderstood
September 30, 2005

Watergate

Watergate means many things to many people - in my life, it’s a magic cabin by the shore of the ocean that I’m fortunate enough to borrow periodically.
watergate
I’m here alone this weekend (not for the first time, but oddly for the first time not in February) resting, reading, recovering from the bad news that clouds a day every once in a while.

Things wil shake out fine, I’m sure, but for this weekend I’m just relaxing.

Posted by skooter at 5:46 PM This entry is filed under Friends.
Tags: Bowen Island, Houses

September 25, 2005

What, me worry?

Posted by skooter at 9:37 PM This entry is filed under Travel.

September 21, 2005

Change in the Wind at Microsoft

There’s change coming at Microsoft.

Microsoft Announces Major Reorganization - New York Times

This change is almost certainly a response to moves made by the new behemoth of the internet age, Google. The question is are they motivated by fear, or a vision for a different future?

Continue reading "Change in the Wind at Microsoft"

Posted by skooter at 7:09 AM This entry is filed under Technology.

Surprisingly, I didn’t buy these apples.

Seen at T&T Super Market. Who says signs shouldn’t be proofread?

Posted by skooter at 6:49 AM This entry is filed under Travel.
Tags: Chinatown, Food

September 18, 2005

More Variety for Mac Users

One of the longest standing issues for the Macintosh has been the lack of software: were it not for Microsoft Word for Mac OS X, I would be unable to use my PowerBook for daily computing - nothing makes it more useful to me than seamless document compatibility.

Continue reading "More Variety for Mac Users"

Posted by skooter at 8:34 AM This entry is filed under Technology.

CSS Validation

Thanks to the magic of the W3C CSS Validation tool, this site should now look as it’s supposed to in Internet Explorer and Mozilla.

As it turns out, I was missing and ending curly brace and while Safari implied one when the next opening curly brace appeared, Mozilla did not - every still after that line of code failed.

Posted by skooter at 7:38 AM This entry is filed under Technology.

September 14, 2005

Vancouver’s Best Restaurant: Closed

Zizane - Gone!
Zizane was one of my favourite restaurants in the city, and I didn’t eat there often enough. Of course, it’s now closed.

My suspicion is that this is a symptom of the standard death cycle of small businesses: the building had several failed restaurants in it, and sat unoccupied for a couple of years after I moved here. Zizane moved in, was very succesful and, I’ll bet, the landlord wanted to increase the rent beyond a level they could afford.

End result? No more poutine for me, and the lovely Isabelle is nowhere to be seen.

Posted by skooter at 7:46 PM This entry is filed under .

Folow the Money, as the saying goes

This article doesn’t make reference to it, but the same fund that paid for this bridge could easily have been used (and was requested) to pay for the upgrade to New Orleans’ levees.
Salon.com News | A bridge to nowhere

While it’s probably impossible to say whether an upgrade would have improved New Orleans’ chances, it’s certain that the lack of improvement had disastrous consequences.

Posted by skooter at 9:06 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

September 13, 2005

Roadtrip: Portland

My last visit to Seattle inluded a road trip to Portland, with two main goals. The first was to visit Mt. St. Helens, which was about to blow the last time I passed by; the second was to hit Powell’s bookstore, long my favourite online bookstore and the world’s best used store by far.

A funky new Lomo Fisheye camera got trotted out for this trip too - the results are below.

Mt. St. Helens
Cycling the road to Mt. St. Helens The road to Mt. St. Helens is a twisting, sprawling road to nowhere and one that positively begs to be ridden on two wheels. These girls chose my favourite mode.

Continue reading "Roadtrip: Portland"

Posted by skooter at 8:37 PM This entry is filed under America, Books, Camera, Travel.
Tags: Portland, Road Trip, Travel

New Wheels

Me riding the Yamaha
Wheels are fun - I’ve missed not being easily mobile.

To that end, a new set of wheels - only two attached to this engine though.

Posted by skooter at 8:28 PM This entry is filed under Family.
Tags: Me, Motorcycle

September 12, 2005

Gomery Delayed?

Today’s news reports that the Gomery report may be delayed as far as February of next year. With Paul Matin’s standing commitment to call an election within 30 days of the release of the report, this puts the next federal election in the Spring of 2006.

Is anybody surprised by this delay? I doubt it had much to do with Martin - Gomery has shown little fondness for the man - but it was entirely predictable.

The government of Ontario’s rejection of the Muslim doctrine of Sharia Law will gain them more votes than it will cost them. In a modern, democratic and free societ such as Canada religion has no business shaping the laws of the country.

This is, in fact, one of my two beef’s with our Charter of Rights and Freedoms which enshrines “god” in the opening paragraph. Of course the American constitution does the same thing, but I’d like to think that the extra couple of centuries we had to write ours might have taught us a few things. Alas it’s there, and not likely to change.

Posted by skooter at 7:04 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

September 9, 2005

Gavel to Gavel Coverage

I’m not making this up - NPR is promoting their coverage of John Roberts’ confirmation hearings on Monday as “gavel to gavel coverage.”

This is a great turn of phrase, uttered without a trace of irony. They’re promising to broadcast Roberts’ opening remarks “live, and uncut” as well.

And really, doesn’t this make sense? The future of the United States is in the balance here - isn’t this more significant than whether the Lakers win or lose by two points?

In other notes, China has blocked access to Skype, a great free internet telephony application that works quite well. Apparently, Skype’s been cutting into China Telecom’s long distance revenue. The same thing’s been happening here, of course, but our phone companies aren’t state run so they’re left a bit out in the cold.

To those who think that China is modernizing, what does this mean? A government that seeks to control its citizens access to information can’t survive - the Chinese government’s life has been extended in part by language isolation - not speaking a European language means a great deal of the world’s linguistic output is lost on Chinese citizens. It can’t last forever.

Posted by skooter at 8:51 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

September 7, 2005

Circular Vision

I can’t quite define what draws me to photography: it’s a realist’s medium, and I definitely qualify as a realist. There’s a surreal element imposed by the lens though - choose your focal length, depth of field, type of film and other factors carefully and you are, in fact, presenting a distorted view of reality.

The Tyee presents an article with work that I like quite a bit. Photographs that capture odd moments, in a unique and beautiful way.
thetyee.ca A Circular Vision

Posted by skooter at 6:52 PM This entry is filed under Camera.

September 5, 2005

Judicial Independence in the United States

President Bush - the leader of a nation in the midst of a massive disaster on a scale never seen on this continent - has named John Roberts as hsi choice to replace Rehnquist as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

This leaves me asking myself one serious question:

How can a judiciary remain independent and free of poiltical influence when the court’s highest job is chosen by the leader of the executive branch of the government?

I see an inherent conflict here - others might not.

Posted by skooter at 8:00 PM This entry is filed under Politics.

September 4, 2005

Rehnquist is Dead

Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court John Rehnquist is dead at 80 of thyroid cancer. Coming on the heals of Sandra Day O’Connor’s retirement, this gives George W. Bush the opportunity to make not one but two appointments to the highest court in America.

Rehnquist was a conservative, and not a liberal. He voted with the majority that gave Bush the presidency in the year 2000, modified the Chief’s uniform and expanded the powers of the police by removing some of the court’s historical restratints on them amongst other things.

Continue reading "Rehnquist is Dead"

Posted by skooter at 8:15 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

Seattle, by Motorcycle

This weekend marked my first road trip of any distance on a motorcycle - heading from Vancouver to Seattle on a borrowed Yamaha Virago cruiser.

When I got here - safe, sound and alive after having ridden almost 300 miles, I sent the note below to family and friends:

well, i’m alive

and in Mrka for the weekend. Trip was uneventful, except when I
figured out exactly how much fuel the “low fuel” indicator on this
bike means.

Continue reading "Seattle, by Motorcycle"

Posted by skooter at 8:02 AM This entry is filed under Travel.

September 2, 2005

Hey George - sorry for interrupting that vacation there!

George W. Bush is heading to New Orleans today, as part of a renewed federal government response to the impact of Hurricane Katrina. I’m sure the citizens are thrilled.

Now, George, thanks to the wonders of modern science we practically watched this thing land. Everbody knew it was coming, and we had a pretty good idea of how devastating it would be. The end result was entirely predictable.

So sorry you had to break into your 5 weeks of vacation to make this little visit. It just doesn’t seem right, does it?

Posted by skooter at 6:01 AM This entry is filed under Politics.

September 1, 2005

Being Paul Martin

John Ibbitson raises a very good question in today’s Globe and Mail:


On Tuesday, with hurricane Katrina’s death toll rising, New Orleans inundated, tens of thousands of buildings damaged or destroyed, a million people displaced and costs estimated in the tens of billions of dollars, the Prime Minister issued a news release mourning the passing of Gus Cloutier, sergeant-at-arms of the House of Commons.
That was it. Nothing else

What it must be like to be inside this man’s head I cannot possibly fathom.

Posted by skooter at 2:20 AM This entry is filed under Politics.