for more information contact

On Trump
Bob Dylan - Wisdom is Thrown Into Jail
Bob Dylan: Tempest
Adam West voices the Dark Knight
Apple's Calendar Inconsistency
Is Pono Dead?
Inbox Zero is Old News: Welcome to Inbox Negative One
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Effects Reel
Evolution of Stop Motion Photography
7 Story Cycling Centric Apartments

What Happened to Jai Alai?
Greatest Text Conversation Ever
Quarry Rock in the Rain
Careless Reckless Love
Electricity, Heights and Women
Daniel Lanois and his AC30
How Can You Just Leave Me Standing Alone in a World So Cold
Today Was a Tough Day
The Resonant Frequency of Love - Rocco DeLuca with Daniel Lanois
Dan Mangan - Forgetery
Birch Tree: Toronto, 2016
Japan's Disposable Workers
Jeff Tweedy Plays Charades with Ewan McGregor
Steph Cameron at the Railway Club (February 1, 2016)
Wilco at the CityFolk Festival, Ottawa (September 20, 2015)
Rice Lake, North Vancouver
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Running Away
Stanley Rohatinski: 1925 - 2015
Chewie...we're home!

November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
October 2015
April 2015
March 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
August 2014
May 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
July 2003
June 2003
January 2003
November 2002
October 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
July 2001
May 2001
April 2001
January 2001
October 1999


your blue hood
Thin Systems
Listen to the Bell, Mr. Premier...It Tolls for Thee
Gordon Campbell Won't Run Again?
Bike Maintenance Lessons: Disc Brake Pads
Cycling is Mainstream Transportation
Brave New World: The Musical
Perennial Also Ran?
Daniel Lanois and his AC30
Dan Mangan - Forgetery

I Am Skooter
So here's us, on the raggedy edge.
Stand on a bridge before the cavern of night / Darkness alive with possibility / Nose to this wind full of twinkling lights / Trying to catch the scent of what's coming to be (in this...)
— Bruce Cockburn, World of Wonders
September 30, 2008

Sunset on English Bay from the Burrard Bridge

English Bay from the Burrard Bridge

Posted by skooter at 1:39 PM This entry is filed under Camera, Vancouver.
Tags: English Bay, Sun, Vancouver

I Swear I Thought I Was Dreaming

Having fallen asleep in front of the TV, I thought I was dreaming when I woke up to see Tina Fey on my TV. Happily I wasn’t.

The moment, about four minutes in, when she starts to explain about the economic bail out plan is just beautiful, and hits the nail a little too close to the head. “…and having a dollar value meal at restaurants…” Priceless.

Posted by skooter at 3:23 AM This entry is filed under America, Entertainment, Politics.
Tags: Elections, John McCain, President, Sarah Palin, Tina Fey

September 27, 2008

More on those Tolls

Missed, in my reading of the initial coverage of the toll situation on Highway 1, was Gordon Campbell’s announcement that tolls on the Port Mann would be imposed for 35 years.

This is, of course, a meaningless announcement. By the time that 35 year agreement is up, the average person voting in today’s election will be in their seventies, and the promise will be long forgotten. Gordon Campbell will be 95, and won’t have to answer for an changes to that decision.

I recall seeing a documentary about the Lion’s Gate Bridge which talked about Vancouver City Council providing a 60 year timeline for the removal of the road through Stanley Park. I wish I could find the reference, but even if I did I wouldn’t fall for it.

I’m not opposed to tolls, incidentally. I think the Port Mann should be tolled. I’m not a fan of artificial promises, and I’m somewhat amazed that the news media has been letting this one slide.

Posted by skooter at 6:42 PM This entry is filed under Politics, Vancouver.
Tags: Gordon Campbell, Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, Transportation, Urban Development

Listen to the Bell, Mr. Premier…It Tolls for Thee

Gordon Campbell today announced at the Union of B.C. Municipalities meeting tolls would be removed from the Coquihalla Highway as of 13:00hrs today. The Vancouver Sun provides sufficiently pedantic coverage.

The logic is pretty obvious here: the new Port Mann bridge is going to be tolled, which means this effectively just moves the toll farther up the highway. The route from Vancouver to the Interior will only be toll free for a short period of time. The Lougheed Highway provides an alternate, probably permanently toll free route to the Coquihalla but from Vancouver it adds quite a bit of time: for most people, it’s not practical.

The obvious question though, is what happened to the 2003 plan of privatizing the Coquihalla. At the time, Transportation Minister Judith Reed explained the decision by saying that:

“As the 17-year-old highway ages, maintenance and rehabilitation costs will grow. These improvements must be made in a way that ensures the 81 per cent of users from outside the southern Interior pay the largest share, and benefits frequent travellers - especially local residents.

The government—the same government—at the time insisted that privatization was the only way to keep the Coquihalla running effectively into the future. There was just no other way.

The government press release is archived here but I’ve excerpted it after the break in case that URL changes.

Continue reading "Listen to the Bell, Mr. Premier…It Tolls for Thee"

September 26, 2008

The Great Debaters

Sigh. Another reminder of how much I miss Jim Henson and the Muppets.

Posted by skooter at 5:40 PM This entry is filed under Politics.
Tags: Barak Obama, John McCain, Muppets, Waldorf & Statler

The Bartlett White House Was Fictional…

but it was also idealistic in the best way. Maureen Dowd is possessed of a sharp wit and a sharp pen, and whether she actually talked to Aaron Sorkin or not, she’s written a pretty funny article called Aaron Sorkin Conjures a Meeting of Obama and Bartlet

One of my favourite excerpts:

OBAMA I didn’t expect you to answer the door yourself.

BARTLET I didn’t expect you to be getting beat by John McCain and a Lancôme rep who thinks “The Flintstones” was based on a true story, so let’s call it even.

and another (I’ve added the emphasis):

BARTLET Well … let me think. …We went to war against the wrong country, Osama bin Laden just celebrated his seventh anniversary of not being caught either dead or alive, my family’s less safe than it was eight years ago, we’ve lost trillions of dollars, millions of jobs, thousands of lives and we lost an entire city due to bad weather. So, you know … I’m a little angry.

OBAMA What would you do?

BARTLET GET ANGRIER! Call them liars, because that’s what they are. Sarah Palin didn’t say “thanks but no thanks” to the Bridge to Nowhere. She just said “Thanks.” You were raised by a single mother on food stamps — where does a guy with eight houses who was legacied into Annapolis get off calling you an elitist? And by the way, if you do nothing else, take that word back. Elite is a good word, it means well above average. I’d ask them what their problem is with excellence. While you’re at it, I want the word “patriot” back.

The article drops a sly reference to 30 Rock as well. I swear that didn’t influence my opinion.

Posted by skooter at 4:53 AM This entry is filed under America, Politics.
Tags: Barak Obama, Elections, John McCain, President

News That Contradicts Itself

What I love about this article:

Gas shortages reportedly critical in western N.C.
BY STEVE LYTTLE, The Charlotte Observer

Hundreds of cars lined streets this morning as motorists in the Charlotte metro region tried to cope with an ever-worsening gasoline shortage situation.
Some motorists waited up to five hours, and fights were reported as people accused other customers of cutting in line.

Some gas stations that opened this morning with what they thought were ample supplies ran out within a few hours.

Police were called out several times to break up fights among angry customers.

which is both surreal and entirely unsurprising, is not so much the article itself as it is these ads which appeared on the same web page.
Charlotte Observer

Every single ad is for an SUV.

Posted by skooter at 3:05 AM This entry is filed under America, Politics.
Tags: Carbon Tax, Cars, Gas, Oil

September 24, 2008

I Don’t Think I Can Wait That Long

I’m a bit impatient sometimes, so I’ve got some old Lego, some AA batteries and a bunch of old hard drive magnets I’m going to put to work:

Collider Operations on Hold Until Next Year
Published: September 23, 2008

The world’s newest and largest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider, will not begin operations again until April, officials at the European Center for Nuclear Research said Tues

But last Friday the machine was shut down after an electrical connection between two of the superconducting electromagnets that steer the protons suffered a so-called quench, heating up, melting and leaking helium into the collider tunnel. Liquid helium is used to cool the magnets to superconducting temperatures of only about 3.5 degrees Fahrenheit above absolute zero. Stray heat can cause the magnets to lose their superconductivity with potentially disastrous consequences.

Posted by skooter at 4:00 AM This entry is filed under Politics.
Tags: CERN, Geneva, Physics, Science

Some Things Never Change

The question is, will Barak Obama be any different?

From the New York Times

One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month from the end of 2005 through last month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain’s campaign manager, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement.
[McCain adviser Rick] Davis’s firm, Davis Manafort, had been kept on the payroll because of his close ties to Mr. McCain, the Republican presidential nominee, who by 2006 was widely expected to run again for the White House.

Posted by skooter at 3:54 AM This entry is filed under America, Politics.
Tags: Barak Obama, John McCain, Politics, President

September 23, 2008

When Capitalists Become Communists

That least Liberal of publications, Forbes magazine advocates for an even greater level of government intervention. At least they mention Marbury vs. Madison

$700 billion is not enough. It also doesn’t include the hundreds of billions of dollars that the government has already committed in earlier actions to stem the tsunami flooding the markets. The bill for American International Group could consume a significant amount of the new request, and the balance sheets of other financial institutions are sitting on trillions of dollars of mortgage detritus.
The Bush administration’s request that the Treasury’s actions be immune from judicial oversight is unconstitutional. Unless Marbury v. Madison has been overruled while HCM’s attention was diverted elsewhere, all actions of the executive branch in this country are subject to judicial review. This request rings with the same troubling echoes of the most abusive aspects of the Patriot Act.

Wrong, Forbes. $700 billion is too much. Wall Street tied its own noose under the free market doctrine of conservatism, and now they’re asking someone else to untie it. Yet another example of changing the rules midway through the game.

Read some Naomi Klein instead. She’s thought the problem through more thoroughly than George Bush has.

Posted by skooter at 4:46 PM This entry is filed under America, Politics.
Tags: Conservative, Economics, Republican, United States

30 Rock: Best Comedy…Again

At this years’s increasingly meaningless Emmy awards 30 Rock once again won Best Comedy with Tina Fey wining Best Actress in a Comedy and Alec Baldwin winning Best Actress in a Comedy.

30 Rock was ranked 94th last year on a list of 220 shows by Nielsen. There’s been two good years so far, and a third committed. Despite the awards, I can’t see NBC giving us a fourth.

“‘30 Rock’ is available to be viewed on,, iTunes, Verizon phones, United Airlines and occasionally on actual television.
- Tina Fey, accepting the award for outstanding comedy series for “30 Rock.”

This is going to be a good one though. Enjoy it while it lasts. Season premiere on October 30th. Funniest woman on TV.

“I thank my parents for somehow raising me to have confidence that is disproportionate with my looks and abilities. Well done. That is what all parents should do,” said Fey, who also won Emmys for best actress and writing in a comedy series.

Posted by skooter at 4:30 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment.
Tags: 30 Rock, Television, Tina Fey

September 22, 2008

Fade to Black

I never shot much Kodachrome. I generally prefered the saturated blues of Fuji Provia. Still, the seemingly imminent demise of Kodak’s flagship product makes me sad.

Posted by skooter at 3:09 PM This entry is filed under Camera.
Tags: Film, Kodak, Photography

Sometimes You Can Judge People by Who They Associate With

You can draw your own conclusions:

PMO pressure contractor to remove ‘xenophobic’ jokes
Military equipment supplier’s website mocked Muslims, women, bilingualism
JOAN BRYDEN, The Canadian Press
September 22, 2008 at 4:49 AM EDT

OTTAWA — A company that supplies knives, flashlights and other equipment to the Canadian Forces referred to Muslims as “rag-headed, heathen, bastards” on its website as recently as yesterday when the federal government complained.

Gear Up Motors’ website was replete with other jabs at women and Liberals and mocked official bilingualism and concerns about global warming.

But with Canadian troops risking their lives in Afghanistan, the passage about Muslims was the most likely to raise alarm.

“Jihad? I’ll give you a Jihad you miserable, rag-headed, heathen, bastard!” said a caption posted over a photograph of a rifle-toting John Wayne.

Posted by skooter at 1:32 PM This entry is filed under Canada, Politics.
Tags: Conservative Party of Canada, Politics, Racism

Bike Sharing Comes to Canada - Again

The news that Montreal is starting a bike sharing program is welcome. Of course, Toronto tried this and it failed. the same thing has been proposed in Vancouver, and it’s been very succesful in Paris.

Theft is an issue, but Paris’ electronic tracking system has apparently minimized that problem. Here’s hoping Montreal’s experiment is a success, and encourages other Canadian cities to launch similar programs. It would be nice to see this in place by the time the Olympics arrive here.

Posted by skooter at 1:26 PM This entry is filed under Cycling.
Tags: Cycling, Montreal, Transportation, Vancouver, Vancouver Olympics

September 21, 2008

Othello Tunnels, Coquihalla Canyon Park

Othello Tunnels, Coquihalla Canyon Taken with a Canon EF20mm lens inside tunnel for 1.5 minutes at f8. Located near Hope, the Coquihalla Canyon tunnels are ideal for cycling.

Posted by skooter at 7:08 AM This entry is filed under Camera, Cycling, Vancouver.
Tags: Cycling, Tunnels

September 20, 2008

It’s Not Like They Didn’t Know

The NDP absolutely knew about Kirk Tousaw’s past. I’d have more respect for them if they kept him running, frankly. Sort of a stand by your man situation.

It wouldn’t even be that hard to pitch the guy as a hopeless candidate (there’s no way they’re going to wind Quadra in this century) and argue that they want him in the race in order to prompt the discussion.

This being Quadra — with an average household income significantly above the national — the economic argument for legalization might even fly, or at least be interesting. Essentially I’ve always viewed this as an economic argument: a tonne of money is spent prosecuting relatively minor infractions. All of that money would now be saved. Add to that the potential for taxation of an illegal crop, and the NDP could argue that they’d fund social programs with the savings and revenue.

I’m not personally pro-legalization, but I do see the viewpoint.

Ah well, Kirk. Sometimes your past comes back to bite you. It’s not like you were going to win anyway.

Another NDP candidate quits in B.C.
Last Updated: Friday, September 19, 2008, 7:19 PM ET

The federal New Democrats lost another B.C. candidate Friday, the second to quit in a matter of days.

Vancouver-Quadra candidate Kirk Tousaw, a civil liberties lawyer and former campaign manager for the B.C. Marijuana Party, resigned Friday afternoon.

Tousaw has been a long-time advocate for the legalization of marijuanna and once appeared on Pot TV, a website run by party leader Marc Emery. He is also chair of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association’s drug policy committee.

Posted by skooter at 2:46 AM This entry is filed under Canada, Politics.
Tags: Drugs, NDP

September 19, 2008

Land of the Giants

The New York Times visits California’s Redwood National Forest, and sends my mind wandering to that golden, scenic coast.

Maybe next year. Maybe on a bicycle.

Posted by skooter at 1:36 PM This entry is filed under Cycling, Travel.
Tags: Articles, California, Travel

September 15, 2008

I Don’t Wanna be a Tiger / ‘Cause Tiger’s Play Too Rough

Teddy Bear found in a muddy field

Posted by skooter at 5:45 AM This entry is filed under Camera.
Tags: Still Life, Teddy Bears

Oh Tina, How Much You’re Missed

Yet one more reminder of how the funniest woman on television once made Saturday Night Live a very funny show.

Posted by skooter at 4:31 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment, Politics.
Tags: America, Comedy, SNL, Television, Tina Fey

September 12, 2008

Saddest Song Ever (according to Neko Case)

At the Stanley Park Singing Exhibition the divine and magnificent Mrs. Neko Case declared Don’t Forget Me by Harry Nilsson “one of the saddest songs ever.”

With that kind of authority (Neko is, without a doubt, the modern Queen of the Maudlin Lyric) behind it, how can you go wrong?

Don’t Forget Me by Harry Nilsson
In the wintertime keep your feet warm
But keep your clothes on and don’t forget me
Keep the memories
But keep your powder dry too

In the summer by the poolside
While the fireflies are all around you
All miss you when I’m lonely
I’ll miss the alimony too

Don’t forget me - don’t forget me
Take it easy if only for a little while
You know I think about you
Let me know you think about me too

And when we’re older and full of cancer
It doesn’t matter, come on get happy
‘Cause nothing lasts forever
But I will always love you

Don’t forget me, please don’t forget me
Make it easy if just for a little while
You know I think about you
Let me know you think about me too

Posted by skooter at 7:06 PM This entry is filed under Entertainment, Music.
Tags: Lyrics, Music, Neko Case

If Tina Fey Registers, I’m Heading to Ireland

Tina Fey drops Star Wars references quite a bit, and Baby Mama was no exception. If I find out that she’s registered for this course, I’m signing up.

Star Wars Jedi Knights course offered by Queen’s University Belfast
A university is offering a course that will use the psychology of the Star Wars Jedi Knights to teach students communication skills and personal development.
By Tom Peterkin
Last Updated: 4:48PM BST 11 Sep 2008

The UK’s first Jedi course is on offer at Queen’s University Belfast in November and hopes to attract Star Wars fans and introduce them to the joys of continuing their education through open learning.

According to its publicity material, the course ‘Feel the Force: How to Train in the Jedi Way’ teaches the “real-life psychological techniques behind Jedi mind tricks”.
It also claims to examine the “wider issues behind the Star Wars universe, like balance, destiny, dualism, fatherhood and fascism”.

No prior qualifications are required and the blurb informs students that “light sabres are not provided”.

Posted by skooter at 4:44 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment, Inanities.
Tags: Education, Star Wars, Tina Fey

Sea to Sky Construction in 2008

Upgrades to the Sea to Sky Highway have been going at a rapid pace, largely driven the the Vancouver olympics. These photos show the highway just north of Horseshoe Bay from the Bowen Island ferry. The colour one in July, the black & white in September.

Posted by skooter at 4:21 AM This entry is filed under Travel, Vancouver.
Tags: Construction, Sea to Sky, Vancouver Olympics

September 11, 2008

Ben Cleaning the Train Engines

Ben Rogers cleaning train engines

Posted by skooter at 4:27 AM This entry is filed under Friends.
Tags: Benjamin, Burnaby Model Railroad, Trains

September 9, 2008

Flinging Atoms at Each Other

I can’t wait until they get the Large Hadron Collider going. That’s going to be a blast.

Posted by skooter at 1:39 PM This entry is filed under Science.
Tags: Physics, Research, Science, Switzerland

End of an Era

My beloved Yamaha Virago has moved on to a new home, one that will see it getting the care that I, with my reduced space, was never able to properly give it.

My last ride was one back from Tofino, in rain that can only be called a torrential downpour with me completely improperly dressed. Despite this, there are a lot of good memories attached to that bike: my trip to California being the highlight among them.

I will be going without a bike for a while. This has, in any case, been the year of the pedal in my life and that will continue for a while. A new motorcycle may be in the cards, but with new requirements. A Honda ST1100 or ST1300 would be an ideal choice.)

Life goes on. I’m happy the bike is going to a good home.

Posted by skooter at 3:33 AM This entry is filed under Travel.
Tags: Motorcycle, Virago

No PST on Bicycles and Parts in British Columbia

The things you learn when you pay attention.

It was time for the annual chain change on my daily commuter bike, and when I wondered why the bill seemed smaller than I thought it should be, I learned that in British Columbia:

You do not charge your customer PST when you sell replacement parts. 

which means I’m going to be paying closer attention to bills in the future. A nice little incentive provided by the Campbell government.

Posted by skooter at 3:10 AM This entry is filed under Cycling, Politics.
Tags: Cycling, Gordon Campbell, Politics, Taxes

September 8, 2008


My end of summer reading was a book I stumbled across in a used book stor called We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will be Killed With Our Families: Stories from Rwanda. I’d read bits and pieces about the Rwandan genocide, but this book provides an in depth look at a situation that demonstrates how utterly completely the world ignores the African problem.

Of course, in North America the African problems doesn’t exist because we just ignore it.

Continue reading "Rwanda"

Posted by skooter at 5:29 PM This entry is filed under Books, Politics.
Tags: Africa, Genocide

September 7, 2008

October / And the trees are stripped bare / of all they wear / what do I care

Stephen Harper went for a walk this morning, and came back with a writ of election from the figurehead Governor General.

Scott Shipway won’t be voting for Stephen Harper’s Conservatives and it’s my suspicion that fewer Canadians than he suspects will.

Another Conservative majority government, a new Liberal leader (hopefully Michael Ignatieff,) a Conservative party in disarray due to a fear of choosing a new leader after what can only be called an electoral failure, Jack Layton remaining in place, if only because of the NDP’s acceptance of failure.

That’s what I think October 15th is going to look like, but I’m sitting this one out anyway.

Posted by skooter at 10:26 PM This entry is filed under Canada, Politics.
Tags: Conservative Party of Canada, Liberal, Michael Ignatieff, Stephane Dion, Stephen Harper

New Photos

Lolita Some new black and white photos in the Lynn Canyon galleries and the first results from my trip to Clayoquot Sound are on Flickr. Another roll to be posted this week.

Posted by skooter at 8:19 PM This entry is filed under Camera, Travel.
Tags: Kayaking, Tofino, Travel

September 3, 2008

David Emerson: End of a Career

When the Vancouver-Quadra electoral association of the Conservative Party of Canada refused to grant David Emerson a nomination, it was no surprise that this news was next.

Emerson won’t run again: sources
Globe and Mail Update
September 2, 2008 at 11:19 PM EDT
OTTAWA — Foreign Affairs Minister David Emerson, who defected to the Harper Conservatives 2½ years ago, will retire from politics instead of running again in the looming federal election, sources say.

Mr. Emerson’s departure will be a blow for the party.

I’m not so sure about the blow. A bright, but extremely arrogant man, Emerson could hardly be called a team player. With no hope of winning, he has taken the safe option and jumped out of the pool.

Posted by skooter at 5:10 AM This entry is filed under Politics.
Tags: Conservative Party of Canada, David Emerson, Elections, Liberals

September 1, 2008

I Shall Be Released, Wilco, Spokane, WA

Posted by skooter at 3:59 PM This entry is filed under Music.
Tags: AltCountry, Music, The Band, Wilco

Neko Case, Malkin Bowl, Stanley Park

Neko Case at Malkin Bowl, Stanley Park Singing Exhibition, 2008

Posted by skooter at 7:19 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment.
Tags: AltCountry, Neko Case, Stanley Park