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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
January 30, 2010

Great Lake Swimmers: Vogue Theatre

Great Lake Swimmers at the Vogue Theatre, Vancouver, BC Great Lake Swimmers at the Vogue Theatre, Vancouver, BC Great Lake Swimmers at the Vogue Theatre, Vancouver, BC

Posted by skooter at 8:00 AM This entry is filed under Camera, Music.
Tags: Great Lake Swimmers, Music, Vogue Theatre

January 29, 2010

The Weary Kind - Theme from Crazy Heart

One of the best films I’ve seen in quite some time, with music curated by the always amazing T. Bone Burnett

Posted by skooter at 6:33 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment, Music.
Tags: AltCountry, Jeff Bridges, Movies, Music

January 26, 2010

BBC Commercial for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics

Posted by skooter at 10:00 PM This entry is filed under Marketing.
Tags: 2010, Television, Vancouver Olympics

January 24, 2010

Steve Earle at the Orpheum Theatre

Posted by skooter at 4:51 PM This entry is filed under Camera, Music.
Tags: Music, Steve Earle

January 21, 2010

Paul Quarrington: 1953 - 2010

Paul Quarrington’s novels and characters were quirky, strange, odd, entertaining and very Canadian. Whale Music is a classic in both print, film and recorded music. Quarrington had cancer for some time which makes this loss no less shocking.

Writer Paul Quarrington dies of cancer
Beloved author, musician and screenwriter battled lung cancer, died Thursday morning at his Toronto home
Michael Posner, Toronto — Globe and Mail update
Published on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2010 10:31AM EST

Paul Quarrington, 56, a beloved Canadian writer, musician and screenwriter, passed away early this morning after a heroic battle with lung cancer.

A statement posted to his official website said: “Paul Quarrington’s brave battle with cancer is over. He passed peacefully at home in Toronto in the early hours this morning surrounded by friends and family. It is comforting to know that he didn’t suffer; he was calm and quiet holding hands with those who were closest to him. The past few days saw a rapid decline in his ability to breathe.”

Posted by skooter at 9:15 PM This entry is filed under .
Tags: Authors, Books, Canada, Paul Quarrington

January 19, 2010

Vancouver’s Independent Bookstore Closes

At the end of August, Pages Bookstore in Toronto closed. It was, in my opinion, the best bookstore in Canada and featured a great selection of first time authors: books that Chapters wouldn’t even think about stocking.

Duthie’s is the closest we have in Vancouver, though its selection of independently published first time authors wasn’t as great. Now they’re closing.

I readily admit to being part of the problem here. In the last ten years I’ve increasingly purchased used books, so I haven’t exactly been helping keep Duthie’s in business. Books can get expensive, and why kill all those new trees? I actually don’t order many books from Amazon: probably fewer than 15 in the last ten years. Still…I’m not pleased about this.

DUTHIE PRESS RELEASE
January 19, 2010

We are sad to tell you that Duthie Books 4th ave is closing.

After 53 years, the last Duthies bookstore is closing. Goodbye to all that!
The Duthie family: Cathy Legate, Celia Duthie and David Duthie, wish to thank all the customers, readers, staff, authors, and publishers who have been part of Duthie Books over the years, particularly our customers who have remained steadfast over these past 10 years at 4th Ave.

We have had 53 (mostly) happy years of bookselling in Vancouver. We have offered friendly recommendations, and stocked good books. For 53 years Duthies has provided a good book service to the city, championed BC and Canadian books, encouraged the public to read local writers, and helped to create a knowledgeable reading public. The book culture of Vancouver and BC has grown up and flourished around Duthies from publisher’s reps to publishing houses , authors, illustrators, designers, printers, literary festivals, and university writing and publishing programs have emerged in the Duthies milieu and many Duthies alumni work in all parts of the book trade.

Posted by skooter at 6:44 PM This entry is filed under .

January 15, 2010

Neil Young - Heart of Gold (1971)

Posted by skooter at 3:12 PM This entry is filed under Music.
Tags: Heart of Gold, Music, Neil Young

January 2, 2010

The Unintended Consequences of Advancement

LED lights are wonderful: bright, long lasting, even more energy efficient than compact fluorescent bulbs (and they don’t require mercury.)

Of course they also don’t give off much heat, and that fact has apparently been causing a bit of trouble with traffic signals in snowier parts of the country.

LED Signal’s Seen as Environmental Boon and Potential Hazard - NYTimes.com
The new lighting is part of a fast-growing trend in environmentalism. LED bulbs use less energy, last longer and are more visible than their predecessors. They are also known to require less maintenance. But they do not emit nearly as much heat as conventional bulbs, allowing snow and ice to accumulate more easily in certain conditions.

It’s always interesting to see the unintended consequences of a new technology. I’m not sure that anybody could have thought this problem through enough to anticipate the problem.

Posted by skooter at 5:20 PM This entry is filed under Technology.
Tags: Environmentalism, Transportation

January 1, 2010

CBC Radio 3 Top 103 Songs of 2009

CBC Radio 3’s top 103 songs of 2009 are now available as a playlist. It’s as reasonable a list as anything I could have come up with. I might have bumped Amy Millan up a bit for personal reasons. I think Young Galaxy should probably have another song on the list, and Metric’s Gimme Sympathy is a bit of a predictable choice for number one (though the acoustic version Emily Haines performed at the Polaris Music Prize Gala was beautiful.)

Onwards and upwards to 2010.

Posted by skooter at 1:15 AM This entry is filed under Entertainment, Music.
Tags: Amy Millan, CBC, Metric, Music, Young Galaxy

“Apple is providing leadership in colors…”

From Business Week, in July of 2000, an article written a bit more than a year in advance of the iPod’s introduction on October of 2001. A priceless quote from Bill Gates.

Yes, Steve, you fixed it. Congrats! Now what’s Act Two?
“All told it’s hard to see how Apple can hold its innovation lead. ‘The big thing that Apple is providing now is leadership in colors. It won’t take us long to catch up with that,’ quipped Microsoft Chairman William H. Gates III last year. Even Jef Raskin, the ex-Apple manager who conceived the original Mac, isn’t terribly optimistic about Apple returning to its glory, ‘I think they can remain what they are: a well-loved, influential bit player, the late Walter Matthau of the computer industry. But not the top star.”

Never count Steve Jobs out. I still can’t imagine Apple without him, though I suspect he’s put a successful culture in place.

Posted by skooter at 12:09 AM This entry is filed under Technology.
Tags: Apple, Bill Gates, iPod, Steve Jobs