Sunday, March 1, 2015

Spring has Sprung

As they say, pictures are worth a thousand words each.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Live Long and Prosper

I came across this graffiti image a few weeks back applied to construction hoarding on my way to a local East Van micro brewery to get my growler re-filled, and I thought it only fitting to post it today upon the passing of Leonard Nimoy.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Crescent Moon with Mars and Venus

I was walking our dog a couple of nights ago around 6:30 pm heading west when I noticed how thin of a crescent the moon was that night. I remember from a few years back that I took an interesting photograph when a similar moon came into close proximity to Venus. I managed to get a pretty good photo at the time by steadying my camera on the eaves trough of the garage.

I quickened my pace and dropped off our dog at home and grabbed my camera to try for a similar shot. As it turns out this particular combination included not only Venus but Mars too. As I had walked home I noticed a faint almost blinking red speck just above the brighter orb of Venus. It appeared almost as a punctuation mark. Or to use a fishing analogy, it reminded me of a string of fishing tackle being trolled behind a boat, as if a thin invisible line was hooked onto the trailing tip of the crescent moon.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Rufus and Ruby (throated)

It must be Spring. We have a hummingbird nesting right outside our front door. I noticed a hummingbird flying around our front yard on Superbowl Sunday. I don't normally watch the game but I was nursing a pretty bad cold and the couch looked awfully inviting. And plus, Seattle was in it, which added a little bit of Pacific Northwest flavour to the affair.

I managed to get a reasonably good photograph of the male by zooming my point-and-shoot into its electronic zoom zone.

The following week we were leaving the house via the front door, and as we turned around we were face to beak with the female hummingbird sitting on her nest in a tree branch that hangs low, adjacent to our house.

I can't tell if this is the male or female. They seem to swap nest duty.

It's interesting that her markings are so different from the male's. I know that the males are usually more brightly feathered, but the female has a fantastically bright red throat that flashes almost like chrome when the sun hits it.

Hopefully we'll get to see what the chicks look like. Quite an exciting Spring so far!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Museum of Human Rights

On our recent trip to Winnipeg this past Christmas we took in the Museum of Human Rights. Last time we were there in 2011 it was still under construction. In my opinion the building is up to the challenge of presenting such important subject matter. It's an imposing elegant structure, yet rugged enough to withstand the harsh environment of a Canadian prairie.

Time Capsule

While sorting stuff in my workshop over Christmas I came across a few tubes of posters I've had for a very long time.

It's perfect timing as we have some vacant wall space to fill now that our basement office space is finished.

With both of the posters shown below, I'd totally forgotten I had them. Once the dates printed on them sunk in it was like opening a time capsule. Ironically I didn't actually attend either event, so I'm not sure how I acquired them, but I'm sure glad I did.

Two unexpected bonuses for this one: it's for the inaugural event and it's signed by the artist (in pen; hard to read in this format).
Strangely enough both posters are from 1990, now enjoying their 25th anniversary.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Paying the Mercury Price

The recent drop in gasoline prices was even more noticeable in Winnipeg than in Vancouver. We spent time in the ‘Peg over the Christmas break and it was really an eye-opener to see sub-loonie pricing per litre. I can’t remember when I last witnessed such an event. When we came home from vacation in Europe a couple of summers ago gas was approaching $1.60 per litre in Vancouver. The average price for gas in Winnipeg I saw during our recent trip was about half that; about 80 cents. And here I thought we were being so smart by buying a hybrid car recently to combat the petro assault at the pumps. But I digress.

The real reason for this post was an exchange that came to mind during our stay in Winnipeg. It occurred to me that although gas was about 20 cents per litre cheaper in Winnipeg than in Vancouver, we’d paid in another way in that the outside environment was 20 degrees colder. It could be said that we’d paid the “Mercury price”.

That slang phrase is in reference to the Game of Thrones series of books I’ve recently read. In the series one clan of people prides itself in paying the iron or gold price. The “iron price” is paid when a warrior slays his opponent in battle with iron weapons, and takes what he pleases from the losing party. The “gold price” is a traditional exchange of currency (gold) for goods. Within this particular clan, it is much more respected to pay the iron price.

Going one step further in this analysis, perhaps next year we’ll go full circle foregoing a traditional Canadian white Yuletide season and pay the “plastic price” (credit card) for some heat to go to Hawaii for Christmas.