Wednesday, August 28, 2013

if i'm gonna...

..then i better.
post. i have to post if i am to bring this thing, this blog, back to life. i am making ketchup, and just ate a few too many scoops of ice cream and am thinking about how, how i need to keep up on this thing.
but i am fading a little.
when i finished this off last year i felt like it was time. it was time to give it a rest. and i did. there were various reasons why i did - some i mentioned then, and some i did not - and will not mention now. it was just time. i don't have as much to say, i don't think. i have stopped taking as many pictures - i think people got tired of me pointing the lens at them - so i stopped. i also wondered about me needing to document everything. everything i did. you did. all of it. leave a little to the imagination.
but i am going to try and keep this up and running and make it fun again.
this week has been a test of sorts.
i was, after finishing the last big film project, taken back to working on set again. and i have to say, i was kinda stoked to find out i was working on a project matt dillon was involved in. pretty cool. i was not as stoked to be in the woods in the GVRD watershed until early in the morning from the night before in the pouring rain. but i was. there. doing that. and really, it's a paycheque. and i was there with guys i really like, who i have worked with or known for years. so it was all good.
i made my annual pilgrimage over to hornby to visit with ailsa and fiona as they set up camp there for a couple weeks. it's always a short visit but i like doing it - ailsa's parents tom and dorothy were there as well and i like having time with them as well. it was beginning to rain as i left yesterday morning but i know they had enough books and games to keep themselves occupied.
before i went to hornby i stopped in at floyd and janine's to see them. my dad was in bed as he had done 'something' that made his back and left leg very sore -  a nerve issue i believe. i have had word since that he is on the mend so that's good. i also, while in victoria, met-up with muc and jenn and the new one there - august jackson. he's a good lookin' kid that one - not a lot of crying but a lot of smiling for sure.
marc and i had dinner at bin 4 - victoria's best burger apparently - and had a nice visit. it's nice having him back in this neck of the woods as i get to see he and jenn more. and now i get to see jackson grow-up and become a mini-muc.
today was all about cleaning. so very exciting. i have to cut tomorrow and go pay my corp. taxes - so that'll be great. oh and i get to write a cheque to my security alarm company as well. oh it'll all be so great. handing out cheques.
and now, now i am making ketchup from the few tomatoes i did manage to get from my 'crop' this year. i want to make the most of what i did get out of the crappy crop. i have made decent ketchup before so i am hopeful.
ok. i know i need to get back in shape here and i am working on it. the insults, the rants, the raves, the pissed-off garn. don't worry, i'll get it back.

g. xo

Thursday, August 22, 2013

matt f'ing dillon, bullshit margs and a fixed doinker.

i have said this before and i'm saying it again - i don't often get too juiced up about seeing celebs. at work i see a lot of them - actors - and i used to meet a few here and there when i did radio - musicians mainly - and i have seen a few sports dudes here and there. but today i was taken aback when i, all of a sudden, found myself standing next to matt dillon. pretty fuckin' cool. he of The Outsiders, Rumblefish, Drugstore Cowboy, etc...great. so great. i am putting in a few days on set on a little thing and i didn't know he was in it. now i know.
last night the garbs, mishi and i went to cuchillo, a new mexican inspired/latin joint on powell street. a friend of mine did the graphics for it and it sounded like a place i would like so i wanted to try it. so. we did. and very shortly into our dinner i knew that, maybe, things may go more south than we were hoping. we ordered three margaritas and they came in martini glasses with no rocks/ice.
now that's bullshit.
we asked about it and our server said that traditionally that's how they came - (even though she admitted that she preferred them on the rocks. and that they don't like to add ice as it dilutes the drink. there would be no way that shaking a drink over ice that the ice may get crushed and broken and add water to the drink already. nope. couldn't happen. we didn't order any more margs.
the food there is very good but the entrees could be 3 bucks each cheaper i think. the tacos are well priced and tasty. the cornbread is a complete rip-off - delicious. but for what you get - a rip. will i go back. yes, but i'd just saddle up to the bar - eat a couple tacos and order a marg on the rocks and then get the hell out. (the crowd was surprising as well...lots of yaletown sorts and west vancouver ' the real housewives' comes off as more of a bar than a restaurant.)

my bbq suddenly stopped working and after some investigation i figured out that the quick connect had lost - how i do not know - a little 'doinker' that sits inside that allows the gas to flow one the bbq hose is attached. (the hose has a little tab that sits 'proud' that pushes the ball in the 'doinker' and allows the gas to flow...) i asked the asked the building manager where the gas shut-off was and after my third attempt, took the old fitting off and while the gas was free flowing into the air, re-taped the threads and put on my new fitting. presto. fixo.

ok...tomorrow i don't start on set until 4 pm so it'll be a long day/night...

g. xo

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

an end to the pain.

this year's crop was shit. no two ways about it. everything in my garden was a bust. sure, i had a few decent potatoes, a few tomatoes but really, it sucked. i am, of course due to my nature in such matters, thinking of not planting anything next year but i probably will anyways. such a glutton for punishment. i will, however, try and really sweeten the pot over the winter - manure, compost, etc. hopefully that will help.

and so it was today that i decided i'd had enough and tore out the tomatoes and what were my dreadful examples of onions. i did leave the zucchini but only to see if something happens - i am pretty sure it will amount to exactly zero but i still have a little hope. but i do expect to be tearing it out very soon as well.

these are the good times.

g. xx

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

not too old, but maybe too old for this/that.

the bombers played last night. we were into the second round of the playoffs in the spring/summer league on the north shore.
i am sore this morning.
i generally feel fine after hockey, minor bumps and such, but i got knocked around a bit last night and took three pretty good shots from the 'kids' we were playing. and i do mean kids. and that may be the problem now. they're young, fast and full of piss and vinegar and i may not be anymore. i know that, in the world, i am not old, but i may be too old now to be playing with and against these guys. i'm 49 they're anywhere from 18 - 30 last night...maybe not even 30. and sure, we hold our own - some much better than others - against them but i am starting to get even slower and i think the worst part, or just a natural reaction to hockey as i get older, care less and have less fire in me to play at that level.
i have signed on for the winter session but am thinking it may be my farewell season with the bombers and i will just spare or play part time after that - shit, i may just sit out games this season when i'm not feeling it.
i love being a bomber and was trying last night to get it done but felt a little over my head. i was drenched in sweat at the end - always a good thing - and i went out every shift trying to make something happen...but not much did.
there are new guys playing winter this year too. new guys, guys who we grabbed for the spring/summer session. and i look at them as the new skaters, a changing of the guard maybe - a couple older players leave, new guys come on board - it's happened on every team i have ever been on. i welcome them.
ok. that's it. old, fat, out of shape. classic beer league player. i just may need to find a team with more guys like me on it, playing against more guys like me.

g. xo

Sunday, August 18, 2013

you dropped what where?

when you open a can of paint with a knife make sure you haven't left a sharp edge anywhere.

last night at dinner at roma, my pal juliet mentioned that she and her (ex) mark had gone to a house where they were to pick-up a hard drive, that had been 'hidden' for them and they now had a little problem. the hard drive - that had been left for them by an artist he does wed/graphic work for - had been left on the top of a column at the top of some stairs at her, the artist's, house and when they went to grab it, it fell inside the column. the hard drive, in an envelope, was inside the column and he needed it to do the work for her. no hard drive, no work done.
so after dinner we drove up to the house and had a look at the column and then figure out what could be done.
i told juliet that there were a few options and that i would get it out - i just wasn't sure which option would work. i said i'd have a look in the morning.

i didn't wait until the morning as it was in my head and i had to go and see what i could do. i first tried a weighted piece of cutting line with double sided tape, trying to get the envelope to stick to it - but that didn't so i went to plan B - opening up the column.
after removing the quarter round moulding i pried apart the wood and presto - look it's a hard drive. now the fixing of the column - i decided to do that today when i could actually see what i was doing. so this morning i went to the shop, did some lawn mower maintenance, washed and cleaned my truck and then headed to do some nailing, sanding and painting - i am not much of a painter.

in the end i think it turned out ok. the main problem was the wood being so old - it splintered and cracked so i had to try and make it all a-ok again. a few nails, some wood filler, a little sanding and paint and wham. a nice column once again - the paint will need to weather a bit to blend in but it's good. and mark can do the work needed. and somehow i ended-up with a bottle of tequila for my efforts - thanks!! 
working for booze works from time to time.
i met up with 'he who can not be named on the blog' and had a nice visit with him and juliet and then it was time to get home and get ready for my dinner tonight with the lovely fawn - who's marriage is only a month away now. (pretty exciting stuff....) - at bao bei on keefer street - home of the wildly popular chinatown night market...something i can not get my head wrapped around. we had a great mix of food and it was great to see fawn and shoot the breeze - cool cat that fawn. thanks for dinner fawnzie!

off to bed soon...more wrap fun tomorrow.

g. xo

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

red devils

i am home again. back in my own bed, sleeping like a giant baby - minus the crapping my pants part and the crying. i think.
i hate hotel beds. and truth be known, i don't sleep well, not really well, anywhere but my own bed. so i am happy to see my own sheets.
it's back to work for the time being - we're just wrapping up what was, for me, one of the hardest shows i've ever done. it was very hard on my brain. but, it is coming to a close. and, unless things change, may be my last show for a while - never say never but all signs at the moment point to the BOC shop not having a show out of there for quite a while. like perhaps a couple of years (something i was preparing for, at least in my brain.) and even when you know something's coming, it's hard when it finally happens. sure, i guess i could go work somewhere else, maybe i could but it wouldn't be doing what i do now. it would be back to set work - something most people i work with have never seen me do - or maybe helping out in another shop.
i dunno. am i nervous? sure i am. a little pissed off? you bet.
so, i am looking ahead. not right away - i do need time to think. but i am thinking, and i have before but now more seriously, of looking for a job outside of the film biz.
maybe turn lawn order into a full time, full service gig - add pressure washing, eave cleaning, etc. take the rest of the bookkeeping course i started and see where that takes me. sell fireworks - i'm not kidding.
maybe become a butcher. shit, a baker. why not?
maybe i'll finally finish my novel. i know there's no money in it, but maybe i'll actually finish it. then you can read it.
if you have any ideas, not for the novel but for my, possible, new career, let me know. i am a curious fella.
for now i am home, wrapping up this show, cutting grass, playing some playoff hockey, hanging out with garvie - garvie and fiona last night for a lovely summer dinner at roma - and thinking. but not too hard yet.
and, oh, thinking of clearing out the garden. it may be done. kinda early but this year, i think, maybe, needs to be taken away from my sight. even the pot is not doing well this year - it may produce something but i am not holding my breath. and really, i do it for fun, but it's not as fun when things - anything - grows so poorly after you give it all you think it needs to succeed. oh well. always next year. (i am going to really give the garden an overhaul in terms of making the soil uber rich with poop and compost over the winter.)
and so it is. i'll finish up my coffee and head in. and then tonight, after work, i'll cut judy's lawn and then head to the rink to do battle with a bunch of 18-25 year olds on the ice.
good times.

g. xx

Sunday, August 11, 2013

texas taco two-step

i lounged around today until 12:30 pm to take advantage of the late checkout time at the hotel. (1 pm) i read a little, watched some bad food network tv, walked over to get a coffee near one of the hospitals and organized my bags and such so i'd be ready when the shuttle service comes and gets me at 4:45 to take me to the airport.
as a side note - a correction to my info yesterday about the number of hospitals in the area. the city of houston, after i did a little research, has the world's biggest concentration of medical research and healthcare facilities. and it makes sense now, or more sense, there are many people staying at my hotel who are here for medical reasons - i have overheard many conversations and seen many in wheelchairs and such in the building.

i decided to skip the game today and instead go find a taco truck i had read about online. (some top ten taco list for the city of houston) it was great - or it was great because of the general lack of food in my area. no. it was great. i had hoped for a simple truck that served great tacos and i got one. though i had heard that the place across the street - the alabama ice house - was cool with you bringing your food over there to eat i did. i also thought the icehouse was a place that would have an indoor area that was equipped with A/C. i was wrong. it's one main building that the staff house and serve up food (i think) and beer (i know) to patrons who sit outside at picnic type benches. there are old rusty fans that blow air and misted water on you - if it reaches you that is.
so after i grabbed my tacos i headed across the street and ordered up a modelo and started in on my lunch. pretty good stuff. but as i sat there i got hotter and hotter - suppose to be a cooler than yesterday 94 degrees today. so when i was done, i was kinda done.

i headed over to the trader joe's to get a few snacks for the plane and then waited in the sun outside, for longer than i had expected to, to flag a taxi to take me back to the hotel to wait, as i am doing now, for the shuttle.
sure, two taxi rides to get some tacos and a beer is an expensive way to get lunch but, it was well worth it.
now...a 7:45 pm flight to seattle and then a drive home. and work tomorrow.

g. xo

Saturday, August 10, 2013

the heat and the stupidity.

after a little snack across the street from my hotel - which seems to be in the centre of anything even remotely medical (several medical training centres, at least three hospitals, universities, etc.) - i came back to the hotel, once again sweating like a freak and had a little rest and then headed out to the astros game. it was a inter-state game as they played the texas rangers and it seemed like there were more rangers fans than astros fans (everyone loves a winner...the astros have the worst record in the league and the rangers are a top tier team)

good back and forth game with the rangers coming out on top in the end.
they are doing construction on the lightrail line i was told to take to the game so i had to transfer to a bus with a grumpy driver on it who really didn't know where i should get off to get to the park and made it kinda clear he didn't care either.
and then after the game, as i was walking looking for either a taxi or a bus to get to the lightrail again, i got on the same bus. literally the same bus. same driver. and after i put in my money i asked for a transfer for the train once i got to it, he told me if i had used a 'blah-blah' card, then i would and could use it as a transfer, but because i used cash i don't get one and would have to pay again once i got on the train.
oh, i don't think so.

i would have to say that houston is probably a 'one and done' city. (above - the view from my hotel window.) from what i saw and from various reports, there's no reason to come back on a vacation or...but i am very happy i came and saw one more team on my quest to see every team play at home. i now have three more teams to go - the twins, the marlins and the rays.
i am happy to be back at the hotel and able to have a shower and relax.
see you soon.


 this guy was happy to be at the game

we'll pick you up at 3:44 am.

when i got into washington, d.c. yesterday i checked, before i left the train station, on what train i would get to the airport this morning. i had read on-line, as i was leaving from a baltimore airport, that it left when i needed it to. but on saturdays, apparently, it doesn't travel as often. to make my 6:44 am flight i would have to leave on the 3:15 am train. nice. and what that meant was i would have to leave my hotel at 2:15 am. the math on when i'd actually have to get up just didn't work for me. i enquired at the hotel about how much a taxi would be ($100.00) and then found out there was a shuttle that took people from different hotels to the airport - and i could be picked up at 3:44 am. the best they could do.
so. up i was at 3:00 am and at the airport by 5:00 am.

i had a connection in charlotte, north carolina and then was away to houston - where i am now. where it's raining. the one city that has a covered stadium so it's all ok. all good. the game is at 7:05 pm and i am a tad hungry so i am gonna go out and find some snacks. the woman at the front counter suggested a bbq place but i am suspect of it - i think it's a chain. we'll see.

yesterday in washington, d.c. i did manage to walk as far as the white house but was so soaked with sweat i had to make my way back to the hotel and re-group. it was a heavy heat yesterday. as soon as i would step out of the hotel or any air-conditioned place it just hit me. and when i would see a group of office dudes in full suits without a bead of sweat on them, it somehow made it worse.

the subway was an easy go - and mainly because i had ridden it before when i was here after gavin's nyc wedding and ended-up at the capital/bruins game - and i got to the game quickly and was able to take in batting practice, chat with a cool old usher and eat a wicked sausage with all the goods on it.

it was my third time seeing the phillies play in three days - and they got clocked by the nationals last night - much they way they took it to chicago the night before in philadelphia. the rain threatened but held off thankfully. then it was off to bed after i got back off the very crowded subway - which is also super great when it's muggy out.
now. food. then the astros game.


Friday, August 09, 2013

overcast with a chance of 'holy crap i can't stop sweating'

there was rain, finally after much talk of it coming and wreaking havoc. but it was short lived and the game was back on thirty or so minutes later. 

it's the truth.
the east has humidity like no other place i have ever been to. one time in st. louis i didn't stop or at least kinda get a handle on my sweating until the 4th inning at a cards game. and when it rains just before a game - lots of thundershowers out here - it's worse.
the weather in philly is both hot and humid. and it rained in the night too. both nights.

i opted for the train to the game today and while a cheaper option, it's a sweatier one. really, really sweaty one. and once at the game the sun came out and made it even hotter. i stayed in the shade for an inning before going to my actual seat and once in it i, of course paranoid sort that i am, felt like everyone around me was looking at the sweaty canadian guy. i went back into the shaded area where the wind seemed to pass through nicely and things got much better before i headed back to my seat - nice that you can see the game clearly from all over the park.

the phillies, after losing the night before to the cubs, came back and assaulted the cubs 12-2. nice - on the day phillies second baseman, chase utley, signed his new two year deal worth way too much. but for some reason i don't care as much as i do with assholes like A-Rod, utley is a classy player, a hard player (he had a collision at home plate the night before that was hard enough to send the cubs catcher to hospital for x-rays. ), and skilled even is his so-called 'later' years as a player.
after the game i headed over to Talk of the Town for a philly cheesesteak - a well deserved after game snack..though truthfully i didn't eat again until this morning it was so filling.

a friend from high school, donna shier, moved here 24 years ago after meeting the love of her life. they married and they have been here ever since - four kids! wow. we managed to get together last night and the three of us, her husband mike who i got to finally meet, and walked around south philly a bit, had a drink and then they took me home well past my bed time. so great to see her.
it was a short sleep, four hours, and i was up and away to catch one train to the amtrak station and am now waiting for my 7:45 am train to washington, d.c.
i think there may be some shut eye on the train.
bye philadelphia.

g. xo

 every game needs a kid in a chicken outfit.

 this guy reminded me of george from seinfeld. he was a superfan.

more from yesterday.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

cloudy and muggy with a strong chance of a dramatic finish.

i was a little concerned, ok more than a little, about the chance of the games i was heading out to see being rained out - the weather channel and such made it look pretty dire. rain 'scheduled' in all three cities. great. (houston has a roof so no matter what i will see the game there rain or no rain.)

i left early - 3:30 am - this morning pacific time and, after a border crossing that can only be described as a formality, i rolled into seatac around 7:00 am and was away promptly at 8:25 am. i realized yesterday that i was going to get into philadelphia and to the hotel by around 5 pm so i could, if i wanted, go to the game tonight. hell yes i did. (i ran into a couple outside the hotel, while i was waiting for a taxi, who were also going to the game so we shared a cab to and from. nice couple. from new mexico. he works for southwest airlines, so they get free flights and go around watching baseball. he has three parks to go, like i do, to complete the cycle of parks.
tonight i got to check off one more. citizens bank park - check. and tomorrow i will go to the 'nooner' and then try and find the best cheesesteak in philly.
the game was a bit of a sleeper into the fifth but just when you thought it was going to extra innings ties at two...a three run home run by the cubs sent the faithful phillie fans heading to the exits. it was awesome. i had this feeling that something was about to happen, and it did.
maybe tomorrow the home team can make some news.

i'm sleepy.

g. xx

Monday, August 05, 2013

bend-a-roo, portland, elsewhere....along the way.

well, we have been moving making our way in a big circle. from seaside we made our way down the coast as far as florence and then headed inland to eugene. ailsa and i had been to eugene together approx. 20 years ago, maybe a little less, so this was our second 'official' trip there together. (the last time was on a roadtrip to san francisco that went horribly they do sometimes.)
we had a very nice meal in eugene, stayed over and spent good portion of the morning at the farmer's market before heading to bend to see what we'd see in bend.
what we did find in bend was pretty good beer - kinda what the town is known for - a river that everyone and their dog floats down on tubes, a big car show and high temperatures. we had picked up some cheese, tomatoes and bread in eugene so had a 'poorboy' lunch on the grass by the river, watched folks in the tubes arrive at then end of the run, looked at some cars and had a little relaxo. nice.
in the evening we headed to portland...arrived late, ate at la bonita - home of the never disappointing mexican food, and stayed at the lovely aladdin inn just slightly out of town.
we had a very good day in portland - i probably did more in portland yesterday than i have done in the past three drop-ins there. had breakfast at fuller's - a counter style diner that has been there since the 40's i believe - walked around the pearl district and downtown area for a around four hours, went to schoolhouse electric and 23rd street, and then to dinner at pok-pok (a place recommended to us by friends of ailsa's...and rarely do places that have a: been featured on TV and b: recommended by pals that say they're 'great' ever measure up to the billing but pok-pok was awesome...)
after dinner we drove up the 5 to just short of olympia (tumwater) and will now head up to seattle, after a coffee at cafe vita, have some lunch and head home and, hopefully, avoid the huge line-up of longweekenders like ourselves heading back to canada.

g. xo