Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A Visit With Santa

Merry Christmas from Sean, Patrick and Brian

This photo was taken at Oakridge Centre in Vancouver in 1969.
I was 8, Sean was 6 and Patrick was 2.
Nice one of Patrick, eh?

Friday, December 16, 2005

Friday Fun Frolic

I belong to an informal masters club at the YWCA that was started by Donald F. We have pretty serious swim workouts and are very focused on proper technique of all four strokes. We swim Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6:00 am until 7:30.
Donalds program is a true “Masters” swim club program and we use the same drills and practices that they use at the University level clubs.
Donald is an Engineer as well and sends us articles from the book Swimming Fastest.
These wildly technical articles discuss things such as whether swimming propulsion is a result of the Bernoulli Principle or whether it is Newton’s Third Law of Motion. Any thoughts from my Engineer readers?
I think even Joe Lee would be impressed. However technically Joe’s stroke is pretty bad according to the textbooks and he isn’t a pretty swimmer, but he’s faster than anybody so he doesn’t need any technical help.

Today was our swim group’s fun swim and breakfast.
In the past we have gone to Griffons at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, but Chris is boycotting it because of a cold poached egg experience. So today we went to the Hotel Soleil.
From left to right:
Maureen, Jules, Shiuman, John, me, Sarah, Ota, Donald, Chris, Lee-Lynn.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Trouble Making

I’m not talking about practical jokes. They are a waste of time, and people can get carried away. They can also cause aggravation and feelings can get hurt. And I’m also not talking about causing trouble that will cost the company money. I’m talking about a little mischief making to get the blood flowing in some individuals who I consider to be a little inactive. I want my people awake and lively. I like to see people scrambling about because of something I have done. It gives me a sense of accomplishment.

There is active trouble making and passive trouble making. The real pros know how to do it passively. That way you put in the least effort and get the maximum results.

We have a group of four troublemakers in the office and we each take turns.
Here are some basic attempts of troublemaking you can try on your own.

Ignacio is somewhat primitive and his attempts involve sprinkling hole punch confetti. This is an example of “active” trouble making.

Gerardo’s clever use of “Sametime” can drive a target to distraction. He waits until his mark is involved in an important conversation with the boss at the target’s desk. Then Gerardo Sametime’s his victim so the icon starts flashing on the computer. The victim is distracted by the flashing, but doesn’t want to be rude to the boss by answering it. The boss wonders why the victim doesn’t answer the Sametime since it is obviously from someone in the company. I find this passive troublemaking elegant and easy.

Here are some basic guidelines to help you with your troublemaking:
The easiest group to make trouble for are the people who are really serious.
The key is to always blame somebody else and make sure that person is plausibile. He or she should be in the wrong spot at the wrong time so they can be blamed wrongly.
You, the troublemaker, must look like you are doing something productive when you are causing trouble. Carry a pen and paper and start writing when the trouble starts happening. That way people will assume you are taking notes about something and also assume you are far too busy to be causing any trouble.
Try to spread the trouble around so that a bunch of people get blamed for something they didn’t do.

Here is an example of active trouble making by Vijay. Mike left a relatively clean desk when he went away on a business trip. He'll be very active when he gets back.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Plant Progress Update

Safety Motto: Safe Plants go to Heaven

Marketing: The plant naming sub-contractor has finally performed! The plant will be called “Robert Plant”. However no singing, humming or whistling will be allowed at site until our client CEO’s wife recovers from her bad hair style.

Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – Is there any budget left?
Structural – I blew my entire budget on coffee and steel.
Architecture – I’m wearing my Star Trek outfit to the opening ceremony.
Process – It’s done already, when’s the party?
Mechanical Services – The money has gone hence the project must be over.
PD-Piping – The bugs ate a piece of my budget.
Mechanical Eng. – The plant had some bugs but we sorted that out in the end.
Material Handling – I don’t wanna let go, the plant is like a part of me.
Electrical Eng. – I’ll have what the plant is having.
Instrumentation Eng – Why do I always have to finish last? Next time I’m going to be project controls.
Accounting – The plant financials balance everyone should make merry.

Chai Latte

Is my coffee/ chai latte drinking habit as expensive as being a smoker? If I stop going to Starbucks what will I do with all that loose money? $155 per month translates to $1,900 per year. If I stop going for two years then I could afford to buy a really nice Aquarium.

This is my first run at a forecast and I’m simply using a fixed forecast method. Next month when I have better data I may go to a rolling forecast model.

I suspect that there is an inverse correlation between work and Starbucks consumption. The less pressure at work the more time I have to drink coffee/chai. And the pressure is definitely decreasing as the Cerro Verde project Engineering is nearing completion.
I may discover some interesting trends in this study.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


I grew up in Kemano, British Columbia. Kemano was an Alcan Aluminum company town in Northern British Columbia created to house workers at the Kemano Hydroelectric Generating Station. Kemano was accessible only by boat, helicopter, or seaplane. I lived there until I was 5 and then we moved to Tsawwassen.
Patrick just sent me this picture of the Kemano 1962 Bowling Champions with my Dad 2nd in from the right at the top.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Tri Buddha Club

Several of my close Ironman Triathlete friends belong to an ultra elite club called the TriBuddha Multi-Sport Benevolent Society. The club's motto is "Where's the Fried Chicken? " I desperately want to be in this club because well, I don't really know why, but they won't let me in!
The idea of this club is to remind us that we should not be obsessive about Ironman and drop to low body fat percentages in order to participate in our races. We are supposed to be doing these races for fun, not to win our age groups. In order to be in the club members must promise never to diet. In fact members are often called upon to make pigs of themselves at the social events. It's a social group and they often go out to restaurants for meals, or have dinners at someones house.
Unfortunately I have been known to go on the Atkins diet and I often get carried away with the fad of the moment in order to drop weight or build muscle. So I have a bad reputation which stops me from even being put on the applicants list.
Doesn't help that I'm dating a vegetarian either. Tri Buddhas consider vegetarianism an eating disorder.

Anyway, I am back on a diet and I guess I don't deserve to be in the club. I'm doing pretty good at it actually. I'm drinking protein drinks about four times a day and really trying to increase protein. I do have a problem with my Starbucks Chai Lattes but I'm not willing to give those up even though it irks me paying $4.50 for one of those drinks.

My body fat is down to 14.5% and I'm hoping to get down to 12% someday.
Here is my latest chart which highlights my obsessive dieting characteristic.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Google Image MeMe

I was tagged by Celena and she says it is geeky cool, and since I desperately want to be geeky cool here are my images.

Google Image MeMe
The assignment is to find and post an image from the first Google Image page for each of the following 7 queries:

1. The name of the town where you were born:

2. The name of the town where you live now:

3. Your name:

4. Your grandmother's name (pick one):

5. Your favourite food:

6. Your favourite drink:

7. Your favourite smell:

And then tag three people: I tag R.G. , Callie, and Daisy

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Liver Spot

This is my favourite dalmatian Plum, also known as Pelham Grenville Wodehouse. I found Plum in the Delta SPCA when she was just a puppy. Plum is deaf and was put in the SPCA by the breeders. She is now fourteen years old and has slowed down considerably but still looks fantastic. I don't think she likes being picked up like a baby anymore. I will make sure that I visit Plum a lot more than I have.

Sunday, November 20, 2005


Goodbye Whistler, I miss you and Plum misses you.
He had a great life living in Tsawwassen right next to the beach.
His favourite walk was to the Spetifore fields where he could chase the rabbits and jump through the high grass. He also loved going for runs in Centennial Park especially when I let him off the leash. And he loved the beach and chasing sticks although he would never bring them back to me.
He was a big purebred dalmatian weighing 85 pounds and he was very athletic. He trained for marathons and ultra distance trail races and could outlast professional triathletes. He got to play on the Oregon coast, tour San Francisco, explore the B.C. mountains. I'll always remember him.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Steak House

Earl's is following a trend and opening up a Steak House in Vancouver. We've always had Hy's but now we have Gotham and Mortons, and now Earl's Steakhouse. The new steak houses are interesting because they serve American style corn fed beef. Hy's serves Alberta grass fed beef which in my opinion is much better tasting, although it is a little tougher.
American corn fed beef is higher in fat and calories and is really easy to cut with a knife.
Alberta beef is much better for you. Alberta beef is higher in beta carotene, vitamin E, and most importantly Omega 3 Fatty Acids.
Omega 3's are commonly found in seafood, but they're also found in pasture (grass) fed animals. Omega 3 fatty acids are formed in the chloroplasts of green leaves and algae and grass.
Omega 3 fatty acids are crucial to human health.
Two of the more important fatty acids are DHA and EPA - they prevent heart disease and cancer.
Another good fat in grass fed ruminants are conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)which as any body builder knows increases lean muscle and decreases body fat.
My point is if you are going to order a steak make sure it is Alberta beef and not feedlot corn fed American beef.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Hey, it's the hundredth post already!
Too bad the only material I can come up with is my weight training plan. But this is something I'm really excited about now.

Here's the Monday workout:
Incline Barbell Press
115 lbs x 10 reps
115 lbs x 10 reps
115 lbs x 10 reps

Flat Bench Dumbbell flys
25 lbs x 10 reps
25 lbs x 10 reps

Incline Dumbbell flys
20 lbs x 10 reps
20 lbs x 10 reps

Seated Cable Row
125 lbs x 8 reps
125 lbs x 8 reps
125 lbs x 8 reps

Wide Grip Front Pulldown
115 lbs x 10 reps
115 lbs x 10 reps

Lower Back Hyperextension
Hanging Leg Raises
Hanging Knee Tuck
Incline Sit Ups
15 x 2 sets
Side Crunches
15 x 2 sets

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Janet's Workout for the Dolphins

Joe did this workout on Tuesday. Well, I think he did it, maybe he just got it emailed to him and he stayed in bed.

November 8, 2005

Warm up:

200 as 150 smooth free @ 2:30/2:45/3:00… + 2 x 25 GO! @ :30/:35/:40…

2 x 100 as 50 single arm free + 50 wrist drag @ 1:50/2:00/2:10…

400 as 300 smooth free @ 5:00/5:30/6:00… + 2 x 50 GO! @ :60/:70/:75…

2 x 150 as 100 swim + 50 kick @ 2:45/3:00/3:15…

600 as 450 smooth free @ 7:30/8:15/9:00… + 2 x 75 GO! @ 1:30/1:45/2:00…


3 x 200 @ :20 sec rest
1 – 100 easy + 50 back + 50 easy free
2 – 100 moderate + 50 brst + 50 easy free
2x 3 – 100 fast (get time) + 50 choice + 50 easy free
4 x 100 free @ 1:45/1:55/2:05…
desc 1-4 **start at time from #3 100 above

Pull set:
100 – 50 easy/50 moderate – br 5/3 by 50

200 – 100 moderate/100 strong – br 7/3/5/3 by 50

300 – 100 strong/50 fast rating ) x 2 – br 2/3 or 2/5 by stroke

Swim down:
8 x 50
alternating 1 free @ :60/:65/:70 1 no free @ :70/:75/:80…

total = 4700m

Ladies Gym

Yeah, I belong to a ladies gym - the YWCA downtown. Technically it is a co-ed gym, but the weight machines aren't exactly like you would find in Gold's.
This YWCA has a pretty nice pool and is located right across the street from my office. My Y friends keep me motivated and don't let me cheat on the weights. I don't like doing "core" work, but John convinced me and Kiven to add in some abdominal work every workout. I think it's pretty effective but I fall off the ball alot.

Monday, November 07, 2005

A Hard Swim Workout

Yes, many of my friends happen to be very good swimmers so a 1900m workout just doesn't do it for them.
I know Joe likes his hundred hundreds (10,000 m). But how about this one that Gordo made up training for Ultraman?

(15x) 200IM, 400 paddles and pull buoys, 200 free, 100 buoys, 100 choice

15,000 Metres baby!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

I Miss Coaching

I got burned out from coaching swimming, being bike director and coaching cycling on top of training for Ironman and working full time. So I asked the wonderful Martina to take over my swim coaching duties and she graciously accepted. And I have passed off my bike director position to Gerry Dortch and decided not to coach cycling next year. Now I don't know what to do with myself. I'm watching way too much Television! I'm going to ask Joe if I can substitute at the Y for him again. That's the most fun I've ever had coaching - and they appreciate what I'm doing.
I still don't want to swim until my bronchitis is gone, but I'll happily watch from the deck.
Here's a swim practice:

100 free
100 back or breast or single arm fly(no fins)
200 free done as 50 scull/50 easy **focus on keeping arms loose on top of the water**
200 free done as 25 right arm/25 left arm/50 easy

Main Set 16 X 50
# 1 - # 4 Pull Desc. 1 - 4 on 15 sec rest
# 5 - # 8 Swim Desc. 1 - 4 on 15 sec rest
# 9 - # 12 Swim Back or Breast or Fly Desc. 1 - 4 on 15 sec rest
(fins okay)
# 13 - # 16 Free swim alt 25 SPRINT/25 easy on 15 sec rest


**No extra rest except as stated between 200, 100's & 50's**

1 X 200 85% effort Desc. 50's 1 - 4
15 sec rest after 200
1 X 100 85% effort Build speed/effort through 100
10 sec rest between 100's
2 X 50 25 easy/25 SPRINT 5 sec rest
5 sec rest between 50's

Warm Down 100 easy SOCIAL kick with fins (find a partner and chat !!!!)

1900 Metres total workout.

Friday, November 04, 2005


Let me just clarify that I am not a hypochondriac. I just happen to have a well stocked medicine cabinet at work.
Items in my personal work pharmacy include: Apo-Sulfatrim DS Antibiotics, Neo Citran, Sucrets, Delsym Cough Suppressant, Visine, Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Creatine, Whey Protein, Acidophilus Pills, Lactase Enzymes, Psyllium Husks, and Salmon and Fish Oil Pills. On the natriopathic side I have Ginger Honey Tonic and Raspberry Lemongrass Herbal Infusion Tea.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


This is Whistler, who is now 12 years old and living with my lovely-ex T. He's a big boy weighing in at 85 pounds, but in amazing shape. He is a purebred Dal, despite being so large. He was three years old when I got him, and he had already been in 5 different homes. When I heard about him, he was living in a locked barn in Ladner. My veterinarian pleaded with me to take him, but I already had two. But how could I say no. Dalmatians have a lot of personality issues and this one was exceptionally naughty. I owned two female dogs Plum and A.J. and they had already established their roles in the house. Whistler surprisingly fit in quite well.
Whistler had joint issues and could not walk very well. With lots of glucosamine and some Corticosteroid his mobility returned and I had him running with me within the year. He has run the equivalent of full marathon, and even did the Diez Vista with me.
I don't see the dals much anymore, but I'm happy to see that they are staying in such great shape.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Feasibility Study for Fresh Water Aquarium

Objective is to have a full fresh water aquarium with minimal maintenance per week.

5 versions of the feasibility study conducted so far.

Version 1: sizing, where to place it, what you need, what is a ROM cost. (Rough Order of Magnitude)
Initial estimate - $2000 - $2500

Version 2: all items bough prefab and bought at various local stores. This detailed estimate came up to $4,500 without any fish or plants or taxes. Since this was twice the ROM

Version 3: Partial Do It Yourself, plus Prefabricated items
Buy tank, CO2 system, Filters, Lights,
Build stand, canopy.
Estimated cost $3,500

Version 4: Nearly everything DIY: Stand, canopy, CO2 system, Filters, Lights
Only buy the tank, and plants.
Livestock not included yet.
Estimated cost : $2,500 for a nicely planted aquarium with no fish.

Version 5: New iteration of version 4
Sourcing stuff different locations and checking the design to make sure the basic engineering is correct and the stand won’t fall apart. Also ensuring scale-ability. If the filters are not scaleable and designed properly, increasing the livestock will put pressure on the bioload. PH crashes, algae blooms big problems.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Candy Dilemma

I was at the drug store last night and I happened to notice the Halloween candy on sale. Thus today is m&m day at Brian’s desk. They come in small bags and they are way more popular than the Tootsie Rolls. Of course there are two types of m&m’s Plain, and Peanut.
Plain come in the brown bag and are smaller so there are more. You get approximately 14 in the brown bag. Peanut come in the yellow bag and you get approximately 5.
Vijay commented that he preferred the Plain kind. I asked why and his response had to do with quantity. The more he gets the longer he can enjoy it. Interestingly he may take as many bags as he wants, so he could take 3 bags of Peanut m&m’s if he wanted. However I suspect he doesn’t because he doesn’t want to appear greedy. So the appearance of quantity for small packets of m&m’s is the main criteria when choosing. They last longer because there are more. And they jingle when you play with them in your hand while they are melting.

Theory: Candy that you don’t like is better than no candy. If people are offered candy and they tell me that they don’t like it eventually I will get pissed off and I won’t put candy out any more. So people will always accept candy if I offer. You will only offer constructive candy criticism because no one wants me to stop giving candy.

Frequent visitors when any candy is out: Antonio, Phil, Jenny, Roger.

I generally put out candy based on my mood. If I’m not in a good mood I put out candy.

List of candy I have put out rated (1 most popular 10 least popular)

1 Gummi Bears
2 Wine Gums
3 Jelly Beans
4 Kraft Caramels
5 m&m’s
6 Dino Sours
7 Ju Jubes
8 Scotch Mints
9 Wrapped Fruit candy
10 Wrapped Spearmint Candy

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

United Way Poster Boy

I am the poster boy for this year. One of my duties as a United Way committee member is to put up the posters and sign up sheets. I started working on the posters last night - it's a lot more work and organization than I thought. We have a fairly big office and our goal is to raise $40,000 next week.
Next week starts off with a breakfast and talk from the Vancouver Fire Chief. That morning we will be face painting the various managers and having pictures taken with them. And we give out United Way Pledge packages.
Tuesday we auction off pumpkins that will be used in the Thursday Pumkin carving contest.
Wednesday is tie cutting day.
Thursday is the busy day: indoor golf tournament, pumkin carving contest, karaoke, anything goes scooter races, and the wrap up party.
Busy week next week.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Mr. Popular

I have figured out a way to be well liked at work. It has nothing to do with my personality, or my work ethic, or my attire. On Fridays I bring in candy and put it in a bowl on my desk. Today is Tootsie Roll day. I've already had visits from Phil and Roger N. and it's not even 10:00 am. See it works.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Dime a Dozen

MBA density: You can't even throw a wad of paper in the air without hitting an MBA in the head on the 7th floor.
There's me, Vijay, Gerardo, Boris, and Brian J.

We get no respect and have absolutely no authority.
As a controlled experiment Vijay just took a flash photo of Dave and then asked him a question but was totally ignored. It's like we are no more than just cubicle partitions that you have to walk around.

Things that happen when you tell someone you have an MBA:
amused grunts
pregnant silence
blank stares (maybe they don't know what it stands for or are thinking "he's not tall enough to be in the MBA")
sarcastic "that's nice"
classic question "oh, so what does that do for you?"

I don't regret getting it; it couldn't really hurt. but there's no short term gain. It's more long term. I don't think it will break even until 10 years down the line.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Table Manners

Will someone please teach Aiden how to eat spaghetti?

Thank you Sean and Patrick!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

A new low

I'm not very proud of it, but it is so low that it is actually funny. It's lower than the 46% final exam in Econ 420 Mathematical Economics. It's lower than the 42% midterm in Chem 315 Organic Chem. It's even lower than 33% on the Calculus 201 Midterm I wrote while drunk.
What is the new low? It is my latest Intro to Spanish spelling test based on words learned in the book Silvestre y la Piedrecita Magica. We are supposed to memorize a set of words the teacher highlights. She tests us by reading out words in English and we are supposed to spell them in Spanish. Latest test: 1 out of 19 correct. That is a staggering 5% and I don't think I can get any lower than that.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Plant Progress Sept. 16

Plant Progress
Status Date: 16th Sep 2005.

Project Controls: The naming of the plant has been sub-contracted to a local naming company….thus far the quality of names have been an issue…. if required we will poke the sub-contractor with a sharp stick to get some action.

Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – The 100% Dead Bug Estimate showed that we are behind schedule ….the plant doesn’t have enough leaves.
Structural – We should check the plant Guru on FOL (Foliage Online).
Architecture – I will talk tenderly to the plant and ask it to grow more leaves.
Process – The soil is too wet; I believe the plant is being over-watered.
Mechanical Services – Who can we blame?
PD-Piping – Investigating claims on over-watering of the plant - will disclose the results soon.
Mechanical Eng. – Why doesn’t the plant pot have a saucer?
Material Handling – I need to work overtime this week because my spouse scratched my Jetta.
Electrical Eng. – My foot hurts.
Instrumentation Eng – The 100% Dead Bug Estimate makes an excellent footrest.
Accounting - Aieee!!…We’re over budget …we may have to employ Enron accounting principles.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Billable Chicken Hours

Antonio asked me to look in the Site Contract to see if Chickens are chargeable to the owner. Wow, that's a new one. I wonder how much a chicken makes an hour and what the multiplier is. They're probably working in the Project Controls department.
I asked him if the chickens were ex-patriates or if they were South American chickens because we make a lot more money with the ex-pats. He told me that the chickens were not actually going to be working on site. Construction Manager Rick thought it would be a nice idea to give a hundred chickens away to the local villagers as presents. I can just see Rick driving his inconspicuous Ford Expedition filled with live chickens and handing them out to Peruvian villagers. I don't argue with Rick anymore. Anyway, I think they are billable to the client.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Yeast Infection

“Yeast infection? You’re kidding me!!”
“No, I’m serious” replied the Pharmacist at Shoppers Drug Mart.
“Well I don’t want a Yeast Infection!”

It started when some of my medical friends pushed me hard to see a specialist about my pneumonia. I am still unable to run because of my chest congestion and have given up any hope of a marathon this winter. I think my friends just want me to get “scoped”, but I’m not afraid of that and I went to see the Doctor at the walk in clinic. The Doctor put me on yet another course of antibiotics, plus Advair, which is a corticosteroid plus a bronchodilator. If this doesn’t clear it up then I go for X-rays next week and then maybe be referred to a Pulmonologist/Respirologist.
Back to the Yeast Infection. One of the side affects of Advair is: Yeast Infection!
I can’t wait to go back to the pharmacy and buy some Monistat.
"Is that for your girlfriend?"
"Uh, no, it’s for me."

Sunday, September 18, 2005


Just some random thoughts on the guys I work with. These observations may not be representative of all engineers. Just some empirical data collected over the last year.

Engineers can't count. I'm sure that they can integrate and differentiate, but I know they can't count. Maybe it's too mundane for them, or maybe there is no ISO standard for counting so they each make up their own system. Example: tell them that they have an extra work item and they have 40 more hours to update 4 drawings but they need to tell me the hour breakdown for each drawing. When I add up the hours they allocated to each of the 4 drawings it is 60 hours. Ugh. 40 is not 60. Please try to add those numbers up again.

Engineers are messy. I thought they learned discipline and structure at university but they remind me of racoons living under a house. Their desks are stacked with piles of paper from 6 months ago. And under their desk is backup from projects 5 years ago that they "might need to reference". Just junk it!

Engineers have no fashion sense. I'm sure everybody knows this and there is no need to dwell on it. The odd thing is the Structural department and their pink shirts. Why? It may be a downtown Vancouver thing.

Engineers and Personal Hygiene: is hair combing not required? It's like a bunch of Einsteins running around.

Engineers Thought Process: Ask an Engineer a question about A and you will get an answer about X, which leads into Y and then goes all the way out to Z.
You will never get a direct clear answer about your question.

Engineers and Humour. I'll give them that. They can be very witty.

Engineers are pack animals (when they are not staring at their P.C.'s). They reside in little groups; you don't see M.B.A's or Accountants moving in packs. Other natural science types such as Physisists and Mathematicians are pack animals too. This behaviour formed during their University years.

Engineers don't like plants. Look at their desks: piles of papers, pictures of their spouses and kids, but no plants.

In this office there are only young and old Engineers. I see very few middle level Engineers. There is no doubt that the young ones will mature into old ones.

The old Engineers have expensive hobbies like boats, or collecting antique cameras. The young Engineers like outdoor activities like Mountain Biking.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Plant Progress
Status Date: 27th May 2005.

Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – Bamboo trellis design …yaaay!
Structural – Morale is high, and my wife is happy.
Architecture – The design is a winner.
Process – I’m not a vegetarian, but plants need Miracle grow.
Mechanical Services – May the force be with you!
PD-Piping – IFA for watering personnel – on hold for schedule.
Mechanical Eng. – Broke one was a mistake.
Material Handling – Mech. Eng broke the vine, it was just a wee little baby, and we mourn the loss.
Electrical Eng. – Lighting a tad much, what is the RAS for the Miracle grow.
Instrumentation Eng – Camera for bi-weekly progress sorted.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Marshmallow Gun

Sean built a Marshmallow gun out of PVC pipe.
Here are the plans

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Plant Project - Subcontracting Out

We can't think of an appropriate name for the Plant, so I have to Subcontract out that part of the project. Please send in suggested names through the comments field.
The only conditions are no obscenities, no really long names but short hyphenated names such as bing-bing are OK. Callie has already suggested Kermit.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Sean's Baby Project

Baby Progress
Status Date: 7th September 2005.

Historical Enlightenment:
Clients decided house was still too large and not chaotic enough.
Baby Project was awarded.

Project Status:
Preliminary design and contruction completed.
(1) Boy, 7 lbs 13 oz ( 3553 grams )
Final designation awaiting committee approval.

20 year phase of growth and developement initiating ( 18 years minimum,
25 maximum )

Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – Your DNA, my DNA, mix well and it'll sort itself out
Structural – Bassinet & crib reused from previous project (2000)
Architecture – Current with standard human design features. 10 fingers, 10 toes, 2 ears, etc... influences of styling from 1963 and 1964 models
Process – If you don't know by now...
PD-Piping – fueling systems by Mom
Environmental - waste systems by Dad
Material Handling – diapers by Pampers
Electrical Eng. – Night lights by Winnie the Pooh

Golden Retreiver

I attempted to rescue Bogey last year from a divorce situation when I heard a rumour that the woman was going to put the dog down out of spite. (an unfounded rumour I later found out). Of course I was just separated and fairly unsettled and living in an apartment that does not allow animals. It turns out that I had met the husband years ago at a pub night event in Vancouver and he remembered me and asked me to take the dog. I wanted to take him, but I couldn't. Fortunately my friend Cindy really wanted a dog, but had never owned one before and was very skeptical that she could take care of a big dog. Once I introduced Cindy to the lovable Bogey it was a done deal. They are best friends and she walks him for two hours almost every night. I went to the beach with them and threw the played ball with Bogey for at least an hour. Sometimes Bogey gets carried away and will swim out into the boat lanes, in which case Cindy will shriek until some kindly gentleman swims out to retreive the retreiver.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Plant Progress - the Beginning

Plant Progress
Status Date: 13th May 2005.

Historical Enlightenment:
Client decided his office space was too gray.
Plant Project was awarded.

Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – A plant with lots of vines would be cool, we’ll design something.
Structural – Guess we need something steady to put in on.
Architecture – No problem I’ll help make it stylish.
Process – Got milk?
Mechanical Services – Who’s in charge here, anyway?
PD-Piping – It will need water, we will deliver.
Mechanical Eng. – If you have a free shelf then I’m not going to do anything.
Material Handling – Tell me how heavy it is and I’ll tell you who to call to carry it.
Electrical Eng. – Yah, you’ll need light and lots of it. I’m on it.
Instrumentation Eng – What’s my budget?

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Summer Romp

I never thought I would run into her there. After all I went up to the Ironman race in Penticton to watch my girlfriend Michelle race. I haven't seen her since our Starbucks encounter last May. I spent a lot of time with her in the summer of 2004 going for walks, playing ball, and hanging out at the park.
I really haven't told Michelle anything about her and I thought it was over, but, well, we had a little romp in Penticton last week.
Who am I fooling, I knew I would see her again. And I'm glad I had one more romp with her. She's getting pretty arthritic in her old age and the vet says she is eight pounds overweight. She is eleven. Good old Kirby.

Underpants Run

Triathlon Coach/ Ex-Professional racer Roch Frey organizes the Underpants Run at Ironman Canada every year. Why run in underpants?
The idea of this race is to make fun of the Ironman athletes who like to parade around town in their Speedos and think they actually look good.
My friend who I now refer to as "lacey" because of her sexy underwear ran in the race, but I don't think she'll appreciate if I post her picture.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Sister Madonna Buder

She heard a priest comment that running harmonizes the body, mind and soul so she took up jogging at 48 using her tennis shoes. She competed in her first triathlon at 51. I think she's 74 now and still racing. She holds two age group records for Ironman Hawaii and three for Ironman Canada. She competes in two Ironman events a year. "I can only do what God gives me the strength to do," she reasons. "Not to use a gift that God has given you is an insult to your creator. We are meant to use the gifts that we are given for His greater honor and glory." She's always on guard against negative thoughts.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

B.C.B.R. Lesson 3

Emergency Procedures

It’s just a matter of when so you should prepare for it.
In the event of an accident move the injured rider off the road if it is safe to do so. Keep in mind that the bike path/sidewalk isn’t the safest place because there may be other riders coming along who don’t see you. The safest place is on the grass.
Use a cell phone to call for an ambulance or send a rider to get help. All bike/car accidents are reportable to police so write down the license number. Make a note of specific medical needs or conditions and notify the coach before the clinic.

Flat tires
Ask your local Bicycle store to put on a tire changing and maintenance clinic for your riders. The store will probably do it for free because of the goodwill it builds. I will change their tires for the first couple of rides because I want to keep the riders coming out and don’t want them to get frustrated taking 30 minutes changing a tire. I don’t want the riders to get cold waiting around while the flat is changed. I will appoint someone to continue riding with the rest of the group and advise them that the flat tire rider and I will catch up to them. It takes me about 5 minutes to change a flat. A common mistake most newbies make is not pumping up the new tire to 100 psi. Most small pumps will not reach 100 psi. so I prefer to use a Zefal full frame pump (which I probably should return to Cindy R. at some point.) The rule is that the coach gets a case of beer for every flat tire changed. Tell the riders to pump up their tires to 100 psi before every ride. Low tire pressure causes “pinch flats” when riding over sharp rocks. But you won’t get pinch flats if your tires are pumped up to 100. If you are unfortunate enough to live in an area where tossing beer bottles on the road is common, then advise the riders to purchase and install Tuffy Liners. They add a little weight, but at least you’re not going to get as many flats.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

B.C.B.R. Lesson 2

If you have taken your beginner group out for a ride you may have noticed some "dodgy" riders. These are riders that are unsure of themselves and are unpredictable. They probably don't know how to brake or corner effectively and this makes them uncomfortable being close to other riders. Braking Lessons are the first priority.
Explain leverage and why brake levers are easier to pull further down the ends of the levers. Show how levers can be used with one finger, or two finger grips. Explain front braking and rear braking characteristics. Using the front brakes will cause the riders body to move forward towards the handle bars. Braking hard on the front brakes only could cause the rider to flip over the bars. Using back brakes can cause the back wheel to lock up which may make the rider lose control.
Practice this drill:
Find a parking lot and have the riders complete a small loop practicing stopping at a point where the coach is standing. Ride the loop and use only the front brakes - try to get them to stop on the point. Have them repeat the exercise. Now have them practice a couple of times using only their back brakes.
Now have them practice a couple of times using both brakes.
Get them to go faster and practice "panic stops" using both brakes.

Group Riding.
You need to get the riders used to riding in a group and in a pace line. Why? (and you will get asked that question) The answer is because it is SAFER for the group because cars will notice a group of riders but they may not notice a single rider. Also it is more SOCIAL, and you will get a BETTER WORKOUT learning how to ride in a paceline. To ride in a group they must be able to ride straight and smooth and be predictable. Sudden braking is not allowed. The riding position is head up, relaxed arms and NO AERO BARS. Use the hand and voice signals you learned last lesson.
To get comfortable riding they can practice in small groups. First have them ride in pairs for 5 minutes, then get them to ride in fours for 5 minutes. Then ride with a larger group for 10 minutes.
Find a quiet road and get them to ride in a straight line. Let them have about a bike length between them which is lots of room for nervous riders. Then get them to ride up closer about 3 feet behind the rider in front. Simulate starting, braking and stopping, intersections and obstacles. Remember to move off the road when stopping. Also reinforce that they must start at a slow speed and gradually increase their speed so that the last rider of the group will not have to sprint to catch up with the group.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

what is luck

I was corresponding with my friend RG yesterday discussing her terrible run of luck with men and with accidents caused through no fault of her own. It's one thing after another with her, fortunately she has a good attitude, and a great dog.
I, on the other hand, have been blessed with too much luck. I can't pull out the luck when I want to because that's not how it works, but it's there nonetheless. Latest good luck story - today my Spanish Test was cancelled because the teacher got back from her Vacation too late last night and was too tired to get here by 7:00 am. Whew! I was going to fail that one for sure! Think I'll work on the Spanish tonight - can't rely on that kind of luck twice in one week.

There is a Dragon in my Sleeping Bag

Yikes. I have a Spanish Test at 7:00 am on the story book "Hay Un Dragon En Mi Bolsa De Dormir." That's one hour from now and I'm still at home cramming for it. Hope I don't fail this one.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Happy Arequipa Day!

It's a city holiday in Arequipa, Peru. Nobody is in the office or on the jobsite.
Those lucky Peruvians - and they just celebrated Independence Day two weeks ago.
When is Vancouver Day?

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Unlucky Bike Socks

I own 19 pair of cycling socks. Ladybugs are my oldest and most sentimental pair. But I think it's time to get rid of them because they seem to be unlucky. I got them as a birthday present in 1999 and wore them in Ironman Canada that year. Jeff Spence was a bike official and he gave me a five minute penalty for "Ladybug Socks". In 2002 I was wearing the Ladybugs when I misread the double set of railway tracks I was attempting to hop over and crashed one month before Ironman. That crash caused a big haematoma and calcification problems that I continue to deal with, not to mention creating the big hole in one of the socks.
Yesterday I was wearing Ladybugs for my five hour ride with Michelle. Unfortunately the ride was cut short when she rode into me causing us both to go down. Of course most people always fall to their right as we both did, fortunately no damage to the drive train on either of our bikes. Didn't seem to be a major accident as we were going pretty slowly, but you never can tell. Michelle is very concerned about tissue damage which will likely show up today. With three weeks to her race I think she has time to heal.
They are six years old, been through two bike crashes and a five minute penalty - time to make some room in my bike sock drawer. Goodbye Ladybugs.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Bike Coaching Beginner Riders

This is the first in my series of bike coaching lessons aimed at beginner cyclists and triathletes. You don’t have to be a coach - if you are a beginner rider you will probably learn a few good practice drills which will make you a more confident rider.
If you do want to start up a triathlon club and be a cycling coach be warned that you will have your hands full. This type of coaching is not particularly easy and it’s fraught with liability issues. Further, you are dealing with adults and you will have to scold them for being “unsafe” and they are not going to like that. And since they probably aren’t in the best shape it’s not going to be much of a workout for you. But somebody has to coach the beginners and they really appreciate it. Someone in our triathlon club, likely Stuart L. or Les P. put together a phenomenal training manual to help me when I became Bike Director and I'm using this manual to put together this coaching series.

These lessons will be broken down as follows:
1 Basic Riding Skills
2 Bike Safety Check
3 Bike Handling and Braking
4 Emergency Procedures
5 Group Riding Skills
6 Gears
7 Pace Line
8 Cornering
9 Aero Bars
10 Hills
11 Acceleration
12 Reverse Pace Line
13 Intervals
14 Bricks
15 Time Trial
16 Distance

Lesson 1 – Basic Riding Skills
Practice in a vacant parking lot, or a grass field if they are afraid of falling over.
Most road bikes have pedal clips but the beginners will not be used to them. Practice mounting the bike and clipping in and out of the pedals. Ride around the lot and practice stopping and unclipping. Most riders will fall over once getting used to clip in pedals.
Don’t take them into traffic until they are comfortable with pedal clips.

Lesson 2 – Bike Safety
Examine each persons bike and look for the obvious worn tires, worn brakes, rusty chain, worn out gears.

Demonstrate and practice hand signals. At the Vancouver based Pacific Spirit Triathlon Club we use these signals but I'm sure they are not North American “standardized” signals.
The idea is to warn the person behind you of upcoming events.
The signals I use are:
Right turn – point right with your right hand, or use your left hand out and bent up at the elbow and say “right turn” outloud.
Left turn – point left with your left hand and say “left turn” outloud.
Slowing – put your hand down by your side so the person behind you can see it and say “slowing”
Stopping – same thing as slowing, but yell “stopping”
Crossing at an intersection – person in front yells “clear” or “car left” or “car right”
Glass or Debris on road – point at the material and say “glass” or “stick” or “skunk” or whatever you want to avoid.
Obstacles – point at the obstacle and say “hole” or “water
A JUST Parked car (and you know the driver is going to open the door when you get to it) – say “car door” and point at the car in question.
Railway tracks – signal is two fingers like a peace sign behind your back and say “tracks”
Car behind you that’s going to pass – say “car back”. The person at the back of the group says this, and then the other riders keep repeating until the person at the front of the group is aware.
Pedestrian, or runner. – say “runner up” or “walker up”
There are more - I won’t teach you “ignoring” which is one that Constable S. taught me for running stop signs because I don’t want you doing that.

Go out for a ride with the group with the riders behind one another. Let them have lots of space since they won’t be comfortable riding closely together. Practice shoulder checking. When approaching a stop sign, get into an easier gear, slow down, practice saying “stopping”. Person at the front yells “clear” if it’s safe to go and the group progresses. Practice your hand and voice signals.

More next week.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Day at the beach

I went out to the lovely-ex's house to take my dogs Plum and Whistler for a walk on the beach. It was low tide and in Boundary Bay that means the tide goes out for 2 kilometres. We walked the 2 km. out to the Cairn that indicates the US/Canada border. The dogs like to eat anything they can find especially dead crabs. Mmmm seafood. They like to chase after the Herons too, but don't worry, they would never be able to catch one.
Plum is the older Dalmatian and she was feeling a little arthritic after the big walk so T. gave her an aspirin. Plum is a pretty good swimmer, but Whistler has never mastered that sport.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Plant Update

Plant Progress
Status Date: 29th July 2005.
Approved Change Order: The plant needs a spiffy name in order to give it a sense of well-being, boost its morale and generally enhance its greenness and leaf-ivity. A team will be assigned to develop and test a suitable name.
Statements by Discipline:
Civil & Design Eng. – A new shelf has been located on the opposite side of the desk space – this will be the new plant location – the last location was too hot due to the heat generated from the computer monitor.
Structural – The new shelf is structurally sound, we tested it by sitting on it.
Architecture – The plant pot needs shining.
Process – The relocation of the plant to the new shelf went without a hitch, the plant is now expected to live longer - one bystander impressed by the operation quoted Shakespeare “O excellent! I love long life better than figs”
Mechanical Services – Miracle grow was applied to the plant after the move.
PD-Piping – A miracle grow supply has been established for the next three weeks
Mechanical Eng. – Routine pruning and trimming was performed.
Material Handling – Waste material resulting form the pruning was disposed without fanfare.
Electrical Eng. – Lighting is okay on that side of the desk.
Instrumentation Eng – I think we should call the plant – “Vinny”
Accounting – We should have a plant naming fund raiser.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Velocity Diet Day 2

So hungry…
The Atkins diet is a high protein, carbohydrate restrictive diet that is designed to encourage the body to burn fat. Unfortunately this diet may cause muscles to be compromised as well so I need to pick up my weight training which pretty much stopped since the gym shunning. I have only been back to the Y twice since getting sick and I better pick it up or else the weight loss will not translate into a better body fat percentage. The goal for this exercise is to get my body fat down to 12 percent from about 16 and to get my weight down to about 190 lbs. I still have aspirations of doing a Marathon this fall and dropping some weight would help my training immensely. Yes I am rationalizing the weight loss but running at 205 lbs on concrete is hard on the joints.

I’m on a variant of Atkins called the Velocity Diet. In case you don’t know what the Velocity Diet is, it is high protein but the ONLY calories consumed are in the form of Protein Drink Mix.
Why bother when Atkins is just as effective? First – it’s easy. No thought involved, just 250 ml of water and two scoops of Vanilla Ice Cream Royale drink mix in water. Mmmmm.
I just picked up some Berry Blast Off from GNC at lunch to spice things up a bit.
When I am on a regular Atkins diet there is a big tendency to cheat and I don’t have a lot of willpower. Since I am going to cheat at some point I will make the best use of my willpower and go on the most difficult diet there is and get as many gains as I can in the two weeks that I can stick with it. I am down to 200 lbs from 205 so it’s a pretty good start.
And I’m not grouchy yet! At least nobody is complaining about me. But I don’t think I can last a third day on Protein Powder only and may go nuts and have some celery tomorrow.
I also add Fish oil pills, vitamins, ground flax seed, and Metamucil pills into this diet.
Ahhhh. They just put PIZZA in the kitchen at the office! Berry Blast Off just isn't doing it for me.

I am such a hypocrite because I was derisive in my comments of Sandy S. this weekend. She is my Ironman training buddy who has lost a LOT of weight in her attempt to qualify for Ironman Hawaii. I haven’t seen Sandy for about a month and she has lost ten pounds since then. I wish her luck in her race, but I don’t like seeing her that small.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Velocity Diet

I start Monday! The plan is to be a "shredded" 190 lbs by August 28 which is Ironman Canada. I'm not racing, but I'm not going up there looking like I haven't trained all summer (I haven't trained because of the hamstring pull and pneumonia).
Before and after pictures will be posted.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Recycling Old Practices

This is one of my typical bike workouts. I think it might be interesting to post some article on how to be a bike coach. It's not going to be aimed at Tour riders but rather at beginner recreational riders and triathlete wannabes.

Long Course Bike Ride

Objective: Improve Aerobic Base

Distance: 60 km.
Phase: Recovery
Time Green Group 2:30, Red Group 2:15, Black Group 2:00

2 minute Bike Director talk: Braking:
Front brake has 3x the stopping power of rear brake – but can cause sommersault over bars.
Controlled braking means sitting in the saddle using both brakes.
Do not brake and corner at same time.
Braking causes weight to be shifted forward and destabilizing the bike.
Abrupt back braking can cause a skid.
Practice braking under different conditions and get the athletes to understand how long it takes them to stop.

Riding Plan:
Review last weeks ride and discuss any safety or procedural issues.
Remind athletes about bringing tools, spares tires, food.

Route: Hilly – With a short drill on braking at UBC. – Practice trying to stop using front brake, rear brake, and then using both brakes.

Then head along the Midtown route (8th), or by Point Grey Road to Stanley Park.
Two loops of Stanley Park.

Focus: Riding Safely in a Pace Line. Mostly seated hills with no hammering

Monday, July 25, 2005

Running low on material

I can't think of anything to write about so here's a swim workout

Tuesday July 26
Warm Up
400 alt. 200 easy swim/200 pull (no paddles)

Main Set
Part 1
1 X 100 -----> 50 scull/50 easy

4 X 50 ALL OUT SPRINT with 1 min rest between each 50

Part 2
1 X 200 -----> 25 right arm/25 left arm/25 fist/25 easy
4 X 100 @ 80% speed plus 15 sec (including rest)
2 X 50 ALL OUT SPRINT with 1 min rest between each 50

Part 3
1 X 400 -----> 50 dog paddle/25 spear/25 easy
1 X 50 ALL OUT SPRINT starting from deep end

Warm Down
200 easy kick with fins alternating 50 on
back/50 on side, NO BOARDS

Saturday, July 23, 2005

I built this house

The picture of the dals in the previous post is at the house Duncan used to own in Whistler. I kind of hoped that I would inherit that house because I put a lot of work into it.
I took a year off from my "real" job in 1994 and moved up to Whislter, B.C. with Tracey's dad, Duncan to help him build this house. I was Project Manager/Carpenter Helper and it is one of the most fun jobs I've ever had. We went way over budget because we were at the mercy of the Whistler subcontractors, and also because it was a custom Log and Beam house that was really difficult to build. We spent $60,000 just on blasting. It's at the end of Falcon Way in Blueberry Hill. Too bad for Duncan that he sold it before the huge rise in house prices in Whistler. Today the house is worth more than $5,000,000. I know I'll build my own house someday, now that I know how to do it.

Friday, July 22, 2005


No, I'm not 50, I'm only 44. However this is the 50th entry at Liver Spot.
As it really should be more about the dogs than me, here is a picture of all three Dals at Duncan's house in Whistler. The three Dalmatians: Whistler (named after the mountain), Plum (the Liver Spotted Dal) and A.J. (my first Dalmatian). All three were rescue dogs. A.J. and Plum were from the Delta SPCA, and Whistler (formerly "Pepper") was an unwanted dog living in a locked barn in Ladner and had already been in 5 different homes. Dalmatians are not easy dogs to own and bad Dalmatians are almost impossible to live with.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Motivation is Fleeting

For most of us motivation is a fleeting experience. Sometimes you have it and sometimes you don't. Which means sometimes your training is kick ass serious and sometimes you hang out at the coffee shop while your girlfriend finishes the ride without you.
The best motivation comes from within but you can also get motivation from your friends, personal trainer, the Running Room, etc. Let's face it though - most people need External Motivation.
The average person who needs external motivation will gravitate towards group exercise settings such as spin classes like the one Michelle teaches at the Y. Spinning is great although I find it odd that one would be more motivated to cycle on a bike that doesn't go anywhere. But there is the power of the external motivation of having other people to spin with, and of course they like to listen to Michelle tell jokes.
I think that people who require this external motivation just to be active do not have specific goals. We may say that we have specific goals but it's really just lip service. If you are unsure about your goals here are a few guidelines to clarify them.
I'll use the SMART acronym.
S - Specific - You don't want to say "I'll get in better shape". Try something like "I'll learn how to swim" or "I want to become a runner"
M - Measurable - Make it quantifiable so you can measure your improvements. Maybe your weight, or a 10km run time.
A - Achievable - Well, how do you know if you can? I suspect that you can if you had the idea that you could. Don't be afraid to set big goals and tell your friends what your goals are because this will make you accountable.
R - Relevant - Your goals need to have a deep personal meaning. You want an emotion behind your goal so it will have power over you.
T - Time Reference. Not next year.

If you have the goal and the emotional attachment to it, you will have self motivation and you will enjoy your training so much more.
My Ironman athletes all have a strong internal drive which keeps them focussed during the 9 months of training. I love this sport because I'm surrounded by self motivated athletes who are having the time of their lives. I'm not saying sign up for Ironman but find something that gets your juices going.

Me and Sean

Please don't say you can't tell which one is me.
Sean has often been referred to as the more handsome one, a fact that kind of bothers me.

Thursday, July 14, 2005


Running Posted by Picasa
I like running anywhere, but there is nothing like running on trails. I don't have any pictures of me trail running though, but I have one of me finishing the Seattle Marathon.
Here's a test to determine whether you have what it takes to be a trail runner. Add the points in parenthesis if you answer "yes" and score yourself at the end.
1. Do you regularly return from runs bleeding? (+1)
2. Do you regularly encounter animals which could maim or kill you(dogs don't count - cows do but only if you've been threatened by one) (+1)
3. Are all your running socks brown?
4. Have you ever gotten dirt in your mouth or up your nose from a fall? (+1)
5. Have you ever taken a detour from a race to see what's over the edge? (+1)
6. Do you time your workouts? (-1) Do you record your times? (-1)
7. Which do you fear more on run, getting shot by hunters (+1), or getting shot by thugs (-1)
8. Do you keep a written PR list (-1) Is it publicly assessible ie. pinned to the wall in your office or on your blog? (-1)
9. Have you missed a meeting at work because the loop was a little longer than you thought? (+1)
10. Have you ever had to pull thorns out of your shoe? (+1)
11. On most of your runs do you have to decide whether to cross on a red light? (-1)
12. How long does it take for a fresh pair of shoes to lose that "new" look? two weeks (-1), one week (0), three days (+1), one day (+2)
13. Have you evern torn your shirt, shorts, or self, on a barbed wire fence? (+1)
14. Do you regularly carry a street map on runs? (+1) a Topographical map? (+2)
15. Do you regularly wear gaiters or dump large amounts of dirt from your shoes? (+1)
16. Have you ever gotten lost enough on a trail that someone had to come looking for you? (+1)
17. Are there times you can't go on a favourite run because of mud or high water? (+1)
18. Can you pee anywhere you want on your run? (+1)

less than 7: a true Road Runner.
7-12 : A trail runner in spirit
over 12: A hardcore trail runner.

Sunday, July 10, 2005


Alanis Morissette Concert Posted by Picasa
Jagged Little Pill Acoustic Tour.
Michelle and I went to see Alanis this Saturday night at the Orpheum Theatre in Vancouver. I didn't know what to expect from an "Acoustic" tour and thought it might just be her by herself, unlugged.
The Orpheum is a smaller theatre and we were treated to a fantastic performance by her and the complete band. Some of the songs were a little slower paced, but I didn't think they lost any of the edge of the original. This is the tenth anniversary of Jagged Little Pill and the tour is to commemorate that album. Mostly the audience was composed of angry young women but I knew Michelle would protect me. Michelle, being the same age as Alanis, sang along to all of the songs. Funny enough, Michelle used to live in the same apartment building as Ryan Reynolds who is Alanis' fiance. I told this to the ticketmaster people, but still didn't get the backstage pass.


Terracotta Warriors Posted by Picasa
Just thinking about archaeology and visiting interesting places and I remembered that one of my friends sent me some pictures last year.
My friend Lisa Hayes went to China last summer and sent me this. The warriors were created in 246 BC by the first emporer of all China, Quin Shi Hiang so that they would be buried with him in his mausoleum. The warriors took 11 years to finish.
The warriors were first found in 1974 by a group of peasants.
By the way, Lisa is a producer and her website is
I'm not her biggest fan, but I do think she's kind of cool. It's too womens issue stuff for me.