Mouse says “Thanks”: days 226 — 250

Okay, another not-planned break. Blame the Queer Film Fest, maybe, and blame the new job, which is still good and fun and WordPressy and hella challenging, but is not leaving me with much energy. I’d toyed with the idea of doing reviews as before, but turns out I couldn’t do that and my regular posts. Turns out I couldn’t do either, for a while. Oh well, this regular blogging stuff is still new. The important thing is to move forward.

As of Monday August 14 (day 226), I was still getting used to having blue skies again. So I took a picture of Stanley Park and the North Shore mountains. It’s nice. I love having a view of the North Shore that I can get to at lunchtime. Bad news, though: yellow skies came back for a few days, but I think as of today they’re gone. Amazing what a little rain can do. Today the air smelled all fresh and petrichor, instead of like a campfire.

On August 15 Gossamer Threads held a big clients BBQ, and I was asked to be a photographer. It was awkward—as it always is around strangers—and occasionally I’d disengage to look at some bees.

August 21, a solar eclipse! It was a pretty eerie experience, though honestly a little disappointing. The sky didn’t get nearly as dark as I expected from a 90% full eclipse, though it did dim somewhat, and the air got noticeably cooler. But then again, that might have been my eyes adapting to the gradually fading light, and I wouldn’t notice any big difference unless the sky was much more hidden? Huh, that never occurred to me until just now. What was cool was the light distorted into crescents, as you’d see by making a fist, or just looking at the shadows of leaves.

This was only the second eclipse I remember seeing, the first being a lunar eclipse in February 2008. Which was honestly a lot eerier. The moon turning to blood beats somewhat dimmer sunlight any day. Or any night.

Speaking of sunlight, I found an interesting spot the next day (on Cordova, just east of Burrard): having shamefully skipped the gym and taking the long way to work, I almost discovered how an ant must feel. I scoffed at the idea of that curvy building actually focusing enough light to be harmful… but apparently it does happen.

I could spend months just cataloguing the public art around. This piece at the Law Courts is not the first and it won’t be the last. Nitpicky as I am I had to take half a dozen shots until I was happy the bits were nicely concentric.

And hey, another train photo. Not my first by a long shot, even if you’re not counting this year. I took many, many pictures of the West Coast Express and assorted trains around PoCo Station. It felt like freedom, y’know? Trains must feel that way to most people, and after visiting Europe and taking lots of trains, I can see why.

Had another company barbecue the other day, where I made a stunning discovery. They grow a few veggies and herbs up on the rooftop deck, including Brussels sprouts. I had no idea this is how they grew! I’d vaguely thought that they grew like lettuces, each on their own. But no, turns out they grow like… tumours, on the stalk of a bigger plant. Weird. How did that happen? What do / did wild plants look like? Wikipedia says they’re related to cabbages, which isn’t that surprising, but nothing about their origins.

Not gonna lie, it can be a little embarrassing to admit to not knowing something… but then you learn something new, and that’s cool. Then you’re one of the lucky 10,000.

Speaking of learning… So the PNE has a special exhibition every year, with a different theme. This year, it was “Toytopia”. Games and toys over the decades. Board games, stupid old crap simple wholesome entertainment from before Kids Today ruined everything with their indie rock and their Yu-Gi-Oh, Legos (of course), train sets, action figures—oh yeah, I remember these babies, my brothers and I had them all. That little droid in the middle, the R5-D4? I loved that thing. I didn’t care (or remember) that we only saw it for one minute in A New Hope before it got fried, that little figurine was way cooler than R2-D2 in my eyes. He’s taller and orange, what’s not to like?

Anyway, games! The exhibit included a few old-school arcade games from when you had arcades, from when you put quarters in and games cost only one quarter. Although you didn’t put quarters into these games, that wouldn’t be any fun. I wanted to try Dig Dug or Ms Pac-Man, which I had rather enjoyed back in the day, but they were taken. So I chose Missile Command, which… I don’t think I’ve ever played before, though I’d watched it and knew the basics. It’s not too bad at first, but then gets overwhelmingly fast-paced. I wonder if there’s a way to predict where the bombs will go, just like I hear you can do in Pac-Man?

And I’ll end with a heartwarming story I only learned about from a poster: a lost cat that was returned to his human. I’d been walking around the Village looking for my daily pic and… well, there you go. I don’t know either of them, but I’m glad they’re together again.

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