Orange is the coolest colour: days 1002 — 1028

Impressions and elections

A lot of nice mornings this month! The days are definitely getting shorter, and that lets me see some new sights: Canada Geese flying low, a remarkably chill seagull greeting the rising sun, and crows also enjoying the sun. I wonder if they do, though? I am pretty sure they enjoy low tides, which I believe was the case in that last photo. Why, you ask? Because that’s when gulls and crows get all the shellfish living in the intertidal zone. Grabbing and pecking if the shells are delicate enough, dropping on rocks or pavement otherwise.

As much as I like to think I notice urban wildlife behaviour more lately, it did take me a couple days to twig to the fact that a lot of crows seemed to be gathering along the seawall, and being very noisy about it. So there you go, it’s all about that seafood.

The morning sun, whether shining bright or filtered through clouds, paints the city in beautiful ways I feel privileged to capture as far as I’m able. Like the stark geometries of Yaletown towers, breaking up the sky while themselves broken up by golden light. Like a dappled grey-on-grey sky reflected in ripply waters, looking totally like some monochrome Impressionist painting.

Now, I love Impressionist art. Is that what I’m doing? Well, no… Obviousy I don’t use paint, but I do like taking pictures of the city and the modern world in all its angles. So, I can’t help thinking about how my photos fit in…

Content-wise, would this trio here, of False Creek at sunset look out of place in Impressionist galleries? Or how about this forest of masts near Granville Island? Or this moody shot of Cambie Bridge under a leaden sky? Maybe it’s a bit silly to imagine being in the same space as historic artists, but hey, why not? Nothing wrong with tooting my own horn. Art isn’t something magic, something reserved for the elite in museums, art is something regular nerds like me can make. And make, and make, and make, over four-digit days and still going strong.

October is also the month Vancouver’s saved its best shows for: yellow and gold and red and super red and orange and more orange.

Speaking of orange, we had a federal election here in Canada. I got involved pretty late, only after seeing a debate on LGBTQ issues at The Junction, and being very impressed with the NDP candidate. It really wasn’t much of a leap, since I’ve been an NDP supporter for a long time, but I’d been dithering between NDP and Green. Not that my vote would make a difference either way in this Liberal-safe riding, but I had to think about it.

So I walked in the office a couple days later, started with some data entry, then moved on to canvassing, then the next Sunday a larger group of us waving signs and connecting with residents. Out of the downtown core, which was nice. Breen and the campaign manager did most of the talking, and the other volunteers and I basically added background colour. We hit Science World, Victory Square at the border of Vancouver East, and Emery Barnes Park in Yaletown. It was a good outing, and pushed my personal envelope pretty hard. I’d never done this in 2015!

Election Day (or “e-day” as we say in the campaigning biz) was my biggest test yet. I went out on my own for a last-minute canvassing blitz; on e-day that really means putting flyers in people’s mailboxes, but this being the West End, that means getting into buildings and slipping it under their doors.

Which, as a campaign rep, I have the right to do. But concierges and residents don’t always see it that way. So the goal is to find an NDP supporter (I have a list) who’s (a) home, (b) believes I’m who I say I am, and (c) is willing to open the door for me. Some did. Most didn’t. Together with the cold and the rain, it made for an exhausting and disheartening morning. The afternoon passed more pleasantly in the office, with data entry and organisation. And then I headed out to do inside scrutineering at Coal Harbour Community Centre.

When I returned to the office it was past 10PM, I’d been on my feet for half of the last 14 hours, and this was no victory party. Breen did come in a very distant second, so that was something. And disappointing as results have been, this isn’t the end: the team has decided to stay together, lay the groundwork for the next campaign, whether that happens in four years or four months. And I’m going to be a part of it.