Friday, February 26, 2010


I just had this play in rotation today, and for some reason it struck me again...



Okay, so maybe not THAT one exactly, but the original.  I don't know what it is about that song, but it always 'gets' me.  I wouldn't say "emotional", but definitely thought provoking and evocative.  Partly it could be because of the interpretation that Scrubs puts on it above about the girl that dies - that's hardly 'un-emotional', but I dunno, maybe it's something else.


My interpretation of it is the poor misled guy / gal who has the starry eyes of a glorious event/happenings that's owed to them.  That somehow, by just 'being' they will be presented with this wondrous life that would make celebrity's jealous.  (there's another conversation to be had about how celebrities have ruined normal life by building up un-reachable expectations - just see the conversation bartleby has with loki in Dogma - and when I say "see" I mean "read")  So, is there a sense of entitlement that is unfounded?  Depends, but by just planning to "wait for your real life to begin" isn't going to make it happen.  As the girl says in the song "open up your heart, let the light (that already is there) shine in".


Another song that came in rotation today pretty close to it was "Ships in Full Sail" by Spirit of the West.  I thought it was apt in one line that I want to repeat here:

"horizons don't get closer"

For some reason that was an awesome line, maybe the combination of my interpretation on the earlier song, and then hearing that.


Often we are so focussed on the 'attaining' in life that we fail to recognize what we have 'obtained'.  Missing the forest for the trees, or similarly allowing our long goal focus forget what we have.  I'm not going to get all sentimental here or anything, but it really describes me.  For myself, I've sometimes set myself too lofty a goal, and as I look at what I have I get to thinking that I'm not there yet.  Really pertinent to me now as I'm awaiting the decision from the school boards about the pool hiring list.  Here I am 8 years after graduation striving after what I wanted...


But in the end I do have to look at what I have.  I have my wife, my son, a house... and I reflect on what I've done to get me here.  Sure there've been some mistakes I've made along the way.  Now would I go back and change them?  I look at my life and I love what I have.  I really wouldn't change it... yeah, there's a few things I wish I had, or was more successful in etc... but then that plays with the equation.  As a mathemetician I know what happens when you tinker with the variables, your output changes, and to be honest I don't think I'd really want to tinker and potentially lose what I have (that could be also because I'm also a guy who doesn't like change too much).


So, ... what does this all mean?  Nothing really... just something that struck me today as I drove to work.  To further the line from SOTW, "horizons don't get closer, rather you extend them further every time you make some gains".


Oh, and so I don't end on a sappy note -- I also liked this today (while doing some of my googling for this article):



Sunday, February 21, 2010

Snow fort

So had an awesome day today.  At a certain part of the day I felt it was time to get outside.  We’ve been having some awesome weather lately and why not take advantage of it.  Yesterday it was the walk down Frederica and possibly as far as the library (but the haircut cut that short – pun intended).

I took Dean and got him all weathered up and set him outside in the back yard.  I just let him do what he wanted, see what he played with.  At first nothing.  I went to get my ice chipper and clean up some of the ice mess out there.

As Dean was looking more and more bored I decided to give him a nudge as to what to do and helped him get to his car out there.  At first he wasn’t excited to get out there, but he climbed right in.

I noticed he looked a little stationary playing in the car and felt I needed to correct that.  So I decided to start digging around the car to give him some room to play with.  Not sure how it progressed from there, but I just started to clear more and more snow, at first to give him room to go around the patio table, and then to build the ‘fort’.

Now I didn’t intend it to be a fort at first, but as I was putting more and more snow on the banks it started to look like a makeshift wall, or semi-igloo.  So it just kept going from there.  I got the ice chipper and would ensure that i cut out snow in definite wall-like ways.  Then tried to put the snow up vertically around the banks.

Then it was to build a path to the patio table so Dean wouldn’t have to crunch over the snow, and when it starts to melt, fall in.

It’s nothing spectacular, just it was fun.  Had I really thought about it, I should have been doing this for a while yet.  This is definitely something I want to start and continue with.  I doubt I’ll get any more snow to really make anything of it this year.

I just remember making these intricate caves and paths in the back yard at home when I was a kid and it was the best fun.  I want to be able to do that with Dean.  I’ve seen some really neat blogs lately about how to make cool igloos using storage bins to make the igloo ‘bricks’. 

Now, for those who’re also doing this, or would like to, let me give you 2 tips – wear mitts, not because it’s cold, but I got some nasty blisters; don’t use a kid’s snow shovel, it’ll take FOREVER to clear even the smallest of areas.


Now I do feel bad that I’ve been neglecting posting photos on here.  I have posted some in the blog itself, but nothing in their own specific albums.  I’ll get to it.

8 days later…

So much for 2 a week, maybe I should update my expectations.  Anyhow…

What’s happened?  Since I last posted we’ve had Valentine’s Day / Family Day / Hangin’ with Ben / After Biz / Some applications / Dean’s haircut and photoshoot…

Valentine’s Day

Not a lot to report, similar to our attempts at New Year’s Eve it gets harder to have official celebrations.  We ended up having to have a ‘do-over’ the next day.

Family Day

I love any excuse for a day off.  I really was hoping to do some ‘family’ things that day with Dean, but to be honest with you I don’t think there was a lot that we did.  I know we were outside for a bit.  Dean enjoyed it, even when he fell face first in the snow (he was leaning forward a little too far).  Then we played with his sled as well, until he fell off… it was a good time.  It had been so cold for a while it was hard to take Dean outside to play.

Hanging with Ben

We decided to give Lindsay a shout to see if she wanted company (Dean needs to learn how to hang out with other kids).  As it turns out we got to have Ben over for a couple of hours at our place.  Which Dean LOVED.  Those two get along really well.  Unbelievable how much energy one kid can have, let alone put two of them together – sort of a “the whole is more than the sum of its parts” idea.  Mandy made some post Family Day crafts with them.  The hands are still drying.

After Biz

Now there wasn’t an after biz or 2 months, so I was itching to get my networking and exhibiting skills back into play.  I swear the email said to go set up at 315-400, so I was there at 315.  Turns out that was about 30 minutes too early.  Anyway, I got to talk with the planning at the VicInn about our MEIV event.  So I get my booth and start to set up, that’s when the other booths start coming in.  And my neighbour – one guy who likes to critique roll-ups and a bra and panty booth.  I had to remind people throughout the night that THEY went next to ME, not the other way around.  It was a good event, albeit I never got to have any of the food (le sigh), they even had Doobsie’s Band (the band that Joe is in) play.  Good show.


Still waiting to hear from the Board about my pool hiring status application… I think this will be the ‘make or break’ decision… If I don’t get on the pool hiring list after 7+ years… I’ll start making some serious decisions about what am I doing with my life.  Have I made some wrong decisions?  I also applied to 3 different jobs in one day.  I’d like to say what… but I think it’s bad luck to say before I know anything, so I’d like to keep that under wraps until I know more, but any of them would be a nice change.

Dean’s Haircut & Photoshoot

So Mandy’s setup a photoshoot with Superior Images for his 2 year old shot.  And he needed a haircut.  I tried to get him over to Hair Infinity, but they were booked up, so I thought, why not walk down Frederica some more as there’s a couple of hair places that way… and I could keep on going after and walk to the Library for the puppet show.  I end up going to Armando Barber Shop on Frederica (funny, we were at Armando’s in Port Arthur for Mandy’s bday dinner).  I say Barber Shop because it had a pole out front, but it was definitely ‘modern’.  It had PS3, Blu-Ray, 42” HD in the waiting room!  It was good, he freaked a little when the barber tried to put the drape around him, so he just omitted it.  I had thought Mandy had pre-called and set it up as he automatically ‘faux hawked’ Dean saying “mommy will love that!” and then grabbed something  and came back saying “you don’t mind eh?” (I couldn’t see what he meant, but said “no worries” anyways)… turns out it was some red gel for his hair.  So Dean not only has a faux hawk, but is red tipped.  Kinda hilarious!  Until Dean ran around and tried to climb his stroller, in the process smushing his wet head against the stroller, his jacket etc… partially ruining the effect.  I decided to walk him home and skip the puppet show (can only imagine the much he’d make with a wet red head and tons of hair all over him).

Then it was on to the photoshoot.  Dean was not participating in just about anything at that point.  He was cranky after coming home, was cranky for quite some time, and then on the way to Jarron’s fell asleep… so was cranky when he woke up.  Then he didn’t want to go down stairs… eventually we got him to have some fun, only by letting him know that he could throw a ball at Jarron… wonder what that portends to in the future?  (will this be the precedent… if you do something we tell you you can do some harm to somebody).  Looking forward to the photos tho’.  He really did get into it after a while.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

January in review

So why am I reviewing January in the middle of February?  Because I’m inherently lazy?  So much for my vow.

What’s going on?  Not really all that much that’s causing me to be so tired or forgetful to post.  What should I talk about?  Let’s do this by the numbers.

My photo-a-day challenge:

  • 31 photos
  • 4 cheatings (posted a photo that wasn’t taken on that day)

image Pipeband

  • 2/3 for gigs - We had the opportunity to play for the torch relay when it came through town.  I held extra practices, but as it turns out I was pretty sick.  I mean I had never been more sick.  I did make the opening and closing ceremonies for the Scottie’s tournament.
  • 2 stripes names – Bill (P/S); Jessome (P/C)
  • 4 pipeband members who came out to Bill’s showing of “On the Day”
  • 5 or 6 new piping students!  Been keeping me busy as I’m trying to find all my old files for the piping instruction modules… I used to have like 4 or 5 done, but can’t find ‘em (then again we haven’t had many students progress past module 1 forever).
  • 60-70 pages of the new tune book finished.


  • 1 day off sick (see my comment about the torch relay – really I slept like 2 days)
  • 100 employer packages put together and handed out as I canvassed the malls – that was kinda fun
  • 14 meetings (9 of which were in one week)
  • 1 performance review – it was good, but doesn’t change my mind.


  • 4 days without Mandy/Dean… it was Mandy’s birthday present for me to buy her a flight to Toronto.   During which time I was able to pick up and pass New Super Mario Bros Wii.  That was fun.
  • 1.5 --- still.  I’m referring to my Android stock operating system.  Still waiting for Rogers to deliver the 2.0+ version… which I’m doubtful will ever happen.  We did get SenseUI, which is pretty cool.  Multitouch is definitely appreciated.  Just disheartening as alot of new google apps are coming out and they’re all 1.6 or better (multi google signins, goggles, buzz, maps layers, etc…)

I think that about covers it for me for now.  Should be doing some February recaps soon, but I’ll leave that for another post.


Monday, February 1, 2010

Quarterly Re-cap


See, this is why I need a vow (see previous entry).  My last real blog entry was Sept. 27... and many before that were 'recaps' as well.


So this will hopefully be my last re-cap blog entry.  I only do this just to have a written history for myself (because you know I'll be old soon and will need to have things written down for me telling me what I did in the past).


Let's go through it by the numbers:

(i'm going through my google calendar to help me remember what happened)



DFC Presentation - like I've said before I like being in front of people... so when asked to present at the co-op/career fair at DFC, I jumped at it.  I had a bit of worry over being able to shorten it to 5 minutes, but I think I did pretty well.  How often will you get to hear a presentation on co-op include nintendo wii?

Christmas - I'm a horrible shopper!  I really did it late, and was seriously asking DIRECT questions in order to get good gifts.  We had some pretty good times.  We had an early Christmas at home (Mandy had to work Christmas day, so we opened gifts on the Eve).  The family also ended up having several straight days of parties/food.  It was good that the office was closed for the length of time it was.  There was also the 2nd annual Knauff Sleigh Ride (tho' it includes more than Knauffs and this year we included friends).  It was a good time to get together with everybody and allow the kids to run around.  And it wasn't nearly so cold as last year.

New Years - this is the clear indicator that we are, in fact, old parents now.  We wanted to have a party and enjoy the evening, but... as it turns out it was limited to a prime rib buffet (which was awesome), some swimming (Dean enjoyed) with a cool water slide and an especially early evening.  Dean wasn't crashing and was just getting crankier as we hung out in the hotel room.


Remembrance Day - First time I've been able to actually run a Remembrance Day ceremony by myself.  It was sorta good that the guy helping to organize it was over zealous in planning.  So we had plenty of time to get it ready.

Celtic Bash - whoo... that was fun.  A lot of nerves going in tho'.  Again, the first time I've done that on my own and it was a new format, at a new location... phew.  Glad it's over.  I think everybody had a good time tho'.  Venus Murphy was AWESOME!

Band AGM - 2nd year in a row I was acclaimed the pipe major... you know, I don't mind.  I know it's a lot of work and pressure... I just would like competition.

Andrew's first piping gig - I had a request from someone to bring a 2nd piper, one who would be a younger player.  So Andrew got a taste of what it's like to be a 'semi-pro' piper.  Hopefully it's motivation to help him practice more.


Bayfield - you saw the photos!

Superior CVI - got to take a tour with the NSWPB crew.  Marg said during the tour "you should be teaching here!"  This is after she stalled in helping me apply for a course there.  yay

Rob's new son - Ben is now not an only child with the arrival of Jack

P2P Fall Forum - got to visit Ottawa (don't think I've ever been there before).  Very cool hotel (was an old condo.  I also go to put together a presentation with Devon... not sure it was received well, but you know me, I like to be in front of people.  They also classified me as 'no longer a newbie' and showed my video as a 'classic example'.  I hadn't been there a year yet!  Also got to visit the casino in Gatineau and realize how little I knew about casinos and the games and french language.  Brandie enjoyed it much more than I did.

MacGillivray's Fundraiser - Got to go to the Scotch tasting night to help them with their special events.  The food was amazing!!

Hallowe'en - Breaking with the 1 year tradition, we did not do a family theme for the costumes.  Instead, Dean got 2 photos.  I only really photo'd one of them (one example here, another here).  The other costume is on my other camera and nothing really turned out.  You might get to see them on Mandy's pics on fbook.