Cabin Feever: a big success

Thanks to everyone who attended the super-fun weekend. Here is a short summery for those who were unable to attend:

Friday – we leave at “five”, actually seven. We make great time to the toll booth (not quite ashen, but good time). However, since Benn was driving his own car, and since his tires were dying we had to put on his spare and drive 50mph the rest of the route. The positive side of that, of course, was that we got excellent fuel economy the rest of the way! We arrived at the cabin at 12.45. We stayed up till 4 in the morning, and Mathias did much dancing.

Saturday: first entire day. Morning – we put the boat in the water (the big speed boat!). Once the boat was in the water, we went on an ultimate watersports trip! Everyone got up waterskiing. Especially matthias, he did very well for his first time. Benn was very intent aswell. But even Milan and Meaghan tried, and somewhat succeeded. Dave and vashti were excellent as expected.

Sunday: Nick and people arrive late in the evening, self-dubbed “Team Focus on the Family”. It is good to See John, Nick, Maya, Neal, and Nick’s friend Emerson. Upon arrival, Alison neal and I take a short bike ride. Returniung, I attempt to light the barbeque. The barbeque is not working properly. A storm ensues, preventing any late afternoon watersports.

Monday: Full day of team focus on the family. Not the greatest weather, but a good time is had by all.

Tuesday: MUCH cleaning to be done, then Dave and I pull the boat of the water. Team focus on the family leaves, we leave. On the way home we drop of Mathias on the 97C to hitchhike towards Nelson. In Kamloops, we pick up hitchhikers. I like picking up hitchikers, but it bothered me that they asked for money when we dropped them off.

Upon arriving at home, Milan helps me get my computer onto the internet, using a ubc VPN account.

Thank’s all for coming! please comment to add your most favorite bits!


The odds of having a while buffalo calf…

This week is short, hopefully sweet. Hopefully work, Laptop choice is basically made: 14inch ibook for 1349 at UBC bookstore (no extras, other than a video cable).

On to more pressing business: Cabin Feever! This friday (provisionally, otherwise saturday) till next tuesday I shall be back at my parents cabin with my friends! (Some of you, hopefully!) If anyone needs information about directions, or a ride (there are seats free in various vehicles travelling at various times), call me. If you don’t have my number, email me (tristan.laing at, this works almost as well and I’ll call you or email you my phone number.

The weekend will be pirate themed, with a themed party at smuggler’s cove (marine transportation depending). I can’t wait to see you all (more like you some) there. We’ve done an excellent job of hiding my parents liquor – so bring your own! There is a liquor store in Barrier, and I’m sure people will do a run to it. We should do a real run to it! We have bikes, we could bike to town. It’s only 30km, up hill both ways.

In a side note, I think “hopeful” might be the most common “mood” in livejournal. You think?

New Camera

So, I’m officially entering the digital realm. My recent purchase of a Canon A510, however, does not mean I’m “giving up film”; there is no comparison between this camera and my SLR system, or even this camera and my tiny rollei 35. However, this camera doesn’t charge me money to take pictures, and I can delete the bad ones (and I actually do, unlike most). Mostly, I got it because I go through stages of means of documentation. In first year, I bought a voice recorder and went through a stage where I would record all my memories on audio tape. Writing, is of course, another favoured medium, although I never really began writing about my life regularly until I began this live journal. It seems thus a natural progression to visual displays; after I figure out the photobucket system, I may go an entire month posting nothing but photos. I’m interested in how photos alone can tell the story of one’s life. I know that for now they will definitly do well to supplement it. For example, I didn’t take my camera to work today, but if I had I could have illustrated quite accuratly what most of my day looked like with 2 small photographs. And, I could have photographed the amusingly painted port moody parks truck, and some of the neat people I work with.

For now, the only photos I’ve actually taken were right after I got the camera. They are on, where all my online photos live:

Enjoy! And comment (here)

An Unfortunate Event

I suppose today marks a kind of “first” in electronic life, as today I learned of Karen Furstand’s death via a friend’s livejournal entry, and surfed subsequently to several other livejournals and a blog to find out what I could of what has happened. I wouldn’t call Karen a friend, but we did no each other, and she always made a point of saying hi to me around campus. If we hung out it was at a debate event, mostly at last years Calgary pro-am tournament. I can attest to the many good things being said about her, they are certainly true and not simply the niceties of eulogy. She was in no way a stereotype of the Greek system; she had time to speak with anyone, and spoke with intelligence sufficient to interest my most demanding of friends. She was also incredibly beautiful, perhaps I should be embarrassed in some way of mentioning this attribute, but I don’t see exactly why.

To me, this loss is shocking, in the sense that I have been in a state of shock and can’t seem to balance properly in my chair since I learned of her passing some thirty minutes ago.

Death is normal, it happens every few seconds. There are a thousand deaths which have occurred since I first learned of Karen’s. In fact, I would on some days argue that my shock and bias towards being concerned over this death even in this moment is in some important way racist and emblematic of some important social justice issues. But now, I think there is something very profound that we can discern from the loss of a colleague, that being the incredible importance of social relationships. I hardly knew her, I knew her mostly through others, I knew her through a society (debate) which I have entirely eschewed. And yet, I am shocked at her passing. I am deeply saddened at the loss of this one colleague who bears many special individual attributes, and I would be similarly saddened should I loose any other colleague who I knew to a similar extent, and considering how little I knew her, that group of people would be large. Anyway, this is really a long winded way of stressing the importance of Others in our lives, expressed here in the reaction to the sudden permanent absence of an Other.

Strep Throat? Work at 5am? Yes…

So, I woke up this morning with a strange burning in the back of my throat. After an hour, I realized it was probably strep throat, so I proceeded down to my family doctor to have the test done. After looking at my throat for 2 seconds, he said he didn’t need to run the test and that the test was “mostly academic”. He rolled his eyes when I told him about the time I went into UBC emergency with horrible horrible pain in the back of my throat and they told me “You probably don’t have it, but we’ll run the test anyway, if we don’t call you don’t worry about it” (I coudn’t swallow food at this time). (Three days later they called me and begged me desperatly to come down and pick up some drugs). The bad news, I have strep and will be sick for five to ten days, (drugs for 10 days). The good news – I stop being contagious after two days. The good/bad news, I got a call to work (out at UBC!) at (crap!) 5am tommorow morning. (Bad for my body, but nice for my pocket book, especially when I’m trying to buy a laptop and all). Possibly after my shift I might mosie down to the bookstore and check out the 12 inch Ibook I’ve been eyeing. (I still want the ibook, despite the fact that xp home is apparently find, so I could have a PC craptop for 400$ less). (If anyone has some comments on the laptop choice for me, please comment). Also, Maya has expressed interest in seeing me tommorow despite my new found disease. The interest shown is reassuring, I just hope I don’t get stuck in the infamous “friend zone”.

A CISV weekend

This weekend confirmed my previous intuitions that CISV Victoria really is just that much better than CISV Vancouver. Their juniour branch board (“Steering”) is enthusiastic, intelligent, and plans mini-camps complete with activities which are fun for everyone, not only 10 year olds we hope to recruit for village delegations. They run interpretive activities which provide a forum for different age groups to discuss very difficult issues. In the 14+ group, we actually ran into the question of to what extent do religious orginizations have the right to engage in practicises which, practiced by employers or governmental bodies, would be construed as charter violations, even hate crimes. Also, after meals there was unfailingly one hour of free time – a stark contrast of Vancouver’s usual “4 minutes before the next activity”. All these differences contributed to a weekend which was more relaxed, more fun, and more thought provoking than I believe the Vancouver camps provide to the kids.

Perhaps the most important gain made this weekend was networking with several steering members who promised to help us during our interchange’s Victoria mini camp. They all live within walking distance of UVIC campus, where we will be staying. Hopefully they will be able to give us an *insiders presepective* on the city, or at least a tour a little better than the one us non-victoriites could give. Perhaps we could even devise a rally (scavenger hunt), although since no one would know the town, it would need to be highly structured.

School begins tommorow, and despite the fact that I feel thoroughly post-UBC I am looking forward to it. I will arrive at UBC early, to purchase texts for the course, and to inspect the 12inch ibook which I intend on purchasing.

In other good news, my grandmother has offered to purchase a digital camera as a graduation gift. I am leaning towards the A400 or the A510, which Dave can sell me at London Drugs for 279, a seemingly appropriate price for a grandmother’s gift. Whether I will ask her to pay for the memory card (probably another 100$, I want a 1gig card) I have not yet decided. If anyone has suggestions for other models I should check out, place a comment!


After spending 2 hours setting the mikes up on the drums, we achieved the ultimate in utereo rock drum sound! (Yes, that’s a condensor mike taped to the wall, and an SM57 above the snare, a PG58 below the snare, and another sm57 infront of the bass drum). Also, we miked the guitar. We achieved the ultimate live-rock white stripes sound. However, since we didn’t finish setting up the studio until 230 am, (ice cream mixed with coffee is good for energy, but bad for your voice) our takes were less than stellar. Thus, we decided to leave the mike setup as it was, and we will take another shot at it this afternoon. “The Sewer Song” must live!

“Down in the Sewer
Sewer slime, creamping up mine”

“Water underground ain’t always blue
Yellow and brown is what we knew”

On another note, my drumming is really improving. Who knew that it was the high-hat, not any of the drums, on a drum kit, which was really the key to a drum beat.

Also, today. (today in this entry comprises several days, none of which are “today”). Today I spent an enjoyable afternoon/evening with Maya. We wandered in the rain, got conned out of money at Starbucks (the story was convincing, it just so happened that he had used it on Maya a few years previous), and consumed tapas and drinks at a reasonably priced restaurant in Coal Harbour (yes, it exists apparently). Maya is an intelligent, beautiful girl, who is much less “up herself” (to use auzzie speak) than the majority of my friends. We have decided that we are in some not undesirable ways, the opposites of each other.