Archive for February 2011

The Magical Ski Day

February 25, 2011

As far as I’m concerned, any day you ski out West is a great day.

But some days are better than others.   You don’t always get ideal conditions, or ideal weather.

But on some days, everything seems to come together.

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Where the sky is so unbelievably blue, it almost hurts the eyes to look at.

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Where trees are transformed into surreal ghosts…

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Where the snow is perfect, and the ski runs are steep…

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Where lift lines are non-existent, and you pretty much have the whole hill to yourself…

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Where ice-crystals play tricks on you,  creating brilliant sun-dogs that hang suspended in mid-air,  just beyond your reach…

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Where you feel on top of the world.   Ready to  launch yourself into infinity.

Yep.   These are Magical Ski Days.

Enjoy them when you can.   Because they don’t happen too often.

I’ve been skiing for 40 years, and I’ve experienced maybe 2 or 3 in my life.

This was one of them, which I was lucky enough to share with Friar’s Mom.

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More Pointless Random Lists…

February 23, 2011

English “or” Words that could be a good name for an alien War-Lord
– Ven-Dor
– Can-Dor
– Ar-Dor
– Glam-Or

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Old and Tired Facebook posts
– Expressing the blatantly obvious (i.e. “We should not judge people based on their appearance“), and self-righteously patting yourself on the back for doing so.
– Coloring your avatar to show support/awareness for the latest flavor-of-the-month cause.
– Copy-pasting a quote from a dead philosopher/dead poet,  to show everyone how wise and well-read you are.
– Posting a photo of yourself (if you’re a woman), so all the other women can tell you how “lovely” you look.
– Posting a photo of your meal, so everyone can tell you how “yummy” it looks.

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Dialogue from the 3-year-old demon-spawn at the next table at the restaurant
– “Am…Am…Am…Am…Am…Am…AM!!!  AM!!!! AMMM AMMMAMMMAMAAMAM”
– “SCREEECH!!!!
– “No! No!  No!  No!  Noooo!  NOOOOOO!!!”
– “AHHHHHHHHHHH!  AHHHHHHH!”

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Modern professions that would be totally useless after a nuclear war and civilizations’  inevitable collapse
– Man-scaper
– Feng-shui consultant
– Social Media Ninja
– Auric Cleanser
– Life Coach

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Modern professions that are totally useless today
– See above.

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Popular Nah-Nah Songs
– Hey Jude:  “Nah-Nah-Nah Nana-Nah Nahhhhh”
– Kiss him goodbye:  “Nah-Nah-Nah Na,  Nah-Nah-Nah Na,  Hey-Ay, Good Bye”
– The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down: “Nahhh, Nana-Na Nah, Nana Nah Nanana Nahhh”

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Bitchy Comic Strip Girls I Never Liked
– Lucy Van Pelt
– Violet and Patty
– Margaret Wade (Dennis the Menace’s nemesis)
– Veronica Lodge


Comic strip characters that would basically be identical, if it weren’t for slight differences in hairstyle or clothes
– Betty and Veronica
– Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse
– Jeffy/Billy/Dolly from The Family Circus.
– Blondie Bumpstead and Tootsie Woodley (right down to the cup size)

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Best Bugs Bunny quotes ever
– “You better plug him again, Mac, just to make sure!”
– “Fortunately, I keep mah feathers numbered, for jest such an emergency.”
– “I must KIWWW the wabbit!”
– “What for you bury me in the cold, cold, ground?”
– “Ahhh…Magnolias!”

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Uncle Friar’s tips on how to mess with dogs and get them all wound up
– Blow in their face.
– Tickle them between the pads on their feet.
– Point excitedly into the snow (“Whassat?  WHASSAT?) and watch them start a digging frenzy
– In a quiet voice…come right up to their face, and ask them “Wwwwwwwwww…..WHAT????”

Life Lessons I Learned from Squirrels

February 17, 2011

Life consists of periods of abundance, and periods of want.   Enjoy the former.   Plan for the latter.

A rolling stone gathers no moss (and never gets eaten).   Never linger in any given place too long.   Whatever you do, keep moving.

When courting your soul-mate,  climb the highest object you can find and scream your love for them, for all the world to hear.

Don’t work hard:  work smart.   Like when you’re destroying a house:  don’t just chew anywhere, but rather focus on the electrical wiring and structural wooden beams.

Life is like a nut.  Sometimes the best things are difficult to obtain, but if you keep working at it, you’ll break through the hard shell and it will pay off in the end.

Never be afraid to break the rules.   Just because that food in the bird-feeder is for birds, there is nothing that says you can’t eat it too.

It’s okay to be vain about your appearance.   If it weren’t for your bushy tail, you’d just be a rat.

If something annoys you, don’t bottle up your feelings.   Clearly express your anger, and don’t stop until the problem goes away.

Don’t be afraid to confront challenges,  even if they’re 100 times your size.   But just make sure you have an exit strategy, where you can retreat to safer ground.

Middle-Aged Cynical Bachelor Tips: 12 Reasons To Talk Yourself Out Of Getting a Girlfriend

February 16, 2011

1.  She won’t ski or fish or golf.   But won’t be willing to learn how, or let me go on my own.

2. I’ll want to spend my weekends relaxing.   But we’ll be getting up at 3;15 AM and drive her kids to 4 different hockey tournaments in 4 different provinces.

3.  She might like Céline Dion.  Or cats.   Or both.

4.   She’ll insist on elaborate meals, involving cutlery and napkins and shit.  Which I’ll be expected to help out with.

5.  I’ll want to watch “Robot Chicken”.  But she’ll insist on Oprah, which I’ll make fun of.  And then I’ll end up sleeping on the couch.

6.  Every year, I’ll have to come up with the most original, most thoughtful, most romantic Valentine’s gift, ever.   And I’ll fail, and then I’ll end up sleeping on the couch.

7.  We will continuously argue over the toilet set, because I will always leave it up.

8.  I’ll finally land my ultimate dream job.   But I won’t be able to take it, because it’s in another city and her kids will refuse to move.

9.  She’ll be in the middle of an expensive custody battle, and I’ll have to cash in my retirement plan to pay for her lawyer’s bar tab.

10   Her kids will be teenagers, and I’ll have to cash in my retirement plan to pay for their orthodontist and/or college tuition.

11.  Whenever I want to eat junk food, I’ll now have to answer to someone.

12.  After the novelty wears off, there will be no more sex.   Which is right where I started in the first place.

More window-gazing across Canada.

February 1, 2011

Whenever I fly, I like to take photos out the window, and try to find out exactly where I am.

My most recent flight started out cloudy.

Somewhere over Northern Ontario,  the clouds finally broke, and I saw this lake.

It kind of looked familiar.  Then I realized it’s Kaby Lake, where I had  spent several fishing vacations.   I recognized many of the islands and bays and my favorite fishing spots for walleye and pike.

Kaby Lake is in the Algoma district,  North of Superior.   This is fairly remote country,  and this is a  “fly in” lake. 

Shortly after, I saw White lake, directly below me. 

White Lake is located off the TransCanada Highway, between White River and Marathon. 


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Furuther along, at first I thought this was a river.   Then I realized it’s Long Lake, located Northeast of Thunder Bay. 

Long Lake is about 100 kilometers long.   The little island on the left  side of the lake is a good frame of reference for the map.

 

 Northeast of Thunder Bay, Lake Nipigon is quite large.   Approximately 60 km x 80 km in size,  it’s amazing that most of  it fits within the airplane window.

 Right smack in the middle of the lake I saw there tracks going between islands.

I have no idea what these are.     They seem a bit remote  to be snow-mobile tracks.   (And why would snowmobile not go in a straight line?).  

Maybe it’s critters (wolves, or moose?)   Either way, whoever made these tracks put a lot of  work into making them, to be visible  from 38,000 feet.

Further along, this is a  farm somewhere over Manitoba. 

I can’t imagine a more God-Forsaken place to live in January…

…except maybe THIS place (somewhere in Saskatchewan).

If that doesn’t look cold, I dont’ know what does.

Landing in Calgary,  the table-top flatness of the prairies was quite prominent.

Of course, the most scenic part of the flight (over the Rocky Mountains) it was cloudy. 

Every time I fly over the Rockies, it’s cloudy.     Every time.

Though the clouds broke long enough to allow me to see SilverStar Ski  Resort near  Kelowna.

If you zoom in, you can see some of the chairlift towers and snow fences, if you know where to look.