Category Archives: Society

Nikkei Matsuri 2017

Fun festival at the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre just up the hill from our place in south Burnaby, BC. The main draw for me? Japadog . . . : -)

Nikkei Matsuri 2017

It was also great to run into a gal pushing 100 years old that we met at a party about three years ago. She was out and about at the event with her walker, since she lives in the Japanese seniors’ residence there, and we had a good long chat in Japanese, mostly Yumi and Yuki, with me following along as best I could.

Here’s a post about that convivial, multilingual, multi-generational potluck.

You Don’t Have to Hit a Homer for a Sense of Accomplishment

Chipping away. . .

People often set big goals. While laudable, I’m not sure that’s always the best way to get things done, chalk up accomplishments, and just plain feel good about yourself, particularly when it comes to projects that take less than a month, a week, or even a day.

Recently I’ve been trying smaller steps, in greater frequency, and it feels good.

Today after work I:

  • cleaned and organized my desk in my home office and can now see 2/3 of the surface
  • cleaned and organized my side desk and can now see 2/3 of the surface
  • got rid of stuff that had sat untouched for years in several desk drawers
  • shredded about 1/3 of a legal-size filing-cabinet drawer of financial records that were well past the date of potential interest to the authorities
  • filled a banker’s box to overflowing with old magazines and put it in the garage to place in recycling
  • filled another banker’s box with books to donate
  • did a load of laundry
  • . . . and so forth.

None of these activities took more than 15-20 minutes each, but it all added up. I could have gone further into the filing cabinets, but why kill myself? Lots more shredding in there to feel good about over the next several days : -).

 

Completed Standard First Aid for Industry

I completed a St. John Ambulance (Burnaby branch) Standard First Aid for Industry with CPR/AED course and certification over the weekend.

Thanks to Danni, a superb instructor, who was very knowledgeable, down to earth, and fun.

I’m zonked now — it was an intense two days, but also happy to have refreshed my first-aid knowledge. I hadn’t taken a formal first-aid course since my youth, in Red Cross swimming classes and Boy Scouts, several decades ago.

Canada Day Weekend Depletes Canadian Stock of Kindness, Politeness

It’s back to work, grumpy people!

I wanted to buy some hiking socks. At the first sporting goods store I went to I was quietly regarding the racks, when a staff member came by, snorted, and said:

“Why would you want to buy those socks? These are the ones you should be looking at,” pointing to ones costing three times more per pair.

I said I’d been happy with a certain combo of layered liner and thick socks for over 40 years of hiking. That didn’t deter his disdain, or his prattle, so I walked out.

The next store I went to, it was clear sailing until the end. Nobody approached me, I had quiet time to myself to peruse the labels, checking the proportions of poly to wool to whatever. . . Bliss.

Then — accosted at the checkout. “Sir, if you sign up for Partner Credit Card today, I can give you 20% off your entire purchase.”

“I don’t want any more credit cards, and anyway, I have this 10% discount coupon which will do me just fine.”

“But sir, I can issue a paper credit card right now, which you can use to get 20% off. . .”

“What’s a paper credit card? How do I pay it off?”

“We’ll send you a bill in the mail, or you can go straight over to Partner Store, and pay it today.”

Right, sucked further into Database Nation. No thanks.

“But sir!”

“I said, no thanks.” Poor kid slumps away, and checkout clerk glares at me.

After these wee contretemps, I’m feeling hungry, and notice a Subway nearby. I walk in, and say “I’d like a footlong turkey on Italian.”

“What kind of bread?” Italian. “How large?” Footlong. “Was that turkey?” Yes. [Silently to myself — Earth to counter person??]

Another fellow walks in.

“Hi!” says the cashier cheerfully.

He says, “I’d like a. . .”

“Sorry, sir, you have to start your order from the other end of the counter.”

“So why did you say hi to me at this end?”

Oy. . .

Mom’s Tenth

Funny how the stars align now and then. Today is the 10th anniversary of my Mom’s passing. She spent over 30 years in the College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan, retiring as Assistant Dean, Student Affairs.

And just now in my email box I see an invitation to a “Millions of Memories” College of Education Alumni Event (I did a B. Ed. there way back when).

Mom would advise me to “do” rather than “stew”, so despite the gray, rainy day, I’m going to go for a long walk before dinner.

A link to an old blog post with Mom’s obit. (Hm, some wonky characters have popped up in there…)

Good to See Some of my ‘Elders’ Out on the Creek Trails

Happy to see a couple of Byrne Creek Ravine Park trailwalking “elders” out and about now that the snow and ice are gone.

Ran into Dave on the creek trail today, and it was good to chat. He’s 87, and always has a good tale to tell about what it was like growing up in the area. If I recall, he was a boxer in his youth, and he keeps telling me to keep moving!

Saw Ron the other day, too. Ron’s a retired stonemason also pushing 90, if not there already, who had a hand in some of the magnificent greystone work at the University of Saskatchewan where I did a couple of degrees. He speaks with a hint of a lovely Scottish burr, and also has tales to tell.

Good to see you, gentlemen, and hope I’m still walking the ravine 30 years from now!