Saturday, 31 August 2013

So then...

After I posted yesterday (well, and then did some other stuff) I went to check the animals before I left for the day. I generally try to give them a quick check a couple of times a day. Salamanders? Fine. Snake? Um...

There's another snake. Another tiny snake.

Yep, our snake's having babies.

This is a fairly new snake to us, and when she was brought in she looked very wide. A couple of the staffers figured that maybe she was pregnant. Then after a while she started looking less wide, so we guessed that maybe she'd just had a really big meal and was taking her reptilian time to digest everything.

Well, as of yesterday afternoon the first guess was right.

So far it looks like there's only one, but there's a very good possibility that any others are just hiding. No idea how long this will take, but she's still looking bulgy so I'd imagine that there's more to come.

I'll keep you posted.


Just thought I'd address something quickly. For any of my two fans who are wondering why the other blog has stagnated (and I didn't think that anyone really noticed until I got a note from someone the other day wondering what was up), it just has to do with the wrist injury I gave myself what... months ago now? For anyone new to the program, I sprained my wrist. It happens sometimes. An old injury makes the joint weak. Anyway, I sprained my wrist, braced it up, and then a few weeks later stupidly took the brace off too soon.

Sprain number two.

I left the brace on long enough this time to give myself a raging case of eczema (I'd take pictures, but you don't need that), and other than my skin things are healing up fine. It's still weak, though, and one of the ways that manifests itself is that if I use my hand too intensely for a period of time the wrist gets tired and my hand gets shaky. It's been inconvenient, to say the least. For a while even using keypads for debit cards and the like was frustrating. Two numbers into a PIN and I'd wonder if I'd have enough aim to get the last ones in.

Needless to say, this has been a pain for someone who likes to do pen and ink work. You need control for that crap kind of stuff.

It's getting better now, and if IF would only give a prompt word that was actually inspiring to me you might see something posted on the artsy side soon.

Unless I sprain the damned thing again.


One last thing, just because it made me laugh. My favourite photo caption of the day, which unfortunately is part of a slideshow so I can't give you a direct link:

Pope Francis photobombs a selfie in Saint Peter's Basilica at the Vatican

Our world is a veeeery strange place...

Friday, 30 August 2013

I can't remember if I had a post topic.

I think I might have, and then work things came up, and then Wheat decided we needed to hear Springtime for Hitler, and then more work things came up, and then I needed to eat some Rockets. And then we went for a walk.

It's a funny thing, working at a nature centre, but we're actually encouraged to go for walks. Sometimes it's to meet the public, sometimes it's to check general maintenance, but most times it's just to get outside.

Unfortunately, in this computer-driven world, sometimes it's hard even here to get away from the desk. We all should, though, even if you don't happen to have a sanctuary out your back door. It's important to look at something that isn't a screen to give your brain a chance to reset.

My brain's reset enough now that I honestly can't think what this blog post was meant to be. So in lieu of sense or even blather, have a random duck bum.

It's so fresh off the camera that it doesn't have a photo title or anything.

I should have called it Random Duck Bum, really. Would have made sense.

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Pointless photo of the day:

I'd tell you what it is, but I'm not sure I can make it out through my eyelids.

Yeah, truck's still on a roll.

Pun not intended.

And I'm really starting to loathe that guy, in case anyone's wondered.

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Pointless photo of the day:

This was just to show everyone that grapes don't grow in Alberta...

My dad's vine went kind of wild this year. It bears edible, if small, fruit, even.

And, at the moment, makes it kind of hard to get around that corner of the house.

Can you tell that I'm completely uninspired about blathering today? Yeah. I'm calling a preemptive stop to this one. Catch you later.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Quick nose-thumbing to coffee drinkers

One of the benefits of drinking tea is that when you suddenly realise that you never finished your morning cuppa (or, with the size of today's mugs, twocuppa) and that even an insulated travel mug can't keep it warm for that many hours, IT'S STILL DRINKABLE. And enjoyable, even.

Do that with yer silly coffee, will ya?

Who cares headline of the day:

Justin Trudeau Smoked Pot

Ok, maybe it was yesterday's headline, but I had other things on my lack-of-mind then.

This headline has as much relevance to me as Justin Bieber is a Douchbag or Ben Affleck is Playing Batman. I couldn't care less if I tried. Maybe it would do the rest of parliament good if they all took a 4:20 some day. And it's not like I'll be voting for the phony little weasel anyway, right?

Nah, I'll be voting for some other phony little weasel.

Incidentally, and not that you should care about this any more than I care about most Justins, but I'm actually in favour of legalisation of marijuana. Legalise it, regulate it, tax it (especially the tax it part. Just think of the returns on a pot tax)... that certainly has to make more sense than having the court systems spending so much time sending people to jail for carrying a spliff or two.

Anyway. I've totally forgotten what this post was going to be about now.


Oh yeah, selling out.

I just finished reading an article by someone (doesn't matter who) that I really admire. I admire his talent, I admire the skill and uniqueness with which he expresses himself, and I got a good deal of enjoyment out of the column.

That is, until I got to the bottom and found out that it was a sponsored article. Sponsored by a company directly interested in the subject matter.

Well, great. Way to lose all of your credibility in one sentence, writer.

Now, I'm not saying that professional writers shouldn't be paid. Hell, technically even I get paid to write in my job (definitely not for this pointless blog, though). But as soon as you're paid by a company to write about something that they're concerned with, you're a shill. A well-expressed shill, but a shill nonetheless. And this guy already makes enough money that he had no need to be a shill.


I'm not going to say I'm disillusioned by this because the world's the world and famous people sell out all the time. I'm also not going to say that I want all art to be pure, since that's pretentious bulltwaddle. Nah, all I'm going to say is why don't we all just forget that this ever happened and watch a spider dance? No, seriously. It's absolutely fantastic. Please watch it even if you don't like spiders. And it's a pretty spider, to boot.

Besides, spider dancing has to be the purest of art, right? It's not like they're getting paid or anything.


Ignorant truck update:

When I got home from work, the floor was already thumping. It thumped all evening, and was still thumping when I went to bed. Luckily, my brain was finally tired enough that it managed to ignore what was going on (a very weird thing for my too easily distracted brain to do) and go to sleep. Slept until 6 am, too, which would be like sleeping 'til noon for most of you.

The floor wasn't thumping at 6. It will be when I get home, though.


Thursday, 22 August 2013

Oh, I have thoughts

I don't know how many of them will actually make it into the post, though, because one of my current thoughts is that I have a massively ignorant truck for a neighbour at the moment. Downstairs neighbour, even, which lets you know the extensive effort it must have taken for him (I'm assuming him, just because) to be so annoying to me and probably everyone else in every apartment anywhere near him.

Listen, I know it's the time of year when the college students are moving into the building and that it's possible that this person has never lived away from home before, but c'mon. Common sense, right? Even if you have nowhere to be and have the leisure to be playing with the audio after midnight doesn't mean that we're all in the same boat. Night before last I wasn't sleeping (yeah, where have you heard that before?) when around 12:30 the distinctive thumping of house music started. House music? In your one-room apartment after midnight? Really? Last night I was especially tired and was sure I'd finally get some proper sleep, when what I can only figure was one of those very cinematic video games started playing. And went on and on and on and was still going strong when I finally got to sleep sometime around 2 am.

Idiot. Headphones, ok? And you've probably guessed that this person isn't actually a truck. Just play rhymes with and it'll make much more sense.


In other annoying news, I decided to wear my hair loose in the back today rather than ponytail it for the first time in months, and boy is this never happening again until I get a haircut. I have about a two year growth on this ratty head of mine just now, and to feel it all over my shoulders and getting caught up between my back and the chair is really frustrating.

My two fans have heard this before many times, but I'm not all that fond of my hair. It's very fine and very straight (those ads for shampoos that will flatten your curls bemuse me a whole lot), and on top of that it grows very fast. So, fine hair that's just going to grow out of a style anyway doesn't get styled much. I usually at least pin it in front (like it is right now), but lately I've just been tying the whole mess back and ignoring it. Except today, and I wish I hadn't suddenly decided this morning that the clips would be fine on their own.

Stupid hair.

Stupid lack of sleep.

Stupid trucks.

I think that I should probably stop typing now, before everything else becomes stupid.

Friday, 16 August 2013


Not quite one o'clock and I'm fading fast, boys and girls. It's been an interesting couple of days. My neck's been out so I've been working at home, which would be ok except for the part that my apartment's been literally (proper use of literally, not internet I-don't-know-what-literally-means version) running at 30C for over a week now. So, discomfort and bad sleep. Fun times.

The planter dog looks like he understands, though.

I'm going to have to get the silly thing a proper bedding plant for a friend next year. This is two years in a row that he hasn't done well being seeded. I think that he's a bit depressed about the whole thing.

Or maybe just about being a scrap metal dog with a pot for a body, I dunno.

I did warn you about the tired part, right?

Well, maybe we'll keep this short for today and just take a moment to acknowledge the very nice rooibos chai that's been accompanying me through the fog (although, given the fog, my mate chai might have been a better choice). It came special delivery via my sister-in-law, and is NOT from Teavana.

It's from here. I've had a browse through the catalogue, and it's tempting. I'd have to go to Edmonton for a physical store, I guess, but I see that there's free shipping on internet orders over $50. Doesn't take much to get over $50 in specialty teas...

Definitely tempting. I'll keep you posted.

Because I just know you're all anxious about my source of teas.


Tuesday, 13 August 2013


 To be fair, there are likely some spiders in there somewhere as well. You know, for anyone who might have missed them.

Anyway, here's a little of what I've been up to in the past day or so, and yes, I have permission to post these photos. I'll give those of you on facebook and instagram a moment to digest that. Yep, some of us still like to have permission from people before we post personal photographs. Odd, right?

Anyway (again), these are my nephews. Sorry for the fuzzy pictures, but it was getting late and between the light levels and the busyness of the boys I should have been on a faster shutter speed. It's enough to give the idea, though, and I suppose it gives the truck race below an artsy feel of speed or something.

 The boys (and, funnily enough, my brother and sister-in-law) have been visiting Alberta for this past week. It's the first time for the kids, and the first time that I've met them. We spent most of yesterday out at a corn maze, and other than the lobstery looks I have from the parts of my skin that are usually covered by my work t-shirt but weren't yesterday (let's just say that I have an interesting pink vee on my chest and I'm a genuine redneck today. And a redforehead as well from not having my work hat on, although that's not as Alberta cliché) it was a pretty good time. Lots to do out there
besides mazing (and a good thing, too, because we were pretty bad at that part), and between having rubber duck races using hand pumps -- every parent of young kids should have a hand water pump in the back yard, I've now decided -- and shooting produce at an old bus with air cannons, I think the boys had fun.

They head off tomorrow, and of course I head back to taking pictures of spiders. Probably a good thing, really. This had to've come close to giving the blog a point, and we all know that if this blog comes to a point it'll turn into a pumpkin.

Frankly, I'm not that much fond of orange. Or glass slippers.


One last thing: International Left-handers Day today. Try not to cut yourself with that, ok?

Friday, 9 August 2013


Ok, ok, I won't do it again.

You're probably going to be seeing a few of these daylilies in the next few days, though. I say this every year, but they're one of my favourite things in the garden so I take loads of photos.

Sorry for the short posts these days, but I need to get back to work.

More tomorrow, maybe.

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Find the spider!

Juuust kidding.

Well, there probably is a spider or two in there, actually.

Have fun looking.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Find the spider!

Sorry, I couldn't resist. Goldenrod spiders are fun.

If it's any consolation, I've been thinking about taking my purple pigeon skull for a tour of the Nature Centre on the weekend via camera. That'd be a change from spiders on flowers, you have to admit.

The skull still lives on my desk, by the way. In a little plastic canvas box, so it doesn't get broken. One of our interpreters asked if it was a little plastic canvas coffin, but I wouldn't have a little plastic canvas coffin sitting on my desk now, would I? I'd have a skull, yes, but not in a coffin. That'd be silly.

Just got a phone call from my dad that my brother and his family are on their way to town from the Edmonton airport. That's right, the Ontario crew have made their way to Alberta for a week. Does that mean that the blog will have actual people pictures on it rather than spiders and flowers?

Probably not.

I don't take many pictures of people. They refuse to pose on flowers.

Actually, to be honest, it's a bit more about privacy than anything else. Yes, in this facebooky age when so many people put so much of their lives on the internet for everyone else to judge or admire or whatever, I'm still not into it. I'm not on facebook. I have a linkedin account that I think I might have signed into twice, no matter how much the excessive e-mail generated from the damned thing encourages otherwise. I use a spider for my profile picture. I honestly don't care if you ever see me.

I've said this before, but I'm under no illusion that I'm not traceable. I mean, first of all I work at a nature centre in Alberta. There's not that many of them, and it wouldn't take a lot to find me that way if you wanted to. And that, of course, is the tip of the proverbial iceberg. If you want to find me, you'll find me.

That's fine. Whatever. But you also don't need to have the minutia of my life showing up on your smartphone multiple times a day. I'm not interested in that sort of usage.

So... probably no family photos, unless I get a really terrible looking one. That I might not be able to resist.

Back to work for me, now. Have a good visit, family.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Pointless photo of the day:

Yeah, I know that's kind of lame of me when I haven't posted for a few days, but what can I say? I go through periods when I'm just not feeling very wordy.

So let's play spot the spider instead, ok?

C'mon. You know you want to, and I promise it's in there.

Later, all.

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Pointless photo of the day:

Yeah, still not feeling very talky.

I've been trying to get a good picture of bees on the Veronica for years.

Obviously, I'm going to have to keep trying.
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