Holidays 2008 – post production report

The 2008 holidays started with my having to purchase new tires for my car…  It was needed but at the same time I was hoping to avoid doing it until after the first of the year, but as the quote goes, “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans".”  So I accept the fact i had to put $900 into the car…

I started the week of Christmas at work, it was a pointless exercise as my entire venue team was gone and I think the department I work in was the only that had more than 5 people there.  I couldn’t really get anything done, so I helped where I could and left a little early on Monday.  By 5:00 pm I decided I was going to drive down to Seattle on Tuesday, so I packed the car and a bag.

It was also decided I would give another couple of friends a ride to the airport on my way out of town, I don’t mind, it’s on the way to the border!  Speaking of the border, on the way there I passed by 7 accidents, mostly people just driving to fast for the conditions.  Something to remember, four wheel drive doesn’t equal four wheel stop on ice.  Thankfully none of the accidents looked like there were any fatalities, so that’s something.

Crossing the border is always a challenge and I especially like the question, “what are you doing in Canada and why are you visiting the us?”

After a very uneventful, but long drive to Seattle I met up with S and her friends.  They were a good bunch of people and they not only know theatre and darts, but they can drink with the best of them!  I’m glad to have met them and I’m looking forward to seeing them again in the future!

Christmas eve is always a bit of a challenge, but it was good to see everyone and especially my brother, the last J.  Having his birthday on Christmas eve is a little bad, but it’s life and you can’t get away from it!

The big day started with a phone call at 4:30 AM from E, she still has problems with the whole time difference thing, but it was excellent to hear from her!  If someone has to wake me up at 4:30 AM on Christmas day at least it was her and not some niece or nephew and the whole “Santa’s been here!”  Yes, I know I was the first one up for years, but I’ve grown out of it so leave me be in the morning!  It was great to have a quick catch up with E and I hope to hear from her again sometime soon!

The day itself was good, a nice little nap in the afternoon, a huge turkey dinner and a showing of The Dark Knight!  I’m not sure my aunt knew what she was getting into to, but it was fun to watch with my sister, her husband and my brother.  Of course I think I’m the only one who watched the whole thing, everyone else fell asleep sometime during the movie.

Boxing day found me driving back to the other side, the other side is the non-island side of the water as my folks live on an island.  I headed back to S’s house and a boxing day party.  It was a little exciting getting there, but I had a blast with S’s friends and the two who I had met at the beginning of the trip were at the party, so it was good to see them there and have a few more words before I headed north. 

I managed to get back to Van on Saturday and didn’t leave the house until New years eve.  It was great to just relax and not have to be anywhere or have any plans.  Some would call it lazy, but I would just call it a holiday in my own apartment.

New Years Eve was a bit off, I wasn’t feeling like partying much, but I made the effort.  I guess I hit a stride at about midnight and went a little nuts at the pub.  I’m pretty sure we closed the place down and I didn’t get to be until at least 5:00 AM…  I didn’t manage to get out of bed until Noon and I didn’t feel right until about 8:00 PM.

I’ll give the 2008 holidays a 8 out of 10 for an overall score.  It’s really an average, but I’m glad I was around this year for the family as who knows what will happen for the 2009 holidays, after all it’s going to be pretty busy for me as well as a lot of friends.

Christmas again…

It’s not that I don’t like the holidays, in fact in a way I kinda enjoy finding gifts and spending time with people and all that jazz…  I guess it’s just a block I have against this time of year…  Maybe S has it right, just spend time at home doing all the things you wouldn’t normally have time to do, like painting one’s kitchen.

Water

I went swimming tonight at a friends place.  It’s the first time I’ve been in the water since I went to Hawaii with S.  I realized over the last few months I’ve been getting more and more uptight.  I couldn’t put my finger on it until tonight while I was swimming laps.  I’ve been missing the water.

When I was growing up I swam a the pool across the street, it was comical really I feel like I spent more time there than anywhere else during the season.  I found peace in the pool, the repetition of the stroke, the breathing, the turns and most important the singular motion needed to stay floating and alive.

It’s amazing how good I feel after that swim tonight, mentally not physically…  Right now it feels like my shoulder is on fire, but I have a clarity I’ve not had in a long while.  It constantly amazes me when I remember to do the simple things and how good it feels to do something like that.  The simplicity of swimming…  I’ll have to find a way to thank K & B for letting me borrow their pool.

I Got This

Politics – A wrap

In what was a record vote in the US, I was absent.  I’m not far from the results given the level of coverage around the world last night and continuing today.  It was a funny thing last night; I was sitting at a Korean BBQ place in Vancouver with my new flatmate and her two friends from Jersey.  I was pretty happy with the results prior to heading out to dinner, last I saw Obama had a good lead and I was thinking there was still a chance for McCain to comeback, but it was going to be really tough (No I wasn’t rooting for him). 

As we got our first round of hot sake, a fellow patron of the restaurant stood up and calmly announced that Obama had won the election (damn iPhone users for having access to information faster than me).  We toasted our new president and went about our dinner.  It wasn’t until I was looking at the returns when I got home later in the evening, well pretty late into the evening to be honest, that it really hit me.  This is history in the making; from the beginning I had an inkling of doubt that somehow McCain would win and we had the chance to continue down the same road we’ve been traveling for the last eight years.  The possibility of a traveled and truly international human to become our next president was almost a dream come true to someone like me.  You get a different perspective on the world when you live elsewhere for a length of time.  You realize that it’s not just about you and your country anymore; it’s about the global community we are all part of and it’s out duty as a human to look out for each other.

We as a nation had forgotten that we’re part of something bigger and our borders are not meant to define us, we define ourselves on how we interact with the rest of the world.  We can be a bully and have everyone fear us and have no respect, or we can be a true leader and use our people to the best of our ability to bring the world together.

Politics – Why?

So I’m normally a person who votes their mind not a party. This year I was looking over my ballot and I discovered I was voting along a specific party line and not necessarily my mind. I had to take a step back and do some research on why I was voting along a specific party line. After taking the time to do some more reading on the issues I got my head back into the game. I voted the remaining ballot based on my conscience.

I’ve grown up in a very liberal house, one could call it extreme left wing, but I think it was not that bad.  As I got older and was able to start thinking critically about the issues myself I was finding myself a moderate compared to my parents.  Now as I’m a voting adult I’ve discovered neither of the popular parties really reflect my values and I seem to not be the only person.  I’ve been an independent, not picking sides.  I’m the voting equivalent of Switzerland.  Of course that targets me as one of the candidates most valuable votes, I’m the guy they have to work to convince and I’m not easy.

I sit here in Canada, staring at the news trying to get a pulse on what’s happening back home and the direction the country is going to go.  Will we be forced to hang our heads as ex-patriots or do I get to be proud to be an American?  It’s funny to say something like that given my track record of not really lying but not telling people where I’m from when asked.  Proud to be a citizen of my birth country, what an odd concept.  I don’t really think I’m going to hinge that pride on who is elected, more like on how we show the world we can actually have a fair election that isn’t swayed by the top 1%.  How each and every citizens voice can and will be heard and we will all make a difference today, and no matter how you vote you have a duty as a citizen to make your voice heard.

Vancouver Week 1

Vancouver-0815There were about 25 of us in the class of October 6th, all of us are with different FA’s, although the largest group in this class is the logistics crew.  Here we are, all shiny and new, looking forward to getting started.  It amazes me how many different people come together to work on a project of this size.

Two weeks ago I was told what venue I would be working on and I was stunned, it’s the venue I would have wanted, frankly I would have worked anywhere, but to have this specific venue I’m pretty excited.  The opening and closing are going to be incredible and the venue is going to be hard to work in, but the results will be great.

When I was just starting out in the entertainment industry I was in theatre.  I started out pushing boxes, painting sets and basically doing whatever I was told to do.  My dream was to work in Ashland as a stage manager or a technical director, I’ve obviously not done that yet, but I never thought of working in events.  I went to college (if you can really call it that) with the intent to continue working in theatre.  I discovered during my schooling that there really wasn’t any money in theatre.  So I started supplementing my income by working for a company that helped do the technical side of events.  Anything from birthdays and weddings to fashion shows and auctions.  I started there pushing boxes and doing whatever I was told, I finished with that company as a project manager / account executive.  After that I decided to stay in the events and went to work for another company traveling the world working trade shows and events.  Now I’m sitting here in Vancouver reflecting on the choices I’ve made from that first time I walked into a theatre and decided I loved it to taking a job with a very disorganized company to getting on a plane for a place I knew nothing about (including where it really was).

Politics or how I became a non-caring part of the population

I was at my local pub last night trying to avoid any and all talks of politics.  It went well for the first few hours, but for some reason a bar full of drunk fools decided to watch the repeat of the presidential debate last night.  Something I’ve learned is you never mix bars with politics.  It’s just a recipe for disaster  given you have alcohol and angry people in the same room with differing views.

Take this example, a couple of friends were in a bar harping on McCain and his choice of VP, they started in on his ability to lead and pointed at his time in as a POW as not how not to fight a war.  Now observe the man at the end of the bar, silently fuming, you can visibly see his anger and hatred for the two friends rising, and yet he doesn’t say anything.  The two friends continue on ragging on McCain and the man on the corner continues to get more and more pissed.  Finally the two friends have gone far enough and the man at the end of the bar shouts “SHUT THE FUCK UP!”  He then tries to pay and the bartender, who in a wise move pays for the angry mans beer, and leave.  He doesn’t tell his story, he doesn’t explain to the others in the bar his point of view, all he does is get angry.

When you hear that story all you can think of is why did he get so pissed?  Was he a POW?  Was he a solider at some point in his life?  Why is he so angry?  These are all questions that could be asked, but he’s gone now.  The lesson is you never know who you’re drinking with and you should keep you politics to yourself.
Now you have to ask yourself why do a bunch of middle of the road people sit in a bar and shout at each other about who they’re going to vote for.  The reality is I don’t really care about it.  I know who I’ll vote for, I’m not going to force that view on anyone else.  Why should they care who I vote for?  Why should I care who they vote for?  We’re all people and are all entitled to our opinions, just like the angry man, if he had just stopped to tell his story instead of just getting pissed don’t you think he could have avoided being pissed off at a couple of people who don’t have to agree with his point of view, but could be swayed with conversation instead of anger?

As far as the presidential debate, basically it looks like McCain had a few mini strokes while speaking and frankly that scares the crap out of me that his choice of VP, one of the dumbest humans on the planet, could be one heart attack away from leading the country even further down the shitter.  At least Obama doesn’t appear to be entrenched in the “system” as much as McCain.  Maybe that simple fact means he would be the better option.

The boat show…

_MG_0482The last day of the show and I can finally do a wrap up…

The numbers:

271 total vessels
225 – Power Boats
46 – Sail Boats
181,480 sq ft of vessels
$129,769,694 total reported value (some exhibitors don’t report the value of their vessels)
69 Shore side exhibitors
32 – East Dock
11 – Entrance
12 – West Dock
14 – Tenders
17 Complaints on the starting time
25 Compliments on the starting time
1 Crazy shouting person
1 Drunken crazy quiet person
1 Pissed off exhibitor
37 cups of coffee
8 donuts
3 bagels
9 beers
9 whaler rides to and from and exhibitors office

Hopefully I’ll have some more stats after today, after all there is one more day of the show to go, who knows I might be able to add to the crazy person total!

Apparently my card is the Five of Clubs

FIVE OF CLUBS
THE ADVENTURER

This card represents mental curiosity that is satisfied through exploration and experience. Being born with this birthday makes you extremely inquisitive and naturally adventurous. You love change and variety, and you are constantly exploring new things. You are not satisfied with what you know, so seeking new information and new life experiences comes easily for you. You enjoy being active, love to travel, and you are likely to initiate change wherever you may be. You are warm, inviting, friendly, and playful, and your natural charm shines in social situations. Your laser quick mind and sharp intelligence spur you into action with your ideas. Good fortune usually finds its way to you, one way or another. It serves you to control your impulses and think things through before taking action to reap the greatest rewards. You are gifted with good communication skills and a highly creative mind and you’re not afraid of hard work, so you make a very great employee or an exceptional employer. Mental stimulation is key to your well being. You benefit greatly from being on a path of self awareness. Restlessness and uncertainty can create challenges in love so keep things spicy to avoid boredom. Use the creative intelligence that is your birthright to bring yourself joy and success. Change equals happiness for you, and your playful spirit of innocence is a gift to everyone in your life.

Not my words but good advice…

RISK
Author unknown

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out to others is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas, your dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To hope is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.

But risks must be taken,
because the greatest hazard in life is to do nothing.

The person who risks nothing,
does nothing, has nothing, and is nothing.

They may avoid suffering and sorrow,
but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live.

Chained by their attitudes, they are a slave,
they forfeited their freedom.

Only the person who risks can be free