Friday, February 26, 2010

happy end of the week

happy fridee (as my old, old boss used to say).

perhaps with the olympics being held in my home town, perhaps the media coverage has been better than in previous years or perhaps there are more canadian athletes to cheer for, but for the first time in years i've been tuning in with regularity to watch the olympics (although, i think tonight will be the last night that i will be crying in front of the tv.)

despite my anti-olympics stance (what with my sadness over the use of tax-payer's money that only an elite group of people will have access to, the financial burden that the citizens in the GVRD will have to bear and the displacement of marginalized people) i can't help but feel giddy and excited whenever an announcer even mentions, the richmond oval, the pacific coliseum or cypress mountain.

and then actually seeing the landmarks on tv is like seeing someone you know flash onto the television for a moment and you want to point to everyone around you and say, 'hey, look! i know that person!'

hmm such mixed feelings i have towards this athletic spectacle. so i shall sign off with pedobear is a 2010 mascot?

have a great weekend and stay warm and cozy fellow torontonians!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

the scribble project

the scribble project

the scribble project

i stumbled upon a great collabo site called the the scribble project where people can download templates, draw on them and submit them to big team scribbles.

it is run by a cheery illustrator named oppy and she has been doing different collaborative projects every year.

last year it looks like over 100 people submitted their version of a totem pole.

now she is hosting a team scribble of carriages that will be put together to create a long train! my submissions are above.

you still have time if you want to participate! only 2 rules, it has to be black and white and it has to be hand-drawn - no digital drawings!

Friday, February 19, 2010

we're now a three beagle household!

fungao = sleep in chinese

.... at least temporarily. cooper is staying with us (along with his parents) while his parents look for a home in toronto! he is finally reunited with his BFF duke.

after a day of getting used to his new surroundings it's back to wrestle mania with duke! but poor petey - he was probably never socialized as a puppy and doesn't know how to play with dogs. he can't engage with cooper when cooper tries to invite petey to play and howls and duke and cooper when their wrestling gets intense.

hopefully slowly, he will learn that wrestling isn't a bad thing.

welcome to toronto cooper! don't worry, those loud streetcars (aka trams) won't hurt you and you'll get used to them in no time.

in other doggie news, several months ago i noticed that my friend had a friend on facebook with a beagle in her profile photo. i just had to introduce myself! turns out she's a big doggie lover and we're going to meet up when duke and i are back in vancouver.

she has an incredibly cute website and a blog about her dogs that she updates frequently: puppy jones

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

happy valentine's day

happy belated valentine's day and chinese new year!

scrum-diddly-umptious vegan cupcakes from omg bakery just a block south from us. don't let the vegan part fool you, this is one rich, delectable cupcake!

according to some reading i've been doing this year is the year of the white tiger. apparently the tiger's main element of wood can potentially clash with the metal element of white. this may mean that aggressive nature of the tiger can turn ferocious and cruel when suppressed by metal, creating tumultuous events. so take caution this year!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

berlin in january

across from the berlin gallery

the berlin wall

banhof postdamer platz

beliner dom

the neue synagogue

the holocaust memorial, snow-covered

i adore this city. berlin is one of the few cities i've been to recently where i felt, yah, it would be amazing to live here for a chunk of my life. (too bad i don't speak german!)

after all the claustrophobic rush-rush, push-push of the big smoke, i loved the wide open spaces of berlin, hushed under blankets of snow, colours dulled under grey skies. you get the feeling that people actually live in the centre of the city, so that between "touristic" areas of the embassies and grand buildings are tucked residential areas with schools and grocery stores. (in london, no one really lives in the centre -- we're all kind of spread out in concentric circles radiating out from the middle, so that if a friend lives on the opposite side of the circle to you, it can quite often take over an hour on the tube to visit them -- although it's all still "london").

berlin is an incredibly artistic city, blessed with many art galleries and museums, five of the big ones located on "museum island" and housing some of the best collections in europe; three opera houses and countless more theatres and music halls; and home to the famous berlin symphony (we were lucky enough to catch a performance). on the subway you so often see people carrying instrument cases, and the german friends we met were all in separate quartets, quintets or symphonies of their own.

recent and ancient history have given the city an eclectic mix of architecture, all amazing in very different ways. one of my favourite days was spent walking along karl marx allee in old east berlin, home to sprawling socialist-era apartment buildings and wide boulevards. at one end sits the east side gallery, a preserved part of the berlin wall now showing murals painted by artists from around the world.

the people were very... well, german! delightfully dead-pan sense of humour, exquisitely precise use of the english language (so precise i felt a bit bashful about my own linguistic inadequacies), a love of beautiful buildings / art / music, warm with a genuine curiosity about where you are from and a willingness (often eagerness) to help. everything runs on time. everything works. the subway runs 24 hours on the weekends, to accommodate all the serious late-night partying. the escalators only start to go when someone is standing on it, to save energy. everything feels well thought-out, well-planned.

maybe i should start taking german classes...!

more pics here