I’m more scraped up from folk-dancing on monday than learning to roller blade today. I lose.

Greek Day is on Sunday from noon to 9 p.m. Broadway will be closed from Blenheim to MacDonald to make room for vendors, music, performances and dancing in the streets. Bring yourself and your friends and be prepared to shake some poly-rhythmic booty. Liam, Vicki and I will be going.

So the other day, Monday actually, Dominique and I did something extremely silly. We made this sign:

The start of our grand boyfriend adventure

Dominique wrote the sign and, after attaching it to sticks, I carried it. (I lack the skills required to create something so girlish). We only got as far as Penelope’s before someone stopped us. A friendly older man in a white shirt thought it was funny and insisted we go in and show the owner.


Already feeling pleasantly ridiculous, we went in and let everyone read it. The owner laughed, said he wished he was younger, then told us to wait, he had just the person. The first man was then sent out to fetch someone as we assembled for a picture to celebrate our first successfully acquired “boyfriend”. The man returned with Memo, a tall young fellow, who had no idea what was going on.

Memo, it turns out, has only been in Canada a month and is still learning english. We asked him if he could bowl and, with a puzzled expression, he said yes. The other men, with shooing motions with their hands, told him he was to go with us. He acquiesced, which was nice of him, and walked up the Drive with us while we laughed and explained that Dominique had been worried that no one would say yes.

Clap hands.

Our second “boyfriend” was collected at Abruzzo’s, an Italian cafe in the block after Grandview Park. Francesco, a real character, who admitted a block later that he lied in answer to our skill testing question, “Do you know how to bowl?,” so he could come with us. I’ve never met anyone so stuffed with machismo. He was amazing. Dominique describes him as perhaps “the most macho thing to walk the earth,” and she may be right. He has a small tattoo of some sort of horned creature on his right arm and when I asked him what it was, he fumbled around and replied with, “Something strong, you know? Scary, and big, dangerous or a bull or something, really manly. Masculine. Strong. Fierce. Maybe like a demon thing. I don’t know what it is, but it’s, you know, manly.”

her first shot

When it came to bowling, the woman who worked there was better than all of us put together. She threw a strike from the seating area. Through pure luck, we each got a strike too, but I was bowling left-handed to save my wrecked shoulder from agony, Dominique can’t stay upright to save her life, Memo had never bowled five-pin before, and Francesco took everything far too seriously. He won, actually, in spite of our group effort to beat him. No matter how poor our aim, he had some terribly encouraging comment, like “It’s going to be a strike this time, I can tell.” or “Oh good try. Good try. You’ll get it next time.” Memo was an angel throughout, grinning when we had fun swinging Francesco’s words back at him, twisting them from irritating to funny. All three of us found it nerve-wracking, but silly too, how little Boyfriend #2 realized we weren’t appreciating his help. There was an especially choice moment, just after Francesco realized he was in the lead, when he asked if the winner got a kiss. I think I saw Dominique’s hands tighten on her ball for a moment and I know I saw Memo just freeze. Instead of looking at him to answer, I kept my face as straight as possible and answered in a level voice, “I would hope not,” I said. “How painfully antique that would be. No fair at all. The winner already gets to win. I say the loser gets a chocolate bar.”

But as it’s now dawn on the longest day of the year, I’m to bed. This is the television to be continued…

better security

There’s a new GROW game! This one involves six little shapes interacting in a forest. It’s deceptively simple looking compared to the twisty frustration that’s the GROW Cube, but one of the trickier realizations was that some items can “level max” without fufilling thier final functions.

  • Rhizome.org: Geeks in the Gallery: An Interview with Artists Tom Moody and Michael Bell-Smith (Part Three of Three)

    The Spaces Between Working Group, that I blogged about yesterday, is showing films again tonight after Commercial Drive Car Free Day has packed up. The community cinema’s made under an overhang that’s part of an autobody shop at Third and Commercial. I really like it. The venue was perfect for watching Metropolis. Tonight they’re keeping to the theme of No Car Day and showing End of Suburbia at 5:50, a documentary that asks if the world can actually supply the demands of the suburbanite lifestyle and what can be done before it destroys what’s left, Ikiru at 7:15, Akira Kurosawa’s masterwork about a bureaucratic city planner who discovers he has terminal cancer and, without telling anyone, sets out to change his life, and Run Lola Run at 9:40, which I’m sure you’re all familiar with.

  • The freely downloadable spoken words of Japanese Cyberpunk Author, Kenji Siratori meets the harsh audio of Nimheil: Kenji Siratori – Gene TV / Neo Drugismo vs. Nimheil

  • you’re crazy but you’re lazy, drivefest happens again


    The Drive will be closed to all motorized traffic from 1st Ave to Venables from 10am to 8pm, with free entertainment from noon to 6pm. (Yes, expect the Carnival band, though fantastically, artists are welcome to perform in the street all they want, with respect to the neighborhood and festival rules).

    It’s a grass-roots event, entirely funded by local businesses, (word has it they turned down corporate sponsorship from Pepsi this year), and run by volunteers, with performance stages at either end and in the park, a roped off street hockey area, a contingent of crazy chopperfest types, (the Burrow-y people with the strange bicycles). Last year there was an approximate twenty-thousand people wandering about and enjoying all of it. (Which might explain why it was impossible to find anyone). According to their website, “new this year is the WORLD CUP ZONE in Victoria Park. In honour of the ongoing World Cup of Soccer, the Festival will celebrate this truly global sport and the Drive’s cultural heritage with a showcase of international entertainers as well as family activities hosted by the Vancouver Whitecaps.”

    Last year‘s first-ever Car-Free Commercial Drive Festival was wonderful. Regrettably I missed most of it because I was too busy with other things, (Sunday Tea, The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party at Trout Lake), but even late, the street was a sea of clearly happy people. This year I’m going to devote my full Sunday to it and run around to see as much of it as I can, camera in hand.

    Monday, Korean Movie Mondays is showing Shadowless Sword this week, a Duelist-like, style over substance, sword-fighting film. As Duelist immediately catapulted itself into my top twenty within the first half hour, I highly recommend dropping by. Remember, if you’re reading this, you’re pretty much invited. Psychic lady building, 8 pm. If you don’t know where to go, just say.

    a crime in my country

    ultra uwe scheid
    Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.

    The angel raises her head, her eyes focusing with an audible click.

    Sometimes I’ll wake in the middle of the night, the sky still dark and broken by occasional stars strong enough to shine through to a city. My eyes are blind without my glasses, I can’t see stars, but on these rare times the darkness lets me compensate. Around me might be other people, might be only blankets. I think, “Where am I going to be?” and I feel myself leave the bed, leave my breath and body full of bones and interlocking chemicals systems and slide into the Other City, where my heart resumes beating. I have an entire life there, a place by the water, a favourite coffee shop, but I can never find it on purpose. Instead, it washes over me, into my cells like some illusive memory of being in the womb. Like when the body remains lying still on the bed, but every neuron firing tells you instead that you are weightless, floating in a fetal position, turning in warm black water.

    Amateur band performs Super Mario theme on marimba.

    There’s a wonderful music store on Commercial Drive that you should all become addicted to. The staff are friendly, with an admirable grasp of anything pleasantly obscure, and the selection is excellent. They sell odd little instruments in the front window and are always playing something you’ve never heard but instantly like. They’ve been doing it for at least twenty years. It’s like it was created for some warm love-story movie that left them behind when Hollywood knocked, but with less pretension. Aiden and I were caught earlier today by a sale table they had on the street. I walked away with Rickie Lee Jones and I’m still wondering if tearing myself away from the afro-european funk they had playing was the good idea I told myself it was. Already I caught myself singing it on the bus while I was reading my borrowed John Barnes. (One for the Morning Glory is now required reading, yo. Find yourself some kids and feed it to them, chapter by chapter.) There’s the reason I hardly ever go in.

    I went in a couple of weeks ago, though. Second time this year. I bought a street kid some guitar strings. His name’s Cody, he’s working at Juicy Juice on the Drive now, (go support him). Ryan and I met him a few months ago, his first day in Vancouver having left him begging for change outside of Love’s Touch. When we ran into him with his newly acquired guitar, I traded it for a joint, man, and he smoked it with me too, so it’s like I traded it for only half a joint, I brushed off my gift by telling him that one-string Deep Purple is a punishable crime. It’s probably true somewhere.

    edit for all of you who jumped onto messenger and asked me: I do not, in fact, remember the name of the store. It is on the block across from Beckwomans and the Santa Barbara market, (the place with the orange bags that’s a few shops down from the BBQ place that catered Jenn’s wedding and the bicycle shop), and is in between the Elizabeth Bakery and the incredibly oldschool italian cafe that goes frankly mad whenever soccer/football comes around right next to the equally brilliant bookstore and the nice little laundromat.