Monday – Survival of the Fattest

[date Tue, Nov 8, 2011 at 1:38 AM]


Aren’t we all tired of “OWS” “news”? Here’s an article by Mark Steyn that should put it to rest for all:

Here’s a quote from the above that is terse and precise:

At heart, Oakland’s occupiers and worthless political class want to live as beneficiaries of a prosperous Western society without making any contribution to the productivity necessary to sustain it.

Worried about water? Afraid that Obama won’t be able to control the rising seas? Frightened and fearful, Bunky? We’ve got it great here on Earth. How about this little pond just across the universe a ways – “140 trillion times all the water in the world’s oceans”:

Definitely enough water to soak even the giant head of the anointed one…..

Ever wondered why your engineering friends behave in a peculiar fashion? Here are some vignettes starring engineers that will help you understand the mind set:

One I especially enjoyed is –

Understanding Engineers #8

An engineer was crossing a road one day, when a frog called out to him and said, “If you kiss me, I’ll turn into a beautiful princess.”

He bent over, picked up the frog, and put it in his pocket.

The frog spoke up again and said, “If you kiss me, I’ll turn back into a beautiful princess and stay with you for one week.”

The engineer took the frog out of his pocket, smiled at it
and returned it to the pocket.

The frog then cried out, “If you kiss me and turn me back into a princess, I’ll stay with you for one week and do anything you want.”

Again, the engineer took the frog out,
smiled at it and put it back into his pocket.

Finally, the frog asked, “What is the matter? I’ve told you I’m a beautiful princess and that I’ll stay with you for one week and do anything you want. Why won’t you kiss me?”

The engineer said, “Look, I’m a busy engineer.
I don’t have time for a girlfriend. But a talking frog, now that’s cool!”

I found a web site with hundreds of creative modifications to helpful and important articles of signage. Here are some of my faves –

Do these folks know where the masks are made and who makes them?

A picture is worth a lot and lot and lot of words

I made a trip to Vancouver on the weekend. Jeanine is preparing for a holiday that will take her away until after Christmas. I went to see her, and to pick up a little something I bought a month ago…. Here is my report.

Lacking any transport with friends, family, or acquaintances, and outfitted with too many bags and accessories to take the bus, I tried a different method of getting to the coast without driving myself. I looked in Craig’s List and Kijiji for rides. There is a category called “ride share” in both of them. I found an advertisement from someone leaving on Friday for Richmond. I emailed, received a reply, exchanged phone numbers, received a call, established a cost and a departure schedule, packed my various articles into baggage, and had time to spare. Well planned, well organized, well priced. Well, well! Let’s talk execution of plan…………

My ride was a 24 year old 6 foot 3 inch brown-eyed blond haired bundle of twitchy testosterone drugged enthusiasm. Ideas? You betcha! By the thousand. Imagination? Double you betcha! Stories so far out he didn’t even believe himself. Reality (feet touching ground type)? Not so much, but (if memory serves) not unrealistic for his age. Dreams, ego, self esteem, confidence, bravado – long suite in spades. A healthy Canadian boyo.

He arrived a little less than an hour late to pick up me and my things. Driving a small Dodge pick-up (Dakota). I threw my stuff in the box, got in to the cab, and smelled the sweet acrid odor of strong herb – none other than the backbone substance of the BC underground economy. Did I mention the young lad was wearing a rabbit fur vest, and sporting a fedora-ish style chapeau? Stylin’ to be sure.

As we drove and talked (looking for common themes) it soon became obvious that I was in the presence of a time warp master. I suggested taking the Falkland – Monty Creek – Kamloops – #1 route, because we would save time. Unfortunately, he had forgotten his GPS in Kelowna, and another paying customer, too. Off we go to find him. He is a master’s undergrad studying journalism, 31 years young. It took us 30 minutes to load his stuff into the truck. Quite a demonstration of clueless. We chatted for about 2 minutes before politics came up. The conversation became quite charged, and both young fellows thought it would be better if we talked about Shambhala, which they had both attended. Much talk about the drug culture, the future of herbs in Kanada, and the oppression from “The Man” they felt. Next, to the farm to get the GPS.

The young man is from a wealthy family. He lives in a trailer he bought parked on one of his father’s holdings in East Kelowna – wine country. In the paddock were his sister’s 4 race horses. Lovely property. It explained a lot in a moment about how he had become such a babbling twit. With GPS firmly in hand (a banana in the other), he pronounced our next destination. Penticton! He had forgotten his wallet in his tool pouch with a fellow that employs him on a part-time basis. Phone calls located the fellow, the wallet, and the location.

Another country heard from. Mr. Journalism is anticipating a career with the CBC. His latest homework wasn’t finished (95%). We need a WiFi zone to send his work in so he doesn’t miss credits; a 5 p.m. deadline. Also, can we stop because he packed a lunch but forgot it on the counter at his now ex-home and he’s very hungry. I’m thinking……. just drop me at the bus depot, please, and here’s some $$$ to go away….. While pondering that thought, we found 97 South, and proceeded to Peachland.

After a stop for fuel (my $$$ because Space Cadet is broke – couldn’t deposit his cheque because he had no wallet – I’m committed!), we decided to drop Mr. Journalism in Peachland to feed himself, and finish his homework. Meanwhile, SC and I will drive to Penticton, retrieve the wallet, and return to pick up Mr. J. Good plan. Space Cadet and I continue south.

Driver training is mandatory for yoot’s (My Cousin Vinny reference) isn’t it? Space Cadet babbles almost non-stop, can’t keep a constant speed (gravitates to the speed of vehicles around him), and is blissfully unaware of the rhythm of the highway. The crowning behavior is he will not drive in the right hand lane. My butt cheeks got one hell of a workout clenching that seat. He texts and talks on his cellular device while driving. Lane control suffers.

I overhear a conversation with his boss, who has the wallet. They are talking a thinly veiled coded conversation about dope. Space Cadet’s sister works for a winery, and slides him almost full bottles of wine from sampling events she attends or provides. He sells the almost full bottles to his friends, and his boss (in exchange for you-know-what). We get to Penticton. SC gets his wallet from the boss, and a large Tim Horton coffee cup – warning! – very strong coffee! The boss gets an opened bottle of wine. Pleasantries are exchanged, and SC has a modicum of wit left – he puts the coffee cup in the box of the truck under Mr. J’s household goods. I almost hope to get stopped and searched just to hear the story…..

Back we go to Peachland, where it takes two phone calls to find Mr. J. Seems he started working on his homework, then started flirting with a girl in the coffee shop he found with WiFi. Flirting won out, and the homework wasn’t sent. Also, the degree of finished has decreased from 95% to 80%. Must have been some strong flirting. Can we stop somewhere later and send the homework? says he.

So far, I’ve met two new people, and toured the Central Okanagan. 4 hours have passed. We are just leaving Peachland. On the road again.

Other than lane control, center lane paralysis, oblivion and speed dyslexia, the miles pass with only a few angry honks from real drivers as they pass on the right. We reach Merritt. We drive right past the highway 5 exit, and are heading into Merritt toward the road that leads to the #1 highway 20 miles away. I break in to his monolog and tell him to turn around, we missed the exit. He says he always goes the way he was going. Yet after a few miles on the Coquihalla, he recognizes some landmarks (from the center lane) and boldly states this is the way he always goes to Vancouver. And on we go.

Hope is next, and I’m starting to hope I’ll get there semi on time in one piece. Mr. J. says can we stop in Hope for food and WiFi. SC says yup! then proceeds to drive past the two exits that would take us there. Mr. J. magnanimously declines the offer to turn around, but we look for another place. I direct the one and only Space Cadet to a truck stop on the way, but there is no WiFi. C’est la vie.

Space Cadet is getting hungry, too. Since the banana he’s probably talked 10,000 words, and eaten a bag of chips with a soda. I make an offer he can’t refuse. Get me to the Coquitlam Convention Centre and I’ll buy him a meal at the restaurant. I haven’t known SC for long, but I know he can’t refuse a deal like that. Off we drive, speeding up, slowing down, hogging the center lane. Finally, the lights of the big city. One traffic accident (not us, miraculously) and 25 miles of road construction later, we finally drive over the Port Mann. The end is nigh! Nope. We need fuel. Mr. J’s turn to ante-up. That exchange of $$$ was interesting to watch.

At long last (8 hours after leaving my house) we arrive at the entrance to my hotel. Alas, SC’s girlfriend and soul mate (they met at Shambhala in August – it’s true lust) has been texting him (various swerves and horn honks from Chilliwack to Coquitlam) to hasten. She has prepared a bath of selected herbs, spices, and who-knows-what, lit the candles, prepared the vegan repast (and the spliffs no doubt), and anxiously awaits his coffee cup darling presence. I tell you now, he was torn, but did the valiant thing and skipped the supper. No rain check was offered. A round of handshakes and off they sped to a chorus of honking horns and swerving cars.

This has been a long story. I thought I’d tell it as best I could, and save the best for last. I fell in love on the trip. A very classy lady kept me company from the moment I entered the filthy cab of that tired old Dakota. Here name is Lola. No, not that Lola, this Lola –

Lola danced while fuel burned.

How she managed to keep up her spirits with SC’s driving is a miracle in self discipline.

This story may sound like a long flight of fancy. How could I prove otherwise? Let me introduce some circumstantial evidence. Here is exhibit one –

I told SC that Jess had been to Shambhala too. I said I’d show his picture to her and see if she remembered. He is modelling the hat he wore at Shambhala.

Exhibit two –

Did I mention the beads? That is a genuine rabbit pelt vest SC is sporting. He made money driving to Vancouver. Well done young entrepreneur!

The drive home was uneventful. The End.

Joe (Time Traveller) Mekanic

p.s. Ramirez to calm my shattered nerves –





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