Hi there, welcome to my blog.

What's this all about? Well, that's a question I'm probably not even qualified to answer. I guess it started off because I had nothing better to do, but turns out that I kind of like it. So when I'm not working for The Man I like to take pictures, make videos and write about whatever else might seem like a good idea at the time.

From dragon boating to mountain biking, to road trips and travels overseas - this is me trying to enjoy life. Clock out at 5, eat, drink and don't forget to smile a lot.

The Time Machine


This is a personal blog, all opinions expressed are meant to be in good fun - if you are offended by heavy sarcasm and jokes that are in poor taste then this is not for you. If you have any copyright related issues please contact us via messenger pigeon.


Tuesday, May 31

What you know about mowing lawn?

11 bags for 2nd mow of the season. Damn rain.

Monday, May 30

Dragon boat regatta season is upon us...time to get a new paddle but which one?

Dragon boat paddles are pretty much a specialty item. Outside of MEC and the GWN website, it's pretty difficult to find a reseller of high end paddles in Toronto. Whether it be Apex, Burnwater, ZRE or whatever, it's not like you can just walk into any Sport Chek or paddling store and just score one in the exact size you need. More likely you'll have to order one off the web and pay $20 for shipping, which is like having a dog kick dirt in your face after she makes you pick up her poop.

I'm a pretty firm believer in having the right tools for the job and a former constant victim of the saying a poor man pays twice. Unfortunately, I also make poor decisions all the time.

So I just sold my 46" Apex Accelerator on Sunday and am looking to score a new one ASAP for this weekend, aka the Pickering Regatta. Let me tell you that going from carbon fiber to wood for 2 practices was like going from 3-ply quilted with lotion to 1-ply recycled...it did the job but it was kinda rough.

Yeah 46" is pretty short, but I thought my type 2 shoulder separation would mangle me permantnely for life (and yeah it did feel like that for a while despite the painkillers). Luckily, thanks to physio it turns out I recovered pretty well and got most of the flexibility back so time to go longer. Strange that how a few inches makes a big difference (that's also what she said...).

Apex Accelerator

Anyway, I had pretty good experiences with Apex Paddles so I'll probably end up buying the exact same paddle again - they're also located near Toronto so I can save on shipping. I mean if you were to throw down $300 for a piece of plastic carbon fiber that weighs 400 grams you'd expect good things form it, luckily Apex makes some good products. For the years I've used it, it didn't dent, scrape or chip on the blade and I gave it a beating, so it's pretty durable. I think most of the paddles supplied at Ontario regattas as well are Apex Durablades too.

The only qualm I have about it (that similar paddles like the Burnwater share) is that you need to use that wax for your bottom hand because the material is so smooth. I found that on paddles with matte finishes (like the ZRE), it's not that bad, but unless you wear a glove or have rough man hands it'll be sliding up and down that wet shaft all day...ftl

Friday, May 27

Making the switch from PC to Console...

My PS3 has been pretty much collecting dust since I got it for Christmas, mostly because I don't really have any games for it. I usually just use it to stream stuff from my computer, but that's all about to change since I just bought Bad Company 2 and Homefront for cheap off the web...just have to wait until they arrive in the mail...

Now that PSN is also back up, I'm making the transition from PC to Console Gaming. Why not? Despite that dumb Wii (what a mistake that was), I'll give consoles another try. Black Ops will probably be the last PC game that I ever buy and I might even get rid of my Mac's Windows partition too. The way I see it, it's cheaper in the long run since you don't actually have to worry about constantly upgrading hardware to deal with newer games.

It's probably not like I'm a hardcore gamer or anything, in fact I've only had my Steam account since December. I guess maybe it's because I don't watch TV anymore that COD ended up consuming those hours, but I haven't played games like this since Counter-Strike a few years ago. It took me a while to get up to speed with the mouse again, but it's a relatively BS free experience nowadays and I play like a boss.

The biggest hump is going to be getting used to that damn DS3 controller - it's been a nightmare so far. At the moment I might as well be using my feet because I can't aim for shit. It'll be great when my hands actually do what I want them too, but until then I'm that noob running into walls, looking at the ground/sky and getting shot in the face.

2 for $40..PS3 dominance, here I come (maybe).

Thursday, May 26

Dino's Wood Burning Pizza and that hockey movie Goon...

So we did end up getting into that test screening for Goon last night. It was legit and serious business apparently.

There were actual security guards wearing bullet-proof vests (not teen theater workers) and no cell phones were allowed in the theater either - they actually searched you with metal detectors and had a legit service where they stored your electronics in sealed bags so you couldn't bring them in. There were also some suits there handling the admin stuff, and the guards patrolled during the screening with so-called "anti piracy technology" to make sure no one was trying to snap photos or record it. I never actually saw this equipment in use...unless they were actually referring to the flash lights they were carrying.

What we saw was a "rough cut" of the movie so there were timestamps, off sound, off picture and some CGI missing, but overall still very watchable. I don't even know when this movie would be released or even have a trailer available, but based on the survey we had to fill out pretty much everything about it is subject to change, so who knows what the final cut will be like.

Yeah, so there was a survey afterwards and they randomly selected people for focus groups too, but considering that we didn't get selected and that it was totally free and the movie was good I can't really complain.

As for the movie, yeah it was pretty good but keep in mind that I also enjoyed Mystery Alaska too, so... I guess I can't really talk much about it but I will say that it was much better than I expected. MUCH BETTER. I'm not going to lie, but I went in there with pretty low expectations but ended up laughing a lot. There was tons of profanity, lots of violence, awesome soundtrack and it was actually really funny pretty hilarious.

Anyways, we also enjoyed some pizza at this place called Dino's Wood Burning Pizza aka Wize Guyz Pizzaria (they spelled "pizzeria" wrong). While it's not a fancy restaurant like Pizza Libretto, the fare was pretty good. Check it out, this thing is Turkish and called a Pide (pronounced pee-day lol).

Dino's Wood Burning Pizza - Sujuk Pide

Here's a shot of the oven - they use legit wood, not even skids. Sorry it's blurry, my cellphone ninja skills failed me...

Wednesday, May 25

What free movie? Test screening? I'm in.

While lining up the other day for Thor, this shady guy in a suit came up to us and offered free tickets to a screening of this new movie called Goon. I can only assume that he was racial profiling because other than math advice or help with taxes I can't imagine why he'd hit up a random group of Asians (in public) for a movie about hockey.

Anyway, while I imagine it being somewhere along the lines of Balls Out: The Gary Houseman Story, I can't really say that I'm expecting too much out of it (surprise!). I'm not even sure that we will actually get in because that's how sketchy the whole deal seems. For all I know they could lead us into a dark theater (blindfolded) and it might turn out to be a huge rape party, who knows?

I've never even heard of this movie nor have I been to a screening before, so I don't even know what "test screening" actually means. Judging by the flyer and huge disclaimer I guess maybe we fill out a lame survey and can never speak of the movie until it comes out...and also help them decide whether it goes straight to Betamax DVD or not.

Tuesday, May 24

4 Pounds of wing = BBQ season in full effect

I ate a lot of BBQ this long weekend. A LOT. Monster wings FTW.

I had also grilled some gizzards to go along with the hearts, but I overcooked them they were chewy as hell they weren't so good - will leave it up to the Japanese.

Sunday, May 22

Black Ops: The easiest way to get Flak Jacket Pro & Hacker Pro

My allergies woke me up way too early for a long weekend and the lawn mower actually broke down on me too, so I pretty much gave up on the outdoors this morning. Instead I popped some drugs and tried to see if I could do some work online, as I haven't played much BO this week at all.

Instead of the usual TDM I decided to play some DEM/HQ and perk grind instead. Anyway, to make a long story short let me tell you that Flak Jacket + Sleight of Hand + Hacker + that type of game = Pro Perks in 3 hours.

Seriously, you just won't see that type of spam in TDM and get those opportunities. Just with the amount of spam people lay down and also throw at you, just by the odds alone, you'll hit up these challenges pretty easily. While FJ and Tac Mask go together hand in hand for this type of game, hacker will also give you a pretty BS free experience too.

I mean all you have to do is play DEM and you'll have frags flying at you all day long. You can also throw down the jammer to do some work near objectives too. Plus, if ou actually play the objectives they're XP dynomite too.

Check this out. Some dude killed me 19 times and I didn't even kill him once...how embarrassing...but then again, he is at 15 Prestige...

The hardest part about FJP is undoubtedly challenge #3: throwing back the 5 grenades. Just like how rarely people use the sentry gun, it seems like not most people prefer to run semtex instead of frags too.

Luckily, if you just sit on defend pretty much any last standing dem-site you'll get spammed with all sorts of shit. The good thing about this challenge is that you don't actually have to throw back the frag - just picking it up and exploding in your hand is good enough.

Even in DOM people will spam you all day, so just by playing the odds that with all that crap flying at you some of it will actually be grenades, you'll be able to throw back at least 5. I managed to complete this one in 3 games of DEM in Nuketown, since it's Spamville anyway.

The animation of throwing back a grenade is also something you never really see/kind of awkward looking/looks very much like BFBC2.

For Hacker, I used to use the motion sensor but now it's all about the jammer - it covers a pretty big area and that shit is actually helpful to your team and you don't even need to pay attention to it. I find that with the motion sensor, unless the guy is camping or trying to creep up on you, he's usually out of sensor range by the time you chase him down. The C4/claymore kills will just come naturally too if you actually decide to throw one down, so no big deal.

Just plant the jammer in a high traffic location or at an objective and run around it's zone. It's large enough that you don't have to camp anywhere, so it's not too bad completing that challenge either. It took me longer to get the claymore kills than this.

I've been playing a lot of objective type lobbies lately and the thing about that is I always feel like I'm the only one actually playing the damn objective. Maybe it's because I like to dolphin dive onto bombs go in alone, but it never seems like my teammates have my back. When one or two guys actually work together, it's like magic because people don't know how to react or something.

Sure a guy might go 30-3 laying in a tire defending our spawn, but with 0 plants/defuses/captures/defends he's hardly helping the team get that W in a 9 v 9...

Now off to a BBQ with watery eyes and snot pouring out my face...

Friday, May 20

Buying this huge bucket of sour keys was a wonderful idea!

TGI...wait...I'm on call this weekend...NNNOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Congratulations S & C! Have a fantastic trip!

Have a few (dozen) for me and enjoy the beach! See ya'll when you get back!

Blossoming Tree 2

Thursday, May 19

Cross another book off the Enderverse...

...and another one off the Diary of a Wimpy Kid-verse...

Haters gonna hate.

Prince Sushi probably doesn't take reservations seriously...

Let's just say I've been eating out quite a bit this week and at this point I am certainly convinced that Prince Sushi doesn't actually take reservations seriously nowadays...

So the other day, we get there and I'm like, "Reservation under Jake..." The lady looks at my sister and I and is like, "Yeah, for 2 right?" I tell her no it's actually for 4 and she looks back at the tables (not even at a workbook or anything on the counter when you enter (where I would presume they'd write down any reservation info in)) and there just happens to be a table open so she gives it to us. No big deal.

If you've been there before, you'd know as well as I that it's always busy around dinner time and you can have reservations and sometimes even have to wait. That's a bit suspect but I used to give them the benefit of the doubt because it is actually a pretty small place and could see how there might be a hold up every now and again...until now.

So the funny part about the whole thing is that when my cousin arrived, he was surprised we actually got a table because when he called to make the reservation the lady seemed to take the time and number but actually hung up and didn't even ask for his name. Fo reals.

So my guess is that you can stroll in at any given time, give some phony name and then probably get in before actual legit walk-in customers.

I've also been thinking about trying to make it onto the Wingporium Wall of Fame too. I'm on the fence about it because I've heard rough stories about dudes dry vomiting and having to take time off work and stuff like that from the Black Mamba sauce. MvF?

Wednesday, May 18

Post Office Bike Jam 2011

My bike's tires are deflated and it still has mud on it from last year...

This is why forums have moderators...

I couldn't help but to share this with you all after reading it of the gun nutz forums...

Originally Posted by USP:

Unfortunately burning hobo's alive, beating them with clubs or jizzing on them is not allowed. So this thread is now closed. Did you guys really think it was ok to suggest setting homeless greasy people on fire? We wont even discuss the jizzing on....

The $1 Toronto Megabus - is this thing for real?

Kind of misleading, but $26 to Montreal ain't too bad. First time I ever saw one of these - guess advertisement really works.

Tuesday, May 17

I just friended you, do you think you're gonna confirm or ignore?

Could it be that I actually enjoyed singing karaoke on Saturday night? The world may be coming to an end...

Even karaoke can get pretty competitive sometimes...

Monday, May 16

Dragon boat practice in the rain...there's always a couple of them every year...

Cold + wet = not super enjoyable.

At least the TO Marathon guys kinda know how it felt...

Friday, May 13

Grinding for those Black Ops Nova gas kills...what about Prestige icons?

I don't think I'll Prestige in Black Ops ever again. After I did my 1st Prestige I was all like, ZOMG MUST GET GOLD GUNS AND SKULL BADGE NOW! I'm currently at lvl 43 again and by my broad estimation it would take me 2 years to get to 15 Prestige lvl 50 at this rate. Yeah, achievements were a hell of a lot faster the 2nd time around, but pimpin' really isn't that easy.

Here's a little perspective for you: the guys at Machinima (Seananners, Hutch & Co.) took turns and did a 24/7 live stream to see how fast they could get to 15 Prestige. It took them about 25 days - 17 days 19 hours of actual in game time with a final KDR of 1.06! Sounds about right as it took me a little over 4 months / 1 day actual play time to get 1 Prestige.

If you think about it that's a long time, especially for people who don't actually play video games for a living. It also gives you an idea of the time you spend sitting in lobbies and loading screens and designing your playercard, facepaint and camo.

If you don't know what Prestiging is let me drop some knowledge on you. In a nutshell, once you hit lvl 50 you unlock the option to Prestige. After a few confirmation screens, you've given up EVERYTHING you've earned up to that point, but have gotten a shiny new emblem in return. The emblem shows up next to your name for others to see. Repeat 14 more times.

Now that you're back at lvl 0, with 0 cash and crap guns - it's time to unlock everything all over again. Fun right? I love me my video games, but I'm still just an addict a casual gamer after all and starting back at square one every now and again is a hard pill to swallow if it's taking me weeks to get there.

Despite returning to my somewhat questionable run around and react faster than the other guy play style, I'm pretty decent player with a KDR at around 1.15 - judge me as you will but the mouse actually made a difference (I think). Just like before, grinding for those pro perks is what's holding me back because that shit is tough. Most of the time you just have to play enough or work the probabilities to run into some of those situations.

I mean you shouldn't rely on Pro Perks but when people be shooting noob tubes, flashing you left/right/center and constantly getting those 2 kill spy planes I'll leave Prestiging to the pros and just cheese them with my own loadouts.

Luckily, the stuff I like to use such as Scavenger and Sleight of Hand come pretty fast and naturally just by playing - I think I got them all before level 10 the second time around. The next easiest to get are Ghost and Warlord. But for the other ones, shit is just hard because those #3 challenges are usually pretty annoying. Here are a couple examples:
  • Flak Jacket Pro: Throwbacks - Throw back 5 enemy Frag grenades. Honestly, who the hell doesn't cook grenades nowadays? WTF
  • Hacker Pro: Near Equipment Kills - Kill 25 enemies within the radius of your Jammer or Motion Sensor. I hate camping. Always.
  • Tactical Mask Pro: Nova Gas Kills - Kill 20 enemies poisoned by your Nova Gas. Yeah I'm that one dude using Scavenger and always popping Nova gas all over the place.
After going 5-27 for about 6 games the other night while grinding for pesky objective game-type challenges, I decided it wasn't in my best interest to re-earn these things 13 more times over. It was probably the most detrimental session to my combat record ever and I didn't even really achieve much. But I mean other than Prestiging, completing the challenges is the only other thing you really have to show from multiplayer anyway.

I've only seen a couple gold guns in my time, and in all fairness those guys were awesome. But man, if I played that much I'd be awesome too. Hopefully.

The only tip I have other than not playing games is that since you do lose all your cash when you Prestige, you should definitely blow it all on playercard unlocks before since it's the only thing your really get to keep afterwards.

Yes my name is FREE BEER 4 ALL and my playercard says "get real noob"... Anyway, enough game talk.

Thursday, May 12

Budweiser King of BBQ sauce?

Who knew they made this? Anyway, if you're not grilling by now I feel sorry for you.

You know I totally got BS'd the other day during my aerobics class. I go to get a drink of water (which isn't something uncommon since you're not supposed to keep your bottle on the floor anyway (since people be high stepping all over)) and some biatch strolls in and squats in my spot. Like mid class. WTF we are in a huge gymnasium and I mean you walked past me. On top of that she throws down a plastic water bottle on the floor. All I could do was give her my meanest cut eye, totally not stand aligned with everyone else and do my side kicks entirely too close to her. Slut.

Wednesday, May 11

It had to happen...eventually

Applying touch up paint was more difficult than expected / doesn't look too good.


Tuesday, May 10

JAPAN Trip 2010 - Part 6: Last Stop Kyoto!

6 months and 6 videos later...

I can't even believe it's been almost half a year since visiting Japan - time flies when you're not having fun. Anyway, the series is now complete and I'm happy to have cleared up my homemade video editing queue for now - just forget the fact that you will probably never see those videos of Jay Peak, Revelstoke and Kicking Horse from this past ski season...heh

But yeah, Japan was really fun...

My longest video ever...wow

Full playlist HERE.

Monday, May 9

Out of the freezer and into Lake Ontario. Paddles up...

Looks like dragon boat season is officially underway. I managed to get out on the water twice this weekend for my teams' first on-water practices. Unlike last year I don't think we could have asked for better weather, as it was down right balmy for this time of the year.

Like every first time in the boat, it all starts with the coach insulting your stroke working out the kinks. Consequently, it also leads to huge aches in back muscles you never knew you had and also pains in your rear caused by those two butt bones. It shouldn't even be the case considering how much junk I have in my trunk...

Not sure if I just stepped it down or everyone else just stepped it up this year, but the stroke rate has gotten pretty fast lately. From that time we got embarrassed by the Stratford Women Contrary to popular belief it's not always how fast you can go hit the water but the quality of the stroke...

Friday, May 6

Double dragon boat practices this weekend...actual water instead of pool practice FTW!

Like I sort of mentioned yesterday, my lunches this week have been pretty pathetic. I even had soup with melba-toast on Wednesday - it was bullshit.

I didn't have any dinner left-overs all week so I've been trying to not buy expensive lunches as I've been work-clothes shopping every day too. Saving every extra dollar helps when you're on a shopping rampage and buying things like $160 worth of leather belts. And contrary to popular belief I am not made of money.

The reason I'm spending so much on clothes is that a little over a year ago, back when I first turned corporate, I was somehow under the impression that I would be wearing khakis and dress shirts like all the time. So I bought tons of khakis and dress shirts. Turns out I actually hate ironing a lot. I've heard a rumor about this thing called wrinkle-free fabrics but, like ear-muffs, they might just be a myth.

As a result I have a closet full of wrinkled clothes and I just wear golf shirts and dress pants year-round because I haven't updated my work wardrobe since. I guess you look less ridiculous it's easier to get away with a wrinkled golf shirt than a wrinkled dress shirt shirt, plus it's a way more comfortable combo. You also don't need to iron them if you fold them hot out the dryer. Unfortunately, I only bought a hand full of these things at the time so I've just been rotating those LIKE ALL YEAR. Since they just all happen to be variations of black and grey, people probably think that I wear the same thing every day or am just too cool sad all the time.

My actual golf shirts don't qualify as work wear because their shine is probably against some policy and the bright colors don't belong in such a depressing place. So...time for new clothes.

These weak lunches probably means that I'll have to get a burrito tonight anyway...

Anyway, hopefully the NDC @ Sunnyside got their act together repaired/recovered their boats because the entire GTA is probably itching to get their dragon boat season going. A lot of teams get on the water for the first time right about now. I saw some of the pictures from the damages at the TS&CC and it was pretty crazy - looks like all kinds of boats just got tossed around everywhere. I feel sorry for all you suckers who own yachts (not really).

Haven't received any word of cancellations so far so...paddles up!

You know, with all the recent editing I've been doing, I just remembered that none of us has even touched the US or Interior BC ski footage from earlier this year...