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don’t piss me offf…

Day four into the cleanse and I’m mad. At what? I’m not sure but I’m angry most of the time. Everything annoys me. The sun, the rain, the clouds… My co-workers (especially), my friends, their cars and all other cars on the road. Except blue cars. They’re nice.

The caffeine withdrawal headaches are horrendous. I want to hit something, anything. Not a good state of mind for someone who works in QA (who’s job it is to find very annoying problems… very frickin’ annoying bugs) and surrounded by expensive equipment. I’m sitting beside a $5000 tablet PC which I’m sure would shatter if I threw it hard enough against the head of the person standing beside me. hmmm… shatter.

But then I’m fine! Spring has sprung, the birds are singing! The flowers are blooming and everything is beautiful. Have I told you today how much I love every single one of you? We’re truly all of God’s children…. queue violins.

But please, just don’t fu@#$ng piss me off because as God as my witness, I will rip off your pathetic little arm and beat you senseless with the mushy end.

Have a great day.

great guy from Japan

while we were in turkey, we met these two japanese people, yosuko & hitoshi. this was on a mini bus tour of some of the sites in cappadocia and hitoshi joined us at our pension for diner that night. i think i blogged about it but he brought his guitar and sang a few tunes. it was a great evening and he is a great guy.

he just wrote an email to rachel the other day and i have to post it. his english is far better than my japanese but it is still his second language. the fact that he put this together and contacted us means a great deal.

both hitoshi and yosuko surprised us at our wedding as they traveled, by bus, for 12 hours to get to selcuk. i sincerely hope we come across both hitoshi and yosuko again.

Hi Rachel!

Long time no see!
How are you? Poni is fine too? —> (yes, he calls me Poni, rach calls me Paulie)
I’m fine and at home in Japan now.
Thank you for everything in Turkey.
Thanks to you I could make a lot of wonderful memories of that travel.

Congratulations on your wedding once more!
Your wedding reception was so lovely and splendid.
That is unforgettable event and wonderful gift for me too.
I am sorry that I am only given by you and giving you nothing.
How about newly-married life?
I think you two are enjoying so happy life.

I am exchanging e-mails with Yasuko some times.
She seems so fine and applying herself to her piano.

My photos in Turkey have been developed.
They are so lovely and remind me of many sweet memories there.
There are a lot of your smiling faces in those.
I would like to send you photos, and if you don’t mind, please tell me
your mailing address.

I feel lucky to have been able to meet good persons like you.
I hope to see you again someday.

With best wishes,

Hitoshi.

workin’

well here we are…

the flight into the UK was very uneventful (which when it comes to flying, is a very good thing). had a window seat which makes me very happy. slept a little, read a little, slept a little more, watched the movie Catch Me if You Can (again!!!!), blah, blah, blah.

Stephan (my partner here in crime) was at the airport to pick me up so even that went without a hitch. small problem with the hotel and my reservation but due to working far more years in the hospitality industry than i want to admit, the problem hardly fazed me. to make a long story short, i stayed in a different hotel for the first night but i’m back to where i should be now in the good ol’ Travel Inn in jolly ol’ Hatfield England.

Yesterday was a bank holiday (not sure what that means) here in England so Stephan and i worked from the hotel lounge (no, we weren’t drinking). the telco carrier has provided us with a new sony ericsson p800 and excuse my language, but this phone kicks ass! it has the symbian OS which is refreshing from the other phone OS’s that we deal with. the phone has a solid connection manager and connections to the internet are very reliable and quick. i have some minor complaints about the UI but that is because i am normally a microsoft boy and have been conditioned to their stuff. anyway, rumour has it that the phone will be available on canada sooooooon so if comes out, it is definitely worth a look.

the offices here are ultra modern. they (the carrier) just moved into these offices a few months ago and i assume that it is home for several thousand employees (at least). so it is a fairly large campus. there are 3 starbucks located within the campus so i’m doin’ juuuust fine. they play very funky ambient future music in the lobbies. there are attractive ‘mobile’ receptionists walking around with bluetooth headsets making sure you are helped offering free cups of coffee at one of the starbuck’s. :-) hmmm, let me seeee, attractive women, covered in state of the art electronics, offering free starbucks coffee…. damn, i can’t seem to get this wedding ring off… :-) kidding! miss you baby!

so here we are. we are waiting for the boys back in vancouver to release the next build which should clear up a few bugs they’ve come across. its 4am in vancouver so you know they are having a good day… or night… the team working on this back at IW is amazing. the short time line, the new technology, the overtime… unbelievable.

well, i need to scram. the pm for the project here is sitting on the other side of my cube and he is demoing this new hardware which i’ve got to tell you about. he has a camera attached to the ceiling about 20 feet from his desk. on his desk he has a ‘base station’ with a sierra wireless aircard 710 (gprs) which receives the images from the wireless camera. the base station then puts the images on the net or bluetooths the images to his phone if he is in range… pretty cool stuff.

anyway. lunch is calling so it’s off to one of the staff cafeterias for some bangers and mash (whatever that is).

cheerio!

oh wait! one last note. a VERY special happy birthday to MY MOM! I wish I was there to share it with you but we’ll have to cram all of those special days that we miss with one another into one crazy day in august when you come out.

love you mommy!

Going… going… gone…

I had the fortunate experience to go to Hawaii a couple of weeks ago with friends. We went to cheer on our buddy Alex who was participating in the Lavaman triathlon. While Alex started his race around 7:30am, we arrived around 8:30 as some of the participants were on the 40k cycling leg of the event. This is after their 1.5k swim of course. And before their 10k run. Anyway… we were driving down the highway and started to see some of the frontrunner bikers. We found a safe place to pull off and wait for Alex. We didn’t have to wait long (Alex is pretty good…) for him to go past and I grabbed this shot.

It was actually a hard shot to get. While I could have set a super fast shutter speed and kept the camera fixed to one spot, I wanted to get a blurred background while keeping him in focus as much as possible. A high risk shot because if I missed it, well, no picture of Alex. I was able to practice on a few other people with varied success. In essence, you try and move (or swing) the camera as the subject passes the lens all while trying to keep the subject in focus and in frame. If done correctly (the camera lens in sync with the moving subject), Alex will appear still with the world speeding past… which is a really neat effect to show speed. I don’t think I’m explaining this very well… I’m tired. But you probably get what I’m saying.

The top image is the original (with a little colour tweaking).

And of course, when it comes to photoshop, I just can’t help myself. I wanted it to look like Alex was turning into smoke. Also a somewhat challenging effect. The hardest part was removing Alex out of the picture entirely in one of the steps that went into the final image. If you look closely in the bottom picture, you can see through Alex where his body once was. That image had to be built into the photo because… well… Alex is in the original shot. But with the effect of him breaking apart, there needed to be image created on the other side of him. Easy to do if he was in front of a single colour backdrop. Not so much when there is road, beach and sky.

Anyway. I haven’t been active in the photo world for a while and this was very therapeutic. And I’m fairly happy with the result.

Good night.