Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Moth & The Flame, Simple Products & Stiff Drinks

Weekly Update 2016-35: Radiohead-style dream rock from The Moth & The Flame, the simplicity of products that do one thing really well, and the hypnotic illustration of Johnathan Schubert.

Music: The Moth & The Flame
This band is channeling Radiohead something heavy. Formed in 2011 in Los Angeles, I'm really digging their changes in dynamics and interesting riffs. Not to mention, yet another score for the Discover Weekly playlist from Spotify. Well done!


Accomplishment:
This past month, I focused on the goal of practicing to get my G license. I don't even plan on driving once I have it, but society deems that this is one piece of identification that everyone must have in order to function in daily life. In any case, I took the road test yesterday and failed. I suspected that there was a small chance, even with all the practice, that I would fail. As it turned out, I was assigned the same tester who failed me three years ago on my G2 test. As soon as she opened her mouth to scoff that I didn't know where the air conditioning button was in a car that I had borrowed from my driving instructor, I knew that if there were any technicalities to find, she would fail me.

That said, I still consider this an accomplishment. I have already booked another test – this one in Orangeville where the foliage will be very pleasant in October when I take the test. I'm trying to be as positive as I can about it, though it seems like fate is against me for the current moment (read on)...

Goal:
Luck is not on my side today. After that kerfuffle yesterday, I woke up to a note taped to my bicycle this morning, asking me (very politely) to cease locking my bike against the side of my neighbours' house. I had already confirmed with these neighbours in person about keeping my bike there, as it had come very close to being taken away by my landlord in its previous location at the bottom of our back stairway.

And so, I must now solve a problem that has already twice been solved. After work today, I will find yet another spot to lock my bike to, amidst the ever bearing threat of it being stolen. I also constantly think about investing money in a lighter bike that I can actually drag up the stairs of my apartment without killing myself. That is the expensive alternative. I may end up buying a new lighter bike next spring (happy birthday to me), but the season is almost over and I think I'll be able to manage this until November or so.

I'm also going to churn out a China post this week. I've already written it, I just need to do the hard part (the photos, of course).

Random Thought:
It kind of amazes me that one can find and use all the features of a product. For example, apps are pretty small and straightforward these days, aren't they? I used to think that the opposite of a bloated app was something that didn't have enough functionality even to be considered an app.

I have realized in the past year or so that truly 'doing one thing and doing it really well' is such a key skill that many apps don't get right. I suppose I feel that way about the Facebook app. It's so big and clunky. There are too many menus and other things I can't fully wrap my head around, kind of like a mouth trying to wrap around a huge burger. I suppose it's because the desktop version of Facebook came out first (so passe, I know!) and the mobile version is attempting to carry all of the features found on desktop.

These days, I feel like trying to cram the functionality of a website into a little phone app is like overstuffing a turkey or something. I can't cognitively remember what is inside an app that is built like that. And for that reason, I really think separating out apps so that they have a single purpose is the right way to go. Pick one goal, and if your features aim to complete any sub-task that isn't part of that goal, cut the feature. Or separate it into a different product.

Facebook has done this quite well over the past while (Messenger, Groups, Pages, Moments), trying to separate out products which may be excellent on their own, but are simply too much to swallow in an app that once had not one, but two hamburger menus simply brimming with content. Imagine a net-new user trying to figure that one out.

Inspiration: Johnathan Schubert



I saw this illustration on my Dribbble feed today and ended up staring at it for about five minutes straight. While I am a big fan of simple/clean lines and digital drawing in general, nothing gets me lost in the lines of an illustration like hand-drawn quality. The cross-hatching is amazing.

The other thing I really like about this piece is the way that somewhat simple lines can capture the feeling of an old-fashioned cocktail so perfectly. The sheen on the thick base of the glass, the cherry hiding behind the orange peel, even the line 3/4 of the way up the glass that signifies the level of drink. This makes me realize that I'd like to learn to shade properly. I can draw outlines of real-world objects pretty well, but it's always the shading that I have never been able to replicate.

Johnathan Schubert is a graphic designer at Tractorbeam in Dallas, Texas. Check out his Dribbble and Instagram. You might even find another illustrated cocktail there :O

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Del Sur, Self-Driving Cars & Daz Qu

Weekly Update 2016-34: The beachy tunes of Del Sur, the possibilities of what we can do with our free time as self-driving cars become wide-spread, and the lovely designs of Daz Qu.

Music: Del Sur
Even though summer is coming to an end, I'm always on the hunt for beachy tunes. Listening to this band makes me feel like I'm in California (the twist: they're from Charlotte, NC). (And no, I can't explain the song name or the video.)


Accomplishment:
I didn't get a chance to check out the business card situation this week, but I did post a bunch of stuff on Bunz, which I'll hopefully be getting rid of this week. It's such a nice feeling to declutter my life. I always seems to acquire too much crap.

This is a weird one, but I feel a sense of accomplishment for doing something that scared me last week. I was at a house party where everyone was using a rickety ladder to climb onto the slanted roof, and while I knew it wasn't really that safe, I had always wanted to see the city skyline at night from a building roof. So I did it too. And what a skyline it was! I had a perfect view of the CN Tower, as well as the AGO and a bunch of colourful condo buildings. Worth it.

Goal:
I would like to, as last week, finalize the design of the business card for my dad. This really needs to happen before his next sale.

Tomorrow, I'm going to a Google Analytics workshop as well, so I hope that's a bit interesting. I'm also scoping out the company running it because they have a part-time class in UX Design that my friend recommended to me. We'll see what you've got, RED Academy!

I'm also taking my G driving test next Monday! Can't believe the day is finally almost here.

Random Thought:
With the coming onset of self-driving cars, we are approaching this really interesting time where we get to rethink the basic idea of a car. Of course there's the obvious stuff like the fact that they won't have steering wheels (or perhaps some will, to allow a human driver to freedom to take over while this is still allowed), but what about the fact that since no one in the car has to drive, the whole interior could be suited to the purpose of whatever the passengers decide to do. There don't even have to be windows (which might be safer? I don't know anything about cars). A car could be outfitted like a room in a house: bedroom, living room, even kitchen or bathroom (imagine getting ready for work on your way to work).

And even further than that, the impact could be massive. When a two-hour commute was too much for a struggling young couple trying to buy their first home in the suburbs, now that commuting time can be put to something useful. Of course, it's still no replacement for living close by to what you need to be close to, but it's an improvement for sure.

We'll just have to wait and see what happens. In the meantime, Uber has announced that they will be rolling out their first self-driving car soon, which obviously means bad news for all of the human drivers making a living off driving people around. Amidst all the positive/negative buzz, one interesting thing has emerged. In light of all the worry of drivers who will soon find themselves out of a job, Uber is now providing a free service called Betterment, which is a free retirement plan for drivers to start saving their cash now. Not the perfect solution, but certainly a step in the right direction. Check out the article on The Verge.

Inspiration: Daz Qu
I was drawn to this Beijing native's work through Panda, and it's delightful. I love the (somewhat trendy) icy gradients and smooth bezier curves. It's just very pleasing to look at, and makes mee feel like I'm floating in the background of the images. See what I mean below:



Lil' Gyrados!

It's probably no surprise that I also think his mashup of Pokemon characters and utilitarian apps is so cute and excellent.




Some beautiful Chinese typography. This is part of the reason I am happy to learn a new alphabet in Hebrew. The letterforms are so mysterious and lovely, and carry entirely different possibilities from Roman characters. It's like having a whole new toolbox to play with.

Check out his work here.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Allah-Las, Venues with Patios & Pokemon GO

Weekly Update 2016-33: Some 60s revival rock and roll from Allah-Las, the concept of a bar having both a patio and a stage for concerts, and the unrealized potential of Pokemon GO.

Music: Allah-Las
Some smooth sixties rock and roll was licking away at my brain as I researched some design conferences and courses this afternoon. I am not at all surprised to find that the band is from California, because they sound like it. I love the Wikipedia genre classifications of the band:
  • garage rock
  • rock and roll
  • psychedelic rock
  • surf rock
  • 60s revival music
All of that together pretty much sums them up. Listen:


Accomplishment:
I fully compiled and edited the video of all the bands I saw at Wayhome! Unfortunately my trial of Adobe Premiere ended just as the video was rendering. Seriously. So I'll have to render the video at home on another trial, hopefully this week.

I also managed to get more of my preferences back onto my computer last week, including iTunes...which is pushing me closer and closer to using Spotify...and a bunch of Adobe Programs (not Premiere though).

Updates in all things cycle-related: I was biking in the rain (something I do not like to do) and I slipped into a streetcar track. I wobbled back and forth for the scariest ten seconds of my life. Then I worked myself out of it and kept pedalling without even stopping throughout this entire experience. I only really registered what had happened to me about five seconds afterward, and shouted "OH FUCK" really loud. I think people were generally confused about why exactly I had exclaimed, but whatever.

My bike rack also unexpectedly broke in half during a ride to work on Monday – pretty scary. The broken piece was sharp and cutting into my back brake wire, so I had to walk it to work and formulate a plan of how to get it to a bike shop. I ended up walking my bike all the way to the Annex to have it fixed there, at which point I was told that my bike seat is broken beyond repair and needs to be replaced. Fun times.

And if that wasn't enough, the next time I rode it (this morning), I realized the back brakes had come completely "undone", most likely leftover from the repairs made on Monday. After freaking out for a moment, I inspected the way the front wheel brakes were placed and figured out how to get the brake back in. It would be really cool if I actually understood how bikes worked and could repair minor things in the bike myself. But you can't do it all.

Also on Monday, some coworkers and I went to a super secret Nike training session (mostly product placement and a chance to try some of their new shoes). There was a photographer taking pictures as well, including this winner:

The shoes were actually really uncomfortable. Just so you know.

Goal:
I've been having a bit of a rough go of things, so this week all I want to do is get my dad to take another look at the design for his business cards and call The Printing House to get them printed.

It would also be great if I could get Adobe Premiere and After Effects onto my computer, and sort out/clean all of my files into something remotely manageable.

Random Thought:
There are some great venues in Toronto, like the Danforth Music Hall, Lee's Palace, and the Opera House. I don't even really mind going to the Mod Club or Sneaky Dee's for a show (especially when there's nachos after). I'd say the same thing of bars with excellent outdoor spaces, like Bellwoods Brewery or Northwood's even-more-excellent parkside patio, complete with a fake owl perched over the sudsed-out hipsters.

What I'm really missing in this town of hot, hot summers is a good outdoor (or partially outdoor) music venue (in the sense of the ones mentioned above). And why not? I know it snows here, but we could have such a great venue for indie musicians to play in the warm breeze. I suppose the closest thing I'm going to get is the Bandshell at the CNE at the end of the summer.

Inspiration:
Honestly, it took me a while to get into Pokemon Go. I understand why some people still refuse to get on the bandwagon, but for those who are still clinging to their real, non Pokemon-infested lives, I want to point out something really nice about the app (and the original version of the Pokemon-skinned game Ingress) that may be overlooked.

You may know that Pokemon Go has a concept called Pokestops. These Pokestops are real-world landmarks at which players can build up their wares of items to use later. But what's great is that these Pokestops are largely made up of a mixture of tourist landmarks, good restaurants, and hidden public art. So, not only do players unwittingly get a good taste of culture poured down their throats, but tourists in new cities can use the app as a sort of tour guide to see those sorts of things.


Hey, remember this equipment box from my Instagram? The artist even commented on my photo!

And as a bonus, these tourists will already have something in common with the natives who gather around such Pokestops, because they both play the game.

Bam.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

TOPS, Bulk Barn & Ryerson Beach

Weekly Update 2016-32: The top lo-fi band fittingly called TOPS, measuring exact proportions at Bulk Barn, and the Ryerson University Beach (warm all year round).

Music: TOPS
I am in love with this band. I decided to do some last-minute sleuthing into some of the bands playing at TIME Festival (this past Saturday) during times I didn't have anything going on, and this band was a gem. Probably the only band I saw at the main stage that I liked as well. They have a great lo-fi sound that reminds me of the beach.


Accomplishment:
I finally formatted my computer! I...think it's running faster now. Of course, I'll have to use it for a little while to decide if it's actually better or if I should sell it and buy a new one. Now or later, it'll have to happen sometime.

I also transferred all my Wayhome videos to my work computer (more processing power!) and will be making the compilation video next Tuesday. And how do I know I'll be making it on Tuesday? Read on!

Goal:
I have finally started to make my goal calendar for the month. I'm posting it in Goals instead of Accomplishments because I obviously haven't done a lot of this stuff yet (and hence the calendar is incomplete), but it's on its way! I already feel better about where my projects will be going.

Things that are notable:
  • having a hack night at work to get my Arduino projects started again
  • taking a day to make the data reporter app (my own personal hack day)
  • getting my dad's business card design done

Random Thought: Bulk Barn
From past mentions and also a whole post about their rebrand, you may know of my undying love for Bulk Barn. So many different kinds of baking goods and snack foods and pastas and soup mixes. And you can buy as little or as much as you want. Also, I like to think that I'm helping the environment by not creating more waste for the landfill, right? It's all good.

Except one thing. When I was last there perusing the muffin mixes, I noted the recipe card on the bin (so cute) and realized that something was wrong. For this particular bran muffin recipe, I would need 2 cups of the flour mixture in the bin. And how exactly would I go about ensuring I had enough to bake the muffins and not too much that would be wasteful? I can weigh my items, but the recipe card called for a dry measure, not a weight measure. Herein lies the problem.

Solution - what if Bulk Barn had scoop measures to conduct such baking business? You would place a bag over the scoop, scoop your stuff, level it out with your hand (also under the bag - gotta keep it clean), invert the bag, take out the scoop and voila! You've got a measured amount of stuffs and a clean scoop for the next item.

The only problem would be getting customers to use the scoops properly - a Herculean task I do not think possible of the unwashed masses (haha).

Inspiration: Ryerson Campus
One thing I neglected to mention was Stop #3-and-a-half on the Izakaya hop I took the other day. I can't even say how it happened, but we were walking by the new Ryerson building on our way to Kinka, and all of a sudden we were inside the building checking it out. The thing is beautiful.

It's a cube that would have one of its sharp corners facing the street (which is terrible feng shui), but it's been lopped off at a very pleasing angle. Love it.

This is the "beach" on the second floor. Amazing. There was even a calming whooshing sound coming from some pipes or something? 

Bean bag chair made of repurposed materials reminded me of lying in sand.

These chairs were pretty comfortable too, and looked like people lounging in the sun from above.

The view from out the window in the corner of the picture above.

I also didn't know Ryerson has such a beautiful set of greenspace and gardens. I am seriously in love with the campus.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Oh My Izakaya

Once upon a time, when I was working at Starbucks, I met a new coworker. His name was Matt and he really liked food. During the shifts we shared, we would talk about restaurants downtown in Toronto. We would dream of one day finally taking the three-or-so modes of public transportation to get to these places, but nothing ever really panned out.

Then, a few months ago, Matt invited me to a very strange Facebook event. It was to be a Duck Hunt. As I read over the details, I realized that we would be restaurant-hopping in Chinatown in search of the best Peking Duck in the city. This is the truly revolutionary idea – get five to ten people together and order enough for a full dinner for two people at each restaurant. But the end of the night, everyone is full, and everyone has experienced a LOT of restaurants in the city. It's kind of like speed-dating, but for culinary exploration.


Eric and I only made it to two out of the five total restaurants (amateurs) but we had some DELICIOUS food. I have since been back to both of those restaurants. For your knowledge, I personally went to House of Gourmet (amazing Turnip Cakes) and People's Eatery (which should be a whole blog post in itself - everything was INCREDIBLE). 

Fast forward to the present day. We all wanted to try something else out, so Matt suggested we do an Izakaya hop! I am not a huge fan of raw fish, but I want to try new things, so I prepared myself for an interesting night of food.


Honestly, I knew that Izakayas meant sushi, but I didn't really know anything beyond that. According to Wikipedia:
An izakaya (居酒屋?) (Japanese: [izakaja], ee-zah-ka-yah) is a type of informal Japanese gastropub. They are casual places for after-work drinking. They have been compared to Irish pubs and early American saloons and taverns.
Which is exactly as I would describe it. They generally include long wooden tables and benches that are communal (yes, we did some people watching including what appeared to be a very awkward first date) and feel like the Japanese version of a pub. Each one had different interesting snack foods and even stranger drinks (including the beer slushies I've been hearing about forever).

Stop #1 Don Don Izakaya
This place was decked out to the max. Japanese scrolls all over the brick-and-wood slab walls, and even some little kneeling tables in their own booths for bigger parties. I got a sake slushie (only $4 on Tuesday special) and we shared a few dishes. There was a bowl of rice with chunks of raw fish, beef tataki, and a sizzling plate of fatty pork. Delicious. Also, there was a huge drum at the entrance and every time someone entered or left (us included), they would bang the drum and yell. That's the part about Izakayas that I didn't mention before. Lots of that.

Stop #2 Tsujiri
This was an unplanned detour really, but it was so good. Just a little ice cream shop with only a few places to sit, we got our amazing treats and went to sit in a park nearby to enjoy them. This is the sundae I got:

A photo posted by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on

The sakura flower is a sugar cookie with something very salty in the middle - not sure what that is. The white ball is mochi and the orange one is a whole chestnut. Deep down in the layers is red bean paste (my favourite) and some nutty rice crisps. The rice crisps were at the bottom so that they would soften down as the ice cream melted. It's great.

Stop #3 Kinka Izakaya (Church Location)
I had been to this restaurant's sister location on Bloor (formerly Guu) and had enjoyed the food, but the atmosphere was a bit dark and dingy. This location is beautiful and well-lit inside, with interesting woodwork and a lovely patio on a sleepy street. Even though it's a bit farther, I'd definitely come to this location over the closer one. We really went all in on this one, ordering eggplant and zucchini in a miso sauce, chocolate creme brûlée, and tempura squid/fish cakes. Delicious. And on top of that, I ordered a Peach mojito to go along with our pitcher of Sapporo and a plentiful order of sake inside a bamboo pitcher! With bamboo cups! So cute.


A photo posted by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on



A photo posted by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on

I noticed that all of the staff was yelling at people in Japanese as they left, so when we were leaving, I turned and yelled "Bye, Everybody!" I was very amused when everyone shouted back at me. It was quite a time.

There were actually three more restaurants on the journey, but as last time, I am only one human and had to cut my night short there. But I learned that Izakayas are just generally really nice places to go for a drink and a snack, and have a really friendly atmosphere.

Next time, I'm going to plan the restaurant hop and it's going to be Korean food. My favourite!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Wayhome Roundup

Weekly Update 2016-31: Since I am still reeling from the excitement of Wayhome, why not have a Wayhome themed weekly update? I saw more than half of all the bands (considering there were four stages, that's pretty good), planned accordingly to fit everything I need into a tiny fanny pack, and made sure I experienced all the awesome art installations. It was quite a ride. Especially when I rode the ferris wheel! Read on for more.

Music:
My favourite music last week was all the music at Wayhome! I implore you to read my post Wayhome Top 5 if you haven't already. But of course, as all good things come to an end, and I don't want to be a cop out so I'll share another piece of music I found. I'm on a nu disco kick again and I really like this song:


Especially near the end, it sounds like an electronic-funky version of Justice. So catchy.

Relatedly to WayHome, my first YouTube video ever (Glass Animals - Gooey) is doing well in the eyes of the masses! Hey, why not watch it right here? The power of the interwebs...


Accomplishment:
I saw 36 out of the total 73 bands. That includes seeing the Darcys on Thursday night at the ArtWalk which was a really cool addition to the three-day weekend I had last year.


Last Monday, since I had the day off, I actually somehow willed myself to book a driving lesson for an hour and a half. My instructor took me on the highway for the first time, which was really cool! (and I've since booked my G test for the end of August).

Goal:
I'd like to organize all of my pictures and videos (since they're 4K quality, Google Photos ain't gonna cut it for this one). I'd like to remove them all from my phone except some of the more excellent ones - and add a bunch of music to my phone since I have 64 beautiful GB of space now.

I'm also going to make a goal calendar for August. It won't be as heavy as the last one I made for March since I want some free time to chill out and drink beer in the sun. But I am hoping that by setting specific time to work and specific time to play, I won't feel as guilty when I shirk off work. That's the plan, anyway!

Random Thought: WayHome Attire
I love the people watching at festivals. Some people dress solely for comfort/utility (like me), while others dress to the nines. I spent a good amount of time leading up to the festival trying to find an outfit that mixes the best aspects of both, but couldn't really work something out. And so I relied on the basics. But I think I probably asked about ten people where they got their "blank". Festivals are a really good place to shop around if you're looking for a particular piece of clothing but don't know exactly what you want.

On a related note, I feel like I finally have the utility of festivals down pat. Inside a tiny fanny pack, I was able to fit all of this stuff!

A photo posted by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on


There's no feeling like being prepared to keep your spot at the front of the crowd for a set that starts in 45 minutes. Which actually only happened once!

Inspiration: Art Installations
I was not let down by the art installations at WayHome this year. Here are a few:

On our way from Mac DeMarco (I'm pretty sure) to Unknown Mortal Orchestra, we walked past these weird glowey things hanging down like vines. There were people sitting under them, and we noticed that they had totally broken through a metal gate to sit there. So we did, too.





There was this weird wooden structure that looked like a cloud dragon from a Studio Ghibli movie. Watch this weird 11 second video of me walking under it.


Some of the sponsored areas had interesting stuff, like a garden of glass bottle trees and this weird terrarium that looks like it has straight up garbage in the middle. Weird job, Perrier.



Reebok scaled back a little this year from GIVING EVERYONE FREE LEATHER SHOES last year (still can't believe it) to giving everyone free rides on a ferris wheel. Not bad.




There were cool palm tree-looking fibre-optic light things around the main stage and of course, everyone favourite flags from last year (which were also at Bestival but looked much more beautiful at WayHome since they didn't have to compete with a rainbow vomiting skittles everywhere).



At the objectively worst stage – WayBright (no cloud cover, terrible sound, and uphill toward the stage), there was a pair of arresting portraits. I don't know if they were painted or photographed, but honestly seeing them at that scale and the intense detail being larger than life, it would have been amazing even if they were photographs. Seriously, arresting. They made the stage almost bearable to be near. (I only took a picture of this one - it was the better one).



At that very stage, I was watching Bahamas and feeling a bit too hot. For some reason, I felt a strong pull to go backwards, all the way from sevenish spots from the stage to behind the sound booth and beyond. I don't know why I went that way, but I did. And then I came across something amazing. Everyone was lying under a parachute! I did too, and listened to Bahamas under some delicious shade. Amazing, amazing idea.



While I was waiting for...I want to say Bahamas, I ran into a couple who were squirting each other with water from ketchup and mustard bottles. So cute! The girl had a really cool tattoo. I asked her if I could take a picture of it, and she posed while her boyfriend did...well, watch the video to see what he did.



Finally, finally, I got to witness a DJ playing outside an RV. On the Sunday night, as we were leaving, this guy was spinning some crazy shit. I had heard about it last year and was honestly so satisfied to say that I have now also experienced it. That's all I have to say about that.

As we were walking to the exit after the last set, Dean was looking around at all the trash left on the grounds. Then, he started singing an upbeat song about trash, just like saying trash over and over again. It was simple and sounds really dumb but it was just really funny at the time. Anyway this photographer started laughing with us and asked Dean if he could take his photo. This was the photo.

Photo credit: Jesse Milns

Amazing. After that, I finally found my favourite totem that I had been describing to my friends all weekend and no one had seen. Yes, it was the BIC lighter. First of all, I had that colour lighter and it was my favourite until it ran out like a month before. Second of all, I'm going to steal that idea and make it glow red and orange with fiber-optics for next year. And I'm going to have the name of the bands I want to see most each day on the sides, and interchange it every day. GENIUS. God, I don't care if anyone steals that idea, let's all do it. Think about how cool that would look in a crowd at night.

Lastly, the most inspiring thing happened at the very very end of the festival, just as we were leaving after the trash fiasco. I had noticed that the wonderful floating sky balloons on a string had returned from last year, and they were inside the festival this year instead of being in the campgrounds. I had noticed earlier also that they were actually being blown up during the festival, to create more interest in process and dynamism throughout the day than simply appearing on Saturday morning from out of a van.



I decided at the last minute that I wanted to see where these things were tied down. Again, no idea why, I just wanted to for some reason. What I found at the end of the balloons was AMAZING. First of all, the balloon were NOT tied down. They were being held at this end that I could see, and the other end across the field that I couldn't see, by people. Like flying a giant balloon kite. Flipping amazing. And I held that thing and I did not let go.


Second of all, the man behind this amazingness happened to be standing behind me, and he told me about how he has made these beautiful and simple installations into a day job. He's been to Coachella and festivals in Europe too.



It's already on the collage wall :) Please do check out his website here.

And lastly, TOTEMS! Here is a photo dump of all the totems I saw fit to photograph (in addition to the BIC lighter one which won the contest and my heart).












Monday, August 1, 2016

Pizza Boxes & Beer

I found myself in a very peculiar situation on Saturday night. These were the facts:

  • It was dark out
  • I was in Whitby
  • I was at a house party
  • The house party was in honour of a Quidditch tournament that had taken place that day
  • I knew, like, four people there
Being in such strange territory, I wanted to do a bit of general observation into just how a house party in Whitby would play out. I knew that there is really not a lot ever going on in Whitby, so this might be interesting, what with making one's own fun and getting creative. And I was not let down.

Consider the pizza box. A vestige of the drunken feast we all strive for at the common house party, yet cast aside once its gooey innards have been gobbled up. One of these such boxes was currently existing on a coffee table in the living room of this party. All of a sudden, a sharpie and a quarter were produced, and the game had begun.

The rules are these:
  • at the beginning of the game, everyone writes their name in a circle somewhere on the pizza box
  • everyone takes turns flipping the quarter onto the board
  • if you land on someone's name, they drink
  • if you land on an empty area, you have to write a rule for whomever lands on that space to complete
  • as the drawing space on the box fills up, more and more often the quarter lands on a space forcing the flipper to drink, and eventually everyone gets nice and drunk
It's beautiful in its simplicity. And so easy to play!

Our box by the end of the game (we drank a little too quickly):


My claim to fame is the rule "show us your last google search". It was underused, in my opinion.

But my truly favourite part of the box is on the right side. A girl named Taj joined in late and mistakenly wrote her name really big. Then, someone explained that that would only increase her chances of being the first one to be drunk. So she turned her name into the other newcomer's name, "Cole", and rewrote hers as the tiny bubble just above "Cole". Hilarious.