Tag Archives: skype

hard not hardly

So I’ve been back in Vancouver a week and been busy busy busy. I have a lot of stuff to do every day, transcribing the interviews I did out east, keeping up with the Teen Reading Club stuff and getting paid to work on elearning videos. It’s funny how the last one is the hardest to get to and that’s the one that actually brings in money. I guess part of it is that I’ve also got to keep those hours down and it’s entirely possible for me to get lost in editing video until the world ends. If I’m judicious about when I start that kind of thing it means I’ll be able to juggle the less fun work too.

Sean and Jenn were in town last weekend and though I didn’t get to spend as much time with them as I’d have liked we did have a good sports day (baseball and football) followed by a science morning. I had never been to Science World, though that golfball building has been my iconic image for Vancouver since I was six. It was a lot of fun. The DaVinci exhibit, filled with replicas of devices made from his notebooks, was there and we wandered slowly through. It was the part of Science World where we had to elbow the fewest kids out of the way. They had a whole room dedicated to blown up pictures of the Mona Lisa, all colour-corrected and infra-red viewed, but my favourite part was the actual sized replica of the back of the painting. There’s an inexplicable H and other scrawls. Even though it’s not the real thing, it felt good seeing something new.

I’m applying for jobs. There’s a great Community Outreach Librarian job in Calgary that came up that I really want. A similar one went up in Edmonton too. And there are positions open in the public library back in Sydney. I doubt I’d get any of those, since they probably aren’t going to be as trusting of a Skype interview as a techy place like Prosentient was, but I’m applying. And I’ll keep applying here in Vancouver. It just feels like here everything is so temporary. There’s a great job that I could maybe get for a year but then I’d have to find a new job when a year is up. Which isn’t the worst thing in the world. Flexibility is a virtue and all that.

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a job i am totally applying for

Today, moments after I hung up from Skyping with my mom, I found a job I really want. I mention Skyping with my mom because in that conversation I’d been talking about how when I graduate I’ll be looking for work all over the place, and how one of the upsides of being unattached is being able to be mobile, and all that jazz, but also how I’d only try working in the U.S. if it was a great job. We talked about places I’d be more or less interested in. At no point in this conversation did Alaska come up.

Of course, Alaska is where this job I found is.

But I think I’d be a pretty excellent New Media Producer for the Juneau NPR affiliate. Here’s a snippet of the job description:

… an individual with experience and skills in journalism and online content management, including writing and editing for the web, graphic design and site management.

I could completely do that. And do that really well. And it would actually integrate my journalism side with my digital librarianish side (you know, content management kinds of things).

Anyway, I’m putting together an application for them. It’s probably a bit of a long shot (I am a foreigner and all), and it’d mean I’d have to finish my MLIS with a couple of web-delivered courses (which wouldn’t be a big deal), but it could be neat.

Sorry this didn’t happen an hour before you called, Mom. I might have been more excitable.

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a day till i leave again

Holly made it to Vancouver all right. It was cut a bit close, but everything worked out in Guangzhou. I’m sure she’ll blog about it soon. We’re at my old house now while Brenda is off skiing with her family.

Yesterday I tried to get a SIM card but failed so you still can’t call me in Vancouver. I’m still on Skype though, and really, isn’t that all a person really needs in this day and age? The only thing is that I can’t really receive texts. I might get a cheapo pay-as-you-go number for those rare times I need to communicate out of WiFi range and to spoof as my CallerID number for Skype.

Today we moved a bunch of stuff out of storage and into my room in my new apartment. Holly and I both really like my new roommate Emma. We got keys, drove to the storage locker, did a quick selection of important stuff I’d need (like a bed and a pile of computers and books), got lunch, unloaded the van, almost got a parking ticket, carried the stuff up to the fourth-floor apartment (Emma and Holly did that so I could get the van back in time), and then sat and chatted for hours before heading home on the SkyTrain and stopping for pizza.

Now we’re just drinking tea.

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like talking in my sleep

So apartment hunting in Vancouver from Sydney was something I was kind of dreading. But since Holly decided she’s staying in Harrisonburg after Xmas, at least I only needed a place for one person. Last weekend I spent a big pile of time going through Vancouver listings using PadMapper and the UBC apartment listings. This is how I met Emma, who has a room in her Coal Harbour apartment (a character building with hardwood floors no less). We exchanged emails and she called one of my references, Marlis.

Now, Marlis is a chatter. An excellent one. Last February when someone stopped in to pick up a wine rack she was selling they talked in the living room for 45 minutes, prompting confusion in the kitchen as to whether this was someone she knew or a stranger. It was a stranger. This served me well, because when Emma called Marlis, they talked for 45 minutes, and Marlis told Emma everything she needed to know about me, so there was practically nothing for us to talk about on Skype the next day. Which, as you may be aware is good, because it’s a lot of work for me to be chatty.

I completely credit Marlis’ talking with getting me this place, because really, I’m some strange guy who’s going to be sharing space with Emma for months. She needs to have some idea that I’m not creepy or disgusting (which I’m not, but it’s much more useful to have third parties confirm that). Thank you Marlis. (If you’re in the market for a photographer, check out Imaging By Marlis, as she’s pretty great at taking pictures as well as talking to people.)

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little skinny dynamo

The new term has begun for real and I finished two assignments this weekend. One’s a little cataloguing thing that was actually pretty fun and useful, and the other is for my Community-Led Libraries class, which is only due in February. I discovered last term when I was prepping for my China trip that I like getting on top of things early and getting shit out of the way. This term I’m trying to organize things so that when Holly comes in February I have to do as little homework as possible while she’s here. At this point if all goes to schedule I think I’ll just have stuff to do for my online Info Policy class.

But on Friday I went to see the Oh Wells at the Biltmore. I really liked them when I saw them compete in Shindig back in November or whenever it was. I think they ended up winning it. And they were good on Friday. The other bands were okay, but the kinds of music I’d need to listen to the CDs a bunch of times before I’d like it. I usually need to parse the words in songs before I can really like something. Except if I accept beforehand that it’s in another language (see Sigur Ros) or practically nonsense (see Deerhoof).

On Saturday Kerry and Alex had a casino party which was fun. I lost all my fake money and didn’t win the prize, but I had an epically creepy run at Small Stakes Go Fish (every time you have to Go Fish you put $10 in the kitty, which was won by the person with the most pairs at the end). There were eight people playing and I asked the right people for the right cards at least seven times in a row before having to fish. And it was early in the round too, so it’s not like I was remembering what people had.

Yesterday I read and relaxed. Today I’ve been prepping for my job interview on Thursday and doing some research for a cool Co-Op opportunity in Australia. SQL queries are easier than I’d expected. I’m also working on a volunteer project that used to have a terrible name, but is now known as NetworkEd UBC, so that’s kind of fun. I’m trying to embrace my identity as a blogging-type library person, but I think this job I’m interviewing for is less about the actual blogging, and more coordinating, which would probably be good for me. We’ll see.

I’m also hoping to find some time in the next couple of weeks to paint up my Blood Bowl team because there’s a tournament at a local game store in a couple of weeks. It’s been too long since I’ve painted.

I’m also spending a lot of time on Skype, hanging out with Holly. I love that we can just turn on our computers and both go about our business (she has more business to go about since she can only get online at the bakery, where there are often customers demanding her attention) and chat when there’re spare moments. It’s not like it’s some big special thing, just life and a bit of connection. Long-distance sucks for relationships, but this is a pretty decent time in history to be doing it, all things considered.

So yes, that’s my recent activity log. A bit more than one thing a day.

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reunited with my books and hats and pictures

So the really fragile piece of art Lynette did for me with my Chinese miner postcards got damaged in the move. It was kind of inevitable really. All that plaster, and only bubble-wrap as protection. It’s one of these things that got damaged taking it to Westgate from my old apartment, so I kind of expected bad things to happen crossing half the country. Three chunks came off, and two of them are findable. I might be able to do some restoration work on it and get it displayable. I have plaster and paint and glue. Or I might do something with the wounds themselves. I’m not sure.

I’ve had a good weekend. I’m pretty much caught up on school so I can go to Winnipeg for Sean’s wedding this weekend without having to bring too much work along with me. I skyped with Holly. I read a book. I went to Word on the Street. I wrote a letter. I made a blog for our SLAIS student chapter of Librarians Without Borders. I drank beers and toured Special Libraries (not in that order).

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not terribly subtle, no

So this weekend I did a bunch of homework and saw a couple of Fringe plays. The Fringe here felt super expensive compared to Winnipeg. Many people I know here have been talking about how expensive food is here, but it’s plays and movies that I’m noticing. Because really, who eats?

Both plays were one-person shows. One was pretty good, the other was less so. The less good one was a performer I’m now convinced I saw at WInnipeg Fringe a couple of years ago. This performance was six or seven monologues in different characters. She started strong (“I will kick you in the box until you pass out and reach your weight loss goals!”) and ended strong (a sketch with only the words “Mom! Ice cream!”) but the middle was a whole lot of Mad TV reject material. The other play, When Harry Met Harry was good. A guy working in an office who had to go to an Interpersonal Skills seminar. Predictably he failed funnily but grew from it. The actor was really good though. The lighting cues were impeccable and really played well with his performance.

Today I bought a flashing red light for my back, so when I leave the house at my ungodly time in the morning tomorrow, traffic will be able to see me better. I don’t understand why we have 8am classes. We’re grad students. Why are we not starting at 10 or 11?

Tomorrow Holly flies back to China. Really that shouldn’t make that much of a difference to me, right? Talking on the phone/Skype isn’t terribly different if we’re across a continent or an ocean. I’m still not with her, which is where I want to be. 75 days.

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