the grownup thing

I am totally okay with my decision, but I’m still going to whine about scheduling conflicts and the sensible but less fun things we do:

Astronautalis and his band of merry men (aka my three favourite musical boys in tight pants) are on tour and playing a show in Seattle next Tuesday. Being the fan girl that I am, I immediately booked time off work and arranged for a mini Mini road trip to see them play. I didn’t want to drive back to Seattle on Tuesday night for work the next day, so I thought to make An Event out of it: I booked a night in a Fancy Hotel, and made plans to have an excellent day and a half all by my lonesome (because no one else is hardcore enough to use vacation time to enable man crush swooning).

Then today happened: my favourite Marketing Manager asked if I was available next Wednesday to attend a conference with her on stuff that directly applies to what I do (neuroscience, rocket biosynthesis, that sort of thing). It’s a one-day conference only in Vancouver on the exact day I planned to be out of town to wander around Seattle in a delicious carefree daze. The company would send someone else, but I’d been specifically called out by the Uber Boss as someone they want there .. what’s a girl to do?

The only logical thing, really: I cancelled my hotel stay and unbooked the days off so I could attend the conference instead. I was worried about the hotel booking because it was a Groupon and the fine print specifically says NO RESCHEDULING NO TRANSFERRING NO ANYTHING AT ALL, but I was able to cancel the thing and get a refund. I’m sad about missing the Astronautalis show, but I have faith that they’ll play in an accessible area again soon and I’ll go to more shows (aka the opposite of what history has shown me to be true). I’m looking forward to the conference. It looks interesting, I get to spend a (paid) day off site hanging out with my favourite Marketing Manager and favourite Sam, and the brownie points earned for cancelling my plans for the sake of my job couldn’t hurt. It’s the Grown Up Thing to do. I am rocking this “adult” thing.

I still have my ticket to the show, though .. and I’ve done the drive down and back in the same day before. Perhaps being an adult doesn’t mean having less fun, it just means less sleep: I could still go to the show. Yes. This can happen. This WILL happen. I need a good dose of loud much more than I need a couple extra hours of sleep. Compromise! It keeps you fun!

wet cold canadian winter

seattle adventuary

Seattle, you are pretty:

pier 46

downtown times

on the waterfront

smith tower

the impossibly gorgeous carved ceiling of the chinese room at smith tower

my favourite building in seattle

More pictures over on the Flickrs.

We couldn’t have picked a better weekend to go Seattling. The weather was the nicest I have ever experienced in any January ever, and we spent the entire glorious day outside looking down on things for miles around. Our first stop was at Smith Tower, which turned out to be our favourite of the two: the lookout is on the 35th floor and you can GO OUTSIDE! Outside is amazing. It’s fenced off For Safety, but it was so gorgeous outside that we were giddy with fresh air and epic views the entire time. The inside of the lookout floor turned out to be a treat as well – it was set up as the “Chinese Floor”, and outfitted with a carved teak ceiling and fancy carved furniture like the Wishing Chair that I made Ed sit in. Legend has it that “any wishful unmarried woman who sits in it would be married within a year”, so we shall see if Ed was sufficiently wishful and womanly enough to be married soon. Here’s hoping! If that doesn’t work out for him he can go work for Uber, as we passed their HQ on the way down in the fancy brass elevator. They were hiring!

After the Smith Tower, we had lunch at the Pike Brewery and I bought an amazing hat. We wandered the Seattle Art Museum, Ed had an early mid-life crisis in the Harley Davidson store, and then we were off to the second tower of the day: the Sky View Observatory on the 73rd floor of Columbia Centre. Sky View was a lot more crowded than the first place, and while it offered some impressive views, it wasn’t really built with viewing in mind: the glass is thick, tinted, and highly reflective (making photography difficult), and you can’t go outside probably for safety reasons but that is dumb. I still managed to get some good shots thanks to Ed the Human Shield, but we definitely liked the Smith Tower better because OUTSIDE and INCREDIBLE CEILING and the awesome elevator operator and so much more.

All the amazing views of Seattle aside, I finally got to meet the new kittens at Doug and Ali’s:



THEY’RE SO SQUISHY!! The kittens were a little unsure of me but they were so fun to watch – and I got plenty of lovin’ from my boyfriend George anyway:


I am now obsessed with getting a squishy-faced kitty to quell my pug lust, but Ed isn’t going for it (gasp). What’s a girl to do, other than run away to London?

Some adventure done. More adventure needed. Up next: escaping from prison!

getting high

Last weekend when Ed and I were at the Vancouver Lookout, I activated my membership. At any point in the next year, I can go up the tower and see awesome views of Vancouver like these:

vancouver harbour

east van

stanley park

I enjoyed looking down on the world from above so much that this weekend, I’m going to do it all over again .. in Seattle. Ed and I are heading to the Sparkle Castle for some fun and visits, and while we’re there I’ve decided we should go up some really tall buildings and look around. I bought us passes to the Smith Tower (35th floor with an open deck), and to the Sky View  Observatory (73rd floor) for weekend good times. The second tower is open past dusk, so there should be ample opportunity for some great night time photos. I am excite! And glad I don’t have a fear of heights!

I have three solid weekends of Adventure coming up (and the fourth weekend is earmarked for Hardcore Adventure Planning). I am happiest when I am outside experiencing things exactly like this, so I couldn’t be more pleased that things are happening. It will go a very long way in ejecting me from the funk I’ve been in for the past few months!

As an added bonus, here is a Nerd Totem Pole!

not to be confused with a shame pole

not to be confused with a shame pole

i’ll be in my bunk

Ed and I spent New Year’s Eve on the outskirts of Seattle, at the new (as of around noon that day) home of Doug and Ali (official name: Sparkle Castle). The party had a Whedon theme, and everyone came through:

from Buffy the Vampire Slayer:

  • Cheerleader Buffy
  • Halloween Anya
  • Dark Willow
  • Oz
  • Cheerleader Cordelia
  • Giles

from Angel:

from Firefly:

from Dr. Horrible:

  • Dr. Horrible
  • Captain Hammer
  • the Pink Pummeler
  • Penny

from Cabin in the Woods:

from Dollhouse:

  • Dr. Saunders
  • Various Dolls

There wasn’t a single duplicate costume or character, and it was SO MUCH FUN. Doug and Ali always throw amazing parties, but this one was all that and more. It was an excellent way to ring in 2014!

I’m on vacation until Monday, so I’m getting away from the computer. I still need to do a 2013 recap (complete with pinpointing the EXACT DATE my year went to complete and utter shit), but right now there is no food in our house so it’s time to do groceries. Here’s to a grand 2014 for everyone!

i solemnly swear i am up to no good

i solemnly swear i am up to no good


On Thursday morning, I received word that I had been rejected by Skynet for the job I had applied for. While I told myself I didn’t really mind because it was always a super long shot, I am apparently not above lying to myself: I was actually pretty crushed (and by “pretty crushed” I mean “illogically inconsolable”). I shrugged it off for the entire workday, but later that evening I when I was unable to properly do a u-turn (long story), I burst into tears and was thoroughly convinced that I am an utter failure; a complete fraud who has no future doing anything at all and no one will ever want me ever again, even retroactively. I cried and wailed and was very glad no one but an extremely confused Ed was around to witness my pathetic display of the feels. 

In my defence, this rejection stung a lot more than others have in the past simply because I was given the “lol no” *after* I had submitted my work samples. I *like* my work (and most people think I’m really good at what I do), so being rejected after showing off was like a kick to my metaphorical balls. It made me sad – really, really sad. Pathetically sad. I was a wreck. 

Luckily, that afternoon in a huff I had decided to throw caution to the wind and demand adventure. Ed and I threw a change of underwear (and 15 device adapters) into backpacks and ran away to Seattle for the night. We hung out with our favourite Americans, saw all the things, and had some Good Times; life disappointments and endless worrying aside. We had so much fun that we’re gonna do it all over again in two weeks (we can’t get enough of our Americans), and I’m slightly more upbeat about the whole thing than I was 48 hours ago. I’m sure that will change one way or another as I either get over it/myself or be rejected for more out-of-my-league jobs, but we’ll jump off that bridge when we get to it. 

I’ll post more words on jobs later, including some words about why I’m looking for work (and being utterly rejected) in the US when I still have a job that I love in Vancouver (and also what Ed thinks of all this), but for now here are some of the neat places we went this weekend:

  • Rachel’s Ginger Beer – if you love ginger beer or simply buying things in growlers, this place is awesome. They’ve got many different flavours of craft-brewed ginger beer on tap, and it’s delicious as all hell: spicy and refreshing, with a big kick. I wish we had purchased some to bring home, but we’ll be back in a couple weeks so I’ll do it then.
  • Otherworlds – A shop in Edmonds that sells steampunky things with a heavy emphasis on unrepentant Firefly worship. Every inch of every surface has amazing things to look at (I am utterly in love with the light switch covers), and if you’re any kind of nerd it’s an awesome side trip to make. 
  • EMP Museum – I love this place, to the point of buying a membership for Ed and I so we can go again and again and again. The new Fantasy exhibit is worth making a trip for, and there’s always a million things to see.
  • Cactus – Forget the Cactus Club; this place is AMAZING. Doug and Ali took us here for brunch on Saturday, and it was probably the best breakfast I’ve ever had. I want to go back and try their regular menu, because if it’s anything like their brunch offering I may never leave. SO GOOD!

Need to plan more impromptu getaways. They go a long way in keeping me sane (especially when I HAVE NO FUTURE).

dark crystal map!

vintage umbrellas!

a surefire way to get me to put out!

here are some vegetables!

all of the fun

I do not know how I can possibly be hungry after last night, but I am awake and starving and could eat all of Denny’s all over again.

Amazing weekend. Don’t particularly want it to end or face the mountain of laundry slowly gaining sentience on my bedroom floor. I want more sweaty music, more laughing with friends, more tall men named Sheldon flirting with me, more accidental running into Steve, more Andy and his amazing band, more Seattle. I want it all .. but I need clean underwear, so it’s back to reality (for now).

I picked Stephanie up in Surrey on Thursday night after a series of unfortunate events that started with my (paycheque-sized) tax refund being held up by CRA because I didn’t file 6 years worth of empty GST/HST paperwork. After getting that sorted out (thanks, Government Darill), I hopped in the Minibator and .. got lost. See, I don’t go to Surrey. It’s absolutely a Vancouver Snob thing. Worse, every time I try to go to Surrey or Delta or Langley, I end up in New Westminster because all bridges are the Queensborough Bridge. I may aim for the other, correct bridges, but each time my brain says “yep, this is totally the bridge to the ‘burbs” and I then I find myself in Wal-Mart with three grubby children and a shopping cart full of off-brand Kraft Dinner and pull ups. I eventually got myself sorted out and made it to Surrey, which was as stereotypical as expected. One Steph later, we were on our way: it was time for Seattle.

The drive down was largely uneventful, if you do not consider apocalyptic weather to be an event. We drove through torrential rain, wind, scary dark freeway times and even time travel fog before coming through on the other side in one white knuckled piece. We were staying with Steph’s sister in Redmond, and we pulled into the belly of the Microsoft beast just before midnight after a harrowing ride.

Steph and I left the house the following morning with no game plan, so we headed to the EMP for the Art of Video Games exhibit. It was neat, but not really worth making a trip for (and that’s saying something, given how much I am in love with video games) .. but the day was saved by the OTHER exhibits at the EMP: the Hall of Nirvana, and the ABSOLUTELY AMAZING horror movie exhibit which you REALLY NEED TO GO SEE. Also, if you’ve never been, there’s a super cool science fiction exhibit (which both of us had seen before so we skipped it this time) that is totally worth seeing. They’re currently setting up the next exhibit on Fantasy and Myth, so if anyone wants to go on a mini road trip in April, museums will happen.

A late lunch at the always ridiculous and delicious Lunchbox Lab followed, and a very brief stop into Pike Place Market – the market is only open until 6pm, and we got there around 5:45. The market itself is nothing new, but we wanted to check out the flowers coz they’re always pretty, and also buy some delicious vinegar from Sotto Voce (which we managed to do with 2 minutes to spare). Wandering happened, and then .. we saw a giant ferris wheel down by the water. With two hours to kill until the show, we decided to go down and check it out: one does not simply see a giant lit up ferris wheel spinning merrily around without further investigation, so we piled back into the Mini and I used my Super Sense to find our way down to the waterfront.

We had stumbled upon the Seattle Great Wheel, all lit up for the opening of the Sounders season. Upon seeing that the seats were in enclosed pods, we decided we needed to go on a ride (we are adventuresome but prone to freezing, and the wheel is right on the water) – call it a consolation prize, because neither of us got to go on the London Eye on our various trips to Europe. Also, the $15 ticket price was a great deal easier to swallow than the £20 in London. The ride was super fun and we got a lot of pictures of Seattle at night from above – would totally recommend, especially if you go during off season because it’s much less busy and you’ll likely get a pod to your group instead of having to share, so then you can totally make out like we and the cute gay boys in the pod next to us did.

Finally, it was time to make our way to Neumos for the show: Astronautalis was opening for Why?, and I will always always drive to Seattle to see Astronautalis play. The venue was crowded as fuck (all ages show), but by pure chance Steph and I managed to get a great spot by the stage just time in for Andy’s set. Also, I poked him twice in the shoulder because I am smooth, and I got a hug. I win. We didn’t stay for the headliner because we were both tired and not feeling the massive crowd, so we made a graceful exit and drove off into the night (slowly, as Pike East is the Granville Street of Seattle and every single person between the ages of 21 and 30 were standing in line to get into a club).

Saturday was a bit rushed, because we had things to do and a deadline to meet back home. We ran important errands (wine, iTunes credit, looking for gnomes) and got out of town around 1pm. More terrible weather on the way back to Vancouver, all the rum at the duty free, and we were back home by 4:45: just enough time to power nap, power shower, and get ready to do it all over again. Steph enjoyed the show in Seattle, so she bought a ticket to come with Ed, Shan and I to see Astronautalis in Vancouver at the Biltmore where we met a coworker who bought my other ticket, and ran into No Fun Steve who was there to see Why?. Fun! I put stickers on my boobs, got right up at the stage for the set (much to the extreme annoyance of the fan girls who planted themselves at the stage for the entire duration of the evening so they could be front and center for Why? – cool but don’t give me dirty looks when I try to get up front for the act I want to see; I will gladly acquiesce my space to you when the act is done), bopped around and generally had myself a great fucking time, as always. Andy and his boys put on an amazing fucking show, and I absolutely adore dragging people out to Astronautalis shows with me because they always enjoy it and then I get to go say hi to the band and they sometimes remember me and yay! Also, shut up – I rarely fangirl out over things, so if I want to be a squealing ninny over this I’m totally allowed because they are my favourite ever, and I will always enthusiastically support the things I love in any way I can.

Also, didn’t accidentally see anyone pee this time. Bonus.

We stuck around for most of the Why? set, then took off before the Biltmore turned into a dance club (that happened the last time we were at the Fortune Sound Club and it was terrifying). The plan was to get tacos, but Chronic Tacos broke our hearts by being CLOSED (apparently for renovations?) so we did the next best thing: fucking DENNY’S, Y’ALL. We ordered ALL THE FOOD (there was so much food), ate it all, then went home: Steph was Rum Drunk and I was Tired Drunk, and we needed to be poured into our respective beds to begin the downward descent into reality and back to a life without daily rap shows and Moons Over our Hammies at midnight.

So much fun. A++++, would do again in a heartbeat. Am a bigger fan of Astronautalis and his band after every single show I see. Love my life, and all those in it.

Pictures coming sometime!

classiest ever.