Friday, February 27, 2015

Get in touch with your inner Dark Knight

Buddha was wise but Batman is wiser...

Buddha once said: "The mind is everything. What you think, you become..."

You know who kicks Buddha's ass? Batman!

Batman said: "It's not who I am underneath... but what I DO... that defines me."

You don't become by thinking. You become by doing.

A few years ago, I overcame my fear of heights through a series of bungy jumps and a jump from the 900 foot high Stratosphere Hotel in Las Vegas.

I couldn't trick myself into thinking I was brave or unafraid of heights. I essentially went BERSERKER and simply threw myself off the edge. THEN I became less fearful of heights.

Patience, bravery, sympathy... we tend to think of these as character traits that we either have or don't have. That makes it difficult to see how you can become something that you're "not".

But, if you think of them not as traits but as skills to be learned, then it becomes easier to change who we are by taking ACTION sometimes in spite of what you think of yourself.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wayback Wednesday: Concrete Cadborosaurus

Concrete Cadborosaurus at Saanich's Gyro Park...
Concrete sea serpent...
A different sort of Wayback today...

This photo was taken recently. It's the newly re-painted concrete Cadborosaurus at Saanich's Gyro Park. My wife and I used to take our young sons to this park and they would climb all over this very same sculpture.

We have been empty-nesters for about four years now and our sons live a thousand miles away. Although we enjoy our freedom now, as we watched the young parents and kids laughing and playing, we felt a little wistful for those days that are decades behind us now.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Love in the Sun

Love at the top of Mt. Doug, Saanich, BC...
Grass, sun and a picnic...
Another couple enjoying the warm sun and soft carpet of grass and moss at the top of Mt Doug in Saanich, BC on an awesome Valentine's Day...

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Guest photography: Seal versus Octopus

An octopus becomes a seal meal.
An octopus becomes a seal meal!
The Ogden Point breakwater is a popular draw for locals and tourists. It's a scenic walk out to the beacon at the end in sunny weather, a dramatic walk when winter storms are throwing wild water up and over the barrier...

If you are lucky you'll sometimes glimpse octopii moving slowly between the rocks below you. I've seen them twice -- it's the movement that catches your attention, not the colour.

A few years ago, a local woman took a great series of pictures that went viral of an octopus dragging an unlucky seagull below the water for a meal.

Last week, another local man, Bob Ianson, was walking the breakwater when he glimpsed a battle brewing in the water. He caught these dramatic images of a seal making a meal out of an octopus. Talk about being in the right place at the right time!

A seal puts the bite on an octopus.
Calamari for this seal...




Sunday, February 15, 2015

Pkols

Enjoying the views from the top of Mt Doug in Saanich, BC...
Young love at the top of Mt. Doug...
Mt Douglas in Saanich was a popular place to be this past weekend as warm weather and frequent sun continues to dominate greater Victoria. The mountain offers spectacular 360 degree views of the southern island.

Pkols is the traditional Coast Salish name for the mountain. A couple of years ago, they started a process to have the mountain officially re-named. The greater community is supportive of the movement.

As far as I know, the name change isn't official yet, but a prominent sign at the peak calls it by its ancient name.

The western slope of Pkols...
The western slope of Pkols...
In the background of the photo above you can see the local observatory...

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Wayback Wednesday: Tropical Galiano

Beach at Montague Harbour on Galiano Island, BC...
No snow anywhere
Ski resort is closed now
I blame Hawaii
Today's wayback photo is meant to be a dose of irony. The white shale beach and aqua marine water so reminiscent of tropical islands are actually part of nearby Galiano Island. This photo was taken during a day trip last summer.

While the rest of Canada and the United States struggles under mounds of snow and sub-zero temperatures, we here on the West Coast are struggling with a different issue.

Warm temperatures and periodic rain have played havoc with coastal ski resorts up and down the coast. On Vancouver Island our local resort has shut down due to a lack of snow. To the south of us in the United States one resort has already declared bankruptcy.

The cause of all this is the Pineapple Express -- a weather system that starts near Hawaii bringing warm, wet air up the North American coast. The result is a mixed blessing. Buds and blooms have already started to appear here in Victoria, BC. So we're likely going to experience an early spring and a gorgeous summer of the sort you see in this photo.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

When farm animals go bad...

No bull...
No bull.. straight from the cow's mouth..
Gary Larson's Farside was a favourite cartoon strip of mine as a teen and young adult. His absurd surreal humour continues to be popular more than fifteen years after he finished penning his single-panel comics.

Frequently, his comics featured intelligent animals reacting to their typical environments or situations as humans might in a similar social situation.

This plastic cow seen in the semi-darkness of Sidney's museum made me think of a noir-ish crime drama.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Justice for Lindsay...?

Signs for the Lindsay Buziak memorial march...
Signs of support for Jeff Buziak's quest for justice...
Years after they were committed, two high profile crimes in Greater Victoria remain unsolved to this day. One is the disappearance of four-year-old Michael Dunahee in March of 1991. The other is the murder of Lindsay Buziak in February of 2008.

Image courtesy of Times-Colonist and Facebook...
Lindsay Busiak
Photo credit: Times-Colonist

Lindsay Buziak was an attractive 24-year-old real estate agent who was lured to a house under the pretext of showing a Saanich house to potential purchasers. While in the house with two strangers she was viciously stabbed to death. Her boyfriend at the time discovered her body shortly after her estimated time of death. There was no sign of the couple - a man and a woman - who had met Lindsay at the house according to witnesses.

Jeff Buziak, Lindsay's father, has been leading a relentless crusade over the years to have his daughter's murder solved. Every year in early February, he leads a march through Saanich to remind citizens that justice has yet to be served in this case. Relations between him and the local police have been strained. He claims they have been too slow to solve the case and too slow to release details of what they know.

Jeff Buziak, father of Lindsay addresses supporters.
Jeff Buziak, father of Lindsay addresses supporters.
Most curious was the fact that the police released major details of the crime one year after the murder in an effort to attract tips. Many people wondered about the wisdom of waiting a year after the crime when potential witnesses might have forgotten details, or moved away from the area.

To this day, the Saanich police continue to be strangely silent on the case although they insist that it is still active. They do believe that the killing was a contract job, but beyond that they don't have much to say.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wayback Wednesday: Jasper National Park

The peaks of Jasper National Park in Canada...
The peaks of Jasper National Park in Canada...
Recently, the photo group that I belong to had a 'black and white' challenge so I submitted this image taken in Jasper National Park about three years ago.

I call this one my faux-Ansel Adams.