Summertime… sadness? Albeit shortlived.

Kiss me hard before you go
Summertime sadness
~Lana Del Ray

Was I sad…
Because my joints hurt?i
Because I was getting soft?ii
Because my bite was unsettled?iii
Because I hadn’t what to strive for?iv
Because I hadn’t what to aspire to?v
Because I was lonely?vi
Because I missed traveling for business?vii
Because my walls weren’t edge-to-edge covered in fine art?viii
Because my car projects are mostly wrapped up for the season?ix
Because I hadn’t enough time for reading and writing?x
Because the boys were getting older?
Because I was too?
Because big fish was imitating my disciplinarian characteristics with his little brother?
Because The Girl wasn’t around enough?xi
Because highs needed lows?
Because yins needed yangs?
Because I was a honk daddy head?xii
Because I was a pee poo stinky head?
Because I was a Peter my love head?xiii

I’m not totally sure, but it was a down-feelin’ sorta week despite a fair amount of exercise and sunshine. Thankfully, that bit of unpleasantness seemed to subside the second we hit the road this weekend for “Dinosaur HolidaysPart Deux!

With Drumheller’s staircase-encasing largest sharp tooth in the world.

Drumheller 2020 - 1

With the Camarasaurus leg at the Royal Tyrrell Museum.

Drumheller 2020 - 2

On the steps across from the Drumheller Visitor Centre eating ice cream after ice cream.

Drumheller 2020 - 3

With the friendly blue morpha butterflies at the Calgary Zoo.

Calgary Zoo 2020 - 1

Playing “tickle bum” with the John Seward Johnson Jr. statue at the Calgary Zoo.xiv

Calgary Zoo 2020 -2

Playing “use free credits to win the rigged game” at the Denny’s across the street from our hotel.xv

Calgary 2020 - 1

And duelling iPads in the jacuzzi tub.xvi

Calgary 2020 - 2

___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

And here are some bonus shots taken recently, ones that can’t help but bring a smile to my aging face.

A bit of “switch“-ing.

R35 Tricycle Push

Little fish riding his tricycle wearing his homemade RULES ARE “RULES” t-shirt.xvii

Rules are rules tricycle 2020

Big fish wearing my new Stilo ST5F Carbon Helmet in XXXL, the largest size they make, which is at the limit of snugly comfortable on me and frighteningly not unwearable on the as-yet-5-year-old.xviii

Stilo Carbon 2020

I’m feelin’ electric tonight
Cruisin’ down the coast goin’ ’bout 99

___ ___ ___

  1. My current joint pain, particularly the pulled groin/hip that pulls the opposite knee out of whack, makes cardio exercise fairly challenging, which in turn makes staying in shape that much harder. I can’t run/jog anymore, which was my “cheat code” for the last 10 years, and bicycle hill climbs are to be taken gingerly, so I’m really just left with the Assault* fan bike at the gym, which is better than nothing I guess!
    ___ ___
  2. I have fewer people to impress with my physical prowess these days, I “took” 4 months out of the weight room, and the boys are finally old enough to play with each other on the playground, and even my own superpowered narcissism isn’t enough to overcome all those factors! 
  3. At rest, it’s quite important for your teeth to “have a home.” Unfortunately, due to years of complicated orthodontics and a variety of other genetic factors, my molars aren’t the primary touch-points when I close my teeth – my fronts are. As such, my jaw tends to “hunt” with varying degrees of inaccuracy and discomfort. The Girl, being a practitioner in the dark arts of dentistry, recently carved one of my molars into a deeper “V” instead of a shallower “U” but it seems that this has only liberated my jaw from swinging further to one side so that my canines are contacting more and wearing deeper grooves into one another. Not cool! Occlusion is hard though… and even though she was trained by the one and only Dr. John Kois in Seattle, there’s a lifetime of learning between her and him. 
  4. Will a billion dollars make me happy? Will it even make me happier? Is happiness even the point?? Of course not. But striving is still the foundation of joy. So be very specific about your dreams.
  5. Who am I trying to emulate? Who am I aspiring to be? I don’t have good answers for these questions right now, which is more of a pickle than you’d think.
  6. The usual summer schedule of birthday parties with friends was obviously lacking this year! Do I miss this more than I realise?
  7. Zoom Lunch & Learns just aren’t the same. They’re like playing Big Buck Hunter at the arcade instead of shooting a deer between the eyes IRL!
  8. Maybe Peggy Guggenheim had it figured out: a piece a day keeps the doctor away! Of course, that’s also the road to “cluttercore,” but I really don’t think I’d mind!
  9. It was a busy spring to be sure! No doubt an unsustainable pace.
  10. I’ve been publishing on Sundays regularly for a few months now, a slight relaxation of my previously held 5-day schedule, so perhaps it’s the reading… perhaps I haven’t had enough time for Torah? I only pull my copy off the shelf a couple of times a year, flipping to whatever the weekly Torah portion is and reading from there, but maybe I should do it more often? There is gold in them thar hills.
  11. She’s starting a much overdue sabbatical in the next few months and it must be said that I’m looking forward to it at least as much as she is.
  12. The boys have an abundance of trash-talk energy at the moment and I’ve elected to have them channel it towards me rather than anyone else. As such, I’m subjected to such fire-spitting gems as “honk daddy head” etc. It seems that every supposed insult has to end in “head” for some reason. Maybe because my head is enormous? A fact compounded by my current “frohawk” hair style?
  13. Where all of these various smack-down lines originated, I can’t entirely say, but if there’s a sweeter and more touching copy-cat line for little fish to imitate than The Girl’s frequently cited “Peter my love,”, I haven’t heard it yet!
  14. Inspired by my sister-in-law telling big fish that he’ll turn brown like her half-Filipino husband if he drinks too much chocolate milk, I told the young man, with whom I frequently play “Where did Niko go? All I see is a statue!” when he freezes, that “tickle bum” – another of his favourite games and easily the most invasive – would turn a statue into a real person. He wasn’t really convinced by my tall tale but he thought it was funny enough to try anyways!
  15. “Smart Prize Time” my left foot! The claw on the left was self-generating credits and Niko managed to pick up no less than three stuffed toys in a row before the credits disappeared. The free credits are unlikely enough, getting one toy is unlikely enough, but winning three toys on three consecutive attempts all with imaginary credits is like winning the California Powerball! I’ve never purchased a lottery ticket before but I tell you it’s bloody tempting.
  16. The Deerfoot Inn & Casino isn’t anyone’s idea of a 5-star hotel, but I tell you that its waterslide was worth its weight in COVID-era gold. Even though the poolside hot tubs being closed smacked distinctly of Protestantesque “it has to hurt to do good,” the jacuzzi tubs in our rooms more than made up for this one shortcoming. The closure of the poker room was less forgivable.
  17. Bookmark.
  18. At a svelte 1.4 kg, this helmet’s a dream when karting! As I get more into karting, the thought has crossed my mind about exposing the kids to it as well. Once I’m a little more handy on the circuit, I don’t see why not, though the prospects for 6’3″-6″9″ young men in motorsports isn’t great! Racquet sports are probably a better fit if they’re anything like as individualistically-oriented as their father. Volleyball if not.

    In other racing-fueled interests, my new SPL lower control arm bushings for the R35 were such a tight squeeze that they needed to be “dry iced” before they could be wedged into place with a 20`000 kg hydraulic shop press. Speaking of which, I freaking love SSS Motorsports in Edmonton. They did all the recent, and relatively extensive, suspension and brake upgrades on my R35. I love them because they’re the exact opposite of the dreadfully unimaginative “tasty spec” world. They also field a very respectable team in the Spec-D Drifting Series, so they know their stuff, and they love them some JDM frankensteins! (And I use “frankensteins” in the most endearing way possible. SSS has creativity in spades!)

    SPL R35 GTR Front Lower Control Arm Bushings on Dry Ice

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