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Oct. 11th, 2033


You deserve to be happy and healthy

If you're on my friends list, you're important to me. I want you to be safe, healthy, happy, and enjoy life as much as physically possible. If there's any way that I can help alleviate some of life's annoyances and pains, please just comment below. Post an address that I can send stuff to (doesn't have to be yours, your post office may accept it for you - ref. https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Poste_restante ), tell me what you need, and a package will be on its way.

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Jan. 14th, 2017


Free Stuff

Does anyone in the Toronto area want any of this stuff?

Stuff to give away.png

- Two rolls of white Contact shelf-liner paper (one partially used)
- Power meter - see how much electricity your appliances are costing you (needs new button battery)
- Yeast Flakes - a low-fat alternative to sprinkling cheese on your pasta (missing one scoop. Does taste like cheese, but doesn't melt like cheese)
- Kickstand for bicycle - missing the fastening hardware
- Panda mini-washing machine - for parts only. The motor doesn't work any more, but the tubes and other parts are fine.
- Plastic drop sheet - 10' x 25' - still in bag
- Insulation made from recycled denim - three rolls still in bag - each 2x16x48" (plus one leftover scrap)

Dec. 30th, 2016


(no subject)

Recently, LiveJournal moved all its servers from the US to Russia.

I don't know if this will have a negative impact or not.  But, just in case, I've imported all of my LiveJournal entries over to Dreamwidth.  "Resonant" was taken, so my account name is "armiphlage".


I'll still be using LiveJournal as my main site, but it's good to have a backup.

This entry is also posted at http://armiphlage.dreamwidth.org/504017.html

Dec. 8th, 2016


Anyone want to meet with the Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism?

Still 300 posts behind in reading my friends page!

A few weeks ago, I posted about a company that provides landlords with resumes of prospective tenants, including their photos and social media links. I was concerned that this might lead to discrimination.


Tomorrow afternoon, I will be meeting with the Ontario Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism (and head of the government Anti-Racism Directorate) for an unrelated topic. While I am there, I will check with his receptionist if he has time for a brief meeting in the new year to discuss ways of preventing such companies from enabling discrimination. Is anyone in the Toronto area interested in joining me in such a meeting?

Dec. 4th, 2016


Carbon monoxide detectors save lives!

In January 2008, a family of four died when a blocked chimney allowed deadly carbon monoxide gas to build up in their home. After seven years of lobbying, their relatives managed to get a law passed making carbon monoxide detectors mandatory in the province of Ontario. Every home with a fuel-burning appliance or garage is required to have at least one detector.


My friend its_raining_jen just heard some odd beeping. She found it was coming from the carbon monoxide detector. She immediately called 911. As she was opening the windows and pulling on her jacket, the carbon monoxide detector in her bedroom started beeping too. When the firefighters arrived, their personal carbon monoxide alarms went off, and they had to back out and put their masks on before returning.

Jen and Leo are safe thanks to the detector.

If you don't have carbon monoxide detector, get one now. I am adding these to my list of free things for my friends, so if you can't afford one, I'll buy one for you.


Nov. 27th, 2016


A comment on movies

Movies are starting to have key characters who are living with mental and physical issues, and who are not the villains. It's not a vaguely-patronizing approach focused on their disability, but treats it as just something about who they are. I think this is a very positive thing, and hope that more movies follow this trend.

[minor spoilers]

In "The Accountant", Ben Affleck is an accountant who does taxes,financial analysis, and assassinations, and is also someone living with autism. It plays very much like any other mainstream movie, and he is not treated as either pitiful or evil because of his autsm- it's just a fact about him. Interestingly, the movie also throws away the usual boring romantic subplot. Usually, if there is a female co-star in a movie, they sleep with the male star. In a shocker, they act like most other co-workers, and manage to be friends and professional acquaintances without needing to fall into bed with each other.

In "Finding Dory", Ellen Degeneres is a fish trying to find her parents. She also is suffering from short-term memory loss. Her memory loss is part of the story, but the movie is still focused mostly on the search. Interestingly, the movie also has no bad guys! Everyone is working towards positive goals.

In "Fury Road", Charlize Theron is a truck driver with a missing hand. She still drives her rig and earns the respect of her co-workers, and the writers do not define her by her missing limb. This is an excellent film about the transportation industry in modern Australia.

In "Deadpool", Ryan Reynolds has cancer, and develops a chronic skin condition as a side effect of his treatment. His girlfriend doesn't make a big deal about his changed appearance.

Nov. 6th, 2016


Election time!

This is going to be a hotly contested one, determining the future of the region! So, a poll of my friends: who do you hope wins? The businessman embroiled in scandal, the female career bureaucrat with experience in international affairs, or the third-party candidate?

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Some municipalities have zoning laws that say bars and nightclubs can't be near churches or schools.

From a traffic planning point of view, that's the exact opposite of the way it should be. They have different hours of business, so having them next to each other would level-load transit usage in the neighborhood, and allow them to share parking lots. Late-night noise from a nightclub won't bother anyone in an empty school, and noise from screaming kids at recess won't bother an empty daytime nightclub.

Oct. 25th, 2016


Carrot something

m_danson posted about a carrot soup-like something. It seemed interesting, so I bought ten kilos of carrots and started peeling.

I stuffed my grandmother's slow cooker full of carrot sticks standing vertically, and slid thin slices of fresh ginger in between. Chunks of apple filled the remaining space, and it simmered overnight. After cooling, I put the still-firm carrots into a blender until smooth. After simmering the puree again, I added thyme, and served with shredded cheese sprinkled on top.

Very nice, but it didn't taste anything like carrot at all.

Oct. 23rd, 2016


Biking and socializing

I haven't seen Sandy for the past two weekends. Last weekend I was sobbing in bed about socks, and this weekend he's in Ottawa with his father visiting his brother and nephews. So I had to find something to do on my own.

I haven't biked long distances ever since I went to Oshawa and back, and messed up my ulnar nerve. It still hasn't healed yet, but I decided to go biking anyway. I had freshly oiled my chain, and installed a new taillight. Many of the bike paths have a 20-km/hr speed limit, so I added on a speedometer. I put on an ugly safety-green neon t-shirt I got online for $5. And then I went downtown to get my hair cut in the gay village.


I'm very happy with my city's progress on bike paths. Only two of the 14 kilometres between me and my barber shop were not bike lanes. Most of the bike lanes downtown now have physical barriers between the bike path and motorists.

The two kilometers that I shared with cars were exciting enough. My new speedometer showed I hit 43 kilometres per hour on Leslie Street, when I was trying to get away from an overly-affectionate SUV. I had no idea that I could go that fast without tumbling end-over-end.

The leaves are changing colour in the Don Valley. It was a very picturesque ride to downtown. Very crowded, though - the bike paths were packed solid. We'll need to create a mullti-lane bike superhighway to deal with the growing bike usage.

As I got my hair cut, I chatted with the person who had been before me. He's from my home province too, and went to the same high school as me. We stood outside the barber shop and I listened while he talked. It was quite cold, but I kept listening as he talked and went through five cigarettes in 90 minutes. At that point I wished him well, and we went our separate ways.

This is the first time that I've talked that long with anyone other than Sandy in literally years! Eugene is not relationship material (he's a smoker, refers to women as "bitches", and I suspect we're actually relatives on my dad's side), but it's a start to finding someone to be with other than Sandy. Who is awesome, but doesn't want me as anything other than a friend.

It was dark and cold on the way back, so I decided to take a bus uphill from Pape Station. The current TTC buses have a rack on front that holds two bikes, but there were three of us that wanted to use it. We all took turns politely insisting that the others use it, until I broke the stalemate and pretended I had to go to an errand in the other direction. I then loaded my bike onto the rack of the next bus to arrive - and by the time I got to my stop, the other slot had already been filled. That's late on a Sunday night - the racks must be totally packed during daylight hours.

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