The Whole Night Sky*

Tonight I stole my son to go star gazing with some junior high students from my school. My colleague, Mr. Schneider, managed to gather a few astronomers with their impressive telescopes in our back field at the school. He gave a short talk and presented about 10 minutes of a video about God and the majesty of the celestial bodies.

The sky managed to stay clear enough despite a drifting haze from the burnings of pine (because of pine beetle infestation) in Canmore. What I saw in the heavens was absolutely astounding. The four main features are pictured above:
If Blaise didn't get cold and tired, I would have stayed out for hours staring at the sky. Truly glorious.

*So, the title comes from a song from Bruce Cockburn's The Charity of Night album, but the blog really shares nothing with the song aside from the moniker. Plus it's cool to put a star next to the title. I should note too that I didn't take these pictures. Maybe one day.

I took this photo in New Brunswick and was pretty proud of it.


Happy Bike to Work Day

I cycled to work today for the 6th time this month. When I woke up, the radio announcer said it was walk, bike or take public transit to work day (or in some places it's called curb your car day). I thought, now I have even more of a reason! I'm cycling tomorrow and Friday too this week.

My commute isn't too far and we even bought a house specifically so my commute wouldn't be long and so I could cycle on occasion. We live 8 km from my work so it's not too bad - 22 minutes there and 27 minutes back (more hills and against the wind). I average 22 km/hr. Since we have only one car, it's handy for Amber when I cycle too (and I don't have to bum rides from other teachers).

I geared up my bike a bit more on Sunday after stopping in at MEC (the first time I've been to the Calgary branch since the Bike trip in July, 2003). Since I go in before it's fully light out on Fridays, I picked up a set of lights and an ankle reflector. I also needed some standard bike care equipment, so before I knew it I had 6 items when I meant to get 2. But it's cool.

The one real hassle of biking to work is having to maintain a wardrobe at the school. It's quite time consuming to get changed before and after school (though I save time throwing on my shorts and jersey at home).

The best part of cycling to work is how amazing I feel. I drink more water. I have so much more energy. I'm more cheerful. It's pretty awesome.


Blogged about 400 Flicks

So in less than 2 1/2 years I've managed to watch 400 movies and write a few thoughts about each one on my blog. I'm glad I'm doing it for a few reasons. It forces me to write and try to write critically. As I watch films, I think about what I'm going to take away from it. I eye the editing, camera operator, writer, actors and directing more than I would if I knew I wasn't going to write about it later. I also have a comprehensive list of the best films I've watched over the past couple years.

I only wish I had gotten started earlier.

Bon Cinema!