Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Elusive White Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 Lens

White Nikkor 70-200-1

A few years back, Nikon decided that Canon had it all figured out - White was the new Black. And so they put out this beautiful limited edition white Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. So naturally, I lost my mind and had to snap it up when I finally saw one for sale.

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Except... mine's just a thermos.

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Fooled ya! :)

Sunday, February 12, 2012



Anita and I were surprised to find a whole frozen octopus at the local Walmart Supercentre (yes, I'm sorry, we actually went shopping at the evil empire). So off we went, in search of a recipe that would make use of this frozen tentacled beast. And while preparing the octopus was a slimy and slightly gross affair, the end result was a delicious stew of whiskey fired octopus and potatoes in a tomato and white wine base.







Octopus Stew


2 lbs Octopus
3 tbsp Olive Oil
1 Red Onion, chopped
3 Cloves Garlic - finely chopped
2 tbsp Whiskey
300ml White Wine
2 x 14 oz cans Chopped Tomatoes
1 Chilli Pepper, seeded and chopped
1/4 tsp Paprika
1 lb Nugget Potatoes
Thyme, Rosemary to taste
4 cups Chicken or Fish Stock
Salt and Pepper, to Taste


-Cut Octopus into large chunks, cover with water in pot, and bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 45 minutes to tenderize Octopus. Drain and cut into bit sized chunks.
-Heat oil in large pan. Fry onion lightly, add garlic, then add octopus and fry for 2 minutes.
-Pour Whiskey over octopus and ignite. When flames die down, add wine and bring to boil. Simmer gently for 5 minutes.
-Stir in chopped tomatoes, chilli, paprika, potatoes, thyme and rosemary. Simmer another 5 minutes.
-Add chicken stock, season with salt and pepper, then simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
-Serve with bread.

Bon Appetit!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Life Drawing at Sandy Hill

Another life drawing session at Sandy Hill Community Centre in Ottawa. I bought a set of conte crayons while we were in Asia, so broke those out for the first time. Hadn't played with conte in about 15 years, so was mildly surprised by how much fun they were to work with. The top 4 pages were 20 - 30 minute sketches, while the bottom 3 pages were 90 second gesture drawings.

Life Drawing at Sandy Hill

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Monday, February 6, 2012

Ottawa by night

Back from a couple days riding the not so fresh snow at Sunshine and Lake Louise. I'm sore, but not nearly as bad as I expected, considering I have the physical fitness of a 73 year old... I guess it was good to take it easy towards the end of our second day. You know, that time when your mind is saying "ONE MORE MOGULS RUN", but your legs are saying, "FUUUUCK YOU!!"

Currently, I'm in Ottawa, tickled pink by the fact that the Sheraton has finally joined the ranks of 2006 (ie: that time when every OTHER hotel chain offered complimentary in-room wifi). Went for a short stroll tonight and snapped a few shots with the iPhone (first time in years I'm not travelling with a real camera). Enjoy.




Thursday, February 2, 2012


A couple years ago, I took part in a United Way affiliated project in which we were tasked with learning about, and examining, poverty within our community. And as a final output of that, we were to present what we learned through photos. This was a gratifying experience in terms of personal learning of an issue close to my heart. But today, when I was informed that one of my photos from that project was 'published' in the Calgary Journal, a local online paper with several printed editions a month, I was so excited in that smug, vainglorious, "I can't believe something of mine got chosen for inclusion in a publication" sort of way, that I almost crapped my pants. But I think the excessive consumption of granola cereal this morning might have had something to do with the latter as well. Damn you, fibre-licious cereal!!

Anyways, back to the point. If you're interested, you can read the entire article here. And if you don't feel like reading about poverty initiatives in Calgary, you can just scroll down the page to see the photo with the credit underneath that was partially the cause of my pants crapping near-miss!

Lastly, the photo itself was taken at 'Cash Corner', a local hangout for folks seeking to do short term manual labour for cash. These three fellows were all seeking cash jobs for the day (doing whatever labour was in demand), and were either currently homeless, and/ or had spent time in homeless shelters. It was an eye opening experience chatting with them to learn about the myriad issues they faced in a life often spent at the edge of poverty...