Sunday, August 31, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 3:42 PM
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 1:41 PM
Thanks to Peter at Cancult for pointing out this article on second hand booksellers. Nice to see Kelly Hughes' Winnipeg store Aqua Books mentioned. I make a point of visiting Aqua every time I'm here in the 'Peg--both for the book browsing and for the very fine food at the Eat Bistro.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 1:16 PM
Monday, August 25, 2008
Once again, my days off have evaporated far too quickly. I'm off to Winnipeg tomorrow. Hopefully a smoother trip than my last one, as interesting as it turned out to be. TTFN
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 11:01 PM
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 5:55 PM
Had a fab time with the fam on Mayne Island over the weekend. We were there for the nups of my old university friend and roommate, Sean and his partner of seven-odd years, Brook. The weather cooperated beautifully (it only started pouring the morning after the wedding), the ceremony and receptions were very fine (at least the parts of the ceremony we caught before we got distracted by Kaleb's crying and dirty diaper) and it was great to hang out with a few friends I'd not seen in years.
Here are a few photos from the weekend.
The fam at Georgina Point, the beautiful site of Sean and Brook's wedding
Strikin' a pose on the brass bed at Fairview Farm
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 5:33 PM
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
At the all-in resort,
while my buddies sun-bathed
by day and chased tail for sport
in strobe-lit bars after dark,
I drank in the shade,
muttered “Let ‘em come
to me if they want some.”
One night the cool kids
conned that eager dumb
schmuck Durrett into chugging
a full tumbler of 151 rum,
whereupon he staggered
down the dew-drenched beach
to plant his shit-bagged
face in the sand--where he barfed.
A scabby stray bitch
appeared to lap the puke
from his lips. Each
day, I woke half-drunk,
had three beers for breakfast.
Each day, the buzz
got harder to build, till at last
I’d drunk myself sober.
Seemed like good fun
at the time. Suppose it was.
I’m not sorry it’s over.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 1:31 AM
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I'm still waiting for my copies of the magazines. I'm looking forward to it. I have to admit that the short story is a form I often neglect as a reader. Not because I don't like the form as such; I just seem to have a hard time fitting story collections into my schedule, which involves reading a lot of poetry and non-fiction along with the odd novel. A lame argument, considering that most short stories can be read in a sitting. Whenever I do pick up a book of stories by a terrific writer like Kafka or Borges--or Rooke or Jarman--I think I should read more. Maybe once I figure out how to live without a dayjob...
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 11:22 PM
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 2:54 PM
Our late arrival into Winnipeg meant that, according to our CBA, I shouldn't have had to work home. We actually got into Winnipeg 35 minutes after the westbound train was supposed to leave, but it was nine hours late. And because Winnipeg's "spareboard" was also depleted, only one of the Vancouver-based employees was allowed to deadhead home. So I boarded the train at 1 am determined to do the absolute bare minimum that was required of me. I largely succeeded in this, but on the last day of the trip, after passing thru the Rockies in darkness, we went thru the Thompson and Fraser Canyons in broad daylight. The novelty and splendor of the scenery--along with the "natural health beverages" (a.k.a. liquid speed) I was drinking to keep my sorry ass awake--renewed my enthusiasm for my job and I started talking to passengers more. I met a lovely couple from Seattle, who it turns out are close friends of Heather Spears'. I know Heather a bit as she wrote for me a fine review of several translations of Danish poetry for the translation issue of CNQ.
I missed some real excitement en route. Because of our delays, we pulled into Jasper at 12:30 am. Because I wasn't required for the detraining and entraining of passengers, I was already asleep and dreaming by this point. While we were stopped in Jasper, a flash thunderstorm hit. Colleagues of mine reported that a tree within view of the platform was struck by lightning during the torrential downpour. Kind of disappointed I missed it. But relieved it missed us, at least. A big steel tube on steel rails is about the last place I want to be during an electrical storm...
We hauled into Pacific Central Station more than 10 hours late, but it wound up being a pretty enjoyable trip in spite of it. I'm still exhausted, even after a full night's sleep--albeit slightly interrupted by Kaleb. I might be coming down from my natural health high...
In other news, Kaleb had his final post-partum midwife visit yesterday. In six weeks, he's gained three pounds, four ounces (he's now 12-7) and has grown 2 inches to 24. He's sleeping longer (sometimes) and has had his first bottle feed. They grow up so fast.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 9:52 AM
Crazy train trip (serves me right for saying what a routine summer it's been), about which I'll post tomorrow when I'm a little more human. We incurred over 16 hours in delays during my five days on the road. As I said to one of my colleagues, my sorry-muscle is sprained.
Off to Mayne Island with Rachel and Kaleb on the 22nd for an old friend's wedding. Should be shits and giggles. Well, shits anyway. K has yet to giggle. But he is smiling a great deal.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 12:22 AM
Thursday, August 14, 2008
As I said I would, I spent the last several days on Lasqueti Island without my computer. It was a nice break. I read a lot. Out of books. (Including the fascinating The Brain that Changes Itself by Norman Doidge and The Gift of Stones, an early novel by Jim Crace, who's rapidly becoming one of my favourite living novelists. I've just started a more recent book of his, called Six, after reading, twice, the brilliant Being Dead and his latest, The Pesthouse. Such a good stylist.) How quaint. That's what life on an off-grid island'll do to you I guess. Also did a fair bit of walking and a bit of wood-splitting, which is one of my favourite physical activities, such a fine combination of meditation and aggression.
Here's a shot of me and Kaleb on the beach:
And here we are doing what the Wells boys do best:
His time with Rachel tends to be more manic:
I'll have to be efficient, as we're planning to move back to Halifax in April and there'll be lots to do to get ready for that. We've given BC a good go, and it has lots going for it to be sure, but we miss our half-boho, half-bourgeois Halifax life, in which we lived in our own house instead of someone else's basement. This city's just too damn expensive for folks like us to get ahead. Thanks to a combination of good fortune and shrewd management, we haven't fallen behind, but everything we've done here has had a provisional feel to it and it can't realistically be otherwise, barring a sudden unexpected windfall.
All for now. I'll probably be back in five days or so.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 10:03 PM
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Some people prefer a keen and perfect
Cutting edge, a right-angled sheet trimmed neat
With borders that might snick an errant
Fingertip. Others play it safer, seek
Corners that are curved or bevel, the better
To deflect attack, embraces and attention.
My own predilection is for the deckled
Indents of a homemade page, fibre-flecked
And textured like a slept-in bed still dented
From the press of its residents, a set
Of lovers well fitted to each other’s
Folding flaws, growing more attached each week
As they fade and sag and grey together.
Posted by Zachariah Wells at 12:26 PM