Things to Do When You are Between Jobs

It’s been a lit­tle over a week before my last day at IBM. I was frankly blown away by the good-bye that I got from cowork­ers that Fri­day. We all went out to a Thai feast in Burn­a­by (and by Thai feast, I mean it just kept com­ing and com­ing until we start­ed gig­gling as each dish was brought to the table; Pad Thai? Sure, Crispy Fish with sauce? Why not!? More Stir-Fried Veg­eta­bles? Of course!)

I packed up my desk (I had spent over a week mov­ing books and toys from it to home in half a dozen trips). It was a strange time, with my time allot­ed to the project over, and work still need­ing to be done the project I’ve been work­ing on. I hope that I haven’t left too much hang­ing; Some of it was depen­dent on details of fea­tures that had not been defined yet, but where I had to leave wire­frames (which are essen­tial­ly dia­grams of how screens should look and what should be on them and where) par­tial­ly fin­ished, I tried to make it clear how they could be com­plet­ed. I said many good-byes to friends and col­leagues, and drove home from Burn­a­by, a lit­tle dazed (hey, it was prob­a­bly all that food at lunch).

On Sat­ur­day, we decid­ed to play tourist all over again. We went to the open house of CityTV and took a sta­tion tour, meet­ing most of the crew of Break­fast Tele­vi­sion (which I must con­fess, we’re not reg­u­lar view­ers of, but it was fun, nev­er­the­less). I won a CityTV Umbrel­la, and we got some Cold Stone Cream­ery Ice Cream at the end of the tour. I like the sta­tion; It’s small and has a lot of per­son­al­i­ty, and they run Jeop­ardy each evening (and also car­ry Reaper, which is a lot of fun and anoth­er series filmed here).

Sat­ur­day Night, I went to the tick­et office at the Orpheum just before the Sym­pho­ny Con­cert, and got a last-minute seat for the con­cert (only $15!). I heard the VSO play one of my favourite pieces, Prokofiev’s Third Sym­pho­ny. I love it because it’s most­ly loud and fast, and almost nev­er lets up. In par­tic­u­lar, the third move­ment is some of the wildest and most vivid music that Prokofiev ever wrote, and much of the dra­ma of the piece is due to the fact that it’s tak­en from his opera ‘The Flam­ing Angel’, which chron­i­cles a young nun’s psy­chot­ic break­down and pur­suit of a man she believes is an angel, com­plete with an on-stage exor­cism and chase through the streets. Not your usu­al opera fare, and cer­tain­ly not your usu­al Sym­pho­ny. The orches­tra did a fine job, but I sus­pect that it was too racy for the crowd, who did­n’t give it as much of a stand­ing ova­tion as they did for the Tchaikovsky Piano Con­cer­to in the first half. Ah, when will they stop doing this?! Once again, peo­ple, when every per­for­mance gets a stand­ing ova­tion, it ceas­es to mean anything!

The rest of the week­end was a bit qui­eter, but things picked up again today, with a job inter­view. I’m not going to write more about that until things set­tle down either way. Pam also has a lead on a con­tract, so it’s prob­a­ble that the free time between engage­ments for both of us is prob­a­bly going to come to an end soon.

Tomor­row evening is a spe­cial SIGCHI event: the film design­er Syd Mead (who was respon­si­ble for the rev­o­lu­tion­ary sets and scenery of Blade Run­ner) will be in town speak­ing, fol­lowed by a screen­ing of the final cut of the movie.

4 Replies to “Things to Do When You are Between Jobs”

  1. It was fun to bump into you at the CityTV thing! I heard that the ice cream is just as good as the Mar­ble Slab. Haven’t had it yet. Glad you had fun!

  2. It was good to see you as well, Raul, and thanks for the shout-out.

    We haven’t tried Mar­ble Slab’s Ice Cream yet, but will have to. One of the few things we miss from Cam­bridge is good ice cream (and to be hon­est, it may be just as well giv­en that there is so much else to gain weight on here). Have found a lot of Gela­to here, but noth­ing that comes close to Toscani­nis, Emack and Bolios, Steve’s, and of course, Ben and Jer­ry’s, which is actu­al­ly from the sav­ing grace of the States (at least for us), Vermont.

  3. Have you tried out the gela­to place on Ven­ables that has a zil­lion dif­fer­ent types of flavours?

  4. Hi Cara — Yes, we’ve tried that place, as well as the Gela­to place on 2nd (near Main), Mar­ios (I think). The trou­ble is that Gela­to is not ice cream. It’s a bit more icy, less creamy, and tends to melt faster.

    When we were in Cos­ta Rica, we were con­tin­u­al­ly amazed at how bad the bread was, giv­en there was all this fan­tas­tic cof­fee. We always said that the per­son who opened a French-style bak­ery there so you could have a real crois­sant or baguette with your cof­fee would do well. The same might go for a high but­ter­fat ice cream par­lor (or is it par­lour in Cana­di­an?) in Van­cou­ver. There’s some­thing about the rich­ness of that high-but­ter­fat cream that is hard to resist (I know, it sounds kind of gross, but I sus­pect that if an Emac and Bolios or Steve’s ice cream opened here, the line would go out the door, just like it would for a Krispy Kreme donut shop — West Coast/health-and-fit­ness-cen­tric Lotus­land or not.)

    I know it’s not raw mate­ri­als. I’m sure that BC Cows give milk with just as high a but­ter­fat con­tent as they do in Ver­mont. I’ve tast­ed the cheese from Van­cou­ver Island and the oth­er areas, so I know it’s in there!

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