Tutor of the Year nomination

Wow!  Good news!  I’ve been nominated by TD for 2020 Tutor of the Year for Canada!  A student’s mom wrote a very positive report on me, and now I am in the running to win this year.  This is most pleasing.  It comes with a gift card of $xxx.xx and … who knows what else – likely a news release of some sort (in the tutoring world, that is).  I’m grateful to TD for all their support, and I’m grateful to have such great students.  I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – my students make me look good!

work

I recently started a new position at a company that makes cabinets as a drafting technologist.  For the past two weeks, I’ve been getting to know the software they use and trying to create an AWMAC compliant room-by-room materials list for a house.  I think they are a good group of people who seriously work hard.  The position, as with most positions out there, comes with a three month probationary period.  I hope I make the cut.  I’ll keep you posted.

In the mean time, there’s still TD.  They also keep me busy.  I’m not sure if I can take on any more clients with them as time is now limited.

an important difference (or, let me in, just don’t follow me)

I submitted this to the Washington Post.

I recently tried to view one of your pages (https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/suffering-from-bad-knees-some-look-for-alternatives-to-surgery/2019/11/15/d286d862-dfd7-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html?utm_source=pocket-newtab) but was transferred to another page requesting to disable my web browser’s ad-block (https://www.washingtonpost.com/steps-for-disabling-firefoxs-native-adblocker/2018/05/21/fb95bf4e-5d37-11e8-b2b8-08a538d9dbd6_story.html). I have apps on my browser to disable tracking, not ads. I do not mind ads. I believe that a free internet requires ads. However, I do not wish to be tracked. I am happy to view your ads without being tracked. I do not know how to separate the two. Firefox, Ghostery, DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials, Privacy Badger, and others all seem to do both simultaneously. Can you offer a method of unblocking ads without disabling tracking blocks? I would welcome this.

I wonder if anyone is listening.

how to get a five star rating (or, not)

Someone asked me why I gave five stars to a recent chat with a company.  Were they really worth five stars?  This is how I give out my stars.

One for responding within the time frame I required of them.
One for understanding the issue and not confusing it with another.
One for being knowledgeable.
One for finding a solution.
One for explaining, teaching, showing well in a meaningful, polite, non-robotic way.

If you’ve done all this, then you get five stars out of me.  If not, then not.

tiny ideas

I’ve written before about the tiny home idea previously – how it might work, what impacts it would have on a town or city, how if might help various people, etc.

Something occurred to me while going to a student’s house in a mobile home park.  There were several older mobile homes (or manufactured homes, if you will, since they’re not exactly mobile).  As these older models become less livable and their worth diminishes beyond the threshold of acceptability, they would need to be removed.  Why not use that space to install two, three, or four tiny homes?

The tiny home would fit nicely into a mobile home park.  Benefits:

  1. The infrastructure for accommodating movable homes is already there.
    1. The use of numerically numbered houses are already in place, rather than grid street addresses.
    2. Utilities electrical, gas, cable, telecommunications, and plumbing hookups are conclusive to movable homes.
    3. A non-standard placement of buildings already exist (the footprints of mobile homes are often kind of random).
  2. Lots in a mobile home park are for the most part rented, not owned, contributing for lower homeowner costs.
  3. Relocating a tiny home would be simpler in a mobile home park than a normal city street lot, allowing for easier sales and purchases of them.  Allowance could be made for shorter leases if a one-year lease isn’t desirable.
  4. Community centres are often part of a mobile home park, a facility that may be of greater benefit to a tiny home owner than the owner of a full-sized home.
  5. It would not impact the neighbourhood as negatively as the monster home crowd.  That is, not as many NIMBY complaints.

I’m sure I could continue to find reasons that this would be a good fit.  What say you?

snow

It started snowing again today.  Yay!

I actually don’t mind snow.  I don’t mind walking in it, driving through it, or shovelling it.  I certainly enjoy looking at it.  People sometimes say, “When it’s winter, I complain about the cold.  But, in summer, I look forward to winter.”  I don’t think I do.  I actually enjoy winter.  No noisy hot-rods driving up and down the roads, coffee tastes better for some reason, and I look forward to meals much more than in hot weather.  On the down side, I don’t get to work on any projects, and daylight disappears pretty quickly.

architecture on Ritalin

Holy cow.  How true.

This Is Your Brain on Architecture

Sarah Williams Goldhagen presents scientific evidence for why some buildings delight us and others—too many of them—disappoint.

Can anyone design a more depressing looking building?  Maybe Arthur Charles Erickson?  (The University of Lethbridge resembles a prison inside its halls.)  I thought for a moment – “What else has that cold, lonely, depressing look?”  What popped into my mind was Robson Square in Vancouver.  Oh – Mr. Erickson again.

Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m not really into hobbit houses, either.  But surely some warmth can enter architecture, can it not?  We’re creating environments to be in.