Time, now, to get out and try and find a job. 

#1 Shave. This takes a while, my beard had rather grown in and there was an even longer beard framing it, great mats of hair that extend down my neck, swathed up behind my ears. This as well gets trimmed.

#2 The Ears. Yes, the ears. I have to keep on this, in a week I'm looking like Yoda. Old Yoda, not the young cute Grogu.

#3 The Eyebrows. I've the eyebrows of a Maestro, little birds nest that offer shelter to hummingbirds and small woodland creatures. Greenpeace better not find out.

#4 To the Barber. Booked, booked, finally down to one I know, she's never given me a cut I liked but any cut is better than no cut. I explain to her - precisely - what I want. And - presto, she delivers. All this prep work to go to the barber, it's like spending 6 hours cleaning before the maid comes over...

Then time for a shower, a change into civilized clothes and hit the streets.

All this cleaning up of myself has made me realize that this apartment, as well, could use a thorough tidying. This weekend...

I'm getting stir crazy, my walk, route, always the same, out for coffee, the day, grey and raining, no trace of snow. 

A new month, a new stack of free piles on every curb...

Walking, past ISIS, not the terrorist group but one of the local sex shops renowned for their racy window dressing, and - who would have guessed, Valentines day is coming...

I'm going to have to find a Valentine this year. I think a "It's Valentines Day where are you taking me?" should probably be enough of an introduction, I refuse to miss out on the possibility of a free meal...

The girls at the liquor store, they know me, be damned if they can't take me out...

***

Last night, busy, up mapping possible destinations, a sapphire deposit, as yet undiscovered, just a few miles south of town. And some great quartz crystal possibilities, south of Chilliwack, several locals, and the good stuff has yet to be discovered, but it's there, it's there.

Yesterday, before the thrift shop, the text, the restaurant, asking if I intend to come back. And - the answer, a hard no, but it's hard to give, it commits me to finding something else, better, and fast - but damn, it's time...the second fire lit under my ass. I should look at my bank account, that would be the third and final fire...

 

This is actually surprisingly close to Canada's current Immigration Model. Import foreign students with the promise of an education that offers no real skills but the chance to spend money and work lowly paying jobs at Dominos and 7/11.

It's a heck of a lot easier than addressing the very real economic/social problems that see our own children unable or unwilling to afford stable housing and careers of their own.

Meanwhile, still no touching of the brushes or pen, time passes, scroll, scroll...

This, an event I would like to get to, although something needs be done about my budget and transport:

That's a for certain, the Mr. Tickles Family Reunion is a must attend. A spectacular lineup of empowered female speakers, which confuses me, Mister Tickles is definitely not capitalizing on his endangered inter-species status... 

Facebook, with it's adaptive algorithms, is bending over backwards to keep me entertained and diverted. 

First of all there are the bad 80's comics - some pair of grandparents, and while it's never funny I always slow down enough to read the captions and confirm it wasn't at all funny. Then there's the "Fun Side", or a hundred other feeds, that contribute Pirraro's "Bizarro" comics, or Gary Larson's "The Far Side", most of which I've seen. And then there's "Calvin & Hobbes", whom I actually do enjoy, and there are the "Kuh-nif" or "k'nif" or "Knif" files, which are cartoons/caricatures of busty women with torpedo shaped bosoms being picked up by lecherous degenerate men. And even while I find them revulsive I always have to read the caption, which is seldom enclosed and almost always irrelevant, the joke is in the woman, the kind of comics that might have been the "serious intellectual backbone" of a 70's girly magazine.

These I've just reconciled myself to, report so many and they keep coming back. Like the photos of girls in lingerie and bikini's, I used to report this, but - the longer you're on it, the more garbage it feeds you, the fault is not Facebook it's in my endless desire to be diverted away from more serious chores.

On a more positive note, there are the 3D photos, something new, which if you've come across are quite impressive, you look at photo, move your phone around and the photo tilts and shifts as if you were there. This is amazing (as if the internet wasn't amazing enough, but there's something to be said for novelty). But these are not so common.

From here - I mentioned the endless girls in bikini's, lingerie ("Follow me for more!!!!"), which I think I figured out (only-fans drumming up business), look at a few, confirm they're not AI - they're not, although for sex-workers they do seem to inhabit some nice houses/beachfront spaces. This, however, is a short-lived wealth, AI will soon be rendering hot girls and posting them to Facebook faster than these girls can change bikini's, it's only a matter of time.

This does, however, go a long way towards a "Mutual Friend" of Tickles & I's who is frequently recommended on Facebook, looking at her profile she lives (Alabama?), pictures posted of her in bikini's, lingerie, etc, I wondered how he "knows" her - and I think I've figured it out...

And, finally, there are the short videos, no longer am I getting the treasure ones - or the crystal diggers (winter in the northern hemisphere has probably slowed production), instead I'm getting "Painting Reveal" videos, in which the artist stands with his back turned to the camera, holding the camera, the caption: "My hard days work" or "100 hours of painting" or "3000 hours of painting", the artist then turns and shows you their canvas.

The more creative ones use the "reveal" to cut to them painting, time lapse, the more straightforward ones just show you the canvas, and - lemme say...

Well, they're artists only in that they made something. The paintings - everything from elephants, lions, apes, to fantasy landscapes, always "In The Style Of...", never their own, there's a range of techniques, competencies, mastery, but nothing that however vague your definition would qualify as "art", merely decorative slop...

In inspires me to create my own set of video reveals, every one different but the same in that the reveal, the painting, it's a cock-and-balls affair, graffitti, grade-3 style..."1000 hours work and a MFA", one is led to suspect the money isn't in the paintings, it's in the short reels that keep people clicking on Facebook. 

And I want to swat these people, seriously, I mean, their look of glowing pride, this giant resin-covered painting of a "local" (Indian, African, North American Indian) with a wolf/giraffe/tree seamlessly painted into their forehead, it's dross, I don't care how well you did it it shouldn't have been done, it's fucking mental vandalism...yes, it's well done BUT IT'S THE FUCKING MALL ART OF THE 21st CENTURY...

...and these are the rabbit holes that keep me drowning in inanity...

 

 

 

 

Image: Osama Bin Laden

In which I write everyone's favorite advice columnist.

OK. I've been on a few internet dates. I confess this with the same reluctance I would admitting to masturbating, adultery, or excessive drinking and drug use. 

This is a list of some of my best -- AND WORST -- dates ever. Note that you gotta go on a lotta dates to get this kinda list, this kinda discouraged. And my online dating thing has been sporadic - an every few years kind of thing at best. Some of these dates go back 10 years, others are a little more recent. And to answer any people who might argue "It beats hooking up at the bar", well, you don't have to hook up at the bar, and at the bar you can see what your getting...

Anyways - apologies to the countless normal, decent dates that I went on but just didn't hit it off with. Memory is selective, it tends towards the extreme, and in this you will find the extremes...