Showing posts with label culture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label culture. Show all posts

Nov 5, 2014

A (Bed) Room of One's Own

Master Bedroom Boyd House Architect Ron Thom image Stacy Reynaud

Brought up the topic of separate bedrooms this morning to be greeted with, 'Should we each have our own house too?' Geesh, sensitive.

Architectural trends reflect our culture, but how far do these trends reflect our instincts?

My first thought was that the shared bedroom is a socioeconomic thing—lots of money = lots of house. Not so much money = not so much home. You know what I'm talking about, so let's not go into tiny house living choices or the cost of a 435 s.f. apartment in Vancouver because I'm simply talking about the concept of the shared bedroom.

My second thought - brought into fruition by a comment regarding prudery - is an image of a lovely Homo erectus couple snuggled up under a muskox blanket in front of their amber-hued, crackling cave fire. The shared bedroom now becomes a mammalian instinct. Stay warm, stay safe, and have sex (in whichever preferred order).

My next thought - is Lucy and Ricky's bedroom - sure, it was fictional (somewhat), and they were shown in separate beds due to TV regulations of the 1950s. Still, I'd argue that it was actually the result of the continuous evolution of Western socioeconomic and mammalian instinctual concepts.

Okay, let's leave it at that - I want my own bedroom, and ignorance is bliss.

image: Boyd House, Ron Thom 
© Stacy Reynaud

Mar 12, 2014

The longest year in history

was 1972.

Remember the power of three? There's one of those going on again; this time, it's with the year 1972.

First off - Moody Blues, Nights in White Satin - a song I thought, from the very first day I heard remembering hearing it, was a cheesy 70s rambling poem song about King Arthur, so I paid no attention to it. Anyway, it popped up at me on the weekend, and I took the time to listen to the lyrics - which are everything but knights in white satin. New old favourite!


Then, I was looking at old Honda motorbikes online and came across this vintage ad from 1972. The truck and camper (and mini bike) equate to the elimination of the living in a van down by the river scenario created by the Vancouver rental pool.

Finally, Tuesday night I was looking at residential architecture and up pops this beauty. West Vancouver's Helmut Eppich house designed in 1972 by Arthur Erickson Architects (and sold in 2010 for $4.8 million.)

Feb 24, 2014

Things that confuse me

  • Efficiency committees

  • Initiatives that take the initiative out of initiatives

  • Dec 17, 2013

    10 Tips for the Party Host

    When your hosting skills are brought to the test, don't fail.
    1. Take your guest's coat. Don't put them on the bed.* Hang them up. Small, unrealistic closet? Rent a sales man's rack or invest in one (I have two).
    2. Your guest's shoes are part of their outfit - allow them to keep them on. I bring fancy house slippers with me just in case the dreaded pile of shoes is at the door.
    3. Offer your guest a drink after you've taken their coat and before they're more than five steps in the door. Tip: have non-alcoholic drinks (soda, tonic and juice), red wine, white wine, bubbles, beer, vodka, rum, rye, scotch, tequila, gin, sweet and dry vermouth and cognac. Don't forget fresh ice, cocktail napkins, lemons, limes, olives and cocktail straws.
    4. Never introduce your guest's boyfriend, girlfriend, fiancee, spouse or whatever, as such. They have an identity of their own.
    5. You are responsible for your guest's safety. Read my post, How to Deal with Drunk Guests.
    6. Keep the lights and the music low.
    7. If you're a couple, work tag team. Lay out each of your defined 'duties' beforehand and cover each other's backs with refilling drinks, conversation starters, toilet paper and hand towel checks, lit candles, cleared plates and stocked ice.
    8. Never let them see you sweat. As far as your guest is concerned you're already the monarch of the mingler - they don't need to see the dirty dishes. Get some of those big plastic crates with tops and hide your dirty dishes in there until the guests leave. Throw a table cloth over it and they'll never know. I used to hide stuff in the bathtub of my ensuite.
    9. Accept that you'll have a guest that snoops in the medicine cabinet of your bathroom. You know what to do with that stuff.
    10. To prevent guests from overstaying, lay out a start and end time in your invite. If there are still stragglers start unloading those crates with the dirty dishes in them.
    * Back in the old days laying coats on the bed was considered faux pas due to bed bug infestations.

    image from the collection of Stacy Reynaud

    Originally published December 27, 2010

    Nov 8, 2013

    9 Ways to Deal With Your Drunk Guests

    Originally published February 14, 2010

    It's your party and your guests are your responsibility. Be attentive and don't get drunk yourself.

    9 things you can do to try and curtail the guest that over drinks:

    1. You should mix your guests' drinks.
    2. If a guest proceeds to the bar to make his/her own drink go with them and ask them to grab the ice, mix or whatever while you pour the drink.
    3. Avoid having more than one bottle of liquor visible.
    4. Make it obvious you use a jigger to pour drinks and hand it to your guest before he/she pours their own.
    5. When it is obvious a guest has had too much to drink don't offer him/her any more. 50% of the time they'll get mad. There will always be someone there to assist you in dealing with them. They usually get embarrassed then sit down and be quiet.
    6. If your guest has drank so much that he/she is going to pass out have two or three other guests assist you in taking them to a bed to sleep it off overnight. If they have a spouse or guest with them offer them accommodation as well or offer them a safe ride home.
    7. Always have coffee, tea, soft drinks, water or juice available.
    8. You are responsible and liable for your guests. You are responsible for seeing that a drunk guest is taken home. Ask a good friend, take him/her yourself if they live nearby, or call a cab, give directions and pay for it. I've been to some parties where it's mandatory for you to drop your keys in a bowl before you're allowed to enter.
    9. Simply put, don't invite people over who are unable to control their liquor.
    At our last party I had Operation Red Nose on speed dial and had our guests enter the number in their phone prior to tying one on. The service was great and our friends that used it were thoroughly impressed. It's free over the holidays as well and they're currently looking for volunteers.

    Oct 12, 2013

    Heritage Status for Canada's Oldest Skate Park?

    A lot of my friends skated this park in the 80s. Now us middle aged Gen X'ers are rallying behind it. Seylynn Skate Park was built in 1978 and is Canada's oldest concrete park. Concern is that the rapid condo development in the area will level Seylynn to a plaque in the ground. However, seeing as us degenearte skateboarders are all grown up, many of us successful entrepreneurs, PhDs, or working in influential industries, the opportunity has arisen for us to assist in the preservation of the park - possibly even as a heritage site. So phooey to all those name callers in the 80s who thought we were good for nothing - we're still here, strategically sneaking up behind you.

    If you want to get involved in the planning workshops for Seylynn, head out to the North Vancouver District Operations Centre @ 1370 Crown St on October 23 at 5:30. More info in the above pdf and at the District website.

    Thanks for sharing the image Dr. Chapman

    Like the idea? Share the love.

    Aug 26, 2013

    Everything we See or Seem

    stacy reynaud
    I was looking up Scorpion pose and came across a book recommendation, of all things. My local library rocks so of course they had it - now I will recommend the beautiful piece of literature to you.

    Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke. Translated by M.D. Herter  Norton, (1934). The translation/translator makes all the difference.

    The close of the eighth letter:

    "Do not believe that he who seeks to comfort you lives untroubled among the simple and quiet words that sometimes do you good. His life has much difficulty and sadness ... Were it otherwise he would never have been able to find those words." 

    Oh, and here's Scorpion pose

    Jul 26, 2013

    Wittgenstein has got it going on

    Everything that can be thought at all can be thought clearly. Everything that can be said can be said clearly. 
    Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico Philosophicus

    Jun 24, 2013

    Momo the Cat and Kevan - the stuff of legends

    1. natural disaster
    2. suspense
    3. human compassion
    4. cute quirky Canadian
    5. and Momo the cat

    Three cheers for Kevan and Momo!

    Calgary flood June 21 2013 - a full list of organizations looking for volunteers for the clean up can be found here.

    all images © Jordan Verlage/Canadian Press
    photo set at CBC

    Jun 10, 2013

    Prada | Wes Anderson | Candy

    I can never tell if these sorts of flicks are parody or pretension. 
    Ah, mais la vie est la parodie, mon cheri. 
    Needless to say, I like their suits and it reminds me of Truffault's Jules et Jim.
    Prada, Roman Coppola and Wes Anderson team up for Candy L'Eau.

    May 31, 2013

    This makes me want to shoot one of me and my bff

    It would be pretty hilarious.

    May 17, 2013

    In My Other Life

    I'm the program head (and member of faculty) for the part time marketing management program at BCIT. I'm also a tree hugger, as you've probably figured out by now. How did I get into marketing? It just happened. I actually hate marketing, or is it marketers? Or is it the campaigns? Remember, I'm also a born BC'er, as is Adbusters - and Greenpeace.

    When I see a campaign like the new one from Greenpeace targeting Italy's largest fashion houses, the first thing that runs through my head is, 'OK Greenpeace, how exactly did that green rubber glove come into fruition?' Last time I checked rubber was harvested from trees - is it neon green when harvested? I thought not. Where did the dye go after the gloves were dyed? How many vehicles were used to transport the gloves? In all fairness, Greenpeace may have had a disclaimer on the gloves stating they were artisanal gloves produced by fairies - or in an ecologically sensitive manner.

    Think before you approve.

    May 15, 2013


    Some of these new spots [artisanal coffee shops] have a way of making you feel not cool enough--like you're dressed inappropriately. Patrick Dempsey on the artisanal coffee shop scene.

    Dempsey just bought Tulley's coffee (the Peet's of Seattle). Weird.

    Any Portlandia fans out there? Anyone been to JJ Bean Coffee in the Woodward's building? Check it out. You'll see what he means.

    Read More

    Apr 27, 2013

    From the archives: A Collection of Rejection

    Originally published April 14, 2011

    One of the best things about writing your own blog is that you really save a fortune on self addressed stamped envelopes.

    But alas!

    Apr 11, 2013

    Scandinavian Pain

    When I first saw this image I thought it was a funky Scandinavian bread shop. That's what happens when you live in a bilingual country. Thanks to Moderna Museet for informing me that Scandinavian Pain is actually an exhibition running this summer at their museum in Malmö Sweden. Ragnar Kjartansson's eleven meter neon sign, Scandinavian Pain, will be installed on a barn housing works by Edvard Munch - cheeky Swedes.
    image © Ragnar Kjartansson

    Mar 6, 2013

    Rustic Camper Van Conversions

    The other day it dawned on me why I prefer vernacular homes with cedar siding - Little House on the Prairie. Right!

    Could it be that Bill and Beck Goddard do as well? The Goddard's family-run business, Rustic Campers, is a bespoke camper van conversion company that sources local materials to convert your van, motor home, or even Mercedes cargo into your own Little House on the Road.

    Living in that 'van down by the river' is becoming more appealing, is it not?

    The Little House on the prairie, (actually located in Simi, California and unfortunately burnt down during the wildfires a few years back).
    © Little House Insider
    top images © Rustic Camper

    Feb 22, 2013

    The Business of Bourbon

    My parents were Scotch drinkers. Which meant that if I ever wanted to have a few shots of liquid courage before going out I either had to grow a fondness for scotch or figure out some way to get into their unopened vodka bottle without being noticed. To make a long story short, my Dad approached me a few years ago expressing his embarrassment when he poured his friend a vodka soda only to have his friend politely comment on the lack of actual vodka in the soda. Now who in their right mind would've thought my Dad still would have had that same bottle of vodka that was watered down weekend after weekend in 1989? We both laughed about it. That's all we really could do.

    Remember New Coke?  I always question brands and their ulterior motives - even if in reality they don't have one. Last week when I heard that Maker's Mark had 'underestimated' the demand for their bourbon five years ago, (barreling less of it for the five year aging process), and had in turn decided to water down future batches, (to ensure supply met demand), the first thing I smelled was foul play. To make matters worse, to state that no one would even know the alcohol content had been lowered from 90 to 84 proof, (an overall decline of 7% in alcohol), the company, that thought it was being transparent, actually made it sound as if Maker's Mark drinkers were without palette and therefore it was without consequence if they watered the booze down. In no way am I accusing Maker's Mark of anything dirty, (no publicity is bad publicity), however the Maker's Mark brand equity is at stake and I find it hard to believe a company could be so blatantly dumb unaware of the damage such a move could have on that equity.

    Always the entrepreneur, I'd planned to head right to the liquor store to stock up on 90 proof Maker's Mark for resale at a later date. But wait, could this move on my part actually be the desired end result of a marketing tactic?

    Feb 8, 2013

    The Dreaded Name Tag | A Tip

    Wear your name badge on your right hand side so that when people shake your hand their eye is directed to your name, not an empty space.

    The Satanic Majesty's Request