|STYLING in 2011|
Let's call racists dumb chickens, not as an insult, but because that's what they are. Most aggression stems from fear. In this case fear of the unknown. And an unwillingness or inability to learn to overcome that fear. So there: dumb chickens.
The bike broke a spoke in the rear wheel about 2 weeks ago and yesterday I realized (after hearing some more noise from there) that a few other spokes were dangerously loose. Hmm. It's been almost 11,000 km, I guess the wheel has earned service ;-)
|Not my wheel|
Last night I took the bus up to Grandma and I liberated Le Velo again, so the mean green machine can relax at the bike store for a few days to get fixed. This is actually perfect timing, because I'm heading to Surrey tomorrow to meet Zu, who will be my co-rider on the June trip. She'll be able to test-sit/ride Le Velo, so that there won't be any nasty surprises (like I can't reach the pedals) on June 5.
That's when it all starts going wrong. At Steeds bikes I am informed that they won't be able to fix my rear wheel until next Wednesday. K, no problem, I still have the other bike. I'm at Slocan and Broadway in East Vancouver when it happens. The pedals turn but that's about it. The same thing has happened before in Holland. No easy fix available either. So I walk to the Skytrain, take it to Waterfront, take the SeaBus, and then lift the bike onto the rack of a bus that's fortunately already waiting at Lonsdale Quay. I sit next to one of those mid sixties to mid seventies white-haired PROPER Canadian women on the bus. She is talking to another woman in the row behind us and most likely not very happy with me sitting next to her because she is blocking half my seat with one of those pull-behind shopping bags. I ignore the hint but wish I hadn't because now I have to listen to her.
"THEY keep talking in THEIR language even if you stand right there and you JUST know that THEY talk about you. I mean, there is SIGNS there that say ENGLISH only, but they IGNORE them. I'm sorry, I would settle this the CANADIAN way. If you don't like OUR rules, GO HOME.Things are BAD ENOUGH as they are!"
|Not my old lady on the bus.|
The woman is PURE VENOM. She is talking about the Philippine staff at an old age home.
Hon, I'm sorry that your son or daughter doesn't want you in their house (even though I think I know WHY) and I'm sorry that CANADIANS are NOT WILLING to take CARE of you for the same LOW WAGES that the workers from the Philippines earn, but why let it out on the only people that CARE for you??? Racism is DEEPLY rooted. I'm working hard not to be drawn into the conversation because if I have to say anything, it would NOT be pretty. She's talking about people who take care of her. Can you IMAGINE what would come out of that FOUL mouth if she were confronted with the subjects of SIKHs or, God forbid, First Nations people? And remember, this is only the trash that she feels comfortable voicing aloud in public. I'd shudder at the thought of what else is going on in that mind but fortunately never makes it into sound. Viva Democracy because it puts power into the hands of people like that.
The owner of the now defunct Evolution bikes, who replaced the stupid motor on Le Velo 2 years ago for $1000 offers to do the same thing again. I think NOT.
|with respect to speed: They are only passing me because I stopped to take a picture ;-)|
I meet Zu in Surrey (Thanks for coming all this way, Zu), down a 9oz glass of wine in an attempt to wash down all the ugliness encountered along the way. That is after Zu test-sits on the mean green machine (MGM hereinafter ;-) with the seat all the way down. It fits!
One big worry out of the way ;-) It looks like she will ride the MGM in Europe while I will ride the yet to order bigger-size-frame New MGM, which I have been thinking of ordering for a while now. The Chicken Caesar Salad at White Spot is atrociously BAD. The waitress doesn't ask how the food is and doesn't care about anything anyway. I ride the bike from Surrey Central to Scott Road Station, get rained on quite a bit, but LOVE it.
|I could be stuck in one of these gas-guzzling contraptions. What a HORRIBLE thought|
|Surprisingly Good Pizza at Earls.|
In the evening, I eat where the other side of North Vancouver eats. Earls Tin Palace. The crowd is AFFLUENT, on the FAT side, and UNBELIEVABLY LOUD. I am reminded of why I mostly eat where I eat. The food is not bad, but not good enough making it worth having to put up with the noise and the attitude.
There seems to be great excitement about a black (African-American?) person on a US 20 Dollar bill to come in the future. Everyone says 'This is how far civil rights have progressed'
(A quick aside re. 'black': A German was talking to the Cuban receptionist of a Persian-owned hotel in Canada (on Native land) and tried to describe another receptionist that had been there before "He was African-American or African-Canadian or where-ever he came from" The Cuban replied: "Oh, you mean the black guy, he was from London, England and originally from Mali" So beware, you politically correct speakers, most time your verbal walk on eggshells will turn you into a mumbling idiot ;-) Now, will black people from Mali be called African-Maliers or does one only call white people from Mali Non-African-Maliers? See my point? As the lady in the bus exemplifies: Racists and bigots will remain racists and bigots, no matter what language they speak.
Back to the image of a black person on US$20 bill. Yes, it's progress, and I wouldn't take that away from the African American population of America (Mumbling idiot syndrome). But there is quite a lot of people who aren't that excited about the new $20 bill.
Because times aren't right yet to put on paper the image of a leader who really cared about the well-being of his American people. No, it's not Obama I'm talking about, even though he definitely meets the criteria.
And sadly, this is how far civil rights have NOT progressed yet.