It’s Crop Circle Time.

Spring is here in its inimitable, slightly-sodden Vancouver fashion. Growing up in Kent, in southern England, I loved it. Every year, the warmer weather brought profound changes to the ancient agrarian landscape around the cathedral city of Canterbury. To a bubbling soundtrack of larks high above, the farmers would sow their fields, bringing a riot of green and yellow to the chalk downs. And then, in another timeless annual rite, crop circle time arrives; the first circle is found smack in the middle of a wheat field in Wiltshire, and suddenly every idiot and conspiracy whack job in the country wakes up sporting their alien-spotter hard on, looking for 15 minutes of fame.

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March Stock Picking Update

Shout out to Shovelnose

Greetings stock pickers,

What follows is an edited version of my monthly junior mining update to the members of the Hys and Lows stock picking club. All names of members have been removed. Which is a shame really. I’d love to leave them in so you can all see how bad our motley collection of mining experts and insiders is at choosing winners.

As the UK ponders a possible Brexit-related general election, and the UK’s electorate therefore have to ponder the real possibility of Jeremy Marx-Stalin becoming Citizen 1 in place of Theresa Won’t, I’d like to turn to happier things: the shitty resource junior market, a welcome constant in these turbulent times.

Down to business.

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The Strangest thing I’ve Ever Seen

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen? Think back. A ghost? Phosphorescence in the sea at night? An honest politician? We’ve all seen something that truly baffles us. Top of my list would have to be Trump’s inauguration – I’d call it black comedy if it wasn’t so serious. One moment the world was relatively normal and the next we’re all eating fresh shit sandwiches. Second on my list is a natural phenomenon, something –unlike Trump- that I can get my head around as a scientist. Kinda.

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When Chickens Attack.

If you’re scared of chickens and their feathered kin, you’ve got Alektorophobia; an irrational fear of chickens.. as well as their eggs …often related to a previous traumatic experience involving feathered fowls.”  In other words, chicken-related PTSD. I don’t have it, but my friend’s wife, a Japanese émigré to Canada, suffers from it. Sounds like a total nightmare to me.

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Let’s Play Hide The Rock.

Gwyneth Paltrow, feminine health legend and definitely not a snake oil saleswoman, says women should insert crystals into their body cavities to “increase chi, orgasms,vaginal muscle tone, hormonal balance, and feminine energy in general.” A big thank you to Goop! for coming up with a solution for so many problems all at once. I really hope she’s not thinking about using stibnite as it might cause a few issues if inserted incorrectly.

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Where Are My Comments?

What the bloody hell have you done with my pithy and informative comment I hear you ask? Good question. I’ve been navigating the choppy, illogical waters of WordPress behind-the-scenes at Urbancrows for a couple of months but some things still have me beaten. The Comments feature is one of them. I’m not sure (yet) why some show up and others don’t.

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Let’s Go Scrumping.

Hands up if you know what scrumping is? No idea? Well, in England it means stealing apples from an orchard; kids climbing over the fence with a pack full of apples plucked from the trees. The word also pops up in the name Scrumpy, as in a fairly rough apple cider (not the clear, sweet, sparkly muck that often masquerades as cider on the west coast.)

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Is Pärt a part of your life?

I hate Philip Glass. Every time I go to see a movie that boasts “Soundtrack by Philip Glass” I’m filled with dread. I find his music desperately dull. All repetitive twiddly bits with no real melodies, his pieces drone on and on spoiling whatever we’re watching. The New Yorker summed it up nicely for me:

“Glass never had a good idea he didn’t flog to death: He repeats the haunting scale 30 mind-numbing times, until it’slong past time to go home.”

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A Game For All Seasons

I’ve been involved with kids’ football.. sorry I meant soccer (my English side coming out again) for over 10 years. I coached my eldest son’s team, the Pistons, until they aged-out after U18 and now I’m doing the same with my youngest son’s team, the Cobras.

Footie season in Vancouver always goes the same way. 

September. Glorious weather. The kids and coaches a few pounds over weight and happy to see their buddies at practice. Terrible scrimmage game with no team cohesion. Trying to figure out where the news kids fit it.

October. Autumn rains starting. The reality of school  starts to bite. A few injuries and the odd player drops out. Games get better and we figure out who plays best in what position.

November. Weather starts to turn to shit. Rain affects practice attendance for kids and coaches. Full match fitness back and we start to get the measure of the teams in our league and figure out if we’re competitive.

December-January. Cold wet hell-on-earth practices. Freezing fucking games, coaches and parents wrapped up in strata of thermals, water proofs and gloves. Miserable frozen wet goalies permanently on the verge of hypothermia. Hopefully we have a winning record which keeps the kids turning up to games.

There have been days like this…

February. See above. 

Late February / early March. Last game. Season done. Over and out till September.

Except this year is different. That last game is really my last game.