Next to playing Santa at the nearest home for wayward youth or joining a roving choir for a boisterous round of caroling, what do you figure would be the last thing I’d want to be doing this time of year? Yep, you guessed it: visiting my local botanical garden for its seasonal Christmas light show. And yet, that’s exactly where I ended up last night – at Vancouver’s Van Dusen Gardens for its 2007 Festival of Lights. It was a little after 8:00 p.m. when we arrived and conveniently found parking not too far from the place. With only an hour before closing and pressed for time, we opted to take a shortcut by trudging through the back lawn, Fondy leading the way. The ground was unusually soggy and, as I slowed to help my mom, I heard Fondy call out: “My shoe! My shoe!” I glanced over and noticed she was teetering on one foot, her other foot, now bare, waving about as she desperately scanned her darkened surroundings, like an elegant ballerina in a filthy, frost-covered Swan Lake. “I can’t find my shoe!” Being the dutiful husband I am, I immediately launched into action, going for my camera intent on snapping a blog-worthy pic of my wife‘s designer shoe lying nestled in the mud. “Can somebody get my shoe?!”. Alas, my sister stepped in and rescued it from the muck, robbing me of my photo op. Fondy threw me a look, put her shoe back on, then stepped forward – and left her other shoe behind. “Let’s go this way,”I suggested, directing my mother around the quagmire while Fondy, fed up and shoes in hand, squelched through the sodden lawn barefoot. “Thank God I didn’t catch fire!”she said aloud, throwing me a glare as no-doubt icy as her feet while she put her shoes back on. “Joe would’ve stopped to take pictures.” I wanted to point out that I didn’t actually get to take any pictures, but elected to keep my mouth shut and headed for the entrance.
So we strolled through the vast garden and its admittedly dazzling display, stopping to take in a musical multi-colored light spectacle that made the Bellagio fountain show look like, well, the Bellagio fountain show. Still, the Van Dusen Garden version was not bad – and mercifully short. We moved on, but I could tell Fondy was feeling the chill. “Do you want to stop off and get some hot chocolate or hot apple cider,”I suggested, “- to pour over your feet?” “I’m fine,”she replied, forging ahead through “gingerbread alley” where the gingerbread men lining the walk looked more demonic than festive with their rictus grins and blazing red eyes. Once we’d passed the last luminous green toadstool, my mother suggested we call it a night. Hey, works for me! In and out in an hour! And so, satisfied with our outing, we headed back to the car.
We took the long way around.
Today’s mailbag –
Susan the Tartan Turtle writes: “Did you check Lulu’s tummy for the heart medication?”
Answer: That’s the first thing I considered although, in this case, I’d have to check for both the heart medication AND its plastic dispenser. Still highly possible.
Thunder writes: “How come I can’t see the video?”
Answer: I’m not sure why some of you can’t see the video. However, for those of you interested, here’s the URL: http://video.google.ca/videoplay?docid=7609661590527338306&hl=en-CA
Montrealer writes: “I believe that IamJohn is thinking of getting SG-1 online outside of the US.”
Answer: Oh. Sorry, I can’t help you there. I have no say in which region gets to see what. For what it’s worthy, I do sympathize and feel it is unfair that fans outside of the U.S. are apparently unable to legally download episodes.
Riley writes: “It’s “overdue”!”
Answer: My bad. I know the difference but failed to properly proofread my entry. Which happens a lot.
Arctic Goddess writes: “ Have you ever tried Kobe beef?”
Answer: Ever since we had the Kobe beef in Tokyo four years ago, Fondy and I have a hard time eating regular beef here in North America. Nothing even comes close.
Beth G. writes: “I was wondering whether or not you’d named any of the pugs?”
Answer: Fondy named all of the pugs. If I’d had my way, Lulu would have been called Electro.
Jedi43 writes: “Any Sheppard fighting to save his life with the Bantos rods or something similar in S5?”
Answer: Way too early to tell.
John in NZ writes: “Do the dogs simply adapt to whatever method the daycare chooses?”
Answer: Usually. Although the daycares are fully prepared for any unforeseen accident.
My Name Is Scott writes: “What would you say the oddest name in your family is?”
Answer: Not so many odd names in my family, but Fondy has an uncle Marble and had a cousin Mars and Venus. Mars! The Roman god of war! How cool is that? Apparently, not cool enough because Mars changed his name to Norton.
Emily writes: “Would you recommend Philip K. Dick’s Ubik?”
Answer: Without reservations. It was an incredibly compelling read.
Erika writes: “Have you seen Howl’s Moving Castle? Or read the book that it’s based on?”
Answer: I own the dvd but have yet to watch it.
Gracey writes: “I watched the marathon off and on and was wondering if Joel Goldsmith was responsible for the Orlin theme music???”
Answer: Yes, Joel is responsible for all of the music. He’s great, no?
Charles Schneider writes: “Have you been to Chris Judge’s poker night lately?”
Answer: I’ve been remiss. And, at the Ark of Truth screening, Chris reprimanded me for not showing up at the last few times he hosted.
big paw writes: “just wondering if you’ve read any of the cirque de freak books by darren shan??”
Answer: Haven’t. What are they like?
Jimbo writes: “Any reason for the lack of participation from not only the actors, but yourself?”
Answer: It always comes down to availability.
Majorsal writes: “Joe, is there a way of activating some ‘preview your post’ thinger?”
Answer: I can’t seem to find this option. If anyone knows where it is and how I can activate it, I’d be happy to do so.
Scarym writes: “I read your interview in the lastest Stargate Magazine. Loved it. Does Chris Judge know what you said about him?”
Answer: I don’t even remember what I said. Give me a hint? Am I looking to be on the receiving end of some Jaffa revenge thing?
Annie from Freemantle writes: “This Christmas I’ve turned two people onto Joe’s(z) blog (ok being a bitch here lol).. they say that Joe’s humour is right up their alley!!”
Answer: Bless you and their little hearts (and exceptional tastes).