Snapseed if you will

UBC with a little drama

A colleague at the downtown school (of which there is drama) told me about Snapseed last week.  It is a free phone app. that can be used to edit photos.  He also told me about Lightroom – an app free for the phone but not for the computer.  I love both – up above is a picture out at UBC today and I used the ‘drama’ setting.  The app. does all of the work for me and I am quite delighted – and I never use the word delighted -with the results.  I think if ever I were to be manic I would see the world this way – very sharp, very bright, kind of manic.  Lightroom is even more fun because you have more control.

Why I am just waking up to editing tools now I am not sure. Heck, almost 25 years ago (ACK!!!!) we used the ancient Pagemaker to adjust photos but not to change or sharpen them.  Just basic cropping with a cropping wheel and all.

I am, in fact, ancient.  As I’ve mentioned before, my body this past several months during the rainy season, has decided to expand quite a lot.  I mean things have gotten bigger and wider in a bizarro way.  That is the 50 year old body I guess.  Doesn’t keep me from obsessing about it though.  My upper arms flap and I am just, well, wider.  C’est la vie I guess.

No matter.

I have a couple of students right now who are 18 and 17 I think.  They are tiny, tiny people.  Two and a half of them makes one of me.  Like that.  They have no body fat in case there is a famine!

Holy cow look at that blue sky.  I have resumed bicycle riding for the season – on Tuesdays I work until noon only – no split shift or what not – and I have started using some of that time to ride a big (for me) ride.  Today was up to UBC; last week was out to West Vancouver.  The ability to do that came rather quickly,  thank goodness.  Today’s huge hill up to UBC (beach way if  you know the area) was a challenge for sure.  At the same time, it is good in many ways for my mental health.  I am constantly roiling internally about my precarious job situation (part time at the downtown school is always teetering on the brink of not being there – students who rule the roost in privately run schools, sometimes have ‘issues’ with me.  I speak too fast, I am not this, I am not that.  I have all ready been put into teaching only higher levels.  And still, complaining.    I have come to dread e-mails from my boss and the inevitable inevitable.  It all makes me rather sick.  Seventeen years in this business and I am still at the mercy of some young folks.  I am not handling it well to put it mildly.  And this is work without sick days, without vacation (vacation pay is included obviously), without benefits.

Like that, yeah.

If I could jump out of my skin, I would indeed.

I haven’t had a vacation in awhile really – I mean because my work is so odd I either work or I don’t but no real it is okay to relax now time.  I had briefly entertained the idea of going to London at the end of August – I very luckily and blessedly have two friends out there to stay with – one right in London (and she is a bit of a bigwig at St. Paul’s Cathedral!) and one just outside of Brighton.  I’d have to book my ticket now but I can’t seem to.  Very lucky to have accommodations while there – but still, flight and all of the rest, expensive.  And I don’t know that i am much of a traveller anymore – travelling can certainly and has been exciting but there can be a lot to push through, especially these days.

I am a split shifter – at the downtown school and/or tutoring a couple of Chinese teenagers.  Those teenagers will stop seeing me at the end of June which is okay because I shall spend July in the sunshine I hope.  One is going to Paris as part of a hugely expensive but awesome school thing and one back to China.

I feel afraid almost all of the time – hard to explain to folks who aren’t.  Fear, isolation – in a way, London might push me out of my rut or not.  Not sure.

I am really enjoying watching Lisa Kudrow in her series, “Web Therapy.”  If you haven’t seen it, maybe download it or if you have Apple TV I think it is on there.  Lily Tomlin shows up as do a slew of other celebrities, including Meryl Streep.  Kudrow plays a non-therapist therapist who does three minute web sessions – her theory is that the 50 minute hour is a waste of time and that hearing about people’s dreams and anxieties is a waste of time.  It is hilarious at times and quite improv-ed I think.

Now that I am a photographer (hee), I have taken to taking out photography magazines from the library.  I enjoy looking at pictures people take and reading about cameras I cannot afford.  This is almost as calming as reading Soap Opera Digest.  Lord have mercy.

Hmmm, my eyebrows need to be waxed.

The world is still in a right bloody mess really.  Here in Vancouver, some folks are sad because they cannot afford to buy a bigger home.  Awwwww, I say.  We all (me too, me too, me too) get so trapped in our own little own little that we can’t seem to see that desperate sadness over not being able to afford a larger home in one of the most beautiful cities in the world may not be that much of a thing.  Or maybe it is.  My world and the world of most of my friends does not include what homes we can’t afford – we can’t afford any!  I think I need to develop some sense of compassion for those who can’t afford mansions in this city.    So many of us here are just clinging to what we have and looking for long term housing stability.

Yikes, I am maudlin.

I think I want to start saying, ‘oh my golly.’  I am going to add that to my repertoire.  “So, Karen, blah, blah, blah and etc.”  “Oh my golly!”  Hmmm, maybe sometimes just ‘golly!

“So,  yeah, transit is on strike (why is no one talking about Thursday’s strike vote?!?!?!).”  “Golly!”

“The dog barks at midnight.”  “Golly good golly!”

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning.”  “Good mercy golly be!”

“The duck quacks at midnight.”

“Heavens to golly!”

Okay, probably enough practice for now.

Okay one more – “Donald Trump is going to win the Republican nomination!”

“%%$%^ to golly!”






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