Tag Archives: trains

Bottomless Lakes of Adaline ~ Chooglin’ on Tracks #2

Getting settled in to train life, Uncle Weed and friends ponder the meal schedule, sleeping schedule, timezones, awesome showers, random rules, and what staff must think of them. With Grant Lawrence interviewing Adaline, she shares how she has used road rage for a musical muse. She also fills us in on what Tracks on Tracks has been like as an artist, comparing it to other events with many artists such as the Peak Performance Project where competition vs collaboration comes into play.

Live musical performance by Adaline. Part 2 in a series from Chooglin’ on Tracks.

Please have your tickets ready for the Bottomless Lakes of Adaline ~ Chooglin’ on Tracks #2

Music

Adaline |MySpace | Facebook | YoutTube@adalinemusic

More Tracks

Tracks on Tracks

Storify

Green Couch Productions

CBC Radio 3 Tracks on Tracks

Podcast Goodness

Postcards from Gravelly Beach – Literature podcast – Feed – iTunes – Blog

Ephemeral Feasthouse – Prezo, interviews & spiels –Feed – Blog – Podcast

Archived at: Archive.org

Visit

Uncleweed.net for more writings, podcasts, paintings and photos

Follow along via Twitter @uncleweed and/or @choogleon

Gear

I use Koss SterophonesM-Audio MicroTrack IIM-Audio Solo audio interfaceGriffin iMic and Sony Microphone – in case you were wondering.

Slow Train Coming – Talking Cascadia Trains in Vancouver Courier

from the article by Robert Alstead, Oct. 22nd, 2008
from the Vancouver Courier article by Robert Alstead, Oct. 22nd, 2008

I was interviewed (and used loquacious quotes like “super lame”) for an article about train travel in the Vancouver Courier.

I am including my quotes and a few other snippets about my pet-rant – inadequate train travel between here and points south as well as the photo by Dan Toulguet so it doesn’t disappear into the internet tubes like my previous photo appearance in this local newspaper. By the way, if someone could pick me up a paper copy, i’d be very pleased.

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Slow train coming

Robert Alstead takes a journey north by rail from California and wonders if Canada’s vanished passenger trains will once again carry us from coast to coast – Robert Alstead, Vancouver Courier
Published: Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Print version of Slow Train Coming
Web version of Slow Train Coming

Dave Olson, who works in marketing for Gastown web design company Raincity Studios, travels six or seven times a year by train, on business and pleasure. “I don’t care for jet travel because of the incredible hassle and huge eco-footprint,” says Olson. Like many, he would take the train more if he could. “I like the pace and not having to drive, I like the rhythm and the scenery you normally don’t see, the rail yards and seashores and forgotten neighbourhoods. I find the train-riding experience somehow charming, even poetic and certainly creativity stimulating,” he says.

However, he complains Amtrak’s evening train south is hardly convenient for trips to Olympia or Portland, seeing as travellers must make an overnight stopover in Seattle. The Amtrak Cascades is also infrequent and often booked up. Amtrak does offer several “train buses” which Olson has found “super lame” with long border waits. He’d rather take the car if there are no seats on the train, although it did mean a $124 parking bill and a chipped windshield on a recent three-day trip to Seattle. “I know we would’ve enjoyed some work or playing cards or meditating on the train,” he rues.

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However, the Amtrak Cascades offers a good example of the difficulties faced in enhancing rail services.

For years, Amtrak has wanted to add a second roundtrip train between Eugene and Vancouver. However, congestion due to heavy freight movement on track this side of the border meant that a new siding needed to be added to allow trains to pass. For six years, Canadian and U.S. officials and railroad owners Burlington Northern Santa Fe had been unable to hammer out a deal over who should pay for the upgrade.

That means that a second Amtrak Cascades has been running only as far as Bellingham. Then in March of last year, spurred on by the onset of the 2010 Olympics, B.C. transportation minister Kevin Falcon announced that he was committing “up to $4.5 million” (reportedly 57 per cent of the upgrade cost) to build the siding.

In June last year, Premier Gordon Campbell marked the new service on the platform at King Street Station in Seattle by exchanging a large symbolic train ticket with Washington Governor Chris Gregoire in a photo op.

The siding was completed months ago. Amtrak is ready to go. But the service hit the buffers due to complications with the Canadian Border Services Agency, which reportedly wants $15,000 per day to clear the train.

Graham says the matter is in the hands of the B.C. government. A spokesperson for the province says it’s a federal government issue. Faith St. John, spokesperson for the CBSA, said she could not comment on the matter “because we are in discussions.” But she did say that “decisions to provide CBSA services at a new location or to expand current services take into account human resource requirements and the ability to provide security and service to the public.”

She could not say when the matter would be resolved.

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Post-apocalyptic Skunks and Fevers – Postcard #54

From a skunk-scented perch along Mosquito Creek, Dave spiels about feverish dreams in a Mexican clinic, personal archeology, mirages about the Wonder Hotel, and reads verse about late trains, dammed rivers, watching ships, and men in white coats walking past.

Take your vitamins for Post-apocalyptic Skunks and Fevers – Postcard #54 (.mp3, 16:35, 15MB)

Post-apocalyptic Skunks and Fevers

Read along:

One way these tracks

night lake diving

Comfortably Lonely, Cabin Porch

Waiting at Jericho

Between night and light

Coastal Starlight 2 hours late

Appendix

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Trainspotting a CP Classic on the Gastown Rails

Tis no secret i enjoy trains and would ride trains everywhere given a choice of trains, planes and automobiles. I noticed this noble Canadian Pacific train idling on the tracks by Waterfront station. I snapped some identification shots to find out the story from a transportation veteran like Stephen Rees.

My biggest question is: Can i ride this Halifax? Really, how do i get aboard with a berth and permanent seat in the bar car? Who’s running this train?

CP Train in Gastown CP Train in Gastown CP Train in Gastown CP Train in Gastown CP Train in Gastown

This train looks to be from the era of the Trans-Continental Pop Festival’s fabled “Festival Express” train from the legendary train+alcohol+LSD-powered cross-Canada tour of counter-culture bands (Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, The Band) in 1970. I’d love to recreate that trip!

Side note: here’s how the tour went down:

Concert dates

Shared with Flock – The Social Web Browser
http://flock.com

Documenting pleasing mundanity of Vancouver commuting

Chinatown GateTis oft remarked that what constitutes a commute in Vancouver, may be considered a pleasure sightseeing adventure in other cities.

My treks starting from the North Shore and heading across Burrard inlet via Seabus or Lion’s Gate bridge are certainly visually inspiring albeit a wee bit crowded at busy times (which are almost always in transit-hungry Vancouver).

As such, i often join the tourists in snapping pics along the way. Heck, i film Seabus voyages and Skytrain rides when i can score that very front seat.

Anyhow, along with a rabble of techies, I tested a Nokia N95 phone for 8 days and used it to create a group project so to speak in which Roland, Richard, Rebecca, Kris and I all documented part of the Vancouver commute experience in order to try out different features and engage with one another using mobile technology. The quest: Return and report both the phone’s functionality/usability as well as the mobile presence-ness mojo conjured up during the experiment.

sun building vancouver lovely north van commute
Of course, Canada’s absurd mobile data plans really limit the usefulness but the wi-fi ability and 5MP camera (with solid video) made for some fun times documenting and getting up quick. I connected to the freethenet.ca connections but having to go through the web screen caused an extra clumsy step.

I also extended the phone’s ability with Shozu which allows direct photo upload to Flickr. I found the tool useful but set-up painful and wouldn’t have pulled it off without the help of Shozu warrior Roland Tanglao. I wish there was a direct upload of video as connecting via usb and then dragging the vid files to the ‘puter and then ftp upload was more steps then i’d like. I also didn’t pre-tag in Shozu but did later in Flickr (typing tricky with small keys). Riding the Seabus

Really, the phone’s user interface lacks massaged usability polish which remove the intimidation for all but the geekiest users. We all provided frank opinions to Jean Hebert (great hockey name eh) who was research project dude for SFU at Harbour Centre. We also commented on what we’d like to have in a portable communications device. I want flexibility, versatility, ruggedness, ease of use, big buttons, quick response – not too much to ask right? {Gonna test an OpenMoko phone next.}

My artifacts from the test are the a stretch of 5 vidcasts — both from my commute from North Van to Gastown and also a roadtrip to Olympia WA where i saw The Dirty Birds rock out at McCoy’s and connected to Zhonka Broadband’s free wi-fi hotspots. There are also a solid batch of photos snapped from the office roof to the Trans Canada trail park by my house in Vancouver Commute set.

Dirty Birds Rock McCoy'sDirty Birds Rock McCoy'sDirty Birds Rock McCoy'sDirty Birds Rock McCoy'sDirty Birds Rock McCoy's

Coastal Starlight 2 hours late

Coastal Starlight
2 hours late
dropped into darkness
late after waiting

i could wait until tomorrow
but i’m ready to leave today

Nine dollars for small bottle
of California merlot
drinking into blackness
cabin eerie tranquil
knowing the commotion
inches below