Archive for January, 2014


To get to my appointment at the American consulate in Vancouver today, I passed through seven check-points. (My iPhone was locked away at the second checkpoint.) Everybody was very friendly, though.

Lissie’s Hello

I doubt a cover version has ever redeemed a song so completely.

Sweet is the Night

God bless Juliana Hatfield.

Your Author in Portland

Photo by Miles Basil

Photo by Miles Basil

Publisher joins Kwantlen’s Development team

Chrissie Bowker

Chrissie Bowker

Kwantlen Polytechnic University has announced the appointment of Chrissie Bowker, former publisher of the South Delta Leader, as its new director of development. I have had the great joy of working with Kwantlen’s development office for a number of years – I fund two student awards – and know that she is joining a fantastic team. From the university’s news release:

“Given Chrissie’s passion for building community partnerships and her deep roots in the region we serve, I am very excited to have her join our team,” says Jeff Norris, KPU’s chief advancement officer, and executive director of the university’s foundation and alumni association. “We have a very exciting future ahead of us. It’s crucial KPU has wonderful people like Chrissie to help us respond to the needs of our students.”

In her new role as director of development, Bowker will be accountable for the management of KPU’s major giving programs, including overseeing program goals, implementing university-wide priorities and developing both short- and long-term fundraising strategies. She will also tackle special fundraising projects that will expand KPU’s community outreach, an area Bowker brings much experience to.

While at the South Delta Leader, Bowker launched Project Bloom, an event in support of International Women’s Day. The fundraising component to the project, added in 2012, has raised over $20,000 for local causes. It is now solely dedicated to the Delta Hospital Foundation, where funds will be put towards purchasing lifesaving equipment for women in Delta and its surrounding communities. The event serves as a platform to connect women in business across the lower mainland.

In addition to Project Bloom, Bowker has helped numerous local non-profit organizations with fundraising and awareness campaigns, including the Delta Hospital Foundation, the Heart & Stroke Foundation and Reach Child Development.

Bowker joins KPU under in the institution’s office of advancement, which oversees the university’s foundation, alumni association, communications and external affairs.

Professor Mayhew is writing about food


One of the best writers I know on the topics of poetry and jazz has started writing about his humble cuisine, delighting me. The above bit of art is quinoa with peppers and chicken.


Picture 3

This new ad, titled “Missing Work,” was created by Bell Canada for its “Let’s Talk Mental Health” initiative. It captures a moment – a short routine, really – very common among the chronically depressed. It is staggeringly understated and beautiful.

Picture 2

(cross-posted at nocontest.CA)

Another old song: Abide with Me

Ode to Joy

A very beautiful rap by Dan McAleer.


Old Song

Movement Plastique – Rebikov.



East side scene, January 2012.



The vaunted School of Science and Horticulture at Kwantlen Polytechnic University has launched a new diploma program in Brewing and Brewery Operations. From

“We are so excited to be offering the first brewing diploma program in B.C.,” says Elizabeth Worobec, dean of the faculty of science and horticulture at KPU. “Along with practical hands-on training, we’ll be giving students a solid background in the science behind brewing craft beer, including the chemistry and microbiology involved in the process. It’s this much-needed expertise that graduates will bring to the province’s brewing industry.”

With only two comparable programs in the country, the university’s brewing and brewery operations diploma will set out to meet the craft beer industry’s demand for qualified and technically experienced employees. Starting in September, 35 students will begin learning to brew from scratch at KPU Langley’s specially designed brew laboratory.

The program’s interdisciplinary course load will also train students in the psychology of sensory evaluation, finishing and packaging, business ethics and communication strategies. Students will get additional practical experience at local breweries during a summer work experience placement, and learn from experts with the B.C. Craft Brewers Guild and the Master Brewers Association of Canada in guest lectures. Options to bridge the diploma in brewing into a degree in business, science or trades and technology are also on the table.

Read more program details here.

“NYC Laughs at Your Puny Transit System”

I love taking the Skytrain throughout BC’s Lower Mainland. People complain about the scant rapid transit here, but I think it is efficient and inexpensive and helpful. I like buses (and bus-drivers), too.

It’s hard to top New York City, though. Even the maps are pretty.


Jean Mandeberg’s Art

"Tingle" detail, by Jean Mandeberg

“Tingle” detail, by Jean Mandeberg

I had the pleasure of starting the new year at the delightful home of Olympia, Washington artist Jean Mandeberg. A number of her sculptures were shown in the living room. Much of her current work combines coins, dice, and discarded wire cages from Champagne bottles, as in the piece shown above. Mandeberg, who teaches at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, says that her art “questions the obsolescence and decay of functional objects.” It’s wry, mesmerizing, and strangely thrilling.

Back in class

This semester at Kwantlen Polytechnic University I’m teaching two of my favourite courses: Marketing in a Digital World and Advanced Professional Business Communications. The digital marketing course is the most demanding class I’ve ever taught, and also the most fun; its content is always changing, and I spend a minimum of 3 – 4 hours a day reading simply to keep up to date (kind of).