Archive for December, 2011

Puppy treats

In the summer I thought it was great that my puppy reacted to ice cubes like they were bought treats, a financial coup.

Now its winter, he thinks the world is his buffet.


Dark Knight Rises, new trailer


When the first of the Christopher Nolan Batman movies was released I was pretty unfazed, I didn’t go see it while it was in the movie theatres I waited and caught it at home after months of people telling me that Batman Begins was different from most comic book adaptations.

Fast forward a couple of years and I did make the effort to see The Dark Knight when it was released to theatres, having eventually enjoyed Batman Begins, I even went so far as to see it at the IMAX.

Now, for the final part of the trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises, will I go see it at the cinema?  Yeah I think I will for no other reason than to see how they have turned Catwoman into an Occupy Wall street protester as alluded to in the trailer.

Well kind of.

The Movie Another Earth

I little while back I watched Never Let Me Go and I’ve thought about it quite a bit since. I’m not really sure why, it must have struck a cord with me on some level. Today I saw a trailer for Another Earth, which I know nothing about but it seems, from the trailer, to have a similar melancholy feel to it.

Not that I’ve gone all emo but I think I’ll give it a watch.

Stollen that turned into plain white bread

I was going to make some stollen  today, mainly because I saw a recipe and thought why not? 

Turns out the reason not is because you need 40g of yeast and I had 8g.

So stollen is now on the back burner and in its place is a simple white loaf, and another food fail for the week is achieved.

Samosa fail

I was doing a small grocery shop today and felt a bit peckish while doing the rounds. I decide on a lentil samosa from the deli counter as my snack of choice, but I’m not that keen on eating them cold.

Can you heat it up?” I asked

“Umm sure” came the counter guys response with a weird look on his face, and off he toddled, and returned a couple of moments later with my samosa and other deli items.

When I got back to the car and unwrapped my samosa it was stone cold. It was then a realised that he thought I was asking if it was possible to reheat a samosa rather than what I wanted, which was to have a warm samosa there and then.

It was still tasty, if not indeed toasty.


Wind turbine on fire

I thought the storms round my way were bad, till I saw this picture of a wind turbine on fire in Scotland apparently due to excessive winds

To tip or not to tip, thats the question

A wee conundrum this morning. My washing machine that we inherited with the house when we moved in, died early this week.  It had been causing problems for a while so we had started budgeting to replace it at some point in 2012, but then it went to silicon heaven earlier than we anticipated.

On the plus side it tied in well with the Black Friday sales (they spill over into Canada too) which meant I we got a stonking deal with $500 off. Not too shabby.

But back to the point of the post, the guys coming to deliver (from Sears) were also installing the new one and taking the old one away. So do you tip?  If I still lived in the UK the answer would be a flat no, an offer of a cup of tea or coffee would be about it. If I lived in the States I think the answer would be yes, but this is Canada. The place where traditions from all over the world come toe to toe with North American consumer etiquette and muddle together.

If its food service then yeah, its a no brainer but I’ve paid extra for delivery and unlike some food service businesses these guys will be on a set wage that doesn’t take tipping into account as part of their earning.

So what did I do?  I did what everybody does in similar situations – I asked Google. Unfortunately my Google search came back with a mix and match of different opinions and comments and still I had no definitive answer. By this point I had offered the guys drinks if they wanted them, they didn’t as they had their own in the truck but they were both very friendly, chatty and seemed more intent on getting the job done and on to the next.

I think that was they key, they were friendly. If they had a face like thunder I would have shrugged and gone back to my morning but the friendly manner and how quickly they were getting on with the task in hand, combined with the blog comments by delivery guys that I’d read as part of my Google search who said that they really appreciate any tips although dont expect them made up my mind. I was going to tip.

Yeah, I really wish I had checked to see if I had any cash BEFORE I made up my mind that I was tipping.  I didn’t ask but I think trying to tip 2 delivery guys with a credit card would be difficult. What ensued was a frantic search for some notes (I feel weird about tipping with coins, not that I more than pennies anyway) and ended up with $15 US left over from a trip down there earlier in the year. Its not really what I had in mind, but it did give me what I need which was a monetary token of my thanks.

I signed the paper work and as we stood at the door I made comment that I didn’t know if it was the done thing to tip or not, but here was a thank you and they should subsidize their lunch on me. I should say that because of the amount of US tourists that come here most places accept the cash so its not like they wouldn’t be able to spend it.

They didn’t shed any light on whether or not it is the standard thing to receive tips, but they were visibly grateful with a couple of broad smiles and a genuine “thank you very much”.