Thursday, 19 July 2012

I Love You David Baldacci

I love David Baldacci. His books never disappoint and these include his Camel Club series with their unofficial ex-military leader, Oliver Stone plus his Sean King/Michelle Maxwell series and all the "stand-alones." Whatever David sets his imagination to, his books deliver a darn good plot, tough but believable characters and lots of "hit-em-hard-knock-em-out-and-run-like-hell" action.

David's latest book, "The Innocent" is the story of Will Robie, a hitman employed by the U.S. government and a 14-year old foster care run-away named Julie Getty. When Will refused to kill his designated target and used his own backup plan to escape a trap, that was the day his world and Julie Getty's collided explosively. Someone is trying to kill them--Who? Why?

I love books that grab you by the eyeballs and holds you in its clutches. "The Innocent" is definitely one of those page-turners that keeps you glued to your chair.  As you press on to the final pages and the shocker it holds, who cares if you have a permanent crick in your neck and shopping bags under your eyes. You had to burn the midnight oil to find out the 'who' and the 'why.' 

I love you David Baldacci. I bet you'll write a future book featuring Will Robie again. And, I know it'll be just as exciting, thought-provoking, timely and fast-paced as all your other books. I'm looking forward to your next one.

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Technical What?

Technology sucks! Yes, you heard me. I'll say it again. Technology sucks big-time. And, I'll tell you why.

The other night, just as my husband and I were settling in to enjoy a program we had recorded two nights ago--this part of technology is good--the t.v. screen went dark and the dreaded message of "No signal" appeared in the lower right corner. We didn't know that this was one of those irrational times when the telephone/cable company goes through a process called "initialization," affecting everyone's reception.
No message from the cable company appeared on screen to explain what was happening, so resorting to pressing various buttons on the remote which didn't do anything, I had to do what I always hate to do--phone the company for help, specifically "technical support." I hate this next part with a passion.

A computerized voice offers up a menu with seven choices, numbered 1 to 7. In the past, as soon as I heard my choice, I would immediately press that number and be connected. This doesn't happen anymore. You are doomed to listen to the full menu before you are allowed to make your selection. And, if you are two seconds too slow, a cheerful voice will gleefully say, "I'm sorry. I did not hear your selection" and proceed to give you the complete menu again. After the third unsuccessful attempt at punching in the proper number and being ignored, I finally resorted to yelling my choice. My spouse just sighed and muttered, "You're yelling at a machine" but miraculously, the voice response worked!

Successfully connected to "Technical Support" doesn't necessarily mean you get instant assistance. You are now doomed to listen to elevator music while put on hold forever. You can't hang up because this would mean phoning back and being on an even longer "hold." So, I held on while my smart hubby crawled behind the t.v., unplugged the cable and replugged it back.  Immediately, the screen came to life just as a real person finally came on the phone.

The lesson learned is that the pull-the-plug-and-put-it-back method works 99% of the time. If it doesn't work, then you really have a problem requiring "technical support."
Good luck in your mission. . .

Tuesday, 3 July 2012


Last week, Summer lingered for more than a day. We enjoyed the rare two days with its gentle breezes, azure sky with a wisp of white clouds, bees flitting happily among the lavender and roses, birds chirping noisily inside the neighbour's thick leafy bush--the one we dubbed the "Condo Bush." I always visualized at least five bird families nesting in there.

Victoria, BC. on the West Coast, has always been known as the "Florida" of Canada because of its warm mild weather in the winter. It is also known as the "Garden City" and for its annual "Spring Flower Count" each year. But this year, Victoria's reputation has suffered. The City's normally mild Winter had been extremely cold, stormy and wet. Spring finally arrived and Summer--well, I think we're still waiting.

Summer has been a teasing flirt. One day, she's hot and sweaty, teasing with short shorts, barely there tops, barbecues, beaches and beer.  The next day, she leaves you cold and bundled in sweaters, warm pants and jackets. See?--a capricious coquette. 

I think we're being punished for crowing over the years about our great weather:  mild Winters, early blooming Springs and Summers arriving in April and staying until October. All that bragging is bound to cause an effect. Meanwhile the wardrobe choices has been a challenge--tank tops or woolen knits? Oh well, there's always next year to grab back our boasting rights.