Amateur is not a dirty word

Epiphanies come when I’m feeding out slack. Don’t tell my climbing partner. Because when he’s leading his way up a strenuous pitch of rock, he likes to know that I am watching with rapt attention, feeding out the rope in perfect increments, absolutely focused on his every micro-move, so that, should he fall, I will…

The last flight of Dave “Lucas” McCord

The last time I saw Dave “Lucas” McCord alive, he pulled out his phone to show me his latest claim to fame. He’d made headlines in Iceland, where he was spending the summer, trading labour as a carpenter and driver for some paragliding friends in exchange for a place to stay. He’d been on the…

Reclaim your Pantry: 7 easy things to start making yourself

Hello convenience shoppers. I am talking to you. (That bag of pre-mixed-and-washed salad you are tossing in your cart? You’ll get no judgment from me.) But please, let me try to convince you, even if you’re an entry-level do-it-yourselfer, that it is possible to reclaim kitchencraft. All you need is a couple of mason jars,…

You don’t have time to volunteer, so maybe you should

What science, and Katrina Onstad, author of The Weekend Effect, claim to be the best way to hack time Katrina Onstad hates brunch. The Toronto-based journalist finds it to be a colossal time-waster, although she phrases it more delicately. “I’m a little ambivalent about it. I have had some really nice brunches. But the culture…

Future-proofing the world, one packet of loaner seeds at a time

On Wednesday, the first day of summer, I borrowed a packet of shelling peas from the library. I sifted through a box of seeds, picked out the peas, signed my name to the register and pledged to return my loan in, oh, about 5 months time – once I’ve planted and eaten its harvest, and…

Sorry to break this to you, introverts, but we need to get out more.

It’s the economy, relationships, stupid My spousally acquired health benefits expire when the ski season ends, so in April, I decided to make a last minute, literally down to the wire, effort at addressing a chronically neglected issue and its mysterious new sidekick, by booking a visit to a physiotherapist. Cue several lightbulb moments: this…

Zero Waste meets bee-love in Squamish-based khala cloths

When Asa McKee goes to work in his home studio in Squamish making khala cloths, the plastic-free food wraps he invented with wife Tamar, he cranks the tunes (Grateful Dead, live concerts only) and starts cooking down beeswax, sourced from bee-first apiaries. “The whole house gets super warm and floral-smelling,” says Tamar. It’s planet-friendly, kid-friendly,…

What winning the lottery really means

When the $2.2 million cheque arrived from the BC Children’s Hospital Lottery Foundation on Thursday May 11, it was one week since Lana McKenzie discovered she had bought the winning ticket. She had $33 in her bank account. The 44 year old former receptionist at the Village of Pemberton, and her husband, “Dumpy” Shanon Dumbleton,…