New SkyTrain cars

TransLink released new images of what the next batch of SkyTrain cars will look like. These cars are almost similar to the Mark II series already in service with some noticeable details. The new Mark II 1300 and 1400 series will feature electronic destination signs over the front windows, rearranged seating to allow more wheelchairs, strollers and bikes, additional stanchions for standing passengers, upgraded anti-slip flooring, security cameras and electronic route maps. In addition, a newer paint scheme, instead of the blank white cars with blue and yellow decals, will be applied to make the cars stand out.

The new cars will be in service the time the 2010 Winter Olympics roll around, however, expect to see a few of them in the coming months.

Source: TransLink

Comeback Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks blew into the Windy City with a 3-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks in Round 2 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Mason Raymond opened the scoring with his goal fifteen minutes into the first period. In the second period, Steve Bernier added to Vancouver’s total on the powerplay and then Henrik Sedin followed suit seven minutes later bringing the score to 3-0. Brian Campbell put the Blackhawks on the scoreboard shortly after and brought the vibrant fans back to their feet. No further goals were scored by either team in the third period and an improved Canucks team took control of the series two games to one.

Word has it that Sami Salo was seen skating in Vancouver earlier and was last heard to be on his way to Chicago. Game four is on Thursday, May 7th at 5:00 PM PT.

Game Three

With Sami Salo injured and Pavol Demitra most likely sitting this one out, the Vancouver Canucks will need to give it their all to take back game three. Vancouver faces a young and determined Chicago Blackhawks and they will be ready to make the Canucks feel pain if they don’t step up and clear some of those rebounds away from goaltender Roberto Luongo. Game three is in Chicago on Tuesday, May 5th at 5:00 PM PT.

Markus Naslund

Markus Naslund

Also, former Canucks captain, Markus Naslund, announced that he is retiring and will not complete the second year under his contract with the New York Rangers. Naslund was quite possibly one of the best players on the Canucks, and had given this city a new hockey idol along with the familiar faces of Trevor Linden, Pavel Bure and Kirk McLean. Since he spent a good chunk of his time in Vancouver, it’s only fair that I salute him for his efforts here.

More Royal Hudson Photos

I went back to New Westminster again today to retake some pictures as a few from yesterday didn’t turn out. I also took the camcorder and got some more video.

Special thanks to the crew for taking the pictures inside the cab. The rest of the photos can be found here.

Engineers side The Firemen Boiler Plate and Firebox

The Royal Hudson

Royal Hudson

Royal Hudson

As part of New Westminster’s 150th celebration, the world famous Royal Hudson, an ex-Canadian Pacific steam locomotive, stopped at the New Westminster Quay to take passengers on a short excursion across the Fraser River to Cloverdale. Some of of the photos are online, and video of the engine arriving and departing New Westminster, as well as climbing the incline in North Surrey/North Delta will be available shortly.

The Royal Hudson will repeat its journey again on Sunday, May 3rd, starting at the New Westminster Quay. More information is available on the West Coast Railway Association website.

Read the rest of this article…

A rare talent

A friend of mine sent me this interesting link to the profile of a girl who’s on the Denver Nuggets dance team who carries the rare talent of “speaking fluent Canadian.” Last time I checked, Canadians spoke English (or for those in Quebec, French). Sure, we spell some words differently, but it’s still the same language. Not sure if she’s really proud of it or someone goofed up on the team’s website.

Game One

The Vancouver Canucks rallied together and were able to triumph over the Chicago Blackhawks 5-3 in the first game of the second round for the Stanley Cup. Pavol Demitra opened the scoring late in the first period, followed by goals from Henrik Sedin and Ryan Kesler to give Vancouver a 3-0 lead.
The Blackhawks came back strong in the third period with two goals from Patrick Kane, one of which was on the powerplay. Dave Bolland scored not even five minutes after Kane’s second goal to even the game out. Sami Salo secured the win by beating Chicago’s Nikolai Khabibulin with two minutes left in the third period, which was then followed by Ryan Johnson’s empty netter.
Vancouver leads the series 1-0 with game two scheduled for Saturday, May 2nd at 6:00 PM PT at GM Place.

Time to panic? Hell no!

So now that the World Health Organization (WHO) has raised their level (almost similar to the US’s terrorism colour chart) to five; which is one level before a pandemic occurs. Basically, it means that there’s been one case of the swine flu that’s been transferred between humans in one region of the world.

Outside of Mexico, only one person, a 23 month old baby, has perished from the flu. Everyone else has contracted mild strains requiring little to no hospital interaction. I’d be more concerned of regular human influenza which kills between 4000-8000 people in Canada annually (that number will probably be more in the United States due to their increased population size). Only one baby, at a vulnerable age, has succumbed to this virus. Come on people, if you do catch it, you’ll be home for a few days with mild symptoms of coughing, fatigue, sore throat and a fever. If you’re violently ill (severe nausea, loss of appetite, extreme difficulty in breathing), then you’d be in a hospital. That hasn’t happened in Canada or the United States and it probably won’t.

And with Mexico closing non-essential services (government offices, businesses, public gatherings) in Mexico City, the fear has spread to other countries where people are now reluctant to go out. I’m going to be in Chicago next week attending Anime Central, one of the largest anime conventions in the United States. Oh dear, a gathering with a large number of people in a hotel and convention center. It’s the perfect breeding ground for the swine flu… Not really. Any contagious disease can be spread through crowded groups of people in confined spaces. Do yourself a favour: wash your hands with warm water and soap. If you need to cough or sneeze, carry disposable tissues with you and promptly place in a garbage bin. Carry hand sanitizer if you’re not going to be able to wash your hands for a while. Also, do everyone a huge favour: if you are sick (with anything) do not attend!! Common sense is the key to keeping a virus at bay.

The media needs to stop freaking everyone out with “pandemic” and “first death in the United States” and “school closures.” Did any of this happen when John Doe caught the human flu last year? Didn’t think so. Calm down, think rationally, and be aware. That’s all you need.

For further information, visit the Public Health Agency of Canada website.

Kawaii but deadly

A co-worker of mine showed me this interesting web comic that’s cutesy but is so horribly wrong. Kawaii Not takes your average everyday item, makes it simple and then slams you with a bad joke or hilarious innuendo at the end. It’s awesome and guaranteed to put a smile on your face. And with all the strife and trials in today’s hectic world, this will keep those troubles at bay for a little bit.

Up next: Chicago Blackhawks

It’s official now: the Vancouver Canucks will be playing against the Chicago Blackhawks in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The first game is scheduled for 6:00 PM PT on Thursday, April 30th in Vancouver at GM Place.

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