Sunday Signage: The Baby’s Gonna Blow!

I love Seattle. I love its zany architecture, crazy ass hill climbs, scenic views, and even its weather. It’s been so awesome having several weeks to explore this city (penthouse living, baby– yeah!), mainly so we can discover random gems like this one:

Quick! RUN FOR COVER!! Baby's gonna blow!

Quick! RUN FOR COVER!! Baby’s gonna blow!

This is not just any restroom sign. It’s a full-scale, life-sized, labor-intensive tiled mosaic that not-so-discretely lets visitors know where they can do their business at the famed Pike Place Market. I haven’t pictured the ‘mom’ part of the mosaic in this particular photo, but I can assure you she’s pretty casual looking. The Girl Child, on the other hand, seems to have more of an, um, urgent spring in her step, and the Dad? Well. I think that Dad has a Diaper Emergency on his hands… literally, from the looks of it.

I’m just picturing the commissioning process for this mural:

Pike Place Market: We need you to lay some tile downstairs. Huge mural. It’s going to be brilliant. The baby needs to be at arm’s length from the dad. I’m talking Dad Arms at 90-degrees. Everyone except mom needs to be breaking into a run.

Artist: Um, okay?

Pike Place Market: Make sure the Girl Child is almost as tall as an adult female. Dad needs to be a freaking giant. Baby will do a superhero pose– it’s going to be awesome.

Artist: And you’ll pay me?

Pike Place Market: Of course! We value all artists here in Seattle!

Artist: In that case, show me that cash money and hand me the grout.

Love you, Seattle!

Sunday Signage: “Luxury” is a Relative Term

Spotted outside the sales center for a new and “exclusive” condo complex in Victoria:

Artful vandalism and exclusive smashing in of windows costs extra…


I am so naive sometimes. This is our fourth season selling our artwork on the causeway in Victoria, and every year, August has taken me by surprise. I never learn just how cruel a mistress August can be! Each June, I think to myself:

This is a piece of cake!

I could do this all effin’ year long!

Bring on the sales, universe!

By July every year, I’m a bit wiser and my enthusiasm is a bit, um, tempered. I console myself:

Hey, at least you’ve only got 50 unread e-mails in your inbox, not 500.

Way to keep up with a twice-weekly(ish) workout schedule!

August will be totally manageable. It can’t be *that* much busier than July.

Then August hits.


I go from working out twice(ish) a week to working out two times the entire month (the 1st and the 31st, natch). The unread e-mails in my inbox pile up at an alarming rate, nearly outsizing the monstrous dirty laundry pile in our closet (you know, if e-mails had physical mass and volume). Marty’s parents leave frantic voicemails on our machine, ranging from “Hello? We haven’t talked to you in two weeks!”, to “Is everything okay?? Are you guys still alive over there??” Sadly, most of their calls go unanswered, mainly because a) we’re not home until midnight to check our messages and b) we pity the fools who try to phone us in the morning before we leave for work. Mornings are for silence. That’s our motto. Our other motto is Phone us before 10 in the morning and SUFFER OUR WRATH! Just saying.

Anyway. August is a demanding master, and we are her wretched slaves. I’ve come a long way since my days at the office, no? Scroll down to experience An Ordinary August Day in photos:

8 am

Why are we even awake at 8 am? Normally, I set an alarm for 8:30 and it nearly kills both of us to peel ourselves off the sheets. Don’t judge! This Ordinary August Day started off as it normally does (albeit a half hour earlier than usual): with me preparing our breakfasts (oatmeal and coffee for Marty; green smoothie for me) and Marty loading up our bike trailer for work.

11 am

This clock tower OWNS ME.

I arrive at the Harbour to join Marty, who has been working there since 10 am. (What? I was at home making our lunches.) I check on the status of my knitting (a staple pastime) and restock any inventory that needs touching up from the night before.

Our art booth, and– more importantly– my knitting!

12 noon

Marty paints. I knit and (hopefully) sell stuff. By 1 pm, I’ve devoured my weight in rye crackers and almond butter as a snack, and I’ve finished the first knit project of the day.

These are about the only foods I’m not allergic or sensitive to for the time being. Naturally, I eat about 8 million of these crackers every day now, so I won’t be surprised to see “rye crackers” and “almond butter” on my next allergy printout. Heh.

Tada! Cramp inducing preemie cap!

2 pm

Marty eats his lunch (avo sandwiches), and then I head to Evil Starbucks to fetch him an afternoon caffeine fix. It’s a necessary evil. Upon returning to the Harbour (a whole 10 minutes later), I chow down on a gigantic salad (kale, arugula, bell peppers, coconut ribbons, hemp seeds, homemade dressing– other foods that I am not allergic or sensitive to at the moment.) And just in case you were wondering: yes! I eat all the time. (3 times before 2 pm for those of you who are counting.) Marty and I are actually known to the other vendors and even the security guards on the causeway as the “people who are always eating”. Ahem.

Do you like my money clip? I got it from one of the other vendors at the Harbour. You can check out his shop on Etsy– Wood Bee Designs. Yer welcome!

2 pm to 5 pm:

Selling stuff. Knitting stuff. Painting stuff. Glancing up at the clock tower that OWNS ME every 10 or 15 minutes. You know, just working.

5 pm:

The dreaded Dinner Hour begins, and Marty takes his cue to head home to fetch our battery and warmer clothes for the evening ahead. Dinner Hour is dreaded because everything sloooooooows down for a period– plus, the sun starts shining directly in my face, so I have to whip out the One Step Shy of a Welder’s Mask Sunglasses.

Please, God: I don’t want my face to look 75 by the time I am 35.

6 to 7 pm

Marty returns with the battery. I go fetch dinner… from the mall (groan). Two cruise ships have just docked, so the streets are starting to fill up, and everyone and their dog (including me!) take photos of the local sights.

Look! There’s a horse-drawn carriage on the street! Hark! Those plants are shaped like whales!

Dear Sushi: I love you, but I hate you. Can’t wait to quit you! xoxo, Dana

8 pm

Yes, we kick it old school at the Harbour. We don’t have any electricity provided for us, so we have to hook lights up to our patio umbrella (our only shelter at the art booth) and haul one of those mega batteries to and from work each day. Good times!

The sun slowly starts to set, so Marty sets up our lights and plugs in our battery. The Harbour is alive with approximately 8000 cruise ship visitors (for real), and amazingly, a few hours pass without me even glancing at the clock tower that OWNS ME. I’m too busy selling things and telling people how amazing my husband is. 🙂

9 pm

What the eff? Somebody leaves a “free gift” in one of our display fixtures. Opening it up, I discover that Hell is So Hot. Thanks! (There’s always something crazy going on at the Harbour. Today, it just took until 9 pm for the crazy to start happening.)

10 to 11 pm

Marty is (faking) still going strong after 12 hours at work. Poor lad is still painting, only now it’s in the dark and the paint is taking forever to dry. I’m taking photos of our provincial government building, counting the minutes until we can start packing up for the night.

Can you see him painting in the background? Aw, precious!

11 pm

Yipee! We’re packing up for the evening and looking forward to all the work that still needs to get done at home. This is what the clock tower that OWNS ME says as we’re leaving for the night:

So what, the photo is blurry? It still says 11:30 pm. 🙂

Midnight to 1:30 am

(No photos to show you). We restock inventory, phone in our credit card transactions, wash our food containers, and fall into bed. Now, multiply this day by 31, and you’ll have our August. 🙂

How have you been lately, my dear but neglected readers? I miss you!


Sunday Signage: Hiking for Lazies

Picture the scene: Marty and I were out hiking this winter. It had been a while since we got out on any nature trail, so as we ascended a steep(ish) hill, our lack of fitness caught up to us quickly. Imagine our relief to discover this sign just before the final ascent to the summit:

Alas. We should have known it wasn’t a real escalator… it was just a 60 degree incline trek to the summit. False advertising, Cowichan Valley Regional District! FALSE ADVERTISING!