Archive for March, 2009

29 Mar 2009

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Family

When will Spring be here??

When will Spring be here??

What the old saying about March?  In like a lion, and out like an angry lion? This weekend has seen another dump of snow, at least it was only 2 or 3 inches this time…

Anyway, it’s a little disheartening when you’ve got a shiny, new (to me) red motorbike waiting in the garage – calling with its siren song.  Yep, we are now a two motorbike family.  After Brenda got her motorbike licence last year, she decided that she was used to and comfortable on my 2000 SV650S – so she stole it.  I was pretty sad when I discovered the theft, but at least I knew the culprit and was able to extract some compensation!

Of course, when your motorbike is stolen, the only thing to do is to replace it.  So after thinking about what I might like, going to the motorbike show in January, and spending some lunch hours browsing the bike dealerships, I decided that the best bike to get would be a 2009 Triumph Daytona 675 ( in “arrest me red” of course).  But then my inner Scotsman heard about the plan (i.e. the price tag) and had a go at my inner Hooligan.

So on Friday I picked up my new bike – a 2006 SV650S …at least I got the colour I wanted…

Now if the weather would just cooperate.

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16 Mar 2009

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Geekstuff



That’s “Continuous Number Plate Spotting”, or more often, just “the licence plate game”.  The game is a bit of OCD foolishness that has afflicted a number of my friends and family over the past few years.  The game has been around in various forms for a long while and gained some prominence in Britain about 5 years ago when a popular comic and TV personality started to play the game.  It  involves spotting car licence plates bearing each of the possible 3 digit number combinations from 000 to 999 in strict numerical order.  It takes a bit of time to play…

Tomorrow I’ll be celebrating my 6th anniversary of playing the game and today, the last day of the 6th full year of play, I saw my 500th plate – how perfect is that?  To save those of you the trouble of doing long division in your head or searching for that little 4-function calculator in your junk drawer; that’s 83 plates per year (6.9 plates per month) or 1 plate spotted every 4.4 days.  For six years.  … I know, it is amazing isn’t it?

In case you wish to join in the fun, here are the basic rules:

  1. Only passenger class licence plates from your current province of residence are valid spots (no vanity, commercial, fleet, diplomatic … plates) in Alberta, these plates are of the following form ABC-123 (or ABC-1234, coming this fall)*
  2. Go about your day in your normal fashion, excepting only a hardly noticeable scanning back and forth to get a glimpse of the licence plate on every car you encounter.
  3. When you spot 000, congratulations! You’ve started!  (You may actually be in denial at this point, but don’t worry – eventually you will see 001 and you’ll be off.)
  4. You must actually see each sought-after number with your own eyes and clearly enough that you won’t be wracked with pangs of guilt in the middle of the night for taking credit for seeing a plate that you’re just not sure about.
  5. If you don’t have a steel-trap memory for the locations of upcoming plates you can jot them down or add them to a list in your Blackberry, but you actually have to physically lay eyes on the right plate in the right order.  It doesn’t matter that the blue minivan with 057 was there just yesterday…
  6. Cruising parkades or parking lots is allowed, but don’t go bragging about it at work, some people might not understand that you are on a Quest.
  7. Seeing the number after the one you want (repeatedly) builds mental toughness.  Quit complaining.

Have fun and repeat after me, “No! I don’t have Asperger’s, why do you ask?”


* There is some debate on how this will affect the rules, but the concensus seems to be that only the last 3 of the 4 digits will count.  …and that the game could be extended to be multi-generational if you try to get all the plates from 000 through 9999.  (That’s a total of 11000 plates to spot: 000 – 999 plus 0000-9999) Not only that, but it has taken the province 25 years to run out of 3 digit plates, so the lifespan of the 4 digit plates will approach 10x as long (well not really, the plates are used at a far faster rate in 2009 than in the 80’s as the population has increased, but still…)

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