7 Days In One Week

The past week was jam packed and eventful at the very least. Let’s start off with Sunday. I met up with Charlie for the Porsche contest B-roll shoot. We did the voice overs at the office, followed by some videos, and finalized the final shot at Matchstick Coffee with dinner across the street at Sel y Limon. The food there was alright. No comparison to LA.
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Monday – I met with Jane and Neil for coffee at Theirry. We simply talked about life and whatnot and the barista there fucked me over royally because he made me a regular Americano, despite ordering decaf. Fawk.

Tuesday, I had dinner with two friends who live in oblivion (re: New Westminster aka old people boring city.) We had dinner at Bambudda, enjoying the chef’s creation dinner courtesy of Ray and Chef Curtis Luk. I won’t go into the details of dinner because there are some menu items that are NOT on the current menu, but needless to say, food and drinks were fantastic as always. Both my friends enjoyed their cultural experience and we all had a great time. I look forward to trying their Dine Out menu!

And look – Two polar opposites. In more ways than you can possibly imagine. I would liken this meeting of two worlds the start of World War 3.
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Wednesday, I had dinner at Burdock & Co. (which was alright) followed by a quick decaf @ 49th Parallel where I saw Cissy and Lisa. The end of the night was a real surprise. But more on that another time.
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Thursday – I got sick. I had to pass on going to band practice that evening. This stupid sinus/nasal congestion upset my balance and my hearing went to shit.

Friday – I went to pick up the RoW M030 sway bars at Blaine. Can’ wait to install these!
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The odometer hit 58,900KM. It breaks my heart, but this car was meant to be driven and enjoyed. And to this very day, every time I get into this car and fire it up, I am always smiling. I can attest to being enamored to the ideals and dedication that Porsche embodies.
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I went to see Joe for my usual haircut then met up with Eddie after for drinks/dinner. We ended up at Shebeen so I invited Neil, who came by to have dinner and a drink with us too. Neat place, nicely stocked bar, but I still think Bambudda’s bar for mixed drinks are way better.

Saturday was a great day. I went to see Audrey @ Master Framers to pick up my first project with her. Both posters were completed and the final product was beautiful – better than I had expected! The Deus Ex Machina poster was stunning – the glossy red frame draws your eyes onto the overhead shot of the classic and iconic aircooled Porsche 930 turbo.

This bike poster was originally from veloposters.com (Australia.) It is a tribute to my affinity for Italian garbage, and this poster pays hommage for my lust for Italian steel frame bikes and their glory during their hey days. Featuring a Masi steel frame road bike.

Audrey Nishi of Master Framers. She is amazing.
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My second project with Audrey. The “She & Him” Classics album poster from their studio album special. This one is gonna look great!
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One of her clients, travel agents themselves, dropped off this vintage piece for her to frame. Dating back to 1984. Old technology. Neat!
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I sneaked over to see John and Ian at Pacific Multisport to say hello then dropped my suit off for dry cleaning at Michael’s place. Sheena wasn’t in. Too bad.

Afterwards, I hit up Tiger’s for lunch and to pick up the “Your Lie In April” CD which Kie so gratefully arranged for me! I am so excited! But I don’t want to open the CD! The struggle is real, children.
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And this brings us to the dilemma of the week – how and where to mount the posters. More so, I still have a bunch of motorcycle and BMW posters that need to be mounted, but I am too lazy. Or maybe it is lack of motivation. I need to find my muse. Sometimes, the idea of hanging them up makes it seem like I’m trapped in some sort of time/space continuum.
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And of course, one of my favourite posters and motorcycles – the Yamaha SR500 cafe racer. I still miss mine. But we’ll meet again one day – I promise.
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One of my friends who I had dinner with pointed out my lust for Porsche. And it’s true. You see, my father, being in the automotive industry, would often take me to car shows and meets on a regular basis. He did a lot of work on high end cars, ranging from Jaguars, Rolls Royce, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Ferrari, Lamborghini, and even F1 race cars.

It was at one car meet at Seymour Mountain, I saw a Porsche 911SC. I was so fascinated with the body lines, the rear-mounted engine, and it’s 2+2 configuration. It was different and I admired that a lot. It broke so many rules from the norm and differentiated itself in a unique and tasteful way. I didn’t know a lot about cars, but I knew for myself that one day, I would get one. More so, a gangster who lived in our project had an Intermeccanica roadster, based off the Porsche 356. I thought that was a very cool car so I told myself I would have to get one of these. I had a lot of big dreams as a young kid and who knew, they would one day come true?

Fast forward a few years later, one of my neighbours got a scale model for me as a Christmas present. Low and behold – it was a Porsche 930 Turbo in Guards Red. I put everything aside, including playing hide & seek with the kids in the neighborhood to build this model. I was so proud of the end result. Unfortunately, the model was lost when we moved so I never saw it again.

Throughout the years, I had never forgotten that Porsche 911SC and the model car I built. I would see Porsches roll around town and along the highway when my dad took us out on road trips. After high school, I bought my first car, a 1988 Toyota MR2 Supercharged, and still, deep down inside, I had wanted a Porsche, but of course, I couldn’t afford one.

I decided to move on to the SW20 MR2 Turbo and before I bought it, I had went to see a 1983 Porsche 911SC in black but the moment I showed up, someone had put a deposit down on it! So the MR2 was only a second choice, as much as I hate to admit it. One day, I went shopping for groceries at the Save-On Foods at Park and Tilford and parked beside some guy’s 911SC. We chatted for a bit and I remember him saying, “Keep working hard, kid.” And that I did. Which leads me to this very day where I now own my very own Porsche despite deviating from my original path where I had owned an Alfa Romeo Spider, an E30 BMW, and the E36 M3.

I’ve also had several people ask me “What is your affinity with Porsche?” Well, the affinity comes from a set of principals and ideals which align with my own. I am simply enamored by their technical innovation and immortal design which lives on to this very day from it’s humble beginnings. Ferry Porsche was determined to build a car he wanted, and that he did, successfully too. I admire the fact that Porsche built a car from the ground up, and made it right the first time. Nothing much has really changed. The classic lines, the body figure, engineering process still stays true to Porsche. And Porsche has their own stories of success and failure too – much like all us humans do. They learn from their mistakes and grow as a company, through thick and thin.

Hopefully us humans and society as a whole will look up to Porsche’s ideals. They stand out. They’re different. And they have their own set of rules. As my friend Jenn said to me, “You are a unique bird.” I’d have to agree. Perhaps, enigmatic at that.

Carrera Panamera

So to follow up on the OpenRoad 48 Hours In A Porsche contest, I finally picked up the Panamera at the Porsche Centre Langley. I was lucky to take the 2015 Porsche Panamera S Hybrid for a few days to drive around in. The catch was to follow up with a video/review of the car.

I’d like to take the time to thank Charlie Croskery for his help in shooting the videos. I can’t wait to see the final result. We still have to do the voice overs hahaha!

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Obligatory #ALing shot. Sorry, Jerry. I did it all wrong. I’ll get it right some day. And yes, I need to moisturize. It was cold as fuck that day.
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Cypress Mountain
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I had lunch with Cici, who was in town for the holidays. We lunched at The Blacktail Florist. VIP parking at my VIP parking space.
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Triangle Cafe Eff You #ALing Meet. This was seriously, the best car meet I have ever been to. Thank you to all the guys for coming out and thank you baller Jerry for the photos! A big thank you to Kevin for making this happen!
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My overall impressions: This is an awesome car, worthy of being a $100K+ vehicle. The power is there, but in the city, that hybrid motor gets you around. It’s heavy as hell, but the V6 motor underneath gets you going at a blink of an eye. There were often times I had to watch the throttle or else i’d be 50km/h over the speed limit. The suspension and chassis is so heavy and refined, you don’t even feel you’re going 140km/h!

Handling – this thing is a boat, but only on classic mode. There are three suspension options you can select. Default is classic, then sport, and sport plus. I preferred sport plus as it stiffens up the suspension and also engages a sporty fuel map, changing the throttle response. At that point, you’re ready to carve canyons and go on spirited drives (sort of, not really.)

The fit and finish of the interior is stunning, again, worthy of its $100K+ price tag. I was overwhelmed with the amount of buttons and gadgets and thought to myself, if anything were to break, you’re fucked. I should also make it a point that this car is quiet inside! Not to mention, the only way to open/close the trunk, is through the use of a button. What? Any way, being a passenger in this tame beast is a real treat. There’s so much room and it just feels awesome.

Would I buy this? Maybe if I were made of money. But I feel there are better options that suit my tastes, like an M5. I wouldn’t buy this as a daily driver, but if I lived in Abbotsford and worked in North Van, I’d give it a go. I’d also drive this thing across the country as it’s meant to be a grand tourer, putting it up against it’s more expensive brother, the Bentley Continental GT (or something like that.) I mean, after all the options, this car cost $132K before taxes and fees for crying out loud! (We saw the window sticker in the glove box.)

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After returning the Panamera, I hopped back into the 996, and boy, it was like being back on to Earth. A real night and day difference between the two cars, mind you, they were never meant to be compared. I think ultimately, the 996 is the right car for me at this stage in my life. Had I really gotten a TSX or Corolla, I think I would have been miserable. Getting back into the 996 put a smile on my face that I couldn’t wipe off for the whole day, complimented by a Reuben sandwich and coffee at Tiger’s Drink House.
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Time – The bane of humanity.
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And to start off the new year on a bright note, I took the 996 in to Derek @ DC Motoworks for an annual oil change and general health check on the brakes and suspension. We flushed out all the oil (LubroMoly) and filled it with Motul X-Cess 5W40. The car is pretty quiet and smooth now that it’s fully topped up. On a related note, I managed to find a set of RoW M030 sway bars for cheap on Rennlist. Fuck. Here goes the mod bug. Thankfully, the parts are OEM. Hah!
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I’m itching to get a set of Koni FSD shocks but I have to resist. I need new tires first, which will likely be the Bridgestone RE-11 all around. The goal this year – California road trip in the 996.

On an unrelated note, Steve, Eddie and myself hit up Bambudda for drinks and dinner. Eddie was poised with the first world problem of saying no to a girl who is potentially interested in him who asked him out for a movie. We delved into the possible outcomes over drinks and dinner and even went as far as to engaging the waitresses to give their opinions, being women themselves. The consensus was to be straight up. One of the waitresses even offered for us to ask her table of friends around the corner, which was really cool and rare, seeing as she had approved of us being worthy to approach her friends. We felt that it was nice of her to offer, but now, we all regret not taking the opportunity!

Any way, food, drinks, service – amazing as always. We all agreed that the food brought back childhood memories and the bar’s interpretation of the drinks we ordered were awesome. Ray and his team took very good care of us. I cannot rave enough how much I love this restaurant. Well, at the end of the night, Eddie got the destructive message after saying no to the movie offer and it wasn’t a nice reply whatsoever. I felt that the girl overreacted but there was no winning in this situation. Too bad on both ends. Regardless, it was a fun night. We ought to do this more often.

2015’s New Year Resolution – Go all in and no shame.

#’Murica

Let me preface this post by establishing a mutual understanding.

Americans are easily offended.

It’s likely you’re American and after reading this, you were offended. That was easy. Go ahead, make fun of me. Make fun of Canada. We take things in stride so it isn’t likely we’ll be offended. The Queen is an old hag, you say? Sure, okay. Whatever. She’s just a figurehead anyway. Don’t even get me started on Rob Ford. He’s a hero in my books and we all had a good laugh so the joke is on you.

So there you have it, the premise of this post. I spent a good two weeks visiting family in my second home of Los Angeles in December and the running joke was about Americans being easily offended. I don’t recall exactly how the joke started, but it was a comment my sister made (or rather posed it as a question to one of my cousins.) It dawned upon all of us that we all came to agree to the generalization where Americans are easily offended. So for two weeks, everything we did and said ended with the hashtag #’Murica.

More importantly, the purpose of my trip was for my cousin Nancy’s wedding. We had a blast and overall, it was a great wedding. And a warm and official welcome to our new cousin, Jonathan. If you’re reading this, you married into a crazy and rambunctious family (but you knew that so it’s okay.)

Some pics highlighting my trip in somewhat a particular order.

First to start, I spent a day in DTLA at the Grand Central Market where I met up with my cousins for lunch. Pictured here is Eggslut. This lineup is insane during lunch. I don’t really know what they serve, nor do I care so find out for yourself.
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Next up is Wexler’s Deli where I ordered a Rueben sandwich. I should have gotten a side potato salad (because I love that garbage) but passed on it in fears of having too heavy of a lunch. It was delicious (as the photo speaks for itself) but could have used a tad more Russian dressing/sauce. Not bad.
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Below here is my favourite Los Angeles barista. I don’t know her name but to me, she looks like Aubrey Plaza’s doppelganger. I took this photo by accident, as I meant to take a photo of the two girls working the machine, but nobody, not even Jesus Christ himself, will ever believe me. As such, I’ve earned my place in hell. Move over, Luficer. I have sinned at G&B Coffee, which by the way, has a cool bar where people stand, drink, chat, and get the fuck on their way like every coffee shop should be.
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So get this. Grand Central Market has a fucking oyster bar right beside G&B Coffee. Crazy, right? (Actually, no, not really.)
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We made a stop at a cafe/restaurant in Hacienda Heights by the name of “Bleu House.” This place suffers from an identity crisis. They try to be hipster with their hipster trash decor, but try to pull it off as a coffee shop, yet, they serve all sorts of Honger/Twanger inspired food to cater to the ABC crowd. What? Any way, the service here was a bit disorganized as we had 3 different servers cater to us. There was one girl who was pretty cute but she needs to work on her hosting skills. Oh well. Some fries of some sort. I forget what they’re called.
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This waffle was made of mochi. It was actually pretty good.
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As always, a must-stop at Deus Ex Machina in Venice. Look at this beauty parked out back. And 68style – where are you man?!
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Played out – homage to Hachi Six and slowguy
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The holy grail of fixies by Cinelli.
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This juice was a rip off. Frack. They also switched coffee suppliers from Handsome Coffee to Vittola. They also use a Faema machine!
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A pretty California blond girl…I mean…cool classic Mercedes!

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In & Out Burger. Awww yeah. No trip to LA is complete without it.
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My sister and I have a fundamental disagreement. Which is better of the two? In & Out or Habit Burger? Well, I’m not a huge fan of Habit, but I will credit them for making a good burger, albeit, not that great. It just tastes like a better version of a Burger King Whopper.
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Wedding Day – Jonathan and I both went around shopping for flute glasses. I think I’ve only ever worn these shoes for weddings. In fact, too many weddings.
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Toby and Milo!
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Tacos at Senor Baja after the photo shoot at the park. How classy, all dressed up in a ghetto taco shack. Talk about ghetto fabulous.
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A pristine E39 M5 on the 405 towards LAX. That machine was awesome.
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Seeing this, I can’t help but fall in love with LA.
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Fly away. I will this year.
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I got really lucky and managed to find a bottle of Uncle Val’s Gin. I first tried this at the Pourhouse with Alphamale and found it surprisingly delicious. Interestingly enough, this is a California-made gin, a rare specimen where gins are mainly produced in the UK, but slowly being produced and distilled outside of the UK, particularly in the US. It’s a pretty aromatic and refreshing gin, mixing well with a premium tonic water.
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Coffee at Klatch Coffee with grandpa. The staff there recognize us.
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Dinner with my cousins in Long Beach. We ended up going to Michael’s Pizzeria by accident after discovering the original restaurant we wanted to go to did not allow people under 21 (thanks for nothing, Raymond.)

It turned out in our favour because it was a well-known local pizzeria and they had a special going on where you buy one pizza, get a free marinara pizza on the house!

We ordered the brussel sprouts with pancetta and lemon (not pictured) and the carbonara and speck pizza. Both pizzas were amazing. Oh, and we also ordered the antara on the cast iron pan. While the food was great, I feel that pizza in Vancouver is much, much better. I’d still come back, however.
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Some inspirational bullshit at Intelligentsia Venice
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My usual faring.
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Man, this dog was drooling like crazy.
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And only in Venice, you’d see a guy in a wet suit with a surfboard on a bike.
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I was invited to my aunt and uncle’s new restaurant in Burbank. They recently opened and renovated so they need to iron out a few things. The food was awesome though!
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The day prior, I bought my three younger cousins ice cream when the ice cream truck pulled up to the side walk. They were thankful and had big smiles on their faces. They surprised me the next day at the restaurants by giving me a small Christmas gift (pictured further below.) In turn, I got the three little monkeys all a present as well – ice cream paddle balls.

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Not only is this the best gift wrap ever, this is art!
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I think it’s obvious. It’s home time. Flying on Christmas Day isn’t so bad.
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I forgot who wrote this quote, found in the Air Canada magazine, but I’d have to agree. “Be very passionate about whatever it is you do. Without passion, you can’t sell ideas or a business plan to anyone.” Wise words to live by.
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This is what the three little monkeys got me. Included were their school photos. I love them so much and look forward to their visit to Vancouver in June.
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