Ma monture (suite)

Après vous avoir longuement entretenu de ma nouvelle monture (un scooter électrique “Écolo” de GreenPower avec batterie au lithium), je vais vous parler de quelques nouveaux accessoires…

En plus de l’obligatoire casque et câble de verrouillage que j’ai déjà mentionné, je me suis procuré un pantalon de pluie imperméable (sur-vêtement) ainsi qu’un couvre sacs à dos imperméables en nylon pour pouvoir conduire le scooter dans tous le genre d’intempéries que l’automne pourra nous apporter.

Malheureusement, mon projet d’installer un porte-bagage arrière de chez Dyad ($40) a échoué. Il semble qu’il y ait après tout de légères différences entre les châssis des DS1 et de l’Écolo; les fixations de côtés sont trop serrées et je n’ai pas pu l’installer. Je suis donc retourné chez Dyad mais ils n’ont pas les outils nécessaires pour l’ajuster en place et ils m’ont donc remboursé. Aucunes des boutiques locales n’offre de porte-bagage pour l’Écolo mais je trouverai bien une solution éventuellement (soit obtenir de bon outils pour écarter légèrement les fixations pour pouvoir mettre le porte-bagage de Dyad en place adéquatement ou contacter le fabricant chinois pour voir s’il offre des accessoires pour ce modèle).

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J’ai également acheté chez Dyad un sac en vinyl noir ($90) qui s’installe entre les jambes (dommage que Dyad ne présente pas sur leur site les accessoires disponibles; il faut se rendre à l’un des magasins pour savoir. Je n’ai rien vu de similaire ailleurs). Il remplit parfaitement l’espace mais les courroies pour l’attacher à l’arbre de direction (à l’avant) et au soutien du siège (à l’arrière) étaient un peu lousse alors je les ai “twisté” pour les resserrer. J’ai également fait de légères perforations dans le bas du sac pour y passer des attaches (“tie-wrap”) afin de maintenir le sac en place et aussi le sécuriser contre d’éventuelle tentatives de vol. J’en suis très satisfait.

J’ai trouvé un manuel en ligne pour le DS1 de Dyad mais malheureusement toujours aucun pour l’Écolo…

Finalement, j’ai aussi acheté une fixation pour iPhone Quad Lock ($120) qui s’installe sur le guidon du scooter. Le téléphone s’insère dans l’étui Quad Lock dont le système d’attache se verrouille solidement sur la fixation. Il y a même une couverture anti-intempérie qui s’ajuste sur le iPhone. C’est un accessoire très pratique. Cela permet de voir l’affichage de la navigation GPS pendant que l’on roule mais aussi de faire des vidéos de nos trajets ! En voici d’ailleurs un exemple (j’ai fait un tour rapide du parc mais comme je ne voulais pas vous embêter avec un vidéo de quinze minute j’en ai accéléré la vitesse (x8) pour le réduire à seulement deux minutes — warp speed !) :

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Écolo Lithium (Green Power HQ)

Une nouvelle monture

Après le début du déconfinement, lorsque j’ai été rappelé au travail, je n’étais pas très à l’aise avec l’idée de devoir prendre l’autobus et le métro. Heureusement mon travail se trouvait à distance de marche ou de vélo. Toutefois je me suis vite rendu compte qu’à mon âge, en pleine canicule, le vélo (et parfois même la marche) c’est plutôt épuisant. C’est alors que je me suis rappelé avoir déjà voulu acquérir un vélo ou une mobylette électrique juste pour le plaisir. Mais c’est tout de même dispendieux et le plaisir seul n’en justifiait pas la dépense. Par contre, dans les circonstances, c’était devenu presqu’une nécessité.

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Le DS1 de Dyad

J’ai donc loué une mobylette électrique pour une semaine (chez Dyad) pour voir si cela en valait la peine, si c’était difficile à conduire et, surtout, si j’aimais ça. J’ai adoré! Après avoir soigneusement étudié les modèles disponibles j’avais choisi de louer un DS1 de Dyad car ils offraient de déduire le coût de location de celui de l’achat si j’étais satisfait et désirais acheter la mobylette chez eux. Le problème c’est qu’après ma semaine de location il ne leur restait plus aucun modèle pour la vente et ils ne prévoyaient pas en recommander cette année! J’ai donc commencé à magasiner ailleurs et à considérer tout les modèles possibles: des modèles similaires au DS1 de Dyad (l’Écolo, le Passeport), des vélos électriques (comme le Banana Boss, le Rad Runner 1, le Maxie Large, ou même le Paris), de plus grosses mobylettes style Vespa (Tao Aquarius, Vienna, Gio Italia, Mignon, UQi Pro, etc.), mais plus personnes n’avait quoique ce soit en stock ! Il faut croire que tout le monde avait eut la même idée que moi en même temps!

J’ai agonisé de longues semaines en soupesant toutes les options possibles mais c’était toujours trop gros, trop cher, pas de siège confortable, pas de place pour un second passager, la boutique est située trop loin, etc., et les fournisseurs me disaient tous qu’ils n’aurait du stock que vers la fin juillet au mieux ou encore à l’automne.

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L’Écolo

J’ai finalement trouvé une boutique (Kolo Scooter) localisée à proximité (dans Hochelaga) qui semblait donner un service de qualité (4.9/5 sur Google), offrait un modèle de mobylette qui correspondait à toutes mes attentes et qui devait en recevoir à la fin juillet. Il ne me restait plus qu’à m’armer de patience… J’ai pu enfin prendre possession de mon scooter de marque Green Power HQ, modèle Écolo version lithium, vendredi le trente-et-un juillet. J’en suis bien satisfait. Voici donc ce que j’en pense en détails… (après le saut de page)

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Note

Il faut bien se trouver des raison de célébrer dans la vie, histoire de garder le moral et de se donner des objectifs pour marquer le passage du temps. Et bien je vous annonce qu’il ne me reste plus que 2500 jours avant la retraite !!! J’ai bien hâte de pouvoir me consacrer à temps plein à la lecture et à l’écriture…

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You have to find reason to celebrate in life, just to keep up your spirits and to set goals to mark the passage of time. Well, I tell you that I only have 2500 days left before retirement !!! I can’t wait to devote myself full time to reading and writing …

Status report (early July)

The life in the time of the coronavirus continues… 

This is my fifth status report since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic (the other four were in March, mid-April, the end of April, and in mid-May). It has now been fifteen weeks (or one-hundred and seven days) since it has all begun. It has been forty days since the beginning of the slow re-opening and my return to work (thirteen days since we’ve restart taking the public in the library for a limited offer of service). 

On the domestic side of life, I can say that I feel I have not been doing much in the last month and half… I didn’t do much around the house (it was either too hot or raining). As usual, I probably watch too much television: like rewatching the Ghost in the Shell: Arise series and several movies (also, to fill the time, I started watching again the 2004 series of Battlestar Galactica). However, I have been reading enough to catch up on my tsundoku… (hurray!) and write a little about my readings (dBD #141, La sphère d’Or, Unbeaten tracks in Japan, I’ll never tell, De Gir à Moebius, and several other French comics that I covered in the article “Sherlock Holmes en bande dessinée (2)”).

Weather — The temperature was unusually warm lately (above average) and often quite dry. So much so that the vegetation in the parc often took a yellowish colour. Thankfully, it rained periodically enough to keep everything alive. In the last week or so it has been quite hot and humid. Enough to discourage any sustained outside activities, although we still take our daily walk.

Health — With the confinement (probably because of slightly bigger meal and less activity) I have gained weight. My blood pressure and glucose are also higher (maybe because of an increased stress?). I have also experienced digestive problems, my usual recurring pain at the end of the digestive track as well as some chest and shoulder pain (probably muscular). Overall, I feel in good shape but it could be better. Unfortunately, I know that with age nothing gets better…

Work — All is fine at work. My usual library being still closed for renovation I was assignment to another one. This new place is at a nice location (at walk/bike distance from home) and has a nice team (although, since the people of my library working there are in extra, we perform mostly boring jobs). However, there was one painful incident: a customer refused the answer the covid “questions” and to sanitize his hands upon entrance. As I was insisting (to follow protocol), he became increasingly disagreeable, up to implying that I was doing so because of my ego or because I was racist. I was just trying to do my job. I was putting my health at risk (and the health of my family) in order to give him access to the library and he has shown absolutely no appreciation or gratitude for it. All I ask is some respect. If I was hurt by being called a racist (and I will come back on this subject) what really pissed me off was that my colleagues didn’t show much support when I tried to explain that he refused to follow protocol and insulted me. I don’t know, maybe they just didn’t understand me well: it is hard to express yourself calmly when it’s hot and your are talking through a mask and a face-shield. What happened to “we must absolutely ask ALL the covid questions and not let anyone in that doesn’t answer properly”? And then they told me “you know, we get insulted all the time. You have to get used to it” implying that I was weak to let it get to me. We are supposed to have a policy of not tolerating any disrespect and bullying (no respect, no service) and, yet in the end, that man received the service he came for. If you are tolerating such disrespect OF COURSE people will feel empowered and continue with the same behaviour. It is the wrong attitude. Anyway, that incident bothered me for weeks as I kept thinking about it…

One thing that I spent a lot of time on lately, was shopping for a nice electric bike or scooter. In this epidemic, I want to avoid public transportation (bus & subway) and if my work place for now is at a walking or biking distance, it is quite tiring in the summer heat (and I am closer to sixty than fifty years-old after all). I rented one for a week and I liked it a lot, but when I wanted to purchase one not a single store in the metropolitan area had any in stock. I guess everybody had the same idea at the same time and I was too late. An electric BIKE looks cool (particularly the Banana Boss, the Rad Runner 1, the Maxie Large, or the Paris) but it is quite expensive and a standard bicycle seat is really hard on my backside. Strangely, a scooter is less expensive, as well as being much more confortable and versatile. I’ve been checking several nice models (Écolo, Tao Aquarius, Vienna, Gio Italia, Mignon, UQi Pro, etc.) but now I found a good store and I am just waiting for them to receive some stock later this month…

Many important events happened in the second quarter of 2020 ( the end of May, June and the beginning of July) but I don’t want to spend much time on those current events. However, the world stage was dominated by the three great plagues of the era. First, the coronavirus. So far, the world has suffered over 10 million cases of infection resulting in over half a million deaths! We dealt relatively well with it in Canada, but the U.S. in on the verge of total catastrophe as it reopened too soon and they are now seeing an horrible surge in infection (over fifty-thousand new cases each day!). 

The second plague is Trump. I would think that we would get used to it by now but his mishandling of the coronavirus response (no national coordination, not enough test and PPE, not urging confinement, distanciation, and wearing masks, etc.), his constant lying, and his rhetoric encouraging hate-speech and inciting to violence kept making everything worse. Sometimes, I think he just doing it on purpose. If he is not a Putin agent, he is certainly an agent of chaos. He loves it. I can’t wait until November… 

The final plague is racism. Following the death by police abuse of George Floyd and many other subsequent similar baffling incidents, the American urban areas erupted in spontaneous protests against this pervasive institutional racism that literally plagues the U.S. How did we moved from a pandemic to riots in the streets? (Without much social distancing hence the cases surge) We all hoped that it was getting better but I guess we got negligent — the coronavirus confinement and Trump inducement somehow seem to have put salt on the wound — as it now seems worse than ever. It must be dealt with once and for all. With police reform certainly (defunding, demilitarizing, new structure, call it what you want — I always thought we should have several level of policing: the unarmed street or biking cop, the patrol police answering to theft and hold-up, the inspector, the riot police and now we should have a force of psycho-social worker for domestic violence, teenage trouble, neighbour disputes, etc.), but the disease goes further than that. Social reform and massive investments to reduce inequality (in education, in job opening, in housing, etc.) are necessary. With the recent movements like Me-Too and Black Lifes Matter, I feel that the world is effervescent and on the verge of great changes, just like in ’68. However, we will have to be patient. Real change takes time. But now the seed of change, the idea that it is possible, has been planted in people’s minds. It only remains to take care of it and watch it germinate… But the first step toward that change is for American to go vote in November.

Racism has always bothered me. All my life I tried to treat everybody equally, not letting their opinion, behaviour, the size of their nose, the colour of their eyes, hair or skin (pink, brown, “black”, “red” or “yellow”) distract me from the fact that we were all the same. Human beings. I always tried to be tolerant (sometime failing: for a while I became quite intolerant toward religion, but now the only thing I can’t tolerate is intolerance — and stupidity). When I was a teenager I thought that the best way to solve racism was to intermarry and eventually we would all become of the same skin colour (that’s what I did, unfortunately I never had kids — too much trouble!). However, skin colour is just an excuse for racists: in fact they are just afraid of the difference (people thinking, dressing, talking, etc., differently than they are). There are many culture on this world and, if we just learn about them, we see there is no reason to be afraid. We discover that this difference is beautiful, that it is a wealth. Those people usually are against (or ignorant of) science. Science is telling us that, genetically, we are all the same and that there is only one race: the human race. I always wanted to write about this complex and touchy subject (and someday I will). Unfortunately, whatever you say or write will always receive criticism: you didn’t say this, the way you say that is discriminatory, it is not enough, it is too much, etc., so I am waiting to have the right words. However, if you stay silent,  it is worse because they say that you are complicit, that you are encouraging racism by saying nothing. I prefer to show support by my actions: I won’t protest in the street but I’ll always try to be equitable, unbiased, and just. If I see someone being discriminated (racially or otherwise) I will try to defend them. And I’ll stay silent. If I scold you for doing something wrong (like misbehaving in the library or trying to cut the waiting line to enter the bus) and you answer be accusing me of being racist, I’ll stay silent. But just know that calling me a racist is the worst insult that you could give me…

I feel the end of this year will really be difficult… Take care of yourselves and stay safe !

Also, I found time to stay a little acquainted with the affairs of the world and gathered a few notable news & links — which I now share with you (in both french or english, slightly categorized, but in no particular order — note that, to save on coding time, the links will NOT open in a new window), after the jump.

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J’emmerde Facebook

Sommet-des-dieux-animeLe 20 juin j’ai republié un message d’Animeland qui annonçait la bande-annonce d’un film d’animation adaptant un excellent manga d’un de mes auteurs préférés, Jiro Taniguchi. Le 26 juin j’ai reçu un message de Facebook qui disait “Your post goes against our Community Standards [on SPAM] so only you can see it.” J’ai donc contesté la décision et FB a fermé le dossier mais j’ignore toujours si mon billet original est toujours visible… alors je l’ai re-publié (mais il ne semble toujours pas visible!)…

 La bande-annonce en question (sur Vimeo)

Je suis outragé! Facebook trouve correct que Trump mente sur leur page, que Trump fasse de la désinformation et de la propagande haineuse, que Trump incite à la violence [WaPoNYT] mais je republie simplement un post qui parle d’une animation basé sur un beau manga de mon auteur préféré et c’est du SPAM ???? F**k you FB, je commence sérieusement à penser à te laisser tomber !

Ne vous gênez pas pour commenter et laisser FB savoir quelle petite merde ils sont!

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F**k Facebook !

On June 20 I republished a message from Animeland announcing the trailer for an animated film adapting an excellent manga from one of my favorite authors, Jiro Taniguchi [same news on Anime News Network]. On June 26 I received a message from Facebook saying “Your post goes against our Community Standards [on SPAM] so only you can see it.” So I contested the decision and FB closed the file but I still don’t know if my original post is still visible … So I re-posted it (but I’m still not sure it is visible…) !

I am outraged ! Facebook finds it okay that Trump lies on their page, that Trump does disinformation and propaganda, that Trump uses hate-speech and incites to violence [WaPoNYT] but when I simply republish a post that talks about an animation based on a beautiful manga by my favorite author it is SPAM ???? F ** k you FB, I’m seriously starting to think about dumping you !

Please feel free to comment and tell FB how shitty they are !