A Different Way of Commuting

A Different Way of Commuting.


A Different Way of Commuting

 I’m pretty sure you’ve already heard about Granville Island, Science World, the Olympic Village, the HR Macmillan Centre and Kitsilano Beach.  All are on the list of places to visit while staying in Vancouver.  But why not get there in a new, fun and exciting way?
Here’s an insider scoop for a much better way to commute around the false creek area and visit all those must-see spots…the best part: (drum roll please) it’s all BY WATER!!!
That’s right; I introduce to you the Aquabus and the False Creek Ferries.  Please hold your applause until the very end.
Vancouver Aquabus
The Aquabuses are cute little dinghy’s that travel around the False Creek area making 8 stops along the way.  Hop on at Science World and sail around the creek before heading to Granville Island.  There are a ton of things to do on the island, from checking out the smorgasbord of cool little shops that sell everything imaginable, to taking in the fresh sights at the market.  Grab a bite to eat at one of the many great restaurants or laugh until your sides burst at Vancouver Theatresports Improv Comedy.  If comedy isn’t your thing, catch a theatre production at The Revue Stage or listen to the live bands playing their sets while sipping on a fruity drink.  Then hop back on the Aquabus and get dropped off right where you started.  You can make a day out of it by buying an all day pass for just $15, which means you can hop on and off all day long!
For more information on schedules, routes, and fares, visit:
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Your other option is the False Creek Ferry Company.  False Creek Ferries have a slightly different route, so if you’re looking to head to the HR Macmillan Space Centre, The Maritime Museum or just a day trip to the Kitsilano Beach side of town, this is your best option. They also offer an all day pass for $15 which are available for purchase on board the ferry.
For more information on schedules, routes, and fares, visit:
You do not want to miss out on an opportunity to commute around town like this, and believe you and me, sunsets are even more breathtaking on water.
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You are very welcome.

Feeling SAD much?


A new season is upon us and with it, a few not-so-delightful friends.

You may be noticing it’s getting harder and harder to get out of bed or even spark up a hint of motivation for anything.  You are tired, your body lethargic, your attitude lazy, and your days lacklustre.  The cold, wet, rainy days remind you of darkness, gloom and doom.   Welcome to winters in Vancouver and a little thing known as SAD.

Extremely common in Vancouver and Seattle, SAD is the acronym for Seasonal Affective Disorder.   We know it as winter depression, winter blues, or seasonal depression.  This is basically a change in our mood that comes with the winter because of the changes in weather and climate.  Our biological clocks are disrupted because of the reduced level of sunlight which means our bodies get confused with when to sleep or stay awake. Serotonin (brain chemicals that affect mood) and Melatonin (hormones that affect sleep patterns and mood) drop.  All these changes trigger and lead to depression like symptoms.

Some of these symptoms include:

– Oversleeping

– Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed

– Social withdrawal

– Loss of energy

– Difficulty concentrating

– Appetite changes, especially craving food high in carbohydrates

– Heavy ‘leaden’ feeling in the arms and legs

– Weight gain

– Hopelessness

– Anxiety

– Depression

So if you have been dealing with any of the above symptoms, worry no more!  This is absolutely – 100% – normal.  Many of us will feel a bit blue and a lot tired as the weather changes and our daily intake of sunlight hours decrease. 

Here then are a few sure-fire tips to help you kick those winter-blues to the curb. 

1)  Basic needs must be met.  Sleep, nutrition (eat that protein), and water intake are all very important to help function like a ‘normal’ human being.  Get enough sleep, eat properly, and drink a lot of water.

2)  Stay warm!  Seriously, stay warm.  Colds and flus are alive and kicking during this season so dress warmly and remember to wash your hands after being out in public.

Some Vancouver staples for the season:

an umbrella

a waterproof windbreaker or a warm coat/parka

a hoodie (sweaters)


3) Stay active.  Exercise.  Get in as much sunshine as you can.

Even if you’re not hitting the gym, running laps, or catching a yoga class (because we all know how hard it is to exercise even on a good day) force yourself to move.  Use the stairs, walk the scenic route home, sit down a little less, and enjoy the wide array of winter sports. And above all else, the minute you see some sunshine, bathe in it.

4) Explore new activities.  Keep busy. 

MOVIES – November and December are known for great blockbusters

GAME NIGHTS – invite friends over for a night of boardgames, or catch the hockey game – Go Canuck Go! – over some nachos and wings

CONCERTS – music, friends, and a night out = happiness

PLAYS – theatre life is always an enjoyable learning experience

COMEDY – laughing never hurt anyone, ever

RESTAURANTS – try a new cuisine every week

READ – because reading is good for everything

HOBBIES – learn something new by signing up for a class after school in the evenings or on the weekends.  If you can’t sign up for a class, head online to YouTube – free lessons available for just about anything and everything.

WINTER SPORTS – Vancouver has every single snow sport available right at the palm of your hands.  Skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, skating, tobogganing, sledding, and so much more!

5) Wake up every morning and remember, you will never get to live this specific day ever again.  So enjoy it and don’t let the weather get you down.  

To A Better 2.0 You

It is now the new year.  Can you believe how time flies?  Goodbye to 2013 and hello to a new year full of opportunities, promise, and hope…or so we’d like to think.  Here’s to another chance at becoming better people.  And to get that “2.0 you” in the new year, what better way than to create a massive list of resolutions?
From quitting an unhealthy addiction, to changing lifestyle habits for the ‘healthier’,  thousands of people have tried and then sadly, failed at achieving their lists.  Come February, you’ve fallen into a pit of self-loathing despair and depression.  All those great things that were supposed to make you this amazing new superstar have run dry and you’re back to square one.
So to make 2014 a year of successes rather than failures, heres a great little video on Ted Talks about how to build discipline in bite size doable pieces.  Matt Cutts – an engineer at Google – talks about his adventures trying an endless string of “new challenges for 30 days”.  Basically, 30 days of working at something is easier to accomplish than a vague one year resolution.  This small success helps build your discipline muscles and gets you out of a stuck rut which in turn will lead you to bigger successes.  Everytime Matt Cutts completed a 30 challenge, he became a different person.  He is now healthier, more confident, more positive, and more driven.
The whole talk is under 4:00 minutes but the takeaway is lifelong.  Watch it, be inspired, and then begin.  A little warm-up never hurt anyone, so before taking on those long-term resolutions, build your discipline muscles with a 30 day challenge, and then another, until you become that better, 2.0 you.
Here are two links to follow for the video:

Just to get you started, here is a list of a few challenges to try:
1)  Learn (memorize and use) a new word for 30 day
2)  Take one picture each day for 30 days
3)  Read an article from the newspaper for the next 30 days
4)  Watch a Ted Talks video for the next 30 days
5)  Listen to a new song everday for 30 days
6)  Visit a new coffee shop for the next 30 days
7)  Exercise – 10 sit-ups and 10 push-ups for 30 days
8)  Message a friend everday for 30 days
9)  Journal a quick recap of the day before you hit the sack for 30 days
10) Help a stranger each day for the next 30 days
So what are you waiting for?  The time to start is NOW. We challenge you!

SCOUT LIST: 10 Things That You Should Absolutely Do Between Now & Next Week


by Michelle Sproule |

CINEMA SALON | Every month, Vancity Theatre’s Cinema Salon producer Melanie Friesen asks a prominent Vancouverite to present their favourite film and speak to its greatness. This month, Dr. Ron Burnett, President and Vice-Chancellor of Emily Carr University of Art + Design presents director Jean Renoir’s La Règle du Jeu (The Rules of the Game). Often named as one of the greatest films in the history of cinema, The Rules of the Game is a film about class, politics and romance set on the eve of World War II. Stay after the screening for a drink and movie related conversation.
Tues, May 14 | 7:30pm | Vancity Theatre (1181 Seymour) | $13 | http://www.viff.org/theatre/films/fc7850-the-rules-of-the-game

ART | The Positive Negative Gallery is gearing up for a polaroid photography show. “Beautiful Decay” launches this Thursday night and showcases the work of 30 artists from around the world (Germany, Sweden, England, Italy, Czech Republic, Australia, Brazil as well as the USA and Canada). As the gallery explains, this is a show that “sharpens its gaze on disorder and desolation, where memories are forgotten and left behind, and the laws of entropy take hold: the cracks and blood and decay of modern life. Everything grows older, yet is beautiful in its release.” If you can’t make it down on opening night, don’t worry. This show runs until June 1.
Thurs, May 16 | 7pm | Positive Negative Gallery (436 Columbia St) | Free | http://www.positivenegativegallery.com/Beautiful-Decay

MORE ART | Don’t be sad that the Emily Carr Grad Show comes to an end this week. Cram as much in as you can before the show comes down on Sunday and then move on to some of the lovely off-shoot exhibitions like the photography show You Came Here By Chance at 221a Gallery. A group exhibition featuring a band of talented 2013 photography graduates from Emily Carr, You Came Here By Chance explores the idea of space in relation to environment and is intended to move the viewer to consider their relationships with the spaces they occupy. I caught quick glimpse of some of these works at The ECUAD Grad Show, and know that making the trip down to Chinatown for the opening reception will be worthwhile. Participating artists include Shannon McCubbin, Andy Jenkins, Avalon Mott, Jeff Downer, Caelan Warnock, Adria Leduc, Olivia Lowe, Sewari Campillo, Caroline Halley and David Peters.
May 16 – May 21 | 221a Artist Run Centre (221 E Georgia) | Free and inspiring | https://www.facebook.com/events/196148970534187/

GIG | American indie rock band Yo La Tengo is in town. On the scene since the mid eighties and still blowing away critics and fans, these talented musicians are touring in support of their latest release “Fade”. They’ll be playing a few sets, one electric an one acoustic, at The Commodore on Saturday night.
Sat, May 18 | Doors 8pm | The Commodore Ballroom ( 868 Granville St) | $25 | http://www.timbreconcerts.com/yo-la-tengo-may-18th/

CHOCOLATE | The newly opened East Van Roasters offers tastings of house-roasted coffee, drinking chocolate and flights of single origin chocolates. Slip into the beautiful Carrall Street shop (wooden tables and benches, original tile floors, brick walls and overhead windows) to sip and taste your fill while watching staffers winnow cacao beans and roast coffee.
East Van Roasters | 319 Carrall St. (next to Nelson The Seagull, across from Pidgin).

NATURE | Mosses and lichens are everywhere – part of the west coast landscape that we take for granted. Why are they so prevalent here? What are they all about? What do they do for us? Hook up with botanist Terry Taylor this Sunday to get the full story on what those fuzzy mosses and soft lichens can tell us about things like air quality, the history of a forest, and more. Any Sunday afternoon activity that can leave you better informed about your city and environment is a good one in our books! To pre-register, email programs@stanleyparkecology.ca.
Sun, May 19 | 1:30-3:30 | Stanley Park Nature House on Lost Lagoon | $10 | http://stanleyparkecology.ca/ai1ec_event/mosses-and-lichens/?instance_id=303

VINYL | Hustle over to the Cambrian Hall (just off of Main at 17th) on Saturday and Sunday to pick through box upon box of records at the Main Street Vinyl Record Fair! Talk old school stereo equipment, wear your old concert t-shirts, and marvel at the fact that there are still people out there who collect cassette tapes.
Sat, May 18 + Sun, May, 19 | 11am-4pm | Cambrian Hall (215 E 17th) | $2 at the door | http://www.vinylrecordfair.com/

FOOD FIGHT | Some of this city’s best chefs and bartenders will congregate at Vancouver Urban Winery this Sunday night to participate in Food Fight, a fundraising smörgasbord that will raise money for highly respected and much loved local chef, Owen Lightly. Owen is fighting cancer right now and he could use a little help by way of positive energy and relief from worrying about how his bills are going to be paid. All participating parties have donated time, energy and product to the evening, as have a seriously impressive collection of suppliers and artisan producers. Although tickets are now sold-out, more will likely be released at the door. Tickets for Food Fight are only $60, with the bar operating by donation, so be sure to bring cash. 100% of the ticket sales and proceeds of this fundraiser will go directly to Owen. If you can’t make it, you can donate by clicking next to the ticket sales box.
Sun, May 19 | 7pm | Vancouver Urban Winery (55 Dunlevy Ave) | $60 http://foodfightvancouver.eventbrite.ca/#

SCRUB UP | Learn how to make your own soap at The Homesteaders Emporium this week. There’s something very satisfying about making a product from scratch using your own hands. Get into it! Instructors will teach you how to blend oils and mix lye to produce handmade moisturizing, chemical-free bars of soap. (this Sunday’s class will focus on making vegan soap but the process and technique that you pick up can be easily applied to tallow soaps as well).
Sun, May 19 | 11am – 1pm | Homesteader’s Emporium (649 East Hastings St)

PLAN AHEAD | There is always something great going on that I’d like to write about but can’t because it has sold out. In an effort to get ahead of the game on this, The Scout List will occasionally include details of an event to plan ahead for. Case in point: Buying and Shooting Vintage Cameras with Trade School Vancouver. TSV is a barter-for-knowledge learning community wherein Vancouverites can sign up to take classes and pay their teachers in goods or services rather than cash. There are a few great sounding events on the horizon that you should look in to now, before they fill up. Buying and Shooting Vintage/Film Cameras goes down next Thursday, instructor Stephanie Fayewill lead a class focused (pun intended) on how to go analog. The self-confessed camera-obsessed Faye will talk about where to find quality equipment, how to tell good from bad, and what to do with your old school camera once you’ve got it.
Thursday, May 23 | The Hive (128 West Hastings St.) | Barter | Get on it

Check the Globe & Mail every Thursday for our Special Weekend Edition of the Scout List

http://www.scoutmagazine.ca – check out one of the best online magazines on everything and anything you need to know to be hip Vancouver

Chris Duehrsen

This interview series is designated to not only introduce the awesome teaching staff at WTC but  to also share in on some of the personal ‘real’ life moments, that we hope will continue to build and encourage the supportive, warm, close-knit community we strive for here.


Meet Chris Duehrsen, half teacher-man and half soccer champ.  Not only has he been teaching Business Communication at WTBC for over three years now, he has also been playing for the Canadian Paralympic Soccer Team for close to ten years!!!  As a Right D-man,  he’s traveled all over the world showing what great futbolling means; from North America, Brazil, Argentina, all the way to the land of tulips, Holland.  He knows how to represent.  When he’s not jet-setting around the world, you’ll find him at “training camps” in Florida, Las Vegas, and San Diego…and of course, right here on Granville Street teaching kick arse classes in business-everything-you-need-to-know.  A great guy to have on any team; we are lucky to have him here with us.

What is your fondest childhood memory?

Playing pond hockey on the river in Delta.  It almost never froze, but when it did, everybody would get their hockey gear and hot chocolate and head out there.  The ice felt like it was going to give at times, but it never did (disclaimer: kids don’t try this on your own) Whenever we were out of breath or needed a break, we’d sit on the frozen logs in the middle of the river and just have a great time.

Did you ever have a ‘naughty and didn’t make it on Santa’s list that year’ moment?

My neighbor had a wicked trampoline, so my best bud and I always sneaked under the fence of their place to use their trampoline when their car was out.  One time, we found a couple of jugs of homemade beer outside so we decided to “sample” a few.  At that time, we were still young so of course they tasted awful to our inexperienced uncouth taste buds.

When our parents got wind of the situation, they dragged us over to our neighbors front steps for a really painful drawn-out apology.

How do you usually spend your down time?

Usually I’m playing soccer with other teams, but the rest of the time i’m either working as an unpaid travel guide and taxi driver for my lovely wife or watching the Canucks and any other sports related show until I have to switch back to my wife’s favorite channel.  As you can see, I love my wife dearly.

Fill us in on some favorites please.

One of my all time favorite comics is The Walking Dead.  The game is also pretty awesome although the show, only sometimes good.  It’s dark, violent, and gory  but it makes you think about what you could or should do to survive a post-(zombie)-Apocalypse (and how it would feel to be a brain-chomper – not that I think about that a lot or at all…)

What was the last book you read?

The last book I read was The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell.  It was quite good and I would recommend it to anyone who hasn’t read it already.

If you were a type of food, what type of food would you be?

I would probably be BBQ Chicken because I want to eat it right now and it’s delicious.  (Which apparently shows that Chris thinks of himself as quite a tasty treat.)

If you could be any animal (existent or nonexistent) what would it be and why?

Hands down, a bear.  Bears hibernate and get to sleep all winter long, they eat berries and salmon, and nobody messes with them.  Plus, we’re both hairy so I feel like if I were to become any animal, converting into a bear wouldn’t be that far of a stretch.

Do you have a crazy – not crazy per se, but more just unforgettable – travel experience or story you could share with us?

It was a scorching hot day, and I was walking with the rest of the Canadian team in a park at Fort Worth, Texas.  While we were walking, we felt this tapping on our shoulders and hats, so for a second we thought a sudden freak rainstorm was coming on, but then we realized we had just been given a stinky welcome to the city by a troupe of birds flying by.  Four of us were coated with their droppings.  We headed back to the hotel to get cleaned up, where the staff apologized for not forewarning us.  Apparently it was a common occurrence at this specific park. Lesson learned.

Any last words or advice for the students?

Whatever you do here, no one back home will know so try new things and don’t worry about failing.   Instead of being holed up at the library all the time, go out and do things.  Go volunteer!  I remember when I was in Japan I decided to learn some Judo.  Everyone in my class came up basically to my knees and it was an epic fail, but i’m still glad I tried it.  One more check off my bucket list.

The Illustrious Kumi Mukai

This interview series is designated to not only introduce the awesome teaching staff at WTC but  to also share in on some of the personal ‘real’ life moments, that we hope will continue to build and encourage the supportive, warm, close-knit community we strive for here.

silly kumiKumi Mukai is kind of a big deal.  She’s also the cutest girl ever, but don’t let that fool you.  Inside that petite figure of hers, is a strong independent woman who you just don’t mess with.  During the day you’ll find her leading WTC’s Japanese Translation and Interpretation Program, pushing her students to be the best they can.  Evening come, you’ll find her swinging and driving away at the range.  Rumor has it, if she weren’t here with us, she’d be on the greens making a cushy living. There’s no doubt about it, she’s a keeper and an ‘ACE’.

What is your fondest childhood memory?

Playing baseball with my brothers.

Did you ever have a ‘naughty and didn’t make it on Santa’s list that year’ moment?

I was quite the prankster when I was younger.  I once created a whole series about my mother.  It was titled either ‘When Mothers Get Shocked’ or ‘The Many Different Faces of My Mother’.  The first in the series played out like this: I put a fake dead raccoon in my mother’s bedroom and stood on standby to videotape her reaction.  Next was a rubber rat I strategically placed on a fishing line a week later that I dragged across the kitchen floor while my mother was cooking.  Of course her reaction was captured on camera.  After accumulating 5+ reactions, I made a video reel and showed it at a family function; my first work of art.

How do you usually spend your down time?

Well it’s pretty exciting and can be summarized in three snippets. Candy Crush, drinking and golf.

Fill us in on some favorites please.

Forrest Gump.  I like to recite lines from the movie because I really love his character.  His life successes and personal relationships are so admirable, especially because he goes about everything obliviously.  You can call me Taylor Gump or Forrest Kang, whichever sounds more admirable.

Do you have a crazy – not crazy per se, but more just unforgettable – travel experience or story you could share with us?

Swimming to a secluded island off the coast of Kailua, Oahu in Hawaii passing mud sharks and turtles trying to get there.  It was an adrenaline rush I will never forget.

What would your ‘if only, if only’ dream in life be?

Retire, buy an island and build a golf course on it.  And I would rule and be queen…

What was your most memorable teaching moment?

I gave a personality test to the students during one class and asked the students a bunch of questions.  One of them was to think of a body of water, give reasons for the choice, and explain how it made them feel when they thought of it.  Basically, the body of water represents one’s view on what an ideal romantic relationship would be.  Anyways, the typical answer falls along the lines of a lake, a river, an ocean, etc but this one student chose ‘a bath’.  The reason?  She said it made her feel pure and beautiful.  Flabbergasted.

Tell us about an epiphanic or epiphanous teaching-learning moment you had. 

Students won’t retain information that you just blab out.  Most of the material that actually sticks comes from fun activities and games.  I play games and have ‘girl talks’ in my classes every afternoon.

What does education, learning, and teaching mean to you?

A never-ending array of experiences that daily build my character.

Any last words or advice for the students?

Language is just a tool.  Strive to acquire more than just linguistic communication skills.  Find what you truly want to communicate.

Here’s a little bonus swing action on the greens:

golfing kumi

"ins and outs"

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