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    The World Illuminated Through a Windshield


    2011 - 11.17

    Regrettably today consisted largely of replacing bulbs, which was way more difficult that in needed to be in my opinion.  Replacing the taillight it was really simple to get it out, more difficult to put back in than it should have been.  Simple four petal design that you turn counterclockwise to remove and turn clockwise to lock back in place.  What they neglect to mention in the manual is that there is one specific petal which needs to match up with one particular gap.  Seems needlessly complex, but is easy enough to deal with once you’re aware that you need to line things up.

    Replacing the two headlights was a much more difficult ordeal, they really leave less than the minimum required amount of space to replace the bulb.  Probably took half an hour to replace both bulbs.  Hopefully it would be faster in the future, but much of it is fiddly rather than “difficult”.  The first main problem was that the manual didn’t actually explain how to release the metal bulb holding clip.  For the record: when you’re facing the car, push on the left hand side of the clip, push towards the front of the vehicle and then down to release the clip.  I don’t know if that’s unique to my car (2003 Pontiac Vibe AWD) or to the bulb type (9003).  With the amount of space available and the lack of visibility into what you’re actually doing, it was way more difficult to do than it felt like it should be, but in the end I was able to do it, despite bouts of doubt and frustration.

    Despite all of that, it wasn’t all bad.  I bought my dual pack of GE 9003 Nighthawk Platinum bulbs at Lordco where they were on sale for $38.99 (seems that regular there is $67.97 according to the invoice; regular price at Canadian Tire is $59.99).  In addition to being on sale, there’s also a $10 mail in rebate on them (at Lordco only) until the end of January, which means I’ll have got them for less than half their regular Canadian Tire price… so pretty pleased with that.  Canadian Tire however was about $4.25 cheaper for the taillight, so that’s where I got those, and installed all the bulbs in their parkade.

    We went out to the mall later to return some clothes and have dinner.  While we were there there was some kind of incident which involved someone being handcuffed.  It happened in the main atrium area while we were eating, Karin took a look.  When we went past later I saw that it was an older guy (rather than a young punk like I assumed it would be).

    Leaving the mall we went to the library to pick up the next half dozen books Karin needs to read in the 100 Book Challenge, some of which are even short.  I picked up Brandon Sanderson’s first book: Elantris.

    Leaving the library we decided to go for a bit of a drive up SFU to test out the new headlights… it’s kind of hard to tell how good the headlights are when you’re driving on streets with headlights.  It was snowing a little bit, but not enough to concern us at all.  Got up to the main intersection and there were some cars essentially blocking the straight through route that takes you to UniverCity that I’d planned to take, so we turned left and headed towards the main campus.  After the first turn we saw a traffic jam which involved a bunch of cars and a couple of buses, none of which were moving forward.  It wasn’t clear what the actual problem (aside from snow) was, so we turned around and headed back the way we came.  Snow 1; Headlight Testing 0.  On the bright side, the all wheel drive and all seasons are still really effective in the snow.

    Welcome to Canada @BrandonSanderson #youreoutofexcuses


    2011 - 11.12

    Thanks to Twitter @randomsynapses (that would be Karin for those of you who don’t refer to people by their handles) we found out that Brandon Sanderson was doing a signing today at Chapter’s Metrotown.  We decided to head on up.  There was a brief Q&A, and then a lot of signing, we were in line for about 2 hours, but we got our books signed and met the man.

    There’s more to be told to this story, but I’d like to give Karin the opportunity to tell most of the rest of it.

    For those of you who may not have heard of Brandon Sanderson he’s one of the hosts of Writing Excuses, the author of the Mistborn Trilogy (and the new novel for which the signing was being held is a Mistborn novel, but not part of the trilogy), the Alcatraz novels (which starts with Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians), oh and he was selected to finish of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time (he didn’t apply, he was chosen).

    He first came to my attention because of the Wheel of Time thing*, subsequently I came across Writing Excuses and we started to listen to that.  Unfortunately, at times they assume that you’re fans and that you’ve read their books.  I hadn’t.  So I had to pause listening to Writing Excuses and go and read both Brandon’s and Dan Wells’ books so as to avoid potential spoilers in the podcasts.

    I’ve now read most of Brandon’s stuff, although none of the Wheel of Time books, as I am waiting until the final book is out and I can just finish the series before I start in on it again.  But what I have read, I quite enjoyed, and I’m looking forward to his future novels and the one’s that he’s written which I haven’t yet read (Elantris and Allow of Law).

    * note: years separated these two events.