Yet Another Odd Job

Jeff Powell
5 min readMar 3, 2023

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Hello once again, dear reader!

As you know, on Friday mornings I take stock of what happened in the past week and share it here. Sometimes I cannot recall — and thus was born the Chronodon — and sometimes I can. Today it’s a bit mixed. I know where most of the week went, but a bit seems to have gone missing. Perhaps the Chronodon consumed an afternoon. I really don’t know.

This week included the end of February, and month endings always have implications. The biggest time sink was preparing the next email bulletin for the readers in our neighbourhood. That involved lots of editing and testing before I could finally send it out. There’s no automated way to get that done, so it keeps me busy.

I also got a haircut. Not a huge time sink, except for the snow. “What?” I hear you ask. I took transit to get to the salon since I knew parking in downtown Lonsdale would be a pain. (Street parking when there is snow piled up everywhere is not exactly fun.) And besides, I really like taking transit whenever I can, but it does take longer than driving.

And speaking of snow, last week I complained about local weather forecasts being inaccurate. I gave an example of the difference between the app I currently use for weather and a weather alert from Environment Canada. In that case, Environment Canada predicted a lot more snow than the app, and Environment Canada proved to be correct.

The photo above was taken early on the morning of February 26th. More fell after that time, and we had a lot of accumulation.

Since then we’ve had a couple more light snowfalls and cool enough temperatures that it has not all melted, so things like street parking are still a tad iffy.

But since then I have seen the app be more accurate about a predicted snowfall then Environment Canada, so no one is winning in my book. Weather forecasts here are basically useless, at least as as the details go.

Switching topics, I continued to work on the kitchen though I didn’t make all that much progress.

I mentioned an issue with a corner bead being visible. This is what I was referring to:

I’m betting you can’t see it, but the vertical corner in the middle of that photo has a fine line next to it from top to bottom. It’s the edge of the corner bead that didn’t have enough drywall mud to secure it in place. I took that photo before applying more mud to hide it. When that was done I found other places in the kitchen that needed similar treatment.

Since then I have sanded things smooth and am getting ready to prime and paint, but one more item remains before I can do that:

That’s the skylight in the kitchen. Note the gap between the bottom of the skylight and the drywall. When we reroofed half the house — two years ago — the roofer told us that skylight wasn’t properly installed. They’re supposed to be some minimum height above the roof, and this one was too low.

They added another 1.5" of height to it to meet code, which probably helps avoid leaks in heavy snow. That was fine on the outside, but on the inside we were left with that ugly gap. I’m filling it with these:

That’s leftover trim from the window installation, ripped down to the right sizes. It’s been primed and will be installed soon. The corners and seams will all get caulked and then the entire thing will get painted.

I’d hoped to make more progress on that this past week, but the overhead of life got in the way. It will get done as soon as I can make the time.

Finally, I was contacted this week by one of my instructors at Langara College, who happens to run the Makerspace. He needs someone to substitute for the regular Makerspace Coordinator from time to time, in the same way that I can currently substitute for the Fine Arts Shop Coordinator. As I am already on the college payroll, this should not be too hard to accomplish, but I am betting there will be challenges. I’ll have two different managers who need to approve any timecards I submit, for example. My bet is that the online system they use probably can’t handle that.

But they are working to set it up, and when they get it figured out I will have to spend some time in the Makerspace refamiliarizing myself with the 3D printers, laser cutter, CNC machines, and other items in there. Apparently I may be asked to give short presentations on how these machines are used in addition to just staffing the Makerspace and answering questions.

I hope you are laughing at this as much as I am. I’m supposed to be retired, but it seems I am slowly taking over Langara College (and possibly the world) one oddball (and very sporadic) job at a time.

But seriously, it’s nice to know that nearly three years after graduating they still remember me well enough to ask if I want to do this sort of thing. And I can’t say no to these people. They’re all working hard to help students in ways that matter, and I love spending time on campus.

I don’t really know when my training will get going, but I imagine it will be in a week or two. Good thing I have most of the living space downstairs painted and ready for general use.

That’s all I have this week. Keep safe and sane!

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Jeff Powell

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.