From both the BC Hydro web site and an e-mail from my manager, I have received word that power has been restored to the building that houses EA Black Box, meaning I can return to work on Thursday morning.

With the addition of these three extra days off, it’s been quite the vacation for me. Going back to June 28, some 19 days ago, I’ve only worked one day in that span. I’ve had almost two-thirds of a month where I wasn’t working which is pretty impressive given I only took seven days worth of vacation.

Now the flip side is that I’ll probably have to make up some of these three lost days. It hasn’t been officially mandated by management but I know we’re on a tight schedule. I’m well aware of what work still needs to be done and I’m keen as ever to deliver the best game possible.

It’s time to put my hard hat back on and grab my lunch pail.


It’s just before midnight on Tuesday and today was another unscheduled day off from work because of the power outage in downtown Vancouver. Despite this, I spent a few hours with three of my co-workers. We played tennis downtown in the wonderful weather.

Though communication from managers has been sparse up to now, it kinda picked up tonight. I’ve been told via e-mail that I might have to report to EA Canada in Burnaby for Wednesday. This is sorta up in the air right now since the BC Hydro web site does say that our block is scheduled to have power back on sometime between 2:30am and 3am early Wednesday morning. If this is indeed the case, things should be back to normal for tomorrow.

The unfortunate thing is that people on my team all have varying levels of remote access. Most managers and producers have Blackberries which allow them to monitor and send e-mail anywhere. Nearly all the software engineers have full VPN access which allows us to check webmail. Between the artists and designers, it’s a toss up. Some have full access like us, while others don’t have any remote access of any sort. I know that managers have been resorting to old-fashioned phone calls for those people.

My prediction is that power will be restored to our studio in just a few hours and that we’ll have a normal workday tomorrow. The morning will tell if I’m right about that prediction.


What you see above is a map representing the areas affected by the power outage caused by the electrical fire in downtown Vancouver today. This was supposed to be my first day back at work after my vacation and I was all prepared to approach it with great enthusiasm. Instead, I emerged from the underground Waterfront Skytrain station at 10am to find occupants of my office tower milling about outside. I was told that the power was out.

At the time, I did not know why the power had been cut. I lingered a bit to talk to some coworkers who wanted to know how my trip went. After a while, I proceeded south to get some breakfast. As I crossed Cordova St., I noticed a great amount of white smoke coming from the Harbour Centre area. After eating breakfast, I returned to my building to find the power was still off and that the latest news was power was to be restored at 4pm at the earliest.

By this time, people on my team were making plans to assemble at the various pubs and restaurants in the area. Some mentioned venues in the Coal Harbour area while other were headed to Yaletown. I eventually met up with a friend who recently lost his job and had lunch with him. After some milling about, it was close to 3pm and there was no sign that power would be restored soon. I headed home, returning a little bit before 4pm. I spent most of the day downtown but I didn’t even have a chance to get to my desk.

As of this writing power has still not been restored to all areas affected today. In fact, if you check the BC Hydro web site, some areas are predicted to have repairs completed as late as 11pm, Wednesday, July 15, some 36 hours after the initial fire. If that is indeed true, I’ll be unable to do anything at work, meaning I get another unscheduled day off. While this does sound good in theory, the reality is I have a lot of work to get back to after my week away.

I know crews are working around the clock to get things back to normal. It will be interesting to see what the morning brings!


As most of you already know, I have returned from my trip to Honolulu, Hawaii. Though it was my second time there, I found this trip to be just as fun and interesting, if not more than the first time.

I experienced a lot of blog-worthy things while I was there, which I will detail in separate posts in the days to come. If you’re a blog writer, there’s nothing quite like a trip to another to country to give you new material.

As a quick summary, I’ll give you a few highlights. First and foremost, I was there to see my good friend Ron get married. The wedding went smoothly and was quite impressed at how both Ron and his lovely bride had everything planned out. Interestingly, I only met Ron’s wife for the first time just minutes after the ceremony ended.

Much of my vacation had to do with eating good food. From the wedding banquet to some iconic US restaurants, there was no shortage of pleasant meals. I wouldn’t be surprised if I came back a few pounds heavier.

This trip was also about many firsts for me. From my first time in an actual submarine to my first time in a helicopter, I quite enjoyed the sense of touristy-adventure, though I kinda at times longed for more extreme pursuits.

I have a few surprises in store as well but you’ll just have to wait for those. Stay tuned.


I’ll be leaving Thursday afternoon for Hawaii. My good friend Ron is getting married in Honolulu and I am fortunate enough to be able to join him at the blessed event. I can’t remember the last time I’ve had so many vacations in a “short” amount of time.

I was in Vegas in December and not a year ago in August of 2007 I was in Manhattan. For me, that’s a lot of time off to go to places. I don’t think I’ve traveled this much since 1997 when in just 6 months I went to Honolulu, New York, and San Francisco. This will be my first time back in Hawaii in eleven years. The first time, I went from writing my last exam of my undergrad degree, moving out of residence, and arriving in Waikiki in about 48 hours.

I’ll be back next Friday. I have no idea what kind of Internet access I’ll have, so my blog posts over the next few days maybe sporadic. I’ll try to keep in touch.


At this moment, we’re almost into the third hour of Canada Day. While my mind should be on relaxing, I’m currently wondering what the hell I’m going to be wearing to a wedding I’m attending on Saturday.

I still have my lovely suit which I bought last summer but I have no suitable shirt nor tie to go with it. I’ve been shopping for said shirt and tie since Wednesday. I scoured Harry Rosen, the Bay, Sears, and eventually Holt Renfrew. Actually, I did find an awesome shirt and tie combo at Harry Rosen but my size wasn’t in and by the time it would arrive, it would be too late. So it’s my own damn fault that I left this too late. Here’s a lesson to you kids, keep your stick on the ice and if you’re gonna go wedding clothes shopping, do it with at least two weeks before the blessed event.

As it stands, I’m gonna try to buy a ruffled blue tuxedo shirt and bow tie tomorrow. It shall make for an interesting Canada Day.