Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

Helsinki; Finland; London, England; Dublin, Ireland; Toronto, Ontario; Fairfield, Iowa

Mei Lin

Mei Lin: Lunch to catch up on news with Satu in advance of teaching class at Metropolia tomorrow. Students are mid-career professionals interested in practical international experiences, as tighter university budgets mean fewer lecturers from abroad. Industrial Management program will move from historic Bulevardi building out to Leppävaara campus in 2018. Chinese cuisine from Chongqing region included cumin lamb, unusual. (Mei Lin, Lönnrotinkatu, Helsinki, Finland) 20161201

Juttutupa

Juttutupa: Meetup with some 2nd year students from the Systems Thinking 2 February class, and a few more from the 1st year of the master’s program in Creative Sustainability. Glad to hear that knowledge they gained was useful in subsequent studies, as they then explain concepts to other group team members who didn’t take this session of the intensive course. This restaurant a quieter place to talk, until an excellent band started playing after 8 p.m.. (Juttutupa, Säästöpankinranta, Helsinki, Finland) 20161201

Metropolia U., Bulevardi campus

Metropolia U., Bulevardi campus: Lectured in Industrial Management master’s program, collaborating on generative pattern language writing for an hour, after 90 minutes of lecture. Students are mostly working professionals with practical experience, so we jointly felt our way through using the format for service systems thinking. We’ve come a long way since the program was initiated in 2006. (Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, Bulevardi, Helsinki, Finland) 20161202

Kiasma

Kiasma: Brian Eno (1999) Memory Flowers is 16 speakers facing upwards on stems, playing ambient music. First shown in 2000 in a solo show, brought out of storage for Kiasma Collection Exhibition. Emmi and J.P. came in late afternoon for the first Friday of the month free admission, well-timed to avoid the 5 pm crush at the coat check. (Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Mannerheiminaukio, Helsinki, Finland) 20161202

Vanha Kauppahalli

Vanha Kauppahalli: Buying salmon in the same way that Finns have since 1889 when the Old Market Hall opened. Also bought little fried vendace at the next stall, to be used in an appetizer. Saturday afternoon sees a lot of tourist visitors, many eating salmon soup facing out from the renovated stalls to become part of the scenery (Kalakauppa E. Eriksson, Vanha Kauppahalli, Eteläranta, Helsinki, Finland) 20161203

Lapinlahdenkatu

Lapinlahdenkatu: Dinner with all Finnish ingredients (unless the salmon came from Norway). Discussed 2016 as a transitional year with lots of change, released now positively towards 2017. Missu the cat hid for most of the dinner, either not enjoying the streaming jazz, or suspicious that the catsitter would take him away. (Lapinlahdenkatu, Helsinki, Finland) 20161203

Moomin Shop, Helsinki Airport T2

Moomin Shop, Helsinki Airport T2: Looked at plush toy, saw “Design from Finland” but no country of manufacture. Phoned to wake up DY at 4 a.m. Toronto time to ask if 15cm 100% polyester figure was worth the money, she said no. Suggested Moomin shopping bags hanging outside, with tags saying Made in PRC, DY declined. On walk back to T1, noticed Moomin troll toys also available in the duty free shop. Not a motivated shopper today. (Moomin Store, Gates 26-27, Terminal 2, Helsinki Vantaa Airport) 20161205

Niven's

Niven’s: From online The Ecology of Systems Thinking group to meeting in person, PJ came for a coffee, talking while watching me eat a full English breakfast. Worked through jams of orange marmalade vanilla, raspberry rose, blood orange marmalade, pear. Discussed history of science within the systems thinking community and the variety of notable figures, up to current day theoreticians and practitioners. (Niven’s, King Cross Road, London, England) 20161206

December 31st, 2016

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Toronto, Ontario; Detroit, Michigan; Iowa City, Iowa; Fairfield, Iowa; Muscatine, Iowa; Port Huron, Michigan

English River lake freighter

English River lake freighter. Great Lakes water seem clear of ice, with small bulk carrier moored by Lafarge terminal in the Polson slip of the Toronto PortLands. In early spring, the vegetation doesn’t obscure visibility, over the fence from the Chinese supermarket. (Cherry Street, Toronto) 20150406

Toronto IBM Club Retirees

Toronto IBM Club Retirees. Update on IBM Canada R&D Centre by @AllenLalonde, meeting the challenges of big data with collaborative innovation centres across universities, industry and government. CARET, SOSIP, CHIA, Ocean Networks Canada. Among retirees, seeing a few familiar faces. (St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Scarborough, Ontario) 20150407

Design with Dialogue, April 2015

Design with Dialogue, April 2015. Special session for SSHRC question, six parallel streams, video capture and live sketching. Pulled together on short notice by SFI masters students. (Lambert Lounge, OCAD U) 20150408

DBC Trio

DBC Trio. Early Thursday set of @LuisDenizSax Rich Brown @ErnestoCervini in @RexHotelToronto relaxed and casual. No festival crowds, just another workday on a city where the arts thrive. (The Rex, Toronto) 20150416

Detroit Greektown

Detroit Greektown. Saturday night busy in popular nightlife district downtown. Most of family visiting #1 son in Michigan. Last time I was here could have been in the 1970s, when the Greek presence was stronger. (Detroit Greektown, Michigan) 20150418

MOCAD

MOCAD. Normal Shift by Coco Bruner at Art X Detroit , 10.5×15 foot Baltic Birch Plywood floor, invites viewers to walk on it at their own risk. Kresge Arts Foundation sponsors show in Midtown. (Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit) 20150419

DIA

DIA. Alexander Calder 1970 La jeune filles et sa suites, on the lawn outside the Detroit Institute of the Arts, towers over local visitors. Family touring on a Sunday afternoon. (Detroit, Michigan) 20150419

April 30th, 2015

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Toronto, Ontario; Austin, Texas; Katy, Texas, Houston, Texas; Chicago, Illinois; Fairfield, Iowa; Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Montreal, Quebec; Paris, France.

Maple Leaf Lounge

Maple Leaf Lounge. Relaxed start of trip to Austin, saw Margaret Atwood at breakfast. Trip became complicated as late flight to Chicago would miss connection. Long line, but phone call revealed seats available via Newark. Rushed to commuter gates. (Toronto) 20141203

Stubbs Bar-B-Q, Austin, TX

Stubbs Bar-B-Q, Austin, TX. Young Tongue, opening act on a quiet Wednesday night in the Red River district, north of 6th Street. We arrived in Austin a few hours ago, having been waylaid by a missed connection. (Austin, Texas) 20141303

County Line Bbq

County Line Bbq. Beef ribs, fatty beef brisket, half pound of pulled pork, as lunch for family of five. Order for 3 enough, would have been ridiculous to call for 5 plates. (Austin, Texas) 20141204

Party sushi

Party sushi. Family from Toronto and California convening foot lunch in Katy, Texas, one day before wedding celebration. Split off women to bridal shower, men to sightseeing at museums in Central Houston and Rice University. More family still arriving. (Katy, Texas) 20141205

Windsor Parks Lakes

Windsor Parks Lakes. Pavilion at east end of man-made lake in gated subdivision at the western periphery of Houston. Cool, cloudy day, but warm enough to be bicycling along winding roads around two storey houses. (Houston, Texas) 20141206

Family wedding celebration

Family wedding celebration. Niece is first of generation to be married. Post dinner dancing reveals a variety of skills amongst cousins not previously observed in other contexts. (Katy, Texas) 20141206

December 31st, 2014

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Over on Rachel and Jeff’s farm, Rafu and Rulle went into the barn to see the tractors.

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The boys were a bit shy about climbing up into the cab of the tractor.

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I went outside the barn to look at the cows … and be looked it. I moved slowly towards them, and a few cows were curious, but the herd as a whole was rather skittish.

February 15th, 2008

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While part of our research team’s learning was formal meetings at the University of Iowa, there was also much to see just in the rural setting. DLH took us for a drive around the farm. The terrain around Fairfield isn’t completely flat, and there are hills and streams.

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There are certainly lots of open fields with fences around them.

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In the area, there some Amish farms who continue to follow traditional methods of agriculture and living. This includes both high ground with a stream in the valley.

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We waved hi to the woman putting out her laundry.

February 15th, 2008

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I spend most of my time in big cities. To give us a different perspective on our research project into innovation, DLH invited us out to his farm near Fairfield, Iowa.

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It’s a working farm. DLH’s career is in New Jersey, so he has been leasing the land to other family members on a long-term basis.

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The barns haven’t been a high priority for construction. They may become meeting rooms some day.

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Construction on the exterior of the house is complete. The building was done without plans, around a period house built from a Sears and Roebuck kit.

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February 14th, 2008

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