pphaneuf: (Sleepy Head)
Je suis allé aux feux d'artifice du Canada hier, à l'International des Feux. À part une ratée qui a interrompu les feux, c'était pas mal! Après un moment sans feux, j'ai démonté mon trépied, mais j'aurais dû écouter la Grande Roue (qui éteint ses lumières pendant les feux, mais ne s'était pas ré-illuminée). Oh well.


Vue d'un quai du Vieux-Port

Mais ce billet n'est pas à propos des feux.

Je n'avais jamais réalisée combien la ligne d'horizon de Montréal m'était familière et précieuse. J'aime bien marcher sous le Pont Jacques-Cartier et être recouvert d'un "ciel" d'acier et de béton. C'est gros, c'est certain, mais ce n'est pas trop gros, c'est juste assez. Je suis allé à Chicago, l'échelle impossible de la Sears Tower par exemple, auquel la plus haute tour dans la photo ci-dessus ferait figure de naine. À Toulouse, il n'y avait que St-Sernin, quelques autres clochers et ces grues de construction, qui n'ont rien du 1000 De La Gauchetière ou du 1250 René-Lévesque.

C'est clair, j'y ai habité longtemps, mais il n'y a pas que ça. Je me rappelle de la première fois que je suis allé sur la rue St-Denis (pour aller au Valet d'Coeur, ça doit bien faire quinze ans!), et que je m'y était senti chez moi immédiatement.

C'est la deuxième ville francophone au monde après Paris, mais la plupart des gens que j'ai connus qui ont habité à Paris sont contents de ne plus y habiter. C'est sûr, il y en a quelques uns qui aiment, mais ouf, certain de mes anciens collègues changeaient de couleur juste à évoquer le sujet! Dans le cas de Montréal, ceux qui n'y sont plus regrettent de ne plus y être, et beaucoup de mes anciens collègues de travail qui y sont venus parce pour y faire un stage en sont tombé en amour. Il fallait qu'ils habitent à Montréal, c'était comme ça, c'est tout!

Toulouse a ses attraits, définitivement, mais Montréal m'émerveille toujours, après tout ce temps, comment une si grande ville arrive à faire sentir à ses habitants une telle appartenance, qui fait penser aux habitants d'une petite commune. C'est plus comme un grand village, avec des gratte-ciels...
pphaneuf: (Default)
Denmark, which I sometimes refer to as "the place the future comes from", gave me another reason to do so: the B-society.

Having just spent a year working a more or less 9-to-6 shift (we had "flex time" inasmuch we could arrive between 8:00 and 9:30), there's no doubt about it (if there ever was!), I'm a B-person.

One of the problem with being a B-person is the clash with the rest of society. Even if work lets me come in and do my hours whenever I want, there's shops, restaurants, and such. Having dinner at almost midnight can restrict choice a little bit, obviously! Social life can also be tricky. Although these is a natural clumping effect between people living similar lifestyles, they might not have as flexible work schedule. And I wouldn't even think of what things would be like with children! Ask anyone who's had to wake me up early in the morning...

But it would seems they're actually trying to tackle the issues, even having B-classes in school that start a few hours later. Just like the French had rules preventing abuse by employers asking employees to work later hours, they're picking up on the fact that, for some people it's asking them to not work later hours that is abuse. And that's the future.

P.S.: Also, in the same line of thought, why the 9 to 5 office worker will become a thing of the past. Not that it matters that much to me now, but I am curious to see how France will integrate that into its culture.
pphaneuf: (Default)
Yesterday afternoon, I found out about something called English in Toulouse, and made a little evening on the town with [livejournal.com profile] azrhey, going to the Crêperie du Taur downtown (yeah, I had the "Montréal" crêpe once more, but hey, it's tasty!), and then headed over to their meet-up. Was a nice and decently diverse crowd, except for the trend of couples where one of the two works at Airbus, which isn't really surprising.

Oh my goodness, Mononc' Serge is on tour in France (with his "Sarge Jazz Band"), and is making a stop at a bar near my place! I am so going!

There's also LCD Soundsystem coming nearby, which I'd really love to go see, but is at the same location I went to for Nouvelle Vague and Mansfield Tya, in Tournefeuille, which makes it a bit sketchy. It was a nice venue, but the whole bumming out a ride from strangers is quite random. I don't know, I might do it anyway, but I'll skip the bike, since I managed to somewhat figure out the bus from work to there.
pphaneuf: (Default)
apenwarr, not so long ago, was thinking about interesting communities, and how they constitute themselves. This is a subject I find highly interesting, because I've always found that belonging to certain communities made me better, through various means. I am exposed to ideas, I get to gain from other peoples mistakes (sometimes called "experiences", to be nice) without having to make them myself, building a network of people with particular skills (and conversely, building a reputation with regard to the skills I have), and so on. At the bare minimum, it's great fun, if nothing else.

The question we had was about how do these communities arise, and what can one do to find the proper people and form a community? Advogato, for example, was a very interesting experiment, loosely tying a bunch of unrelated blogs on the single recent entries page, which then gave way to the Planets concept (for the LiveJournal users, this is like a community friends page).

But I don't know, I find the Planets leave me wanting. I liked the cross-cut of various interests on Advogato, so I don't really end up reading any of the Planets in particular, I just use my feed reader to keep track of my own particular, customized "community". But the problem with this is keeping it from being static. People came to Advogato, and either stuck, or left eventually. Things worked themselves out, over time.

I'm not entirely sure how to fix this. I'm kind of hoping there's some magic network effect that can be leveraged or something...

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