Wanderings

Phillip Jang

Phillip Jang

Phillip Jang is news editor at the Times Colonist, in Victoria, British Columbia. He has lived on Vancouver Island since 1997.

  • How to figure out when the next bus is coming in Greater Victoria

    One of the biggest hassles with riding public transit is not knowing when the next bus will arrive. Have I just missed it? Should I start jogging because it might be a minute away? B.C. Transit’s. . .

    Phillip JangAugust 28, 2019

  • How to travel between Victoria and Vancouver on public transit, 2019 ed.

    Travelling between Victoria and Vancouver on public transit is straightforward, but it is multi-step, requires at least three types of fares, and is not suited for the impatient and the easily . . .

    Phillip JangJune 5, 2019

  • Notable changes for some high-use bus routes, including 70 to ferry

    Several Greater Victoria bus routes are getting adjustments because of the new Douglas Street bus lanes. I suspect a lot of riders will be surprised by the changes, especially those using stops . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 2, 2019

  • Blog: Reflecting on being visible with straps, sprays and lights

    Being visible at night, especially if you’re a pedestrian or cyclist, is a big deal. I’ve been obsessed with this since a couple of close calls. People die because they are not visible. This is . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 31, 2018

  • The do’s and don’ts of wearing a mask to protect yourself from wildfire smoke

    You need to wear the right type of mask, and to wear it properly, to ward off wildfire smoke. That’s the message from the experts. Here’s a summary of their advice. If you’re going to wear a mask. . .

    Phillip JangAugust 24, 2018

  • Blog: Weedkiller is legal to buy in Greater Victoria, but using it might not be

    It’s spring. The dandelions are blooming in the lawn, and you’re thinking of reaching for weedkiller. But in four Greater Victoria municipalities, it’s illegal to use certain weedkillers if you . . .

    Phillip JangMay 6, 2018

  • Blog: Pedestrians need to be visible in the dark

    A lot of people wear dark clothing on dark and rainy nights, courting disaster. I’ve become a little obsessed about this after a few close calls. While driving at night, I almost hit a person who. . .

    Phillip JangNovember 27, 2017

  • Blog: A luggage rack arrives on a mainland ferry bus, and there is rejoicing

    One of the discomforts in riding public transit between Victoria and Vancouver via B.C. Ferries is the trouble caused by luggage. Many passengers board the buses with giant suitcases, backpacks, . . .

    Phillip JangNovember 15, 2017

  • A sea tour of the Southern Gulf Islands for a modest sum

    For not that much money, it’s possible to have a multi-hour meander by sea around the Southern Gulf Islands, enjoying the ocean breezes, drinking in the amazing views, and maybe spotting the . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 31, 2017

  • A year of paying for things by tapping my phone

    After a year of trying to use my iPhone to pay for things, here are some things I’ve discovered. I set up the iPhone to make payments by linking my credit card to Apple Pay. It was . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 18, 2017

  • Figuring out which B.C. electoral district you live in

    One of the reasons for uncertainty is that the name of an electoral district doesn’t necessarily describe the area it covers. Also, in some instances, boundaries and riding names have changed.

    Phillip JangApril 13, 2017

  • Why smoke was wisping out of the toaster and other mishaps

    There was an alarming smell one afternoon when I was toasting a bagel. The smell was coming from the toaster, accompanied by wisps of smoke. I turned off the toaster, unplugged it, removed the . . .

    Phillip JangApril 4, 2017

  • A low-tech way to help you recover a lost phone

    Smartphones get misplaced. They’re left behind on restaurant tables, on bus seats, on public washroom counters. After they’re left behind, it can be tough to track down the owner. Phones are . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 27, 2017

  • Using a smartphone to pay for stuff at Victoria stores

    Blog: I’ve been using Apple Pay around Greater Victoria and Metro Vancouver for the past few weeks, and it has mostly worked.

    Phillip JangJuly 5, 2016

  • How to pay less for foreign currency

    In preparing for a trip to the United Kingdom, I’ve been exploring the ways of currency exchanges and hunting for the best foreign currency deals available to a small-time player like me. It’s been. . .

    Phillip JangJune 29, 2016

  • Why they can water the grass and you can’t

    Lawn watering from May to September in Greater Victoria is supposed to be limited to Wednesdays and Saturdays for even addresses, and Thursdays and Sundays for odd addresses. And only from 4 a.m. . . .

    Phillip JangJune 6, 2016

  • ICBC’s scare tactics, using sticky note and marker

    Blog: The Insurance Corp. of B.C. is using scare tactics to drum up business.

    Phillip JangMay 24, 2016

  • Fear of credit card tapping

    Blog: Many people are uncomfortable with just tapping their debit or credit cards, and not having to enter a PIN.

    Phillip JangMay 16, 2016

  • Riding transit in Greater Victoria with the new daypass

    BLOG: B.C. Transit has a new way of selling daypasses for the Greater Victoria bus system.

    Phillip JangApril 11, 2016

  • Automated service partially fills in income tax forms

    BLOG: Canada Revenue Agency's "Auto-fill" can fill in numbers for T4s, investment income, RRSPs, pension income and many other things.

    Phillip JangApril 4, 2016

  • Figuring out sailing times for that B.C. Ferries 30% discount

    BLOG: On south coast routes, it’s on offer Monday through Thursday, and Saturday, but not for all sailings.

    Phillip JangMarch 21, 2016

  • A detour on Lochside trail

    BLOG: On a short stretch of Lochside Regional Trail, just off the south side of Quadra Street, near McKenzie Avenue, there’s a hovering wall of rock.

    Phillip JangMarch 7, 2016

  • Favourite meals at Victoria restaurants

    BLOG: Enjoying a cheese and arugula pizza, beef tongue, seafood noodle soup, and more.

    Phillip JangFebruary 29, 2016

  • Former con artist’s advice: Don’t use debit card to buy things

    Frank Abagnale, the former con man whose exploits were featured in the movie Catch Me If You Can, repeats this advice in speeches he gives in his job as a security consultant: Don’t use debit . . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 22, 2016

  • What you could do if you miss the last ferry back to Victoria

    They travelled by ferry and public transit from Victoria to Vancouver to watch World Cup soccer last summer. Times Colonist sports editor Brian Drewry and a friend had planned to return home the . . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 15, 2016

  • Fixing a zipper with pliers and other repair adventures

    A cataloguing of repairs, so that you can avoid and benefit from my missteps. The zipper on my waterproof MEC bicycling jacket stopped zipping after just eight years of use. I checked about zipper . . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 8, 2016

  • How to ride Vancouver public transit with a Compass card

    How do you ride Vancouver transit with a Compass card? The short answer is: buy a Compass card and tap it on the blue Compass card logo when you board a Metro Vancouver bus or approach a train or . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 28, 2016

  • Eight years of riding an electric-assist bicycle almost every day

    Eight years ago, I started riding an electric-assist bicycle to work almost every day, and on weekends for recreation and errands. I have used it in all sorts of weather year-round, including . . .

    Phillip JangDecember 7, 2015

  • Seeing Saanich Municipal Hall in a new light

    Saanich Municipal Hall is celebrating its 50th anniversary this month, an event that has spurred me to finally notice its architectural élan. Despite its readily apparent distinctiveness — all . . .

    Phillip JangDecember 2, 2015

  • A name is fixed in a pleasant visit to the motor vehicles office

    Going to a B.C. motor vehicles office can be a surprisingly pleasant experience. I dreaded my visit, embracing a stereotype that says it’s a place with long lines and unpleasant people. But it . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 28, 2015

  • Restarting fixes a lot of electronic woes

    It’s proving to be the solution to a great assortment of electronic maladies: the restart. You turn something off and then, after a minute or two, turn it back on again. Or, when an on-off switch . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 12, 2015

  • It’s a hassle when driver’s licence and health card names don’t match

    B.C. is merging the driver’s licence and health care card into a single card. Under a new policy, when you renew your driver’s licence, you are directed to bring along your health card, known as . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 5, 2015

  • What a credit report reveals, and how to get yours

    Until this past year, I’d never seen my credit report, a mysterious document that can dictate whether we are granted a credit card or accepted as an apartment tenant. Home Depot signed me up for a . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 28, 2015

  • The voice on the bus

    B.C. Transit in Greater Victoria has been rolling out automated street announcing on its buses, pushed to do so by a human rights complaint from people with vision problems and by its unionized . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 22, 2015

  • What to expect at Ribfest: meat, music, beer, maybe gluttony

    Update: Verdict on the food at Esquimalt Ribfest. I sampled offerings from four of the five booths. The pork ribs were all good, though one was a little tougher than I liked. Pulled pork and beef . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 11, 2015

  • The art of butting into line (not necessarily an endorsement)

    For many Canadians, the expectation is that there'll be a lineup if there’s a crowd of people wanting to get something or wanting to enter an event. Even if there are just three people, there . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 23, 2015

  • Itchy trouble with no-iron pants

    For years, I’ve been buying a particular model of pants because they fit nicely, are comfortable, and draw a minimum of snarky remarks about my fashion sense. Then, one day, when I went to buy more. . .

    Phillip JangAugust 18, 2015

  • Why you might mysteriously go over your credit card spend limit

    It was at a middle-range Toronto hotel. We checked in using my credit card. Up in the room, I decided to log into my credit card account online, which is something I like to do when travelling to . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 22, 2015

  • Do you know your Gulf Islands? Here’s help memorizing 14 (of 200)

    I am embarrassed to admit this, but I don’t know my Gulf Islands. I can name and roughly place the 13 municipalities that make up Greater Victoria. But, faced with an outline of the Gulf Islands, I . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 13, 2015

  • Getting rid of hum when connecting a computer to a stereo

    Sometimes, when you plug an audio line from a desktop computer into a stereo receiver or amplifier, an annoying hum comes through the speakers along with the music. You stop the music and the hum is. . .

    Phillip JangJuly 6, 2015

  • Lobster at Subway and McDonald’s

    The fast-food giants occasionally like to go up-scale. Subway and McDonald’s temporarily put Atlantic lobster on their menus in recent weeks to attract attention and to add a little variety. At . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 2, 2015

  • What happens when a cross-country Via train is 16 hours late

    Before getting into the details of being 16 hours late on a cross-country train trip, here’s some Via Rail policy news: Via Rail has responded to on-time troubles with some of its passenger trains . . .

    Phillip JangJune 19, 2015

  • In search of, and finding, a very good flashlight

    Flashlights have undergone a revolution thanks to the LED technology that is also changing household light bulbs. The result is much brighter light with the same size of batteries. It does not make. . .

    Phillip JangJune 12, 2015

  • How to line up at busy Greater Victoria restaurants

    On many days, starting about 4:30 p.m., a line forms on Government Street in Chinatown outside the restaurant Brasserie L’école. They don’t accept reservations, so people line up before opening if . . .

    Phillip JangMay 20, 2015

  • Why a traveller might book a middle seat

    In a row of three airplane seats, the middle one is the least popular, especially if you’re travelling solo. Most of us would rather not be squished between two people. Yet, some travellers . . .

    Phillip JangMay 15, 2015

  • A bicycle lockup stand that might be too complicated to use

    Behind the Victoria Curling Club there’s a bicycle parking area with snazzy lockup stands that have built-in storage compartments and very sturdy bars. It’s sheltered by a roof. One side is a . . .

    Phillip JangMay 9, 2015

  • Credit card tap convenience versus worries about security

    MasterCard calls it PayPass, Visa calls it payWave. Interac calls it Flash. Users of recent-era credit cards and debit cards have the option of paying for purchases by tapping their card or placing . . .

    Phillip JangApril 30, 2015

  • ‘Midnight’ is too imprecise when we’re talking about a tax deadline

    When you say the deadline is midnight on May 5, does that include the entire day of May 5? Or should midnight be interpreted as the start of the day on May 5, that is, a moment straddling May 4 . . .

    Phillip JangApril 28, 2015

  • We can use a lot less detergent because our water is very soft

    Back in 2007, the Capital Regional District ran a campaign to get us to use less detergent. Detergent in the water we dump down the drain can damage the ecosystem, we were told. Use less to help the. . .

    Phillip JangApril 24, 2015

  • Confused by Galloping Goose detour at Johnson Street Bridge

    I didn’t notice the problem, because I’m a regular on the Galloping Goose trail. Construction of the new Johnson Street Bridge has forced detours for both vehicles and pedestrians. A few signs . . .

    Phillip JangApril 20, 2015

  • In case you missed it, electricity rates just went up

    B.C. Hydro increased its residential electricity rates on April 1, part of a long-term scheme that has rates increasing every year through to at least 2018, and likely beyond. Rates this year are up. . .

    Phillip JangApril 17, 2015

  • Running a smartphone for $10 a month

    With a little discipline, decent access to Wi-Fi and an aversion to talking, it’s possible to run a smartphone for $10 a month. A relative has managed to do this for several years. One of the big . . .

    Phillip JangApril 4, 2015

  • Puzzling over why some income tax services are free, for everyone

    The era of doing your taxes for free is taking hold. This year, there are four online offerings with Canada Revenue Agency Netfile approval where you can fill in your tax information for free . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 31, 2015

  • Freight derailments hobble national passenger rail; track quality questioned

    Update: Via announced on April 8 that it is resuming train service between Winnipeg and Toronto on April 10. - - - On Saturday, March 7, a tanker car train carrying crude oil derailed near Gogama . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 17, 2015

  • Ways to be visible at night while being fashionable

    Reflecting some more, so to speak, on a pet issue: it's the fashion to wear dark clothing, which is fine until it's night and motorists (and cyclists like me) can't see all those dark-clad people . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 10, 2015

  • With ‘everything’ turned off, quite a few pennies are still going to Hydro

    The TV, computer and stereo are all off. The heat pump, dishwasher and exhaust fans aren’t running. The fridge and hot water heater are resting. Everything in the house powered by electricity seems . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 6, 2015

  • Despite policy, B.C. Transit drivers rarely call out stops

    B.C. Transit drivers in Greater Victoria are supposed to announce the bus stops. It’s mandatory, B.C. Transit says. It’s also not happening much. A B.C. Transit spokesman said in January that the . . .

    Phillip JangMarch 2, 2015

  • Amazing ways that people cross the street

    The scene is a busy street in Mumbai, India. The car traffic is constant. Crosswalk stripes are painted on the pavement, and packs of pedestrians cross. But the cars never stop. The pedestrians, in . . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 26, 2015

  • Juice from an orange vs. juice from a carton

    This was supposed to be a quick reflection on the taste of orange juice after I rediscovered what it’s like to drink juice that I’ve personally reamed from oranges. But then, I went exploring and . . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 10, 2015

  • Peeling boiled eggs so that they don’t get pitted and gouged

    Some generally agreed upon concepts discovered in a survey of the egg-peeling literature (mostly found on food websites). To make the peeling of boiled eggs easier: Use older eggs; the shell sticks. . .

    Phillip JangFebruary 4, 2015

  • Via rolls out rooms with double bed on Vancouver-Toronto train

    Via Rail is beginning to offer its new Prestige service on its flagship Vancouver-Toronto train, The Canadian. It’s Via’s version of first class. The biggest reasons why you might want this option:. . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 30, 2015

  • Accidentally at the forefront of fashion with L.L. Bean boots

    L.L. Bean, the U.S. maker and seller of practical clothing, is having a fashion moment. Its L.L Bean boots — waterproof and warm, and sold since 1912 — are suddenly in great demand. They’ve become . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 25, 2015

  • Doing private things in a very public way

    Among the many things that puzzle me: why so many private things happen in public. This occurred to me while strolling around downtown Victoria. I walked past a brightly-lit nail salon with big . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 20, 2015

  • Risk assessment in booking a hotel room: refundable or not

    For a simple transaction, there’s so much to consider. In my hunt for a hotel room in Toronto, where I’ll be attending a niece’s wedding, I waded into a complicated world when I clicked on the . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 16, 2015

  • Galloping Goose cyclists cheered on by a sign that counts

    Back in mid-December, a low-key electronic sign was installed beside the Galloping Goose Trail just after the Point Ellice Bridge as you approach downtown. I saw it for the first time while out . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 12, 2015

  • Dark clothing on dark streets: fashion needs to be more reflective

    Black, dark grey, dark blue, dark brown. They are the fashionable colours for coats. In the winter darkness, they make people wearing them invisible, which is dangerous. Walking along one of our . . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 9, 2015

  • Puzzled about your garbage pickup schedule? Here’s a bit of help

    Garbage pickup schedules are online, though you have to dig a little to find them. Here are direct links to garbage and recycling schedule information for the 13 municipalities in the capital region. . .

    Phillip JangJanuary 3, 2015

  • Favourite restaurant meals of 2014

    It was a good year for restaurant meals. Things started off nicely with excellent food on a Vancouver-Toronto train trip on Via Rail’s The Canadian in January. I wrote about that in an earlier post.. . .

    Phillip JangDecember 30, 2014

  • 10 gadgets that were worth buying

    There was the cordless phone with bad sound (should have taken it back). The external hard drive that wouldn’t wake up after three days of use (took it back). The wireless headphones with the . . .

    Phillip JangDecember 8, 2014

  • Cold weather quickly pushes us into higher-priced electricity tier

    With the arrival of cold weather, it took just over a month for our household to burn through 1,332 kWh of electricity at B.C. Hydro’s Step 1 price of 7.52 cents a unit. We’re now into the Step 2 . . .

    Phillip JangDecember 1, 2014

  • Cast iron pan clash: wash with soap or not?

    The instructions that came with the cast iron skillet were insistent: “do not use soap.” Soap will strip off the cooking oil seasoning that protects the skillet from rust and helps to make it . . .

    Phillip JangNovember 27, 2014

  • Trouble with solar lights

    Solar lights seem like a great idea. You put them wherever the sun shines without the need for wiring. You don’t have to pay for electricity to make them glow. They often come with sensors, so they’. . .

    Phillip JangNovember 21, 2014

  • If you slouch, you might lose your wallet, like I did

    [Update: A reader suggests zippered pockets to keep wallets from going astray. If not for pants, for a vest. But keep track of that vest. Another suggestion: put a tracking device in your wallet, . . .

    Phillip JangNovember 14, 2014

  • With minus-2 in Victoria forecast, mild panic about taps and tires

    For people elsewhere in this nation of ice and snow (minus-20 in Calgary this week), a few degrees below zero is still shirtsleeves weather. They will chortle at our alarm over something as toasty . . .

    Phillip JangNovember 10, 2014

  • It looks like a trend: paying before you eat

    I haven’t done a scientific survey, but it seems as if more restaurants are using a pay-before-you-eat format. Three restaurants that recently opened in downtown Victoria operate this way. At Fish . . .

    Phillip JangNovember 6, 2014

  • B.C. Transit tests mobile-friendly website that has trip planning

    It is a little difficult to use on mobile devices and it kicks you to Google if you want trip planning. B.C. Transit’s website, which hasn’t changed much in the past decade, could stand some . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 31, 2014

  • Debate over dryer balls: some say they don’t work

    Dryer balls are baseball-sized balls that are typically made of rubber, plastic or fabric. The promotional material for them says when you put several in a clothes dryer they’ll hasten drying; they. . .

    Phillip JangOctober 29, 2014

  • Stuff isn’t necessarily cheaper online

    It’s called showrooming, where shoppers go to a store to check over something they want to buy. They then go online to buy it, believing that they’ll pay less that way. The behaviour is based on an . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 22, 2014

  • At our house, and maybe yours, electricity price is going up a lot

    Heating season has arrived and that means much bigger B.C. Hydro bills since we heat our house with an electrically-powered heat pump. (We don’t have one of those super-insulated houses with fancy. . .

    Phillip JangOctober 18, 2014

  • Clothes dryers are getting all fancy and energy efficient

    They are the energy hogs of our households. Clothes dryers, especially electric ones, suck up gobs of energy to blow hot air at wet clothes. They have essentially been the same for decades, unable . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 13, 2014

  • Review: B.C. Hydro’s EMU-2, energy monitor and nag

    The EMU-2 is a device that wirelessly links to your B.C. Hydro smart meter and displays your power use in kilowatts and pennies. B.C. Hydro is promoting it as part of its conservation efforts. The . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 7, 2014

  • Taking precautions after Home Depot’s credit card breach

    Home Depot acknowledged in September that it had suffered a credit card data breach involving customers who bought merchandise at its stores in Canada and the U.S. from April to September. In a . . .

    Phillip JangOctober 1, 2014

  • Filed under gullible: Bent iPhone reports might not be true

    The word spread via social media (it was in my Facebook news feed) and was quickly picked up in mainstream media: the new iPhones can bend without much force. You can do it with your bare hands, a . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 29, 2014

  • Device links to B.C. Hydro meter, shows real time electricity use

    Another stage in B.C. Hydro’s smart meter era has arrived. You can install a device in your home that shows the amount of electricity you use while you’re using it. Turn on an electric clothes dryer. . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 26, 2014

  • Despite hassles, travellers pack public transit for ferry trips

    Riding public transit between downtown Victoria and downtown Vancouver, with plenty of help from B.C. Ferries, can be a hassle. Yet, a lot of people are doing it, taking business away from the . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 20, 2014

  • At Esquimalt Ribfest, BBQ experts show off high-volume, tasty efficiency

    [Updated with award winners.] Esquimalt Ribfest is over for another year. Award winners were announced on Sunday. Here's a link to a YouTube video of the award presentations. A judging panel . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 14, 2014

  • Hidden house address signs cause vexation (and could be dangerous)

    An amazing number of houses in Greater Victoria have no visible address numbers. Or, if they are visible during the day, they become invisible at night. This became apparent to me several times this. . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 8, 2014

  • A walk to work that takes an hour — maybe it makes sense

    In late August, during the Fringe Theatre Festival, I re-discovered walking. The Roxy, St. Ann’s Academy, Langham Court and Metro Studio were among the venues and I walked between them to attend . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 4, 2014

  • Juggling act New Conformity voted Favourite Show at Victoria Fringe, plus other awards

    The 28th annual Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival wrapped up Sunday after 11 days of shows. At a packed Pick of the Fringe party, these awards were handed out, based on online voting by audience . . .

    Phillip JangSeptember 1, 2014

  • Reflections on Fringe shows and finding late-night food

    The Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival continues until Sunday, and as I said earlier, you should go. I’ve followed the advice of some veteran Fringe-goers by not always picking shows that I am almost. . .

    Phillip JangAugust 30, 2014

  • Hidden washrooms at shopping centres; confused cellphones; orca sightings

    Observations from a ferry visit to Vancouver. I appreciate the layouts of Victoria’s Hillside Centre, Mayfair Shopping Centre and Bay Centre much more after wandering around a couple of malls in . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 25, 2014

  • Fringe Festival wins over a skeptic

    I was slow to embrace the Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival. A bunch of shows by no-name performers in makeshift theatres. I didn’t see a lot of reason to go. But then I did, and I was surprised by . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 20, 2014

  • Avoiding a skewering when you eat food on a stick

    Eating food in the proper way is a big part of being accepted into a society. Do things the wrong way and you’ll be snickered at, shunned, lectured, bullied and maybe even beaten up. You’d think it. . .

    Phillip JangAugust 18, 2014

  • Comparing our household’s electricity use, summer vs. winter

    B.C. Hydro’s website allows you to track daily electricity usage. It’s part of the utility’s effort to encourage conservation. If you know what you’re using, you might use less of it, the theory . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 15, 2014

  • In search of a place to fill a barbecue propane tank

    For years, filling our barbecue propane tanks was a quick and easy task. Take them to the gas station a two-minute drive away, hand them over to the propane-qualified attendant. But one day, the . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 11, 2014

  • To stay cool, leave house windows closed or open?

    The assumption here is that you want to keep your house as cool as possible in hot weather without resorting to air conditioning.

    Phillip JangAugust 7, 2014

  • Fixing an oven, a faucet, a sprinkler and a phone, sort of

    One of my office colleagues, who grew up on a farm, is very handy. He’s my inspiration. He just tackles stuff, from putting on a roof to installing plumbing fixtures. I am nowhere near that level . . .

    Phillip JangAugust 4, 2014

  • A guide to public toilets in downtown Victoria

    Downtown Victoria is well-endowed if you’re out and about and need to use a toilet. After a surge of troubles in the late 2000s when late-night revellers made things unpleasant by peeing in the . . .

    Phillip JangJuly 28, 2014

  • Dishwater detergent that cleans coffee and tea stains

    Filed under: I only found this out by reading the manual. Reading dishwasher detergent box labels the other day, I discovered that some are formulated to clean away coffee and tea stains on ceramic. . .

    Phillip JangJuly 24, 2014

  • Rediscovering Victoria when relatives visit

    We live in an amazing place, and sometimes it takes visitors to remind us of that. When I moved here 17 years ago, I was visiting a beach every few days. A long-time Islander was skeptical that that. . .

    Phillip JangJuly 21, 2014


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