Documentaries 101

It is natural for humans to choose the path of the least resistance. I also am guilty of borrowing someone else’s opinion that I overheard and liked how it sounded on topics that I had limited understanding of, in situations where I did not want to seem uninformed. How often do you do things “because others do it”? We are afraid to look odd or weird, or have an unpopular opinion, so we mimic and replicate each others behaviour, to the degree that collective consciousness becomes what Swiss psychiatrist Carl Gustav Jung refereed to as the “collective unconscious”: “[it] does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain psychic contents.

Thus, we can only escape the collective unconscious by educating ourselves. The problem is, the conventional educational system is (arguably) rotten, and it is preparing you for the World that does not exist [speaking about the primary and secondary education, not necessarily the higher education]. According to a tech entrepreneur Ingrid Riley, the Founder and Lead Strategist of CONNECTiD, “half of what we learn in schools will be obsolete [by the time we graduate]“.

In the past couple years that I’ve been educating myself through select literature and documentaries, I have learned a lot more about how the World operates, rather than what I’ve learned from the mainstream media and the university.

How often do you wake up with the realization that there is something wrong with the World? Do you think that anybody who works 40+ hours a week should struggle to feed themselves; that the effect of the food on the human organism needs to be researched before the food is sold to masses? Why is nearly 50% of World’s wealth is owned by the 1% of population? Who is profiting from tipping the scale?

If you dig deeper and follow the money a lot becomes more clear. There is a ton of material, good and bad, radical and not so much; but I feel like these 5 documentaries are enough to get you thinking. They are in the easily digestible order, from the easiest to understand towards the ones with the wider perspective on the situation.

1. The American Dream - about the banking and education system;

2. Food Inc – about the food industry; [the only one that isn't free to watch]

3. The world according to Monsanto – about the food industry, and the Monsanto’s impact on it;

4. Venus Project – about where we are now, and how we can fix it;

5. Thrive – this documentary is difficult to explain in one sentence. It is doubtlessly the best documentary I’ve seen; I still watch it over occasionally, and learn something new every time. It opens up a whole new perspective on the World, and connects all the dots in a way that it makes perfect sense.

If you have seen all 5, and feel like there is more to learn, I highly recommend reading “The Creature from Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin about the creation of the creation of the Federal Reserve in the US, which may very well be the most interesting agency in the US, which, despite its name, is not Federal, nor a reserve; and “Currency Wars: The Making of the Next Global Crisis by James Rickards about the new type of wars, which do not necessarily involve armed interference, but still have quite a devastating impact on the general population.

Since the immensely popular “Currency Wars”, James Rickards wrote another book, The Death of Money: The Coming Collapse of the International Monetary System, which is rated #212 on Amazon. I have not read it yet, but, judging by his previous brainchild I can only assume it will be good.

BONUS: The interview with the New York’s fireman, who has helped with the aftermath from the events that occurred on 9/11.


Each city has a thing or two that most people shake their hands and “facepalm” over. I love Vancouver, but sometimes it makes me cringe. And now I have created a page, where I’ll be collecting and displaying all odd occurrences that made our city what it is today.

For example, how often do you see impromptu massage sessions in Skytrain, or someone losing their drivers license over the unwillingness to remove a colander due to religious reasons?

How often does THIS happen in your city?


Welcome to “Oh You, Vancouver“, where OP always delivers.

Beekeeping in Vancouver

A few weeks back my friend Stan and I had a chat about beekeeping in Vancouver. We thought it is pretty fly to keep a beehive and have an access to your own honey supply.

As a part of their goal to help make Vancouver one of the world’s most sustainable cities, Vancouver City Council encourages beekeeping in urban areas. Urban beekeeping is an excellent way to improve pollination for plants in backyard, community, and public gardens, which leads to better vegetable production.

There was a 393% increase in the amount of registered bee colonies in 2001 to 2011: the number went from 2,822 to 13,902.

However, you can’t just set up a beehive and start making honey; there are certain rules that need to be followed.

1. Make sure your swelling permits beekeeping:

2. Make sure that the amount of your beehives does not exceed the regulation (4 beehives max. over 10,000 sq. ft), and that the beehives are spaced evenly, according to the regulation;

3. Beehives are located in the backyard.

4. Your beehives must be registered with the City.

The full set of rules for backyard hobby beekeeping can be read here.

If you live in an apartment, you are out of luck: beehives can only be set in a single or a double family dwelling. Your other option is to join a local community, and take shifts in helping taking care of somebody else’s bees.

More information about beekeeping in Vancouver can be found here.

UBC Greenheart Canopy Walkway review

IMG_20140928_141922521This Sunday Maria and I went to UBC to check out the Greenheart Canopy Walkway, as I had a Groupon from a while ago, that was about to expire. I was very surprised that this place gets less traffic than all other Vancouver attractions, because, in my opinion, it is one of the best out there.

IMG_20140928_142427801_HDRIts length is only 310 meters, however, it feels much longer. The walking boards are secured to the tall fir trees with metal cables, and they swing up and down, and to the sides, as you walk on them. Some of the trees, Douglas firs, Grand firs, and Red cedars are 100+ years old. The walkway is only wide enough for one person, so everyone is moving in a single file. This is not much of an issue, as long as everyone is moving at a similar pace.

The walkway is located within UBC Gardens, so you have to pay the $24 admission for the garden+walkway entry, or a little less if you want to visit just the gardens. There are guided tours to join (which do not cost anything extra), or you can walk at your own pace.

IMG_20140928_143515408_HDR IMG_20140928_142952701 IMG_20140928_142729378 IMG_20140928_142405611

IMG_20140928_140500405_HDRWhat surprised me, is that there are no security cameras (usually, there is one on every corner in such attractions, mainly for liability). And, as such, the absence of 1984-esque “Your every move is being filmed” signs, makes the teenagers go a little crazy. I have witnesses 4 guys jumping their hardest at the second to the last portion, and, even though it felt like we were on Paris Hilton’s waterbed, the cables did not snap, which was reassuring.

This is what the garden part looks like

This is what the garden part looks like

The tunnel to the North Garden

The tunnel to the North Garden

The gardens are a nice walk for a sunny day, too (though, I doubt we would have much more of those until the next summer). They have created a ton of micro-floras, showing what the mountains look like in certain areas. The gardens have different fruit trees and vegetable plants.

Overall, it is definitely worth the $12 single admission, and is still a good way to spend a half-day even if you are paying the full price.

Click the Groupon logo below to sign up for large discounts, and get deals such as this one.


Ioco (Imperial Oil Corporation) Ghost Town visit


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I’m sure you remember the previous post I wrote about Ghost Towns in BC. Ioco town in Port Moody is ones of them, and probably is the closest one to Vancouver.

Location: Ioco Rd., Port Moody V3H
Distance: 28 km from Waterfront Station;
Recommendation: check it out, if you are nearby;

Ioco and the DRZ

Ioco and the DRZ

The Imperial Oil Company built an oil refinery in 1914, and began construction of the Ioco Townsite in 1921. After the WWII, IOCO no longer wanted to take care of the town, and people started moving out. In 1992 Ioco own has been incorporated into Port Moody.

Currently, Port Moody Heritage Society is trying to preserve the site.

It seems rather odd to find all these expensive waterfront homes on the way, even a block or two away; but to see the abandoned homes just a little further down the road. Nonetheless, there are only two houses that still have people living in them, and the soccer field behind the school is still used by the local residents.

The houses have the windows and doors decked up, and the signs promising a maximum $50,000 fine completely discouraged me from attempting to get inside. My friends and I stayed there for about an hour, took a few pictures, and left.

Here is an artistic picture of Lady and myself by Andrei Onokhov.