Concept by Neil Blake


I’ve known about the Federation of Canadian Artists since I was quite young because my parents used to have a couple of pieces hanging in the house. I am now at a point in my life where I am seriously contemplating applying to become an Active Member.

There is an exhibition called Concept going on right now, and I am so tempted to go check it out as it seems just down my alley. I know that going to see what other member artists are doing might also give me a better idea if I need to keep working before I apply to become one myself.

The downside is that it costs $50 to apply which is not a lot of money, unless you’re a starving artist like me. If I could possibly get the $50 for the application fee, hopefully that would lead to me becoming a Member and getting some exposure in order to actually sell some of my pieces! I’ll let you all know when I do.

Discovery by Neil Blake

   I was using Flipboard this morning, reading like I normally do everyday when I saw an article called “New multiple sclerosis culprit identified”. I just had  to read it as soon as possible!

   Since being diagnosed over 5 ago, this has been the most optimistic article about treatment and therapy I’ve read. It gets me very excited to hear and read articles like that and leave me optimistic for some real positive changes in the future.




Saturday Night MRI by Neil Blake

   I remember a time of my life where asking  me to do anything other than go out to a party to get drunk or go out to the bars/clubs with friends on a Saturday night, unless it was to work all  night, would have been pointless. Tonight, however, I’m not doing either, tonight, I have an MRI at St. Paul’s Hospital

   That was when I was younger. Way younger.  And before my MS. So tonight, I’ll be having another MRI of my head done to get a glimpse of the brain damage caused by my own immune system. 

   I’m not going to say that I necessarily like seeing my own brain, but i will definitely say it is REALLY neat to see something like that when you do! 

Feeling Pretty Good by Neil Blake

   I’m on the SkyTrain on my way to my weekly massage session at the West Coast College of Massage Therapy out in New Westminter after a short and very solid nap before heading to the bus in order start the trip on transit to make sure that I make it to my appointment. This will be the first massage I’ve had a little while because of summer break, but that’s over now.

   I remember this time of year in the past and how anxious I would get about returning to class. but I don’t ever remember looking forward to school starting when I was younger as much as I do  is as adult. Now that school is starting again, it means that massages start again! 😀 

I’ve been in quite a bunch of pain lately, so I am REALLY looking forward to this! 

Progress Is Being Made by Neil Blake

I’m currently just having a seat near the location of an upcoming meeting I will be attending after a very productive day with the help of my mom and ex-wife at my Public Storage unit in  North Vancouver 

Even though it was really hard to be around the ex today, it made so much clearer how much work I still need to do to stop living in the past and move on. I also wasn’t able to locate my paper shredder to get rid of a bunch of extra paper I wanted to get rid of today. However, I was able to eventually get into my storage unit and get to a few other things that I ended up to bringing home and go through before getting rid of it with my mom’s  help. 

Together we made some really good progress at starting to really sort through a lot of the old stuff I’ve been paying around $100/month to store.  I’m on disability, so I could really use that extra cash. 

Even though I didn’t find the paper shredder I originally went there for I did manage to find a bunch of other stuff I’ll blog about later.

its meeting time!


Missed It Again by Neil Blake

Ok, so, I’m getting pretty damn tired of trying to get to my Peer Supprt group meetings and getting lost and then totally missing them or arriving somewhere I thought a meeting was going to be happening, only to arrive on time, to find out I was at the wrong place completely!  Entirely like I have for the past two days.

The only, and it’s a HUGE one, difference being the amount of walking I had to do. Yesterday I ended up walking  17.31KM by taking 21780 steps, before getting up yesterday to end up taking  24,984 steps over the 18.79KM walked yesterday!

Today, I thought I had another MS Peer Support group meetings out in New Westminter, only to arrive to find a different group in the room. And so after walking around New West for a bit, I just gave up and got back on the train and headed home.

i am definitely getting of failing, which. Is probably a big part of the reason the love painting and art these day! 

Interesting Idea by Neil Blake

I was watching Planet Earth II with David Attenborough on Netflix tonight after a beautiful 10KM walk in the sun along the seawall here in Vancouver with my mom when something he said triggered a new theory about what the meaning and real point of life is.


Could it perhaps be that life is a grand alien experiment using the earth as a large Petri dish and us, humans, and any other form of life on the planet, as the genetic variation component of the experiment? Perhaps they are trying to find the answer to about themselves, or some other problem they are working on. Maybe it is trying to save itself? Or maybe they are looking for the right genetic combination that would be the one to unluck or maybe even fix their biggest problem (or problems).  What do you think? 


Time to Stop by Neil Blake

Yesterday was a very emotional day for me.  I’ve only ever had one harder, more honest with anyone, including myself, kind of day in my life. That was the day my ex-wife asked if I hadcheated on her with someone I used to work with and I had to answer with the truth, “yes”

This time though, I wasn’t asked, I said what I needed to to my mom about try to escape. I am not proud to have to write this right now either, but yes, I was using cocaine.  

Instant Tears by Neil Blake

    My ex-wife and I used to have a storage locker together in North Vancouver when we had our loft in Gastown. After our divorce, I kept paying for it because I didn’t want to be packing/unpacking and then hauling the very little material goods that I still owned but wanted to keep. When we split, the easiest thing to do was to move into a furnished studio apartment in Yaletown.

   The storage unit was where I kept all of my memorabilia and the bigger things I knew I would’nt need very often but still wanted to keep. It was where I kept everything left that I owned after the split, which wasn’t much stuff at all compared to what I am surrounded by today, unfortunately (I just don’t like having “stuff”)

   My ex and I had moved to Vancouver, BC from Ottawa, Ontario with what we could fit in the car and a small U-Haul tow trailer, before we bought a place where one could see everything in the place, as it was just one room!

Well, almost 10 years later, I saw her in a very different context for the first time in a  very long time and was instantly brought to tears.  

Its always been quite easy to make me cry, but never this easy, which just made me realize how much things have changed. 

I really need to move on! 

Rebooted by Neil Blake



Yesterday was a  really hard day emotionally, psychologically and physically as well. After my latest relapse (MS), during which time I was hospitalized by ambulance because of a grandmaul seizure, I was given corticosteroids by injection and IV, to try to reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of another. That left me with some very visible and ugly bruising to my lower forarm.

You have to remember that I live in Vancouver, which is by far, the home of Canada’s largest and most visible drug addiction problem (heroin, fentanyl amongst others) in the country. So to have to leave the hospital with bruises and injection sites visible like they were, isn’t exactly fun. No is it the best way to “meet the ladies” , as my uncle Ben used to say, is it? Don’t get what I’m about to say wrong, but, at least, not the kind of woman I’m looking for or that I’d like to learn more about.


IV injection site bruising on my forearms.

Monday Reset... Hopefully by Neil Blake

After this latest relapse, I feel as though I’ve been attacked and totally destroyed by my own immune system. That has definitely impacted my life a little. 

Thankkfully, today i feel quite a bit better and I get to spend time with my beautiful mom who was luckily able to come visit me from back home. Yay!!! 

 We are both currently sitting in my living room getting ready to head out for the day to run some errands, so that’s what I’m about to do.


Apple Support by Neil Blake

I’ve always been proud of my brain and mind and the way I think when I was younger. Well, I used to be. That was before it started getting attacked my the body that was carrying it around all day because of this illness called multiple sclerosis, which I now know I have. 

i used to use my Apple ID to help manage it, but I just can’t remember like I once could. I find myself trying to log in to ICloud but can’t remember my password, The problem is that I relapsed really head last weekend, and non just can’t remember my Apple ID password, so I sent a message Apple support asking for help. Hopefully they can get  back to me soon and we can regularly scheduled programming of Self-Serve, , painting and programming.

Relapsed Hard on Monday by Neil Blake

I was officially diagnosed with Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis 5 years ago and my life is so absolutely different than I ever thought or imagined it would be. I used to be a Product Manager for Vision Critical Inc. , Today, I am an artist on full time disability insurance benefits to help.

I just got onto the final train of the trip to go run an errand for my mom. I’ll be writing another post soon!


Once again! by Neil Blake

Earlier, I mentioned how I’d lost a few key belongings (phone, Visa Card and drivers license) and even though I really have been trying not to lose or forget anything anymore, I just can’t seem to stop. This was fully illustrated by the fact that I forgot two key passwords in my digital life yesterday after  just getting my credit card and drivers license back. 

Well, here I go again! I’m just waiting outside of the Apple store wait for a genius appointment to hopefully get me back in. I’ll let you all know how it went in my next post.