Sovereign Neighbours

A video created last year during the Olympics explaining Canada to the Americans.

Canadian Elections Explained à la Rick Mercer Style

Conservatives:

Green Party:

Liberals:

NDP/Bloc Québecois:

One of the Best


UGH.
I was driving back from a stint in retail therapy when I was suddenly blinded by The White Stuff.
It was coming down so fast that you couldn’t see the path the car ahead of you just made.
It tripled my return time from 40 mins to…. well almost 2.5 hrs.
Not happy.
I just finished digging myself out this past week.
With my back still hurting from the hernia – shoveling isn’t a my best friend.
The upper level neighbours are lazy asses who don’t shovel – so I find myself doing most of it myself.
Just enough to get my car out, that is.
I’m not feeling overly neighbourly towards them but I have my reasons.

It’s not at cold but it is blinding, poor poor visibility, terrible road conditions.
I know I live in Canada and therefore should be expected.
But I don’t think I ever will.
The older I get, the less I like.

I am digging deep to avoid that bitter place that comes with cabin fever, lack of vitamin D that is quickly depleted in the Canadian winters…
I suffer from S.A.D. making the winter months the hardest on me, emotionally.
So I have to dig deep…
Doesn’t help that we got hit with this unexpected, blinding snow storm.
Again.
Today.
And I totally stole this from our friend Buck over at Exile in Portales because that’s how it feels…
And although I am about to jump on a plane to Florida this week, I am struggling to find humour in my daily doings.
It does feel like a horror show!

So I am going to offer this up.
Because we all have to laugh.
This one just tickles me funny…
So happy Saturday.
Hope you aren’t digging yourself out, like we are.
Again.
Ugh.

The Centre of the Universe Has Snow & It’s Bloody Cold

So the Farmer’s Almanac for Winter 2010/2011 predicted for SW Ontario: little snow, very very cold, long winter.
We’ve got more snow than predicted.
It’s FUCKEN cold (and this is coming from a Canadian with plenty of extra ‘padding’ to buffer the weather … so you know it’s COLD!)
And although only just barely February… the winter is already far too long for my liking.
2 outta 3 ain’t bad in the accuracy department.

Depending on where you fall geographically in SW Ontario, you will get more snow than other areas.
Of course… you already knew that.
For example: London, Ontario gets far more snow than say, Toronto (thanks to being pretty much right dab centre between Lake Erie and Lake Huron creating this crazy weather belt).
I know that for a fact, I lived there for 10 years.
Toronto doesn’t see nearly as much as the rest of Ontario – but it still gets some.
What Toronto gets is the icy cold, damp winds that come off Lake Ontario that just settles into your bones long enough to make you feel miserable!
The thing is: Toronto just isn’t equipped to handle LOTS of snow.
Only a few Canadian cities are truly equipped – snow plows, salters, sanders, ice breakers etc… in enough quantities to handle its infrastructure.
I can say Québec and some of the Prairie cities are far more equipped to handle the bitchy Winter months and her snow.
The rest of us – well, we depend on other provinces for help when a storm hits and it gets B-A-D.
And when it gets really b-a-d … sometimes, a mayor will call the Army for help, to dig us out.

But be warned: if you happen to be THE Mayor that called in the Army for assistance – you will be mocked for the rest of your life.
No – not term in office.
L-I-F-E.
And your city will suffer the labels and wrath of the rest of the country because they didn’t think of calling the Army first.
You will be mocked across Canada – from Victoria, BC to St. John’s, NFLD.
From Coast to Coast to Coast.

As in the case of Toronto Mayor Mel Lastman.
In 1999, Toronto was hit with a rather B-I-G snow storm that dumped 40 cm of snow overnight and was about to be hit yet again with another 15-25 cm. The winds were at 40-50 kmph and the temperatures had dropped to a balmy low of -40˚C (with wind factor)… and then another system was right upon them after that – so on and so forth.
Winter that year was relentless and Toronto was her target.
They were looking at 125 cm of snow… in a very short period of time.
Yes.
For Toronto – this was a lot.
Because for Toronto – in 15 days, they got an entire winter season’s worth of snow fall upon them.
To give perspective, the average snow fall in the month of January for Toronto is only about 30-35cm.
They were looking at 125 cm!
And with over 5,000 km of roads to clear, public transit was down and emergency vehicles were getting stuck and couldn’t respond when called…
Yes.
This is a lot for ANY city to handle.
But Toronto Mayor did what most politicians are afraid to do: they called for help.
DA-DA-DUM!!!
And they got it.
*GASP* Shock and horror!!!
The rest of Canada attached to Toronto and its citizens the distinction of having a ‘centre-of-the-universe-mentality’ within Canada.
Forever mocked for Mayor Lastman’s decision to call for help.
Personally – I think the rest of Canada are just jealous they didn’t think of calling.
I mean the US does it all the time, calling in emergency help and no one thinks of them any less.
Kinda ludicrous really.
(You can read about it here.)
But I will say this much… this dramady is funny… even I laughed… because Canadians from Coast to Coast to Coast… are very much like this now. Apparently – most of us… don’t like snow! Not just Toronto – although this is truly mocking Torontonians…

I don’t live in Toronto.
I no longer live in London.
I live somewhere in between.
Typically, we don’t see this much snow as we have this year.
While the rest of the province calls for snow days, not where I live.
Nope.
The bottom line is more important than the lives of its citizens.
And so you brave the not-so-plowed-with-an-under-layer-of-black-ice streets just to make sure the bottom line isn’t impacted.
Doesn’t matter that your kids school is closed, the OPP is telling you to stay home and off the streets or that you don’t have winter tires on your car.
Nope.
The bottom line is all that matters.
Oh and on a daily basis for the last several weeks, we are enjoying weather conditions of about -24˚C but feels like -40˚C. Frostbite, two pairs of pants, cuts you straight to the bone, it-hurts-to-breath kind of cold.
I am bitter. Cold. Wishing I was back in Panama City dammit.
So far though, no Army assistance required.
Although, I wouldn’t mind a little man-in-uniform assistance myself… but I digress.

All the while… my compatriot Old Iron is currently basking in the Antiguan sun as part 1 of his 3 week rotation away from the swamp lands of Nigeria. Bastard!!! (of course said with seething jealousy and envy – surely I will die at Snowmageddon for breaking these cardinal biblical rules… good thing I don’t believe HA! There you go – now you know I will surely be struck by a killer snow flake in 2012)
So I caved in.
Part 2 of Old Iron’s rotation is hosting me.
I’m off to bug the shit out of Old Iron next week, where I am bringing along my fellow Canukc/friend Butch, to Florida.
We need to defrost and thaw out.

But for those of you who didn’t know:
The Centre of the Universe, aka Toronto, has snow.  And it’s bloody cold.
Get out those Isotoner gloves.
Keep the Starbucks Tim Horton’s warm & fresh.
It’s a real bitch out there!

BANNED!

So I qualify as being a ‘banned’ item under the definition of the word ‘banned‘ having been excommunicated/disfellowshipped from my faith of birth… but this post isn’t about that… although, it is rather humourous that I am considered as BANNED…  I wonder if that makes me a threat to national security like Kinder Surprise does… hmmmm

// (bn)

tr.v. banned, ban·ning, bans

1. To prohibit, especially by official decree: The city council banned billboards on most streets. See Synonyms at forbid.
2. South African Under the former system of apartheid, to deprive (a person suspected of illegal activity) of the right of free movement and association with others.
3. Archaic To curse.

n.

1. An excommunication or condemnation by church officials.
2. A prohibition imposed by law or official decree: a ban on cigarette smoking on airplanes.
3. Censure, condemnation, or disapproval expressed especially by public opinion.
4. A curse; an imprecation.
5. A summons to arms in feudal times.

[Middle English bannen, to summon, banish, curse, from Old English bannan, to summon, and from Old Norse banna, to prohibit, curse; see bh-2 in Indo-European roots.]

So it appears that there are a few ridiculous items on the banned list… some that are legalised, others I would ban, and others that will soon be banned…

● ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ●

Bad bad song... Evil song...

Canada has banned Dire Straits song “Money for Nothing” to be played in its current/classic format.
As long as the word ‘faggot‘ is still uncensored in its classic format – it cannot be aired on any Canadian radio station, in Canada.
A recent decision by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, after complaints by a few handful of politically correct listeners were called in because the word is used three times in the song.
The reason: the word ‘faggot’ itself is damaging and hurtful and has no place on the airwaves
So in retaliation protest, a Halifax and an Edmonton station played the song non-stop for an hour – a ‘Money for Nothing’ marathon.

The ruling was prompted by a listener objection in St. John’s, N.L., and applies to every Canadian radio station. However, two radio stations in Edmonton and Halifax are protesting the decision, saying they will not comply with the CBSC ruling, the Canadian Press reported. Edmonton’s classic rock station K-97 and Halifax’s Q104, which are both owned by NewCap Radio — are planning to run the unedited song in its entirety for one hour

Of course, the ban doesn’t take into context the song, how it was written or why it was written.
It simply bans it because it contains a-not-so-politically-correct-word-‘faggot’-that-only-now-irked-the-sensitive-emotions-of-a-listener-after-years-of-this-song-being-played-on-the-airwaves-without-complaint
Of course, this ban is going to face its its own challenges by the free-speech advocates…
But Dire Straits keyboardist Guy Fletcher is right :

Calling the ruling “unbelievable,” Fletcher wrote that Mark Knopfler, the song’s writer, will now substitute the word “fudger” for “faggot” for use on Canadian airwaves. “I reckon Canada could ban about 75% of ALL records ever made,” he wrote later.

● ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ●

I watched the Golden Globes awards last night.
It was shockingly humourous… scandalous almost.
It was uncomfortable to watch and yet, you couldn’t help but continue to listen to Ricky Gervais.
He went after everyone, unabashedly.
Most in the audience laughed with shock, dismay, some in disgust, some insulted and others with sheer delight.
In the US Hollywood world of politically correct right-winged Liberal demeanor – this Brit went for the jugular.
However, oddly enough, politics was not discussed.
That was a shame honestly.
It was his goal to not be invited back to host…
I wouldn’t call it hosting… it was more of a roasting event.
Crude and crass, rude and ignorant at best.
And in a very odd way, I loved it.
And apparently, he may have just got his wish
Banned from future hosting duties???

And while Ricky Gervais had nothing to do with the fact that The Social Network took home best picture award – personally speaking, while it was a good movie, I don’t think it warranted the top awards.
There were far better movies made last year, with superior acting and actors that were much more deserving.
Just saying iz all…

● ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ●

Once a Sag - Always a Sag

So on a personal level, I am banning all stupid reporters who think they have stumbled upon something new in the zodiac world and write articles that piss off the masses.
It sent the uneducated masses into a frenzy, suddenly insulted and confused…
Am I now a …. ?
But I always thought I was a ….. ?
What does that mean?
How is this possible?
MY LIFE IS A LIE!!!

Good lord I just wanted to zing my Sagittarius arrow into that reporters ass… for CLEARLY he/she had NOT done its research!
You see, I am a big fan of astrology.
I have studied on/off for years.
I use it as building blocks to any potential relationship that I come into contact with – armed with some fairly basic astrological information, I can quickly assess just how to approach most situations.
Its not a solid science as people are far more complex than their sun signs but its a good start.
So here’s the truth:
If you’ve adhered and related to the tropical zodiac, which most people who follow the Western zodiac do, whatever your sign was, still is.
Nothing has changed!!!
I am a Sagittarius.
Old Iron is a Sagittarius.
That has not and will not change.
You see there are many different zodiacs.
That isn’t breaking news!
Its old news!
At one point in time, thanks to the gravitational pull of the moon, the earth went all wobbly… creating a shift in the stars alignments.
But since we don’t subscribe to the pre-Babylonian days zodiac, the extra month and zodiac sign isn’t used in Western astrology.
So… like it or not, you are who you are.
Your sun sign is your sun sign under the Western zodiac.
And crappy, uneducated, unresearched reporters…
Are banned in my books…

● ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ●

Kinder Surprise National Security Threat

My friend’s facebook status:
Friends of ours almost had their visa revoked Sat for unknowingly importing Kinder Surprise choc eggs, which are sold & marketed everywhere but the US on account of it being illegal to embed a non-food substance (ie. a toy) within the egg. Who knew? We bring them back all the time (did). Border dude had his wife and kids in tears. Way to go, CBP – keeping Americans safe, one chocolate confectionary at a time.
January 6 at 6:50pm · Like
· Unlike · Comment
What?
The United States of America has banned Kinder Surprise?
Seriously?
Yup.
It is considered as illegal contraband.
Yes.
They banned the chocolate filled with delights back in the 1930s.
And still considered a threat to the national security of all Americans.
So much so they will be seized and you can be fined.
Even face something far worst if you protest… for chocolates are dangerous.
This chocolate treats are a national threat to Americans and Canadians need to think twice about bringing one of those yummy treats across the border!

● ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ◆ ~ ♠ ~ ♣ ~ ♥ ~ ●

And that’s it folks … because I could go on and on and on … but I don’t have time.
I’ve been banned from work this week due to sickness… and ordered to bed.
And it is bed that I am going to hit… before they ban the cotton in my sheets because at one time, cotton was picked by slaves and somehow, somewhere someone will be offended by cotton and it will be banned.
Might as well enjoy it while we can.

Another Big Night in Canada

… the Russians have something to prove after such a dismal performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics …
Canada stomped Russia 7-3 in the semi finals making for a beautiful, stressful, nerve wrenching game for gold …
But I won’t rehash the win …
We ALL know who took it home …

CANADA BABY!!!!

So the Russians want to save face and they are in a decent position to do so this year with the World Junior Hockey
Canada faces nemesis #1 on ice for Gold… Russia.
We already took out nemesis #2 … USA who faced the Swedes for Bronze but sadly, lost.
We are HUNGRY for it baby!
But its been a dodgy journey towards GOLD with this junior team as our goalies have been, well, not necessarily stellar…
However, we are still in the game – going for the best there is, proving who we are – and fighting hard for it.

I mean seriously: as I type this, its 2-0 Canada at the end of the first … and Canada has definitely invaded Buffalo with nothing but a sea of red and white maples in the crowd … in deafening roars, oozing hockey pride à la Olympic-spirit kind of pride that woke our nation up to its wintery slumber last year …

Someone recently exclaimed: who cares KC? Its only a bunch of high school boys on skates!
WHAT?
MY EYES ARE BLEEDING FROM READING THAT?!!
BLASPHEMY!
OK, well maybe not blasphemy but really – must I really explain it again?
Alright. Obviously I must:
Hockey is an unrecognized but highly accepted Canadian religion that is quickly adopted by even the off-the-boaters and ingrained into the DNA to anyone living North of the American border; much like football is to many an American and soccer “football” is to Europeans.
Its a beautiful game to watch.

(I’m sure my dear American blogger friend meant no harm in his comment/reply back to me after I sucker punched his serene beautiful post with my maple-syrup bleeding gloating pride as we kicked American ass on ice – junior hockey or not)

Personally, I love watching Junior hockey and OHL games – its where the future generation hockey players, pre-NHL super stardom, play. The game of hockey has become faster, quicker, fiercer than ever before, outshining even our very own ‘The-Great-One’ Gretzcky. Its fun to watch these young men develop into the legends they hope to become. Honestly, its just plain ol’ great hockey.

So I will once again, ooze maple syrup pride and sing to the tune of “Rasputin”
… Rah Rah Ca-na-da, hockey’s greatest Win Machine …
and hope to the hockey gods above that we get to keep our Olympic spirit for a wee bit longer … and take home another GOLD.

GO CA-NA-DA
GO CA-NA-DA
GO GO GO CA-NA-DA!!!

And here is a little tribute to our great game … with a wonderful commercial with yet another GOLD quality beverage “Crown Royal

Oh and quickly…. just as I complete this blog posting, about to hit publish… Canada scored again… 3-0 not even 2 mins into the second period. Russia has just changed goalies. Oh yeah. I smell GOLD!!!

 

**9:45pm UPDATE**
Gonna puke.
WHAT THE HELL???
Did these kids forget they had a third period?
3 Russian goals within 5 minutes to tie the game AND then… taking the lead 3 mins left in the 3rd?
CRAP.
Stressful.
Not giving up though.
The gold was ours to loose.
And now its ours to win.

** 9:53pm **
Collapse.
Well – they wanted it more than we did apparently.
it fucken sucks bad maple syrup…
This the greatest collapse in the history of the World Juniors.
Good on the Russians… their first gold since 2003.
Silver for Canada…
Second year in a row, shamefully beaten in stunning fashion…
Well at least we beat the US …
if we can call that our consolation prize?

I’m disgusted.
Going to bed.

Bury the Lede

And so the debate continues…
Was there enough Francophonie content or not enough?
The 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Opening Ceremonies are under fire, yet again. Because some dude named ‘Graham Fraser’ said a few people complained there wasn’t a proper representation of French Canada. It wasn’t bilingual enough.
Say what?
You kidding me, right?
You spent how many millions of hard earned Canadian tax dollars in hard economic times to come up with a report that said the majority of the complaints (36 of the 48 allowable complaints) you got about the Olympics were that the Opening Ceremonies didn’t have enough French Canadian content?
Seriously now: FUCK OFF.
I am left bouche-bée honestly with such political idiocy.
Because the people who are doing most of the bitching… are the Canadian politicians.

“… Premier Jean Charest and other politicians were quick to criticize the event, angry comments flooded online news stories and one newspaper headline declared: French as Rare as Snow in Vancouver…

…Federal Heritage Minister James Moore said: “there should have been more French, just period, full stop …“

And a few French speaking people who may have chosen to ignorantly not speak English as a reflection of their ‘individuality’ and cultural identity.

What pisses me off is that no one actually can say what wasn’t FRENCH enough.
No one is giving examples.
They just claim “the cultural content didn’t reflect the host country.”
That’s because the cultural components were mostly in English.
What??

Let me ask you a question:
Do you know who these artists are?
Robert Charlebois?
Daniel Lanois?
Jim Corcoran?
Les Cowboys fringants?
Mes Aïeux?
Daniel Boucher?
Les Trois accords?
Garou?
Mononc’ Serge?
Marie-Chantal Toupin?

Do you recognize any of the above artists as CANADIAN having any international acclaim on the world scene? Would you want unknowns to represent you?
Probably not.

But the world knows the names of …
Bryan Adams
Nellie Furtado
Donald Sutherland
K.D. Lang
Joni Mitchell
Sarah McLachlan
Loreena McKennitt
Ashley MacIsaac

… who are easily identifiable as Canadian.

There was plenty of bilingual content during the Opening Ceremonies, where all formalities were in the two official languages, satisfying the IOC mandate and the official bilingual mandates of our country. World audiences complained the cultural content was dry as it is… imagine having to make the world listen to a bunch of Québecois version of French? Even most of the French speaking world have a hard time understanding Québecois. Not saying some of their artists aren’t any good (because there are some great French artists) but if already had the attention span of the international audience members holding on by a string… surely we would have lost them.

Sorry though, the entertainment didn’t have Québec front and centre… as they like to think they are THE only province deserving any notoriety in Canada. The fact is: Québec pissed off that artist Garou was the last performer of the evening/Opening Ceremony… rather than the first. Deal with it. Sorry you didn’t get the international ego boost you so desperately crave in order to justify your need to separate from Canada. The Olympics was not the platform to do it, nor showcasing your artists as top-notch goods the way to go.  Know your audience.  Choose your platform.  Marketing 101.

The Opening Ceremonies were closely watched by La Francophonie, an international organization who was there to monitor French at the Games. Their whole mission is to promote the French language as an international language AND the promotion of worldwide cultural and linguistic diversity in the era of economic globalization.
Their findings?
In a separate report from La Francophonie’s Pascal Chouchepin (former Swiss President) stated Canada’s performance on bilingualism at the Games set a new gold standard for the Olympics.

Couchepin said he was pleased with the amount of French, and said he wasn’t bothered by the opening ceremonies. Still, he said he could understand why Canadian Francophones were offended, and chalked up the controversy to Canada’s struggle with its dual French and English cultures.  “It is an internal and political question, revealed by the Olympic Games, but having nothing to do with them,” he wrote in French.

To finish this all off, I couldn’t agree more with this journalist’s opinion of the issue in this published article which are in line with Couchepin’s view, shared by many, including myself:

“(…) Canada’s bilingualism policy is for Canada to decide, not to be judged by playing to the motley chorus of world opinion. Self abnegation may pass for serious purpose in Ottawa, but it finishes out of the medals in everyday Canada which found unity in the Vancouver Olympics. The only golden opportunity missed was in not cancelling Fraser’s funding for this report.”