Sunday, April 30, 2006

Quote of the Day, Another Bad Joke

Poor boy, in the hotel called the Palace of Gloom
Calls down to room service, says, "Send up a room"

Ron Maclean: Passive-aggressive.

Ron Maclean has a reputation as a nice guy, but I’m having none of it. He’s on a mission to make Kelly Hrudey look bad. This cannot pass unchallenged.

Yesterday’s first incident was an untrue comment about goalie J.-S, Giguere that was a set-up (ha ha) and caught Kelly in a full open-mouth breather mode: "Huh?", he asked. And that gave sadistic Ron an opportunity to chuckle and say "just kidding". Nice, Ron. Kelly, to his credit, took it well.

Ron is used to making nasty comments to Don Cherry and I have no problem with that. Cherry is a provocateur who deserves everything that is flung his way. But this shtick is non-transferable.

Later, Ron was into full embarrass-Kelly attack mode by displaying a magazine article that focused on Kelly’s pretty-boy appeal. No jealousy there. Kelly admitted that this whole episode made him uncomfortable, but did Ron stop? No.

I’ve always suspected that Kelly was hired by a female exec, but I have no facts to back that up. He’s easy on the eyes, and not the brightest bulb. But he’s self-deprecating, modest and inoffensive, so why attack him? I assume he knows his hockey, at least from a goal-tending angle. So why the abuse?

Is there a power hierarchy at CBC Sports that allows Ron to do this? Has Kelly been told if he wants this gig, he has to put up with Ron’s rot? I am annoyed.

The McLaughlin Group

The only reason McLaughlin brought crazy Tony Blankley onto the panel is to make Pat Buchanan look normal. Blankley is clueless, and if a person has a foreign name, forget it, he can’t be bothered with them. He couldn’t even get Mohammed ElBaradei’s name right. What a tool.

By comparison, Buchanan looks like the voice of reason and moderation. He’s never had it so good.

Buster Keaton in the Bathroom

Buster Keaton, in his later years, smoked a cigarette using a long holder without looking effete or pompous. Of course, he died of lung cancer, so a fancy holder will only get a guy so far. But it looked cool.

Buster said that some of his best creative ideas came to him in the bathroom while he was shaving. What is it about the bathroom that makes it such a lively creative place? I’ve noted too that ideas always come to me when I’m in the shower. Some part of our brains gets shut off while we’re grooming, apparently, and that frees up the creative instinct. Interesting, I think.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Quote of the Day

They got Charles Darwin trapped out there on Highway Five
Judge says to the High Sheriff,
"I want him dead or alive
Either one, I don't care."

Ottawa 3-2; wins series


Good Old Keef

Keith Richards suffered a concussion after falling out of a palm tree in Fiji. Probably spilled his drink, too. This conclusively proves that with age does not always come wisdom. I love this kind of story because it makes everyone ask the same question: what on earth was he doing in a palm tree? The man is 62 years old.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Quote de Bob du Jour

Well, Shakespeare, he's in the alley
With his pointed shoes and his bells

The last Friday of the month is

Gratuitous Rafe picture day!

I can't believe I'm writing about lumber

Overall people seem pleased that this softwood lumber debate with the US has finally been settled. But we lost $1 billion on this deal. The NAFTA tribunal twice voted that Canada was right in this dispute, but in order to end it we gave up $1 billion. And this is victory? This doesn’t make sense to me. Sounds to me like all those years when the issue didn’t get settled, maybe the Liberals were standing up for the country, but with Harper and co. it is more important to make nice with our neighbours than to insist on receiving full payment for what the tribunal declared was rightfully ours. But what’s $1 billion between friends?

Full disclosure: I’ve never voted Liberal in my life. It’s Harper who is making me look back wistfully on the Liberals of the past. I never imagined this could happen. Yikes.

No Iggy for me

Saw Michael Ignatieff on Radio Canada this morning. On the positive side, his French is nice. Very pleasing to my delicate ear. On the negative side, he didn’t say anything worth hearing. He was vague, and I felt he doesn’t have a clue what is going on in this province. He’s also stiff in a John Kerry kind of way, like he's afraid of saying the wrong thing so he says not much at all. Not the man for me.

Comparing him with Bob Rae, who last week said he didn't care if he won, I have to say I prefer Rae's casualness. He said if the party wants him, that's great, if not, well that isn't the end of the world. How frank is that. I liked it.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Quote of the Day

I'm no pig without a wig
I hope you treat me kind

Ottawa wins 5-2

I'm cautiously optimistic. I know how confidence can come back and bite you. I don't feel like being bitten.

Thursday Crime Blotter 2

"A family in Longueuil is offering a $10,000 reward for the return of an elderly woman's head after her remains were mutilated during a funeral home break-in last summer."

I can’t get passed this story. The woman’s sister and nephew were on the news last night, and they seemed to be sane. If this had happened to us, I would still not have recovered from it.

The thief removed the dead woman’s earrings and did not take any of the money in the collection envelopes that were left in the salon of the funeral parlour. He was only after the head. What’s the motive here? Why do this? The victim’s nephew just wanted the head returned to the family and he wanted to know why. Not who did this, just why.

This lady died just a month before my mother did. Last summer, my sister and I were so stressed and busy running around, making arrangements, calling relatives, buying a cemetery plot, etc., I cannot imagine a scenario where the funeral director would have called us and told us that someone had broken into the funeral home, decapitated my mom and stolen her head. I would have had to have been committed and I’d still be in The Douglas today. Totally out of my mind.

The woman’s sister said that she realized a head could be kept in a freezer for months, and her fear was that one morning she would get up and look outside and there would be a bag on the front porch. How can you even get up in the morning, leave your house and go through your day knowing there’s some sick nut out there who stole your mother’s head. What strength and courage this family has. I would be mental. Completely out of my mind.


I like a hard-luck tale as much as the next guy, but on this song My Oklahoma Home, a twister blows away the singer’s house, then his crops get blown away and then his wife (!) gets blown away. This seems rather harsh.

Thursday Crime Blotter 1

The media are stupid.

Regarding the murders in Medicine Hat this week. A 23-year-old man hooks up with a 12-year-old girl and the media decide the problem is …. The Internet. ?? This the angle they decide to play?

Whose agenda is being served here? The problem isn’t the Internet. The problem is the 23-YEAR-OLD MAN who’s dating a 12-year-old girl.

The National’s focus last night was all on goths, white supremacists and neo-Nazis and all the other evils of the Internet. Not a word about the 23-YEAR-OLD MAN in a relationship with a 12-year-old girl.

If only computers didn’t exist, the world would be safe.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Quote of the Day

Now you would not think to look at him
But he famous long ago
For playing the electric violin
On Desolation Row

This week on "House"

We learned that Wilson is a McGill man.

I guess this is supposed to explain why he is:
1) a top-notch oncologist; and
2) incapable of keeping his pants on.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Quote of the Day

I asked the doctor if I could see you
It's bad for your health, he said

Ottawa wins big

An ugly game but a win is a win. sigh.

He made me do it

I've never written a letter to any politician in my life. But Harper made me do it.

I e-mailed him today to complain about the new policy of allowing no media at the arrival of soldiers coffins from Afghanistan. I was very respectful and polite. But this stinks of Bush-mimicry (not to mention fascism) and I had to say something.

Am I a raging Granny in training?

Is this what Billy Bragg felt like when Margaret Thatcher turned him into a protest singer?

New Springsteen

Monster truckasaurus folk.

It's loosey-goosey and full of joy.

It's a romp. It's The Living Room Tapes.

By the time I got to John Henry I was already dreaming about a live show. Could picture a huge crowd all singing, stomping, clapping, laughing, swaying, hooting. And Bruce grinning like a crazy man.

Hockey musings

Is Ron Maclean losing his hair really fast or is the lighting in the studio unflattering? He’s always been thin on top but the technical people at the CBC aren’t doing him any favours. It’s getting distracting.

Who names their kid Cristobal? Even in France this has to be a sissy name, the kind of name that gets a kid beat up on a regular basis. No?

There is something fundamentally, apocalyptically wrong with the Montreal Canadiens goaltenders coming from France and Switzerland. There really is. I hear a distant whirring sound, and I think it’s Jacques Plante spinning in his grave.

George Strombouloupoulous is a Canadiens fan. This surprises me. He’s just so Toronto in every other way. But he does too often fall into the mookish behaviour I associate with Habs’ fans, so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Every team has mook fans. I know. I know.

Has William Shatner ever sung the anthem at a game? He should.

Yes, I do World Cup special requests

45 days to go and I'm already breaking the rule on my World Cup blogging. OK, so it can't be all Figo, all the time. Sometimes some people are in the mood for a bit of Italian. I aim to please.

Today's Confession

I love Jon Lovitz!!
Yes, it's true. I think he is hilarious.
Every time I see that new Subway commercial, I laugh. What a goof.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Quote of the Day

I got a house on a hill
I got hogs lying out in the mud

Them Liberals

Saw Scott Brison on Radio Canada last night. I have to get up to speed on my Liberal candidates. I hope they will be distributing trading cards soon. I’ll have to collect ‘em all.

As for Brison, the old bag in me says he’s too young and inexperienced, while the old French bag in me says: whoa, sonny, your accent is killing me.

I appreciate, really, all the efforts by all candidates from Anglo Canada to learn French. I know learning another language is very difficult, and I was impressed by Brison’s good grammar and vocabulary, but that accent will never fly in Quebec. Where are the comfortably bilingual candidates? Maybe Brison and Stephane Dion could run as a tag team, that way we would never have to be exposed to either one’s accent.

In T.V. news...

There’s a review in the New Yorker about the new series The Unit, about US Special Forces and their families. Sounds interesting enough. Of course stupid CBS has to run it against House. So The Unit will be for taping and watching later. Nothing trumps Hugh Laurie.

Pop Quiz: From the following excerpt determine which word most piqued my interest:

the man holding both leashes is Colonel Tom Ryan, the commander of the unit and the de-facto commander of his men’s families. Ryan is played by Robert Patrick (he was an F.B.I. agent in the last two seasons of “The X Files”), who cuts a trim, taut, impressive figure of a military man; the first time you see him in full dress uniform, in a meeting at the White House, your instinct is to push the bag of Doritos off your lap and snap up attention.”

If you guessed:
a) trim
b) taut or
c) impressive figure of a military man,
score zero points.

The correct answer is of course: Doritos.

Speaking of Doritos, I haven’t been paying attention to the Saddam trial lately. Must get back on track in this regard.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Quote of the Day

You play with my world
Like it's your little toy

46 Days to go...

Sorry, had to get rid of Luis. He was causing me grief.

"I know you're sorry, I'm sorry too. "

Afghanistan 3

Yeah, I'm stuck on this today.

So we have to end the military confrontation and engage the Taliban and other malcontents. Negotiation is the only path to stability in any country. You can’t get any progress from imposing military action. This leads to the questions: What do they want? How can their demands/needs be incorporated into the bigger picture of the rest of Afghan society?

I don’t think there’s that much of an ideological gap between the Taliban and the leaders of the country. The recent case of the Christian convert spoke volumes. The judges and local religious leaders will set the agenda. Karzai’s govt is irrelevant. He’ll only survive as long as he is protected. I’ll miss his cape.

There’s a huge gap between the Taliban and us, but we aren’t the issue here.

Tampa Bay wins 4-3

St-Louis, I shake my fist weakly at you!

Afghanistan 2

At this point, I don’t know what to think about whether or not we should have ever gone into Afghanistan in the first place. I used to believe it wasn’t necessary, and that getting rid of Al Qaeda should have been an intelligence and policing job. Now I don’t know anymore. The stick was used, but was the carrot even considered? Could some of the Taliban have been quietly lured away from their side? Could an internal division been encouraged and achieved? I don’t have any answer.

But since we used the stick and we are there, then what do we owe the Afghan people?
Physical safety. Yes.
Shelter. Yes
Food. Yes
Medical care. Yes
Literacy for all. Yes.
The right to disagree without being killed for it. Yes.
Western-style democracy. Hell, no.

Not only do we owe the Afghans this, we also owe it to people in Sudan, Congo, North Korea, anywhere where people’s lives are bad. Yeah, it would be very, very expensive. But compared to everyone else, the West is rich. We are the only ones who can afford to take this on. Would it entail a drop in our standard of living. Yes. A big drop. A huge drop. So what? We can afford it.

I think I’m advocating for a big UN Mission. I wasn’t planning on heading in that direction, but that appears to be it.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Quote of the Day

With haunted hearts through heat and cold,
We never thought we could ever get old.

Cloudy Saturday A.M.

Went to two depanneurs and could not find a Globe & Mail this morning.

This is a sign. I'm not meant to be subjected to the inanities of the Saturday Style section this week. It's been two weeks since I read about motivational pampering and I still haven't calmed down.

Motivational pampering: Listening to life-affirming speeches about your soul whilst getting your manicure, pedicure and facial. barf. barf. barf.

Afghanistan I

A very bad day for us today in Afghanistan.

Last week, my nephew submitted his application to join the reserves. Last week, one of his school pals, who is in the reserves, got a call. Did he want to go to Afghanistan? He mentioned he wasn’t finished high school yet. So that was that. But I’m sure they’ll be calling him again in a few months. Luckily, service is still voluntary.

Last weekend, I met a really, really polite bright young guy. I suspected, given his manners, he was in the military. I was right. He’s 22 and has one year of engineering studies left before he’s ready to be shipped over. He was looking forward to going overseas. He’ll be doing mine-clearing, he said. Useful work. How did we raise these patriots? This has happened behind my back.

(Incidentally, I didn’t get a chance to say a proper good-bye and good luck to this young guy, so good-bye and bonne chance. I’m sure you’ll pass (or have already passed) that French test, no problem.)

So what do we owe the Afghan people? Gotta think about this for awhile.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Quote of the Day

This place ain't doing me any good
I'm in the wrong town, I should be in Hollywood

Ottawa wins 4 to 1

I emit a tiny peep of joy. A tiny cautious peep of joy.

The Death of Penmanship

Saw a few minutes of a documentary on JP Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. What struck me was a shot of the two of them in an office, their desks side by side. He was reading correspondence, and she was writing a manuscript. Longhand, of course. That’s how they did it in those days. Writing an entire book manuscript longhand.

I’ve realized lately that I can’t write longhand anymore. Two medium-length paragraphs and my knuckles start cramping and aching. I have to put down the pen. This can’t be a good thing. But when do I ever need to write longhand except for a grocery list or a birthday card. Recently I wanted to write a fairly long message in a sympathy card and I ended up typing it and putting the typed note in the card. I admit my handwriting is atrocious (and it won’t ever improve at this rate) so this may be part of the reason I’ve given up writing. But I find it terribly sad that my hand has forgotten how to hold a pen. I wonder how much the younger generations write. Will they really need to learn to write anything other than their signatures?

I’m curious, you people with kids, do your kids write longhand? How is it taught? Or do they concentrate on (gawd, I hate this word) “keyboarding” (ugh)?

Today the bed, tomorrow the world

I am no longer in control of my own bed. There used to be rules. I had the left-hand side, the boys had the foot, and “She” had the right-hand pillow. But then one night slowly and irreversibly the rules started to change. Little Miss Hitler was suddenly moving towards the gap between the pillows, an area known as “The Sudetenland”. I vainly tried to push her back but she was unstoppable. The gap was annexed. I appeased her by letting her stay there, but I knew it was only a matter of time. I kept a firm grip on my pillow (“Poland”).

Two weeks ago, the inevitable assault. She had her big green eyes on Poland. She undertook a commando assault under cover of darkness. I rolled over in the night and (miaouuu!) flattened her. She beat a hasty retreat. But apparently the scent marking was done, the ground work complete. One night soon after she goose-stepped over and gave me the look, the look that says: “It’s 1 September 1939 and you’re in my spot”.

So now Little Miss Hitler contentedly occupies Poland and I am left in some no man’s land. I’m thinking of applying for refugee status at the foot of the bed (“Switzerland”).

Latest: I thought she had retreated. I got the left side last night. Until I woke up this morning in the middle, and Miss H was firmly established on the left. Logically she should stay on the far right, but I guess in the long run ideologies come full circle.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Bad Joke Quote of the Day

I'm sittin' on my watch so I can be on time

Onward Christian Soldiers

Last night PBS ran a show called Holy Warriors about Richard the Lionheart, Saladin and the Crusades.

“The Lionheart” is a pretty friggin’ cool nickname.

The Crusades took place in the 11th Century. Everyone wanted to get their paws on Jerusalem and (this is the tricky part) hold onto it. I think we’ve learned in the past 3 years that invasion is easy; it’s holding the darn fort that’s the problem.

We are now in the 21st Century. 2100 – 1100 = 1000 years. We’re still squabbling about this 1000 years later? One of these days I’m going to go to Jerusalem, just to see what all the fuss is about. But I’ll have to wait until it’s safe. I’m looking for a cheap flight sometime around the year 3000.

Richard the Lionheart died at the age of 42. He died of a crossbow wound. Which, I suppose, for a crusader is natural causes. I just read this description of his death:

He spotted an archer with bow in hand on the wall aiming a shot at him. It is said Richard paused to applaud the Bowman. He was struck in the shoulder with the arrow and refused treatment for his wound.” *

What a maroon.

Why applaud the Bowman? Was he being snarky? So he died because he was a show-off? What did he think he was doing? What a dumb way to die.


The Rite of Spring

The Senators vs the Lightning in the first round.

Ottawa has had their normal strong regular season, which makes me stupidly confident that they can go far in the play-offs. Yes, I am a deluded fool.

But Tampa has Martin St. Louis, and as the Number 1 representative of Very Short People in the NHL, he commands and receives my utmost respect and admiration. So I hate to be against him. On the other hand, he is the enemy, so if he is responsible for ousting the Senators in the first round (and what a surprise that won’t be should it happen) I’ll have to curse his name and weakly shake my fist at him.

This being said, do I have to keep supporting the Senators*, knowing full well they can self-destruct in the first round and break my heart yet again? It’s the déjà vu of being an Expos fan, all over again. Why do I stay in the abusive post-season marriage? Ottawa is so good all year and then, come the play-offs, it’s pffffft lunchbag letdown. And, yet, hope springs eternal…

*Yes, I am ignoring the local team. I have to. I don’t hate the local team but I do hate their moronic fans. Therefore the local team is not on my radar.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Quote of the Day

Now the bricks lay on Grand Street
Where the neon madmen climb.

Just shake hands, kid

Normally I wouldn't post a news photo for no specific reason, but gosh darn it, I just love this picture.

Sorry, Stephen, but there are limits to what you can control.

Robotics News of the Day

The White House has junked the McClellatron 3000. I won’t miss it/him. He was dull, uninspiring, lacking in bells and whistles.

Time to bring back Ari Fleischer. Now there’s a man I can hate with relish. He has no peer in the domain of oily sleaziness. Bring back Ari! Bring back Ari! Ari, come home.

And if they can’t land the elusive slippery Fleischer, I know just the back-up for the job: Crazy Lou Dobbs. He’ll tell it to us straight. No mincer of words, he.

One thing I hate about Montreal

Morons on t.v. who start anticipating the Stanley Cup Parade before the play-offs have even started.

Reporter: You looking forward to the play-offs?
Dim Bulb: Yeah! (whoops) I can’t wait for the parade!
Reporter: You’ll be going to the parade?
Dim Bulb: Oh yeah!

Umm. No you won’t.

La Mundial

51 days until the World Cup. Is it too early to begin posting gratuitous photos of Figo? Nah.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Quote of the Day

My old man, he's like some feudal lord,
Got more lives than a cat


I'm not the only one who sees the impending American invasion! I feel better although I'm not sure why...

US Has War Plans – For Canada!

Today’s puzzler

Is every day casual Friday?

What’s with Ahmadinejad and his beige casual outerwear? Every single picture, he’s wearing this jacket.

"As soon as I conclude this latest fit of fiery demagoguery, I’m hitting the links."

Boys good, girls bad.

Happened to see two stories on the same disturbing subject on the same night on different networks. In the upcoming generations, the girls have been bred out and now there aren’t enough women for all the men. 60 Minutes talked about this in China, and Newsworld had the same issue in India and Pakistan. In China it is state-sanctioned, but in IndPak it’s “cultural”. How much forward thinking would have been needed to see this crisis coming?

In the Indian villages, the idea was “hey, we can always find women in the next village”. Too bad nobody thought to ask if the folks in the next village were thinking the same thing. Now if you don’t have land or some form of wealth, forget it, pal, you are single forever. And men without women equals one thing: trouble. Self destruction and destruction of one’s community and environment.

And not to get all Bushie about it, but lots of men with no future in Pakistan means lots of easy recruits for jihad. When you ain’t got nothing, you got nothing to lose.

In one family, there was a man who had three unmarried sons. He was ashamed and embarrassed about it. The sons, in their early 30’s, knew their lives were already over. They also clearly expressed their fear and understanding that their society is doomed. But the father had a fourth son, who was married, and had a baby. And the baby was a boy! What endless joy! Does nobody grasp the problem yet?

I understand the women, though. If your life is crap and your daughter’s life is crap and the only thing that can ensure that your grandchild’s life isn’t crap is that your grandchild is a boy, then you want the best life for that kid. It makes no sense on a wider scale, but is perfectly reasonable within each individual family.

The temptation is to point fingers at these people and tsk tsk them because we believe them to be poor, ignorant and having cultures that provide a lousy, miserable existence for females. But in clinics in the Western world, if couples have an option of choosing the sex of their baby, more often than not they go with a boy. Human beings prefer boys to girls, especially since in many cases, there’s only going to be one kid in the family. My conclusion: whenever the human race is given the opportunity to control its destiny, we opt for self-destruction. Whether it’s quick by the means of nukes, or slow by environmental destruction or genetic engineering, we have a death wish. What a bunch of losers we are.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Quote of the Day

Lost time is not found again.

Everybody needs a nuke

Reading Seymour Hersh in this week’s New Yorker re Bush and Iran and the whole nuke thing, I came across this tidbit:

[Iran expert] Clawson said that he would prefer to rely on sabotage and other clandestine activities, such as “industrial accidents.” But, he said, it would be prudent to prepare for a wider war, “given the way the Iranians are acting. This is not like planning to invade Quebec.”

“Not like planning to invade Quebec”? What does that mean? Is the Pentagon’s invasion plan for Quebec simpler or more complicated than its Iran invasion plan? Time to start stocking up the basement with potable water, canned goods and Doritos*.

In my Level 8 paranoid fantasy (Paranoia Fantasy Scale being: 0 = no paranoia; 10 = metaphysical certainty that paranoia is justified) the Pentagon has an invasion plan for every country on earth.

Sources of fresh water are rapidly running out and we have plenty of it. I know THEY are going to come after our water, both for the hydroelectricity and for plain old drinking water. How are we going to stop them? Quebec needs a nuke. Now.

*and Omega-3 rich cat food

On the 420 bus this morning

Was sitting next to a Chinese guy. His headphones were slightly too loud, forcing me to listen in on his English lesson. I fell into a trance.

How long does it take to get to work?
How long does it take to get to work?
How long does it take to get to San Francisco?
How long does it take to get to San Francisco?

There isn’t a bus stop near our house.
There isn’t a bus stop near our house.
There isn’t a bus terminal near my apartment.
There isn’t a bus terminal near my apartment.
There isn’t a subway station near my house.
There isn’t a subway station near my house.

One problem with these language tapes. This is something I’ve discovered in my countless unsuccessful attempts to learn Spanish. Nobody who speaks a language speaks it slowly and clearly like the voices on the tape. I always understand Spanish on a tape, but as soon as I’m faced with someone rattling along in Spanish at a hundred miles an hour, I’m lost, totally hopelessly lost. Maybe if they yelled louder at me in Spanish I’d understand them…

I want my fish oil

Bought a bag of cat food last night. It has a sticker on it that reads: “Now with Fish Oil, a rich source of Omega-3s”. What? I pay close attention to my crew when they are gathered ‘round the food bowl and not once did I hear any of them say: “You know, this food is acceptable but it would be healthier if they added some Omega-3”.

“Omega-3! Good for a human and grrrreat for a cat!” Big bonus to the marketing guru who came up with that one. It’s a racket, I tells ya.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Quote of the Day Passover/Easter Edition

And like Pharaoh's tribe
They'll be drownded in the tide
and like Goliath, they'll be conquered

Special Passover/Easter Edition !

After careful consideration I have come to the conclusion that the best Bob pictures are religious Bob pictures.

Adios Bandidos

Is it a bad thing that I don’t care about these 8 dead bikers? When I heard the story about 8 bodies being found in a small town, my initial reaction was sadness because I was thinking it was going to a domestic incident with an entire family dead. But when it turned out to be 8 biker guys, I confess I thought “no loss, good riddance”. Does this make me a terrible person? I realize these guys had wives and children and friends, but they were criminals, so am I wrong to not care about their deaths. I think I am indeed wrong. But at the same time, thinking or knowing I am wrong, doesn’t make me feel I am capable of changing my opinion.

I think George Stroumbouloupoulous (let’s call him Georgie S, shall we?) raised this issue on his show this week, but I didn’t see his take on it. I’d like to think most people, whether they admit it or not, probably think like me. Or maybe I’m just cold-hearted. Is this how simply we view the value of human life. If you are good, I’m sad for you and your family if bad things happen, but if you are bad (to quote an old acquaintance) “hope you die”. It can’t be that simple, can it?

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Quote of the Day

Renegade priests and treacherous young witches
Were handing out the flowers that I'd given to you.

When separatists bicker

Michel Tremblay has lost the faith. The dream of sovereignty has died, destroyed by crass economics. And how long does it take before the knives come out? Oh 24 to 48 hours. In Le Devoir today Claude Jasmin spews one of the downright bitchiest attacks I’ve ever seen anywhere. The fact, sez Jasmin, is that Tremblay was never a REAL sovereignist in the first place. Pooh on those fake sovereignists. Pooh, I say. I love this stuff. I sense the rulers coming out, my sovereignist devotion is bigger than yours.

Tremblay’s sin is that he accepted money from the Great Satan to make a living. And now Beautiful Sovereignty is dead because we’ve become money grubbers like the rest of the world. He admits he’s rich, I’ll give him that much. I wish someone had informed me that I was growing up in a socialist near-Eden, the only thing that kept it from being perfect was, of course, Ottawa. Maybe I would have appreciated it more.

I also like that Jasmin attacks Tremblay for living in Florida. !! Cat fight! Meow!

How are artists supposed to make a living? I’d like to see a return to patrons. Real patrons. Some fat rich guy on the mountain who pays a starving artist to write him a requiem or paint his portrait like in the good old days. But since the rich are neglecting their duties, the government has to be the patron. I don’t like it, but I blame the rich for this. Hey, rich guy/girl, don’t give your money to a foundation; give cash directly to some sculptor living in a loft in St. Henri. Let her buy groceries first, then art supplies.

The great Robert Lepage has expressed his doubts about sovereignty too. Let’s call him lukewarm on the idea. Is this because he’s actually travelled the world, worked in different cultures, spent a lot of time outside the province? Or is he just a turncoat, too? This reminds me of Les Invasions Barbares and the character played by Stephane Rousseau , the son-of-a-hardcore-separatist investment banker who lived in London and who didn’t give a hoot about separatism. ‘Cause he left it all behind. For money! The tramp.

Jasmin on Tremblay: His infantile political expression displays a crass immaturity.
(Son infantile réflexion politique est d'une immaturite crasse). How is this helpful? What a bitch.

Whatever happened to Junior?

I don’t mean Bush.
As I was watching Brokeback the other day, I was struck by the fact that one of Ennis and Alma’s girls is named Alma Jr. and I got to thinkin’. Do people still do this? Name their kids after themselves. It used to be common. But I was searching through the parents I know with young kids (you know who you are) and I couldn’t come up with a single one who named their son or daughter after themselves. Why has this gone out of fashion? And what was it about in the first place.
Was it egocentric? I want my son to carry my name. Why? What’s so great about you? Have we collectively decided that, nah, there’s nothing so great about us as individuals that we feel we have to stick our name on somebody else. I think people still name their kids in honour of the grandparents, at least for the middle names, but there aren’t a lot of Alma Jr’s around, are they? Especially with girls. I don’t think I’ve ever known a woman who had the same name as her mother. I imagine it was probably more important for fathers to point to their kid and see their rightful heir, name and all, than it was for mothers. I dunno.
From what I’ve read about the 1940s and 1950s, a lot of sons were carrying their fathers’ name without carrying any of their dad’s actual DNA. Was the naming thing part of staking one’s parental claim on the kid, even if he looked just like the milkman. Did the name thing fall away as men become more convinced (sub-consciously) that their boys’ really are their boys and didn’t feel the need to reinforce it publicly with a Jr label?

Monday, April 10, 2006