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Showing posts from October, 2004

I'm not entirely Kerry'd away, but...

Neighbors to the south of me:

No doubt you're sick of electioneering right about now. Up here in Canada, our elections run for one month, and that's plenty long enough. Yours has been going on for over a year now. I don't know how you stand it. Then again, the argument can be made that you're electing the most powerful man in the world, whereas we are merely electing the leader of Canada. Big difference there.

Listen--you've heard a few things about us Canucks I'd like to dispel. One, we aren't all sanctimonious assholes. True, there are a few of those in government, but our government keeps getting elected largely by one province out of thirteen. (Unfortunately, that province is mine.)

Two, not all of us think George Bush is completely out to lunch. It's true that if only Canadians could vote on Tuesday, Kerry would win in a landslide. But there are a few of us who wish it would be otherwise.

We had an election earlier this year, too. And I noticed dur…

Ever thought about going to jail?

Once upon a time, long, LONG ago, and in a different world than this, crime was not a social problem. It wasn't a sociological problem, an economic problem, not a geographical or racial or cultural problem. No, the problem of crime rested in one place, and in one place alone: squarely on the shoulders of the criminal.
In sixteenth century New England, if you committed a crime, you weren't sent to gaol at all. No, you dug your own gaol--shovel provided free of charge. Your gaol was as deep as you could make it, digging from sunup to sundown. Once you'd finished that task, down you went. Some bars were thrown over your hole and there you'd sit. You were equipped with a single all-purpose bucket that served as your privy and your plate both. Stale bread and brackish water made up your diet, augmented perhaps with some gristly meat on Sundays.
Mind you, this sort of punishment wasn't for your murderers or rapists. No, those were summarily hanged. The "Hole-iday Inn…

The Naming of Cats

I'm far from the first writer to reflect on the importance of naming cats. T.S. Eliot thought it sacred. Tad Williams, in his Tailchaser's Song, was the first, so far as I know, to recognize that cats have a name for the human world they deign to interact with and a much more revealing name they use among each other.
Our present cats, as I have said, are named Streak and B.B. Streak was named both for the white thatch of hair amongst the gray and for her propensity to run around the house like lubed lightning. B.B. is short for Bug-Butt. After years of devotion to these kitties, they have granted my request to know their Felish names.
A few words of explanation. Felish naming is a delicate affair, and Felish names are incredibly complicated to human ears. They almost always consist of eight or more syllables which are extremely difficult to render into English phonetics, and they can be even harder to translate.
Technically, the first part of every cat's Felish name is …

Test post

This is a test. This is only a test. If this was a real blog entry, it would never have been published. Every time I attempt to publish something this weekend, the blog frog comes along and eats it up. Are you there, Blog Frog? Better not be, ya bugger.

Is it me, or... the news getting more and more stupid every day?
Take today, for example.
Kids are now using webcams to film themselves in street races.
The federal government is selling items seized from drug dealers.
China is fourth on Canada's list of foreign aid recipients, even thought the Chinese government is looking to spend umpty-billion dollars buying Noranda. The money, said an Ottawa flunkie, is going to support "social and political reform" in China.
As of today, Bush is still leading in the polls.

Robert Heinlein dubbed the last half of the 20th century "the Crazy Years": a time of rocketing illiteracy, public apathy and general inanity and insanity. If only he could have lived to see the world we're dealing with now: people eating sheep's asshole on prime time television for money; asshole sheep voters in the millions absolutely certain that Iraq was behind 9/11; fundycostals (tm) everywhere uniting to try to "save" marriage…

The fur is flying...

Got a call at work today letting me know that friends of a colleague of Eva's found an abandoned Maine Coon Cat in Mississauga this morning. Apparently this cat was found in an old tire by the side of the road. She must have been recently tossed out of a car, because she jumped right in to their car as if she figured 'hey! My ride home!'
Instead that ride took her to a Waterloo hair salon, where the staff and clientele promptly fell in love with her (and she with them). Eva went over at lunch to see her and make sure she was (a) flea and otherwise disease-free and (b) female. We have two formerly female cats already; introducing a male would have probably resulted in felinious assault.

We came to get it after work. Never have I met a cat so self-assured, particularly at five months, which is what we estimate this one to be. She purrs at the drop of a hat, so violently I thought she might come apart at the seams. In the car ahs was more curious than nervous...I simply cradl…

Divine Revelation...

Our friends Dana and Bowe invited us to the christening of their daughter Brooke today. So off we went early this morning to Palmerston to help prepare the 'post-baptismal fellowship lunch'...for sixty-some-odd people. There were a lot of beans served. I think a sizeable number of Palmerston Anglicans are boldly putt-putting around their houses this evening.
I'll tell you a secret, dear blog: I wasn't looking forward to this day overmuch. I haven't been in a church since my wedding and haven't attended a Sunday service in over ten years.
The wet snow that came down this morning in Palmerston certainly improved my mood. While the rest of the folks around me succumbed to gloom and grump, I was whistling Christmas carols. There's something about the first snowfall that sets my heart to singing. Not much of a chance of wiping sweat out of my eyes for the next half-year or so! Precipitation that doesn't adhere to my glasses! Blizzards! (Yeah, I'm surprise…

I'm ill. Bwaahhh.

I'm not feeling the best of late: head clogged like a drain stuffed with peanut butter, energy level guttering like a campfire after midnight, general sense that I'm living in a cement mixer. I'm trying to just inhale my bitchiness along with all that (snorg!) mucus, but there is seepage.
You have to admire women. Most of them will, in fact, admit to feeling sick, but will act as if they're 100% anyway, thus making us men feel guilty for wanting to sleep about 25 and a half hours a day. And oh, the urge to be cuddled, loved, cared for...the urge to SHARE THIS GODDAMN overwhelming at times. Here, c'mere, let me give you a deep soul kiss. There, now you're sick too. Misery loves company, dontcha know
But no, women would never think like that. Or if they do, they keep it bottled up along with their snot and sick-spit.
They're missing out!
Admit it: it's kind of fun to be sick. It brings back memories of staying home from school, warm Neo Citren …

You can't go home again...

I was telling my boss, Larry, about my plans for today. "We're going to visit my old hometown of Bramalea", I informed him. He asked when I'd left; I told him 1980, and the first thing he said was "You'll probably find it's not as, umm, white as you remember."
Well, I knew that--friends of Eva's parents moved out of neighbouring Brampton a few years back and they had told us they were pretty sure there were now no Caucasians allowed within city limits. The city is now widely known as "Bramladesh".
Anyway, a little colour in the current denizens of the city wasn't going to faze me. I wanted to see my first home and check out Bramalea City Centre, the mall I visited weekly as a child.
We journeyed up the 410 towards what used to be Highway 7. (I'm pretty sure, incidentally, that the 410 wasn't even there when I was.) The sign flashes by on the right: BRAMPTON POPULATION 302,000
Yike. That's damn near doubled in 25 years!
A door-to-door salesman came calling, and a ten-year-old boy answered the door.
"Hello, lad. Is your mother home?"
"Naw. She ain't here."
"Oh, then how about your father?"
"Ma 'n him went somewheres."
"Dear boy," the salesman said, "where's your grammar?"
"Oh, she's in the kitchen bakin' cookies."

I'm currently reading Eats, Shoots and Leaves, which is--wait for it!--an engrossing and comical dissertation on punctuation. It appeals to my Inner Grammar Demon.
Now, many of you may be able to look at a sign that says "Book's, Video's, DVD's Sold Here" without wincing. I have always equated language with music and to me, that sign actually causes pain...a pain analagous to that I feel when I hear a note that's jarringly out of tune.
The author of Eats, Shoots and Leaves--which is a phenomenal bestseller, incidentally--says that we Grammar People have a 'seventh sense…

October already?

Yeesh. Wasn't it just June? Now we're coming up on the time of year I love...and hate.

I love it, first of all, because it's our anniversary. Four years. Sometimes it seems like twenty, (never in a bad way, mind you); other times it seems like yesterday.
As October 14th approaches, I find myself in a very introspective and retrospective frame of mind. We have come a long way in four years. I'm just as happy as I was the day I got married. Perhaps more. Marriage, for any singletons out there, isn't the trap you might think it is. What it is, is single life...with security.
I hate this time of year because it's Oktoberfest. We got married in October for several reasons, one of which was that it got us out of this boozecan for at least part of the (spew) festivities.
. "Oktoberfest is a celebration of German culture" , they'll tell you. I have one word for that contention and that word is


This town has almost forty thousand univer…

Going Moldy....

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