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Showing posts from November, 2006


Tomorrow it starts.
Well, it started sometime in late September: that's when I heard my first Christmas carol of the season, and they're in full bloom now over the satellite system at work. I got my Christmas cookies well before Hallowe'en and saw the first Christmas lights go up on our street sometime in early November. Ridiculous.
I've always considered the first of December the official kickoff to what is--surely sarcastically--referred to as the "holiday" season, no matter how early retailers try to get the jump on it. In my world you wouldn't be allowed to even mention Christmas before December 1. Or better yet, retailers would be allowed one month of festive orgy: if they chose to start it on the first of November, all traces would have to be removed by close tonight.
Oh, to be a kid again. Remember that? When the "holiday season" actually meant two weeks of holidays? When the only Christmas stress was felt on Christmas Eve, waiting for that …

I'm against crime. Why aren't judges?

Some things about me have certainly changed over time. I've become a calmer person thanks largely to my wife. I've lost all my homophobia and most of my racism. I still have a materialistic streak, but it's much more easily held in check than it once was.
One place my attitudes have not changed, and likely will never change, is towards crime and punishment. I'm unabashedly right-wing in my theories on both, and nothing I've seen through my limited time on earth has done anything to shake my convictions in the slightest.
Eva's done wonders for my perceptions, broadening my mind in countless ways, admitting shades of gray into a black/white world. But my thoughts about crime and criminals long predate my wife. Liberal types would call them antediluvian; also, probably, barbaric. That's fine. Barbaric simply means 'strange, foreign', and it's been ages since I thought I was anything else.
Every time I hear people gibbering about the "root causes&…

Political Troika

The politics (from poly-'many' and tics-'small, loathsome insects') have just been a-scuttling along lately, haven't they? The 'bin's been crammed full of life, lately, so it's been an effort to dip my nose into the river of prattling discourse emanating out of Ottawa, Queen's Park, and my own municipality.
Speaking of my own municipality, we recently had municipal elections...and I was firmly in the majority of residents who did not vote. I haven't missed a provincial or federal election since I came of age, but I've never bestirred myself to vote for anything local. I realize this is shameful behaviour, but I have my excuses. Some of them I've almost succeeded in elevating to the level of reasons.
For one thing, nobody was running on a platform I could support. That's not surprising, since the only municipal platform I could support involves the dissolution of several local governments. We here in Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge, in th…

Georgia On Our Minds

So things have a way of happening rather suddenly in my life. Then not happening. Then happening again. Remember that old Donovan Leitch chestnut, the one that goes first, there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is?
Well, first, there was a puppy, then there was no puppy, now...there is!
There's an animal pipeline running through Eva's work. A couple of years back, it belched out Dory, one of the loveliest cats it's ever been my pleasure to know. Unfortunately, our B.B.-kitten thought otherwise, giving us an unmistakeable ultimatum: it's either me, she said, Get that thing out of my house. So we did.
Two years later, and not long after we were told, in no uncertain terms, that our Tux was meant to be an only puppy, the pipeline has squirted out Tux's baby sister, Georgia.
She's part English Bulldog, part Boxer, part Rottweiler, and all ugly. But I mean that in the nicest possible way: she's adorably cute-ugly. Like a tiny orang-udog.

Consumerism run amok

The Sony PlayStation 3 went on sale across Canada for about three minutes this morning. People had been camping out for as much as three days for their chance to plunk down over $700.00. Many of them had no intention of ever unwrapping their game consoles; in radio interviews, people said the first thing they'd do when they got home was put their prize up for sale on eBay, where PS3s have been bid as high as $3990.95 as of this writing.
I can't think of a single item in the whole wide world for which I would be willing to camp out three days...and that's if I got it for free. That people are willing to do it for a videogame system--something that offers them no tangible benefit--is simply beyond me.
I understand the profit motive. But I doubt most of the people lined up bothered to attempt a true accounting.
Let's try one together. Feel free to insert your own figures wherever you think I'm talking out of my ass.
Okay, so the lowest list price I've been able t…


Today I'm going to break two of my Cardinal Rules For Blogging:

Rule One: Never air dirty laundry.
Rule Two: Never piggyback off another blogger's post.

Truth be told, there's rarely any dirty laundry at all to air, around here. And yes, I would--probably--tell you if there was a giant smelly load...I just wouldn't necessarily detail every skidmark and bloodstain.

As for Rule Two, well, that just screams copout to me. It's one reason you won't find too many memes cluttering up this here Breadbin (another is that almost every segment of a meme really demands a blog entry in and of itself).
I especially hate to filch off people like Magazine Man , who is, tale for tale, the best pure storyteller I've run across in this big ol' blogosphere. But his post referenced above coincided, rather eerily, with something similar in my own life...a yellowish, smoky load of dirty laundry.

My beloved Eva started smoking again.

She's trying to quit, which is great, but for…

My Northern Adventure

by Tuxedo "Woof-woof" Breadner

It started Friday night with the appearance of a suitcase. I've seen that thing before. It means Mommy and Daddy are going away, leaving me someplace that's not Tux's house. Sometimes I get to see Abby and Bear and their Mommy Auntie Susie, who's the best Mommy any puppy could have if they don't have my Mommy.

Here's Abby and Bear and yours truly at Auntie Susie's house.

Other times they put me in this big place with lots and lots of other dogs and we run and play-with-the-Tux all over.

Saturday morning, after Mommy and Daddy got-the-poop-out-of-the-Tux about sixteen times (and I only pooped once, ha-ha) I went back into Tux's house to find Daddy picking up the Tux-pillow and taking it to the CAR.
Well, this is unusual. That's my pillow. If it's going for a CAR-RIDE then that means TUX is going for a CAR-RIDE too. I'm not letting the Tux-pillow out of my sight.
Sure enough, there's Daddy jingling his ke…

Old Rummy's gone, and Bush must be burning!

I don't understand the American political system.
That shouldn't be a surprise: I don't claim to understand the Canadian political system, either. But these midterm Congressional elections have me puzzled...
...they're midterm, for one thing. That's odd. I mean, isn't a "term" the period of time that elected officials serve? Checking further, I find that the political term in the U.S. lower house is just two years. Wow. Hard to believe anything gets done in that short a time.
In this case, surprising absolutely nobody, the Democrats have regained control of the House of Representatives. So far as I can guess, that's like Stephen Harper being the only Conservative amongst a sea of Liberals. How that would work I have no idea, and likewise I can't imagine how Bush is even supposed to pretend to govern, now. (Yeah, yeah, I know, he's been pretending to govern for six years now, rimshot!)
I tried to explain to my wife, who couldn't care less a…

Strangers in a very strange land

I came home from work the other day to find a friendly neighbour from two doors down (I think), armed with a giant leaf-blower, busily fwooshing a pile of autumn's detritus off my front lawn and to the curb. I believe this to be the same man responsible for the snowbanks abutting my driveway on either side, with bare pavement between, in the dead of winter.

I thanked him quite heartily. Raking and, for that matter, shovelling) have never been favourite tasks chez Breadbin. Your host is not what you'd call an outdoor kind of guy. At any rate, my neighbour waved off my thanks and zigzagged back to his own house, fwooshing leaves all the way, and that was the end of it. I don't know his name. I'm not completely certain where he lives. And I hate to admit this, but I'm not keen to find out either of those details. My wife would like to gift him with some of her homemade chocolates, and I can get behind that sentiment, but--count me among those who think good fences m…

Well I'll be a SAP-sucker...

We did it.
We went live without going dead. Only a few glitches--for a while we had no way to enter or send orders to our warehouse, for one thing. All three warehouse loads that were slated to arrive yesterday afternoon showed up early this morning instead, back to back to back. I had anticipated this, but I could have done without the three separate emails telling me all was fine, all manner of things were fine, and that all loads would arrive on time. Sure, guys, pull the other one, wouldja?
In the manner of all upgrades everywhere, they've managed to introduce a few "features" of dubious value, things that create more work with little perceived benefit--at least at store level. I do hope my company is growing its own forests, because the stream of paper coming down to the stores has suddenly become a torrent. On the other hand, there are nice handy-dandy things like the ability to change dozens of prices at once. The invoices from the warehouse are a lot more readable.…

Crunch time

Y'know, if I hadn't just got back from holidays...I'd need a holiday right about now. Our entire company, all banners, is undergoing a major computer system transformation and "go live" is this weekend. The final two training sessions took place while I was away, so I've had to glean what I can from the training manuals. I have a reasonable idea what's going on, but the sheer volume of information is a bit intimidating. Emails from head office come in seemingly every few minutes. Do this! Don't do that! Stand on your head and meow like a kitten!

"Go Live" only hopes it doesn't mean we're all about to get zotted.

I've had to let my dairy department slide, as this other has been almost a full-time proposition. I have an assistant down there holding things together with spit and baling wire, but it's touch and go. Thankfully, we are getting a part-time administrative assistant to take some of the heat off. Once I've got …