Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Every Sport Puck No

rant sports has a very apropos article about ESPN and their indifference to all things hockey.

This is why I can't stand TSN 1290 when the jets aren't playing. Non stop NBA and football and baseball from their ESPN feed. Nothing else. I'd rather listen to dead air or a high pitched buzzing noise or babies crying on a loop. TSN Radio should seriously work on dropping ESPN. Not that I don't find other sports interesting, but ugh, they're just so tedious.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The end is Nye

Consider the following

So I'm reading the Winnipeg metro today, boxing day 2011, and they've got half the paper devoted to end of the world prophecies. Now, I've.. WE'VE dealt with this before... 12 years ago.. but some people are simply eternal optimists and refuse to give up. If the Mayan calendar ends at the end of 2012, then obviously it means the end of the world as we know it. Heck, REM broke up this year.. maybe they know something. Hopefully they feel fine.

Bill Bill Bill!

So back to the metro. They asked 412 individuals who the best and brightest they would bring with them. Top 3? Barack Obama, a doctor, and the dalai lama. Doctor. .. I'm OK with. But Obama? Why? Who needs politicians? And the dalai lama doesn't make sense. Why pick a seriously old Tibetan monk when he's just going to reincarnate anyways? What a waste!

Nye Nye Nye!

Other choices included brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.. yeah. and Keanu Reeves and Oprah Winfrey as celebrities they would bring if they could bring a celebrity. Meh.

But the most ridiculous thing I read was Adam Carolla's response to the question "What is your last meal" if the world was going to end. He actually said he'd go to the busiest restaurant and keep changing his order three or four times. First of all - good luck finding a restaurant open at the end of the world willing to deal with your smug self-entitled bullshit. Even if he's joking .. it doesn't come across as a joke, but Adam Carolla's never been funny to me.. even if, it's still such a douchebaggy thought to put out there. And second, its the end of the world, everyones going to be looting and raping and pillaging. You're going to be hiding in your bomb shelter eating cans of beans hiding and shivering in a corner making no noise in case you're discovered by the last remnants of humanity.

Bill Nye the science guy!

Anyways, its all moot, the world isn't going to end in 2012. Right Bill? Right.

Boxing day was so bad this year

I got a concussion.

Seriously, I couldn't get my phone to connect to MTS in St James it was so busy.. but there was nothing worth buying.  It made no sense.

Cosmos - With Ilya Bryzgalov

Friday, December 23, 2011

SOPA - The NHL wants to Censor the internet.

How would you like an American law that basically censors the entire internet the way China is censored? Without any real oversight? Guess what! That law is currently being pushed in the United States after many large multinational companies paid off "lobbied" some politicians enough to push it through. Among those companies are all of the major professional sports leagues of North America, including the NHL.

Now, I get where the NHL is coming from. Obviously here in Winnipeg, there are counterfeit Jets jerseys being bought and sold. It's worse on the internet. Obviously the NHL wants to protect their business. There are also streaming sites out there that they might wish to have shut down.. though I consider the proliferation of streaming sites a reaction to the needs of consumers not being met, not piracy that needs to be stamped out. I mean nothing is more infuriating to a Jets fan stuck in Vancouver not being able to watch TSN Jets. If I could subscribe to TSN Jets through a $10 web stream and not have to pay for basic cable, I'd pay it. Granted I'm happy with the radio feed.

But SOPA is to anti-counterfeiting and copyright protection what the Code of Hammurabai is to family law. It's akin to dropping a nuke on a city in order to kill a terrorist. It incriminates far too many people and gives far too sweeping powers to individuals and entities that CAN'T BE TRUSTED to use them.

Obviously as a Canadian, there is little we can actually do, even though this law effects us, we cannot threaten an American politician with votes. We get all the "benefits" of these laws with none of the say. Lucky us, to be serfs in a globalization game of thrones.

We can boycott companies who do support (foolishly) this law. GoDaddy recently backed down from their pro-SOPA stance thanks to the THREAT of a boycott. But lets be realistic, nobody is going to boycott the NHL. Especially here in Winnipeg. But we can hopefully communicate to the powers that be our distaste for this entire premise. Being anti-SOPA is not being Pro-piracy. Piracy is not something that can be legislated away anyways. Obviously as consumers everyone wants creators to profit from their works. I myself write this blog and would hate to have others steal it and post it under their own name. That said, a bad law is a bad law, and insane people who push those laws because they think theres something in it for them need to step back and rethink what stepping off the edge of a cliff will do to them.

These giant companies that are most in favour of SOPA? They want us to go back to the days of AOL or Compuserve or prodigy where they control everything we see and hear. They want to turn the Internet into a passive media where they profit off of every bit.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas wishlists and Retail details

I keep reading articles about retail businesses complaining how the recession or online shopping is hurting their sales.  I have to disagree.  What is hurting sales is the fact that every single store sells the exact same Chinese crap as every other store.  If I want to buy something, often I'm FORCED to buy online because local selection is non existent.  There is no variety.  Especially between large chain stores. 
That's probably the reason specialty stores are coming out relatively unscathed.  Good for them. 

Canadian retail selection is horrible.  If you look at products available in the USA that aren't available here you can see how bad it is.  While price is always a consideration,  as long as people aren't being horribly gouged its not a deal killer.

Why anyone does shop retail in Canada is beyond me.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

To the Jets fan with the sign "Teemu we forgive you"

Forgive him for what? Being a class act? Being one of the greatest all time hockey players?

You're an idiot, and you made the people around you look like idiots.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Daddy's girl Paris Jackson

So I'm reading today's metro winnipeg newspaper and Paris Jackson, Michael's daughter, is talking about her decision to take up acting. Which is great. Good luck to her I wish her all the success in the world ..

But what causes me concern and pushes me to make this blog post is how she says her decision to act is due to her father.  In an upcoming interview on Ellen she says "My dad was in the movie Moonwalker and I knew he could sing really well, but I didn't know he could act.  I saw that and I said, "Wow I want to be just like him."

Now I'm one of the few people in the world who sat through Moonwalker for its entire duration.  Horrible horrible movie.  Michael Jackson was a brilliant singer and dancer, but as far as acting is concerned .. not so good.  In fact if you think Michaels role in Moonwalker was impressive, I worry for your sanity.  Its bad, its bad, you know it.  It's up there with mariah carreys glitter as one of the top 5 reasons singers shouldn't act.  Fortunately marky mark and eminem are arguments in the other direction.  Jamon.. heehee.

Boo Who?

With regards to the notion that the Winnipeg Jets taking money from other segments of society.. such as donations to such and such or visits to the arts or theatres or concert hall or what have you.. TOO BAD SO SAD. You've all had 15 years of support without the Jets here. But now you have competition, tough competition at that. It's not even about the money, its about time and interest levels.

I have never visited the Ballet. I have no interest in dance of any kind. I rarely go to the concert hall. While I do appreciate the distinct sound of a live orchestra, I can live without it. As for going to plays or what have you.. its not something I go out of my way for.

But does the Jets crowd really intersect with the Ballet or concert-going crowd all that much? I highly doubt it. But the Jets have better marketing. I've never seen any piece of advertising that would convince me to visit the ballet.

The point is, if you're not getting fans in the seats.. leave to the American south for 15 years. Then miraculously come back. Instant sellouts. Go for it.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

If I suddenly became a billionaire tycoon

And I had to build an Asian headquarters for my awesome company that sells I dunno.. working hoverboards, I'd totally hire a feng shui expert and do the complete opposite of what they recommend. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Wheres wald..Winnipeg?

It must be difficult for Americans to find winnipeg on a map, all tucked away down there.  So far I've seen winnipeg placed in BC and Alberta in articles about the jets.  At least they put us in the west.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Building Better Borders

In my opinion any politician who votes in favour of the US Border "Deal" should be tried and sent to prison for treason. I'm a citizen of Canada, the USA has no business dictating how Canada runs its business. The USA has no business poking its nose into ours. Imagine if this was China we were giving this information to? Or WWII Germany? Disgusting. If you voted Conservative knowing that this raw deal was in the works, shame on you. If you want to be an American so badly, apply for U.S. Citizenship.

Santa vs Dragons

So I'm watching CBC (Finally available in high definition in Winnipeg with an antenna) and a commercial for Dragons Den comes up. Santa Claus is going to visit the Dragons Den.

Now I don't know how this is going to work out.. but it got me imagining a scenario where Santa comes up to the Dragons looking for 10% of his North Pole based corporation in exchange for oh I dunno, two million dollars.. then proceeds to explain his business plan of giving toys for free to good little boys and girls.

I'd watch the heck out of that.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Using street name pronounciations to prove someone is a winnipeger

Notre dame - its pronounced no ter dame .  Why?  Nobody knows. 

Leila - its not Layla like the song its leela like the futurama and Doctor Who characters.  Why?  Nobody knows!

Lagimodiere - watching an out of towner try to say this word is incredibly fascinating.

Portage - yes its derived from the French word portage, but we don't say it that way.  Again.. no idea why.

Any other street names out there that have unique winnipeg pronounciations?  Let me know in the comments!

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Dominoes Pizza and other Facebook whores.

Dominoes, if you want me to like you on Facebook, giving me a 50% off deal only if I go through facebook is not going to do it. In fact, if you want my love, its a lot more expensive. Too bad most people appear to have low standards. My like vote will cost you $10,000 dollars. In the meantime, I will be removing myself from all Dominos pizza mailing lists and ordering pizza elsewhere from now on. I don't have any desire to spend my money on companies who are facebook whores.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

NHL Realignment

So the NHL is set to do a re-alignment with Winnipeg in a central time zone-ish conference. This is probably the best solution, but I think they should bring back the conference names. I miss the old division names like Smyth division, Adams division, Patrick division, and Norris divisions. And the Wales and Campbell conferences rather than the Eastern and Western conferences. It just sounded classier.

I suppose they could go an updated route and instead of old owners they can name the new conferences after the greatest players of all time. Thus the Gretzky Conference with Edmonton and LA and the rest, perhaps the Hull Conference with Winnipeg and Chicago and so forth, the Richard conference with Montreal (or the Orr conference? I dunno!), and.. perhaps the Lemieux conference. It kind of works out nicely.





Conference AConference BConference CConference D
AnaheimChicagoBostonCarolina
CalgaryColumbusBuffaloNew Jersey
ColoradoDallasFloridaN.Y. Islanders
EdmontonDetroitMontrealN.Y. Rangers
Los AngelesMinnesotaOttawaPhiladelphia
PhoenixNashvilleTampa BayPittsburgh
San JoseSt. LouisTorontoWashington
VancouverWinnipeg

Monday, December 05, 2011

Moose Droppings


Apparently the Philadelphia 76'ers are having a "pick the mascot contest". Now, I hate basketball, and I'm really not a mascot aficionado, but heres the thing. One of the proposed mascots is named Phil E. Moose. A Moose.

What do Moose have to do with Philadelphia? I guess maybe they have one at the zoo there?

I understand where they get the "Phil E." from, but Mick E. Moose of the Manitoba Moose and now the Winnipeg Jets is so close that it's freaky.

Perhaps a cease and desist order is in order?

Interestingly, the Flyers don't have a mascot.

Listening to TSN Radio 1290 (and other local radio stations)


For a while I was content to listen to TSN 1290 in winnipeg using the tunein radio app for android.. but I ultimately wanted a better solution. Ideally it'd be great if cell phones included AM/FM radio and voice recording options, but for some reason the more convergence we get the less there is. Ultimately features are left out because hey, you can use the internet and stream it. And nobody uses AM/FM radio anyways! Though you can usually get FM radio. Supposedly AM doesn't mix well with mp3 decoding somehow. That's what I heard. I don't understand it, nor do I care. Now, sure there are cheap analogue AM/FM radios all over with a dial that you tune to the station you want.. and if that's good enough for you, great. But those ALWAYS break. The dial stops dialing because you dialed it too far, or the volume is no good. I wanted a digital solution. I can press a button, and voila, radio station, and it even says what frequency I'm tuned into on the LCD screen.

Oddly enough I found what I wanted at the source (formerly the source by circuit city but now Bell source). Or maybe it's not so odd considering TSN 1290 and the Source are both owned by Bell. Yes they're one of the most evil companies on the planet next to Monsanto and nestle and shell.. but they have - until December 14 at least - a digital AM/FM pocket radio tuner by Centrios on sale for 24.99+taxes. Regular price is 50 bucks so it's half price right now. The nice thing about it is it is digital. No knob on the side and a clock and digital screen that lights up. I got pretty good reception with it. $25 is a fair price for what you're getting. These devices in this format are really difficult to find.

Seriously its about the size of a pocket digital recorder. Very portable. In fact it'd be nice if they had a recording capability but what can you do.

Takes 2 AAA batteries .. it'd be nice if it took a cell phone battery that recharged with a USB port but beggars can't be choosers.

Lights up in orange on the led screen when you use it. Even has dbbs. Dynamic Bass Boost.

Also has a slot for putting a carrying strap through, and you can even toggle a lock button so you don't accidentally change the station. All in all a good deal for a Christmas present.

It looks exactly like the Coby CX90. Which comes in Silver and Black and has a blue backlight as opposed to the orange of the Centrios. It's probably the same device, and you can get the CX 90 for $10-$20 online, but it's hard to find anyone selling them in Winnipeg and you'll probably have to pay shipping and wait for it to arrive anyways, so if you want something right away, the Centrios is on sale at the source until the 14th of December.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Juice(idiot)box

So I'm listening to the illegal curve hockey show and the most infuriating commercial I've heard in a while came up. Apparently there is a digital channel called "juicebox" which bills itself as television you can leave on for your kids without parental supervision or worry.. then they state that their programming consists of Justin beiber and selina Gomez and other such horrible horrible role models. If I had kids, I'd feel safer forcing them to watch cartoons all day than this horrid tween bile. Basically, if you subscribe to this channel then in my mind you're a horrible person and a horrible parent.

Hey you know its true.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Greed traps

So the new extension to the Chief Peguis Trail opened today (Finally), and according to reports from CTV, they already had a police speed trap set up. REALLY? Really, police? It's a new road, people are just getting adjusted to it, learning the speed limit, and you're going there? Shameful and blatantly opportunistic. I hope they didn't catch anybody speeding.

Hopefully they start construction of the extension the other way from Chief Peguis to McPhillips next year. I can't see it costing as much, I doubt it even needs a single overpass. Once thats done, Main Street won't be jammed all the way down between 3 and 5:30pm.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Nickelback terrifies thousands at Grey Cup half time show

Many dead, including the chance of the Blue Bombers chance of winning this years Grey cup championship.

Anyone notice how Nickelback performed for the BC AND Detroit Lions? Whats with them and Lions? Subtle RBC sponsorship?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Privacy in the age of Starbucks


Ever wished you could browse the internet or even do work on your computer without someone looking over your shoulder at what you're doing? Well, over at instructibles.com they show you one method. Granted, you risk destroying your old LCD monitor if you make a mistake.. but still.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Privacy-monitor-made-from-an-old-LCD-Monitor/

It involves basically taking the polarized film off of a monitor, leaving you looking at a white screen. Then you apply the polarized film to a pair of glasses, thus allowing you to be the only one able to view your monitor (unless someone else with polarized film glasses wanders by.

I wonder why monitor companies don't use techniques like this to allow us to switch back and forth between a basic mode and a private mode.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Tele-lack-of-vision.

Why don't I subscribe to cable TV? It's not because I hate paying for cable, though I do, it's because I hate being locked in to a $H!TTY TV BOX.

The whole home PVR by Shaw is pretty cool, but you know what's cooler? Being able to plug your cable in to your TV and not having every HD channel encrypted . It's maddening that they encrypt channels that are available OVER THE AIR UNENCRYPTED and in even better quality. What is the reasoning behind that? It makes no sense!

You know what I'd like? an HD Homerun Prime. It's a cablecard compatible digital tuner that plugs in to your router so that you can watch TV from any connected computer. I have the regular HD Homerun, which uses only Over the Air digital TV as its source, and it's great. But I can't use an HD Homerun Prime because Cable Card isn't offered as a solution in Western Canada either. Thanks for nothing, industry Canada and the CRTC.

The HD Homerun Prime is just an example. But sooner or later you wont be able to watch TV on your laptop or otherwise. Sorry, customer, but your needs are irrelevant.

So while I'd like to subscribe to TSN Jets, And would even pay for basic cable to do it, being unable to watch it on my own terms has lost them a customer. Not piracy, not netflix. Their own poor service and pathetic restrictions.

They can continue to attempt to enshrine DRM into law, pay off as many politicians as they can, and it won't help them get a single cent out of me. Providing me with what I want at a fair price will.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Feelin warm warm warm

With the temperature in Winnipeg reaching 8 degrees Celsius today, Maybe the NHL should just leave the Jets in the Southeast division.

I've said it before and I'll say it again.. Yay for Global Warming!

3-2-1 Contact .. lenses

Dailytech is reporting on a Contact Lens being developed with text and image display.. Now, this is a great sign. I'm thrilled that progress is being made in this field. Augmented reality could really use something like this. Imagine wearing a contact lens and being able to see text floating in front of you telling you theres an incoming call from your mom. Or that the road you're traveling is undergoing construction up ahead. Or while you're driving the speed limit of 60 is constantly posted in the top right corner of your peripheral vision.. perhaps updated not by a data connection but by installing RFID type chips on every street sign. Anyways, there are a lot of applications for this technology even in its most primitive form. And even more entertaining ones should it reach a more usable state.

However, I'd prefer to wear a pair of glasses instead. Easier to slip on and off, and imagine wearing one of those expensive contact lenses and losing it. Plus while they have the text and image display set up, I doubt you can install any sort of practical wireless receiver or memory or processor into something as small as a contact lens.

Of course, the technology has been around forever, its just that people haven't been able to figure out how to keep it from exploding when it encounters people with power levels over 9000. I mean, with a contact lens, you could lose an eye! So yeah, glasses only for me.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Are mandatory minimums the answer to the NHL's penalty problem?

The Onion News Network has a brilliant article pointing out a "study" showing that in the NHL, being sent to the penalty box does nothing to curb the behaviour that got the players sent there, and that some even wear it as a badge of honour.

If you've watched the Jets this year, you'll notice that they have spent a lot of time in the penalty box, repeated instances of being sent to the penalty box game after game. Obviously the coach would prefer not to have his players in the penalty box, and the NHL would prefer not to be seen as a revolving door of justice!

Hockey historian and Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper to the rescue. Mandatory Minimums are his Conservative Party's solution to the woes befalling Canada (falling rates of crime). Build more for profit prisons, find reasons to build them up. If people are against going to prison, call them socialists or crime apologists. Win-Win!

Imagine applying mandatory minimum sentencing to the NHL. Remember that high sticking penalty that wasn't deserved a few nights ago? Imagine if it was the third time that player (I honestly can't remember who it was) got a penalty this season. Guess what, no penalty box for you, douchebag! BANNED FOREVER FROM HOCKEY. Yeah that's right. That's how mandatory minimums work.

That's why you hear about people in California and Texas going to prison for 20 years for stealing a loaf of bread from the store.

If the Conservatives were serious about stopping crime, they'd be going after actual criminals. But they get a slap on the wrist and a hefty year end bonus.

I hear what you're saying. You're saying Reed, ref's have poor eyesight and selective hearing. They aren't as dependable as the RCMP or the local police, who are never wrong and never put innocent people in jail. Well yes, you're right. Police are model citizens who would never abuse their power. But what if, what if some of those police officers are really alien shapeshifters posing as police? Can we take that chance? Is it really wise to submit to their infiltration and eventual conquering of earth? I say no. If you hate aliens, say no to Bill C-10.

Winnipeg has crime problems. We don't need Judge Dredd and over-reaching and ultimately bad laws to solve them.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

On the Phoenix Coyotes situation

Now that the NHL is back in Winnipeg and so are the Jets, I don't really mind if Phoenix sticks around.  Easier to buy a plane ticket and tickets to the Coyotes than get a ticket in Winnipeg.. and they make for a natural enemy.. Unfortunately I can't see that happening for much longer.  I just don't see anyone wanting to own that team in Phoenix. 

Now obviously the first solution would be for someone to buy the team and move them.  It's the most likely scenario, but I hate the idea of a team moving from too many different cities and carrying the records of all previous teams with them. 

It might not be as profitable in the short term, but maybe if the Coyotes do fail, the players should be dispersed and the team and its history could be merged with the current Winnipeg Jets.    A minor contraction of the league, and in a year or two you can introduce expansion teams to Quebec or Seattle or what have you. 

Team mergers aren't unusual. Cleveland Barons who were once the California Golden seals merged with the Minnesota North Stars.. Who when they became the Dallas Stars split their roster with the expansion San Jose Sharks, owned by the same people who owned the Cleveland Barons in the same market the golden seals played in.. You know what, I guess it's confusing either way.

I was hoping the Phoenix Roadrunners merged with the WHA Winnipeg Jets at some point to somehow make everything come full circle, but no.  Oh well.  I still think it would be the best option.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The wheels on the bus go round and round

The price of Winnipeg Transit goes up and up
up and up
up and up

The price of Winnipeg Transit goes up and up
every new year.

Like everything else in the world, and as it does every year, the price of Winnipeg Transit is going up.. This time a whole .25 cents.  To help pay for rapid transit of course.

I buy a monthly bus pass.  I do own a drivers license, and if I felt like it I could get myself a vehicle, but I prefer to take the bus, disgusting smelling vagrants, crying babies, fat people, the crazies and everyone else.  I don't know how much the price of a monthly pass will increase, but I don't really care if it goes up another $5 a month. 

Do I believe that this is necessary?  It's probably not.  It's just an easy way to get more money from the people.  Will it get Winnipeg a rapid transit network?   Not in the next few years.. and in a few years or so inflation will negate any increases in the bus price towards the city budget.  Plus, it'll probably start to go up 5 cents every year in another year or two.

However, it won't effect me.  It might even make my bus ride more pleasant if it keeps drunks and bed bug ridden drug addicts off the bus.  But then again, it probably won't keep those people off.  They often get on for free anyways and stink up the ride for paying customers.

If this ends up somehow spurring a light rail system for pembina and portage and perhaps through east kildonan down the old former rail line turned bicycle pathway, then good.  It won't, but hey I could be wrong.

I'm now going to say something nice about Winnipeg transit.  Yes, out of character, I know, but here we go:

One of the best things Winnipeg Transit has done in recent years is update their buses with GPS positioning and air conditioning.  Most importantly, they created a completely open API available in XML format to any developer to access this data over the web.  If you own an iphone or android phone and search for winnipeg transit, you will find a few apps that use this data to tell you if your bus is late, what buses are coming to the stop nearest you (detected with your phones GPS) and some offer other features.  I've used Winnipeg Bus Live, a recent addition to the android market.  It could use a few more features but it's pretty good already. If they update it to support integration with google maps or something, and perhaps even route planning.. that'd be neat.  But even if they don't, the API is available to any other developer out there to write their own, even if Winnipeg Transit doesn't bother with writing an official app. 

Sooner or later we may even be able to use our cell phones with NFC (oh you have an iphone and no NFC? awww sorry) to pay for or access transit.  They do plan to eliminate the stupid old coin boxes soon, so that'll be welcome too.  People really shouldn't be in the habit of paying for their bus trip in change, trying to short change the coin box by using pennies nickles and dimes.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Good news for Manitoba Hydro

 By Good news I mean of course double plus ungood news.

According to this article and many others I've read and heard about recently, we're about 3 to 5 years away from solar power being able to provide almost 100% of the electrical needs of the average home.

Imagine a world where Hydro builds a brand new dam and even spends extra money to distribute that power along the west side of lake Winnipeg, and the price and efficiency of solar power once they're ready to go basically kills all their profit (nevermind the money they're not going to be getting from the USA)


It should prove interesting to see how it all plays out.  Electric heating and solar power (I assume using some sort of energy retention system.. batteries or otherwise) will be fascinating.

When everyone stops having to pay for their utilities, I wonder what will happen.  My guess is the price of a hookup for backup power will go through the roof despite lower and lower use.  In fact the government will likely look for reasons to ban solar power if it becomes to popular and cuts off a source of profits.  Just like they're attempting to shut down the free internet worldwide to protect the interests of a small monopoly of media cartels.

But maybe the solar power breakthroughs are just wishful thinking by its proponents.  Still, considering how the price of energy, internet, cable and phone (and any other utility monopoly) goes up every year while the original investments made have been paid off for a while, imagining a world where people can once again be self sufficient and not spend their entire paycheck paying to their feudal lords the government and its appointed monpolies.

Nevermind electrical, in my opinion we're totally wasting much of the radio spectrum.   Wouldn't a society with an internet completely set up as an unstoppable and uncensorable mesh network be neat.

Also, now I'm on a tangent.  I feel now that the digital changeover has occured we should expand the FM dial to cover 76-88 MHz as well in North America.  (Channels 5 and 6 VHF).  Maybe as part of a plan to switch to DAB/Eureka-147 digital radio on a proper spectrum.  that would allow for an FM band of 76-108 MHz.  76-88 MHz has been used in Japan for years, and they've been known to make tons of radios.  It could work to expand the radio dial.  If there was anyone intelligent working for the government of Canada it might be profitable..  But everything I said probably sounds like gobbledygook to them.  Sigh.

Anyways, tl;dr.  Solar Power is gaining efficiency and could be a contender in 5 years, magically transforming Hydro's business plan into toilet paper.  Radio dial could be expanded and service improved if someone forward thinking existed in politics.  But they don't. 

I wonder though how solar power users in Canada deal with snow.    I should do some research on that.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Tea and grumpets

Apparently the Canadian band the tea party are touring again after a long hiatus.  I honestly thought and hoped and prayed they were gone forever but alas no.  And you know who I blame?

The American tea party organization.   You just had to pick that name, didn't you.  I could forgive you people for being unwitting manipulated tools of big business interests, but I cannot forgive you for this.  You people disgust me.  Now ill be forced to listen to these wanna be Jim Morrison's on the radio. 

They're not as bad as Nickleback, sure.  But Nickleback isn't as bad as creed, and I'll bet the American tea party loves both.

Still, could be worse .. could be great big sea .. goddamn for a 10 year period they played the same songs over and over again at every festival in Canada.   EVERY FESTIVAL.  ugh.  I bet they'll play your wedding too.  But I only hate great big sea because they were overplayed.  I just don't like the Tea Party's sound.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Christmas Time

I love how winnipeg transit signs/GPS reports that a bus will be 4 minutes late for 15 straight minutes.  That must be how Santa is able to deliver toys to every girl and boy in one night.  He uses the santa bus.  I know there was a Santa Claus parade but really.  Every year I get inconvenienced needlessly.  Surely there's a better way. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Oh give me a home where the Byfugliens roam

... And the Jets and the Avalanche play. ( Yes I know they don't play Colorado until December.. Avalanche is the only word that sounds close to Antelope )

I'll bet Dustin Byfuglien racks up a lot of roaming charges on his cell phone.  I wonder if he cares.  Perhaps he has a plan with unlimited roaming throughout north America.  You certainly don't want your considerable salary going towards wasted roaming fees. 

On the ice Byfuglien wanders perhaps a bit too much.  It wouldn't be a huge problem if it helped the Jets win, but right now it's actually hurting them.  Especially with Enstrom injured.  Too many turnovers.  I'm not keeping track but I know the Jets have been scored on at least twice with shorthanded goals while they were on the power play. 

I like Byfuglien..  He's an entertaining player and his playing style is reflective of his personality.  But at the same time, roaming TOO MUCH can seem like a lack of faith in your teammates .. justified or not, he needs to know when to reign himself in.  Maybe he's the type of guy who wears his heart on his sleeve, but in a team game, you have to play your position. 

I mean think about it like this, If the power ranger in charge of the left arm decided nah, I'm going to be in charge of the right foot,  then the show would be over in a few episodes.

Now Coach Claude Noel has said he doesn't have a huge problem with the way Byfuglien is playing his game, that it's a high risk play and sometimes it pays off.  Well, picking the Jets on Pro Line/Sport Select is also high risk that sometimes pays off.   But it doesn't pay off that often.

I am a bit concerned over reports that there were boos for the Jets last night at the MTS Centre.  I mean, you can boo the refs and you can boo the opposing team but don't boo your own side.  Don't be Toronto or Phoenix.  I didn't catch the game.  I listened to the first period streaming on my cell phone and saw where it was going, and decided my battery was too low and the outcome too likely against the Jets to keep listening. 

Besides, nobody is really expecting them to win the Stanley Cup this year.  One more quality first round draft pick though, and another year or two and we'll have a great team.  These things don''t get built overnight.  

I wonder if the problem is we once had a team with Teemu Selanne, Keith Tkachuk, Nicholai Khabibulin, Teppo Numminen, and Shane Doan as a rookie and still think we should have that team.  Man if that team had stayed together and never left.. ah well.  Gotta live in the here and now.. win or lose.

I forget where I was going with this post.  I think I just had a clever title and went from there.  Anyways happy remembrance day.

Go Winnipeg! We're Number ?

Recently a poll conducted by Leger Marketing analyzed how loved or hated Canadian cities are in Canada.  They polled across the country and came to the conclusion that Toronto is the most hated city in Canada.  Now, I do hate Toronto for many reasons (most of which are the leafs) and yes, I've been there and have family there as well.  The thing is, they didn't other to put Winnipeg on the list.  I don't expect them to put every city in, but they put Halifax there.  Halifax.  They have both Victoria and Vancouver.  Edmonton and Calgary, Why would they leave out Winnipeg from a list of cities people feel strongly or negative towards?  I'd like to hear their justification. 

I suspect they wanted to get the result of Toronto being the most hated city in Canada.  They purposefully left Winnipeg off the list because maybe we're the only competition they have.  Or maybe the euphoria over the return of the Jets would skew the results too much and Winnipeg would have outdone Ottawa, Victoria, and Vancouver?

We'll never know, though.  But if you want to read a smug sounding individual from Toronto saying the rest of Canada are just haters, check out this Global Toronto piece.  I can't decide if it's serious or satirical.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Programming your DVR

So in the USA, Conan airs on TBS apparently directly opposite The Daily Show and the Colbert Report Monday to Thursday.  They all take Friday off.  I don't know why I'm capitalizing the days of the week, but I've never read an MLA handbook and it just looks better to me that way.  Anyways, back to Conan. 

Johnny Carson used to air a repeat on mondays (or a Jay Leno fill in episode) and ran his show tuesday to friday.  I wonder why Conan/TBS chose to do Monday to Thursday.  I guess if it airs Monday to Thursday they can show replays of the previous day from Tuesday to friday, which is what they do here in canada on the comedy network here.  See, now im just arbitrarily capitalizing things.  What's wrong with me.

Still, if Conan aired Tuesday to Friday, he wouldn't have to compete with The Daily Show and Colbert for one day (and vice versa)..  then again, perhaps the assumption is people have better things to do on Friday nights.

Recently they discovered a way to turn back the age of old cells.  I wonder, if Jay Lenos audience was de-aged to their 20's or 30's, would they hate Jay Leno?

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

MMmmmmm. Homers.

I've never been to Homers restaurant on Ellice, but I love optical illusions, and their sign made out to look like its an actual bust of who I assume to be Homer is really cool.  Here's a link to Google's street view.

If you are driving down ellice avenue or are near the UofW and see this right up close, you'd swear its a cement bust sticking out of the wall, but in actuality it's just a well done illusion.  Neat huh.


 What's even funnier is if you click on the sign, Google actually BLURS OUT THE FACE.  Even Googles cameras were tricked by the illusion.  You can try it yourself, but here's a screenshot.

Homers is in good company, as the KFC Colonel himself was also blurred out by the same facial regognition software.. and he's a cartoony caricature of a real person.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Google a solution for this

I really don't like Google's new blogger interface.  At least the old one let you bank out a post easily.  Now it tries to be Wordperfect 7.  Just let me easily post my nonsense please, google.  Stop making things difficult. 

I mean it's not without any redeeming features.  The set date and time field is nice.. but I hate how everything is hidden. 

You know what'd be cool?  If it was made up to actually look like a completed blog post as I was making it.  Then you wouldn't even need a preview option.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Lets all go to A & W.. and ask for extra ketchups.

I haven't been to A & W in a while, but when did they start giving out huge Ketchup packages?  they're like 3 normal ketchup packets in one packet.  It's awesome. 

Though they also took French Toast off the breakfast menu.  Boo-Urns.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Causes Celebre

Recently I've been reading about various celebrities trying to convince Barack Obama not to allow the construction of an Oil Sands pipeline.  Now, despite the industry lobby groups trying to paint it a certain way, there are a number of negatives to the oil sands and the pipeline construction.  It's unfortunate, but it's true.  Today's technology is far superior to that of the past, and the extraction of oil from the Alberta Oil Sands is much better than it has been in years past, but there is still a long way to go.  I'm of the opinion that science will eventually overcome all of the worst environmental hurdles, but in the extraction of oil, there will always be an environmental consequence.  Sadly, we live in a society that uses oil and it's byproducts inefficiently and greedily.  But that's not going to change any time soon.

The latest person to attempt to gain Obama's ear on this issue is Julia Louis Dreyfus, Actress from SNL, Seinfeld, and some other shows that have failed.  Also she's been on Curb Your Enthusiasm, but that's almost a Seinfeld spinoff set in the real world.  The Superboy Prime universe to the Superman main DC universe of Seinfeld.  I don't care if you don't get the reference or the joke, Jerry Seinfeld would, so whatever, man.

The interesting thing in this case however is that she herself is actually an heiress. Her father is Gerard Louis-Dreyfus, a French billionaire.  Louis-Dreyfus family's net worth was estimated at approximately 2.9 billion dollars a few years ago. The Louis Dreyfus group, of which Gerard was president and CEO until 2006, is, according to Wikipedia: "one of the world's largest commodities trading and merchandising firms" and has interests in everything from shipping to sports management.  I wonder if amongst the ocean vessels they manage some happen to be oil tankers?  Hmm.  Looks like they do have an energy department called "Louis Dreyfus Highbridge Energy LLC"..


Julia has been part of the green movement for years. Julia and her husband Brad Hall's Montecito residence is built from "sustainably harvested tropical woods". The house also features a retractable roof clad in solar panels, recycled newspaper insulation, and a "natural ventilation system". She provides "Eco-Tips" to USA today and promotes clean water and land preservation through her involvement in environmental organizations like "Heal the Bay" and the "Trust for Public Land".  She also drives a hybrid.

Now, its great that she believes in this, but with her connections to this company, one can perhaps infer a bit of hypocrisy.  Still, she does walk the walk environmentally, but when you're wealthy, its a lot easier to spend the extra cash needed to be green.  Not that we all shouldn't install efficient windows and solar panels to help reduce our energy footprint. 

Anyways, the point of this blog post is that Julia is a nice lady and the oil sands aren't perfect either and I'm gonna eat some chicken fingers.


Sources:http://www.treehugger.com/culture/five-loaded-heiresses-who-is-the-greenest-of-them-all.html
http://ldhenergy.com/ 

Friday, November 04, 2011

Grimm TV landscape

You know what, I'm enjoying the TV show Grimm.  Kind of reminds me of Buffy and Angel (which they surely take as inspiration).  I hope it finds an audience. 

Katz Quotez


 From CJOB.com quoting Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz with regards to bill C-10:

"Katz spoke with committee members about the need to close the revolving doors of justice so repeat offenders stay behind bars instead of escalating the nature of their crimes.   He also emphasized the rights of citizens cannot take a back seat to the rights of criminals."

 Can someone parse this statement for me?

"He also emphasized the rights of citizens cannot take a back seat to the rights of criminals"

Criminals are citizens, like it or not. Law breaking citizens, but citizens nevertheless.  Everyone breaks the law all the time without even knowing it half the time.. especially if you include traffic violations.

When he is saying that the rights of citizens cannot take a back seat to the rights of criminals, what exactly is he saying?  Rights are rights.


What I wish Katz was saying was that the rights of citizens cannot be ignored by legislation simply because we want to put all the bad people in jail forever and ever so that we can create a false sense of safety. 

Mandatory minimums don't merely close the revolving doors of justice.  Three strikes laws in the USA that we in Canada have grown fond of mocking for their ineffectiveness?  welcome to Canada.  For Profit prison systems?  Welcome to Canada.    American style justice?  Yeah, sounds great.

I'm all for locking up gang members and thugs and drug dealers.  I'm not in favour of trampling over citizens rights to do it. 

Passing Bill C-10 in its current state is insanity.  If the Conservatives go ahead with it (and Bill C-11), the next election can't come fast enough for me.

A majority is not an excuse to act like someone gave you a blunt instrument to bludgeon your detractors with.  Who would have thought we'd be looking back at the Jean Chretien days wistfully as ones of sanity and measured thinking.  Perhaps only by comparison.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Take your time travelling Delorean with the Jets bumper sticker back to 1995

Want to see what people were saying about the Winnipeg Jets on the internet back before they left?  What's that you say? There was no internet back then?  You're wrong, good sir or madam.  Google has archives of usenet group wpg.general and other forum groups of the time, the blog of yesteryear before AOL and spammers ruined the public water cooler known as usenet.    Click on it and take a look. Phoenix Coyotes fans, take heart, your city council is only slightly stupider than ours was at the time.  It's fascinating how so many people back then used their real names in discussion forums.  15-16 years later, wonder where some of them are now.

some choice quotes (click the names to go to the original full post):
"The atmosphere inside was bittersweet. It was more bitter outside. I 
think there was about a hundred people outside at the highest point, but a 
lot of people left as soon as they found out the doors were locked. A lot 
of those hanging around had disappointed and depressed faces - especially 
when all the kids inside were cheering to the comment about Winnipeg kids 
always being Jets fans. " - David A.
 I think I was there.  Sounds like something I'd attend.

"Does anyone think it is fair to American NHL teams to institute a forof revenue-sharing. It would in effect be a form of cross-subsidization. Larger, richer team (mostly in the US) would be propping up teams from smaller centres, (mostly in Canada)" - Gregory M.


Oh if he only knew then what he knows now.  The irony.
 
"The MEC (Manitoba Entertainment Complex) needs to sell 40 boxes and 1500 club
seats by the end of November to proceed.  They've sold 38 boxes and about 500 club seats
so far.

David Baker, Director of Corporate Sales for the Winnipeg Jets, sold the 40th 
and last private box yesterday evening to Coke.  Club Seat sales are just over 
600 right now, and have started to sell more quickly.  A couple of club seat 
purchasers, MEC sales people, and press are going to San Jose, to check out 
that building some time next weekend.  The plan being that they will come back 
to the Peg gushing with news about how great our new building will be. - D Bergman

huh.  How many private boxes do the current Jets have.  Interesting to look back and see that the MEC plan called for 40.
"Senior city officials'.  Hrmph.  What this story seems to be based on 
is a local radio station having Mayor Bill Norrie on saying that the 
Jets majority owners have already sold their 64% interest in the team. 
(For the uninformed, the other 36% interest is held by Winnipeg Enterprises 
Corporation, a quasi-independent corporation set up under provincial 
charter to operate the Arena/Stadium/Velodrome complex in the city.  They 
assumed this share of the Jets after a buyout attempt by Michael Gobuty 
failed.)


 WEC has a complex arrangement with the private owners that the 
WEC will cover all losses over a certain amount (approx. $400 000), or 
the private owners will be free to break the lease they have with the 
Arena until 1997.  WEC has yet to cover the rest of the losses that the 
Jets incurred this year (approx. $1.2 million).  So needless to say, 
there is a great deal of speculation of what is going to happen.  There 
are two local groups of people that are interested in acquiring either 
WEC's share of the team or the whole team to keep it in Winnipeg.  One 
group plans on a new downtown Arena, tenatively called Manitoba Gardens. 
The other wants to take over the arena as is. .
Barry Shenkarow has said that the situation is rapidly becoming critical,but as of yet, there are no offers on the table either way.  Things still very much depend on city council. " - Daryl T
Interesting.  This is a post from 1991.  The Jets stuck around for 5 more years.

 "The only place the JETS are moving is UP, waaaay UP in the standings   :-)   " -  Ken D, worlds biggestt optimist  in 1994

Anyways, its fascinating to poke around and see that there is actually a record of what people were talking about then.  I'm sure theres other stuff you can search as well.  It's a shame there won't be the same resource in 15 years for people searching old twitter and facebook comments.  usenet, like the internet itself, was designed to be open, whereas the open protocols of the internet are being replaced more and more by closed protocols that do the same things.  All according to plan, I suppose.  Watch for legislation that further puts the internet in the control of government, in the name of protecting us from ourselves.  (Really, protecting politicians from bloggers and the people).  That's what the conservatives crime legislation is designed to do.  Not stop true crime.  Otherwise why not require a warrant? 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Bacon time

I wonder how many degrees of separation Sir Francis Bacon and Kevin Bacon are, and if they have any relation.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

That was a crazy Jets - Flyers game

I'm not even going to blame Pavelec for anything.  He made some pretty good saves, and in the end the Jets won.  I don't even know.  It was just a wild game.  Entertaining as hell, but man when they tied it I thought we were doomed.  Pavelec is still young just like the rest of the team.  Remember the bombers last year?  All they need is consistent coaching and to work on fixing their worst problems, and who knows what could happen.

Still, if the jets do end up tanking, nothing wrong with getting a first round draft pick... it could be just the thing they need in the long run.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

BULL DRM

I read an excellent Op-Ed on DRM today, aka digital rights management titled "If you want to fight piracy, make better games".   In it, the writer Jason Schreier writes about the company Valve, and writes about how company owner Gabe Newell believes publishers should be using the carrot and stick approach.  It's a great read, and very timely when you consider the recent ill-advised bill C-11 the so called copyright modernization act.  Which wouldn't be a bad law if it weren't for the fact that it criminalizes the breaking of DRM, and no amount of proof of the fact that most Canadians are against enshrining DRM into law and that Canadians DESPISE it will stop the Conservatives from idiotically pushing this through now that they have a majority.  Hell, even the Conservatives, if you read what they are saying, sound like they're just reading a pre-written message from the music and movie industry.. which lets face it, they almost certainly are.  Now I've talked about DRM before and how it makes it illegal to do what you want to do with the cell phones or computers or music or DVD's that you buy.. If you don't know what DRM is by now or why it's evil, you're part of the problem and probably a member of the Conservative Party of Canada.

Anyways, What got me posting is my epiphany that the Conservative solution to crime prevention is the same as their approach to copyright.  Extremist, pointlessly expensive and ultimately unworkable.    It's the same in that INNOCENT PEOPLE get inconvenienced, but the CRIMINALS will keep on doing what they're doing.  In my mind these laws show that the Conservatives don't care about catching actual criminals, they care about making laws that criminalize everyone and everything.  Everything is a sin, in their eyes, and you're automatically guilty.  They'd get rid of the lawyers and judges if they could get away with it and lock everyone up.

That is how DRM works.  It inconveniences people who want to play a legally purchased game or watch a foreign movie in another country.  It makes it impossible to unlock a cell phone to work on a competing provider.  The Conservatives know this, because people have stated it to them, but they don't care!  It doesn't matter.   They can then lock up a number of people and say "Look, we stopped crime, arrests are up 5000% since our new laws!".. well no, you didn't solve anything.  It's only an illusion.  If you do arrest anyone actually guilty of something, you've arrested another 1000 generally law abiding citizens and created a culture of fear and domination and opression.  Which is clearly the point.  Welcome to America today.  Protection of ill gotten monopolies for the wealthy class.  The so called 1% of robber barons and still on the loose criminal bankers.

People don't want to break the law.  But when everything is illegal, what choice will they have? The fact that people download music is not a failure of copyright, its a failure of companies not meeting their customers demands.  Look at the success of netflix.  Old media companies hate it.  They've been spoon fed so long in this country they want to enact UBB to protect their little fiefdoms.  The regulatory capture in this country is sickening.  4 companies essentially own the media and the distribution networks and the government in Canada.  And they act in lock step.

The laws of this country are slowly being changed to protect only a small segment of wealthy foreign nationals.  That's what Bill C-10 and C-11 are for, they have little to do with stopping graffiti or putting gang members in jail.  That's who the Conservative party works for.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Good Riddance, Autobins

Years ago, my parents lived on a street where Autobins were being introduced. Originally, they were going to be the smaller variety, but then because nobody else wanted it to block their driveways, and because the property they owned would not be as inconvenienced, the city would put one large autobin behind their house.

 Now when I was a kid, you'd have actual garbage men, or I suppose waste disposal experts or whatever the correct term is (I like the term garbage men) and they'd go from house to house, often there would be special enclosures built into a fence just for the garbage bins to be kept tucked away neatly. But when Autobins were introduced, ugh. They take up so much space in a back lane, they attract rats, mice, mattresses and construction waste. My parents hated that autobin.

Well, where they live now they have one of those garbage bins that you wheel out. They love that. It's just so convenient and you can keep it in the garage. Apparently the city has decided FINALLY to get rid of the cursed autobin. Finally. Say goodbye to fires in the north end, mysterious waste disposal, and so forth.

I wonder where the rats and vermin will go now that they'll lose a source of food? I suppose the autobins can be recycled for business use. BFI seems to use similar bins. Now that I think about it, businesses who illegally use autobins will be forced to go legit.

The only thing I hope for is that instead of those small blue boxes, they instead had a blue version of those large garbage carts for regular garbage. I'd be more likely to chuck in plastic bottles and such if it didn't have to sit out in the open for everyone to see how much Diet Dr Pepper I drink on recycling day (I don't drink Diet Dr Pepper, It's juts an example. I actually hate Dr Pepper)

 Anyways, apparently removing autobins will cost property owners an additional $50 on their property tax bill. Funny how it always works like that.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Suffering the (River) Bends

It is with mild bemusement I read an article in the Winnipeg Sun about people in Riverbend area of Winnipeg being against the building of habitat for humanity housing on Benn Avenue. Not least of which is my parents almost bought a property there once. In fact I thought Benn Avenue was just outside the city limits but maybe that's been adjusted in the intervening decades. In fact back when my parents were interested in purchasing property on Benn Avenue, Riverbend was still a huge farmers field. Which is part of the reason I'm actually surprised there is still even an empty lot available.

I was out in Riverbend the other day and made a few observations. A brand new strip mall, the oddly named "L. Banag mall" which already is two thirds full of operating businesses, was spray painted with graffiti and half the businesses seemed to have their windows broken. I was genuinely surprised at this. This is something that is supposed to happen mainly in Downtown Winnipeg. Why is it happening there?

In the immediate vicinity of this strip mall lies a brand new skateboard park (which also already has graffiti). Now, I don't want to blame the skaters, because for one thing a lot of them are really young kids presumably from the area, and for another, I don't think the graffiti is being introduced by kids from the area. The skateboard park is located right next to the Red River Community Centre, a couple years old but still pretty new. I've noticed that questionable looking individuals seem to be congregating on the community centre parking lot in the evenings, for what purpose I can only speculate. They don't appear to be attending any community centre events in any case. So they are suspect #1 to me.

Down the road a bit is the still fairly new West Kildonan Collegiate building. Suspects #2 are kids who "go to school" there. Remember how a grade 10 student from West St Paul was killed in 2009? Not on school property, but a student of that school all the same, killed by a 16 year old. Gang members from the north end are almost certainly pushing their way into west kildonan and riverbend, probably to peddle drugs to students and push their contemptible and ignorant attitudes towards society farther and farther. There is graffiti around that area from students, though not spray painted. Just little "So and So was here" type graffiti.

Theres also people at the Tim Hortons who hang out all day there, but they don't seem the type to bother with graffiti and property destruction.

Anyways, back to the mall that showed clear signs of property damage. They already removed most of the spray paint from taggers (I wonder if anyone has ever taken photos of winnipeg tagger tags and documented what they mean?). Ice Time Sports had a broken window, but nobody seems to have actually gone inside and stolen anything.

There is a conservative party sign on one of the store fronts. Obviously the conservatives didn't win provincially, but Joy Smith used that property as a campaign headquarters in the last election as well. Now, the Conservatives do have an "omnibus crime bill" they're trying to enact, but how much do you think that crime bill protects the people of riverbend?

The crime bill has worse sentencing for marijuana based offences than for pedophiles. The crime bill pushes American style for profit prisons. The crime bill also includes draconian copyright protection measures at the behest of American special interests. But what does it do for the people of riverbend who voted in Joy Smith? I don't have much faith in it. What the crime bill does is it criminalizes the innocent, even those fools who voted the conservatives in. By comparison, gang members, punks and thieves will continue to advance to different areas of the city with their smug "what are you gonna do about it" looks on their faces as they group together considering their next act of violence or destruction.

The people in riverbend are justifiably worried about habitat for humanity. It's not that these individuals are necessarily going to be bad, but they're already seeing a bad element move in on their neighbourhood, and they want to get a handle on the situation. Putting faith in the Conservatives probably won't help. Partially legalizing Marijuana and selling it at specialty stores would be highly profitable for the country, and take away a huge market that funds the criminal element. However the Conservatives are too busy making new laws that criminalize innocent people who do something banal like share a song on the internet and protects antiquated business monopolies rather than to do something about crime and the reasons for crime. They care more about taking away your right to privacy on the internet than stopping crime. It's highly telling that the bill is tougher on pot growers than pedophiles.

I don't get the Conservative hate-on for marijuana. I can't stand the stuff, but I don't care for alcohol or tobacco either. I suppose if they thought they could get away with it, they'd criminalize alcohol too. But whatever the case, for all their talk, I'm not impressed with their crime bill. The people of Riverbend should look closely at what is being pushed onto their doorsteps and the effectiveness of those laws on actual criminal elements.

Theres also the question of cost effectiveness.. there isn't any. The Conservatives plan to just throw unlimited money at the problem rather than actually productively work to solve the underlying issues. Very simple minded of them.

Welcome (back Jets) to my nightmare

Well, the Winnipeg Jets played their first game and it was everything we thought it would be. Parties at the Forks, huge 50/50 pot, and just a great atmosphere at the arena. Unfortunately, the Jets lost. What does this mean? It can mean only one thing.

CERTAIN DOOM
CERTAIN DOOM
CERTAIN DOOM

Yes, after this one game, I can prognosticate that the Jets are going to lose every game they play this year. Half of the team is going to end up trapped in a time-space vortex at one point, and come out of it with all knowledge of how to skate erased from their minds. The Jets will be in last place for decades, and the city of Winnipeg will sink 1000 meters into the ground to be taken over by the mole people and their king.

Sure, you can scoff and say "Oh Reed, it's just one game" To which I must reply: NO. The Jets lost, and it's obvious they can never improve, that they are the same Atlanta Thrashers as last year, that the MTS Centre is too small and the NHL will never work in Winnipeg and this is all just the first sign of the aphockalypse

Dustin Byfuglien got a penalty and he didn't even do anything. This obviously means he is a horrible horrible defenceman and his legs are going to turn into jell-o.

The only solution is to trade everyone right away for someone else. Trade every player for another player that is better. We have to PANIC NOW while it's still early enough for our panicking to make a difference! Panicking doesn't help when we're already at 75 losses. God help us all. If the Jets don't win their next 40 home games, they're going to move to Regina! Am I the only one who can see? Why aren't Cheveldayoff or Heisinger doing something!!! Do something! Fire Coach Noel! Fire somebody! Blalrlalrglrelhwjepoihwekh

Seriously though, aren't sports pundits freakin' annoying? Yeesh. Way to overreact.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

I hope Gary Doer enters the Federal NDP leadership race

Not because I want him to win or care, but because Paul Dewar just entered, and it would just be hilarious to me to have Doer vs Dewar. What do we do!

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Froot x 2 feet.

It's nice when you get an unexpected bonus.  Got myself froot by the foot and it had two stuffed in one! SWEET!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

On your Mark Scheifele's and other matters

I wonder if part of the interest in keeping 18 year old Mark Scheifele with the Winnipeg Jets by fans is that we want this kid to experience the same party we as fans of the Jets are having. Sure it would be better for him to wait, but he's just so excited and enthusiastic and so are we so it builds and builds until finally we win the Stanley Cup. Okay probably not, but his enthusiasm really seems to mirror that of the fans and it's certainly catching.

I noticed at the Jets game yesterday that there were one or two Atlanta Thrashers jerseys in attendence. There are former Atlanta Thrashers fans in Winnipeg. Who knew! Anyways, I was reading comments on TSN's website about the Jets. There was a bitter Atlanta Thrashers fan, and commenters and Winnipegers were sympathetic to his plight (with caveats of course).. but someone made the comment that everyone should all chip in and send him to Winnipeg to see his team here. And I thought, wouldn't that be a brilliant marketing move (and peace offering to thrashers fans) by Travel Manitoba and the Jets organization? Get a few tickets and put together a Winter Wonderland sort of prize pass targeted towards Atlantans. Or Americans in general but use Atlanta as the hook. Maybe a few prize packs for different games. Why not? People in the south probably don't really get what Canada is about, so it could work to build up Winnipeg as a quirky winter destination. Surely there are hotels who would be on board and other people in the travel industry. Why not be proactive? Be creative? Stop coming up with stupid slogans like "It's Manitoba time". God that annoyed the hell out of me. Why are they paying to advertise Manitoba to Manitobans? You never see Winnipeg offered as a destination prize on the Price is Right either, but again, why not? It could lead somewhere. Winnipeg is a mystery place with a funny name to many people. It's like Timbuktu or Ouagadougou, only closer and okay maybe not as warm.

Finally, CBC was supposed to be up and running in HD over the air starting tomorrow Friday September 30th. But a notice on their website says that the ALREADY delayed switchover of a month will be delayed even further. So if you wanted to watch the return of the Jets in HD over the air, guess what, you're sh!t out of luck. But hey, it's not like they had 5 years notice on the digital changeover. Oh wait, they did? They waited until the last minute and finally said they would do Winnipeg because they were forced to? Pathetic.

This is your money funding the CBC. 1-866-306-INFO (4636) is the number to complain to the CBC, but I'd suggest you go further and complain to your member of parliament. The CBC needs to be accountable. This game of delaying the inevitable has to stop. Other countries have a public broadcaster that works for the public. Canada has a public broadcaster that seems to work only for special interests, and throws your money away not on providing you with high quality over the air service, but instead on trying to play in the same league as CTV or Global.

So to reiterate, the return of the Jets on CBC Hockey Night in Canada? WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE OVER THE AIR IN HIGH DEFINITION. Because the CBC is incompetent and seemingly does not have the capability to do their job.

I'd act surprised, but if you've read this blog before, and you've followed the actions of the corporation before in print media, you can see why I'm not.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

In Winnipeg

Every game is a playoff game.

Wonder how many standing room only seats they'll have in the playoffs.

Great game tonight, Jets win. Finally found a way past Boucher in the third period.

Monday, September 26, 2011

One is the loneliest number

Unless true north releases single last minute tickets to jets games.. then being single is the best thing ever!  Wonder if this will happen a fair bit during the regular season.. take that,  people in relationships without jets tickets! Bahahahahahaha.  I'm so screwed if I meet someone and fall in love though.  Go to hell, kiss cam.

Cat Burglars stealing my pepperonis

Neighbours cat broke into my house. Got in by breaking the basement window screen. Walked up the stairs, only to find me waiting and scared the heck out of it. THUNK, jumped straight downstairs out the window. Made me close it. Went outside with a flashlight and spooked her a bit more. I'm watchin' you, cat. I think it stole one of my pepperoni sticks and came back for more.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

I hate saying goodbye at the airport


The old Winnipeg airport is soon to be mothballed for the new one right next door which will finally be opening up next month.


I don't know if they will be tearing down the old one or not. I hope not, but I wouldn't be surprised if they do. As far as modernist architecture goes, what was once known as the Winnipeg International Airport is my favourite building of that style. I heard they were thinking at one point of putting the manitoba aviation museum in that building.. but that probably fell through. Which would be too bad, because it's also the perfect location for an aviation museum.

As a child, I would run around the airport from novelty to some other novelty. Many of said novelties requesting a tribute of quarters. I played pac-land and learned that pac-land is a quarter eating piece of garbage at the Winnipeg Airport. I played pole position, I played many an arcade game (a few of which are still there!) They also used to have some car game in where the arrivals area is currently. I think they also still have another arcade in behind the departures security zone. Probably still have good old Terminator 2 there.


There was also that weird plane/helicopter flying game that was always broken. They removed it years ago, but I remember it sat there for years. You put money on it and it seemed like it flew around.

I think they also had a sheriffs badge making machine once. I wonder why you don't see those anywhere? Kids today would still love that sort of thing.

Then there were the black and white TV's. Remember those? I watched an episode of Star Trek TNG on MTN one friday night on those. They only got local OTA fuzzy analogue TV. Now they have one big shared TV stuck on one channel (unless you bring in a universal remote.. which I've often been tempted to do)

I mostly remember the games and coin operated mechanisms. I remember sitting bored in the international arrivals basement area a couple times as well.

I also remember the secret basement pop machine that's 25 cents cheaper than the other pop machines. (Of course now they have Pepsi, used to be Coke.. I hate exclusivity contracts when Pepsi has them) Theres neat tunnels down there too.

It's the last place I saw my grandparents and many family members leave. No they didn't die in a plane crash. They just came to visit. I was there as a kid in my pajamas when my mom left with my sister to visit my dying grandmother (her mother) leaving my dad and me alone to eat McDonalds and pizza (Sometimes McDonald's pizza!) for two weeks. I was there when my sister went to Montreal for some French learning related thing, only to return complaining french guys kept hitting on her and talking to her in english, completely defeating the purpose. I remember going to vancouver on a cheap Jetsgo flight and returning a week and a half before they went bankrupt. I had a whole window seat and aisle to myself, but the lack of washroom facilities should have been a sign of what was coming.. but I still have my free jetsgo badge!

I remember my father returning from a few months on Baffin Island with an Ookpik owl for my sister and me. We still have them. Hers looked like a baby snowy owl, mine looked like a penguin.

I'll miss the observation deck. I showed it to my four year old nephew a few months ago. I don't know if the new one will have an observation deck. I somehow doubt it. I hope the new airport has decent (and free and public) areas for people to decompress and relax in.

But like my torn down elementary school (of which my mom managed to save a limestone brick as a memento), everything has its time and place. Winnipeg's airport was around during the heyday of commercial travel. It was there when Winnipeg was a hub. If any building in Winnipeg can be said to have a personality and soul imbued with the memories of the people who came and went, YWG is certainly at the top of the list. Farewell, YWG. Farewell unlimited refills at Harveys. Farewell overpriced DVD's and books at Virgin. Farewell money exchanging kiosk and bothwell cheese store (BEST CHEESE IN THE WORLD), Farewell pocket scissors from 5 years ago I had to throw in the garbage. I hardly knew ye.

I hope the new airport can live up to its predecessor. I hope it can absorb the memories of those in the city and those from outside who visit. I hope its not a cold and impersonal and boring and cold and sterile concrete monstrosity. I hope it gives people who visit a good impression.

But the 7 year old inside me is shuffling his feet and hanging his head down mumbling goodbye to someone he'll likely never see again. Thanks for the memories, airport. Last flights are on Sunday October 30th. New airport opens on Halloween. Oooh Spooky stuff! :)

Crappy google quote of the day