Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Ice!

January 31, 2012

I have not posted lately. I say that a lot. Anyway here is my backyard ice rink this year. Enjoy!

 

New Song

June 23, 2011

I’ve got something brewing, here’s some words:

When world’s collide
Both light and darkness
We wait on the side
Will we take part?

Is there light enough to see where we’re going?
When we try to change the world from the outside

Just look around
At all this talk
Maybe it’s the first step
To a new start

You try to soothe me
Say it’s not my fault
I don’t believe you
No not at all

Is there light enough to see where we’re going?
When we try to change the world from the outside

And if the future
Will be a better place
I can’t keep hiding
In a sacred space
No I can’t keep hiding
In a sacred space

Is there light enough to see where we’re going?
When we try to chang the world from the outside

This Is Our ’72

February 28, 2010

The 2010 Winter Olympics are drawing to a close, and many of us Canadians have been fixated on it. I am an Olympics junkie so I have watched virtually every event, but there is a significant current underneath these games.  In Canada, virtually everyone has embraced the Olympics.  A country that has mostly been known for it’s beautiful scenery and polite people has unleashed a powerful patriotism.  Some have argued that these games have been bigger in Canada than Expo ’67 or the Summit Series of 1972.  I can’t say if that’s true, but I can say that for the generation born after those events the Olympic games will be that meaningful for us.  It has been a country changing event.  Despite early trepidation, anxiety, and disaster, the Games have become a touchstone moment for the entire country.

Under A Dock

October 11, 2009

Contemporary indie music falls into many categories.  But perhaps the most recognizably “indie” songs contain guitar, keyboard riffs, and male/female vocals (including generous portions of ooos, ahhhs, and ohhhs.  I was listening to my ipod while laying some interlocking brick, and this lovely old tune came on.  It seems to fit in well with contemporary music.  Considering that The B-52’s were an underground phenomenon before making it big, they seem to fit the mold.

I tried to imagine the group as up-and-comers and what impact they might have on the current scene.  They were willing to be unusual, experimental, and even at times somewhat bad in pursuit of making interesting and fun music.  Apparently Rock Lobster was written and ultimately played on a guitar missing the middle two strings.  Certainly, these days there are many people who also experiment with music.  With the proliferation of the internet it’s possible to be constantly exposed to these folks.  Thus a group like The B-52’s could become one voice among thousands.  Fortunately for them, those thousands didn’t write Love Shack.

First Star I See Tonight

August 25, 2009

Please take a second to click on this link and marvel at our universe. Each dot on that picture represents a galaxy of around 100 billion stars. Amazing.

New podcast is up and as always you can find it over there–> In this episode I talk about eating disorders. You can find lots of information and statistics about the symptoms, causes, and treatments of eating disorders by visiting the website of the National Eating Disorder Information Centre. This topic is relevant because of The Alder Fork Festival, which is raising money for the Eating Disorder Awareness Coalition of Waterloo Region.

The music comes from two True North Records artists, Madison Violet, and Le Vent Du Nord.

We’re Done Done Done With All The…

July 7, 2009

This is an opinion piece about opinion pieces.  A great deal of media discourse comes in the form of opinion and speculation.  The 24 hours news cycle is filled with experts and commentators giving their perspective on issues.  Often these people lack evidence for what they are saying, and indeed at times they contradict reality.  Yet under the guise of journalism they pass off information that may or may not be true. This situation has been criticized before, particularly in response to the rampant speculation that appears when a big news event occurs, like the death of Michael Jackson. Facts easily outdo speculation, but require more patience.

In reading an older text on the state of Canada’s poor, I came across a number of columnists claiming that Canada was the most overtaxed country in the world, along side evidence proving this was not the case.  I was inclined to believe that iff you asked Canadians if they were overtaxed, you’d probably find more people believe in the columnists than the facts. But I decided to do some research and discovered that in a 2002 survey, most Canadians asked said they were willing to pay higher taxes to improve or sustain public health care and other social services.  So maybe the majority in this country recognize the value in funding social programs.

A Mind Trip

June 19, 2009

I was searching through some draft posts and I came across this random bit of thinking.

Have you ever thought about life in another person’s head?  For example, you might be far too shy to walk up to someone in a grocery store and ask them out, yet people do it all the time.  You may be afraid to haggle over a price, but all over the world people do it regularly. Contemplating different ways of thinking is really a fascinating exercise. There are the very positive types of people who are hoplessly optimistic, or completely naive.  I can’t imagine what life would be like for someone who doesn’t notice and analyze each interaction and response he/she encounters.

From Sea To Sea

May 18, 2009

For the last few years there has been a great deal of discussion surrounding Canada’s arctic sovereignty.  The current Conservative government has been very interested in establishing Canada’s command of the Northwest passage.    The original quest for the Northwest Passage was fraught with death and disaster.  Modern technology and changing global conditions has changed the situation. As the ice becomes more navigable, shipping and tourism through the Arctic sea is more attractive.  Already Canada has been faced with competing interests from Russia, the United States, and others.  The government pays people to live in Arctic regions, in part to keep a presence in that area.  This issue has been on my mind for awhile, and I’d like to recommend the following CBC documentary as an interesting look at one such Northern community.  This one was created by a previous Canadian government precisely to reinforce Arctic sovereignty.

There has also been talk of adding an additional “to sea” to the Canada motto of “from sea to sea.”  This change would acknowledge that Canada is surrounded by three bodies of water and not just two.  The original motto came about at a time when the country was interested in expanding westward to the Pacific ocean, and the Arctic region was an afterthought.  Apparently the change would be relatively cheap, and is supported by many elected officials.  It is a minor detail in a sea of much more important issues, but it is also a simple way to acknowledge the breadth of our nation and its peoples.

I Now Remember

May 13, 2009

Yesterday I caught an enlightening documentary on the Canadian/British/American/Polish invasion of Italy, focusing specifically on the Canadian effort. I knew some bits and pieces about that part of World War II but was foggy on the details.  It made me realize that most of what I know about that war, or at least what I remember, relates to the events after D-Day in Normandy.  Thanks to the National Film Board I am able to bring you this wonderful documentary on Canada’s part in the war prior to June 6, 1944.  Some of the events are more well known, such as Dieppe, the Battle of Britain, and the North Atlantic convoys.  Yet I still think many of us forget that a lot of fighting took place before the final push from the beaches of France to the gates of Berlin. Long before the boats came ashore at Juno Beach, brave Canadian soldiers were fighting and dying among the remnants of the Roman Empire. Be warned, the following video is close to 1 hour long, but if you have the time, it’s well worth watching.  You can also see Part II and Part III of the big documentary on the NFB site.

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The Whole Wide World

May 2, 2009

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Yet another delicious National Film Board archive piece for you.  I have exactly 1 Expo ’67 story, and it isn’t exactly mine since I wasn’t alive.  My mother attended the Expo with her grade 8 class, and I’m sure she was very excited to check out this amazing event. Unfortunately, she collapsed at the front gates and spent the entire trip in a Montreal Hospital.  Her doctors and nurses only spoke French, so they could not explain to her what was wrong (I’m not sure if they even knew).  So you and I have now seen more of Expo ’67 than my mom, who was there.

The World’s Fair movement continues to this day, but many argue that Expo ’67 was the Zenith.  This remarkable effort in Canada’s centennial year exceeded all expectations. Over 50 million people visited Montreal that summer including a record 590 000 in one day.  It is even more remarkable that many observers at the time believed the Expo was unfeasible.  Instead people from around the world were treated to a marvelous experience.

This film captures much of the sights, sounds, and atmosphere of the Expo.  It is a cultural milestone for Canada that may never be matched. The film itself lacks narration, which is fine for this kind of documentary/commercial.  The images speak for themselves.