Bungee jumping in Canada with Jeanne Robertson

November 18th, 2009 § 2 comments § permalink

When I grow up, I want to become Jeanne Robertson …

Sickening liars at Fox News

March 20th, 2009 § 13 comments § permalink

How can these insufferable pricks live with themselves? They are a living paean to the idea that there is no point in being shit ignorant unless you show it.

Neanderthals online

March 17th, 2009 § 11 comments § permalink

We have two national newspapers here in Canada, Globe & Mail and the National Post. (Of itself, I find that a bit gigglesome, coming from a tiny country that has nine national dailies and the same number of Sunday papers.) The Globe is fairly middle of the road, veering rightwards on all things fiscal, while the Post is unabashedly right-wing, having been launched by that bastion of Canadian conservatism, Conrad Black—now serving time in a US slammer for enriching himself at the expense of his shareholders.

The First Husband and I get both papers delivered every morning and, if I had to choose just one, I would probably pick the Post, despite its conservatism. It’s not as smug as the Globe, has better writing overall, and, last but not least, it has my favourite cryptic crossword, which I think is lifted from the Daily Telegraph in Britain. I did give up my subscription for a whole year, once, while the paper carried the syndicated column of the skinny bitch who will not be mentioned by name on this blog but, as soon as they turfed her, all was forgiven and I went back into the fold.

Part of the Post’s charm is its letters page. Unlike the Globe, which seems to favour a select group of grousers, the Post’s letter writers are a great bunch of splenetic flat-earthers, and their morning bitching is a highlight of my day, always good for a laugh. Yesterday, however, I didn’t know whether to shriek with laughter or horror, as I read the following missives, which had been posted on the website of the Post’s comment pages, and were being given star-billing in the middle of the letters page:

The lives women enjoy today are the direct result of the advances made by men.

Women can join the military today because a soldier no longer needs to be a blood-thirsty testosterone-charged brute able to wield a 40-pound broad sword to hack the limbs from his opponent face to face. She can sit in the comfort of a room on a ship and push a button that launches awesome fire power and think herself a warrior.

Women can “bring home the bacon” because you no longer have to have the sheer machismo to stare down a wild boar with a sharpened stick. You sit at a desk rearranging numbers and think yourself a master of the corporate jungle.

They can travel the world because crossing the ocean is no longer a three month life-threatening ordeal of searching for land no one really believes is even there, and most of the murderous indigenous peoples have been pacified. Now they’re too eager to see you arrive with your tourist dollars and make you feel like an adventurer.

They can snowboard down mountain sides for fun, because getting to the top is no longer a two-day trek in wool coats.

The power, machismo, innate engineering ability and sometimes sheer stupidity of men were the absolutely necessary elements that conquered the Earth and developed technologies that rendered what were once life-threatening undertakings mere hobbies by comparison for women today. Women enjoy the freedom of having had all the heavy lifting done for them.

But even as women revel in that freedom, men, or perhaps more accurately “manhood,” are suffering from their own success. The programming that led men to strike out across an ocean, or to say “yes, I believe I can take down that buffalo with a sharpened stick,” makes them at their core less well adapted to this soft, easy, collectivist, feminized world. Worse, they’ll get little but grief from the women they raised out of the drudgery any time they dare to rock the boat with reminders of the manhood that got us all here.

This little piece was signed by Fred_001. Three guesses as to what I think his surname is …

The cherry on the cake was the response to Fred from a little remora fish named MikeMurphy:

Fred: well said. Feminists, particularly the gender-branded variety want more and more and constantly whine about their gender as an underclass of victims. For them it is not about equality but domination.

I’m assuming these whingers used pseudonyms, because their wives would kill them if they saw what they wrote.

What’s Canada? Chopped liver?

January 28th, 2009 § 7 comments § permalink

Once again, the American thrust on Afghanistan, as explicated in an article in today’s New York Times, completely ignores Canada.

. . . the Obama administration would work with provincial leaders as an alternative to the central government, and . . . would leave economic development and nation-building increasingly to European allies, so that American forces could focus on the fight against insurgents. (Emphasis mine)

“European allies?” Let’s do the math here: As of 23 January 2009, there have been 996 Coalition deaths directly related to the fighting in Afghanistan. Of these, USA casualties number 574, UK casualties 124, and Canada 107. The rest range from Germany with 30 casualties to Lithuania with a grand total of 1. It appears fairly clear that, yes indeed, the USA is carrying the load, with twice the casualty rate of the UK and five times Canada’s.

But not so fast: The Americans have 32,000 troops in Afghanistan, while the UK has less than 8,000 and Canada some 2,500. Which puts their respective casualty rates in a whole nuther light—Canada at 4.2%, while the US and UK rates are 1.8% and 1.6% respectively.

At least the Brits see fit to mention Canada’s contribution now and then but, as always, all the American media see when they look northward is Alaska. Which is probably why Canada got all girlish and giggly when it was announced that President Obama’s first foreign (or, as Missus Palin might say, “overseas”) trip would be to Canada. They like us, they really like us—even if they don’t know we exist! Gargh.

But we can now hazard a guess as to why Obama is making the trip. The Canadian government has committed to pulling out of Afghanistan by 2011, and maybe a little sweet-talking is in order to see if Canada can be charmed into extending the date. Perhaps someone should warn Obama — sweet-talking Stephen Harper will be like cuddling up to a dead mackerel.

Dear Zachary

January 25th, 2009 § 8 comments § permalink

I spent last evening watching this MSNBC documentary, which aired on tv here a few weeks ago and was recorded for me by #1 Son’s boyfriend. (I had tried to DVR it, and the damn’ thing was blank when I went to watch it … fairly typical of my experience with DVR, but I hope on, hope ever, and have so far resisted throwing the fracken machine out the window.)

In 2001, a Canadian-American GP, by the name of Shirley Turner, shot and killed her ex-boyfriend, Dr Andrew Bagby, in Pennsylvania and fled to Canada to escape justice. There she announced that she was four months pregnant by Andrew and, for the next few years, thumbed her nose at the US justice system, aided and abetted by various members of the Newfoundland judiciary who treated her with kid gloves, because she was a single mother. Shades of that hoary old joke about the criminal who murders his parents and throws himself on the mercy of the court as an orphan!

There are many good guys in this appalling and tragic story, including David Bagby’s friends and colleagues, and the Newfoundland lawyer who worked long and hard to try to bring Shirley Turner to justice. But the real heroes are Andrew’s parents, David and Kate Bagby. They gave up their lives in the States and moved to Newfoundland, where they attempted to gain custody of their grandchild. Frustrated at every turn by the courts—the film, made by their son’s friend, Kurt Kuenn, is a heart-scalding indictment of the Canadian justice system—they made numerous friends in Canada and bowed to the whims of their grandchild’s psycho mother, in order to maintain contact with Zachary. David Bagby has published a best-selling book about their experiences, entitled Dance with the Devil, and has become a passionate advocate for sweeping changes within the family law system in Canada

I won’t say how the film ends and, if you want to track down the DVD, which is due to be released on February 24th, I would advise that you not Google any of the protagonists because it’s a huge spoiler. Also, make sure you have a box of tissues close at hand as you watch. More info on the film can be found here.

NFB online. Yay.

January 22nd, 2009 § 10 comments § permalink

The National Film Board of Canada has put its entire archive online … and it’s for free! Now that’s putting our tax dollars to work, in a good way for a change.

Remember this one?

/>

Or this one?

/>

And then there are all the fantastic documentaries, the live shorts, and the trailers. Pure heaven. I may never come up for air …

Newfoundland and Labrador

January 21st, 2009 § 3 comments § permalink

A Canadian beer fridge

January 10th, 2009 § 7 comments § permalink

canadian-beer-fridge.jpg

Courtesy of The Canadian Design Resource

Get Adobe Flash player