Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Big Rock

When I enjoy a beer, I usually indulge in the Big Rock family of beverages. This brewery is named after the Okatoks glacial erratic, a bazillion tonne rock sitting rather blamelessly on the barren prairie, a few kilometers east of the rockies. And so Suzanne and I decided that we would be remiss if we did not make a humble pilgrimage to the "big rock." I'll have to check with the brewery but I think I get to add "trad" to my name now.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Folly and Hubris: An ill Wind Blows

The Globe and Mail (Toronto's national newspaper) devoted its weekend edition to global climate change declaring that 4 out of 5 Canadians have experienced the effects of climate change. I am constrained to point out that they certainly think they have. To make such a claim is to claim that the weather they experience is not part of the normal tempestuary deviation that is Canadian weather. I rather like that word I just invented: Tempestuary. It sounds like a reeking mud flat that a low tide would reveal in all its rotting-kelp glory.
In any case, the fact that the population now believes in climate change is a familiar disturbance. If they now believe it because they feel they have experienced it, then they are right- but for the wrong reasons. This phenomenon has ceased to amaze me yet its triteness does nothing to assuage my fear of my fellow townsfolk. Being incidentally right for the wrong reasons is perhaps the best I can hope for. But what folly and mischief this has caused in the past.

Did anyone else feel bloated this week? I was feeling positively rotund until I learned the cause. Last week the Chinese successfully shot down a test satellite. That extra gravity of a profound shift in the zero-sum game of military brinkmanship is what we all felt. The entire US military is routed, connected, synchronized and de-ionized by satellites that are now rendered obsolete (truthfully,the US military is de-ionized by their military issue Q-Ray bracelets.) It made for a good laugh when just days later, the US military announced it had successfully shot down a missile. Those in the know will tell you that the missile defense system really doesn't work at all but for p.r. purposes they had to appear to be on top of things. It makes no difference whether any of this is true or not. It just entertains me that the military power seems to be assayed by its high tech marvels. Watch any testosterone sponsored show on the History channel that showcases the latest US hardware and it becomes tragic comedy when you know that this high tech juggernaut is being defeated by stone knives, bearskins, and the cold heart that kills. Indeed this is a graven image.
If military hubris has become America's false god, then I shall melt this golden calf by watching American Idol tonight at 9pm. For I am a jealous God!

Thursday, January 25, 2007


I've christened beta blogger with a header of the lovely chinook arch that brought the warm winds of the same name to our fair city this week. The temperature rose about 20 degrees celsius for a good chunk of the week which makes a welcome repite from the deathscape of winter. Most impressive of all is the so-called "chinook arch" which is pictured above. Its rather other-worldly as though the fingertips of spring are peeling back winter as a curious prank. A sheet of clouds hangs from its skyhooks and a tempting sliver arch of blue leers over the mountains grinning. Its enough to make you weep you know not why.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

"Buzz" Aldrin: The Real Story

Today is "Buzz" Aldrin's birthday. An appropriate day to tell his sad story of drug abuse and the Apollo astronauts that enabled him. You see, he and Neil used to do rails of 'Tang' off the LEM Module's control panel. While Neil snorted the juice crystals mostly socially, Aldrin's habit quickly swelled to 3 packets a day, earning him the nick-name "Buzz." It was in one of their Tang-fueled frenzies, that they came up with the idea of playing golf on the moon.

Neil: Hey Buzz, there's one more line for you.
Buzz: Thanks Daddy-o!(snooort..snort-snort) Dude! I had a groovy idea. We should like, play Golf! On the Moon! HAHA!
All: laughing and doubling over

For my part, I find this very good ammunition for the moon-hoax cabals. I mean, who would fake a Tang-overdose-fueled-golf-date-on-the-moon? Who?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

America Idol: Applied Epistemology

For my sins I've been watching the auditions for American Idol. Once the auditions are over its just the tedium of beautiful people singing which is of little interest. Unless you come from the Netherlands where all their singers are ugly and disfigured. The auditions are a marvelous peek at the inner workings of the human mind. After a particularly painful rendition of yesterday's discarded pop tunes, the contestant listens with incredulity as the judges tell them how comically awful they are. Then follows the best part of the series which is typified thusly:

Simon: Do me a favor and never sing again.
1)Tone Deaf Chump: (with blood pressure rising) Who the hell do you think you are anyway?
You don't know Sxxt!!
2)TDC: (with an expression that is not dissimilar to one found on an executioner's face just before the blade is lowered) I KNOW I can sing!

Semantically of course, someone who is in the act of singing is a singer, but I don't think this is the cognitive mistake the contestants are making.
The latter of these composites is wonderfully informative if they really mean what they say. "I know I can sing," it reveals a mind that has no formal algorithms for determining true from false, or a singer from an abysmal hack. This mind contains arbitrary information with no system of organization and no apparent interest in pruning the falsehoods and irrelevance from their unruly knowledge trees. In any case, its a sobering thought that these are the people who design banking software, ensure that our drinking water is pure and prevent planes from crashing into one another.

And speaking of music, For all my friends who loath Pachabel's Cannon in D, and for fans of very very clever musicians, daviditron theatre is proud to present Rob Paravonian. Most assured, its worth the every of its five brilliant minutes.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Maria Sharapova

Through the cyber ether, I pass along wishes that Fortuna smiles upon my girl Maria Sharapova at the Australian Open this week. I highly endorse this brilliant commercial that firmly sticks it to the beautiful but talentless.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Health Plans v Scary Think Tanks

I don't know what it is about Ultra right wing think tanks but they really have a penchant for touchy feely names. And so my first reader challenge of the year is to guess which of these logos are health plans and which are think tanks. I regret that I can't link you to any of these because frankly I will not be responsible for giving them link traffic. But if you're in the "right" frame of mind, it can be good for a laugh.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Feminism has never set itself up for ridicule

Well, I didn't quite go two weeks without talking politics. If only I had the willpower of the Duchess of York. Oh Fergie, whilst thou lendeth a humble serf some of thy focused mind? But back to the first course, in anticipation of Bush's new plan for Iraq, I read the Iraq Study Group Report. Its a tidy lil novella with surprises and twists, good character development a nice climax if a trifle unbelievable. One of its gems was the observation that of the thousand plus staffers in the Iraq embassy, only 8 were fluent in Arabic. If I could write great gags like that, I'd call myself a writer!
My prediction for the new policy is that the Tigris river will be choked with the dead of God's most chosen nation. It seems that American battalions will now be in Baghdad ensuring that sectarian interference isn't interfering with bringing militias to justice (and yes, the awkwardness of that sentance was inspired by Mister Bush.) My hunch is that the militias will revel at the chance to engage the American forces in street combat where they will hold a substantial advantage.

I've been reading Dawkins "The God Delusion" this week. Any theists who make it past the first chapter will toss it when confronted by his smarmy but witty tone. I don't think he can help it frankly but the book is filled with tasty nuggets in any case. Referring to how some feminist's refer to god using the pronoun "she" he says:
"But what, after all, is the difference between a non-existent female and a non-existent male? I suppose that in the ditzily unreal intersection of theology and feminism, existence might indeed be a less salient attribute than gender." Amen!

I also noticed the emergence of a new car company whose exclusive product is electric cars. Fittingly, its called Tesla Motors and their signature model is an elite roadster that blows the doors off everything guzzling gas. This CEO plaything will be followed by an $30 000 electric sedan for the rest of us, due out this year. A big Huzzah for Tesla Motors! In fact this product looks so good I may abandon my automotive inspiration: The Smart Camino. A smart-car style el Camino to attract the growing environmentally aware Hispanic demographic. I had already inked a deal with a pair of lovable Spanish midgets to help market the thing. "Eess good for the environment!" The marketing writes itself!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Palindromic Entertainers

I'm not sure which of these entertainers were cloned from which. Certainly it does demonstrate that talent isn't diluted with successive cloning. Its true, I don't have any genetic proof of this experiment, It came to me in a flash while waiting for the curteous and incompetant coffee droid at the coffee shop to pour me a simple cup of said drink

Also included for your perusal is my new favorite latin palindrome:
I will measure off the raft; she, mistress of the area, shall grind.

If there is a better example of an erotic latin palindrome, I'd love to see it!