Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Movie Review: The Fountain (no spoilers)

I didn't know quite what to expect from this flick. I had heard very mixed reviews (it was sitting near 50% on rottentomatoes) about this movie that was supposed to be the kind of thing you watch when you're high.

It's definitely trippy. I'll give you that.

But I liked it. And no, mom, I wasn't high.

I'll confess, I've always been a Hugh Jackman fan ever since he brought a surprisingly convincing Wolverine to life in X-Men. But in his subsequent flicks he tended to be a little too emotional. I blame it on his musical theatre background.

But in this flick he hit the right notes (as did his splendid co-star, Rachel Weisz, who can also sometimes be too much). This is a very emotional story, no doubt, but Jackman still reined in his perfomance so that it wasn't over the top. And this could not have been an easy movie to act in. Like I said, it's hippie trippy and features some very...unusual ideas.

I'm sure lots of critics will hate the movie for being too confusing (especially if you don't know anything about the tales of the Fountain of Youth), but if you can keep up with the themes and stories, I find it hard to believe you wouldn't appreciate the unique nature of this film. And how often do you get to say, "I saw an original movie today"?

Thumbs up.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Love Actually & other Christmas movies

A friend of mine pointed out that the tone of some of my recent posts was...angry. So, in an effort to prove to her that I am not a raging psycho, I offer to my readers a more "upbeat" item.

And what could be more upbeat than Christmas? (mall shopping aside)

Tonight, the CBC is offering up a charming Christmas feature: Love Actually. And even though it airs at 8pm in Toronto, thanks to my time shifting digital box (a misnomer if I ever heard one - call it multiregional access), I get to see it an hour earlier. Although it's a bit of a newcomer on the holiday flick scene, it is worthy of being right up there with some of the classics like my all-time fav It's A Wonderful Life.

And judging by the reactions of friends when the movie is brought up, I'm not the only one who feels this way, for once.

It's hard to put your finger on what it is about Love Actually that makes it so watchable. I can only imagine it's 'cause it's incredibly positive. You know, kinda like Forrest Gump, only, you know...better. And it also features some of the better modern Christmas tunes like Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You" and George Michaels' "Last Christmas"

But the thing that always gets me about Love Actually is the fact that they imply the character of Natalie is overweight. Are ya sh**ting me?! I gotta tell ya, Martine McCutcheon is, how do the British say it? Smashing. She even overshadows Keira Knightley, who's no slouch herself - though a bit too thin. If McCutcheon is undesirably overweight, no wonder women have body imagine issues.

It's just not right. It makes me so MAD. I mean, who the hell do these moviemakers think they are?! Telling us what's sexy and what's not? YOU"re gonna tell ME what's attractive? HUH!? WHERE DO YOU GET OFF YOU...YOU..

Oh...crap. I am a raging psycho.

Tee-hee. Oops!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Harper: Tough on Crime, Soft on Guns

So PM Harper was in Toronto yesterday, standing next to Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and Toronto Mayor David Miller to announce tougher gun crime rules - namely the use of reverse onus for determining bail for gun-related charges.


But hidden just beneath the surface of this announcement was the division between these leaders when it came to the real issue - gun control.

It was quite clear that while the leaders agreed that tougher rules were needed for gun crime offences, they could not agree on a handgun ban. Guess who didn't want to ban handguns?

Yup: Mr. Redneck.

I don't get it. What possible use could someone have for a handgun other than to threaten someone with it? And don't even start with home protection. Let's just say for a minute that someone does invade your house - are you really going to use it? Is it worth the risk if the intruder is simply a burglar? And even if the intruder was a threat, would you even have time to get to your gun before the intruder got to you? Would you have time to load it or would you pre-load your gun? Do you really think it's a good idea to have a loaded gun in your house? Not so much.

Oh, right: guns don't kill people - people kill people. Guns just make it a whole lot easier.

When's the last time you heard about someone accidentally bludgeoning someone to death? When's the last time you heard about someone acidentally getting shot?

And did you hear this one? Seems some 92-year old lady was shot dead by police. Tragic. Seems the police were executing a warrant at her house regarding drug activity. The police claim they knocked and announced themselves. Obviously feeling threatened, the elderly lady fired a gun at the officers, striking each of them. The officers understandably returned fire, killing the woman. The lady's niece claims it was a case of mistaken identity. The officers say there was no mistake when it came to the address (so perhaps someone was dealing drugs out of the house?).

Reverend Makel Hutchins, a "civil rights leader" said: "Of the police brutality cases we've had, this is the most egregious because of the woman's age."

I'm not even going to touch the ridiculousness of claiming that officers returning fire are engaging in "brutality", or that age should have anything to do with how officers deal with being fired upon.

No, what strikes me is that this Associated Press story doesn't even blink at the idea that a 92-year old lady had a handgun! What the f**k?! 92?! I don't think 92-year olds should be driving let alone carry live ammunition.

Never mind that the incident took place in Atlanta, Georgia. This is indicative of the absolute insanity that can result from the proliferation of firearms.

When I'm Prime Minister, you can bet your ass that one of the first things I'm gonna do is ban private ownership of handguns and automatic weapons. You think it's a right to collect weapons? Kiss my ass. You want to hunt? Fine. Keep a rifle with a trigger lock on it. You can take the lock off when you get to the hunting ground. Anyone who is caught with an unsecured rifle or any other gun gets 20 years. Period. Use it in the commission of a crime? Life.

And that's in addition to the reverse onus for bail conditions.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Harper: Quebecois a "Nation"

This is so dumb.

This is politics at its worst and highlights the ignorance that permeates news writing these days.

But, of course, I'm somewhat interested to know what "the people" think and to find out whether or not they can see through this charade.

It's all semantics, people.

Let me see if I got this straight: just when the Liberals were starting to attack one another on the question of Quebec's role and identity in Canada, Prime Minister Stephen Harper does Michael Ignatieff a huge favour (Why? Could it be because he actually wants the foot-in-mouth neophyte to win?) by pronoucing that "Quebecers form a nation within a unified Canada" (or words like those - I heard them in French and English).

Now, are you paying attention? Did you catch that huge loophole?

'Cause I'm not sure half the press stories I've read/seen did.

Quebecers form a nation...not Quebec. BIG difference.

Harper's wording makes it so that Quebecers form a "nation" within Canada much like Amerindians (a word I much prefer over the innacurate "native" - a subject for another day) do, or much like how we refer to Toronto Maple Leafs fans as "Leaf Nation". That is to say, a group or people identified by a common trait.

This is a FAR cry from recognizing the province of Quebec as a nation in Canada (which would bring about all sorts of issues reagrding powers and sovereignty). But, again, I'm not sure everyone in this debate realizes that.

See, there's no constitutional argument here. Harper gets to cozy up to those in Quebec who might lean towards the Bloc (thereby securing a few more seats,perhaps?) all the while talking out of the other side of his mouth to the Rest of Canada (ROC) and making it seem rather innocent. Which, of course, it is. Whether the language is adopted in the House or not, it has no teeth. The province of Quebec is unaffected.

For those of you who might be freaking out over this hornet's nest being stirred up again: relax. This. Means. Nothing.

Harper is paying lip service to separatists who only read the headlines.

But let's get back to me.

See, I have a personal beef with this language. Specifically, I'd like to know what we're trying to say, exactly. I mean, what is it about this group of people that makes them a "nation"? Surely Harper is not merely talking about those who live within the boundaries of the province of Quebec - that makes no sense. How does being an anglophone renting an apartment in Westmount while working at the local IBM office make one worthy of being recognized as a member of a recognizable "nation"? There must be more to it. Being subjected to French signage doesn't cut it.

No, surely Harper is talking about a culture here. This people must be identified somehow by what they bring to the fabric of Canada. Is it that they are decendants of the first French colonists of Lower Canada who fought to maintain their cultural identity in the face of eventual British rule? The reason Canada was eventually declared a bilingual country?

If we are talking about such culturally-defined people, then why the f**k is Harper using the term "Quebecer"?

THIS is my problem.

Just whose ass is Harper trying to kiss? 'Cause by the definition above, I belong to this "nation" though I have never lived in Quebec, just like thousands upon thousands of other ROC "Quebecers".

So, Mr. Harper, just who the f**k belongs to this special "Quebecer" nation of yours: my aunt, who grew up in northern Quebec but now lives as a retired French school teacher in Burlington Ontario, or an immigrant from (insert whatever country here) who only speaks English and (insert whatever language here), who can't tell the difference between "poutine" and "putain" but happens to live 30 minutes east of Cornwall?

Until our delightful PM defines "Quebecer", it's hard to imagine they form any kind of "nation".

Mr. Harper may be getting kudos from the ignorant, but those of us with half a brain who are able to see this for what it is (regardless of what side of the sovereignty debate we're on) are clearly not impressed.

The news media, however, don't seem to get it.

Tell me, oh readers of mine, that you understand the difference...

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Movie roundup: Bond, Queen, Aviator, Prestige, Break-Up

*mild spoiler warning*

I caught the latest instalment of the Bond franchise yesterday (love the poster by the way). It had been getting a crazy high rating on rottentomatoes, so I was a little worried my expectations would be too high and the flick would be a disappointment.

It wasn't.

It was really entertaining, though I'm still trying to decide what I think of this new direction for the series. If I had a word of warning for people planning to see it, it'd be this: don't expect a Bond movie.

This movie was not end-to-end action, it didn't have the typical Bond cheese and Daniel Craig definitely attempts to actually act in this flick. This is a rookie Bond, making rookie mistakes and learning the tricks of his new trade.

Craig, however, gives Bond a quality he was lacking in the other incarnations, save perhaps Connery: he's a thug. With Craig, you actually believe his punches would hurt. The action sequences (though they may seem few) are great (except, unfortunately, the last one - but I'll avoid spoiling the rather odd final 20 minutes).

He doesn't need the designer watch that emits an EM pulse that can avert a nuclear threat; he's a bad mother f***er who likes to fight. Bring it on.

Goldeneye was on the boob tube when I got home and as I watched the first few minutes I was reminded of just how much of a departure Casino Royale is from its predecessors. This Bond is much more, dare I say, realistic than its gadget-wielding, one-liner-laden breatheren. I never want to see that stupid invisible car again.

But, in the end, is it...Bond? James Bond?


The Queen: a fine flick and it certainly has its charms, but more of a movie-of-the-week, I must say, without any grandeur or effects or subject matter that would make it required viewing at $10+ on the big screen. Wait for it to be aired on tv. It'll be worth it then.

The Aviator: I own this one, having bought it last Christmas during one of HMVs annual blow-outs (what will I pick up this year?). Figured it was about time I got to it, and seeing as I have a little more free time these days... Anyhow, this one is entertaining as well, so long as you find the characters appealing. I'm not a big Leo fan, and here it's more of the same emoting on his part. Been there, done that, won't buy the t-shirt. But the story of Howard Hughes was compelling enough for me. Thumbs up.

The Prestige: Good flick, thumbs up, but I gotta say I saw the ending coming about halfway through. The problem with movies that involve deceit and double-crosses, etc, is that you start to anticipate them. You look for the angles. Unfortunately, that means the surprise is lost and hence, the effect. But this movie is definitely different enough that it's worth a viewing.

The Break-Up: I ordered this via my new digital box, since I had an afternoon to kill and was curious to see how this system worked. It was ok. I enjoyed it, but it definitely could have had a few more laughs. I don't know if this movie was trying to be a little more mature, a little smarter, a little more like the relationship movies of the 70s, but it didn't quite get there for me. I appreciated the ending etc, but that doesn't cut it. In the end, it just wasn't enough of anything for me to rave about.

Does this mean Rogers' plan has worked and I'll be on the hook for bigger cable bills in the future? We'll see.

Georges St. Pierre: UFC Champ

Some folks may read this and have no idea what I'm talking about, but the Canadian flag is flying a little higher this morning.

At about 12:35am, Montrealer Georges "Rush" St. Pierre was being fitted with the belt that had belonged to UFC Welterweight Champion Matt Hughes.

Of all the UFC champs, Hughes was considered the most formidable, the best (he was also considered by many to be an asshole jock, which his ignorant comments about Canadian war involvement seem to prove). What makes St. Pierre's victory so impressive is not merely that it came against a man considered pound-for-pound the best fighter in the UFC, but the manner in which St. Pierre won.

He didn't beat Hughes. He absolutely destroyed Hughes.

Hughes was never in this fight. From the opening moments, St. Pierre asserted himself, taking the centre of the octagon and delivering punishing kicks to Hughes' legs.

Hughes complained of a couple of low blows, but unless his testicles hang somewhere around his knees, the second "offense" was clearly clean. It would seem unlike Hughes to complain without cause, but his protestations rang hollow.

After being saved by the bell at the end of the first round, Hughes' demise came early in the second. He leaned forward to deliver a punch, unaware his face would soon be introduced to St. Pierre's shin, courtesy of yet another punishing kick. Hughes was rocked and hit the canvas. St. Pierre pounced on the fallen champ and delivered shot after shot to Hughes' face until the referee was forced to stop the fight.

The crowd in the bar went apeshit.

New UFC Welterweight Champion of the World: Georges St. Pierre.


Friday, November 17, 2006

Frank Thomas a Blue Jay

Uh boy...

I'm scratching my head over this one.

Why was "The Big Hurt" a priority? The Jays have been on the verge of contending for the last couple of years, but their holes were obvious: middle relief pitching, a shortstop who can hit, and maybe some starting help (though, if healthy, the Jays are pretty good in this area).

So, I'm tempted to add this signing to the list of strange signings by GM J.P. Ricciardi. Don't get me wrong, I think Ricciardi's been doing a good job of getting the Jays off the scrap heap of recent years, but he seems to be incapable of getting the Jays that last mile.

My favourite example? Bengie Molina. What was up with that? The Jays had a veteran leader with an underused dependable bat in Greg Zaun, but just when it appeared Zaun had clearly earned the starting catcher's spot, the Jays go out and sign free agent Molina for way more money ($5M vs $1M). Why? They then had two catchers, so of course the higher paid one got more playing time, deserved or no (they ended up with very similar stats). Now both have signed for free agency and both want starting jobs. That was $5M very poorly spent; Zaun was a bargain.

So now 48 year old Thomas gets $9M. The same Thomas who was essentially dumped by the Chicago White Sox a couple of years back. The same Thomas who was named "Comeback Player of the Year" last year and made Oakland so happy (no wonder: he was earning next to nothing).

So now Thomas is getting big bucks again. It remains to be seen if, at 38, he's a big bucks player. Either way, odds are his signing means he'll be playing with small bucks teammates.

That's what I call a "Big Hurt".

Thursday, November 16, 2006

CFL: Selling its soul...and the Grey Cup?

There's a rumour going around that the CFL is considering selling the naming rights to the Grey Cup.

That's right: not a stadium, not a game, but the actual trophy itself.

Someone, somewhere thinks this is a good idea.

Add this to the many reasons I dislike the CFL, which previously included:

1. Game days - I never know when the Argos are playing next. If I did, I might be motivated to tune in more often. Why the CFL doesn't play all of its games on the same day like the NFL (mostly) and NCAA is beyond me. It would increase rivalries in the standings throughout the season and help to give the CFL some kind of identity. How about fridays? That work for you guys?

2. Three downs - Let's see: I get two tries at ten yards and then I have to punt. Joy. Can I please watch some more punting? I love punting. So exciting. Best part of the game. More punting!!! (and considering how obsessed the Argos were at running on first down, I got my wish plenty this season)

3. Skill level - Say what you want CFL-fans-who-don't-have-a-hockey-team, the skill level in the CFL ain't what it is in the NFL. That much is obvious. So you'll have to forgive me if I don't pledge my allegiance to an inferior product. I want my NFL team, and I want it yesterday.

4. NFL hinderance - The NFL clearly does not want to kill the CFL since they provide a nice little farm system (which otherwise would only exist in the form of the Arena League and World League...is that still around?). The NFL has made it pretty clear over the years that it will not expand to Toronto while the CFL is still on life support. So let's pull the %&@#ing plug already. With Godfrey et al kicking around, now's the time the strike: buy a team and bring 'em north. Buffalo won't like it, but I have no doubt Toronto could support an NFL team (heck, there are only 8 or so home dates). I don't even think the Argos would have to change their name nor jerseys!

But back to the issue-du-jour. It's bad enough that SkyDome has been renamed the Rogers Centre and that stadiums around the globe are being renamed seemingly at random, but to change the name of the top prize? Why? To make a few bucks? So, what, we get the Fido Cup for ten years, then the Telus Cup for the next ten, and so on and so on? STFU. What does that say about the history of your league? Can you imagine looking back at the stats in 50 years to see who won the league chamionship, only to read the confusing list of names associated with that championship?

History means something, folks.

Would you rename Maple Leaf Gardens the Loblaws Maple Leaf Gardens? (oh...wait...bad example...) You know what I mean.

Have some pride in your product, you morons.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Rogers Digital Cable Offer

You know those deals that sound too good to be true? I hate those.

I went through an insane sales pitch experience recently with a travel company (The Travel Store) - more on that at another time (I'm still waiting to see how ridiculous it gets).

Yesterday, however, I got a call from Rogers that had me scratching my head. They were offering me a digital box at no charge for one year (anyone else get this call?). My bill wouldn't change, and if I chose to keep the box after the one year, I would simply pay the regular $6.96/month price.

Hmmm...what's the catch? None, according to them.

So I went by the local Rogers store, picked up my box and set it up upon returning home.

Voila: digital cable.

The immediate benefit is that I can now receive a couple of channels that came in fuzzy before (NBC and CKVR, for some reason) and the handy-dandy remote allows me to control my tv, vcr, dvd player AND stereo (I need to run the tv sound through it - long story). The universal remote I was using before didn't quite cover all of these bases adeqately.

On top of the million channels I now get (and will never use) I can also access Rogers on Demand and pay-per-view options (though, for $40 versus $10, I think I'd rather see UFC ppvs in a pub)

The bitch is that there's a lag between channels when flipping. And anyone who knows me knows I'm an unrepentant channel flipper. This will take some getting used to.

So I guess Rogers is hoping I'll get hooked on the "superior picture quality" or maybe order tons and tons of movies. Otherwise, this seems like an expensive promotion for them.

But in case they think I'll simply forget to cancel at the end of the year term and shell out for the extra $6.95 per month: I canceled my additional Bell features this morning.

An elephant and a thrifty bastard never forget.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Long Live the King!

So apparently there's some new study out that claims it has discovered certain "predictors" that can tell if a man will lead a long life.

"Nine factors were good predictors of which middle-aged men would live healthily into their 80s and beyond, concluded a 40-year study of nearly 6,000 Japanese-American men living in Hawaii."

(Asian men living in paradise? Don't they ALL live beyond 80?)

1. Not being/becoming overweight: No worries there. I have a crazy metabolism.

2. Having low blood pressure: According to that Shoppers Drug Mart doohickey, I'm soaring in this category.

3. Low blood sugar levels: I wouldn't really know, but since I tend to avoid sweets in general, I'm gonna assume I'm doing alright here.

4. Low levels of bad cholesterol: Hm...don't know about this one. This may be my first real blip. I like fries.

5. Not drinking alcohol excessively: Define "excessively". I'm Irish.

6. Not smoking: Have only smoked for stage, so I'm ok. This is also my number one turn-off in women, so seond-hand smoke isn't too much of a concern either.

7. Having a strong grip: Can't say I'm known for my strong grip, but I plan to work out. How's that?

8. Achieving a high level of education: Well, I did go to university twice, so that can't hurt.

9. Being married: Hmmm...Kinda out of my control for the most part, I figure. I'll do what I can, though.

So by my calculations, I've got to be at least 6/9. If I manage to get some girl drunk enough, I may even be 7/9 some day.

If I hit the gym and stop eating fries, hell, I'm gonna live forever!

Just gotta stay away from those falling pianos...

Late Bloomer

It's 1:30am and, once again, I'm still up.

I've been having a heck of a time getting to bed at a reasonable hour. Since I've been off work, I've been going to bed between about 2 and 4 am every night. I get up between 10am and noon.

This is not good.

Clearly, I am not a morning person. I knew that. I've always known that. Part of the reason acting suited me, I guess.

Working in an office? Not so much.

Still, I've got to get a handle on this. By the time I get up, half the day has gone and, before I know it, it's time to go out with friends or watch my favourite show and *boom* everyone else goes to bed. Day's over.

But I'm still up.

If I don't figure out a way to change my sleep cycle I'm gonna end up in Malaysian chat rooms.

Don't. Wanna. Go. There.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Remembrance Day

Today is Remembrance Day, of course.

I was thinking about it, and it struck me how sad this occasion makes me. Not because of thoughts of those who died in the Great War, or WWII or Korea, etc, (that's a given) but because of how that is juxtaposed by the same sacrifice made by soldiers today - without the same noble cause.

War has changed a great deal (not that I'm an expert) over the decades. As I watch some of the great stories being told this week on the History Channel, I am reminded that war, back in the day, was much more savage - face to face, hand to hand at times, and fought in the trenches. This is contrasted greatly by the eye-in-the-sky, surgical missile strikes and stealth bombing raids in Iraq and elsewhere. It used to be that if you fought for what you believed in, it meant getting your hands dirty and bayonetting a man while looking him in the eye - while facing equal odds that you would suffer the same fate.

That was war. And war was hell.

Today, superpowers squash "insurgents" like bugs and the only way for them to fight back is to strap explosives to their chests. Today, armies don't face each other in equal numbers in farmers' fields because no equality exists (note that not marching to slaughter makes you a "terrorist" or "insurgent", though - ain't labels a bitch?). Today, people like George Bush (take your pick) lead the world into "wars" where a button is pushed and dozens of the "enemy" die at a time - soldiers, civilians, whatever. (I wonder: what was the civilian casualty rate during the American Civil War? What is it in Iraq?) And instead of praying that the casualties on "our" side are fewer than those suffered on "their" side, we get news reports on individual soldier deaths. That is to say, when one Allied/American/Coalition soldier dies, it's newsworthy. What does that say about our expectations of war? What does it say when the "general public" is up in arms that the casualty rate has reached double digits and demands that our soldiers return home?

What does it say when the Prime Minister tries to ban coverage of a single soldier's body being returned home for fear it will weaken our resolve?

I've said it before and I will say it forever: if you are not willing to suffer at least as many casualties as the other side in order to win a war, that war is not worth fighting in the first place. It doesn't mean enough to you.

Today, war has become too easy. It's convenient. It's "in the bag". Got a problem with Iraq or Libya? No problem: just bomb'em.

Got a problem with North Korea or Russia? No prob--

...Oh, wait.

But how do you say that to the soldier who is sent overseas? How do you say that to the soldier who is risking their life in Iraq? How do you tell them you don't support what they're doing? (Because, believe it or not Mr. Redneck Warmonger, you CAN support your troops WITHOUT supporting the cause they were sent to fight by the Administration-du-jour)

So, on this Remembrance Day, I remember the wars that were and pity the soldier who makes the greatest sacrifice at the whim of George W. Bush.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Uncle Philip to Baby Caleb Sullivan Flaherty

My sister Christine who lives in Vancouver had her baby overnight. Little Caleb (yeah, right: 7 lbs 12 oz.) was born around 4:30 ET - which is about the time I woke up needing a drink (I don't normally need one).

I bet my sister could have used a drink right about then, too!

Caleb makes my mom a grandmother for the first time.

Awwww.... "Grandmaman Sullivan"

I'll be seeing Caleb for the first time around Christmas.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have some shopping to do!

Dessie Curley: [at a pub, after Sharon's delivery] 7 pounds 12 ounces.
Loner: Is that a baby, or a turkey?
Dessie Curley: A baby!
Loner: That's a good-sized baby.
Dessie Curley: Right.
Loner: Small turkey, though.
- Colm Meaney and Birdy Sweeney discuss babies and turkeys in "The Snapper"

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Don't Anger the Dirt Gods

I love this ad...


I think it only airs on Spike and/or during sports events, so many of you may be missing out. And you are missing out. Apparently video game ads are the bomb.

Dirt God: Gary, what are you doing?
Gary: I'm shining up my ATV.

Dirt God: ...Why?!
Gary: Because it's dirty?

Dirt God: From now on your name will be "Sally"! (gives him a pink dress and a pink ATV)
Dude passing by on ATV: Hi Sally

Sally/Gary: ...Hi...

US Elections: Rumsfeld gone


For the first time in a long time, the American electorate came to their senses and returned some power to the Democrats - or, rather, removed some power from the Republicans.

Right now I'm listening to George Bush eat crow at a press conference. This is by far the longest time I have spent in one sitting listening to this moron speak. I guess it's the subject matter.

He's actually talking about the war in Iraq in negative terms.

He's tripping over his words, he's backpedalling, he's contradicting himself - he's being George. Priceless.

He's called the election "a thumpin'."

He painted himself into a corner and actually said that Democrats want to defend the country just as much as Republicans, and will do it just as well - remember THAT quote! (as I write, a reporter just called him on it and he dodged the question; but in true George fashion used a double negative such that he implied Democrats want America to be attacked! Oy vay...)

But the big news is that Donald Rumsfeld has resigned.


The story, of course, is that Bush and Rumsfeld agreed that a "change in perspective" was necessary. So is it just coincidence that the resignation comes after this election "thumpin''?! If a "change in perspective" was necessary, it should have been necessary regardless of the election results!

The fact is that it would have been impossible for Rumsfeld to work with the Democratic House (Senate is still undecided) based on his behaviour in the past. He was the hawk of all hawks, he was the warmonger of warmongers, the stubborn s.o.b. who is directly responsible for the many needless deaths of American soldiers overseas. History will judge him. Goodness knows no justice system ever will.

The world is a brighter place this morning. That's all that matters, I guess.

Monday, November 06, 2006

My Halloween Costume

I'm posting because I have no way of sending this to Diane, who requested to see it.

The rest of you: close your eyes.

Here you go, Diane: Corporal Punishment.

...It would take too long to explain.

Yes, my name tag says "Punishment" and I am wearing corporal's flashes on my sleeves.

Hope you like.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Saddam Hussein : So Damn Insane

This really is nuts, ain't it?

I mean, how did a guy who runs (ran) a little country half way around the world loom so large in North American politics and news?


Anyways, I find it mildly interesting that the US would be so happy with this "trial" (quotes included since the outcome of a trial is supposed to be somewhat in doubt, normally).

See, as far as I can tell, no one has accused Hussein of actually pulling any triggers, of actually killing anyone. But then again, I don't know the details of this trial (does anyone?).

My point is this: having a leader hanged because he ordered the death of civilians is an interesting precedent. I mean, it ain't like civilians haven't died due to the orders of Mr. Bush et al. Have they?

Argue all you want that it isn't on the scale of "crimes against humanity", but surely there are degrees of guilt in the "let's make leaders accountable" judicial system, no?

How about...I don't know...manslaughter. Is that ok? Surely the boys of Law & Order could make those charges stick. 'Cause we're accountable here in the West, right? I mean, we hold our leaders to account, yes? We judge them as we would hope other leaders would be judged, right? What's good for the goose and all that?

Heck, even Michael Ignatieff, a political neophyte, was able to deduce that Bush had authorized a modern-day war crime (oops - don't use that term in the West. We save that one for Nazis and Iraqi leaders and some Eastern European folk).

I'm not saying Hussein is innocent - like I said, I don't know the facts - but I do know that leaders are normally hanged thanks to a mob, not a court. If we're claiming this trial was on the up-and-up and that leaders should be accountable in this fashion, let's take a real long look at the thickness of the glass walls before we start chucking stones.

Know what I mean, GB?

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Gears of War

I was sitting at my computer when a cool commercial came on. I'd seen it before and loved it, so thought I'd spread the word.

There's a commercial for the new Xbox game Gears of War. It goes something like this:

A (computer) soldier runs through dark streets, jumping into buildings through the windows, loaded for bear. He dives to the ground. He opens his eyes to see a beautiful array of lights. It seems peaceful. Until the lights are revealed to be the luminescent eyes of a gigantic spider-like monster. The soldier stands and opens fire, making a stand against all odds.

Gary Jules' version of "Mad World" (Donnie Darko) plays throughout...


All around me are familiar faces,
Worn out places,
Worn out faces,
Bright and early for the daily races,
Going nowhere,
Going nowhere,
Their tears are filling up their glasses,
No expression,
No expression,
Hide my head I wanna drown my sorrow,
No tomorrow,
No tomorrow.

Mad world,
Mad world.

Lost characters


This week, a certain character left Lost.

I was really disappointed to see them go. I really liked that character. They were different. They were...I don't know...in tune with the island in a way Locke seems to be (in part, at least). They were spiritual and violent, pensive and vicious.

It's a shame, I think. And I can't help but figure it again had to do with things outside the show. You won't convince me that the writers created this character only to have them written off this way. I'm convinced now, more than ever, that this show is being bullshitted as it goes along (all apologies to Denis, who believes this is what makes television great - yes, it makes it fluid, but how is a fan supposed to feel to know, to KNOW that there is no plan?).

Lost character indeed.