Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Monday, 28 January 2008

Hmmmmm? Doesn't Look Like -48oC

But holy freakin' doodle, it sure feels like it!

This is what we woke up to this morning; -48 with the windchill.
But it felt a lot more like -49 to me.

And, to top off the day, our fire alarm went off. So we're outside at night with all the firemen racing around. On the coldest night of year. With apologies to Bruce Cockburn.

So not only was it feakin' cold, it was freakin' windy. It was so cold even the snow was trying to sneak inside.

Sunday, 27 January 2008

Yeah, Baby!

Went to the second game of the Roughnecks lacrosse season. You know, there's no better way to feel like an out of touch, old fogey than to sit beside two ubercool 15 year old dudes.

Some samples;

Me jumping up an telling "Yeah, baby!!" A lot.
UC Dudes, slinking down in their seats, grimacing at each other.

Me: "Check it out, guys, the ref got some guy for using an illegal stick! Yeah baby!"
UC Dude #1 (with a nano turn of his head); "No...they regularly check them all game long. Nobody got caught."
Me: "Oh...."

Me: "Hey? Why'd they blow the whistle? Come on ref!!"
UC Dude #2 (with an incredibly pained expression): "Because the period's over."
Me: "Oh, yeah."
His last comment was said with his mouth. His eyes said; can you possibly be any more stupid?

Well, apparently from their ongoing expressions, I was just getting warmed up. Yeah, baby!

Me (now late in the game): "A penalty shot? Are you nuts ref? He didn't touch him!"
UCD#1: "Too many men, less than two minutes in the game, a penalty shot." They were by now resigned to explaining and correcting almost every one of my comments.
Me: "Oh...." (In my defense, how do you know that rule?)

Let's just say I think these guys are now planning to shoot themselves long before they reach 40. If this is what it's going to be like.

And neither of them will ever drink beer. Good, more for me.

Oh, Yeah?

Across the street from my place, that's how you handle annoying restrictions.

Saturday, 26 January 2008

Location, Location, Location

The Calgary apartment vacancy rate is hovering around zero.

So it's come to this; an open house to live in the back of some guy's truck.

Actually, I saw the ad for this in the paper; "Lovely four door Chevy Tahoe, steps from the C-Train. Perfect for young couples. Crackhead couples."

$4:50 Corona's - Not Bad!

Looks Like They're Selling Well, Too
This is the pub around the corner. From the looks of the clientele from sticking my head in, I think the fella passed out in my lobby comes here for a few drinks before going to bed.

Good thing about living in my neighborhood when you are mobility challenged is that there is actually lots of interesting stuff easily accessible within limping distance.

Who knew I'd be so lucky.

Thursday, 24 January 2008

Now We're Getting Somewhere

Front page of today's paper. I'm not the only one whining about our deteriorating downtown situation. So they are finally planning a safety audit of the commuter train system.

One of the skeptical pundits said, since it will be done by the transit system itself, the audit will likely find that there's no safety problem; the cars are safe, the doors work and the wheels don't fall off.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008


So I go down to get a paper this morning and what do I see - I mean who do I see. Wait a second, I don't know who this is....what scuzbag do I see passed out in our lobby?

It's a good thing Google doesn't have its smell-o-rama feature enabled or you'd be doubled over. Our whole lobby stank you like wouldn't believe.

I know it's tough to make him out, but below is what the lobby should look like.

So did I call the cops to get him out? Did I yell and kick him to get him out? No, no...I just got my paper and went back upstairs. Sigh.... But something has to be done about these guys.

Now all you suburbanites are saying, what a heartless cad you are. These are the most vulnerable people in our society. We need to look after them. Well, see if you like them sleeping on your property.

You guys go back to your pretty bungalows. While we urban cowboys have to be tougher, grittier than that to survive.....oo oo wait a second, my mocha latte is ready. Mmmmm.....anyway.... grittier to survive down here in the core.

And don't worry, these guys have lots of shelters where they can get warm and eat. But they don't want to go there, because they won't let them in hammered and high. So they just ride around on the free C-Train all day long. And now, sleep in my lobby. Whew....I'm out of breathe.

And it's not just me. In today's paper a female reporter told it like it is.
Way to go Naomi. She started by relating a story about Israeli prime minister Golda Meir.

Her male cabinet ministers told her the way to cut down on nighttime assaults was to have a curfew banning women after dark. She shot back - no, ban the men.

So Naomi really lit into those "scumbags who ride up and down the free-fare zone...because they have nothing better to do with their sordid lives. They're even sleeping in guy's lobbies." Okay, I added that last part.

But the rest is right on! Maybe we're getting to a critical mass here.

[P.S. What prompted her article was a woman was beaten to death at a C-Train station on the weekend.]

Okay, angry middle-aged, middle-class guy signing off......

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

It's All Canadian, Eh?

Now that's Canadian! And, apparently, Calgarian.

That brings to mind a song........

"Home, my home is strange.
Where the bear and moose paddle all day.
Where gunshots are heard,
And the words are all slurred
By the guys that are drinking all day."

Monday, 21 January 2008

This Time She's Gone Too Far!

Oh my aching head!

My physio says acupuncture is supposed to be relaxing. So, first time I close my eyes to relax, she sticks a needle in my head. What's up with that?

Hey, she must have cut off all my hair, too.

And before someone else says it...Mr. Greenfield....what a pinhead.

Sunday, 20 January 2008

Hey, Great.....ohhhhhh

This place is always just about empty when you go in. And if their inside operation is as good as their outside marketing, I know why.

I just looked inside and saw their next sign: "Great Happy Hour Deals - We're Closed".

Saturday, 19 January 2008

Canadian, Too, Eh?

Ouff..... Calgary at night? Nope - Calgary at mid morning. This morning. Bleah.....

Good dumping of snow today. Then down to -25 overnight and more tomorrow. It's no North Bay, I know, but it sucks just the same.

Good thing my knee and I don't have any pressing engagements today. Hmm...I guess that could go for just about any day.

However, there is a silver lining to these many dark clouds - no filthy pigeons.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Canadian, eh?

This true blue Canadian couple got married at a Timmy's in Calgary. Wonder whose idea that was?

I'm suspecting there's a little bit of Scottish blood in that laddie. Not that there's anything wrong with that. My grandaddy was a Scottish banker. [No! We would have never guessed.]

She has one of those frozen I-don't-believe-he-did-this smiles.
He's thinking, this is excellent, the whole thing cost under five bucks.

Sorry, under $30 - forgot the case of beer for afterwards.

Hmmmm.....I guess it is pretty Canadian.

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Get It Off Me!

It's alive, it's alive! To quote a Seinfeld episode, it feels like aliens are poking at my body.

So I decided to get some physiotherapy on my knee. Right about now I'm seriously questioning the judgement of that decision.

These things send what I'm sure is 50,000 volts of pure mayhem through your extremities. It's supposed to "loosen the knee up". I see. Good plan.

And this is the hideous machine that makes those babies hum.

The therapist said, you can turn it up as high as you like.

Turn it up? How the hell do you turn it off?

As I was snap, snap, snapping away with my phone, she called in, "is that the machine making that noise?". No, no, nothing.'ll be hearing from my lawyer....

Hey, What Are You Going To Do With That Needle?

Whoo chee mama! Them's a some spicy needles.

That blue thing sticking out of my knee is one of them needles. I know it's hard to see, but you try taking a good picture when you are quivering like a stuck pig. And they're all down my leg.

Acupuncture, they call this. I'm not sure about the accu part, but I can certainly vouch for the puncture end of it.

If those physioterrorists aren't sticking their thumbs where they're not supposed to, they're doing the next worse thing. This is supposed to help my knee, too. Yeah, and I got a hammer, that'll really tune it up.

I can't wait to see what she cooks up next week. "This is a 457 magnum. The most powerful handgun known to man."


Sunday, 13 January 2008

Must Be In The Front Row

Home opener for the Calgary Roughnecks lacrosse team Saturday night. And I got my seats upgraded this year.

Front row, right behind the net. Pretty good vantage point for watching noses get smushed up against the glass.

And also pretty good vantage point for the cameraman to get me on the Jumbotron. Cheeky monkey.

I guess there were no pretty girls in the seats yet, so he flashed me up there.

Thought I would return the favour.

To give you the simulated feel of me up on the Jumbotron, this is me in my nice pink sweatshirt and matching hat.

Now just so nobody gets angry, this was not taken by the cameraman. Official cameraman, anyway. You remember Big Buddy? Well this was apparently Bumbling Buddy. Not so easy taking a shot with my little shutter box, is it.

I was pretty in pink, by the way, because the Roughnecks were having a breast cancer fundraiser last night.
In fact, all the players looked pretty in pink. Although I didn't tell them that. All the jerseys were auctioned off after the game and they raised over $40,000.

Looks like one got away from the 'necks goalie. Heck, he plays, and looks, like a girl. I didn't say that to him either. These are big boys. With absolutely no senses of humour.

Again, not so easy to take those photos, is it Big Fingered Buddy?

And I guess not so much fun getting your picture taken either. Another good close up of the big fingers. All five this time.

Unfortunately, the boys lost in overtime. Same thing that happened last year. And to the same team. But an exciting game, nonetheless.

The Enemy

These filthy pigeons are all over our building. Rats with wings. Zoom in a little closer on this flying plague machine.

There, he's looking right at me.

And, as you can see, a few are arrogant enough to try and land on my balcony. In fact, these....these...creatures of nature, actually built a fully functional nest on my balcony last year.

My dear, 92 year old mother had some advice for me. "Kill them." Well, I don't have the cojones my Mom does, so I just got rid of the nest. But they keep coming back.

Well, I got news for them now. Next slide.

The Weapons!

This here is Owly. Scares the pants offn them birds.

And he hoots, too. Pretty annoying sound. I know it is for me (and I bet for my neighbors) so he surely strikes fear into their tiny pin heads.

It was actually so annoying I finally had to block his hoot hole with kleenex. White bit down by his feet. Oh well, he's still pretty effective.

This here is Master Blaster. Full of ice cold water. Whereas Owly is kind of passive, Master B is all action.

The trick is opening the door reeeeaaallllll slooooow and quiet like. Then line up the little darlings in my sights and pump, pump, pump! And watch the fur fly. Whoooo hooo!

A couple of times I swear I heard them say "What the.......?" as they cartwheeled off the balcony railing.

The Result

....steamed pigeon. Well, wet anyway. The little...uhhhhh.... fellow....was sitting right there this morning. Blam - got 'im.

I love it when they are actually on the balcony and I start blasting. They fly right into the glass. Ha ha ha! [Oops...sorry, Pat, you shouldn't have read that part.]

It is pretty funny, though, watching their little pea brains trying to figure out what's going on.

Hyuk hyuk, thems birds shore is dumb.

Oh well, I'm sure they'll get the last laugh. Using their favourite weapon.

Thursday, 10 January 2008

And The Results Are In

Had my MRI this week. Big honking, noisy behemoth. But I guess they work pretty well.

Survey Says....

Looks like I have a nice meniscus tear. Actually a "complex meniscus tear". My doctor says you only see the "complex" ones after skiing accidents or car crashes.

I was embarrassed to tell him I was only walking around. Guess I must be a rough walker.

Next Stop.....

I guess I'll be getting to know some orthopedic surgeons.

But I hope not these guys - I'm no doctor, but I don't even think that's a knee.

But my doctor says I should be able to get surgery within a year. Maybe 13 months. I love our health care system. Maybe I'll have worn away my meniscus by that time and won't need surgery.

Looks Nice.......

Very modern looking light rail transit station in downtown. All the business folks heading home after a long day at work.

However, as much as they try to make this a nice area, they are fighting a tough battle.

Zoom in on some of the spots in the background.

Nice Pawn Shop there. I think I saw our CEO in there.

And, of course, the ubiquitous police wagon waiting right beside. We had two beside my station this morning on the way in to work.

As soon as the sun goes down in this area, they get busy. Too bad we have to abandon our downtown to the you-know-who's each evening.

Oops, better get on my train and skedaddle......

Monday, 7 January 2008

You Also Heard This Here First

As previously, and incredibly, predicted, [Jump to incredible prediction] Benazir Bhutto's 19 year old son does not want to become the leader of her political party. He just wants to party. kidding.

The article says he'd rather go for drinks at an Oxford nightclub. Pretty close to what the Urban one hypothesized a few short days ago. No thanks necessary.

Sunday, 6 January 2008


....that's better. So going against doctor's directions, mother's admonishments and all common sense, walked all the way to the local pub last night. I told the knee to shut for once and do something I wanna do.

What better place to sample a delightful Czech Pilsner.

And I think that is a hockey game on in the background. Wonder how much the Leafs lost by.


An amusing Blueberry Lager. How smoothly they go down.


Now the bold flavour of a Langhorn Irish Bitter. Truly bracing for a cold and blustery evening.

Like a meal in itself. Hmmm.....that reminds me, maybe I should have had something to eat.....

#? Huh?

Urp. Hmmm, camera doesn't seem to be working very well. I'll have to have it looked at.

But I'll tell you, whatever kind of beer thish was...I love it, man, it was delishus. Yummity.

But all good things must come to end end. According to the bartender anyway. I love that guy, man.

Big Thanks

And of course, this trip would not have been possible without the assistance, and terrible jokes of, the aforementioned big buddy. Jump to aforementioned Big Buddy reference

Saturday, 5 January 2008

Whoa, Dude

Dude, you gotta cut back on the hallucinogenics.

What is this? Looks like an attack of the, apparently very orderly, aliens. Any other ideas?

Actually my you-know-what piece of camera makes this game a lot harder than it should be.

How 'bout now?

Anyone....anyone.....Mr. Bueller? They're all over me now. The horror, the horror.....

How 'bout now?

I get it, I'm stuck in my elevator. But looks like the aliens finally got me.

[Okay, this wasn't such a good idea. I stole a clever concept and ran it into the ground. I gotta get this knee fixed so I can venture a little farther than the circumference of this building.]

Friday, 4 January 2008

Give Him Credit For Trying

Since I'm stuck at home, I'm actually having to read, rather than just wander around aimlessly outside snapping nonsense.

So here's an idea that, if you're ever in a bind you might want to try.

This fellow was trying to get out of his 1990 conviction for fraud (I guess he skipped bail).

His lawyers were arguing that his right to a speedy trial was violated because authorities were not actively pursuing him during his 16 years as a fugitive. Ahhhh....good strategy. But with the courts today, you never know....

However, rest easy, as the title of the article implies, the judge didn't buy it.