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Saturday, August 23, 2003

Timid Wanderings into World Politics

Paul Bremer is the American civil administrator in Iraq. He says Iraq has become "one of the battlefields in the war on terrorism." Mr. Bremmer was quoted as saying "It is now unfortunately the case that Iraq has become one of the fields of battle in this global war." Huh? Am I backtrekking into rampant moronism again? Did I wake up in a different dimension where the planet is similar to, but not exactly like, the planet I was on yesterday? At what point in recent history was Iraq not involved in terrorism? Did America invade Iraq on this planet, looking for Weapons of Mass Destruction, or was that in another reality? And if that all took place on this planet, can someone please explain to me how WMD are unrelated to terrorism? "Oh look, honey, someone bought us a WMD for our 50th wedding anniversary!" "Geez, I know we're newlyweds just starting out our lives together, but really, how many WMD does one couple need in a one bedroom apartment?" Are these questions we hear all the time? Or are WMDs actually considered weapons of mass destruction (as opposed to all those weapons of non-mass destruction, which perhaps are used to destroy only energy, no mass)? Wait a minute, maybe it was one of those non-mass weapons that caused the big power failure on August 14?

Back to the original point: If anyone is under the delusion that Iraq is not involved in terrorism, this is your 11th hour wake-up call.

Deeper thinkers are already wondering about the connections that tie Iraq et al with the Palestinian militant group Hamas. Abdel Aziz Rantisi (mark that name down for this year's Christmas card list) hails as a leader of Hamas. He is quoted as calling President Bush "an enemy of Islam because the U.S. government froze the assets of Hamas leaders in response to a suicide bombing of a bus in Jerusalem" because the frozen money doesn't belong to Hamas. Therefore, Americans stole Muslim money. Huh? Let me get this straight. Hamas doesn't have any money. The assets frozen by the U.S. belongs to Muslims. On the planet of my birth which may not be the planet upon which I am now resident Hamas is Palestine's major Muslim fundamentalist movement. Remember, fundamentalists take the "fun" out of – damn near everything If the frozen assets belonged to Muslims who don't agree with Hamas, who did the assets belong to? The Koran states in part "That which you have been given is but a fleeting comfort of this life." The concept of here today, gone tomorrow. Sure, I'm only quoting part of a holy book and only that part which suits my purpose – does this approach sound familiar to anyone?

Bah. Religion. Use it, abuse it, lose it. Don't even get me started on the life and death of John Geoghan, the former Catholic priest whose part-time work as an avid child molester resulted in prison time and prison death.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 150 Peeves (Lower than anticipated due to heroic self-restraint)

Some Acts of Randomness

Thinking About Blogging is not unlike thinking about doing. Some planning is wise. Excessive planning is counterproductive. Recovering Morons learn to think about consequences of actions before taking action. Blogging is a dangerous activity for Recovering Morons unless we occasionally indulge in some thought. By occasionally, I mean before creating the blog, before publishing, and many times after publishing. Clearly my life was lacking in positive stress, which is why I continue to blog and fret, blog and fret, fret fret fret

The Falsehoods of Privacy and Publicity, aka blogging. The lure of anonymity often overrides the reality of potential harm. So many bloggers have discussed the concept of rules for blogging that to pick one or two bloggers' comments may seem unfair. Such is life. Both Acidman and Broad at Bat have reviewed the issue with clarity and honesty (and a viewpoint with which I agree). Of course, since both are intelligent and articulate people, they represent a small percentage of this world's human population, so there you have it. People with class are not perfect and whatever mistakes might be made are not malicious in nature. If my blogging style offends, the reader can choose to discontinue our relationship. And Acidman discusses how to create a readable blog. Which leads me to my next act of randomness.

My Blogging Style is like passing on a phone message to my readers. Maybe it looks like trying to cram too much information into a small square. This is exactly how I write phone messages, on those damn pink pads designed for people with miniaturized hand writing. It is possible to fit the first three chapters of your autobiography on one of those pages if you write the word "OVER" on the bottom of the first page, with the obligatory arrow, and continue on the back The reality is, each post is an attempt to provide the essential message. You, the reader, are deemed intelligent enough to determine if you have enough information to make a decision about the situation. If you require more information, you are free to ask. If you have enough information to make a decision, you proceed with your life and take responsibility for further actions.

The Concept "Freedom of Speech" as I understand it allows me to say what I believe, end of sentence. Freedom of speech does not give me freedom of falsifying instructions. People with class understand that distinction without belabouring the point. People without class grab onto the phrase "freedom of speech" and set out to damage other folk for pure enjoyment or power (or both, as is usually the case). That's the difference between advising people there's a fire in a crowded theatre, and yelling "Fire" just to see the people running and hear their screams. If you don't understand the difference, ask your day pass supervisor to explain it.

The Attention To Details by both blogger and reader can bring moments of pure joy. Read the comment line (tag line? Descriptive phrase?) in the blue box at the top of Depthmarker before enjoying their writings. Where do your opinions come from? Read the yellow left side bar at You Big Mouth, You! before taking advantage of his Right Wing Conspiracy services please remember I lean to the left. The comment (tag? Description? Whatever) for Arrrgh!!! sums up life rather neatly, as evidenced by the writings therein. Details can make all the difference.

Personal Piss-off Rating: 1 Peeve (The traditional rating for making me think)


Friday, August 22, 2003

Going to the doctor may be bad for your canajun health. Reporting this may alienate me from certain medical professionals in the family. Big deal, like they give me any discounts or bumping rights NOT If this link is still available, you can get the scoop from the illustrious and often pompous Globe and Mail. To make things easier, here's a quick summary: canajun doctors responded to a survey. The survey was designed to reveal levels of mental health and stability. Guess what? Many doctors are stressed out and overworked. OK, problem number one: Does anyone see the irony of asking doctors to complete a survey that is designed by the Canajun Medical Association to prove the doctors are stressed out? Problem number two: Go ahead, try to get your doctor to fill out a form to acknowledge that you are stressed out at work. You'll get the standard advice: exercise more, eat a healthier diet and when all else fails, here fill out this prescription and take these pills. Oh, wait, apparently some doctors are taking their own advice – sort of. The article states: "Many doctors quietly endure depression, alcoholism, drug abuse and marital problems, said Michael Kaufmann, medical director of the Physician Health Program in Toronto." Red flag, people doctors are quietly enduring ALCOHOLISM and DRUG ABUSE and they are still practicing medicine? That's why the phrase is "practicing medicine", right? Of course, anyone with an arms-length interest in health knows that drug and alcohol abuse is not a rarity among medical professionals. So here's my favourite part of the whole scheme story: "More research is needed, Dr. Hanson said, so the CMA will devote $50,000 to further examinations of physician health." Did you catch that? The CMA will devote $50,000 to study what's wrong with our doctors. Don't tell me our health premiums aren't well spent.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 15 Peeves (One each for the survey and the CMA; three each for the stupid standard advice and for the original idea of the survey; one for every $10,000 that the CMA is investing in padding their pockets future studies; two because I'm still pissed off at the city of ehduhmonton over the whole no-liquor-sales-no-liquor-license-no-smoking quandry)

Thursday, August 21, 2003

Heh heh. "France without castles." There, I subtracted 6 Peeves because I re-read Anticipatory Retaliation's remarks. That line is classic. Thanks.
I Just Flew In From Alberduh and Boy Are My Arms Tired

Words to live by: "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."
Words I live by: "If it sounds too strange to be true, it probably isn't."
I thought my decade-long employment with a provincial government ended in December, 1996. Smack me with a maple leaf and colour me red, white and shocked: the provincial government has not released me from employment. It's good to be wanted, isn't it? Ask anyone who's been profiled on America's Most Wanted. But I digress. It is hard to beat that warm, fuzzy feeling. Prozac isn't dulling it, I'm out of Glenfiddich and I'm still feeling fuzzy. And warm. And a little dizzy, so nothing out of the ordinary there. What's scaring me is that I may be backtrekking into the Land of Moron. This situation does not make sense to me. If my employment with Oztario is terminated, I cease to work for Oztario, right? If my employment with Oztario is not terminated, I continue to work for Oztario, right? Essay to Mothership. Come in, Mothership. Over In December of 1996, Oztario stopped issuing me paycheques. Coincidentally, I stopped commuting to work on a daily basis. Seems to me my employment was terminated. How wrong I was. Help me. I try to logic my way out of this labyrinth. I am hopelessly lost. Although I stopped all productive work for Oztario in 1996 and yes, I worked my fingers to the bone while I was employed there, there was no window in any of my offices dammit, my employment has not been terminated. Am I owed back pay? Am I going to be sued for abandoning my position? Am I owed back pay with interest? Is this all pensionable time? And speaking of pension, that's how I discovered this mess. Until such time as my employment is officially terminated, I can receive no information on the status of my pension. That's just how things work, in the land of Oztario. Until such time as the government of Oztario deems it acceptable to reopen their phone lines, I am unable to speak to anyone about my situation. Essay to Mothership. Come in, Mothership. Over Ask me how much I care about a power outage, rolling blackouts, half-lights and half-wits working half-time at half-speed. Sympathy don't feed the bulldog, mister. I want my back pay with interest and I want it now. And send a bottle of Drambuie with that, you cheap bastards.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 300 Peeves (One for every month of back pay owing, 50 for being out of Glenfiddich, 50 for making me think so damn hard, 50 for the power outage, 10 because Mothership isn't responding and the remainder for the interest on my back pay. Bastards)


Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Still In Denial

Hang my head in shame. Several years ago I had a nodding acquaintance with someone who cannot be named here. For simplicity's sake, this person shall be known herein by the pseudonym Tequila. Tequila was a recovering moron and a politician to boot. Heavy is the head that wears that double crown. Please, give me a moment; this is very difficult for me Heavier is mine, for not being more attentive to Tequila's needs (as clearly stated in the solemn vow for recovering morons. No, strike that, I've said too much already!). Tequila hails from the canajun city herein known as Happyton, Ontario. Happytonians rejoiced the day Tequila took the pledge of recovering morons. Canajuns grew to know and love Tequila the day she declared she would leave politics if the villainous and immoral GST was not revoked. This was a glad time indeed. sob What a coup! Canajuns across this great and wondrous land knew that victory was within our grasp. No politician would dare slap the face of a fellow entertainer by maintaining the villainous and immoral GST. Pass me a tissue, please To this day, no one is entirely sure what happened. The infamous Tequila song is strongly suspected as the motivating factor. All that is known is: One day, Tequila snapped. She turned her back on her solemn vow and on her declaration of leaving politics. We were stunned. Happytonians were the most stunned. Tequila took advantage of this state of shock and held an election to prove that she was wanted, nay, needed in spite of revoking all that is good and pure and right. Happytonians, reduced to zombies by the depth of their shock, accidentally voted Tequila right back into office. Oh bloody hell, are those tears blurring my vision? I think you can see where this is going. Politicians everywhere learned the dirty little secret: shock + poorly designed ballots = huge chance at winning office without deserving it.

The rest, as they say, is history. Is this all because I turned down the chance to mentor a certain moron from Happyton? I'm sorry, I just can't say anymore Honk!
Personal Piss-off Rating: 62 Peeves. (I'm still in mourning)

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Interblogview

Courtesy of Broad at Bat, an interview. And yes, I'm using the term "courtesy" rather loosely

canaDuh Rules
1) If you want to participate, send an email with the heading "interview me" and the URL to your blog/site.
2) I respond by asking you five quasi-original questions.
3) You update your blog/site with the answers to the questions.
4) You include a snappy version of this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5) When others ask to be interviewed, you ask them five semi-original questions.

canaDuh Qs and As
1. What would you say has been the biggest challenge for you as a recovering moron?
A: Huh? No, wait, I mean, besides this question? No, no, how about … gaddam yes, you have another question?

2. Who is your favourite wrestler, and why?
A: Kurt Angle. For those who know nothing of wrestling, his given name says it all. For those who know wrestling, no explanation is necessary. Runners up include Faarooq, the Ultimate Warrior, the Undertaker (not the remade Underbiker thank you very much) and THE ROCK. Sean Connery. He doesn't wrestle? Who gives a rat's ass?

3. If someone were to be, you know, a little concerned about the increasing level of your Mood Swing Rating, what would be the quickest way to earn some negative peeves and lower it back into the Amused zone?
A: Gee, I think the psych said other people are not responsible for my reactions so I don't think I should release this particular secret. See Q4 for the secret ingredients to my world-famous cake. One secret is enough per interview. Ask any famous person.

4. How can I get some of that world-famous cake?
A: Send me all of the ingredients, a round-trip bus ticket to wherever you're at, and at least two weeks lead time. Ingredients are mostly cream cheese, chocolate, icing sugar, six eggs, a LARGE bottle of Glenfiddich and a LARGE bottle of Jack for the Hubby. Make that three weeks lead time.

5. What advice would you offer to wannabe Canajuns?
A: Give yer head a shake. We have no more room. Go away, silly pig dogs. My igloo is standing room only. Bring cash and lots of it. If the wannabe is already here: "LEAVE NOW while you still can."
Personal Piss-off Rating: 6 Peeves (Two for each of the hard Qs, -1 for the Glenfiddich and -3 for letting me say SEAN CONNERY and THE ROCK in the same paragraph)

Received an interesting call the other morning (Saturday morning, as power was returning to the wonderful land of Oztario). A friend and former co-worker (from my life in the IT industry) had enough time during a power onage to say: "[insert name of previous boss here] left a message on my voicemail, begging me to track you down. Seems [previous boss] is having trouble getting the office network back up. You are instructed to fax a copy of your emergency preparedness plan to [previous boss] immediately. The computers aren't working. The phones only work sometimes. So she figures the fax machine must be the only reliable form of communication. [Pause for hysterical laughter from the person transmitting this message] She demands you tell her how to get power back. Her fax number is XXX-XXXX. That is all."

Sure, I'll get right on that. Since I was the one cut from the payroll in favour of other, younger, more chi-chi employees with less experience and more bounce, I must have reverently preserved each and every document from the hell that was my employment with your company. And, with all of my experience in the industry, I am confident that 1) your fax machine was not affected by the power outage; 2) the document I wrote seven years ago is still completely applicable to the network you're running today; 3) the information that will save your ass is available to you free of charge, because I'm so generous and giving and not in need of income to maintain my carefree, gypsy lifestyle. And let us not forget that I am 100 per cent confident that you read the original document and followed my words of wisdom faithfully. You have continued to update the document and keep it in safe places (that is, a copy with each senior team member, in case the unthinkable happened and someone had to recover without me being there). You know my psychic powers are so impressive that I know exactly how the network is set up now, and what tricks, smoke and mirrors you can apply to get power to the office long before power is fully restored to your geographic area. Oh yes, I am omnipotent. Which, of course, is why you had no problem downsizing me to make room for your protégé, who would not survive in the cold cruel world without your care and guidance. Yup, I'll get right on that. You just wait for the 2,500 page fax of blank pages, one copy for each team leader and a few extras because your photocopier might not be working just yet. With no cover page, and no identifiable information for you to track me down. Stand at the ready.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 5 Peeves (I'm laughing too hard to clarify the calculations)

Monday, August 18, 2003

Today's Shamless Plugs

Plug and Rant Broad At Bat has no comments. Check out her Follow-ups. Focus on the Boys and Boobs. I can't help but read that Additional thought as: "I could SO easily have ranted in a totally different direction, like how "I'm a man, I can't help it" is udder bullshit. (So consider yourself warned.)" Now that the obligatory joke is out of the way, here's the stupid angry rant: Any man who truly can't help gawking at any woman is a man who truly has no control over his eye muscles. When I jab you in the ass with a cattle prod, you will stop staring at her and start looking elsewhere. Personally I don’t give rat's ass if your self-esteem is so low that you don't stop until you have face planted in the gutter. And attention all women: Why are you dating a man who's self esteem is so low that he can't imagine acting like an actual, mature human being? And if your man is looking, not gawking, get a fricken grip and do some growing up yourself.

Rantless and Shameless Crabby Bill was like that before I married him. He also has no comments. He was like that before I married him, too. So what's the deal with him and the Broad? Is he looking, or gawking? Where's my gaddam cattle prod? Where was I before that spectacular train of thought derailment? Oh right, interesting answer to where he would live, considering I'm afraid of heights… And never did I ever use the term "Trawna" when referring to To-ron-to. Three syllables, take it slow if it's your first time en-un-ci-a-ting. Did anyone else catch Uncle Mel on the rampage, that the rest of Ontario (and the rest of the world, if he can help it) needs to ease up on the ol' power usage because To-ron-to is the centre of the canajun universe? Well, it is. And if the morons in To-ron-to would ease up on the gaddam neon signs, perhaps more people could return to work. Just a wee Western thought for ya, Mel. Love ya!

Rantless and Reckless You Big Mouth, You! has no comments. I'm noticing a trend here. Catch him before he conquers Sweden. I have dibs on the fjords.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 6 Peeves (Four for the whole "I can't help it"/"Stop staring" rant and two for the neon signs)

Anticipatory Retaliation makes me think. Compliment? Criticism? Interpret as you wish. There is the stunning revelation was that Americans thought of Canada before the Iraq War. Smack me with a rolled up towel and call me Jacques Jock Canajuns are so bland. Who knew anyone thought of us? You'd be hard-pressed to find an intelligent Canajun no, the sentence doesn't stop here, quit nodding and keep reading! who would argue with the notion that Canada is "France without castles." (Sure, we have Casa Loma and some lovely homes that approach castle status, but I digress.) Our countries are similar. Our strengths are complimentary. How to phrase this delicately? Oh crap, here it is: We canajuns vote in those who AMUSE us, not those who REPRESENT us. Want to upset Joe Canajun by dissing the Prime Minister? Stand in line, and be prepared to hone your criticism to a funnier level than Joe's. (Remember, canajuns are naturally funny. We are the Number One comedian breeding ground on this planet.) Sadly, we canajuns failed to realize that Americans weren't in on our little voting secret. When our politicians started saying nasties to and about Americans, we FORGOT the Americans didn't know the entertainment factor. THAT is where we fell down on the job. We failed to publicize. Sure, we hired actors to stage looting in Ottawa AND we finally hired the right PR people to publicize the event. But ask us to give up our beloved pumpkin head leader who can't speak three words in any language and be clearly understood speaks for sheer entertainment value? I don't think so. That would be as un-canajun as believing that America won't kick ass on our jointly-beneficial behalf.
Personal Piss-off Rating: -5 Peeves. (1 for making me think, and -6 for the classic "France without castles" line)


Sunday, August 17, 2003

Oh. My. Gawd. Ehduhmonton is the City of Bylaws and Bohunks. Proof: A private club for recovering substance abusers cannot allow smoking without a liquor license. Said club cannot obtain a liquor license because the club has no intentions of serving liquor. Thanks to ColbyCosh.com for bringing that to my attention. Oddly, upon ramming the non-smoking law down the throats of law-abiding smokers in ehduhmonton implementing the bylaw, the city did NOT build in an automatic cash grab the option of smoking licenses. Note to Edmonton City Hall: Be the FIRST to make (more) money off smokers. Create smoking licenses NOW. For the love of all that's western, don't let the evil that is Toronto beat you to it. With all the fricken bylaws that restrict the rights of ehduhmontonians to enjoy life, you'd think the blood-sucking bylaw officials would have enough income and be busy enough to avoid looking for extra paperwork. Apparently not. Allow me to explain the rationale for this sentiment from several years of learning to understand the limited mentality that is the city of ehduhmonton: "You silly recovering substance abusers, what gives you the right to have a cigarette along with your coffee? You were so weak as to become the pawns of a substance that god-fearing, self-righteous, holier-than-thou ehduhmontonians like myself would never consider allowing into their back yards, never mind their homes (because beer doesn't count and so what if I get pissed to the gills three times a week, I am not an alcoholic). So you think you can attempt to regain a normal life, get a job, and become a responsible tax-paying citizen living in a respectable community like this? It will never happen. We are the hard-core right, we speak to god on a regular basis (like most Sundays, unless there's a really good sports event on TV), we like the broomstick shoved up our collective asses and we will never allow anyone like you into society, to remind us of what could happen to any one of us at any time. Weakness be damned. Read the Old Testament and see I'm right, gaddammit."

Need I point out that I do not agree with the above sentiment? I do not agree with the above sentiment.
Personal Piss-off Rating: 15 Peeves. One each for the bylaw, the bylaw officer, the government official, the turndown and the lack of imagination; nine for the sentiment; an extra one for the government official because her response really pisses me off)

Weekend Update 17.Aug.2003

Compliment of the Year Hubby remembered our 11th anniversary and almost got a dream present for me.

Local News
Driver of Notable Mention TMU 756 Mr. Suba-moron-u, if you can't afford the speeding ticket, maintain top speed at the posted speed limit. Do NOT pass me like I'm standing still, then slam on the brakes as soon as I pull in behind you – just because you finally noticed the radar trap at the bottom of the hill
Dog Attack Five-year-old boy mauled by neighbour's dog whose owner needs more help than I can imagine Akita. Stories like this slur responsible pet owners. Slurs like this make it almost impossible for responsible pet owners to rent decent accommodations. Thanks for thinking of the rest of the world, Ms. My-Dog-Has-The-Right-To-Be-Psycho-At-Large.
More Power Fergawdsake, turn down your stereo. It could happen in Alberta!

Larger View Link N Think
Whew! U.S. Marshals murder – oh wait, that isn't politically correct fatally wound one of America's most wanted. Don't you feel safer now?
Uh Oh Cedar Grove, West Virginia has their very own sniper. Listen up, only a coward shoots those s/he does not know (except in times of war; the U.S. has not declared a state of war on U.S. soil, unless I missed that announcement). It doesn't matter if the coward is psychotic or a sociopath. Mental illness is no excuse for acts of random evilness. A deputy sheriff reportedly said people should not be alone when fuelling up at gas stations at night. Is that so the sniper must fire twice, and perhaps be in the area long enough to be caught? Get a grip. Put up some barriers. Think about your neighbours and the guy who lives alone and never speaks to anyone. Have we learned nothing from recent internal terrorism?
Nomination Here's one for the Darwin Awards. When freedom of expression leads to a pointless death, it may be time for other long-hairs to rethink their "look" – or their choice of employment. By the age of 40 you'd figure the guy might have considered some safety factors on the job. Watch for upcoming legislation to protect those who aren't smart enough to protect themselves.

No Link, Just Think All hail PGA golfer Mike Queer, for having the courage not to change his name. Oh wait, his name is Mike Weir. That is clear in the written word and remarkably funny when spoken. (Try saying his name aloud, you'll see what I mean)

Personal Piss-off Rating: 20 Peeves, with 10 in reserve for upcoming legislation


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