February 2003

Cup of Soup

Mon, Feb 3, 2003

Long-Travelled Fellows

Last night I got to add another pair of CWD folk to the list of members whom I have met. Along with a few of the locals and Janet - who drove up from Flint, Michigan - I got to meet RSteve, who flew all the way from England to be here, and Bogey, who made the 10-hour drive from Maine to join the party.

We have massed the troops. Victory is upon us. Or, just some fun playing air hockey and foosball. Both are good.

Tues, Feb 4, 2003


Boss for a day: If I had the power to fire just one person from any position, it would be the lighting guy for the Telehealth Ontario commercials. I don't know where he learned to light sets, but all the people are so close to the lights that their foreheads, noses, and cheeks glow like neon signs. They look ill, as if they just woke up from a 3-year coma and are anxious to get this commercial done so they can hit the sack again for another Rip-Van-Winkle-sized nap. I am now afraid to call Telehealth Ontario, for fear that I'll end up looking like the people in their commercials.

I see stars: The American Hockey League All-Star Game was on last night. The AHL is the minor-level feeder league for the NHL, which basically means that it's full of recently-drafted youth, and washed out seniors that weren't good enough to make it to the big league. These guys, then, are the best of the not-quite-good-enoughs. So, how do you have an all-star game full of players that aren't good enough to be stars?

Quote of the day: "Deciding a hockey game with a shootout is like deciding an NFL game by throwing a football through a tire. As long as I'm running the Vancouver Canucks, we'll never vote for it." - Brian Burke, general manager of the Vancouver Canucks.

Wed, Feb 12, 2003


The big news in town is the sale of the Maple Leafs. Exit Steve Stavro and enter billionaire Thompson into the group, and enter Tanenbaum as chairman. Now everyone is asking: "Will this group improve our chances at bringing home the Stanley Cup?"

The answer to that is a big flat no, of course, for one main reason: The new majority owner - whose stake rose from 49% to 58% - is the Ontario Teachers Pension Fund. With their billions upon billions of dollars in assets, you will not find a bigger bunch of penny-pinchers around; a group perfectly content on collecting profits from the tremendous hockey community in Toronto and unwilling to go the extra mile to ensure a championship. If the Leafs ever do win another Cup, you know it was despite the owners' best efforts.

Then, I continue reading the news and discover several threats of strike action in school boards around the province, and I just want to beat their unions with a large wooden stick, preferably one with many splinters. Why on Earth are they at the government's throat when their own organisation is quiety hauling in billions of dollars? Solve your own corruption before you go off into the world and cry about someone else's.

Tues, Feb 18, 2003


When new couples-to-be plan their weddings, they should budget for the rental of a large-screen television, or a projector. This year, I have three weddings to attend that are all scheduled during the NHL playoffs.

I understand your wedding is one of the most important days of your lives, but the Leafs affect us all, and I have been waiting all 25 years of my life for them to win a Cup, and I wish not to miss it.

Thurs, Feb 20, 2003


Sleep is a valuable thing, and serious consequences can result from an inadequate amount of it. The first thing you lose is any sense of coherence. You'll be sitting at work, trying to concentrate, when your alertness slips away for a moment. Your train of thought slows and switches tracks. Your vision fogs and you forget that your fingers are over a keyboard. As a few dozen "d"s stream across the screen, the cars on your train of thought unhinge and each take separate tracks. What was once on the topic of booking exam centres now runs along several unidentifiable subjects that generally have nothing to do with the task at hand.

You startle yourself when the next thought that goes through your head is something as inexplicable as "Has Bill sugared your locations yet?"

I think I will feel better when I find out what sort of hallucinogens have been put in my coffee and where I can get more of it.

Mon, Feb 24, 2003

I Have My Reasons

I will freely admit that - on this particular topic - I am fickle. I support the concept for entirely the wrong reason. What's "right" and what's "fair" mean nothing to me in this instance, because if rightness and fairness prevail, I won't care anymore.

I watch women's curling to see attractive young women in kilts.

It was one of the few good things about Catholic high school, and it's the best part of curling. So, the poor performance of British Columbia's all-rookie team and the sudden breakdown of PEI's 21-year-old skip - not to mention the poor decision on behalf of my home province of Ontario, which sent a talented team of curlers all in their 60s instead of a group of giddy young eye candy - upsets me deeply, and soured my enjoyment of a Canadian pasttime.

Now I will have to wait until next year, and hope that BC's Fister Sisters can once again upset the local competition and perform on the national stage, and - more importantly - on national television.

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