Friday, June 26, 2009


Yup, 39. I kind of have the heebie-jeebies.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Ed Brubaker

This really isn't an Ed Brubaker fan club blog, but I am struck at just how good his stuff is. I had jumped into Criminal when I was still living in Vancouver, but Theo at Unreal City has been great at helping me along with my Brubaker reading. Aside from Incognito, which is still coming out in single issues, Theo turned me onto Brubaker's run on Captain America and his own series, Sleeper.
I was always more of a DC kid back in my childhood, but sometimes Marvel managed to break through. Captain America was one of those characters who could be pretty bland if done in the typical way you would expect, or pretty damned interesting if handled well. Brubaker handles the character of Captain America well. I am reading the "Winter Soldier" storyline and really getting into it. Theo has also directed me to Brubaker's take on Daredevil - behind bars with his identity revealed.
Sleeper is set in DC's Wildstorm Universe. It is about a man who's power is that he cannot feel pain, but he stores the information and can conduct it to any person he touches. He is a double agent working for a secret organisation and trying to come in from the cold. I am always struck by how compelling Brubaker's characters are and just how much depth there is to his work. Both he and Frank Miller are passionate about pulp literature, yet I would say that Brubaker is the better writer and achieves more depth. I guess I find that his work has more resonance for me.
If you are not opposed to to reading comics, check out Brubaker's work. (NOT for the kids, by the way) Sam Raimi and Tom Cruise are both interested in purchasing the rights to Sleeper, if you are interested. This would be the fifth attempt at bringing Sleeper to the screen.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Most Boring News Conference Ever

I watch CBC Newsworld before going to work. It frequently offers me something informative to mull over while I am working in the lab and ignoring the frequently inane and periodically whiny conversations that take place all around me. (this is not a problem when I am working in the morgue, I am happy to report) Today, however, they spent a great deal of time speculating about the court ruling in favour of the NHL and preventing the Phoenix Coyotes from moving to Hamilton, Ontario. They devouted at least 10-15 minutes to the press conference about how they are not going to give up trying to move the team to Hamilton.
This is news? Okay, it is - but is it worth 10-15 minutes of prime news time? There was nothing else they could have devouted more time to? No other pressing issue facing the nation that could not have received some coverage in that time? Nothing going on in the world that couldn't have been covered in greater depth? Sure there is, but it is either old hat or too hot to touch. Hell, I can even think of a spin-off report that the Ceeb could have done in connection with this Phoenix Coyotes story. They could have looked at anti-trust laws and how lethargically they are applied. They could have looked at monopolies in North America and how they are strangling smaller businesses and offering people less choice in the market place.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A Late Anniversary

The 8th of June this year marked the one year anniversary of my move from Vancouver, BC to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009


Frayed Ends of Sanity

I have been backing off the politics lately. Sort of like sodium consumption, I figure a little less would be better for my stress and health levels. But that doesn't mean I am not interested. Aside from BC's recent, and predictably disappointing, Provincial election and the worldwide Economic and Environmental crises, here are some of the topics I am engaged with at the moment.

1. Republic of Guinea: I am curious to see what will happen wit this country after it's bloodless coup at the end of 2008, but news has been scant.

2. Bill 5 and Bill 6 - Public Service Essential Services Act: The right wing Saskatchewan Party has enacted two bills to kneecap labour in this province. Working class people should never be happy when its government is looking for new ways to make it easier to sodomise them without lubricant. This affects me, btw. Not all the jobs that would be affected by Bill 5 are essential (Hospital librarians?) and Bill 6 is just plain anti-democratic.

3. Sanctuary for former KGB translator, Mikhail Lennikov: Mr. Lennikov was to be deported back to Russia as an undesirable, leaving his wife and son back here in Canada. He has not been engaged in espionage in this country and the U.S.S.R. is defunct. So what is the deal? I cannot provide specific examples, (there are two Polish families I am thinking of but, cannot recall their names) but Canada really likes to shit on Slavic immigrants via deportation. Being part Belarussian, I kind of take it personally.


This has nothing to do with cereal, but rather a list of what I have been listening to of late, in no specific order:

1. Isis, Wavering Radiant: Takes what they have building on for a while now (more specifically, Oceanic) and refines it further. More focused that Panopticon and more punchy that In the Absence of Truth...

2. Peter Gabriel, 2 also sometimes referred to as Scratch: I like Peter Gabriel's output before he hit the ... errr, "big time" with So. However, up until now, I have only ever had the double sic set of Plays Live. Solid album with Robert Fripp producing - even shares the title track from his own solo album of that year, "Exposure".

3. Mastodon, Crack the Skye: Metallic bliss.

4. Mogwai, The Hawk is Howling: My iPod really likes this album too, particularly the track "Daphne and the Brain".

5. Wilco, Being There. Still a great album. RIP Jay Bennett.

6. Matthew Sweet, Altered Beast: Still great and still largely underrated and unknown.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Sas - ka - toon, it's a hell of a town...

CDs in Play: Mastodon, Crack the Skye. Isis, Wavering Radiant. The Flaming Lips, Zaireeka (Disc 1)

I have washed my hands three times and they still smell like pepper, onions and wine.

Why did I move to Saskatoon? This is a question that has been posed to me a number of times (usually quite incredulously) by the locals. I have my stock replies: better opportunities, no Olympics and nothing even resembling the massive social problems faced by the Lower Mainland at this time. But what I don't often tell people is that I felt compelled to move here.
For a while now I have had Saskatchewan in my thoughts. Even when I was in Montreal - a place I was quite happy to be in - a little voice in my head would tell me that I would live here again. (I had lived in the southern portion of the province in the early 90's for about 18 months)
Even before I had really re-established contact with Geosomin, met her husband J, I had this small voice whispering to me, telling me that I would be in Saskatchewan again. I looked for chances to move here a number of times, but the timing was never right. In the summer and autumn of 2007 I was looking at Halifax, Fredericton, Ottawa, Nunavut, Calgary and Victoria (Montreal, but my French is still poor) but none of them were presenting options - not like Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
So here I am with my own place, a job in the Health Region and now a chance to maybe get published and make some headway with the various stories that have been swirling around in my head. Theo at Unreal City hosted a launch party for Vehicle magazine based out Calgary, Alberta. Run by Black Sheep Studios, the magazine wants to offer a chance to writers and artists to get their stuff published and get some exposure.
As it turns out, the guy who manages the writing end of the magazine is the son of one of the woman I know from the Health Region. We got to talking and he was interested in what I have to offer. I am putting something together and plan to send it to him for feedback.