Monday, September 28, 2009

Caught by Surprise Again

This will be my second Autumn in Saskatoon - my fourth in Saskatchewan - and it has caught me off guard this year just as it did the year previous. My time in Montreal allowed me to see Autumn at its most regal, the rich reds mixed in with the brilliant yellows and oranges. Central Canadian proceeds in its stately way, taking its own time to show off its colours before the end of another season. People embrace the Autumn there in a way I have seen no one else embrace it anywhere in this country.
West Coast Autumns are reluctant affairs. Never so colourful as Central Canada's, Autumn on the West Coast does its best to live in denial until the truth can no longer be denied. Some British Columbians and most of the would-be British Columbians gripe at the end of summer and look at Autumn as an unwelcome visitor. But the ever persistent presence of evergreens helps the various regions within the province maintain is greenery.
Autumns in the southern portion of Saskatchewan is notable for just getting colder. What few trees they have down there tend towards sparsity anyway, and one day they are just simply sparse. The ground is quickly covered over winter becomes the new and familiar reality. Saskatoon has trees, however. In fact the northern portion of the province has far more in the way of greenery.
Autumn arrives and sets up shop quickly while no one is paying attention. Too late for protests, to late for organized dissent, too late for one last day of summer - Autumn has come to do a job and will soon be on its way. Trees that were green and full one day are stripped and near empty two days later. In Spring, the leaves are born reluctantly maybe even grudgingly. Sour from Winter's hold on the landscape, trees are slow to trust the changing of the seasons here. Maybe that is why Autumn needs to work so quickly?
So I am caught by surprise again and probably not for the last time.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Give Us Your Money!!!!

I have joined CFCR 90.5 FM, Saskatoon's homegrown community radio station. I have a show every other Monday (like this coming Monday actually) called Green Eggs & Ham from 6am to 8am. Anyhow, we are 100% listener supported and I am supposed to ask people for money... so basically, if you have money and you know how to get a hold of me give it up! Whatever, I don't know too many people in Saskatoon and am competing against some of the people I do know for funds. If you can spare a couple of bucks and know how to get a hold of me, drop me a line and we can tee things up. However, no pressure.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

When Comics Blur the Line and Become Books

I had intended to buy Spitz and Mullen's We Got the Neutron Bomb: The Untold Story of L.A. Punk, however, I was unable to find a copy of it in town and did not feel like ordering one. What to do? Well, Theo at Unreal City had a couple of solutions to my reading dilemmas, namely two crime stories in the graphic format.
The first book is Richard Stark's (aka Donald Westlake) well covered classic, The Hunter put out by comic book upstart, IDW. You may have seen one of the The Hunter's big screen adaptations: Point Blan
k starring Lee Marvin, or Payback starring Mel Gibson. Part one of Westlake's Parker series, Darwyn Cooke has lovingly adapted and illustrated the book for the graphic format. Set in 1962, the art style resembles the advertising style of the period. It is a beautiful book and anyone who hasn't read The Hunter but seen the films based upon it should pick this up at the very least.
Next up is
Brian Azzarello's (of 100 Bullets fame) contribution to the new Vertigo Crime venture, Filthy Rich. Classic pulp tale of the loser, the femme fatale and the plots they become entangled in. It may not be shockingly original, but it makes for an interesting read. Azzarello has a great grasp of the crime genre and knows how to set the pace and keep the reader interested.
Vertigo's other book is Dark Entries, a supernatural entry with a detective twist featuring the character John Constantine. Theo wasn't so crazy about this one, but it is written by Ian Rankin so I will probably be picking it up regardless.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cynicism, Thy Name is The Conservative Party of Canada

Just a quick note before I go to work - but wow, just watching a government press conference on how the New Conservatives are going to introduce legislation to beef up Employment Insurance, temporarily, to assist certain individuals during this economic downturn/recession/depression. They have used it as an opportunity to slam The Liberals and Michael Ignatieff and the other opposition parties. Aside from the fact that the package does not go far enough, the timing of this package is just too convenient.
Harper must really have a low opinion of Canadians if he believes that the majority of us cannot see through this cynical attempt to save his government from an election. The rhetoric coming from government officials is so thinly veiled and cynical.
Serious change needs to happen within Canada's electoral system.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Firefox, How I Miss Thee

I am back in Vancouver visiting and have to use my Dad's computer. I have many complaints about what my Dad does with his computers. He loads them and clogs them up with too many redundant or useless programs (many of which are nigh impossible to remove) and superfluous secuity features. However, my biggest bone to pick with my Father's computer is that he is still using Internet Exploder... um, Explorer.
I hate Explorer, especially the version he is using. I love Firefox. It blocks banner ads - I cannot believe how much advertising it blocks for me. Firfox runs smoother and looks better. Explorer just down right sucks.

Monday, September 07, 2009

This Is The Face of Ugly

The pink toy, not the cute little girl. I am in Vancouver and decided to get toys for my friends children. I always felt bad because I had never got them anything before so I decided to make it up to them. I decided to get them Ugly Dolls. The ones I bought are entitled "Uppy" (see above), "Ox" and "Turny Burny". ( both sort of pictured) I like them, the parents like them and the kids (for the most part) seem to love them.