Thursday, March 31, 2005

Infrared Tree Series; High Park, 2003

Camera: Nikon FM, 50mm F1.8 lens
Film: Kodak HEI High Speed Infrared Film
Developer: Dektol
© 2003 Zydeco Fish

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Wednesday, March 30, 2005

There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in

Finally, the National Post has published some interesting news. Paul Kennedy, host of CBC Radio's Ideas, has launched a campaign to nominate Leonard Cohen--one of my personal heroes--for the Nobel Prize in Literature. (I am not sure how long this link to the article will remain valid).

If you are going to be in Montreal on Saturday, April 2 and have $5 to spare, why not check out CBC Blue?:

Saturday, April 2, 8:30 A Nobel for Leonard Cohen
panelists: Karen Young, George Elliott Clarke, Michel Garneau, Edward Palumbo

Host: Paul Kennedy

Salon Jeanne Mance, Hyatt Regency, 1255 Jeanne Mance.

I believe that Leonard Cohen was the greatest songwriter of the 20th century. Only time will prove that statement correct, but I'll be long dead by then.

Here is a fascinating story behind a haunting Cohen song, Seems so Long Ago, Nancy. This is a must read for Cohen fans everywhere.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2005

When they dance in a reptile blaze

The crossing guard was blasting out ABBA today and now my brain is infected with bad music. It's not like I needed any more encouragement to get my butt over to Sam The Record Man today and pick up the new Beck album for the incredibly low price of $11.99 - now that's a deal. In my humble opinion, Beck is some sort of bizarre musical genius. Mutations has a place in my list of top ten albums of all time. It is the best Beck album, without question, musically and lyrically.

Eagles drone and pose alone like black balloons all banged and blown
On a backwards river, the infidels shiver in the stench of belief
And tell my momma I'm a hundred years late, I'm over the rails and out of the race
The crippled psalms of an age that won't thaw are ringing in my ears
Holding hands with an impotent dream in a brothel of fake energy
Put a nickel in a graveyard machine, I get higher and lower
I get higher and lower like a tired soldier with nothing to shoot
And nowhere to lose this bottle of blues

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Monday, March 28, 2005

The Kilt

Despite being half Scottish, I do not own a kilt, nor have I ever worn one. I think that is a serious oversight. Of course, they are expensive garments and, let's be honest, unless you are Prince Charles, how often does one really get a chance to wear a kilt, especially in Canada? And then, there is the whole issue of whether or not to "go commando."

Anyway, I am a bit miffed at the University of Cambridge. The administration has banned Scottish students from wearing kilts at graduation ceremonies. In truth, they have also banned other national dress and armed forces uniforms. This strikes me as remarkably intolerant. But, I wonder if it has something to do with that infamous picture of the Queen and the 1st Battalion of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders?

In other news, who will ever eat at Wendy's again (link)?


This woman has dropped the suit against Wendy's. According to one story I read, she has a history of making legal claims against corporations, including General Motors and a restaurant in Las Vegas.

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Thursday, March 24, 2005

Easter Bunnies

If you are thinking of purchasing a cute little bunny for Easter - for you or someone close to you -please heed this dire warning from the House Rabbit Society. They say that Easter and Bunnies Don't Mix. They write: "The exuberance of even the gentlest toddler is stressful for the sensitive rabbit." They add that there are many abandoned rabbits after Easter. And I thought that they were worried that all of those cute little bunnies were going to be turned into Easter dinner.

So, just in case you come into possession of a cute little bunny and you can't be bothered caring for it (or you get tired of it) here are some rabbit recipe sites:

1) Rabbit Recipes
2) A Terrific Collection of Rabbit Recipes
3) Rabbit Recipes (from Rabbit Hunting Online)

Or, click here to Google it.

I wonder if the food bank would take an unloved bunny? Really, I am not that cruel :-) Happy Easter, if you celebrate such things.

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Yet Another Reader Writes

Wow, blogging recently got a whole lot easier. If this keeps up, I won't need to think of anything to write about. I'll just re-post email messages. This guy, known by many names, including simply '7' offered this comment:

"Where the hell is Zydeco Fish the man? I know how dangerous it is to be honest but I was hoping to read more about the inner person -- or maybe I just missed it. The closest I got was a mention of sex blogs and '14 Random Facts About Me'.

Like I mention, I want more about you. Easy for me to say since I don't have a blog."

And then, he offered this, which I characterize as a sort of guest post (included here with his permission):

"Recently I began a very private journal, one in which I write about my sex life, in all its graphic detail. From my experiences with Richard R. (1960-61), wrestling just about each Monday evening at our Boy Scouts meeting. I knew Richard would get an erection during our struggles. As he held me tightly, I got to touch it. Then he'd get angry and wrestle even harder. Ah, how I loved Mondays.

"Richard and I lived outside of Cornwall and went to the same grade school. After 4:30 pm Richard would often chase me home, bully that he was. One time I remember he took me to the woods (how I love the woods) and tied me to a tree. I don't think that anything overt happened, but I do recall that Richard wrapped his arms around me, forcing me against the tree and lingered way too long.

"Anyway Richard moved on as they say, lost all of his hair, married, and sold metal detectors in a town that had no beaches."

All I can really say to that is, oh my! And, I'm afraid I'll never post something as personal as that.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

More Keyword Mayhem

Previous post on this topic.

Hey, here's some more keywords used to find this blog:

1) lubitel 166u mask

2) pornographic sexpots

3) wakefield brewster

4) large erect nipples video

5) moxy fruvous "album covers"

6) "david cesarini" koestler

7) kool moo dee

8) pronounce "zydeco"

9) Zydeco pronounce

10) thesis about quail meat,pdf (note to this person: you need a lesson is how to search the web).

11) zydeco fish (again)

12) "fabulous life of simon cowell"

13) nympho librarian blog

14) jann arden whiner

15) "mouth like a black hole"

16) snoopisms

17) biography Robert Munch's

18) influenza infection quicktime movie

19) London's Portman Square orgy

20) "erect nipples"

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Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Another Reader Writes

There is no way to introduce this one:

"I find your blog impressive. If I had anything worthwhile to say I would create one myself. I think your blog personality is in some ways more intelligent (but less interesting) than you are. However, I cannot help but suspect that a majority of the experiences you describe are figments of your imagination. "

And, later:

I did a good job defending your blog - I remember using phrases like "paranoid, self-deluded but still intelligent" and "better than spending hours looking for online pornography" - but then I realized that I'd better just simply forward the comments to probably don't take requests, but perhaps you can use them in a future blog topic?"

I don't take requests, but for you I will make an exception. Oh, and if you want to add anything, leave a comment.

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Monday, March 21, 2005

A Reader Writes

So I got some email from a reader who has some comments and questions:

"Comments? Really? I hate leaving comments. It forces me to think!"

"Sometimes it takes me awhile to put a coherent sentence together especially today."

"but you are forcing me think and everyone will read my comment won't they? I'm afraid, very afraid!!"

I'm sure you'll get over it. After all, you can post anonymously, and I'll never know it was you.

"where did you get Zydeco Fish??? "Hey you, leave a comment". Well that is inspiring. Oh can this count as a comment?"

Zydeco Fish is the title of one of the first poems I had published, and no, that doesn't count as a comment.

"do you play the guitar?"

I try.

"haha...your post on Celine was funny"

This one or this one? But, thanks.

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Friday, March 18, 2005

Happy Spring

It's Friday and all I can think about is spring. So, happy spring. By the way, spring comes on Sunday this year, the 20th, not the 21st, as you might expect.

I am not a Star Wars fan by any means, and so you can imagine that I care little about the new film that is about to be released. After all, I fell asleep during the last one. I still can't decide which was more boring: Lord of the Rings or Episode II. So, just why is it that George Lucas thinks that re-releasing these films is 3D is a good idea? Beginning in 2007, we could be faced with a remastered 3D Star War film every year for six years. That means more Star Wars hype into 2013. Can't he move on and do something else?

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Thursday, March 17, 2005

Happy St. Patrick's Day

It's really a coincidence that I am wearing a green shirt today. I competely forgot what today is. Ever since Grade 5, when someone laughed at my green shirt, I have avoided green on St, Patrick's Day. Green is not my colour anyway, or maybe it is?

But, I think I have the right to wear green, given that I have a great grandmother who was born in Ireland. In August 1649, Oliver Cromwell sent his army to crush Ireland.

There's a good Pogues song, called Young Ned of the Hill. They sing:

A curse upon you Oliver Cromwell
You who raped our motherland
I hope you're rotting down in hell
For the horrors that you sent

To our misfortunate forefathers

Whom you robbed of their birthright

To hell or Connaught

May you burn in hell tonight

I have Scottish heritage too. My father was born in Glasgow. In July 1650, Oliver Cromwell sent his army to crush Scotland. Oh, and there's a good Proclaimers song, called Cap in Hand. They sing:

But I can't understand why we let someone else rule our land
We're cap in hand


We fight-when they ask us

We boast-then we cower
We beg
For a piece of

What's already ours

It's interesting that Cromwell died in 1658, but was exhumed in 1661 to be executed, posthumously. It was a little too late, by any stretch.

Oh, and I know something about this, having taken an entire graduate history course on the English Civil War. At the end, my head was filled with stuff on the Whigs, the Puritans, the rise of the New Model Army, the Roundheads, Levellers, and the Diggers (True Levellers). And, that reminds me that also in 1649, Gerrard Winstanley took his Diggers to St. George's Hill. But that, as they say, is another story

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Wednesday, March 16, 2005

College Street Fights

During my leisurely after-work stroll home, while listening to Brian Eno, I witnessed two violent and simultaneous events near the corner of College and Robert. This happened:

A guy was pushing and shoving another guy on the sidewalk. The pushed one ended up flat on his back in the snow. He covered his face with his coat and hands just as I heard a bicycle bell ring out. So, at the same time - and less than ten feet away from this scuffle - I hear a cyclist screaming at the driver of a mini van, calling him a 'dumb ass' for driving in the bike lane and telling the driver how he had hit his handlebars. It was hard to decide which altercation to follow because the other guy was poking the guy, who was flat on his back in the snow, about the face and telling him to keep out of whatever was going on because it was none of his business. Meanwhile, the cyclist was really screaming at the driver (and, believe me, I sympathize, having been almost pinned between turning cars and parked cars on several occasions).

About eight or nine people turned their attention to the goings on, but no one stepped in. The guy who had his quarry pinned on the sidewalk seemed very unstable to me, but it was clear that he was happy with the intimidation he had brought upon his foe cowering in the snow. No one came to the aid of the cyclist (or the driver, for that matter), mostly because I think people are apathetic to the plight of the urban cyclist in Toronto. As I cycled in today, I reflected on the reality of the situation: the car rules here, despite the large numbers of cyclists in this city.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Keyword Mayhem

Hey, here's some keywords used to find this blog:

1) what on tvo kids kids on tuesday and thursday (note to this person: you have no idea how to search the web)

2) human harp performance "body modification"

3) celeste zydeco

4) librarian

5) libraries

6) pen equity, toronto, metropolis, 2005

7) naked old women large nipples

8) zydeco

9) yonge and dundas

Update - Forgot the obvious:

10) zydeco fish

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Is Bush an Idiot?

The President explains his Social Security plan (Tampa, Florida, 4 Feb 2005)

Question: "I don't really understand. How is it the new [Social Security] plan is going to fix that problem?"

President Bush: "Because the -- all which is on the table begins to address the big cost drivers. For example, how benefits are calculated, for example, is on the table. Whether or not benefits rise based upon wage increases or price increases. There's a series of parts of the formula that are being considered. And when you couple that, those different cost drivers, affecting those -- changing those with personal accounts, the idea is to get what has been promised more likely to be -- or closer delivered to that has been promised. Does that make any sense to you? It's kind of muddled.

Look, there's a series of things that cause the -- like, for example, benefits are calculated based upon the increase of wages, as opposed to the increase of prices. Some have suggested that we calculate -- the benefits will rise based upon inflation, as opposed to wage increases.

There is a reform that would help solve the red if that were put into effect. In other words, how fast benefits grow, how fast the promised benefits grow, if those -- if that growth is affected, it will help on the red."

How did this man get elected twice?

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Monday, March 14, 2005

Garden State

OK, so like, many months after most people had seen Garden State, I finally saw it. I was reminded that I really need to see it after stumbling on Zach Braff''s Blog. So, here is my short movie review: I like it, but I found it had a very Hollywood ending, for a film that is somewhat unconventional. What do you think?

Other than that, the only thing I have to say is that I was kind of mesmerized by Natalie Portman's ears. Is it just me, or are they rather Elf-ish, even Vulcan-ish? I swear, if they ever need to cast a nice looking young woman as a Vulcan or an Elf, they should seriously consider Natalie Portman. Does anyone agree?

Is anyone else amazed that the Pope is still alive? He can't be human.

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Friday, March 11, 2005


I just discovered that Zach Braff has a blog. Imagine posting something that got over 3000 comments? That will never happen here, especially since Blogger's comment system is fried at the moment.

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Thursday, March 10, 2005

Blogger Problems

Something strange was going on at Blogger this morning, and this eve, I noticed that the commenting system was all messed up. Sorry about that.

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Bring Out Your Dead

It's probably bad form to commence a serious post with a reference to Monty Python. But, if you have been following the increasingly scary warnings from the World Health Organization, you will know that the question is not if a influenza pandemic will happen, but when. So far, the disease has been characterized by a lack of symptoms and a very high mortality rate. The Spanish influenza pandemic in 1918 killed somewhere between 40 and 50 million people, with a corresponding mortality rate of only 2.5%. So far, the mortality rate of the H5N1 avian flu in Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia is 76% (42 of the 55 known to be infected have died). To make things worse, there is now one confirmed human to human transmission.

That's scary. I just can't imagine that kind of toll. The flu travels faster these days because of airline travel (as opposed to being carried on ships), so this will be fast and deadly. When this or a future pandemic hits, it will be devastating.

On the bright side, I was recently telling a friend how much I enjoyed last week's Simpsons Couch gag. It turns out that I am not the only one. The Accordion Guy had loaded a Quicktime movie, but he had to take it down 'cause blogware's server was being overwhelmed. He has posted a new URL, but you need BitTorrent to watch it. See his post.

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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Random Things

First, the recent deaths of four RCMP officers has stirred up the marijuana debate even more. I have said this before, but I will say it again. We shouldn't be making criminals out of tokers. We shouldn't ban a substance that is probably less harmful than alcohol. Prohibition didn't work then and it isn't working now.

Start Counting

I've added a counter to this blog, almost two years later. Hey, and at the time of posting, I had 33 visitors in the first 24 hours (and that doesn't include me). That's cool, although no one left a comment :-( which leads to my next point.

Comment Killer

Now I know the meaning of the term. It seems that my recent three-part segment from my journal scared some folks away. Maybe I'll think twice before I divulge anything so deeply personal again.

Dan Rather

I have kinda always liked Dan, but I have to say that I may have to re-evaluate that after having read this list of Dan Ratherisms. They are more apt than anything uttered by Dan Quail, but they are rather goofy. It's hard to pick a favourite, but how about: "This election swings like one of those pendulum things." or, "This race is tight like a too-small bathing suit on a too-long ride home from the beach." Say what? The list is hilarious.

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Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Two things:

1) Gizoogle

Have you seen Gizoogle? It translates web pages into Snoopisms (you know, Snoop Dogg). Here's the Gizoogled US Declaration of Independence.

2) Blogs as Advertisements, or, Marketing Rot

If you have ever followed the link to "NEXT BLOG" on Blogger (top right of this screen), you will have undoubtedly stumbled upon blogs that are ads. Many simply repeat the same thing over and over, post after post. This irritates me for two reasons.

i) Is it necessary to defile everything with ads? Can't they leave blogs alone? I suppose this is marginally better than comment spam.

ii) Do they really think that we are all idiots? Maybe I am in the minority, but I wouldn't patronize any business that creates a blog as an advertisement, especially if it doesn't even have enough energy to make it interesting. I'm not about to take out a mortgage from some due who solicits for customers in online communities.

I'd give you an example, or two, but I really don't want to give these yahoos any more exposure.

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Monday, March 07, 2005

Toronto's Times Square Ripoff

How did it happen that the municipal government in Toronto decided to build a lesser Times Square? No one asked me if I thought it was a good idea. And, I'll tell you what, I don't think it is a good idea.

Isn't it bad enough that we are bombarded with advertisements almost everywhere we go. Why do we need giant LCD screens and media towers confronting us at Yonge & Dundas? I do realize that there have always been advertisements there, but why does the city think that we should allow what looks to be a pornographic orgy of ads in this area?

Anyway, the long-anticipated Metropolis Centre is finally under construction (on the north east corner of Yonge & Dundas), but I have noticed that not much is happening on the site recently. Future Shop and Virgin Superstore have leased space. (Let me just add that there is nothing super about any Virgin Superstore I have ever visited. The name is hyperbolic).

Pen Equity has loaded an interesting document (in pdf) that describes the project. I have to object strongly to this statement: "Comparable to New York's Times Square or London's Piccadilly Circus, Dundas Square IS the 24-hour public face of Toronto." Is this a joke?

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Saturday, March 05, 2005

An old excerpt from my pen and paper journal...(part 3)

Read part 1 and part 2

These were the days of rap. How many videos featured those female dancers in those tight athletic shorts, shiny black with black shoes, short shirts even bras or bikini tops? And, those athletic moves. These women could bend and flex. They had good bodies. And then there was the twenty minute workout, featuring three women with those bodysuits. I am not sure if the TV police noticed, but one could see the aureole through some of those outfits. That is on top of the fact that one of the women always had fully erect nipples.

The blonde woman with short hair had large breasts. The camera always managed to offer a good view, right down her cleavage. The camera panned around just as the three of them bent over to place their palms on the floor. It was a good view from the front or the back.

Back to Much Music. I think it is a George Michael video in which several semi-naked women appear. His guitar gets set on fire. A woman writhes on the bed, all sweaty. Her arms conveniently blocking the view of her pubic area, and her nipples, but the flesh of her breasts spills out. That's almost as good. That video was always a good climax to my viewing.

In the afternoon, I headed back to my computer. I switched off the radio and brought up my thesis in Word Perfect. No, I couldn't do it. Just one more game of Tetris. Just one more game.

Usually, I tried to get something done: change the ordering of ideas on a page; rewrite a sentence; run the spell checker through the file, which was a slow process because of all of those Polish, Russian, German, and Baltic names.

I always got the same questions when A___ came home. "Did you get much done?" and "did you call G___."

(these entries, although written at the Pearson airport in 2002 while awaiting a flight to Texas, refer to events of 1991).

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Friday, March 04, 2005

An old excerpt from my pen and paper journal...(part 2)

Read part 1

I thought of my thesis, even felt guilty that it was languishing in another directory. But, my day was set. I looked forward to the all-request-nooner, the mail delivery, Tetris, lunch, and a few minutes of rap videos on Much Music in the afternoon.

Mail was never very interesting, but it was a diversion. It wasn't my thesis, it had to be done, and so I did not feel guilty taking that short elevator trip down six floors to the lobby. I hated it when mail was late. Every day, I met a short Chinese woman in the lobby whose whole life seemed to revolve around the mail. Why was she always there waiting for the mail like a dog staring out the window hoping his owner would show up? We never spoke.

I liked most songs on CFNY's all-request-nooner. I used my small cassette player in the den because the sound from the stereo did not travel very well down the concrete halls from the living room.

In a Tetris haze, I could see nothing but probabilities. When I made a mistake, I knew how the program would punish me. I'd get a square I couldn't use or an L shape with no place to put it. My vision distorted. Things went grey at the edges, like I had tunnel vision.

I dreamed Tetris. I had nightmares of falling shapes, yellow against black. I had nights of terrible restlessness that eventually blended into A___less morning sleep.

If I was lucky, the songs on the radio went with the game. Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb was the essential Tetris song. I had become comfortably numb.

One more game and then I will get on with chapter two. OK, one more game and I will re-read my introduction. OK, just one more game and I'll have lunch. Lunch was good. I had to eat lunch, so lunch was not procrastination. What's wrong with catching the headlines on the news? I needed to be informed. After all, I am doing an MA in history. Just get the headlines and then work on the thesis.

Wait, a good story on dogs is coming up. I like dogs, so what's wrong with watching that? The weather? Why not? I may have to go outside. The weather is important.

OK, just a quick channel surfing session and then I'll be set. OK, stop there on Much Music.

to be continued ...

Read part 3

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Thursday, March 03, 2005

An old excerpt from my pen and paper journal...(part 1)

I think the days went like this. A__ woke up to the alarm at 7:01, not a minute earlier, not later. Ideally, she would wake at 6:50, but the sight of the number 6 was too much for her so early in the morning. She settled on 7:01.

A quick shower, the attack on her hair in the bathroom that left a loose rug of hair, perceptibly deep, on the floor was followed by a regimented breakfast : one piece of toast with peanut butter, always smoothy, never crunchy, and one glass of milk. When I had two slices of toast, she sneered at me, angered by the wastefulness. Two pieces of toast were too many. We needed to economize.

I slept through it all. She busied herself and I slept, happy to finally hear the click of the front door. I slept soundly, waking later and later and the year progressed.

My M.A. thesis was underway, stored on my hard drive, backed up on several floppies. I carried one copy in my back pack at all times. I had a recent print out. I hadn't looked at the file for days. But, I did use the computer.

My courses had ended in the spring and I looked forward to a summer of finishing my thesis. As the weeks passed, I got out of bed later and later. At first, I woke at 9:00, then 9:30, then 10:00. After a while, I would wake and see 11:35 on my clock radio. I could have slept even longer.

I'd get out a bed, shower, shake my head at the thick matting of hair on the floor. I'd never seen anything like it. And, she blamed some of it on me. I knew my hair was more rigidly attached to my head than that. I suspected that she would be bald in a few years.

After breakfast of two or even three pieces of toast and crunchy peanut butter, I headed for the den and fired up the computer. Soon, the Tetris blocks, the colour of deep almost dirty yellow, fell from the top of the screen. I placed them perfectly in rows, rewarded buy that small computer bleep - a sound that made me feel like an expert - and a slowly increasing score.

Soon, I entered the zone of Tetris perfection. The top twenty scores were all mine. I was so good, I had to start losing when I reached the high score. Otherwise, the counter went back to zero. I remember screaming with joy when I lost, just in time to record my score before the game would have put me back to the beginning.

to be continued...

Read part 2

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Wednesday, March 02, 2005

A Political Detour, or, Hey Bush, Shove Your Missile Defense System

I just have to say something else about missile defense. Lots of experts -- including one from MIT and another from the Canadian Association of Physicists -- have said that the system just won't work. Apart from that, it is clear that deploying such a system will herald a new weapons race. Sure, these are defensive weapons, but weapons still. Isn't it obvious that the enemy (whomever that may be) will want to design weapons that can penetrate the new shield? I had thought that the weapons race was over. Apparently, it is starting again.

So, I don't care if Condoleeza Rice snubs Canada. I don't care if Paul Cellucci rants and raves that we are losing sovereignty. In my opinion, choosing our own international path demonstrates Canada's independence and sovereignty. The Bush administration is focusing on an obscene war on terror, developing new weapons, and panicking about same-sex marriage instead of paying attention to those things that are truly immoral, like genocide in parts of Africa. Bush needs to get his priorities in order.

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Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Candy Road Kill

There's nothing like shoveling snow first thing in the morning.

My favourite news story of the day is that Kraft has decided to stop production of Trolli Road Kill Gummi Candy, a candy shaped like flattened snakes, chickens and squirrels, complete with tire treads. Who would have thought that a stodgy old corporation like Kraft could even have come up with such an idea in the first place? It's not like Kraft is based in Tennessee, home of the Road Kill Bill.

Speaking of which, want to know what happens to some road kill and dead pets? Here is an excerpt from The Poisons in Pet Food:

"Road-kill animals and some deceased zoo animals are also sent to rendering plants. A report in the San Francisco Chronicle (February 19, 1990) presented evidence that dead pets from animal clinics and shelters are carted away to be rendered —with their name tags and flea collars intact. Other items tossed into the rendering 'soup pot' are rancid grease from restaurants and supermarket meats that are no longer fresh (including their Styrofoam and shrinkwrap packaging).

All of this material is slowly ground up at the rendering plant, then chipped or shredded, and cooked for up to an hour at 220 degrees F to 270 degrees F. The fat or tallow separates during the cooking and is removed. What’s left over is then pressed to remove all moisture and crushed into what is misleadingly called 'bone meal' or 'meat meal.'"

I wonder if this is really true? Anyway, it kinda takes my appetite away.

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