Friday, March 31, 2006


This is post #399.

Update (3 hours later): OK, so that was a lame post. I changed the comments section, 'cause I have received somewhere in the range of like, 1000 spam comments recently. I was doing domain registration look ups and emailing customer support addressed on various web pages, all to no avail. The bastards kept it coming. So, I opted to edit this template to accept the original Blogger comments with word verification.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

On Enthusiasm, Muscles, and Shirts

My interest in blogging comes and goes. That is, it fades and then reappears. I think I am in a relatively unenthusiastic mode at present. It's hard to say why. It could be the change of seasons, the alignment of the planets, or the amount of work I have. I have a lot of competing interests, and it is sometimes difficult to make time to post entries and to visit other blogs.

I recently started a photoblog, and that has diverted some of my attention away from this blog. I have other online projects, which all require some time.

Today, I wore a nice shirt. It's a favourite, but it is barely long enough to cover my midriff. If I have to reach up, I will expose parts of my stomach, which is ok, because I have a well-formed abdomen. This reminds me of my high school days. I used to do 500 sit ups and 500 pushups per day (Currently, I only find the time to cycle to work and back, which is roughly 11 KMs round trip). In high school, I would ask people to punch me in the stomach as hard as they could. I borrowed that from another guy - Craig - who gained some sort of popularity from the act. If your stomach muscles are strong enough, all manner of fists will just bounce off.

So, this shirt is a little short, but not too short. It's just a tad shorter than I would like. I'll spend the rest of the day doing the Picard maneuver.

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Monday, March 27, 2006

Blogger is Down (again)?

Well, I am posting blind today. I can't see my blog. I tired a few others and they are down too. Others seem to be working. This is actually good since I have nothing to say. So, that is all I am saying right now. Happy Monday.

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Friday, March 24, 2006

Soup Nazi is Here

As I previously mentioned on this blog, the Soup Nazi is here. I took this rather bad picture of the kiosk in the Eaton Centre. They were distributing free samples, but I did not take one, since I would have had to ask tons of questions about the ingredients.

The Spam keeps coming. I have had about 250 spam comments on this blog recently. Unfortunately, this template does not support Blogger's keyword verification, so I really might have to change templates to those boring Blogger ones. In other spam news, I got this bizarre email:

From: jennifer aniston
Date: Mar 21, 2006 8:57 PM
Subject: hi honey

Just wanted to make sure you got those anal beads I sent you, those fuckin' couriers can be so nosey.



Note: My real name is not even Vinnie. I guess this is some sort of Vince Vaughn joke.

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Taste the whip, in love not given lightly
Taste the whip, now plead for me

Favourite Albums, #4 (previous entries: The Clash - London Calling, John Cale - Music for a New Society, Beck - Mutations)

Apparently, Brian Eno once said something like: "only about 1,000 people ever bought a Velvet Underground album, but every one of them formed a rock and roll band." This may have been an overstatement, but it speaks to the enormous influence that the VU have had and continue to have on music.

The Velvet Underground & Nico, the first release from John Cale, Lou Reed, Sterling Morrison, Maureen "Moe" Tucker, and Nico, is a fine album. The AllMusic Guide says: "Few rock albums are as important as The Velvet Underground and Nico, and fewer still have lost so little of their power to surprise and intrigue more than 30 years after first hitting the racks."

Cale's droning viola and unusual keyboards, combined with Lou Reed's inventive and provocative lyrics, make the music stand out from most other music. There has really been nothing else quite like it.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Meetings, Bloody Meetings

Somehow, by some odd turn of events, I have to endure hours of meetings today. Weeks go by with few such events, aside from the weekly - and partially dysfunctional - Council meeting, and then I get stuck with a day just chalk full of group dynamics and opportunities to learn and share with colleagues. I should be grateful, but I know that I will end up with a sore ass. I have thought of taking along my office chair, but that seems like too much work.

Besides, the longer I am away, the less time I have to read email, and I learn so much from email. For example, today I have already learned a great deal about Filipina women:
Sexy Filipina Girls
Why choose a Filipina? Women from the Philippines are noted for their beauty, grace, charm and loyalty. With their sweet nature and shy smiles, Filipina's posses an inner beauty that most men find irresistible. Filipinas are by their nature family-orientated, resourceful and devoted. What's more, English is one of the official languages of the Philippines, so communication is straight forward, and as the majority of Filipinas are Christian, cultural compatibility is easier than some other Asian countries. With the help of our website you can find a filipina in your area
Now you know too.

I have been a bad Blogger, and have failed to visit many of my fav blogs recently. I apologize for that.

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Monday, March 20, 2006

Because I Can't Think of Anything Else to Write About Today

- I have 28 cameras.

- I hate Fabricland. I hate everything about it, from just being in the store, to the acres of unappealing fabric. I feel nauseous and weak, especially in that one at Yonge & Bloor in the basement with the low ceilings and bright fluorescent lighting.

- I make tons of typos. In fact, let me just type a coupld of sentences to demionstrate how many typiose I make. It;s beacause I never learned how to tyupe properly in schoo.. I guiess IO figured that I;d never need to know how to type, so I didnlt take the couirse. Thanks heavens for spellc heckers. I think I typs with six fingers and I use the thumbs f rthe space bar, like verybody else. even fater I run evertthing through the spell checker first, I find errors. It's ok to let me know if you see one.

- Here is a picture of my bike.

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Friday, March 17, 2006

Happy St. Patrick's Day

I planned to post a picture of my lunch every day this week, and always forgot. I forgot again today, so the best I can do is the empty container. You'll have to guess what was in it.

Yes, I am part Irish. My great great grandmother on my mother's side was born in Ireland. She married an Englishman and then they moved to Canada. In last year's St Patrick's Day post, I discussed imperialism and invasion and being oppressed. I really liked that post, but it seems few other people did.

The problem with St. Patrick's Day is green. I do have some green in my wardrobe, but I always make sure that I avoid it on St. Patrick's Day, except for that day in grade 5 when I forgot it was St. Patrick's Day and I wore a green shirt. I'll never forget it. There'll be no green from me on St. Patrick's Day.

What the hell is going on with Blogger? I don't know about you, but it's being very uncooperative. Hey, Jeff's blog is back now. Wait, it was for about 5 seconds. Some Blogger error killed his blog for hours and hours. That's all I have to say today. It's Friday and I am tired.

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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Dropping the Dialect

A colleague recently told me that she knew I was not from Toronto by the way I spoke. I am not sure if it is the accent or the word choice. Whatever the case, I am aware that people from my part of Ontario speak strangely. I only have to visit my rural relatives to be reminded of that.

It is not uncommon to have a conversation with my dad and hear him say:

"I done steaks on the bar-b-que last night."
"I ete an hour ago and I'm still hungry."
"We haven't ate yet."
"She don't like it."
"We have boughten bread."
"That's as useless as tits on a bull."
"I'll have a double-double"
"Let's go to Kentucky Duck" (That's KFC, or Kentucky Fried Chicken)

Listen to a few sounds files from Ontario here: International Dialects of English Archive - Ontario. They allow people to submit recordings, so maybe I will.

Also, people in my hometown are fond of the expression "fuck the dog" or "fucking the dog," which means slacking off or doing nothing. I am from Buttfuck nowhere, so I am allowed to say that.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The Price of Cabbage

In 1945, you could buy 2 pounds of cabbage or 2 pounds of carrots for 11 cents, a dozen oranges for 32 cents, and a head of lettuce for 15 cents. Light bulbs were 15 cents each and you could get a tin of Flusho for 21 cents or Sinko for only 25 cents. Now, these are prices I could live with, even though I am only guessing at what Flusho and Sinko were used for.

A colleague recently found stacks of newspapers in his kitchen walls during his renovation. He found two pages from a paper published in my hometown in May 1945. Aside from the shopping deals and endless lists of auction sales, there were two other interesting bits.

The reverend that baptized me - not that it did any good, for I never attended a church service in that church (or any church, until I was an adult, and then only under serious pressure from another person) - was mentioned. He is the man who performed the marriage ceremony at my parents' wedding. I even have photographs of this man.

And then, there is mention of a meeting of the Presbyterian Young People's Society. A certain individual, whom I cannot name, is said to have been presiding. He was the Vice President. Let me just say that this man, a family friend - now thankfully dead, was never brought to justice for years of child molestation. I have good evidence that he and my brother (then about age 13 or 14) were fond of the Princeton Rub, and probably a few other rubs as well. I knew other people who fell victim to this freak too. It's a shame he was never thrown in jail.

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Friday, March 10, 2006

Self Portrait #6

(self portrait #5)

One day - I am not sure when - I will post a real photo with no distortion. I promise.

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Paranoid Side Step

Although it really requires an in-person demonstration (no, I will not be demonstrating it), I will attempt to describe the complex manoeuvres of the Paranoid Side Step. Imagine a teenage boy, part way through high school, attending a high school dance in the mid-1980s. No, this is not me. He might be wearing white high top running shoes with laces untied, jeans, and a t-shirt. His hair is long enough to cover the ears, but not so long as to be too hippie-ish. He spends most of the dance hanging out in the shadowy fringes talking to his male friends. When a slow dance comes on, he circles the high school gymnasium looking, but not too obviously, for someone to ask for a slow dance. The song might be Babe or Stairway to Heaven. He may or may not have success. Eye contact might be accomplished and then lost quickly. In 10% of the cases, he may end up in a tight embrace with a girl he knows or does not know. He is unsure if she is taking pity on him.

The bravest of the boys take a turn at fast dancing (the opposite of the slow dance). Well, they are either brave or gay or latently gay (not that there's anything wrong with that). The more macho guys quit the dance floor when the back-to-back slow numbers end. But, in later years, these macho guys realize that if they want to get chicks, they have to dance the way of the ladies. And so, with reluctance, they take to the dance floor and adopt a rather interesting dance style that I call the Paranoid Side Step.

Dance styles come and go, and it is possible that in the high schools of today, the Paranoid Side Step is a thing of the past. But, in my high school days, it was the dance adopted by most guys (except for the gay and the almost gay: they were far too fabulous on their feet).

Perhaps you should try this on your own. Stand with your feet parallel, about ten inches apart. Hold your arms close to your side so as to keep any motion of the upper limbs to a minimum. Wildly flailing arms and any sort of jauntiness could be trouble for the adolescent boy. Now, slowly bring one foot and place it beside the other and then put it back where it was. Do the same with foot number two. Repeat.

As you do this, keep your arms to your side and your head on a slight downward incline. Without turning your head, have a good look around you, just to make sure that no one is actually watching you. To do this, you need to dart your eyes right and then left without moving your head. You don’t want to let on that you care that people are watching you: you just want to give the appearance of nonchalance and that you are only doing this for points with the ladies. Of course, it would be better if you could avoid looking around with those darting eyes that make you look quite paranoid. But, for some reason, you cannot stop looking.

This, ladies and gentleman, is the paranoid side step.

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Keyword Mayhem, Part 4

I love reviewing the keywords that people use to find this site. Here are a few recent ones:

1) hairy breasts
2) zydeco font
3) girls in diapers
4) can 2 tamagotchis with same sex marry
6) Banana eating contest
7) true poop stories
8) upturned handlebars drunk
9) percentage of people who pee in the shower
10) date your cousin
11) an explosion between the legs
12) her soles
14) snoopisms
15) lyrics to franklin the turtle theme song
16) canadian tire "start with you"
18) Canadian Tire tv commercial jingle mp3
19) elliott moose song
20) tv show elliot moose theme song lyrics


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Thursday, March 02, 2006

I am Stressed, Man, Very Very Stressed

For those of you that missed this, and I assume that is everyone, a new study says that librarians suffer more stress than firefighters, police officers, train operators, and teachers. Say what?

How could my job be more stressful than firefighters who may, at any time, be asked to pull people from burning buildings? How could being a librarian be more stressful than a police officer, who may be fired upon by all sorts of nasty criminals? This makes no sense to me. There is very little stress in my job. In fact, I rather enjoy my job. There is essentially no supervision and I have complete academic freedom. What's stressful about that?

Alright, I have to go upstairs now and try to teach some research skills to a few undergrads. It promises to be very very stressful.

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