Friday, March 30, 2007

A Reply to kate from Budgewoi, NSW

I was going to post this in a comment on the original post, but I decided to put it here instead.

kate from Budgewoi NSW wrote:

"Will silly americans ever get it right..."

I am not American! Had Vest or you bothered to read my site or its subtitle, you both would have learned that, plus a whole lot more, but maybe you don't know where Toronto is?

"vest is a master at spoof, harmless as a kitten,..."

A master of spoof? If you think his homophobic insults are spoof, you are as bad as he is. If he had read my blog, he would have learned that I am a nice guy, not to mention the fact that I am not gay (not that there's anything wrong with that), but that wouldn't matter to him anyway. If he hates you, the worst insult he can think of is to accuse you of being gay. That says enough to me about him.

Prejudice has no place in civilized society. He is uncivilized and certainly not harmless. He might as well put on the KKK uniform. His views are out-of-date, hurtful, and opposed to fundamental human rights.

He can't have it both ways. If he wants to throw insults at me and my readers, he should be a man and use his real name (whatever that is) or his blogger name with a link back to his blog, and not hide behind a myriad of pseudonyms.

" was he who was goaded initially but few of you are unaware of it..."

What do you mean by "few of you"? Do you mean bloggers? Do you mean Americans? I have never once goaded him. He came to my blog uninvited and acted like a school yard bully. The fact is, Vest and I share similar heritages, but, since his plan of action is to insult, and not to be informed, he never learned that. And, I assume you meant, few of you are aware of it.

Let him retaliate. What's he going to do, call me a faggot, again? It's very tiring and predictable.

"like you hateful people are doing right now."

Vest is the hateful one. He's the one calling people faggots and cock suckers, not me. By defending him, you are as bad as he is. Why do you think I am hateful? I can't defend myself? I asked him several times not to comment on my blog, but he just couldn't help himself. I kept deleting and deleting. He left over 80 comments on one post on another blog.

"I know the guy, you only think you do and wished you could."

Maybe. I am a student of history, and have a graduate degree in history. I have studied war, and wrote a thesis on foreign policy which focused heavily on some military conflicts. When I read about his role in the Royal British Navy on his blog, I was intrigued. The fact is, if he had engaged in web 2.0 discourse like a civilized person, we might have gotten along. But, why would I want to know a bigot?

"ps. Is it a privilege americans have , and that is strike down or bully and not expect retalliation?"

I am not American. You meant retaliation, not retalliation, right? Bully? You are defending the biggest blog bully I have ever had the misfortune to encounter! I think you are also referring to the American Government and the American Military. Trust me, I am not fan of American foreign policy, and, I think that the war in Iraq is obscene. If you or he had read my blog... but I have already said that.

"I feel so sad for you"

Don't. I feel sad for you that are you defending a racist, a homophobe, a sexist, and someone who clearly has no idea what he fought for in WWII.

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Thursday, March 29, 2007


Here's an interesting piece of trivia. This is post #59 this year. Did I ever fall off the blogging bandwagon last year! In 2006, I posted only 58 times, down from 220 posts the year before. Perhaps I needed a rest.


After my recent cleaning, I had to return to be fitted for a crown. I'm feeling a bit like Thomas Levy in the Marathon Man at the moment, except that I am fairly sure that my dentist is not a former Nazi SS dentist from Auschwitz. Still, I had several needles to freeze the area, drilling to remove the old filling, more freezing because I could still feel the drill, more drilling, grinding, filling, more grinding to reduce the area so that it could accommodate the final crown by which point the freezing was mostly worn off, and since I hate the feeling of the freezing, I opted to finish the procedure without it, and so endured a great deal of pain.

Jail Guitar Doors

This is a great story. Billy Bragg has donated six guitars as part of a new program called Jail Guitar Doors, named after a Clash song. "Ex-prisoners who have actively participated in such sessions have a re-conviction rate of between 10% - 15%, compared to the national average of 61%." Who would have predicted that learning to play the guitar would have this outcome?


I am psyched for the return of the Sopranos on April 8th. Sadly, it's the end of what is probably the greatest show in the history of television.

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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

He'll be Dead Soon

Look at this face, if you can. I know it's hideous, distorted from a permanent sneer, from a rage brought on by the fact that the world is filled with people he hates. They don't share his racist, homophobic, sexist, and fascist views. He's angry that he has been crippled with impotence, that he smells like an old person, that he is rotting from the inside out. The good news is that this coward will be dead soon. He's half dead now.

Meet John Leonard Spencer, sometimes known as Leslie John Bowyer or Christopher Leslie Bowyer or Les Bowyer. He is the person behind dailygaggle[dot]blogspot[dot]com. He's also the moron I wrote about in this post.

This is the man who has been posting anonymous comments on my blog. It's easy to slander people when one can hide behind a fake name. I deleted most of asinine comments, but some are still there.

Here's an example of the hateful garbage he writes. In my post about Facebook, I left a comment that said:

"Oddly, half of the librarians here are on Facebook..."

His reply was: "And the other half faggots"

This gives you a good idea of this man's values. If he hates you, and he hates everyone, he hurls anti-gay insults. John Leonard Spencer called me a c&#% sucker. It's obvious that he hates himself. I think he should just come out of the closet. What do you say, Leslie?

Johnny has written a book called Waving Goodbye to a Thousand Flies and, because he could not find anyone stupid enough to publish it, he did so himself, via Tafford Publishing, a vanity press that lets any incompetent, uneducated, imbecilic, moronic person publish any drivel they want, as long as they pay for it. He must have saved his cash from his years working as a rent boy. To complete the vain cycle, he comments here and there under the name Leslie Bowyer, to drum up interest in his book. Of his own book, he once said: "I found the book Wholesomly [sic] interesting with few dull moments." It's fraudulent and desperate.

Here's what the reviewers are saying about John Leonard Spencer's book, Waving Goodbye to a Thousand Flies:

"Never have I seen such awful writing. Spencer is a man preoccupied with himself, probably from an early age, when he developed an addiction to masturbation and a love of phallus-shaped vegetables."

"If we judged books by how conceited the author is, Spencer deserves a A+"

"The errors of syntax overwhelm the book. It is difficult to read a book that is so laden with obtuse remarks, and so lacking in any kind of coherent structure."

"A Dog of a book."

"Two thumbs down, way down."

"The publisher should be executed."

"Waving Goodbye to a Thousand Flies is obviously written by a man that has spent most of his life masturbating with chronic frequency. It's clear that he is now impotent, but he has fond memories of bashing the bishop and shoving foreign objects up his rectum."

"Spencer gives credit to Freud's theory of the Oedipus complex, except that he never outgrew it. Spencer is a mommy's boy."

I'm not the only one he has felt the need to pester: he has been trolling tshsmom's site too. He is like an adolescent school boy, desperate for attention.

Beware of this loser. Too bad Blogger won't let us block by IP address.

Host Name
IP Address
Country Australia
Region New South Wales
City Sydney
ISP Swiftel Communications

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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

A Visit with a Sadist ... I mean Dental Hygienist

The mere fact that the chair reclines, speaks of torture. Sure, the chair might be comfortable, at least for a while, especially since it's after work, and hours of thinking about issues, problems, and the endless meetings. So, it's not so bad to be fully reclined in a comfortable chair, even if the ceiling tiles are unspeakably ugly. You'd think in this environment, someone would pay to have something nice on the ceiling, like a plasma screen with peaceful images flowing through the neon and xenon. Instead, there's a few square feet of tile decay.

I sat down, felt the chair roll back, affirmed that I was comfortable, and hoped that she would leave me alone for a few minutes so I could get some sleep. Instead, I heard the jangle of the instruments being readied.

Some famous comedian once observed that dentists tell us not to put sharp metal objects into our mouths, only to put sharp metal objects into our mouths when we visit them. Aside from the needle and the drill, they rarely inflict serious pain on us. But, the dental hygienist, at least mine, has a different method of operation.

I believe that she was hired from some secret spy organization - like the Alliance of Twelve - that uses dental torture to extract information like coordinates, access codes, bank account numbers, and shoe sizes. She could be gentler if she wanted to be, but I believe that she inflicts pain in direct proportion to the amount of flossing she thinks we are not doing. It's getting worse too and it's clear to me that, as she ages, she has less ability to moderate the amount of pressure she uses when she stabs the sharp pointy metal implements into my gum line.

After my last visit, my mouth was is so much pain that I found it difficult to brush for a week. I suppose, as an inducement to floss more, it might work. Frankly, I'd like to hire someone to floss my teeth for me, or maybe I could train a monkey to do it.

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Monday, March 26, 2007

Facebook & Enemies

Well, I finally set up a profile on Facebook, using my real name, not my fishy alias. Aside from the fact that there is no one there from my graduating year in high school, I have only one concern, and you might call it an enhancement request.

When someone adds you as a friend, you can either reject or confirm this action. So, if they are not your friend, you reject. If you hate them, you reject. If they have friended you just because you have listed Captain Beefheart in your musical preferences, you can go either way. But, I think it would make far more sense to be able to add a list of enemies. This would be useful for certain colleagues (the close-talking type). I refer to him as a Facebook whore, because he seems to inhabit that space to the detriment of all else. He found my profile mere minutes after I had set it up.

Then there are those high school losers, who wouldn't really qualify as friends, simply because you knew them (so far, no one like that has crossed paths with me). Maybe it would be more appropriate if they were enemies.

And, finally, we have trolls like Bozo the Brit. He must have very low self-esteem, if his idea of amusement is to leave mean comments on my blog about other people.

By the way, I considered adding a profile to Assbook, but I am far too shy for that.

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Friday, March 23, 2007

The Close Talker and the Egomaniac

I still haven't figured out what term best applies to him, but my colleague has been described as a buffoon, idiot, and moron. I am sad to report that I can add Close Talker to the list. Glass of wine in hand, I orchestrated a creeping backwards maneuver, with him in close pursuit, until we were no less than six feet away from where our conversation began only ten minutes earlier. This is how snakes move - silently and inexorably, millimeter by millimeter until they swallow their pray or find a place to warm up in the sun. The good news is that we ended up beside the open bar, and I turned to my right and said: "red wine please." She refilled my glass.

My back should be sore, for it was arched away from him, trying to avoid his breath on my face, the light random drizzle from his mouth, and his exploding Ps. If anyone had been paying close attention, they would have approached me and offered to push me upright. When the dinner bell rang, I found a good seat in the middle of the room and chose a chair that afforded me a good view of the podium, so I would not have to twist my head around like an owl to see the person speaking. The bad news is that I sat right next to an egomaniac.

A simple question turned into a 15 minute exposition of how freaking wonderful she is, and then on she went about her grants, her research, her publications, her life-long interest in learning. I got the whole story of her childhood and how she was the first woman in her class to attend college. I had to sneak in that I was the first person in my family to attend University. She bulldozed over that. It was exhausting listening to her. But, there was free wine, a substance that can counteract the effects of a poison.

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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Confession #4

While living in residence, during my undergrad degree, I watched The Young and the Restless. Yes, it's true. Gary S. had two things in of importance in his room: a coffee maker and a TV.

I had a discussion recently with a friend about residence, and I recalled that I lost three things in residence:

1) A magnetic chess set. I am certain that Peter D. has it. Please mail it to me.

2) An old-fashioned toaster. You know, the ones that permit toasting only on one side, and then you have to turn down the sides and flip the bread over. Look at this page if you want a general idea of what it was like. If you are wondering what I would do with an old toaster, since they are now so sophisticated, I would turn it into a guitar amplifier.

Sharon B. has my toaster, but probably sold it ages ago in a lawn sale. She had a Camaro too and a very very short boyfriend who looked like a shrunken version of Ricardo Montalban, without the muscles, charm, wardrobe, or looks, and with an unfortunate mustache, the kind which 16 years old boys try to grow. Now that I think about it, he looked nothing like Ricardo Montalban.

3) Two coffee mugs. Gary S. has these, or had them.

Several of us, including Running42k, if my memory is serving me correctly, kept mugs in his room, and we all made a daily trip at 4:30 to drink coffee and watch Y&R.

All of this not that terribly interesting, but I have to confess that I got hooked. It was like crack. In the summer, I tried to fit my work schedule around Y&R. I would work late shifts at the bar, rather than early ones, so I could see the show before coming in to work. My dad did not have a VCR, so taping was not an option, but I did make a few trips out to a friend's place to see the shows that she taped if I missed them.

After my addiction passed and I tuned in after several months of staying clean, I discovered that absolutely nothing had happened for months, except that some other dude was playing Jack, and we all had to pretend that it was the same guy. It was like when they swapped out Kinchloe on Hogan's Heroes for some other black guy, because they assumed that no one would notice.

Anyway, I am ready to start pursuing my acting career, and I plan to start with a soap opera. If you know anyone hiring actors, please let me know. I could do a good Victor or Brad.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007


I am not at work today and I have no time to blog. Too bad for you.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Fish Heads & the Woody Allen of Chemistry

So, here's the Fish Heads video, if you care:

Ii tried to embed this video using YouTube instructions, and using about four other methods posted on the web, and they all failed. I keep getting a Blogger error, and Blogger kept stripping off some of my closing tags. I'd put them it, and Blogger stripped them off in a vicious and irritating cycle. Damn you Blogger.

So, this morning, I went to a short conference, or a long meeting, at MaRS. I am not sure what the best description is, but I was bored stiff. I am not a chemist, not even close. My only knowledge of chemistry comes from the chemistry set I received for Christmas when I was about ten years old. I was never able to make anything truly combustible, even when I paired it with the electronics set I received the same year. I bet Carter from Hogan's Heroes could have made something deadly with it.

But, one of the presenters was rather entertaining in a Woody Allenish sort of way. He had that distinctive accent, like Woody or even George Costanza, along with that halting cadence characteristic of Allen. I found it very amusing to hear this guy say things like "non-hydrogen heteratom" and "stoichiometry analysis." Even then I was terribly bored and very hungry, and the lunch was gluten city, so I fled to find lunch at a place around the corner and came back here to get caught up with work and eat chocolate.

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Monday, March 19, 2007

Mad at Madonna

I am seriously annoyed that Madonna has a new clothing line with H&M. I am also seriously annoyed that she has published a series of kid's book, especially since her first book received the largest launch in publishing history. I am seriously annoyed that the rich and famous get to do whatever they want, even if they have no talent for it.

In case you missed it, there's a growing list of celebrities who have written kid's books. Some of these are probably good, like those by John Lithgow and Jerry Seinfeld, but I have not read them. But, do we really need books by Jamie Lee Curtis, Katie Couric, Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, John Travolta, Jane Seymour, Spike Lee, and Dr. Laura?

Of course, publishers love these celebrity books because they rake in buckets of cash and H&M will probably do the same with Madonna's clothes. It sucks.

I am supposed to be writing an abstract now, so off I go...

Listening to: The Dears - Gang of Losers (liberated from a delete bin for $5, marked down from $37! It's an import with a funky package).

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Friday, March 16, 2007

Coke and Pork and Worms

I need your help. Have you seen one of the several videos floating around the web that show people pouring Coca-Cola onto raw pork? After a few minutes, the worms crawl out of the meat. Now, my first thought was: Who the hell would drink Coke if it is noxious enough to force innocent worms from the comfort of a slab of pork? Well, I'll allow that Coke mixed with rum is OK.

The now infamous video seems to have been removed from YouTube, but any web search will find videos that support or refute the allegations along with a few humorous attempts to show all manner of biological entities emerging from pork, like plastic rabbits. Some argue that Coke simply makes a nice marinade. Others argue that pork is infested with worms (trichinae) and will cause trichinosis. I have heard that there has not been a case of this in Canada for years. Who knows what is happening in the USA.

I'd try this myself, but I don't drink Coke and I do not want to support the corporation, despite occasionally purchasing Dasani, primarily because it is usually stocked here. Did you know that Dasani isn't even spring water? It's tap water that has been remineralized. Have a look at the ingredients. Yeah, that's right, it's water with ingredients.

So, if you are willing, go out any purchase some raw pork, throw it into a dish, and pour some Coke on it. Let me know how it turns out. I'll trust you.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

10 8 Things I'd Like to Learn

1) How to fly a helicopter I am not sure if this comes from watching too many episodes of Magnum PI as a young boy, or from years of listening to Darryl Dahmer. Anyway, it would be so cool to be able to fly a helicopter like Carrie-Anne Moss in The Matrix.

2) How to build a spacecraft that really works and is fast enough to get me to Pluto in, say, 2 to 3 minutes. I'd like to be able to get to Alpha Centauri in half an hour.

3) How to break dance I am not so sure I want a callous on the top of my head the size of a grapefruit, but it would be cool to spin on my head and do all of those crazy moves. Besides, I could then audition for So You Think You Can Dance.

4) Sign language I'd have to figure out which language first, because there are many types. This would really only be cool if everyone I know also learns.

5) How to ride a unicycle I saw a high school kid riding a unicycle to school on Bathurst Street once, and it just made me wonder why I was on two wheels when I could have been on one.

6) How to juggle No, I am not planning to join the circus. My friend, Colin, could do this in grade 7, and I was amazed. Have you ever wondered why jugglers drop something in every performance? It's to make juggling look harder than it is. I've tried, and it is as difficult as it looks.

7) How to become a millionaire overnight Wait, I have to check my lottery ticket ... crap, I can't cross that one off the list.

8) How to make myself invisible Yes, I love Heroes. I have long known which superpower I would like: It's immortality, but I think that being invisible would be far cooler. If I could combine both, that would be awesome. Oh, and if I could read people's minds. I think I want to be Sylar.

I was going to list 10 things, but I can only think of 8 at the moment.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Fish Heads

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

In the morning
Laughing, happy
Fish Heads
In the evening
Floating in the soup

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

Ask a Fish head
Anything you want to
They won't answer
They can't talk

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

I took a Fish head
Out to see a movie
Didn't have to pay
To get it in

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm
They can't play baseball
They don't wear sweaters
They're not good dancers
They don't play drums

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

Rolly polly Fish heads
Are never seen drinking
Cappacino in Italian restaurants
With Oriental women...Yeah

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm...

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

Fish heads, Fish heads
Rolly polly Fish heads
Fish heads, Fish heads
Eat them up, Yummm

by Barnes and Barnes

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Monday, March 12, 2007


In my dream last night, I met Adolf Hitler, sort of. I am not sure where I was going or what I was doing, but I had to ask a truck driver to move his rig. I walked around to the driver's side, looked up, and was not surprised to see Adolf Hitler behind the wheel.

You might think that the chap simply looked like Hitler. I was convinced that it was him, and yet, I was not too concerned about it. He had the famous truncated mustache, the deep black hair that fell into his eyes, and a yellow uniform with all manner of insignia and decoration.

The thing that troubled me was what to call him. I needed to get his attention, and I just looked up, unsure whether I should say: "Hey, Adolf!" or "Hey, Hitler!" The rest would have been easy: "move your damn truck out of the way." He was probably parked in the bike lane, now that I think of it.

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Friday, March 09, 2007

Today, I Killed a Mouse (warning: contains some cruelty to animals)

It was nearing death anyway, I was certain of that. Judging from my past experience, I can tell you that a healthy mouse will scurry away from you and not let you pick it up and stroke its fur, tickle its tummy, or feed it peanuts. They just run away, usually around baseboards and under things, like big furry cockroaches. I've tried to catch a live mouse sprinting away, and it's almost an impossibility, almost.

The mouse was loitering right near my bicycle in the basement. He did not look healthy and just waited there for me to come up to it. Sure, his legs were moving, but he was going nowhere. He had no joie de vivre. I immediately started to look for some implement so that I could put it out of it's misery.

I was reminded that a mouse once came up to me in the kitchen, looked right at me, and seemed to be begging me to send him on to the next world. I used a frying pan. Years ago, in my small room in a shared house on Bathurst Street, I trapped a mouse, but the poor rodent got pinned by the legs, and so his neck did not snap. I grabbed my adjustable wrench and clipped him on the head.

Just so you think I am not some sort of psychopath who enjoys killing animals, I felt so bad about killing the poor mouse, that I removed all of the traps from my room and just let the mice be free to eat my food and crap on my floors.

A few years ago, I had to resort to traps in a house that had way too many mice. One day, a poor little mouse ended up backwards in a trap. Oh, and by the way, I tried those so-called humane traps and they do not work. The cheese mysteriously disappeared, but there was no mouse in the trap. Anyway, unless you release them in the wilds of Ontario, they are just going to find their way back into your house or the house next to the park where you released them.

So, I had a crippled mouse and needed to send it to the mouse afterlife. I decided that hitting it over the head was a bit too brutal, so I decided to drown it. Apparently, drowning is a pleasant way to die. I am not sure if this holds true for a mouse, but it has got to be better that dying in the jaws of a cat. I used a pair of pliers and held the trap with the dangling mouse under the running water, until I realized that I was simply giving the mouse a cold shower.

I put the plug in the sink, and dropped the trap in the accumulating water. I had no idea that mice could swim. Well, this one sort of could, even with a heavy trap attached. He might have died, eventually, after treading water for hours and hours, but that seemed too cruel. I pushed down on the trap with my pliers, forcing the mouse underwater, until I saw a few bubbles escape his mouth. Yes, I felt mean.

A few days later, I did almost the impossible. I saw a mouse on the basement floor. I grabbed a broom and managed to throw him off balance. I whacked again, but the little bastard kept on going. I had him cornered but there was a large wardrobe just ahead, a place of refuge for the beast. I struck again, and the mouse got tangled in the bristles of the broom. When I raised my broom, the mouse tumbled end over end - much like the bone in 2001 A Space Odyssey - until it landed several feet away. I pounced like a cat and made sure his days of pestilence had ended.

You know, mice are very destructive. They will chew through anything, eat your food, leave droppings all over the place, make noise. They are pests and you don't want any mice in your house. Trust me.

Today, I killed a mouse by dropping my toolbox on it.

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Thursday, March 08, 2007

Come on Over?

In the most shocking news I have heard lately, the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) has released the Definitive 200, a list of "200 ranked albums that every music lover should own." I think they made a mistake, and accidentally included some albums that deserve a spot on the Infamous 200, or albums that no one should own.

Last night, on some insidious show like E Talk Daily, they reviewed the Canadian artists on the list. I was shocked, appalled, disheartened, stunned, and pissed off when I discovered that the top ranked Canadian album was Shania Twain's Come on Over which ranks at number 21. WTF? Even worse, Celine Dion came in at #97! These people have no idea.

Shania is an awful and horrific blend of Donny and Marie. This new country thing is so old and boring and unmusical. Please decide if you are country or pop, because this middle ground is not doing anybody any good.

I can't understand how Celine Dion has managed to make a career out of screaming, and I can't pass up the opportunity to use a quote I read on McBickle Eyes the Transom in this post: "Celine Dion looks like a beautiful woman after she's been assaulted." That's very funny. My father once said "Who doesn't like Celine Dion?" That says it all.

Even more astonishing is the fact that Neil Young's Harvest came in at 98. This is simply perplexing. Neil Young is without question the most influential Canadian musician of all time and it is ridiculous that throwaway acts like Twain and Dion (the shrill voice of Air Canada) should place higher than him on this stupid list.

Other omissions are glaring. I would argue that Leonard Cohen is perhaps the best living lyricist, and yet, no Leonard Cohen album made the list. In my opinion, Songs of Leonard Cohen is the best Canadian album ever recorded.

Other things that irritate me about the list is that the Clash's London Calling comes in at 96. It belongs in the top 10 or even top 5. It scores only a few places better than the soundtrack to Dirty Dancing. Are they crazy? If this hasn't convinced you that the people who compiled this list are on drugs, this will: Shakira made the list! Christina Aguilera made the list! Michael Jackson came in at #3! Meatloaf made the list! Queen made the list! Beyonce made the list! Mariah Carey made the list!

So, here they are:

1. Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – 1967
2. Pink Floyd – Dark Side Of The Moon – 1973
3. Michael Jackson – Thriller – 1982
4. Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin IV – 1971
5. U2 – Joshua Tree –1987
6. Rolling Stones – Exile On Main Street – 1972
7. Carole King – Tapestry – 1971
8. Bob Dylan – Highway ‘61 Revisited – 1965
9. Beach Boys – Pet Sounds – 1966
10. Nirvana – Nevermind – 1991
11. Pearl Jam – Ten – 1991
12. Beatles – Abbey Road – 1969
13. Santana – Supernatural – 1999
14. Metallica – Metallica – 1991
15. Bruce Springsteen – Born To Run – 1975
16. Prince – Purple Rain – 1984
17. Ac/Dc – Back In Black – 1980
18. Rolling Stones – Let It Bleed – 1969
19. Doors – Doors – 1967
20. Grateful Dead – American Beauty – 1970
21. Shania Twain – Come On Over – 1997
22. Who – Who’s Next – 1971
23. Stevie Wonder – Songs In The Key Of Life – 1976
24. Fleetwood Mac – Rumours – 1977
25. Pink Floyd – Wall – 1979
26. Alanis Morissette – Jagged Little Pill – 1995
27. Norah Jones – Come Away With Me – 2002
28. Eminem – Marshall Mathers Lp – 2000
29. Outkast – Speakerboxx-Love Below – 2003
30. Dr. Dre – Chronic – 1992
31. Beastie Boys – Licensed To Ill – 1986
32. Guns ‘N Roses –Appetite For Destruction – 1987
33. Dixie Chicks – Wide Open Spaces – 1998
34. Miles Davis – Kind Of Blue – 1959
35. Eagles – Hotel California – 1976
36. Def Leppard – Hysteria – 1987
37. Soundtrack – Grease – 1980
38. Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On – 1978
39. Beatles – White Album – 1968
40. Soundtrack – Saturday Night Fever – 1977
41. Jimi Hendrix – Are You Experienced? – 1967
42. Beatles – Revolver – 1966
43. Boston – Boston – 1976
44. Bon Jovi – Slippery When Wet – 1986
45. U2 – Achtung Baby – 1991
46. Whitney Houston – Whitney Houston – 1985
47. Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin Ii – 1969
48. Dave Matthews Band – Crash – 1996
49. Rolling Stones – Sticky Fingers – 1971
50. Green Day – Dookie – 1994
51. Led Zeppelin – Houses Of The Holy –1973
52. Joni Mitchell – Blue – 1971
53. Elvis Presley – Elvis At Sun – 2004
54. Aerosmith – Toys In The Attic – 1975
55. Lauryn Hill – Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill – 1998
56. Bruce Springsteen – Born In The U.S.A. – 1984
57. 50 Cent – Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ – 2003
58. Ac/Dc – Highway To Hell – 1979
59. Notorious B.I.G. – Life After Death – 1997
60. Van Halen – Van Halen – 1978
61. Green Day – American Idiot – 2004
62. Black Sabbath – Paranoid – 1971
63. Eminem – Eminem Show – 2000
64. Jewel – Pieces Of You – 1995
65. Coldplay – Rush Of Blood To The Head – 2002
66. Meatloaf – Bat Out Of Hell – 1977
67. Usher – Confessions – 2004
68. Kid Rock – Devil Without A Cause – 1998
69. George Harrison – All Things Must Pass – 1970
70. Billy Joel – Stranger – 1977
71. Eagles – Hell Freezes Over – 1994
72. Van Morrison – Moondance – 1970
73. Rem – Automatic For The People – 1992
74. Phil Collins – No Jacket Required – 1985
75. Metallica – Master Of Puppets – 1986
76. Faith Hill – Breathe – 1999
77. Johnny Cash – At Folsom Prison – 1968
78. John Coltrane – Love Supreme – 1964
79. Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here – 1975
80. Michael Jackson – Off The Wall – 1979
81. Marvin Gaye – Let’s Get It On – 1973
82. Bob Seger – Night Moves – 1976
83. Paul Simon – Graceland – 1986
84. Linkin Park – Hybrid Theory – 2000
85. Prince – 1999 – 1983
86. Def Leppard – Pyromania – 1983
87. Janet Jackson – Control – 1986
88. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Blood Sugar Sex Magik – 1991
89. Dire Straits – Brothers In Arms – 1985
90. Tupac – All Eyez On Me – 1996
91. Matchbox Twenty – Yourself Or Someone Like You – 1996
92. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Californication – 1999
93. Led Zeppelin – Physical Graffiti – 1975
94. Nelly – Country Grammar – 2000
95. Creed – Human Clay – 1999
96. Clash – London Calling – 1979
97. Celine Dion – Falling Into You – 1996
98. Neil Young – Harvest – 1972
99. Soundtrack – Dirty Dancing – 1987
100. Dixie Chicks – Home – 2002
101. Tom Petty – Full Moon Fever – 1989
102. Van Halen – 1984 – 1984
103. Soundtrack – Titanic – 1997
104. Crosby Stills & Nash – Déjà Vu – 1970
105. Tlc – Crazysexycool – 1999
106. Beck – Odelay – 1994
107. Kenny G – Breathless – 1992
108. Nwa. – Straight Outta Compton – 1989
109. Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks – 1977
110. Beatles – Rubber Soul – 1965
111. Radiohead – O.K. Computer – 1997
112. Simon & Garfunkel – Bridge Over Trouble Water – 1970
113. Dixie Chicks – Fly – 1999
114. Metallica – And Justice For All – 1988
115. Michael Jackson – Dangerous – 1991
116. Mariah Carey – Daydream – 1995
117. Soundtrack – Top Gun – 1999
118. Elton John – Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – 1973
119. Police – Synchronicity – 1983
120. No Doubt – Tragic Kingdom – 1995
121. Rolling Stones – Beggar’s Banquet – 1968
122. R Kelly – R – 1998
123. Tool – Lateralus – 2001
124. Oasis – What’s The Story Morning Glory – 1995
125. Bob Marley – Exodus – 1977
126. Journey – Escape – 1981
127. Christina Aguilera – Christina Aguilera – 1999
128. Jay-Z – Blueprint – 2001
129. Alicia Keys – Diary Of Alicia Keys – 2003
130. Soundtrack – O Brother Where Art Thou? – 2000
131. Cars – Cars – 1978
132. Enya – Day Without Rain – 2000
133. Natalie Cole – Unforgettable With Love Natalie Cole – 1991
134. Soundtrack – Footloose – 1984
135. Lionel Richie – Can’t Slow Down – 1983
136. Sarah Mclachlan – Surfacing – 1997
137. Bonnie Raitt – Nick Of Time – 1989
138. Metallica – Ride The Lightning – 1984
139. Sheryl Crow – Tuesday Night Music Club – 1993
140. Frank Sinatra – In The Wee Small Hours – 1954
141. Earth Wind Fire – Gratitude – 1975
142. Zz Top – Eliminator – 1983
143. Willie Nelson – Red Headed Stranger – 1975
144. John Lennon – Imagine – 1971
145. Toni Braxton – Toni Braxton – 1993
146. Etta James – At Last – 1961
147. Elvis Presley – Elvis Presley – 1956
148. Cat Stevens – Tea For The Tillerman – 1970
149. Smashing Pumpkins – Mellon Collie & The Infinite Sadness – 1995
150. Dave Brubeck – Time Out – 1959
151. Janet Jackson – Janet – 1993
152. Queen – A Night At The Opera – 1975
153. Ozzy Osbourne – Blizzard Of Ozz –1980
154. Will Smith – Big Willie Style – 1997
155. Prince – Sign Of The Times – 1987
156. Public Enemy – It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back – 1988
157. Bob Dylan – Blood On The Tracks – 1975
158. George – Michael Faith – 1987
159. Boyz Ii Men – Cooleyhighharmony – 1993
160. Destiny’s Child – Writing’s On The Wall – 1999
161. Jay-Z – Black Album – 2003
162. Avril Lavigne – Let Go – 2002
163. Fugees – Score – 1996
164. Madonna – Like A Virgin – 1984
165. Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin – 1969
166. Stevie Ray Vaughn – Texas Flood – 1983
167. Stone Temple Pilots – Core – 1992
168. Original Cast – Phantom Of The Opera Highlights – 1988
169. Jethro Tull – Aqualung – 1971
170. Tupac – Me Against The World – 1995
171. David Bowie – Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust – 1972
172. Shakira – Laundry Service – 2002
173. Soundtrack – Forrest Gump – 2001
174. Al Green – Call Me – 1973
175. Curtis Mayfield – Superfly – 1997
176. Live – Throwing Copper – 1994
177. George Benson – Breezin’ – 1976
178. White Stripes – White Blood Cells – 2001
179. Lynyrd Skynyrd – Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Erd – 1973
180. Sade – Diamond Life – 1984
181. Fleetwood Mac – Fleetwood Mac – 1975
182. Paul Mccartney & Wings – Band On The Run – 1973
183. Beyonce – Dangerously In Love – 2003
184. Anita Baker – Rapture – 1986
185. Nas – Iiimatic – 1994
186. Barbara Streisand – A Star Is Born – 1976
187. Earth Wind Fire – That’s The Way Of The World – 1975
188. Anita Baker – Rhythm Of Love – 1994
189. Jay-Z – In My Lifetime Vol 1 – 1997
190. Ll Cool J – Mama Said Knock You Out – 1990
191. Steely Dan – Aja – 1977
192. Willie Nelson – Stardust – 1978
193. Aretha Franklin – Sparkle – 1976
194. Andrea Bocelli – Andrea – 2004
195. Bob Dylan – Bringing It All Back Home – 1965
196. Luther Vandross – Never Too Much – 1981
197. U2 – All That You Can’t Leave Behind – 2000
198. Rush – 2112 – 1976
199. Outkast – Aquemini – 1998
200. Grand Funk Railroad – We’re An American Band – 1973

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Another Piece of Art

I have writer's block today, probably because yesterday's post was so long. If you haven't read it, you should. Go, right now and read it. I insist.

I painted this, but I am not sure I like it. In fact, it might be upside down.

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Tube Quest

My most recent flat tire arrived with a satisfying pop, a small explosion of air bursting through my rubber tube at Bloor and Bay late at night. A few people looked, perhaps thinking that a gun had been fired. I walked my bike home, thankful that it was not minus 40 degrees with the wind chill, as it is today. The boots weren't right for walking, and my feet felt a bit sore when I finally removed them at home.

There are lots of nice bike shops in Toronto, but all of them were closed for some sort of bike show at the Exhibition. So, I was forced to go to a run-down place that reminded me of my youth. There was a chap on the outskirts of the small town that I am from who had what can only be described as stockpiles of crap. The man had everything from bicycles parts to old records, bits of steel, dismembered parts of electrical devices, topiary, stuffed foxes, fish mounted on old pieces of wood, tackle, knives, probably bullets and grenades, bits of planes, tanks, anti-aircraft weapons, and what appeared to be robots or parts of them. He also had odd mechanical devices that few had ever seen before, and fewer knew how to operate. But, this guy could fix anything, from a radio to a flux capacitor.

A blast of smoke hit me when I opened the door to the bike shop. I was transported back to my days as a bartender at a hotel in my hometown. The place was so smoky, I had red eyes well before last call. I worried that I was getting cancer in two ways: from the smoke I breathed in, and from the smoke that soaked inexorably into my skin. I worried that I might break out into lesions.

The bike shop was dark and dingy, but I could see some flickering light at the back. My boots thudded on the plywood floor, as I made my way back, through a darkened nave filled with bikes then, up a small ramp, a few feet more to the counter looking more like a smoky altar in the poltergeist-like glow of a small TV. It would have been oddly appropriate if the TV had been broadcasting old Jerry Falwell sermons or the 700 Club. Two guys sat on lawn chairs, smoking. Beside them, at least two dozen empty beer cans - the 500 ml variety - covered the floor. These men looked as though they had just returned from 39 days on Survivor.

"It's been a day of cigarettes and beer and TV," one of them grunted, as he stood up. At least he stood up, I thought. They had no ashtrays, so the ashes and butts piled up on the floor, among the cans.

"I need a tube," I said, almost coughing from the smoke.

"What size?"

"26 by 1.95," I replied. He ducked behind the counter and came up with the goods.

"5 bucks," he said, but he didn't ring anything in, did not touch the cash register. In fact, I don't recall a cash register of any sort. I wondered if I could have paid him in beer.

I handed him a $5 bill. "Oh, you're rich," he said, far too gleefully for a man who had been smoking and drinking all day and watching a TV with a pinkish hue.

The other guy said nothing, barely moved. I was certain I could have given him a light push and he would have tumbled over into a pile on the floor.

Later, I installed the new tube and realized that I also need a new tire, as mine had a hole in it. I decided to go to a different shop.

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Monday, March 05, 2007


I hated art class in school. That really should be, I really hated art class in school. And so, I did not take any art classes in high school.

But, I remember that in grade 7 my art teacher was some sort of space cadet. Maybe that's just my memory of her. In grade 8, my art teacher was far better known as a math teacher. Maybe I just had terrible teachers. I think I was afraid of art.

This is not to suggest that I am any good at art. I can barely draw to save myself. I can draw rectangles, triangles, and some other geometric forms, but ask me to draw a bird, and it is hit or miss. I drew a good one the other day, while in a meeting. Maybe boredom and confinement helps.

I was painting with the kids the other day and took over this from Sam, who had made the dynamic black splotch. He then seemed more interested in ripping this apart (I gather he did not like it), so I gave him a new piece of paper and finished this. You can see two other attempts at painting here and here.

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Friday, March 02, 2007

This just in
From: kristine

hello, I am pretty russian girl, bored tonight.
would you like to chat with me and see my pics?
if so then email me at

Oddly, this reminds me of my second Russian language class. I was about to enter a graduate history program in Russian History, and I needed a reading knowledge of Russian. So, I took 5 back-to-back courses at the University of Toronto, and then hired a private tutor with two former classmates for several months.

Class number 2 featured a bookish, balding, and somewhat emaciated dude with thick glasses. He had just received his mail-order Russian bride in the mail. I wondered if she came in a plain brown wrapper, or if the words "Russian Bride" were printed on the box for all to see. Perhaps there was a Russian bride warehouse.

OK, so not really: you couldn't send a person through the mail, especially a Russian bride, because I think that the temptation would have been too much for all of those postal workers, and the box would have been opened long before these men ever received their packages. In fact, I would suspect that many such packages would be lost in the mail.

Back to the story: the man's new Russian friend spoke not one word of English. Well, I think she could say hello and goodbye, but I am not entirely sure. So, he diligently sat there, every week, regretting the lack of a present tense of the verb "to be," learning relevant vocabulary, like "meat salad", "autobus," "escalator," "elevator," "toaster," and phrases like "my neighbour is an eccentric," "I need a doctor," "I like to swim in the Volga River," "how many hours is it," and "when I was a little boy, I liked to play chess."

All of this reminds me that Khrushchev's famous phrase "We will bury you" is open to re-evaluation. The poor translator had to translate on-the-fly, and, if he had time to reflect, he probably would have come up with something like: "We will leave you in our dust," which has an entirely different meaning, if you ask me. In other words, I don't believe that Khrushchev said what we think he said.

Happy Friday.

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

When I was 18

I went back to that Imagination Prompt Generator and was asked:

"What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think back to being 18?"

That's easy: my jeans. I spent a lot of time finding the most flattering jeans. They had to be tight and make my ass look good. Now, they weren't so tight that I had to lie on the bed, get out the coat hanger, and invite a friend over to help me get them done up, but they were rather constricting. I am glad the era of tight jeans for men is over, at least I hope it is.

I wish I had a good anecdote about my jeans from that period. I can tell you that, in my adult years, all of my jeans seem to wear out in the crotch. It leads me to believe that today's jeans are inferior to the denim of my youth. There could be other explanations, but I am going with that one.

Here's a little price of trivia: my waist is still same size today as it was when I was 18, but I wear slightly larger pants :-) I credit a diet that is completely free of beer with aiding in my great physique. Oh, and maybe some cycling helped out a bit.

The second thing I think about from that age is my hair. I still have a full head of hair, I should point out. But, back then it was lustrous and long, and very shiny. I spend lots of time styling my hair. I kept a black comb in my back right hand pocket. We all did, back in the day, just like The Fonz.


I got a flat tire on my bike two days ago, and I haven't been able to pick up a new tube, so I have been taking the subway. Yuck. Happy March.

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