Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Webpages are so demanding!

So I finally bit the bullet and updated allie.ca. I added some links and new pics, but I doubt anyone will notice compared to the amount of work I just put into it! But Quynn should note that his link now appears twice on my links page. And I know I haven't linked everyone that I need to, so if you think you are missing drop me a line and I will get around to it. Next on my list is the Bookclub Page. That is all.

Thought of the Day

"Give a chunk of your life to improve the human condition. Why are we here if not to improve the human condition?"
- Stephen Lewis

Monday, January 30, 2006

Scrapbooking Across the Universe

So I finally did it. Holed up in my home for the past while I have been piecing and pasting together the scrapbook pages for my wedding and honeymoon, only two years after the fact. Better late than never I say, and arts and crafts are always fun. Although, it takes surprisingly longer than you might imagine...

I still have to scrapbook our first wedding anniversary vacation to Toronto and Niagara Falls, and I found myself musing this weekend about going places just so that I could scrapbook about them - like Paris, Stonehenge, Vegas, Mexico, Hawaii and... well you get the idea. I've always had the travel bug but now that it's combined with the scrapbooking bug it should make life interesting!

So here is an example of first try at Scrapbooking. I will leave some more on my Flickr page if anyone is interested to see some more (and remember I am still learning)!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Voices in My Head

I'm not talking about the kind of clothes she wears, Look at that stupid girl
I'm not talking about the way she combs her hair, Look at that stupid girl...

The way she talks about someone else
That she don't even know herself
She's the sickest thing in this world
Well, look at that stupid girl

Well, I'm sick and tired
And I really have my doubts
I've tried and tried
But it never really works out

Like a lady in waiting to a virgin queen, Look at that stupid girl
She bitches 'bout things that she's never seen, Look at that stupid girl...

Shut-up, shut-up, shut-up, shut-up, shut-up Shut-up, shut-up, shut-up, shut-up, shut-up

- M. Jagger/K. Richards

Ah, The Rolling Stones really do have have a song for every moment, every situation and every person we meet. Thank you Rolling Stones!

Monday, January 23, 2006

It's getting "Curiouser and Curiouser..."

"But I don't want to go among mad people," Alice remarked. "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat, "We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad." "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat, "or you wouldn't have come here."

It’s been a whole 574 days since I last voted in a federal election but I have not yet voted in today’s 39th General Canadian Election: my son has asked me to wait until he gets home so he can go with me when I cast my ballot, which gives me a little more time to consider my options, I guess (you’d think 56 long days was time enough...).

It seems to me, as voting Canadians, we are always a little weary of change, but this might be the first time in a long time that we are more afraid of the status quo. I think as a result we'll see a better voter turnout than 2004.

With the Conservatives on the brink of a potential Majority, the Liberals and the Bloc fighting tediously for Official Opposition, the NDP making gains they don’t deserve and the Greens remaining altruistically optimistic, the possibilities are endless. And who’d want to be left out of that?

So, whether you are Choosing Canada, standing up for Canada or just believing in Canada, voicing your opinion today will make tomorrow’s Canada YOUR Canada.

It's our day today!

My Own Mind is My Own Church

Kang: "Abortions for all!"
Canada: "BOO!"
Kang: "Very well...no abortions for anyone!"
Canada: "BOO!"
Kang "Alright...abortions for some, miniature American flags for Albertans!"
Canada: "YAY!"

Found on the FARK Forums (Canada Election thread)

Six Figure Blogging!

When I started this blog I didn't really have any idea of where it would go or what it would come to be for me. I didn't even know I was a blogger! Now, a month away from my third blogiversary and 1054 posts later, I will soon cross the magical 100,000 visitors mark! Will it be you? Leave me a note so I can see where you are visiting from... afterall it's really all about the visitors, and 100,000 visitors can't be wrong!

Thanks everyone!

EDIT: My 100,000th visitor came here from Munich Germany at 11:33:41 am!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

The System is the Scandal

So did you think it was your democratic right to spoil your ballot?

"No person shall wilfully alter, deface
or destroy a ballot."

Section 167(2)(a) of the Canada Elections Act

Now, that's an interesting law. Even more interesting since there are strict procedures at polling stations that ensure the legally mandated secrecy of your vote (Section 163 of the Canada Elections Act). Behind the voting screen there is no one to know how you mark your ballot, even if you do chose to spoil it, so how would the Vote Police know?

Also Election's Canada does not give you the option to refuse your ballot, and you definatly can't eat your ballot, so it seems that if there is no one that you feel deserves your vote in tomorrow's election the only option that you have is to avoid the polling station altogether.

Home Stretch Rhetoric

"Vote for Me!" *
- Jack Layton

"Vote for Me!" **
- Gilles Duceppe

"Vote for Me!" ***
- Stephen Harper

"Vote for Me!" ****
- Paul Martin

* Actual Quote: "Lend us your vote."

** Actual Quote: "The best safeguard against a Conservative government is the Bloc."

*** Actual Quote: "We can win because it is time for a change, time to move forward, time to get beyond the scandals and investigations and corruption. Let the Liberals claim, for Canada, this is as good as it gets. I know for our Canada, the best is yet to come."

****Actual Quote: "The choice could not be clearer, the stakes with which we are dealing with are incredibly stark. There is only one party that can stop the conservative radical right, and that is the Liberal party."

Friday, January 20, 2006

Keeping Democracy Alive and Well Means Voting

I'm thinking carefully about my vote. Whichever Party I vote for on Monday will recieve $1.75 in public funding each year just for my vote. I realize that casting my vote with this in mind might actually be the most democratic move I could make in my riding.

Regardless, in Edmonton Spruce Grove, these are my candidates:

CONSERVATIVES: Rona Ambrose: She has her Master's degree in Political Science from the U of A, and as our Incumbent she served as the Critic for Intergovernmental Affairs and International Trade in the most recent government.

GREEN: John Lackey: Recieved his BA in history from the University of Alberta and his MSW (Community Development) from McGill University. Now operating a family business he has worked as a teacher, a social worker and in senior government management positions.

LIBERAL: Brad Enge: A self-employed lawyer and Ex-RCMP Officer (anti-terrorism department), he seems to care about native rights (but I wouldn't know well enough to confirm).

NDP: Jason Rockwell: "Social justice activist" and Student at the U of A. Ok, I've got to say it - Nice Tie. And Shirt.

No, not really.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Derision: Contemptuous or jeering laughter; ridicule; a state of being derided

Martin to Harper: I’d make a pretty good Finance Minister.

BURNABY, BC (CDM) – Prime Minister Paul Martin used a scheduled press conference today to suggest that Conservative Leader Stephen Harper might consider him for the Finance portfolio. "Well, I’ve had a lot of experience in that job, and people seemed to think I was pretty good at it," said Martin. "I got rid of a $43 billion deficit. Not too shabby I think. And I was picked for the World Economic Forum’s Dream Cabinet in 2001. They don't invite just anybody to that. Mr. Harper should re-think his position on this important issue, and pick me for Finance. Please."

HT: Derision 2006 and Kudos to Duncan

Dance Martin Dance!

With due respect to his office, I think my Prime Minister is losing it, and in more ways than one.

This campaign has had a few surprises, but I was offended by his out of the blue pledge to rescind the federal governments ability to use the not withstanding clause. I mean - HE MADE THAT UP. On the spot. He just made it up (I've got news for him - Canadians don’t want to open a constitutional debate).

Were his political instincts always so poor?

And then consider the incompetence. The arrogance. AdScam. Gomery. Scandal after scandal. A general lack of credibilty. The scare tactics and dire warnings of "Harper's hidden agenda." Poor campaign strategy, questionable motivations and desperate out of control spin.

He doesn't deserve my vote, his party doesn't deserve to be returned to govern us. If someone wants my vote they need to earn it.

Actually, the best thing that could happen (both for Canadian Politics and for Martin's Liberals) is for the Liberal Party to lose bad.

"People in this country are tired of being played by Paul Martin's Liberals."
- Jack Layton

"Canadians are tired of slurs, scandals and spin."
- Stephen Harper

"Let's just vote and get this over with, I say. Martin's self-immolation is getting hard to watch."
- Warren Kinsella

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

It Makes you Wonder Why the Youth Vote is so Hard to Get Out...

The U of T's Varsity is reporting that Elections Canada has cancelled the special polling stations that were to be set up on campus to enable student's who live in residence to vote in Monday's Federal Election, a first time for most of the students in question.

The story, Campus Voting Sites Axed (written by Sarah Barmak), draws some pretty interesting conclusions... It seems that both the liberal candidate and the conservative candidate merely voiced what they consider to be some "legality concerns" of the polling stations to Elections Canada (who had already confirmed the polling stations with the U of T SAC) which prompted the stations to be cancelled.

The real kicker here, if you can ignore the obvious issues with these young potential voters who are now left out in a cold political landscape, is that this riding in particular is Olivia Chow's riding (which in the last election she only lost by c. 800 votes and it is well known that the NDP has a large voter support base on this campus).

This kind of BS Politics is exactly why youth won't and don't vote. Students manage to vote without issue on campuses all across Canada - so when something like this happens it's hard not to see it as politcal interference typical of big parties that don't think the youth vote (or voice) should count. Or in this case, by parties that feel maybe the youth vote would count just a little too much.

Hat Tip: Toby

Monday, January 16, 2006


The winners of the Dose Attack Ads are online today. For as long as the link works, here is my favourite.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Dissent - The Highest Form of Patriotism

I just made my own attack add! You can too. But for a limited time only.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Here We Are Now, Entertain Us!

I’ll admit it, I like Attack Ads.

It’s true. Underneath my cool and polite Canadian exterior beats a heart that revels in the excitement of aggressive competition, especially when it comes to politics.

I appreciate the brilliance and creative thought that goes into the ads as rival factions attempt to illustrate, in the boldest of possible terms, the difference between competing values and messages.

Attack ads create interest, demand attention, generate discussion and fuel debate. They turn the often elusive game of politics into a sport that everyone can play.

This campaign has been so boring I’ve mused out loud about actually eating my ballot just to stimulate some excitement in the people around me. The threat of this election has been hanging over our heads for far too long and finally, after months of scandals, sponsorship allegations, judicial inquiries and police investigations, we find ourselves tired of the same old same old. Attack Ads encourage people to engage and we all can attest to the need for that! People vote when they are angry or otherwise motivated so lets raise the stakes. Hell, let the bloodbath begin.

Bring on the Attack Ads.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I Poke Badgers with Spoons


Yep. It's that time... again. Man, I feel like a woman.

Earlier today I was excited to see that a U of A Gateway article was linked in FARK, but it's farked now (crashed from the sheer strain of too many visitor's) and who know's when it will be back up... but for the curious here are the most interesting parts:

Best of the Campus Crime Beat by Amanda Ash

Get A Room!
Around 4pm on 21 February, members of Campus 5-0 were shocked to stumble upon a female student giving a handjob to her male peer on the couches in the Central Academic Building. The couple, who were getting sexy near the Tim Hortons, were given stern warnings and told to seek a more suitable venue.

Topless Brigade
At 1am on 24 February, student auxiliary officers on patrol in HUB Mall observed a group of females running topless down the hall. Once stopped, the topless ladies were identified as students and told to return to their HUB suites immediately.

Ahhh, our moment of fame. I don't remember the Campus Crime Beat being so much fun when I used to write it...

Maybe I am just feeling catty today due to my "condition", but go see the new negative Liberal ads if you haven't already - Choose Your Canada: Washington Times - I must say that a potenitially cozy relationship with the Bush Administration is one of the things that bothers me the most about a potential Harper Majority Government. I want a strong Canadian Prime Minister, not a "Bush-Lite" version. If Mr Harper is to be our PM, let him be OUR PM.

Today's post ends with a quote from a famous man who turns 100 years old today:

"I had wonderful visions"
- Albert Hofmann

Can anyone guess what Dr. Hofmann invented?

Sunday, January 08, 2006

This is a Public Service Announcement

There is new legislation in Alberta that requires all drivers to slow down to 60 km/h or less when passing ALL emergency vehicles and tow trucks that have their lights flashing while stopped on the same side of the roadway (a similiar law applies to passing construction workers as well). The fine for not complying with this law is $632.00.

Other provinces have similiar legislation, so consider yourself warned. Ignorance of the law is not a defence.

Last year, my brother was killed helping direct traffic around a stalled vehicle all because one person was in too much of a hurry to slow down while going around an accident scene. One selfish act, some might say a "mistake" on the part of a driver, and my brother's life was over at the age of 30.

Some Albertans seem to think that this is "just a cash cow" or that the law is "a stupid waste if time" (which IMHO is a pretty self centered view). But if drivers can't use common sense, slow down and change lanes in order to pass a situation safely (and possibly care enough to safeguard someone elses life) then they should be hit with high fines - because it is the only way to make them (and others) care enough to slow down, everytime. You can never know when someone is going to be suddenly in front of you, and when they are it doesn't matter anymore why or how they got there.

One of my best friends is a Calgary Police Officer who, yes (for many reasons), you might see on the side of the road or at the scene of an accident sometime. She, like other emergency professionals, are all people just like you who have as much right to live their lives and to go home to their families as you do.

Pay attention, slow down when it is needed and drive defensively. This isn't about cash cows or over zealous traffic cops - it's about protecting peoples lives and the harsh reality that some "mistakes" can't be taken back or fixed.

Via: Globe and Mail

The Bubble Creature Cometh

I just went to brush my teeth and when I turned on the light in the downstairs bathroom this creature was staring up at me from out of a sinkful of bubbles... it took me a second to recognize it as my dog's chew toy that obviously Duncan was trying to clean in an effort to extend it's life.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

A Comic Spoil

As Regards Spoilification by the Penny Arcade.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Thunder in my Belly, and the Thunder rolls...

I am sitting here drinking my cup of tea (listening to the gases move through my digestive tract realizing that the sound oddly resembles the sound of rolling thunder) witnessing the delightfully erratic behaviour of our cat (who was fed an overly large amount of cat nip just a while ago, the effects of which seem to have now kicked in) and enjoying the clean crisp air from the open window (a rarity for an Albertan January, but the temperatures have been mild so far this winter) while I ponder those certain connections in life that appear happenstance (my pondering aided of course by having just finished watching Season One of LOST) but seem to illustrate our story much more richly if we notice them.

So, in other news, there's nothing like a good stomach Flu to start off a new year - and according to the trusty bathroom scale I've shed about 12 pounds over these past four days, good news coming so close after the binging of the holiday season but not exactly easy on ones body (I'm really not getting any younger here!). It is, however, a good complement to my new three month long Doctor imposed NO Cholesterol diet (ever tried to eat a no cholesterol diet?) that will endeavour to determine if my high cholesterol levels of the past year are self inflicted through diet, or self inflicted by the over generousity of my own liver. Right now I'm not sure which to hope for (if any).

As far as world news goes, I have been watching if only peripherally - we did watch Team Canada win gold at the World Juniors (YAY CANADA!) and I have been keeping a vigil of sorts for Mr. Sharon - but all I have to say about that right now is could Pat Robertson be anymore of a DICK? He's really on a role with his insanity these past few months - where is a good Yahweh style Smiting when you need one?