Saturday, February 02, 2008
Friday, February 01, 2008
On a cold Saturday in New York City, the world’s largest train station came to a sudden halt. Over 200 Improv Everywhere Agents froze in place at the exact same second for five minutes in the Main Concourse of Grand Central Station. Over 500,000 people rush through Grand Central every day, but today, things slowed down just a bit as commuters and tourists alike stopped to notice what was happening around them.
What makes this funny is that there is some bad blood between Matt Damon and Jimmy Kimmel after this well publicized incident about two year ago:
GrassrootsPC, an anti-Tory website, argues that the man has lost a provincial and mayoral election—and can't even win a seat. Hi opponents don't want to give Tory a second chance in 2011. To counter the insurgents, Tory has his own website, TogetherWithTory.ca and he has some high profile supporters like ex-Minister Janet Ecker.
I think another strong motivator for some grassroots members to remove John Tory is
that he does not embrace true to conservative values. John Tory is a moderate or "Red Tory", and if his replacement comes from Stephen Harper's inner circle ( eg., John Baird, Jim Flaherty), as some have suggested, the party could become more of a conservative option for those inclined to vote that way. Ambitious right wing members of Tory's caucus may also be behind the grassroots movement to dump him.
North American skaters
Steven Stamkos, C, Sarnia (OHL); 2. Drew Doughty, D, Guelph (OHL); 3. Zach Bogosian, D, Peterborough (OHL); 4. Kyle Beach, C, Everett (WHL); 5. Alex Pietrangelo, D, Niagara (OHL); 6. Tyler Myers, D, Kelowna (WHL); 7. Luke Schenn, D, Kelowna (WHL); 8. Colby Robak, D, Brandon (WHL); 9. Colin Wilson, C, Boston U. (Hockey East); 10. Cody Hodgson, C, Brampton (OHL).
1. Nikita Filatov, LW, CSKA (Russia); 2. Evgeny Grachev, C, Yaroslavl 2 (Russia 2); 3. Mattias Tedenby, W, HV 71 Jr. (Sweden Jr.); 4. Vjateslav Voinov, D, Chelyabinsk (Russia); 5. Roman Josi, D, Bern (Switzerland); 6. Anton Gustafsson, C, Frolunda Jr. (Sweden Jr.); 7. Dimitri Kugryshev, RW, CSKA 2 (Russia 2); 8. Viktor Tikhonov, W, Cherepovets (Russia); 9. Kristoffer Berglund, D, Bjorkloven (Sweden); 10. Tomas Kundratek, D, Prostejov (Czech Div. 1).
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Some Democrats blame Nader for spoiling former Vice President Al Gore's bid for the presidency in 2000 by taking support away from him in Florida, the state that decided the election. Nader got 97,488 votes in Florida; President George W. Bush ended up winning the state by just 537 votes over Gore.
Nader has set up an exploratory committee and is in the process of filing papers with the U.S. Federal Election Commission.
Misery is defined as a state of great unhappiness and emotional distress. The economic indicator most often used to measure misery is the Misery Index. Forbes ranked 150 cities on six criteria and added their ranks together to establish what they call the Misery Measure.
Here is the top 10 (with their worst problems):
1. Detroit, Michigan (pollution, unemployment, crime)
2. Stockton, California (commuting, taxes, unemployment, crime)
3. Flint, Michigan (crime, unemployment)
4. New York, New York (taxes, commuting)
5. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (commuting, taxes, crime)
6. Chicago, Illinois (commuting)
7. Los Angeles, California (pollution, commuting, taxes)
8. Modesto, California (unemployment)
9. Charlotte, North Carolina (crime)
10. Providence, Rhode Island (taxes)
The city of Boston is planning a parade for this Tuesday to celebrate the Patriots winning the Super Bowl. Yes there is a little arrogance at work here but afterall they haven't lost yet this year. Perhaps New York City is also working on a parade too but just not being as public about it.
The contraversy regarding the parade is more about the date. Tuesday is also Super Duper Tuesday when 20 states including Massachusetts hold primaries. However, the parade will require major streets being closed and make getting around difficult. The parade route would pass by several polling stations.
Elderly and disabled groups in Boston are furious that the city would choose Tuesday for the celebration. Groups are advising voters to get absentee ballots now in case they can't get to polling stations on Tuesday. It would be easier to pick another day but 8 star players are leaving on Wednesday for the Pro Bowl game and the team wants the parade to happen before the team breaks up for the winter.
This wouldn't be a problem for Miami since they have already had their primary. Oh and the fact that the Dolphins went 1-15 this season.
The Leaf media horde has been obssessed with a Sundin trade and has hounded the Leaf captain for the past 2 months about whether he would waive the no trade clause in his contract. This is the same group of dilusional reporters that has speculated for years that Sundin wanted out of Toronto. Of course nothing could be further from the truth. Sundin does not want to be a rent-a-player. He has indicated that he would not get much gratification from winning a Stanley Cup in a uniform he is uncomfortable wearing. He is not a mercenary-type in the mold of a Roger Clemens or Peter Forsberg. And he is not about to walk this summer as speculated by the same misguided media.
Fletcher did report back that he and Sundin had a lengthy discussion on a number of issues including Sundin's future. Neither Fletcher or Sundin will comment publicly on the discussion over the next month. Of course this will not stop the media from continuing to hound both men.
So what does this all mean? What is significant is that Fletcher did not announce that the Leafs would not be trading Sundin. Had he made that public then all the speculation would end (and shift to other veteran players). Fletcher is very fond of Sundin and my guess is he would be almost as reluctant as Sundin to accept a trade. However, both men understand how a trade can change the fortunes of this team.
I don't think Fletcher will trade Sundin unless someone brings him an offer that literally will blow his mind. Should that happen then Fletcher would likely be able to convince Sundin to go. And whether he re-signs with the Leafs in the summer depends on whether Sundin's comfort level in a new city changes if that team goes deep in the playoffs. If Sundin is not traded then he will be signed for another 2 or 3 years over the course of the spring or summer.
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
1. Madonna - $72 million
2. Barbra Streisand - $60 million
3. Celine Dion - $45 million
4. Shakira - $38 million
5. Beyoncé - $27 million
6. Gwen Stefani - $26 million
7. Christina Aguilera - $20 million
8. Faith Hill - $19 million
9. Dixie Chicks - $18 million
10. Mariah Carey - $13 million
11. Hilary Duff - $12 million
12. Avril Lavigne - $12 million
13. Martina McBride - $12 million
14. Britney Spears - $8 million
15. Carrie Underwood - $7 million
16. Nelly Furtado - $7 million
17. Fergie - $6 million
18. Jennifer Lopez - $6 million
19. Sheryl Crow - $6 million
20. Norah Jones - $5.5 million
“Did, did you just double dip that chip?” Timmy asks. “That’s like putting your whole mouth right in the dip!” Finally George retorts, “You dip the way you want to dip, I’ll dip the way I want to dip,” and aims another used chip at the bowl. Timmy tries to take it away, and the scene ends as they wrestle for it.
Welll food microbiologist Prof. Paul L. Dawson decided to test the Costanza theory and ran some double dip tests with his students. He has some advice for the next party you attend: “Before you have some dip at a party, look around and ask yourself, would I be willing to kiss everyone here? Because you don’t know who might be double dipping, and those who do are sharing their saliva with you.” The NY Times summarized the study:
On average, the students found that three to six double dips transferred about 10,000 bacteria from the eater’s mouth to the remaining dip. Each cracker picked up between one and two grams of dip. That means that sporadic double dipping in a cup of dip would transfer at least 50 to 100 bacteria from one mouth to another with every bite.
Well there you have it. No double dipping please.
The shoeless officer had to be shackled by the wrists and ankles by crew members with the help of a traveller who was a member of the Canadian Forces. The captain cut short the flight by diverting to Ireland's Shannon airport where the co-pilot was carted off to the local loonie bin for assessment.
It was also a reminder of the 1999 Egypt Air flight that plunged into the Atlantic. Black-box recordings raised speculations that the crash occurred because co-pilot Gameel Al-Batouti was suicidal. Pilots undergo mandatory annual medical exams but no psychiatric exams.
Meanwhile Edwards couldn't compete with the big money being raised by his party's leading contenders. The same problem plagues Mike Huckabee. My sense is that the populist message preached by Edwards just didn't sell well with his expensive suits and haircuts. He;s no Bobby Kennedy.
Edwards has not endorsed either of the remaining candidates but both will be lobbying hard for his support. This race is so close for now. Giuliani is supporting John McCain who has the momentum with 2 consecutive primary wins. It is suspected that Huckabee when he drops out will also support McCain.
Things may become clearer by Wednesday morning when some of the largest states get to vote. The current delegate count is:
Democrats (2,025 needed to win)
Republicans (1,191 needed to win)
My hat's off (only indoors though) to my fellow hardy Canadians.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
The Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home booked rooms at the Carlyle Hotel for the impostor. The Post also reported that the hoaxer even got them to send free stuff to their rooms when nobody was there." The impostor also called the Medical Examiner's office to speak with the doctor who performed the autopsy, but it's unclear if the doctor told him anything.
As for fooling celebrities, the scammer spoke to Tom Cruise a few times, until Ledger's family alerted celebrities of the impostor. John Travolta was very close to booking airplane tickets for the faker from Australia to the United States (Travolta's publicist says that's not true, but admits her client did speak to the man). The impostor was also trying to get the phone numbers of Mel Gibson and Christian Bale. (There is no truth to the rumour he spent an evening out with Paris Hilton).
This guy is such a creep! Anyway the police would like to arrest the con man if can find him.
Click right here for the full blow by blow description.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Included in the list of potential threats to Australian tourists are the threat of terrorist attacks, crime (which they note is of a similar level to Australia), winter driving, the wind chill factor, earthquakes in BC, avalanches in BC and Alberta, tornadoes (only between May and September, obviously), and bush and forest fires which can occur "at any time." They didn't go so far as to suggest that Australians would be in danger of tsunamis while visiting Canada, but they sure didn't rule it out, either.
We can take some solace in the fact that regular, everyday Australians are still willing to inflict upon themselves the excruciating agony of visiting our fair country. According to CTV News, William Fisher, the Australian High Commissioner to Canada, noted that "Canada still ranks as the top 'dream destination' for Australian tourists," and that "More than 200,000 Australians visit Canada each year."
What is perhaps more galling to the average Canadian is the Toronto Star's report that the U.S. State Department saw fit to warn its citizens that "Violent crimes such as murder, armed robbery and rape can occur throughout [Canada]," and that "While Canadian gun control laws are much more strict than those of the U.S., such laws have not prevented gun-related violence in certain areas of Toronto." What hypocrisy.
Thank goodness no one has reported on the killer beavers!
Large crowds, including veterans and emergency service personnel, have routinely gathered on the highway's overpasses to wave flags in support of the troops. A total of 78 Canadian soldiers have died in Afghanistan.
The survey indicates that a majority of employers anticipate they will suffer some sort of negative impact from the new holiday. Many employers are saying they'll compensate their employees in some other way. This is turning out to be a bit of an embarrassment for the government and reflects the lack of any consultation before passing the Bill in the fall. I guess if you are going to have a policy flop, it's best to have really early in your mandate.