Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Random Awesome Things Day

Hey all,

There's nothing gnawing at my insides today - well, nothing interesting anyway - but I have stumbled across a couple random awesome things, so I'm just going to keep putting up the shit that's making me laugh today. So let's get started:

1)Go to Google. Type in "failure". Hit "I'm feeling lucky". Enjoy!

2)There's a bill going through Parliament right now on product labelling, among other things, and one specific clause in there (65.1, for those of you who want to look it up) which would make it unlawful to put a dairy term on a non-dairy item. Today,the Dairy Farmers of Canada sent out this little fact sheet explaining this clause's effects (and yes, they were implicated in the writing of this particular amendment). For example, you can't call your instant potatoes "Butter and Herb" flavoured if there's no butter in the ingredients. Same thing - can't say your popcorn is "Butter Lovers" if it doesn't contain any butter. And - AWESOMELY - you can't put the word "butter" on a margarine container - NOT EVEN IF YOUR PRODUCT IS CALLED "I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT BUTTER". How freakin' awesome is that? You have a product called "Definitely not a Dairy Product" and the dairy farmers are all, you can't put the word "dairy" on there, and you're all, but the word dairy is preceded by "not", and the dairy farmers are all,whatever, take it off, and you're all, but the name of my product clearly states that it's not a dairy product, and how I am I supposed to tell consumers my product isn't dairy without actually using the word dairy, and the dairy farmers are all lalalalalala we can't heeeeeeear you, and you're all, damn, bitches.

3)Check out this link (courtesy of la Kot) for one of the most awesomest things ever broadcast on television, ever...it's even more fun now that you know that these chumps have their days numbered when they recorded this..."I'm not saying you're not a smart guy, 'cause those things are hard to tie...". Aw yeah.

4)And thanks to Mo for this link which makes me wonder about a possible career change...sure, the pay's non-existent and the danger is life-threatening...maybe I can just start shouting COBRA! at work randomly...like when I'm collating, or sorting the mail, or whatnot. COBRAAAAAA!!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Well, that’s it. I’m on the lam. I shouldn’t be writing this, wasting precious time that could be spent deciding whether I want my new identity to be Francesca La Maradonna, Esq, flamboyant countess and lover of fine linens, or Jo-Mary Hoddwag, down-to-earth mobile home inhabitant and lover of fine collectible plates featuring the cast of Seventh Heaven.

See, yesterday I…ignored a security guard and snuck an unauthorized visitor into the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Now, in fairness to me, said visitor was the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, and his photo is on file and all, like, six security guards are supposed to recognize him, and he’s been the PS for TWO YEARS, and the security guard on duty that day is about 800 years old and can barely see or speak and really was completely at fault.

And in his defence – um…he’s really, really old.

Now, I don’t want to come off as ageist here, because that’s not the issue. I mean, Gran’pa Floyd is 76 and he’s still the one I’d want watching my back in a zombie fight because a) he’s freaking tough and b) he owns many, many rifles.

But this guy? Is just…feeble. He is a feeble old man. If they replaced him with a sign that said “mumble mumble” they would achieve the same level of security. His job consists of two things – checking security passes (which he CANNOT SEE from ONE FOOT AWAY even with GLASSES as I found out yesterday) and making sure people without them go to the desk.

Which brings me to yesterday. My boss has no pass. He needs no pass. Dude does not understand this. So when he mumbles after us to check in at the desk, a low mumble which my boss does not hear, I made a split decision to IGNORE HIM. Because, dude? It is not my job to secure myself. It is your freakin’ job. And if you can’t do it, then too bad. I’m sure you’re a great grandfather, (and probably a great-grandfather too) and a wonderful person and a pillar of the community but you sure as hell aren’t making me feel any safer.

And you know what? That’s what security guards are for – to make things safer. They are the guardians of security – the place of business, the employees, the customers and visitors. This is a real actual job that requires a real actual skill set. My crazy obnoxious roommate from second year worked night security and, yes, she was crazy and obnoxious, but at least she’d be capable of a quick reaction to an emergency situation, even if that emergency situation is just stopping someone from getting in the elevator.

Hey, as long as I’m going down this road, I’m gonna make a pit-stop at How-do-they-decide-what-to-confiscate-ville. I’m talking about when you have to walk through the little scanner and put your shit through the x-ray machine, and then they single you out and thoroughly inspect your collection of wind chimes as if you’re planning on...shit, I don't even know what you could do with wind chimes... "Now turn this plane around, or I will fill the cabin with the sound of metal pieces hitting each other!" "Oh no! We'd better do as she says...she has miniature bejewlled dolphins on a string!!!"

Seriously, do they like, throw a bunch of shit into a bucket, and then the intern sticks his hand in and the first 20 things he pulls out are banned objects? Back when I was a tour guide, it really seemed like it. After September 11th, the staff who worked the scanners really cranked up their protection of our capitol building by neutralizing such threats as:

A )Elderly women with nail clippers
B) Girl Scouts with whistles
C) Elementary school kids with hand-held Canadian flags

I guess I wouldn’t be a very good security guard, because I fail to see how any of those pose a threat to the safety and/or decorum of Parliament. But a real security guard could tell you that a) DANGEROUS OBJECTS! b) LOUD NOISES! and c) SYMBOLS OF CANADA! are very, very bad things to have in Parliament (aside – if an old lady manages to kill you with NAIL CLIPPERS - survival of the fittest, that’s all I’m saying).

In all fairness, I guess you could make an argument for A) and B). But if you bring a whistle into Parliament for the sole purpose of making a scene, then you probably aren’t above, say, yelling really loudly. And god knows if your nail clippers get taken away, then you might have to use your hands, and I’d rather be attacked with someone’s nail clippers than someone’s fists.

Same thing for planes: I can’t bring my knitting needles, but some black belt gets to bring her hands? If we’re serious about safety, than martial arts experts, covert operatives and vampire and/or demon slayers should be forced to declare themselves as lethal weapons and then wear some sort of Hannibal Lecter-type full-body cage. And it should be sparkly, for the amusement of other passengers. I mean, knitting needles? Yes, some are sharp and pointy. But others are basically two dull sticks; the only way I could kill someone with a pair of those would be if I tossed the needles to them and then strangled them while their hands were full. (Editor's Note -Okay, I just did I little fact-checking, and it turns out that kniiting needles are A-OK. So...sorry, airplane guys. And thanks for allowing my fellow passengers to be armed with whips!)

I’m not trying to say that we shouldn’t have security policies and people to uphold them. I’m not saying said policies and people aren’t important. They absolutely freakin’ are. And because they’re important, the policies should be reasonable and sound, and the people should be capable of enforcing them. But when you get dumb-ass policies thrown together without reflection, and dumb-asses incapable either a) critical thought or b) doing two push-ups without a break in between, then there’s really no freakin’ point is there?

Thursday, October 13, 2005


Hey y'all...

Not much of a post this week. I've been experiencing a weird version of a cold/flu wherein I get all the symptons on different days. I already had a cough/sore throat day, a headache day, a nausea day, and a fever day, and now I'm back to square one. Yes yes, I know, my life is so hard. Since there's no post this week, why don't you go check out the most recent Strongbad e-mail. That's what I'm going to do.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

October Rocks!

(Aside – that title reminds me of one of my favourite lines from one of my favourite episodes of my favourite show – the scene from the Band Candy episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where the kids show up at school and see that someone has spray-painted “Kiss Rocks!” on the lockers, and Willow asks “Why would anyone want to kiss rocks?”) (BWA HAHAHAHA!) (Haahaha) (heh) (cough)…anyway…on with our regularly scheduled programming).

This is my favorite month. Sorry, January – go cry to mommy. July? Take a hike. March? You suck. October has it all.

First, October is, generally, a pretty decent month, weather-wise. I’m a jeans and sweater-type gal, so growing up in BC, October generally had my back with the 10-20 degree weather. Here in Ontario – well, y’all know how I feel about fall in Ottawa.

Second, October is non-transition month. What I mean is that October doesn’t signify a big lifestyle change - September is back to school month; so is January to some extent; and then there’s either May (university) or July (everyone else) that’s the WHEEE HOME FREE LET’S ALL HANG AROUND THE MALLS AND IRRITATE FLOYD WHEN SHE’S TRYING TO GET SOME QUICK SHOPPING DONE, LIKE OMIGOD THAT SHIRT TOTALLY MAKES YOU LOOK HOTT MAYBE BRETT BRETTERSON WILL FINALLY ASK YOU OUT, HE’S SO FUCKING COOL month.

But not October – no, October is straightforward and dependable. It’s not here to shake you up, but to help you settle into that new routine comfortably. September rearranges all the furniture – October’s there with a pillow and a martini to help you get used to it.

Of course, the main reason that October Rocks is…well, it’s actually two reasons: Thanksgiving and Hallowe’en. These are and have always been my two favourite holidays/festive events because: dude. First you stuff yourself on home-cooked goodness, and then you stuff yourself on artificially manufactured goodness.

Thanksgiving is probably the last of the non-commercialized holidays – partly because a decapitated fowl makes a lousing marketing mascot (“Hi kids! Henry the Headless turkey here! Make sure your parents buy you my special brand of cranberry sauce! It’s almost as delicious as my roasted flesh!”), and partly because there’s no gift giving involved, unless, of course, you count basic human kindness and generosity, which I do, but most major retailers don’t, because it’s hard to put in a box with a garish ribbon and a cartoony mascot and sell it for $19.99 plus applicable taxes.

And then there’s Hallowe’en, which, much like Christmas, is the bastardized version of an ancient Celtic seasonal celebration, but with more zombies (insert inappropriate “Jesus rising from his tomb” joke here) (insert apology here). Both holidays are commercialized beyond belief, with Christmas being slightly more so because they are actually trying to sell you human kindness and generosity in a box with a garish ribbon and a cartoony mascot, only they charge twice as much and won’t let you return it on Boxing Day.

But Hallowe’en – all they are trying to sell you is candy (And various novelty decorations. And those Playboy bunny outfits that you only wear if you are a) looking for tail, or b) saving it for marriage). Not love, not compassion, not the key to a happier, more harmonious world. Just candy covered in chocolate coated in sugar rolled in sprinkled sealed with spoooookiness.

So, needless to say, I am very much looking forward to this month. The sun is shining, the leaves are brilliant, the feasting and gorging still lie ahead – and so does winter, but thanks to the warm feeling in my heart and the extra 10 pounds, who even notices?