July 2005 Archives

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My MP3s Updated

CDI've added 87 new CDs to my MP3 collection. Here they are, divided into three convenient categories.

New stuff...

  • Hot Hot Heat - Elevator
  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Fever To Tell
  • System Of A Down - Steal This Album!
  • The Von Bondies - Pawn Shoppe Heart
  • Johnny Cash - American IV: The Man Comes Around
  • 2pac - Until the End of Time (Discs 1 & 2)
  • 2pac - Resurrection
  • 2pac - The Rose That Grew From Concrete - Volume 1
  • 2pac - All Eyez On Me (Discs 1 & 2)
  • 2pac - Nu-Mixx Klazzics
  • 2pac - R U Still Down? [Remember Me] (Discs 1 & 2)
  • 2pac - Live
  • 2pac - Loyal To The Game
  • 2pac - Better Dayz
  • 2pac - Greatest Hits (Discs 1 & 2)
  • Makaveli - 7 Day Theory
  • Outkast - The Love Below
  • Outkast - Speakerboxxx
  • Outkast - Stankonia
  • Snoop Doggy Dogg - Doggystyle
  • De La Soul - Timeless: The Singles Collection
  • Moby - 18
  • Alice in Chains - Greatest Hits
  • The Chemical Brothers - Singles '93 - '03
  • The 2 Live Crew - Greatest Hits
  • Run DMC - Ultimate Run DMC
  • Faith No More - This Is It: The Best Of Faith No More
  • Everclear - Ten Years Gone: The Best of Everclear 1994-2004
  • Sugar Ray - The Best of Sugar Ray
  • N.W.A. - Greatest Hits
  • Creed - Greatest Hits
  • Arrested Development - 3 Years, 5 Months and 2 Days in the Life Of
  • Bjork - Greatest Hits
  • Motley Crue - Red, White & Crue (Discs 1 & 2)
  • The Pogues - The Very Best Of The Pogues
  • Ray Charles - The Definitive Ray Charles (Discs 1 & 2)
  • Santana - The Essential Santana (Discs 1 & 2)
  • James - The Best Of James
  • Kanye West - The College Dropout
  • Wu-Tang Clan - Wu-Tang Clan's Greatest Hits
  • Stars - Heart
  • Eric B. & Rakim - The Best of Eric B. & Rakim
  • Gordon Lightfoot - Complete Greatest Hits
  • Linkin Park - Reanimation
  • Frank Sinatra - The Best Of Frank Sinatra (Discs 1 & 2)
  • NaS - It Was Written
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers - What Hits!?
  • AC-DC - Who Made Who
  • Beastie Boys - The Sounds of Science (Discs 1 & 2)
  • Neil Diamond - The Essential Neil Diamond (Discs 1 & 2)

Taryn's stuff...

  • ABBA - Gold - Greatest Hits
  • Sarah Slean - Night Bugs
  • Loretta Lynn - Van Lear Rose
  • John Prine - Prime Prine - The Best of John Prine
  • Nelly Furtado - Folklore
  • Nelly Furtado - Whoa, Nelly!
  • The Rolling Stones - Steel Wheels
  • The Rolling Stones - Tattoo You
  • The Rolling Stones - Stripped
  • The Rolling Stones - Goats Head Soup
  • Beyonce - Dangerously In Love
  • Counting Crows - Recovering The Satellites
  • The Eagles - Their Greatest Hits (1971-1975)
  • Lost Dakotas - Last Train to Kipling
  • The Waterboys - Fisherman's Blues
  • The Wallflowers - Bringing Down The Horse
  • World Party - Egyptology

Stuff I could have ripped a long time ago but didn't because I was ashamed...

  • Various Artists - Dance Mix 92
  • Various Artists - Chris Sheppard Presents The Techno Trip
  • M.C. Hammer - Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em
  • Vanilla Ice - To The Extreme
  • Various Artists - St. Elmo's Fire Soundtrack
  • Bell Biv Devoe - Poison
  • Bobby Brown - Don't Be Cruel
  • C + C Music Factory - Gonna Make You Sweat
  • Apache Indian - No Reservations

That's 879 complete albums, 12,840 songs and 824 hours, 41 minutes and 23 seconds of tunage. Check it out.

If you want to peak behind the curtain and see how I do it, read this detailed account as to how you can rip your CD collection to MP3 like me.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following entry earlier today.

Hey Mike, I am happy to know that the NHL is back. Sidney CRosby is going to be for NHL what Tiger Woods is to Golf. Can't wait for the season to start. Oh and I would add the song "Hip To Be Square" among the fav songs of Heuy Lewis & The News. Cheers!

      Roshan

Of course, "Hip to be Square" was considered when I assembled my five favourite Huey Lewis & the News songs, but it didn't quite make the cut. It's definitely a top ten though.

As for the NHL, I'm damn happy it's back. We have exactly 66 days, 7 hours, 48 minutes, and 1 second remaining until the season begins, according to The Official torontomike.com Maple Leaf Countdown Clock.

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Leafs Trade For O'Neill

Happy BirthdayAt yesterday's NHL draft, our Toronto Maple Leafs acquired Jeff O'Neill from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for a conditional draft pick and quickly signed him to a two-year, $3 million deal. The former 41 goal scoring O'Neill is my kind of player and he's a very welcome addition to the blue and white.

Speaking of yesterday's draft, the Leafs took Finnish goaltender Tuukka Rask with the 21st overall pick. The Leafs have not drafted and developed a front-line goalie since Felix Potvin in 1990. Here's hoping Rask changes that.

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Happy Birthday Mom!

Happy BirthdayI guess this is how it's going to be from now on. Poor Grandma's birthday overshadowed by the birthdays of two of her grandchildren just two days earlier. This weekend will now always be jam packed with birthday parties in this family.

Today, it's my beloved mother's turn to celebrate a birthday. Happy 39th birthday Mom!

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My Quote of the Week

Opening Quotes"The life given us by nature is short, but the memory of a life well spent is eternal."
      - Cicero

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted four new pictures in Pictures. A few from Wasaga Beach and one from Zander's first birthday party.

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

A picture of Homer Jay Simpson"Now what is a wedding? Well, Webster's dictionary describes a wedding as the process of removing weeds from one's garden."

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveWorld events that affected me

  1. 9/11
  2. Kurt Cobain's suicide
  3. Challenger space shuttle disaster
  4. Columbine shootings
  5. 2004 tsunami

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following entry earlier today.

Happy Birthday to Zander and Michelle!!!

Michelle is awesome. Zander is amazing. I too cannot believe what took place one year ago today. Two beautiful children were brought in to this world mere hours apart. I'ts actually more baffling than the thought of two phenomenal talents like Cobain and Grohl meeting at such a young age and forming a band. One word comes to mind: Fate!

I love you Zander. I'm sure mike will have some way to store all these guest blogs so you can read them in about 5 years.

      Ryan

The files that comprise this web site have been backed up six ways to Sunday, so they'll absolutely be available to Zander and Michelle when they're old enough to appreciate all the nice things we're saying about them. Michelle, Daddy loves you very, very much. Zander, Uncle Mike wanted you to be a Xander but lost that battle. Still, I'm sure we'll attend plenty of Jays games together and play many a game of catch in open fields throughout Toronto. There's only one first birthday, I hope you're both enjoying the day.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following earlier today.

Has anybody else noticed how hardcore they are pimping this new movie STEALTH? The very first time I say the preview I remember thinking this movie is going to blow. I'm guessing the studios got the same sentiment and felt they could off balance the suck-ness of this movie by trying to hype it up. At one point last week I almost wavered and thought this movie might be alright, but just as quickly I realized that this IS what they want me to think. I'm bet studios think they have a new bankable/respected black actor in Jamie Fox and they don't want his latest showing to be a bomb. So as long as they pull in a good opening weekend nobody will remember that STEALTH SUCKS. I think Jessica Biel is in the same boat, she'll be a future star, so again they don't want poor light cast on her. I will predict STEALTH takes largest box office revenues on its opening week. Can someone tell me why they would go see this movie???

I think the advisements have been over played and people are starting to get turned off by this. Look for ads to be scaled back. Piss in the mainstream.!

      Brent Carter

I'm guessing Jamie Foxx signed on to do that piece of crap before his recent successes and now he's damn ashamed. Meanwhile, the film company realizes they have the winner of the best actor award at the Academy Awards in this thing so they're going to promote the hell out of it trying to steal a huge opening weekend before the word gets out that it's horrible.

Who are these people who see movies without reading a single review?

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Happy Birthday Zander!

Happy BirthdayIt still blows my mind that my only nephew arrived on the same day as my only daughter. If Michelle is turning one today, that means Zander turns one today.

I remember visiting Zander that day and writing this about his arrival in which I said "This is completely bizzarre and in defiance of all odds. Forever and ever, these cousins will celebrate their respective birthdays in unison. They'll both turn 1 on the same day, 16 on the same day, and 50 on the same day. It's quite the bond for Michelle and Zander. I'm a proud father and uncle today and completely and utterly exhausted."

I attended Zander's birthday party yesterday and created this Flickr photo set. Happy 1st Birthday Zander!

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Happy Birthday Michelle!

Happy BirthdayMy little girl turns one today.

I remember vividly how that night unfolded and welcoming my Michelle into the world. It was an amazing day, followed by an amazing year. Now she's walking, picking up new words and hungry for hugs and kisses.

Here she is earlier this week at Wasaga Beach. Happy 1st Birthday Baby!

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A Renouncement of Violence

ShamrockThe Irish Republican Army announced earlier today it is renouncing violence as a political weapon and resuming disarmament in a dramatic declaration designed to revive Northern Ireland's peace process.

Here's to a long deserved peace in the mother land. The mills of God grind slowly but they grind finely.

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Courage, It Couldn't Come At A Worse Time

MusicLast night, after putting in a full day at the office, I drove to Wasaga Beach and back. I brought along a bunch of new CDs for the trip, including Creed's Greatest Hits. Brace yourself, for this is a most courageous entry.

If you like good music, music with soul and integrity, music that's organic and cool, you don't like Creed. I'm not supposed to like Creed. When Creed broke up last June, I celebrated the demise of this fairly good Pearl Jam cover band, but I alluded to a positive experience I had with the band.

A few years ago, Creed headlined an Edgefest event at Molson Park in Barrie. I was there, even though I knew it was quite uncool and unhip of me to attend a Creed concert. Under a clear, star filled sky, Creed played a solid, energetic set, rocking through their hits. For that hour or so, I had a blast. I was singing along to the radio cuts, impressed by the tightness of the band and the quality of the set.

Yesterday, driving South to Toronto, Taryn put on Creed's Greatest Hits and I made a smart aleck remark or two about the crappiness of the selection. There was "My Own Prison", "What's This Life For", "One", "Higher", "With Arms Wide Open" and more. Before you knew it I was singing along at the top of my lungs, once again well aware of how pathetic that is. Here is why this entry is my most courageous yet. I'm afraid I may be a closet Creed fan. How else can you explain the enjoyment I experienced seeing them live and singing aloud to their greatest hits?

We'll call this the guiltiest of pleasures. I feel just awful about it, but I'm glad I got it off my chest.

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FBOFW Theories

EmailI've received a few emails regarding this comic strip and my plea for help. There seems to be two trains of thought on this one.

The first theory is that John is upset because April mentioned she had the best fishing day when he felt it was more of a father/daughter day. As happy as April was when she stated "Know what, dad? That was the best fishing day I ever had in my whole life!", John found a fault in her statement, displeased that she celebrated the fish more than her love for him. This is probably what Lynn Johnston was going for, but it seems awfully harsh of John and rather out of character. April is young and is happily remarking on the great day she had. This should make John smile, not scowl!

Another theory is that John is selfishly upset that he didn't catch any fish and April caught many. There's no way the John I know would be upset at this fact. As you'll see in the strip, complete with my annotations, John was extremely happy in every previous frame, helping with the net and taking pictures. What father wouldn't be happy watching their child succeed in this manner? Again, John should be happy.

I'm still interested in hearing your theories as to what this strip is about. I still don't quite get it.

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I Don't Get It

HumourI've been reading Lynn Johnston's "For Better Or For Worse" for as long as I can remember. It's the only comic strip I read daily. After reading thousands and thousands of FBOFW strips, this weekend was the first time I can honestly say that I didn't get it.

Here's the strip. Am I missing something? I don't understand why John is upset that April had a great day with him. He seemed to be enjoying himself in the boat. Will someone please explain this one to me...

I Don't Get It!

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following earlier today.

Re: Disgusting Telus Practice

If you feel that Telus is acting in a "disgusting practice," then I'm sure you feel the same about the union and its members. Telus has blocked access to the "union site" which you feel is "just so damn wrong," "clearly censorship," "unethical," and "more than a little concerning." Having read the article, I'm sure you'll agree that the union members cutting phone line service (funny enough, resulting in downed internet service) to residents and businesses is also "a little concerning." After all, I don't think you'd be pleased with your phone service cut, not to mention the loss of emergency access. I think you would also agree that posting pictures of people (or "scabs" according to the union) who chose to go to work is also "unethical" of the web site. Which by the way, I don't understand how workers were allowed to cross the line if they were "locked out" by Telus. I think you'll agree that the union has misinformed them and are really just on strike. A strike no member voted on. But I think we can both agree that what Telus has done and what the union has done were both "disgusting practices."

      PK

Section 36 of the Telecommunications Act: "except where the Commission approves otherwise, a Canadian carrier shall not control the content or influence the meaning or purpose of telecommunications carried by it for the public."

I'm sorry to hear Telus has a rather nasty labour situation on its hands, but that doesn't come close to justifying this action. In the service Telus is providing, they have absolutely no right to arbitrarily decide to make certain legal content inaccessible to their customers. Further to that, I cringe at the mere suggestion that shady practices by union members somehow permits the second largest telecommunications company in Canada to block a million users from these sites. Illegal censorship to promote a multi-million dollar corporate empire's agenda is totally unacceptable no matter how many ways you slice it.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following earlier today.

My submission from July 21/05 should have included my #5 as the Columbine High shootings from Apr. 20/99 - a scene we as a family would never forget. Nothing is sacred - schools, churches - What is next?

      Dale

That earlier submission is here. And they blamed it on Marilyn!

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumGeorge Wallace was 88. He was an actor whose career spanned 50 years and was best known as Commando Cody in the film serial "Radar Men from the Moon."

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A Year Ago Today

RewindOne year ago today, I wrote this baby update. At the time, all signs were suggesting that Michelle was itching to arrive. I was totally psyched and ready for action.

As it turns out, one night later we were on our way to the hospital and Michelle arrived a year ago this Friday. My girl is turning one.

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The Recurring Nightmare (Part 3 of 3)

SpookyIn The Recurring Nightmare (Part 1 of 3), I revisited a nightmare I began having after the space shuttle Challenger exploded almost twenty years ago. In The Recurring Nightmare (Part 2 of 3), I wrote about the bear nightmares I'd have as a very young lad. Today, I'll revisit a recurring nightmare I started having later in life and had as recently as a few years ago.

I too suffer from the popular "I have an exam I completely forgot about and I'm in big trouble" dream. I began having this dream during my University of Toronto days, but it has occasionally popped up throughout the seven years since. In this dream, I remember that I'm enrolled in university classes that I never attend. I haven't submitted any essays and now there is a final exam that I'm completely ill prepared for. It's too late to drop the class and it appears I will fail. In this nightmare, I try to understand how it is I've enrolled in classes I totally forgot about. You see, it's not that I decided to skip these classes intentionally, it's that it completely slipped my mind somehow.

These damn dreams show up now and then and they seem so real I'm always delighted when I awake and realize it didn't really happen. I've read that these types of dreams are common, but I'm not sure what brings them on. Although I haven't had one in a while, I remember having the dream at least once in the past three years.

That does it for recurring dreams I've had throughout my life that I remember. My mom tells me a story about a series of dreams I had as a toddler where I'd awake in the middle of the night screaming that there were bugs all over me, but I thankfully have no memory of this. Bugs are gross.

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Weekly MP3

MP3I share an MP3 from my collection every Wednesday. You have seven days to grab this week's MP3. Please right-click your mouse and select "Save Link As..." or "Save target as..." so you can download it to your PC before playing.

Foo Fighters - Walking After You
"Walking After You" is a cut from the Foo Fighters' awesome "The Colour And The Shape" and it's fine and all, but they slowed it down a little for the soundtrack to The X-Files movie and that's my preferred version. That's also the version I'm sharing today. Enjoy.

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Raging Storm 24, Sharks 6

BaseballWhen I lead off the game with a homer, it's always a good omen. I did just that last night and we managed to score 15 runs in the first inning in a game that was called after four on a account of the mercy rule. Me like winning.

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The Countdown Begins

LeafsThe Leafs will host the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, October 5, the opening night of the 2005-06 season.

In anticipation of this event, I'm bringing back my Maple Leaf Countdown Clock. Visit that link for real-time updates as to how much longer we'll have to wait for regular season Maple Leaf action. There are now 71 days, 10 hours, 49 minutes, and 40 seconds remaining until the puck drops.

Go Leafs Go!

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The Recurring Nightmare (Part 2 of 3)

SpookyIn The Recurring Nightmare (Part 1 of 3), I revisited a nightmare I began having after the space shuttle Challenger exploded almost twenty years ago. Today, I'll revisit a recurring nightmare I had even earlier in my life.

Although it's difficult to pinpoint, my fear of bears probably started in the very late 70s. I don't even know what triggered this fear, but I remember vividly the dreams it spawned. In one scene, I can see several large grizzly bears meandering along the street I grew up on. Keep in mind, this street wasn't in a rural locale, but in Toronto. I was dreadfully frightened that one of these bears would maul me, and in another dream, I remember a bear leaping through a window in our home and mauling my mother.

This fear seemed to last for years and years. I believe at some point I figured out the liklihood of bears walking the streets of Toronto were slim to none with slim on a Greyhound heading North, but there were camping trips, Cub Scout expeditions and trips to Grandma's house where bears were just waiting in the bushes to pounce.

My recurring bear nightmares have been gone for about two decades now, but as recently as three weeks ago, camping at Killarney Provincial Park with James, at about 02:00 EST on a Sunday morning, I could have sworn I heard such a bear slowly meandering through our campsite. This time, there wasn't an ounce of fear in my veins, just satisfaction that I had slayed this beast many moons ago.

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted four new pictures in Pictures. A couple are from this weekend's party for Steve and a couple are from last weekend.

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The Monday Shuffle

The Quintessential PlayerEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in the Quintessential Player and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today.

  1. The Tragically Hip - Scared
  2. Pet Shop Boys - DJ Culture
  3. Ben Folds Five - Steven's Last Night In Town
  4. Bruce Springsteen - My Hometown
  5. Keane - Untitled 1
  6. The Kleptones - See
  7. A Perfect Circle - Peace Love and Understanding
  8. Smashing Pumpkins - Siva
  9. The Living End - Read About It
  10. Papa Roach - Time and Time Again

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumEdward Bunker was 71. He was the crime novelist who learned to write in prison and appeared in the movie "Reservoir Dogs" as Mr. Blue.

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Whose iPod? Not Mine!

RadioI just read yet another article about the current Jack/Bob/Mike radio format explosion in North America. I've written about Jack before, a format that claims to "play what we want". In most of these articles, there's always some Jack FM PR guy who says it's just like listening to your iPod on shuffle.

Ok, whose iPod are we talking about here? It's certainly not my iPod (or iRiver as the case may be). Most of those tunes aren't on my iPod, in fact, they seem to be missing about 99% of the tunes I do have on my iPod. And besides, if someone wanted to listen to their iPod on shuffle, they could do just that, right?

In reality, this is a carefully selected mix of safe songs that are systematically aired in a seemingly random sequence that's anything but. It's not your iPod or my iPod, unless your iPod is full of Elton John hits, sappy Phil Collins tunes and a few "best of the 80s" compilations. Sure, once in a while they really go crazy by throwing an AC~DC tune or (gasp!) Bob Marley song in the mix, but it's still well orchestrated and not your iPod on shuffle.

That is all. I'm going back to my iRiver...on random.

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Disgusting Telus Practice

PhoneI'm not a Telus customer, and with practices like this I will never be a Telus customer.

Telus has blocked its internet subscribers from accessing a website supporting striking union members. Telus subscribers can't get into Voices for Change, which says it's "a community website run by and for Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) members."

This is just so damn wrong. Telus, an internet service provider, is blocking access to a website because union members are presenting their company is a less than flattering light. It's clearly censorship and has to be illegal, right? I sure hope so. Either way, it's unethical and more than a little concerning.

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My Link of the Day

Mike's Link of the DayFamily Guy's "Take On Me" - On Saturday, the extended family got together to celebrate Steve's birthday over some steaming hot pizza. It didn't take long before the conversation turned to the most recent episode of "Family Guy". There was a scene early in last Sunday's episode in which Chris entered the video for A-Ha's "Take On Me". As a product of the 80s, I loved this scene and raved about it. This link is to the video in question.

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The Barbarian Invasions

A Movie ReelThe Barbarian Invasions: 8.5 out of 10.

"The Barbarian Invasions", or "Les Invasions Barbares" if you prefer, not only cleaned up at the Genie Awards last year, but it won Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars. I'm not surprised as it's exceptional, telling a thought provoking emotional story supported by tremendous acting. This kind of emotion leaps over the language barrier before it.

Canadian cinema needs more of this. Not since "The Sweet Hereafter" have I seen a Canadian film this powerful. See it.

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My Quote of the Week

Opening Quotes"I long to accomplish a great and noble tasks, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker."
      - Helen Keller

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Happy Birthday Steve!

Happy BirthdayI want to wish my brother Stephen a very happy birthday today.

When I turned 27, my first thoughts were that I had reached the age of premature rock genius overdose suicide. Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin and Kurt Cobain had all died at the age of 27, having been afflicted with an unfortunate thirst. Just being 27 freaked me out for that very reason.

Now, my youngest brother has reached that age. Thankfully, he's not a musical genius. Not even close. Enjoy the day, bro!

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

A picture of Homer Jay Simpson"I'm not gonna lie to you, Marge. See ya soon!"

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The Friday Five

The Number FivePlayers with the best scoring seasons in Maple Leaf history

  1. Rick Vaive - 54
  2. Dave Andreychuk - 53
  3. Gary Leeman - 51
  4. Frank Mahovlich - 48
  5. Lanny McDonald - 47

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission moments ago.

Well Crosby is not going to be a Leaf. However, with Lemieux as his mentor Crosby will do well in Pittsburgh. Just watch 40 year old Lemieux light up the score board. I predict a 1-2 finish in the scoring race for this duel playing on the same line. You heard it here first.

Looking forward to the season!

      Tim Legere

When you have a 2.08% chance of winning, you don't get your hopes up. I'm just glad he ended up in Pittsburgh and not some place I hate like Montreal, Ottawa or Philadelphia.

It's going to be a great year, and Lemieux and Crosby together will be fun. As for them finishing 1-2 in the scoring race, I'd give that a 2.08% chance of happening.

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Draft Lottery Results

NHLI was actually really nervous watching the lottery results. They're still at it, but my beloved Leafs just learned they'll pick #21. So much for Sidney Crosby in blue and white. Damn.

Edmonton and Calgary are already gone, so it's not looking good in terms of keeping Crosby in Canada. With my luck, the Canadiens will land him. I'll update this entry after they get to #1.

Update: The Pittsburgh Penguins will draft Sidney Crosby.

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Draft Lottery Streaming

NHLNHL.com will be streaming the results of the draft lottery order selection for the 2005 NHL Entry Draft live at 16:00 EST. For those of us stuck in front of a computer, this is a very good thing.

2.08%... 2.08%...2.08%...2.08%...2.08%...2.08%...2.08%... Cross your fingers.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumLong John Baldry was 64. He was the Vancouver-based blues legend credited as one of the main forces in British blues, rock and pop music in the 1960s and first hit the top of the U.K. singles charts in 1967 with "Let the Heartaches Begin."

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Michelle Walks!

BabyMichelle had been standing on her own for a while and taking a step here and there, but yesterday she decided she had had enough. She started to truly walk.

It's funny, because you always knew eventually she would start walking, but I was still mesmerized when I saw her stand up and take nine or so steps across the room. It was as if I was witnessing a miracle, something never before accomplished in the history of humankind.

The fact is, this was something never before accomplished in the history of Michelle, and that explains the fascination. July 21, 2005: The day Michelle got up and decided to take a stroll.

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My Link of the Day

Mike's Link of the DayMandatory Mash-Ups - I'm telling you, I'm digging this mash up fad. This is an exceptional link to a list of great mash ups in MP3 you can download. Hell, there's even 50 Cent meets Benny Hill! Also, while we're on the subject, check out "Sgt Peppers Paradise"...it's GNR meets The Beatles and it's awesome.

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A Question of Naming Convention

Question MarkI simply can't make up my mind. I proudly maintain this alphabetical list of albums in my MP3 collection, but a friend has advised me that my naming convention is all wrong. There are two issues that I'm on the fence about, and I need your help.

The first issue involves bands like "The Flaming Lips". I currently file them under "T" for "The". Apparently, I should be listing them as "Flaming Lips, The" and filing them under "F" for "Flaming". At this moment, there are 39 such "The" bands in my collection. Do I alphabetize them as "The Flaming Lips" or "Flaming Lips, The"?

The other issue involves solo artists like "Neil Young". I currently file him under "N" for "Neil". Should I instead by listing him as "Young, Neil" and putting him in "Y"?

I've been dwelling on this all week and I can't make up my mind. Please advise.

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NHLPA Ratifies New CBA

NHLIt's official. The NHL is back and we survived to hear about it.

Tomorrow at 16:00 EST, we'll learn who won the Sidney Crosby lottery. There's a 2.08% I'll be as happy as a pig in shit shortly thereafter.

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Weekly MP3

MP3I share an MP3 from my collection every Wednesday (yes, I'm a day late). You have seven days to grab this week's MP3. Please right-click your mouse and select "Save Link As..." or "Save target as..." so you can download it to your PC before playing.

Jive Bunny - Do You Wanna Rock
Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers mashed up oldies well before mash ups were all the rage. Their album is a guilty pleasure for me, and here's a sample.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission late last night.

I may seem like a pessimist with the following list - but my glass half empty & not half full. Here are the top 15 tragedies that have affected my life since 1960 when I was able to comprehend what LIFE was about.

  1. My father's passing - 06/26/91 & My mother's passing 02/18/05 - NUFF said. My kids never had grandparents on my side of the family & my wife's father passed away in 1990 at the age of 51 -1 1/2 years before they were born. Personal tragedy's with our family.
  2. 9/11 - Sept.11/01 - The WORLD changed forever. Our perception of LIVING changed that day & I will never ever forget seeing both towers collapse & the emotion WE all felt. 2A - London - 07-13/05 - Subway & Bus bombings. More to come.
  3. JFK assination - 11/22/63 - in grade 3 when the Principal tearfully told all over the PA system that the President is dead. 4 days of mourning & on live TV seeing Lee Harvey Oswald being shot by Jack Ruby - still invisioned in my mind to this day.
  4. Oklahoma City Bombing - 04/19/95 - McMurrich Federal Bldg. bombed - one of the 1st major catastrophies CNN showed live minute by minute on TV.
  5. RFK assination - 06/05/68 - on national TV shot dead with former football player Rosie Greir holding Sirhan Sirhan down with a gun in his hand.
  6. Jamestown, Guyana - 11/18/78 - Jimmy Jones with his cult following drinking kool aid laced with poison & he shoots himself as an easy escape after murdering numerous on an airfield including a congressman trying to free the worshipers.
  7. Tsunami - 12/26/04 - Indian Ocean - STILL counting the victims. A Natural disaster with economic proportions & thousands of lives lost.
  8. Martin Luther King assination - 04/04/68 just before RFK was shot - DION sang it best with Abraham, Martin & John.
  9. Potomic River plane crash - Flight 90 - 01/13/82 - Live on TV watching survivors flaying away in icy cold water trying to survive with 2 people passing a cage from a hovering helicoptor to the next person in the water - these 2 people would perish after being too long in the cold water - a seen I will never forget.
  10. John Lennon assination - 12/08/80 - I purchased Double Fantasy earlier that SAME day & have the sales receipt to this day. How ironic. It was then I realized the Beatles would never get together again after all the hoopla earlier about how much it would take to get them back together. No such luck. The best band ever.
  11. Challenger disaster - 01/28/86 - 7 killed including a civilian teacher. When you talk about this, the conversation is about the teacher who perished & we all can relate to this (kids & parents).
  12. Charles Manson - 08/69 - He has fessed up to 39 killed with the most notable as the Tate/LaBianca murders.
  13. World Trade Centre - first bombing - elevators - 02/26/93 - the first sign of terrorism at WTC & Osama is initially behind the bombing - things to come.
  14. A Tie - Pres. Ronald Reagan & Pope John Paul assination attempts - Two of the most influential people in the world & luckily they survived to live long lives after their ordeals.
  15. SARS - 2003 - Because of our health care system we were not able to control this epidemic until it was too late due to lack of funding, etc. by our Gov't - Needless lives lost.

      Dale

Having revisited the Challenger disaster in The Recurring Nightmare (Part 1 of 3), I've been thinking about such things as well. In fact, I'll post my top ten soon, which will include your #2, #4, #7, #11 and maybe your #15.

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Daylight Saving Solution

ClockThere's great debate today over the time. It looks as if our giant neighbour to the South will be extending Daylight Saving Time and many Canadians feel we have to follow suit or suffer mass confusion. This is the perfect time to revisit my Daylight Saving Solution which I first proposed on this very page back in October 2003.

I proposed we make Daylight Saving Time the new Standard Time and keep it there. To quote myself:

We've essentially taken an hour of sunlight we'd experience in the evening and moved it to the morning. Wouldn't it be more beneficial for our society to keep that hour of sunlight in the evening where it can be enjoyed? Does anyone really care if there's light at 7am?

We first introduced Daylight Saving Time during wartime as an effort to conserve fuel needed to produce electric power. It's time we stay there. The average citizen is no longer a farmer who follows the sun's lead in determining an appropriate hour to wake up and go to sleep. Typically, we're working from 9 to 5, Monday through Friday, and Standard Time is no longer our best option. I suggest that when we return to Daylight Saving Time in April 2004, we stay there. Just say no on October 26, 2004. Help me spread the word.

We now have the opportunity I've been hoping for. Lets let the USA tinker with this old formula while we boldly go all the way and lose the time change completely. Time has passed the concept by...

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John Cazale Email

EmailThe man behind JohnCazale.com dropped me a note today regarding this entry from December 29, 2002. In the entry I praise Cazale for going five for five in what is definitely pound for pound the best career of any actor, ever.

I also mentioned that Cazale succumbed to brain cancer. In fact, as Pascal pointed out to me, it was bone cancer which took Cazale at the young age of 41. Over 2.5 years later, I stand corrected.

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Scotty's Wartime Exploits

InfoAdmittedly, I've never understood the allure of Star Trek. I've never seen a single episode of the original series or the spin-offs and I've only caught one or two of the flicks. I just don't dig it.

Earlier today, we learned that James Doohan passed away. Despite my disinterest in everything Star Trek, I knew who Scotty was and appreciated the fact he, like Captain Kirk, was Canadian. Plucked straight from his BBC obituary, here are some very interesting facts about Doohan that you may not have known.

As a captain in the Royal Canadian Artillery Regiment, he lost a finger on the first morning of the D-Day landings in Normandy.

He then saw a tank, which was carrying his substantial winnings from a cross-Channel card school, blown to pieces before his eyes.

Besides this, his aerobatic exploits, which included nearly crashing his aircraft in Holland while taking "a look" at a German U-boat, earned him the title of "the craziest pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force".

The craziest pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force will be missed.

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Mike Kic Reports from Poland

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to TorontoMike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Just wanted to let you know how things in Poland are going. The tour itself was amazing we visited the richest churches, and the homes of many kings. The tour was especially informative when we went to the former concentration camp in Auschwitz, that was the hardest day but I'm glad I saw it with my own eyes. We spent the last few days on a farm visiting family friends and boy, do we ever have it good in Toronto. Right now I'm in Krakow which use to be the former capital of Poland. We're leaving for Warsaw on Friday and it's back to Toronto on Saturday night...can't wait to play baseball again. Go Storm Go!

      Mike Kic

The tour of Auschwitz must have been intense. We must remember, that it may never happen again.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumJames Doohan was 85. He was the Canadian-born burly chief engineer of the Starship Enterprise in the original "Star Trek" TV series and movies who responded to the command "Beam me up, Scotty."

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Reviewing The Potential Changes

NHLWe're in store for some pretty serious changes to NHL hockey this season. The competition committee will recommended rule changes for the NHL board of governors to approve. Bob McKenzie speculates in his latest column as to what these changes will be, so I'll list them and share my thoughts on each one.

Shootouts - After five minutes of four on four, all regular season games will be decided by a shootout. As far as I'm concerned, this is a good move. It will certainly add some excitement and it will be nice to do away with the boring ties. Of course, I only support shootouts as an interesting way to resolve regular season games. When the playoffs arrive, they play five on five until someone scores. No exceptions.

Obstruction Crackdown - This isn't really a change, just another promise to actually enforce the existing rules. I'm all for it.

Red Line Removal - The red line would be removed for the purpose of two line passes. Back in the day, I felt the two line pass kept players honest and prevented Bure-like goal sucking. Today, I'm in favour of this change. Those long bombs up the middle can be pretty damn exciting and back and forth action will be our reward.

Goalie Equipment Reduction - It's about freakin' time. When Patrick Roy retired, they showed a lot of footage from his rookie year. He was about half the size as he was when he retired. Goalie equipment with those huge net-like sweaters has been too big for too long. I applaud this move.

Although I'm somewhat of a traditionalist when it comes to sports, I understand the need to tweak our game to increase the excitement factor. I don't regard any of these changes as too radical. I just want to get back to playing.

Go Leafs Go!

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Birham Woldu

NewspaperI've been getting a number of visitors lately from those how have search birham woldu via Google. It seems I rank a healthy 8th for some reason. I'm not complaining, I'm just surprised.

Birham Woldu is an Ethiopian woman who as a malnourished toddler appeared in some of the most wrenching footage of the 1984-85 famine. I saw her during the Live 8 coverage as she was introduced to the crowd in London prior to Madonna's performance and it really brought home what it was all about. She was given ten minutes to live and today she's a beautiful, educated young woman.

Birham Woldu is a true symbol of hope.

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The Recurring Nightmare (Part 1 of 3)

SpookyI was in grade five when the space shuttle Challenger exploded during launch, killing the seven on board. We were outside playing in the playground at St. Pius X primary school during lunch break when a classmate who had been home for some reason ran up to our group to share the news. I remember Peter telling me that the space shuttle had crashed and I remember replying with a "no way!".

Being eleven years old, I was well old enough to follow this event. I remember seeing the photographs in the next day's Toronto Star and watching the coverage on television. I felt horrible for the seven on board, particularly Christa McAuliffe, the first teacher to fly in space. Her presence made it all the more devastating to me.

Over the next while, I remember periodically awakening in the middle of the night in a cold sweat. I was having the same nightmare over and over again and it was so traumatic I recall it as if I had it again last night. In this nightmare, I'm piloting a space shuttle. I'm 100% responsible for ensuring the safety of the flight and there are dozens and dozens of people on board. There's a moment in this dream when I realize we're going to crash, everyone will die and there's absolutely nothing I can do to prevent it. That powerless sensation haunted me. It's even difficult to write about, despite the fact I haven't had this dream in about 18 years.

My recurring space shuttle nightmare is just one of three recurring nightmares that I can recall having throughout my life. I'll explore the other two soon.

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It's Hot

SunToday is the ninth straight day Toronto's temperature has exceeded 33°C. As a result, officials have issued yet another extreme heat alert. Meanwhile, the Independent Electricity System Operator has warned us we'll be subject to rolling blackouts if we don't curb energy use. This extreme heat is causing record demands for electricity, and places operating limitations on both generation and transmission facilities.

I don't mind the heat, I'm still playing ball in it and doing what I usually do, but it seems to be draining my creativity. I'm usually good for 3-4 good ideas a week, but the last couple of weeks I've been completely dry. This heat is sapping my creative powers. Our collective brains are melting.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumGeraldine Fitzgerald was 91. She appeared in such classic 1930s films as Dark Victory and Wuthering Heights and later had a career on the New York stage.

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Raging Storm Swept

BaseballIt was one of those nights at the ballpark tonight. Nothing went our way and we lost a couple of tough ones. Both were close, in fact, we had the lead in game two going into the last inning only to cough it up. I don't want to talk about it.

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The Monday Shuffle

The Quintessential PlayerEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in the Quintessential Player and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today.

  1. 3rd Base - The Cactus
  2. Janis Joplin - Cry Baby
  3. Radiohead- Airbag
  4. Pearl Jam - Sleight Of Hand
  5. Powerman 5000 - The Son of X-51
  6. Limp Bizkit - Red Light-Green Light
  7. Gordon Lightfoot - Early Morning Rain
  8. Soundgarden - Somewhere
  9. Pearl Jam - MFC
  10. Incubus - Mexico

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

It's only July and already it is starting. Can we not forget obout hockey until after Labour Day. I am definatly not ready to hear all you leaf fans planning your parade.

Then crying after the play offs about some bad call or other excuse for not making it all the way!

      The Grinch

Dude, we just went a whole year without our damn religion. We were left without Hockey Night In Canada, without the Maple Leafs, without Stanley Cup playoff pools and the awarding of Lord Stanley's mug. If I want to plan a damn parade along Yonge street and get psyched about the upcoming season, I'm bloody well going to do it.

Go Leafs Go!

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Fun With Google

GoogleIf you go to Google Maps and search for "White Trash", Ottawa, it will point you to the Embassy of the United States of America.

If you go to Google Maps and search for "Mike Boon", Toronto, it will point you to Vesuvio Pizzeria & Spaghetti House. Best damn pizza in the city.

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Perchance To Dream

MoonIt's June 2006. Gary Bettman is there, it's the ACC, the crowd is ecstatic, I'm crying. Gary speaks into the microphone. "Mats...come to center and claim what the Leafs and its fans have been waiting 39 years for!"

I think it's going to happen. This is the year.

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Gimme A Head With Hair

BabyI just measured, and there's a solid 3 millimeters of hair on top of Michelle's head. Most of that arrived within the past few weeks. Michelle has hair!

Gimme a head with hair
Long beautiful hair
Shining, gleaming,
Streaming, flaxen, waxen

Give me down to there hair
Shoulder length or longer
Here baby, there mama
Everywhere daddy daddy

Hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair
Flow it, show it
Long as God can grow it
My Michelle's hair!

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Silver City

A Movie ReelSilver City: 6.5 out of 10.

John Sayles wrote and directed one of my favourite films of all time, "Lone Star". Unfortunately, "Silver City" is not "Lone Star", although it could have been close.

The idea is good, the message was smart, the timing was right and Chris Cooper had Dubya down pat, but it drags and gets lost in the plot. Parts of "Silver City" are very good, but parts seem to lag and make you wish this 128 minute flick was about a half hour shorter.

Close, but no cigar Johnny boy.

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My Quote of the Week

Opening Quotes"I don't want you as quiet as an ant pissing on cotton. I want you as quiet as an ant not even thinking about pissing on cotton."
      - Joe Moore, Heist

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Doing The Math

LeafsIt looks as if every NHL team will have to adhere to a hard salary cap of $39 million next season. Our beloved Toronto Maple Leafs currently have 8 players under contract for next season. They are Mats Sundin, Owen Nolan, Ed Belfour, Bryan McCabe, Tomas Kaberle, Ken Klee, Darcy Tucker and Matt Stajan.

Even if you rollback these eight salaries 24%, you arrive at a figure of $27,066,647. Those eight players account for over 69% of our cap next season. We have a whopping $12,000,000 for the remaining 17 players, which may or may not include the likes of Aki Berg, Tie Domi, Brian Leetch, Nik Antropov, Alexander Mogilny, Joe Nieuwendyk and Gary Roberts.

Something has to give, the numbers just won't add up. If nothing else, this will force the Leafs to do some much needed pruning. We're too damn old. As tough as it will be, I think it's time to buy out the likes of Belfour and Nolan and say goodbye to Leetch, Nieuwendyk and Roberts. This team desperately needs some youth, above and beyond the likes of Stajan and Colaiacovo.

Better yet, join me as I pray for Sidney Crosby. We have a 2.08% chance of winning the draft lottery and picking first over all. It might be our only hope.

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Hot Times

SunIt's been way hot for so long now, I don't remember what sub 30°C temperatures feel like. Temps will be hovering around that 30°C mark until Wednesday, when we might get a brief reprieve. For the record, this isn't me bitching about the heat, I'm just commenting on the humid summer we've had thus far. Ok, I'm bitching.

Hot times like these require hot tunes. Better yet, how about my ten favourite songs with the word "hot" in the title. Here ya go!

  1. Ministry - Jesus Built My Hotrod
  2. Billy Idol - Hot In The City
  3. Beck - Hotwax
  4. Sly And The Family Stone - Hot Fun In The Summertime
  5. Stone Temple Pilots - Heaven & Hot Rods
  6. Redhead Kingpin And The FBI - Pump It Hottie
  7. Everlast - Hot to Death
  8. Jimi Hendrix - Long Hot Summer Night
  9. Limp Bizkit - Hot Dog
  10. Robert Palmer - Some Like It Hot

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Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle

A Movie ReelHarold & Kumar Go to White Castle: 6 out of 10.

It really wasn't that bad. Harold and Kumar are not without their charm and there were lots of shots of Toronto thrown in for good measure. Taryn hated it and didn't even finish it, but it really wasn't that bad.

The Neil Patrick Harris angle is good stuff and there are some great cameos. Hell, do we really want every movie to be really, really smart? Sometimes you've got to sit back, take a virtual hit off the bong of life and watch Harold & Kumar do their thing. There's nothing wrong with that, is there?

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

A picture of Homer Jay Simpson"Our kids keep getting smarter. If we have another kid, he could invent a time machine to go back in time and prevent us from having kids."

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The Don Returns

TVThings are coming together nicely. First we learn that the NHL and NHL Players' Association have finally reached an agreement on a new six-year collective bargaining agreement and now we learn that Don Cherry will return to CBC's Hockey Night In Canada, once the agreement between the NHL and NHLPA has been ratified.

I can't wait for the first Saturday of the regular season when I sit down to watch Maple Leaf hockey and Ron and Don during the first intermission. Oh wait, before this moment passes...another excuse to break out the Don photo!

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite Huey Lewis & The News songs

  1. The Heart of Rock & Roll
  2. I Want A New Drug
  3. The Power Of Love
  4. If This Is It
  5. Doing It All For My Baby

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumChuck Cadman was 57. He was a member of Parliament from 1997 to 2005, representing the riding of Surrey North in Surrey, British Columbia.

I went away for a few days and somehow missed the news of his passing. Chuck Cadman played a key role in the recent Thrilla on Parliament Hilla and I even suggested we re-brand Victoria Day "Chuck Cadman Day" this year.

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Runaway Jury

A Movie ReelRunaway Jury: 7 out of 10.

You can't go wrong with Gene Hackman, right? Throw in a little John Cusack and Dustin Hoffman and a half decent script, and you're well on your way to a good flick.

I'm an anti-gun kind of guy, but I'm still deducting points from this movie for being unabashedly biased in its opinions about gun control and the firearm industry. My goodness it's over the top with its political agenda. Still, Hackman's always good and I enjoyed the movie, as preposterous as it was.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Who cares about the probable settlement of the NHL labour agreement - it's been TOO long & most haven't missed this damn sport at all. Finally the players will be getting contracts they should be & not the ridiculous offers they have been getting the last few years. It's too bad the big markets are going to suffer the most from the CAP & T.O. is unfortunately 1 of them. The last time I saw a hockey game was in April when the Battalion were in the playoffs & it's great to see youngsters playing their hearts out - not the overpaid players of the NHL. It's going to take a lot of time to get fans back to their seats & even on T.V. especially in the smaller markets. GO JAYS/ARGOS GO - The leaves (Leafs) will be falling soon as autumn is just around the corner. I do love hockey but us, as fans the last few years have been non existent with the sport lacking in entertainment in all respects.

Dream on - do I hear 40 years & counting?

      UNHOCKEY NUT

I know where you're coming from. I've decided not to give MLSE one red cent for a long while. That means I won't be buying a single seat at the ACC or purchasing a stitch of "official" memorabilia. I briefly considered a more radical form of protest, but I love the game and always have. Following the Leafs is a serious passion of mine and there are so many great moments and memories along the way. Anything more radical would just be hurting myself.

Blowing away a whole season was a terribly selfish move designed to hurt their reason for being: the fan. I agree with you, smaller markets have an uphill battle on their hands trying to lure back the fan to the television and arena. I, however, live in Toronto and root for the Leafs. You know the ACC will be jam packed every night and the media will continue their blue and white frenzy. Here, in the capital of the universe, it will be business as usual.

Go Leafs Go!

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New Ticket Stub

Ticket StubsI finally added a new stub to my collection of Ticket Stubs.

My ticket from the Blue Jays game on June 19th is now on display.

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"MP3" Turns Ten Today

MP3Today, the name "MP3" celebrates its tenth anniversary. According to this, on this day back in 1995, the researchers at Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS decided to use ".mp3" as the file name extension for their new audio coding technology. Soon MP3 became the generally accepted acronym for the ISO standard IS 11172-3 "MPEG Audio Layer 3".

Those three characters totally revolutionized the way I listen to music. Back in December 2003 I bought an 80 GB hard drive and began converting my CD collection to MP3. My only regret is I didn't do it sooner. Having my entire collection digitized has resulted in me hearing more music from more albums than ever before. When I'm on the PC, I'm playing these files. When I'm lounging in the living room or dining room, I'm listening to these files on the stereo. When I'm walking or chillaxing on my own, there's my personal MP3 player. My MP3 collection is always close at hand, providing me with the notes that comprise the soundtrack of my life.

Happy Birthday MP3!

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If You're Interested

FlickrAlthough I recently posted eight new pictures of our camping trip in Pictures, I'm actually sharing dozens of pictures in my Flickr account.

So, if you want to see dozens and dozens of shots of the beautiful landscape in Killarney, go here.

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My MP3s Updated

CDI've added 60 new CDs to my MP3 collection. Here they are...

  • K-OS - Joyful Rebellion
  • Metric - Old World Underground, Where Are You
  • Hot Hot Heat - Make Up The Breakdown
  • The White Stripes - The White Stripes
  • Nine Inch Nails - With Teeth
  • Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
  • Beck - Sea Change
  • Beck - Mutations
  • Beck - Midnite Vultures
  • Jay-Z - The Blueprint
  • Kasabian - Kasabian
  • The Mars Volta - De-Loused in the Comatorium
  • Goldfinger - The Best of Goldfinger
  • Gorillaz - Demon Days
  • A Perfect Circle - Thirteenth Step
  • A Perfect Circle - eMOTIVe
  • Headstones - Smile & Wave
  • Radiohead - Pablo Honey
  • David Gray - White Ladder
  • The Postal Service - Give Up
  • Cake - Pressure Chief
  • Cake - Prolonging The Magic
  • Cake - Comfort Eagle
  • Powerman 5000 - Tonight The Stars Revolt!
  • Larry The Cable Guy - Lord, I Apologize
  • Lit - Platinum & Gold Collection
  • Adam Sandler - Shhh...Don't Tell
  • Huey Lewis & The News - Time Flies... The Best Of Huey Lewis
  • Danny Elfman - Music For A Darkened Theatre
  • John Williams - John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969-1999 (Discs 1 and 2)
  • Whale - Hobo Humpin' Slobo Babe
  • Crash Test Dummies - God Shuffled His Feet
  • Blink 182 - Take Off Your Pants And Jacket
  • U2 - The Best Of and B-Sides of 1990-2000
  • U2 - The Best Of and B-Sides of 1980-1990
  • U2 - All That You Can't Leave Behind
  • U2 - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb
  • Rancid - ...And Out Come The Wolves
  • The Hives - Tyrannosaurus Hives
  • Travis - 12 Memories
  • Jack Johnson - On and On
  • Jack Johnson - Brushfire Fairytales
  • Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams
  • Incubus - Make Yourself
  • Norah Jones - Feels Like Home
  • No Doubt - The Singles 1992-2003
  • Keane - Hopes and Fears
  • Matt Mays & El Torpedo - Matt Mays & El Torpedo
  • St. Germain - Tourist
  • Various Artists - Purple Rainbows
  • Various Artists - The Matrix
  • Various Artists - Back To The Future
  • Various Artists - The X-Files: The Album
  • Various Artists - The Best Beer Drinking Album In The World Ever The Second Round
  • Various Artists - The X Files: Songs in the Key of X
  • Various Artists - The Cable Guy
  • Various Artists - Batman Forever

That's 792 complete albums, 11563 songs and 744 hours, 15 minutes and 29 seconds of tunage. Check it out.

If you want to peak behind the curtain and see how I do it, read this detailed account as to how you can rip your CD collection to MP3 like me.

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They're Back!

HockeyI saw this moment coming, and now that it's here I'm even happier than I thought I'd be. The NHL and NHL Players' Association have finally reached an agreement on a new six-year collective bargaining agreement. Assuming this deal gets ratified, the NHL will start back up again on July 21.

As always, I'll be watching every Maple Leafs game, posting recaps on this page and sharing my opinion on our team, trades involving the blue and white and our quest to end a Stanley Cup-less drought that is going on 39 years.

I have no opinion on the details of this agreement, except I see NHL players will participate in the February 2006 Olympics in Turin, Italy. That's just awesome. We'll have a full year of the best hockey on the planet complemented by Gretzky's team going for another gold. I can't wait for Hockey Night In Canada, our pursuit of the gold, the Leaf playoff drive of 2006, our annual playoff pool and pulling on Bill Barilko's #5 again.

Ratify this puppy and drop the damn puck. It's been way too long. Start playing our song.

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Weekly MP3

MP3I share an MP3 from my collection every Wednesday. You have seven days to grab this week's MP3. Please right-click your mouse and select "Save Link As..." or "Save target as..." so you can download it to your PC before playing.

Hot Hot Heat - Bandages
I don't remember a summer as hot as this. There's some hot, hot heat out there. Wait a minute... this gives me an idea. Lets fight the hot, hot heat with some Hot Hot Heat! "Bandages" is one of my favourites from this Victoria, BC band.

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted eight new pictures in Pictures. All eight are from our camping trip this weekend.

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Regional News From Killarney

RadioJames and I just spent three days and two nights camping under the stars in Killarney Provincial Park. We swam, caught frogs, hiked the Cranberry Bog Trail and took in Mother Nature during one of the sunniest and hottest weekends in Killarney history. Most importantly, I didn't have access to a computer or a television, forcing me to actually unplug for an entire weekend. This was good.

I did, however, bring along my MP3 player which has an FM tuner. At night, with James sound asleep in his little Hot Wheels sleeping bag, I'd tune in CBC radio from Sudbury and listen to the news. I just wanted to ensure everything would be where we left it when we returned. From the moment we left our driveway in Toronto to the moment we pulled into our camp site in Killarney, I drove exactly 398 kilometres. 398 kilometres North West, listening to a feed from Sudbury, and guess what regional news I heard? That's right, they're getting Toronto regional news up there. In addition to national and international updates, I was being fed details of life in the big smoke, including updates on the garbage strike and local crimes.

I was grateful for the Toronto news as it kept me in the loop, but you've got to wonder what Sudbury natives feel about their news being bogged down by that shooting at Jane and Finch or the possibility of a garbage strike in a city 398 kilometres away.

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Mike Kic Reports from Warsaw

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to TorontoMike.com. I received the following submission a couple of days ago.

Well it looks like Poland has advanced technologically since I was last here 12 years ago. We finally arrived in Warsaw and well it's weird to see how 'North Americanized' this city really is. Full of billboard ads for Coke, Ricoh, LG and others I just don't remember it like this when I was younger. The airline decided to lose my bro's and my dad's luggage yesterday and while they waited in the airport for over 4 hours to see if would come, it finally arrived this morning at our hotel. I would like to take this opportunity to wish my Raging Storm team good luck on Mon on their double header, as I am signing off from Warsaw.

Later everyone.

      Mike Kic

Last time we heard from Mike Kic, he was in Ecuador and now our globe trotting friend is writing us from Warsaw, Poland. You'll be happy to know we swept the double header last night, preserving a one run lead in game two even though the opposition loaded the bases in the last inning. I love winning the close ones. Enjoy Poland.

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Double Header Sweep

BaseballA five hour drive to our late-night double header tonight was worth it as we swept, ending our two game slide. More tomorrow.... goodnight!

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Gone Camping

CampingJames and I are heading North for a little rest and relaxation. We'll be nowhere near a computer, so this will be the last update for a few days.

Consider this an excellent opportunity to visit the archives and catch up on what you've missed. Take care of yourself, and each other.

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

A picture of Homer Jay Simpson"I used to rock and roll all night and party ev-er-y day. Then it was every other day."

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Watching Custom Videos via Google Video

GoogleI uploaded a bunch of really cool Custom videos so you all could watch them. Ok, I actually uploaded them for visitors to TeamCustom.com, but you can watch them too.

In order to watch these videos, all you need to do is install the Google Video Viewer. Once that little ditty is installed, simply click one of the links below and click "Play whole video".

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My Link of the Day

Mike's Link of the DayLive 8 Video Downloads - Awesome Quicktime links to every Live 8 performance. I was sure to grab Neil Young's "When God Made Me".

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite things about taking a vacation

  1. Not working (as much)
  2. Not working (as much)
  3. Not working (as much)
  4. Not working (as much)
  5. Not working (as much)

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Raging Storm 7, The Clippers 12

BaseballTonight, we lost our second game in a row. Our bats have gone silent after a torrid start. Oh wait, I just realized we have a great excuse. Both losses have come against teams in a higher division. Phew!

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

How much of this terrorism can this world take!! These people have to be stopped somehow - but HOW? The most influential country (U.S.)cannot put a dent into their deceit & terror, how is the rest of us going to put an end to this? I heard today that Italy & Denmark are under extreme alert as they may be targeted next. Where does Canada stand - 3rd, 4th or 5th? The devestation is overwhelming from 9/11, Madrid & today in London & after being on such a high from getting the Olympics in 2112 this happens. More is going to occur - when, where & how, who knows. I'm concerned about our future as what kind of pressure will we be under. Kids are our future & if this keeps happening what do they have to look forword to - education, families or waiting for the next attack to occur?

      Twins From Bolton

All I'm hearing about is that damn list of targets Osama ran down. Canada is on it and is apparently the only nation on it that hasn't yet been attacked. Damn them and their freedom hating ways. I will be defiant. I won't alter my life one iota for fear of an attack. They want us to alter our lifestyle, they want us to live in fear. I ain't wit it.

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Hey Mike,

I wrote this "news" article last week - forshadowing or what!?

Keep up the good werk.

      Tim

Put them skills to good use, will ya? Write about a Stanley Cup parade down Yonge Street or a declaration from the Supreme Court that pizza be free for all citizens each and every Friday.

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Heightened Caution

NewsI awoke this morning and heard the news. Half a dozen explosions rocked the London subway and tore open a packed double-decker bus during this morning's rush hour. The blasts killed at least two people and injured scores in what a shaken Prime Minister Tony Blair called a series of "barbaric" terrorist attacks.

Clearly this was timed to coincide with the opening of the G-8 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland. It was Al Qaeda-like in its deployment and could be retaliation for the British support of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's all speculation at this time, but there's no doubt this is terrorism and there's no doubt this is scary shit.

Immediately my thoughts turned to Toronto. Was Toronto a target? Could this happen here? Is our subway system secure? With these thoughts, I heard a news report communicating the Toronto Police Service's reaction to the bombings in London. Toronto Police are reacting with "heightened caution". That's a direct quote. This is our response to a terrorist attack upon our ally, G-8 compadre and mother land. Our police officers will practice "heightened caution". I feel better, don't you?

Following 9/11, our collective subconscious was prepared for events like this. On March 11, 2004 in Madrid, we were jolted back to that fateful day. Now, we've been bluntly reminded that terrorism has not been eradicated. My thoughts are with the people of London this morning. My hopes are that "heightened caution" is sufficient.

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Podcasts

DigitalIt seems everyone is talking about podcasts these days. In fact, it seems there are now more podcasts out there than there are people interested in listening to podcasts. Podcasting is the new blogging, or the new black, I get confused.

Personally, my beef is with the term "podcast". "Podcast" appears to have become the catchall term of the moment for any MP3 file that is intended to be a broadcast of sorts. For example, if I were to put together a half hour audio file of myself talking about and playing my favourite tunes, that would be a podcast. In reality, it would be an MP3 of me talking about and playing my favourite tunes that anyone could listen to anywhere that MP3s can be played. This kind of thing has been around a great deal longer than the iPod.

Many media outlets have introduced podcasts. Metro Morning, the local CBC morning show, for example, offers a new podcast each day by noon. This is pretty damn cool if there's a piece you missed or want to review, but to access the Metro Morning podcast, they want you to copy this URL (http://www.cbc.ca/metromorning/metromorning.xml) and paste it into your podcast software application. To hell with that, I just open the XML file in my browser, copy the url for the MP3 and throw it in a new Firefox tab. Try it... click here, find a title you're interested in and copy the url for it that ends in .mp3. Now paste that sucker in a new browser window. If you chose the Karla update, it would sound like this.

It's great content, but it's more accessible as a sweet and easy MP3 download. This podcast business is over complicating and needlessly geeking up a good thing.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumErnest Lehman was 89. He wrote the scripts for the legendary musical "West Side Story" and the Alfred Hitchcock classic "North by Northwest".

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Weekly MP3

MP3I share an MP3 from my collection every Wednesday. You have seven days to grab this week's MP3. Please right-click your mouse and select "Save Link As..." or "Save target as..." so you can download it to your PC before playing.

Whale - Hobo Humpin' Slobo Babe
I remember this tune well from Monday nights at the Phoenix. The theme of the night was "Strange Paradise" and it was a great mix of alternative and funky rockin' tracks like this one. What the hell happened to Whale?

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Dear Anonymous,

It is during the formative years that we are establishing the type of relationship we will have with our children. We must strive to build a foundation on trust, respect, and empathy during these early years. Hopefully as our children grow into young adults with more complex issues we can rely on the existing foundation to help guide us in our parenting. Being parents does not mean we will be without flaws and I am sure I will and have disappointed my children from time to time as I am sure they will disappoint me at times. Our relationship is a mutual process that is ongoing and static and I am hopeful that the disappointment will not diminish the solid foundation of our relationship.

      Jill

Jill's entry is in response to this guest blog entry from yesterday which was in response to this entry of mine from a couple of days ago. Who's next? Say your piece and I'll post it.

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Talkin' Hockey

LeafsIt's been way too long since we've been able to talk Maple Leaf hockey. Sure, we've talked about the NHL, but it's been all about labour negotiations and lock outs and season cancellations. I want to be able to talk about Belfour's edge and Sundin's scoring streak. I want to discuss the resurgence of Colaiacovo and the potential of Steen. I want to talk hockey.

The Globe and Mail has yet another story about the imminent deal. The NHL lockout is in its final days and I'll return to writing about Leaf games, trades, rants and tirades. In anticipation of this near future, here are the Maple Leafs all-time scoring leaders.

  1. Darryl Sittler - 916
  2. Dave Keon - 858
  3. Borje Salming - 768
  4. Mats Sundin - 755
  5. George Armstrong - 713
  6. Ron Ellis - 640
  7. Frank Mahovlich - 597
  8. Bob Pulford - 563
  9. Ted Kennedy - 560
  10. Rick Vaive - 537

Of the ten players above, I only have memories of watching Salming, Vaive and Sundin. My memory of Armstrong involves a slippery set of dentures.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumRenaldo "Obie" Benson was 69. He was one of four members of the Motown singing group Four Tops.

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Live 8 Boost

MusicMuch has been made of the sales surge Live 8 artists experienced after their performance on Saturday. Pink Floyd sales rose, The Who's sales rose, U2's sales rose, and so on.

I'd file this one under "D" for duh. In the three days following Live 8, I've noticed myself clicking more of the artists I heard on Saturday. They're in my conscious mind and I've recently thought about their catalogue and what songs I'd like them to play and what songs they ended up playing. I've been spinning more Neil Young, Blue Rodeo, Bruce Cockburn, Motley Crue, Pink Floyd and Dido since I caught a glimpse of them all on Saturday.

That kind of exposure can only help, although I've yet to seek out a Madonna tune. Now where is my "Like A Virgin" cassette tape?

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Upon reading about your dream of being a good father I wish you the very best luck and achievement in this area. A parent who owns up to responsibility knows that this is the very most difficult task on the face of this planet. The formative years seem more simplistic and easier to achieve because of the children's utmost respect for the parent and vice versa. It is when we tire and the child reaches an age where your wishes matter less and his/her wishes are of utmost importance that things can get difficult. Good luck and I say this with sincereness and a sense of sadness that looking back I did disappoint my children from time to time. No one had more convictions about what type of parent I would be and yet looking back I have such guilt about the way I handle some of life. Do any other parents reading this have some wisdom on this subject area?

      Anonymous

If anyone wants to contribute to this enlightening discussion, say your piece and I'll post it.

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My Link of the Day

Mike's Link of the DayThe Tragically Hip Performances From Live 8 and Neil Young's Performances From Live 8 - If you missed it, this is your chance to see The Hip perform "My Music At Work", "Ahead By A Century" and "Poets" and Neil Young perform "Four Strong Winds", "When God Made Me" and "Rocking In The Free World". Unfortunately, I had to view these videos in IE (typical AOL bullshit) but seeing Neil's "When God Made Me" again was worth it.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumHank Stram was 82. He took the Kansas City Chiefs to two Super Bowls and was known for his inventive game plans and exuberance on the sideline.

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A Tale of Two Booners

NewspaperIt was an interesting sports weekend for people with last names similar to mine.

In baseball, three-time All-Star second baseman Bret Boone bid goodbye to the Seattle Mariners on Sunday after being designated for assignment. His days with the club are over.

Meanwhile, Tom Boonen won Monday's third stage at the Tour de France. The Belgian rider clinched the 212.5-kilometre trek from La Chataigneraie to Tours in a thrilling sprint to the line, clocking four hours 36 minutes nine seconds.

From the highest peak to the lowest valley, you're only a letter away. From Boonen to Boone to Boon, it's a slippery slope.

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The Monday Shuffle

The Quintessential PlayerEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in the Quintessential Player and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today.

  1. Pulp - Monday Morning
  2. Lenny Kravitz - Can't Get You Off My Mind
  3. Rusty - Friends
  4. The Kleptones - Jazz
  5. Metallica - Free Speech For The Dumb
  6. Jay-Z - What More Can I Say
  7. Otis Redding - Satisfaction
  8. Katrina and the Waves - Walking on the Sunshine
  9. Nirvana - Heart-Shaped Box
  10. The White Stripes - You're Pretty Good Lookin'

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumGus Bodnar was 82. He was the NHL rookie of the year in 1943-44, totalling 142 goals and 396 points in 667 games in a career that included two Stanley Cups with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

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Hardwood

MoviesI watched a fantastic documentary last night. It's called "Hardwood" and it's "a personal journey by director Hubert Davis, the son of former Harlem Globetrotter Mel Davis, who explores how his father's decisions affected his life and those of his extended family".

It packs a major emotional punch in a mere 30 minutes, exploring the father-son dynamic in three pefectly structured chapters: "love," "recollection" and "redemption. Far and away the most important goal for me in life is being a good father to my children. It's my primary quest each and every day I awake. "Hardwood" contains a heart wrenching scene in which one of Mel's sons reads a letter from his dad which elegantly outlines his goals as a father, many of which he failed to achieve. One was to show his son he's disappointed in him without breaking his spirit. It's this balance I seek, this wisdom I desire.

I'm not sure what my second goal in life is, but if I succeed with this first one, the others won't matter.

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New Videos

New VideosI haven't done this in a while. I'm now sharing a couple of new videos in Videos. I used to share a lot of video but once I got a digital camera I found myself taking less and less video and more and more pictures. These two videos were actually taken with my digital camera.

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted an unprecedented eight new pictures in Pictures. Five are from our Canada Day trip to Puck's Farm and the other three are from a trip to the park Thursday evening.

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My Quote of the Week

Opening Quotes"We thought that we had the answers, it was the questions we had wrong."
      - Bono

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Top Ten Search Strings

Top Ten Search StringsOn the first day of every month I post the top ten search strings from the previous month. Only a couple of days late, these are the Google searches that referred people to this site. Below are the top ten search strings for June 2005.

  1. joe carter
  2. family guy
  3. pearl jam
  4. big shiny 90's
  5. wayne's world soundtrack
  6. ticket stubs
  7. amber frye nude
  8. auroras
  9. homer quotes
  10. naughty

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Go Leafs Go Song

EmailI received the following correspondence this morning via my Contact Mike page. The sender didn't leave an email address or any contact information, so I'm hoping he'll read my response here. Here's the message in its entirety.

Greetings,

Mike I am composer of the go leafs go song since 1993. Would you like to listen to the song....I hear you're a leaf fan. Best of luck....nice web site!

Regards
Holger

Hell ya I'd like to listen to a Go Leafs Go song. Bring it on! My email address is listed on that Contact Mike page.

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Photographic Zen

ZenMusicians Neil Young and Gord Downie of The Tragically Hip perform Young's "Rockin in the Free World" for the grand finale of the Live 8 concert in Barrie, Ontario July 2, 2005.

Gord and Neil

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Live 8: Great Music, Greater Message

MusicI spent the bulk of today watching Live 8 performances from around the world, with a particular focus on our very own Barrie show. There were some great moments, wonderful tunes and a list to sign.

A couple of moments were particularly awesome. In Barrie, Neil Young sounded great and looked strong as he performed the Canadian folk anthem "Four Strong Winds" and a stunningly beautiful stripped down "When God Made Me" before he was joined on stage by the rest of the performers for a closing rendition of "Rockin' in the Free World". That would have been a fitting end, but they followed that up with an impromptu version of "O Canada" which left me covered in goose bumps. Gord Downie and Gordon Lightfoot were there, Blue Rodeo was chiming in, the Barenaked Ladies were along for the ride, dammit it was sweet. Meanwhile, in London we witnessed the first time guitarist David Gilmour, drummer Nick Mason, keyboard player Richard Wright and bassist Roger Waters appeared onstage together since 1981. Pink Floyd sounded spectacular.

Then there was Birham Woldu's appearance, Nelson Mandela's speech, Paul McCartney alongside U2, Coldplay and Richard Ashcroft performing "Bittersweet Symphony", The Hip and much, much more.

As Neil Young asked tonight in "When God Made Me", Did He give me the gift of compassion to help my fellow man? The 31st G8 summit is scheduled to be held from July 6 - 8 at the Gleneagles Hotel in Perthshire, Scotland and hosted by British Prime Minister Tony Blair. We shall see what comes of this glorious noise.

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Asking The Anonymous HMV Manager

HMVI have a contact at HMV, the popular music and video store. My contact wishes to remain anonymous, but I can tell you that's he's a manager of a Toronto HMV. Periodically I'm going to ask questions of The Anonymous HMV Manager and I'll post his answers here.

I asked The Anonymous HMV Manager to list the top selling CDs in his store thus far in 2005. He ran a report and promptly replied with the top twenty. Here they are.

  1. Coldplay - X&Y
  2. Michael Buble - It's Time
  3. Il Divo - Il Divo
  4. The Killers - Hot Fuss
  5. Green Day - American Idiot
  6. Ray Charles - Genius Loves Company
  7. Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams
  8. Gwen Stefani - Love Angel
  9. Keane - Hopes & Fears
  10. Usher - Confessions
  11. Garden State - OST
  12. 50 Cent - Massacre
  13. U2 - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb
  14. Black Eyed Peas - Monkey Business
  15. Kelly Clarkson - Breakaway
  16. Alicia Keys - Diary
  17. Maroon 5 - Songs About Jane
  18. Bruce Springsteen - Devil's And Dust
  19. K-os - Joyful Rebellion
  20. Ray Charles - Very Best

I hadn't even heard of the band holding down the third spot.

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My Link of the Day

Mike's Link of the DayCBC Canada Day Quiz - Only one of the 1,000 people surveyed scored a perfect 20. Two-thirds got less than half the questions right. I got 18/20.

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

A picture of Homer Jay Simpson"Ooh, I love your magazine. Especially the 'Enrich Your Wordpower' section. I think it's really...really... really...good."

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Guest Blog Entry

Ink StainAnyone is welcome to submit a Guest Blog Entry to torontomike.com. I received the following submission earlier today.

Happy Canada Day (a day late but it's better than nothing) from a guy in India who absolutely loves Canada, her cities, her musicians, her authors, her hockey players, her actors & esp. her actressess. Now that I have said my bit, here is a request to all true Canadians - "GET ME A VISA TO COME TO CANADA!!" lol. Hope you had a good day Mike.

      Roshan

Last night, James and I celebrated our nation's birthday by pitching a tent outside and sleeping under the stars. We heard fireworks exploding in the distance as we drifted into slumber. It was flippin' beautiful, eh?

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumLuther Vandross was 54. He was the Grammy award winning crooner best known for his hits "Here and Now" and "Any Love".

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Formula 1, Taryn 0

CarHeading North on the 400 earlier today on our way to Puck's Farm in Schomberg, the conversation turned to music. 54-40's "I Go Blind" was playing on CFNY Edge 102 and that got us thinking about 54-40 and Hootie and the Blowfish, who covered the song for the show "Friends".

I was noting how different the two bands' careers were. Hootie and the Blowfish blew up big with their debut and became one of the most popular bands in the world for a short period of time before disappearing completely while 54-40 never attained such success but had a steady, consistent and respectable career for over two decades. The question I posed to Taryn was simple. If you were a band, which career would you rather have? Hootie and the Blowfish's or 54-40's?

It was at precisely that moment that I turned to my side to catch the response, only to witness Taryn taking a large swig from the tupperware thermos containing Michelle's formula. You see, there were two such containers in the bag, one full of formula and the other full of cool, refreshing water. Taryn had inadvertently grabbed the wrong one and instantly regretted it. As she spit it out the window along the 400, trying to wash out the terrible taste with water and rice cakes and anything else she could find in the car, she mentioned it was perhaps the worst thing she had ever tasted.

She also managed to answer my question. She said she'd rather have 54-40's career, which of course, is the right answer.

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SLS13 Unveiled!

SLSI can't think of a better way to celebrate Canada Day than by unveiling the songs that make up the thirteenth edition of SLS. The negotiations were a little stickier than usual, but at the end of the day the committee agrees that these songs make the cut. Without further delay, I present to you, with great honour and pride, the SLS13 twenty.

  1. The Mars Volta - The Widow
  2. Arcade Fire - Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
  3. System of a Down - B.Y.O.B.
  4. The White Stripes - Blue Orchid
  5. Foo Fighters - Best Of You
  6. Audioslave - Your Time Has Come
  7. Queens of the Stone Age - Little Sister
  8. Custom - USA
  9. The Killers - All These Things That I've Done
  10. Hot Hot Heat - Goodnight, Goodnight
  11. Kaiser Chiefs - I Predict A Riot
  12. Beck - E-Pro
  13. Doctor - What Makes You Think He's Lucky?
  14. Franz Ferdinand - The Dark Of The Matinee
  15. Louis XIV - Finding Out True Love Is Blind
  16. Metric - Dead Disco
  17. Modest Mouse - World At Large
  18. Weezer - Beverly Hills
  19. Billy Talent - Nothing To Lose
  20. Nine Inch Nails - The Hand That Feeds

Mark insisted that Nine Inch Nails make the cut, despite my insistence that it wasn't worthy. During the negotiation process I gave up my NIN resistance in order to preserve the Weezer and Billy Talent tracks. Audioslave's "Be Yourself" ended up on the bubble but "Your Time Has Come" rose to the challenge and made it a moot point as there can only be one track per artist on each edition of SLS. Another late comer to make the cut was Kaiser Cheifs' "I Predict A Riot", leaving Jakalope, Garbage and The Marble Index on the cutting room floor.

What do you think of SLS13? Share your thoughts!

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Happy Canada Day!

CanadaShe's 138 years young and we love her. Happy Birthday Canada!

  • Population: 32 million (UN, 2005)
  • Capital: Ottawa
  • Area: 9.9 million sq km (3.8 million sq miles)
  • Major languages: English, French (both of official status)
  • Major religion: Christianity
  • Life expectancy: 77 years (men), 82 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Canadian dollar = 100 cents
  • Main exports: Machinery and equipment, automotive products, metals and plastics, forestry products, agricultural and fishing products
  • GNI per capita: US $23,930 (World Bank, 2003)
  • Internet domain: .ca
  • International dialing code: +1

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