May 2006 Archives

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Guest Blog Entry

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

The 1st night in 7 with no baseball but watchin' the skies. A tornado watch here in Caledon earlier this afternoon - power has been off 2-3 times in since 6:00pm. The same day as the anniversary as the Barrie tornado - 21 years ago today.

It's eerie outside now - weird clouds & raining hard. Hope not a reflection of the past & things to come!

      twins in bolton

I heard things are worse in your neck of the woods. Our game was in Mississauga but close to the Etobicoke border. The pictures I took were taken in Woodbridge this afternoon.

It's hard to believe the Barrie tornado was twenty-one years ago. I remember it well because my grandparents lived in the area. Here's a good CBC recap broadcast on June 3, 1985. Eight killed, 155 injured, 300 homes destroyed and $100 million in damage. Let's hope we don't get a repeat performance tonight.

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Raging Storm 12, Hollywoods 7

baseballIt was a strange night from the get-go. First there was the tornado warning and ever-threatening rain and lightning. Again, I was shocked (not literally, but almost) we got a full game in with a sky as dark as this and this. It rained a little and there were flashes of lightning in the distance, but we played seven innings and improved our record to 3-0.

Playing first one inning, I corralled a tough throw to record the force out only to see the runner at third charging home. With little time to spare, I threw hard to Andge who was catching. Unfortunately, my throw was short and the bounce up from the ground clipped Andge hard under her left eye. There was that scary moment when she dropped to the ground but luckily it looks like the only damage will be a pretty cool looking shiner for a few days. Sorry Andge!

For more on Raging Storm, visit

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Weekly MP3: Rush

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.

Big Audio Dynamite - Rush
Enough talk. It's time for Ricky to rush.

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Blame God

crossPope Benny visited Auschwitz on Sunday. His words were widely reported, but here's an excerpt in case you missed it. "In a place like this, words fail; in the end, there can be only a dread silence, a silence which itself is a heartfelt cry to God: Why, Lord, did you remain silent? How could you tolerate all this?"

Is it me or is blaming the holocaust on God a damn easy way to deflect blame? It's God's fault, he tolerated these horrific acts, he's the bad guy here. Didn't God have a human representative during those years? I believe Pius XII was Pope, why did he tolerate it is a far fairer question. The Wikipedia page for Pius XII has a good section on the Holocaust. You really should read it.

Pope Benny shouldn't be asking God why he remained silent and "tolerated" these atrocities, he should be taking responsibility on behalf of his predecessors. God had nothing to do with it.

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Playoff Pool: Day Forty

PuckThis series deserved a game seven. The Sabres refuse to lose and Saturday's game promises to be far better than the only other game seven we've had during these playoffs. In our pool, Marc and Ryan will be paying close attention to this game as it probably determines the winner of our massive jackpot.

For the current standings, visit

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Unparalleled Argo Buzz

argosI've lived in this city for 31 years and I've never felt this type of buzz for our football team. The closest was probably when we signed Rocket Ismael out of Notre Dame, but it wasn't quite like this Ricky Williams vibe that's gripping Toronto right now. This is just awesome.

Everyone wants to talk about the arrival of the NFL's best running back. In addition to his tremendous athletic skills I've read several articles about his person. His manner and perspective on life is so awesome not a single person who has met him has anything remotely negative to say about him. ESPN is covering Argo practices, talk radio is all about #27 and I'm sopping up everything I can find about the guy on the web. Call it a man crush if you like, but I'm totally jazzed about Williams suiting up for my Argos this season and I'll be there live to watch him make his CFL debut Friday night.

No NFL superstar has played in our league while in his prime, at least not during my lifetime. We're experiencing a near perfect storm here and the CFL is benefitting with some well deserved attention and respect. I was already back in the fold, but now I will recap every Argo game this season, paying particularly close attention to Ricky Williams. This is gonna be fun.

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Link: - " is a simple tool that simplifies the process of compressing and sending your files online. isn't a replacement for the traditional desktop compression tools, but its just a tool that makes things easier by cutting down all the 'krunching' hassles!"

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She's Lovely and She's Ours

ttcYesterday, in sweltering hot, hot heat, thousands of Torontonians cursed out the TTC and their illegal wildcat strike. There was record heat, a smog warning, a humidity warning and, for many, a long walk or bike ride to work. It was a great way to start the week.

Not long ago, I gave this site an overhaul. I completed the migration to Movable Type and rewrote the XHTML and CSS. Looking for a main logo and new colour scheme, I wanted a symbol that said "Toronto". I toyed with the CN Tower, our crappy Toronto flag and our sports teams but I ended up with the TTC logo.

To me, it's the life blood of the city. Our subway, bus and streetcar system covers every nook and cranny and gets you from A to Z quickly, safely and reliably. I've always loved the TTC, and I shared some memories of her when the subway turned 50 in 2004. It's a great institution, but it could be so much better.

The TTC has no concept of how cool a symbol it could be. Last year I linked to the TTC Subway Rider Efficiency Guide. It was so cool, but it didn't come from the TTC. It came from Remember the ultra cool buttons featuring replicas of the tile art from each station? That was probably the coolest piece of TTC marketing ever, but it didn't come from the TTC. They came from Just this past February put out a very funny anagram map of the TTC subway system. I was so dissapointed when TTC lawyers sent him a cease and desist order. Luckily, is still hosting the original. The TTC ought to be encouraging such actions instead of calling the lawyer.

Finally, if you want to see how out of touch TTC marketing is in this new age of viral communique, one needs to look no further than their official web site. It's one of the worst commercial sites I've ever come across and a complete embarassment. If you're interested in a challenge, try and learn from what a single adult fare would cost you today. Good luck! The official TTC site looks especially horrible when compared to Transit Toronto, a fan site that's vastly superior to the TTC sanctioned site.

I'm sticking with the TTC logo in the top left corner of this site until I'm inspired to change it or I get one of those nasty cease and desist letters from the TTC, whichever comes first. The TTC doesn't get it, but instead of hating them for it I pity them. So long as we continue to put out efficiency guides, tile buttons and anagram maps, we'll eventually drag the TTC kicking and screaming into the twenty-first century. It's worth it. She's lovely and she's ours.

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The Monday Shuffle

iTunesEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in iTunes and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today with a personal story about one of them.

  1. Promised Land - Elvis Presley
  2. Sittin' On Top Of The World - Jack White
  3. Gouge Away - The Pixies
  4. Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) - Arcade Fire
  5. Not The Same - Bodyjar
  6. Minstrel of the Dawn - Gordon Lightfoot
  7. Neon Crossing - Our Lady Peace
  8. Everything I've Known - Korn
  9. Exit - U2
  10. Eternal Life - Jeff Buckley

The Arcade Fire are a Canadian success story, a Montreal band who recorded Funeral at the Hotel 2 Tango in their home town. It has always bothered me that a Canadian born and bred band would spell their "neighbourhood" trilogy n-e-i-g-h-b-o-r-h-o-o-d.

I realize we're talking about one lousy "u" here, but why Americanize the spelling of such words if you're a Canadian band? Were they afraid the American CD-buying public would be frightened by the funny spelling? I just wish it was "Neighbourhood #1 (Tunnels)", "Neighbourhood #2 (Laika)", "Neighbourhood #3 (Power Out)" and "Neighbourhood #4 (7 Kettles)".

Even without the "u", It's a fantastic album. My favourite of 2005, I recall.

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SLS Submission: Woman

SLS SubmissionI just submitted a tune for SLS15 consideration. I submitted "Woman" from Wolfmother.

This is precisely the kind of great tune that should appear on SLS. I've been digging it for weeks and weeks but I'm only now getting around to submitting it. You can actually hear "Woman" here.

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mlbBarry Bonds hit his seventh home run of the season yesterday. It was also the 715th of his career, bumping him ahead of the Babe into second place all-time.

Majoring in history at the University of Toronto, one of my favourite classes was American Pop Culture. This class was amazing. I actually got a credit for studying the origin of jazz music, the influence of the Beatles and hippy culture. I had to write two major essays for that class, and as a big sports fan, I chose to write about the two most influential American atheletes of the century. I wrote about Muhammad Ali and George Herman "Babe" Ruth.

In 1920, Babe Ruth hit 54 home runs, smashing his own single season record of 29. How much better was Babe Ruth than every other player in the league at that time? He out-homered all but one team in baseball, the Philadelphia Phillies who managed to hit 64. How did he follow up that historic 1920 season? In 1921 he had what remains the greatest statistical season in the history of the game. Borrowing from his Wikipedia page, in 152 games, Ruth batted .378, had 204 hits, 44 doubles, 16 triples, 59 home runs (8th all-time), scored 177 runs (2nd all-time), had 171 RBIs (7th all-time), 144 bases on balls, with 119 extra base hits (1st all-time), an .846 slugging average (3rd all-time), and amassed 457 total bases (1st all-time).

Entering the 2000 season, Bonds was already a hall of fame player who ranked amongst the greatest all-time. I've always admired the man's talents and considered he and Roger Clemens as the two greatest players of this generation. If you believe the two reporters from the San Francisco Chronicle who wrote "Game of Shadows", Bonds began using steroids in 1998 after becoming jealous of the attention given to Mark McGwire. This got Bonds to approach Greg Anderson who developed a steroid regimen which in turn helped Bonds hit 73 homers in 2001.

Although he denies ever knowingly taking steroids, Bonds has admitted to taking "the clear" and "the cream". We know "the clear" and "the cream" helped transform Bonds from an amazing hall of famer to the second all-time home run king behind Hank Aaron. That ain't right. Babe Ruth is now #3, but Barry Bonds will be stuck with a hugh * for all of eternity.

Let's hope Aaron stays at #1.

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Eight

PuckThe Canes came back and have Buffalo on the brink. I'm not surprised to see them secure another "W". Have you looked at their roster? Seven players with a surname beginning with "W" played for Carolina last night: Niclas Wallin, Aaron Ward, Cam Ward, Doug Weight, Glen Wesley, Ray Whitney and Justin Williams. That has to be some sort of record.

For the current standings, visit

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumPaul Gleason was 67. He was the character actor best known for playing the angry high school principal Richard Vernon in "The Breakfast Club."

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Ricky Williams Signs With The Argos

argosThe Toronto Argonauts have signed suspended Miami Dolphins running back Ricky Williams. The lingering issues have been ironed out and the Dolphins have given their blessing. He will reportedly earn around $250,000, easily making him the highest-paid running back in the league.

I love this move. It will be thrilling having a back like Williams playing in Toronto. From my perspective it's all good except for the fact we'll have to give him back at the end of the season. I can't wait to catch #34 at SkyDome this summer.

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Rosie DiManno's Load of Nonsense

canadaThe other day, Rosie DiManno wrote this article for The Toronto Star. She argues that Edmonton is not Canada's team and will never be Canada's team. She writes, "the Oilers are, have always been, will always be, a near-exclusive Edmonton phenomenon."

I'm a life-long Torontonian and proud Canadian with no ties to Alberta whatsoever. As a life-long Torontonian, I bleed blue and white and cheer for the Leafs, Blue Jays, Raptors and Argos. When the Leafs are eliminated, and its happened every spring of my life, I don't naturally adopt the remaining Canadian franchises as mine. I've never cheered one second for the Habs or Sens. I wanted the Lightning to beat the Flames in 2004 because I wanted Dave Andreychuk to win and I rarely root for the Canucks. Having said all that, for the remainder of this year's Stanley Cup playoffs, the Oilers are my team.

Are you Canadian? Watch this. Ready to jump on the Oilers bandwagon with me? I thought so. Hell, if you're American you should click that link as well. There's plenty of room on board.

I've got chills. Damn that's awesome. DiManno is wrong. The Oilers are indeed Canada's team.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumCraig "Ironhead" Heyward was 39. He was a former NFL running back who played for the New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears, Atlanta Falcons, Los Angeles Rams, and the Indianapolis Colts in an 11-year career.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

I realized seconds after my speech yesterday that I had forgotten to thank Mike, Ryan and my brother, Matt, for being part of our wedding party. It meant a lot to Steve and I to have you standing beside us on our wedding day.

We also wanted to thank Mike for doing such a fantastic job with the music. It was great!!!


Hillary Swank forgot to thank her husband during her Oscar acceptance speech and look what happened to them. I threw together two mix CDs, acted as best man and took many photos from that ideal vantage point yet I was excluded from your thank you speech in which you thanked everyone under the sun. I heard a thanks for the guy who delivered the morning paper which promised a rain-free day, the woman who served your friend a double-double at Tim's that morning, the grocer for the wonderful meat, the middlemen who jacked up the price, and the humane but determined boys over at the slaughterhouse.

You're welcome.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

I just wanted to comment on yesterdays festivities. I can honestly say that Vanessa was a gorgeous bride and Stephen really cut quite a handsome figure himself. You both looked so serene and happy. I am very happy for the both of you and I would say I am so proud to have you both in my family but I was already proud of that. I want to thank you for letting me be part of your big day and I wish you a lifetime of smiles and sunshine. I love you both!!


A lifetime of sunshine? Are you trying to convince them to leave the big smoke?

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted twelve new pictures in Pictures. Ten of these are from yesterday's wedding.

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Link: Hallelujah

LinkHallelujah - My entries about Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" are several. References to the song have made it into nineteen entries. This link, sent to me by Jill, includes many covers of Cohen's classic.

Sadly, Gord Downie's version isn't there, but Imogen Heap's is. It was recorded for the season finale of The O.C. and was the topic of discussion last night while Jeff Buckley's version played. I'm going to listen to it right now.

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My Quote of the Week

Quotes"I dont wanna come back down from this cloud. Taken me all this time to find out what I need."
      - Bush, Comedown

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Seven

PuckAt the wedding yesterday, Jomp made a bold prediction that the Edmonton series is going seven. He's currently working in Fort McMurray, Alberta, so this prediction meant something. I immediately told him he was nuts but he was adamant.

Jomp was wrong and the Oil are in the finals. With Scott Niedermayer's departure, I'm out of players and will finish in tenth. Considering I drafted eleventh, I'm quite pleased with this advancement.

For the current standings, visit

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The Speech That Wasn't

weddingWell, they did it. Steve and Vanessa are married. It was a beautiful day with great food, great tunes and loads of fun.

I didn't think we'd be making speeches, because it was advertised as an informal affair without the usual wedding rules, but on Thursday my mom told me Ryan was making a speech so I wrote something up and memorized it for the occasion. As it turned out, they didn't want any such thing and I never got to deliver this speech, but here it is anyways for your amusement.

There's a passage I’ve got memorized that I’d like to share with you all. It seems appropriate for this situation.

Ezekiel 25:17. "The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness. For he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know I am the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon you."

I’ve been saying that for years but I never really questioned what it meant. I saw something today, we all saw it, we were all there, and it’s made me think twice. Now I’m thinking Steve here is the righteous man Ezekiel’s writing about.

Calling Steve a righteous man hardly does him justice. In the immortal words of Grace the secretary in Ferris Bueller’s Day off, he’s a righteous dude and any woman would be lucky to have him. Vanessa, you’re the Bryan Colangelo of weddings and you’ve just won the lottery.

You’re a sweet girl, and I’ve grown to dig you the most, but I think you need to recall Ezekiel 25:17 and the fact that I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. Stephen or Ryan, it doesn’t matter which one.

Stephen, I love you. You’re a great brother and I'm certain you'll make a great husband. Vanessa, you look nice in that dress. Congratulations to both of you! Now make babies for mom.


That's it. For ten years I've wanted to deliver a speech like that and this was my first opportunity to do so. If I ever get another chance to speak at such an affair, I'll be quoting good ol' Ezekiel 25:17.

Here's my photoset from the wedding. Congratulations again to Steve and Vanessa. I wish you many years of happiness.

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Link: Darth Vader calls the Emperor

LinkDarth Vader calls the Emperor - If you like Star Wars, you'll enjoy this. "Death Star blown up by a bunch of %#$% teenagers".

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Guest Blog Entry

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

Today is my youngest son's wedding day. The weather is great after a few weeks of concern. The last few days have found me remembering the day he was born and the many years of watching him grow into the fine young man he is today. Stephen and Vanessa I love you and wish you all the best that life has to offer. I know you were meant for each other and so today we are having a party to celebrate this amazing union. Two people who have been together for a long time and are now ready to confirm their commitment to each other and their families. You both make me proud to share this day with you. Happy wedding day to both of you. Love Always Mom


As the best man, I'll be making a brief speech after the ceremony. Later tonight, I'll post my speech here in its entirety.

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

Homer"I'm going to the back seat of my car, with the woman I love, and I won't be back for ten minutes!"

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Six

PuckGerber shuts out the Sabres and lets Marc reclaim the lead. That's two goalies winning big games the past couple of nights despite not having played in a month. Rust never sleeps.

For the current standings, visit

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Would You Have Helped David Sharp?

everestWould you have helped David Sharp? He's the British mountaineer who collapsed on his way up Mount Everest last week. In desperate need of oxygen, about 40 people walked right on by while he sat dying.

That's right, 40 people climbing Mount Everest saw Sharp but kept on climbing. Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to reach the top way back in 1953, called this horrifying. I agree.

Some of the forty walked right on by Sharp because they didn't think he'd have a chance to survive even with their help. Others were afraid of jeopardizing their own climb. Others just didn't care. I've never reached the top of Everest and I'll probably never even try, but if I were at its base camp I'd like to think I'd do whatever I could for someone in need until they had gulped their last breath. This culture where you blow by a fellow mountaineer in trouble because it's better him than you is pathetic.

They're right about one thing though. David Sharp never had a chance.

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite Philip Seymour Hoffman movies

  1. Magnolia
  2. Boogie Nights
  3. The Big Lebowski
  4. Almost Famous
  5. Capote

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumDesmond Dekker was 64. He brought the sound of Jamaican ska music to the world with songs such as "Israelites."

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Guest Blog Entry

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

So I was watching one of the many wedding shows on Life Network and it showed a little known fact on the screen that I was less then shocked by. The word "Bride" comes from the Old English for cook. How charming!!


After this I'm going to reply with a simple 'no comment'.

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Wedding Prologue Tunes

WeddingThe 100 songs for my brother's wedding have been finalized, burned and are ready for the big day. It's 6.9 hours worth of tunes, so it's highly unlikely anyone will ever hear the same song twice.

Yesterday I received a request from the bride to produce a second mix of music. This was music to be played while guests arrive and during the brief ceremony. Background music of sorts. This was to be an entirely different mix, this was to be classical.

Here are the eleven songs that comprise the hour long wedding prologue mix.

  1. Vivaldi - Four Seasons - Spring - I. Allegro
  2. Haydn - Symphony No. 94 - Andante
  3. Schubert - Symphony No. 5 - Allegro
  4. Elgar - Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1
  5. Handel - Messiah - Hallelujah Chorus
  6. Mozart - Eine Kleine Nachtmusik
  7. Rodrigo - Conceirto De Aranjuez
  8. Pachelbel - Gigue
  9. Albinoni - Adagio
  10. Berlioz - Rakoczy March
  11. Mendelssohn - A Midsummer Night's Dream - Wedding March

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Five

PuckLadies and gentlemen, we have a tie for first place.

For the current standings, visit

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Oh Ricky, You're So Fine...

argosWe've been preparing for the big Ricky Williams signing here in Toronto for a week now. There are loads of conflicting reports out there, but the fact is Williams has been in Toronto all week and he visited with the Argonauts yesterday, even watching a practice from afar.

If it were up to Ricky Williams, he'd be an Argo today. He wants to play this season in the CFL and he doesn't care about our drastically lower salaries. Right now, there are a couple of snags holding everything up. For starters, the Miami Dolphins haven't actually given the Argos permission to sign him. Furthermore, there are issues with the standard CFL contracts that could cause problems when the season ends and it's time for Ricky to return to Miami.

I'm really hoping this works out. I think Williams is an awfully cool dude with a wicked perspective on life. Hell, I'm jealous of this cat. With my buddy getting season's tickets it would be sweeter than sugar if I could watch Ricky run for the double blue. I've got my fingers crossed.

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Tonight's Moment of Zen

ZenAfter brushing her teeth, Michelle was ready for daddy to give her a hug and kiss and lift her into her crib. I gently lowered her onto her stomach, patted her back, told her I loved her and said goodnight. She replied with a "goodnight daddy", but followed that up with a loud "goodnight Jamesie!". James, playing in his room, rushed in, patted her back and said in the most nurturing, sweet, gentle tone, "Goodnight Michelly Belly. I love you. Have sweet dreams and we'll play together in the morning. Nighty-night".

Two seconds later she was sound asleep... with a smile on her face.

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A Movie ReelCapote: 7.5 out of 10.

This is an exceptional acting performance in a pretty decent movie. I'd recommend it based on Philip Seymour Hoffman's performance alone, but the movie isn't bad either. I didn't think it was a great flick, but it's got some depth to it and might provoke a thought or two along the way.

On Friday, I'm listing my five favourite Philip Seymour Hoffman movies. Stay tuned!

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Four

PuckRyan picked up a whopping five points last night and now only trails Marc by two. We're talking some major scratch here. You can cut the intensity with a knife.

For the current standings, visit

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumIan Copeland was 57. He was a pioneering booking agent and music promoter credited with helping launch the "new wave" alternative rock movement of the 1970s and '80s with such bands as the Police, the B-52's and R.E.M.

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America Still Doesn't Like Hockey

hockeyA couple of years ago I wrote an entry entitled "America Doesn't Like Hockey". I thought it best that we all just accept this fact and move on without taking America's disinterest as a slight against our game. The game may be more exciting now than it was then, but Americans still don't care for it.

More people in the United States watched the 13 WNBA broadcasts on ESPN2 last year than the NHL on OLN this year. NBC's poker series, which preceded the network's NHL playoff coverage two weeks ago, easily outdrew the hockey by more than 200,000 viewers. When you're getting beat by the WNBA and poker it's time to accept the fact you're no longer one of the four major sports. This is reality and it's okay. League attendance was up by 2.4% this season and that's after a lockout. The hardcore fans have come back and the disinterested have stayed away.

They can keep their WNBA south of the 49th parallel and we'll continue to love and enjoy the greatest game in the world. That sounds like a fair trade to me.

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Weekly MP3: Let There Be Love

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.

Oasis - Let There Be Love
I plucked this one from my 100 song wedding playlist I just finalized. Let there be love!

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Three

PuckEdmonton was lucky to make the playoffs. After squeaking in, nobody gave them a chance against the Red Wings. Then, nobody gave them much of a chance against the Sharks. Now they're just one win away from the cup final and the bandwagon is filling up fast. Go Oilers Go!

For the current standings, visit

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Raging Storm 10, Clippers 7

baseballTonight we played an effiicent game with solid defense and timely hitting to improve to 2-0 on the season. An unnamed player on our team brilliantly pulled a Canseco, running to the warning track to make a catch only to have the ball bounce out of his glove and over the fence.

For more on Raging Storm, visit

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Guest Blog Entry

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

BBall season is upon us. 2 kids playing for 2 different REP teams. 1 playing a division up - he's 14 playing with 15-17 year olds & holding his own so far. The other playing in his own age group - 14 years old.

A difficult decision we as parents have to make but 1 of the kids is that much better than the other. Travelling from Whitby to Burlington, Bradford to Leaside every week. Fortunately only 2 or 3 conflicts but going steady 3-4 days a week. Each also umpire - another conflict!

Weekends are not a time for relaxing - tournaments - Burlington, Thornhill, Kincardine, Chatham & Orillia. Both kids also practice on weekends. 4 weekends this summer away but we also have our own 2 tourneys in Bolton.

Parents get involved its very rewarding as I've coached Rep BBall for 5 years & house league for 3 years & time to have a different perspective of your kids & how they interact with others their own age. Confidence & self esteem.

No games tonight - but worked tonight till 7:00pm. I still love it. See how I am in September. The next 2 weeks 1 kid has 11 games in 10 days & the other has 5 games in the same period. Do I have a wife - I sure do. She is also on the Bolton Baseball Exec. committee.

We do it for the kids. Parents GET involved it's rewarding in any sport your kids are playing.

      twins from bolton

If you had the foresight to discourage your kids from participating in activities of this nature you could be enjoying your evenings in front of the boob tube sucking back a brewski while your kids play video games in the next room. Now you've got 11 games in 10 days. Thanks for the warning!

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Raptors Win NBA Draft Lottery

RaptorsWe had the NBA's fifth worst record at 27-55 but we ended up jumping four spots to win our first draft lottery tonight. With Bryan Colangelo at the helm, this couldn't have worked out better.

Actually, that's not true. We could have won this thing when Lebron James was available. Underclassmen Adam Morrison of Gonzaga, Texas center LaMarcus Aldridge and LSU forward Tyrus Thomas are considered top candidates. None of them have a Lebron sized "can't miss" label tatooed on their foreheads. Let's hope this is a sign that our luck is changing for the better.

Draft well, Colangelo. Vince Carter good, Rafael Araujo bad. Got that?

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Link: Love Will Tear Us Apart

LinkLove Will Tear Us Apart - Lots of bands cover Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart". Here's a pretty good list complete with MP3s.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

Re: Blenders Worst Songs Ever:
Wow, this sure generated lots of discussion between Hubby and me. Here are our thoughts:

Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (Beatles).......This is such a happy tune and reminds us of a favorite TV show(Life goes On).........Lets keep in mind, the worst Beatles song( Revolution No 9) is better than most crap put out today.

My Heart Will Go On(Celine Dion)......Not being a fan of Celine Dion, We have to disagree with this choice. This song has been definately overpalyed and It is painful to watch Celine sing it but who doesn't watch Titanic listening to that James Horner score with Celine singing and not shed a tear?

The Sounds of Silence(Simon and Garfunkel).........a good song to listen to when you are feeling glum.

The End( The Doors)..........My all time favorite doors song. It is not only the opening to one of AFIs top 100 films of all time, it is a very dark,somber and melodic tune of its time. Psychadelic!!!!!

Toby Keith.......They're all bad!!!

Broken Wings(Mister, Mister).......Okay the 80's conjures up fun times and as people reminisce they think the 80's had good music. If you really reflect, it is the memories that most times are good, not the music. If you were to listen to this song choice today, it does not sound dated and is not worthy of being voted the worst.

You're the Inspiration(Chicago).......Corny Lyrics but totally listenable.

Illegal Alien(Phil Collins).......This song is humorous and the video is great.

Kokomo(Beach Boys)......A catchy tune from a cute flick that had both the late Carl Wilson ,cousin Mike Love and the rest of the boys carry on without deceased brother Dennis and the abscence of founding member, Brian.

Ebony and Ivory(Paul McCartney)......Like my previous mention of the the earlier Beatles tune the worst Paul Mccartney song is better than most crap today.

The Heart Of Rock & Roll(Huey Lewis and The News)..........and the rest of the songs off the "Sports" album are one of the greatest LPs of our time.

Our choice for worst songs:

  • Wind beneath my wings(Bette Middler)
  • I swear by?????
  • Friend in low places (Garth Brooks)
  • Could have been so beautiful(Tiffany)
  • Muskrat Love ( America).......this version is worse than Captain and Tenille.
  • Abracadabra (Steve Miller)
  • Midnight at the some chick
  • The Morning after by????


I'm still shocked that two people as talented as Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder could produce such crap. There's no way you can defend that one. I'm not sure how you defend "Kokomo" either. C'mon, they had John Stamos on drums for heaven's sake. John freakin' Stamos.

I do agree that they were awfully harsh on "The Sounds of Silence" and "Broken Wings" does bring us back to a simpler decade when our war was cold, Nancy had us just saying no and Steve Guttenberg was a box office draw.

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Blender's 50 Worst Songs Ever

musicBlender has listed the 50 worst songs ever. It's fun to agree with lists like this, but it's even more fun to disagree. Below are seven songs I enjoy that made Blender's list.

  • R.E.M. - Shiny Happy People - C'mon Blender, is this one really so bad? True, it's not the best R.E.M. song out there, but even their crap is better than a worst fifty list.
  • Crash Test Dummies - Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm - Perhaps it's my Canadian bias at play here, but I don't mind this song. Of course, when I hear it, I usually envision Conan singing it.
  • The Doors - The End - I have two words for Blender: Apocalypse Now.
  • Corey Hart - Sunglasses At Night - Again, my Canadian bias is outraged that this song made the list. Even worse, they call Hart a one hit wonder. Not on this side of the border!
  • Spin Doctors - Two Princes - Who didn't like this tune? It was huge during my final year of high school. Good times, good times...
  • 4 Non Blondes - What’s Up? - Dare I say this isn't just a decent song but a great song. Sing it with me people, and I SING hey-YEAH-YEA-EAH, EAH HEY YEA YEA...
  • Wang Chung - Everybody Have Fun Tonight - Do I really need to explain why I like this song. Frasier will take it from here. "I was listening to a rock and roll station on the way over here, and I think the lyrics to one of those tribal chants applies to this evening: 'Everybody. Have fun tonight. Everybody. Wang Chung tonight.'"

I'm okay with the other 43 selections. What say you?

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-Two

PuckIn any draft, somebody has to go first. In our pool, we each pull numbers out of a hat. If you end up picking last, as I did, that's just the way it goes. I like to think drafting first isn't that bit of an advantage, but crunching the numbers thus far suggests otherwise.

The current top four in the pool were also the first four to draft. I'm not using that as an excuse because I drafted last. Draw your own conclusions.

For the current standings, visit

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Sure-Fire Yellow Jacket Trap?

waspLast summer was just brutal for wasps in our neighbourhood. Not just those pesky white Anglo-Saxon Protestants but also those annoying insects who showed up for every BBQ just to piss me off.

I'm always on the look out for a solution to this problem and I'm intrigued by this one. It's safe, non-toxic and just crazy enough to work. If things are bad again this summer, I'm going to give it a try. I'll let you know how it goes.

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Oh Vicki, You're So Fine...

victoriaShe's done it again. She died in 1901 after a reign of more than sixty-three years but she continues to bring delight to Canadians over 100 years later. Every year on this day I'm thankful for the holiday but upset it's in honour of a Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.

In 2003 I suggested we re-brand Monday's holiday Terry Fox day, or Wayne Gretzky day or John Candy day or even Don Cherry Day. In 2004 I wanted to honour Dave Andreychuk. In 2005 I called it Chuck Cadman Day. Today, I'm not celebrating Victoria Day, I'm celebrating Captain Nichola Goddard Day.

Goddard, 26, died Wednesday while fighting Taliban insurgents west of Kandahar, Afghanistan. She is the first Canadian female combat soldier to die in action since World War II. She was the 16th Canadian soldier to die in Afghanistan since 2002.

Whether we should be there or not is another entry unto itself. Regardless, Goddard and many other brave Canadians like her are in Afghanistan right now risking their lives, fighting on our behalf. There is nothing more courageous. Vicky can step aside again this year. This day is in honour of Nichola Goddard and those who sacrifice all.

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Three More Theatres Die

thumbsdownThis weekend I paid tribute to the old Runnymede Theatre which is no longer a theatre. I lamented that the days of smaller, charming neighbourhood movie theatres are long gone. Today, another nail was hammered into that coffin when it was announced three of Toronto's repertory cinemas will close at the end of June.

The Revue, the Royal and the Kingsway are the three shutting down. Steve, didn't we just see "Meet The Parents" at the Kingsway? I hated the flick, but loved that shitty theatre.

Enjoy your Googolplexes kids. You win.

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The Monday Shuffle

iTunesEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in iTunes and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today with a personal story about one of them.

  1. Something's Got To Give - Beastie Boys
  2. Guinnevere - Crosby, Stills & Nash
  3. When World's Collide - Powerman 5000
  4. That Lucky Old Sun - Ray Charles
  5. She's Like Heroin - System Of A Down
  6. Speed Of Sound - Coldplay
  7. About A Girl - Nirvana
  8. English Fire - Bush
  9. My Way - Limp Bizkit
  10. Higher Learning - Patti Smith

The other day a bunch of us guys took Steve to Pizza Hut. If there's a better way to send a guy into marriage, I can't think of it. We began playing a game in which one of us would name a band or solo artist and then we'd one by one name our favourite song from that band or artist. Eventually, we got to Nirvana.

Many of us were torn. It's difficult to come up with a favourite song for an act like Nirvana. Someone said "All Apologies", another said "Lithium" and yet another said "Scentless Apprentice". I ended up going with "Lithium", but I threw "About A Girl" on the table as one of many solid alternatives. "About A Girl" appeared on Bleach, but it really took off after it appeared on Unplugged in New York. Hearing it unplugged got me spinning the Bleach version again and gave me a far greater appreciation for the tune.

Around the tenth anniversary of Kurt Cobain's death I took a crack at listing my five favourite Nirvana tunes as a Friday Five. At the time I had Lithium, All Apologies, Pennyroyal Tea, Sliver and Rape Me. I'll bet I could do that daily and never list the same five twice.

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty-One

PuckLooking back on that fateful day we drafted our players, nobody wanted to touch the Oilers. Steve was first to dive in, making his ninth pick of ten Ryan Smyth. Three others followed with their final selection, but that was it. Only four Oilers were drafted by four different poolies. We sure know how to pick 'em!

For the current standings, visit

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Alex Gonzalez Retires

mlbIn the mid 90s, Alex Gonzalez was touted as a can't miss prospect for the Blue Jays. Although not a great batter, he was a stellar defensive shortstop who gave us eight promising years. In 2001 he hit .253 with 17 homers, 76 RBIs and stole 18 bases. He also frequented the Blockbuster employing my brother at the time securing him a spot in the Boon hall of fame.

Today, Alex Gonzalez retired after 13 seasons in the majors. His puny .111 average most likely the deciding factor in this sudden decision. He'll be remembered around here for his great glove and poor taste in movies.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumFreddie Garrity was 69. He was the lead singer of the 1960s pop band Freddie and the Dreamers who hit the top of the charts with the 1965 hit "I'm Telling You Now".

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My Quote of the Week

Quotes"Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies."
      - Aristotle

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirty

PuckRyan still trails Marc by nine points. Marc has two Hurricanes while Ryan a couple of high scoring Sabres, a high scoring Oiler and a low scoring Hurricane. This is gonna be close!

For the current standings, visit

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The Runnymede Theatre

rewindToday's entry on Paved mentioned the Chapters store on Bloor near Runnymede. I remember the local controversy when that Chapters was being built because it was assuming the location held by the much beloved Runnymede Theatre. Just thinking about the old Runnymede Theatre brings back a tonne of memories.

Growing up in West Toronto, our two prime theatres were the Humber Odeon at Jane and Bloor and the Runnymede Theatre at Runnymede and Bloor. Just about every movie I saw was at one of the two. At the Runnymede Theatre I remember getting creeped out by "Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan", thoroughly entertained by "Beetle Juice" and "Lethal Weapon" and fairly disappointed by "Poltergeist III". It was a fantastic little theatre with a stunning interior the likes of which I never saw in any other theatre. It was a sad day when it shut down for good.

It's tough to find a good picture of the theatre before it became a Chapters. Here's one taken right after it closed and before construction on the new Chapters began. Here's a shot I took of how it looks now. They actually did a really good job maintaining the historical exterior. They did an amazing job keeping the great old interior as well, which you can see nicely in this shot and this one.

The days of smaller, charming neighbourhood movie theatres are long gone. All my favourites have shut down, the Runnymede, the Humber and the Uptown. It's really too bad, all we're left with are the memories.

Runnymede Chapters

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Guest Blog Entry

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

Barry Bonds equalled Babe Ruth's record for home runs today - but who really cares. His accomplishment is shrouded

Barry is also an AHOLE towards fans & the media which is why a lot of BBall folk don't take this tying Babe's record with respect.

Babe will always be #2 & Hammerin Hank # 1 in home runs. Until Ken Griffey Jr.


I was going to address the whole Bond thing as soon as he hit 715. When he hit #661 to pass Mays, I acknowledged two facts few would disagree with. He's an asshole and he might just be the best damn player to play the game. Unfortunately, he's not only an asshole, but he's a cheater too. I'm okay with him being an asshole, I'm not okay with him taking the clear or the cream.

The fact of the matter is that the Babe will soon be #3, just like the number he wore throughout his career. Bonds will soon be #2 and Hank Aaron will remain the top dog with his 755. Here's hoping Bonds doesn't hit another 41.

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Team America: World Police

A Movie ReelTeam America: World Police: 7.5 out of 10.

It's funny, but I've never really taken to "South Park". I've probably only seen a few complete episodes in my life and I've never felt compelled to ensure I see more. I find this funny because I absolutely loved "South Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut" and I found "Team America: World Police" hilarious.

Some of it is too good to be true. There's a sex scene in this film that's just priceless. It's so graphic and over the top it could only be shot with marionettes. Shockingly, that scene is probably why this film was rated R when it hit theatres. They're puppets for goodness sake!

I actually added the soundtrack to my collection last month and I thought it was pretty funny then. Suddenly it all makes so much more sense. Gary Johnston, the actor that is recruited by Team America to save the world from terrorism, makes a great speech at the end of the flim during the Peace Ceremony hosted by Kim Jong Il. There are plenty of swears, but if you think you can handle it, I've pasted it below.

We're dicks! We're reckless, arrogant, stupid dicks. And the Film Actors Guild are pussies. And Kim Jong Il is an asshole. Pussies don't like dicks, because pussies get fucked by dicks. But dicks also fuck assholes: assholes that just want to shit on everything. Pussies may think they can deal with assholes their way. But the only thing that can fuck an asshole is a dick, with some balls. The problem with dicks is: they fuck too much or fuck when it isn't appropriate - and it takes a pussy to show them that. But sometimes, pussies can be so full of shit that they become assholes themselves... because pussies are an inch and half away from ass holes. I don't know much about this crazy, crazy world, but I do know this: If you don't let us fuck this asshole, we're going to have our dicks and pussies all covered in shit!

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Viewing Conflict

hockeycanadaUs hockey fans have a conflict this afternoon. At 1:00 pm TSN is airing Carolina vs. Buffalo. That's a no-brainer, they have to air the NHL playoffs live, but they have the rights to the IIHF Semifinal between Canada and Sweden at the same time. They plan to air that game on tape at 4:30 pm, but I want to flip between both games live. What's a guy like me to do?

This table from suggests the Canada ~ Sweden game will air live on alternate channels. I'm a Rogers digital subscriber, so I should be able to see it on channels 1, 82 and 85.

Check out that table for Bell ExpressVu, Star Choice and Rogers Cable analog alternative stations. Go Canada Go!

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Life Wasted Released Under Creative Commons License

pjEven if I hated Pearl Jam's music, I'd love the band. You can't deny the fact these guys get what it means to be a fan better than any other rock outfit on the planet. There was the free download of World Wide Suicide, the high quality DRM-free official bootlegs, bonuses for fans who buy early, and the best fan club going.

I just read that the new music video for Pearl Jam's "Life Wasted" was released yesterday under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-NoDerivs license, so that people anywhere can legally copy, distribute, and share the clip. If you scroll to the bottom of this page you'll see that all content on my site is licensed under a Creative Commons License. A Pearl Jam video is news in itself for being their first video since "Do The Evolution" in 1998 but to release it like this, so damn fan friendly. Unbelievable.

Their new video for "Life Wasted", an awesome new song I heard live twice last week, can be seen here in Google Video.


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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-Nine

PuckAt this point in the season, so much is about momentum. Edmonton rolled right into round three and took game on from the Ducks who had quite a bit of time off. I really like the Oil in this series. Yes, I now call them the Oil. Oilers is so 80s!

For the current standings, visit

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

Homer"Hey, what's the big deal about going to some building every Sunday? I mean, isn't God everywhere?"

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Finally, a MeFi FPP

santaThe title of this entry is a little deceiving. It wasn't I but Zanta who received a front page post on MetaFilter earlier today. The second link of this FPP is to a Flickr search for Zanta and the first picture you see (as of this moment) was taken by yours truly. To review, the top of the page referenced in the second link of a MeFi FPP belongs to me. That's gotta be less than six degrees of separation.

Zanta, as you may recall, was the subject of an entry I wrote earlier in the year. It was then that I learned of my brother's fondness for the chap. Hell, he practically participated in our annual playoff pool which was held in his apartment building.

Toronto's little secret is out of the bag, or sack, if you will. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!

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Link: 10 Things I Hate About Commandments

Link10 Things I Hate About Commandments - Imagine "The Ten Commandments" as a teen comedy. Now, imagine the trailer. This is damn funny, I swear.

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite movies directed by Ron Howard

  1. A Beautiful Mind
  2. Apollo 13
  3. Cocoon
  4. Splash
  5. Ransom

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Ricky Williams An Argo?

argosIf you believe this article on, Ricky Williams could very well be a Toronto Argonaut as soon as Monday. Apparently, the Miami Dolphins are set to give the suspended running back permission to sign a one-year deal with the Argos on the understanding that he would be released at the end of the season and return to the NFL club.

This is very cool. When was the last time a top-tier NFL star played in the CFL during his prime? In the early 90s we signed Rocket Ismail, but he came straight from Notre Dame and was unproven. Williams is 29 years old and from 2000 throgh 2003 he rushed for over 1000 yards a season, peaking at 1853 in 2002. This guy is good and I'd love to see him in Toronto. Sure he enjoys the wacky tobaccy, but he seems to be an intelligent, deep-thinker with an interesting and refreshing perspective on things. I suspect he and Pinball will hit it off.

While we're discussing great NFL running backs, here's a great montage of highlights from the best.


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Thunder Songs

lightningIt's been raining all week. It rained yesterday, it rained today and it will rain tomorrow. As seen on Breakfast Television, I've already covered the "rain" songs in my collection. Tonight I'm checking out "thunder" songs.

  • Thunderstruck - AC~DC
  • Thundering Hearts - John Mellencamp
  • Thunder Road - Bruce Springsteen
  • Thunder Kiss '65 - White Zombie
  • The Thunder Rolls - Garth Brooks
  • Dogs and Thunder - Weeping Tile

If this keeps up all weekend, we'll have to visit "lightning" songs. Lucky you.

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Speak Up Or Forever Hold Your Peace

cdI just remembered that there's more to providing music for a wedding than assembling a list of 100 appropriate but cool tunes. I've actually got to burn these tunes on disc to play at Steve's wedding that's fast approaching.

I'm going to burn the disc Tuesday with the final list of 100 wedding songs. That means you still have time to check out the current 100 and tell me what you feel is missing or what you feel does not belong. You know I appreciate it. I want the final playlist to be perfect.

I'll leave you all to your homework assignment with a quick note to the person who keeps requesting Rick Astley's "Together Forever". Yes, I agree it's so uncool it's practically cool, but I also believe it's so uncool that it surpasses actual coolness and loops right back to uncoolness.

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The Great Stats Debate

digitalOn the heels of The Great Female Walk Debate comes The Great Stats Debate. In previous Raging Storm seasons, we've kept offensive statistics. Here's the 2005 page and the 2004 page as examples.

This season, we're debating whether to continue this practice. Some believe it puts too much pressure on the batter while others think it creates a fun competitive atmosphere. Personally, I'm on the fence. For starters, it's extra work for me to maintain the stats. As for benefits, I'm not sure there are any except that those with the bigger stats can back up their arrogance with metrics. Stats don't measure intangibles like heart, effort and camaraderie. They're just cold numbers in an all too cold world.

The stats were emailed to me this morning but I haven't posted them on our page. This debate is incomplete!

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumDan Ross was 49. He set the record for most Super Bowl receptions with the Cincinnati Bengals in 1982.

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-Seven

PuckHow many of you predicted last fall that the final four would consist of Buffalo, Carolina, Anaheim and Edmonton? If you just raised your hand and shouted "me!", you're a damn liar. Lies make baby Jesus cry, please make that the last lie you ever tell.

I'm rooting for a Buffalo~Edmonton final, although I have no ill-will towards the other two teams. I'd like Edmonton to return to the final for obvious reasons and watching the Sabres~Sens series endeared me to our QEW brothers.

For the current standings, visit

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Link: Milinkito :: El que tuvo, YouTube : 'Los Ochenta'

LinkMilinkito :: El que tuvo, YouTube : 'Los Ochenta' - Don't understand that title? That's okay, neither do I. But I do know this web page has links to dozens and dozens of 80s music videos. Many of these take me back, like XTC's "Dear God", Love And Rockets' "So Alive", Duran Duran's "Wild Boys" and Danzig's "Mother".

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Raging Storm 8, Zep 7

baseballAt 4:00 pm, it didn't look good for tonight's game. It was pouring, there was lightning in the air and the weather forecast wasn't promising. As I approached the ball park near Derry Road and Goreway it was as if the clouds parted for us. The rain was gone, there was no lightning in the air and we had our first ball game of the season to play.

It was a solid win against a strong opponent. Things were tied up in the bottom of the seventh when Greg Fay hit his second home run of the game to secure the victory. The perfect season continues...

For more on Raging Storm, visit

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Weekly MP3: Hunger Strike

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.

Temple Of The Dog - Hunger Strike
When Mother Love Bone singer Andrew Wood died of a heroin overdose on March 19, 1990, Soundgarden's Chris Cornell started Temple of the Dog. Temple of the Dog was essentially members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden and the hit single from their 1991 album was "Hunger Strike", a great Cornell and Eddie Vedder duet. Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament rose from the ashes of Mother Love Bone to join Vedder and Mike McCready. The rest, is history.

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It's Okay To Be Grey

thumbsupI'm well on my way to becoming a silver fox. Today's Toronto Star article entitled "Grey Matters' remarks upon how men going grey prematurely have stopped fighting Mother Nature. Their prime examples are Anderson Cooper and American Idol contestant Taylor Hicks who both went quite grey quite young and didn't attempt to cover it up. In addition to Cooper and Hicks, celebrities who have gone grey early are few and far between. There's Steve Martin, Phil Donahue, Michael McDonald and, my favourite example, Richard Gere. I emphasize.

I started going grey when I was about 21 years old and I've had a couple of serious grey patches for years now. The front looks as if I bumped into a white wall that had just been painted. I've never considered dying my hair and have chosen to embrace the demise of my melanin. I'd rather be greying than balding any day of the week.

The biggest annoyance about grey hair is that such hair loses its fine texture and becomes quite coarse. They stop cooperating with the "normal" hair and sort of do as they please. We can learn a lot from them.

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The Waterfront Revitalization

skylineThe Waterfront Revitalization Corp. has unveiled the top five redesign concepts for a Toronto waterfront that would be more accessible to residents and visitors. Construction of the winning design is set to begin in the fall.

I've spent the past couple of days working at 1 Yonge Street and to get to the office I've been walking through BCE Place where I've been checking out the designs that are on display. I'm sort of digging the entry from West 8 & du Toit Allsopp Hillier, but I don't think any of the five are quite right for this purpose. West 8 & du Toit Allsopp Hillier plans to combine the primary waterfront with a floating waterfront along with a boulevard and slip-ends. It's a nice start, but far from a complete thought.

This thing has to rock. I think we can do better. I know we deserve better.

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My Flesh and Blood

A Movie ReelMy Flesh and Blood: 8.5 out of 10.

I caught part of this documentary late last year but only watched it in its entirety this year. Susan Tom is the mother of 11 adopted special needs children and we're given a peak at a year in their life.

I encourage everyone to watch this doc for instant perspective. This family is incredible. It's heart wrenching and totally fulfilling all at once.

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Link: TV Cream Themes

LinkTV Cream Themes - Hot damn, a whole bunch of TV show theme songs in MP3 format. Go get 'em!

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That's It For Dougie

nflDeciding to completely ignore my plea, Doug Flutie has called it a career. They list him at 5-foot-10, but there's no way he's that tall. 5-feet-8 would probably be closer to the truth. What he lacked in stature he more than made up for in heart. The highlights break nicely into three categories.

The Magic Flutie
In 1984, at the Orange Bowl, his Hail Mary pass to Gerry Phelan won it for Boston College. He won the Heisman that year, and was already a legend.

O Canada!
Here in Canada, Flutie became an honourary Canuck when he played eight years for the BC Lions, Calgary Stampeders and Toronto Argonauts. It was only eight years, but he made the most of it, winning the league's outstanding player award six times and capturing three Grey Cup rings. He didn't just win three Grey Cups, he won three Grey Cup MVP awards.

The Bill
In 1998, Flutie signed with my favourite NFL team, the Buffalo Bills. During that first season, he went 8-3 as a starter and followed that up by going 10-5 in 1999. All Flutie did was win, but Wade Phillips made the call that took my love for NFL football and all but destroyed it. He started Rob Johnson ahead of Flutie for the opening round playoff game against the Tennessee Titans. I've written in the past about how this Johnson over Flutie decision affected me. Rob Johnson looked the part but Doug Flutie was the part. Anyone who chooses to cut Flutie and go with Johnson as their starter has absolutley no soul, brains or a snowball's chance in hell of winning anything. History has proven me right.

Farewell, Dougie.

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-Four

PuckWe're down to five teams vying for Lord Stanley's cup. The poolie with the most players remaining is Alexi who has six, but he's in fourth and will most likely finish out of the money. Should Edmonton advance, Marc will be left with a couple of Hurricanes while Ryan will have a couple of Sabres, a Hurricane and Chris Pronger. A Buffalo ~ Edmonton final would most certainly give Ryan a come back victory.

Conversely, should Anaheim go to the cup and Scott Niedermayer score dozens and dozens of unassisted goals, I could win it all.

For the current standings, visit

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Guest Blog

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

Mother's day for me is a time to reflect what my Mom did as I grew up with 4 other kids. Being the oldest & the only son I was very close to her especially after she suffered a stroke in 1987 & was in wheelchair with limited capabilities. It was at that time I realized she needed me much like I needed her as I grew up. Dad was there for different reasons. He passed away in 1991 & I took control of my mother's well being.

Son's seem to be closer to their Mothers than their Fathers. My twins are much closer to their mother than me & I can understand why. Fathers are there for support but Mom's are there for everything else.

Mom passed away in Feb/05 & I still think of her. Mom I miss you - Happy Mothers Day from all of us.

      twins from bolton

I agree. Last Mother's Day I wrote "mothers have the most important job in the world. I'm not trying to slight fathers, as we're playing a vital role too, but mothers are at the top."

It's not fair, but it's reality.

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James' First Beer

beerYesterday we celebrated Mother's Day for my mom and today we're celebrating Mother's Day for my wife. James is only four years old, but on Saturday he enjoyed his first beer.

Ok, it wasn't really beer, but it sure looked like beer. His apple juice was the perfect colour and even had some head on it. When it was first served to him, I was sure they had made a mistake and had given James whatever was on tap. Here's a picture of James enjoying his first alcoholic beverage.

If a four year old can't enjoy a beer at 1:00 in the afternoon, the terrorists have already won.

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Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mothers DayHave you ever noticed how many songs guys write about their moms? Ozzy sings about mama, 2Pac and Kanye West rap about mama and even Adam Sandler urges us to do it for your mama. There's a reason mother~child themes are so prevalent in the arts. Everyone has a mama.

I have a mother I love very much and I want to wish her a very happy Mother's Day. My two angels have a mother they love very much and I want to wish her a very happy Mother's Day. My nephew has a mother he loves very much and I want to wish her a very happy Mother's Day. Hell, if you're a mother, Happy Mother's Day!

For my mother, a song that says it all:

When I find myself in times of trouble, mother Mary comes to me,
speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
And in my hour of darkness she is standing right in front of me,
speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

And when the broken hearted people living in the world agree,
there will be an answer, let it be.
For though they may be parted there is still a chance that they will see,
there will be an answer. let it be.

Let it be, let it be...

And when the night is cloudy, there is still a light, that shines on me,
shine until tomorrow, let it be.
I wake up to the sound of music, mother Mary comes to me,
speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be...

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-Three

PuckThere are rumours on the internets that suggest Canadian hockey fans always root for the other Canadian teams in the playoffs if their team is eliminated. I'm a Leafs fan through and through, and I assure you this isn't true. I may adopt a team from the west for the playoffs, because they're Canadian based, but I will never, ever root for the Ottawa Senators or Montreal Canadiens.

I know Montreal is our historic rival, but over the past five or six years I've developed such a hate on for Ottawa that it has eclipsed my hate on for Montreal. The sweetest playoff victories over the past five seasons have been over the Sens, and there have been many. This season, I lived precariously through the Sabres and cheered loud and proud when Jason Pominville made Daniel Alfredsson look like a pylon, caught Wade Redden napping and beat Ray Emery to send the Sens to the golf course. Hell, yeah.

For the current standings, visit

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My Quote of the Week

Quotes"A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts."
      - Washington Irving

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The Great Mighty Machines Racket

teddybearWe can talk about the great shaving racket, but we should really be talking about the great Mighty Machines racket. "Mighty Machines" is a show my kids watch on Treehouse TV. It's the biggest scam going. They basically film construction crews at work, sanitary engineers collecting garbage, buses stopping at a bus stop, airplanes landing or whatever, throw a simple score over top and add a narrator. They package these things up under the title "Mighty Machines" and market it as kids entertainment, on TV, DVD, VHS or whatever.

Total cost of production? There's at least one camera involved, so you have to have a camera, tape and someone who knows how to work it. Then, there's a little editing involved and that voice over guy who tells you what the mighty machines are doing. That's about it. It has to be the least expensive show to prouduce in the history of television, at least after that yuletide log thing they show on Christmas morning in some markets.

They film "Mighty Machines" in Toronto, so if you see some guy holding a video camera while city workers repair a water mane, you're actually watching children's programming at its finest. Sneak on camera and you'll be on right after "Franklin".

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Hip Royalty

tragicallyhipOn May 2-4, The Tragically Hip will be honoured royally. The Royal Conservatory of Music, that big building on Bloor Street near St. George, is honouring the band at a Royal Occasion gala. "We’re proud to recognize the achievements of The Tragically Hip, a quintessentially Canadian band whose music resonates with millions of fans," said Peter Simon, president of The Royal Conservatory of Music.

Exactly one month later, I'll be seeing The Hip for the ninth time. I've been charting the setlists and tracking the song statistics on my Tragically Hip page. They've played "At The Hundredth Meridian", "Grace, Too", "New Orleans Is Sinking" and "Poets" every time I've seen them live, thus far.

Simon's right, they are a quintessential Canadian band and they are admired by millions. It's nice to see them get their due.

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New Pictures

New PicturesI've posted four new pictures in Pictures. These are literally all over the map, from NYC to the ACC and a cute ice cream eater to top things off.

I realize the pictures page had reverted to an earlier date. I've fixed this. It seems I've discovered a rather annoying limitation with Movable Type regarding the length of templates. I am absolved of all responsibility.

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-Two

PuckRyan made a little move yesterday, chomping into Marc's lead like it was hot fresh pizza after a night of grandeur. Marc's lead is down to a measly five points after Ekman and Pronger put points on the board. If Buffalo wins tonight, it shouldn't be too difficult for Ryan to out-point Marc the rest of the way.

For the current standings, visit

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

Homer"Apu, you got any Skittle Brau? Never mind, just give me some Duff and a pack of Skittles."

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Season 8 Release Date

HomerSeason 8 of "The Simpsons" will be available August 15. This is the season that brought us "You Only Move Twice", "Simpsoncalifragilisticexpiala(Annoyed Grunt)cious", "The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase" and "Homer's Enemy".

Since the only DVDs I collect are seasons of "The Simpsons", I'm certain this one will find its way into my collection.

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The Great SLS X-Post Experiment

slsHenry David Thoreau was on to something when he said "simplify". Actually, he said it twice and it would have been more economical had he said it but once. Why double the effort if you don't have to?

The same principles can be applied to SLS. We started the SLS blog a couple of years ago, but rarely do Mark or I actually write an entry. Having said that, I frequently write SLS-related entries on my personal blog. What if, when I write an SLS themed entry on my personal site, it automatically showed up on the SLS blog? That's the kind of simplification HDT was talking about!

And so begins the great SLS cross posting experiment. If successful, this entry will appear simultaneously on both my personal site and Smells Like Sour. What an age we live in.

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Link: I Want To Believe Generator

LinkI Want To Believe Generator - If you watched The X-Files, you'll enjoy this.

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite songs by Great Big Sea

  1. Run Runaway
  2. Mari-Mac
  3. Drunken Sailor
  4. Ordinary Day
  5. When I'm Up (I Can't Get Down)

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The Paul Maurice Era Begins

leafsLet the Paul Maurice era in Toronto begin. Sure, it technically began when he was hired to coach the Toronto Marlies last season, but now he's been promoted to coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Paul Maurice era begins now.

It's hard to believe he's still in his 30s. Prior to joining the Marlies he coached the Carolina Hurricanes for over eight seasons, guiding them to the Stanley Cup final in 2002. The players love playing for him and I believe this is the right move for our club.

Now Fergie has to prove his worth and upgrade the personnel that will play for Maurice next season. I'd start with Patrik Elias, the re-signing of Bryan McCabe, another solid blueliner, a top notch goalie...

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty-One

PuckThe Sens live to play another day but the Avs are down and out. That means Enzo wins the annual prize for being the first poolie to have all ten players eliminated. Contratulations Enzo!

For the current standings, visit

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Ok Blue Jays, Let's Play Ball!

bluejaysI'm still trying to hunt down a good MP3 of Gord Downie's "Hallelujah", but there is another song on my hit list. I'd absolutely love a digital version of our old Blue Jays song "Ok Blue Jays Let's Play Ball".

I have such fantastic memories of that stupid song. I used one horrendous line as my quote of the week back in September 2004. I attended many games at Exhibition Stadium and we'd always sing our song. I believe they still sing a small part of the song during the seventh inning stretch (I'll confirm this next month), but I don't think the full version has been sung in years. I miss it.

If you can help me secure this important part of my childhood and early Blue Jays history, wonderful karma will be yours to wallow in for all eternity.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumFloyd Patterson was 71. He was a boxer who became the first two-time heavyweight champion of the world.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

Awesome Pearljam show yesterday, even more awesome then first,(and that was pretty awesome!). The set list was fantastic and the crowd was louder and more energetic. The band replaced some of the slower new songs like Inside Job and Come Back with rock'n songs like Go, Hail Hail, Rearviewmirror and State of Love and Trust. I was also cool to hear live rarities like Whipping and You Are. Crazy Mary and Indiffernce on the second encore sealed the deal ... best Toronto show ever!


I agree. That was the best Pearl Jam show I've been to in Toronto. I probably enjoyed the 1998 Barrie show a little more, but that's probably because I prefer my concerts outside.

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Hail Hail Pearl Jam

Pearl JamLast night, I attended the second of two Pearl Jam concerts at the Air Canada Centre. This time, I was seated to the right of the stage, on the Stone Gossard side, 16 rows ups. The first show was great, this show was spectacular.

The Toronto Sun review of the first show said "it may very well go down in history as one of the greatest live performances to ever hit this city." It was a great live performance, no doubt about it, but the show that deserves to go down in history as one of the greatest live performances to ever hit this city occurred last night. My Morning Jacket was even better and the crowd definitely had greater energy, even managing to produce a successful wave at the ACC before Pearl Jam hit the stage shortly before 9. Hearing many of the new songs a second time live helped as they blended perfectly with the older staples. Eddie was on fire, seeming far more comfy and pleased with this show than he was on Tuesday night.

There were several highlights. This is the third time I've seen them open with "Release" and it's ideal for setting the mood. The new songs killed, with "Marker In The Sand" proving to be an instant classic. An exceptional "I Got Shit" was followed up with a surprise declaration that it's just a reworking of Neil Young's "Cinnamon Girl". Vedder even proved his point with a brief demonstration and comparison of the two choruses. Keeping with tradition, the crowd carried a stunning "Better Man", full of piercing emotion. Both encores blew the roof off the building as we were beaten into submission by Big Fish's "Man Of The Hour", "State of Love and Trust", "Do The Evolution", "Alive", "Crazy Mary" and more. As with their previous two Toronto shows, they finished up with a Neil Young cover and, the perfect closer, "Yellow Ledbetter". This time, they went with Neil's "Fuckin' Up" and cracked that it's Dubya's song. For the complete setlist, visit my new and improved Pearl Jam page where I'm now maintaining my personal song statistics. There you'll learn that "Even Flow", "Better Man", "Corduroy" and "Do The Evolution" have been played at all six Pearl Jam concerts I've attended.

At one point, Eddie serenaded us, asking Toronto to come along with them as they continue their tour. It seemed spontaneous and genuine. 20,000 people were one last night, and I'm so glad I was part of the greater good. This was a show I will never forget.

I know that I was born and I know that I'll die. The in between is mine.

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Playoff Pool: Day Twenty

PuckIn the second round this year, there are only two teams I'm rooting for. I'd like to see the Oil advance, to represent the mother country, and I'd like to see Buffalo stomp the Senators. I wish Ottawa nothing but playoff failure. I can't stand 'em.

During the Pearl Jam concert last night, Ryan used his cell phone to check the scores. He reported a 2-1 Sabre victory in regulation. This made an amazing night even better, but it was a false report. On the drive home we realized the game actually went into overtime. Had Ottawa prevailed in OT, I'd be suing my bro for false hope.

For the current standings, visit

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A Nicely Tied Bow

edgefestLast month I wrote about how odd it is that Our Lady Peace is skipping Toronto on their cross Canada tour. Then, earlier this month, I complained about the crappy Edgefest line-up before I realized they're calling it Edgefest II and hadn't announced Edgefest 1 yet.

It turns out Our Lady Peace, or OLP as the kiddies call them, are coming to Toronto. They're going to headline Edgefest. It all comes together nicely, doesn't it?

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Weekly MP3: The Good That Won't Come Out

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.

Rilo Kiley - The Good That Won't Come Out
As promised, here's a song I've been digging for over a year now. Whattyathink?

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Pearl Jam at the ACC

Pearl JamLast night, I attended the Pearl Jam concert at the Air Canada Centre. It was the first of two back-to-back shows. I was seated to the left of the stage, on the Mike McCready side, 19 rows ups. Here are my thoughts on yet another great show.

My Morning Jacket - During the last Toronto Pearl Jam concert, Ed came out at 19:30 for an acoustic number before the opening band hit the stage. We were ready at 19:30 for a repeat performance, but it was not to be. Instead, we jumped right into My Morning Jacket, an outfit from Kentucky that wasn't half bad. They were part Lynyrd Skynyrd and part The Who with a little Rush thrown in the mix to fulfill Cancon requirements. I wasn't familiar with My Morning Jacket before their set last night, but I enjoyed their performance. Needless to say, my expectations weren't particularly high and I wasn't there to see My Morning Jacket.

The Show - This tour is in support of Pearl Jam's new album, ingeniously titled Pearl Jam. It was a very fresh start with four new songs to kick things off. There were seven new songs in total, with highlights being the great opener "Severed Hand" and the sweet as hell balled "Come Back", played during the first encore. In addition to the new stuff, we were blessed with plenty of the concert staples we've come to expect. You'll find the complete setlist on my Pearl Jam page. "Betterman" was electric, "Courdoroy" was it's typical energetic self, "Do The Evolution" was head-banging and "Porch" started acoustic before exploding into pure mania.

The New Tradition - Eddie is well aware it's our other national anthem, so he once again blessed the crowd with "Rocking in the Free World", Neil Young's classic rocker. Bono wasn't there to join him like last time, but it was full of energy and the perfect next-to-last tune on a great night. The last tune, as is to be expected, was "Yellow Ledbetter".

It seems this is becoming the new Toronto tradition with Pearl Jam. "Rocking in the Free World" followed by the closing "Yellow Ledbetter", both with the house lights on and everyone singling along at the top of their lungs in sweet, sweet approval.

Here are pictures I took of the show. I can't wait to do it all again tonight.

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Playoff Pool: Day Nineteen

PuckJoffrey Lupul had one of those nights last night, scoring all four goals in the big Ducks win. Alexi has him in the pool and now looks poised to assume third place overall. If Lupul keeps up this torrid pace, scoring four every game for the remainder of the playoffs, Alexi could come all the way back and finish first.

Stranger things have happened. Case in point, a Canadian has won the NBA MVP award two years in a row. Do you believe in miracles?

For the current standings, visit

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Pearl Jam 101

pearljamPearl Jam's tour kicks off tonight here in Toronto. I'll be there and I'll return tomorrow for show #2. Pearl Jam is enlightened enough to have a progressive policy regarding cameras, so I'll try and snap some pix.

Before I head on down to the ACC, it's time for Pearl Jam 101. Here are the links to get you started.

Tonight is my fifth time seeing Pearl Jam live. The band I've seen most often is The Tragically Hip who I'll be seeing for the ninth time in June. I'm already spinning Vitalogy, getting ready for Eddie's acoustic number at 7:30 before My Morning Jacket hits the stage.


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musicI knew Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" was heavily covered, but I had no idea how many artists have recorded the gem. This thorough list of Cohen songs covered by other artists reveals it's been covered 82 times. It's not even the most covered Cohen song. "Suzanne" has been done 146 times and "Bird on a Wire" 96 times.

It's a thorough list, but incomplete. It doesn't reference Gord Downie's version I wrote extensively about when I reviewed "Saint Ralph". Speaking of which, rarely a day goes by that I don't hear from someone who's scouring the web for information on how to secure a copy of Downie's "Hallelujah". I'm not alone, people all over the continent are watching 'Saint Ralph" and wanting to again hear that song. I now have agreements with dozens of people that if any of us comes across an MP3 of this song we're to alert the other.

I assure you, if I do stumble across a decent MP3 of Downie's "Hallelujah" I'll write about it here. In the mean time, welcome fellow fans referred by Google. I feel your pain.

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Playoff Pool: Day Eighteen

PuckWith a 2-0 leader in all four series, we're getting a clearer picture as to who is likely to advance. Marc has a solid ten point lead over Ryan right now, but Ryan has two Sabres whereas Marc has none. When it comes to Hurricanes, Marc has the clear advantage. Neither has a Duck and Marc holds an advantage in Sharks.

Marc will be very tough to catch. Should Buffalo put down the Senators (please God) and eventually advance to the finals, Ryan has a slim chance.

For the current standings, visit

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The Monday Shuffle

iTunesEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in iTunes and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today with a personal story about one of them.

  1. Chi - Korn
  2. Come On - The Verve
  3. What Is?... - The Kleptones
  4. Jump Around - House Of Pain
  5. Dig A Pony - The Beatles
  6. The Good That Won't Come Out - Rilo Kiley
  7. Fiesta - The Pogues
  8. Strange Brew - Eric Clapton
  9. Hello City - Barenaked Ladies
  10. Sexy M.F. - Prince

About a year ago, a friend of mine who lives in California sent me an mp3 of Rilo Kiley's "The Good That Won't Come Out". After one listen I was hooked. It's an absolutely fantastic song that gets better as it progresses, reaching a crescendo just before it leaves you wanting more. I'll share this thing Wednesday and you can hear for yourself.

I've never heard a single reference to Rilo Kiley on our local "alternative rock" radio station. Apparently, it's still too indie. Based on what I've heard, that's going to change fairly soon.

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You Can't Kill God

tvThe Camdens, a Christian family living in California, have been in our face for a decade. Perhaps they haven't been in your face, but they've been in mine. I live with a fan of their televison show.

I'm not going to lie, I've seen a number of episodes from the first two seasons of "7th Heaven". Taryn was watching them on DVD and they weren't bad enough to chase me away. My rule is simple, "7th Heaven" before the twins is acceptable, "7th Heaven" after the twins is not.

Tonight is the series finale of "7th Heaven", or is it? Just when we thought it was done comes a rumour that the new CW network might revive it for one more season. Matt and Mary might be coming back tonight prematurely. We might be doing this all again next year.

Killing God isn't easy.

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Eddie's Choice: Boon or Bono?

pearljamLast June, on a whim, I jotted down five superficial life goals. Number two on that list, right after "Celebrate Maple Leafs Stanley Cup victory" was "Watch Pearl Jam concert from backstage and meet Ed".

The last time Pearl Jam came through Toronto, everything seemed to line up perfectly to fulfill my number two superficial goal. They played the ACC on September 19 and thanks to a wicked hook-up with a member of the crew, I was there with an after show pass in hand. What happened at the end of that show is now legendary. Eddie Vedder and the gang were joined on stage by U2's Bono for a rousing version of Neil Young's anthem, "Rockin' In The Free World". Here they are, rocking out with the house lights on. It was a truly great moment, and only "Yellow Ledbetter" separated me from an opportunity to translate my after show pass into a meet and greet with Mr. Vedder.

Sophie had a choice to make and so did Ed. Bono trumped Boon and the two retired into the Toronto night to share war stories and scotch. Less than eight months have passed and guess who's strolling through Toronto for a couple of sold-out shows at the ACC this week? Pearl Jam is back and I still have a bud on the crew. This time, Bono is nowhere in sight.

Aye Davanita.

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Playoff Pool: Day Seventeen

PuckWhen the playoffs started, I was intriged by the first round match up between 2004 darling Miikka Kiprusoff and 2003 darling Jean-Sebastien Giguere. Little did I know at the time that Ilya Bryzgalov would so quickly become the coolest duck since Frank McCool, recording his third shutout in a row.

Speaking of Frank McCool, the Toronto Maple Leaf goaltender who had three postseason shutouts in a row as a rookie against Detroit in 1945, is there a better name in all of sports? I'd like to be called McCool, even if only for a day. That would be the McCoolest.

For the current standings, visit

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Sunday Songs

calendarIt's been a great Sunday so far. James got a bike, I mowed the lawn and fixed the shed and now there's a hockey game to watch. In honour of this fine Sunday, here are "Sunday" songs in my collection.

  • Sunday Sun - Beck
  • Sunday Girl - Blondie
  • Church on Sunday - Green Day
  • Another Sunday - I Mother Earth
  • Sunday Morning Coming Down - Johnny Cash
  • Sunday (The Day Before My Birthday) - Moby
  • Pleasant Valley Sunday - The Monkees
  • Sunday Morning - No Doubt
  • Gloomy Sunday - Sarah McLachlan
  • Loving You Sunday Morning - The Scorpions
  • Sunday Will Never Be The Same - Spanky and Our Gang
  • Naked Sunday - Stone Temple Pilots
  • Sugar On Sunday - Tommy James and the Shondells
  • Sunday Bloody Sunday - U2

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumLorne Saxberg was 48. During his 27-year career at CBC, he was a widely recognized news anchor in television and radio, who was famous for his deeply sonorous voice and his easy-going delivery.

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Link: Every Playboy centerfold ever

LinkEvery Playboy centerfold from December 1953 through May 2006 - This is important for historical purposes. There is much we can learn about a culture from the evolution of their centerfolds.

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Batman Begins

A Movie ReelBatman Begins: 7 out of 10.

I remember watching the teaser trailer for "Batman Begins" a week after Michelle's birth and thinking it looked pretty cool. I also took note of the amazing cast. They've got Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Tom Wilkinson and Ken Watanabe in this thing. Needless to say, with Christopher Nolan directing, my expectations were pretty high.

Considering the lofty bar I set for this summer blockbuster, I was pretty impressed. It looks great, at 141 minutes I was never bored and it's a dark, brooding tale the way it should be. Good stuff.

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Playoff Pool: Day Sixteen

PuckIn my mind I’m goin’ to Carolina, Can’t you see the sunshine, Can’t you just feel the moonshine, Maybe just like a friend of mine, It hit me from behind. Yes I’m goin’ to Carolina in my mind.

For the current standings, visit

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My Quote of the Week

Quotes"Only a cynical man would call what these people have "lives," Wayne. Crime. Despair. This is not how man was supposed to live. The League of Shadows has been a check against human corruption for thousands of years... We sacked Rome. Loaded trade ships with plague rats. Burned London to the ground. Every time a civilization reaches the pinnacle of its decadence... We Return to restore the balance."
      - Henri Ducard, Batman Begins

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Rob Ford: Like A Rock-head

cityhallRob Ford is a city councillor for Etobicoke North and he says some awfully stupid things. In case you've forgotten, here's a collection of Ford quotes from the past few years.

  • "This is an insult to my constituents to even think about having a shelter in my ward!" - April, 2002
  • "I know he's a weasel and weasels and snakes belong in the zoo. I'm not letting this go. He did it out of spite". - February, 2003
  • "It just makes me sick when you left-wing nut jobs like Howard Moscoe are down here trying to bash the police non-stop." - February, 2003
  • "To me, if you are going to water plants, water all the plants. You don't just pick and choose which plants you've got to water." - April, 2004
  • "Pathological liars." - June, 2004
  • "This is so foolish. What are we going to ban next? Fireplaces?" - September, 2004
  • "I don't understand. Number one, I don't understand a transgender, I don't understand, is it a guy dressed up like a girl or a girl dressed up like a guy? And we're funding this for, I don't know, what does it say here? We're giving them $3,210?" - June 2005
  • "People do not want government housing built in the city of Toronto. They want roads fixed, more police presence, but they don't want more government housing that will depreciate the value of their property." - July, 2005
  • "She's a joke. She's a waste of time. A waste of skin." - July, 2005
  • "Giving the mayor more power for this council is like giving criminals free guns." - December, 2005

Ford was in the news last week for initially denying he was "belligerent and obscene" at a Leafs game on Easter weekend and then coming clean. Maybe Gloria Lindsay Luby isn't the waste of skin at city hall?

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The New Menu and My IE Shock

firefoxThe new look of this site is one week old tonight, but I hadn't given it a solid look in Internet Explorer until this morning. Sure, I gave it a cursury glance in IE to make sure the new code actually worked in the world's most popular browser, but my primary focus was how it looked in Firefox.

This morning I blew away the old main navigation menu at the top of this page in favour of a different look to complement the recent overhaul. It was quite easy to get things where I wanted it in Firefox, but IE didn't play nice with the new CSS. A tweak here and a hack here and I got her to an acceptable point for those viewing this site in Billy Gates' browser. While I was in IE, I decided to click around and I didn't like what I saw.

For starters, the background image in the top left hand corner of this site seems to reload with every page change. That causes an ugly flicker effect that you don't get in Firefox. What's the point of clearing the image only to bring in the same image in the same place? The CSS has it in the body tag and every page in this site is reading the same CSS file, so wtf? For those of you not yet using Firefox, you really should give it a whirl and see what you're missing. Furthmore, I hated how IE interpretted the line spacing I had in the CSS. Why didn't any of you tell me that there was all that space between lines of text? You don't see that in Firefox. As a result, I stopped controlling the line spacing in the CSS file which seems to have fixed things in IE.

I won't bore you with yet another list of reasons why you should switch browsers. I'm sure, like a chain smoker, you've heard all the reasons in the world to stop doing what you're doing but for one reason or another, you can't help yourself. If you need a refresher on why you should get Firefox, here are all my entries that reference the word "firefox".

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Homer Simpson's Quote of the Week

Homer"Back, you robots! Nobody ruins my family vacation but me... and maybe the boy!"

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Playoff Pool: Day Fifteen

PuckI watched that wild Buffalo ~ Ottawa game last night. With goaltending like that, our playoff totals will go through the roof. I'm telling you, when the Sabres tied it up late and scored early in overtime, I was one happy pappy. The annual tradition is that the Maple Leafs defeat the Senators in the playoffs. In lieu of a Toronto berth, our QEW brothers will do nicely.

Go Sabres Go!

For the current standings, visit

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The Great Shaving Cream Debate

showerI've stumbled across quite a few references to the shaving cream racket the past few weeks. It's as if people are just realizing the presumed need for shaving cream is a big scam. This is something I learned long ago.

When I first started shaving as a niner, I was taught to apply shaving cream and shave it off. This is how I shaved for the first couple of years until, during a campling trip to Pinery provincial park, I was forced to shave without anything on my face except hot water. A successful and painless shave later and I realized the truth. Shaving cream was for suckers.

My shaving method is simple, I turn on the shower radio, turn on a hot shower and hop in. I don't shave seven days a week. If possible, I try and shave thrice a week, usually Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Sometimes I'll skip Friday and go to work scruffy if I'm in that sort of mood. When it's a shaving day, I simply let the hot water soften my beard and glide the gillette razor over my bare face. I've been shaving this way for over a decade and there's never been a problem. I don't cut myself, my face doesn't rash or feel burned and it's quick and close. I would never, ever consider putting shaving cream on my face again.

For many, the shaving cream racket has only just been exposed. For me, I figured it out a long time ago.

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The Friday Five

The Number FiveMy favourite Tom Cruise movies

  1. Magnolia
  2. Minority Report
  3. A Few Good Men
  4. Rain Man
  5. Eyes Wide Shut

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Link: Watch TV Shows Online

LinkWatch TV Shows Online - From The Sopranos to Thundercats and many in between.

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The Towering Inferno

bluejaysJosh Towers allowed another five runs in the first inning last night against Boston. Towers, who is 0-6, became the first six-game loser in the majors. The Blue Jays are 5-3 against the Red Sox this season, and all the losses have come in Towers' starts.

His ERA currently sits at 10.59. His WHIP is 2.28. He's killing us. JP Riccardi, I beg you to assign him to Syracuse where he can work out his kinks with little damage to our quest for a pennant. We can't handle a seventh start by Josh Towers.

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Cart Before The Horse

edgefestIn an effort to be fair and balanced I'd like to point out that CFNY Edge 102 is actively promoting July's Edgefest as Edgefest 2. You may recall I went off about the Edgefest line up the other day, releasing a yawn that was heard around the world.

There have been Edgefest 2s in the past, but they've always been announced some time after Edgefest 1. My incredible deductive logic tells me that there cannot be an Edgefest 2 without there also being an Edgefest 1. The announcement of another Edgefest is imminent.

Who wants to bet Billy Talent headlines again?

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SLS Submission: Hate Me

SLS SubmissionI just submitted a tune for SLS15 consideration. I submitted "Hate Me" from Blue October.

I instantly liked this song, but hesitated to submit it because it's a little poppy. But what the hell! This might be 2006's "Since You Been Gone"... a guilty pleasure I can't help but like.

Or maybe not. Maybe I'm a total loser for liking this song. Hate me... go ahead and hate me. See if I care.

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One More Year, Dougie

nflI own the jerseys of two Dougies. One is a #93 home Toronto Maple Leafs jersey with Gilmour on the back and the other is a #7 Bills jersey for Flutie. At the age of 43, Flutie is considering retirement. I hope he plays one more year.

In March of 2005, I feared Flutie was done after he was released by the San Diego Chargers. I wrote at the time, "There were so many reasons to root for the diminutive quarterback. There's the hail mary pass while at Boston College. There's the years of MVP service in the CFL and the two Grey Cups he brought to Toronto. There's the glorious NFL comeback with the Bills when he guided them to back-to-back playoff berths. We all loved #7."

There's one trophy Doug Flutie hasn't won, and that's the Super Bowl. As Tom Brady's backup, that's always a possibility, but he has to give it one more year. I hope he does and that he goes out on top. He wasn't the biggest guy on the field, but there's little doubt he has heart to spare.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

I'm putting my money on Marc. Alfredsson, Havlat and Elias could easily meet up in the semi finals. I am banking on Briere/Dumont and Heatly/Redden who meet each other in the quarter Finals. I am gaurenteed to lose two of them.

Good luck to everyone but it really does look like a two man race. I won my hockey pool this year, and I hope to win the playoff pool as well.... BUT I DOUBT IT!


Dude, you're my brother and all, so I'm rooting for ya, but the main reason I want you to win our 2006 NHL Playoff Pool Spectacular is so Marc doesn't. That guy has won twice in the past three seasons, including one come from behind win to push me into second. Enough is enough. Go Sabres Go!

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May the Fourth Be With You

starwarsIt's a shame I only get to pull this one out once a year. It's a classic.

May the Fourth be with you.

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Guest Blog Entry

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

i just wanted to say thank-you to everyone who helped me spend over four hours assembling the biggest bunch of losers since last years raptors, and also for taking my 20 dollars, appreciate it, i hope whoever wins gets hit by a bus on their way to the bank

      stefan (alexi's bitter brother)

For those who aren't following our 2006 NHL Playoff Pool Spectacular, Stefan banked on the Red Wings and Rangers and now sits in last place where he'll likely finish.

Thankfully, I'm not winning this thing so I don't have to fear the deadly curse he's put on the eventual winner. If the winner gets hit by a bus on his way to the bank, we know who to blame.

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Playoff Pool: Day Thirteen

PuckMany are disappointed with Calgary's loss last night. Everyone wanted to see the battle of Alberta. Everyone, except me. I'm growing a little tired of Alberta. Who do they think they are? The centre of power in Canada has always been Ontario, but now Alberta has the money and the political power. No disrespect to Albertan visitors (Carter, Jomp, et al) but another battle of Alberta was more than I could stomach.

I feel better about banking on Dallas after watching the top four seeds fall in the West. When was the last time seeds 5-8 advanced? If I had to bet on a final, I'd bet on San Jose ~ New Jersey. If I had to bet on a winner in our pool, I'd take Ryan over Marc by a hair.

For the current standings, visit

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SLS Submission: Steady, As She Goes

SLS SubmissionI just submitted a tune for SLS15 consideration. I submitted "Steady, As She Goes" from The Raconteurs.

Jack White of The White Stripes contributes vocals, guitars and keyboards to The Raconteurs, a very promising band from the sounds of it. "Steady, As She Goes" is their first single and fantastic. You can hear it on their official site.

Speaking of which, this may very well be the best "official site" for a rock band I've ever seen. It's absolutely brilliant. You'll have to click on over to see what I mean.

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Weekly MP3: Perfect Day

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.

Lou Reed - Perfect Day
I put this song on my 100 wedding songs playlist, to be played at my brother Steve's wedding later this month. If you haven't thrown your two cents at that list yet, get to it!

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumEarl Woods was 74. He was Tiger Wood's father, the architect and driving force behind his phenomenal career.

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Why Bother?

MoviesThere was a time when I would look forward to the summer blockbusters. There might be a new Raiders of the Lost Ark or a highly touted big-budget gem like "Jurassic Park". There was actual anticipation for these flicks.

Those days are long gone. I rarely look forward to a movie these days, and summer promises the worst of the worst. The A.V. Club's 2006 Summer Movie Preview gave me an opportunity to check out all the upcoming summer releases. "The Da Vinci Code" could be good, and I hope it's good, but otherwise I have little interest in any of them.

As the A.V. Club so aptly put it, why bother?

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Link: CBC Radio Podcasts

LinkCBC Radio Podcasts - Here you'll find the best of CBC's national Radio One shows, new regional podcast magazines, exclusive musical talent from Radio 3 and special podcast-only features. All the goodies are here, Quirks & Quarks, The Best of DNTO, The Best of As It Happens, The Best of The Current and more.

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Playoff Pool: Day Twelve

PuckI'm glad the Habs lost. Sure they're Canadian, but I still hate 'em. So much success, it's so unfair. I'm also glad the Flyers are out. Bob Clarke's Flyers are hateful. The last time we had playoff hockey in Toronto, it was the Flyers who beat us in six in the second round. Then, there was that Lindros thing... the whole team is easy to dislike. Good riddance to bad garbage... and go Sabres go!

For the current standings, visit

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Done.... and Done!

ConstructionOn February 7th, I relaunched this site, powered by Movable Type. I went back and manually put all previous entries from 2006 into MT but I left entries from November 2002 through December 2005 in their original files. The plan, as I outlined it here, was to knock off one month's worth of entries every week. I guessed I'd be done by the fall.

A little piss and vinegar and a lot of tedious effort late and nights and here and there and I'm finished way ahead of schedule. It took almost three months of concentrated effort, but all 4355 entries are now here in Movable Type and therefore indexed for the search you now find on the right side of every page. Also, where appropriate, I've thrown these 4355 into relevant categories, which you'll find below.


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Another Edgefest, Another Yawn From The Crowd

EdgefestDo you remember when Edgefest was a darn good rock n' roll show? CFNY Edge 102 used to put some serious effort into this show, hiring solid closers like Radiohead, Green Day, The Tragically Hip and more. Lately, it's been more of a joke.

The last Edgefest I attended was back in 2003 when Sloan, Our Lady Peace and The Hip played the last 'Fest at Molson Park. The 2004 line-up really upset me, and prompted quite the exchange between Alan Cross and myself. Last year's line-up was a little better, leaning on the power of local heroes Billy Talent, but it was still the weakest collection of bands since the late 80s.

This year’s main stage will play host to Yellowcard, the All-American Rejects, Hawthorne Heights, Story of the Year, and Matchbook Romance. I'm sure there's a 14 year old kid in Scarberia cheering right now, but the majority of us ol' faithful CFNY guys are yawning and moving on. We're aware of their unexplainable obsession with the Rejects, one of the bands I hate and a main attraction of this year's show.

Tix are on sale May 5th. I'm sure plenty of ducats will be available in July, so there's no rush kiddies. Take your sweet ass time.

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Stephen Harper Eats Babies

BabyThe scrolling electronic sign on five different Go trains displayed an interested fact yesterday. "Stephen Harper Eats Babies." This message was repeated on a continuous loop.

Go Transit has gone on the record denying that Stephen Harper devours innocent children. Stephen Harper's own people have said the same. They're claiming it's a lie, slanderous even. They're shrugging this off with a laugh, jokingly telling the media that they've never witnessed Harper eat a single baby.

Has anyone stopped to consider that this message may in fact be truthful. Perhaps Stephen Harper does eat babies and we've just been shown the light. I want to believe.

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Link: Lyrics from LyricWiki

LinkLyrics from LyricWiki - LyricWiki is a free site which is a single source where anyone can go to get reliable lyrics for any song from any artist without being hammered by invasive ads.

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Clippers Win! Clippers Win!

BasketballIs the apocalypse upon us? Are my eyes deceiving me? Did the Clippers really win a playoff round last night?

I can't think of a team in professional sports that better symbolizes mediocrity to me. The Clippers have been pretty damn awful throughout most of my life. They hadn't won a playoff series since 1976, when the team was playing in Buffalo as the Braves and beat the Philadelphia 76ers in the opening round before losing to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference semifinals. We complain about 39 years without a championship while these guys went 30 years without advancing into the second round of the playoffs a single time. Ouch.

Of course, it's probable the Clippers will win it all before we get another sip from that awesome mug.

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Playoff Pool: Day Eleven

PuckWhat's the deal with the Red Wings? This team won the President's Trophy as the regular season team with the most points yet they bowed out rather easily in the first round. It's a great line-up, with a nice mix of youth and veterans who have won in all before, but something was missing. With a 2-0 lead headed into the third, I had this one going seven. I was wrong.

For the current standings, visit

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HTTP Proxy in the USA

TVAs you may have read today, ABC is now streaming full episodes of many television shows, totally free until June 30. "Lost" is on the list, as is "Desperate Housewives". Unfortunately, if you reside outside the United States as I do, you're outta luck. Or are you?

Here's a simple hack for watching these episodes from outside the USA. "All you need is a http proxy that is hosted inside the USA and does not spill your IP address." Easy as pie.

California streamin', on such a winter's day...

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The Monday Shuffle

iTunesEvery Monday I shuffle my entire MP3 collection in iTunes and list the first ten songs that play. Here are the ten tunes I heard today with a personal story about one of them.

  1. Nicotine & Gravy - Beck
  2. Direction - Interpol
  3. Wendy Under The Stars - The Odds
  4. The First Time I Met The Blues - Eric Clapton
  5. A Ballad For The Fallen Soldier - Jay-Z
  6. Give The Dog A Bone - AC~DC
  7. D.F. - Outkast
  8. Not Enough - Our Lady Peace
  9. Ex-Pats of the Blue Mountain Symphony Orchestra - Matthew Good
  10. Where I'm From - The Game

It wasn't the finale of "Six Feet Under", but it was the second last episode of the series, entiteld "Static". "Direction" from Interpol played while Claire drives to Nate's grave. Everything was building up for "Everyone's Waiting", but "Direction" wasn't the song in "Static" that blew my mind. That song played while Brenda gave birth and kept going during the closing credits and was called "Cold Wind" from Arcade Fire.

I recently added Six Feet Under: Everything Ends to my collection and it includes both tunes. Damn, I miss that show.

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Guest Blog

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

Once again Steven Colbert comes off as a total phony. Anyone who calls George Bush their "Hero" in any context in no friend of mine. What does he think he's giving the state of the union speech? Man, unfunny and off target. I can't put my finger on it but something about Colbert really rubs me the wrong way.

See for yourself. Youtube search: Colbert Roasts Bush or if this link works.


We disagree on this one. Stephen Colbert lampooned Dubya in the guise of his talk show character, and from what I gather the president and First Lady in attendance were not amused. You can see it all in three parts on YouTube:

Here are some of my favourite lines:

  • "I believe that the government that governs best is the government that governs least, and by these standards we have setup a fabulous government in Iraq."
  • "And though I am a committed Christian, I believe everyone has their right to their own religion, be it Hindu, Jewish or Muslim, I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal lord and savior."
  • "Most of all I believe in this president, now I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating, but guys like us [turns to president] we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking [makes airquotes] in reality, and reality has a well known liberal bias."
  • "So don't pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man has doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68% of people approve of the job he's not doing?"
  • "I've never been a fan of books. I don't trust them: all fact no heart. I mean they're elitists telling us what is or isn't true, what did or didn't happen, who is Britannica to tell me the Panama Canal was built in 1914? If I wanna say it was built in 1941, that's my right as an American. I'm with the president, let history decide what did or didn't happen."
  • "The greatest thing about this man is he's steady, you know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday."
  • "And then you write 'oh they're just rearranging the deck chairs on the titanic'. First of all, that is a terrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking, this administration is soaring! If anything they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg."

How funny is that? If you think he's coming across as a phony, that's the schtick. It's a character, and it's supposed to seem like a character. His compliments to Dubya were so backhanded they weren't compliments at all. He totally roasted the sucker and we should all applaud him for it. Stephen Colbert has won my heart.

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Rest in Peace

In MemoriumJohn Kenneth Galbraith was 97. He was the University of Toronto graduate who went on to become an influential liberal economist, best-selling author and presidential advisor.

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Playoff Pool: Day Ten

PuckFour teams are out, the biggest hurt was felt by yours truly. When the Stars bowed out early and unexpectedly to the Avs, 40% of my team went with them. It's all over but the cryin'.

For the current standings, visit

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