Month: February 2010

Ode to the Olympics…


O’Canada hip hop style

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SmSqaKsW98

O’Canada traditional CBC version

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0jhJA1Hjxk

and now with some swagger…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRI-A3vakVg

I AM CANADIAN!!!

My weekend thus far


This has been an interesting weekend for me so far, half-way through Sunday.

On Friday night we had Shabbat dinner here at the house with my mother and sister.  When they arrived there happened to be a stranger in the living room taking pictures of my kids – mainly the baby.  This place takes a bunch of pictures for free then tries to sell them to you.  I like the concept since it’s such a pain in the ass to book photo shoots for the kids and usually are very far away.  I hope they turn out.

After dinner my sister helped me prepare the T4 and T4 summary for our previous nanny.  Actually she did it while I slept on the couch.  We watched the 1st period of the Men’s Olympic semi-final game between the Slovaks and Canada.  I nodded off at 3-0 Canada.  They won 3-2.  Whew.

Saturday saw skating first thing in the am, well, skating for the oldest boy, the youngest spent most of the time laying on the ice having a meltdown.  I think he needs new skates with more ankle support. 

Both boys got their skating progress report cards.  Neither had been on the ice prior to the start of this program about 2 months ago so I not surprised to see Linus did well but Stewie… Not so well at all.  Oh well. 

After skating I dropped Stewie off at my mothers and Linus off at my in-laws and my wife and I took the baby and headed downtown to walk around.  It was a lot of fun!  She went into the bead stores and the baby and I walked around the streets looking at stores and a lot of weirdos.  LOL. 

I did, however, make a HUGE mistake and walked into the Second Cup… UGH.  I was hungry so I bought a morning glory muffin (ugh) and a really gross double Americano.  Had I walked another block west I would have found the Tim Horton’s.  At least the second cup had a change table in the woman’s bathroom where I could change the baby explosion (poo).  It was everywhere!

We strolled over to Chinatown for some dim sum (in the rain of course) and headed home to gather the other kids in time for bed.

Needless to say all of us passed out early, but I woke up to hang the laundry and could not get back to sleep.  Too much on my mind.  I finally dozed off at 3:30am.  I was up at 5:30am to help burp the baby and 7am with the boys, but managed to get them to hang out in the bed with my until 7:30am. 

We skipped karate and instead went to a Purim Party at the Temple where my son goes to nursery school.  Knew a ton of people there and had a blast.   The highlight for me was tossing a football through a hole 3 times while others tried dozens of times without success.  Each person who failed grumbled that the hole was too small.  Giggle.

So now the kids are bathing and soon we’re off to watch the Olympic Gold medal hockey game between Canada and the USA.  For some strange reason Linus is voting for Team USA.  Hope he’s doing that just to bug me.  Sure, team USA was put together by Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke and coached my TML head coach Ron Wilson, but come on, Linus!  Go Canada Go! 

 Did you know that the most ever gold medal won by a country in one winter olympics is 13.  Guess how many Canada has right now?  Yup.  13.  So if we win the hockey game we set a record.  No pressure, eh?  I may not be able to watch the game.  I don’t want to be disappointed.

Conan O’Brien Tweets


I have to admit, I never liked Conan O’Brien.  Didn’t find him funny.  Don’t like his hair.  Nothing about him.  Heck, I don’t even know how to spell his last name.  I kept adding an “a” instead of an “e” in his last name.   He was not even on my radar… Unit he got screwed by NBC.  Now I feel for the guy.  

So as a twit myself – as in someone who is on twitter in order to post stupid meaningless comments to a bunch of strangers – I was intrigued by the fact that Conan is now on twitter too. 

I actually do not understand the point of Twitter, maybe because I don’t have many friends on it, or really have conversations, but I think with the number of celebs who have publically dumped their twitter accounts – read: stupid professional athletes too – Conan could save Twitter from the same fate as ICQ. 

Here is the story. 

On Wednesday, Conan broke his silence through what is currently one of the most popular mediums for celebrities: Twitter. “Today I interviewed a squirrel in my backyard and then threw to commercial,” he tweeted. “Somebody help me.” With just one tweet and less than 24 hours since signing up for the social-networking site, O’Brien has already gained over 235,000 followers. 

At the beginning of the year, O’Brien and his longtime employer NBC were involved in a much publicized dispute over the future of The Tonight Show, after receiving low ratings due to a failed experiment that involved moving previous “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno to a 10 pm time slot and letting O’Brien host the show, NBC proposed to push Leno’s new show to 11:30 and bump O’Brien’s “Tonight Show” back to 12:05 am.  Believing that a time slot shift would “seriously damage” what Conan called “the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting,” O’Brien chose to walk away from the network with a $33 million settlement deal. 

The comedian sardonically joked about the ordeal in the “Bio” section of his Twitter profile: “I had a show. Then I had a different show. Now I have a Twitter account.” 

Conan chose to create a Twitter account just days before Jay Leno will resume hosting “The Tonight Show” on Monday, March 1. And judging from the traffic on his Twitter, it’s clear that his army of dedicated fans still care what the comedian has to say. 

This is the biggest screw job since Vince McMahon screwed then WWF champion Bret “Hitman” Hart in Montreal by giving the world title to Shawn Michaels. 

I’m just saying…  I’m going to add him…

A Tale of Transit Woes in Two Large Metropolitan Cities


I found the following very interesting.  Today there are two stories around the same topic – public transportation and reducing costs of it, and the actions taken to correct it are at opposite ends of the spectrum.  The pathetic Canadian response refuses to touch the fact that the TTC holds the city hostage with their extremely high salaries, poor customer service, questionable work ethic and the ability to strike at a moments notice.  The MTA in New York also in debt offers up a solution right up front… Read on.  

Toronto – A Toronto Member of Provincial Parliament’s bid to have the TTC designated an essential service is being derailed by the Liberal government because Toronto’s City Hall refuses to ask the province to outlaw transit strikes.

Liberal member David Caplan (Don Valley West – Toronto) introduced private member’s legislation Monday that would strip Toronto Transit Commission workers of the right to strike.

While the MPP’s bill passed first reading by a vote of 39 to 7 – with the unanimous support of Progressive Conservative (right wing) and Liberal (centre) members, including six cabinet ministers, and the New Democrats (left-wing, union / welfare loving party) dissenting – the government intends to quash it.

The bill “does not reflect the government’s position,” Liberal Transportation Minister Kathleen Wynne told reporters.

“The municipality (Toronto) would have to ask for that action and that has not happened,” said Wynne, adding “costs can increase” because arbitrated deals are often more costly.

Caplan, a former cabinet minister, said arbitration is already the norm because strikers are routinely legislated back to work as soon as they hit the bricks.

“There is significant dissatisfaction with the service on the TTC … the unreliability and the work disruptions that I have seen. People will not ride a system which is not reliable,” he said.

Deriding the bill as “a pathetic political ploy,” TTC union president Bob Kinnear, who engineered a wildcat strike in 2006 and a legal stoppage in 2008, blamed those disruptions on Queen’s Park failing to adequately fund transit.

TTC chair Adam Giambrone (Toronto council member with a reputation from promiscuity) warned “this piece of legislation could end up costing tens of millions to the city and the province wouldn’t pay anything.”

While (Toronto’s left-wing commi-pinko) Mayor David Miller supports the status quo, the two leading contenders to succeed him in October welcomed Caplan’s bill.

“Concern about the cost of arbitrated wage settlements aside, (it) reflects an appropriate source of concern about the cost of TTC service disruptions to the city and commuters,” Mayoral candidate and former Liberal cabinet minister, George Smitherman said in a statement.

Former Liberal strategist and mayoral candidate Rocco Rossi said the bill “shows there is clearly a larger role the province can play fixing the TTC.”

Among Toronto city councillors (the majority of whom are left-wing) in 2008 rejected by one vote a motion to ask the province to make TTC workers an essential service, opinions remained split on Monday.

While in New York…

New York -  The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will try to clean up some red ink by handing out pink slips to more than 1,000 employees.

MTA Chairman Jay Walder says the layoffs are extremely painful but the agency must live within its means.

“The State’s economic crisis demands that the MTA move quickly and decisively to cut costs, and that is exactly what we are doing,” Walder said.

The MTA plans to eliminate more than 600 administrative positions and it will begin laying off up to 500 transit station agents.

The MTA said in December it was facing a $383 million budget gap. It’s due largely to a cut in state aid and lower-than-expected revenues from a payroll tax.  On Tuesday, they announced another $378 million gap which had developed this year based on revised state revenue projections.

The MTA said management employees whose jobs are cut will be offered a severance package.

“This is just the beginning of a comprehensive overhaul of how the MTA does business,” Walder said. “We will be reducing overtime, consolidating redundant functions and working with suppliers to lower costs. We will not stop until I can say that every dollar the MTA receives is spent wisely.”

What a novel concept.

I want the MTA running the TTC… Right away.  Screw the mandatory unionized wage increases and the fare increases.

Now I Get It… BONER!!!


My ears perked up upon hearing that a former “star” from the TV sitcom Growing Pains had gone missing. I thought (hoped) it was the yucky kid brother before Brian Bonsell came on to the show – to Kirk Cameron and Tracy Gold, but it turns out I was wrong.

In fact it was Boner!  Remember that guy?!?

Vancouver police continue to work the case of missing “actor” Andrew Koenig – aka Boner - and are holding out hope he will be found safe but said there’s been no activity on Koenig’s cell phone or bank account since he was last seen in south Vancouver on February 16th.

Koenig, 41, who played Boner on the late-’80s sitcom Growing Pains, was reported missing after failing to return home to Venice, Calif., on schedule from his trip to Canada.

Koenig’s father said he began to worry about his son after receiving a note from him Feb. 16 in which he sounded “despondent.”

Despondent?!?  Imagine going through life being known as Boner.  Geez.  I think his character’s real name was Richard Stabone.  sound familiar?  Can anyone verify?

PS.  Vancouver police…

You need dogs. 

If you want to find a “bone” you need a dog.

OR…

If you’re looking for a “boner”, check out a porn site.  LOL.

But I do hope they find him.