snow and stuff…

It’s snowing kids. Yuck. But such is life in remote arctic wastelands as these. If you’re not from around here I should inform you that yes, we do have many different words for snow aside from ‘snow’ itself; fluffysnow, wetsnow, yuckysnow, grosssnow, stupidsnow, coldsnow, ughsnow, nomoresnow, stopsnow, notagainsnow, skiffofsnow, pileofsnow, moundsofsnow, damnsnow, f%@#ingsnow, etc… It goes on of course but I won’t bore you with such linguistic flair, suffice to say we are a cultured lot, and our language reflects that – especially in the Winter.

Speaking of culture, it seems our relatively newly appointed provincial government has implemented a carbon tax to effectively move us Albertan’s into the 21st Century. Yes, the phone lines on 630 Ched were awash with many regular-joe’s complaining about the taxes the working middle-class would now endure as a consequence of the trickle-down effect from corporations taking the hit. One caller was particularly adamant that the ‘little guy’ is always the one to pay the piper …and I had to resit from calling in to qualify his statement – ‘little guy with the big truck.’ You see, we have many big trucks here, and they all love to endlessly idle when no ones in them …so I can see his dilemma. What would the world ever do if we had to shut them off?

I hate windows. I don’t use the non-mac stuff enough to really know what I’m doing, so I went and reformatted a partition on a partitioned drive thinking that, like a mac, it would just change that single partition. No sir-e-bob …it instead went and wrecked havoc on the drives directory and now my mac can’t see it. Oh, it’s still there, this I know, but I can’t get to it without some skilled command line crap (which is way above my head) or doling out for some file-recovery software. Grrr. So now the plan is to slowly rescue my 1.2 Tb of data (movies, installers, previous hard drive saves, data galore!) and move it onto another drive. In a way it may be good as it forces me to clean things up, but in another way it may be bad as I’m not sure how much of it I’ll get back. So yeah ….boo windows.

When stressed over such silly things though, I find my workouts are substantially better! Yesterday I did a back-tricep thing that I’m still feeling today …which is nice because although I usually do get sore the next day, it’s not as sore as this. But it’s a good thing. The weight went up a bit too as I hit 140 lbs on the nose. I know, I’m still not going to win any lumberjack competitions, but I think my strength to weight ratio is getting better. I slid off my ‘diet’ for a bit too lately (and by diet I mean my avoidance of sugary things) but I think I’ve been pretty quick to recover so not all is lost.

Which is fortunate as I may have a car to dig out from under a snow bank.

the new jam…

It’s something called Royal Jamaican Ginger Beer …and it’s most excellent. I was first turned on to the ginger beers at The Next Act and loved the Crabbies as well as another one I tried but don’t remember the name. Both were great and served with a glass of ice. The fact that they’re carbonated and laden with sugar probably helps (although not as sweet as the Smirnoff Ice sorts) and since I’m not a fan of beers in general, I’ll be asking for these more often. I won’t get it of course, but that’s not going to dissuade me from trying.

Calories schmalories.

The Girls in the Band

I caught this award winning documentary at the Metro last night and thought it was pretty good. It was a before and after look at women in jazz and, sadly, confirmation that although much has changed for the female gender in this patriarchal music world, much also hasn’t. I thought the audience would be full of those from the Edmonton Jazz community too, but apparently ‘women in jazz’ in Edmonton garners as much interest now as it did in the 30’s. Senator Tommy Banks was there, which was nice to see, but aside from that….

Nope, it’s appearantly not of interest in this culturally advanced northern segment of the world. I assume that’s because all is well when it comes to music equality, and us jazz-men don’t perceive any inequalities with regards to the jazz-women we work with. We are a perceptive sort after all! And if you don’t believe that ….well, I think our track record speaks for itself.

*sad face*


lost & found

Here’s a little ditty I forgot about. I was going through files on an old drive of mine and found this moving-picture video of a tune that I remember writing and kinda thought I had recorded already …apparently I didn’t. I remember liking it and now that I just saw the lyrics, it must of been one of those undecided things that I shelved for another time. As for the comment about ‘Eric’ …I earmarked this tune to send to him (over in Vancouver) so that he could add some pedal steel at some point – and that too may be why I never did actually finish the thing; I never did pass it along. Oh well…

It’s done enough I say, and even though the video is a shortened version of the original lyrics, maybe when I get old and crotchety and care about stupid things I’ll go about adding them to a recording. I won’t hold my breath though. The text file for the lyrics was dated September 24, 2010 …so 5 years ago. Probably longer if I know me. The video too is from October of that year and yes, I decided to tweak it with a little ‘aged film’ effect through the magic of digital beans.

No mp3 file this time around kids, just the video and the lyrics -which aren’t so bad as far as lyrics go. You can find the link on the Music-New page and don’t forget you can search this site for all original music posts with the phrase ilikeslurpees. Oh yeah …and it’s called I Can’t Wait To Leave. I know, so positive ;)


A love unused is wasted.
A day abused untasted.
And life runs on just like the sea
and I can’t wait to leave.

A song unsung is silence.
A voice unheard is violence.
Patience seems a harsh reward
and I can’t wait to leave.

I can’t wait to get away from here.
I can’t wait to hide my eyes.
I can’t wait to take a holiday
and find my way back to right.

A truth untold is frightening.
A secret held is lightning.
A morning rain can seem so cold
and I can’t wait to leave.


It was a hectic-ish gig out to Grand Prairie on the weekend kids, but through it all there was time for Shin Annigans and Tom Foolery …two stand up fellows. The event had something to do with trees. And Christmas. And auctions too …I remember that now. It was a fancy affair all around, and even the potatoes were done up to look like flowers. The tomatoes had cheese in them as well. I know …fancy. People danced though, and seemed to have as much of a good time as we did – so success! Oh, and we played SOB. Hold The Line and Chandelier were relegated to soundcheck status however. Oh yeah …and I got to see St. Nick! Double success.


Ticking Bomb

I had a little snooze this afternoon, and in the process had some music on my headphones that I haven’t heard for quite a while …it was Hanne Hukkelberg’s album Little Things. I have it and the latest one, Featherbrain, but thought that I should check out if there’s anything newer that I may have missed in the few years or so that I last looked into her ….but nothing! Perhaps she’s on a sabbatical of sorts? Her Facebook and Twitter accounts are rather vacant too, and I really can’t find anything on the web so I’m gonna go with the sabbatical thing. I did find this neat video of her and as far as I can tell it’s her tune ‘Ticking Bomb’ done with the group Who Killed Bambi. They provided a string arrangement of the 2006 song and the tune sounds great. Like, really great :)

Anyway, here’s the original and the revamped string arrangement in the video below. Enjoy!


We still don’t get it here. And as much as we revel in our command over technology and our environment; in our keeping up with the Jones’ in culture and politics, we simply still don’t quite get it. Not all of us at least. ‘It’ of course is equality of the sexes, and we seem to be brainwashed into believing that what got us to these ‘upper echelons’ in the first place, will most likely get us to our next evolutionary stages down the road. If I may venture outside the box however, consider the idea that we just might have surpassed our current achievements if we had already bought into the whole equality thing centuries ago. Could that be possible? Could we have in fact soared beyond what we today consider the pinnacle of human achievement? I’d like to think so.

But some are content with what they know….


Image from

The image above is a billboard advertisement out by a town called Killam, AB ….about a few hours South-East of Edmonton. When I first saw it I was confused as to what the fuss was about; I considered it might be something of a religious controversy over the use of the word Hell? Wrong though, as upon closer examination I spotted the womanly shape in the flames. Wow. The owner of the company has apparently stated he doesn’t see anything wrong with the ad. “It has nothing to do with women and violence” he remarks, and although on a certain level he may be correct, on many other levels he’s dead wrong as the image portrays women as objects (something to be ‘drilled’) ….which is a precursor to violence.

But he’s not a chip that falls too far from the block however, as even the Alberta Court system is challenged in sexual equality. Alberta Judge Robin Camp is deservedly in hot water over remarks he made to a 19 year old sexual assault victim. Suggestions like “Why couldn’t you just keep your knees together?” and “Why didn’t you just sink your bottom down into the basin so he couldn’t penetrate you?” are horrific demonstrations of how far out of touch some people are. It’s victim blaming to say the least, but for these attitudes to come from a revered and learned member of society speaks loudly to just how pervasive the problem really is. Sadly though, it’s not just little ol’ Alberta that’s still in the dark ages….

The above ad is from America’s Bloomingdale’s department store. Apparently spiking women’s drinks makes them laugh and loosen up because, again apparently, they don’t know that they need to loosen up and that, again apparently, alcohol is the best way to do that and, again apparently, they’re not smart enough to figure this out on their own and it should be a guy who, again apparently, is a best friend which makes the phrase ‘best friends’ synonymous with a pair or people of whom one is substantially more wise and knowing then the other and can operate, again apparently, with impunity when it comes to welfare of the other. Or something like that ….apparently. It’s a sad statement though, and doesn’t bode well for the immediate future of women folk who face a lengthy, uphill battle for something that should be a natural right.

Now I know a LOT of guys who might read this and consider that I’m overreacting when describing how bad the problem is. “After all” they’d say ….”women have things pretty good considering how things were in the past.” True, but should that be good enough? Wasn’t it good enough in the past when stronger men killed weaker ones just because they were weaker? No? Is that not right? Did we somehow evolve from those barbaric days of old to treat all men with respect and dignity? You bet we did ….so why can’t we take it one step further and simply treat people as people regardless of their particular personhood? Is that too revolutionary? Do we lack that cognitive ability?

I’m by no means perfect when it comes to sexist stereotypes I carry around ….but I do admit them and I do challenge their existence. Part of that comes with the old ‘reverse-er-roo’ I like to employ; if there’s something that seems sexist, reverse the roles and see if it makes any sense. For example; how would that drilling advertisement work with a naked guy (genital bits obscured) getting imaginary drilled in the groin or ass? How would the judge’s statement sound if he told another guy “Why didn’t you just sink your bottom down into the basin so he couldn’t penetrate you?” How would the Bloomingdale’s ad work with the roles reversed and the women in control of how the man should experience a good time?

As a guy (or as a person I suppose), if you don’t challenge the little things then you simply fall for the bigger ones. And we as guys have to reflect on those smaller, day to day things that when unchecked blow up into something more pervasive and damaging. Heck, throw ‘guy’ out the window for that matter, and embrace the diversity of the people-type-beings that exist in all our lives. And maybe that way not just women but all people-type-beings will benefit from a truer sense of equality.


Three little giggies the other day kids ….and all in quite different houses. The first was a Minty affair at the Empress, the second a jazzy affair at the Yardbird and the last a hip-hop-opotamus number at the Royal Museum. All fairly successful and not too tasking as two were single sets and one only two ….technically one long and drawn out gig could have been worse. All in the done books though, and now I can re-apply my song-learning-skills to some newer endeavours crap just around the corner. Oh, and it hasn’t really snowed yet either.

I’ve just officially jinxed us all :(


post #459.34

When you buy an avocado and the predominant lettering on its label is the word RIPE …why wouldn’t you assume that the stupid thing is ripe!? Apparently I’m an idiot though, and have fallen numerous times already for thinking that the word RIPE would actually mean the word ripe. It was a few months ago now and I’ve since smartened up, but it still frustrates me. It’s false and/or misleading advertising. At a stretch you might say it’s ingenious advertising …but I don’t think you should be allowed to do that with food. The fine print under the word RIPE is ‘when soft’ ….but c’mon, there are idiots in grocery stores and they have no idea what they’re doing! *that’s me btw…*


In other exciting non-news I got my first ever recall in the mail today. I know! It seems my little new-to-me Hi-Youn-Day has a faulty stop lamp switch or something that might cause my brake lights to not work when I actually use the brakes. That would be exciting in a non-exciting kinda way. It’s not that I haven’t owned vehicles long enough, but more the case that I haven’t owned a new enough vehicle to warrant a major automobile company worrying about my safety. I think my newest car was something like 12 years off the pace until this one ….which is 2011. So I think it’s exciting; I get free labour and if things work out right, the technician replacing the switch destroys my car and I get a brand new one. Dare to dream….

Sugar is my 5th food group in case you forgot, and it appears it’s getting yet another bad rap. This study substituted starch for sugar in obese children’s diets and although they still consumed the same total calories, the sugar-less kids metabolic health improved (blood pressure, insulin/glucose levels). So sugar in and of itself is evil and not necessarily it’s caloric contribution. Interesting. There are sceptics though who say “Overall, this study is of modest interest but is far from convincing.” and that’s what good science is all about I suppose. Time will tell though. This however I didn’t know, but Mexico has been implementing a sugar tax for a while now, although the jury is still out on its effects. That’ll be bad news for us sugar lovers here up North if the results are positive. I might have to change my diet. Yikes.

“The team’s findings challenge the common claim that a disproportionately larger hippocampus explains females’ tendency toward greater emotional expressiveness, stronger interpersonal skills, and better verbal memory.” Apparently, much to the chagrin of many men around the world who have enjoyed the idea that their female better-halfs are somewhat more ’emotional’ then they, it seems the science has finally spoken ….and you can now toss the emotional ‘girlfriend/wife/partner/whatever’ argument into the trash. Our hippocampuses (hippocampie?) are much the same – as well as many other brainurisms. I think this bodes well for female sorts though, as with this and the over-blown PMS garbage that has littered culture for the last million or whatever years, they playing fields have gotten just a little more level. Success!


Ahmed Chalabi passed away today. Remember him? Probably not, but he was one of those guys who helped the West realize just exactly what the issues were when it came to Iraq in the early 2000’s. I remember way back when Saddam Hussein was ‘most wanted’ here in the West, and mentioning to my Dad that by the numbers his popularity in Iraq was greater than what the Conservatives were here in Alberta. And that number wasn’t anything to sneeze at.

Anyway, perhaps you might enjoy this rather insightful two part Al Jazeera documentary, beginning way back and stretching forward to just last month. Lest we forget of course….

“Al Jazeera’s former Middle East correspondent, Sue Turton, narrates the documentary and also moderates a studio discussion between Iraq’s former national security adviser, Mowaffak al Rubaie; Ali Khedery, special adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq; and Australian journalist and Middle East correspondent, Martin Chulov.”

Video Link (click)