August 16th, 2012 by eric
I understand why Doc thinks it’s a great thing that Guns N’ Roses are doing a residency in Las Vegas. See, that way, if you happen to be in Vegas at that time, you can just mosey on over to the GNR show and watch some rock n roll and then get back to your gambling and beer drinking and hookers and buffet. I think it probably appeals to Axl Rose for the same reason.
This is in no way an indictment of Guns N Roses, the band, as they are currently constituted. I know a lot of people hate Axl Rose, and hate on the band, and make fun of them for their lack of class, authenticity and punctuality. I might agree. But this is more about Vegas, the place where bands go when it’s time to be put out to pasture.
For example, we would all be very excited if AC/DC decided to come to Ottawa to play in the parking lot for the opening of a Stittsville supermarket, wouldn’t we? AC/DC is coming here! We barely have to get up and we can go see them! True. But at the same time, wouldn’t you find it a little bit sad?
It’s supposed to say “Spinal Tap”, THEN “puppet show”!
So rejoice, those of you who might take in a Guns N Roses show if you happened to be in the same city they were on a night they were playing and had nothing better to do. There are all kinds of opportunities for entertainment in Vegas, and you can now take in a giant buffet, Guns N Roses, Carrot Top, Air Supply and Donnie and Marie, all in one day!
My point is simply this – hard rockers in Vegas should be a one-show, one-night deal. You know, as part of a tour. Motley Crue did this in February, but really who cares about what Motley Crue does? Elton John is in Vegas. He fits in. Celine Dion is in Vegas. That makes sense. As does Air Supply and Cirque Du Soleil and David Copperfield. But GNR? This just means it’s the beginning of the end.
Vegas, remember, is where Elvis went to get fat. And then, it’s where Fat Elvis went to die. It’s the final rest home stop for artists that are too big to ever go to Branson Missouri. And while I understand that Fat Axl may want to follow in the footsteps of Fat Elvis, dead at 41 35 years ago today, and he likes the idea that he can play shows without having to get up and move around between them, this is the beginning of the end.
There’s a story in the news today about a guy who won $232 million in a British lottery, and joked that he wanted to spend the money reuniting the original lineup of GNR. I would suggest that he save his money. Axl Rose has finally destroyed everything that the original lineup stood for, and with their move to Vegas, he has sounded the death knell for all that Guns N Roses ever was. See you at the buffet!
August 13th, 2012 by eric
The Americans may believe they “won” the Olympics. But really, it was Usain Bolt who won the Olympics. That guy is just awesome, and I never get tired of watching him cruise past all the other competitors like he’s not even trying. He reminds me of that scene in The Incredibles when the parents are yelling at the kid to slow down and only win by a little, so no one gets wise to the fact that he’s a superhero.
I also love the showmanship of the Jamaican sprinters. But their win in the 4×100 was a foregone conclusion. I think it would have been far more interesting, and also would have been great showmanship, if Yohan Blake had handed the baton to Usain Bolt, who then passed it to the fattest Jamaican weightlifter on the team for the anchor leg. Take that, the rest of the world, we’re gonna win this regardless.
I think that by adding Anthony Davis to their Olympic roster, the American men’s basketball team were basically doing the same thing. See – we can have a gyu who’s not even in the NBA, and we’re still gonna win!
I think the Canadian women’s soccer screw-job against the Americans will actually be more memorable, in a decade, than an actual win would have been. Of course, had we lost the bronze, that might have been different.
I think the best game I saw in the whole Olympics was Australia – China in waterpolo.
Rhythmic gymnastics is the ice dance of the summer Olympics. In that it’s the one event that I can’t watch for more than one second before my skin tries to crawl off my body.
I hate watching horses jump over things.
Destinee Hooker also wins the Olympics. I give this super-hot US volleyball star the title of Best Name At the Games, ahead of Yay She-Win, Regina George, Jack Bauer, the Brazilian soccer player Hulk, Canadian swimmer Victoria Poon and (barely) Kim Yoo Suk. I also give her props for appearing in ESPN’s the Body Issue. Naked posing is gutsy for someone 6’4″, but moreso for someone named after a poorly-translated Hong Kong brothel.
I have decided that I really don’t care at all whose parents have recently died, whose father was diagnosed with cancer, or whose mother had her house foreclosed upon. Once is fine. But when every single athlete at the Olympics has some kind of personal tragedy to overcome, then in the end none of them do.
Synchronizing things is a really lame way to add more events into the Olympics.
Being proud, as a country, of a gold medal in trampoline is like being proud, as a country, of Nickelback. It’s the sort of thing you say while coughing. Yeah, we won a gold medal. In what? In coughtramcoughochokeoline.
And my new favourite athlete is Alex Morgan. For at least a week, until I forget everything about the Olympics I just watched.
July 10th, 2012 by eric
I understand there are bigger news stories out there. After all, Bev Oda expensed an air purifier – to taxpayers! It’s no 18-dollar orange juice, or $1,000 car ride of course. But it’s big news because it means she’s taking this Roy Orbison impersonator thing to a sad and dangerous new level, determined to chain-smoke herself into an early grave like her hero.
So that’s a pretty big deal…as is the Tom Cruise – Katie Holmes divorce, which allows us all to speculate wildly about Scientology, jackboots, and just how crazy Tom Cruise actually is. The most important thing to come out of that situation, so far, is that Katie Holmes might finally sign on for the Dawson’s Creek reunion something-or-other. How splendid!
And then there’s the Capital Hoedown, another enormous story where today we learn that everything we already learned about this has been confirmed. The Hoedown is, indeed, canceled. This is a great news story, because now we can decide, as the organizer has, where exactly to place the blame. Was it the city shutting down the venue? The high prices? The lack of ticket sales? The media scrutiny? The chupacabra? And we also get to muse about the acts that are (still) not coming! Oh, Taylor Swift, we will miss you!
Then there’s the Kardashian baby with the stupid name, the home run derby complete with the bizarre hatred of Chris Berman, and the breakup of music superstars Chumbawumba, who after 30 years together as a band have now been knocked down, never again to get up.
So it’s understandable that something as insignificant as the continued destruction of our oceans has gone largely unnoticed. After all, most stories about the environment and how bad it really is get relegated to the back pages of newspapers and websites, if they get reported at all. It’s not that these stories aren’t important, it’s that they’re not important to people.
Remember 2006? And 2007? The time of Al Gore and Global Warming and David Suzuki and An Inconvenient Truth? When the world sat up and took notice and started to do stuff about environmental issues? It seemed like that documentary and the environmental groundswell that sprang up as a result were the beginning of an era where global warming and climate change problems and solutions would be the foremost issues of the next decade. But of course, this didn’t happen. And 2007 was not the beginning of all this, but rather the peak.
So now – for those of you who didn’t get this news today – the oceans are screwed. In fact, they have osteoporosis. See, we’ve been putting too much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. And that carbon dioxide gets absorbed by the oceans. And that turns into acid. And that acid kills coral reefs. Coral reefs, you might remember from that time you briefly cared in 2007, are those things in the oceans that are necessary for most of the life in the ocean to survive.
Now, because of a lot of nutjobs, this will likely be debated, as has every major discovery that indicated that yes, people are responsible for screwing up the environment. This is why, when the findings were announced, a “consensus statement” was signed by 2,600 scientists. Because they have to prove that they all agree that we’re pooched.
Then again, it’s not just the oceans. Ottawa is in the hottest, dryest stretch in history. Just a coincidence and the natural rhythms of the Earth, I know. We’re messing up in other ways too. Yesterday, we were talking about the pacu, or “ball cutter fish”, which is no longer confined to Papua New Guinea, but has now been discovered in a lake in Illinois. Yes, lakes in Illinois are now so tropical that they can support the same kind of water creatures as Papua New Guinea.
The “ball-cutter” fish is so nicknamed because on at least two separate, documented occasions, it has bitten off and eaten men’s balls. And those men have died. The sad thing is, it didn’t have to be this way. The poor pacu fish was once a peaceable vegetarian before it developed a taste for testes. But with deforestation and the disappearance of its plant food, it became carnivorous and started going after low-hanging scrotums. Let this be a lesson, people. Mess with the environment and this fish will eat your balls.
July 6th, 2012 by eric
For years, I have resisted getting a cell phone of any kind. Actually, maybe the word ‘resisted’ isn’t the right word, as I was never even a little bit tempted to get one. I just ignored the idea of having one altogether. People would complain at me. I would be at a live event 15 minutes early, when they expected me 30 minutes early, and some sales person would get all worked up – ‘how do I even get in touch with you?’
I would say – you don’t get in touch with me. Just trust that I’ll show up. Seems easy to me. Doc has an iPhone, and he seems to use it mostly to get a cat to repeat what he says in a funny voice. Woody has a blackberry, and he seems to use it only to send rambling, stream-of-consciousness emails on a variety of subjects when he hears a piece of news late in the afternoon. My wife has a blackberry that she uses to text her son when he’s in the basement.
So what, exactly, are these things good for? Nothing, it seems to me. My wife has been bugging me to get one so she can call me on the golf course and know when I’m coming home. I have never bothered explaining that the two things are mutually exclusive and the whole thing is therefore a non-issue.
Then I got this Rogers gift card. I couldn’t use it to pay my bills. There are no more video stores. Which meant that I had no choice, really. There are now three things I can buy with this thing. A tablet, a phone, or about 50 cases for my wife’s phone. Which would take care of Christmas for the next 50 years…
So I bought an iPhone. Then tried to figure out what to do with it. I can go on Facebook, but I don’t really use my Facebook ever anyway. I can go on Twitter, but for what? Oh yeah, I realized – this phone is also a camera! So I took a picture and tweeted it. Which was really easy. The picture was of the cilantro plant hanging in my backyard. My tweet said “cilantro”.
Now what? My wife started playing with the phone, I went to bed. When I woke up, it had a bunch of games on it. Angry Birds! Oh yeah, I’ve heard of that. I played it for 90 seconds. Then I was bored. There was also an Army of Darkness game – she put it on cause I love that movie. I couldn’t figure out how to play it. There was also a talking bear named Ted, from that movie. He sucked and I deleted him.
I did find one app I liked. It’s a meal-planning app where you type in an ingredient or scan a barcode, and it gives you a bunch of recipes. Which is great at the grocery store if I want to use peach jam and bacon in the slow cooker. I typed in ‘cilantro’. Then I made a salsa with cilantro and raspberries from the garden. Which is neat (for me – probably not of interest to anyone else), but is that really all I’m going to do with this phone?
The most amusing thing for me though, is seeing people’s reactions to me finally getting a phone. I get a lot of ‘welcome to 2012′, and people treating me as though I have finally become a real, fully-realized, human being. Most of them have sent me these sentiments via text-message. I have now received 41 text messages. And sent four.
My favourite was Sam from sales. I sent out my new phone number to the select few people I thought might, from time to time, need it for some reason. As soon as she got it, she started sending me text messages about Bluesfest, instead of the emails she normally sends. I kept responding on my email, which I have in front of me at work. And she kept responding via text.
I think I have already reached the limit of what I will do with my phone. I will take pictures and tweet them. Maybe of more cilantro. I will look up recipes. Cilantro recipes. My phone will be my cilantro resource and nothing more. Oh, one more thing I will do. I need to wait until my sister is over at my house next, and then I will spend her entire visit screwing around with my phone. I’ll read news and browse apps and maybe even send a text or two, and I will respond to her conversation in a disinterested way without really paying attention or looking up from my device. I can’t wait for that!
Obviously, I still haven’t figured everything out.
June 29th, 2012 by eric
You know, the ancient Olympics in Greece were contested entirely in the nude. I thought it might be a good idea to bring the idea back…
Seems like a decent idea, right? Then again…
Much as I like to think I’m a traditionalist…maybe we’ve made progress. No one, no matter how hot they are, looks good when they’re competing in a (real) wrestling match!
CHEZ 106 / Ottawa Sun Sunshine Girl beach volleyball team photo shoot. This is why I am not a photographer.
June 21st, 2012 by eric
The above pictures were taken by a real photographer. Brittany, Taylor and Thea are three members of the CHEZ 106 / Ottawa Sun Sunshine Girl beach volleyball team that will be playing at HOPE this year. I got the chance to go to their photo shoot on Tuesday, I guess the plan was for me to mill about and take some pictures of my own. So I did.
Again, these pictures were NOT taken by me. They were sent to me after the shoot by Mark Williamson from the Sun - he took them during the two-day shoot. Brittany is on the left, Taylor in the middle and Thea on the right. A couple more of Taylor, sent over by Mark:
See, this is what a real photo shoot is like. It takes place on a big white sheet under big bright lights and a lady holds a fan to make hair blow and the photographer points at stuff. The wardrobe is carefully planned. High heels are a must. Swimsuit models and strippers always need heels. Even though they are likely the two professions (well, and maybe construction) where high-heels are the least convenient thing a person could wear. Especially when you’re on your way to play beach volleyball. Here’s more photos of Thea:
Once again, these photos were not taken by me. These photos were taken by Kaitlyn, our promo assistant, who accompanied me to the photo shoot at Events In Style on Murray street. This is Kaitlyn:
Kaitlyn is an actual volleyball player. And at least a halfway decent photographer. She’ll be at HOPE with another team. She tells me they will not be wearing high heels for their game. Now, the pictures I took.
It appears I cannot be trusted with a camera. If this radio thing doesn’t work out, I will not be able to fall back on any kind of photography career. I also took these pictures:
This is either Kaitlyn preparing to bump a volleyball, or demonstrating how to take a dump in the woods.
Swimsuit models eat healthy food.
Brittany was getting ready for her shoot as we left.
Kaitlyn took that one. The woman in the green dress was the one holding the fan for the models. She may have been the best looking woman there! Okay. My career in photography clearly will not take off, I’m done.
June 14th, 2012 by eric
Went to Operation Come Home today for a ceremony honouring students who graduated from the Rogers Achievement Centre. Four students got their high school or GED diplomas, and many more earned credits through the classroom at OCH downtown. It’s a great event every year, and watching the kids celebrating their success after overcoming enormous hurdles is always terrific. One of the best things about the ceremony this year was a video they showed, a little documentary made by two students at Ashbury College about Operation Come Home, the kids, and the charitable work they do. Check it out:
Way to go, Alexa and Cindy!
June 14th, 2012 by eric
I recently got a series of calls from a vaguely-real collection agency. They told me I owed the City of Ottawa $71 for something I never paid in the year 2000. I called the city, they had no idea what this agency was talking about. Either way, the statute of limitations on debt collection was six years back in 2000, and it’s two years now. So there’s no way. Of course the company kept calling me anyway, making up some crap about the statute of limitations no longer applying. I kept ignoring the call when it came, sometimes three times a day. My wife was getting the same phone calls, about a nonexistent debt from 2005. Only hers was for $4,000!
Last week I tried a new tactic. I answered the phone. I explained to the lady on the phone that the city of Ottawa had no idea what this debt was, and since the collection agency couldn’t explain it either, I was operating under the assumption that it was bogus. I went on to explain, calmly and (very) slowly that since the statute of limitations WAS up, and they could do nothing to me or my credit rating, that I had no intention of ever paying. She said they would keep calling.
So here’s what I did – it seems to have worked. I explained my plan, very slowly. I said “okay, you keep calling. And I’ll keep answering. And I’ll continue to explain things to you the way I have today. After all, I’m around in the daytime, and it’s quite easy for me to put you on speakerphone and continue with my cooking or my workout. I have all the time in the world. Now, let’s say that I keep you on the phone for five minutes a day. And let’s say, for the sake of argument, that you make twelve dollars an hour. I will keep answering until I have used up eighty dollars of your company’s time, chasing me for the $70 you pretend I owe. This will take you exactly eighty phone calls. And at five calls a week, you will be at $80 in man-hours within sixteen weeks. At the end of those sixteen weeks, we will begin again. And I still won’t pay.”
It has now been nine days. And they have not called back, even once.
June 7th, 2012 by eric
You’ve probably seen this already, if you’ve spent any time on the internet today. But for those who come only to the CHEZ page, you’ve gotta see this.
June 5th, 2012 by eric
I see from perusing our website that we need some clarification on what, exactly, the Canadian Golf & Country Club free golf clinic days are all about. Here’s the deal – it’s very simple.
You show up on a certain day, at a certain time, and the Canadian’s pros teach you golf. For free. With however many people show up at that clinic. I went to one last Thursday, asked for help straightening out my drive, and within a few minutes it was straight again. It’s that simple. Here are the days and times that you can show up – all are welcome beginners and scratch golfers, no need to sign up or do anything other than be there!
Saturday, June 9 – 1:00-3:00
Thursday, June 14 from 5:30-7:30
Saturday, June 23 from 1-3
Saturday, June 30 from 1-3
Thursday, July 5 from 5:30-7:30
I’ll see you there! (Well, at all but this coming Saturday’s clinic – this coming Saturday, I’ll see you at Scotiabank for the RV show)