Thursday, January 26, 2006

Bon voyage!

Paul Martin prepares for his long journey down
the hazardous River of No Return.

We sparkle plenty

From the New York Times...

The Conservatives' success was helped by voters' exhaustion with the divided and squabbling Liberals, with the unending series of slush-fund and inside-dealing scandals that have swirled around their rule for the past few years, and with the distinctly lackluster campaign skills of the outgoing prime minister, Paul Martin, who managed to be uncharismatic even by Canada's undemanding standards.

Hey, hey, hey!

You sayin' us Hosers got no charisma? Hooey!
Canadians reek of twinkle and charm!

Why there's.... uh ... what's his name?
Or... uhm ... that other guy. You know who.
Give me a second. I'll think of one.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Jumpin' Jack 'Stache

Imagine for a moment that Jack Layton was not the leader of the New Democrats.

Imagine that he did not run a brilliant campaign.

Imagine that Jack did not, in the final hours, ask unhappy Liberals to "lend" him their votes. As NDP and Conservative seat counts testify, many did.

Wouldn't the Liberals have squeaked thru to another minority, a minority as slim as the Conservatives now have?

Wouldn't Gomery's rats have escaped the trap?

Harper energized his base. Layton moved votes.

On the day after the election, Canadians have Jumpin' Jack Stache to thank that the smug Liberals were punished... at ... all.

Thanks, buddy.

Time's up

The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

An election night e-mail arrives, a dear friend fearful of the terrifying hours to come.

"Finally a home for all the religious nutbars," she wails. "And the gun lobby. Their ads run around the clock here. And the creationists. And the We-Would-Rather-Canada-Be-Primarily-White Joyriders. And the rich guys who want to pay no taxes on whatever gains they have not managed to secrete off-shore....

"Of course I voted Liberal. Martin is decent and honest. Yes, he and his cadre of young white men have run a stupid campaign, but the alternative is just too scary... "

I rush to the keyboard to re-assure her.

(Let tearful photo set the mood. Sniffle.)

"Gee," I write back to her.

"I'm not half as fearful and frustrated as you appear to be. But then I'm not a Liberal.

"I'm a dog person.

"Reward good behaviour. Ignore bad behaviour.

"Unfortunately, Martin and Chretien only focused on the second. This is not exactly a plan for better behaviour.

"What exactly would the Liberals have to do to dissuade you voting for them? Come to your house and steal the TV? Promise you day care for a sixth time about 18 months from now? Drink all your good wine and soil the sofa? Poke you in the eye and tell you they're entitled? Oh wait: they already did that.

"Do you believe, given Harper's all-too-pragmatic, don't-be-scared campaign, that a dumptruck of Conservative loon legislation is coming in the next two years? How would he ever achieve a majority? If so, your prayers will be answered when he returns to the polls... and is buried by media, opposition and history.

"If the nation is so fragile that Tory nutbars who've been hiding under rocks since November, Opus Dei and Focus on the Family Bible-burpers can put us back in the caves, chasing pregnant single women with sticks and toasting marshmallows and bannock over flaming copies of the Charter, perhaps we deserve it.

"That you can find any politician to type the words 'honest and decent' about, is a marvel. The ones I see are motivated by personal ambition and not much else. Their one qualification for office: they are missing the 'shame' gene.

"I have stocked my living room with cheesies, Sleeman Clear, Meyers rum and Diet Coke.

"Let the Great Miracle of Democracy begin!"

I hit SEND and snicker.

Yes, I am here to help. What are friends for?

Apocalypse now

Monday, January 23, 2006

Forgot to vote

Excited by election results

Disappointed by election results

This just in...

All the voters in the previous photo have now been trucked to the polls by party workers frantic for participation.

Soon, the Miracle of Democracy will begin.

A caution: stay in your homes til daylight.

Many dead voters, once unearthed, decide to make a night of it.

Elections Canada is not legally liable.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Late night e-talk

My computer blinks when someone on-line wants to chat.
They're almost always former readers of the column.
Awww. Still loved. Sniffle.
I e-talked with a Canadian living in Texas last night.
It went like this....
And yes, he knows it's going up here...

WINS 1010: they say in Louisiana..."How's bayou?"
Pagesix: still kickin. u?
WINS 1010: Not bad. Are the Tories still ahead in the polls?
Pagesix: tories 38, libs 29, ndp 17, bloc whatever as of this morning
WINS 1010: Great. Harper seems like Bush Jr.
Pagesix: i think bush jr is seriously without rival
Pagesix: paul martin looks about 104 now.
stumbles over his own memorized sound clips. it's weird
WINS 1010: You're probably right there, but it amazes me that people don't just see what's happened here over the past 5 years and put in a Liberal majority. Last time I looked at the CBC site, the Tories are pulling the gay rights issue out of the hat.
WINS 1010: A two month long campaign must be gruelling :)
WINS 1010: As long as the Democrats here allow Republicans to talk about abortion and gay rights, they're not going to get anywhere.
Pagesix: The tories have a nice tv ad that shows blue collar joes eating in a diner looking up at a tv set on which martin, & cab members keep repeating they had nothing to do with sponsorgate, that they are paragons of integrity....
this is intercut with justice gomery quotes: "an elaborate tax fund scheme..."
Pagesix: The folks in the diner just nod their heads at each other ... and grin
WINS 1010: Oy. It's just the negative nonsense. Unfortunately it works.
Pagesix: it doesn't come close to the liberal attack ads. at least there's some grin to it.
WINS 1010: I guess Harper's spending the summer on the rubber chicken and barbecue circuit helped his image.
Pagesix: we'll see what rabbits are pulled from hats in the next 2 weeks
Pagesix: he can walk and talk at the same time now. that wasn't true last time out
Pagesix: and he's so laid back... a tribute to modern chemistry
WINS 1010: Should be good. My wife and voted by mail. We've been in Texas for over 20 years. That's a whole other story.
Pagesix: don't hear your accent on here
Pagesix: got the gunrack?
WINS 1010: :)
Pagesix: u never know when a crazed armadillo will try to get in the truck
WINS 1010: No gunrack. If people broke into my house, they'd LEAVE us stuff:)
Pagesix: lol
WINS 1010: I still don't understand why all these people drive pickups and they don't haul anything:)
Pagesix: they haul ass
WINS 1010: Not in the supermarket. They stand around and clog the aisles talking about the Cowboys:)
WINS 1010: Half the city of Plano is in Walmart at any given time:)
Pagesix: i spend time in colorado.
99% of walmart yap is about the broncs
Pagesix: u got somethin' against them 66 cent cans of pringles u darn canuck?
WINS 1010: :) And where can you get a coffee maker for $9?
Pagesix: ah-murica. home of the predigested, perfectly-formed chip
Pagesix: exactly
WINS 1010: And Olestra. Oy vey.

Late night e-talk ... part two

Pagesix: ah-murica. home of the predigested chip
Pagesix: exactly
WINS 1010: And Olestra. Oy vey.
Pagesix: talk like that is what george is lookin for on his wiretraps
Pagesix: i've been in two walmarts now that had no GREETER.
is there an old coot shortage?
WINS 1010: Gonzales is going to fly us both to secret bases in Bangladesh and implant microchips in our arms.
Pagesix: at least we'll get tan
WINS 1010: Unless we end up in Ukraine:)
WINS 1010: The sad thing is, more people are concerned about Survivor than the president grabbing power.
WINS 1010: Short memories. It's really too bad.
Pagesix: saw george b. jr on tv this week.
his facial expressions are getting more and more like The Muppets.
Pagesix: odd, over-exagerrated, tick-y
Pagesix: thank god cheney rocks
Pagesix: the evil empire is safe
WINS 1010: should write a column for the Telegram:)
Pagesix: i can't even summon enthusiasm to do the blog.
Pagesix: the snow on the kayaks in the yard depresses me. lol
Pagesix: tho we're havin a thaw
WINS 1010: I have trouble getting motivated to write a check (cheque) (or a Pole)
WINS 1010: Are you still in the Toronto area?
Pagesix: nope, still in the woods, east of algonquin park. about three to TO, two to Ott and Kingston. down to ottawa in the morning for a few days of r&r
Pagesix: the web made it possible to do the last 10 years at the sun mostly from the boonies
WINS 1010: Wow. The real woods. I used to get nervous being more than 10 minutes from a 7-11, but as I get older, I like the thought of solitude.
Pagesix: pizza pizza is greatly overrated. ditto timmy's
WINS 1010: I'll probably have to work until they carry me out in a casket ... I still think about retiring back in Ontario, at least for most of the year.
Pagesix: man does not live by sushi kitchens alone
WINS 1010: I never cared for the chain pizza joints since I grew up in NY, but I do miss Tim Hortons coffee and crullers.
Pagesix: just dump chickory in your own coffee
Pagesix: be your own addiction
WINS 1010: Chicory? Maybe I'll switch to Postum:)
Pagesix: come back. If only for the comedy. lol
Pagesix: there is a comfort knowing whatever we do jan 23, IT JUST DOESN"T MATTER.
we're a little comic opera country, stomping our feet and singing patter songs
WINS 1010: I did buy a can of Tim Hortons coffee from a lady in Vancouver on Ebay.
WINS 1010: :)
Pagesix: i believe 90% of all ebay sales occur between 2am and 4am local time, after the bars close.
WINS 1010: Stompin' Tom Connors.
WINS 1010: I hope he's still alive.
WINS 1010: Rap music way ahead of its time.
Pagesix: tom still stomps
WINS 1010: Great to hear. How about Ronnie?
Pagesix: amazingly, still alive.
WINS 1010: His most productive years:)
Pagesix: people are very nice to u if they think u might croak in front of them.
WINS 1010: They don't want to dispose of the body:)
Pagesix: bury him in the yard with the ex's. why stop now.
WINS 1010: Or next to the Cadillacs near Amarillo, Texas:)
Pagesix: and of course Canadians .... are .... NICE.
WINS 1010: Anyway, must run and get back to work. Mazel tov on the blog. At least now you write when you want to.
Pagesix: maybe i'll just paste all this in the blog.
that way, george's people won't have to transcribe it all to find out that Bad Thing u said about walmart. Good idea?
WINS 1010: :) Great...make his job easier. He probably has all my e-mail anyway:)
Pagesix: see u in bahrain, sparky
Pagesix: or wherever the secret little jets take us
WINS 1010: :) We should be so lucky.
Pagesix: pretend it's bahrain. we'll be blindfolded
WINS 1010: :)
Pagesix: have a good one

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Good-bye Prime Minister Pinky!

Summary line in Toronto Star this morning:

Many people in this war-weary land began to look cautiously toward a future without their strong-willed 77-year-old leader....

Oh wait!

Paul Martin is 67.

They must be talking about somebody else.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Moon grin

Lost ... and found

So since last July, I have been free to drift.

And drift I have.

The joy of not having to produce another 800 words of copy for tomorrow, and the day after tomorrow, has not yet lifted.

A daily column that drips for decades seriously taps a tree.

But there is snow on my kayaks. It's a long winter.

And I confess here and now... I was not ... born to blog.

It's not that opportunity hasn't knocked.

Fall brought a radio gig query, an echo of my 1980s.

A long-time TV bud flattered me with work bait.

I said no to both.

If I'm going to work my butt off in public again, I want something odd, something funny, something strange, something peculiar.

An idea that--hopefully--will make other people laugh.

Yes, I will serve you when it's ready.

It's here. I may even write about it.

Just one word for you, a clue if you will since you are pals, here the very day that project begins. That word is ... Boot.

It came together this morning.

I now have a workbox labeled ... Boot.

It will take about six months.

Last week I wuz lost, in serious December funk.

But this morning, I wuz found.

My idiot grin came back...

In the first quarter moon of this bright, new year.

It shines on you too. So grin, darn it.

Window west

Sunday, January 01, 2006

The Morning After

Yes, the bear lights up.

Called a bud to see if he wants to hoist a New Year's beer.

"Dunf," he moans, "I'm too effed up to drink."

We both were at the same NYear's Eve bonfire.

Okay, so it ran a little late.

Dawn comes. This is the way 2006 begins.

Salut. Have a good one.