Thursday, August 30, 2007

Things They Never Tell You But Should

There are some things they never tell you but should in life – simple things. You know, like always look both ways before crossing the street.

But someone probably told you that.


Did you listen?!?!?


What you wanna get run over or something?!?!

Anyway, today’s blog isn’t about things you’ve been told but don’t do. That would just be a nagging blog and who wants that? Today’s blog is about all the things someone should have told you, but never did.

Don’t kiss anyone’s ass to get to the top – if you work really hard, show you are loyal and dedicated, and willing to do the work no one else wants to do, eventually you’ll be noticed.

Yeah right – and the all those junk emails you get about penis enlargement work. No, no, NO! Wrong answer!

No one likes an ass kisser, but you ever notice how those very same ass kissers have bigger brighter offices, driver better cars than you, wear more expensive clothes, and generally have a better life in general?

Ass kissing works – the key is not to be seen as an ass kisser. Don’t follow your boss around with puppy-love struck eyes. Don’t jump at every opportunity to kiss ass. Just be there when your boss really needs you. It’ll pay off – big time.

Speaking of paying off, if you really want to make a lot of money in the world lie, cheat and steal. Honesty doesn’t pay – look at all those poor people out there that never lie, cheat or steal.

So what if you’ve never really been to Harvard, never heard of the company you’re interviewing at, and actually, never really done the job before. You can do it – when in doubt fake it and fake it big. If you talk the walk, eventually you’ll get a chance to walk the walk.

And if you’re thinking that job offer sounds really good – a dream job come true – dial 1-800-wake-the-f*ck-up. There is no such thing as a dream job, well unless you are actually in a dream.

All jobs have their good points and bad. All jobs have people you’ll love to work with and those you want to throttle. If you really think you’re working a dream job, you’ll dreaming.

Speaking of dreams – and this is the most important one – cherish your dreams. Life sucks. We work all day for less money than we are really worth, we come home exhausted too tired to do anything enjoyable, and on weekends we do chores around the home which we can’t do while working.

But when we dream, that’s living! We can dream about anything we want, and experience it anyway you want. Dreams never come true – but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dream. Make extra time to sleep and experience your dreams – because when you wake up you’ll be in the exact same place you were before. And that really does suck.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Microsloth's Feature-Packed World

I use Microsoft Windows and their Office package. I have to – it is industry standard across the board.

Actually, it is also probably the best operating system and package for offices. But you’d figure after over a decade of being the industry standard they’d at least have worked out all the bugs.

Microsloth products are chock full of bugs – unless you work for Bill Gates pride and joy. If you work for Mircrosloth, then these bugs are actually referred to as “features.” Seriously, ever hear someone describe a bug at Microsloth?

I’ve encountered my fair share of these so-called “features.”

One that constantly drives me nuts is Outlook’s lack of respect for rules. In Outlook, you can create rules which will filter email messages into specific folders or directories immediately upon being received. I have a rule set up to automatically send any message with “[Bulk]” into my Trash mailbox, so that I don’t even have to look at more than half of my junk mail – it automatically gets deleted.

When I first created this rule in Outlook it worked well. After updating my MS-Office product recently using Microsloth’s own automatic Windows/Office Update, the rule has ceased to work. I’ve deleted the rule and re-created it, but it still allows those bulk emails into my Junk mailbox, instead of sending them into the Trash. Must be a new feature with the update – the disobeying of a direct order.

Word isn’t immune from these so-called Microsloth “features” either. Word sucks when it comes to massive documents. I have worked with quite a few 400-plus page documents and often Word will do whacked-out things with them. Sometimes Word will mess up the automatically generated table of contents I create – taking the wrong headings or subheadings, or oddly, even adding content to the table of contents which I never flagged as a heading.

I’ve also seen Word take a mega-huge document, and totally mess up the page count. The actual physical page count was 612 pages, but for some reason Word was only counting up to 512 pages – it was off by exactly 100 pages. You could scroll through the pages, and actually read them. You could print them too – but when you printed them, after 512 the page numbering started at one! I was able to re-adjust and fix the problem by inserting a section break and have the page numbers continue from the previous section – but I shouldn’t have to do that. You’d think at least these computer programs would do what computers do best – basic math calculations!

Excel is full of these annoying “features” too – sometimes if you incorporate a table in your data, Excel will completely and totally go nuts, as if the table doesn’t have any data. I’ve added tables to data, and the end result occasionally is a blank table.
Maybe Bill Gates and his cronies over at Microsloth should spend less time working on the latest release of their products, and fix the bugs in their current software?

They do issue “updates” – they never actually call them “fixes” which is what they really are. But these “updates” always come after-the-fact, they have already annoyed and alienated the vast majority of the world which uses their products. It would be nice if for once, I could use a Microsloth product and NOT experience any bugs whatsoever. Or at least bugs which are pretty basic – like not being able to count pages correctly, or the complete disregard of rules.

Computers are high-tech – they started the term. But they aren’t rocket science unless used for that purpose. If you know something doesn’t work up to snuff – fix it before sending it out to the masses.

Others have tried to compete against Windows and Office and failed miserably. The world runs on Microsloth – that’s a fact. But shouldn’t we have clear windows which allow us to really see – than ones clouded over with these so-called “features?”

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Dogs and Kids – Top 15 Reasons Why Dogs are Better than Kids

  1. Toilet Training is Easier with a DogIf your dog pees on the floor, just tell him he’s a bad boy and put him outside until he learns that’s where he’s supposed to go potty. If I did that with a kid, the neighbors might call Children’s Aid.
  2. Dogs Come When You CallDogs for the most part will come when you call, without any negative feedback. My friends who have kids always have to call several times, and usually are greeted with nasty responses like “I’m busy!” “Not NOW!” or even the occasional swear word.
  3. Dogs Don’t Talk BackI have yet to see a dog tell his owner where to go – but I’ve seen kids tell their parents off.

  4. Discipline Can Be EnforcedKids can be disciplined, but only to a point. Thanks to the Internet and the media, kids will call the cops or children’s aid even if you just do what parent’s have been doing forever – sending their kids to bed for misbehaving. When a dog misbehaves, you tell him he is a bad boy, ignore it for a while and then all is good. If the dog was really bad, you can leave it outside for a while until. Children talk back, disobey curfews and do other things to get out of any punishments.

  5. If You Kid Comes Home Pregnant, You Can’t Sell Off the BabyBut you can sell off any puppies your dog has! With a kid, you have to get into the whole issue of abortion, or taking care of the unplanned kid for ever. A quick poster in a public laundry room is all it takes with a dog “FREE PUPPIES TO GOOD HOME!” Or you can sell off the puppies and earn a handsome profit! Try that with your daughter’s kid.

  6. You Don’t Have to Have “The Talk”When your kids are old enough to know about sex, drugs and pretty much life – you have to sit down and talk with them. Dogs don’t need to know the pain and anguish of the universe, they are happy just being dogs. And you’ll never have to worry about what to do if your dog comes home pregnant – see number five above.
  7. Dogs Don’t Require A Home Cooked Meal Every NightI love to cook, but I work hard for a living. Some nights, I just don’t feel like cooking. But that wouldn’t affect a dog, just put the dog food out as always and dinner is solved. Kids always demand this and that and whatever else – it always requires work.
  8. Dogs Don’t Need the Latest Fashion StatementsMy dog isn’t going to beg, plead, or harass me to buy him those $300 pair of Nikes that “everyone else at school” is wearing. And when I say “no” my dog won’t sulk and cry and make a fuss. Dogs are content with whatever their owners give them – even if it isn’t something everyone else is wearing.
  9. Dogs Don’t Do DrugsWhen was the last time you saw a dog puffing on a joint? Case closed.
  10. Dogs Won’t Crash the Car or Demand You Teach Them To DriveKids are a nuisance when they become old enough to do some things – like drive a car. They demand you take them out and teach them how to do it, then they demand you give them your car when not using it. Eventually they’ll want you to fork over the coin for a swanky expensive car for them. Dogs don’t drive – and often they look really cute sticking their head out the window with their tongue flapping in the wind.
  11. Dogs Never Borrow Money From YouCan I have $40 for lunch? Forty stinking dollars for lunch?!?! What are you eating fine Italian pastries?!?! Dogs never ask for outrageous sums of money for things that should cost a lot less – actually they never ask for any money ever.
  12. Your Dog Will Never Outgrow YouKids go through stages when they think their parents are uncool. Dogs never go through this phase, they always love and cherish every moment with their owners.
  13. Dogs Don’t Ask “How Much Farther Is It”On long road trips, dogs don’t complain, never ask how much farther is it, and don’t demand to stop for food or bathroom breaks – they just lie their and sleep until you get to where you are going. Kids nag and complain, they fight with each other, they even need DVD players and other distractions to keep them entertained for the journey.
  14. Dogs Don’t Tie Up Your PhoneA dog will never call another dog on the phone and talk all night long, never letting you use the thing. Also, dogs don’t rack up huge cell phone bills – which despite telling your kids the value of a dollar, they never seem to understand how much things really cost.
  15. True Unconditional LoveDogs will always love you – even if you don’t buy them the latest fashion trends, occasionally have to discipline them, and sometimes have to spend less time with them. Kids love varies until they are much older and appreciate the things you do provide.

Monday, August 27, 2007

New Neighbors

My building is a complex mini-civilization. There are always people coming and going, moving in and out, carrying large loads, and large groups moving from place to place.

I’ve written in this blog about the crazy psycho neighbor I have down the hall, and the pot smoking junkies on the other side of the hall.

Now I’ve got a couple of new neighbors around me. A lady moved in directly across from me a couple of weeks ago, and a man, his son and girlfriend have moved right next to me.

I’ve met them all in passing in the hallways. They seem nice and relatively normal – though I suppose I’ll learn more as time goes on.

It is interesting getting new neighbors, as you really never quite know what to expect. Are they going to be loud and bothersome? Are they going to be Peeping Toms? Will they be quite and keep to themselves?

I like to be relatively quiet and generally keep to myself. I will say hi to people I recognize in the halls, and even chat with others in the elevators or in the hallways.

But when it comes to hanging out or other forms of socializing with the neighbors, I keep a low profile. I like to be a bit anonymous – especially as you really don’t know how sane or insane those are around you.

There are probably at least 800 people calling this building home. So there are bound to be the occasional nuts.

But when someone new does move in, I always wonder what the proper etiquette is. Years ago – when our parents were growing up – it wouldn’t be uncommon for them to send a gift basket to a new neighbor with a card. Some might even pay them a visit and introduce themselves.

Way back when, times were much different. There wasn’t as much crime, poverty and social angst in the world. So it was safer and easier to trust people.

These days, with so much immigration from war-torn countries, third-world countries and generally with a more “me” and “I” attitude in society than a “we” attitude, the world has become less safe.

So sending a gift basket might be a nice idea, but you really don’t know if you’re making nice-nice with some crazy psycho killer hell bent on causing chaos.

That’s really too bad, because it would be nice to be able to get to know one’s neighbors. When I was a kid growing up, we knew all our neighbors – we even played with the other kids in the street.

If I had kids, I don’t know if I’d let them out with the neighbors kids – you don’t get to know your neighbors like you used too.

Most kids these days probably don’t play outside anymore anyways – they come home and hop onto the Internet.

But then again, there are just as many crazy people online as there are in our own backyards.

Maybe I’ll test the sanity of my new neighbors by going over and seeing if I can borrow a cup of sugar . . . that’s how people often started to get to know their neighbors in the past. But these days, I’d probably be seen as a nutbar who just ran out of sugar.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Trapped By The Wet Shiny Floor

I enjoy cleaning my place – it is relaxing, downtime for my mind and gives me great satisfaction afterwards of a nice clean place.

And although I love my place, sometimes I think it wasn’t designed very well.

Whenever I wash the floors I feel trapped, or boxed-in. It doesn’t matter how I do it, if I want to wash all the floors, somewhere I’ll get trapped, unable to go someplace unless I don’t mind getting wet feet.

I occasionally will wash the kitchen floor, wait until it dries then do the hallways. But that is time consuming – it can take 30-minutes or longer for the floors to dry.

Usually, I’ll start in the kitchen, and go all the way around to my bedroom. Then I just watch TV or surf the net in my bedroom until the floors are dry. Though this means I can’t go out, eat, or go to the bathroom.

I’m trapped by the wet shiny floor!

Right now as I write this I am trapped – so in a sense it gives me an opportunity to take a break from cleaning to write a blog. But, if I have to go to the washroom, get hungry, or just want to go out and do something – I can’t!

I have to wait until the floor dries, otherwise I’ll end up with footprints on the thing, and that doesn’t look good.

I wish they designed this place better, so that I could do all the floors, and still have access routes to all the places I need. Maybe one day they will invent ant-gravity boots so I can float atop the wet floors without actually touching them?

Till then, I wait . . .


They do have those robot vacuums! One of those robot vacuums actually is a floor washer. I could program it to go off when I’m not home, or at night when I am sleeping. That way, I won’t have the need to go anywhere that may be wet.

I’ve been considering getting one of these robotic vacuum things for ages. Now I see the true advantages of having one – the ability to do the cleaning without being stuck in a room for half-an-hour!

I wonder if they have one that does windows?

Friday, August 24, 2007

The "No Change" Scam

I love to cook, but sometimes even I am too lazy-ass to pick up a spatula and start something. So I order in.

Usually ordering in is a relatively tame and easy experience. I even order online occasionally, which reduces the chance of human error by some kid in a call centre.

A while back I ordered from Pizza Pizza, they make great Italian pies. The order came to about $30, all I had were twenties. So I gave the guy $40 and he was supposed to make change.

“Oh, I’m sorry Sir,” he claims. “I don’t have enough change.”

It wasn’t a large amount he was off by, only a couple of bucks. He said he had a few more orders to make, and wouldn’t be able to go and get change right away. He said, if you let it go, I’ll remember you next time and take it off your order.

Yeah, right.

That was a couple of months ago. I’ve ordered from the same pizza place several times since and have yet to see the same delivery guy. He probably did that “no change” scam with all his customers, made a small fortune, and is now living the high life in some sunny resort town.

I don’t mind being burned once – now I know. From now on when I order take out, I always make sure I have exactly the amount I plan to give the delivery guy. If I don’t, I’ll use my plastic. If all else fails and someone were to try that scam on me again, I’d just take my money back and tell the guy to come back when he has change.

I’m not falling for that trick again.

And you shouldn’t either – if this has happened to you – let me know. I’m curious how common this scam really is.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

A Private Lesson on the Subtle Art of Kicking Your Ass

Change can be good. Today I happened to stumble into my first class at the gym and I enjoyed it.

I had just completed one of my typical weight lifting routines and was on my way up to the cardio floor to do my usual routine when I noticed they had moved the exercise bikes used in the spinning class to the boxing gym. Wondering what became of the boxing gym, I went over to investigate.

There were two people in the gym, but no boxing gear. I figured they axed the boxing gym and were putting in another type of gym.

The trainer saw me and motioned for me to enter. I hesitantly did so. Turns out he’s the new boxing instructor and they hadn’t finished putting the new and improved boxing gym together.

But he asked me to stay and join his class.

What class I asked, looking around – there were just three people in the room – the trainer, his apprentice and me.

He told me usually he gets quite a bit more people, but for some reason, no one showed up this time around, so he was just training his apprentice. But he said it’d be fun to try – it was free – and it would prep me for the next class.

I thought about it.

It’s been years since I took any fitness classes at a gym. Many years ago I used to join everything from kick boxing, yoga, step and I killer cardio, and boot camp abs to name a few.

I enjoyed classes back then – the group atmosphere was very supportive of everyone, and it was fun to learn new moves and ways to exercise.

I’ve been so busy working on my own routines, I haven’t bothered to try a fitness class in ages.

So, I thought, hey, why not – and I joined the boxing class. If you can call it a class, it was more like a personal training session, as it was just me, the apprentice and the trainer.

The trainer showed us a move, the apprentice then demonstrated the move and then I attempted the move. It was a lot of fun. We did some core workouts (abs, oblique’s and lower back) and then we did some cardio.

The cool thing about this, is it is actual boxing. Most gyms I’ve been at had kick boxing, or some other non-contact form of the sport. They don’t want to take on the legal liability if someone knocks out someone else in the class. They usually have special boxing gyms where that’s all they teach.

Here though, I was in an actual boxing class! A class where they teach you how to kick butt.

At the end of the class, the trainer says he always ends the class with a mini competition. As there were no other students, I went head-to-head against the apprentice.

We had to do a calf-raise and keep our legs straight and raised just six-inches over the ground. The loser was the first person to drop their legs to the ground. This is a really good exercise for your abdominal muscles – the trick is to focus on your breathing and not think about the burn.

I’d done lots of these calf-raises in the past, but didn’t know how I’d do as this was my very first class – in years.

But surprisingly I won – and the trainer says – says – he buys the winner a health shake. Ahem – still waiting for my shake – but I really enjoyed the class.

I think I’ll go to the next one Monday night – even though I don’t like hitting the gym on Mondays – too busy. But hey, I deserve a free health shake!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Wear the Right Stuff or Go Naked

Recently at the gym I saw one of those women covered all in black except for a little slit for her eyes. She was on the treadmill, going at a relatively slow walking pace. But her outfit wasn’t right for working out, and sure enough, she took a tumble.

Five or six personal trainers rushed to help her. She made quite a seen. Not only did she go down, her long robes got caught in the treadmill so she was pretty much stuck where she was.

She was okay, but the trainers had trouble getting her long black robes out of the treadmill. One suggested using a pair of scissors. The woman complained loudly – well sort of. I guess she doesn’t speak English, because all she’d say was “no no no.”

So the trainers yanked and pulled and pried. Eventually through much struggling, they were able to remove the long black robes from the treadmill.

One of the trainers told her she shouldn’t be wearing anything long which might get caught in the machines. Maybe she should toss on a pair of shorts, or even a track suit, he suggested.

The woman, looking very much the part out of place as a beat-up old mule on a busy city highway, just kept saying “no no no.”

After all the trainers had left, this woman – in all her long black robes – got back up on the treadmill and continued as if nothing had happened.

She didn’t fall down again, from what I saw, but she still shouldn’t have been on that machine in that outfit at all.

Gyms are relatively safe places, provided you know a little something about your body, working out, and are dressed right.

Wearing the wrong stuff can make the gym a dangerous place, as the scary looking terrorist-like woman on the treadmill discovered.

I know terrorist is a strong word. But these people aren’t in their country, they are in mine. And in Canada we don’t run around with completely covered with nothing more than a slit to see.

If I went into a Mack’s Milk wearing a ski mask, how long do you think it would take the store clerk to panic, call the cops and start preying for his life?

I am a firm believer in Canada’s multicultural openness. We warmly welcome just about anyone from just about anywhere. Practice your culture’s values at home as you would in your native land. But when you are out in public, get your mindset on one thing – this isn’t your native country, this is CANADA and we don’t do shit like that here.

If you really don’t like wearing something as simple as a t-shirt and blue jeans, fine – go naked. Naked may not be comfortable in our climate, and you may have more wrinkles than most care to see, but at least you’d fit in more than wearing scary outfits that conceal who you are.

A while back in the winter, I wrote about some Indian guy who was wearing open-toed sandals in the middle of winter. It was -30 C outside, and there was lots of ice and snow. Sandals may be fine in warm climates, or even here in the summer – but in winter!?!?

What the hell is wrong with these people? Do they want our free healthcare so badly they are willing to get frost bite to try it out?

Maybe they need to fall off a treadmill nearly breaking their neck to experience the thrill of an emergency ward in one of our over crowded hospitals.

Maybe our hospitals wouldn’t be over crowded if we didn’t let idiots into our country? Anyone told by professionals what to wear – like the woman on the treadmill – and then ignores their advice is an idiot.

Breaking your neck so that you can practice your scary customs out in public in my country isn’t the thing geniuses do.

But then, I suppose we don’t let in many of those geniuses anymore. Just those idiots that will do stupid things – like walking across a major highway, wearing sandals in winter, or long black robes on a treadmill.

I can see the headlines now – Woman Walks to Death on Treadmill.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Shopping Isn't Just for Girls

Our society’s double standard says shopping is a “girl” thing. Women go shopping – so the double standard says – to relieve stress, to make themselves feel good, or just for something to do.

Guess I have a female side, because I like to shop too.

Though the double standard probably doesn’t take into account the different types of things men and women like to shop for.

I just came back from Wal-Mart and I bought a whole slew of electronics gadgets and a few things for my home. I got a spanky new wireless headset for my cordless phones – so that I can yack for hours on end without getting a stiff neck. I also bought the latest version of Microsoft’s wireless mouse, with High Definition laser accuracy. I got a Black and Decker multi-purpose Panini Maker/Waffle Maker/Grill for my mom – her birthday is today (happy birthday Mom!)

And I got a new three-bin laundry hamper which actually is way cooler than some of the other things I bought. My old laundry hamper was worn out and over flowing to the point where clothes were ending up on the floor. This new laundry hamper has three different bins to sort clothes – one for lights, one for darks and one for everything else (I’m using it for towels).

I dropped a load of coin today, but it felt good. Though according to the double standard, I should be stressed out over the whole experience, instead of relaxed and feeling good about myself and my purchases.

Why is that?

We men need stuff too. We need clothes to cover up those naughty bits, tools to put things together, even personal grooming types of things (like shaving crème, shampoo, body wash, and cologne).

Though a lot of the things I buy I don’t have to have. But it gives me pleasure using them, and I feel good while shopping looking for things which I might enjoy using.

I am not suddenly attracted to other men, and I don’t think I’ll be jumping into a leather thong and branching around in the gay pride parade. I’m as manly as they come – I love a good steak, a cold beer, and hard core girl on girl porn.

But if you follow the standards set by our narrow-vision society, you’d think I’d be a woman or gay.

Shopping for me is fun – so long as I’m shopping for the things I like. I think that goes for most people – men and women.
Anytime we spend money on ourselves, we feel better about ourselves, because we feel looked after and self-sufficient all in one go. We feel better knowing we can fend for ourselves, afford to go out and splurge occasionally on ourselves, and we enjoy the products and services we paid for with our own hard earned cash.

That’s just the way it is – for men and for women.

Now excuse me while I go use some of the cool stuff I bought today.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Refreshingly Slick – But Not Slippery

My hands have been really dry recently, and I really don’t know why. Usually they aren’t dry and flakey, but for some reason, now they are.

So, I’ve done what most people do with dry hands – rub on some lotion. But the lotion I have in my bathroom I got many years ago at a Dollar Store, and it is extremely greasy.

I put it on, and literally for half an hour or more, I was still holding onto things with paper napkins, because my hands were still slippery from the lotion.

I used to think it was normal to sit around for hours, waiting until the lotion absorbs into your skin and the greasy goo went away.

But then I started to think – hey! Do people really sit around as if they have nothing better to do and wait hours for their lotion to dry?

I see women at the office rub in hand lotion all the time, and within minutes they are back to typing away on their keyboards. Their keyboards don’t appear to be slippery – so what gives.

The answer is simple – you get what you pay for.

Cheap Dollar Store skin cream is just that – cheap. It may be greasy, but it works – so long as you don’t mind waiting around for a few hours.

There are better lotions out there, they just cost more. But again – you get what you pay for.

I haven’t got around to buying new lotion, but after my workout today I did something I haven’t done in a long time. I rubbed lotion on my body after showering. The lotion at the gym was not greasy, and didn’t have that strong a scent.

And the best part of all, it felt really, really, REALLY good. I felt refreshed, and smooth, and extra clean – if that’s at all possible.

I’m going to buy me some high end moisturizing skin cream, and apply it after every shower. Who needs a spa, when you can do it at home?


I’m moisturizing!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Television Isn't What it Used to Be

I caught an episode of Sanford and Son recently on television. Sanford and Son is a show about people living in the ghetto, from the 1970s.

They did have a laugh track, but the jokes were really funny. I was almost rolling off my chair laughing.

They don’t make television shows like that anymore. With real characters in unreal situations. These days they make reality shows which are supposed to be real, but obviously could never actually happen.

Shows like Beauty and the Geek, where they gather a bunch of nerds and a bunch of hot fashion models, and see who ends up dating who. Or my favorite, Joe Millionaire, where they take an average Joe and make him look like a millionaire, and then they gather a bunch of money hungry gold digging women, and see which one would still “love” him if he weren’t really made of money.

There are other reality shows like Survivor, where they toss a bunch of people onto an island, and expect them to fend for themselves.

These shows are most likely scripted – though they claim they aren’t. How else would they be able to guarantee their sponsors people would watch, if everyone on Survivor died in the first episode, or worse, figured out how to get off the island within a few minutes?

Shows from the 70s and 80s weren’t always realistic, but they were far more entertaining than the reality shows the network trash brass give us.

One of my favorite shows when I was a kid was Emergency – about paramedics and their daily lives. It was a bit of action, some comedy and lots of cheesy 70s references – but it was a great show. If and when I catch it in re-runs, I still watch it.

Then there were all those family sitcoms in the 80s – Growing Pains, Family Ties, Diff’rent Stokes, Who’s the Boss, The Facts of Life – all these shows are still classics. They often had stories which taught us a moral lesson, but there was still lots of humor and good natured drama to them. These shows were based on reality, and could conceivably actually happen – even today.

Shows like Survivor just sell nut balls trying to make money in a pre-scripted game show so unrealistic, only the brain-dead would actually believe any of it was real.

Sad to say, most people that watch television these days must be brain-dead, because they eat up shows like Survivor – which is why the networks keep churning out this crap.

That’s what it really is – crap. Television used to be entertaining. They used to make shows with a purpose, and really well crafted storylines, exceptional dialogue, and solid characters.

These days, most characters are paper-thin, the story lines appear to be created on napkins, and the scripts might as well be written on the same napkins, because they sure don’t hold my attention for very long.

Maybe one day, some television executive will remember about old times, and wake up and start creating shows worthy of watching.

I have over 500 channels on my digital cable, yet I often find so little of value on television, I hop onto the Internet or I go out on my balcony to pass the time.

When I spend less time on my balcony and more time in front of my television, then we know we’ll have finally got something worthy to watch again.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Nothin’ Beats Surround Sound

Recently I saw Rush Hour 3 – the third movie in the martial arts cops movie with Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker.

The movie was great, living up to the other two movies it was based on. The stunts were phenomenal, the comedy was rocking funny and the sound – whoa!

Nothing beats surround sound. The theater we were in had a very good surround sound system. I could hear bullets going off behind me, the crack of car doors as they opened, the music was booming.

Scripts make a movie good or bad, as does the acting. But once you get past all the stuff involved in the actual making of the movie, what’s left often depends on where you see the movie.

Big screen, big sound, big deal. Actually it is – if I saw this movie in a smaller theater without such a high-end surround sound system, it probably wouldn’t have been as enjoyable.

Some movies don’t require all the high-end surround sound to make them work. A romance movie, or a psychological thriller less so, and a drama – who cares if I hear the weeps of woe from the actors?

But an action movie, or a science fiction movie, or even a horror all require top notch audio systems to really be heard.

I remember seeing Jurrasic Park in the theater and then seeing it on someone’s home television years later. There was something very different between the two – even though they were both the very same movie. What was different was the audio – in the theater you get shaken up with every dinosaur’s roar. While at someone’s much smaller home system, you get a lot of bass, but not much else.

One of my co-workers loves to see movies at the drive-in. She says it is so much better being in your own car, enjoying a movie, than having to deal with complete strangers sitting next to you, or blocking your view in front.

I suppose if you have one of those high-end car stereo systems, you might get some of the cool surround sound effects. But most high-end car stereo systems were designed exclusively to give you the best quality music. In a movie there is more than music, there are natural sounds, mechanical sounds, people sounds – all sorts of sounds. From gun shots, to rain.

Car stereo systems just can’t deliver the same audio you’d get in a movie theater.

Home theater systems are getting better – and they are designed to give you movie theater quality audio, right in your living room.

Now if only I can figure out how to get 10-foot speakers through my front door. . .

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Boxers or Briefs?

How about BOTH?

Okay – this is going to be one of those very personal touchy-feely types of blogs. Today we’re going to look at the clothing we wear under our outer wear. Underwear. Yeppers – those unmentionables are getting mentioned.

For as long as I’ve been alive, I’ve always worn briefs. I guess when you’re a kid growing up, you just naturally wear whatever your parents buy you. And when it comes to underwear, your mom and dad naturally buy you what they wear – for boys they end up with the same kind of undies as their dad, and vice-versa for girls.

As I was raised in briefs, I’ve always been comfortable in briefs. Briefs seem like the only kind of underwear I would buy. And until recently, they were the only underwear I would buy.

A few weeks ago I was shopping for some tighty-whities and saw boxers. A lot of women supposedly think boxers are sexier on men than briefs. I never was a big fan of boxers, as they are so loose, everything just kind of hangs out of them.

I’ve also seen those tight boxers, called boxer briefs. They are the same length as boxers (which is longer than briefs) but they are tight to the skin (like briefs).

I thought about it, and I took the plunge. After a life-time of wearing nothing but briefs, I decided to buy a couple of packs of boxer briefs to try out. I got two brands, Jockey and Calvin Klein. I even experimented with colors – usually I just get nice bright white. But I got a few grey pair as well.

A few days later, I tried them on. WOW – so comfortable! It was a definite change from my usual undies, but it was a very nice change. A more comfortable change. I like the way they feel, as they are longer than briefs they bend and flex more with my body. As they are tight to the skin, they don’t let everything hang out.

Boxer Briefs are definitely the way I’m going from now on with my underwear. Today I went out and got another eight pair, so I have enough for the week. I will be slowing saying goodbye to my old, worn out briefs which I’ve had for so many years. I’ll be replacing those older briefs with the new boxer briefs.

Interesting, brand names aren’t everything in fashion either. I got all Jockey as the Calvin Klein’s bunched up around the waist area. They are exactly the same size, but the higher fashion Calvin Klein’s just didn’t measure up in terms of comfort.

I may still wear my old briefs at the gym, as they are shorter and probably won’t hang beneath my shorts while I workout. But that will be the next test – wearing a boxer brief while working out. I’ve worn ‘em to work, and elsewhere, but not on a long workout.

I go through a lot of underwear. On days when I workout, I go through at least two pair – one during the workout and one after the workout after I’ve showered. Some days I may go through three pairs – if I go swimming I’m liable to have changed undies three times.

Underwear is one of those things no one talks about, but it is so very important. It really is extremely important that our under layer be just as comfortable – if not more so – than our outer layer.

I’ve always bought 100 percent cotton undies too. Cotton is best for wicking away the sweat and moisture caused by our hot bodies during the course of a day.

I still makes sure all my underwear is all cotton, but now I’ve got boxer briefs and two colors to choose from. Daring! Maybe next time I’ll buy black undies, or red ones, or even a male thong. . .

Uh er – well maybe not a thong. Some things just don’t look comfortable or decent no matter how much – or how little – material they put into them.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Soaking Up Some Cancer

We’ve all heard the warnings about staying too long in the sun. Thanks to global warming, the sun’s ultraviolet rays can not only burn your skin faster than before, but they can cause legions leading to skin cancer.

With all the warnings you’d think people would cover up. Nope – it amazes me how many people I see lying at the pool, sun tanning.

That’s right – sun tanning! They aren’t covering up, they are taking it all off to capture that bronze tanned look.

Way before we knew the sun could kill, a sun tan was considered healthy. People who had bronze skin were thought of as being sexy, because they took enough care of the bodies to want to show it off – so they’d go out and get a tan to compliment their slim builds.

Back in those days, people actually were coverer themselves in Vaseline or baby oil to increase their chances of getting a dark brown tan.

These days, anyone who bathes in baby oil to get a dark brown tan is just asking for trouble. If you are using anything other than sunscreen – with at least a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 – than you might as well just go and stick your head into a hot oven.

Go ahead – jump into that oven, because if you are using anything other than a good sunscreen, you are just baking your skin.

Fair skin is back in fashion, because we know sun tans are unhealthy. But I guess there are always going to be the occasional idiots that still think the glow of the sun is safe, harmless, and good for their skin.

Well, thankfully cancer can be fatal – so hopefully these idiots will die out and not propagate in the gene pool. We already have too many nut bars in the pool – so I guess if a handful cook themselves into extinction, it’s okay after all.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Fine Dining without the Fine

I’ve heard a lot of great things about a fine dining steak house called Baton Rouge now for some time.

My mom and dad love the place. I’ve heard others say they have the best ribs in town.

So, I went recently, expecting hefty prices, but exceptional service, high quality food and lots of steaks to choose from.

Well, after reviewing the menu several times, I was extremely disappointed. Oh the prices were hefty, but the selection of steaks for this supposedly “steak” house were quite slim.

Actually, for the hefty prices they were charging, I was expecting fine dinning items on the menu. You know the kind of things prepared by exclusive chefs – which amazing descriptions.

Things like quail in a bourbon sauce, with wrapped in brochettes, and covered in Champaign demi-glaze. Or maybe blackened pan seared steak, served with sweet potato fritters, in a peppercorn and crème sauce.

Those are the types of things you find typically at exclusive high-end fine dinning restaurants. Those are the types of things prepared by exceptional chefs, who can charge outrageous prices for their pieces of food art.

At Baton Rouge, they were charging those outrageous prices, but didn’t have the fine dinning food or famous chefs to back up those prices. For a supposed “steak house” they only had three steaks on the menu – all costing about $30.

They had a clubhouse sandwich, hamburgers, salads, even ribs. But they didn’t have anything special, which you’d find exclusively at a real fine dinning establishment.

Fine dinning isn’t just about great food. It’s about food art. Real fine dinning occurs when you have an exceptionally talented chef taking unusual food pairings, tossing them together and creating visually stunning plates, which taste as good as they look.

Anyone can make a clubhouse sandwich – and hamburgers – if I wanted a burger I’d go to McDonald’s.

Fine dinning is also about the experience. The whole staff should be very prompt, overly friendly, and go way out of their way to offer you a suburb dinning experience.

Our drinks we ordered came right away, but when we asked for our bill, it took well over 15 minutes. We only ordered drinks, because we were disappointed with the menu selection and price. Yet with only two drinks, it cost $20!

At a real fine dinning restaurant that’s okay – but at a regular upscale eatery that’s a rip-off.

We went to the Keg – a real steakhouse with lots of steaks to choose from – and got more drinks and lots of real high quality food.

The Keg isn’t fine dinning – it is just an upscale steak house. But their prices are right, their service outstanding, and their food very good.

The Keg doesn’t offer fine dinning cuisine – but even they take the time to create unique food combinations which only they have.

I love their pecan sirloin – a sirloin steak, covered with feta cheese, roasted pecans, and a peppercorn sauce.

At Baton Rouge, they didn’t even go out of their way to create a unique dinning experience. Well, okay that’s not entirely true. They try to create a fine dinning experience without the fine. You pay an over inflated price for moderate to poor service, average bar-type food, in a cozy atmosphere.

If I was a tourist and didn’t know any better, I probably would have paid those outrageous prices and enjoyed the meal, not knowing I was being ripped off. But as I’m not a tourist, I knew better.

And now you know better too.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Gift Giving at The Office

My birthday is Monday. Happy Birthday to me.

When I was younger, I really looked forward to my birthday. It meant friends and family would gather together and celebrate moi. There would be great food, lots of presents, and of course birthday cake.

When you get older, you start to wish these things didn’t come by every year. Aging is a natural and normal part of life. But it doesn’t mean you have to accept it and celebrate it.

I still enjoy getting together with friends and family to celebrate my birthday. Any excuse for a party among friends, is a good excuse.

Celebrating birthdays at work is another story.

Again, when I was younger, I worked for a company which had pizza and cake day on the last Friday of every month. On this day, everyone would gather in the big board room to listen to the latest developments from the company’s top brass, and then any birthdays, anniversaries, engagements or other personal developments were announced and everyone clapped and cheered. Then we had pizza and cake for lunch to celebrate.

When I was younger, I enjoyed those pizza and cake days. I thought it was an excellent opportunity to network with others in the company, and it was nice to celebrate someone’s birthday – even mine.

But as you get older and wiser, you learn the politics of office life. All offices have politics of some kind or another. The most common form of office politics I have found can be summed up in one phrase: “perception is reality.”

Now we all know, just because we see something – or “perceive it” doesn’t necessarily make it “real.” But, in an office environment, where we really don’t get to know each other as well as our close friends and family, perceptions do become realities very fast.

The office floozy, who always wears revealing clothing, too much makeup, and although she never gets anything done, she always makes more than you must be sleeping with someone in power. The whiner that is always complaining about something, but has been with the company forever and doesn’t appear to be looking for anything else will always have something to complain about that really doesn’t matter.

These are perceptions about people that may or may not be true. But we assume they are true, because although you spend eight or more hours a day, five days a week with these people, you really don’t get to know them.

Which brings us back birthdays at the office.

I don’t like celebrating birthdays at work. I think it is dangerous and may potentially wreak havoc with someone’s career.

I USED to enjoy celebrating birthday’s at the office. But then I discovered “perception is reality.”

We perceive – rightly or wrongly – certain stereotypes with age. The older a person becomes, the wiser they are supposed to be. In an office environment, the older a person becomes, the more expensive they become, because of all this added wisdom from their years of experience.

We also believe people start thinking of management roles as they get older and may eventually one day want to stop everything and retire. Some people don’t want to lead, they prefer to follow. Others may not want to retire for many years.

We may also think of those younger than us, that they are not as able or capable of doing the job we once saw them do, simply because we now know their true age.

Our perceptions can harm our relationships in the office, because of the assumptions we can make, regardless of our working history with these people.

Celebrating someone’s birthday in the office also can lead to awkward moments. Some people are very sensitive when it comes to their age. By announcing their birthday, you prompt others to ask – how old are you?

This forces some into turmoil – if they lie then Human Resources may pounce on their back for making stuff up on their employment application. If they tell the truth, then their colleagues may have differing opinions of them from there on in.

Also, what happens when someone you don’t know that well, a co-worker, suddenly gives you a birthday gift?

This can be perceived of by you – and other co-workers – in many ways – none of which are good.

If a co-worker is the opposite sex of you, other co-workers may think there is more going on in your meetings than work.

Even if the co-worker is the same sex as you, others might wonder what scheming you do with your “buddy” outside of work – they may even think you hang out at bars and both get toasted.

Celebrating birthdays at the office is wrong.

I know everyone means well. But perception is reality.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Who’s Business is My Business?

I work really hard to do the best I job I can. I like to put out high quality materials in any projects I do.

And it shows – I get lots of great feedback from my coworkers.

They are always interested in whether or not I’ll be coming on-board permanently, or taking on another contract.

I always find this interesting, as I myself do not know.

On one hand, it is nice to be wanted. On the other hand, I often wonder if they know more about what the higher-ups are thinking than me – and they are fishing around to see what I am thinking.

In all contract negotiations, there are two or more sides to the debate. There is always management, occasionally human resources, finance and then there is me. Each side has its own wants and needs.

Management if happy with my performance, will usually want me to come back, either on another contract, or on staff. They talk to finance which wants me to come in at the lowest possible price, to ensure they get good value for money. Human Resources is in the middle of the two, working on coming up with the best possible offer, given the budget. Then there is me.

I have to decide first if I want to come back. Just because a client offers me another contract or a more permanent position, doesn’t mean I’ll take jump at the chance and take it.

If there is a lot of mis-management, poor working conditions, duties and roles which are not those typically assigned to someone in my profession, or other negatives, they can convince me out of accepting any offers, no matter how lucrative.

Then there is the offer itself. I find offers for being brought on board to staff usually unappealing, because they actually offer less than I make on contract. They toss in medial, dental and life insurance, and company pension plans and other so-called “benefits,” as a justification for dropping down the salary.

Money isn’t the only thing – it is everything. It is nice to have benefits, but benefits don’t pay the bills. Benefits keep you alive so you can comfortably continue to work – they don’t pay for food, rent, or clothing.

Typically, after proving my worth, I like to increase my salary. If a company feels I am so much of an asset, they want me to continue working for them, then why shouldn’t I?

Most people on staff receive raises on a regular basis based on performance, why shouldn’t I?

Also, if you lock yourself into the same rate or a lesser amount of salary at the start of a permanent offer, chances are you will be stuck at that level until you either die or move on to another company.

Raises don’t usually grow by too much over the years, and company bonus plans are so flimsy, one never knows if the economy, the company’s management or both will cause the company to flounder, and so to the BIG bonus you were promises.

Case in point, the company I am working on contract now for has some pretty questionable fiscal management practices. The marketing executive blew their budget last year, and almost jeopardized everyone’s bonuses. This year, those very same people that blew the budget, over spent even more this year. Not only are all employee bonuses at risk, but the company may have to do some serious cost cutting to stay afloat.

Still, the other day I was asked by a coworker if I’d be staying on as an employee after my contract ends.

My contract doesn’t end for several months, but I guess I do think about these things too.

I enjoy working with most at the company. They are very nice, and for the most part very good at what they do.

However, there are lots of other things which makes me wonder whether or not I’d want to continue on past my contract. And then there is the offer too – I’d need to see the offer in writing before making any decisions.

One of the biggest reasons I am not sure is this whole budget blowing fiasco. It is one thing to have an executive team member of a company over spend. It is quite another to continue to allow those people responsible to go on about their work, with out any punishment or methods to prevent such fiscal mis-use of funds from occurring again and again.

One of the key projects I was initially hired for was put on hold, because although the company had the budget for it, after the marketing executive overspent AGAIN this year, they didn’t have the funds for my pet project. So, although I enjoy the work I am doing, it wasn’t the primary reason for me accepting my current contract.

That will come into play big time come negotiations. If the company can’t show me that they have taken reasonable steps to prevent the budget for my project to suddenly vanish due to some other team’s mis-management of funds, then I may just as quickly turn down any offers.

The fact that there is no accountability, or ownership at an executive level of such a major issue also will affect my decision. If the company’s executive can overlook someone putting the company into financial harm’s way, what is to stop them from looking the other way over other things which could easily cost the company it’s very existence?

I do enjoy what I do and for the most part the people I work with. However there are a number of issue which need to be addressed long before I sign on the dotted line to continue past my current contract.

So, from now on when a coworker asks me if I’ll be staying on, I tell him or her that I really don’t know. And that is the honest truth.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Sparkling Smile

Teeth whitening has been a fad now for a few years.

All dentists will try to up-sell you on their whitening services.

“Your teeth are fine, but could be whiter. I just happen to offer a teeth whitening service. . .”

Sneaky. You go to your dentist thinking it is a medically necessary procedure to ensure your teeth last as long as you do, only to be the victim of a sales campaign.

Then you can go to those “specialists” that do nothing but whiten teeth. Using everything from lasers, white-out, they will make your teeth so white, when you smile everyone goes blind.

Or you can do what I did recently, and start using products readily available in your drugstore. I usually use Plax pre-brushing dental rinse to remove plaque. But as I was shopping around for my Plax, I noticed they didn’t have the flavor I liked.

I tried the red “original” flavor and thought it tasted far too much like medicine. So, as they didn’t have my flavor, and I was looking for a pre-brushing rinse, my eyes opened up to the Listerine Teeth Whitening rinse.

This bleach white bottle claims to whiten teeth in three months, with regular brushing.

You have to gargle with the stuff twice a day, and then brush, but I can handle that. Though it still doesn’t taste as good as the Plax I usually by – it at least doesn’t taste like medicine.

I don’t know how safe these teeth whitening products are – or how reliable.

If you take the time to read the ingredients, they actually have peroxide in them. Peroxide is the active ingredient in bleach, that turns white clothes white and everything else too. Peroxide is used in hair bleach to turn a brunette into a blonde.

It’s a chemical similar to acid.

Still, it is found in most teeth whitening products. I wonder how safe it is to drink bleach? In a sense that is what you are doing when you use these product – a small amount must get into your system when you gargle. Sure you spit most out, but some must remain inside.

I wonder if my insides are turning bright white by using this stuff?

Oh well, so long as my teeth get the whiter, I suppose it doesn’t really matter. Besides, who’s going to see my inside anyways?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Stickey, Ewwy, Gooey, Good

Went to a ribfest with my brother on the long holiday weekend. I’ve heard about these things before, but this was the first time I actually ever went to one. You always read in menus or hear in advertisements about some restaurant’s award winning ribs. Well, ribfests are where these restaurants win those awards.

When we first got there, we didn’t see any ribs!

There were lots of vendors, selling everything from T-shirts with funny catch-phrases, to scented oils to make your home smell nice and fresh, to candy and everything else.

Then there was the midway, with lots of rides – just like at the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE).

Finally after passing all of this, we got to the rib’s section of ribfest. There were several restaurants all in a row, all grilling their ribs. They were all serving up ribs, chicken, baked beans and cole slaw. And all of them were charging exactly the same amount, to eliminate any potential for competition from the crowd. The real competition they were here for was to win best ribs of the ribfest.

It was actually hard to tell the names of who was who. All of the “ribbers” had huge signs over their booths, proudly displaying all their banners from all the other ribfests they had won. Somewhere, amidst all of those banners was their actual sign – but it was so buried in their other promotional stuff, most of the time I didn’t know the names of the places I was eating ribs from.

We first walked the ribbers row – to see and smell all those glorious ribs. Every one had their own “secret” sauce – which was also available for purchase from each vendor.

My brother and I chose two different vendors to try, we each got half a rack and compared ‘em. They were good – but so many more to try. We did the same thing for a couple of more vendors. But ribs are very filling and expensive, we couldn’t possibly try all the vendors.

But we had a lot of fun trying the three vendors we did manage to get too – ended up costing us over $30 each (and all we got were ribs) and we each ate a rack and a half of ribs.

But it was worth all the sticky fingers we had. They even had hand washing stations set up in the park – I guess they know you can’t enjoy ribs without making a mess. But taking that mess home is another thing.

I’d definitely go back to ribfest next summer – it was well worth the gooeiness and the full stomach. Maybe next year I’ll even make it to the beer tent before getting too messy.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

The Power of Guilt

Monday’s are the busiest day at the gym. The next busiest day is Thursday.


One word.


People feel guilty about gorging themselves silly over the weekend, so they go to the gym to work off those extra beers on Mondays.

Thursday’s people feel guilty about their over indulging plans to come on the weekend, so again, they go to the gym.

Funny, the least busy days are Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Guess those days are for something, any something, other than working out.

I don’t need guilt to enjoy the benefits of working out. I love the adrenalin rush so much so, I’ll go whenever I have free time. Hell, I’d actually live at the gym if possible!

But for most, the gym is a chore, a schlep, something which requires more effort than they can muster unless they feel guilty about something.

Maybe they ate too much, drank too much or plain ol’ did absolutely nothing worthy of physical activity for so long, they feel guilty about even paying for a gym membership.

I get my money’s worth – and more at the gym. I workout because I want to, because I enjoy it and because it keeps me active, healthy and eager to come again.

Then there are others who come to the gym just looking for a potential bed buddy. I see the men and women scouting around, with their eyes darting from here to there. They never seem to work up a sweat, but they sure do move around the gym a lot. And they always have the latest in workout fashions.

I don’t care what I look like at the gym. I don’t go to pick anyone up. I go to workout. I usually just wear a t-shirt, shorts, and running shoes and socks. I have my trusty water bottle to keep hydrated, and a workout towel to wipe away the sweat. That’s all I need.

I don’t know about those that have to be guilted into working out. Kind of defeats the purpose of being a member of a gym. I’d rather be interested, eager, and happy to be someplace, than forced into it by way of guilt.

But to each their own.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Simcoe Day? Who’s He? Who Cares – Let’s Party!

The second-last long weekend of summer is coming up this weekend. Each province has it’s own holiday this long-holiday-weekend.

Here in Ontario it is called Simcoe Day, in honor of Lord Simcoe, the founder of Ontario.

There wasn’t really a “Lord” Simcoe, his name was John Graves Simcoe, and he founded York, which is now the city of Toronto.

He was the first lieutenant governor of Upper Canada, which is now Ontario. He introduced many institutions including courts, trial by jury and English Common Law . . .


It’s a long weekend man! Just grab some Heineken, bags of chips, and
P A R T Y!

History is important – to historians. Long summer weekends were meant to chill out by the pool, BBQ, drinking beer – or anything alcoholic – and just forgetting about that awful thing called life.

Life isn’t so bad – so long as you take time to enjoy it’s finer pleasures.

Like drinking. Drinking can be loads of fun, there is so much to choose from. Beers, scotch, whiskey, cocktails, mocktails . . .


What are you 12?

Here’s your Shirley Temple. . .pussy!

Where was I?

Oh yeah. . . the finer things in life.

Like food!

Glorious goodies like double chocolate fudge cake, dripping in soft butter cream icing, topped with whipped cream and hot fudge sauce.


Though sometimes, the finest thing in life is to sit back, and do absolutely nothing at all. Be it soaking up some rays at the pool, lounging around on the balcony, or lying on the couch mindlessly watching some infomercial on television.

So, “Lord” John Graves Simcoe founded Toronto in 1793 and named it York . . .




Who cares about stinking history? So long as you can celebrate the holiday in peace and quiet, light off a few fireworks, drink your Heinekin and eat your chips.

Remember the key word . . .

P A R T Y!

But just in case you’re interested, here’s a snippet of why we do celebrate Simcoe Day in Ontario – for those who really want to know:

John Graves Simcoe

Born February 25, 1752 in Cotterstock, England
Educated at Eton College, Merton College, Oxford (THE SAME GUYS WHO WRITE THE DICTIONARY.

Occupations: Military Officer, First Lieutenant Govenor of Upper Canada.

Spouse: Elizabeth Posthuma Gwillim

Parents: Captain John Simco, Katherine Simcoe

Children: Francis Gwillim Simcoe, Eliza Simcoe, Henry Addington Simcoe

Died: October 26, 1806 in Exeter, England

Fast Facts:

Appointment as Lieutenant-Governor in 1791 -- he was the FIRST to hold the position.

Founded Toronto in 1792.

Brought the court system to Ontario

The following are all named after him: The town of Simcoe in southwestern Ontario is named for him as is Simcoe County to the west and north of Lake Simcoe. Lake Simcoe, meanwhile, was named by John Graves Simcoe for his father. A provincial holiday held on the first Monday in August is known as Simcoe Day in Toronto. Simcoe's regiment still exists as the Queen's York Rangers, an armoured reconnaissance regiment of the Canadian Forces reserves. A school in St. Catharines, Ontario, Governor Simcoe Secondary School, was also named after him. Simcoe Street and Simcoe Place (office tower) in Toronto are both located near the fort where Simcoe lived during his early years in York.