Tuesday, December 30, 2014

I Doubt Anyone's Keeping Track.

There is all sorts of information that no one is keeping track of.  For a lot of it there probably isn't a practical way of doing so.  One example is the average life span of a webcomic.  Anyone who has read more than a couple has been a reader of a series that has gone silent, or stumbled across one after it has.  Long running series like Questionable Content must keep the number higher that it might, given that a lot of webcomics make it a year, or less, before the creators realise they're in over their heads, or lose interest. 

Friday, December 26, 2014

A Possible Solution.

The mess prompted by the revelation that Jian Ghomeshi is apparently a giant creep continues to have effects.  One of them is that CBC has pulled the video versions of his various interviews off of YouTube, and won't use them on Q.  But perhaps there's a solution.  Re-edit the material to remove Ghomeshi.  It would be an audio and video equivalent of Garfield Minus Garfield, where strips are edited to remove the titular cat.  It would be a lot of work, and might not work with some interviews, but it would make for an interesting listening experience.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Are You Out There?

I hope not.  I hope you aren't one of those people who are going to sit out in the cold all night so you can buy some supposed door crasher at 6 AM on Boxing Day.  It's silly.  Especially if you live in a place like Saskatoon, where it will be -23 Celsius overnight.  If you haven't left already stay home, and save yourself the pain.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Google Likes Me.

Seriously, I've received quite a few hits of late attributed to Googlebot-image for various random posts here.  They must be doing some sort of archive updating or something.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Gas In Saskatoon, December 19, 2014.

The week of December12th saw no change in prices in Saskatoon.  This week made up for it with a double dip.  Gas in Saskatoon is now 89.9 cents a litre at most locations.  At this point it's probably pointless to speculate how low prices will go, as they just keep dropping.

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Yes, I have beaten some of you.  I'm all done my Christmas shopping.

Of course when you're only buying for three people it's kind of easy, isn't it?

Remember, you have less than seven days left, depending on the shopping hours where you live.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Generic Can Be A Problem.

I've been on a bit of an '80s and early '90s nostalgia kick of late, having spent a lot of time looking at old TV commercials on YouTube.  And this morning I was thinking of the days when music videos were the hot thing, and there were who knows how many video shows on both network and local TV.  But one I remember is kind of hard to look up.  To the best of my knowledge the title, or partial title, was Rock and Roll Video.  As you can imagine it's pretty hard to find something like that when it's such a generic phrase.  Of course CBC's long running daytime video show was Video Hits, another generic title, but it's much easier to find when you know the broadcaster.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Forever The Same.

I caught the premiere of ABC's new series Forever tonight.  Honestly they're going to need a lot of work to make this one differ much from previous shows about immortals.  It already looks like it will contain the classic elements, namely the hero getting badly mangled or killed each episode, and the inevitable flashbacks to his past.  You'd think someone could do something different with the concept, like say have it revolve around those who have just become immortal and all the things they go through as they slowly realise what it all really means.  Of course there's a good chance it will get six episodes and be cancelled. 

Addenda:  Oops, I didn't know this show has been on the air for a while.  This shows you how much attention I pay to network TV these days.

Saturday, December 13, 2014


I'm fighting a cold right now. Given how I coughed this morning I'm surprised I didn't cough out a lung.  Too bad I don't know anyone to give this cold to.

Monday, December 08, 2014

Carrying A Concealed Snake?

Chances are this will soon reach the "weird news" segment of your newscast of choice.  But if you see this soon enough you can say you saw it here first.  Two Saskatoon men are currently in custody, facing charges of mischief and causing a disturbance, after they threw a snake at Tim Hortons employees at the 22nd Street location.  The two men became irate after an employee of the restaurant told them couldn't have diced onions on their sandwiches, prompting one to pull the snake out of the other's pocket, and throw it over the counter.  The employees fled, and after police were called the two men were located nearby and arrested.  The snake was a garter snake, which of course is not venomous, and was taken into protective custody.

As if we didn't have to worry about Saskatoon crooks with guns, knives, and bear spray, now it's concealed snakes.

The Last Christmas?

No, not for you or me(unless our luck turns really bad).  Rather, seeing a toy ad online for Sears Canada got me wondering if this might be the last Christmas for them.  Like its US parent the Canadian version is not in good shape.  Their revenue has dropped heavily in recent years, and they lost money, almost 120 million dollars, in the third quarter of this year.  Their workforce is half what it was in 2005.  New CEO Ronald Boire claims the company is not going away, but to some extent that seems like wishful thinking.

I have a family connection with the company.  My mother worked in the women's underwear department of the Saskatoon store for years.  So it's strange to think of it disappearing, that this might be the last year their familiar Christmas Wish Book turns up in mail boxes.  Of course it could be argued that this is another sign of Sears failing, still putting out what must be an expensive piece of advertising in the scheme of things in the modern online era.  In any case, it could be that this time next year all that will remain of Sears Canada is memories.

Where's My Backbone?

Has anyone seen it?

Saturday, December 06, 2014


Misogyny kills.  Sexism helps it persist.  On this day in 1989 14 female students at Montreal's Ecole Polytechnique were murdered by Marc Lepine for the crime of being women.

Geneviève Bergeron (b. 1968), civil engineering student.
Hélène Colgan (b. 1966), mechanical engineering student.
Nathalie Croteau (b. 1966), mechanical engineering student.
Barbara Daigneault (b. 1967), mechanical engineering student.
Anne-Marie Edward (b. 1968), chemical engineering student.
Maud Haviernick (b. 1960), materials engineering student.
Maryse Laganière (b. 1964), budget clerk in the École Polytechnique's finance department.
Maryse Leclair (b. 1966), materials engineering student.
Anne-Marie Lemay (b. 1967), mechanical engineering student.
Sonia Pelletier (b. 1961), mechanical engineering student.
Michèle Richard (b. 1968), materials engineering student.
Annie St-Arneault (b. 1966), mechanical engineering student.
Annie Turcotte (b. 1969), materials engineering student.
Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz (b. 1958), nursing student.

We always remember the names of the people who perpetrate this violence.  We need to remember the names of their victims.

(This post was inspired by James Nicoll's annual memoriam posts about the Montreal Massacre.)

Friday, December 05, 2014

Gas In Saskatoon, December 5, 2014.

The 100 cent barrier has been broken.  After a couple of dips this week the first Friday of December sees gas in Saskatoon at 97.9 cents a litre at most locations.  If prices fall below the 90 cent mark early in 2015 I will be entirely unsurprised.

However, if you drive a diesel fueled vehicle each drop in gasoline prices must seem like cruel taunting.  A litre of diesel currently costs over 30  cents more than a litre of gasoline in Saskatoon.  It used to be that diesel was always a bit cheaper than gasoline, but those days are gone.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

More Than I Thought.

The death of hockey great Jean Beliveau got me thinking about hockey and this blog.  I don't watch hockey, as I'm not a fan.  Yeah, there are Canadians that don't pay attention to hockey.  I assumed I haven't mentioned it much here as a result.  But when I did a search I found that hockey has come up here more than I thought.  The number of posts that primarily deal with hockey is small, but they are there.  I even have a hockey tag.  It just shows how much of an effect the sport has on Canadian culture whether you're a fan or not.