Wednesday 25 November 2009

Working in Ottawa today --Tazered Deer

Good morning folks,
I will be working in Ottawa today.
I read two news stories on the plane.  A deer wandering around downtown Toronto was Tazered after attempts to tranquilize failed.  I figure the cop had real guts and perhaps very poor judgement to get that close to an agitated deer.
The other story just irritated me and I'm not even bothering to share it  --well maybe.  Check out the Caledonia resident that is suing the province for failing to provide equal protection under the law.  Without researching the story more, my impression is that the province has abdicated its responsibility by trying to keep the peace with the local native population that has annexed the area by self decree, but seems to be ignoring the legal title that the resident has to his dwelling and his right to quiet enjoyment therein.
Have a good day.
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Wednesday 18 November 2009

Working in Ottawa today --Red Blood on Harp Seal Skin

I will be working in Ottawa today.
The restaurant at Parliament Hill will begin serving harp seal meat as early as spring.
This will no doubt spark additional protests over Canada's seal hunting.  I am curious though, what is it about hunting seals that many find morally reprehensible?
Before sending me hate mail or starting a flame war, let me clarify.  I am not for or against the seal hunt, just interested in what the issue is.
Is seal hunting fundamentally different than fishing or crabbing?  Granted a seal, especially a young seal, is cuter than a cod, but that is just because of the alignment of its nose, eyes and whiskers.  I do hope that it is not the attractiveness that is at the root of the opposition.
Perhaps the issue is more basic, should be killing other animals for our own needs?  Is the issue that for many adding seals to the list of animals that we tend to kill regularly is adding to their existing moral outrage?
I've heard or read that the manner of seal killing is offensive --clubbing I believe.  Having briefly spent time on an Alberta kill floor let me assure you, no manner of killing another animal is pleasant.  Whether running an animal on a conveyor into boiling water or firing steel rod into an animal's skull, or just gutting the animal while it is still alive, it is all brutal and unpleasant.
Hmm.  I may be leaning to one side, I may have to think about this too.
Have a good day.
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Wednesday 11 November 2009

Working in Ottawa today --Billy Bishop Airport

Good morning everyone,
I will be working in Ottawa today.
I noticed that the Toronto Island airport has been renamed after one of Canada's ww1 flying aces, Billy Bishop airport.  Hopefully this will not cause any confusion with Owen Sound's airport.. Billy Bishop airport.  I suppose it is no more confusing that the dozen or so Pierre Laporte grade schools.
Have a good day.
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Wednesday 4 November 2009

Working in Montréal today --José Márti’s Mustache

Good morning folks, I will be working in Montreal today and Ottawa on Thursday -just landed.
I was speaking with one of my brothers late last night and among other topics, Jóse Márti was one briefly.  So was Hungarian independence and private ownership of soviet era apartments, but that is another email.
Does anyone else think that all photos on the internet of José Martí have been altered to make his mustache larger? John dismissed my conspiracy theory and suggested that such mustaches were in vogué during the musket age -right, so was wearing an onion on your belt.

José Martí was a Cuban hero, poet, philosopher, journalist.. 1853-1895.  Active in Cuba's move to independence from Spain in 18?? -late but don't know when.  Also active in the fight against U.S. ownership and effective annexation of Cuba.
This of course led me to think of the song -Guantanamera.  Although not generally credited with the lyrics -that goes to Jóse Diaz in 1910 or so? The song does contain at least the first verses of one of his poems.
Yo soy un hombre sincero
De donde crece la palma
Y antes de morirme quiero
Echar mis versos del alma
I am an honest man
From where the palm tree grows
And before dying I want
To share the verses of my soul.

Many artists have recorded the song, but only a few of the 20 or so come to mind.  Pete Seger -my favorite version. Joan Biaz, Jimmy Buffet, and I think Carlos Santana
Have a good day.
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