Thursday 27 March 2014

Working in Montréal today --Veni, vidi, non scripsi

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Montréal today.

Every now and then I draw a blank set of topics for my Thursday pulps.  If you don't know how my process works, let me enlighten you.  Usually as I turn on to Silver Dart Drive on the airport grounds I start to think about possible subjects.  Having the radio news on sometimes helps.  If still blank I have hopes that something in the newspaper will supply a creative tidbit.  Failing that, some event at the airport will surely give me something, anything...

Once I have a topic, I will sometimes take the opportunity before take off to do some very quick research on the subject, perhaps some historical context, occasionally I will look up past pulps as some topics resurface.  Mayor Ford, The End of the World, Keynesian economics and corporate greed, tips on home surgical techniques -how to avoid a bleed out when removing your own appendix. I've covered them all, sometimes twice.

Today.. nope, nada, zip.  There was a brief moment where prior to push back the captain come over the PA and asked for everyone's attention, something had occurred and was observed by the baggage handlers.. "Yes?" I wondered.. a spill of crack cocaine from Mayor Ford's bag?  The missing $4 billion tacked onto the Ontario Hydro Debt by McQuinty, Oscar Pistorius' missing defense and a claim that it was he that screamed like a girl after the first two shots, but before the last two?

 No.  Seems  3 attractive grey ties had apparently slipped out of someone's bag.  Would the owner please alert a flight attendant so that they can returned.


It happens folks.  Not a damned thing to write about.  So instead of writing furiously, I am going to enjoy my breakfast  and a hot cup of coffee and sit back and enjoy the flight and will post this lame excuse for a pulp on our landing.

Oh.. Veni, vidi, non scripsi. Latin for I arrived, looked around, and didn't write about it.

Have a good day.

Thursday 20 March 2014

Working in Ottawa today --Keep Calm and Carry On

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Ottawa today.

When traveling through Charles De Gaulle airport about 3 years back I was somewhat taken aback by the lack of queuing up, through every door or turnstile or check point (of which were numerous) the traveling public just.. well sort of.. mashed up, like a semicircular arc of peoples all attempting to squeeze through simultaneously.

I had lamented this experience to my brother John in a short email on return to the Big Smoke and he explained that prior to WW II no one lined up anywhere and it was the British that invented the practice and now a source of true Brit pride, Keep Calm and Carry on!  He's a funny guy.  I countered with what about the bread lines during the Great Depression -- weren't those exactly that, lines - queues?  He said answered, no, the lines never existed, they were a staging by a young Walt Disney taking the pictures, much like the staging of Lemmings dropping to their death over cliffs some years later.

Huh.  Well how about that?

This morning I joined the lower level priority security line at Toronto's Pearson Airport.  When I joined the queue there were about 6 persons in front on me, and we collectively were by all indications waiting to flow through security door 1.  The standard proletariat line had no one actually in the line, but security door 4 had perhaps 10 persons waiting to pass through.  I decided to stick with the Priority queue since 6 well seasoned Elite and Super Elite travelers should in theory be able to pass through security an order of magnitude quicker than 10 of the great unwashed with their water bottles and spare change and scrap metal in each pocket.

But no.  As a new set of travelers entered the empty non priority queue, the security agent ushered them in front of a gentleman about 5 ahead of me for door 1  (!)  You have got to be shitting me!

"Ma'am?" I exclaimed, "What are you doing?".  "What did you say to me?", she demanded.

"Ma'am, you have placed travelers that just entered the queue ahead of persons us that were here prior to their arrival.  We are already here waiting!"  She explained that everyone needs to get through security (duh) and that I was still in line (double duh).   And then the best justification for her actions.. "I have the authority to place people where ever I want them!"  Well golly, her parents are surely proud.  I repeated my objection attempting to be clearer but I already knew such an attempt would be fruitless.

The gentleman behind me leaned forward and explained for the security agent gal and I to hear that my mistake was that I thought I was in a Priority Line, but in reality it was the De-Priority Line.  I turned and asked, "De-Prioritization?", his traveling colleague explained, "oh yes.  It's part of Air Canada's new campaign, they aren't happy until you're not happy."

Oh.  Now I would actually disagree that it is an Air Canada problem as AC did attempt to speed me on my way by paying for the special queue, but it was the security agents that get the fail in the science of queue mechanics.

After the brief nose to nose disagreement the security agent cut off all communication with me but also as additional travelers arrived in the queues she did not attempt to place anyone else in front of door 1.  A success. 

Have a great day, queue up!

Thursday 6 March 2014

Working in Ottawa today -Porn, Canadian Style

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Ottawa today

If politics bores you, keep reading, the porn is at the end.

You may have surmised that I generally hold politicians in contempt and regard their motives with suspicion.  This week Hillary is on the block, not because of what she said, but because she denied saying it.

Two days ago while at a speaking engagement with the Boys and Girls club of Long Beech (Recreation and Park Association Join Partnership for a Healthier America), Hillary made certain comments about Putin's movements into the Ukraine, specifically into Crimea.

Hillary stated, “Now if this sounds familiar, it’s what Hitler did back in the 30s,” and then she continued with, “All the Germans that were ... the ethnic Germans, the Germans by ancestry who were in places like Czechoslovakia and Romania and other places, Hitler kept saying they’re not being treated right. I must go and protect my people and that’s what’s gotten everybody so nervous.”

Now here's the thing... her assessment is correct.  All too often we hear the Hitler card played where it just does not apply, like when some Tea-Party play thing reacts to Obama's half hearted attempt at bringing about some Social Justice and introduces a Healthcare bill.. "He's like Hitler!" -- no Biff, you must have missed History 101.  but Hillary, yeah baby, you actually nailed a good comparison.

Putin did put Russian troops on the Ukrainian peninsula in Crimea, insisting that Russia has a right to protect its interests and Russian-speakers in Crimea and elsewhere in Ukraine.  Now bear in mind that Russian-speaking peoples make up about 60% of the population of the Ukraine, so protect the Russian-speakers from whom?

From this writer's seat it just looks like Putin took advantage of pro-Democracy protests as an easy entrance into occupation.

But Hilary did an about face yesterday, and now denies that she made the comparison of Putin to Hitler.  Odd.. go back up and read the quote again and you will read that she clearly invoked the hitler card.

But no, Hillary now states,  "What I said yesterday is that the claims by President Putin and other Russians that they had to go into Crimea and maybe further into eastern Ukraine because they had to protect the Russian minorities ... is reminiscent of claims that were made back in the 1930s when Germany under the Nazis kept talking about how they had to protect German minorities in Poland, in Czechoslovakia and elsewhere throughout Europe.".

"I'm not making a comparison certainly, but I am recommending that we perhaps can learn from this tactic that has been used before".

Yeah.. Hillary, sweetheart, you are making a comparison, and it was apt.

"Um.. Uncle Daniel didn't you promise PORN?"

Yes, yes I did.  Yesterday the CRTC decided enough was enough.. or maybe I should say was not enough and issued a reprimand to the Canadian Adult Movie Channel AOV for not airing enough Canadian porn.

The CRTC want to see at least 8 and a half hours of Canadian made porn per day.  But that's not all.. no.  Closed captioning, where is the closed captioning and equally important, where is the audio descriptions of the activity on screen?

Now these descriptive video voice-over guys usually deliver in a low monotone voice.. 

"A pizza delivery guy walks into the apartment carrying a flat cardboard box.  From the bedroom walks a shapely young women wearing a thin negligee.  oh no, she has suffered a wardrobe malfunction.. Bow Chicka Wow Wow! out has popped a set of double entendres!"

But the real opportunity here is reminiscent of the CanCon boom in the 70's for Canadian Music, that brought us Ann Murray, BTO, Foghat.. and now CanPorn!  An opportunity for Canadian young men and women to show their stuff! to become stars!

Have a great, don't hesitate to try out a new career!