Tuesday 27 May 2014

Working in Ottawa today --The Second Coming of the Squirrel Prince

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Ottawa today and tomorrow.

The second coming of the Squirrel Prince.    Damn.   I was going to write about the virtues of olive oil and its ability to strip black enamel paint off one's hands with relative ease and without the harsh drying and toxic effects of distillate solvents.  That and my hands smelled like salad or perhaps pasta instead of a chemical spill afterwards.

But no.  Instead, squirrels.  You may recall the multipart Daniel v. Rodent series of 2011-12


Was much fun for all, and now I get to relive it, albeit with less altitude (elevation?) this time as a Racket of Sciuridae has securely moved into the soffit of my garage and front entry porch roof.  It really does not come as a surprise, Sharlene first heard some scurrying or perhaps some scampering some time ago, but try as I may, I did not ever hear anything or anyone nor could I see any point of entry.

Sidebar, a Racket is the collective noun for a group of squirrels, much in the way a Parliament is a group of owls, but of course I always thought that a group of owls should be collectively an Inquisition.  Who?  Who?  I find that hilarious, btw.  Feel free to join me.

And we are back.  This changed through a few events.  A week ago or so I heard them.  Was clearly a scampering across a soffit vent as I walked past the overhead door.  A re-examination of the garage roof and facia and soffit revealed an opening about 1 1/2 inches by 4 inches where the industrious little bastards have pealed back some flashing.  Who keeps giving these guys power tools?

The second event was last night while I peered towards the top of one of the interior garage walls listening as hard as I might when a little face appeared, stared down at me and with a little squirrel voice asked, "hey buddy..  whatcha doin'.. down there on the .. eh.. ground, so low .. you can't catch me eh? .. chortle chortle".   It was bad enough that he taunted me, but as he turned and scampered away, I heard a distinct giggle, some squirrel whispering, and then several squirrels all join in a subdued snickering.  Damn them.

I think it best to not seal up the hole until I catch them all, can you imagine the damage a trapped squirrel could do to the stuff in your garage?  So.. Wednesday evening I will mount a live trap on the top of that same wall, baited with peanut butter, and start a new relocation campaign. 

Operation -- Not so Funny now eh?

Have a good day, don't take any dissin' from rodents.

Thursday 22 May 2014

Working in Montréal today --Get Paleo!

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Montréal today.

Hey kids, ever hear of the Paleo diet?  I first heard of it a couple of years back from one of my brothers that extolled the virtues.  He was feeling like he had more energy, was trimming down, his mind more alert, although he had the forboding sense that the tribe in the next cave were planning his demise and he had no time to talk but had to go fashion more spear heads from his cache of lithic stone flakes.  Like I said, that was a couple years back, and I haven't seen him since, reportedly he is living in a cave in the Badlands east of Calgary.

Um..  Uncle Daniel, Really?

No, not really.  He lives in Calgary and is a huge fan of object oriented design.  I also have no idea how many spear heads he has, although I understand that they can also be used as currency when he runs out of shiny beads.

Back to the diet, the theory lurches along something like this, if you consider the vast amount of time that us humanoids have been on the planet..

Okay, perhaps brief history of us and our planet.  I will omit the part where the veggie matter and zooplankton decomposed into oil (previous post http://pulp.puckett.ca/2012/08/working-in-edmonton-and-all-points-west.html) or where the Sheiks in the Middle East pumped it out of the ground, sold it to the Americans and all bought Mercedes Benz.

4,600,000,000 years ago earth formed from gasses and dusts around a young sun.
4,400,000,000 years ago our moon broke away after we collided with the evil planet Theia.
3,900,000,000 years ago some really simple life emerged.
560,000,000 years ago some early fungi showed up.
360,000,000 years ago and then some crabs and ferns.
200,000,000 years ago evidence of viruses are littered about.
68,000,000 years ago Tyrannosaurus thundered around.
66,000,000 years ago, he died.
6,500,000 years ago, the first hominin, He with the severe unibrow, Sahelanthropus crawled out of the muck.
200,000 years ago the anatomically modern human woke up, stretched, farted and scratched his rump.
10,000 years ago we developed agriculture and cultivation.
14 hours ago while playing racquetball I whacked myself in the special place with my own racquet.

..Back to the theory, since we have been on the planet about 20 times longer than we have been farming, 650 times longer if you count the guy with severe unibrow, then perhaps our bodies are better suited to a diet of the hunter gatherer instead that of the gentleman farmer.

So meat, fish, fowl, eggs, fruit, vegetables, nuts, berries, tubers, a few rock, a peck of soil.  If Paleo man ate it, it's in.   So no grains, dairy, sugar.   

So uncle Daniel, if I eat that then I will revert back to the the tall standing, muscular, high energy version of myself, and move away from the hunched over,  slumbering, overweight oaf that I have become?

No, you'll also need to toss in some exercise, don't forget Paleo man had to work very hard to get this food.  I recommend that prior to eating a steak, that you gather up some friends, a few clubs, a couple of spears and then head out into the country where the vast herds of wild bovine roam free and ATTACK!

I recommend the bovine first as they are rather slow moving before moving up to the faster and more nimble Pig Super Sport or the ultra fast Veloxa Deer or Elk Celeratas! They latter are way to jittery and fast for the novice club wielding modern man to catch, but for pure exercise go ahead and try to chase one down.

Um,. Uncle.. You are kidding right? And what's with the smattering of Greek and Latin, and it's not veloxa it's velox.

Well.. Maybe just a bit.  And btw, no one likes a show off, veloxa deer just sounded better than velox deer and no one cares anyway.

You see there is no magic formula, skipping out the massive amount of sugar that our society consumes and limiting all of these breads and pastas will help us all trim down.  But for the best effect on our belly and heart, we all need to exercise, get moving!

It's Spring and a great time to knock the dust off the bicycle, dig the running shoes out from under the bed, unroll the Yoga mat, and put some air in the basketball, at the very minimum, go take some long, brisk walks and take the stairs.

We go through this life exactly one time, and.. GO!

Have a great day, get fit, get Paleo!

Thursday 15 May 2014

Working in Ottawa today --Toronto, you suck

Toronto, you suck.

Where else on the planet except perhaps Chicago could you have a crack smoking gang affiliated mayor, yet suspend a crossing guard for wearing her uniform in a music video?

I will clarify, by uniform I mean her reflective traffic vest.  Yes, in a bold move that demonstrates a strict adherence to rules and all things in order, the Toronto Police Services have suspended Kathleen Byers, AKA the dancing crossing guard last week without pay for appearing in indie band Born Ruffians' music video.  I will add that she was not nude, nor twerking, just doing the same dance moves that she has done for 10 years at the intersection of Dundas West and Dufferin.

Her same dance moves and 'out there' personality led to her appearing in a Toronto Police Safety video in 2012.   This time she was in hot water for wearing her uniform for a "purpose other than prescribed in Toronto Police Service Rules and Procedures".

I'll add that as recent as Toronto Police Service neglected to re-staff the post, so kids have been fending for themselves at the intersection.  

Have a good day, drive slow and watch for children.

Thursday 8 May 2014

Working in Montréal today --Quit bugging me

Hi Folks,

I will be working in Montréal today and will get a chance to see the kick off of the new Montréal Transit Bus advertising campaign.   Surfin' the web with Distributel on a Montréal transit bus.  No.  I did not bring Bermuda shorts.

Hey kids, ever wonder what the deadliest life form to humans on this planet is?

No, it's not sharks, they only kill about 10 people per year --It's like they aren't even trying.

Any more guesses?

Hey Uncle Daniel is it humans?

No it isn't and put your hand back down, this isn't a classroom and you are not the Statue of Liberty.  Us humans only kill about 1/2 a million people per year, and yes, we are trying.

Uncle Daniel, is it snakes or hippos?  No and no.  Stop answering if you don't know.  Snakes are pretty good at it, but only manage to take down 50 thousand or so.  Hippos -- really? Hippos? You are clearly just guessing.  They are towards the rear of the pack with only 500.

Give up?  It is Mosquitos.

Through their efforts they manage to knock off almost 3/4 of a million of us every year.

And good news!  They are refining their craft, and in the Caribbean they are currently spreading a new virus  for the region, the chikungunya virus.  It is usually found in Asia, and this particular strain is resistant to treatment.

The World Health Organization has reported 4000 confirmed cases, and an additional 30,000 suspected cases.  My advice is to forego any trips to the Caribbean, but pay close attention to this one.  The mosquito that carries this virus is the Aedes aegypti, yes the same blood sucker responsible for the Dengue Fever so this virus could easily spread into the Southern United States.

On a related note, Brian this is for you.  The small (very small) non-biting mosquito-like fly that has invaded Southern Ontario is the Midge.  Specifically the chironomid member of the midge family.

Have a great day, hope nothing bugs ya.


Friday 2 May 2014

Working in Ottawa today --Leave Britney Alone

Good morning folks,

It will be working in Ottawa today.

While brushing my teeth this morning, some of the week's event were shuffling around in my head, when the cold realization came to me in a blinding flash, a glimpse into a Grand Unification Theory of String Theory, Parallel Dimensions, Reincarnation, Shared Consciousness, General Relativity, Visualisability Theory and all things Celeb.

Rob Ford is an aging foul mouthed balding blonde over weight failed Mayor of Toronto with a drug opportunity, I mean problem, and simultaneously an aging foul mouthed balding blonde failed pop star with a drug problem, I mean opportunity.

Oops, he did it again.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Miss Britney Spears.

Wait!  Uncle Daniel, is this one of those times where you employ that cheap literary device and imbed the lyrics of some song, just to pad up your Pulp to a minimum size?


Well, Uncle Daniel, What do your publishers think about this blatant attempt at filling column space with whatever the hell you just copy and paste down?

They pay me exactly the same, regardless.

Huh.  How about that.

Again.. Ladies and Gentlemen, Miss Mayor Ford singing his classic..

"yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah 

I think I did it again
I made you believe we're more than just friends
Oh baby
It might seem like a crush
But it doesn't mean that I'm serious
'Cause to lose all my senses
That is just so typically me
Oh baby, baby

Oops!...I did it again
I played with your heart, got lost in the game
Oh baby, baby
Oops!...You think I'm in love
That I'm sent from above
I'm not that innocent

You see my problem is this
I'm dreaming away
Wishing that heroes, they truly exist
I cry, watching the days
Can't you see I'm a fool in so many ways
But to lose all my senses
That is just so typically me
Baby, oh

[Repeat CHORUS]

Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah

"All aboard"
"Britney, before you go, there's something I want you to have"
"Oh, it's beautiful, but wait a minute, isn't this...?"
"Yeah, yes it is"
"But I thought the old lady dropped it into the ocean in the end"
"Well baby, I went down and got it for you"
"Oh, you shouldn't have"

Oops!...I did it again to your heart
Got lost in this game, oh baby
Oops!...You think that I'm sent from above
I'm not that innocent"

Have a great day.