Sunday, 30 October 2011

This Week in the News! October 29 Edition

Welcome to the newest edition of "This Week in the News!".

5.Olberman dubs Ford "Worst Person in the World"
I'm not really a Rob Ford fan, but even I think this is a little extreme.

4. Canadian senator wants polar bear as new emblem
This article is from the BBC, but I read basically the same one in the Toronto Star too.  The poor beaver.

3. Utah highway shut after 20m bees escape from lorry
Also from the BBC (note use of "lorry" as opposed to "truck").  20 MILLION bees.  That's a lot of bees. The road was closed for several hours while beekeepers tried to get the bees back.  Most were gone.  Drivers are being told to keep their windows closed.

2. Actress sues Amazon over her age on its IMDB
An unnamed actress is suing Amazon for more than $1 million because IMDB listed her age.

1. Rick Mercer's rant on teen suicide
The rest of the articles are ridiculous.  This one isn't.  Watch this video.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Things that really annoy me: #1. Misuse of Guy Fawkes

I've decided to write a weekly (perhaps more often than weekly) post entitled "Things that really annoy me".  In it I will write about - you guessed it - things that really annoy me.

In volume 1 of "Things that really annoy me", I would like to discuss Guy Fawkes.  You know, the guy (and the word "guy" comes from his name) who tried to blow up British parliament in 1605.  A total hero of the people.  Trying to fight against the establishment, and make it a better world for everyone.

Except that's not what he was doing.

Guy Fawkes was part of a plan to kill the protestant king and put a catholic monarch in his place.

What really annoys me is the use of Guy Fawkes' image (namely, the mask from V for Vendetta) and using it to represent the struggle against government.  Take, for example, the most recent "Occupy Walls Street" protests (or Occupy Toronto, Vancouver, Boston, etc.).  During these activities, I saw multiple pictures of protesters wearing Guy Fawkes masks.  And in Montreal, I saw a statue wearing a mask.

Guy Fawkes wasn't trying to blow up parliament to destroy an evil theocracy, he was trying to install one.

V for Vendetta was an awesome movie.  But for god's sake, please get your facts straight before you slap on the Guy Fawkes mask.

So this November 5, when you remember Guy Fawkes, please remember what he ACTUALLY was doing, and not the movie V for Vendetta.

Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
The Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.

Friday, 21 October 2011

This Week in the News! Oct 21 version

I'm finally home after spending a week in Montreal for work.  Montreal is a fabulous city (not that I saw much of it on this trip; I spent 9 hours minimum a day inside a meeting room at the hotel) but I am very, very happy to be home.  I know a lot of crazy things happened this week (the biggest being the death of Gadhafi), but I'd rather focus on the more random things that were newsworthy.  Well, maybe not really "newsworthy".  But they were in the news.

5. Shatner the Humanitarian; he donated his kidney stone to charity
Yes, William Shatner sold a kidney stone and raised $25,000 for charity.  I wonder how much he could get for his toupee.

4. John Lennon's Tooth Up For Auction
If William Shatner's kidney stone made $25k, imagine what John Lennon's tooth could make.  Side note: the tooth has spent the last 40 years in Canada.

3. Texas prisoners lose their lunch
Now when you go to prison in Texas you'll only get 2 meals on the weekend: brunch and dinner.  And if you're expecting a last meal before execution, you're out of luck (thanks to a white supremacist who ordered a giant dinner and didn't eat any of it).

2. Charlie Sheen will be Charlie Sheen for Halloween
In case you were wondering.  And you can be Charlie Sheen too.  All you have to do is buy an incredibly creepy mask like this guy:

1. It's my brother's birthday
Not really a news item, just a statement of fact.  

There's No Such Thing As a Free Lunch, or a Free iPad

We've all seen those ads or links on Facebook: "click here for a free iPad" or "like this for a free Tim Horton's gift card".  Hopefully you've never clicked on them (or any of the "OMG! I can't believe what this girl did" links). They are scams, 99% of the time.  If you're lucky, you're just taken to a website trying to sell you something.  If you're unlucky, you're click-jacked or worse.

I'm always amazed by the number of my Facebook friends who are taken in by these scams.  Or who share information that they saw on their friends' pages without confirming the truth behind the rumours.  Please, take 30 seconds before you click "share" when you read something on Facebook.  And NEVER click on any video link that starts with "OMG".  You're just asking for trouble.

The best source of information about these scams (at least, in my opinion) is Sophos.  Look them up on Facebook, and "like" their page.  They give up-to-date information on the latest Facebook scams (like the free gift cards, the video links, the idiotic memes, etc.) and can protect you from looking like an idiot or getting a virus.

Another great spot is Snopes.  This is where you can find the truth about all those memes that your friends are trying to spread (e.g., fake Amber alerts) as well as a ton of other information about scams.

If it seems too good to be true, it usually is.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Their are so many idiot's in this world

I woke up this morning intending to do some work.  I mean actual work for my actual job (even though it's Saturday).

Instead, I saw this picture online:

This sign, printed by a professional sign making company in Toronto, is a disgrace.  There are only 18 words on the sign.  And there are something like 9 errors on it.  When I first read it, I didn't even notice the crazy hyphenation going on; I was too focused on the 5 apostrophes.  Why???  How did this happen???  Let's assume that the sign had to be written by a person, approved by someone else, sent to the printer, made into a sign and then delivered (by the way, there are 5 of these signs posted on the fence in different locations).  There had to be at least 3 or 4 different people who had the opportunity, nay, the obligation, to fix this problem.

And don't even get me started on unnecessary quotation marks.

On second thought, let's take a look at unnecessary quotation marks:

Okay, so it's not a dog. TELL ME WHAT I NEED TO BEWARE OF!!! Is it a cat dressed as a dog??  is it a guy who thinks he's a dog?? I'm so confused.

Poor lobsters.  Do you think they're zombies??

Now this one is just gross.  Of course, maybe their "cheese" is actually some non-dairy substance and they legally can't call it cheese (something similar to Cheez Whiz, maybe?).  If that's the case, then I applaud their honesty.

In summary, there are way too many idiots in this world.  So I guess I should write it like this:

Their are way to many "idiot's" in this world.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Halloween Horror-Fest

In honour of Halloween, Girlfriend decided we needed to do a horror movie marathon.  Starting last weekend, we have been watching a number of scary movies.

Last weekend we watched "28 Days Later" (which should not be confused with "28 Days") and "The Others" (notable for being the last thing Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise worked on together).

Tonight we started with "The Exorcism of Emily Rose" (which really wasn't that scary, but it was interesting watching Deb from Dexter playing someone who could talk without dropping the f-bomb every second word).  And then I was finally able to convince Girlfriend that "Friday the 13th" was worth watching.

I'll admit that the movie is incredibly cheesy.  Bad dialogue, horrible acting, awful hair.  And for the most part, fairly predictable.

But one part had us both screaming (and I'd seen it before).  Watch it if you dare:

Thursday, 13 October 2011

People Who Read My Blog

I was pretty sure I knew everyone who was reading my blog.  All 10 of you.  I mean, first of all, it's not very interesting (I wrote a post yesterday about the Oxford comma, for Christ's sake).  Second, it's not very interesting.  So I was pretty sure that it was just my friends reading it out of pity.

So imagine my surprise when I looked at my blog stats and saw this:
14 views from the US
2 views from Italy
2 views from Germany
1 view from Russia (???)
1 view from Sweden

My first question is why?

My second question is why only one from Sweden??  I mean I actually know someone who lives in Sweden. Unlike the US, Italy, Germany, and Russia (side note - did you like my use of the Oxford comma?).

So I'd like to say hello to my readers from around the world!  I hope you enjoy the ramblings of a crazy person!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

The Oxford Comma, or the best thing to come out of Oxford since the ox forded

The Oxford comma (also called the series comma or the Harvard comma) is the comma used immediately before a coordinating conjunction (usually and  or or) preceding the final item in a list of three or more.

For example:

with the Oxford comma: I visited Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta.

without the Oxford comma: I visited Ontario, Quebec and Alberta.

Who cares, right?  I mean, why do we need the Oxford comma?

Here's why.  Use of the comma makes things less ambiguous.  Like this book dedication by Teresa Nielsen Hayden:

To my parents, Ayn Rand and God.

wow.  Did you know her parents were Ayn Rand and God?  Or maybe it really should be:

To my parents, Ayn Rand, and God.

Well done, Oxford comma!  You've saved the day again!

And take a look at this fabulous example:

So I'm going to keep using the Oxford comma, because I don't ever want to end up with JFK and Stalin as strippers.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Your Trying to Kill Me With You're Stupidity

I'm fairly reasonable.  Often.  Okay, sometimes.  But there are a few things that really, really drive me nuts.  Telemarketers, door-to-door furnace/water heater/religious people, and people who walk their dogs too close to my house (causing my dogs to go completely insane) are very high on my list of major annoyances.  Probably on the top of the list are people who can't use you're and your correctly.

I know I'm not alone in this.  In fact, there are MULTIPLE webpages dedicated to teaching people how to properly use "your" and "you're".  This one actually teaches it in 4 steps.  Seriously.  If you need 4 steps to figure out that "you're" means "you are", GET OFF THE INTERNET AND GO BACK TO SCHOOL.

There's also "to", "two", and "too".  And "they're", "there", and "their".  And "its" and "it's".  If YOU'RE TOO lazy TO pay attention TO what YOU'RE writing then you deserve to have YOUR ass kicked. IT'S not that hard TO figure out which form of the word TO use.

If you are reading this and don't know what I'm talking about, please step away from your keyboard.  Never type again.

Next up: Fun with the Oxford comma!

Monday, 10 October 2011

IS John Travolta Immortal?

Yes, I meant to type it like that.  IS John Travolta immortal?

A few weeks ago, I wrote an entry about Nicholas Cage and Keanu Reeves, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are both immortal.  Now it looks like John Travolta is immortal too.

Exhibit A:

Exhibit B.  The article where I got the above picture.

Case closed.

But now I've started wondering.  What other actors/celebrities are also immortal?

Using the incredibly clever Google search for "actor immortal", it is very soon apparent that there are others.

Peter Dinklage:

And that's all I could find.

But still, it's pretty impressive that there are 4 actors out there who are immortal.  And if I find any more, you'll be the first to know.

This Week in the News!

Welcome back to my weekly review of what's been happening in the world around us.  To be fair, this is my first post like this.  But I'll probably do it again next week.  Maybe.  Unless I can think of something better.

Okay, so here are my top 5 news headlines, taken from around the globe!:

5. Woman Gives Birth Hours After Finishing the Chicago Marathon
Okay, first.  What the what!  you're 39 weeks pregnant so you decide to RUN A MARATHON? yeah, that's normal.

4. Harry and Chelsea, Together Again?
Topping my list of "things I don't give a crap about" is this article about Prince Harry and his girlfriend.

3. Netflix Whiplash Stirs Angry Mobs
"Angry Mobs"?!?!? Seriously?  about Netflix? If you have enough money to sit in your parents basement dressed in a Klingon costume, you can afford the hike in Netflix fees.  If you can't afford it, CANCEL YOUR SERVICE.  Angry mobs should only be used when villages are being threatened by vampires (NB - the article does not actually talk about angry mobs, just whiny little babies using their Twitter accounts to vent).

2. FarmVille Movie in the Works
I'm sure this steaming pile will clean up at the Razzies.

1. 3 Amish Men Accused of Cutting Hair, Beards of Others
Violence is never funny.  But come on.  They had me at "Amish".  As the article says, Amish-on-Amish violence is rare.  So please, take some time tonight to remember the brave Amish who had their beards and hair trimmed against their will.


Of all the ridiculous things to come from the invention of the internet, Rickrolling has got to be one of my favourites.  It's where you take a video like this one of two kittens playing with a puppy and replace it with this:

And hilarity ensues.

(see what I did there?)

My favourite example of Rickrolling happened on April 1, 2008, when all the videos on YouTube were replaced with the Rick Astley video.

In honour of Rick Astley and his contribution to the internet, here is another video: