Won’t go nowhere

I might prefer gliders to rocking chairs, but rocking chairs get all the good songs and stories.

via @bittycar on Instagram, who finds all the best cartoons

Storming the castle

Several years ago about this time of year, I tried to cross the border into Canada with a bunch of fireworks. When the border agent started confiscating said fireworks, I asked him, “But don’t you like fireworks? Tomorrow is Canada Day!” He answered me thusly: “We like things that fizz, not things that bang.” So, Canada.

When we went to Mexico earlier this summer, Benny and I bought a bunch of fireworks in town and set them off on the beach. I can assert most confidently that Mexico prefers things that bang, not things that fizz.

Quiet celebration

Published in: on July 2, 2011 at 10:07 am  Leave a Comment  
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If you go down in the woods today…

I can’t believe I didn’t hear about this incredible drug bust last summer. Actually, I can. The American reporting of the story left a lot to be desired. Whereas, in Russia:

I want to get all my news from this woman.

via Metafilter

Mystery solved

Last week, I was doing a Google image search of “lost pet notices” when I discovered something strange. The most common search results for “lost pet notices,” aside from Fancy Notions posts, were notices left on or around Bloor Street in Toronto, Ontario. Lost cat at Bloor and Dufferin. Lost dog at Bloor and Dovercourt. Lost thing at Bloor Street West. Lost Found cat named Sausage-Monkey wearing a suit jacket at Bloor Street West. Strange. What, exactly, was it about Bloor Street and missing pets?

Thankfully, I asked a couple I know who is currently living in Toronto about this curious phenomenon. Here’s the response:

“An excellent conundrum. Bloor Street runs through the “fancy poodle” district of Yorkville, so it may be that dognappers are rife. There are no major parks nearby, so coyote attacks are unlikely. Another possibility is that they’re just whiney up there.”


Of course, just now I did a Google image search for “lost pet flyers” rather than “lost pet notices,” and Bloor Street no longer had the corner on the market. It seems that Americans say “lost pet flyers” and only Canadians say “lost pet notices.” Canadians and Fancy Notioners.

UPDATE 2/26/10: I’m still thinking about this. Bloor Street can’t be the only fancy whiney poodle street with rife dognappers in Canada. Shouldn’t there be Google image results for lost pet notices in the fancy poodle district of Vancouver and Edmonton and Calgary? Case reopened.

Published in: on February 25, 2010 at 10:55 pm  Comments (3)  
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Curious Canadian critter carcass controversy

I can’t believe I never heard about the Torrington Gopher Hole Museum before today (thanks, metafilter). Not only does this place feature three things I love – dioramas, taxidermy, and animals in costumes – but apparently it was the focus of a PETA protest back when it opened in 1996. When the museum founders responded to PETA’s letters with a postcard saying, “Get stuffed,” newspapers around the world picked up on the story. I can’t believe I slept through all this.

Apparently the issue is still riling people up; when the student paper for the University of Calgary wrote a story about the museum, it received the following complaint:

I was seriously offended to see a gopher representing my profession…not only because gophers in and of themselves are the pride of the Praires, but also because it undermines the skill required to be a blacksmith since it is common knowledge that gophers couldn’t possibly have the mental capacity to perform such tasks. In fact it borders on defamation of a blacksmith’s character. We ask that the proprietor remove at least the blacksmith gopher from her collection. Clearly the RCMP gopher has been appropriately depicted, and possibly the reverend as well.

Okay, whoever wrote that was obviously joking around; it was signed “Rusty Brown” which is a suspicious name if I’ve ever heard one. Then there was the following comment:

the brilliance of a stuffed gopher can never be underscored. think of the tragedy that noah faced with the arc and yet here they immortalize the most dispised rodent on the prairies. this is where the underdog is transformed to immortality by the skill of the taxidermists hand and the the careful display by the curators who willl be blessed in gopher heaven

if i could be stuffed i would. if i could be a care free gopher who can copulate 20 hours a day so be it that i might be in the pantheon

At this point, I think I’m even more amused by the University of Calgary student body than I am by a trailer full of taxidermied ground squirrels. Maybe amused isn’t the right word here. One thing is for sure – I need to go up to Torrington, and on the way I either need to take a detour to the UC campus or give it a very wide berth.

Photo by smithco on flickr

Talk sleep with Sue

Hitting me like a ton of bricks this week was the news that the last ever episode of the Oxygen Network television show “Talk Sex With Sue Johanson” will air this Sunday. What? Less than a week’s warning? How can she do this to me?

Sue’s official reason for the farewell had something to do with her being too sleepy to do the show properly, which I find a little fishy. First off, old people don’t need as much sleep at night because they get to take naps during the day without people bugging them to get back to work or whatever. Secondly, don’t they make coffee in Canada? Finally, and most importantly, who’s saying she doesn’t do her show properly? Not I, said the duck. SueJo is the finest source of Canadian content since SCTV.

Oh, Sue. Couldn’t you have given us a little more warning? This hardly gives me enough time to compose one of those lousy safe sex couplets you read each week from your viewer mail. How will I fill my Sunday evenings? Where am I going to learn what words like “choda” mean? You can’t do this, Sue. Really. What can I do to make you stay?

The easiest job in the world

God bless Sue Johanson and her crew for bringing comedy back to Sunday night TV. If you’re not familiar with “Talk Sex With Sue Johanson,” you may not see what’s so special about yet another sex advice show hosted by an ancient female homunculus, but please believe me: SueJo is a Canadian treasure not to be missed.

Terrible advice to callers, majestic turtleneck sweaters, vibrators wandering across the desk, and Sue’s constant confusion are all worth the price of basic cable, but it’s the shoddy call screening that really makes this show what it is. If there is a call screener at all, he or she does a terrible job. Roughly three quarters of the calls that make it on the air are joke questions, and Sue doesn’t seem to notice. Last week she blithely addressed the issue of “If my boyfriend does it to me in the butt, will that make my butt bigger?” (answer: “Oh, no. No, it won’t.”). This week, she didn’t raise an eyebrow in response to the question about hurting a midget’s insides, nor did she pause when faced with the gruntle query:

SueJo: A grondle?
Caller: I think it’s gruntle. Men and women have it?
SueJo: A gruntle. Where is this?
Caller: That’s what I’m wondering. Where the gruntle is.
SueJo: Gee, I don’t know. You got me. A gruntle.
Caller: Okay, well thanks anyway. I love the show, Sue.
SueJo: Well, thank you!

She doesn’t do any better with legitimate questions. Two separate callers have asked about testicles getting cold during intercourse, and both times she said she had never heard of that, that testicles get warm during intercouse, and she was going to have to look it up later. You can get better sex advice on the internet than from SueJo (link not safe for work; seriously).

I’m tempted to say I want her job, but I probably don’t. She makes it look easy because she’s a comic master. I would, however, take the call screening job. Let’s talk, Sue.

Published in: on April 21, 2008 at 12:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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