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Got through basketball this week without any additional injuries. Hallelujah.

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Today’s been one of those days where you just can’t anything useful done ’cause you’re in meetings all day and chasing email in the few breaks that you do have. Actually, yesterday was like that too. And tomorrow’s shaping up that way. Thursday isn’t looking much better. It even sounds like I have meetings popping up on Friday now, after I thought it looked clear and I’d just work from home or finally catch up on the sleep I didn’t get Sunday night. And it’s not like the weekend will be light either…Raptors game Friday night, Winterlicious dinners Saturday and Sunday evenings, and possibly brunch with CBGB somewhere in there as well. I’m glad I took this week off from studying or I’d be losing my mind.

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Need…sleep…

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Dang. My Grandaddy‘s gone.

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Argh: Religious Groups Get Chunk of AIDS Money.

For the record, I have no problem with the money going to religious charities per se. What I *do* have a problem with is giving AIDS money — money meant to save lives and ease suffering — to religious charities who focus on abstinence and refuse to give out condoms or work with prostitutes. I wish all the money could’ve gone to groups without hidden (or not so hidden) agendas.

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No Frank McKenna after all. Huh.

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OK, not to be cold and heartless, but once a year I see a story like this where a couple of nimrods are surprised when their motorcycles or snowmobiles or whatever plunge through the ice (and find, much to their surprise, nearly-freezing water underneath) and die. I mean, I feel bad for their families and everything, but fucking hell, Jethro…YOU’RE DRIVING ON ICE!! THINK!!!!!

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I’m pretty wiped today. We were up until about 4AM; I had to sign off on an implementation that went in last night. I got a couple hours of sleep between 4 and 6, then had to get up to do a final check and sign off, then back to bed for a couple of hours. I can function at about 80% even with minimal sleep, but I still just feel drained and wonky.

At least staying up until 4:00 gave us lots of time to watch all the episodes of Veronica Mars that we downloaded. We’re now up to date on season 2, so we can pick it up tonight.

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Canadiens 4, Leafs 3. For once Montreal was on the power play in overtime against Toronto, and they scored to pull out a big win on the road.

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Last night we started up our Winterlicious tour at beerbistro with friends R&M. I really enjoyed it: the atmosphere was somewhere between a lounge, a pub and a restaurant, with a large bar, TV and jazz quarter up front and dining area in the rest of the room. The food was good — not Avalon or Splendido good, but certainly much better than a pub or most restaurants — and their suggestions for different beers were right on. I had a pint of Fuller’s ESB, a bit of Dennison’s Weissbeer to go with my salad and a pint of Koningshoeven Dubbel to go with my steak and dessert. The Fuller’s and the Koningshoeven were both excellent and matched the food well. My only complaint about the place was that the music was too loud; we had to yell across the table to each other.

I can see beerbistro becoming a regular neighbourhood place — along with C’est What, the Irish Embassy and The Strand — when we move downtown.

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Good for Nettwerk, a Canadian record label that’s fighting charges laid by the RIAA against a Texas father.

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The cats both puked at the same time this morning. It was like some kind of coordinated terrorist attack.

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The humuhumunukunukuapuaa is dead. Long live the humuhumunukunukuapuaa.

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Well…at least we won’t have to suffer through any more embarassing dunk contests featuring Chris Andersen.

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Still on the subject of basketball: I can’t believe it took this long for the Raptors to fire Rob Babcock. When you go back and look at a list of the trades he made and the players he drafted…it’s staggering. The Vince Carter trade will undoubtedly go down as one of the worst in history.

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Haute Tension (imdb | rotten tomatoes) was a good Friday night, slightly scary, need to relax before the rest of the weekend hits, gruesome movie. We knew it had been a Midnight Madness film in recent years, so we fully expected the blood. If slightly better than average horror films (with higher than average violence) are your kind of thing, check it out. Just remember to switch the audio to French and turn on the subtitles; why they shipped it with dubbed as the default, I’ll never know.

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Wow. It’s been twenty years since the Challenger disaster. I remember being at home that day, off school because I was sick with a cold. Come to think of it, I remember being at home the day after the Gulf War started too, but I think that was a snow day. In both cases I remember watching the same footage loop over and over and over. It was like being hypnotized. I think I became a bit of a news junkie that day.

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Nellie and I have been burning up our bandwidth with bittorrent, downloading episodes from Season 2 of Veronica Mars to try to catch up, now that we realize we get the channel that’s airing new episodes. I’m enjoying Charisma Carpenter’s [ahem] guest appearances, and the cameo by Courtney Taylor-Taylor of the Dandy Warhols in the last episode we watched was pretty funny. Apparently Britt Daniel (Spoon) shows up in one episode.

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I finished watching Darwin’s Nightmare (imdb | rotten tomatoes) today. It’s pretty freaky stuff; the ecological, social, political and economic ramifications of somebody introducing a new species of fish into Lake Victoria 60 years ago are *staggering*, far more far-reaching than I could have imagined. I highly recommend watching the film — if for no other reason than to remind ourselves how desperately parts of Africa need our help — but don’t watch it unless you have a strong stomach. There’s one prolonged scene that involves fields of rotting fish, crawling with maggots. I happened to watch this scene yesterday as I ate lunch. That did not go well.

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So Jan Bulis hears from the coach that he’ll be a healthy scratch for last night’s game against Philadelphia. Then Sheldon Souray gets taken out of the lineup because of an infection, and through some juggling Bulis is back in the lineup at the last minute. Bulis then proceeds to score four goals, including the game winner, breaking Montreal’s road losing streak. Eight goals on the whole year, and four last night…here’s hoping Gainey makes him a game-time decision every night.

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Hello, Frank McKenna. Farewell, John Manley; we hardly knew ye.

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Here we go again. Another video game, another youth driven to death and destruction by it. It never ceases to amaze me how dense people can be sometimes. As Nellie pointed out this morning, the people who think that video games are responsible for this crash — and a number of people interviewed on the street said just that — must be ignorant enough to think that no one ever died in a street race before, say, 1985. Perhaps James Dean was all hopped up on a black & white version of Gran Turismo when he died in a street race?

Tell you what…when the number of deaths that can be directly linked to recreation of video games reaches 1/100th the number who die from drunk driving, then we can talk about banning video games and alcohol. Until then, use some common sense and think before you open your nattering gob.

By the way, as a side-note to this story, check out the differences in the way the same story is told in the Toronto Star and the Ottawa Sun. Granted, the Sun chain can hardly be called real newspapers, but surely somebody must read past the Sunshine Girl and lottery numbers and find their take on current events. Here’s how the detective on the scene was quoted by the Star:

“It’s a horrible irony…Some have said this is life imitating art but I don’t know…a game is a game, but when you get behind the wheel it’s reality…ultra-violent driving simulation, fighting simulation and criminal simulation…But are games the cause? Absolutely not. But, it is rather ironic.”

And then by the Sun:

“Here we have, in real life, two guys driving high-end cars at a high rate of speed in an urban area…I don’t think it’s a giant leap for people to say, ‘Wow, how does this go together?'”

Same detective, same story. Completely different spin.

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Wow. Vince Carter is calling out Kobe Bryant for his 81-point game ’cause one-man shows like that don’t honor the team concept. That’s fucking rich. Carter might as well have been talking on his cell phone during his last 60 games with the Raptors. What an asshat.

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Speaking of asshats, can we please find a way to stop all the whining in Alberta about being so hard done by and about how the rest of Canada discriminates against you? Antonia Zerbisias points out some of the fairytales spun by Norman Spector, and on CTV Newsnet this morning I heard Link Byfield whinging about “the east” just not getting “the west”. This confused me, as I’m pretty sure my ballot didn’t list “Alberta” as a candidate.

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On to hotter happier things now: Martina Hingis. I actually have a reason to watch tennis again. Ok, well, maybe just tennis highlights. She lost last night, but getting to a grand-slam quarter-finals after being away for so long? Pretty impressive.