Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Citizenship Rant

Conservatives order rewrite of 'insipid' citizenship guidebook

Canada's Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Jason Kenney, sounds like a bit of an ass in this article.

The current guidebook for Canadian newcomers includes two pages on environmental stewardship and barely a mention of the Canadian military - and that has Jason Kenney hopping mad [...] As Kenney acerbically characterizes it, the booklet includes two pages "on recycling" - but "not one single sentence on Canadian military history."

I've been a Canadian citizen since 1993, and while I agree that the citizenship stuff I read at the time and in the years since could be described as somewhat "insipid," I take offense at the idea that focusing on things like the environment is "ridiculous," while lecturing about past wars is supposed to be a better way to introduce people to their new country.

It isn't that 1990's Liberal Canadian values are more "insipid" than 2000's Conservative Canadian values. It just that Canadian attempts to describe Canada are pretty much always gag-worthy in some way. The government, no matter who is in control, is always the most clich├ęd in this endeavour (except perhaps the CBC).* Insulting environmental stewardship in order to celebrate soldiers isn't going to change that. It's just exchanging one ideological emphasis for another, and if you ask me, the one that boasts of environmental responsibility and peacefulness is more valuable than the one that salutes military achievement.

I'm not saying that knowledge of military history isn't important, it's just not as important for the future of Canada as the topic the Minister singles out for derision. I believe that Canadians should know about Canadian history, including the good and the bad. I doubt, however, that along with the story of Vimy Ridge immigrants will learn about Japanese internment camps. I doubt that in addition to the importance of the poppy as a symbol, the new booklet will mention much about the residential school system. Unless I'm proven wrong and they somehow don't pick and choose the version of Canada they want to convey, I say give me a break, Minister! The changes you are planning are almost certainly going to be "a small-c conservative, partisan [and] ideological project." Don't pretend otherwise. Your version of Canada will be just as "insipid" as the old one, just in a conservative way.

And I don't see how this will "foster greater integration of immigrants" and improve "social cohesion."

In fact, I can feel my immigrant self dis-integrating as I write this! Thanks a bunch, Conservatives! You are ruining my cohesion, socially speaking.

*Don't get me wrong, I really like the CBC. I just can't stand to hear them talk about 'what it means to be Canadian' and stuff like that. It is just too self-congratulatory for me to stomach.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I am so angry with the new laws in Afghanistan. Women are not allowed to refuse their husband sex. Women have been protesting the new laws, but were met with violence.

Monday, April 20, 2009


Good Lord!

I recently posted a link to one of my favourite dooce stories here. I've been reading dooce for about four years now, after I accidentally got sucked into a few mommy blogs when one writer I enjoyed had a kid. I've always felt a bit odd about this, being in my late teens/early twenties and (thankfully) having no children. But they are amusing. And interesting. And their kids are cute. So whatever. Stop judging me.

In case you are not as familiar with this genre as I am, dooce is their queen. She started blogging as a young single woman in L.A, got fired from her job for writing things about co-workers, got married, had a kid, had postpartum depression and became extremely popular along the way.

I knew her site got a huge amount of traffic and that its ads paid enough for her husband to quit his job. Even so, when I once read somebody's garbled rant about how much she sucks and that she makes millions of dollars I mentally rolled my eyes. There is no way she earns that much, I thought. This angry internet person has no concept of reality/finance.

And then Oprah/CNN goes and tells me that dooce.com brings in 40 000 advertising dollars a month! A MONTH!

I repeat, Good Lord!

In conclusion, expect either Rachel or I to suddenly have babies and dramatically improve our writing. Also, I am off to join a wacky religion now, so that I can later abandon it and mock it in an amusing fashion. Right now I've only got second-hand Salvation Army jokes, and I don't think they measure up to the Mormon goldmine.

Friday, April 17, 2009


The Deadly Nightshades had his on their blog, I wanted to share.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

National High Five Day

Happy National High Five Day!


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

attack adds

Elizabeth May explained today that attack adds work, because they reduce voter turnout. don't let them get you, stay informed even outside of election times and remember to always take advantage of your place in democracy.


what we missed.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Post of Sound - Ronettes, Spector, Crystals

I just learned that Estelle Bennett (on the right side of picture) of the Ronettes died a couple months ago.
Her life was shitty after the group split, but at least she had memories like this:

Since thinking about The Ronettes leads me to thinking about Phil Spector, I want to recommend The Sound of Young America interview with Mick Brown, a Spector biographer. It's an interesting interview, especially if you don't know much about his crazy life story.

Lastly, here is one of the weirdest pop songs I've heard, He Hit Me (It Felt Like A Kiss):

It was written as a protest against abuse, but it's very odd to hear coming from the same women who sang the fluffy "Da doo ron ron."

EDIT: Wow, I made a timely blog post without even realizing it! Phil Spector found guilty of murder today.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Did you know:

-Half of all sexually active people will have a sexually transmitted disease (STD) by age 25?
- One new STD infection occurs every two or three seconds in the U.S.?
- Many STIs have no symptoms, so most new infections go undiagnosed?

There are many ways for you to participate. First (and most important): GYT! STI testing is easy and quick (promise!). You can ask your regular doctor for STI testing or make an appointment at your local Planned Parenthood health center.

And for more information on ST!s, check out plannedparenthood.org, or use The Check, the awesome new interactive risk assessment tool.

STIs are a total drag, but the only thing worse than having one is having one and not knowing it. Getting tested not only allows you to have piece of mind and/or identify an existing infection so it can be treated, but it's also a great opportunity to talk with your health care provider and learn more about ST!s and ways to lower your risk. Make an appointment to Get Yourself Tested today! Trust me: safer sex is better sex!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Buddha's Birthday!

Today is Buddha's Birthday!
Happy Birthday Siddhattha Gotama!

don't block my facebook.

I just read (yes read) an article on Why goofing off boosts productivity.

another great way to break up your work day.


Is this becoming a horribly predictable music blog? I sincerely hope so. Today I share with you Embrace ft. Ladyhawke

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

No House Work Day

Today is no house work day!

Last week I saw a movie that relates to this topic,

Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles.

made in 1975.
The film is often compared to late Hitchcock films, it is also an early feminist film. A real-time chronicle of this woman’s highly ordered day-to-day routine, the mundane details of housework. This housework is the primary subject of the horror show. Thought the film may be difficult to sit through I recommend it, especially right to the very end.

In honor of No house work day, let us not do any house work, perhaps watch Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, and not do any house work.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Drowsy Driving Awareness Day

Happy Drowsy Driving Awareness Day.


loved the U2- Get On your Boots (Justice Remix)! (totally stole this from Roger)

at Mola Super Poco

love Paul Rudd as much as you?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Kurt Vile

My friend Jesse sent me this link, I am so excited that he thought of me when sharing such an exciting find. He explained that in this son Vile uses old lyrics of his that never made it into other songs. Those of you who read stereogum.com might find this redundant, but its a great song.

sxsw preview :: kurt vile at Gorilla Vs. Bear

Saturday, April 4, 2009

I tried to make latkes yesterday, and it was not a success. Some good came of the attempt though, because it reminded me of a little book I'd flipped through while Christmas shopping. I chuckled to myself as I scraped those crumbly potato pancakes into the garbage.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Alcohol-free weekend.

This weekend is Alcohol-free weekend.
who will be celebrating?

This is particular a good idea if you have any interest in participating in 'social behavior' and not crime. BBC

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Mysteries of the Universe

Why is it that when other people quote The Simpsons it is irritating, but when I do it is totally fresh and amusing?

"Keep watching the skiiiiiis!

See what I mean? You really enjoyed that!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April is Deaf History Month


ps. this is not an April fools joke.

CAILIN - My English Great Grandfather and Irish Great Grandmother were both deaf. His father beat him to deaf* after he hit a policeman in the head with a snowball, and I believe she was born without hearing. They met at a school for the deaf in South Africa, and raised four boys. I sometimes wonder what that must have been like... I imagine it was difficult. But I can't confirm that because they are all long dead. Lost to Deaf History.

* That is an awful joke. Sorry. And yet not sorry enough to delete it...