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General

Mother’s Day Ad Campaigns To See Now

Posted April 21, 2015 by Sonya

One of my favourite things to do around significant holidays is keeping an eye out for the ad campaigns. Some are created to stir our emotions and others to give us a quick laugh. As Mother’s Day approaches here are […]

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General

Disney’s ‘acoustruments’ can control phones using their own sounds

Posted April 21, 2015 by Mariella Moon

Disney Research is apparently developing plastic accessories that can control phones, which might even be more far-out than MIT’s thumbnail trackpads. They’re called acoustruments, and they can control phones with sounds from their own speakers. How?…

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General

Joe Oliver and the Ghastly Cinderella Budget Show

Posted April 21, 2015 by Simon

Well let’s put it this way, his PMO handlers did their best to turn it into a glamorous photo-op, but it wasn’t exactly Cinderella slipping on her dainty glass slipper.

And it wasn’t pretty.

It was just Ol’ Joe Oliver, pulling on his new pair of Made in America, New Balance running shoes with Con blue laces. 

But as bizarre as that spectacle was, it did mark the beginning of Stephen Harper’s final push for another bloody majority. 
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Books

Book Review: The Day We Met By Rowan Coleman

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

My niece is 17 years old yet my sister remembers her birth with acute accuracy. It was the most horrible experience of her life, she claims. Now obviously the end result is the best thing that’s ever happened to her, […]

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General

Facing Autism in New Brunswick: Autism-Epilepsy Connection Explored in Four Studies

Posted April 21, 2015 by H L Doherty

The newsletter that follows reports on 4 studies of the autism-epilepsy connection.   It is a connection which our own son Conor has lived with and which has presented serious challenges. Conor received an autism disorder diagnosis the day after his 2nd birthday 17 years ago.  We have been focused on his autism ever since but we were not initially aware that because of his autism disorder he might also be at greater risk of epilepsy as set out in the following report reviewing 4 studies of the autism-epilepsy connecction.   We began to suspect seizure activity when Conor entered (Read more…)

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General

A Broom Closet Re-Haul With Command™ Brand

Posted April 21, 2015 by Guest Author

My husband and I are just in the final stages of a whole-house renovation, which included a brand new kitchen. Coming from our fairly small, badly-laid out previous kitchen, I was insistent on trying to make better use of the […]

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General

Miley Cyrus, Patrick Schwarzenegger … Adios, Amigo

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

Miley Cyrus and Patrick Schwarzenegger have split … the only issue is whether it’s temporary or permanent. Multiple reports are confirming the obvious … after dating for five months, they’re each off on their own again. It looked like Miley…

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General

Google’s letting armchair monster hunters explore Loch Ness

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

For decades, people have searched for signs of “Nessie” in the murky depths of Loch Ness. Photos and videos have emerged over the years alongside supposed sightings, but they’ve ultimately failed to prove the mythical beast’s existence. Is Nessie fac…

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General

Ben Shapiro vs. Gunther Grass: My NEW Taki’s column

Posted April 21, 2015 by Kathy Shaidle

Do I even need to warn you about “JOOOOOOO!!!!”-y comments this week? PS: One of my paragraphs (which was admittedly a bit obtuse) was mangled in editing, so if something sounds confusing even for me, my apologies… For indeed, Günter Grass – Nobel Prize winner and mouthy Man of the Left – had, during the […]

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General

Ostrander Point Wind-Farm Case Goes Back To Tribunal

Posted April 21, 2015 by bigcitylib

The decision is here.  Put briefly, the case will now get bounced back down to the Ontario ERT, where Ostrander Point Wind Energy will have a chance to convince the tribunal that their proposed remedy, a series of fences and gates that w…

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General

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Ostrander Point Wind-Farm Case Goes Back To Tribunal

Posted April 21, 2015 by bigcitylib

The decision is here.  Put briefly, the case will now get bounced back down to the Ontario ERT, where Ostrander Point Wind Energy will have a chance to convince the tribunal that their proposed remedy, a series of fences and gates that will block public access to the roads around the wind-farm, are enough to prevent “irreversible” harm to the local population of endangered turtles.

Some background can be found here, here, and here.

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Egypt’s former president Mohammed Morsi sentenced to 20 years in jail over killing of protesters

Posted April 21, 2015 by Maggie Michael - The Associated Press

CAIRO—A criminal court in Egypt on Tuesday sentenced ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi to 20 years in prison over the killing of protesters in 2012, the first verdict to be issued against the country’s first freely elected leader.

The ruling, which can be appealed, reflects the dramatic downfall of Morsi and the drastic challenges facing Egypt since its 2011 uprising that forced longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak from power.

Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood group swiftly rose to power in elections after Mubarak’s ouster, only to find themselves behind bars a year later when millions protested against them for abusing power and the military overthrew the government.

But as Mubarak and members of his government increasingly find themselves acquitted of criminal charges, Morsi and the Brotherhood are at the receiving end of heavy-handed sentences.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Judge Ahmed Youssef issued his verdict as Morsi and other defendants in the case — mostly Muslim Brotherhood leaders — stood in a soundproof glass cage inside a makeshift courtroom at Egypt’s national police academy. Seven of the accused were tried in absentia.

In addition to Morsi, 12 Brotherhood leaders and Islamist supporters, including Mohammed el-Beltagy and Essam el-Erian, also were sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Youssef dropped murder charges involved in the case and said the sentences were linked to the “show of force” and unlawful detention associated with the case.

The case stems from violence outside the presidential palace in December 2012. Morsi’s supporters attacked opposition protesters, sparking clashes that killed at least 10 people.

During the hearing, Morsi and the rest of the defendants in white jumpsuits raised the four-finger sign symbolizing the sit-in at the Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque, where hundreds were killed when security forces violently dispersed the sprawling sit-in by Morsi’s supporters on Aug. 14, 2013.

In past sessions, Morsi and most of the defendants turned their backs to the court when Youssef played several video recordings of the clashes outside the palace in 2012.

From his exile in Turkey’s capital, Istanbul, top Muslim Brotherhood figure Amr Darrag called the ruling “a sad and terrible day in Egyptian history.”

“They want to pass a life sentence for democracy in Egypt,” Darrag said.

Under the government of President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who as army chief overthrew Morsi, Brotherhood members and Islamists have faced mass trials that end with mass death sentences, sparking international condemnation.

Morsi himself faces three other trials on charges that vary from undermining national security by conspiring with foreign groups and orchestrating a prison break. Thousands of Brotherhood members are in jail facing a variety of charges, most linking them to violence that followed Morsi’s 2013 overthrow.

Morsi is being held at a high security prison near the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. His incarceration there followed four months of detention at an undisclosed location.

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General

BBC Sport widget delivers the news without annoying you

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

If you’re a serious ports fan, keeping up with the latest results, injuries and transfers can feel like a full-time job. Plenty of apps offer all of this information in one place, but then you’re often left with two options: continuously open the app…

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Children

A Bunch of Photos of Coca-Cola Not Marketing to Kids

Posted April 21, 2015 by Yoni Freedhoff
Coca-Cola Vienna City Marathon (Austria)

Or maybe they are marketing to kids.

Clearly they’re photos of Coca-Cola’s involvement and sponsorship of kid sport. But marketing?

Yup.

Not that it’s exactly news that corporations sponsor sport because it’s good marketing, but it was news to me at least that Coca-Cola was transparent about their involvement therein calling it quite plainly, “sports marketing“.

So here are some more photos of Coca-Cola’s sports marketing. Marketing that’s clearly targeting the kids they always deny targeting (though it’s true, some of the kids here look 12 years old, which according to Coca-Cola, means they’re no longer children and hence fair game).

Coca-Cola’s Powerade Final Four Dribble Event (USA)

Coca-Cola Soccer Camp (Brazil)

Coca-Cola “What’s Your Sport” Campaign (Serbia)

Coca-Cola Cup (Poland)

Coca-Cola WNBA Fit (USA)
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General

This box transmits emotions to your hand

Posted April 21, 2015 by Mat Smith

This slightly unwieldy looking machine can apparently deliver emotions to your hand through “mid-air haptics”, pinpointing areas on your palm that are attuned to certain emotions, and stimulating them. A study from the University Of Sussex used an Ul…

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General

Most Canadians favour coalition if election ends in minority, poll shows

Posted April 21, 2015 by Donovan Vincent - News reporter

Most Canadians support the idea of a coalition government if no party gains a majority in Parliament in the next federal election, according to a new Forum Research poll.

The Liberals and Conservatives remain virtually tied in public support, according to the same poll — a trend that has continued for the past five months.

The public opinion survey found 35 per cent support for the Liberals, and 33 per cent support for the Conservatives, a statistical tie given the poll’s margin of error.

The New Democrats had 22 per cent support.

The poll says nearly 60 per cent of respondents support the idea of two or more parties forming a coalition government, if no party gains a majority of seats in October’s election.

“It appears that the idea of a coalition government isn’t the bogeyman to voters that the government would like us to believe,’’ said Lorne Bozinoff, president of Forum Research.

A majority of Canadians are familiar enough with the U.K.’s system of government that they’ll support some form of co-operative government in a minority situation, Bozinoff said, adding “one thing is clear — the coalition they are discussing is between the Liberals and the NDP, to supplant a Conservative minority.’’

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has been stick handling around the idea of a coalition with the NDP if the Conservatives win a minority in October.

Trudeau has said he’d “maybe, but maybe not’’ be open to a coalition with the NDP if Tom Mulcair wasn’t leader of the party.

Meanwhile, Mulcair has said he’s open to a coalition if it’s necessary to defeat Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives.

The Forum poll also presented respondents with five major issues facing the federal government right now — the budget, the environment, ethics and transparency in government, marijuana, and war — and asked how much the issues influence their vote.

Nearly two-thirds (65 per cent) said ethics and transparency have a “great deal’’ of influence on their voting intentions.

That finding comes amid the ongoing fraud trial of suspended Senator Mike Duffy.

The next most influential topic, according to the Forum poll is the budget, with 43 per cent of respondents saying it has a great deal of influence on their voting intentions.

The environment was next (42 per cent), followed by Canada’s missions against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, and the mission in Ukraine, with 30 per cent saying the topic has a “great deal’’ of influence on their voting intentions.

“For one thing, when the number one issue in a wartime election is ethics in government, that’s not a good sign for the government in question,” Bozinoff added.

The least influential issue on voting was legalized marijuana, the poll found.

The Forum poll was conducted April 14-16, with the results based on an interactive voice response telephone survey of 1,365 Canadians, ages 18 and over.

Results from the total sample are considered accurate plus or minus 3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

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General

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The problem with no problem #nlpoli

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

Dwight Ball is the latest Liberal to emerge from the candidate protection program.  He popped up on NTV on Monday evening to tell us all two things:

First, he thinks there should be an inquiry into the Dunphy shooting.  He made up some nonsense about the need for an imaginary process that supposedly had to play out before he revealed the real Liberal position.  After telling us about Step One:  the Dunphy family grieving,  and then Step Two the two investigations that aren’t finished,  he could now announce Step Three, namely that he will appoint an inquiry when he is premier.

Not gonna call on the Conservatives to do it now. Nope. Gonna wait until he is on the 8th.  If that happens. And, allowing that he might not get to be Premier until October 2016, that could be a long wait for an inquiry that could begin soon and . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The problem with no problem #nlpoli

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General

Jarret Stoll — Partying with Kings Teammates … During Vegas Drug Arrest

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

Jarret Stoll had been raging in Vegas with several of his L.A. Kings teammates in the hours before the NHL star was busted for trying to bring a BUNCH of cocaine and molly to a pool party … TMZ Sports has learned.  Multiple sources confirm…

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General

Robin Thicke — Furred Lines … Going Stupid 4 New Puppy

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

He knows she wants it … so Robin Thicke made damn sure he scooped up an adorable puppy for GF April Love Geary. Sources close to the situation say April’s been itching for a pooch since March, so Robin did what any good boyfriend would –…

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General

Marilyn Manson — Antichrist Superstar Returns to Roller Skating

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

So what did Marilyn Manson do this weekend … drink the blood of a unicorn? Double date with a couple witches and a warlock? Nope, he just went roller skating in Oklahoma … naturally. The goth rocker showed up at Skateland in Tulsa on Friday&…

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General

Neil deGrasse Tyson — The Force Is Not With Me … I Ride With Trekkies

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

Nerd demigod and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson doesn’t mess around when it comes to science or sci-fi … which is why there’s one clear winner for him in the ‘Stars Wars’ vs. ‘Star Trek’ debate. Tyson was leaving…

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General

‘Full House’ revival is official, will arrive on Netflix in 2016

Posted April 21, 2015 by Nicole Lee

Whatever happened to predictability? Well, if you had paid attention to the rumors surrounding Netflix’s upcoming roster of shows, you’d have seen this recent news coming from everywhere you look. Yep, that Full House sequel we heard about earlier th…

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General

Guess Who This Fish Enthusiast Turned Into!

Posted April 21, 2015 by TMZ Staff

Before this awesome little angler was a Hollywood catch he was just another cute kid posing for a photo in Casa Grande, Arizona. Can you guess who he is?!

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General

George W Bush Elected President in 2001 ‘Floating on Oil Money’

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

This DeSmog UK epic history series post takes a closer look at ExxonMobil’s contribution to George W Bush’s election as President of the United States.

The 2000 US election cycle was as high stakes as they come. Congressional balance was in question, and the presidency was up for grabs.

The George W Bush–Dick Cheney partnership was Big Oil’s dream team. Bush, the presidential candidate, had made his early career though oil exploration in his home state of Texas, while Cheney, vice president (VP) candidate, was a Halliburton executive and ex-congressman of Wyoming, the US’s biggest coal producer.

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General

YouTube app will soon stop working on older smart TVs and iOS devices

Posted April 21, 2015 by Mariella Moon

If you own a smart TV or an iOS device that’s getting a bit long in the tooth, you may need to do some upgrading this week if you want to continue using the YouTube app. Due to certain changes in the app’s API, it’ll no longer work on a number of mod…

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General

Mike Duffy Trial: Day 11

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

Mike Duffy found a lot of uses for the public money he channelled through a company run by an old friend and Crown prosecutors are showing all of them at the suspended senator’s criminal trial.

After two weeks, prosecutors Mark Holmes and Jason Neubauer are still presenting evidence about the first eight of the 31 charges Duffy faces, all to do with $65,000 worth of contracts he arranged for friend Gerald Donohue, who then allegedly served as a piggy bank Duffy could draw on for expenses the Senate might not have covered if he’d filed them in the usual way.

The Crown says this was fraud; Duffy’s defence lawyer, Donald Bayne, allows that it was “administratively irregular” but says it’s was not so out of keeping with the Senate’s usual loose practices that it amounted to a crime.

Over the past week, the trial has heard from an intern in his office who was given an off-the-books honorarium of $500; a personal trainer who gave Duffy some insights into health and aging during workout sessions; a makeup artist; a journalist friend who helped him deal with Internet trolls; a cousin who sent him updates on both family and current events in Prince Edward Island; and an Island politico who gave him advice on important issues in the province Duffy represented.

There’s more to come.

What we expect to hear

More witnesses who did work for Duffy as a senator but who got paid by cheques from Donohue’s company Maple Ridge Media (or its later incarnation, Ottawa ICF).

The Crown has tried to show that Duffy’s payments often mixed personal and professional expenses and that regardless of the propriety of the work, the payments didn’t follow the Senate’s rules.

Bayne has emphasized that there was always a professional element to the work Duffy funded through Donohue, so there’s always at least a case to be made that these were all legitimate expenses for a busy senator.

dreevely@ottawacitizen.com
twitter.com/davidreevely

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General

Libyan Refugees and European Intervention

Posted April 21, 2015 by Ian Welsh

Perhaps, Europe having destabilized Libya thru invasion then not re-stabilized it afterwards, the Europeans should stop caviling about Libyan refugees and start rescuing them and settling them in Europe?  (America and Canada might wish to follow suit.) It just could be that intervening militarily in other countries should be the last resort, done very rarely.  […]

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General

GameStop’s going retro with classic consoles and games

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

GameStop is trying a new tactic as it faces increased competition from the likes of Gamefly, Amazon and other online retailers: It’s going old school. IGN reports that beginning April 24th, the company will once again begin accepting classic consoles…

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General

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: NDP inspired by Lougheed, PCs wage war on Wildrose

Posted April 21, 2015 by Anonymous

Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley released her party’s election platform and fiscal plan over the weekend, with a focus job-creation, a serious review of royalty rates and a reversal of cuts to health care and education included in the Progressive Conservative government’s recent… Continue Reading →

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General

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Laila rules

Posted April 21, 2015 by Norman Farrell

Almost a year ago, blogger Laila Yuile reported on retaining wall defects along the Sea to Sky Highway. Pictures were included: Troubling photos spark Ministry of Transportation inspections of Sea to Sky retaining walls, creating new concerns over Kiewit construction.

Laila followed that with additional information, including: Sea to Sky retaining wall questions continue as ministry employee emails indicate Kiewit inspected their own work.

In 2014, the transportation ministry reported the problems were merely cosmetic although correspondence uncovered by Ms. Yuile suggested government was relying on inspections conducted by the original contractor, not by ministry staff or independent engineers. It (Read more…)

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General

Laila rules

Posted April 21, 2015 by Norm Farrell
Almost a year ago, blogger Laila Yuile reported on retaining wall defects along the Sea to Sky Highway. Pictures were included:
Troubling photos spark Ministry of Transportation inspections of Sea to Sky retaining walls, creating new concerns over Kiewit construction.

Laila followed that with additional information, including:

Sea to Sky retaining wall questions continue as ministry employee emails indicate Kiewit inspected their own work.

In 2014, the transportation ministry reported the problems were merely cosmetic although correspondence uncovered by Ms. Yuile suggested government was relying on inspections conducted by the original contractor, not by ministry staff or independent engineers. It seems the ministry of transportation and infrastructure is not revealing the full extent of problems with the highway. One thing is clear, Laila Yuile has been ahead of others in reporting on financial and engineering aspects of the Sea to Sky Highway and the ministry’s responses last year to her inquiries are now proven dubious.

Today, CBC reports:

Sea-to-Sky Highway in need of repairs near Horseshoe Bay
The Sea-to-Sky Highway is to undergo repairs to a retaining wall near Horseshoe Bay — just five years after the Winter Olympics for which the B.C. government spent $600 million to widen and straighten large sections…

The depth and quality of CBC’s current reporting may be revealed by their small ($195 million) error in quoting the cost of the roadway. As a matter of fact, the Auditor General revealed in 2012, “Capital costs increased from $600 million to $795 million.” The watchdog office also reported:

…the Province (represented by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure) entered into a P3 agreement with the Sea-to-Sky Highway Investment Limited Partnership (a group of private companies) to design, build and finance about two-thirds of the highway improvements and to operate and maintain the entire highway for 25 years. The ministry is responsible for managing the remaining one-third of improvements…

Of course, the entire business deal has never been revealed. That’s a benefit of public private partnerships, if you are a private partner; it’s a disadvantage if you are a member of the public. However, we learn from public accounts about the stream of payments going from taxpayers to the private partner.

From B.C. Public Accounts:

SEA TO SKY HIGHWAY INVESTMENT LIMITED PARTNERSHIP

Fiscal Year Payments Future Obligations Grand Total
2006 $ 7,104,157
2007 $ 25,369,209
2008 $ 36,364,125
2009 $ 53,795,523
2010 $ 58,293,523
2011 $ 63,003,619
2012 $ 66,140,676
2013 $ 58,173,389
2014 $ 51,000,000
2015 $ 50,000,000
2016 $ 50,000,000
2017 $ 50,000,000
2018 $ 49,000,000
2019 & beyond $ 535,000,000
Totals $ 368,244,221 $ 785,000,000 $ 1,153,244,221

Note:

More than three years ago, Laila Yuile wrote excellent pieces on the Sea to Sky Highway. Click HERE to begin looking at her work.

There was previous information about this roadway at Northern Insight:

Sea to Sky Highway subsidy $12-$15 each vehicle

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General

Shelley Fralic: Vancouverites ‘can’t get no satisfaction’

Posted April 21, 2015 by Vancouver Sun - News

Well, of course we’re unhappy. Like we need Statistics Canada to tell us that we’re the saddest city folks this side of Saguenay. Who wouldn’t be? I mean, have you spent any time in Metro Vancouver? It’s a wonder so many of us linger longer than a day or two and, more of a wonder, why so many keep coming here and settling down.

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General

#263 Getting cell phone service back after not having it for a while

Posted April 21, 2015 by nkspas

Welcome to the saloon. Jump off your tired horse, kick your cowboy boots together, and step through the swinging gates into your home away from home. Dusty sunbeams streak through dirty stained-glass windows and shadows fall on your closest friends … Continue reading

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General

Photo of the Day: Yonge Street Glow

Posted April 21, 2015 by Jack Landau

UrbanYonge Street is known for its walkability, culture, and for its tremendous length. The street also serves as an important geographic dividing line between the east and western sides of the city. In today’s Photo of the Day, which was submitte…

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General

Daily Roundup: Nokia making phones again, Sony wants better selfies and more!

Posted April 20, 2015 by Anonymous

Today, read how Nokia is planning to get back into the phone game, ponder why Sony’s added image-stabilization technology to the front of its new flagship phone and get all the details on the best vaporizers around — because it’s that day. All that …

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General

Teachers earn more than middle class

Posted April 20, 2015 by Anonymous

Are teachers fairly compensated?

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General

Reds Manager Loses It

Posted April 20, 2015 by Mitchell Blair

Its safe to say Cincinnati Reds manager Bryan Price is not a fan of the media and his team’s beat reporter.Price went on an epic rant Monday night before his team’s game in Milwaukee as you will read if you click right here

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General

Warren Kinsella: Lisa does not like my paintings

Posted April 20, 2015 by Anonymous

…so I’m promoting them on the Internet to irritate her. 

  

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General

99 Thinks 97 Is Pretty Good

Posted April 20, 2015 by Mitchell Blair

 
 
EDMONTON — Is Connor McDavid the Second Coming of Wayne Gretzky?

Edmonton Oilers fans are wondering that after the National Hockey League club won the draft lottery on Saturday, which gives them the right to select McDavid — the wondrous 18-year-old centre who racked up 44 goals and 120 points in a mere 47 games for his junior Erie Otters team — in June’s entry draft.

“Good for him. When I was going down that path as a young player, Gordie Howe was always pulling for me, and I look at Connor the same way,” said The Great One, who stands as the NHL’s all-time leading scorer with 2,857 points and holds or shares 61 NHL records. “I hope he brings Edmonton a Stanley Cup and he breaks my records … he’s got the talent and the makeup to do it. I hope he leaves a couple for me, though. I could use that.”

Gretzky says McDavid is “clearly a franchise player.”
“He’s as good as I’ve seen in the last 30 years, the best player to come into the league in the last 30 years, the best to come along since (Mario) Lemieux and (Sidney) Crosby. He can definitely change a franchise’s fortunes,” said Gretzky, who feels Edmonton will be like a nice warm blanket for the teenager from Toronto, just as it was for Gretzky, who was born in Brantford, Ont.

”I think it’ll be a perfect fit for Connor in Edmonton. Not one bit is Edmonton a suffocating place to play. He’ll be treated like an Edmontonian. People will give him his privacy while they’re enamoured by his ability. I know the Oilers have gone through a lot the last few years (nine straight years out of the playoffs) but they’ll be patient with him. I know it’s a big step going from junior hockey to the NHL, but the Edmonton fans have been through that with (Mark) Messier and (Paul) Coffey and (Grant) Fuhr and myself,” said Gretzky.

“What I notice about Connor is he does the right things and he says the right things; he’s very mature for an 18-year-old who’s rated No. 1,” said Gretzky. “I’ve talked to him, and I’m fascinated by his maturity, being under the microscope.”

People were saying the same things about No. 99 in the late 1970s.
McDavid will be diving into the deep end, coming directly from junior to the NHL, something Gretzky didn’t have to do in 1978 when he left the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds at 17 to play in the rival World Hockey Association. He had a pit-stop in the WHA and had 110 points.
“Yeah, I got a year of training. The WHA wasn’t the NHL, but it was better than the American Hockey League … that was my stepping stone,” said Gretzky. “I got lots of help from older guys like Paul Shymr, Dave Dryden and Ace Bailey. My year (of pro hockey) is something Connor won’t have, and it’s a big step. but he’s excelled at every level and I don’t see it taking a long time for Connor,” said Gretzky, who had 137 points his first NHL season.

“I’ve had lots of people come up to me and ask ‘Do you think the Oilers would trade the No. 1 pick.? I just laugh. Did Montreal trade the pick when they were going to get Guy Lafleur (in 1971)? 0r Pittsburgh with Lemieux (1984) or Crosby (2005)? You don’t trade guys like that. Especially a player who’ll help your franchise and your city for the next 15 years,” said Gretzky.

“I guess it’ll be the worst kept secret at the draft (June 26) who the Oilers are taking … but I know when (former Canadiens general manager) Sam Pollock traded all those players to Los Angeles to make sure they were getting the first pick for Lafleur, there was no big surprise,” said Gretzky.

Even as terrific as Gretzky was in his first NHL season, he couldn’t will the Oilers into the playoffs. They needed a goalie that year just as the current team does, and acquired Ron Low at the NHL trade deadline, finishing 16th and losing to the Philadelphia Flyers in the first playoff round.
The current Oilers need a bonafide No. 1 goalie. They need another defenceman or two. But when McDavid tugs on an Oilers jersey for that annual June draft picture with team owner Daryl Katz, it could be a fine marriage.

“This may be the one player who can get the Oilers over the hump,” said Gretzky. “Maybe this is a step forward for the whole city, not just the organization.”

(Edmonton Journal) 

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General

Downtown Vancouver goes up in smoke at annual 4/20 celebration

Posted April 20, 2015 by Vancouver Sun - News

Purple Kush, red eyes and thick stacks of green gave colour to the annual 4/20 smoke out, held around the Vancouver Art Gallery Monday.Packed nearly as tightly as the thousands who crammed in shoulder-to-shoulder to light up this year were the scores of vendors’ booths that ringed the gallery grounds.

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