Monday, June 30, 2008


A PostSecret posted on Sunday:

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Eight Belles to this post

In the Sports Illustrated that came out on May 26, 2008, the Point After department on the last page was written by Selena Roberts and was an argument for abolishing the whip in horse racing.

From the article:

  • Fair or not, someone had to be to blame for the chilling end at Churchill Downs on May 3, when Eight Belles broke her two front legs after finishing second in the Kentucky Derby and had to be euthanized on the track. So PETA fixed on [jockey Gabriel] Saez, accusing him of whipping the filly mercilessly – he struck her at least eight times down the stretch – and calling for his suspension.
  • But just when my inner Mister Ed started to go sweet on Saez, he defended himself with loopy logic. "The whip is half a pound, and the horse is 1,200 pounds," he explained. "It doesn't do anything to the horse."
  • Who knows the pain tolerance of a horse? And why beat its hide at all?
  • Take the whip away and vanquish a symbol of cruelty. This wouldn't merely be a sop to PETA - it's a move industry types from legendary jockey Jerry Bailey to race caller Trevor Denman support if it can help restore credibility to every owner and trainer who proclaims that the horse's health is a priority.
  • "I keep getting told the jockey needs the whip for control," says Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, an equine orthopedic researcher at Colorado State. "I think we've got reins to do that."
  • [Trainer Larry] Jones counters with the New Coke approach: "If they want to go to a lighter whip, where the horse would still hear the popping sound, I'd be great with that." But lighter is still visible. It's public perception that empowers the PETA point of view[...]"
  • Perception?" Jones said with a smile [...] "I know it's about perception. But I also know some people who say they use whips in the bedroom. Now to me that wouldn't be good. But hey, it's what they like."
  • Eight Belles didn't have a choice.
Three weeks later, in SI's June 16, 2008 issue, the Letters page featured this letter:
If Selena Roberts feels that horse racing is cruel because jockeys often resort to a half-pound whip, perhaps she should turn on mixed martial arts and see humans beating the snot out of each other.
Did the letter writer not read the last six words of the piece? Eight Belles didn't have a choice. Humans - when engaging in mixed martial arts - have chosen to give and take abuse.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

...I need park for a rest

On Monday afternoon Biscotti and I were walking the dogs on various trails in Pacific Spirit Park. Usually when we do this, there are many other trail users, mainly professional dog-walkers and bikers. This time, however, the spotting of other people was a rarity, unusual for such a nice afternoon. At one point, walking north on Salish north of Council, there was eerie silence. No passersby talking, no dogs barking, not even birds chirping. And the closest road was miles away, keeping the rumble of cars out of our ears. So, naturally, surrounded by nature and with nary a sound or onlooker around, you can probably guess what I was able to talk Biscotti into doing. That's right: nothing. We both stopped walking, stood still, and just listened. Listened to nothing. It was so very quiet. Not a sound. Calming.

It made me think of Saturday morning. After yet another week of "phone calls" and early mornings and obnoxiously loud and intermittent sounds and hard labour, I had been looking forward to a nice long sleep. Well, the house directly west of us recently got demolished and on Saturday morning, no later than eight-thirty, there was heavy machinery making obnoxiously loud and consistent sounds (*CRASH* *KLUNK* *BANG* *SMASH*). My head, laying on my pillow less than a foot from the west side of our house, was closer than anyone's head should've been to the source, attempting to sleep or not. Sleep was impossible. They kept up the work deep into the afternoon, and for the rest of the day I was a zombie as we were out and about.

To avoid a repeat early wake-up situation this Saturday morning, I'm considering hauling my bed to Salish Trail - just north of Council - on Friday evening and bunking down for a good night's sleep. What? Yeah, maybe you're right, it's a stupid idea. Best to just take a sleeping bag and therm-a-rest.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Overheard in Vancouver

[Two France fans have just watched and listened as all the Italy fans stood up and sang Italy's national anthem as it played on the television. The France anthem is now playing and the Italy fans are razzing the two France fans for neither standing nor singing.]

One of the France fans: Shhhhh, we're listening.

-- Caffe Roma, 17.06.2008

overheard by: me

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Quick Question

The Happening: Crappy movie, or the crappiest movie?

[Silvercity Riverport needs to make their washroom faucets no-touch. The door was no-touch (propped open) and the hand dryer was no-touch, so making the faucets no-touch will make it a perfect sanitization experience.]

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Watch jPod

Friends, family, and passersby, here's the thing.

In January, CBC unveiled jPod, an amazing new TV show based on Douglas Coupland's novel. No doubt due to lack of advertising, not many people watched the premiere, but, mostly via word of mouth, more and more people were tuning in each week, despite its move from Tuesdays to kiss-of-death Fridays.

Unfortunately, CBC canceled jPod partway through the first season. However, the rest of the season still aired, and a fan campaign was launched to save jPod. After the first season ended, jPod was nominated for 15 Leo Awards and walked away with 4 wins!. (The Leo Awards honour the best in British Columbian television and film production.) CBC is now re-airing jPod's first season in a better timeslot: Thursdays at 8pm, starting June 19th. This is a perfect opportunity to save this unique show!

If you haven’t seen jPod yet, it’s a humourous Canadian TV show set in Vancouver. It follows a group of videogame designers at work, set upon a backdrop of hilarious and over-the-top events — for example, Carol Jarlewski is a mother and wife who is involved in grow-ops, drug dealing and murders, and Kam Fong is a Chinese mafia kingpin who traffics humans. Alan Thicke is fantastic as Jim Jarlewski, a father character quite different from Growing Pains' Jason Seaver.

Two videos to whet your appetite: Snart and Jim's Crisis.

If you've already seen jPod, enjoy it again for the first time and help make a second (and third, and fourth) season a reality.

Whether you're a jPod newbie or veteran, you should definitely be tuning in to watch this awesome show on CBC in its new timeslot: Thursdays at 8pm, starting June 19th.

New to jPod? Check out this link.

*Disclaimer* -- The first episode of jPod, like many pilots, doesn’t do justice to the rest of the series. jPod gets better with each episode thereafter and truly hits a fantastic stride. So stay tuned beyond the first episode - you’ll be glad you did!

This post's content was supplied by, with some tweaking here and there.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Pud & Haus

Who else was totally enthralled with the two-hour season finale of Lost on Thursday? Hot diggity was that a suspenseful episode. But that's not why I'm here. I'm offering you an opportunity to discover your Sawyer nickname. You know, the nickname that "His Seaside Surliness" would give you if you were one of the Oceanic Flight 815 survivors. Ta git yer nick, go to this page of the official Lost website on ABC. It takes about 20 seconds. I'm Pud and Biscotti is Haus.