New quiz

Thanks to the ikeapunk, here’s a good quiz for a Monday morning, when the brain is still in start-up mode and the coffee is just kicking in. Take your time with this one – and you may want to turn down your sound, at least after the first seven or eight hundred times of the loop.

Another true test of Canadianness

So we stayed up ’til midnight last night, listening to the final list of CBC’s 50 Tracks feature.
In brief, the three-month feature asked several panels and then listeners to nominate and defend the top 50 quintessential Canadian singles of all time (or at least the last century).
We started listening around 7 o’clock, and got hooked…
This has nothing to do with the fact that the host is the eminently scrumptious Jian Ghomeshi. Just because he’s smart, funny, musical, melifluous and generally yummy? Please. Give us some credit.
Besides, it was a radio broadcast.
Anyway, the final list is now available. There were a few surprises, not least of which for me was a total absence of April Wine. What about Just Between You and Me? For goodness sake, there’s even a French bit. English Montreal was well-represented by the likes of Sam Roberts and Leonard Cohen, and thankfully abberations like Corey Hart and Gowan didn’t make the list. There was no Pagliaro, however; in fact, the only franco on the list was the 40-year-old Gilles Vigneault single Mon Pays.
Also, while Gordon Lightfoot had two songs in the top ten (as did Joni Mitchell), personally I would have chosen If You Could Read My Mind instead of Early Morning Rain, but that’s a matter of personal taste, I guess.
Another surprise was number 2 on the list – not that this song doesn’t belong on the list. I was just surprised to see it at number 2, edging out American Woman, which frankly should have been number 1. American Woman not only rocks, it reflects a Canadian perspective lyrically, and not just by dropping place names.
Having said that, the song that did end up in the top position, while it might not reflect a quintessential Canadianness for me, certainly does separate the Canadians from the pretenders. I guessed it before the lovely Jian revealed it, and Dr. T, who was with me right up to that point, said, and I quote, “who?”
This is because the one track that, according to CBC voters, best represents the best of Canadian music is Ian & Sylvia’s Four Strong Winds.
While Dr. T tried to figure out just who the heck these people were, I took a little trip down memory lane – I can remember watching Ian & Sylvia on TV. I remember when they broke up. I remember my mother, guitar in hand, singing Four Strong Winds, and it was beautiful.
Maybe the Guess Who put Canada on the map musically, but Ian & Sylvia are so very Canadian.


The Cat Translator
via Davezilla, from whom I also found Spell with Flikr.
Update: Oddly enough, the spell with flikr thing seems to be making my page flikr. It was a lovely image, but an annoying side-effect. I left the link in, so you can go there yourself and spell to your heart’s content (or any other phrase you prefer).

The thought that woke me up this morning

Forty or so years from now, will we be surfing through a slew of websites with names like “Granny’s Blog?” Will commenters have to gently tell posters “um, you’ve already told us this. Six times.”?
When my grandmother was no longer able to live alone and we moved her into the ‘Villa,’ my dad mentioned the idea of a computer – we have friends and family across the country, and it might be nice for her to have e-mail capabilities. The answer was an emphatic “no.” She has a phone, and a large TV, and her newspapers, so she’s in touch.
My parents, on the other hand, are both computerized (I don’t mean that they’re robots. I have no proof of that.). So when the time comes that one or both of them need the kind of living arrangement that my grandmother has, I assume we’re going to have to make sure there’s a DSL connection in the room.
When it’s my turn, my antique laptop computer will no doubt be a source of amusement for the strapping young orderlies, whom I’ll probably bore to tears with my tales of yesteryear, when we thought OC-768 was the height of technology.
“It used to take upwards of five minutes to download a file that big, in my day. Now, about that sponge bath…”

Maybe I should make a list of this stuff…

So my office is very tidy.
My plants are watered and all dead leaves have been trimmed.
I have despammed my blog.
I have discovered that I am silver.
Now, I am seriously considering the following must-do projects:
1. update the blog template, cuz it’s spring
2. clean up my blogroll, cuz some of those people never post anyway
3. come up with something pertinent and deep to add to the debate going on over at Martine’s
4. clean my boots
5. create a list of all the little activities I engage in when I really should be marking essays.
One down…

Hiho Silver, Away!

Ag… Silver
You scored 45 Mass, 46 Electronegativity, 67 Metal, and 0 Radioactivity!
Congratulations, you are one of the only things that can kill werewolves. In addition to that, you are socially-minded, constructive, and pretty hard to corrode. You, like iron, are a cornerstone of any collaborative effort. You tend to be a bit set in your ways, but you’re also pretty good about sticking up for yourself. All this is well and good, but most people just like you because you’re shiny.

Link: The Which Chemical Element Am I Test written by effataigus on Ok Cupid
Via Clare

Balls! Torches! Chainsaws!

You are ‘juggling’. Jugglers, tumblers, and other street performers were a very popular sort of entertainment once, before movies and talkies and online quizzes supplanted them.
You like to put on a show for people, and they like to watch. You are friendly and well-liked, particularly for your sense of humor, although you sometimes play with people’s heads. You are frequently the center of attention, and you like it that way. However, you have to realize that the world does not revolve around you. Furthermore, you have to learn that your light-hearted antics are not appropriate to all situations. Your problem is that juggling has been obsolete for a long time.

What obsolete skill are you?
brought to you by Quizilla
via Magnificent Octopus

Ah, spring, when a young man’s fancy turns to friggin’ potholes

It’s obvious that Sam Roberts is a Montrealer, and there’s no metaphorical or philosophical meaning to the lyric “and there’s no road that’s not a hard road to travel on.”
True Montrealers are familiar with our annual pothole festival (Les nids de mars, perhaps?), featuring ‘pockmarks’ in the asphalt that are measured in feet, not inches – there are several reports in various forums of people sustaining damage to wheels, rims, tires and even axles.
According to CAA Quebec, this year may be the worst yet. As always, the CAA has a special section on potholes, including a form for reporting new hazardous holes – so far this year, with more than 1,000 holes reported, we’re beating last year’s number by a landslide. In fact, the roads are so bad this year that the CAA site started the pothole section a month early.
There is, in fact, no road that ain’t a hard road to travel on.