Runaway Future

26.2.2006

just like peas and carrots

Filed under: The Daily Grind — forbes @ 1:16

Last night was the ‘Survivor’ competition at the curling club. 12 hours of curling and other events, 8pm to 8am. I was the first one voted off after losing a draw to the button that would have placed my team ahead of the other team in a competition. When you’re voted out at 830 and are there for another 11 and a half hours, it makes for a long night.
Thankfully, I was able to put my free time to good use, and win a few extra challenges to jump back into the game. I had been smart enough to set up some deals and made it all the way to the final four players. So everything worked out grand in the end.
It’s so bizarre to be up at 4am, discussing alliances and voting strategies like it’s the most important thing in the world. I had a moment of half clarity and started laughing when someone was quietly whispering how we were going through the next round. It all seemed so foolish, and as a result, I almost lost my precious alliance. It’s really good to be able to go away and focus on something so completely, that no other thoughts invade your mind. After a while, even the tiredness went away.
At 830 this morning, I had bacon and eggs and beer. It was the finale for the night, cooked by the ladies of the club. I took one look at the orange juice and was repulsed, so I went for beer. They should have some sort of ‘breakfast beer’, a lighter beer, maybe a honey ale? It seems like a huge untapped market. Such a surreal feeling, 12 hours of drinking and curling. On the way home, I forgot that I worked on Friday.
After coming home and sleeping most of the day, I tried to calculate how much sleep I got. Does it show that I’m a working stiff when I count the hours between 9 and 4 and automatically take an hour away for lunch?

I watched Forrest Gump today, and then Behind Enemy Lines. What the hell is wrong with Owen Wilson’s nose?

23.2.2006

maybe we should just go home

Filed under: The Daily Grind — forbes @ 1:48

There’s a lot to be said for timely commentary. As I’ve often mentioned, my email box is full of links that I email myself from work about things I want to research deeper and blog about. I often never do and so the pile of emails grows larger and larger until I go looking through them and wonder why back in the day I sent myself some random Slashdot thread.
Even right now, there’s something I want to write about an article in last week’s issue of the Coast, but have never gotten to it yet. Maybe…sometime.


Anyway, so to try to be timely, I’ll comment on the big hockey news. Canada is out of the men’s competition. Bob McKenzie calls it a colossal failure. I have to agree.
He also said the problem was more then just a few people not clicking, which after watching a lot of the games (thankfully work has a TV in the boardroom and everyone loves sports), I have to agree again. The entire team appeared to lack a drive, a kick, an intensity level. No one seemed to be able to drop it into a higher gear.
Anyway, the team lost and this is now the period of navel gazing and second guessing. Everyone will be throwing out names like Crosby, Staal and Phaneuf as young guys who could have made it. Everyone will be watching the World Championships in May with a bit more earnest attention to see how Canada rebounds.
I still don’t think Crosby should have been there. This is not a situation like Ovechkin and Malkin, Crosby is a year younger (two years in Ovechkin’s case) and the age difference is apparent. These two Russian guys have been playing pro hockey in Russia since they were 16, while Crosby has been coddled by the Canadian Hockey League and others since before that time. You can see it in the way he approaches the game in the NHL level, that there is still an immaturity issue there. I think Crosby will be an excellent player, but he should not have been on this team. This whole city is probably going to question not having Sid the Kid, but focus on the kid part, because it’s true. I don’t think he would have been able to magically change the teams fortunes.
My thoughts are this: the team was slow, this is four years since Salt Lake. Sakic is now 36, so is Blake, Foote is 34. The rest of the team seemed just as old. The teams that beat Canada: Russia, Finland, Switzerland; they all outskated Canada and were able to skate hard enough to avoid pressure from Canada’s bigger bodies going for checks. The lack of speed was also apparent when holding the blueline or entering the zone. The defense couldn’t keep up with the play and so when they committed themselves to pinch, a turnover resulted in an odd man rush the other way, or they had to play conservative and hang back, often not being there for passes back to the point.
So as the teams are outskating Canada, Canadian players have to reach farther to stop incoming attacks, leading to interference penalties, made woeful by the lack of speed with the man down. Then when players like Bertuzzi or Pronger actually get a guy, their frustration shows through, like it does at times in the NHL, and they take poor aggressive penalties, like roughing calls.
You can not fault the goaltending, both Brodeur and Luongo were excellent. But the forward corps looked too often for the pass, and never the shoot. It seemed no one wanted to be selfish and take a shot. I’m surprised by all the shots that came up at the end of the game. When players like Rick Nash, Jarome Iginla and Dany Heatley, all of whom are not to sneeze at in the goal scoring department, do fancy schmancy drop passes and try the high risk feeds, then there is a problem.
I don’t like the Vancouver Canucks. They are honestly my least favorite team in the NHL and I can’t even explain it. I like no one on that team, save for maybe Jason King. But acknowledging that bias, Todd Bertuzzi was terrible. Steve Moore soap opera aside, he is an undisciplined player and this tournament showed that. He took bad penalties and produced little. Worst player for Team Canada.
However, Pat Quinn kept sending Big Bad Bert out there shift after shift, while guys like Martin St. Louis and Rick Nash sat on the bench. Perhaps the change in the Olympic team needs to start from the top. When the team was named, a lot of people criticized Gretzky for picking the ‘old boys’, rewarding his pals who’ve done it before. It now appears those critics were right and I would include the coaching staff in there just as much as anyone else. New blood is needed, a newer face for the team. Next Olympics is on Canadian soil in Vancouver, and the old guys like Sakic and Blake won’t be there.

I’m disappointed, but it will be interesting to see what happens next. Hopefully not more canned excuses.

22.2.2006

Tiggeriffic Decrepit

Filed under: The Daily Grind — forbes @ 0:11

So this article about abandoned homes in Detroit being painted a bright shade of orange had me thinking. The artists themselves recognize that by painting the houses, they are drawing attention to the problem and soon the houses are torn down by the city.
This all made me think: by shining the spotlight on a problem, it encourages action to resolve. Basically, drawing attention to one of those dirty things that no one wants to look at. What else could this approach work towards?
Every morning at about 8:30am and then again in the afternoon at 4:45pm (sometimes at noon as well), I walk out of the office and usually pass at least one street person asking for money. It’s one of those things where whatever you do, it just isn’t enough. There’s no way to guarantee that the money goes towards anything good, and even if it does, you see them again and again. Soon enough, your eyes avert, your face goes blank, you look right through them. We’ve all done it.
Wonder what would happen if they started wearing orange overalls? Something to make it impossible to look past what’s in front of you? Something distinctive that would force a spotlight, require action from something larger then just a passer-by. What about if the Sydney Tar Ponds was a nice shade of electric lime? or Halifax Harbour for that matter? Instead of being dark and easy to confuse with murky water.
When the group was here judging Halifax for their city bid for the Commonwealth Games, apparently the streets the committee drove on had been cleaned meticulously the night before. Makes sense, but I bet they didn’t see a guy standing anywhere in Tiggeriffic overalls or a harbour that looked like Kool-Aid either.

I envisioned this post as being better

20.2.2006

Torino 2006 in Turin

Filed under: The Daily Grind — forbes @ 11:46

A few quick things to pass along,

First off, this is unacceptable in my mind. I know drug testing is key for the Games and the Austrian team has been in trouble before, but there should be some restraint here to keep the playing field level. Can’t they search the rooms while the guys are getting tested? Can’t this be done at a time that isn’t 2am?
Pathetic quote by the Americans, “If someone wants to come check us, check all you want to.” That’s swell, now run along…

This article on what’s wrong with the NBA
, defines my opinion on what is wrong with the NBA.

Finally, having problem with spam here at work. They’re HTML emails done with DIVs and SPAN so that there isn’t a string that I can target and weed out (like Viagra or Cialis, because it’s seen all in code with stuff between). As far as I can tell, my Spam server can’t filter HTML code, so I dunna. Right now I have a catchall subject line filter for “news” but obviously that’s no good either. Any help/ideas would be awesome.
Technology pisses me off…I’m going to the boardroom to “work” while curling is on.

19.2.2006

It’s just another film that won’t get made

Filed under: The Daily Grind — forbes @ 23:51

Alright weekend, I went to Bayer’s Lake yesterday and then rushed to make it to the Mooseheads game in time. I stopped at the banking machine beforehand and when I put my card in, the ATM spit someone else’s card back out. After a bit of running and some dumb luck, I actually was able to find the guy and give him his card back. Saw Yvette at the hockey game, she’s working at Maple Grove now and just had a kid, a son. Is that two for her now?

Next weekend, on Friday night/Saturday morning, I’m doing this 12 hour competition at the curling club. I signed up figuring I don’t do anything on Friday nights usually, and since then I’ve had to turn down two seperate plans. At least Daniel’s coming, maybe. Good Twin + Evil Twin = Shenanigans.

Ok, so there’s this huge thing coming up at the office. I don’t like talking about work at all. I don’t want to be defined by my business card, my office, my name on the door. There’s so much more then that, but then again, it always feels like it’s the only thing going on at times. Basically, depending on how the next few weeks work out, my job responsibilities could be changing dramatically. I’ve always said that I like what I’m doing (the network support, the web design, the actual interaction with real people) better then what I did for my course, because with programming, I hated just sitting at the computer and typing. So, what happens if I get stuck in the role of a programmer again? At least before, I could pretend that I wasn’t a complete sell out while I was questioning my whole course beforehand. The big joke: The only thing I hated about my college program in computer programming was the computer programming. Maybe I am just in it for the money.
It will all end up as more work, it will be more stress. It’s not a case of whether or not I have the skills, it’s just that I have to draw the line sometime, y’know? Would anyone fault me if I ran away?
Maybe I really am just assuming things and no matter what happens, it won’t be as bad as I imagine. The root of my fear is that I am alone in this, I don’t have a group, a department, someone behind me, anyone who truly understands what I bring to the table to begin with. I can sit there and do nothing, or I can bust my ass, and there’s no one who can tell the difference.

I went out for coffee with Hillary on a whim last week. When I saw her on election night, I was drunk, she was smashed and we were happy to see each other. Turns out coffee doesn’t have the same effect. I never even learned her last name.

On American Dad, there was a little tribute to Trahn “Jimmy” Ng. A little googling came up with this blog post. Very interesting.

I don’t want to be bothered with anything.

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