Archive for April, 2005

What’s a bookworm?

Bibliotheque Nationale du Quebec.A bookworm is someone who spend their time
a) at the library?
b) in books?
c) always studying?
d) all of the above?
e) none of the above?
I really don’t know the answer. If someone threw that question at me, I’d go for B. In this context, I’ll use answer A.

Today was the big opening of the new library which is suppose to be… well I don’t know what. The line-up was so long I didn’t want to wait to get in. It was at least a 100 meter long line-up.
See what it looks like? When people put their foot in a small tiny puddle of water, they go nuts, but waiting under the rain to get in a library that will remain there for so many years is okay. I don’t get that. I must be missing something. Here’s more photos of the inside. Yup, the place is huge. It’s so monumental that it makes the collection inadequate. There are only 4 million documents. the university, UQAM, on the other side of the street has 10 million documents, but it’s a private library.

Can’t deny it, the new library looks good.

Ding dong the Kreme is dead

It admit it, I could not help but to feel a little bit of pride in the inhabitants of my neighborhood when I noticed that the Marche de l’ouest Krispy Kreme was boarded up after less than a year.

It is said that American society has a big problem with food. You simply need to drive south for 45 min and to sit down at the Camplain Mall food court in Plattsburg to see what I’m talking about. One of the symbol of this problem is Krispy Kreme and their oh so good doughnuts that are only sold in boxes of 12. In fact, they give you a free doughnut while you wait, a strategy that was originally developed by schoolyard drug pushers.

Some have assumed that the Fall of the KK Empire is due to the increasing popularity of the Atkins diet but that is simply not the case up here. Have you been to Premiere Moisson recently?

Myself, and many people I know, did the obligatory pilgrimage but most of us obviously knew how amazingly unhealthy these little nuggets of taste can be. Each regular glaze doughnut contains 200 calories and 12g of fat, the one with a caramel coating has 390 calories. As a comparison, a Big Mac contains 576 calories and 32.5g of fat and your average adult needs 2000 calories per day.

Just so you really know what you’re missing, I went to the effort of downloading the ingredient list from the KK web page. Sounds yummy.

Ingredients: Enriched flour, dextrose, vegetable oil shortening (partially hydrogenated soybean and/or cottonseed oil), water, sugar, soy flour, dried egg yolks, wheat gluten, yeast, skim milk, calcium sulphate, ammonium sulphate, calcium peroxide, mono- and dicalcium phosphate, diammonium phosphate, sodium stearoyl-2-lactylate, whey, starch, ascorbic acid, sodium bicarbonate, calcium carbonate, salt, mono- and diglycerides, lecithin, calcium propionate, cellulose gum, natural and artificial flavours, amylase, maltogenic amylase, pentosanase, protease, sodium caseinate, corn maltodextrin, corn syrup solids, BHT.

Glaze: Sugar, water, corn starch, calcium carbonate, calcium sulphate, agar, dextrose, locust bean gum, disodium phosphate, sorbitan monostearate, mono- and diglycerides, artificial flavour, salt.

Expected weather in Montreal

Spring. It’s the season when plants grow up. But in order for plants to grow, they need that warming sun. Plants already got that about a week or two ago. They also need water. Plants in Montreal got that since yesterday and they’ll get more water until next week.



We got a new entry for the Marketing Blunders Hall of Fame, all of the country’s Radio Shacks will be renamed (insert drum roll) The Source. These stores are very well known around here, not only as a source of electronic appliances and gadgets, but also as the purveyors of electrical/electronic components for tinkerer and inventors.

Brought to you by the same geniuses who through that it would be a good idea to ask for my postal code every time I buy batteries…I always give out G1Q 1Q9 (you won’t get it unless you speak French).

Another reason to love Montreal

Quebec city and Trois-Rivieres will be getting more snow ;-P

They work for you

Depending on the votes of a couple of independent MPs, our fair city (and the rest of the country) may soon be covered with election signs. For most people, these head-shots and party affiliation often are the only things that they know about their local MP. Most of us can’t even remember their names and we assume that they spend the majority of their time trying to look attentive while the PM and ministers do most of the talking in Paliament.

This is why I am so impressed with this page, called TheyWorkForYou, that allows British voters to see everything that their local MP has said and done since the last election. This include a lot of written questions that would never make it in the news media. This group of volunteer programmers has done a beautiful job of organizing all of this publicly available information.

War driving on the city’s coolest street

Thanks to the selfless efforts of Ile sans fil (island without wires) and the participation of local businesses, Boulevard St-Laurent (a.k.a. La Main) is now one big wireless hotspot.

But don’t forget, while driving with a cell phone is not recommended, surfing and driving is definitively NOT SMART. Just sit down on a park bench or, better yet, take it easy in one of the area’s numerous bars and cafes.

parc rosemont

En attendant que l’herbe soit verte… Waiting for green grass…

SDBSL is a greedy organization…


This morning I came across this press release touting the 100th anniversary of Saint Laurent Boulevard being named as the East/West divider of Montreal. On the surface, it all seems fine and dandy. But upon a closer read, it states that the SDBSL has created a “commemorative poster” for this occasion which uses an image from one of Ryan Larkin’s films. Again, fine and dandy – until you realize that Mr. Larkin is a homeless man who for about the past 20 years has been beset by a number of problems. His life, now, might be a tad better because of his being the subject of the award winning documentary bearing his name.

What makes this not “fine and dandy” is that the SDBSL is ostensibly giving a portion of the proceeds of the sale of the poster to Mr. Larkin. How anybody involved in the organization can keep a straight face when thinking that the organization needs the money more than Mr. Larkin does is beyond me.

It cost me 10

Born Montrealers

A new issue of Born magazine is out with quite a few Montreal contributors, including three (or is it two?) of our bloggers with this piece.

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