Archive for February, 2007

Living Montreal

Well, this being the Year of the Pig, I guess pigs do fly since I actually called in sick today due to a cold. Normally, I would slog my crusty-nosed self in to work and share my nasty germs with my beloved colleagues but I figured I would spare them that pleasure today. That said, I quote from one of my favourite childhood books, “Happiness is being too sick to go to school but not too sick to watch tv” and that’s exactly what I did from the comfort of bed with my chicken soup and box of tissues. In doing so, I came across a delightful little magazine type show about Montreal called “Living Montreal”. It airs weekdays at 1 on CBC, hosted by Sue Smith, covering a variety of human interest topics all related to living in Montreal. Who knew that there was interesting locally produced english language programming in the middle of the day? So the next time you find yourself stuck at home on a weekday afternoon, you can flip to Living Montreal for a half hour of fun infotainment.

Habs Week in Review

Another trade deadline passes and nada. There I was, scanning the net looking for a sign, any sign that Gainey would find us a new goalie.. Hell, I’ll even take Ed Belfour. Why not. He can’t be any worse then that piece of swiss cheeze that has way too many holes.. (ok, bad pun).

But no, the deadline passed and I felt like the ugly kid frantically scanning the high school gym floor looking for the pretty little red head as Stairway to Heaven plays over the PA… and there she is dancing with that jerk in misses Thomson’s class.. AACK!

Gainey did make one trade this week. Habs veteran Craig Rivet for a 22yr old who hasn’t done too much in the NHL and a first round draft pick.. It’s that second part that makes me almost forgive Bobsie for not finding us a goalie. So here we are, a few dozen matches away from the playoffs and we have to make do with a kid and what’s his useless face..

As of this writing, the Habs are in 7nth and losing to the Rangers 1-0.

Controversial soccer

Everyone has probably heard about the controversy that was created in Laval when a Muslim girl was not allowed to play in a soccer game because she refused to remove her hijab. The grounds were that it poses a risk of strangulation.

I’m torn because on the one hand I do see that there are safety rules for a reason, though on a personal note I wonder what the odds really are of someone being strangled because of a hijab. At the same time, a hijab is not the same thing as someone wanting to play while wearing a long string of beads around their neck or a hat for fashion’s sake, it’s a religious headscarf and I’m all about her right to wear it.

However, I don’t think the story in and of itself, as it was briefly described is the REAL interesting part of the story. What is interesting to me is that not only did she refuse to take it off and not only did her team support her by refusing to play, FOUR other teams walked off and refused to play in protest of the rule.

I find that part interesting and fascinating and even hopeful of a generation that cares about issues because when I was a young kid I don’t know how many of my peers would have cared enough to stand up for someone and walk away from a tournament like that.

Accurate prediction?

I patch of earth has become visible in my front yard. There is grass, browned by frost, that I haven’t seen since January. Gosh it’s beautiful outside today. Bright sun and windless conditions make it feel almost hot! And why is it that all the nicest days seem to fall smack dab in the middle of the week. Supposed to be beautiful sun again tomorrow, but now they’re talking stormy weekend. Sigh.

Still, outside today, I couldn’t help but notice that it’s been two weeks since the groundhog predicted this. Could it be spring?

It Won’t Kill You to Take Off Your Backpack

I have so had it with people who insist on keeping their backpacks on in a crowded bus. Every single morning, I have to deal with squeezing past people OBLIVIOUS to the amount of space they take up in the bus aisle by keeping their backpacks on. Along with padded winter coats, a backpack takes up the same amount of room as a PERSON! But can these offenders do the right thing and take them off? Noooooo, why, that would be too civilized and dare I say it, UNselfish. Instead, they just continue standing there going la dee da in their heads while everyone else gets jammed up at the front of the bus. Some days, I want to just personally remove the backpacks off these people myself with my bare white-knuckled hands. Would it kill you to take off your backpacks and just hold them by your side to make a little room for your fellow passengers? Am I making an unreasonable request? Well, here are some good reasons:

    5. Your backpack will not disappear and cease to exist if it comes off your shoulders. You may think you are special but you do not have magical powers.
    4. Your arm will not break if you have to hold your backpack. Don’t be a wus. If you can hold on to a pole, you can hold on to a bag.
    3. Your backpack won’t get pick-pocketed if you TAKE IT OFF.
    2. If you take off your backpack and make life more pleasant for others, you will earn KARMA brownie points.
    1. It won’t kill you to take off your backpack but leave it on and one day… some angry rider might.

Road Trip

quilts.jpg

This week, the three Montrealers perhaps least likely to be found in the suburbs — me, Chris Hand of Zeke’s Gallery and artist Edith Dora Rey — went on a road trip to the south shore. To see art. (I had to drive because Edith doesn’t “do” highways and Chris doesn’t drive at all. Me, my idea of going by car is hailing a cab, so we had all the makings of an indie comedy.)

I hadn’t understood until now that the Quebec government likes to fund art institutions outside of major urban centers. Apparently the province is peppered with excellent small galleries next to shopping malls or CGEPs. Since the south shore is about as close as you can get to Montreal art lovers without actually being in town, it’s especially art rich.

I loved the St. Lambert Museum’s exhibition of star quilts, an interlude in a day of contemporary art galleries. If you have wheels, it’s just across the Victoria Bridge. (Museum of Costume and Textile of Quebec, 349 Riverside Drive in St. Lambert, is open Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; weekends, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets cost $4 adults; $3 students and seniors; $2 children age 6 to 12 years. 450-923-6601 or www.mctq.org.)

What’s a frozen canal for, if not sports d’hiver?

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I don’t spend much time being jealous of Ottawa, but the Tourism Ottawa photo of people skating on the canal makes me wonder: why doesn’t Montreal have canal skating too? Any guesses?

Underground Race, how’d it go?

montage.jpg
Me after the race, the finish line area, one of the friendly volunteers.

Well! The day after the Underground Race, my leg muscles are in pain! OUCH!

It was quite nice! I arrived at the Carrefour at around 7h10 and there were already many runners there! Everyone getting ready, stretching, preparing for the 5 kilometers! At 8h30 the race started.

The 1st kilometer went fine! Then I got tired a bit! I combined running with fast walking. At the 3rd kilometer I got some weird thing in my throat. In French we say “avoir un chat dans la gorge”. Something there, even if you cough it doesn’t go away! Grr! The 4th kilometer I was happy! Only 1 more to go! I can do this! I didn’t mind my time, my goal was to participate and do it for myself.

Along the way I enjoyed seeing my city! I ran in some places I’d never seen before. Like the upper levels at the CDP, wow! So pretty! And I didn’t know we had a piece of the Berlin Wall in Montreal!

Finally I arrived at the Complexe Desjardins! The finish line! YAY!

654 on 674 runners, total time 41:21.7, pace 8:17, 78 on 82 in my category of age (women 20-29) and 243 on 257 women. All of the results here.

I waited a bit for the medals presentation but apparently they were having technical problems compiling all of the results, so it was delayed. I decided to come home!

Matthew made a neat little video of runners at the Eaton Centre…

Another image from Blades of Glory

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Hi hi! They used it, although they did go a bit overboard with the makeup.

And no, I’m not talking about the babe.

Undergound Race

Tomorrow morning it’s the Undergound Race, part of the Montreal High Lights Festival!

It’s a 5 kilometers run through the tunnels and corridors, from the Carrefour Industrielle Alliance to the Place Desjardins. About 750 people will participate! The race begins at 8h30. There’s a spot for people to cheer runners on located at the Place Ville Marie, enter corner Mansfield and Cathcart.

And I’m one of the participants! It’s my first “real” race, so I’m excited. I know I won’t have the best time, but it’s all about participating and having fun. I’ll write about my experience tomorrow afternoon/evening if I am not dead of exhaustion!

Oh and for those who’d like to take part in the event, you can also walk the course at your own pace starting at 10h30.

All the information is on the Festival’s website.

CDP
Photo (c) Christelle.

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