Archive for March, 2007

The greenest school on earth? Concordia U?

Students at Concordia University have just recently voted to pay 75 cents per course as a means to green their campus. For the math lovers out there, thats 42,000 students x 75 cents= $185,000 to be put towards the greenification.

Initiatives such as giving each student a reusable plastic mug to eliminate their reliance on one-use styrofoam, providing each with a reusable bag to break the dependance on plastic bags as well as investing in electric vehicles to be used to get students from campus to campus are part of the agenda.

The Sustainable Concordia Project can be credited for kicking this into high gear as their 2003 and 2006 assessments ‘paved’ the way for this program.

See Hollywood burn

Hollywood is Burning

It has been shown on numerous occasions that the Metroblogging sites especially shine when something bad happens in their local cities. This time, has been linking to truly amazing pictures of the wildfires around the Hollywood Sign.

Papillons en Liberté

Last weekend, I had the chance to visit the Jardin Botanique for their annual Butterflies Go Free exhibit in the largest of their many greenhouses. The event is quite popular with families and children but the staff controls the number of people who can enter the exhibit at once. In short, it was a long wait. March%20073sm.jpgWe went at 11am Sunday and waited over an hour. But it was worth it! The moment you walk in, you are stunned by the twinkling of butterflies everywhere and all the walls and plants seem to shimmer as the little creatures bat their wings while resting. The blue and purple butterflies are really something to see. It was pretty comical everyone trying to take pictures of the little buggers – they don’t sit still for long! All through the exhibit, they have smooth jazz playing and it’s really quite magical. Every once in a while you’d hear someone squeal with delight as a big butterfly landed on someone’s head or hand.

The exhibit runs until April 29th, so catch this wild and wonderful event while you can. (But it helps if you like bugs of course!)

Reach For The Top

We’re not talking Canadian Idol here: far from it. Mike Boone of the Montreal Gazette has a great piece this morning on one of those quiet people who gets things done. This is Dean Whalen who last year instituted the Annual Mont-Royal Stair Climb for Children. Last year he started this and the participants together climbed over 133,000 stairs, raising $20,000 for the Montreal Children’s Hospital. He himself climbed over 10,000 stairs, that’s 41 flights, contributing almost 10% of the cumulative total.

It’s taking place again this year on Saturday May 5th from 8 a.m. – 12 noon. It starts at the Mount-Royal Stairs, on Pine Avenue, just east of McGill’s McIntyre Medical Building. It’s a marathon on stairs up on the jewel of our city, with no end in sight: 256 steps in all. This year’s climbing target is a total of 150 thousand steps, which should raise a minimum of $30,000.

So why not do your bit. You’ll find more details about this event here. Why not participate, every step will help. If you own a company, then become a sponsor. .. or if you work for a company, then persuade your colleagues and your company to get involved. For more details, call 514-346-3048.

One day left

This Friday is the last day to notify your landlord if you are leaving July 1st. That really doesn’t give you much time. If you haven’t done so, you are probably best giving it to them in person or sending it ExpressPost.

My search for an apartment is over. Na, na, na! I’ve been living in my current apartment for seven years and 16 years total in Le Plateau. The thought of moving puts the fear of God into me. So I stayed put. That, and my current apartment, while rather small was awesome. Without getting too personal, at 35yrs old, it’s time to ditch the wild and crazy bachelor life. (HAHAHAHA!) and and move in with my girlfriend.

My girlfriend has a very particular problem in that she’s often not in town due to work. Not only that, but we can never be quite sure when she will be back in town and for how long. Therefore, it was important that we start our search very early.

My fears of searching for an apartment were not unfounded. It’s a complete zoo.. especially in Le Plateau. Of all the places we searched, of all the places we called, on average there were 15-20 others also looking and many of them very interested in signing.

So where to look? We used 4 main websites.

Habs Week in Review

Buy the chaise longue. Seriously. Head down to Crappy Tire before work and pick up a chaise longue. Never mind how much it costs. Never mind that Crappy Tire is probably gouging their clients with those insane prices for chaise longue, buy it. You are going to need it for when the parade passes by.

This team is for real with a real goalie. Not that piece of swiss cheeze. A real live goalie who stops pucks. Lots of ’em too. Kovavlev is playing like the Kovalev when the Habs signed him. He scores goals. Koivu is fully energized. The kids are playing with full gusto and Begin is putting the puck in the net!

My mother always used to tell me: “Justin, poop or get off the pot”. Well, it’s time to poop. The Habs will make the playoffs. There, I’ve said it. But it will happen.

Yesterday I had to pick my girlfriend up at the airport. Listening to CKAC on the way in, riveted to the radio, I later had to apologize to her (at the end of the first period of course) for not really asking her how her flight was.. Sorry Hun, the Habs were down 2-0!

But then in the 2nd, DINK, DINK, DINK, DINK, DINK! 5-2, like that. The Rangers scored two in the 3rd to drive my heart rate up into lactate threshold zone but Streit’s goal in the 3rd sealed the deal.

The Islanders lost. The Hurricaine lost and the Habs are the sole 8th place holder. That’s the cutoff for the playoffs.

See you at Crappy Tire. They open at 9am.

Woo-Hoo! My mom on As it Happens! Tomorrow night


[Update: Apparently this election thing is important. Her interview has been bumped to Wednesday eve, everything else remains the same]

I don’t know how many folk still listen to As it Happens in the gazillion channel universe, especially since it is (gasp!) a radio program, on the CBC to boot. But I am immensely proud of my mother as she is going to be interviewed by Carol Off all about Gardasil, aka the HPV vaccination.

For those of you out of the loop (or too young to know) As it Happens is a 20+ year old radio program where they call out to newsmakers and informed folk (like my mom) on headline stuff. Back when I was a youngster one of the cooler ones was when they interviewed the best friend of a woman who had tried to assasinate president Ford – as you might guess it was quite incendiary. If I remember correctly it was listened to by as many as 1 million people, but I would guess many fewer these days.

If you care to hear my mom, the program starts at 6:30 pm, lasts an hour (although I do not know exactly what time my mom is going to be interviewed) and CBC radio One is 88.5 or 104.7 depending where on the island you live, or you can stream it from their website, or download their podcast after the fact.


Apparently the Nintendo Wii is the new big thing. It’s barely impossible to get one, demand is huge and manufacturing low. The revolution comes in the wireless controller, which detects motion. So if you’re playing a tennis game, you use the controller as a tennis racket!

Today I was walking around in downtown shopping malls. I saw this Wii triout stand at Centre Eaton. People were enjoying different game, getting tips from pro Wii staff, etc. I liked this kid. Out of all the games available, he was playing the original Mario Bros! The game I grew up with. So cute…

I don’t know until when the stand will be there, but for gaming fans that haven’t yet had the chance to play with the Wii, now is your chance!

Veil non-nonsense

So veils are in the headlines again. This time it involves the voting process. My first impression was that Boisclair was right on, after all, how are we supposed to ensure the identity of a voter if we can’t verify it visually? But then I got to thinking, “why should voting turn into a moral question for someone?” Wouldn’t it just be easier to have a woman at the voting place who could take the veiled woman aside for identity verification? Couldn’t everyone be happy then? Even though I hate the phrase “reasonable accomodation”, I’m all for the spirit of it. What do you think? It’s not quite as black and white as it seems.

Habs Week in Review

The chaise longues that were on sale at Crappy Tire are now back at regular price. Spots along the parade route are starting to sell once again.

Speaking with a buddy of mine, ever the Habs optimist, told me weeks ago that I am much too pessimistic.. that this is far from over.

Depending on how things turn out in various other matches, the Habs are right on the cusp of being in a playoff position with less then two weeks to play. They have two relatively easy matches to play against the Caps and again the Bruins whom they beat tonight 1-0.

Halak played a second great game, producing his first NHL shutout match; making key saves to get those much coveted two points. Latendresse scored Montreal’s only goal.

Habs fans and sports journalists are famous for going back into the archives when speaking of young Dryden and Roy being introduced into the NHL just before the playoffs and carrying their new teams into the playoffs and onto a Stanley Cup.

Even better news, some reports have Huet coming back earlier then expected.. possibly before the playoffs.

It’s still way too early to say, but I won’t be buying a chaise longue for the parade route just yet.. not at those new prices anyhow.

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