Monday, January 28, 2008

Scotties picks

CurlingZone had a few provincial Scotties polls going last week. I took a shot at a few of them. Let's see how I did.

Alberta

I picked Shannon Kleibrink, and I almost missed this one. Two bad ends all week for Sonnenberg, but that was enough to lose it.



Saskatchewan

I picked Stefanie Lawton to take Saskatchewan, and came close.



Ontario

I picked Krista McCarville in Ontario. Almost got this one too. I like Sherry Middaugh, but she has a bad habit of choking in the big game. We saw that in the last Olympic trials, and last year in the Ontario Scotties final. She tried to do it this weekend, dropping the Page 1-2 game.



Before taking the final in an extra end. I thought the wheels were coming off when I saw that steal to go to the extra end, but it all worked out.



So, I went 1-2 in my picks, but both ones I missed ended up losing their finals. Not bad. I'll console myself by calling the weekend's Grand Slam right - I picked Howard to win it.



I'll go on the record here to make my picks for the Ontario Men's. Howard, Middaugh, Corner, Harris in the playoffs. Howard to win it. Way out on a limb here, eh?

I'm planning to go on the Friday night. I'll be the one watching the Howard-Harris game with my 7-year-old. She'll be the one eating everything she can find at the concession stand.

Raging gangs in our schools

This is too weird. A hockey team decided to dye their hair blue, as a team-building thing going into the playoffs. Now, that's not the weird part. The weird part is that one kid (a 13-year-old) was sent home from school because of his hair colour. Apparently, gangs colour their hair. The school has a zero-tolerance "no gangs" policy, so the kid's out.

Schools can't get a handle on the drugs and guns coming in the door, but it looks like they're gonna draw the line at blue hair, dammit.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Ontario Tankard field

The field is set for the Ontario Men's Curling Championship.

Howard Rajala - Rideau Curling Club
Rob Dickson - Land O'Lakes Curling Club
Bob Turcotte - Oshawa Golf and Curling Club
Wayne Middaugh - St. George's Golf & Country Club
Rob Lobel - Brampton Curling Club
Peter Corner - Brampton Curling Club
Rob Todd - Brant Curling Club
Wayne Tuck - Brantford Golf & Country Club
Mike Harris - Tam Heather Curling & Tennis Club
Daryl Shane - Kitchener-Waterloo Granite Club

and of course returning Brier and World champion Glenn Howard (from Coldwater) will be there.

Looks like a great set of teams. Several former provincial (and Brier, and World) champions, and even a surprise local team.

Here's the schedule. I'm going to try to get to a few games, in between curling myself, Brownies, gymnastics, etc. Man, I need to retire...

Friday, January 18, 2008

If you should go skating, on the thin ice of modern life

Another crazy slippery drive into Waterloo from out in the country today.

How slippery was it? I was passed by one of these, going by me on the shoulder:

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Outdoor curling gets underway

Construction is underway for the outdoor curling in downtown Waterloo this weekend.

Follow the construction action here, as they turn a parking lot into a curling sheet.

Looks like the weather will cooperate, and this should be a really neat event.

You can now disconnect from the Internet

What is this, the stone age? Disconnect from the Internet? Who still does that?



[Edit - wait! It gets better! Now I have to close the setup program so the setup program can continue.]

Friday, January 11, 2008

Shameless sea

Shameless sea
Aimlessly so blue


"P.E.I.'s historic West Point Lighthouse is under increasing threat of falling into the sea."

I don't have any photos here at work, or online, but I've visited this lighthouse twice, most recently in August. It's a beautiful part of PEI, with a great spot to go beach combing.

I realized how fast life goes this summer when we were there. My six-year-old was scrounging for shells on the beach, and I flashed back five years to remember her doing the same thing, on the same beach, when she was just a toddler.

I don't know when I'll get back there, but I hope the lighthouse is still standing.

Canada's healthcare crisis?

I've been fighting a bad case of kennel cough, or SARS, or ebola for the last week, and I finally decided it was time for some professional medical care. Phoned the doctor at 10:00am yesterday, was in at 3:15pm and out in a few minutes with antibiotics and high-octane cough syrup.

Who says Canada's health care system is in crisis? Mind you, I didn't take my chances on a 10 hour wait in the ER...

The cough syrup I'm on says to avoid operating heavy machinery, driving, or anything that requires mental alertness. Good thing I'm a software developer. No mental alertness required.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Fairfield Marriott Challenge results

Game One - a tight game. We were up 2-1 playing the 5th end, and gave up 4. Took one in 6, stole 7, stole 8, stole the extra. Not a fun way to win, but we'll take it.

Game Two - another close one. Frustrating, because we had the opposition in huge trouble three times, and they shit out a shot that was unbelievable. Missed the broom by three feet, hit the wrong rock, and ended up with a better result that they would have had if they made the called shot. Three times! Down 3 playing the 8th end, we took great pleasure in stealing three to go to an extra end. Learned a bunch of new words from their skip at that point. Couldn't quite pull off another steal though, and we were off to the B side. Gotta stop this extra end crap...

Game Three - getting tired at the end of the day, but by far our best game. Put the stealing shoes on right from the start. Steal, blank, steal, steal, steal, gave up one, took three with the hammer. 7-1 after 6 ends. Nice to not have to play 9 ends for a change.

Game Four - terrible first end, nobody made a shot. Somehow only gave up a steal of one. Shook out the cobwebs and went on to win fairly easily.

Game Five - met the best team we played all weekend. And kept it close for a while. Had a chance to tie it up 2-2 after four ends, but needed to curl an inch more. Ended up losing 5-1 in 7 ends.

So, all in all, a respectable 3-2 record through the weekend. Should have won Game Two, but other than that we did ok. And my losing streak at the Galt Country Club was finally snapped.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Outdoor curling comes to Waterloo

Outdoor curling comes to Waterloo this month.

As part of the TSC Tankard Ontario Men's Curling Championship, which is being held in Waterloo this year, an outdoor sheet of ice is going in on Saturday, January 19.

* 120 feet of real curling ice, built by our own expert ice maker: Joe Hahn
* A chance to meet former world champion curlers: Ed 'The Wrench' Werenich, and Neil Harrison
* Celebrity curling
* Curling instruction, and a chance for you to throw a real curling rock!
* Music and entertainment for all
* M&M burgers and treats for sale, with proceeds to charity
* Best of all, it's free!


At least the weather looks like it will cooperate, following next week's big warm up.

Curling this weekend

I'm curling in the Fairfield Marriott Challenge (formerly the Holiday Inn Challenge) this weekend. This time around we have half the team from last's year's 2-2 performance, and a quarter of the team (me) that went 4-0 and won the A side for a trip to the provincials three years ago.

There's a different set of teams in our zone this year, some I know and some I don't. I like our chances on paper, but of course that's not where the games are played. The only bad thing is that the event is at the Galt Country Club this year. I've played there in several different 'spiels and OCA events, and I can't remember ever winning a game at that club. I know I've lost there on the last shot at least three times. Let's see if we can change that record tomorrow.

What kind of message is this?

OK, SuperMegaCorp is struggling. It's all over the news. The stock price has plunged over 50% since last summer. The board is "open to offers" to acquire pieces of the company. Fine, that stuff happens all the time to big companies.

To cheer everybody up, the company posted a "Happy New Year" photo on the internal web site. Perhaps the choice of graphic was a bit... wrong. Nothing says, "we're gonna turn this ship around" like a gaping wound.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

You raise the blade, you make the change, you rearrange me 'til I'm sane

I was reading an interesting "How Stuff Works" article on brain death today. (Ok, I need a better hobby).

At the bottom of each page of the article is a series of Google ads. These caught my eye:



I'm not sure what losing belly fat has to do with brain death, but at least now I know where I can pick up some cheap brain damage.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Back at 'er

Happy New Year to my regular readers - you four know who you are - and to the occasional reader who ends up here from Google via a poor choice of search words. I'm back at work today, and my blood alcohol level is slowly easing back down to its normal level.

This New Year's Eve was not very eventful. We stayed at home and watched the snow fall. And although we did go outside to light up some sparklers, we left the front door unlocked, so the stupid dog couldn't lock us out again.

Yesterday my four-year-old was telling me that her eyes are green. I said, "no, they're blue." She insisted they were green. I said, "no, they're just like your sister's and mom's - they're blue. My eyes are green." She leaned in to take a look at my eyes and said, "They're kinda... red and crackly."

Hey, give me a break, I was up 'til midnight the night before.