A Puff of Absurdity: On Sugar and Socialization

An Agenda discussion on sugar use is timely for me. I typically let students eat something small and healthy in class to tide them over until lunch, but, in one class this semester, I ended up having to police their choices. A few shovelled candy into their mouths before I’d tell them to put it ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Sugar and Socialization

An Agenda discussion on sugar use is timely for me. I typically let students eat something small and healthy in class to tide them over until lunch, but, in one class this semester, I ended up having to police their choices. A few shovelled candy into their mouths before I’d tell them to put it ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Water Wars and the Last Straw

The next world wars won’t be about land or oil. They’ll be about water. And Canada could be the next Iraq, invaded and decimated for the abundance of our natural resources. We have to stop corporate control over our most necessary resource now before it all slips out of our hands. I watched Maude Barlow ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Saving Cyclists’ Lives

It seems like every year we have cycling deaths in our community. In the past, the local paper reporting has held a subtle anti-cycling stance, but this summer, some tragic accidents have been clearly cyclist error.  People are calling for greater education for cyclists, which is important, and I’ll get to it in a minute ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Saving Cyclists’ Lives

It seems like every year we have cycling deaths in our community. In the past, the local paper reporting has held a subtle anti-cycling stance, but this summer, some tragic accidents have been clearly cyclist error.  People are calling for greater education for cyclists, which is important, and I’ll get to it in a minute ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Unions and Boycotts

The elementary schools in our board have decided to boycott the local paper because one columnist has been known to take a decidedly negative view of teachers. So a local MPP, Michael Harris, petitioned Sandals, the Education Minister, to… I’m not really sure what he wants her to do. But he wrote her a letter ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Those Statues Again

There are dueling petitions out to continue (which curiously disappeared) and stop statues of all 22 prime ministers being planted on the grounds of Wilfrid Laurier University, my old school that I loved all to bits. I wrote about this statue project on its inception two years ago. The statues were originally to be set ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Achievement and Death and Stuff

First, a bit about boredom: “Boredom may lead you to anything. After all, boredom even sets one to sticking gold pins into people…one may choose what is contrary to one’s own interest…one’s own fancy, however wild it may be…desire what is injurious to himself, what is stupid, very stupid – simply in order to have ...

Yappa Ding Ding: Horrible Regional Signage is Causing Construction Chaos

The Ion LRT is going to take three long years to build, three years of construction and traffic jams, three years of mud, three years of inconvenience and unpleasantness. The process started a few weeks ago, and I live in the epicenter of it. The Region has got to improve their signage. Here is an ...

Yappa Ding Ding: Horrible Regional Signage is Causing Construction Chaos

The Ion LRT is going to take three long years to build, three years of construction and traffic jams, three years of mud, three years of inconvenience and unpleasantness. The process started a few weeks ago, and I live in the epicenter of it. The Region has got to improve their signage. Here is an ...

Yappa Ding Ding: Horrible Regional Signage is Causing Construction Chaos

The Ion LRT is going to take three long years to build, three years of construction and traffic jams, three years of mud, three years of inconvenience and unpleasantness. The process started a few weeks ago, and I live in the epicenter of it. The Region has got to improve their signage. Here is an ...

Scott's DiaTribes: Interview with Cathy MacLellan, Liberal Nomination Contestant for Waterloo

One of the advantages of going to a LPC(O) Conference is you sometimes unexpectedly meet candidates or nomination contestants. That was the case this past weekend in London when through an acquaintance, I met Cathy MacLellan, who is a nomination contestant in the riding of Waterloo, a new riding created by Elections Canada due to ...

A Puff of Absurdity: People’s Climate March Update

“If you don’t fight for what you want, then you deserve what you get.” – Disruption The People’s Climate March is in one week.  The 50-minute film, Disruption, is a motivating force to inspire people to hit the streets.  If you can’t make NYC on Sunday (busses leaving from Toronto might be full), then there ...

A Puff of Absurdity: AER Strategies

Margaret Wente recently wrote about a teacher, Lynden Dorval, who was fired for giving students zeros when they didn’t complete assignments.  Fellow teachers argued his case:  “They told the tribunal that when there are no consequences, a disturbing number of students – quelle surprise! – don’t do the work.”  She clarifies the policy rationale: [Ken ...

Yappa Ding Ding: King & University: a traffic problem?

Taxi drivers are saying that they are risking their lives to pick up and drop off passengers outside the new high rises on King Street north of University Ave. The problem is that the buildings have no pull-in area so cabs have to stop on busy King Street. I have noticed private cars stopping on ...

Yappa Ding Ding: King & University: a traffic problem?

Taxi drivers are saying that they are risking their lives to pick up and drop off passengers outside the new high rises on King Street north of University Ave. The problem is that the buildings have no pull-in area so cabs have to stop on busy King Street. I have noticed private cars stopping on ...

Yappa Ding Ding: King & University: a traffic problem?

Taxi drivers are saying that they are risking their lives to pick up and drop off passengers outside the new high rises on King Street north of University Ave. The problem is that the buildings have no pull-in area so cabs have to stop on busy King Street. I have noticed private cars stopping on ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Clara Hughes’ Mental Health Tour

h/t CAAWS Our school had the honour of hosting a visit from Clara Hughes yesterday – six time Olympic winner for cycling and speed skating.  She’s biking around Canada – ALL around Canada – talking about mental health.  She biked through a snow storm in Woodstock on her way to K-W.  Very hard core! She ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Flag Waving

The twin-cities, Kitchener and Waterloo, have both decided to put a rainbow flag inside city hall for the duration of the Olympics rather than fly one outside the building. From The Record: [Coun. Frank] Etherington [who proposed the motion] was critical of the city’s flag solution. “My argument was (putting the flag inside) in no way ...

Yappa Ding Ding: Waterloo needs a west-side expressway

Rush hour traffic in uptown Waterloo is a mess. Some of the busiest intersections – William/Caroline, Erb/Caroline – are going to get even worse when the LRT goes through them. What we need to relieve the congestion in uptown is an expressway, or at least a rapid road, on the west side of town. Currently ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Celebrating History

I’ve got a funny story. A while ago – like months – a colleague asked if I’d do some website or advertising work of some sort for a sesquicentennial event in 2017 crossing Canada and involving high-school history teachers.  I’d have to find a way to get high-schools everywhere involved.  I said, “Sure!” Then yesterday, ...

Yappa Ding Ding: King & University: Density node? Neighborhood? Mess?

The density at King & University has been a long time coming. When I was a teenager in the 70s, there were already large apartment buildings on Regina Street North. University Avenue in the King-Regina area has been steadily growing with apartments and strip malls. WLU is building more and more student residences in the ...

Yappa Ding Ding: Will/Should John Chen move BlackBerry to California?

I worked at Sybase for eight years under John Chen, the new CEO of BlackBerry. He was an interesting CEO – refreshingly (almost appallingly) frank. I remember he once came to the Waterloo office and told us that our market was shrinking, and that he felt like the captain of a leaky boat that was ...

A Puff of Absurdity: If You Build It, They Will Come – Really!

Photo Cred: Harrogate Cycling Group In today’s Record, Jeff Outhit comes very close to suggesting that if we bike in K-W, we should expect to get hit by a car.  It’s not safe out there:  “…riding a bicycle to work is dangerous and counter to common sense.” Counter to common sense.  Later on he uses ...

Alberta Diary: Campaign Diary Volume 9: Sidewalks, snow, public transit & Adlai Stevenson

A sidewalk snow removal machine in Ottawa. Below: Better a hole in the shoe than a hole in the head, as the slogan said. Adlai Stevenson in ’52, campaigning in a bow tie! One of the joys of running for public office in St. Albert, win or lose, is the opportunity to talk with our ...