Thursday, April 24, 2008

LOST returns to the airwaves tonite...

Don't forget to tune into to the remainder of season 4 post-Writers Strike this evening on ABC/CTV at 10PM et.

For spoilers and plot points dealing with tonight's episode, check out:

You all better watch :)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Gas tax, the pumps and Earth Day-ness

As it's Earth Day I have a couple of humble recommendations for anyone who happens to stumble across this blog.

First, power down your computers. Yes, the blogosphere will survive without your eyeballs for a few short hours.

Next, slather on some sunscreen, and walk, don't run to your closest park or favourite walking trail.

Exhale all that stale air that your cubicle-bound mass has taken in for so many hours and attempt to pick up 15 pieces of refuse (the amount is important only because I used to perform this very mundane task with my 11-year-old charges when I was a day camp counsellor). Stick organics in an organic waste bin, and non-perishables in the trash or recycling bin of your choice. Repeat once a week and you've done your Good Earth Inhabitant duties for the time being.

If you can, you can also perform the following:
  • Switch all home-installed lightbulbs to compact-fluorescent or LED lighting
  • Purchase an Energy-STAR approved washer/dryer and washing machine (see the Government regulations' for same here and here )
  • Make an effort to support increased road tolls in the 416-905 area
  • Take public transit at least 2-3 times a week
  • Turn it off, unplug it, and open some windows!

Some other tips for greening your home environment can be found by logging onto the David Suzuki Foundation's Nature Challenge and pledge that you will do whatever you can here. Because no person is too small, or too far removed to see that a changing climate system, while unavoidable, can be managed with lesser perils and sounder judgment than we, in the industrialized world, are making.

So, enough reading, get to it :)

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Kind of intrigued by this one..

Death Cab for Cutie are headed to Toronto Island - WEEEE!!! The lads from DCfC will be joined at the Olympic Island summerfest this June 7 by their friends Stars, new-ish bands Rogue Wave and Young Galaxy at the June 7th annual party on Toronto Isle by the ferry docks.

I wonder how many navel-gazers in skinny jeans and bookish cardigans will be able to tear themselves away from World of Warcraft for this one? [source]

On another note, my freelancing website should be up and running in a couple of weeks, so don't forget to bookmark "I forgot the directions". It will be ad-sensed, just so I can make a bit of coin on the side but should encompass my current like's: off the grid travel, off the wall writing, and conservation (the environmental kind not the political force associated with minimalist governance) [link]

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Les liaisons dangereuses

In honour of it being a Sunday, and therefore official Do-Nothing-Day (although it is Easter and I have just watched High Fidelity starring John Cusack for the zillionth time), I thought I would create the Top 5 "Best Cinematic Songs to Dedicate to your Cheating or Unfaithful Spouse".

And they are in no particular order, excepting numero uno...

#5 - "Shot You Down" (also known as the Bang, Bang song by many fans of the Kill Bill Vol I and II films by Quentin Tarantino), as sung by Nancy Sinatra in the late 1960s. This song is terribly melancholy in its refrain, more than a little wistful for a simpler time, and always makes me think of the regret I have for not keeping in touch with childhood chums or a sweetheart from long ago. Luckily, I haven't been on the receiving end of said bullet, a la Uma as the "Bride" in the aforementioned film. A terrible 2005 remix of the song by Audio Bullys can be found here.

#4 - "Your Cheatin' Heart" by Hank Williams (and a multitude of other country-western singers over the years). Another simple ditty dedicated to the one you love if h/she has ever had 'tears come down like fallin' rain/You'll toss around and call my name/You'll wa-alk the floor the way I do/Your cheatin' heart will tell on you' A great song from a simply great and underrated American storyteller.

#3 - "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell. A sing-along classic that has been featured time and again in every 80s compilation disc under the sun. You know that if someone is playing this song for you during a round a karaoke, they may be trying to send you some not-so-subtle hints.. 'once I ran to you/Now I run from you/This tainted love you're giving/You gave me all a boy could give me/Take my tears and that's not really ALL!" 5 bonus points to the gentle reader who ever's read into the sexually-transmitted infection inferences found throughout the lyrics to this one...

#2 - "Back Street Affair" by Franz Ferdinand. Some might argue that this little-known ditty, which prior to the Scottish rockers had been covered by everyone from Loretta Lynn to John Prine and Patty Loveless, may not agree with its inclusion in my top-5 list based on its relative obscurity, but with lyrics like "They say I wrecked your home,You're a husband that's gone wrong" and the fact that it is the sole song to allude to the fact that many affairs do in fact turn into happy & fruitful relationships, I include it on the list.

And, finally, my No. 1 worst of the best Cheating songs is.... (drumroll. please.)

YOU GIVE LOVE A BAD NAME, by Bon Jovi!!!!!!!!
This song is voted no. 1 for a multitude of reasons. First, because I love 1980s hair rock and everything to do with the fantastic 1986 B-J album Slippery When Wet like no other. Second, because it is one of the greatest fist-pumping, rock out anthem-songs of the latter part of that decade (excluding Appetite for Destruction by GnR, which I remain true to) Third, although you might disagree with the prominence I accord the song, which alludes to the spite a man shows his former woman who's jilted him for no apparent reason, the factors that led to Jon Bon Jovi writing the song are interesting to say the least. For your viewing pleasure, please find a link to some original concert footage of the song here.

And that's all for today!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

CBC Radio 3 makes big Podcast waves..

Big news from the nation's broadcaster this week. CBC Digital Programming, and specifically its podcasting initiatives, now includes many of the top downloaded podcasts on the iTunes store, and CBC Radio 3, the independent music site available via subscription on Sirius Satellite Radio, is being downloaded in its podcast-edition, all over the world!

For an interesting story about the CBC Radio 3 phenomenon, read the story available on Vancouver Web site here

Thursday, May 24, 2007

The LOST season finale will make my brain explode!

Before inaugurating my new travel blog "I Forgot the Directions" I thought I would announce a couple of deals that are circulating around the interwebs for those looking to book last-minute summer vacation:

  • fly to Dublin, Manchester, or London from Toronto for as low as $94 - 114, air only(

  • fly to Madrid via Toronto (or Buffalo) for $431 CAD (via

  • stay on the island of Elba, Italy with an all-inclusive trip starting at 110 euros a night (

So, final thoughts.... was anyone's mind completely blown away by the season finale of LOST last night?!

WOOT, that was some 'effed up action towards the end, with the flash-"forwards", what with Locke (who lethally administers a swift killing to Naomi the parachutist with a quick launch of his handy knife) facing down Jack, and finally contact being made with the "enemy" the offshore ship waiting to rescue them!!!!

I am severely disappointed that Charlie's dead at the hands of I-must-be-robot-cuz-I-just-won't-stay-dead Mikhail (Charlie, incidentally, drowned just as Desmond predicted). It had been rumoured for weeks, and I figure the hobbit is probably going off to make some exciting films in la-la-land and can probably crash with Evangeline if he is called back to do flashbacks a la Boone.

But H-E-L-L-O - why can't Ben/Locke (they've started to develop very similar characteristics) just reveal their motives!!!! Aaah, the writers are going to kill me with all of these raised questions, and the plot keeps twisting in the wind!

How glad was anyone to see Walt (who's all grown up), and to see that Sayid/Bernard/Jin had survived!

And, what exactly is the deal with the ship? Why shouldn't they want to be rescued??? As we see from the flash-forward, all with the island may not be what it seems, but it apparently causes you to either develop a bad addiction to pills/renegade doctor if you leave it (Jack) or a lady seriously flaunting her need to star in a Pantene ad (Kate) - whew! hot!!

I am so frustrated it will be drawn out for 3 more seasons, sigh... If you still can't get enough, check out screengrabs, closeups and more goodies from last night's episode here,

Monday, March 05, 2007

The Internet in winter: some use it more, why some use it less

So I've just reconnected with one of my old best friends through FaceBook, and it's gotten me to thinking... why is it so easy for these social networking sites to completely suck us in?

It is pretty anti-social, don't you think? Couldn't I better spend that time out at the movies with my buddies, out for a drink, or even engaged in that tired old activity known as *exercise*. And doing a little quick Goggling, I discover that according to the Pew Internet & Research Project the majority of Internet users (54%) say the amount of time they spend online is about double the number they spent online only two years ago but is the same as that they spent six months ago (Ed. note -- how can that be true in Toronto? It's so cold that I think in response people have been decamping to their computers much more frequently) .

A buzz-term I've heard bandied about is "Internet addiction", and I think we're all a little bit guilty of that with possible spring election in Canada, intrigue in the U-S (will Hillary make history? Is Barack the only man for the job? Why do we care so much in the Great White North?)

I easily spend about 20 mins to an hour a day checking in with my face-crack, on my MSN space, uploading to FLICKr or previewing new bands on Myspace. And this is during work hours, eek! Although the American Psychiatric Association it doesn't expressly recognize such an addiction as an actual disorder, but then again, it took until the late 1970's for homosexuality to be declassified as a psychiatric disorder by this same organization, so keeping pulse with the fabric of today's society they are not so much. Some would say people also spend too much time watching television, reading, or following sports, and no such diagnosis exists for those activities either. Conversely, I may be adding fuel to the fire by asking people to pay attention to my posts, eh?

What about you - do you think we are all Internet-addled and are you addicted to Bebo/MySpace/Digg and the like?

What gets scary for me, is how prevalent cached information is. The pervasive rumour is that GOOGLE, the behemoth and undisputed champion of Internet search engines, has vast stores of databanks set up all over the Midwest where they keep reams of data on every keystroke ever entered on their homepage. Are you taking note, Big Brother? The government (e.g. the CRTC) in Canada may wade into the fray next year by beginning to mandate what constitutes User-generated content on private broadcasting sites such as CTV, Canwest Global's, and the CBC.

Do you want someone to keep the results of every Google search you've ever keyed in Enter to? I don't think so. But we broach a fine line between outright regulation of Internet ownership, and what constitutes viable, and unfiltered fair comment and speech. Just keep that in mind the next time you try to do a search for a journalism story on foot massages and enter "Massage Parlours." I learnt my lesson, trust me.

As a total aside, do make time to see both of the following in your spare time: Half Nelson, which I watched this weekend, is hands-down one of the best films of 2006. Ryan Gosling turns in easily the best breakthrough performance of any actor struggling to broach independent/mainstream success, and won a well-deserved Best Actor at the Independent Spirit Awards last month in Los Angeles.

And, make time to check out the new Landymore-Keith Contemporary Art Gallery at the end of my block along Dundas West, near Little Italy. A great retrospective is starting soon called Illuminated Cities, and opens on March 12th.. For more information e-mail or check out