Sunday, August 30, 2009

...and the trend continues.

I can't believe I left these out before.


Apparently the powers that be decided the police presence in Hamilton's Hess Village had to be stepped up a notch. This is being done by now having five horse-mounted officers standing at the end of a street, and I believe walking down after the bars are closed telling people to get the fuck out. Now they're probably right about the police presence part, it could be stepped up. I have actually seen some cops getting over-powered down there by the throngs of drunken brawlers that are a dime a dozen.

But, for one thing having these horses around there costs the city money, meaning costing me money. Second, and this is the most ironic part, the horses fucking shit all over the street. Anyone ever been hassled about having their dog take a big steamer, and not picking it up? Its very much against the law. These horses though, can just crap whenever, wherever they want, with nobody coming to clean it up. And its not like its tiny little crap that ToTo is dropping, these are literally small hills of shit. I brought the irony to the attention of one of the officers on the horses, and was ignored. I proceeded to make some comment about the hilarity of watching pigs standing in shit, and luckily I was not heard by any type of law enforcement. Thirdly, its kind of a hazard. Imagine hundreds of people walking around shitfaced (a possible and unfortunate result of someone with poor balance), who have enough problems staying on their feet and not puking, now have to worry about turning around and stepping in a nice steamy pile of horse shit.

Personally I'd love to see some rookie copper having to go around with a shovel and bag picking all that crap up. I just hope I have a camera when I see it.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

First Hang Over.

Ahhh after a solid night of consuming lots and Jack Daniels, I have my first Canadian hang over in over four months. Feels great, other than the fact that the bottle of JD cost me fucking 28$. What the hell is going on over here? Anyways bitching aside, maybe I'll head on down to Murphy's Subs, or even Queen's Pizza for some very local, Hamilton flavor.

Apparently DJ AM died last night, surely by the hand of too many narcotics. Actually yes, one headline reads: 'he was found surrounded by crack pipes and pill bottles'. How humiliating. Who needs more than one crack pipe anyways?

Well looks like it will be a slow day, where I will surely try and catch up on my NHL '09 fix which I missed out on all summer. Pathetic, I know. But that game to me is like what crack is to DJ AM. So watch out for my obiturary.

And I seem unable to get enough of late-90s Canadian hip-hop. Sweet.

Friday, August 28, 2009


This group is a joke in France, and I'll admit its a pretty cheesy song. But its painfully catchy.

Let the video load for a minute, the site hosting it sucks. I wasn't allowed to post it through youtube.

Back Home.

Well I'm back after four months overseas that went by in a flash. It almost feels like the whole thing was a dream, and I've just woken up only to find myself broke as fuck, a head full of memories, with a taste for whiskey, wine, stinky cheese, and cigarettes.

La France, je t'aime.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Been stuck in my head all day.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Film Review: Inglorious Basterds

I won't say too much about this movie, other than its probably the most entertaining Tarantino film to date. Its not exactly in the same vein as Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, or Jackie Brown style-wise, but it doesn't matter.

Tarantino brings insane violence, lots of comedy and some great acting to create a film that has never made watching Nazi's being brutally slaughtered so much fun.

Its only flaw would be that its a bit too long, with some scenes feeling like they're being dragged out. But its Tarantino, so what else could we expect.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Horror.

Walking around town this morning fighting off serious nausea from all the boozing last night, I saw one of the most foul sights I have ever witnessed. Some crazy old bag-lady who must have been at least sixty with huge scraggly grey hair, decided it would be a good idea to pull down her pants in the doorway of a clothing store, squat, and just start pissing everywhere with a very determined look on her face. Just thinking about it now makes me want to paint the computer screen with my lunch.

It was one of those things that you wish you could un-see.

Friday, August 21, 2009

I Love Horsies.

Film Review: District 9

A while ago I posted the trailer for this film, hoping that it wouldn't be a disappointment. Its a decent movie, but not nearly as good as it could have been. The first half of the movie is quite good, exploring our own humanity and how we're so easily corrupted by greed, even if it means the suffering of millions. After that though, it kind of turns into a full on action-movie, which would be fine, if only it didn't kind of ruin the serious message and good story that was set up in the first half of the film.

The rundown: Aliens come to Earth by accident, ship is broken. Aliens want to leave Earth. We want their guns. We keep them there in poverty, preparing them for near concentration-camp captivity. Struggle ensues. We are the bad guys.



I had the chance to hitch a ride back to Berlin with Alex and Dylan, and it was one hell of a drive. We left Lille at 4am because the car had to be returned to Berlin in the early afternoon. It gave us the chance to burn down the empty highways and make pretty good time. Over eight hundred kilometers in just over seven hours. Maybe it helped that we were going 200 km an hour most of the way.

Thank god for the German autobahn and its non-existent speed limits.

The sun coming up...I almost lost my camera taking this picture.

Going that speed, we came inches within our lives a couple of times, which resulted in stopping immediately to catch our breaths, and so our hearts didn't burst. Scary shit.

We made it back to Berlin in time, and in once piece.

I stayed in Alex's dormitory, happily taking the free-of-charge floor over a hostel. I was actually confronted by one of his program leaders, asking who I was and what I was doing there, seeing as they weren't allowed to have guests. I simply shrugged, gave her my name, and never saw or heard from her again.

Going to Berlin I kind of expected to see massive, old, and epic architecture everywhere, but it was quite the contrary. I suppose considering most of the city was flattened during the war, it would have been difficult to keep that heritage. Not to mention half of the city was communist for a while, who's history is clearly visible when you are on the Eastern side. Massive concrete apartment blocks in near-desolate neighborhoods are all over the east-side, with a noticeable shortage of shops and businesses on the former communist blocks.

Standing at the former border.

Personally I found Berlin to be a pretty bizarre place. Perhaps it was just the neighborhood I was in, but goddamn there were a lot of strange people walking around. Gutter-punks everywhere, getting offered any kind of drug imaginable, from about every fifth person I ran into. Maybe it's because I clearly was not German, and clearly was not from around there that I was offered so many narcotics. The thing I found most strange, is how they use they're not-so-popular history of the past one-hundred years or so to their advantage, and exploit it for tourism.

Flying the flags of the countries that occupied you...makes sense.

A piece of the wall, next to the red star.

Checkpoint Charlie, where the Allies were allowed to pass through the wall.

The Brandenburg Gate along with the Reichstag were extremely impressive.

Another thing that I noticed is that all over the city, there are grim reminders of the atrocities committed in the past.

A very cool building beside the Reichstag, with little white crosses sitting in front, signifying the deaths of people trying to cross the wall at that spot.

These pieces of gold are cast into the sidewalks in the front of formerly Jewish-owned properties and businesses, with the names of the victims, their birthdays, along with the date of their deportation, and where they were executed.

At night though, the city is packed with some very cool bars and clubs, that seem pretty unique to Berlin. Lots of character and very cool interiors pepper the city with a special nightlife. One bar even had televisions set up, connected to old school video gaming systems...and the DJ's passed around hash spliffs. Bonus.

After three nights there it was time for me to head back to Lille, and what a fucking shit-storm that was. I made my train reservation online, stupidly through the French train company SNCF, as you can make the reservation, then pick up your ticket at the station with your credit card. Apparently they don't do that in Berlin, and I would have to be in France to pick up my leave Berlin. Interesting.

Anyways, without a ticket I figured I was either stuck in the country for another night, or would have to pay another full price ticket, which already ran me 120 euros. I waited for the train to arrive, then sprinted up and down the platform looking for a train conductor who spoke English. The last person I found, she spoke English. With sweat pouring down my face, I tried to explain myself as quickly as possible, seeing as the train was leaving in about sixty seconds. She told me to get on the train, and we could figure something out. I hop on, and since it was an over-night train, told me to sit in one of the cabins. I waited for about twenty minutes, unsure of my fate. She came back, and told me that her boss wanted to charge me the full ticket price of 120 euros again. My jaw dropped. She asked me where I was from, told me that she loved Canadian accents, and the country. Just my luck, a Canadian lover. She then printed out a receipt, saying that she couldn't have me traveling without any form of ticket, and simply asked me for twenty euros, instead of the hundred and twenty. Relief washed over me in an awesome wave. I thanked her relentlessly, as she just saved me twice. She then informed me that I was beyond lucky, because I now had the whole three person cabin to myself for the thirteen hour overnight ride to Paris. Things just got better and better. The ride itself was actually very enjoyable. Going through the German countryside in the middle of the night with no lights around, the sky was lit up with stars. I eventually fell asleep, and woke up in Paris.

Night trains are the shit.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Da Beach

Some good 'ol Hamiltonian friends came to visit Lille about a week ago. Driving from Berlin, Dylan and Alex managed to swing themselves a ballin' Mercedes C-Class. Not wasting any time with this pinnacle of German engineering, we decided to hit the road and go to a beach on the Belgian coast. Seemed like a good idea, until we hit the insane traffic. What should have been a one hour drive, took three hours.

It looked like this most of the way there.

When we finally did arrive, we had to park about two kilometers away from the damn beach. Wouldn't have been so bad, but we had to haul about 36 beers for the four of us in one cooler. Seemed worth it when we got there at least...

Then it all went to shit on the ride back, totally blowing our good day out of the water. Seemed that someone decided to have their car breakdown on a one-lane highway, and couldn't find anyone to push it the fuck out of the way.

At least there was a sweet sunset...

...and enough time to hop out of the car to enjoy some tasty beers.

Actually, after the first brew I had to immediately use the toilet. So I hopped over the barrier, and crossed the service highway/road that was not being used at the moment. With my beer, I decided to mark my place at the side of the road into the ditch. Whilst doing so, a police van came screaming down the road towards me honking and flashing its siren. I swiftly flipped it the bird, whipped my beer at its windshield, resulting in a horrific and fiery crash, cooking all passengers inside*.

In all, it took us another three hours to get home.

*I actually bitched out, cut off my piss, tossed my beer in the ditch and tried to look at innocent as possible.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Glenn Beck Is A Blubbering Buffoon

If you don't know who Glenn Beck is, he's a correspondent for Fox News who regularly does commentary on the networks programs. He also has a radio program. Lately his show has been coming under serious fire after he made incendiary and racially charged comments about President Barack Obama. His program has been losing corporate sponsorship left right and center for the past week or so ever since making these insane comments. He is very quickly surpassing Bill O'Reilly as the most insane man on television, and frankly in my opinion having people like this being allowed to broadcast their views on such widely used mediums like radio and television is dangerous.

Exhibit #1: Glenn receives a call on his radio show regarding the American Health Care system, and since he clearly is not able to articulate a well-organized response to the caller...well, I don't know how to describe what happens.

He comments on the French health care system, suggesting that its impossible for a non-French citizen to receive free health care. I can tell you from my own personal experience here, that Beck clearly has no fucking idea what he is talking about. I walked into a pharmacy because I was coming down with a very bad cold. Without even asking me for identification, I was spoken to and quickly examined by a doctor there (in the pharmacy), who gave me an over the counter prescription. Guess what? The medicine worked great, barely cost me anything, and I was fine within 36 hours.

Exhibit #2: Glenns comments on a Fox News program that has effectively been stripping his program of corporate sponsorship.

What a fucking nutbag.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sky Force 6: Episode #3

Best one yet.

Eat shit Nickleback.

And Dundas.

Summer Readin' VI

While I was gone for the two weeks I ended up reading three books, two which were amazing and one that was absolutely awful. Here they are:

In Cold Blood - Truman Capote

This is the book that defined Capote's career, and would end up being his last novel, for writing it nearly destroyed him psychologically and resulted in serious alcoholism. After reading it and realizing the painstaking amount of research that must have gone into it, its easy to see why. Its the reconstruction of the events surrounding the murder of a farming family of Kansas in 1959, with their trial and inprisonment going well into the 1960s. Capote delves deeply into the minds of the killers, the mind-set of the town after the murders, and the repercussions the case had in the area. The result is a gripping non-fiction thriller that was impossible to put down.

Animal Farm - George Orwell.

Written between 1943 and 1944 during the height of WWII, Orwell's satire of how power corrupts even the noblest of causes still holds true today. Clearly a reference to Communism and how it doesn't work, the novel takes place on a farm where the animals take it over, ousting the owner that they see as evil. At the beginning everything goes well, but as things start to develop, a small ruthless elite among the animals begin to take control of the farm, things start to deteriorate, and nothing is what it seems. A must-read.

Snuff - Chuck Palahniuk.

Where to even start with this piece of trash? The story revolves around an aging pornstar that is trying to break the world-fuck record, by banging 600 dudes on film. Its told through the perspectives of Mr. 600, Mr. 127, Mr. 72, and Sheila, the pornstars personal assistant. It weaves in and out of their perspectives, giving us an idea behind their motives of being at the gangbang. Its an extremely strange novel, and usually with me, the stranger the better. But this book seems like its being as strange as possible, just for the sake of being strange. I've come to conclude that I really don't like Palaniuks writing, after also reading Fight Club. Its a disgusting book (and I loved American Psycho), that really holds no redeeming quality. Maybe I'm taking the book too seriously, as its clearly meant to be a dark comedy about human suffering, but I just didn't enjoy one page. Don't read it.

Monday, August 10, 2009

2 Weeks in Paradise

As some of you may have noticed I haven't posted here in a couple of weeks. Apologies. I have been in the south-west of France, without internet access. Which I actually enjoyed, its nice to be free of computers and technology for a while. But now that I'm back, I will tell you just what the hell I've been up to.

I was on a brief road trip going through small towns with my Dad, also making a stop in Bordeaux which turned out to be one of the nicest cities I have ever visited. Its a city on the river, whose name literally means 'by the water'. Old architecture, very clean streets as cars are generally not allowed in the center of town, just scooters and the streetcar system that is operated by brand-spankin' new Bombardier trains.

After Bordeaux we went to a small village where my grandparents used to live, along with my great-grandparents. This place is so small that my Dad actually ran into one of his cousins while we were there.

That's the whole town.

Great-Grandfathers house.

After visiting these places for a couple of days, it was off to the real destination. A rather large beautiful house, more like a mansion, that houses twenty people comfortably, nestled in a valley in the Dordogne region of France, about twenty minutes from Sarlat.

The place had a pool, pool tables, foos-ball, huge patios, a massive property, and one of the gates edged onto the tiny town it was attached to. Which was great, because for the first three nights there was a festival going on in the village. Nothing spells fun like some drunken bumper-car driving along with some rifle-shooting.

As I said, the place was beautiful:

The days generally involved rolling out of bed around eleven, having a small breakfast, then sitting around the pool soaking up the sun with some wine until lunch, and that usually happened around three o clock. Then more of the same, with some games of Boule thrown in there mixed with Mojitos, along with trips to Sarlat.

I probably haven't eaten so well in the past two years. We must have had every part of Duck imaginable; fois gras, great local vegetable salads, fruit, wine, cider, the works. Every meal just got better and better. Dinner in itself was always a blast, having twenty people sitting at one table drinking unthinkable amounts of wine and enjoying each others company.

Mmmm, Melons.

As a bonus, there were ponies on the property, just roaming around:

They were friendly, to a point.

I'll have to explain what I mean by 'to a point'. One day some members of the younger crowd and I had been doing some drinking as usual, and went for a roam around the property looking for these guys. We brought along the dog, which is a small Jack Russel. Turns out they didn't like that. All of a sudden they started charging the dog, and us. They may be small, but these fuckers can move when they want to. The darker pony almost nailed me in the head with its hind legs. Bastard. But injuries were avoided, and resulted in nothing more than a high-paced retreat back to the house filled with hysterical laughter.

All in all it was one of the best things I've done the whole summer, I will truly miss it, and of course the people that we all shared the time with.