Fri, Aug
19
2005

Headline: Gas Thief Escapes on Tricycle

Fri, Aug 19, 2005

Several things went through my mind as I saw this. How, exactly, does one steal gas? And getting away on a tricycle? How old was this criminal? Eight? And then I saw this photograph.

And, now I have to ask: if this crime was committed in broad daylight, and there was somebody there to snap a very good picture of the event, who else was around? Did the police not shout “unhand that gas!” and chase down the boy on a tricycle? He’s on a tricycle, he’s carrying a honking big balloon! He can be caught on foot!

The report does not say whether this individual was caught. One wonders how he hid the gas.

(Hat tip: From A to B)


“Jew Couple?!”

I seem to be encountering a lot of weird news today, so why not run with it. Over at A Little Bit Left comes news that a couple attending a restaurant received a bill and were surprised to find their table identified as “Jew Couple”.

The waitress, Karina (who no longer works for said eatery), handed Elliot his bill as the meal was over. He was shocked. The price was about what he expected, but what he couldn’t have expected was to see his table identified by the wait staff as “Jew Couple.”

The article does not identify whether the couple was actually Jewish, but frankly that’s not the point. Little Bit Left says it well:

The owner of the restaurant says that it was used as “a form of identity” and not intended to be a derogatory term. Having never worked in a restaurant, I could be speaking out of ignorance here, but are not tables identified by, um, what’s the word I’m looking for … oh yeah, a number? What if there are multiple Jewish couples in the restaurant at the same time?

Yeah, bizarre. One wonders what the restaurant was thinking. Or maybe just the waitress.


Come On. You Can’t Be Serious. Can You?

Apparently, somebody wants to stock the great plains of Saskatchewan with African game animals. I’m talking about lions, cheetahs, tigers and elephants. It’s apparently an attempt to save these creatures from extinction.

Places with lots of grasslands and thin human populations — Nebraska and west Texas are other examples — would be just right, says a team led by Josh Donlan of Cornell University. Besides, Mr. Donlan argues, American lions and elephant-like creatures such as mammoths did roam North America until about 13,000 years ago. If anything, they were even bigger than their modern cousins. In today’s edition of Nature, Mr. Donlan and 11 colleagues call the idea “rewilding” — or turning back the clock to a natural state.

Uh, huh. Yeah. That’s just what our beleaguered farmers need. Tractors stalked by cheetahs.

They note the potential for conflict between the big African animals and humans is “high.”

Ya think?!

(Hat tip to Calgarygrit)


How Come I’m Not Getting Any Phone Calls… AND WHAT’S WITH ALL THESE CRICKETS!!!

I seem to be developing a love-hate relationship with the cellphone. Mostly I like it. It’s helped me stay in touch, and it’s brought good news as well as bad. I’ve also managed to get the settings mostly the way I like it. And I tolerate the ring tone.

Seriously, the ring tone is fairly decent. It’s fairly obviously a phone ring, even if it’s pretending to be a glockenspiel. I was surprised at the number of ring tones I could download, from snippets of popular songs, to even people shouting catch phrases.

Me, I just wanted a ring-tone that sounded roughly like a phone. And, surprise, surprise, these weren’t included.

Whose brilliant idea was that?

I’ve done this myself, so I know what’s going on here. Somehow, somewhere, somebody got the bright idea that phones could play sound files or MP3s as their ring tone, freeing the cellphone jingle from the standard crickets-chirping or “la coucaracha” remixes. And, realizing this, they went a little overboard, not actually thinking whether or not having one’s pocket suddenly erupt with, say, WWE Champion John Cena shouting “The Champ! Is! Here!”, was a good idea.

Look, I understand the need for ring tones that somebody can identify as one’s own. I remember the old days when a cell-phone would ring and an entire room would fumble around their pockets to check to see if they were the one being called. But there has to be a compromise between crickets chirping and celebrities speaking out of your pants.

Alternately, if you’re going to go this route, go all the way. Offer really individualized ring tones. I’m sure people will pay money for a service wherein Fran Drescher records a tone that bellows (often in the middle of a quiet, suspenseful scene in a movie theatre): “JOHN P. MORGAN OF 234 SOUTH PARK STREET, YOUR PHONE IS RINGING! JOHN P. MORGAN, ANSWER YOUR GODDAMN PHONE!”

I’m sure other people in the theatre would pay money for that service too, after showing up at John P. Morgan’s address after the movie and smacking the snot out of him. Cameron, I know, would approve.


Stormy Weather in Toronto

Tornado Warning Issued for GTA

Tornadoes have apparently already touched down outside of Guelph as a substantial supercell approaches Toronto. Sure, the only damage so far has been torn-down trees and flipped cars, but a tornado warning is a rare event for the GTA, so forgive the local media if they go a little crazy over this one.

Actually, I watched the storm as it blew through Kitchener. There was no sign of any tornadic activity; just lots and lots of rain and some heavy winds. Beforehand, you could tell that a big storm was coming. It’s strange how you get that anticipation in the air.

I have never seen a tornado “live”, not even at a long distance. I hope some people in the GTA get to see a good, exciting show, and that nobody gets hurt.

P.S. Sunny skies here in Kitchener. At exactly the same time, here’s the view from Toronto:

torontoweather.jpg

On This Day

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