Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Nifty

So? Whaddya think??

Do you like it? Huh, do you?

Yeah, Blogger has recently come out with some mega new designer templates but I never really had a chance to look at them until the other day. And then, cautious by nature, I had to consider it for a few days before I got brave to try a change. Because what would happen if I decided I didn't like it?

Well, apparently hopefully you can change back to your original template. Or so they say. Even though they don't appear to offer them any more.

Whatever. I took the plunge.

So what do you think? Do you like it?

I do. Although something tells me, with so many to choose from now, I might just be updating the look of my blogs to go along with all the holidays. Or at least the seasons.

Hmmm. Makes me wonder ... you don't suppose they any Canadian flag backgrounds, do you?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

That Time of Year

Again.

Meaning that it was a very, very busy weekend around our house.

And we are all pretty much wiped out.

Although we did manage to rally enough to head out to the Pub for supper tonight. It is, after all, Father's Day.

The Medal Count, you ask?

Two gold. One bronze. My girl can swim.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

I Don't Do Poetry

I don't do poetry.

But I just wasted spent an amzing past hour or so flipping through this man's videos - Miracle Workers, Undivided Attention, Depression Too is a Type of Fire, For The Life of Me, Labeling Keys and Defending American Interests, among others.

Many others. Check this one out. Possibly one of the best funniest. Go ahead, I'll wait.

I don't do poetry.

But the guy is amazing. The man that brought us "The The Impotence of Proofreading" - him, I could do listen to all day.

To have him as a teacher, that would have been something.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Post With No Name

When the Blue Jay was younger, I developed a mantra. For survival.
Daily life was tough back then, no doubt it.

The mantra, which I shared with many other parents whose children had intractable epilpsy, was simple.

This too shall pass.

Or.

This. Too. Shall. Pass.

Depending on the day.

But don't fret, this is not going to be a downer post.

Nope. This. Will. Make. You. Smile. Honest.



How in the world do some people find these things?

H/T to Kris at Reflections by Kris

PS ~ By the way, they're not actually a, you know, marching band.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sunday Afternoon Chuckle



No need to stay a word word.

After ale, hes stays it ale, dontchya thunk?

/p>

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Just Because I Can

Confession time.

I fell in love again today.

Nope not with a guy. Might just be I found something better.

I think I might have linked to this video last year, not quite sure. But whether I did or not, it's going up again now.

Why? Because it still gives me goosebumps.



Sure, you can watch it above. But it's waaaaaaaay better full screen.

Like this. Trust me.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

'In a Company of Heroes'

As I mentioned, my brother was down this past week for a visit.

He's always putting me on to movies I've missed, usually bringing 2 or 3 from his massive collection down with him for us to watch. Often buying me one he thinks I particularly would like or need to have.

This time, he didn't bring any movies with him. Unless you count the entire six seasons of Get Smart on DVD which he bought down here and now brings back on every visit. He only watches it down here. It's kind of cool, reliving a piece of your childhood that way.

But the first night he was here, he asked if I had ever watched "Band of Brothers" on HBO. No, I hadn't but I had often seen it in the Guide. I really should watch it, he said, it was excellent. The following morning what was on TV but the entire Band of Brothers series, starting with the very first episode.

He convinced me that I could run my few errands the following day, that today this is what we would do. Unfortunately, the phone kept ringing. Then a friend came to the door. I kept returning to the show but after a few hours, I commented that although I was still following the story I had missed enough to still not really know who all the characters were.

Shortly thereafter, I apparently having missed something my brother considered significant, something that I had to see so I could understand and appreciate something that would come later, he proclaimed that he was hungry. We should turn off the TV and go out for lunch. No, really. That's what we should do.

I was a little perturbed. After all, he was the one who had wanted me to watch this, convinced me to give up the day for it and then here I was being essentially told that I couldn't watch the rest of it.

But we went out for lunch. And later, while I ran some errands he stopped in at the Future Shop. Nothing new there, it's one of his favourite places to browse, so I didn't think much of it. When we returned home, he handed me the DVD set of Band of Brothers. "Gee, thanks, but you didn't have to do that." "I know but now you will be able to watch the whole thing."

We started with where we had left off and made it through Part VI before he left, leaving me with four parts left to watch. But as I listened to talk about D-Day, Normandy and the assault on the beaches that would be going on at the same time as Easy Company went about their mission, I turned to my brother and commented on the Canadians at Juno Beach.

And I must admit that it was nice to finally (for once) have knowledge of something that he was a little more fuzzy on - he wasn't entirely sure of the Canadian soldiers involvement in D-Day.

I was.
It was about 2:30 p.m. when Westhaver, Westie to his buddies, landed on Juno Beach for an allied invasion that was the beginning of the end for the German forces pummelling Europe.

He’d joined the army in May 1942, flew to England in August of that year and trained for six or seven months to become a wireless operator with the Army Signal Corps. He and his fellow servicemen spent months more practising for battle on the beaches of Wales, "almost like a rehearsal for a show."

But no amount of training prepared the young men, many just 21 or 22, for what they encountered on that strip of Normandy sand.

WADING THROUGH BODIES

Sailing over the English Channel to get there, Westhaver huddled with British commandoes, who sharpened their knives for battle.

"But there wasn’t much talk," he says. "I think they were all like me because we had never been in action before so we didn’t really know what to expect."

The then-21-year-old spent his first few moments of action wading through bodies.

"The water was up around my shoulders . . . and here the water was full of dead Canadians floating by with their heads down and you could see Canada on their shoulder. . . . So I had to push these guys out of the way to get into the beach," he recalls.

"There were dead bodies everywhere, laying on the beach and everything. So I’m running up the beach — and I’ve thought about this many times — all of a sudden I see an airplane coming.

"Now I used to build airplanes when I was a kid, I was always interested in airplanes. This airplane had two engines, two motors and all of a sudden sparks started coming out of the wings and I’m looking at it . . . coming at me. And all of a sudden it dawned on me, ‘He’s firing at us.’

"This was a German, this was a German airplane so . . . there was a hole there and I ran and jumped in the hole. I landed on top of a dead Canadian."

He shakes his head, but like he did that day, he keeps going.

"As soon as the aircraft went over you could hear the guns going . . . but it was a very confusing day because there were bullets flying everywhere. . . . You’d hear them over your head and the Canadian Navy, they were firing over our heads into the German lines . . . and you could hear these great big shells going over your head — whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa — and I used to think, ‘Oh my God, let’s hope that they keep going.’ "

This dangerous chaos is what D-Day veterans of many stripes have described over the years.

But fewer of them are around these days to talk about the horror and heroism.

Nova Scotia vets Earl Gouchie and Irving Cromwell, now gone, lived the horror then and — off and on — for the remainder of their days.

On the eve of the 60th anniversary of D-Day six years ago, Gouchie, a former sniper, could still smell the blood of his fallen comrades, hear the rat-a-tat-tat of machine-gun fire and feel the artillery shells groan.

Cromwell, his hand still trembling from the "shell shock" of a long gone war, recalled a fear frozen in time — as if he still stood on that beach, on that day, as the bombs and soldiers fell.
It's hard to comprehend, to get your head around, what it must have been like for those young men, for those boys. In fact, I think it's a lot easier not to even try.

And yet, be that as it may, we owe them at least that much, don't you think?

I'm going back to watch some more of Band of Brothers. It's the least I could do.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Free Falling in Pictures

As promised.




So that be me in the red and black flight suit. And the ridiculous looking helmet.

And that me by brave sister-in-law (the wife of my brother, the pilot, who absolutely refuses to even consider skydiving - make of that what you will) in the black and purple flight suit. And the ridiculous-looking helmet.

You might have noticed that the brave souls we jumped with had much less geeky-looking gear. Which, by the way, exactly why that was was never explained to us.

Update: I'm afraid you will have to head over to Flickr to see my brilliantly witty commentary attached to these photos. Which, for some reason, doesn't appear to show up in the slideshow.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lost in Space

It's been a while, hasn't it?

Like over a week. Not good, I know.

Unfortunately, it don't be looking much better at the moment.

My brother is down for the week. That's right - him of the movies, Play Station games, eating out, Play Station games, board games, drinking, chatting fame. Meaning my amazingly-free schedule is taken up with other things. You know the drill.

Not that I'm complaining any. It's fun. It's just that it doesn't bode so well for the whole blogging thing, particularly when I have been so notably absent the past few months.

Oh well, I probably shouldn't worry my pretty little head about it. After all, chances are there likely ain't anyone coming around here anymore to check things out anyway.

Although.

On the off chance there is, I might just mention that earlier today my brother was showing me the pictures he took of my little free falling adventure last summer. The ones he had been promising to email me but never had. Because he still hasn't taken them off his camera, like.

Meaning that, at the moment, the plan is not to let him out the door of this place until I get those pictures off his camera. And on this here 'puter.

And although I can't promise to share many with you (trust me when I say that I really don't look so good in a flight suit and WWII-type helmet and goggles), you might just see one or two.

If y'all come back again, that is.