Archive for May, 2011|Monthly archive page

Best way to get a cushy political job?

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

…in a branch of government supposedly not supported by the Conservative Party of Canada?

  • Be a conservative.
  • Lose an election.

http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/columnists/rewards+success+with+Cabinet+failure+with+Senate/4806816/story.html

http://shitharperdid.ca/

Camelot

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Melle, Melissa and I went to see Camelot at Stratford – kind of a last minute thing thanks to a Twitter deal on tickets. I don’t think we had any expectations one way or the other. I’m not a fan of musicals really, so I was just hoping that I’d be able to handle 3 hours of happy singing. Plus, it’s something to do with Arthurian legend (good) and T H White’s The Once and Future King (also good).

I was looking forward to the cast, especially Geraint Wyn Davies and Brent Carver. I mean, having these two on stage together is a rare treat, and is part of what makes Stratford so awesome.

It was okay. Wyn Davies isn’t a trained singer, and oddly enough, it made his songs better in contrast with Kaylee’s Harwood’s performance as Guinevere. Her voice is very “trained” and it shows, and her speaking voice went to the shrill side from time to time, which very distracting.

Wyn Davies was okay as Arthur, but is a bit senior (to my mind) for the early scenes, before he marries.

What I loved? The set. It was fantastical and pretty and minimalist all at the same time. Debra Hanson did a brilliant job, especially with the tree, and the candelabras that have these macrame trunks roll down in a later scene (sounds corny but it really wasn’t). Filigree and organic shapes, but made of metal and tubes. Pretty cool. Costumes were fantastic as well, especially during the May Fair ensemble scenes. I’d wear any one of those gowns. So kudos to Mara Blumenfeld.

And finally, there’s Brent. Totally stole the show, both as Merlyn and then as Pellinore. If you’ve read the book, he so captures that Quixotic What? What? and his warmth and timing and impeccable. There was also good chemistry between him and Wyn Davies.

Well,

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

What to say to that craziness that was #elxn41? I’m torn between quipping about Jack Layton’s menagerie of completely inexperienced MPs, including a woman who went on vacation and never canvassed, and genuinely wringing my hands about what we’re in for in the next four years.

Layton should be thrilled with his 102 seats, but the $ per seat money may be more of a boon than being the leader of the opposition in a majority government, since he effectively has LESS power in this situation. Plus, those votes in Quebec weren’t FOR the NDP, necessarily. The people were speaking to Gilles Duceppe, just as sure as they were speaking to Iggy. Quebec nationalism isn’t dead.

Neither is the Liberal Party. It was amazing how fast Twitterverse went to speculation on the “Democratic Liberal Party”. Maybe merging the Left is the right idea in terms of reducing the detrimental effects of vote-splitting. On pure percentages, the two parties together were 49% of the popular vote to the Conservatives’ 39.62%. Of course, with first past the post, they still would have been lacking #seats.

What the Liberal Party should not do is jump quickly. Ironic that Iggy was his warmest when he was graciously resigning – where the hell was this guy for the last parliament and the whole election? Apparently he hopes the next Liberal leader is young and female. I’ll be happy with good, which we haven’t had in a while. And as long as it’s not Justin flippin’ Trudeau, who couldn’t find “genuine” in the dictionary under “G”. The Party needs new leadership, should never have gone with Michael Ignatieff in the first place, but this is quite a hard lesson to learn.

What’s to fear in the Harper government? More funding cuts to women’s groups, the demise of the CBC, undercutting healthcare and healthcare transfers to the provinces, no public funding for political parties (after he gets his share from THIS election and simultaneously screws the LPC one more time), corporate tax cuts, no more long gun registry, and a continued gag on his own party and on the media, as best he can.

What is scariest, maybe, is the fact that my fellow Canadians voted for a man who believes bullying is a good way to lead, for a Party that was in contempt of parliament, and who launched vicious attack ads, and who have, on numerous occasions, diverted funds for their own purposes. I don’t understand their thinking, and perhaps that’s the most depressing fact of all.

And then we drank

Sunday, May 1st, 2011

Fabulous time had by all at our first Straightup KW event–a scotch tasting at KW Art Gallery. Little Mushroom Catering provided some fabulous food to go along with the scotch presentations led by Matt Howell, a local brewmaster and scotch expert with training in Edinburgh.

My able and affable co-host was Daejin.

It was a bit touch and go as to whether or not we would get our quota of 30 people, but in the end, we did, and it was an excellent mix of locals, and a few Brantfordonians! I was totally thrilled that there were several women as well.

We got some great feedback, and already have a tasting menu in place for our next celebration–Canadian whiskey, anyone?

Here’s the write-up: http://www.straightupkw.com/?p=15. You’re all invited.