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Grazing Arizona - Sedona And Tiger

June 4, 2008 @ 11:55

Sedona, Arizona - We found a little piece of heaven on earth yesterday. It’s called Sedona, Arizona known for its breathtaking topography and red rock.

It’s one of those things where I can try to describe it, and I can post some pictures, but you really have to see it to believe it.

As we approached the area from the main highway, it was almost too much to digest. We saw what was in front of us, but it was hard to comprehend that it wasn’t a post card or a big movie screen showing some famous western.

We got here later in the afternoon so we didn’t have a lot of time to scout around, that’s we plan to do today.

We’re going to a hiking trail in a place called Oak Creek, and then we’ll spend some time scouting around the actual town of Sedona before finding a good place to watch the hockey game.

I’ll report back tomorrow.

Meanwhile, if you plan a trip to this area in the next little while, don’t be fooled about all you read and hear about “Old Town” in Scottsdale.

It’s nothing more than your typical tourist trappy area. A bunch of souvenir shops selling the same over-priced crap.

And one more thing. I got into conversation with a couple of hockey fans in our hotel lobby yesterday, and they were steamed at Tiger Woods.

Tigers comment the other day “nobody watches hockey anymore” rubbed them the wrong way. It was stupid thing to say, and what bothered these Coyote fans is the disrespect it showed for fellow athletes.

As a good fella named Carl offered, why would a pro athlete say that about another pro sport? Is there no unwritten law of respect?

I’ve to be honest it bothered me as well. Especially when you consider Woods plays in a sport that features fat guys and old guys. A sport where the competitors get pissed off if someone clicks a camera before they swing. A sport where aggravating fans yell "in the hole" when I guy makes a tee shot on a par five.

I think I might join my mother in the “anybody but Tiger” club.

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Grazing Arizona - Camelback

June 3, 2008 @ 10:37

Scottsdale, Arizona - I saw the hockey game last night. In a place, that boasts the world’s largest selection of draft beer.

It was called the Yard House and we planned the day so that I could watch the game, while Delyse shopped at a huge extravagant structure called the “Fashion Mall” in Scottsdale.

The Yardhouse has no less than 50 plasma TV’s, but when I first walked in I had to search for the game. The rest of the TV’s were showing the University of Arizona women’s softball team in their “World Series” game against Texas A and M.

The hockey game was playing on one screen at the end of the bar so I sat their with a kid from Minnesota and a local guy, and we appeared to be the only hockey fans in the place.

There was a big crowd because don’t forget, the game starts at five o’clock here and there was a big supper crowd to take advantage of the “happy hour specials” that are a big part of life in Arizona.

I had a couple of Boddington’s and some jerk chicken, while I waited for Delyse who was going to hook up with me at seven o’clock, at roughly the end of the second period.

By the time Delyse arrived, I’m happy to report that the Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings had captured the crowd at the Yard House.

With a one-goal game and the action going end-to-end, eventually every plasma in the place had been switched to the game and the drama increased to a climax when the Penguins tied it up with 34 seconds to play.

Unfortunately for this crowd the game dragged on a little too long. It did even for us.

As the overtime continued the bar emptied, and at the end of the second overtime, even we went back to our room to finish watching it.

But not before Delyse had the ginger encrusted salmon and I had the seared ahi tuna with wasabi.

I had mixed emotions when the game ended at approximately 9:35 local time. I was glad the Penguins had extended the series, but felt for Neighbour John and his boys who were at the game hoping to see a Stanley Cup awarded, obviously a once in a lifetime opportunity.

But not to worry. John has informed me he’s secured tickets to game seven, so he and the boys are hoping Pittsburgh can pull out a victory in game six tomorrow night.

As for touristy shit, we climbed halfway up Camelback Mountain yesterday morning.

It’s one of the things you’re supposed to do while in Scottsdale, so we got an early start to beat the heat and it was rather enjoyable. The entire hike up the mountain is about 1.7 miles with the final half mile recommended for only experienced hikers.

We climbed until we could catch a glimpse of the landscape on both sides of the mountain, Scottsdale to the east, Phoenix to the west.

After that, we hung out by the pool for a few hours, taking advantage of the 102 degree temperatures, and this allowed me to continue my Arizona observation of countless good-looking women with short blond hair and large breasts.

It’s almost cookie cutter. Like clones or something. And judging my the consistent shape of the breasts, I’m sure there’s a very rich plastic surgeon in town.

Today we’re going to the Museum of Contemporary Art (something else you’re supposed to do while in Scottsdale) and then we’re heading north to Sedona.

Ya peckers.

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Grazing Arizona - The Beginning

June 2, 2008 @ 10:07

Scottsdale, Arizona - This trip got off to a good start because of the Air Canada factor. We didn’t fly Air Canada.

It meant a fast and efficient check in with a smile not a scowl, and a large luxurious jet with leather seats that were half-empty.

Me and my sweet had a whole row to ourselves. It got me to thinking about joining the mile high club but the blankets they provided weren’t big enough and to be honest, given a choice, Delyse would rather open the emergency door and jump out at 37 thousand feet.

I should mention that we did encounter one problem before departure. There were only three American customs guys on duty. It wasn’t the busiest day at Pearson, but three wasn’t nearly enough and it took us about forty minutes to get through.

Just another thing about the Toronto airport experience – from my experience – there’s always something. It’s seems you can blow through other major airports like Atlanta, Raleigh and Chicago without much of a problem, but Toronto always seems to throw you a curve.

Arrival in Phoenix brought another surprise of medium proportion. At the car rental desk it was brought to my attention that taxes on the PT Cruiser I was about to get would be forty seven percent.

“You’ve got to be kidding” said Fred.

“Nope, we’ve got to pay for all these stadiums somehow,” said the obviously biased car rental attendant.

“What do you mean” I replied.

“To build Chase Stadium for the Diamondbacks and the US Airways Centre for the Coyotes, the state of Arizona decided to institute heavy taxes on tourism to pay the bills and rental cars were hit really hard.”

In other words, hard working people on business or pleasure have to cough up more dough so guys like Randy Johnson can have somewhere to make twelve or thirteen million dollars a year. Another reason my interest in sports isn’t what it used to be.

Now here’s the hypocritical part.

I went to the Diamondback’s game yesterday. Whenever I’m in a city with major league sports facilities I like to check them out. Yesterday was no different.

Delyse and I headed for Phoenix about ten in the morning, parked the car for free believe it or not, walked around the quiet city for a couple of hours, then bought a pair of six dollar tickets that were remarkably good.

It was a fun couple of hours. It got us out of the 98 degree heat and into an air conditioned stadium that Skydome haters would probably hate just as much.

In Toronto, we have a closed stadium that opens for games. In Phoenix, they have an open stadium that closes for games. The heat is so punishing, they have to close it just before game time or nobody will come, but it makes for a weird feeling.

There’s bright sunshine and heat outside, but inside its dark and dank and cool. Again, all the things that Skydome haters hate, is provided at Chase stadium. But at least in Toronto, when the sun is shining, you can feel it.

We stayed until the sixth inning with the Diamondbacks enjoying a 5-0 lead, then headed back to the Scottsdale area to do a little shopping.

It’s the off-season in Arizona, so you pretty well have the streets and the stores to yourself. Not that it bothered me, because people tend to bother me a lot more.

The streets of Phoenix were like a ghost town and Scottsdale wasn’t much different. Literally, nobody on the streets, including a trendy little shopping area called Fifth Avenue.

We walked around for an hour so, headed back to the fine hotel we booked, had a swim and 16 oz Bud Lite, then headed for Delyse’s favourite American restaurant chain, The Cheesecake Factory.

If ever you’re down in the states you’ve gotta check one of these places out. There’s one in Buffalo near the Galleria Mall. I won’t get into a long description other than to say you don’t have to go beyond the appetizer menu. That’s all we ever order for dinner.

After dinner last night we stopped in a Walgreen’s to buy a couple of things, we got into a mild argument about the quality of fish oil on sale, and then headed back to our room where we crashed because we’re still feeling the affects of the time change.

Today we’re going to climb Camelback Mountain and then visit an area called Old Town.

Ya buggers.

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Grazing Arizona

May 30, 2008 @ 08:43

Yes my friends, I'm heading out on another adventure, this time with my sweet darlin' Delyse.

Tomorrow morning we're flying to Phoenix, Arizona where we'll spend a week touring the state.

We plan to spend three days in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area before heading north to Sedona, Flagstaff and then the Grand Canyon.

It's going to be hot, the forecast for arrival time tomorrow is sunny and 37 degrees celsius - buy hey, what the hell, it's better than the crap we've been getting up here lately.

It should be fun, and as usual, I will take you with me. My trusty little Toshiba laptop will make the trip so I'll try to post something every day while we're away.

On Sunday afternoon I'm going to an Arizona Diamondbacks game - I will drink beer.

Loving you,

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E-mail - Mike From Lowville

May 29, 2008 @ 09:55

Part of the reason I created was because of people like “Mike from Lowville.”

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that Mike is a frequent reader and contributor to, and CanadianThinker, but that doesn’t mean I agree with the guy, or that his damaging political correctness escapes me.

Guys like Mike are why Canada is going where its going. Guys like Mike, in his quest to prove whatever to whomever, like to squash the opinions of others by making outlandish statements designed to silence them.

Yesterday was a great example.

I posted a piece called “The Mayor is Stupid”. I talked about the David Millers plan to close a couple of shooting ranges in Toronto as a bizarre way of helping to battle gun violence in the city.

I went on to say the Mayor refuses to confront the root problem of gun violence in the city, which is mostly committed by a small portion of a small group in the city. A fact that can’t be disputed, a fact that’s been well documented and a fact that’s been validated by people within the actual community.

But what does Mike say? Mike from Lowville, in his ongoing to mission to sound like the smart guy comes out with this.

"There has to be some way to get this lunatic out of office A.S.A.P. before he really does some permanent damage."

There is. All you people, (including Fred) are alluding to it. Get someone from the islands to do it. Put a cap in his ass. Then arrest tall the coloured folks that come from that island and throw away the key. That will solve everything....... How moronic!!

To be honest Mike, the only thing on this page that’s moronic is your response.

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A Very Sad Day

May 22, 2008 @ 10:13

The city of Toronto took a giant leap backwards last night with the official approval of an Africentric school which will open in the fall of 2009.

I can’t believe I’m actually sitting here writing this piece.

Here it is, the year 2008, Toronto prides itself in being a multi-cultural city in a diverse country, yet we’ve buckled under to the politically correct again and allowed something to happen that is not only wrong, it’s downright embarrassing.

Everything that Canada stands for crumbles with this decision. Allowing segregation in our schools is nothing to be proud of. This is not progressive and it’s definitely not a solution for what ails black youth in the current school system.

It’s an excuse. Nothing more than a silly excuse for parents who let their kids down at home long before they were let down at school.

It’s a power play. It’s ill equipped parents looking to blame some else for their shortcomings and then standing behind the all mighty “R” word to get their way.

And it’s pathetic. It’s pathetic that this could be allowed to happen in this day and age, especially when you consider what black people have fought against for generations. It’s wrong, and what makes it even worse is that most of the people who voted in favour of this probably know it’s wrong.

But they were afraid to say so.

And the spotlight should go on trustee Maria Rodrigues today. She did the most predictable thing during last nights final vote which will allow this regressive joke to go forward.

She accused fellow trustee Josh Matlow of being racist simply because he apposed to the idea. How predictable, how mindless, how manipulative.

In some respects however, what Rodriques did was a solid argument against the school. It goes back to my point about a power play. This school exists mainly on the strength of the "R" word. During the whole process opposition was stifled by it's use. It stopped rational debate and silenced those who might have had good reason to be against it.

It divided the trustees. Much like the school will divide children.

And this is only the beginning, make no mistake about it.

On the heels of last nights decision to open a school for kindergarten to grade five, demands were made for a high school. It will only grow from here. The segregation will only spread.

It’s a sad day for Toronto, it’s a sad day for Canada.

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The Worst That Could Happen

May 22, 2008 @ 10:12

Today’s story about the 15 year old Toronto lacrosse player, who died as the result of an injury in a game, is horrifying for all parents.

Obviously, it can’t match the living nightmare that Jamieson Kuhlmann’s parents are going through, but it’s something that constantly plays on the subconscious minds of parents every time they watch their kids walk out the door.

To lose a child under any circumstances has to be the most horrific thing that could happen to a person. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s to disease or an accident.

As the father of two healthy young adults I try not to think about it, but when I see stories like the one about Jamieson Kuhlmann I shudder. I can’t imagine losing one of my kids, and for those who do, I wonder how they go on.

My father died recently, and the pain it cause is bad enough. My dad was 82 years old and lived a long and productive and mostly healthy life.

But if losing him can hurt so much, how do you measure that against losing a child. As the old saying goes, your kids are supposed to bury you, not the other way around.

When I talk to new parents I love to ask this question. Especially of those who swore at one time that they’d probably never have kids.

I ask them, could ever imagine loving something as much as you love your kids, and the answer is always the same. A resounding “no!”

Prior to Monday, I’m sure the parents of Jamieson Kuhlmann had a lot on their minds.

It could have been anything, their jobs, their finances, personal relationships, and before Monday these things may have played a big part in their lives.

Today I’m sure nothing means anything and everything else is a blur.

The Kuhlmann’s have suffered the absolute worst thing that can happen to anyone and I’m sure for the time being, their lives have lost all meaning.

Category: Sports | Stuff

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Passing The Buck - Again

May 21, 2008 @ 14:47

Parenting continues to be ignored in the ongoing search for what's "wrong" with Toronto's public schools.

A lot of time an money is spent on identifying every problem known to man, every problem that is, except parenting.

The Toronto School Board will spend four million dollars on a new program designed to battle racism, sexism and violence.

It's part of a one thousand page report that was commissioned after the Jordan Manners murder, but it offers precious little on the root problem of bad behaviour in Canadian schools....... Bad parenting.

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Saskatchewan Model Fuchs To The Top

May 16, 2008 @ 09:53

It's not often that Canada makes a big impact on the world stage, but every so often along comes a Canadian who stands above the crowd.

Such is the case with Taylor Fuchs.

What are the chances that a young fella from White City, Saskatchewan could become the world's most successful male model? It's quite the accomplishment, and quite the name.

I'm sure he had a bitch of a time as a kid.

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Dirty Rotten Bastard

May 14, 2008 @ 12:06

I’m sure some of you think my life must be pretty good if one of the more pressing issues in my life is graffiti, but I’m telling you, we should all be concerned.

Not to get overly dramatic, but I think the recent explosion of graffiti in the GTA is extremely disturbing. It tells us something about our society as a whole.

It reveals selfishness, the disregard for others and the willingness to literally shit where you live. I’m convinced that most graffiti is probably committed by people who live in the area where they leave their messages or so-called tags.

What kind of pig chooses to deface their own community.

I guess it’s the same kind of pig who decided to deface the granite memorial dedicated to Ontario’s fallen firefighters at Queens Park.

The son of a bitch took a red spray bomb and covered the memorial with all kinds of garbage, showing total disregard for all the heroic firefighters who have died on duty, and their surviving family members.

It’s a despicable act that should be dealt with severely, but don’t hold your breath.

As the city becomes a canvas for every half-cocked, malcontent jerk off with a spray bomb, the mayor twiddles his thumbs, and thinks of ways to embrace the practice without offending anyone.

I’m telling you, I’m so pissed off at what happened at Queens Park, if given the chance I’d literally cut the bastards balls off.

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