gordon.dewis.ca - Random musings from Gordon


Archive for July 2009

Pictures of KISS at Ottawa Bluesfest posted

July 16, 2009 @ 10:49 By: gordon Category: Music, Photography

I’ve posted all the pictures I took of KISS on-stage at the Ottawa Bluesfest. You can view them here.

KISS at Bluesfest

July 16, 2009 @ 02:05 By: gordon Category: Music, Out and about, Photography

KISS at Bluesfest 2009 004

I headed down to the Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest at Lebreton Flats Wednesday evening to see KISS in concert.

This was my first KISS concert, which apparently put me in the minority based on the fact that there were tons of people in KISS makeup. I enjoyed it enough and can put a tick next to “Seen KISS in concert”. Rock and Roll All Nite was pretty impressive, with lots of fireworks and confetti cannons. Very cool!

I took a lot of pictures, some of which you can see by clicking on the images below. Sooner or later I’ll get around to putting the rest of them online. They’re now available here.

Women can’t jump

July 12, 2009 @ 11:04 By: gordon Category: In the news

Ski jump, that is.

The 2010 Olympics being held in Vancouver next year will have three ski jumping events for men, but none for women.

Canadian women ski jumpers launched a challenge of this under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms on the basis that this is discriminatory. Ski jumping is the only event in the Olympics that is mens-only, a situation that has existed since 1924.

The International Olympic Committee says that their decision not to include a women’s offering is “based on technical issues, without regard for gender,” according to a story in the Globe and Mail.

A B.C. Supreme Court judge has ruled that women ski jumpers are being discriminated against by the IOC’s decision, but that there’s nothing that can be done because the IOC is based in Switzerland and thus beyond the reach of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. And the Vancouver Organizing Committee must abide by the IOC’s decisions, even though it’s in based in Canada. Not unsurprisingly, the IOC has issued a statement in which they say “we strongly disagree with the court’s analysis that the IOC acted in a discriminatory manner.”

I understand that the schedule of events at the Olympics is tight, but how difficult would it really be to fit a women’s ski jumping event into it?

The IOC claims there aren’t enough countries and top-flight women to make it worth it, but if they don’t offer the event at the Olympic Games what do they expect? It’s the classic chicken-and-egg scenario.

Interestingly, the judge noted that male ski jumpers don’t meet this criteria either, but that they were “grandfathered” into the Winter Games in 1924 when new qualification rules were introduced.

"Men can participate … even though they do not meet the current standard for inclusion. Women cannot," [Judge Lauri Ann Fenlon] said. "In my view, the exclusion of women’s ski jumping from the 2010 Games is discriminatory."

Shame on the Vancouver Organizing Committee for not having the integrity to stand up to the IOC, declare that the 2010 Olympic Games must be non-discriminatory and include a women’s ski jumping event. And shame on the International Olympic Committee for perpetuating this discriminatory practice.

Dave Carroll: 1, United Airlines 0

July 10, 2009 @ 14:03 By: gordon Category: In the news, Music

By now you’ve probably heard about United Airlines throwing the Sons of Maxwell’s guitars around as they were loading them on the plane. Predictably, one of the guitars was damaged, so Dave Carroll asked United to fix it. United basically said “no”, to which Dave Carroll said “well then I’m going to write three songs about my experience and post them to YouTube”. I’m betting that Ms. Irlweg thought “yeah yeah… posting rant to YouTube… heard it before”. According to his website, he was hoping to get 1 million hits in the first year.

Well, over 1.3 million hits later  in 3 days and United has blinked. They’ve apparently seen the error of their ways. Of course, this probably isn’t going to stop the release of United: Songs 2 and 3. 🙂

Thursday evening at Bluesfest

July 10, 2009 @ 12:02 By: gordon Category: Music, Out and about, Photography

012 I hadn’t been planning on going to Bluesfest, but a call from a friend changed that. I hopped on a bus and made my way to Lebreton Flats where I met up with my friend. We listened to some amazing improvisational electronic music from Holy F*ck for a while before heading off to see Ana Miura.

019 Watching and listening to Ana, it was clear that she was singing from the heart. Her music was warm and full of rich tones and she even played one song on a ukulele that she’d made herself. Very talented and a likely addition to my iPod in the near future!

Once Ana finished, I made my way to the main stages. Metric was about half-way through their set when I showed up, so I listened to the rest of their set while I munched on some mini-donuts I bought from one of the vendors.

044 The last act of the night was Ben Harper and Relentless7. He played a mix of guitar and slide guitar while singing a great selection of songs, including  a cover of Under Pressure by Queen and David Bowie. Wow!

All in all I had a great time at the Ottawa Bluesfest and I’m thinking of going to a few other nights because it sounds like there’s a bunch of great performers lined up.

I took some pictures of the various shows I watched and put them in my gallery. I haven’t gone through them with a fine toothed comb, so you’ve been warned. 🙂

WordPress 2.8.1

July 10, 2009 @ 11:48 By: gordon Category: Meta, WordPress

WordPress 2.8.1 has been released. The changes includes some bug fixes and tightening up of the security for the some of the administration pages for some plugins. There are a bunch of other changes, too, which you can read about on the WordPress Dev Blog.

Upgrading consisted of backing up the database for good luck and clicking the upgrade link in the admin panel.

Road debris causes fatality

July 08, 2009 @ 01:15 By: gordon Category: In the news

The Globe and Mail has a story about a driver  on the QEW near Toronto who was killed by a piece of scrap metal that flew up off the road and went through his windshield. The car scraped up against a guard rail before it stopped, but by the time the police showed up just a few moments later he was dead. Investigators later determined that the piece of metal hit him in the forehead, killing him instantly.

This is eerily similar to something that happened to my uncle a couple of years ago. He was driving along the QEW when a piece of rebar ripped through the bottom of his car and tore through the passenger’s seat. Fortunately, my uncle wasn’t hurt and there wasn’t anyone else in the car, though his car was quite damaged.

I regularly see junk that’s fallen off someone’s car or truck lying at the side of the highway. Usually, the junk is well out of the way, sometimes it’s being picked up by the driver it belongs to. But every now and then I come across a piece that’s a bit too close to the lanes. In those cases, I call *OPP (*677), a free call from cell phones in Ontario, and report it to the police so that someone can clean it up. If you see junk on the highway, please let the police know so that it can be cleaned up. Who knows – maybe your call will prevent someone else getting hurt or killed.