gordon.dewis.ca - Random musings from Gordon


Archive for September 2009

Who owns the email you send at work?

September 29, 2009 @ 17:00 By: gordon Category: General, In the news

CBC had a story yesterday evening about a CUPE union executive who is suing the union for violating her privacy by reading her emails. According to Katherine Thompson, when she was the secretary-treasurer of CUPE’s Air Component Lesley Swann, the then-president strong-armed an IT consultant into providing access to her emails, which Swann then allegedly monitored. (A union executive using strong-arm tactics – imagine that! But that’s for another time.) Swann says she believed that Thompson had violated the union’s bylaws, which is why she did what she did.

The case seems to hinge on whether it was reasonable for Thompson to expect that the communications she made using the union’s email system were private.


Does the ATU 279 membership not trust their executive anymore?

September 28, 2009 @ 12:30 By: gordon Category: Transit strike

antiatu279.pngAs you probably know by now, Local 279 of the Amalgamated Transit Union has voted to retain the right to strike rather than have future labour disputes resolved by binding arbitration. This is a bit surprising because back at the end of January the very same local agreed to resolve the labour dispute at the time by binding arbitration, which is why I removed the little anti-ATU logo that had appeared in the header of my blog.

I was quite surprised by this because I would have thought the union membership would have followed the advice of their president, Andre Cornellier, whose advice they followed when they went on strike in the first place.

Does this mean they don’t trust him anymore?


Uh…Dave… something’s wrong…

September 22, 2009 @ 00:17 By: gordon Category: General

image I’m watching the Late Show with David Letterman this evening, which I don’t normally watch. And the guest this evening is Barack Obama, which is a big deal for the show. (It’s probably fair to say it would be a big deal for any late night talk show.)

Dave usually has a coffee mug with his logo on it sitting on his desk  and tonight is no exception. To celebrate having the President of the United States on his show he peeled the backing off a sticker with the presidential seal on it and made a deal of sticking it on the mug.

The mug is sitting prominently on the edge of his desk…

IMG_1641 Oops.

Be glad it doesn’t really work like this

September 20, 2009 @ 08:03 By: gordon Category: Seen on the 'net

A tip o’ the hat to Gadling to blogging about this.

Chocolate, bakeries and sunshine

September 19, 2009 @ 23:25 By: gordon Category: Out and about

image Ottawa’s been having a nice stretch of sunshine lately, and with a high pressure front moving through the area, today was no exception. After doing some stuff at home, I headed out to run a couple of errands.

My first stop was the Ottawa Bagel Shop on Wellington, not too far from where I live. Home of some of the best bagels in Ottawa, it also sells all sorts of chocolates, freshly-made cookies and a whole lot of other delicacies. I picked up some Michel Cluizel Grand Lait 45% milk chocolate and a couple of small bars of Green & Black’s Organic white chocolate. I’ve been a big fan of the various chocolates that Green & Black’s make for some time now, but I only recently discovered Michel Cluizel after watching a show on Treasure HD called How The Best Is Done that featured some of the best chocolates in the world. Both makers produce amazing types of chocolate!

Anyways, after buying some cookies to go with the chocolate, I headed off to the Harvest Loaf Bakery, just a couple of doors down from the Ottawa Bagel Shop. There, I picked up a loaf of light pumpernickel bread and a croissant and then continued down Wellington.

Swinging by the Tim Horton’s on Richmond Road near Woodroffe for a quick snack (the croissant just didn’t do the trick), I decided to follow Richmond Road out to its namesake, the village of Richmond.

One of the main reasons to visit Richmond is the Richmond Bakery (their Yellow Pages ad since they don’t appear to have a website). I can recall going there with my parents as a kid. Besides bread, they also have cookies. Lots of cookies. I picked up a dozen sugar jam cookies for a geocaching roadtrip tomorrow and a jam-filled cookie.

From there I decided to check up on a geocache I have near North Gower, Out in the cedars (GCP93C). I placed this cache about four years ago and it’s been well-visited since then. It took about 25 minutes to drive to the cache from Richmond and about 25 seconds to confirm that it was still ok.

Heading east along Roger Stevens Drive, I found myself in Metcalfe, from whence I made my way to South Keys Mall to pick up the bits to make a new geocache out of. After braving the crowds at Wal-Mart, I headed home with my newly-acquired stuff.

All in all a very good day! 🙂

Third race at the Fall 400

September 13, 2009 @ 11:03 By: gordon Category: Dragonboats

Our third race at the Fall 400 was the best race of the day for the Algonquin College Singapore Slings. Like our first race, we were piped in to the staging area by a world-class bagpiper who is the boyfriend of one our team members. Needless to say, this attracted a lot of attention (and looks of envy) from the other teams!

Racing in lane #4 again, we made our way to the top of the race course and lined up with the other teams. As an incentive to the team, I issued a challenge: If they better our best time of the day, I’d buy a round of beer for the team at the restaurant later.

I think that worked because we shaved 3 seconds off our time and finished in 01:52.43, a few tenths of a second behind the ORCC Dunrobin Dames, a very competitive team.

To say we were happy with the results is a bit of an understatement. We were ecstatic!What a high note to end the season on!

After watching the races for the  Community Challenge and top six teams we met up at Morphy’s Landing to celebrate a great day of racing. I was in the process of ordering pitchers of beer for the team when one of the team captains announced that she was letting me off the hook and that I didn’t have to buy the team beer. As an unexpected bonus, however, a local who was in the restaurant and talked to some people on the team arranged for three pitchers of beer to be sent to us after she left.  A tip o’ the hat to the mysterious Lady In Purple from the team!

So, from the weather to the organization to the races themselves, the Fall 400 was a great dragonboat festival! Congratulations to the organizers for putting on a great event!

Second race at the Fall 400

September 12, 2009 @ 14:06 By: gordon Category: Dragonboats

Our second race here at the Fall 400 saw the Algonquin College Singapore Slings finish first in our race with a time of 01:55.58. We were in lane #4 and had a bit more of a headwind.

Our next race is in an hour or so.