We Are Watching You Regina

This afternoon I was part of a covert meeting with Saskatoon Ward 10 councillor Zach Jeffries.  I invited him to meet me here on the “down-low” but of course, with public profiles like ours it was a matter of time before the Regina paparazzi caught wind.  I expect photos and rumours will begin to pop up like so many Richardson’s ground squirrels, so I have decided to strike first in an effort to control the message because some of the photos and reports may not be flattering.

Among the topics on our agenda:

The tripling of Highway 11 to introduce a lane specifically for use by Zach, myself and our friends.  Start kissing our asses now if you don’t wanna be tail-gated by a Dodge Ram or boxed in by a Crown Victoria ever again. None of  those in our lane.  Also no speed limit.

Saskatoon to become a second location for the Regina Folk Festival, and Regina will host some of  The Saskatchewan Jazz Festival.  The RFF is a beauty and Sask Jazz is friggin’ amazing. Both festivals should happen in both cities. For example, Serena Ryder plays RFF Aug. 9 at 10:50pm and under our new arrangement, she would then drive to Saskatoon, using the Zach- Heath Superlane and play at 1:30am.

Mayor swap! Once a year, for one month we will swap mayors.  They don’t get to use the lane.  Extended time away from home presents a great chance for politicians to get quality time with a mistress!  A happy mayor is a better mayor, no?

We have a lot to do so I bid you farewell.  In the meantime, we welcome your suggestions regarding Saskatoon/Regina co-operative efforts.

Back off with the camera you sonofab***h!

 

Observations Of An Outsider

My annual Regina trip is in full swing.  Here is what I have discovered thus far.

When the Riders have a bye week, people actually think of other things!  Normally, during my week-long July visit, I note Rider clothing adorning  19.2% of adults and 24.7% of youth/children/toddlers/babies.  This week  however, the numbers are drastically reduced to 11.8% and 9.3% respectively. 9.3!  That is outrageous! I assume the week off for the team partly explains the absence of Kelly Green (of course you knew that Kelly Green is the specific colour tone of the Roughriders) but as I pointed out to a new friend at O’Hanlon’s, the team also sucks.  Shame should not be ruled out as a contributing factor. The positive here is that folks have headspace for things other than football, so I hope to see a big crowd at the Red Sox game tonight.

My second observation; the traffic lights on Arcola Avenue heading South East are horribly synchronized.  Fix it.  Why am I stopping so much on what is practically a highway?  Do you have city councillors that are invested in brake repair shops?  Fix it.

Observation 3.  The Knotted Thistle  serves beer in great big test tube things they call “yards”.  It’s funny to look at and ridiculously inconvenient to drink from and of course completely compromises the taste of your beer.  Even so, part of me wants to try it.  The same part of me that wants to post a teaser on facebook about what an incredible day I am having just to see if I can suck anybody into caring.  Fortunately, 47 years has taught me to supress that urge.  I will have a pint of Rogue Farms Seven Hops please.  Jesus, that’s a lot of hops in one beer.

Finally, there are fewer “gingers” in Regina than Saskatoon.  Are they banished at adulthood?  Saskatoon is flush with these fascinating mutants and dare I say Regina, you are missing out on something special.  Speckly orangey reddishness goes brilliantly with Kelly Green! Observe…

Beautiful colours.
Beautiful colouring.

Saskatoon Loves Happy Endings

Doomsday 2Merry Christmas from Saskatoon.  That’s what we say here in Saskatoon because, as our Mayor pointed out, Saskatoon was founded on Christianity.  That’s why our stores remain closed Sundays in recognition of the Sabbath and none of our restaurants serve meat on Fridays.

In light of the Mayans mind-boggling error in judgement, I have very little time to blog today.  I have a list of things to do before the weekend and I feel I should get started now because last minute Christmas shoppers are sure to swarm the streets.

1. Return power generator, ammunition and heirloom seeds.  I hope I can get refunds for all of this stuff.  If anybody wants to buy canned pork and  beans, I am sitting on a shitload!

2. Apologize. I was so sure about this one, and I may have been a bit assertive with friends and colleagues.  Telling people they’re nuts if they can’t “see the signs” is clearly a risky game.  I will say I am sorry and commit to  thinking logically from now on, even though accepting reality is likely to bum me out from time to time.

3. Get to the gym. Turning flabs into abs is back on.

4. Back out of the house sale. I guess I need the house after all. Hindsight suggests I shoulda built the bunker inside the house. Argh.

5. Beg for my job back. If currency is still currency, I would like to have some. Is the kiosk that buys gold still in the mall?

6. Christmas shop.  As a man, I require 90 minutes to complete this task.  I’ll need to get it done tomorrow since the stores in Saskatoon (as previously mentioned) are not open Sundays.

6 things to do, I have 6 things to do.  Gotta keep on top of my life . Got 6 things to do.  Farewell for now, and the best of all things to Reginans from the city with principles.

I Am So Done With You Regina

That’s it. I’m taking my toys and going back to Saskatoon. Highlights of my week in Regina include:

-A home-cooked meal that made me miss the farm. Thanks Lois-Anna and Scott. We ate flowers from the back yard! (Updated with photo!)

-Seeing my old friends Mitch and April and pretending I didn’t want Mitch to pick up the entire tab.

-Getting ruined like a 17 year old with Stephen. He continues to be a shitty influence.

-Seeing a movie with a stoned stranger at the IMAX. If my mind was slightly blown, that guy is probably still recovering.

-Running into an old friend completely by accident at a Red Sox game and pretending I didn’t want him to buy me a beer. Thanks D’arcy.

-Sleeping in my pal’s bed (they let me use the master suite) rather than a hotel. So relaxing. T and T, you people are super swell.

-Hanging out in the prairie dog office and pretending to be useful. Hey Paul, I’m pretty annoying ain’t I. Greg just stopped coming in because of me. Tell Chris to drive slow and wear a helmet.

-Finally, a mysteriously agitated groin muscle. I have no explanation, so I will use Whitworth’s: “Regina makes my crotch hurt.”

I gotta move it. Saskatoon needs me.  See you soon Regina (in fact tomorrow for a football game). Cheers and thanks!

I Feel Nearly Normal

If a guy wearing a t-shirt with an image of Johnny Cash giving the finger tries to serve you beer he makes in his basement, take it. Thanks Niall, for the hospitality and the wasted day spent getting over it. I think I may be a bit immature. It was a magical evening though! Prairie Dog co-founders Dr. D and April were out and Whitworth got his tab paid for him TWICE!

It’s been a nice stay in Regina. Saw the Red Sox play on Tuesday night. Wow! Those boys can hit a ball. I lost track of how many frozen ropes went all the way to the wall. They look pretty good to repeat while my Saskatoon Yellow Jackets are going to need to snurgle out some wins in their last 5 games to get it. Go Jackets!

More amazing Regina people tonight. An invitation from Lois-Anna said something about deer sausage and cabbage rolls and rhubarb crisp. How awesome does that sound! And I get to meet a new person which is cool about 86% of the time.

Only one more sleep before I go home with my Dad’s 74th birthday present in tow. I hope it fits because I know how much he loves Johnny Cash.

Regina Has Awesome Stuff

It’s my annual week in Regina covering my pal’s desk. Basically I reply to e-mails and answer his phone, explaining he’s gone this week but he’d be happy to call you when he returns. It’s five days of doing whatever I can to avoid real work, all the while appearing to be very busy. I’m pretty good at it.

The best benefits of the gig include his fully stocked beer fridge (that he won’t notice the depletion of for months) and a chance to do Regina things. Regina things like the IMAX. That sucker is awesome. I saw the new Michael Caine flick last night and it was spectacular on that screen, with that sound! Michael Caine’s head was as big as my house. You must experience it. It looks like Caine’s massive head will show on your IMAX screen until July 30. The 10:15 show was a sell out last night so I recommend a call ahead for tickets before 8:30. What a sweet deal! $12. We should get one of these in Saskatoon. It should be slightly larger than yours.

Oh, and good morning to the stoned dude that sat beside me but left before the show ended. It was nice to meet you, guy who conversed without eye contact. He told me he had already seen it, but arrived late the first time and missed the start. I’ve never thought of spreading a movie over two half-viewings, but I’m pretty sure it makes sense when you’re high.

I’m guessing the rest of my stay here is going to suck, unless somebody has tips? I really don’t wanna do the touristy Regina stuff though so please only advise if you have something really good.

Prince Plays Geetar!

You know what excites me most about Prince coming to Saskatoon? A chance to hear him play guitar. He’s freakishly good!

The bummer? Last time he was supposed to be here it was scheduled for TCU Place, and this time he’ll play CUC. Crap! On the other hand, this will likely be the best concert that we’ll see in the city for a long, long time. So get tickets when they go on sale Nov 4 and prepare to have your mind blown.

Ole Crooked Nose Quits In Chi-Town

Andy Fantuz has quit the Chicago Bears! At least that’s what I heard up here in Saskatoon. When people from Regina get news, they tell people at the Bus Depot who then come up to Saskatoon (on a bus) and tell people the news. From there to me, sometimes the message gets confused.

Here is what I heard: Fantuz was mad ‘cuz they only threw him 2 balls in 4 games. Also, he couldn’t find his cereal anywhere in Chicago. So, he quit. He will play in the Banjo Bowl in Winnipeg on Sept. 11. As you see in these photographs, he is running away from The Bears at a rate of about 4.7 seconds/40 yards. The photo on the right is taken just 1.3 seconds after the photo on the left.

That’s all I know for sure right now.

Lost In Regina

Why is your movie theatre out in the middle of nowhere?

I am here in Regina for an extended stay on business and last night I packed up my Scene Rewards card and headed off to see Captain America. The Internet map location for the Galaxy Cinemas seemed a bit hard to believe. Way the f**k up there? Really? You oughta have stuff like that downtown. That’s just stupid having it in the ‘burbs.

I might be bitter because I got caught up on the way home on a poorly-lit winding trail near a lake and was lost for about half an hour. Or because I left before the credits were finished (nobody told me there was an “Avengers” trailer at the end).  Twenty-nine km of crankiness aside, ya gotta build stuff like that where it’s accessible and can draw a nice crowd around a gathering place like DOWNFRIGGINGTOWN.

Perhaps tonight I will go to see something at a more centrally-located theatre. What’s nearest (walking distance) to a couple of nice pub options?

Oh and before I forget, Captain America was worth it. Good fun!

Jazz Time in Saskatoon

C’mon up beautiful Regina people! The 25th Saskatchewan Jazz Festival starts in Saskatoon on Friday with Macy Gray headlining the big stage in the beautiful garden behind the Bessborough Hotel. Followed by 10 days of loads of Jazz, Blues, World Music, Alternative and I don’t know what else because I can’t absorb it all.

The big stage hosts one of your amazing sons, Colin James as well as Holly Cole, Tegan and Sara and Aaron Neville. Then, you get yourself over to Amigos or Scratch for the Groove Series shows into the wee hours.

This festival is a peach!

Maybe you should look at the festival’s website.

If you need a place to stay, just call me.

The Perfect Saskatoon Friday Afternoon

It’s so beautiful outside! It really has a summer weekend vibe, so I think we oughta go to Winston’s and put this week to rest. If you’ve ever wondered, “How does Saskatoon party on a Friday afternoon?”, have a peek at the video.

The band featured, The Pack A.D., will be here in a week to play The Poplar Arts Music Festival. Come party with us. I promise it will look just like this.

Happy weekend Regina, you beautiful city you!

Planet S Magazine Endorses Bruins

After much consideration, the Editorial Staff*of Saskatoon’s Planet S Magazine has decided to place its support firmly with the Boston Bruins. The Stanley Cup finals start tonight, thus the timely announcement out of Saskatoon this morning.

Two long nights of discussions with some kind of board was suggested. Unfortunately, everyone is really busy at this time of the year so participation was limited. Under my watchful eye however, the merits of the Bruins and the Canucks were debated and it was determined that the magazine would throw its support behind the boys from Beantown.

Among the determining factors were Canadian content, proximity to cities where Bobby Orr played and uniforms (broken into categories including colour combination, intimidation value and alphabetical order). Using these criteria the Bruins became the obvious choice.

Alt-Magazines have a long history of supporting sports teams in league championships and this reaffirms Planet S Magazine’s commitment to the tradition.

Bruins in 6!

*Editorial Staff was unavailable for the selection process.

Saskatoon Gets Creepy Some Nights

I’m getting a bit old for this stuff, but once in a while ya just gotta suck it up and get out to Amigos.

Last night was a good night to drag my tired old bones out at 11 o’clock. The Creepshow played and it was really, really worth staying up late on a school night. What a great band. Exceptional players and lots of fun songs about zombies and vampires. Sarah Sin even ended up playing while standing atop the bar at one point. Yup. A great show. The next time they come to Regina, a must see! In the meantime, a video.

Yum!

When in Saskatoon, dine at one of our fine street vendor stands.

At the corner of 21st and 2nd Ave., you will find delicious jumbo dogs like this one. The best part: home made corn relish. This stuff takes me back to the farm in a magical way. Friggin delicious.

Is there such a vendor in the core of Regina?

AParkCafeolypse Update From Saskatoon

If you were in Saskatoon, and were having your last supper, you might choose Park Cafe. I did and it was sinfully awesome. Yep, the legendary Park Burger was my swan song meal. I’m happy that the last food I tasted consisted of ample amounts of both grease and cheese. It set the perfect foundation for what was a fantastic last night in Saskatoon.  Look at that sucker.  Rapture indeed.

It was the start of a long night of friends and fun and a sunrise walk along the river.  Beauty.  You know what I won’t miss?  Mosquitos.  Unless of course Lucifer is reading the Dog Blog today and decides to throw biting insects into my eternal suffering repertoire.  It would still be better than Hitler’s pineapple every afternoon.

Time to get going.  A busy seven hours that starts with putting Achy Breaky Heart on repeat in my apartment, turning it up to 11 and leaving.  How do you like me now pricks on the second floor?  Kiss my ass.

Off to Winstons to watch the Bruins win the Stanley Cup.  In case you haven’t heard, the last NHL game of all time will be a one-off for the Cup.  Sorry Winnipeg, one Rapture too late!

Before I forget, please remember to max your credit cards out ASAP.

Rapture Ready

And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man. Revelation 9:5

End of Times kicks off tomorrow at 6 p.m. local time.

Are you prepared? My suggestion — get your freak on until about 5 p.m. tomorrow, leaving you one hour to apologize to God, thereby punching your ticket to salvation. In the event you fail to wake up from a 17 hour bender fuelled by booze, debauchery and fornication, expect a long line-up at the registration gates of Hell.

Let me give you a tip for when checking in to eternal damnation. Try to pick a short line. Nothing’s worse than a ten thousand year wait with a billion backlogged sinners.

I suggest you look for the Lawyer line. Yes, they are all going to Hell, however there are relatively few of them compared to Bigots, Liars, Cheaters, Greedy Assholes, Homophobes and Evangelicals. The latter six groups will have the longest lines despite there being HUGE overlap in the categories. Caution on the Lawyer line though, you’ll receive a bill of about $7000 for services rendered four weeks after admission. Satan loves irony.

Wanna save $7000? Though the line will be really long, Commercial Radio Fans will move quite quickly because the sound system in Hell plays Nickelback in perpetuity and the folks in this line will be so eager to get in that they’ll run through the gates like so many tone deaf Tweens busting into Britney Spears show.

Nazis and both Right and Left Wing Extremists will be combined in one line. The line will be average in length but it should be a lot of fun! People firmly rooted in ideology void of logic and common sense always provide belly laughs.

There’s a rumour going around that the Atheist/Agnostic line will be really short, but don’t fall for the ploy! If you give up your position in whatever line you land in (based on the initial living assessment filed by FAAC*) to seek out the Atheist/Agnostic line, you will discover it does not exist. Your wayfaring will put you at the back of your original line adding several hundreds of years to your wait.

It’s so unfortunate. We’ve had ample time to prepare for this, yet I expect the worst. Far too many of you don’t believe in fairy tales and unicorns and that lack of faith is gonna make this a damned long process.

*Fallen Angel Administrative Council

THE SHEEPDOGS ARE FINALISTS!

Yes…all caps because I am screaming with glee. Glee as in happiness, not the atrocious TV show. (Barf). The Sheepdogs are into the last round of voting to be featured on Rolling Stone Magazine’s cover and voting has commenced. The challenger, a young singer/songwriter from LA who sounds pretty good despite the icky countryish and commercial undertones of her material.

So – you must save Rock and Roll by voting and telling every person you share social media with to do the same. Click here and do the right thing!

Saskatoon Is Losing A Radio Icon

Ramblin’ Dave has been on the air here for about 20 years. He announced today that he’s headed to Ottawa to explore new things, or maybe the same things.

Dave started as a copy writer back in the early 90’s.  He shrugged off a Law Degree after articling and ended up writing ads for stereo stores and car dealerships and other radio staple clients of  (speak this next phrase loudly with an echo) The 80s, 90s and Today.  His wit and creativity earned him a full time spot on the air and he became the most popular and familiar media personality in Saskatoon.

Dave Scharf is a warm, intelligent man.  Somebody is going to be lucky to have him.

Enjoy Ottawa Dave and Heather.