Archive for October, 2008

Canadian Conflict: Amoeba Battle

For the second installment of International Nature Battles, Canadian Fermentation has prepared an amazing contest between a couple of the most fearsome creatures that nature has evolved:  Amoebas.

Today, for your viewing pleasure, we have Canadian Amoeba Vs. Australian Amoeba.

Are you shivering with excitement yet? This match should prove to be a contest of strength, cunning and pseudopods.

Let’s get right to the battle:

Canadian Amoeba is in the red trunks on the left side of your screen, while Australian Amoeba is in the green trunks on the right side of your screen.  That is me in the bottom corner.  I’m the referee and will ensure that this contest is fair.

The action starts fast and furious!  Both warriors form pseudopods and try for a quick knock-out blow, hoping to make this a short contest.

Unfortunately, each champion, being an amoeba, is able to absorb the blow without any damage.  The battle remains even.

Oh no!!  What’s this?  Canadian Amoeba has pulled out a hockey stick.  I check the rule book to see if this is legal.  Unfortunately for Australian Amoeba we forgot to write a rule book before the battle.  Looks like the hockey stick is legal.  Tough break for Australian Amoeba.

Ah Ha!  Australian Amoeba is no slouch when it comes to shenanigans.  It appears that Australian Amoeba has brought a boomerang to the fight.  This should be good.

Wait a minute.  Apparently Swedish Amoeba has intervened in the battle and is calling for peace.  What’s going to happen next?

Uh oh.  Looks like Australian Amoeba and Canadian Amoeba have called a truce.  That’s bad news for Swedish Amoeba.

Yep.  Poor Swedish Amoeba.

Canadian Amoeba and Australian Amoeba decide to extend the truce and celebrate their victory.

Wow!  That totally did not turn out the way I thought it would.  Well done, Warrior Amoebas.  Well done.


October 29, 2008 at 12:07 am 9 comments

Canadian Shanties: Barrett’s Privateers

Why are there only sea shanties?  Why not, say, land shanties?  Is saying “sea shanty” redundant?  These are important questions.

Best Shanty Ever:

Oh, the year was 1778,
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
A letter of mark came from the King
To the scummiest vessel I’d ever seen.

God damn them all!
I was told we’d cruise the seas for American gold.
We’d fire no guns, shed no tears.
I’m a broken man on a Halifax Peer,
The last of Barrett’s Privateers.

Well, Elcid Barrett cried the town
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
For twenty brave men all fisherman who
Would make for him the “Antelope’s” crew


The “Antelopes” sloop was a sickening sight
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
She had a list to the port and her sails in rags
And the cook in the scuppers with the staggers and jags


On the king’s birthday we put to sea
(“How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
It was ninety one days to Montigo Bay
Pumping like madmen all the way


On the ninety sixth day we sailed again
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
When a bloody great Yankee hove in sight
With our cracked four-pounders we made to fight.


the Yankee lay low down with gold
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
She was broad and fat and loose in stays
But to catch her took the Antelope two whole days.


Then at length we stood two cables away
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
Our cracked four-pounders made an awful din
But with one fat ball the Yank stove us in


the Antelope shook and pitched on her side
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
Well Barrett was smashed like a bowl of eggs
And the Maintruck carried off both me legs.


So here I sit in my twenty-third year
( “How I wish I was in Sherbrook now!”)
It’s been six years since I sailed away
And I just made Halifax yesterday


October 28, 2008 at 1:24 am 5 comments

Canadian Support: Vote Ahmnodt Heare.

Canadian Fermentation would like to officially announce our endorsement of Ahmnodt Heare for President of the United States of America.

Ahmnodt is a true American patriot and has run a fiscally sound campaign (total expense: $0.30).  It is a crime that he has not received more media attention.  I can only blame it on some kind of conspiracy.  Or possibly aliens.

October 24, 2008 at 2:17 am 2 comments

Canadian Battle: Moose Vs. Kangaroo

In our first competition between the animals of the ruggedly beautiful Canadian wilderness and the barren wastelands of Australia, Canadian Fermentation has determined the outcome of a Moose vs Kangaroo battle.  Let’s take a look at our contestants:




This battle – as I’m sure most battles between Australian and Canadian animals will turn out – was not much of a contest.

Size: Weighing in at over 200 lbs, and standing over 6 1/2 ft, the kangaroo may seem like an intimidating opponent;  that is until one stands beside a moose which can grow to 7 ft at the shoulder, and weigh almost 1, 400 lbs.  If that is not intimidating enough for you consider that the span across a moose antler is 6 ft.

Size advantage favours the moose.

Reach: Kangaroos are known for their boxing prowess which, you might think, gives them an advantage against a non-boxing prowessed type animal.   Unfortunately their boxing ability is vastly exaggerated.   Seriously, look at those tiny little Australian hands that the kangaroo has.  Do you really think that they could hurt the mighty hide of the Canadian moose?  Ha.  Drink another Fosters, my Australian friends.

Consider the size of the moose’s antlers and the limited reach of the kangaroo, the advantage has to go to the moose.

Speed: The kangaroos top speed is about 70 km/h – quite impressive for an Australian!  With all its bulk the moose is not the most maneuverable of animals, but can reach speeds of over 56 km/h.

We have no choice to admit that the kangaroo takes this category, which is a good think, I suppose.  With all that speed the kangaroo can easily run away after the moose kicks his ass.

Overall winner: The moose, of course.  Seriously, who would you rather fight?  A kangaroo or a moose?

Next battle: The next battle will be equally as interesting, and fair, as this one, I’m sure.  Keep an eye out for the awsomeness that is Koala bear vs Grizzly bear.

October 23, 2008 at 11:19 pm 11 comments

Canadian Curiosity: Who Won America’s Last Debate?

So, I’m logging into my wordpress account to see what’s a-happening over her at Canadian Fermentation (nothing was happening, in case you were wondering), on on the way here I noticed that the front page had a linke to a blog entry that said something like, “Who Won the Debate?  You Decide.”

I clicked on it, because I like a good laugh.  Usually it’s a bunch of partisan idiots spewing their vitriol about the opposition’s candidate.  There were something like twenty-thousand responses – very imperssive – so I decided that I wasn’t going to read them all.  I started reading from the top, and the first poster was somone slagging on Obama.

The second post, another anti-Obama diatribe.

The third post, against Obama.

Fourth…yep, again someone very angry at Obama.

What was happening?  I read through, maybe, the first twenty posts, and all of them were anti-Obama.  That’s when I scrolled back to the top of the page and discovered that it was the Fox News sight.

Whew.  I thought I was going crazy there for a moment.  Obama has opened up a huge lead, so I was wondering why there was all this anger towards him.  Good ‘ole Fox!  Fox never lets us down.

October 16, 2008 at 6:27 pm Leave a comment

Canadian Elections: Who Won?

Ah, it is a simple quesiton, no?  Who won the 2008 Canadian Federal election?  It just happened yesterday, so the results should be obvious, shouldn’t they?

In my opinion, yes and no.  Let’s take a look.

(Steven Harper celebrated the Conservative’s victory by reorganizing his filing cabinet.)

The Conservatives: It’s easy to automatically say that the Conservative Party won this election because they had the most MP’s elected to Parliament, and therefor will keep their mandate to form the Canadian goverment.  So, yes, they “won”.  But, I don’t think that all members and supporters of the Conservative Party will agree when looking at the bigger picture.  Whether or not Prime Minister Steven Harper said so – and to be clear he claimed that his goal was a minority government and he didn’t believe that he was able to capture a majority – but if you believe that then let me tell you that I used to be a Rhodes Scholar and invented the resevoir tip for condoms.  In other words, for those slower than I am, it’s a crock of shit.

The Conservatives weren’t performing badly, their base was holding tight, and they were making ground in Quebec and Ontario, and their main rivals, the Liberals, were (and still are) in leadership turmoil and are as factuous and disjointed as they have been during my lifetime.  Don’t forget about the looming economic crisis, and the fact that sitting governments usually don’t do well with the electorate if they are in power during major economic upheavals, whether or not they deserve the ire of the people.  It was the perfect time for Harper to try for a majority government, and waiting any later would jeopardize any chance for it to happen.

Did the Conservatives win?  They were the winning party, and they increased the strength of their minority government, but they lost.  They are heading into a major economic challenge with a minority government.  They will have a grace period as the Liberals sort out their mess and work towards finding a new leader, but when the new Lib leader is in place and secure, it’ll only be a matter of time before they take down the government and call another election.  I give Harper two more years at most.

Success: Won a second minority government, increased number of members of parliament.

Challenges: Missed great chance to secure a majority government.  Still no success in major cities outside of western base of support.  Making it appear that Harper has a soul.

(Stephan Dion is, reportedly, still in the closet crying about the unfair universe.)

The Liberals: The week before the election Liberal leader, Stphane Dion, was slowly starting to  fit the role of ‘Leader’.  Oh, he wasn’t there yet, but he was showing glimpses of potential, and, therefor, was becomming a less futile choice for disgruntled voters.  For a while there was even talk of a Liberal minority.


Anyway, the Liberals, who are Canada’s traditional default ruling party, had their worst results since the 1980’s when Mulroney ruled this land.  The party is fractious with – seemingly – few in the party feeling really comfortable with Dion as leader.

To put it bluntly and to the point, the Liberals are in trouble…shambles…swimming with the poop.

This election the Liberals were the biggest loser.  They lost support, they lost ridings, and their power is drained.  They are the oldest existing party in Canada, and, perhaps, are starting to show signs of the wear and tear of years.

Success: Nobody was killed.

Challenges: Finding a new leader to reinvigorate the Canadian voters.  The government is the Liberals to lose.  Rediscovering their purpose.  Losing their attitude.

(Jack Layton celebrated a solid NDP showing by twirling his moustache.)

The New Democratic Party: The NDP won more seats and had a greater share of the popular vote for the third straight election after having fallen to a measley thirteen seats in 2000.  Jack Layton claimed that he was running not to be a social conscious alternate political choice for Canadians, as per usual, but to be the Prime Minister of Canada.

Of course no one really believed him.

Ultimately the goal was to hope for a Liberal collapse which would result in  great gains for the NDP, leading to official oppositions status, which would have been a coup for this party.  Although the party did well in this election, they didn’t do as well as they had hoped.

Are the NDP winners or losers in this election?  This is a tough call.  Layton didn’t accomplish his stated goals, but under his leadership the party has slowly been gaining traction within the Canadian political consciousness as a valid federal option.

I call this one a draw for the Ndippers.

Success: Increased number of seats in parliament.  Increased percentage of the popular vote.  Won a seat in Quebec. Layton still has the coolest moustache in Canadian politics.

Challenges: Continuing to grow the base of support.  Smoking less pot.

(Elizabeth May celebrated by going on an orgiastic carbon-letting frenzy, which included; driving an SUV, burning coal, and punching a hippy in the face.)

Green Party: The Green Party really has nothing to lose.  This is, if I remember correctly, the first federal election where the Green Party ran a candidate in all ridings, except for the one contested by Liberal leader Stephan Dion, as per agreement between he and Green leader Elizabeth May.  That is, in itself, a victory for this young party.

Their realisitic hopes for this election was to grow their popular vote, and challenge – with thoughts of winning – a riding or two.  The didn’t win a riding, but they did increase their vote by almost 2.5%, and a good number of candidates finished third, with at least one candidate – May – finishing second.

I have to consider this a victory for the Greens.  They are slowly increasing their acceptance as a viable party.  It’s a tough haul in Canadian politics, but I think the Greens have now made it to the next level as a Federal Party.  It’s now time for the party to step back and consider what their future is, and where they want to take the party.

It’s a win for the Greens.

Success: Ran a candidate in all but one riding.  Improved performance over last election.  Competitive in a handful of ridings.

Challenges: Increasing base of support.  Determining if having another competitive party on the left is viable in Canadian politics.

(Giles Duceppe celebrated a solid showing by sacrificing an anglophone to the gods of French.)

Bloc Quebecois: Canada’s oxymoronic federal sepratist party didn’t collapse like many were predicting up for most of the run up to the election.  The Bloc came away with a similar result to the 2006 election where they won 51 seats in Quebec.  This election they carried 50 seats.

On the other hand they did drop half a percentage point in the popular vote.  This may not seem like a significant drop, but keep in mind that they only run candidates in one province, Quebec, and the percentage quoated is based on federal results, so the drop is much more significant than the number indicates.

Moving into the future, with the separatist movement apparently stalled and experiencing fatigue, many will continue to question the relevancy of the BQ.  They, obviously, have no hope of forming the federal government, and have only slim hope of forming the official opposition.  Then again, the BQ’s success in Quebec was the foil to the Conservative government obtaining a majority; many will consider that a success.

Did the BQ come away winners of this election?  I think so.  The exceeded expectations, and affected the face of federal politics.  On the other hand, though, how relevant is this party in the modern political era?  Other than their seperatist platform their main role is as a leftist party, of which we, arguably, already have three.  Nonetheless, this election was a win for the BQ, and they did as well as could be expected.

Success: Maintained representation in parliament.  Showed that there is still significant support for the BQ.

Challenges: Proving the party is still relevant.  Obvious drop in support.

October 15, 2008 at 11:22 pm 3 comments

Canadian Elections: Man, This Is Exciting!

Sorry for the title.  I know that Canadian politics isn’t supposed to be exciting, but I can’t help myself.  I get totally stoked over elections.  Oh, we all know the likely end result of tonights elections – a Conservative minority – but I enjoy the evening nontheless.

Even my riding won’t be very exciting.  I live in the GTA, which means solid Liberal backing; Scarborough in particular.  All Scarborough riding are expected to stay Liberal after tonight.

Why do I find elections so exciting?  Honestly, I’m not sure, but I’ve always been this way.  As a child I would gather all my and my sisters stuffed toys and hold elections.  Each party would have their leader toy, and then all the other toys would vote.  The NDP toys did very well in contradiction to the results that were seen in the real world.  OK, so the toy elections weren’t exactly unbiased, but at least they were democratic.

So, I will be watching the election coverage tonight.  Perhaps I’ll do some ‘live’ blogging…but then again I might not.  For me the excitement of elections do feel something akin to major sporting events.  I consider them more fun, than serious business, although I also understand the seriousness of the process and respect that fact.

Don’t worry, after the elections are over, I’m going to get back to slagging on Australians for awhile.  You know, something more serious in nature.

October 14, 2008 at 10:45 pm 2 comments

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