Posts filed under ‘international’

The Truth About Curling

The first thing that non-Canadians ask me when they find out that I am from Canada is: “Tell me about the sport of curling because in my country we do not play, but it is a very fascinating sport to us and we must learn all we can about your culture.” This is what they ask unless that person is from one of the following countries that has an official curling association (list from Wikipedia):

Since I played curling for a few months back when I was in high-school, and I’ve watched a couple of games on T.V.,  I figure myself to be something of an expert.  Therefor I will explain all you need to know about this sport.  Once again the amoebas have agreed to assist in the explanation:

Teams are made up of 4 people, making a total of 8 players participating in each game.  Competitors like to get together before a match to have a celebratory drink to the game that is about to take place.

curling1The Canadian Amoeba Curling Club has won the World Amoeba Curling Championship the past three years.

The game begins.  The blue team shoots first this round.  Next round the brown team will shoot first.  Play continues for a total of ten rounds.  With the first shot, Team Blue will try to set up a guard.  A guard is a rock that sits before the house (the coloured circles) but after the Hog Line (black line you see in the image).

curlingfirstend24

The first shot was perfect!  Everyone, including the opposition, celebrates the shot with another drink.

Team Brown has the next shot.  They decide to try and get a rock into the house.  Unfortunately the shooter put too much pepper on the shot, and the stone goes all the way down the sheet and out of play.  The players decide to have a commiseratory beer.

curlingtemplate3Curlers tell non-drinkers to “go play hockey”.  This is considered a major insult in the world of curling.

Play continues with players on opposite teams alternating their shots.  After all the shots are taken (sixteen in total for each end), points are awarded.  Points are scored by having one or more of your team’s rocks closer to the center of the house (circles) than your opponents.  If your team has two rocks closer to the center than any of the other team’s rocks, then your team will score two points.  If neither team has a single rock in the house at the end, neither team receives a point.

curling5In this case the brown team scores two points since they have two rocks closest to the center of the house.  Only one team – or neither team – can score points each end.  Everyone celebrates Brown Team’s points.

Play continues like this over ten ends.  At the end points are tallied and the team with the most points wins.  After the game everyone gets together and has “one for the road”.

curlingfirstend2

Games sometimes end before ten ends are played, due to excessive alcohol poisoning.

And that is pretty much curling in a nutshell.  If you are interested in some actual curling information, I recommend checking out Curling Basics.  It’s a really cool site, with lots of good, and…er…relevant information.

Happy curling!

June 3, 2009 at 3:52 pm 9 comments

International Amoeba Battle: Canada Vs. Brazil

Welcome back, sports fans, to International Amoeba Battles.  Today we have an exciting match between the indomitable Canadian Amoeba and the svelte and sexy Brazilian Amoeba.  Today’s match is being staged at the newest Amoeba Battle Arena in the world, located in chilly Yellowknife, capital city of Canada’s Northwest Territories (NWT).

The temperature in Yellowknife today is -274 degrees Kelvin.  Residents of Yellowknife consider this “moderate”.

amoebaarena

The new Battle Arena is a spectacular architectural achievement.  The choice of building an open air arena, instead of a dome, has many wondering about the sanity of the architect.  Although the weather can be quite pleasant during the week of summer Yellowknife experiences, the rest of the year is considered uninhabitable by most reasonable people.

canbraintro2

On the left is Canadian Amoeba, who had a good showing in a battle against Australian Amoeba, that ended with Canadian and Australian Amoeba teaming up to smite Swedish Amoeba.  What a twist!

On the right is Brazilian Amoeba, in Brazil’s first International Amoeba Battle appearance.  Brazilian Amoeba appears to be wearing a pair of bikini bottoms, borrowed from the Brazilian beach volley ball team.  Very sexy!  Unfortunately bikini bottoms are against Amoeba Battle rules, so Brazilian Amoeba will have to take them off.

For today’s battle, I brought my cat, as he enjoys violence and combat.

Unfortunately, having eaten and imbibed a merry amount over the holidays, all of my luscious muscles have gone to pot.  My cat also had a festive holiday season, and has become even more out of shape than usual.  Have no fear, Amoeba Battle Fans, as my cat and I are  performing intense workouts to get back into shape.

bracan2Canadian Amoeba and Brazilian Amoeba start the fight by circling one another.  This is the first time these opponents have met, so it looks like they are going to take a moment to size one another up.

I’m sure by now you have noticed the improved visuals for this International Amoeba BattleCanadian Fermentation has upgraded its technological capabilities in order to bring you a visceral experience, Dear Viewer.  No expense has been spared!  We hope you enjoy it.

canbra3Canadian Amoeba and Brazilian Amoeba continue to circle one another.  Brazilian Amoeba reaches out and takes a shot at Canadian Amoeba, but the northerner manages to maneuver away from the punch.  Canadian Amoeba appears reluctant to engage the enemy in combat.  This is becoming an embarrassment for the home fans, who are starting to become restless.  There have been a few scattered boos throughout the arena.

canbra41

Wait a minute! It looks like something is happening.  Brazilian Amoeba is slowing down, and looking rather pale.  What is with all that shivering?

canbra5Brazilian Amoeba has stopped moving and is standing still.  Canadian Amoeba moves in for the kill, raising a couple of pseudopods in preparation of the final blow…

canbra6Smash!! Wow!! It looks like, due to the extreme cold of Yellowknife, Brazilian Amoeba became an amoebapop thus allowing  Canadian Amoeba to shatter Brazilian Amoeba into tiny shards.  What amazing strategy on the part of Canadian Amoeba!

Now the reason for the open roof stadium makes sense.  The architect is a genius!  Give them a raise.

Well, that was another amazing International Amoeba Battle, wasn’t it?  Very invigorating.  I don’t know about you, Dear Viewer, but I can’t wait until the next International Amoeba Battle.  Stay tuned.

January 19, 2009 at 9:58 pm 10 comments

Why Can’t I Be You

Ahhh.  If only I were other people.

Other people seem to be able to divest the inner turmoil that disrupts my thoughts to the outer world in a more succinct manner than I ever could.  Damn them and their fine communication skills.

For example, if I were David Suzuki, I would have written this article to explain how I feel about our current world view and the economy.  I recommend clicking the link and reading the article.  If you are lazy like me, though, here’s a good summary paragraph:

“Even stranger, economists believe this behemoth can grow forever. Indeed, the measure of how well a government or corporation is doing is its record of economic growth. But our home—the biosphere, or zone of air, water, and land where all life exists—is finite and fixed. It can’t grow. And nothing within such a world can grow indefinitely. In focusing on constant growth, we fail to ask the important questions. What is an economy for? Am I happier with all this stuff? How much is enough?”

If I were David Suzuki I would also kick the ass of an Australian.  Just because.  I know you know what I’m talking about.

The article is written in support of the new book, Managing Without Growth – Slower By Design, not Disaster, by economist Peter Victor. The Toronto Star also had an interesting editorial article about Victor and his new book.

I would have written this book if I were an economist named Peter Victor, and if I were Carol Goar I would have written an article about it for the Toronto Star.

But, I’m not.  I’m just a guy with a blog and nothing better to do than wonder what it would be like to be David Suzuki; David Suzuki kicking an Australian’s ass, and writing articles about the environment and the economy.  Ahhh…what a life!

December 9, 2008 at 2:43 pm 2 comments

International Amoeba Battles: U.S.A Vs. China

Welcome back to International Amoeba Battles, formerly known as International Nature Battles.  The last match showed that Canadian and Australian Amoebas are able to put aside their differences and join forces to destroy and humiliate the innocent.  It was a good fight.

Today’s fight will have to be spectacular to match the excitement of the last battle.  Unfortunately it looks like a potential snoozer, as we have the experienced and deadly American Amoeba taking on Chinese Amoeba.  This is Chinese Amoeba’s first International Amoeba Battle appearance: a tough draw for a newcomer.

Chinese Amoeba has been training hard, though, and is expected to have a few surprises stored away in vacuoles.

Let’s get to the action!

ab1

On the left in the blue trunks, is American Amoeba.  On the right is a new comer to International Amoeba Battles, Chinese Amoeba.  Chinese Amoeba is wearing red trunks.  That is me in the bottom corner.  Once again I will be the referee.  For this battle I brought my hoes.  I thought they might enjoy the contest.

ab2It is a quick start to the battle, with American Amoeba attempting a classic surround and isolate strategy.  A good move against an inexperienced opponent!  This should be a quick match.

ab3Whoops.  Looks like American Amoeba over-extended and was not able to close the trap.  Chinese Amoeba manages to escape.

ab4Oh my!  This could be bad.  American Amoeba appears worn out by his failed surround and isolate maneuver.  Let’s see how Chinese Amoeba takes advantage of this situation.

ab5Interesting!  It looks like Chinese Amoeba is respecting the power of American Amoeba.  Chinese Amoeba is offering to loan American Amoeba  money so that American Amoeba can buy nutritious supplements to regain energy and continue the battle.  This is a classy move by Chinese Amoeba!

ab61

Now Chinese Amoeba is offering to sell American Amoeba some nutritious supplements, in exchange for the money previously loaned.  What a sportsamoeba!  Apparently the box also contains toys and other sundries to keep American Amoeba amused while recovering.  Chinese Amoeba claims that none of it is unnecessary crap. Chinese Amoeba also promises to sell it to American Amoeba for a better price than American Amoeba would be able to find from American made nutritional supplements.  American Amoeba agrees to the deal.

ab7Chinese Amoeba respectfully retreats to the corner while American Amoeba ingests the supplements and waits for them to take affect.

ab8Hmmmm…something doesn’t seem quite right.  It appears that the supplements are starting to expand out of control inside American Amoeba.

ab9Oh, crap!  It looks like the nutritious supplements are still expanding.  They are expanding so much that American Amoeba is starting to break up.  Is Chinese Amoeba flipping American Amoeba the bird?  That’s not very nice.

ab10What an upset!  Unbelievable.  Chinese Amoeba has defeated American Amoeba from the inside.  Chinese Amoeba celebrates victory by raising a couple of pseudopods into the air, before proceeding to injest the remnants of American Amoeba.  Gross.

November 21, 2008 at 7:23 pm 8 comments

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 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:

MIGHTY MOOSE

V.S.

KRAZY KANGAROO

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

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