Posts filed under ‘opinion’
I’ve finally discovered the secret to successful blogging.
You see, the secret to successful blogging – and by successful I of course mean the number of hits you receive, not the quality of your blogging – is to not blog. No, seriously, I have proof.
During the course of this blog, some where over a year of fairly regular posting, the number of daily hits I received steadily increased. Of course, this is all relative, because when I started blogging my hits were exactly 0, so even one hit could be considered an increase. But, over the months the total increased gradually until I was at a point somewhere slightly above 0; and I mean slightly.
The past few months, though, I’ve only made a handful of posts. This was due to a combination of burnout, wanting to focus on other things, and questioning the purpose of it all anyway. I pretty much stopped blogging, although I hadn’t yet decided what my intention was as to the future: did I want to pack it in entirely or would I start blogging regularly once again?
Even though I had stopped writing for the blog, I still checked in every so often, and looked at the stats. Starting a couple of weeks ago I noticed my daily hits were climbing to significantly impressive (for me) new levels. One day during this past week my daily hits made it into the 4-digit range, which was something I never expected would happen.
Part of Taoism is discovering the path of least resistance – which I interpret as a licence to be lazy. Just kidding…or am I???
No, I am. In the blogging world, the path of least resistance is to not blog.
Another idea in Taoism is that in order to succeed, you need to give up the attachments to succeeding, which I did a long time ago. So, by not blogging I have tapped into the Tao and this has caused my daily hits to increase significantly. Obvious proof of the validity of Taoism, not that it needs it.
Then again, the new found number of daily hits might have something to do with a more human element. The posts responsible for the vast majority of hits lately have something in common. That commonality, coincidentally, happens to be that each of these posts contain a picture of half-naked babes. Here is a link to the post that has garnered the most attention of late: Canadian Nationalism: How Do We Know Who is Best?
So, this new found success can be boiled down to either Taoism or Half-naked babes. Tough call…
I was Stumbling around the net when I came across this site: http://magswordfinder.com/
I didn’t find the site particularly interesting, my personal opinion, of course. The site allows you to type in a word and it will pull out any other words that can be made out of the letters involved in the word you type. What I found interesting, though, was the disclaimer:
“Note that some dictionaries are quite large, so the search may take several seconds.”
Several seconds? What kind of world are we living in where we have to wait several seconds to discover all the iterations of the word “Impatient”? I’d rather spend my time watching cat videos and eating fast food, thank you very much.
Creating top-ten lists is the meat and potatoes of internet posting. Although I do enjoy reading them, I think making a top-ten list is lazy authourship. That having been said, I would like to return to Canadian Fermentation by introducing for your education, Dear Reader, my Top 10 Tips on Creating Lists of Tips.
Although it may seems like there are contradictions in my list, there are, in fact, none. It’s a perfect top-ten list. I hope you enjoy it and are able to take something educational away with you from the experience.
1. Creativity and entertainment are more important than applicability, facts or actual usability. Go crazy!
2. Interesting visuals are nice, particularly if they include a hottie (male or female depending on your target readers), or a picture of a cat doing something crazy. The pictures should, even if loosely, be related to the topic or tip.
The best visuals are a combination of hot babes and cats.
3. Originality is overrated. Focus on topics that people are familiar with. People don’t want to learn something new, rather they want their beliefs confirmed.
4. Keep entries short. A long entry just provides more material for other people to prove you wrong.
5. Try to refer to at least one “expert” in your list. Jane Spilousia, Lead Tip Master with the Tip Institute of Toronto says, “Experts give your tips acumen and authority. If in doubt, find an expert to make your tip pertinent.”
6. Don’t share personal anecdotes, and beware of using your personal experiences as proof. Trust me – I tried this on my last Top 10 list and it didn’t work.
7. Borrow from historical sources. If you become stuck for tips to share just remember that the internet is your playground. Ignore what others have told you; there is no such thing as plagarism on the internet.
8. Maintain your authority. If you receive critical responses to your list, either delete the responses or chastize and humiliate the person who criticized you (preferably using an alias). This will show other readers how masterful and in control you are.
9. Give yourself a deadline, and stick to it. Don’t worry about having a concise, accurate list with the absolute “top 10” tips. The important thing is production; get that post on the web where it’s needed! Be willing to embrace tip #1, rather than strive for total accuracy and relevancy. By utilizing tip #’s 5 + 8 your list will remain relevant.
10. Avoid being witty. Most readers are stupid anyway, and won’t get the joke. Don’t waste your time on them with your best work when any old junk will do.
Bonus: Always have a bonus tip. Why? No one really knows, it’s just something that all top 10 list makers do. You don’t want to stand out from the crowd, do you?
Back to the roots of Canadian Fermentation! I have recently started some exhaustive research into the history of Canadian Prime Ministers. This has led to some interesting discoveries! I’ve included some of the more interesting and strange – as well as some of the more infamous – examples of Canadian Prime Ministers. I hope you enjoy it.
Please feel free to leave a response and share who your favourite Prime Minister is.
Sir John A. McDonald:
- Served two terms; the first Canadian Prime Minister from 1867-1873, and a second stint from 1878 – 1891.
- One of the Fathers Of Confederation.
- Enjoyed drinking. Heavily. Often. Sometimes naked, when he would yell to his enemies, “Bring it, bitches.”
- Born in Scotland, which may explain the drinking.
- Progenitor of the trans-Canada railway.
(Sir John A. McDonald enjoyed sunsets, long walks on the beach and parties.)
Sir John Abbott:
- 3rd Prime Minister of Canada.
- Nobody fucking cares about John Abbott.
(Who is this guy?)
- Little known fact that Marx was Prime Minister in 1933. Ruled under the name Rufus T. Firefly.
- Changed the name of country from Canada to Freedonia.
- Forced Freedonia into a war with fictional country, Sylvania. Hilarity ensued.
- Wields a mean Stradivarius.
- Excerpt from cabinet meeting:
- Minister of Finance: Here is the Treasury Department’s report, sir. I hope you’ll find it clear.
Rufus T. Firefly: Clear? Huh. Why a four-year-old child could understand this report.
[to Bob Roland]
Rufus T. Firefly: Run out and find me a four-year-old child, I can’t make head or tail of it.
(Mr. Marx had the reputation that he would do anything, or anyone, for power.)
William Lyon Mckenzie King:
- Served as Prime Minister on three different occasions; 1921-1926, 1926-1930, 1935-1948, thus winning the Triple Crown of Canadian politics. His award was a free extra large double-double at Tim Hortons.
- It’s good to be king.
- Introduced old-age pensions.
- Prime Minister during WWII. Claims he single-handedly beat Hitler at a game of crokonole, thus ending the war.
(The Lyon King also wore a crown as World Crokonole Champion from 1941 – 1946)
Lester B. Pearson:
- Prime Minister from 1963-1968.
- Won Nobel Peace Prize in 1957 for role in ending the Suez Crises by introducing crokoonole to the Middle East.
- President of 7th session of the United Nation’s General Assembly.
- Brought many programs to Canada, including; universal health care, Canadian pension plan and full nudity strip clubs.
- Approved the current Canadian flag.
- Created world’s first race-free immigration system, leading to the establishment of a UFO landing dock at St. Paul, Alberta.
(Lester Pearson established the first inter-galactic immigration system.)
- 1979-1980 (9 months)
- Joe who?
(Historians remain baffled.)
- 1993 (4 months)
- First woman Prime Minister.
- Last woman Prime Minister.
(Kim Campbell once said that she only served as Prime Minister for four months because she was able to accomplish everything she set out to do in that time. It might be true.)
- Has served as Canadian leader intermittently, according to hard-core religious American conservatives.
- Dresses exclusively in red. Obvious sign of communist leanings.
- Allows gay rights. Plans to introduce inter-species marriages.
- Free medical care is just a scam to bankrupt the country as well as the citizen’s morals.
- Wants to change name of country to Kanuckistan.
(Satan often gets a bad rep, but he has quality leadership capabilities. He’s not afraid to get the job done, by any means necessary.)
I recently spent time trying to figure out a way I could help stimulate the economy. All the experts say that the best thing for me to do is spend lots of money buying things I don’t need. We need to keep the wheels of the economy greased. Or is that greasy?
I spent the weekend looking around my place figuring out what old, useless items I could replace. One thing kept coming to my attention: the cats.
My cats are older models and, quite frankly, aren’t running with the pep that they used to have. I know cats sleep a lot, but twenty-three and a half hours per day? That seems a little excessive even by cat standards. It was obviously time for some new, younger, more modern cats in this household.
“Out with the old and in with the new,” is our civilizations battle cry, after all.
(Many people ask me what it means when cats expose their bellies. They seem to think that it means that the cats are comfortable with their environment. Actually, it means that your cats are mentally handicapped and have forgotten which way is up. It is time for a new cat.)
As anyone who has delved into cat acquirement knows, the first step is to decide on the model of cat you wish to purchase. Personally, I have a soft spot for the Asian models – such as a Balinese, Japanese bobtail or something from the Hello Kitty line – as they tend to run longer on less food than North American cats. Check out this video that shows the ease of maintenance that is required of Japanese cats:
I began by checking the classified section of my local newspaper. What a disappointment. Most of the ads were for free cats, which defeated the purpose of obtaining new cats in order to stimulate the economy. I noticed, though, that there were several ads for exotic models, such as Main Coons selling for $500. Main Coons are a little more cat that I’m used to, but they have a solid body and are able to take a lot of wear and tear. I called the number and inquired how much they would give me for trade-in. They laughed.
Apparently cat breeders don’t take trades. They informed me that there is no money in the second-hand cat market.
I was shocked.
This threw a monkey-wrench into my plans. Five-hundred dollars was more than I planned on spending for my new cats.
Next, I went to the animal shelter and asked the man at the front desk to see his newest models. After giving me a questioning look he took me to a large room of shelves filled with cats.
There were a lot of second-hand cats available, and although I was not as interested in that market, I have to admit that some of the used cats were in good shape! Plenty of the used cats had been previously owned for less than a year – I assumed that meant that the original owners could no longer afford payments and the cats had been repossessed.
(When your cat starts to become unfocused, it might be time to consider a new model.)
I noticed a couple of kittens in one of the display cases and immediately fell in love. One was a long-haired black kitty with big, green eyes, while the second one was a short-haired orange, sporty looking model.
It was time to negotiate. I feigned disinterest so that my opponent wouldn’t suspect my true desire.
“They are a little small,” I said. “How fast do they run?”
“Oh, you know, they’re quick little buggers,” he responded. “You’ve gotta keep an eye on them.”
“Hmm. I don’t know. Are they good to take off-road?”
“What? What do you mean, off-road?”
“You know, like on road trips. Do they travel well?”
“Uh. I don’t know. How would I know that?”
“I just assumed you would know your stock.” I gave a sigh, and let my eyes wander over some other cats hoping that the attendant would think I was losing interest. He was good at his job, unfortunately, and stood his ground.
“We prefer to find a home that will take both of these guys. They are so attached to each other that it would be a shame to separate them. Would that work for you?”
I shrugged. “I suppose that would work.” I yawned. It was time to get to the nitty-gritty of the negotiations. “I already have two cats that I’m looking to trade-in. How much do you think I could get for them? I’d have to get enough to make the price of these two reasonable in order to make a deal here today. I’ve got my eye on a hot tabby at one of your competitors and they are willing to knock 50% off the price if I trade them my old cats. Can you match that?”
The attendant stared at me for several moments – I assumed he was contemplating my offer – before responding. “Uh, let me get this straight. You’re trying to replace your old cats with a couple of kittens? That’s just not right!”
I grinned. “Ahh, you got me. What I’m really trying to do is stimulate the economy by spending money on some new cats, but I can’t afford the prices. I was hoping to get a discount by trading in my old cats. Think you can help me out here? I’d really like to take these two off your hands.”
The attendant cleared his throat. “Well…uh…that’s a…uh…great idea, but we don’t take trade ins. When people get cats it should be for life. Some people are irresponsible and leave their cats behind when they move and force their former pets to become strays, or they abandon them at shelters for both good and not-so-good reasons. That’s where most of these cats come from. Sometimes people don’t realize the commitment it takes to care for animals, and they lose interest. Some of these cats were Christmas presents for young children, and the parents have no clue as to what it takes to be a responsible pet owner. They figure it’s a cat and cats don’t require much care, so it will be easy. They soon realize that cats do require care, and it takes money, time and commitment to give the cats a good life. You should never get someone a cat as a present, especially kids, unless you are sure that they want to have a cat live with them, and they are able to care for the cat properly.“
(New cats may look like they are easy to maintain, but actually take a lot of work. Kitten-evil is a much more intense type of evil than regular evil. Adult cats usually have a little less evil motivating their behaviour, but take just as much attention.)
“Sounds good,” I said, having blanked-out half way through this fella’s speech. “So you won’t give me anything for my cat’s then?”
“No, no trade-ins”
I nodded. This changed things, but I was still determined to stimulate the economy. “Well, how much do these new cats cost?”
“It’s all by donation. You decide how much you want to pay. We mostly just want to find these guys a good home. They are expensive to upkeep, though, so as much as you can give would be great.”
I decided that it was my duty to spend some money. Since I really didn’t need four cats I made a donation to the cat shelter instead, and left the kittens where they were. The attendant said that this was probably a good idea. I wrote a check and headed back home.
I walked in my door and noticed that the old, useless cats were asleep on the couch. I put a handful of treats between them, figuring that they would notice when they woke up and might wonder if Santa had visited and left them presents. Unfortunately the fat one woke up first and ate all the treats before the skinny one could get any. I guess that’s why he’s the skinny one.
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!
I don’t often post about hockey, which may seem strange for a blog on Canadian things, and, to be quite honest, I’m not sure why I don’t post more about hockey. I play the game, I’m an unabashed Leafs fan, and I’ve followed the NHL since I was a wee lad.
And, yet, it takes Sean Avery to make me want to post about hockey. I’m posting because I think Avery is a moron.
This is Avery’s latest:
“I am really happy to be back in Calgary, I love Canada. I just want to comment on how it’s become like a common thing in the NHL for guys to fall in love with my sloppy seconds. I don’t know what that’s about. Enjoy the game tonight.”
I’ve been perusing the net and reading commentary on Sean Avery’s latest outburst. Surprisingly – or maybe not so surprisingly – there are a lot of people out there who find Avery’s comments funny. Most people don’t seem to get what it was, exactly, that he did wrong. People are wondering why he was suspended.
What struck me first and foremost about his comment is his disrespect towards women. If you are not familiar with Avery, he is an NHL player with some noteriety. He has dated several actresses including Elisha Cuthbert, who is currently dating Dion Phanuef of the Calgary Flames, and who was the target of Avery’s comments.
How utterly disrespectful of Cuthbert is Avery? Calling an ex “Sloppy Seconds”? Seriously, any women out there think this is a compliment? Or, any women out there not offended by being called a “Sloppy Second”?
My god, what is wrong with Avery? What is wrong with all the people who think that this is funny? I’ve seen comments about the brilliance of his delivery, how it was genius the way he set up his intended comment. Are you kidding? It might possibly be funny in the context of sitting in a comedy club, listening to some stand-up, but in the realm of hockey in a pregame interview which Avery initiated?
No. That’s just moronic. And if you can’t see that, then it says a lot about your attitude. I wouldn’t go around telling women that you think it’s funny to call them Sloppy Seconds. Go ahead, try it.