Took a thirty-six hour trip to the Center of the Universe last week.
Which meant I had to spend ten of those hours in the bloody cigar tube going back and forth.
When I got there late Wednesday the cab driver wasn't paying attention when he swooped down off the Gardiner Expressway and plunged us into a sea of stone-faced Leafs' fans exiting the ACC after their team's opening night loss to the Canadiens.
As a result, it dook him another half hour to travel the 15 blocks up the street to get us close to where the old Gardens used to be so that he could drop me off at what I consider to be just about the worst hotel in the Western hemisphere.
Well, for starters, I'm pretty sure they haven't steam-cleaned the carpets since Ms. Mitchell sang about some lug sitting in that particular hotel's bar (in my mind at least) who had 'a little money riding on the Maple Leafs'.
I spent all day Thursday running a meeting a stone's and/or a Joe Cannonish throw from the Skydome with a bunch of fellow science geeks whose job it is to give strategic advice to a non-profit group that, like so many others, is doing its very best to pick up the slack for all that the extremist currently running our fair country has wrought.
And normally this group is very conservative, not in the ideological sense but rather in the truly Canadian 'let's-not-rock-the-boat-so-that-we-can-do-our-best-to-spread-things-around-as-much-as-possible-to-help-the-most-folks-we-can' sense.
But not this time.
Because on this particular day just about everyone around the table began to really pound it while voices rose to a fever pitch with the well-founded concern that it is very possible that we could lose an entire generation of young, up-and-coming fundamental/basic scientists given the Harper government's never ending ratcheting up of a policy that is clearly designed to kill 'curiosity-driven' research in favour of a 'pick-the-winners' approach in certain applied fields that can be commercialized.
Put another way, it's a 'Crony-Capitalism Hijacks Science' approach to doing things which probably comes as no surprise to anyone who is actually paying attention.
Don't get me wrong.
I'm all for trying to move good, important and useful discoveries towards something that can be used by everyone for the collective, or even the commercial, good (and, no, I don't think those two things are necessarily mutually exclusive).
But when you go all in down that road at the expense of the actual discovery-based research, which is what that curiosity-driven stuff is all about at it's core...
Then you snuff out the ability of all the young punks with all the great new ideas and all the drive to do the real thing.
Which, of course, is what Mr. deAdder's cartoon at the top of the post is all about.
So, forget all about that voice modulated-reasonableness coming from the Extremist's ad-buys these last few days before the election.
Because the key for the entire country is to break the House-of-Cards Levee that has been carefully constructed by the Extremist and his henchmen on Oct 19th.
Spent the cigar tube ride home smack-dab in the middle of a gaggle of young middle school musical bandish-type kids on their way to Australia...For the first half-hour I was the dour old 'Get off my lawn!' guy in their midst...But by the time the drink cart came down the aisle their good natured-enthusiasm was infectious enough that I abandoned the thesis I was trying to read and watched the fantasmagoric 'Love and Mercy'...The movie itself was great, but watching Brian Wilson himself sing the title track as the credits began to roll was truly spine tingle-inducing.
Sure, the song above is from Mr. Zimmerman...But my favourite footloose, fancy-free/buskerized version is....Here (wait for the incredible cameo due at the end).