Bad Bad Baby Names 2

Posted in Bad Baby Names on May 19th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

:: Jennifer notes that Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Coldplay Martin named their newborn girl “Apple“, and Gina Davis’s new twin boys were christened Kian and Kaiis. Her response and mine to these developments are similar: WTF???

I had a lot of respect for Paltrow and Martin up to now, as they keep their relationship out of the public eye, making efforts never to walk down red carpets together, etc. But “Apple”? Good grief. From the Herald Sun (Melbourne Austr.):

The Eye’s Western District spy suggested Apple could get hitched to Christine Applegate’s brother and become Apple Applegate, then get rid of him and take up with Bill Gates’ son and she’d be Apple Applegate Gates.

What’s with the weird baby names? Yes, I ranted about this earlier, and will continue to rant about this stoopid practice. The Herald Sun, notes that these handles aren’t the first odd celebrity baby names:

A Knight’s Tale star Shannyn Sossamon has a son called Audio Science, while Almost Famous actor Jason Lee has a boy called Pilot Inspektor.

Audio Science? Pilot Inspektor? There really, really oughta be a law. Why, you ask? Check out Horrid Celebrity Baby Names.

:: It’s confirmed that Dennis Farina will be replacing Jerry Orbach on Law & Order. Orbach will be missed. I think it will take time to warm up to Farina.

Fahrenheit 9/11

Posted in Film on May 17th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

:: Michael Moore‘s new movie, Fahrenheit 9/11, debuted at the Festival de Cannes today. Oddly enough, I cannot locate the movie’s official web site. Reviews of and commentary on the film are already in, from sources such as: BBC, Associated Press, Time, and The Hollywood Reporter, which reports a 15-20 minute standing ovation for the film after its screening and offers a review. A definite must-see film for 2004.

An expansion of this list is on my post at

Walking To Work – A Love Story

Posted in Family History, My Mother's Stories on May 16th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

Here is another family story, this time from my Mom, about her father.

When I was six years old my parents moved our family to the north end of Winnipeg. We lived approximately one city block from King George Public School which was located on the corner of Selkirk and Arlington. It would have been so easy to send five of their six children there for school if our parents hadn’t been so adamant about us getting educated in the Catholic school system. This meant we had to be up by 7 a.m. to be ready to catch the streetcar (yes, I did say streetcar) and be on time for school which for us was St. Mary’s Parochial School. Our school was located directly across from St. Mary’s Cathedral on St. Mary Avenue.
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Funny Names, Funny Words

Posted in Miscellaneous, Pop Culture on May 15th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

:: steely who? the original band names, lists some of the names that Becker and Fagen considered for a band name, before settling on Steely Dan. As if! My favorites are Thunderhurl and Hard Donut. This is most likely another brilliant parody by Walter Becker, who writes the most colourful parody and satire pieces for his band’s web site.

:: Allison (friend at work) told me about The Word Spy: “This Web site is devoted to lexpionage, the sleuthing of new words and phrases. These aren’t “stunt words” or “sniglets,” but new terms that have appeared multiple times in newspapers, magazines, books, Web sites, and other recorded sources.” The full list is here, along with the Top 100, as measured by page views. Some words and phrases, like metrosexual, jump the shark, google, NIMBY, flashmob, and blog (duh), you will or may recognize.

Among those I’d not seen before, these are some of my favorites:

  • wrap rage: n. Extreme anger caused by product packaging that is difficult to open or manipulate. Also: wrapping rage.
  • time porn: n. Television shows and other media that portray characters as having excessive amounts of spare time.
  • butt call: n. An unintended phone call placed by sitting on one’s cell phone.
  • batmobiling: pp. Putting up emotional defenses when a relationship becomes too intimate.
  • cankle: n. A thick ankle, particularly one that appears to be a continuation of the calf
  • himbo: n. A man who is good-looking, but unintelligent or superficial. (NOTE: This one reminds me of LOMBARD, from the William Gibson novel, Pattern Recognition, which means: lots of money, but a real dickhead.)
  • yestersol: n. One Mars day ago.
  • quarterlife crisis: n. Feelings of confusion, anxiety, and self-doubt experienced by some people in their twenties, especially after completing their education

:: Regarding my previous post about our provincial leader plagiarizing sources on a term paper, Keith, speaking from experiences as a teacher working overseas, offers a few thoughts on the subject of web theft.

Are You Calling Me A Liar? No, Just A Bozo (and a Plagiarist)

Posted in Miscellaneous on May 12th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

:: There are times when I am embarrassed to be living in a province with leadership characterized by its collective arrogance and close-mindedness. Actually, it’s 99% of the time. Recently, our premier behaved like a spoiled brat, when he appeared before a provincial public accounts committee. When asked to produce a receipt for a golf trip, he lowered himself to the level of Beavis and Butt-Head:

Klein: “Is the honourable member suggesting I am lying?”
Blakeman: “No, sir, I am just asking for the document.”
Klein: “Oh, why would you ask for the document if you are not suggesting I am lying?”
Blakeman: “Because this is the public accounts committee, sir, and we can ask for that kind of information.”
Klein: “Oh, I see. In other words, you’re saying you won’t take my word for it. I want to know if she’s calling me a liar. She doesn’t believe me.”

Blakeman tried to respond, but Klein cut her off three times, repeating: “You don’t believe me.”

The press Klein received following his whining was all negative, even from his usual conservative supporters. He was ridiculed in political cartoons and on radio shows, but the best response had to be from CBC Radio in Edmonton, which produced a 48-second segment, weaving Klein’s schoolboy outburst with Robert De Niro’s “Are you talkin’ to me”, from Taxi Driver, and Joe Pesci’s “I’m funny how, I mean funny, like I’m a clown” sequence from Goodfellas. Listen and enjoy, and consider that this man runs the richest province in Canada, where the next budget surplus could top $8 billion CDN, erasing the last amount of debt the province owes, but a province in which the roads and infrastructure are deteriorating rapidly, and education and health care continue to deal with cutbacks and layoffs. And my apologies to Beavis and Butt-Head, no offence intended.

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Oh, and it just gets worse. This morning, in the 13 May 2004 edition of the Edmonton Journal, comes word of the following: A paper Klein wrote for a communications study course at Athabasca University had been tabled in the provincial legislature recently to counter charges that he is insensitive to Chileans who suffered under Pinochet (another long story), making the paper available to the public. Upon close examination, it was confirmed that at least half of the 13-page paper was skimmed directly from an assortment of websites without proper citation or quotations.

On the last page of the report, the premier lists his sources, including 10 websites. Word for word passages from the essay are found on those sites – and a count found 58.7 per cent of the lines in the essay are the same as those on the websites listed.

It’s time for Ralph Klein to go.


Posted in Music, What? on May 9th 2004 by Randy Reichardt

:: Taking a few days off from posting didn’t help all that much. I’m still knee deep in e-mail (aka electronic messages), although I did get the number from 65 to somewhere under 40.

Today I perform in a Mother’s Day concert with Amelia (click the pic on the right). The concert is at 2:00 pm, at St Luke’s Anglican Church, 8424 95th Avenue. $10 at the door if you’re looking for something to do with Mom, or otherwise. A few days later, Amelia is off to Vienna for a few weeks, to visit her brother and his family, and take a break from Edmonton life.

It was quite nice yesterday, warm enough to sit outside for coffee with a good friend I hadn’t seen for at least 18 months. There is a dusting of snow on the ground this morning, and the temperature is -2C. Enough with the sub-zero weather, already – it’s MAY, dammit!

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