Saturday, September 24, 2011

Crazy Stupid Love

A pleasant surprise of a movie. As many reviewers note, where the script might have seemed thin or implausible on the page, the actors keep things going-one great scene after another.

My beef: 13-year-old speaking at his middle school graduation, starts to say true love is a rip-off, so his dad (Steve Carell) has to take over to make things right. Yes, this creates a resolution for various threads of the movie, but: once again boomers have to take over an event that doesn't belong to them.

Steve Martin has done this with the Father of the Bride franchise: the children of boomers are planning a big day (wedding or birth of a child). Oh yeah? The boomer parents can have an even bigger day! Hmmm ... even going back to Ronnie Howard's movie Parenthood ...

I've been tempted to go for a rant that the boomers are always wrong about everything. That can hardly be true, although: climate and the environment in general ("We've got to save Bambi! You've got to help us, or you're a bad person!); diet (chocolate good, chocolate bad, salt, sugar--don't worry, it's all in the peer-reviewed scientific literature); drugs in psychiatry and elsewhere (it's a proven fact that many drugs will make you feel better for a short time). They've screwed up the economy--this time they have no one to blame but themselves. But on some things the boomers must be more or less correct, right?

They've always congratulated themselves for being morally and intellectually superior to their parents, and they've always wanted to write books about their experiences. There's a beautiful but nasty line about Theodore Roosevelt that comes from his daughter (only child from his first, short-lived marriage--his wife died at least roughly in childbirth): TR always wanted to be the bridegroom at every wedding, and the corpse at every funeral. That is kind of what I want to say about the boomers.

Terry Fox Run

I've done this run in Newmarket every year since 2006. It's really a 5K, but there's never been anything to stop you from repeating for 10K, and this year the website even mentioned that. It's not officially timed, but they do have the km markings. I did 10K in about 46 minutes--which would be a PB if it were timed.

I met Jeannine O'Reilly who was written up in the local paper when she qualified for Boston. For a while she trained with the marathon group out of the local Running Room store, but she has probably trained more on her own. She said that in her second Boston, she was injured, did not enjoy the run or have a good time (in either sense). So she quit running for a while, but now she's looking forward to getting back to it.

A musician played guitar and sang his song in honour of Terry Fox. I didn't catch his name, so I e-mailed one of the organizers (Laurie Osborne) to find out.

Her reply is pretty great: The relevant part:

Glenn Marais was the singer and he actually had a gig at Sgt Peppers in Aurora last night, I couldn’t make it but if you have a chance you should check him out. He also opened for Jim Cuddy at a recent concert in Richmond Hill. He’s my friend on facebook, if you have facebook do a search on him. Let him know you saw him at our run. He actually wrote a hit song for Snow “Everybody wants to be like you”. He does tons of work for the schools and also aids in Africa and children.

Here is a link all about Glenn.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Downsview United

Downsview United is probably the last real remains from the old Village of Downsview. Very close to my office. In a way this area has had too much prosperity to preserve anything. The Air Force arrived in WWII, and what was already a growing airfield became huge. De Havilland started building planes in about the 1920s; their plant has been bought out by Bombardier, but some kind of Dash-8 or whatever is still built there, and you can see them going for test flights. (Presumably this has to be cleared with the tower at Pearson, which is not far away).

The military is almost completely gone, and the feds are slowly building a park with different kinds of amenities. Ben and I went to an aviation museum, which has a full-size model of an Avro Arrow, among many other things. The city has built a "parkette," which commemorates the manufacture of planes over the years.

Anyway, the village as it was ca. 1939 is long gone, except for the church. Unfortunately, poor photography and camera again, but what I was thinking was: the sign in front says "Established 1830," and the white "headstone" or whatever over the front door says something like Wesleyan Methodist Church, 1870. So the building is 1870, but there was another building on the site going back to 1830.

The English info sign is now complemented by something that looks like Korean underneath, and one in Spanish on the sandwich board closer to the sidewalk. My guess is the United Church crowd is elderly, and dying off--I saw a couple of very elderly people while I was looking around--and they are making arrangements for other groups to use the building.

I don't really give a sense of the depth: it goes back quite far.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

U.S. Election

Hard to believe they're at it again.

I think Rick Perry will run--to some extent--as a Tea Partier in order to get the Republican nomination. He has always been somewhat flexible on actual policy positions--sometimes sounding surprisingly like a liberal (see also here)--and he will become more of a John McCain maverick--angry and tough, enjoying war, rather than having principled positions--as the general election approaches.

I still think Obama will win.