We hope you like it.
The website will have most of the articles from the print edition of the current prairie dog as well as (very) limited archives. Although there are still some nooks and crannies "under construction", there's is plenty to see, read and poke right now.
And tomorrow at some point we'll flip the "on" switch for the new Dog Blog and, well, it'll be back to business. Except that from now on, our blog be part of a bigger website.
And that's it for this version of Dog Blog. One thousand, five hundred and twenty-nine posts later, we're moving onward and upward.
Hope to see you soon at the new address!
The new website was designed and built by Jason Funk and Alex Whyte. Extra special thanks to designer Paul Klassen who came in late and helped bring it all home.
I'm not surprised. Russia has the talent but something's missing, or not clicking. Also, it looks like Canada lost the right game in this tournement. They're awake now.
Have to say, I don't root for Canada the way I used to. I root for teams with players I like, and there's players I like from all over the place. Teemu Selanne --hey, I saw him score enough goals back in the day at the old Winnipeg Arena. There was a time when I'd have donated him a kidney if he'd needed one (thank god he did not). And how do you root against Ovechkin, or a guy like awesome U.S. goalie Ryan Miller--who (if I recall correctly) was insultingly left off the 2006 U.S. Olympic team for poor, terrible John Grahame.
Still, kind of nice to see that the beast, she has awoke. Look out, U.S.A. These guys are looking like Miller killers.
(Until tomorrow at a new, improved and soon-to-be-announced location Shhh!)
Well, one Conservative MP has stepped proudly out of the closet. In a letter to La Presse, Maxime Bernier applauded Harper's go-slow approach to climate change because the science, he says, is not decided.
So we've got Gary Goodyear questioning evolution and Bernier questioning climate change. Is anyone in the Conservative party even passingly familiar with science?
Tonight and tomorrow night at Conexus Arts Centre, Do-It-With-Class Young Peoples Theatre are presenting a somewhat revised musical version of L. Frank Baum's beloved tale with some video sequences being shot in Wascana Park. The Wiz debuted on Broadway in 1975, and in 1978 was made into a movie that starred such luminaries as Diana Ross (Dorothy), Michael Jackson (Scarecrow), Lena Horne (Glinda the Good Witch of the West), Nipsey Russel (TinMan) and Richard Pryor (the Wizard).
God knows how many TV and film versions of Baum's story are out there. All have a touch of weirdness attached to them. But hands down, in my mind anyway, this cartoon that I remember from my childhood is the weirdest. Anyone else out there remember this? (YouTube)
"Our strong leader???!!!???!!"
Jeez, at least Hitler hired Leni Riefenstahl when he wanted to capitalize politically on the games, not whatever boob was running the camera for Stephan Dion's recorded message...
In a perfect world, we'd have the paper off to the printer by 5 p.m. But, as we are constantly reminded of virtually every day of our existence, we don't live in a perfect world. Each issue, all sorts of things typically happen from writers being late with copy to our network going down to advertisers being late with ads to late-breaking stories to the editor attending a production-weekend party and suffering a "ginjury", that frustrate our ability to hit deadline.
So the odds of us being done the paper in time to take in this gig are long indeed. I'm serious, Switzerland has a better chance of a gold medal sweep in Men's and Women's Ice Hockey at the Olympics then we do of hitting deadline. But we'll definitely be there in spirit. Because, as Steve noted in his post, Yukon Blonde is "effing great" (Dog Blog)
Hard at work wrecking my hearing, that is.
Surprise shrieks of feedback have been happening since, well, since the system was installed as far as I can remember. But things have been getting steadily worse. Tonight, it seemed if anyone spoke even slightly louder than normal, they'd be greeted with howls from the speakers. It was clearly bothering some of the delegations and even warranted some very testy comments from Councillor Clipsham.
Apparently, the problem is "being looked into."
In other news, want to know how to really provoke council's ire? Suggest raising property taxes to avoid the necessity of a 25 cent transit fare increase.
That's what former mayoral candidate, Jim Elliott, did, and boy howdy, did they let him have it. Normally, when Elliott appears before council to promote his left-wing, radical socialist, hippy agenda, the response is a "seeing no questions, thank you, you may return to the gallery." Tonight there were questions. Questions aplenty.
Elliott's argument was essentially that while a 25 cent fare increase seems small, there was a 15 cent increase in August so the two should be considered together and a 40 cent increase over a calendar year is starting to look a little on the steep side. He suggested that any increase will have a negative impact on low income users of transit and that maybe further fare increases should wait until there are some demonstrable improvements to the transit system.
Under questioning, he suggested that a property tax increase would be preferable to a fare increase as it would spread the impact out farther.
Ignoring Elliott's point that the fare increase they should really be discussing is 40 cents over a year, Councillor Fougere argued that a 25 cent increase is very small and pointed out that the discounted transit passes for low income people are not increasing at all in price. He also wondered aloud if Elliott would rather transit users pay nothing to ride the bus. Elliot said, no, he'd just like to see their contribution to transit not increase at this time.
Councillor Hincks, who seemed very cranky at the suggestion of a tax increase, pointed out that Regina's transit rates, before this hike, is among the lowest in the country. Elliot argued that by keeping our transit fees lower than other cities we're giving ourselves a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting new residents. He didn't take the obvious dig that maybe our transit fees should be lower because our transit system isn't as good as other cities'.
Councillor Clipsham argued that the current ratio of user fees to city subsidization of transit is about right (one third paid for from fees, the rest from municipal coffers). He also asked the administration about the effect on ridership from last year's 15 cent price increase. According to the Director of Transit, David Onodera, ridership increased. This prompted Clipsham to suggest that Elliot's concerns that price hikes would drive people away were unfounded.
Once Elliott was allowed to return to his seat, I think he'd received more direct attention from city hall than during his entire run for mayor.
In the end, council voted unanimously that fares should go up.
Everything else on the agenda also passed unanimously. That includes the Transit Investment Plan and its attendant action plan.
The one exception was a motion made by Councillor Clipsham during discussion of the fare increase. He requested that administration, as part of their comprehensive review of parking, look into the feasibility and desirability of linking transit fares to downtown parking fees. Only councillors Fougere and Findura voted against this.
Oh yeah... A tip to anyone considering appearing as a delegate before council: If you're planning to say something critical of what council is doing -- especially if it has something to do with things like transit, programs for low income people or housing -- be prepared for this question: "Have you brought your concerns to the provincial government?"
Now, to be fair, the point council's making is that some of the stuff that people want to complain to them about is in part, or even wholly, a provincial concern. Still, the question is a great diversion tactic that can throw someone unused to council proceedings right off their game. (I should know. They hit me with a version of this the one time I appeared before council.)
So begins Axe Cop, an online comic strip that is drawn by Ethan Nicholle (age 29), and written by his younger brother Malachai (age 5). According to Ethan, his father has 'very healthy loins.'
The strip is wonderfully drawn, and the storyline should be familiar to anyone who thought or said anything at the age of five.
Read Axe Cop here.
Spoiler: Don't get too attached to Axe Cop's partner, Flute Cop. He becomes Dinosaur Soldier in the first episode!
Monday, February 22
City Council (5:30 pm): Council will be considering the Transit Investment Plan and the transit fare increase. Former mayoral candidate, Jim Elliott, will be speaking before council in favour of the former and in opposition to the latter.
Also, the water and sewer utility budget will be brought forward so that council can review it and then at their March 8 meeting decide whether or not it should be approved. If it does, it recommends a 8.9 per cent utility rate increase.
Council will also be deciding on whether or not it should pursue funding for a new, environmentally friendlier garbage truck and whether they should use debt incurred for the Global Transportation Hub for capital projects. They will also be reviewing the 2010 Regina Municipal Heritage Award recipients.
Tuesday, February 23
Community Services Advisory Committee (5:30 pm): Receiving a presentation on the Transit Investment Plan.
Wednesday, February 24
Regina Planning Commission (4:00 pm): Considering a recommendation to close an unused laneway and incorporate it into a piece of adjacent city property which would then be sold to the Regina Public School Board to facilitate the redevelopment of the Arcola School site. Also, considering an amendment to the Official Community Plan to reflect the addition to the city of land annexed for the Global Transportation Hub. The new territory will be called the West Industrial Lands.
Yes, again I jest. With the summer games, Field Hockey, outside of maybe a few hotbeds like India and Pakistan, does not enjoy a high profile. But when it comes to the winter games, Men's Ice Hockey definitely is one of the top draws. And today on CTV/NBC/Whatever Other Networks Are Involved in Broadcasting the Games at 6:30 p.m. there's a match-up between the United States and Canada that should be the highlight of the preliminary round (although Sweden vs Finland, and Russia vs Czech Republic, which are also on today, should be okay games too).
Lacking cable TV, I didn't see a millisecond of Canada's first game against Norway, an 8-0 spanking on Feb. 16. I did catch the last two periods of their game against the Swiss on Feb. 18 at a friend's place. Canada certainly had the better of the play in their 3-2 shoot-out win, but the Swiss were very definitely no push over. Led by goalie Ryan Miller, meanwhile, the U.S. recorded a hard-fought 3-1 victory over Switizerland on Feb. 16, and then dispatched Norway 6-1 on Feb. 18.
Against the Swiss, the Canadians had trouble finishing, and they also were prone to reckless giveaways on defence. I'm not sure exactly what playoff format the Olympics follow once the preliminary round is over, but regardless of the outcome of today's game both Canada and the U.S. will advance to the next round.
The men's semi-finals are set for Feb. 26, while the gold medal game will be played on Feb. 28. Will they meet again down the road? Perhaps. But both Sweden and Russia look to have strong teams too, so a gold medal appearance by either team is by no means assured (unlike in Women's Ice Hockey, where it would take an upset of seismic proportions for there to not be a Canada vs U.S. gold medal showdown).
Two bang-up articles for fans of film critic Roger Ebert, medicare, and the meaning of life. Ebert has had several surgeries to remove cancer which has left him jawless, speechless, and full of beans.
It's about an old woman who is waiting for death so she can rejoin her departed husband. Things don't go as planned.
Maybe it's my dark sense of humour but I find this one to be pretty funny and surreal.
No, the decision to rachet up the number of Best Picture nominees is nothing but a blatant marketing ploy by Hollywood. But enough grousing. Tonight at Conexus Arts Centre, the Regina Symphony Orchestra presents its annual tribute to Hollywood movie music. We're not talking about those soundtracks stuffed with pop hits that some directors rely on to trigger emotion in the audience either. This is music that's been composed specifically for movies.
As an added bonus, people who attend are encouaged to dress up as their favourite movie star. If I was going, here's who I'd be. What about you?
It's an internet oldie by now, but nonetheless IT WILL HAUNT YOUR DREAMS.
Meanwhile, in Regina, the Hot Blood Bombers will be storming the stage at O'Hanlon's Pub with Ian LaRue & the Condors backing them up. The hard-rocking Regina trio have been on the road a fair bit lately. When I last spoke to guitarist/vocalist Dave Schneider in September he said he and bandmates Herb Exner (drums) and Shane Grass (bass) had laid down 13 new tracks for an album that would be released in 2010. So keep an eye out.
Ian LaRue & the Condors played Lydia's in Saskatoon last night. In a preview last issue, our sister paper Planet S described LaRue as possessing a "darkly emotive" songwriting style. He and his band hail from ... oh, this is too rich. They hail from Winnipeg. Home to the CFL's Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Here's video of the follow-up to the Best of Regina commercial we ran last year on CBC-TV where we used the Hot Blood Bombers' tune "Cold City" for the soundtrack. Enjoy. (Facebook)
Also on tap tonight at the Club is a Grassroots Regina gig headlining Jory Nash with local singer-songwriter John Fettes backing him up. Here's video of Nash doing Gordon Lightfoot's song "If You Could Read My Mind" from a Toronto tribute show in January 2009. (YouTube)
If you've checked out Michelle Provost's show Selling Out (DogBlog) at the Dunlop Art Gallery you might remember an Egon Schiele action figure on the one wall. Born in Austria in 1890, Schiele was a protege of Austrian Symbolist painter Gustav Klimt who, prior to his death in 1918 at age 28 from the Spanish Flu, attracted both accolades and condemnation (for drawings of teenage girls that townsfolk where he lived regarded as pornographic).
I mention Schiele now because this contemporary dance performance by Vancouver-based artists Justine A. Chambers and Deanna Peters is apparently inspired in good part by images taken from his drawings and paintings with the goal, says advance publicity, of offering "an otherworldly look behind faces we show."
Just came back from the Community and Protection Services Committee meeting at which the Transit Investment Plan was discussed. In short, it's recommendations were passed unanimously by the committee so it will be going on to council with their endorsement.
This was another of those big idea meetings that attracted a big turnout from the community. Five delegations spoke before the committee, four of which were there to laud the report and the transit department for putting it together. The last delegation was also generally favourable of it but had issues with the placement of the downtown transit hub and how it would affect parking. (Always, the bloody parking.)
Also discussed at this meeting was the proposed transit fare increase. It too passed unanimously and will go forward to council for final approval.
Here, there was one delegation who spoke against the hike. Her points were interesting: The last increase came last summer so this is two increases over a year and there hasn't been a similar boost to welfare or the minimum wage. The fare increase, then, hits low income families disproportionately hard. The administration pointed out, though, that Regina's service is still among the most affordable in the country and the fare increase is needed to subsidize the transit improvements people are clamouring for.
Sooooo.... I guess the elephant in the room is that nifty transit plan isn't going to get very far if the transit department and council can't come up with other ways to fund it. Fare hikes can't do it all. The report makes mention of seeking out other funding options -- presumably through the federal and provincial governments -- but it remains to be seen if they'll find them.
Or The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec is the latest film from French director Luc Besson (The Fifth Element, Leon: The Professional, Nikita).
It's been awhile since Besson has directed a film. He's written at least 40 movies and produced over 80 but only directed just over 10.
This film is based on famed French comic creator Jacques Tardi. There have been at least 9 volumes so far although there hasn't been an English adapation since the early 90's. Dark Horse Comics had reprinted them in an anthology series called Cheval Noir which has been out of print for decades and NBM had collected a couple of them in the mid-1990's but those too are out of print.
Still the film looks very cool. No idea if and when it will reach North America though.
The Transit Investment Plan was released on Friday to virtually no fanfare. It’s a comprehensive document that outlines a series of recommendations on how to make Regina’s transit system function better. And like the Downtown Neighbourhood Plan, it seems to say all the right things: Make transit a priority. Increase ridership. Improve pedestrian and cycling networks. Integrate with the Downtown Plan. Make transit more user friendly. Expand service. Speed service up.
Want a taste of what to expect from its 260 pages? Here are six standout recommendations to whet you’re appetite....
1. MORE DIRECT ROUTES: The route network has been redesigned according to something they’ve dubbed the Top Down Plan. Basically, the plan keeps the downtown as the hub for transit -- most major routes will be stopping at a spot just north of the main library -- but the routes will meander less and not penetrate quite so far into the suburbs. To service those areas, there will be a series of short buses that run shorter shuttle loops. In theory, while people may have to transfer a little more often, overall transit and wait times will shrink.
2. HOLIDAY SERVICE: These new schedules will finally provide long-overdue holiday and Sunday service. Yay! No more sitting around on Family Day doing nothing because the buses aren’t running.
3. MAKE TRANSIT COMPETITIVE: There are a few ideas on how to make transit more attractive to more people. Things like, an overall parking management strategy that could lead to higher parking prices downtown -- oh, I can almost hear the hue and cry already. (Here’s hoping someone will do the same at the UofR.) Also, dedicated bus lanes will be added to major streets to improve transit speed and reliability. And, the Transit Department will take another stab at getting a UPass for post secondary students and consider things like making transit passes available to businesses and communities.
4. MORE BUSES: Our current fleet is looking pretty old and many aren’t fully accessible. The plan recommends purchasing up to 12 buses every year.
5. GET THE WORD OUT: A transit marketing manager will be hired to expand awareness of RTS’s improved service. Customer information will be improved through things like a more interactive website and GPS on buses that’ll allow for live updates about how the buses are running. You’ll be able send a text to RTS and find out when exactly your bus will arrive. Nifty.
6. SERVICE TO THE AIRPORT: About bloody time.
There’s more of course. Lots more. Smart cards. Annual fare increases. Heated shelters. Oh, and a note about how supervisory positions will be made union-exempt to reduce conflicts of interest. I imagine there’ll be more than a few RTS employees who’re none too happy about that one.
Still, from my cursory read, it looks like a plan that’s headed in the right direction. It will go before the Community and Protective Services Committee tomorrow at 4pm. If you want to show up to show your support or to offer a critique, you can attend the meeting and have your say. If it gets through there, it’ll presumably go before council at their next meeting (which will be, I believe, February 22).
The plan can be download on the city's website. And if you want to discuss it in an open, friendly, online forum, there’s a comment button below.
Regina Urban Ecology is a great, newish blog on city-planning-type issues from Laura Pfeifer and Martin Gourlie. From their About page:
"This is a forum to discuss the many aspects of the urban experience in Regina, Saskatchewan. We use the term 'urban ecology' to encompass issues of urban planning and design, aspects of community, art and culture, as well as the natural ecology of the city. It is a place to discuss how a unique urban experience is built and developed."I'm a total nerd for stuff like this. They've only been around since September but already there's a sizeable collection of posts. Presently, on the front page, there are good articles on Regina's new "Infinite Horizons" brand and on the Walmart shuttle.
Tuesday, February 16
Public Works Committee (4 pm): Looking at the installation of water meters in new buildings. Presently, water meters aren't installed until after a building is built and during construction a flat rate is applied for water use. Under the system being proposed, meters would be installed when construction begins and builders would be charged for the water they actually use.
Wednesday, February 17
Executive Committee (11:45 am): Apparently, in the past, when railway land has come up for sale, the city hasn't had a plan on how or when or if to purchase it for expansion of city services or to make available for housing or roads or what have you. Currently, there doesn't seem to be any railway land that'll imminently become available, but if Executive Committee accepts a recommendation coming forward this week, they will incorporate a railway land purchasing strategy into the Official Community Play.
They will also be looking at shuffling around some of their debt. The city currently has $42 million in debentures it took out to cover the cost of providing water and sewage services to the Global Transportation Hub. Turns out, they didn't need that cash as the cost of providing that service was cheaper than expected ($20-something million instead of $40-something million) and the provincial and federal governments paid for it. Instead of paying off the $42 million, Executive Committee is considering using the money for other capital projects. If they do this, they'll avoid paying a penalty for paying off their debt early. Plus, they're going to have to take out debentures to cover the capital projects anyway, so using these debentures saves them the trouble of getting new ones.
Also on the agenda, are some technical stuff about the Recreation Infrastructure Canada Fund Contribution Agreement (specifically, approvals are needed so the city clerk and mayor can negotiate and administer the federal government's $750,000 contribution), a request $135,413 to cover updates to the Regina Police Service radio system and a $122,500 contract for off-site storage of municipal documents.
Community and Protective Services Committee (4 pm): The transit review is finally here! Although they're officially calling it the Transit Investment Plan. So, Community and Protective Services Committee will be having a gander at this. It's kind of a big deal and at 260 pages, probably warrants a post of its own.
Also on their agenda are an increase in transit and paratransit fees. Expect to see the cost of riding the bus go up to $2.50 for an adult. The committee will also look at a report on the Campus Express service which shows transit usage by students is up since its introduction -- now if we could just get all the little anarchists and Ayn Rand fanboys to kick in for a universal UPass system the route might become sustainable. Did I just suggest our city's post-secondary student body is overrun with anarchists and Ayn Rand fanboys? Yes I did. But that's okay because I'll bet you dollars for donuts nary a one will read this far into this incredibly long, incredibly dull city hall update. It's Reading Week and they're all off getting drunk and syphillitic in Florida while I'm freezing my ass off here.
Yes, it's a particularly bitter Monday.
The committee will also be looking at increases in the greens fees at city owned golf courses. The city owns six golf courses.... that blows my mind a little. Why does the city own six golf courses? Is that a usual thing for a city to own?
As usual, blah blah blah, blah blah blah, the city website.
If you happened to read the adjacent blurb in the Galleries & Museums section you would've learned that Herivel's inspiration for the show came from a reading of her grandmother's letters and diary-entries describing her WWII experience living under Nazi-occupation on the British island of Jersey.
Now I haven't actually seen this show yet (it just opened Feb. 10). But it looks like a solid one. In this work, which is called Die Festung [perhaps after a German novel by Lothar-Gunther Buchheim (who also wrote Das Boot) based on a journey he took across occupied France in 1944] words like "dissident", "inspection", "patrols" and "underground" leap out. I haven't seen too much, if any, of Herivel's work in recent years, but it does mark a big, and welcome, departure from what she used to to.
It's on until March 11. Check it out if you get a chance.
There's also a fundraiser for a new theatre company that Rob Ursan and Andorlie Hillstrom, the driving force behind Do-It-With-Class Young People's Theatre, are forming called Golden Apple. It's being held in the spacious lobby area of the T.C. Douglas Building and will feature a performance by Kyle Golemba of his humorous salute to Canadian musical theatre Making Love in a Canoe.
At O'Hanlon's Pub, Kleins96 (Harvest King Records) are headlining a gig that also includes Divorce Gun and the Savants.
But I decided to go with the opening day for the much anticipated release of this remake of the 1941 Lon Chaney horror classic The Wolfman. Quite apart from the chills it delivers, the story's loaded with socio-cultural significance. Apparently, the guy who wrote the original screenplay for Universal Pictures (Curt Siodmak) was Jewish.
I'm no expert on the Wolfman legend. But I believe that a person who is inclined whenever there is a full-moon to feel the irresistable urge to transform into a hybrid human/lupine creature has a pentagram inscribed in their hand. A pentagram bears a pretty strong resemblance to a Star of David. And as a metaphor for demonization, persecution and otherness, a "werewolf" is certainly potent. Here's the trailer (YouTube)
school secretary. Ever precocious and perky, this girl has grown into a woman of considerable accomplishment [in high school, for example, she was a skilled flautist and ball-handler-- as point guard for the basketball team, I mean] who may not yet have realized her final destiny, her growing legion of supporters fervently hope anyway, as leader of the Free World. (blogacause)
Ladies and Gentleman, if you find yourself in possession of a glass of alcohol or some other suitable libation tomorrow, give a toast to the birthday girl, will you?. (CornerStoneGroup).
And to show that she's still at the top of her game, here's video of her in action at a recent conservative political convention in Nashville. (YouTube)
Tonight, though, she's playing on a bill with Jason Plumb & the Willing. More than just local favourites, Plumb and his bandmates are top-notch musicians in their own right with a musical pedigree dating back, in Plumb's case anyway, to the late '80s and his group The Waltons. Like Grant, they too will be performing in Vancouver as part of the Cultural Olympiad.
Regardless of which order they play, Regina music fans are in for a treat. Tix are only $10 too, which is insanely cheap.
When I went to YouTube to look for a song by Grant to feature here, I had my choice of several. For some reason (actually, for a particular reason which will become clear tomorrow when the Feb. 11 issue of prairie dog hits the streets) I chose "Heartbreaker" off her 2009 CD Echoes. (YouTube)
If you're from around here, you've almost certainly seen Jason Plumb & the Willing play before. To refresh your memory, here's the trailer for their 2009 DVD Alive and Willing. (YouTube)
Speaking of threats, University of Regina Political Science professor Jeffery Webber just returned from a one week visit to Honduras as part of a human rights delegation that met with trade unionists, peasants and other activists who are engaged in a popular resistance against the current Honduran government which seized control in a de-facto coup in June 2009. Tonight at the University of Regina (Classroom Building 112) at 7 p.m., Webber will discuss his experience, plus outline the role the Canadian government has played in propping up the illegal regime to protect Canadian mining interests in the country.
Tuesday, February 9
Finance and Adminstration Committee (12:15 pm): The city's looking into buying a green garbage truck. To do this, Finance Committee will be considering a staff recommendation to enter negotiations with the province towards a cost sharing agreement under the Go Green Fund. The truck they have their eye on uses a Hydraulic Launch Assist technology to capture kinetic energy in braking. No, I do not understand what that means nor how it works. Colour me an ignorant twerp. All I know is the administration claims it could lead to 25 per cent reduction in fuel consumption. A good thing. But if they buy the truck, it would only be a pilot project and they'd be monitoring it to see how it performs in -30° weather. The truck would cost $400,000 and if the province likes the idea, the Go Green Fund would contribute $300,000 and the city the rest.
Meanwhile, tsk tsk Regina, according to a report Finance Committee will be looking at, it seems your tax bill is $5,739,399 in arrears this year. That's $401,0151 more than in 2009. You know we're not getting the extra cash the province promised us? That $5 million would come in pretty handy right about now. I'm just saying....
Reports and agendas can be downloaded on the city website.
We'll have a review of this show, which is on display at the Dunlop Art Gallery's Sherwood Village Branch until March 21, in our Feb. 11 issue. It's by Aussie native Lyndal Osborne, who since the early '70s has been a resident of Edmonton, where she's currently a professor emeritus at the University of Alberta.
From a young age, Osborne recounted at a January 23 opening reception, she has made a habit of collecting all sorts of natural materials -- shells, bones, stones and twigs.
Inspired by the ongoing effort by governments around the world to staunch the loss of bio-diversity in the plant kingdom through the establishment of seed banks where genetic material from endangered wild flowers, grains, fruits, vegetables and whatnot are stored for possible future use, she's taken some of the material she's accumulated and used it to make hundreds of sculptures based on images of seeds derrived from electron microscopes.
On one hand, ab ovo could be seen as a celebration of human ingenuity. But as I discuss in my review, there's definitely a darker side to the show. Not as dark as John Wyndham's classic 1951 horror tale Day of the Triffids, admittedly. (YouTube) But dark nonetheless. Check it out if you get a chance.
Oh man, that poster tickles all the nerd centres in my brain. And my brain is mostly nerd centres.
It was made by Justin Van Genderen, a freelance illustrator from Chicago. He's mocked up a whole series of these Star Wars travel posters and put them on his Flickr stream. (Discovered via Drawn.ca.)
How calculated that all is, I'm not really sure. But it certainly reflects a trend that is surely only going to accelerate as society becomes increasingly globalized. For a band like Delhi 2 Dublin, who play the Exchange tonight as part of the Regina Folk Festival Concert Series, the world truly is their oyster. Here's the video for their song "Apples" off their self-titled 2007 debut album. (YouTube)
Also, at the Lazy Owl tonight there's a benefit for earthquake relief in Haiti that serves as a wrap-up to two weeks of fundraising by university students to raise money to send to the beleaguered country. Doors open at 8:30 p.m., with entertainment starting at 9:15. First up is an acoustic set from what organizers describe as "very special guests", followed by a second acoustic set by Valerie McLeod (aka Val Halla). Rounding out the evening will be a set by OYE!. $5 at the door.
This should be a nice palate cleanser after last year's assault of the climate crack-pots courtesy the Frontier Centre for Public Policy.
Littlemore is an environmental journalist who's worked at newspapers such as the Ottawa Citizen and the Winnipeg Tribune. He's also one of the minds behind DeSmog Blog, an invaluable resource for anyone interested in finding out about the climate change denial industry and its efforts to obstruct the work of legitimate scientists.
For our climate change feature, we interviewed Littlemore's Climate Cover-Up co-author, James Hoggan. You can read the complete transcript of that interview here.