Monday, December 24, 2007

Bronco All Time Team

Good thought idea on Bronco all time team...The best of the best at each position. Because NO ONE asked, here are my pics...

Disclaimer; whenever I do one of these lists, I only include players from 1986 to present. If you want to include Trottier, Ruskowski, Tiger and company on yours, be my guest.


Joe Sakic. Easy choice because of the obvious 78 goals and 82 assists in 87 and 88, but even though Joe was not on the Mem Cup team of 89, players on that team will say having him around the year before made them better.

Andy Schneider. One of the smartest players in the history of the dub. So much skill. The straw that stirred the drink on the 93 WHL championship team. Jason Krywulak and his 162 points were good, but his 162 points came with the help of Schneider.

Todd Holt. 5'5 135 pounds. Five years as a Bronco...423 points. Tyler Wright almost got this spot on the team...but Holt was nicer to me when I was the stick boy.


Dan Lambert. I still consider him the best Bronco ever. "Pep" could do it all on the ice and was a leader in the room.

Brent Bilodeau. Big and scary with offensive upside. How he stayed out of the NHL is one of hockey's greatest mysteries.


Trevor Kruger. How could I possibly have a guy with a GAA abouve 4 as the all time best goalie? Kruger would always make the big save in a close game that gave Swift a chance to win it. He did it in the mem cup final. Some people would say Milan Hnilicka should have the spot. Milan didn't make those big saves like Kruger did. Milan's Bronco victories where often 8-3 routes where he didn't have to come up big. If Milan had his A-game in the 93 mem cup, we'd have another banner.

I love discussions like this. I hope more people reply over at whlfans.


Sunday, December 23, 2007

Guitar GOD!!!

With company in town, I got to open a present early. Merry Christmas to me!!! Guitar Hero, keg cans and 7-11 nachos at 3am. Good times! I hope you're having as much fun with the holiday season as I am.


Saturday, December 22, 2007


I feel the subject of miracles is best summed up by Morgan Freeman's character (God) in the movie Bruce Almighty: A single mom who's working two jobs, and still finds time to take her son to soccer practice, that's a miracle. A teenager who says "no" to drugs and "yes" to an education, that's a miracle. People want me to do everything for them. What they don't realize is *they* have the power. You want to see a miracle, son? Be the miracle.

I have seen Christmas miracles this year. Here's a few:

-Golden West Radio engineer Dave Funk received his 25 year service award at our Christmas banquet. Anyone who work sin radio knows that engineers are often men who are confined to the dark corners of the radio station. They are on call 24/7 and have personal beepers that go off whenever there is more than 5 seconds of dead air. Nobody talk to an engineer except for one something is broken and needs fixing. As engineers fix things they also have to hear complaints and much whining and sniveling. Dave Funk has gone through 25 years of this. At our banquet when someone recieves a 5, 10, 15, 20 or 25 year award, their name is announced, they get some polite applause, the CEO of the compnay reads their bio and they get their plaque. When Dave's name was announced he received, to my knowledge, the 1st ever standing ovation at our Christmas banquet. The whole room, 12 radio stations represented, everyone on their feet. People now to the company asked "why are we standing?" "who is this guy?".

Someone who deserves it. Miracle #1.

-I don't know the ins and outs of the Brian Mulroney/Karlheinz Schriber scandal. I know that 'Karlheinz' is a fun name to say. I know Karlheinz is not a very good person and had some sort of alledged scandalous relationship with the former Canadian Prime Minister. I do know that as a result of this scandal we've had to deal with Brian Mulroney's talentless son Ben much less on CTV. Christmas Miracle #2 Broadcaster Disclamier I don't usually judge broadcasters as we all have our own style, some like it, some don't. In the case of Benny Boy, he is where he is (or was) based on NOTHING BUT HIS LAST NAME. Therefore he is fair game.

This is a busy family time of year. I have company coming to my house over the next few days from Saskatoon, Calgary, Edmonton, and hopefully North Dakota! It will be so good to see everyone. Miracle #3.


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A Blog Rerun

In the next few days I will be making a post on the subject of Christmas miracles. They're there if you look for them. Sometimes you have to look hard and sometimes they smack you right front and center. There is more to this world than meets the eye and the Christmas season proves it. Am I a Christmas nut? Do I Clark Griswold my house every year with lights? No way! I am a Grinch...or I was. More on that later this week. Retro Re-post

I have had many people send me e-mail or comment on the street or at the gym about the Joe Carnahan post I made a few weeks ago. I have also had people say they couldn't find it on my blog and want to read it. Rather than have you dig through my archives, I'll just re-post the darn thing. At risk of turning my blog into a Carnahan tribute, I give you the following...

The Ballad of Smokin' Joe...

I hope this doesn't read like a post about how great I am...Cause I have a lot to learn in my work and in life in general. I've achieved some goals in my career and have acquired a level of happiness. The desire to better myself is still there, and I still have goals to achieve.

I wouldn't be who I am (and again, I'm not saying I'm great) had it not been for the summer of 2004. I was asked by the radio station general manager if I was interested in doing play by play for the Swift Current Indians baseball team. I took the gig...For no other reason than the extra cash it would bring me over the summer...Them schooners get expensive!

What I learned that summer would change my life.

I met Joe Carnahan. An import baseball player from Ashland, Wisconsin. He was an established player in the WMBL who was the league MVP two years earlier. I had never heard of him before I shook his hand on a June morning before a road trip through Alberta. I was making my baseball play by play debut that trip. Joe was the first player to introduce himself.

Joe and I couldn't have been more opposite. He had his t-shirt, shorts and ball cap with a look like he hadn't shaved or showered in days. I was style over substance with gel in my hair, dress shirt, khaki pants and dress shoes.

I spent the summer calling baseball games and watching Joe hit .447 that season.

I also watched him destroy his arm one afternoon on the mound.

Doctors told Joe he would be unable to pitch the rest of the year. His arm was all kinds of messed up. Swift got through the year without him on the mound... his bat helped them through the tough times.

The playoffs rolled around...imports left, injuries caught up with the tribe. They needed a win against Melville or the season was done. No pitchers available. Joe took to the mound that night. I'll never forget what he told me on the drive to Melville. I asked him if the arm was okay...With no tape rolling he gave me an honest answer not intended for showmanship or a headlines.

"It'll have to be"

With no heat on his fastball and nothing but experience, guts and saavy he gave the tribe 7 full innings. They won. No contract bonuses or endorsement deals pending. He had a job to do and he did it.

Joe won the league MVP award for a second time that year too. By the end of summer we had become good friends. He left his MVP plaque in my car for a week. I had to remind him to take it back to the states with him. He didn't care. He was all about the team.

Ever since that day in Melville, when I've been asked to do something out of the ordinary, I've never said "I can't do that" or "that's impossible". I've never asked "what's in it for me?" I like to think I'm a better person for it.

Joe Carnahan is the new coach of the Swift Current Indians. He will lead by example. He will make his players better athletes and better human beings...and chances are he won't even realize some of the ways he's doing it.


Sunday, December 16, 2007


It's Sunday night as I type this. I'm off to bed in a few minutes as I'm up way before the crack of dawn to do the Magic 97 morning show for Chris Martens (who is holidaying).


-From I heard that Willis on Welfare hasen't been posting because he had his computer repo'd. So for Christmas i will present him with a new lap top courtesy of old Scout here. He still goes to the games as a business owner bought him his seasons.


-In talking with Willis, the respect you give him is gift enough for the holiday season. He is thinking about a big return to whlfans in 08. Willis is still a bum.

-I saw former Indians coach Harv Martinez at the Training Zone yesterday. It was a battle, Harv vs. The Treadmill. I'm not sure Harv's exact age, but he looks like he could still round third and slam into a catcher with the best of em. I got tired just watching him.

-Current Indians coach Joe Carnahan is going to be visiting Swift next week. It will be good to catch up with Smokin Joe, who is a Man's man in every sense of the word. We'll likely be at BP's lounge for a good chunk of time. We both love the rye...JUST LOVE IT!!! I enjoy hanging out with Joe because we are opposite in every way. We're like Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thornton in the movie 'Bandits' (Joe, of course representing the tougher Bruce Willis type to my nerdy BBT). Joe admitted to me his days of being one of the boys this summer are over. Have I mentioned he'll make a great coach?

-Wal Mart being open 24 hours is hilarious. I went late last night. It's full of teenagers who just raided Dad's liquor cabinet who are looking to play guitar hero in the electronics section. I still support the little businesses whenever I can. Don't haterize on me for feeding the corportate beast.

-I just can't bring myself to make a Bronco post. I have nothing to say on the subject.

-People in Swifty were treated to a beautiful sunday! Myself, my son Ethan and his friend Dalton and his parents took in some sledding action at Riverdene. Outdoor rink hockey being played in the background, kids laughing as they careened down the hill. Sunday, lots of snow, about -2 with lots of other parents I know enjoy free family entertainment. I would not trade living where I do for anything in the world. What a great day!

-On just one of the many tobaggan runs in the city, I am now begging the City of Swift Current to install chair lifts or a handle tow. I felt like I was 85 walking up the hill after about run 27.

-My son likes snow boarding!!! Sadly, he still likes Nintendo more. He is his father's boy.

More later this week.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Thursday Thoughts...

But first a shout out to 1330 Rosetown Morning Jedi Ryan Tunall who reads the blog. Sorry for the infrequent updates...Keep making the Rosetown morning airwaves safe to listen to Man!

I Double GARE You...

My good friend and sports writer/scumbag Gare Joyce has reared his coon skin cap covered head yet again. You may remember Gare as the guy who wrote "Denial of Death" on about the Bronco bus crash of 86. I'm not going to link you to his have google, you can find it. Gare and I got into a BIG debate on this blog in the aftermath of his article. I felt it was National Enquirer level journalism, he felt otherwise.

He has a new book about the dark and evil world of NHL scouting. My buddy Scout at made this post on the subject. A friend of Gare's wrote a review (I will add my thoughts and translate the BS in italics):

Gare Joyce Strikes Again

He must love the Broncos as we are in his new book:

Gary Joyce's latest work is a must-read for casual and hardcore fans.

by Ken Campbell
Gare Joyce has an obsession with junior hockey that some might refer to as maniacal. Or perhaps mind-boggling. Maybe even unhealthy. No argument there

But there is no doubt that Joyce is the foremost authority on the workings and people involved in major junior hockey in North America and that expertise, intertwined with unparalleled passion, comes through incredibly clearly on Joyce's latest bit of work, Future Greats and Heartbreaks: A Year Undercover in the Secret World of NHL Scouts. Gare joyce works in junior hockey circles cause most NHL people are smart enough to see through his bulls*** and don't want a creep with a fishy handshake and a coon skin hat travelling with the team

If all of that sounds a little too inside for Gino from Woodbridge who thinks the Leafs should trade Mats Sundin and bring Wendel Clark out of retirement, that's probably because it likely is. What?!?!?!?! Is the only person Gare could find to pump his book totally insane?

But I suspect Joyce doesn't really care whether his book resonates with the casual hockey fan. He's clearly a man who writes for himself and for those who look at his work with a critical eye and worries more about what they think than how many times its bar code will be passed through the cash register at Indigo. This is an excuse for the book being a total snoozefest. Gare has zero people skills and his inability to relate to human beings is evident in his writing. He is not very good at what he does and should stick to a blog.

(In the interest of full disclosure, Gare is a friend from the hockey beat and I am mentioned in the acknowledgements for this book. Something I wrote about junior hockey for THN more than a year ago is also discussed in the book. But I also believe this is a very good piece of work and if I didn't, I would simply ignore it and write nothing about it.) Gare Joyce has dirt on me, so I'm pimping his book

In Future Greats and Heartbreaks, Joyce gives us a unique insight into the game from the perspective of an NHL scout, perhaps the most underappreciated, underpaid and most vital position in any NHL organization. And in doing so, Joyce leaves no stone unturned. He travels from the Yardman Arena in Belleville to Zimny Stadion in Piestany as a de facto scout himself, trying to separate the future stars from the future stiffs of the 2006 and 2007 entry drafts. Coaches and General Managers are aware Gare is a tabloid journalist, but scouts who enjoyed Piestany Punchout still talk to him

To his credit, Joyce received unparalleled access to the inner workings of the scouting world when the Columbus Blue Jackets gave him an all-access pass to their war room in the months leading up to the draft. Joyce was encouraged to give his input and ask questions during the interview process. He conducted interviews with players on his own, asking questions from a reporter's point of view and, in the process, gathered information scouts might never consider. He was privy to discussions and meetings that he parlayed into some very keen insights. 30 teams in the NHL and ONLY the Columbus Blue Jackets gave him the time of day. Do the Blue Jackets have a large fan base I'm unaware of? How many people do you know with a Blue Jackets jersey? Why not do the Leafs? Habs? Rangers? Red Wings? Does the casual NHL fan even know there is a team in Columbus? Right, Gare doesn't care about casual fans.

At one point he talks about 2007 draft prospect Bill Sweatt showing up for the scouting combine with his arm in a sling and tells the medical staff that he was pushed by a coed through a window at a frat house. "Couldn't he have just said that he did it working out?" one scout says. "Not too bright for a college guy." That's right ladies and gentlemen, buy Gare's book and hear all about the antics of NHL SUPERSTAR BILL SWEATT!!! Cancel the order on my Bill Sweatt jersey, he's a 17 year old who WENT TO A PARTY!!! Thanks Gare. The world is a better place.

Through it all, Joyce weaves his way through the Canadian Hockey League, making stops everywhere from Swift Current to Rimouski to get insight into the young men who, in the next few years, will see their life's work result in either an NHL career or, more likely, a life in the minors. Gare Joyce boldly goes where HUNDREDS OF NEWS PAPER WRITERS, RADIO SPORTS GUYS AND TV REPORTERS GO EVERY GAME!!!

And in doing so, Joyce pulls no punches when it comes to many of the players in his book. He is particularly hard on Phil Kessel, who would later be drafted fifth overall by the Boston Bruins and go on to a reasonably productive first two seasons in the NHL. On the other hand, he seems to take a liking to Akim Aliu, a player whose performance has never reached his potential and is playing for his third OHL team. DO YOU HEAR THAT NHL GMs!?!?! F**K PHIL KESSEL. His comeback from testicular cancer to put up very respectable numbers in the NHL as a 19 year old is NOTHING COMPARED TO WHAT YOU COULD BE GETTING WITH AKIM ALIU!!! WAKE UP NHL!!!

In an interview with Brady Leavold of the Swift Current Broncos, Leavold has the following to say about Ian White, formerly a star player with the Broncos and now a regular on the Toronto Maple Leafs defense corps. Gare doesn't have much new material so he has to go back to his Bronco stuff from last year.

"In training camp we were supposed to show up for fitness testing in the weight room at the rink, and we were all there in our gym stuff. (White) shows up in jeans and a cowboy hat. He didn't even take it off when he had to do the bench (press). He did one rep and put the bar back on the rack and said, 'That's all I feel like today.' ...On the bus, I was afraid to even look around my first season. I sat near the front - all the veterans were in the back - and one time when I turned around, White saw me and said, 'What the f--- are you lookin' at? After that I didn't look back the rest of the season." This just in...Ian White may not have been the greatest quality kid to wear a Bronco jersey.

Joyce also reports that prior to going to Leaf training camp, White asked Broncos GM Dean Chynoweth if he could skate with the Broncos, "then proceeded to carouse around town." Chynoweth's farewell to White was marked by the GM throwing White's equipment out the back door of the arena when White didn't show up for a practice. That's why we love Deano

The book, which follows Joyce's critically acclaimed When the Lights Went Out: How One Brawl Ended Hockey's Cold War and Changed the Game, about the 1987 brawl between Canada and the Soviets at the World Junior Championship, Future Greats and Heartbreaks is typical Joyce work, painstakingly researched and well crafted. It brings readers inside the world of scouting and player evaluation like never before and explains the intricacies of the most inexact science in sports. I'm sure it does bring people into the world of scouting like never before...The "Hockey Scouting" Section of Coles is rather bare. Could it be NO ONE CARES about this subject?

There are a few nagging errors, such as Columbus scout Milan Tichy once being referred to as Milan Tuchy and Brian Lawton being from Minnesota when he actually hailed from Rhode Island, but they're very, very minor and aren't close to enough to undermine what is a very strong piece of work. You mean the great Gare Joyce didn't do all his painstaking research you referenced in the last paragraph?!?!?!? We in Swift Current can't believe that!!!

But will that be enough for the casual fan to relate to it? It might not be, but it should. Any hockey fan worth his autographed jersey should know what goes into player procurement and why his or her team is either good at it, not bad, or abysmal. It should also be a must-read for anyone whose son is showing promise in this game because in many ways, it presents the sobering reality that so many are called, so few are actually chosen. Wow, you mean something may be wrong with the NHL!?!?! Thanks so much Gare for pointing that out. Anyone else you want to kick when they're down?


What did Jesus ever do for Santa on his birthday? The Great Steven Wright

The People's Premier

As I shoe-horned myself and wife, Heather into some of the last seats in the back row at the Oman School Christmas concert, I noticed that in the standing room only crowd was Premier Brad Wall. A busy day for Brad who was in Regina for a photo op with Regan Bartel ( that day and then capped it off by getting back to Swifty to sit ON THE FLOOR for his kid's Christmas concert at a packed cafetorium. He was even wearing the same suit at the concert as he was in the pic with Regan.

That's our boy!


Saturday, December 08, 2007

My Favorite Bronco

For the first time since I was 11, I can say that I have a favorite player for the Swift Current Broncos. In 1988, I was at a game early when #23 Peter Kasowski emerged from the dressing room to give me a stick. Not sure why. Sticks weren't $250 back then. Maybe he curved it wrong, maybe it was bad luck...whatever, PK gave me his twig and he was my hero til he graduated the dub, and even after we dealt him to Seattle for Andy Schneider in 1990.

Must be something about the #23.

I've always enjoyed the Broncos as a team. For example, I really liked the 2003-2004 team (before the dreaded Rome trade). Jeremy Williams could shoot and score from anywhere on the ice. Davin Heintz was the leagues best penalty killer, Ian White was amazing when he wanted to be, and Aaron Rome was the all around best d-man in the league. There was lots to love on that team...but no one player was my favorite.

While this year's team has depth, and lots of guys worth the price of admission, I can say for the first time in two decades that I have a favorite player.

Dale Weise.

What's not to love? 99 mph slap shot. Throws HUGE hits. Wins battles in the corners. He is one of the league's best trash talkers on the ice yet backs it up with the gloves off when he has to. Pre or post game win or lose he is a GREAT interview for us media nerds too. Weise also has that intangible quality that you just can't teach that you either have or you don't. I stole this from Keen's blog (the Broncos shut out the Kootenay Ice on their Teddy Toss Night):

A teddy bear came on to the ice with about a minute to play. Dale Wiese skated over to it and threw it back in the stands as to almost say "sorry, not tonight".

Weise doing that made a couple statements:

1. My team is going to win.

2. I have faith in these guys to hold off your teams attack.

3. To the opposition it says: our goalie is going to shut you out and there is nothing you can do about it.

If there is any chance this year to bid on Dale Weise game worn jersys, I will be all over it.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

A Comment That Ticked me Off

With sattelite, mp3s and streaming radio not alot of people listen to local radio anymore, and I couldn't tell you how many read the local papers.

Taken from by a poster calling himself 2,5andagame.

I think I know who this is...he should know better. I could go on and on about recent AM and FM radio success stories both locally and in Western Canada. How did hundreds of people know about donating sports equipment to kidsport early in November? That was only one local radio station talking about it, and we got three truckloads of gear for chairty!!! They didn't read about it in the paper.

I gave away 97 touques in 12 minutes on Magic 97. 97 cars showed up for that, and dozens more where turned away. Not because of anything they heard about on Sirius.

Mp3's, portable music players and such have been around forever be in the form of walkmans and discmans. No impact at all on the radio business. Record sales maybe, but not our business.

Streaming radio? Computers are amazing things. People are finding better things to do with them than listen to out of market radio with announcers talking about traffic conditions in Calgary.

And the satellites? People always think there is a technology that will kill radio. The 8 track, tape decks in cars, CD changers and now satellite radio. Our business has survived all of it and we still get raises once a year.

Don't go giving anyone Satellite radio as a Christmas gift by the way. Don't take my word for it though:

This post was written by Douglas McIntyre of the blog 24/7 Wall Street:

Goldman Sachs hit Sirius and XM Satellite with serious downgrades today. It knocked down shares of both companies by 5%.

What analysts don't want to say is that the future of satellite radio in the U.S. could already be coming to an end. A merger between the two companies may be the only alternative they have to stay in business. Each company has well over a billion dollars in debt. Sirius had negative operating income last quarter of $106 million on $242 million in revenue. XM was in the red to the tune of $108 million on sales of $278 million. And XM shows only $275 million in cash on its balance sheet.

Sirius had 7.7 million subscribers at the end of last quarter and XM had 8.6 million, but those numbers no longer double year-over-year. That may be because other forms of entertainment have taken over in the car. When satellite radio was launched a decade ago the rear-seat entertainment device was not all the rage. The Apple iPod did not exist.

The market seems to forget that the shares of these two companies trade as if they were going out of business. In early 2000, Sirius traded close to $70. It is now lucky to see $3.50 on a good day.

Sirius and XM are lobbying the FCC to approve their merger on the basis that there is plenty of new digital competition and that a combined company would not be a monopoly. In the strictest sense, it is one, of course. The government licenses the rights to be in the business and, in a merger, there would be only one company with those rights.

But, the FCC may have a more practical reason to give a merger the green light. With limited cash on their balance sheet, tight credit markets, slowing subcriber growth, and huge quarterly losses, both companies could disappear.

We're doing just fine. Thanks for listening.


Sunday, December 02, 2007


Today's blog will have two subjects, but one theme. Being resourceful. Not crying about what you don't have (and what you'll never get) but using your assets to their full potential.

Jon Keen is taking heat at because of soem comments he made on his blog. These comments:

Where's the atmosphere in our building? Sure the fans have to create something but shouldn't the Broncos as an organization do something to promote fan excitement or involvement? I've been to all 22 WHL rinks so I feel like I can speak with some authority on this matter. Have we given up? Other teams have big promotions or have certain "nights" that bring in large crowds. What about the Grey Cup making an appearance? I see Moose Jaw, Saskatoon and Regina all have a Grey Cup appearance in the works.

There is no excitement build-up prior to puck drop unless the public address announcer is throwing a shout out to the Hazlet fans who have come out to cheer Andrew Bailey of the Kootenay Ice. Are we too accommodating? The I-plex has been a pretty inviting place for other teams to come in this year. Where's our edge? For pete sakes, Bailey's mom even sang the national anthem! Great job Terry-Lou. It was probably that or the junior B orchestra that has been busted out a couple of times this season. (taped instremental version of Oh Canada) No offense Cypress Cyclones, just a figure of speech.

Making the I-plex an imposing place to play starts with creating a tough atmosphere for the visitors to cope with and ends with a dominant in your face hockey team.

The Riders have the "13th man" and it makes a difference.

People at are calling Keen a "clown" among other things for his comments. It's not the job of the marketing department to make people cheer is the argument. I do think Jon has a valid point in that more can be done to fire up the crowd. A lot of the comments on whlfans are of the theme that "Swift can't compete with the big centres and we have no budget".

I tire of that small market syndrome excuse. Yes, our budget is nil and the evil board of directors won't let anyone do anything creative. We've heard it all before.

The Bronco marketing gig is a tough one. We in Swift are handicapped as we don't have a jumbotron to show highlight reel clips to fire up fans just before opening faceoff. We don't have pyro...we don't have a budget.

So this is where we need to be resourceful. We have a sound system, a cordless mic and a crazy in-stand dude. Blast Welcome to the Jungle, get Zoolander on the ice and have him start a 'go Broncos go' chant. When I was the in stand guy, I did it. It got the crowd going (sadly it backfired when Med Hat fans ran our show, but we learned).

Instead of the tired and emotionless fields and pasture lands bit while playing Kid Rock's Cowboy for Charlie Horse, do something high energy. Play 'Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy' again. Invent a new Bronco chant. Hell, have the Hudec Brothers or a local band write and record a 'Go Broncos' fight song ala "Green is the color" to play before games.

Shooting t-shirts into the crowd gets fans wound up. Do that before the opening faceoff.

Honestly, would the board say 'no' to any of that?

By the way, I'd like to thank the one poster for saying I was "great" in the thread. I've been a part of radio stations that had ZERO heat and listeners over the years. I appreciate every compliment I get. Thank you. Moving on...

Don't Taze Me!!!

I enjoy the comments from the liberal media that RCMP officers should be stripped of tazers. Obviously there is no need to arm Police officers.

Strip all cops of tazers and arm them with silly string seems to be the solution. The RCMP is the finest law enforcement institution in the world. Yes, there was a situation in a Vancouver airport where cooler heads should have prevailed and a man was killed by accident.

The solution is not to take law enforcement tools away from cops, but perhaps do a refresher course on using words and feeling EMPATHY for the people they deal with. Some cops need to learn better communication skills. They need to put themselves in the place of the foreign guy who doesn't speak english who has been in the airport for nine hours without anyone seeing to his needs. Talk, communicate, empathize, use the RCMP resources to contact his family. Offer him a handshake and a coffee. Make a universal gesture to let him know you're there to help. Cops need weapons, but only as a last resort.

When all attempts at communication and reasoning end...then you electrocute someone.

It's a shame this happened. Our cops for the RCMP are good cops. Bad judgement by a few in Vancouver has given the whole nation of officers a bad rep. As police go, we have it good here.


Saturday, December 01, 2007


This blogging thing may turn into a Weekend Warrior type of deal for me.

Thank goodness my wife looks after the Christmas shopping in our family so I have time to entertain the blogaholics.


-MY 96 Morning radio Jedi Kim Johnston in The Hat brought a smile to my face in his online bio.

Person he would most like to meet: Willis on the Welfare his favorite blogger.

Inside joke and a beauty.

-Quote from Deb at Subway: "I like it when you blog about things other than hockey."


Here comes Santa Claus...

The downtown Christmas Tree lighting was a fun time despite the arctic temperatures. We wnt to the new Urban Ground Coffee house after and I was hoping they would forsake sushi on the menu in favor of whale blubber. I have not been that cold since I lived in Manitoba.

Mike Wilson and RJ Larochelle were there from the Broncos. Veteran Alderman Tim Keene was there from the city. SANTA and MRS. Claus put in an appearance. A choir sang Christmas carols, Sundog volleyball players stoked a fire, radio station folk fed everyone hot chocolate and a horse drawn carriage pulled families down the street. A very good night despite the cold.

Here is Southwest TV news' coverage of the event:

I like the crew at TV news. They work hard, they put together a professional product and they've won a coveted RTNDA award (which is big in broadcasting). It is too bad in this instance that the volunteers and people who showed up to make this a great event despite the cold didn't get the props they deserve. Yes, the weather caused the event to end earlier than usual. The Downtown Business Association and all involved should still get their love. (plus, the radio station promoted the event and I'm not cool with other media insinuating no one showed up at our event).

Don't just take my word though:

From the mind of the smartest man in showbiz:

Ben Stein had his game show a few years ago, Win Ben Stein's Money. People competed against the actor/genius in a trivia contest. If they beat him, he would not get paid for his work on the show that day, the contestant would get his fee. if he won, he got paid.

The issue of holidays/Christmas and having to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas" isn't in Saskatchewan what it is in the States. No one here will jump down your throat for having a "Christmas Tree" instead of a "holiday tree". I hope it stays that way.

Ben Stein wrote a gem of a piece on the subject which I will copy and paste for you now:

Herewith at this happy time of year, a few confessions from my beating heart:

I have no freaking clue who Nick and Jessica are. I see them on the cover of People and Us constantly when I am buying my dog biscuits and kitty litter. I often ask the checkers at the grocery stores. They never know who Nick and Jessica are either. Who are they? Will it change my life if I know who they are and why they have broken up? Why are they so important? I don't know who Lindsay Lohan is, either, and I do not care at all about Tom Cruise's wife.

Am I going to be called before a Senate committee and asked if I am a subversive? Maybe, but I just have no clue who Nick and Jessica are. Is this what it means to be no longer young. It's not so bad.

Next confession: I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are: Christmas trees. It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, "Merry Christmas" to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a creche, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship Nick and Jessica and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him?

I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where Nick and Jessica came from and where the America we knew went to.

Thanks Ben,

Next post, I talk about HOCKEY! Much to the chagrin of Deb Rumpel.