Tuesday, January 30, 2007

KFed's got Nationwide on his side

There's no escaping trailer park king Kevin Federline, his estranged ho Britney Whats-ho-name, Paris Hilton et al.

KFed's got a gig, in an insurance commercial that will air during the Super Bowl. Check it out: www.nationwide.com/nw/featured-ads/index.htm?hpAdClick=teaser and see why the fast-food industry says it demeans the 12-million-plus people who work in the industry.

Sheesh. Fifteen minutes of fame/infamy sure is long these days.

Monday, January 29, 2007

I'm seriously freaking out here

I have a young friend who has AD/HD. He's 21, is extremely intelligent, but considered developmentally challenged -- he's a Special Olympics swimmer and lives in semi-assisted housing, as in his own apartment that is visited regularly by a case worker. His uncle is my all-time best friend.
I often chat online with Patrick, and his mom says he really looks up to me.
A few minutes ago, up pops Patrick on MSN, saying "Bob, u need to help me", and goes on to tell me that he's cutting his arm. I told him I couldn't help him from this distance (he's in Hamilton, I'm in Ottawa) and he said no, he needs his dad, but his dad isn't answering his phone. Employing the usual logic that doesn't necessarily work with Patrick, I figure he might not be serious about hurting himself, because he gives me his dad's phone number. I called Dean, and he said he would call Pat right away.
As I was writing that last line, Pat told me he's okay. I just replied that he scared me, but I'm glad he asked me for help.
Crisis averted, I guess, but the adrenaline was pumping for a few minutes there.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Hey, Ma! Check this out!

Confirm or deny: Coming soon to a Tim Hortons near you?
DURHAM. N.C. (AP) -- That cup of coffee just not getting it done anymore? How about a Buzz Donut or a Buzzed Bagel? That's what Dr. Robert Bohannon, a Durham, North Carolina, molecular scientist, has come up with. Bohannon says he's developed a way to add caffeine to baked goods, without the bitter taste of caffeine. Each piece of pastry is the equivalent of about two cups of coffee.
While the product is not on the market yet, Bohannon has approached some heavyweight companies, including Krispy Kreme, Dunkin' Donuts and Starbucks about carrying it.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Vacation in the DR is getting closer

I finally got the invoice and details about Newsguy Bob's Excellent Dominican Vacation. It's for the Bahia Principe resort in Punta Cana. April 21-18, leaving from Toronto, with arrangements for a hotel room April 20 in TO, parking for the week, and shuttle service back and forth to Pearson.

Okay, so talk amongst yourselves. Here's a topic: Is Newsguy Bob in for a good time at a good resort, or is it a week in Cockroach City? Discuss. Maria, I think you're the travel agent, so dish, Girl.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Yo, telemarketers: Bugger off!

It's that time of year. Television and radio are polluted with ads for life insurance, weight loss miracles and the old-style K-Tel albums of music that was never much good anyway; and the phone lines are burning up with telemarketing calls.

Here's a tip for the companies that unleash the barely English-speaking callers on us: If I wanted whatever the hell it is that you're selling, I would call you!

The most recent call was at 9:30 this morning. Now keep in mind, I was sleeping, having worked until almost midnight, and only getting to bed after two o'clock. It was that now familiar five-second pause while my name comes up on the caller's computer screen, then a heavily accented voice trying to pronounce it. Come on! -- "McIntyre" is not that difficult! You can't even pronounce my name, and you want me to buy something from you?!?!

Don't get me wrong. I do have sympathy for the caller, although not a lot. Those people are working for minimum wage, trying to make a living by annoying their potential customers. What really disgusts me is that they suck in enough people to make it worthwhile, so it continues.

Whatever happened to the planned "do not call" list? I would be first in line to get my name and phone number on it. Heck, I would manage the campaign of any politician who promised to implement it. Sure, there are probably fewer politician's promises kept than there are successful telemarketing calls, but it would be worth a shot.


Okay. I've vented and feel much better now. Gotta go: the phone's ringing.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Today hasn't been that bad

It's what we've been calling "Drop Dead Day" here at A-Channel Ottawa -- the day that most of the layoffs announced in July finally take effect. I wasn't in yet when the A-Channel Morning crew left. There are several people from that group who are no longer employed.

I've said good-bye to a couple people tonight, and a couple more are putting in their final shift. Luckily, several of us landed different jobs here, me included. So for that reason and because I only escaped the axe by a matter of days, I haven't wanted to get too involved in good-byes, not wanting to appear smug.

Life goes on, I'm employed, and now have to adjust to working weekends and evenings again.

Have a great weekend, fellow bloglodytes. This will be my last one for a while.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

So proud of a special group of young men

They're known as the Gloucester Rangers Major Bantam AA hockey team. We're just back from the National Bantam tournament in Ancienne-Lorette, Quebec, just outside Quebec City.

No, we did not win the tournament, but the coaching staff and parents still have a lot of reasons to be proud of these 17 young men.

It took more than two games for anyone to even score a goal on us, and we ended the round-robin portion of the tournament with nine goals for, and only one against. After a hard-fought quarter-final last night, we moved on to the semi-final early this afternoon. To make a long story short, we lost 4-3 in triple overtime, with the team from Mauricie scoring with 1:51 left in the sixth period of play.

Heartbreaking, yes, to a certain extent. But the grit, guts, determination and commitment shown by our team members demonstrate maturity well beyond their years (they were all born in 1992).

Our team was the talk of the tournament, and the large crowd at today's game, cheering for us, is proof of that.

So apart from expressing my pride and admiration in the Rangers, I say thank you to the people of Ancienne-Lorette, for a super tournament.

The cohesiveness, camaraderie and skill of the Rangers sets them up very well for league playoffs, which start in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Good news on the job front

After six months of sweating it out and looking (unsuccessfully) for a new job, I am not going to be laid off by A-Channel Ottawa on January 19 after all. I have been offered a news producer position, and intend to accept it tomorrow.

It means I'll be working weekends and three evenings a week, but it is a job, and takes the pressure off while I continue looking, partly because the very future of A-Channel is anything but guaranteed, in light of the CTV buyout of CHUM, and the likely requirement that it will have to unload any A-Channel in a city that already has a CTV station, as Ottawa does.

It also allows me to get on with my life, and make plans to travel this year, for instance. First stop: Punta Cana in April, for the wedding of the daughter of some very good friends of mine from Iroquois Falls.

I just wanted to share the news with my fellow bloglodytes; thank you for the moral support the past six months since I got my layoff notice; and to say "Phew!"

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Please try now

I hit "No" on the moderation thingy, and selected "Let Anyone post comments" or whatever the heck it says.

NOW it might/should/could/whothehellknows work.

You're gonna love this

...especially if you have the same warped sense of humour that I have. We just received this news release here in our newsroom. General consensus here is that it is an early leader for 2007 Dumbass News Release of the Year, and it will take a lot of creativity to beat it.

One more note before your read it: I mean absolutely no disrespect to James Brown or his family. The release is from the company that booked his Ottawa appearance.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, January 04, 2007

James Brown was scheduled to perform at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa this evening. Regrettably Mr. Brown passed away on December 25, 2006. Refunds are available at point of purchase. Tickets purchased by debit and credit cards will be automatically refunded.

The National Arts Centre – OTTAWA

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

I think (I hope) I fixed it.

Comment away. Thanks to CQ and JB Redundant, I think I fixed the problem.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Gloucester 3, Rideau St. Lawrence 1

Not a very pretty game, for first place vs. tenth place. All of our goals were on the powerplay -- two on a 5-on-3.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

May 2007 be a great year.