Friday, August 29, 2008

Crunch time for telemarketers

It's not just me: Two co-workers have noticed an upswing in the number of telemarketing calls the past week or two. I've been getting three and four a day.
I can't confirm this yet (although it might make a good news story for 'A' News next week), but we suspect they're rushing to get in all the calls they can, before the Do Not Call List takes effect September 30.

Monday, August 18, 2008

What's up with Maria?

Blogspot says her blog has been removed.
Maria, where art thou?

Define "sport", please

I have been part of more than one discussion about what constitutes an Olympics sport.
Our sports anchor at work (salt of the earth, lovable retired CFL player who played football without a helmet once too often) was questioning race walking the other day.
I was questioning floor exercise, acknowledging that our other sports anchor, who happens to be on maternity leave right now, would kick my ass for it, because she's a former NCAA gymnast. I mean, it's definitely an art and requires a high degree of athletic ability, but a SPORT?
What do you think should or should not be an Olympic sport?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

What's happening to the CBC?

Right up to front, I will state what some may perceived as a bias. I work in broadcasting, as a news producer at 'A' Ottawa (until this past Monday, it was A-Channel). And we at 'A' are guilty of some of the same type of transgressions about which I am about to rant.

Now that that's out of the way, the national public broadcaster used to be the showcase of proper English, how to write it and how to speak it. That appears to have become a thing of the past.

A handful of examples illustrating that point:
-When I was on vacation, I was listening to a national program on CBC Radio (I believe it was "Sounds Like Canada" or possibly a newscast), and a reporter used the word "influx" as a verb, as in something was influxing. I add that to my list of nouns that cannot and should not be used as verbs (or "verbed" as Calvin says in one particular favourite edition of the comic strip "Calvin and Hobbes").
-Last week, local CBC Ottawa radio reporter Nick Gamache was filling in as a newscaster. this gentleman usually covers issues in the Outaouais, which is the area of Quebec across the Ottawa River from Ottawa. While mentioning that Adam VanKoeverden would be Canada's flagbearer at the opening ceremonies for the Olympics, he pronounced the last name properly, but the first name was pronounced a-DAM. Yes, I know, that's the French pronunciation of Adam, but this was on the English CBC.
-This afternoon, again Nick Gamache, mispronounced the name of CBC Toronto reporter Philip Lee-Shanok, who was doing a report about the aftermath of Sunday's propane explosions, and said that many people suffered "trama". Methinks he meant trauma.

Showcase of the English language, eh?

P.S. As I was proofreading this, the 5:30pm CBC news came on. Gamache was describing a robbery suspect with a sparse moustache, and pronounced it "spairse".