Monday, June 27, 2011

BLAGO CONVICTED

The retrial is over and the verdict is in. Rod Blagojevich is guilty this time on 17 corruption counts.

"I am stunned", he says.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

LAZY SUMMER DAY NEWS FROM NOWHERE

Well, all I have to say is it's tough for me to get too excited about summer right now, in part because I am still decompressing from the months of exciting basketball and hockey action on the tube. It's like how you react once the NFL season is over -- you sort of have to decompress a bit.

Anyway, the NHL had its awards this week and the NHL Draft, and the NBA held its draft, so that helps ease things a bit for the fans. Today in Toronto, there is the Queen's Plate and I am pretty excited about that.

Other news: The Souris River is cresting in flooded-out Minot North Dakota, and it's a really sad scene there with all those houses under water. The flood there was so bad it beat the all-time 1881 record for the area. I've been watching the streaming video from the area on the Internet. Needless to say I don't think I'll be travelling down there anytime soon. My summer vacation plans are in chaos right now.

Here in strike-ridden Canada, we are in the midst of a legislated end to the postal strike, which is good because I am waiting for a big cheque to come in the mail. 

In sad news from Hollywood, Peter Falk has died. Also gone, former CNN sports anchor Nick Charles, from cancer.

In news from the courtrooms, Conrad Black is back in the clink, Lindsay Lohan was in trouble again, and the Casey Anthony trial drags on.

PIXAR made motion picture history this weekend -- its release Cars 2 has given the vaunted CGI animation house its first critical dud in history. A dismal 34 percent Rotten at Rotten Tomatoes. Well, I guess you can't win them all.

On the positive side, Cars 2 did win the weekend box office, beating Cameron Diaz's raunchy flick Bad Teacher. Speaking of which ---nice outfit, Cameron. No actress in Hollywood today can don the denim shorts quite like Cameron Diaz.

That's all for now.

Friday, June 24, 2011

J-E-T-S, JETS, JETS, JETS!

Well, to no one's surprise the new NHL team in Winnipeg will have the same name as the old NHL team in Winnipeg -- they will be the Winnipeg Jets. It was announced tonight in St. Paul at the draft.

I think they had to call them the Jets -- otherwise people there would have rioted. (Canadians tend to do that.) Honestly, people were calling this team the Jets long before the name was officially chosen.

We heard all these stories about how the ownership group really wanted a different name and to go a different direction. I think they really were intending to call them the Manitoba Moose, the name of the AHL team they owned! But how could they call them any name other than Winnipeg Jets with magazine covers like this one practically declaring the "Jets" were back, and with all the NHL fans celebrating in the streets wearing Jets jerseys. I didn't see a single one of those folks wearing Moose jerseys. Did you?

I think the True North owners got some hard lessons about what the fans really thought of the Moose franchise and their name -- they thought it was a second-rate substitute for what they really wanted. They didn't want to cheer for a team called the Moose, or the Falcons or whatever other name was being thought up.They wanted to cheer for the Jets.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

FLOOD IN MINOT

I am watching live streaming coverage of the major flooding that is hitting Minot, North Dakota right now. Over 10,000 people have been ordered to get out right now. They are having press conferences down there talking about disaster assistance.From the looks of it, basically the entire middle of the city is going to be flooded, right where the river is. What a sad scene.

I am very familiar with Minot due to numerous trips across the border to the place. It is "the" most popular cross-border shopping destination for folks living in Saskatchewan, and unlike a lot of places in the USA it looks like a fairly safe and friendly place. They really deserve better down there, but then again, this isn't the first time Minot or even North Dakota has had to deal with floods.

Folks in southeast Saskatchewan have had to deal with flooding, too, and worse yet, the crop insurance people have walked out on strike right in the middle of our own floods. I hope to ask Premier Brad Wall some flood-related questions tomorrow night at a dinner in Meadow Lake that I plan to cover -- assuming he's there. I wonder whether all this other flood-and-strike nonsense will tie him up and scuttle his whole northwest trip.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

MISS USA PAGEANT 2011 IS TONIGHT -- PROMISES TO BE HARD-HITTING AGAIN

Well, now that all the sports finals are over with we can move on to the next big sporting event: determining who's the most beautiful girl in the USA. That's right, it's Miss USA tonight in Las Vegas, and AS USUAL it's on my favorite network NBC at 9/8 Central. (7 pm where I am.)

And it promises to be another one of those nights with the judges bound to ask politically-charged questions of the hapless contestants. Apparently all these girls are scared to death about the questions they'll be asked. They are all worried they'll get hit with some loaded question and put their foot in it, and turn themselves into the next Carrie Prejean (pictured).

You remember her, she was the ex-Miss California who was asked about gay marriage by Perez Hilton and gave her unenthused reaction to the whole idea, got in trouble for that and other things, and eventually had to give up her title. 

You know, this says it all about the United States right now. Instead of a contest celebrating beauty, we have a contest that's now all about politics and hot-button issues. The USA needs a little less politics, in my opinion. Political divisions are ruining the United States of America and every aspect of life there, including the beauty contests. That's my, uh, opinion.

Oh, and as an aside,  HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

LAST WORD ON THE BRUINS

I'm not going to talk any more about the rioting. Instead, some last links to some opinions on the Stanley Cup, with the victory parade going on right now.

Fairweather hockey fan Bill Simmons had some good things to say about both being roped back into following hockey again and about the Boston Bruins victory itself.

Also, Chris Jones had some things to say about Canada's collective misery over the last 18 years without a Stanley Cup win for this country. It's now up to 19 years and counting.

(You know, they should never have taken 2005 off -- that could have been the year one of these Canadian teams would have shocked the world and won the Cup. But we'll never know.)

Friday, June 17, 2011

TIME TO TURN THE PAGE

So long, hockey season.
Bring on FOOTBALL SEASON. Go Riders!!!!

HEF'S BLONDE BOMBSHELL

Well, guys, I'm excited because we have a big wedding this weekend. That's right. Hugh Hefner, Mr. Playboy himself, has finally decided to settle down and will be tying the knot with his gorgeous blonde Playmate bride Crystal Harris! Yes, this is a wedding that is sure to be...

See this is what happens when the television is showing nonstop coverage of hockey riots in Vancouver: you miss out on the real news. 

Anyway, it's a good thing it was this wedding and not Wills and Kate that was called off. In the latter case, there would have been a riot. A big one.

We don't really know the real story behind this latest breakup, although one story had these two breaking up after a fight over the phone. Some of the rumors are really wild -- like the one about how Crystal was going to dump Hef at the altar during the wedding itself and do a reality show on it for big money. I really found that rumor unbelievable.There was also a rumor she was cheating on Hef with Dr. Phil's son. Then there's what Crystal said to ET the other day. Honestly, I have no clue.

This breakup happened so suddenly that the issues of Playboy prematurely declaring Miss Harris to be Mrs. Crystal Hefner were already printed! They had to put stickers on all of them declaring her to be a Runaway Bride. How embarrassing, but then again I think Playboy is pretty much beyond embarrassment anyway. These should sell like hotcakes.

See, this is why I like to post about Playboy, they provide endless juicy material for folks to write about. Someone needs to get a reality show about the Mansion back on the air -- this stuff is too good.

Speaking of which, it's nice to see ex-Girls Next Door Holly, Bridget and Kendra all back together again consoling Hef. He'll at least feel a little better about things. Some guys just aren't cut out for marriage.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

MORE ABOUT THE MORONS IN VANCOUVER

I have more to say about what went down last night in Vancouver after the Canucks lost 4-0 to the Boston Bruins in game seven of the Stanley Cup finals.

First of all, I am not with the people who are referring to these looters as "Canucks fans." There are hockey fans, and then there are people who aren't really fans but use hockey games as their excuse to party, get drunk and be idiots. This latter situation is what we have here.

Don't confuse these jerks outside Rogers Arena who were looting and setting cars on fire with the real fans, the ones who were actually in the arena and who were behaving with more class after their team lost. Those fans were even clapping for Tim Thomas when he got the Conn Smythe award. (Although I did notice they were throwing bottles at Gary Bettman. I guess they couldn't keep all the idiots out of the arena.)

Second -- where the heck were the police? I know that they were a little overwhelmed, but weren't any lessons learned from 1994? They should have had every cop in the province in Vancouver on Wednesday, prepared for the worst. Instead, these guys in charge had their heads in the sand about what would happen. I heard the police say on the radio before the game that they didn't expect a repeat of 1994 because most young people weren't born back then and it was a different group of people now. Right.

They should have taken a few lessons from the folks in Boston about how to deal with the idiots, because Boston has had plenty of experience dealing with celebrations gone out of control in the past few years before finally getting a handle on it.

The police in Vancouver were saying they expected it to be more like the Olympics when everyone was behaving themselves and there was a great festive atmosphere. But that's different -- the Olympics tend to attracts a higher class of people than hockey games. Those Olympics visitors are usually people who can't be bothered with looting places or getting drunk in public. All in all, a poor show by the city of Vancouver for not being ready for the inevitable rioting that everyone knew was going to happen with the Stanley Cup.

Finally, all I gotta say is -- why bother rioting? It was only a hockey game. Hockey games are no reason to stage a riot. Instead, stage riots over things that are important -- like if the people are going hungry or something like that. Like I say -- these rioters and looters are idiots.

Oh, and as an aside, these looters were shown on TV all over Canada. Nice going, you fools -- you just gave the prosecutors plenty of evidence to use against you in a court of law. Enjoy your time in the cells, you so-called "fans."

ANOTHER BADLY BEHAVING POLITICIAN BITES THE DUST

I gotta say I am so proud of myself for lasting so long at this blog without mentioning Anthony Weiner. Unfortunately, the luck runs out today.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

RIOTS IN VANCOUVER

What a sad scene in Vancouver again, just like in `94, all because of a 4-0 loss in the Stanley Cup final game by the Canucks to Boston.

Although I think it would have happened if it went the other way, too. Sadly I am not surprised.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

STARTING TODAY: 24 HEURES DU MANS

Just a reminder to myself that Le Mans is on. Live audio is here.

UPDATE: What can I say? What a crazy race it was.



First, Audi's Allan McNish crashes into a wall and the whole car flies into pieces, and people are worried he might have been killed, but he walks away unharmed. Then later, Audi loses another car as Mike Rockenfeller's car gets into an even worse crash and also flies into pieces, and everyone thought the poor guy might also have gotten killed -- but he survived, too. It's a miracle that Audi managed to hold off their rivals Peugeot given all the problems with their cars getting into particularly scary crashes, but the third Audi car driven by Andre Lotterer finished the 24 hours and won the race. Wow.

Too much drama for one team to handle in a day. Auto racing is great, but not when you get so close to the edge like that.

Friday, June 10, 2011

MILLER LITE LITEGUARDS MAKE WATCHING THE CUP FINALS A GOOD THING

You folks in Canada watching the Stanley Cup on CBC are really missing out. As usual, the best commercials during a major sporting event on TV are on in the States. This time Miller Lite has ads showing the gorgeous Miller Lite lifeguard girls - or in this case, Liteguards. (Shades of Baywatch -- I loved that silly show, it gave my brain a chance to relax.)

I've been seeing these pop up on NBC during the hockey games. It almost makes watching "Doc" Emrick and the crew instead of Ron and Don worth it.

If you are wondering who the gorgeous girls are, they are Sabina Gadecki, Aria Pullman and Candice Loper. I know, this gig won't win anyone an Oscar, but it's a paycheck.

Ads like these make watching the Stanley Cup fun -- it's better than watching guys with beards biting each others' ears off on the ice. Vancouver now leads the Cup finals 3-2.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

CHEATERS NEVER PROSPER, AND OTHER NEWS FROM NOWHERE

Welcome to another big News from Nowhere, and the big news in the past number of weeks has been all the marital infidelity and overall bad behavior from all your favorite politicians.

By now everyone knows about the marital woes for ex-California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and wife Maria Shriver, who is now getting ready to take her cad husband to divorce court, and the cleaners, for fathering a love child with the family maid. If you read the supermarket tabloids it looks even worse on Ahhnold, with rumors of even more infidelity and other potential kids he fathered. Wow.

Shriver has apparently taken on "Disso Queen" lawyer Laura Wasser to handle the split. Now Ahhnold has hired a lawyer, too. Good luck Arnold; you'll need it, given the divorce laws in California.

The bad behavior of one John Edwards, ex-VP candidate, not only got him written out of his wife's will but in even bigger trouble; federal criminal charges for illegal campaign spending to cover up his extramarital flings while on the campaign trail. Wow, I dunno about this one. I know he's a cad and reprehensible and so on, and should probably never hold high office ever again, but going to jail because your campaign covers up the fact you are a cad? Isn't the whole point of a campaign supposed to be to make your candidate look good? What was he supposed to do -- admit he was cheating in the middle of the campaign?

I've got to look into these allegations a little more closely, because it seems a little bit over-the-top to charge someone with federal crimes for having an affair. Also, if Edwards goes to jail maybe they should re-open the files on Bill Clinton, because this is going to mean open season on wife-cheaters and other scoundrels in politics.

Of course there are the ongoing criminal charges against disgraced IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was supposed to run for President for the French Socialists but now faces sexual assault charges in New York. He sounds like he's an even worse individual given his reported antics.

Honestly, what's gotten into these guys? They are giving all of us men a bad name.

On the flip side, and in order to show that some females are also not angels sometimes -- the Casey Anthony trial is under way in Florida and has been going for a few days now. That's that woman accused of killing her kid Caylee. I've been watching the live streams of the trial and following some of the reporting of it from Nancy Grace's website and at Caylee Daily and elsewhere.

I've missed out on a lot of pop culture news lately -- such as who won the Cannes Film Festival. And of course, Oprah's last show.

Also, Cheryl Cole has already been fired as a judge before even beginning production for Simon Cowell's sure-fire hit FOX show The X Factor because apparently dumb Americans can't get past her thick British accent.

And Jeff Conaway of TAXI and Grease fame has died. Also gone: wrestling legend The Macho Man Randy Savage.

I know, this is all old news, but my arm has been kind of on strike lately, along with Canada Post and everyone else in this country. So now I am catching up.

Finally, it is great times to be a hockey fan in Canada. Winnipeg is back in the NHL and fans have already bought up all the 13,000 season tickets that were on sale. Meanwhile, the Vancouver Canucks are just two wins away from bringing the Stanley Cup back to Canada after long exile in the USA.

That's all for the moment.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

TWISTER HITS SPRINGFIELD

Wow. You know it is a bad year for tornadoes when even Springfield, Mass. is getting socked. Already four people dead tonight from the storm.

Folks in Boston are having to watch Game One of the Bruins-Canucks series in the middle of a massive thunderstorm. Well, I hope it doesn't turn into a tornado.

I plan to do a News from Nowhere sometime soon. My arm is just too lazy at the moment.