Good Monday morning!! Welcome back to my weekly newsletter. I hope that you aren’t too upset about my temporary hiatus last week, but as I’ve mentioned in the past, it will happen from time to time. I pride myself on being an excellent multitasker, but every once in a while, I’m just not able to get to the post. Family comes first, right?
What a strange week it has been. The craziness that’s going on everywhere has inspired a new section of the newsletter that I’ve included below. I’m calling it ‘The Current State of Crazy!’ I’m looking forward to this inaugural edition of that! But first…to the events!
St. Patty’s Day
We’ve made it to mid-March, and with that comes one of my favourite holidays of the year…St. Patty’s day, or St. Paddy’s day depending on which you prefer! I have no idea which one is correct, so I’ll use them interchangeably until I know for sure. It’s my annual struggle on which one is accurate. I suppose I could just go with “St. Patrick’s Day” for accuracy, but what fun is that?
It’s the second year in a row where events are significantly limited for this typically beer filled-day and night of debauchery. I remember when I was young, I’d book work off on the 17th each year, and line up at noon or 1pm at the old Grace O’Malley’s on Merivale Road for their huge party. That was the best place to be each year, man it was fun! That annual mess is over for me now that I’ve become an upstanding and responsible adult. Or something. But really, I’ve looked around for St. Patrick’s Day events to discuss this week, and I’m not seeing much to choose from around town, which is actually a good thing, as we all need to do what we can to mitigate the risk of spreading the COVID. Let’s all hope that the pandemic is over soon, and that next year, it’ll be back to Shamrocks and Shenanigans for us all!!! (Remember that song? – “Boom Sha-lock Lock Boom”…..Classic!)
The St. Patty’s Day events that I have been able to find are happening throughout the week at different venues. I’ll keep updating them as I find more over the course of the next few days, so check out the Events Calendar to see what’s going on, but don’t expect too many.
Orpheus Musical Theatre and Show Tunes Showdown
Orpheus Musical Theatre is once again taking part in the Show Tunes Showdown. This event runs annually, and I am happy to see that this year, it will still happen, albeit virtually. There are three teams of four competing to be the best Show Tunes singers in the competition. Representing Orpheus are Julie Seguin (you will remember her from my glowing reviews of Orpheus’ Falsettos and Suzart’s 9 to 5), Rana Laviolette, Axandre Lemours, Joseph Stone (I loved him in Suzart After Dark’s Cabaret) and musical director Steve Vesely (I lauded his performance in Suzart’s James and the Giant Peach). It will be held on April 24th. I’ve got it listed in the Events Calendar, but no times have been posted yet. There is so much talent in the Orpheus portfolio, it’s sure to be amazing!
For more information, check out the Tone Cluster website by clicking here!
This is my random story and features section. These topics don’t necessarily have anything to do with Ottawa. It could include stories about current news issues, sports, funny videos, and/or perhaps just random things that I’ve discovered over the previous week. I hope you enjoy!
What I’m Reading Now:
I’ve started reading a new online book. It’s called “2034: A Novel of the Next World War”. This book came to my attention through my Wired Magazine subscription. Each month over the past half year, a new chapter hit my inbox, and at first, I dismissed it, but now that it’s all released, I took a bit longer of a look and found out that it’s right up my alley!! I’m a huge military strategy fan, and also love an infusion of some spy aspects, particularly Tom Clancy style books. Granted, “2034” does not have the level of research that Tom Clancy put into his books, but the excitement and thrill is still there. It’s a surprisingly light and fast read, as the authors don’t delve into the depths of the history of each character, but rather focus strictly on the present situation. It’s a very believable prophecy of the future, describing the details of the next world war. It has fun additions/predictions of the state of US politics, with references to “former president Pence” and the naming of the “USS Michelle Obama” nuclear submarine. If you like that type of book, you’ll like “2034”. It’s some good, clean, entertaining wartime fun.
“From two former military officers and award-winning authors, a chillingly authentic geopolitical thriller that imagines a naval clash between the US and China in the South China Sea in 2034–and the path from there to a nightmarish global conflagration.” – Amazon
You don’t need a Wired subscription to get it, it can be found on Amazon or anywhere books are sold. Enjoy!
Working from Home?
Anyone with an office job has likely experienced some working arrangement changes due to a year of the pandemic, with many either working from home, or having been temporarily laid off. The “new normal” set in many months ago: home offices were built up, new furniture and equipment were set up, and a new daily routine began for many of us. When the pandemic stretched into July was when I began to suspect that major changes were afoot, with many media outlets reporting on how the future of the office building was shaky at best. I’m guilty of writing the same, but although I do think we’re in for a very transformative future in that industry, I also acknowledge that most likely, many of us will gradually head back to the cubicle farms in some capacity. And that’s ok.
I, for one, HATE the drone life: a morning commute, set working hours, and 8 hours a day in the cubicle farm. Someday I’ll break free of the golden handcuffs of government work, but for the most part, that is still my reality post-pandemic. With Ottawa’s biggest employer being the Federal Government, I imagine that many people will return to their offices/cubicles as well, once it is deemed safe to do so. A quick search has led me to learn that in the National Capital Region (NCR), the Federal Government manages 2160 buildings with an area of over 6.1M square metres. That’s a lot of cubicle space! And while the vast majority of office workers will likely return to their buildings in the Ottawa area eventually, I also think that many may not, particularly in the private sector.
All this to say, buckle down and wait it out. We really don’t know what’s going to happen for sure, but either way, things are going to be different.
Illustration: Michael Kennedy (Wired Magazine)
For a fun read, here’s an article, once again from Wired Magazine, about sneaking into the office to get a break from one’s family life. It’s a short and fun read. https://www.wired.com/story/ooo-im-sneaking-into-my-office-is-this-so-wrong
Here’s a great idea that I came across on CTV News this week. It’s yet another creative way to mix work and home. It offers the best of both worlds….oh, except that you’re totally alone and isolated all the time. Fun!
Current State of Crazy
This is the new section of the blog, and to be honest, I’m not sure where it will fit in going forward. As the blog is transforming from being mostly events-focused to more of a weekly entertainment piece, I figured this is a good fit. In this section, I plan to make a bit of a mockery of the big (or small) news stories or events from the previous week. I won’t just be another news outlet through, so maybe you’ll learn something–but probably not!
Meghan and Harry:
Did anyone watch this?? Of course, you did, it was HUGE!! And yes, I know it is over a week old now, but I took a break last week so I’m playing catch up. I really don’t give 2 poops about the drama that surrounds the royals and their lives, but I’m a huge “Suits” fan, so I watched this Oprah interview in hopes that I’d learn about how Rachel and Mike are doing in Seattle (surprisingly that wasn’t covered). Also, my wife wanted to watch and was controlling the remote, so 90-Day Fiance was relegated to the PVR. I don’t think the things that Meghan said about the royal family were all that bad really – other than the obvious skin colour revelation but that’s a whole other story by itself, and I’m not touching that here.
What I enjoyed about this whole thing is how the reactions poured out of the UK. Meghan was actually pretty great about detailing her strong and positive relationship with Queen Lizzy. All good things to say about her, and the same with much of the actual royal family. It was mostly the business side that she had problems with, and I think that the fact that she called them out for lack of support was great. Again, the fall-out was entertaining for me, once again because I don’t particularly care for the whole “royals” thing, despite proudly living in a commonwealth country. Piers Morgan offered the best source of entertainment in my humble opinion. His little temper tantrum when being called out on his Meghan-bashing on air was amazing! I used to really like Piers on CNN, but what a lunatic! What seasoned media anchor does that? You gotta be able to take it if you give it Piers! Have a look at the ET news story regarding Piers Morgan here:
Masked Singer Season Premier:
I’m sorry, but I have to talk about this mess too. SPOILER ALERT – if you actually care and haven’t watched it yet, I’m going to reveal who was kicked off. This show is so ridiculous, but I love the banter and trying to guess who the costumed celebrities are. I’m really, really bad at guessing, mostly because a lot of the celebrities are people I’ve never heard of. Season 5 kicked off last Wednesday, and the loser (The Snail) was brutal. I think the show has gone too far with this one, because the hidden celebrity inside the snail costume was none other than Kermit the Frog. Really? I was so annoyed. Who’s next, R2-D2? Wilson the Volleyball? Stewie Griffin? Or maybe Drogon? (on that note, I was making a joke but it seems as though it’s been done. First in season 4, there was a dragon costume, and second, there’s “A Dragon’s Song” in existence….ugh).
BC Court Throws Out Man’s Lawsuit:
Seems like an innocent tagline, right? Well, I had to put this in here. Tyler Chamberlain of Nanaimo BC was cycling, and was victim of a hit and run in 2018. This sucks for sure, and definitely a tragic accident, but it doesn’t end there. Tyler decides to sue….everybody. The primary defendant was ICBC (Insurance Corporation of British Columbia), but Tyler was also suing Justin Trudeau, BC Premier John Horgan, and Queen Elizabeth. Tyler argued for the following:
– The reconstruction of the RCMP
– 500,000 shares of Tesla
– The suspension of trade between Canada and China
– The Release of various classified documents
– An MRI of his entire body
– The dismantling of Transport Canada
– And of course, for his pain and suffering, 32 Trillion dollars (yes, with a “T” – That’s twelve 0’s).