Gmail coming out of Beta?

This is meant as a test “Blog This!” from digg.com, but I never realized it was still in beta. Although I did wonder why the invites thingy was still there.

Australian and New Zealand residents are the first in the world to be able sign up for Gmail without having to scrounge for invites from existing users.
As of today, users can sign-up to Google’s Web-based e-mail program by simply registering on the site http://www.gmail.com

read more | digg story

Published in: on August 9, 2006 at 1:40 pm  Leave a Comment  

Jackie Mason defends Mel Gibson (video)

Jackie Mason is a Montreal favourite and he’s been here many times. I was lucky enough to meet him once, when he came into the CJAD studios. Here he is defending Mel Gibson, for Gibson’s drunken rant against jews.

(Thanks to Dvorak Uncensored, where I first saw this video)

Published in: on August 7, 2006 at 10:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

Highway sky

Sky

This picture was kind of blah, so I thought I’d see what I could do with it in photoshop. This was the result.  Nothing spectacular, I know, but I wanted to play around and see what I could come up with.

Published in: on August 6, 2006 at 4:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Painted sewer

This way or that

Decided to take my camera with me on my “walk” the other day. Got a lot of boring old trees and things, but I thought this was kinda interesting.

Published in: on August 6, 2006 at 4:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Rainbow

I said back in June that I’d taken some rainbow pictures. Here’s one.

Rainbow in Pincourt

I took this on my street in Pincourt. It was almost a full rainbow, but I couldn’t figure out how to get it all in the picture.

Published in: on August 3, 2006 at 1:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Lightning strikes again

Daniel Séguin from genestho.ca has done it again. Look at this great lightning shot from last night. Better yet, go to his site and look at if full size. I went out last night with my point and shoot and my camcorder. I got one picture and many minutes of video that I’ll post eventually ( unfortunately I’m having a bit of trouble with my ISP and so I have no access at home.) Daniel, you might remember, has been taking spectacular shots of lightning since the storm we had back in early July. And… sorry, back then I said it would be my last post on lightning… well I guess i lied.

Published in: on August 2, 2006 at 1:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

Iron-on-brick sleeping techniques

It occured to me last night, as I lay in bed for the 4th hour without sleep, that people who work odd shifts are at the mercy of the rest of the world, particularly our neighbours. People who wake up at 3am, as I do, or who work overnight have to sleep sometime. Many of us take naps in the afternoon. Others, especially people who work the graveyard shift, sleep — or would like to sleep — all day long.

The problem is the people who live around us. They are, for the most part, good people. My neighbours, for instance are great and I hope they never move, because I realize how good I have it (no young kids running around the yard.) But they do not, and should not have to tiptoe around the neighborhood when we (odd-hour-sleepers) are trying to sleep. But, what if they decide to smash bricks with a large iron bar 8 feet from your bed. Sure it’s through a brick wall and sure you take steps to minimize outside noise, like wearing ear plugs to sleep, but nothing can mask the repeated, irregular thumping of iron hitting brick.

In my case, outside noise that’s so loud that I can’t sleep is fairly rare occurence, but it does happen now and again and it’s a reminder that we are not our own masters when it comes to sleeping. We sleep at the pleasure of our neighbours.

Here’s some advice from a guy who’s been sleeping odd hours for many, many years.

  • Wear earplugs. I like this kind (although not necessarily that brand.) You can get them at any pharmacy.
  • If you need to, wear a sleep mask (like the one pictured above) or invest in some really thick blinds or drapes.
  • Tell your family, friends and neighbours when you will be sleeping
  • Do not keep a phone in the room where you will be sleeping.
  • Live in a fully detached home, not a semi-detached, a townhouse or an apartment, unless the walls are VERY thick!
  • If you’re going to put a window air conditioner in your bedroom, be aware that you’ll probably have to have it on all the time, while you are sleeping. Your window is no longer fully closed and the wood or plexiglass you have covering part of where the window used to be is not nearly as soundproof as glass.
  • It gets a little easier in the winter when people tend not to linger outside for very long.

And… if you live next to someone who sleeps odd hours

  • If at all possible, avoid banging bricks with large iron bars while your neighbours are sleeping. (Yes, we realize you have the constitutional right to bang anything you want at 1:00 in the afternoon, but just keep in mind well-rested people generally make better nieghbours.)

Feel free to add any advice as a comment below!

Published in: on August 1, 2006 at 2:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Illegal cross-border pesticides

 

Why is your lawn brown and patchy while your neighbour’s is lush and dandelion-free? Well, you can’t buy pesticides legally in Quebec anymore — but you can still get them in Ontario . Hardware stores across the border say Quebecers are buying up pesticides like Killex and Grub-B-Gon by the cartload. Some people are reportedly stocking up for several years worth of the stuff. The Quebec Environment Department isn’t all that bothered, though. It considers cross-border pesticide shopping a marginal phenomenon.
Heard on CJAD 800 in Montreal on 31 July 2006

Are people that desperate to get a “perfect lawn” that they need to do this? My lawn is not perfect, not a pristine dandelion-free expanse of beautiful grass (as my neighbours will attest,) but it’s usually kept pretty neat. It gets mowed every week. Dandelions seem to have two growing seasons: late spring/early summer and then again late summer. If you just make sure you mow them down and try to keep your lawn as healthy as possible with fertilizer, which really does work, then you should be fine.

Published in: on July 31, 2006 at 1:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

Video of my son playing hockey last winter

Published in: on July 30, 2006 at 3:38 am  Leave a Comment  

Vox

I’m testing out a new blogging system called Vox.  I think I might move part of my blog there, and keep some here.  Vox is in the not-ready-for-prime-time phase, although it sure seems pretty darn good to me.  Check it out.

Published in: on July 17, 2006 at 11:40 pm  Leave a Comment