This sounds like an exciting game.

Well, not really. But it was a game, and the Eskimos pull out a miracle victory over the Wheatherders. The team improves to 2-6, which isn't impressive. There's a reason I didn't watch today's game. I just hope they don't get the impression that somehow not sucking is an indication of their skill rather than an aberration.

Edmonton has a sad history of mistaking temporary team success for being impressive.


"We'll Show You Ours" -- The 29th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival: Main Page

(this post is "sticky" and will remain at the top of the page until Monday, August 23rd. Scroll down for new content)

It's that time of year again: time for yours truly to hit up the Edmonton Fringe. Just like last year, this page will serve as the central hub for all 2010 fringe related materials. Event reviews, site reviews, and most importantly: play reviews. You can look at last year's portal page here, and the 2007 Edmonton Fringe portal page can be found here.

As before, I don't really know what I'm seeing yet, I have actually yet to pick up a program, and typically I try to hold off until I get some feedback and know what's happening. As always, I have one rule about seeing Fringe plays:

No fags.

In 2009 I reviewed fifteen plays. How many will I review this year? Er, probably not as many. And certainly not this piece of dreck. -ed] But time will tell. The poor weather forecast may become an issue: its hard to enjoy the beer tent and the sight of hot girls wandering about when its 19 Celsius and raining. (Actually, the first full day of the 2009 Fringe was also +19, but it also got up in the high 20s later on, and we had a warmer summer overall).

Oh, one thing in particular you may wish to read from last year is the George Orwell is Not My Real Name review to see why you should check ahead of time where a play is: the site has expanded off Whyte Avenue, and this could get you into trouble.

Day 1: The Tornado! A Musical Prairie Tragicomedy
Day 2: The Sputniks
Day 3: Caligula: The Musical, Sh!tshow, It's Raining in Barcelona
Day 4: History of Lost and Found, An Informative Guide on How to Climb the Corporate Ladder
Day 5: Drive
Day 6: Fortress Mentality
Day 7: Under the Mango Tree, The Excursionists: A Matter of Seconds

Comments are disabled for this post, but can be made on the individual pages that will make up Third Edge of the Sword's fringe content.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 7

Underneath the mango tree
Me honey and me can watch for the moon
Proponents of Canada's loose-as-Darrin-Hagen's-anus immigration policy tend to have some wonky beliefs. The total list is too much to get into here, but amoung them is the concern that by bringing them over here, the Third World can be "saved" from poverty. There are of course many strong arguments against this point, but while we tend to focus on the economic harm caused by giving incentive for their best and brightest to move away, Under the Mango Tree looks more at the human cost of whisking men away from their families.

Timal is one of the Hindu minority in Fiji: her mother has died, leaving her father and her grandparents to raise her. When she turns ten, her father leaves for Canada, where she is assured he will soon become rich and be able to bring her with him. To give away the ending, this never happens: over the next decade or so of Timal's life she is forced to endure letters only, distancing her from the family in Fiji determined to arrange a marriage and keep her there in the village. Playwright-cum-actress Veenesh Dubois does a pretty good job with her material here, (mostly) effortlessly switching between the characters. Her frantic acting style results in the need for a mid-play break, which is used with a live-action expression of a letter from home (the $2 bill makes a surprise appearance) which helped the audience as well when we started becoming a little weary or her performing. It's almost disappointing that some of the other letters weren't expressed in a similar way, though most of the letters required Timal to provide mini-editorials.

As the play nears its end, however, heartache begins to reign, and when a now grown and married Timal leaves her own young daughter to visit Canada in her father's illness the parallels of the two Canadian departures doesn't even have time to resonate before Timal arrives just in time for a funeral, cursing and spitting on the affluent country that somehow decided that it needed an additional blood sacrifice from her long-lost father. As the immigration debate ebbs and flows, its a subtle reminder that we impose not only an economic hardship on every foreign family who's hardest workers abandon them and their families.

Ever since DeWitt's formulation of the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics, science fiction has loved the notion that each decision we make creates a parallel universe in which that decision took place. Ignoring briefly that the same story which used the many-worlds interpretation will also involve some device who's operation is dictated by the Copenhagen interpretation or a von Neumann interpretation, once writers find themselves in this world, all sorts of wacky events can take place.

This is what The Excursionists: A Matter of Seconds looks into. The sequel (apparently) to an earlier work I never saw, features Victorian inventor Goggins and his high-society idiot friend Necksycracksy. Goggins has created time machines out of two bathyspheres with clocks on them, and the two of them travel through history on a whirlwind adventure. Their thrills start in 1509, where it seems they have accidentally beheaded Henry VIII on his coronation day. Escaping the mobs, they travel to 1613, where Shakespeare puts on a play about the beheading in which Goggins and Necksycracksy feature prominently. As they try to ponder how this could have happened, the story cuts away to Necksycracksy and Goggins....but this time Necksycracksy is the genius professor while Goggins is the bumbling politico. It transpires that these two Victorian explorers also built a time machine, with the express purpose of going back and assassinating Henry VIII. This is explained as required for France to invade England, although we know full well that the only way you can travel back in time to let France win a war is the complete annihilation of the opposing country.

This is where the fresh take on the parallel universe theory is so appreciated: through some remarkably clever stage techniques, Christopher Bange and Professor Jonah Von Spreecken do battle with the parallel versions of themselves, encounter each other in numberous settings, do battle with themselves, and ultimately kill themselves. There is a little bit of crowd involvement in this work, which I'm not particularly a fan of. There's also self-referential fringe jokes in this work, which I'm also not particularly a fan of. However, there is enough high adventure and gags and snappy writing to make The Excursionists worth a look.

Good news for visiting Torontonians in Edmonton

Today, August 21st 2010, is the day Edmonton's total length of 'day' (ie. sun above the horizon) finally becomes shorter (14h 25m 05s) than Toronto's amount of sunshine on June 21st 2010, the longest day of the year (15h 26m 45s).

Toronto will get 15h 26m 44s on the longest day of the year next year (June 21, 2011), and we will pass that with 15h 27m 06s of sunlight on May 7, 2011.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 6

The human brain has an immense capacity to fill needed gaps in our psyche. This is what is explored in Fortress Mentality, where a man struggling in a post-apocalyptic horror defeats solitude by letting his brain invent a Nymph, a gorgeous piece of fairy-tail who loves him and helps him out and gives him the companion that some slow disease seems to have taken away. For the first 1/4 of this play, the man and his nymph talk about his collection of books which line "the fortress", in which he lives. He also had some vinyl records kicking around, though its unclear how he would enjoy them without power. He collects river water to boil until its safe to drink, keeps a lookout on the horizon for a civilization that is destined never to come, and with the help of the girl that doesn't exist carries his mental state along fairly well.

Until he learns there is another survivor.

By halfway through the play we are at the meat of the production: arguments and discussions and personal revelations are let loose between the man and this stranger. The stranger builds a bridge between their houses (putting to rest our wondering if this was a real "fortress"), and tries to converse, and in general provides the companionship that the first man's brain has finally gotten around to convincing itself wasn't ever coming and would never need to be dealt with. Nymph slowly fades out of the picture as the two men come to grips with the concept of talking to real life people (its indicated that the stranger himself has his own nymph which he seems to be harsh with for much of the work).

While an interesting idea, with the mental stresses of solitude being worth exploring, Fortress Mentality seems afraid of confronting it. The play ends on a decidedly unsatisfying conclusion: having built up a sense of impending mystery and plot-twisting, ultimately nothing happens. A Three's Company style misunderstanding at the end serves as the denouement which hardly seemed fitting. There's a brief message about the perils of being true to yourself in a social world, but now that they live in a world without a society neither man tries to fully embrace their identity.

Loriel Medynski is quite hot and approachable as the nymph, though I would have tried to cast identical twins as "Nymph" in identical outfits and have the stranger's nymph turn out to be exactly like the first man's when we got to see both simultaneously. Alas, was never to be. Mat Simpson, who plays the protagonist, looks like Dave Foley...actually no, he looks more like the kid I went to highschool with who looked like Dave Foley. Meanwhile the stranger, played by Justen Bennett, had a very Scott Bakula look to him. This is one of those off-the-beaten-track plays, so be prepared to hoof it to 100th street and 80th avenue when your showtime comes up.

2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 5

Ah, the open road. Themes centered around the topic of our love affair with automobiles are highly prominent in Drive, one of the more unique shows you will encounter at this year's Edmonton Fringe Festival.

For one, Drive takes place outside, at a skating rink behind Catalyst Theatre. In it, a variety of automobiles and traffic signs litter the lawn and the actors themselves are the ushers who take your ticket and hand you your program. It opens up with some interpretive dance...heavy on the interpretive: the actors move about in a creepy robotic fashion, which I suppose is to remind us that despite our aforementioned vehicular lovin', they are just pieces of mere equipment. A similarly planned 'traffic jam' routine also is completely lifeless and uninteresting. Fortunately, the real interpretive dance stuff is all gotten over with relatively quickly, and the performers start talking and performing skits and only dancing a bit to keep their ballet membership cards active.

Some of the skits are pretty good: while there is a bit of sexual overtone to some of the monologues about the car, the winner by far has to be where a girl treats her old Nissan pickup as a person, near-tears demanding more and more experimental surgeries for little or no benefit at huge financial cost which the doctor (mechanic) is fighting her over. It's a slightly sobering look that we are so desperate to hold onto our old favorite vehicle even when no medical ethicist on the planet would allow us to treat our grandmother in this way.

Along with cars as family members and cars as sex objects, the big philosophical point about cars is that they are in fact political statements: the teenager skipping away from home is perhaps the best example of this. The car exists in a large part (its hard to remember with the GM and Chrysler bailouts) as a giant 'fuck you' to controlling governments. I would have greatly preferred to see more along these lines.

Drive is a surprisingly enjoyable bit of ballet, though an outdoor fringe show is fraught with risks: this year in the form of mosquitoes in overdrive for the first half of of the festival and thick acrid BC smoke in the second half. You may recognize the poster, featuring red-haired beauty Holly Cinnamon looking deliciously smoking in high heels sprawled inside a pickup truck. I'm here to warn you that until the final number the entire cast is in mechanics coveralls. Even then, only Tessa Stamp and Julia Wong look impressive in their outfits. For all the talk of cars as sex objects, they forgot that hot ballet dancers can be sex objects too.

Drive features the aforementioned Cinnamon, Tessa Stamp, and Facebook-privacy-obsessed Anastasia Maywood, Kelsie "Whedonverse" Acton, David Son, and Julia Wong. At the finale, they all board a car to the tune of various automobile-related music. Yet as they drove off, they missed the chance to play one of the greats...

Riding along in my automobile
My baby beside me at the wheel



A couple weeks ago CBC Radio was talking about "the sophisticated counter-surveillance technology" found at a drug bust and why this meant that the drug industry was so well funded with advanced equipment.

I assume they realized how dumb that was, as future print stories never mentioned it.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 4

The History of Lost and Found is about a man and woman who work in the deep basement of a privately owned transit company who are responsible for the Lost and Found. Erik (Evan Moesher) is smarter than he appears, a scientifically curious man who gets to spend at least some of his time up at the actual busses. Emily (Keira McDonald) is left down below to catalog the items. When they're together, they both act out little homemade skits using the lost and found items as props and costumes. Unfortunately, something called "the cat incident" means that at least one of them is going to be fired, unless they come up with a daring plan. This work is not really suited for public audiences, its the sort of thing that would-be actors have to perform to a casting agent to show their chops. The mini-skits really drag this play down: when the plot is being advanced its half-decent entertainment. But there's only so many slight variations in accents and nuances before the mini plays start to become incredibly dull and drag the work down. I understand that the mini-plays are necessary for the characterization, but they didn't need that many: the plot just gets going in time to die down again. History of Lost and Found turns out to be lost far too quickly, and then comes the slow drive until it's history.

In An Informative Guide on How to Climb the Corporate Ladder, playwright Gavin Williams leads the audience on a brief overview of living the world of a big faceless company. He begins with the job interview, with the halfways clever notion that your answers to interview questions should be about how your personality matches that of the company you work for. Unless you're working for BP, perhaps? From there it moves onto the various types of jobs, and the details of office politics. Williams is high energy and keeps the pacing very tight, especially in the early part of the play. Michael Roik and Renee Amber are solid though not exceptionally impressive as the supporting cast, and the romance subplot kind of stalls out at the end. As you can expect from staving artists, the play's ultimate message is that you should quit your corporate job and...survive...somehow. Remember kids, Gavin Williams never heard that line "don't give up your day job" that your Dad is given at family parties every time he tries to be Johnny Carson.

Like a corporate training seminar that features a slightly embarrassing role-playing exercise, An Informative Guide on How to Climb the Corporate Ladder could stand to have been a little bit longer with more of the interesting "meaty" part and less of the unnecessary distraction.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 3

I have a fairly airtight "no fags" rule that has turned out to not only be extremely popular but an excellent way of avoiding bad material. Though Caligula: The Musical certainly violates the sodomist ban in the first thirty seconds of orgy material, it turns out to be okay. Like the grand films of old, Caligula's uranist tendencies are the gateway to a whole realm of immoral and frightening behavior which ultimately sees him killed. It's from the finest Shakespearean traditon in that regard. The play is about the historical Roman figure, but more precisely its in the spirit of the 1979 Malcolm McDowell film.

Caligula (Evan Terlesky) wants to be Caesar: not only will he be the absolute ruler of Rome that he and his army boy-toy Macro (Chad Carlson) feel is his destiny, but he'll finally get the chance to bed his own sister (Alyssa Billingsley). (If you thought Cruel Intentions had too much brother-sister love you'll have this work) The news that his grandfather Tiberius (Mikolai Witschl) wishes to see him on a remote island just fits perfectly into his plans. Though Tiberius warns him against it, Caligula kills his grandfather to take the throne, and then all the fun begins. Well, except for everybody around him. After making his soldier fairy into the head of the Praetorian Guard, Caligula instantly implicates him in the murder and drives him to suicide. From there, his proclamations get more and more irrational as it turns out there is a group of Tiberius loyalists anxious to put ineffectual Hacker-esque uncle Claudius (Brendan Fraser) under the laurels.

I would be lament if I didn't stress that this was not the play to bring kids or the squeamish to: in addition to an opening song likely titled "Pussy (That's What I Want)", at one point Caligula finally gets sex with his sister while simultaneously having her raped by his horse. And this is shown. Be warned.

The songs are relatively well done, though Alyssa Billingsley's voice is far too loud and piercing compared to the rest of the cast: some lyrics were completely unintelligible as her voice cut out any sounds with elocution coming from the rest of the cast. One musical issue I had was that the play opened with a 4-6 minute long piano solo by Brendan Fraser, which was perhaps a little unnecessary. The pacing is fairly quick, and while the runtime goes by generally smoothly there isn't all that much great dialog. Near the end Caligula bursts into a song arguing that his thirsting and lust for power would occur to anybody placed in the situation, though not only is this not borne out by what we've seen of Tiberius himself but we never see Caligula acting "like anybody else". He's a sick and depraved individual when we first encounter him and he hasn't really "arced" throughout the play: the only arc to speak of is Drusilla (the sister), who starts off just as depraved as him and lusting after her brother only to later see the error in her ways and end her life in sadness when horse rape was more important to him than her sweet sweet luscious touch.

There's really only one mystery in this play I don't get: Kristen Omerzu (last seen in Lutheran church ceremonies) plays both Gemellus (Claudius's younger brother, who he also sexually molests) and an anonymous concubine. As Gemellus she's put in lose clothes and made to look like a pre-pubescent boy. As the concubine she's in loincloth panties and a bra. In the former she (properly) gives all appearances of being totally flat chested. In the bra we see that her rack is huge. Where the hell does it go??

Sometimes when you leave a building you think to yourself "this was a shitty play". If you go to see Sh!tshow you can declare this whether you liked the play or not. Its all about shit, or at least that's how it bills itself.

What it really is when you get there is a set of skits about bathroom related topics. Skat takes centre stage, though urine and masturbation make appearances as well. Actors Ben McIvor, Will Mitchell, Amber Muller, and Liz Rodriguez take us through a variety of issues regarding the bathroom (though the largest issue, lid up or down, is only briefly referenced and no acknowledgment is made of the obvious choice that the lid is left in place by whoever last used it). Where the work does best is when it sticks to its oeuvre, namely staying on the topic of shit. The choose your own adventure segment is fairly good, as are the "Taco King" and "maybe its just a fart" gags. Will Mitchell's powerpoint talk into categories of feces is fairly entertaining as well. Where Sh!tshow falls apart like a Type 2 after its been out in the sun too long is in the non-dung aspects of the play. While watching Muller and Rodriguez catfight and later intimately maneuver around in bra and panties in a Brazilian wax sequence is best described as awesome (Rodriguez had those protuding nipples going for her while Muller's rack is frankly obscene in its massivity, hence my linking to her Facebook profile above), McIvor and Muller are in a 3-segment and overly dramatic and excruciatingly painful skit about a positive pregnancy test or seven. The masturbation segment was neither funny nor insightful. In the end, Sh!tshow is a solid but hardly fiber-filled exploration into the bowel. For probably the best example of this sort of piece and what should have been the inspiration for the play, let's just leave it all up to the masters, okay?

Sometimes a fictional work moves into an exotic location to provide a sense of newness. Sometimes this is done for seemingly no reason and it almost never becomes a plot point, while at other times the exotic locale is entirely essential for the story at hand. Its Raining in Barcelona is a prime example of the former. At no point in the play does Barcelona become critical to the plot, which is odd since the setting is brought up in the title. While there's a couple Europeans in the work, the play wouldn't have been much different had the play stayed in Saskatoon. Lali (Leora Joy Godden) is a call girl who's best client David (Alan Long) isn't interested so much in sex as reading her quotations and trying to expand her mind: while admittedly getting her half naked or some such thing. David's interests partially coincide with the world-wise playboy image her boyfriend Carlos (Jeffrey Pufahl) likes to project: he quizzes her on quotations as well. As David learns of Carlos, emotions run strong, arguments ensue, all that usual love triangle stuff. While the writing isn't bad, the plot doesn't progress all that well and the actors are not entirely throwing all of themselves into the parts. Long's David is just the right mix of everyday Joe and slightly perverted guy pretending to be everyday Joe the rest of his life, but Lali seems to have a veil of uncaring paled over everything she does. When the female role has to carry the entire piece, its a shame when it fails to click.

It's Raining in Barcelona has its own website, though, so you can see the trailer and see for yourself.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 2

Autobiographical and semi-autobiographical plays tend to litter around Fringe Theatre Festivals much like, well, the actual litter of Fringe Theatre Festivals. Like the litter itself, some of them turn out to be gems, but the majority of them turn out to be pretty much shit. The problem is that the egos of playwrights and performers are hard to contain, and they remain convinced that they can make their life interesting. A challenge for them would be to pick some random person -- say, a prominent Edmonton blogger? -- and turn that guy's life into an interesting little one-man show put on by somebody maybe not quite as handsome as me but in the same vein. Kiefer Sutherland perhaps?

Fortunately for all concerned, The Sputniks is not one of those plays: though it certainly feels like it at first. Elison Zasko starts us off by introducing us to the narrator, Katyana [no playbill was provided, so if the cast or crew don't like how we spelt the names here its all your fault. -ed], a precocious young thing who seemed to be of school age but young enough that her memory was faulty when "the event" occured. She is talking to her father Boris and her mother Tatyana -- both played by Zasko in this one-woman show -- about life in the Soviet Union before they came to Canada.

As Jewish intellectuals, they had to first endure prejudice in mother Russia, suspicions abounding about their loyalty to the state. Through the pains of lineups and homemade pickles, Boris talks about his courtship of Tatyana and the two of them tell their daughter the story of their slavic life, more prejudice in Austria and later in a Swedish sanitorium before the "present day" part of the story, which for various reasons is hard to pin down. The 1968 Polish crisis is a little too recent, though Jewish refugees continued to depart from the Soviet Union until 1989.

Zasko is fairly adept at the physical and vocal aspects of playing the multiple characters (at my count she plays a total of 5), and particularly Tatyana's metamorphosis through time. Parts of the story tend to drag, and its ironic at one point that Boris (who knows nothing of creative writing) tries to talk about story structure explain to the audience and Tatyana that a story should have "an introduction, a climax, and a conclusion" seeing as how the play itself suffers from a bit of a problem of structure. The mostly liner narrative breaks from linear just often enough to be confusing, not often enough to suit the drama. The play is meant to be read as a serious drama with a dash of humour, but a combination of the actress and the audience means that too many scenes which need to be played out straight are instead milked for a quick laugh.

The Sputniks, as I suppose I should have surmised from the title characters, does have a bit of a science fiction twist ending which retroactively redeems much of the play. However, unlike movies with twist endings its not really possible to "go back" and rewatch it to catch all the subtle-ish clues and moments that you missed. Still, its not a semi-autobiographical work. And for that we should be eternally grateful.


2010 Edmonton Fringe Review Day 1

The wind in the wires made a tattletale sound
And a wave broke over the railing

If you're a fan of music about windstorms, you can't go wrong with Gordon Lightfoot's incredible classic The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald. If you're attending a play at the 2010 Edmonton Fringe, however, there is no play featuring the music of Gordon Lightfoot. Instead, if you want musical storm content you'll be best served by checking out The Tornado!: A Musical Prairie Tragicomedy.

In the play, the fictional town of Red Pine, Alberta was founded on the endearing love and Protestant work ethic of the first homesteader. His son (or grandson, the dialog suggests both) did well for himself, becoming "small town rich" [this line doesn't appear in the play, its entirely copyright Third Edge of the Sword Industries. -ed] and mayor of the town as well. Unfortunately, their idyllic prairie lifestyle cannot possibly survive the dual evils of both a tornado and the CBC landing on the same day. What town could?

The show features music (composer Rob Mitchelson has a MySpace page featuring so far two songs, but sadly not Our Town (Is Better) which is the best work of the play), puppets, and an impressively large red pine prop which fortunately isn't quite wide enough to conceal Sarah Sharkey's impressive figure when she hides behind it. It also features a lot of F-bombs and course language. Like, a lot of course language. And sexual content. The program itself advises 14+, so all the parents angry about the bad words in front of their 8-14 year old kids probably should have read the program. If you're a parent who doesn't read programs and does read reviews, there is a lot of swearing here despite the puppets.

Anyways, along with the aforementioned Rob Mitchelson and Sarah Sharkey (if you doubt my characterization of her, doubt no further!), Patrick MacEchern rounds out the cast. They're all competent enough singers, and indeed for the style of music delivered here any sort of Tony-award nominee would ruin it, the performance overstepping the self-imposes small prairie town feel designed for the play. The puppets are a neat dramatic device, allowing for a few bits of intentional and unintentional comedy, but I'm left with a sinking feeling that the puppets were useful moreso that the cast could feel properly detached from the curiously lacklustre script. Basically the plot is about Liz, a bitchy CBC reporter [bonus points for accuracy! -ed] who travels the country doing the Lorraine Mansbridge style fluff pieces on small towns. She hates the job, hates anything outside a perfect city life, and considers being in rural communities the dues she has to pay on her ruthless rise to the top. Ira, the mayor the of town, thinks that her interview with his town-founding grandfather Horatio will spark a new dawn for the community. Ira's son Clay and his girlfriend are having problems that a sexy big city celebrity certainly won't be fixing, and meanwhile the sock puppets around town (no, this isn't an internet personality reference, these are actual sock puppets) whisper rumours that Horatio's story of perfect love on the slow boat from Liverpool to Halifax is the cover for a deeper secret. At the end it turns out this may be true. Or isn't. Having setup a dark deep mystery behind the town (whether you think the concept is worn or not), the writer kinda leaves that plot by the wayside for more jokes involving fucking.

The 65 minute runtime sort of drags a bit, and the most entertaining bit was Rob and his puppet Tom both doing a little silent physical acting. Funny for the first 30 seconds, the next 45 seconds of it was broken up by the laughter that it kept going. Somewhat impressively, he didn't seem to breathe. I'm also guessing that various guest "Tornadoes" will appear throughout the show's run, and the meta-humour of the fourth wall here was probably its only positive occurrence. The Tornado is not a bad play, its suitably entertaining though hardly riveting.

If you want to read more about this play, they have their own blog at http://fringetornado.wordpress.com.

As an aside, the Strathcona Public Library is a very small and intimate gathering. Holding 90 people (really? that many?), if a show in that venue gets a good review and it interests you, buy tickets ahead of time. They won't last.


Traffic Circles with stoplights

Traffic Circles With StoplightsReading about the St. Albert road widening going on right now, and came across this tidbit:

About the Traffic Circle

The City reviewed the feasibility of replacing the traffic circle with a signalized intersection. Construction of a signalized intersection would cost several million dollars, which is not proportionate to the scope of the rehabilitation.

The traffic circle will be redesigned and widened to increase the capacity without the need for a signalized intersection.

Um, I don't mean to be a spoilsport, but the "traffic circle" at Groat and 118th already has a signalized intersection! Nobody in their right mind still considers that to be a "traffic circle".

So does this mean that the City of Edmonton will be removing the lights from this intersection to make it look like a real traffic circle? Or will they continue to leave the lights in place and just have a little berm in the middle? More to the point, will they forego the tickets from the red light camera in place westbound on 118th Avenue, and make the intersection look like this?


Post #1700, Baby!

The blog is still going strong.

Well, strongish. 1700 posts is nothing to sneeze at.


Words used in tweets

From my Tagwalk page:

yeg eglinski like they how about No other get amacisaac tcot only them one its he when Why up ableg as roft maybe would all Don't know dominionpundit New has us BrentWelch use Who take taser now Alberta been Oilers bevurlee still many than their his there rotated can't people


Oh Snap(bird)

SnapBird, really the only way to search old twitter posts at this time. Usually it gets to a number and summarily dies: hopefully this can be resolved sometime in the future.

Prairie Boy Ridin' Dirty beer review

A quick and dirty review of Ridin' Dirty, from Edmonton's Prairie Boy Brewing Company.

A fairly mild and unimpressive/unobjectionable lager, but surprisingly smooth for its 6.2% alcohol content. The girls on the cans are the big draw here, or would be if internet porn didn't exist.


Edmonton Heritage Festival 2010 videos

From my YouTube channel, videos from this year's Servus Edmonton Heritage Festival. Remember that photos from the event are also available.

Inside the Progressive "Mind"

Such as it is...

Beck nails something on here: every time you point out that Progressives are dangerous creatures with a lack of understanding of reality, all the left-wingers give you is endless harassment.

And then you prove that you were right all along.


Twitter Camel Toe joke

Okay, so this is the closest I got yesterday to a picture of a "camel toe". I'll try harder in the future.

Update, August 2 2010, 6:29am: More photos from Heritage Days are now available on my Facebook page.