Happy New Year

Happy New Year 2012 Everyone


Winter sport scenes: toboggan hill

Date: 1954-01-30 
Credit/Crédit: City of Ottawa Archives / Archives de la Ville d'Ottawa



Metro Music

My kids have been taking music lessons at Metro Music on Bank St. for a while so I have spent some time hanging out there while they learn. It is in a old commercial building that in the 1920s was a car repair and/or a tire dealership. It has been a music store for while.

Here is an ad from 1966:

Metro Music text ad

Much has changed on that stretch of Bank St., but not everything.


Dow's Lake Causeway

As the water is drained out of the Rideau canal the remains of the Dow's Lake Causeway becomes visible.

I'm not sure when the causeway was removed but the picture below is from the Report and Correspondence of the
Ottawa Improvement Commission (Ottawa, 1912).

A quick picture taken today.

  Dow's Lake Causeway 3

Cropped Map of Dow's Lake

Cropped map of Ottawa from 2nd Edition, 1915, Atlas of Canada


Ottawa International Animation Festival

Sacha and I attended the Ottawa International Animation Festival last weekend. We saw one of the reels in the shorts competition. The collection of shorts was really interesting, if quite dark. We saw a variety of animation techniques from stop motion to hand drawn with markers to a real variety of computer animation. I assume that the shorts were not chosen by theme, but there were a number of shorts that dealt with murder/suicide/death/ and other pretty dark subjects.

Some of the highlights.

Muybridge's Strings, was excellent. An interesting use of different animation styles and a creative approah to the narrative.

Bout, which has a much simpler story was also really well done. The images and sounds from this short stayed with me.

Although the the dark subject matter was alomost relentless, the video for the Hard On's song Everyone Seems to be Out to Get You was one of the few shorts that was also funny.
As well we saw some of the winners!
From the festival website:
The 2011 Nelvana GRAND PRIZE for Best Independent Short Animation ($3,000 CDN) is:
Moxie by Stephen Irwin (UK)
“For its powerful combination of style and narrative, leaving a memorable impression.”
The 2011 Best Graduation Animation is:
I’m Fine Thanks by Eamonn O'Neill (UK & Ireland)
“Strong visuals, brutal honesty and unique voice.”
Honourable Mention:
Birds Walking by Stephanie Delazeri (USA)
“For its refreshing sense of humour.”

All three were good. Both Moxie and I'm Fine Thanks  were visually really interesting as well as being pretty bleak in there own ways.

MetaMaus by Art Spiegelman

boingboing has posted this book trailer for a new book by Art Spiegelman about his brilliant book Maus. Maus is one of my all time favourite books. It can be read in so many different ways I'm curious to read what Spiegelman has to say about it 25 years later.

I haven't been buying many books lately, but this looks like a must-have.

Time for an Update

As usual the site has been neglected for a while. Well, the kids are back in school, the seasons are changing. Time to turn over a new leaf and update the content and technology of the site. I started this site to give the family an online presence and to have a personal sandbox to play with Drupal and other technologies. Time to get back to it.

Lansdowne Park Update

From http://www.letsgetitright.ca/blog/364. A well written summary of recent developments with the Lansdowne Park development. Key paragraphs:

In fact, had the City not abandoned the international design competition it launched in early 2008, redevelopment of Landsowne Park would already be underway. But that open, transparent and competitive process was discarded by the City in favour of a back room deal and an overly-complex scheme to privatize a large part of this valuable public land.

The reality is that it is not FOL that has slowed the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park. The delay is due to the City's decision to proceed with a complex, ill-conceived redevelopment scheme that has disregarded virtually every rule of prudent public planning and fair process. We have hired three of Canada's leading experts in public procurement and accounting who have given sworn evidence roundly criticizing the redevelopment plan as failing to meet any reasonable standard of due diligence.

GleeBE: The Musical

How Much Does it Cost to Make Bread with a Breadmaker?

Bread machines are great. I've been using ours to make bread a few times a week for a couple of years now. I have assumed that it is cheaper to make bread at home than it is to buy it. I finally tried to figure out if this is true.

The prices of the key ingredients vary quite a bit. For this calculation I used the current prices from my local Metro store. Most of the ingredients are sold by weight but are used by volume. Converting kilos to cups or grams to teaspoons is not exact. I used the calculator found on the Gourmet Sleuth website for the conversions.

I have not considered the cost of electricity. When I get the voltmeter back I will add it in.

Ingredient Amount Cost (in dollars)
Salt 1.75 tsp .01
Flour 4 cups .60
Butter 2 tbs .17
Sugar 2 tbs .02

Powdered Milk

2 tbs .14


2 tsp .36
Total Cost per Loaf   $1.29

So, cheaper than than store bought, and usually tastier. The other factor to consider is that I often have leftover bread because it goes stale before we can finish the loaf. Homemade bread goes stale much faster than store bought.

Ads you would never see today

Bell bragging about not having rich shareholders or paying out large dividends.

March 4 1929 Ottawa Citizen 

Ottawa Citizen - Bell Ad March 4 1927



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