Tag Archives: Weird


I see I’m not the only one to notice an eerie similarity between the 2008 U.S. presidential campaign and the final two seasons of The West Wing (which coincidentally is airing now on CLT).

In the West Wing presidential election, the Republican primary is quickly wrapped up by a western, moderate, security-conscious old senator who has to struggle with the fact that he’s losing the support of the religious conservative right. The Democratic primary, meanwhile, drags on for months, with an inside-the-beltway establishment front-runner being unexpectedly eclipsed by an inexperienced lawmaker with modest roots, trying to break the colour barrier and avoid being characterized solely by his race.

(via TV Feeds My Family)

Worst. Kerning. Ever.

Seen at the Berri-UQAM metro:

Horrible kerning

Horrible kerning (2)

Looking at the website of the Rendez-vous du cinéma québécois, I admit it’s possible this comically awful kerning job was done on purpose. But if so, it looks silly.

And the fact they misspelled “québécois” inconsistently (note a missing accent on the second version), I’m thinking maybe Astral Media was just incompetent designing these ads.

Another eBay story too good to be true

Hey, remember that guy who sold a snowbank on eBay, getting $3,550 to donate to charity?

Yeah, it was a junk bid.

I appreciate that journalists did their due diligence and contacted the guy who was selling the snowbank, to determine that 1. He’s really selling a snowbank and 2. He’s really donating the proceeds to charity.

But once again, they seem to take an unconfirmed winning bid as if it’s a completed transaction. And when the bid is ridiculously high after lots of media coverage, there frankly should be an assumption that the bidder isn’t going to pay.

Same deal with the Guitar Hero auction, which sold at 100 times its suggested retail price just because it came with some story of a guy whose son smoked pot. Though the winning bidder in that auction is a long-time account with good feedback, the deal hasn’t been concluded yet so we shouldn’t assume it’s good.

Is a little bit of healthy skepticism (and patience) too much to ask?

Cherry Chocolate Rain

Good God.

Tay Zonday has gone mainstream:

Cherry Chocolate Rain (via Transmission Marketing)It’s cute, but the fact that the original song “Chocolate Rain” was about how racism still permeates society, having its remix/sequel video done throwing money around, surrounded by gangsta rappers and video skanks and shelling a soft drink… I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be ironic.

Good for Tay Zonday for capitalizing on his immense success. As for Dr. Pepper’s marketing department…

UPDATE: I got an email from a company whose job it is to search the Internet for Tay Zonday blog posts, pointing out another version of the song promoting Comedy Central’s Last Laugh ’07 tonight, singing about celebrity gossip (is that worse than a soft drink?). No word on when The Comedy Network will air the program in Canada.

Cours Mont Royal is watching you pee

Someone complained to the Gazette about video cameras in the men’s room at Cours Mont Royal. Apparently, according to the proprietor, the cameras aren’t running, due to that minor matter of it being illegal to film someone in a bathroom.

But they say it’s working, deterring illegal acts like drug dealing, vandalism, gay sex, peeing on the floor, and, of course, forgetting to wash one’s hands.

I just hope Jeff Goldblum doesn’t get his hands on it.

Pedophilia: the new gay? I hope not

Montreal is in the news again for being a pedophilia haven. First we had a website hosted here, now another site based on it is promoting an upcoming children’s festival at Maisonneuve Park.

The website, which nobody wants to link to (what are they afraid of exactly? Their readers suddenly turning into pedophiles? Or those who are already pedophiles getting access to like-minded websites?), and I won’t either just to avoid sending traffic their way (if you want to find it, you can do like I did and Google-search the direct quote from it used in the article), defends its stance saying that pedophilia is a “sexual orientation” and not a crime. It’s OK if you’re just looking at girls and fantasizing, as long as you don’t touch them, I guess.

The website has guides that sound a bit like what gay support websites might have looked like 50 years ago if the Internet existed back then. There’s talk about the law, about living with a pedophile, about how pedophilia doesn’t necessarily lead to child molestation, and how to “come out” as a pedophile to your family. Some parts suggest the website is trying to ride the line between legal and illegal, while others make it seem like pedophilia is entirely platonic – and can be satisfied by donating money to UNICEF.

According to the SQ (or “Sret du Qubec” according to the accent-phobic Gazette), the websites aren’t illegal but are pretty close to the line.

Let’s hope that line is bulletproof.

The worst of Québécois film and television for your viewing pleasure

A friend pointed out to me today that he was planning to pop his Fantasia cherry by going to an interesting showing this evening. One mention of the words “Total Crap” and I knew exactly what he was talking about.

For those who don’t know, Total Crap is the brainchild of Simon Lacroix, who has for some reason taken it upon himself to collect the worst of Quebec television, from dancing lessons for overweight baby-boomers, to local wrestling previews, cheesy commercials and, every now and then, an appearance by Celine Dion. This is a pretty good example, but there’s much better.

Now, you might think “wow, that’s a really weird hobby”, and you would be wrong. You see, there’s someone else in town who’s doing the same thing. DJ XL5 (Myspace link, sorry) is also a local practitioner of what they call “zapping” and showing awful clips to eager audiences.

Last fall, someone had the brilliant idea to have them square off against each other. On Halloween at Club Soda, they did battle. The audience couldn’t decide between them, and there was no winner declared, but they did agree they wanted more.

So today at 7 p.m. at Concordia’s DB Clarke Theatre (Hall Building, 1455 de Maisonneuve W., corner Mackay), comes DJ XL5 versus Total Crap: La revanche. Here’s the teaser.

Next Friday afternoon, DJ XL5 returns solo with a showing of some pretty insane shorts with DJ XL5’s Kaleidoscopic Zappin’ Party (Teaser).

Tickets to both are $7.50, which you can get at Admission or on-site. (Bell Mobility is running a promotion with $5 tickets if you want to play their cellphone games)

Ewww. Gross.

Hey, remember that St. Henri apartment that was found last week to be a giant garbage dump with half-dead cats?

Now that workers (who are hopefully getting a huge tip) have cleaned out most of the garbage, they got to open the fridge, to find another 43 dead cats inside.

And if you thought that was weird, apparently the couple who rented the apartment spent thousands of dollars on veterinary expenses. The Gazette suggests it was a mental disorder, which seems to be the only rational explanation for all this.

Ride without the seat (updated)

Apparently Montreal is participating in the World Naked Bike Ride this Saturday. 1 p.m. at Wilfrid-Laurier Park at Laurier and Brébeuf.

So if you see people riding naked through the Plateau, they’re not crazy, they’re just … actually, yeah, they’re crazy. But crazy as a group.

Too crazy for Canoe’s Claudine Potvin.

UPDATE: If that’s too much for you, consider taking your family to Saint-Eustache on Sunday.

The bar mitzvah from hell

I was wondering why this short, confusingly-written and apparently factually incorrect 940 News story was getting posted to local blogs, until I noticed someone posted it to Fark. CBC has a better story here.

The original story from three years ago isn’t online anymore, but apparently Mr. Neumann, a pediatrician, sued the city for $70,000 (the city settled for $20,000 — the estimated cost of the party was $30,000, which is about what the judge awarded him) after the ruined party, which included these highlights (according to the lawsuit, since the janitor hasn’t come forward with his side of the story):

  • The janitor (who for some reason the English media refuses to name) arrived in the afternoon and started helping himself to the open bar.
  • Having a few drinks in him, and for reasons we can only guess, he took all the ice prepared for the party and stashed it in a locked freezer, offering to sell it back to them. Instead, the grandfather sent his son out to deps to get bags of ice.
  • His brilliant plan foiled, the janitor took out all the toilet paper and paper towels and disappeared (or simply refused to restock the bathroom, depending on what news report you believe).
  • People got stuck in an elevator, with the janitor still missing (CBC says the janitor refused to call 911). They called the fire dept., who freed the trapped people, and then a firefighter got stuck in the elevator himself.
  • Janitor comes back later and announces that the party ends at midnight (though the hall was reserved until 2am).
  • Piano player collapses from a heart attack. The janitor “seemed confused” about finding a phone or first aid kit. The Neumanns, being rich West Island doctors, successfully revive the heart attack victim. (The 940 story erroneously says that lawyer Jordan Charness was performing CPR instead of the doctors).
  • Everyone leaves, disgusted.
  • The city sends an insurance adjuster to take a claim, then promptly ignore the entire matter send a letter accusing the Neumann boy of not being Jewish, causing Neumann to file suit.
  • The janitor, who had been disciplined before, is fired.

Interesting trivia here: Jordan Charness, the Neumann’s lawyer, is a driving columnist for The Gazette.

UPDATE: The Gazette finally got its own story on the bar mitzvah from hell this morning, and it includes our fourth figure to date: $27,000. Fortunately they explain that it’s $22,000 plus interest, which makes the most sense out of the figures given so far. It also includes such contradictory information as suggesting the janitor threatened to lock everyone out at midnight (instead of locking them in as previous stories said), and adds that:

  • The city offered an apology a month before the case was heard — four years after the incident. Neumann would have none of it.
  • Neumann says he’s donating the money to charity, because it was the principle that mattered.