Inching towards mediocrity.


The Canadian Hero Fund

As we head into the dismal days of November, the brisk winds and chilly air reminding us that indeed, once again, winter is coming (get used to it Canada – it happens every damn year) we are reminded of many things. Setting our clocks back an hour is pointless and annoying; Americans celebrate Thanksgiving at a weird time; and, of course, Remembrance Day.

Whatever your views on war or the military or politics may be, you cannot deny the sacrifices, heroism, and just plain courage that radiates from our soldiers. Over the years they have done and seen things that no human being should ever have to face; but had to regardless, whether for freedom, peace, or just because it was the right damn thing to do.  You may be anti-war, and that’s fine. You may even be anti-military, and that’s fine too. But blame the policy makers, the politicians and the war-mongers; leave your vitriol and condemnation for them. Soldiers – the ones doing the hard shit because it’s their job – deserve nothing but your utmost respect and compassion. Without them, where would we be? Canada is a great country, there’s no denying that. But without the thousands of brave men and women who gave their life over the course of our rich history, we wouldn’t have the same freedoms and liberties we take for granted now. And if you get right down to it – isn’t that what makes Canada so amazing? Food for though, oh world of the internets.

On that note, I would like to ask anyone reading this to check out The Canadian Hero Fund, a charity organized to assist the children of our fallen heroes. Few, if any of us, don’t owe something to these people. We all have family members or friends that have at some point served in the military  – whether during one of the world wars, or currently in Afghanistan.

So take a moment to remember their valiant efforts…head over to the Canadian Hero Fund, and give it a look. Or join their Facebook page, as I have. There is literally nothing we can do to even begin to pay them back for what they have done, and what they have accomplished. But there’s no reason we can’t try.


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Alberta River Toxic; Politicians Remain Unconcerned.

Toxic pollutants have been found in the Athabasca River in Edmonton, near oilsands sites, but luckily the pollutants are at “insignificant levels.” So naturally no one seems to be concerned. Including Alberta’s environmental minister, the Honourable Rob Renner.

Pretty. (Also, toxic).

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Hunger Awareness Day in Toronto. (Now with 100% more hunger awareness!)

I am not a selfish man by any means. Nor am I a greedy one. I am, however, a lazy man – and, as such, have rarely thrown my hat into the ol’ “helping less fortunate people” ring.

Until now.

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Is there a doctor in the house?

(Editor’s Note: I had meant to publish this blog much earlier, but in my haste, hit “save draft” instead of “publish”. On the one hand, I was lucky; it saved my draft. On the other hand, it didn’t publish. Fate is indeed a fickle thing.)

Well.

Next season marks the end of Roy Halladay’s contract with the Toronto Blue Jays. At the end of the 2010 season, he will be a free agent; this means, if another team wants him (and they will), and if he wants to go (and he will), he can. And will. And, let’s face it – probably should. He is one of the best pitchers the MLB has ever produced: controlled, fiercely competitive, and deadly serious about the game of baseball and his role within it. He has spent his entire career with the Blue Jays. He has never won a World Series, and with this team on it’s current course (they swear they have a plan, but they don’t) he probably never will. He is 32 years old, and he deserves to play in October more than anybody.

Now. With that out of the way, let me tell you why I believe Roy should stay.

The main reason is fairly simple. In Toronto, Roy is a pitcher. A baseball player. If he were to go to an American team, and especially a big team like the Yankees or the Red Sox, he would be a celebrity. Doesn’t sound too bad – except he would come under a lot more scrutiny, both personally and professionally. Everything he did, good or bad, would be under the microscope. In Toronto, A.J. Burnett was a solid number two starting pitcher, and a successor to Halladay. In New York, he’s still a solid number three man, and having a decent enough year – but his high pay check and somewhat inconsistent season is getting a lot of attention. And not good attention, either.

Secondly, Halladay is currently the face of the franchise. With Vernon Wells not playing up to par, and Alex Rios traded to the White Sox, Roy is our guy. He’s the veteran, and the unofficial team leader. A celebrity, sure, but not in a bad way. Just sort of the go-to-guy if we ever need anything good to say about the team.

And lastly, he’s playing for more than just himself, and even more than just the Blue Jays. As I said, he is the face of the franchise – the only one currently in Canada. If, by some miracle, we do make the playoffs anytime soon, Roy won’t be playing just for the Blue Jays, or even Toronto. He’ll be playing (and hopefully winning) for a damn country.

Something to think about, anyways.

Oh, and his wife loves Toronto. And I’ve seen Brandy Halladay – you really want to lock that down. At age 32, Roy might be looking at the most comfortable way to continue his career. And this might just be it.

That competitive edge, though…he wants to win, needs to win, and should win.

But he’s loyal, and promised to see how the team was doing in 2010 before making any major decisions. Whether the earlier trade debacle this year will have any effect on that outlook remains to be seen. The important thing is, Roy Halladay is a Blue Jay for at least one more season.

And, if the rest of the team manages to step up to his level, hopefully many more after that.