Archive for Nova Scotia

Hello my name is…

Posted in History, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 3, 2011 by Jordan

When my older sister Jessica was born, my parents appropriately gave her the middle name Marie, which was the same middle name given to my grandmother.  Years later, it was discover that my sisters middle name was inappropriately given because my grandmother realized (after looking at her birth certificate more closely) that her middle name was actually Mary and not Marie. As a result, my sister Jessica Marie is aptly named after no one in particular.

In 1497, the Italian explorer Giovanni Caboto, who was sponsored by England, discovered parts of North America that had not been visited by Europeans since the Norse Vikings in the eleventh century. Although the actual landing sight of Caboto’s voyage is not 100% agreed upon by historians it is certain that he did land somewhere in the Canadian Maritimes.  Caboto’s financial connection to England saw his name anglicized to John Cabot and thus identified in Canadian history books as such.

The National Congress of Italian-Canadians has recently established momentum in their quest to have Cape Breton’s Cabot Trail renamed the Caboto Trail.  This movement seeks to have the anglicized name of the Cabot Trail renamed to reflect the Italian spelling of Cabot’s last name.  Naturally, the addition of an “o” to the end of Cabot has left many Maritimers up in arms and livid over the proposed name change. The arguments against the name change are valid; after all, Cabot is a simple name, a traditional name, and an English name. However, it is contextually and historically inaccurate.

When you think about it, calling the trail “Cabot” after Giovanni Caboto is the equivalent of calling Montreal’s airport the Peter Elliot Trudeau International Airport because the english pronunciation of Pierre is preferred.  Or, like CBC calling David Suzuki’s show The Nature of Things with David Smith because they felt entitled to give Suzuki an english last name because they pay the bills for his show. It’s ridiculous to think that either of these scenarios would be accepted by the public today, so why is it that this same public is so resistant to changing the name of a highway from Cabot to Caboto even though it is both logical and accurate?

It’s high time peoples’ names are represented accurately and accordingly.  When a baby is born, the only thing they own is their name; consequently, that name should be cherished and respected. There is nothing quite as aggravating as being called by the wrong name or having your named mispronounced. Giovanni Caboto probably moved with excitement in his grave for the first time in 512 years at the mere prospect of English Canadians giving his name the respect it deserves. Consequently, I look forward to driving all 289 km of the Caboto Trail this summer and telling my sister Jessica Mary all about it.

God Save the Queen

Posted in History, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 2, 2010 by Jordan

With the Queen in the middle of her 22nd official visit to Canada I have found myself caught up in the Royal hoopla.  She made her first visit to Nova Scotia in 16 years and I even caught a glimpse of her majesty through binoculars as she sailed pasted my office building amidst the international fleet review. I could tell it was her because she was the only person on the ship wearing white and her hat had a big white flower on it.  Also, I could easily tell which person was Stephen Harper because his onion loaf coif danced rather majestically as it was tossed about by the sea breeze.

I’m not sure why but I have always been an advocate for the royals and for the Queen’s role as the Head of State for Canada.  I look at the Queen and I see the epitome of elegance and grace.  She’s a complete geezer yet she sucked it up when the rain came in sideways upon her arrival to Halifax, she didn’t hesitate to walk through a soggy field to look at teepees, nor did she waver when taught how to play a native game that looked ridiculous.  She rarely smiles but always says the right things that make Canadians feel good about themselves and to top it all off she looked radiant in her red dress and white hat on Canada Day.

Despite all this there is a less flattering side to the Queen the goes unnoticed.  There is no way the Queen has lived her 84 years without having explosive diarrhea and had an occasion where she barely made it to the “crappie” without pooping herself.  I’m sure she’s even had the odd poop that has left her out of breath and whipping beads of sweat off her forehead, opening windows and spraying Glade Summer Breeze in the air.  There is also no way she hasn’t had a fart that goes drastically up in pitch as it concludes.  She’s probably been so sick she puked her guts out and popped blood vessels in her face. She has probably flossed her teeth and been in need of a blood transfusion afterwards because her gums bled so badly.  She probably shaves her armpits and has had her upper lip waxed (maybe not the upper lip… she’s not French after all).  She’s probably had B.O. at least once.  I guarantee she’s had food stuck in her teeth and no one told her.  She has pretty fancy clothes but I’ll bet she has picked lint out of her belly button and sweaty fuzz from between her toes.  Maybe the Queen has an outty and doesn’t get belly button lint… I don’t know I’m not a doctor.

The list of unflattering things the Queen has done in her life is probably as big as her annual spending habits.  The point is, no matter how elegant and graceful a person is and no matter how high that person is placed on a pedestal by society, everyone has to take a shit at some point in their life and it probably doesn’t smell like freshly baked cinnamon buns.

So Much More Then Just Rocks!

Posted in Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 20, 2010 by Jordan

Most readers of this blog do not live in Nova Scotia so I will share this little adventure with you.

Recently the LC and I decided to jump in the soccer mom mobile and take a little drive to Peggy’s Cove to breath in some sea air and play on the rocks.  Although we have both been to Peggy’s Cove on a few occasions it is a small little place that I really enjoy and have no problem driving the 45 km from Halifax to get there.

I can’t believe that it hadn’t dawned on me before but Peggy’s Cove has to be one of Canada’s best natural parkour playgrounds.  The rocks around there have “broken foot and ankle” written all over them.  There is actual a sign on the lighthouse saying something to the effect that many people have been rewarded with death when visiting Peggy’s Cove due to foolish behaviour.  The LC and I tossed such warnings out the window and parkoured our asses off until the waves came home.  The LC is pictured leaping over a mighty chasm that surely would have cost her her life had she made any errors.  I can say with joy that the LC survived the experience and lived to parkour another day.

In addition to the picturesque scenery of Peggy’s Cove, is a monument commemorating those who died on Swiss Air 111 in 1998.  Reports indicated that the plane crashed 8 km off Peggy’s Cove while dumping fuel in preparation for an emergency landing in Halifax but many retired RCMP investigators have recently come forward with a conspiracy theory suggesting the crash was a covered up terrorist act.  I’ll leave such speculation up to those who like to speculate on such affairs but 229 people died on that flight and there is a rather nice monument remembering those who perished.

Peggy’s Cove, check it out if you’re in the area.

This Blog Is What It Is… A Living Breathing Document

Posted in Grind My Gears with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 22, 2010 by Jordan

The amount of diverse people I interact with on a weekly basis is uncanny.  However, the more someone struggles the more they seem to appeal to me.  My favourite thing about ‘Struggles’ is that they always seem to have stupid clichés or words that they use on a daily basis.  Consequently, this blog is dedicated to ‘sayings’ or ‘words’ that grind my gears.

It doesn’t seem to matter what setting you are in, the saying “it is what it is” seems to come up everywhere!  I worked construction a few years back and our superintendent was obsessed with the saying.  For example, one time my coworker (brother D) and I where told to move a pipe to the dumpster that an excavator dug out of the ground.  The problem was the pipe weighed well over a thousand pounds and we had to carry it about 300 meters. Brother D was a fairly strong middle-aged guy and I am obviously no slouch (not that I’m bragging but it’s really not a big deal… I work out).  We made one feeble attempt to move the pipe knowing full well we had no chance.  We looked at our super and said, “There’s no way we are moving this.”  He looks at us and says, “Well… it is what it is.”  Then he walked away.  Brother D and I looked at each other wondering what the even meant.  I thought to myself, “of course I know what this is… it’s a thousand pound pipe that I have no chance of moving.”  Brother D and I moved on to a new task only to be chewed out 40 minutes later for not moving the pipe.  So, I guess “it is what it is” meant move the unmovable 1000 pound pipe!

In my current job, the saying “living breathing document” gets tossed around multiple times a day like it’s a bodily function and everyone ate beans for breakfast.  Why does a document have to be living and breathing why can’t it just be subject to future change?  It’s not like I can ask a document out on a date and smooch it in copy room.  All I can do with a “living breathing document” in the copy room is copy it and wait until future changes are made to it, take the revised copy back into the copy room and copy it again.

Ever since I moved to the East Coast the terms “everywheres” and “anywheres” are used as commonly as the word “the”.

Question – Where do you want to live?

Answer – Anywheres

Question – Where did you go last night?

Answer – Everywheres

Question – Explain what the dog did when you knocked on the door?

Answer – When I knocked on the door the dog started jumping everywheres and I was like WHOA I want to be anywheres but here!

The best part about the use of “everywheres” and “anywheres” is that it does not discriminate.  The smartest lawyers on the East Coast use it when arguing a case, teachers use it when teaching, and the greasiest son of a bitch you can image uses it the same way.  What makes it even better is that if you call people out on using “everywheres” and “anywheres” they will argue with you until they are blue in the face that it is a real word and that the context they use it in is more then justified.  I have news for you.  My computer looks like the chicken on Family Guy after a fight with Peter Griffen because it is so disgusted with the way I spelled “everywhere” and “anywhere”.  They are not real words!  Get over it and STOP USING THEM!

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