Monday, January 30, 2006


Monday, January 30, 2006
A cyber friend/acquaintance of mine, Rochelle, with whom I have cyber discussions focusing on toilet-related issues among other topics in a humor discussion forum , brought up something interesting today. The topic is paper and how it's acquired in its basic form.

It was indeed fortuitous for me as a Canadian, to have Rochelle come accross this this invaluable piece. Little did I know that our neighbors south of the border were abusing Canadian trees by the mere act of blowing their noses AND wiping them, among other things!

As a person who buys the cheapest tissues at Costco in bulk, I checked my box of Scotties (the cheapest on sale) to see if there was any indication which type of trees came from which country before the actual manufacturing process. As far as I could see there was no background information mentioned on the sides, underneath or on top of the box save for a very attractive blue/green and white check pattern covering the entire surface . None of the dozen or more boxes provided any information regarding the tree types and/od the forest from which they orginated. So conducted some research and guess what? Scotties are made by none other than Kimberley Clark who also make:

- Kleenex
- Huggies
- Pull Ups
- Kotex

According to its site (Kimberley Clark):

"K-C is Committed to Preserving Ecologically Significant Old Growth Forests With the spin-off of Neenah Paper, Inc., in 2004, we no longer own or manage any forest lands in North America. We continue to adhere, however, to a corporate policy that prohibits the use of fiber from virgin rainforests or ecologically significant old
growth areas, including designated areas in Canada's Boreal Forest."

Further more:

"The vast majority of fiber we purchasecomes from residual waste (sawdust and chips) from the lumber production process. Globally less than 15% of Kimberly-Clark's total fiber use is sourced from the Canadian Boreal forest. The small percentage of
Boreal fiber we use is harvested responsibly and is promptly reforested. Based on further data from the Canadian Forest Service and from the Canadian Boreal Initiative, Kimberly-Clark purchases just 3.5% of the pulp and 1.3% of all Boreal region forest products that include lumber,pulp and newsprint."

Actually, it's all our fault in the end. Seems that North Americans want soft - really soft - tissues to blow our noses and for the "other end" of the equation requiring virgin lumber.

Go figure that some lumber is virgin! This is important stuff you wanna know about!

IMHO - there is a possible solution to this issue that would make everyone happy, especially the environmentalists. How about - wait for it - using handkerchiefs! Remember those squares of cotton that were kept in our pockets and sleeves and whipped out over and over again when needed? Of course they do tend to stay wet for a period of time, but if left to dry on a surface they'll handle the job more than adequately. There could be a problem, however, as to where to let them dry could be an issue, though, especially in an office setting.

Placing it top of a printer and allowing the warm of the printing process to dry it is one possible solution. It won't look very appealing to the people who want to use the machine but it's a small price to pay to help save the forests.
Or... it could be hung on the back of a spare chair in the office...
Or... perhaps taped to the side of the computer screen.
Or...tacked on to a bulletin board and left out to dry

Now about those sanitary napkins and disposable diapers...

Sunday, January 29, 2006


Weight loss for many people - me included - it's a "been there - done that" issue.

It's not surprising that more than 1,500 people showed up to be part of NBC'S successful weight loss show, "The Biggest Losers." It was part of an open casting call in San Diego when hordes of people showed up at Dave & Buster's Restaurant. Problem was that the eatery could accomodate all the wanna be contestants.

Sooooo - they cancelled the audition.

Arguments broke out but nobody was arrested

When you think about it that meant 1500 people in one city alone, and one presumes that the show will hold other open casting auditions is cities accross the U.S., were willing (some would say desperate) to go on public display in their bid to lose weight. Can't say that I would be willing to do this but would be interested to know if anybody else would.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Imagine you're travelling on the highway and have to answer nature's call. The temperature outside is cold-bordering-on-frigid but a person's gotta do what a person's gotta do.

A 58-year old driver stopped to use the bathroom at a highway rest stop near the town of Lichtenau in Bavaria, which had been experiencing cold weather and snow recently. He found himself trapped in the toilet stall with a frozen lock. Unable to open the door he managed to convince the person in a neighboring stall to call the police, who subsequently got him out. There is no mention of whether he was standing or sitting down to...well...


Meanwhile in New York a man was found dead on a subway car at the start of of morning rush hour, leading authorities to speculate that the corpse could have been riding on the train overnight. The man, a postal worker, worked the 4 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. shift and if he left work at the usual time and died during the trip home to Brooklyn, he might have spent six hours aboard the train before being discovered.

This leads one to wonder whether he met up with some friends during the drive home who might have wondered why he was unusually quiet. Perhaps they made a mental note that he appeared a little stiff. Perhaps they also noted his unusually white pallor and suggested that he see a doctor.

An autopsy was scheduled to determine the cause of death and exactly how long the corpse had been riding the subway.

Monday, January 23, 2006


Today is election day in Canada.

This means that Canadians all accross the country will be going to the local polling stations to elect the politicians they feel best represents their needs. Some will get their needs fulfilled, others won't. That's the way the system works.


Let's say... for the sake of argument that some voters are less than enchanted with the choices of candidates in their riding. Let's say... they want to express their distaste with the options available and decide to take it to the extreme and want to make a public statement by let's say...eating their ballot. Eating a ballot it appears is a no-no (let's not discuss the fact that it's an instant case of indigestion, which could be even worse than the actual act of voting for a candidate that one doesn't like).

According to Section 167(2)(a) of the Canada Elections Act, "no person shall wilfully alter, deface or destroy a ballot." Conviction could bring a $500 fine or three months in jail.

It would be interesting to know if anyone has been convicted of eating their vote.

Thursday, January 19, 2006


Come slide with me...

For those unfamiliar with the CN Tower located in Toronto, Canada, boasts that it is the world's largest tower. Don't know if "the Donald" would agree with that given his extensive real estate endeavors, but let's accept this as fact. Dimensionally, it stands at 1,815 ft., 5 inches) tall and according to the information blurb on the Tower's site, it attracts approximately 2 million visitors. As one of those visitors let me state for the record that it's a fun elevator ride up to the top, after which one gets to see an overview of Toronto. That takes about...3 minutes and then it's an ear-blocking ride down.

Obviously, having that many visitors presents an opportunity for a smart entrepreneur to come up with an idea to make the experience even more memorable. Writer Douglas Coupland who coined the term, Generation X, is toying with the idea of creating - wait for it - a tobbagan run for the building. Picture a tobaggan run for the Empire State Building and this will give you an idea of the challenge. This would involve bringing in who-knows-how-much snow (or ice) in to the middle of Toronto, which is always busy with traffic. Don't know how City Hall would take to this - um - unique concept since Toronto has been known to bring in the army to clear roads in really bad snow storms. In fact a few years ago a former mayor did just that.

For his part Coupland opined that it would be "the world's biggest tobaggan run" and that accomplishing the actual job "wouldn't be that hard to do."

If the tobaggan run does become a reality, can a run for the Empire State building be far behind?


Strange bedfellows?

There have been stories about strange or unusual animal friendships made but a friendship between a hamster and a snake is a disaster in the making. Then again perhaps not.

A rat snake named Aochan has become the best-buddy of Gohan, a female hamster. Perhaps the furry one isn't aware that the snake who goes by the name Aochan, means meal in Japanese. The pair were "introduced" to each other after the snake went off frozen rodents. Maybe one of frozen rodents had passed its "good until" date and caused a tummy upset... Go know.

Anyway, when the unsuspecting Gohan was dropped in the cage originally as a main course, the snake did what snakes usually do and slithered up - and then made friends! The two have been inseperable pals ever since, zookeepers report.

Even though the snake has re-developed an appetite for frozen rodents, he has kept his fangs off his friend. So far.

Monday, January 16, 2006


Our planet is getting more and more weird by the day. It's bad enough when people use walls to empty their bladders instead of a toilet. However, it's beyond weird when a person pretends to pee.

Take the case of this Danish artist who was fined Monday for pretending to urinate in public. The pretend-urinator (or unrinatee) was well known in his field and the area in which he lived as a painter who decorated house walls. This leads one to wonder whether he was a run-of-the-mill house painter who was good at his craft or he drew portraits/still life etc. directly on to the surface of the wall.

When arrested(!)in Herning, 270 kilometres west of Copenhagen, his excuse was that it was an artistic stunt and he didn't mean for it to be indecent.


He pretended to pee by hiding a plastic bag filled with water in his pants and squeezed water on the wall. This leads one to wonder how he accomplished this. Thinking logically, in order to make an impact on a wall and given that the plastic bag filled with water was inside his pants, he would have had to lift a pant leg and shake his leg to get water to splash on to the wall. Even then it probably would have just dripped downwards on to the ground directly at his feet. Or...speculating further, maybe he kept putting his hand inside his pants, dipped his hands in water and flung it at the wall. That act in itself could get him into trouble. Since the exact method wasn't supplied, we'll never know.

The court for its part, was not amused and ruled that it wasn't necessary to establish whether he urinated or sprinkled water. It deemed his conduct "obscene" and unlawful, and fined him $165 US.

One wonders the rationale for creating this "artistic stunt." I mean, what type of statement was he trying to make? That art is in the eyes of the beholder?

"Oh my - look at that pretty pattern on the wall," a passer-by might comment. "Such an intricate pattern. I wonder how it was created."

Okay. If he wanted to attract attention and get publicity, he should have wrapped something i.e. himself, town hall, etc. with toilet paper or something along those lines. Even then, how would that further his career?

"Dear...why don't we hire that know...the one who pretended to urinate on the wall?"


Perhaps he just had toilet issues. Go know.

Thursday, January 05, 2006


It's always been a dream of mine... Okay. I thought about it from time to time, to get two pet angel fish on the Letterman show... Or Leno if he would be interested. Unfortunately, it was never to be since both fish have since gone to meet their maker in that great toilet in the sky. However, there are other pets that truly do deserve to make an appearance on one of the shows, especially being that this hero is a cat.

After entering an apartment in Columbus, Ohio recently to answer a 911 call for help, police were baffled to find an orange-and-tan striped cat lying next to the phone on the living room floor. Meanwhile, the cat's owner lay on the ground near his bed having fallen out of his wheelchair. The owner who couldn't get up due to pain caused by osteoporosis and mini-strokes believes that his cat, Tommy, managed to hit the 911 buttons and get help.

The police received the 911 from the cat's owner's apartment but when they attempted to verify or ascertain the situation, there was no answer. It was at that point that they decided to check things out. When they entered the apartment they found Tommy next to the phone.

The cat's owner acquired his cat three years ago to help lower his blood pressure, and attempted to train him to call 911. Anyone who has ever owned (does anyone really own a cat? Not!) or has a cat will ascertain that it's difficult at best to teach a cat to do anything. Dogs yes - cats no. Perhaps the cat realizing that his meal would be late decided that it would be in his (the cat's) best interest to get help and made the call. Go know!

According to the report the phone is always kept on the floor with 12 small buttons including a speel dial set for 911.

Even if Tommy should make it to Letterman or Leno show, chances are he will do absolutely nothing when ordered to repeat his act of valor because that's what cats do best. Ignore the world.

"Tommy - show how you dialed 9-1-1," his master will order, at which point the cat would look up with that "yeah - sure!" look in his eye and go to sleep.