Sunday, June 29, 2008

Halt that construction...plovers on the way???

About two weeks ago I started to notice this bird taking a run at my car as I drove down the lane way to our cottage so last Sat morning before heading out on my trip I walked up the lane to get the Guardian and low and behold this plover like bird starts dragging its wing up towards our gate. On my way back to the cottage I noticed this depression in the middle of our gravel driveway with 4 eggs and the bird was limping off in another direction trying to fool me away from her eggs. I tried to get a good look at this bird and as I got closer it limped further away but I did start thinking it looked like a plover as it had a ring around its neck. I went and got my camera and took some pictures of the eggs and when I looked up piping plovers on the web the eggs were exactly alike and the plovers usually laid 4 at a time. Although I was excited to think I had plovers on the property I was also aware that our driveway and construction project would have to be shut down. So I tried calling Parks Canada in Dalvay but it was Saturday and there was no answer. I tried reaching Diane Griffin and Doug Deacon to help me identify the nest before I left on the trip but I couldn't reach them. I then called my friend Linda Stevenson of the Nature Conservancy of Canada who in turn put me on to a number of people all of whom I couldn't reach. I decided I better shut down the roadway so I had to take Keir away from his day off as he had the key to change the controls on our gate and I also wanted to park one of our trucks in front of the access so someone wouldn't invariably find a way to drive down the road. I also noticed on the web that a way of protecting the plover was to build a fence corral around the nest and since I couldn't get a hold of anyone I decided I better delay my trip until I had a solution to protect what I thought were plovers. After lunch I got my first returned call from Jackie Waddell who is in charge of the Plover Watches on PEI and she confirmed that the bird was a Killdeer a member of the plover family who looks and lays similar eggs to the piping plover. Thank God it wasn't a crow as it was embarrassing enough fielding all the return calls explaining that it wasn't a piping plover, but Jackie was very courteous and thanked me for calling and explained they would always prefer a call when someone was in doubt. Linda, Barb, Diane, Doug, Keir, Rick and everyone who helped with the Plover Alarm, thanks.... I decided to leave the road closed anyway and opened our other road as an alternate (not good for the Porsche) and when I arrived home today I took a look and momma Killdeer is still happily resting on the nest in the middle of our blocked off driveway. It’s been quite a spring at the cottage as we are doing a little renovation and so far we have some geese in our pit, some ducks in our pond, some new fox cubs playing next to the cottage, a new pair of red-winged blackbirds, a racoon under the deck, the usual crows and our marsh hawk that swings by every evening. Now all we need is some better weather.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Home soon...and looking forward to it.

I'm still on my big adventure and haven't had a lot of time for my blog but I did upload some new photos which you can see by clicking the following

I've got lots of great stories about my trip which I hope to post soon but I can't wait to get home to the Princess and knock a few balls around with the boys. Hopefully this will end the extended travel until the fall.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Missing in action...working on some deals!

If you're wondering where if been take a look at this video clip

Yesterday I played in the annual National Loblaw's Properties tournament in Toronto and after a feed of PEI lobster I had to drive 4 1/2 hours to Syracuse, New York and I've been on this crazy schedule for over a week. I have been on the go early and getting in late working off my blackberry but I'll have all kinds interesting posts in the near future. Have a good look at the "World's worst golf swing" and it's amazing that I'm making more money with it than some of the pros on tour???

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Tiger's got my tee time...will they miss me

For some strange reason I'm still on the Crybush mailing list (don't tell Jack) so I shed a few tears today when I got the news that Tiger is looking for my tee time. Seriously, I'm told the folks in at Golf links had tried to get Tiger to play the Bush as the third leg of the Legends, but they may have to settle for Larry McGuire and me, toe to toe with the foot putters. Robert, please put the Bush up for sale as I might even break the bank to buy it and get back on. Boys, say hello to Tiger for me!!!
Tiger Woods gives and then he takes away after going down with injury
The Associated Press
He gave us one of the most memorable golf tournaments you’ll ever see, winning the U.S. Open on one leg. Then he took the rest of the golf season away. In just a few short days, golf went from prime time to who cares. There are two major championships and the Ryder Cup left, but without Tiger Woods around it won’t be must-see TV anymore. Think the PGA Tour had trouble selling the FedEx Cup last year? Try getting people to change channels from the NFL when the only player anyone really wants to see is sitting at home in Florida playing with his toddler daughter. Put an asterisk next to the winner of the British Open and PGA Championship because those are both tournaments Woods likely would have won had he been healthy and able to play. Add another to the golfer who wins player of the year, because that was always going to be Woods, too. As for the Ryder Cup? Well, it should be a friendly little competition down in Louisville in September. I don’t know about you, but I can hardly wait to see Justin Leonard and Stewart Cink paired up against Lee Westwood and Robert Karlsson.

No Fishing Sunday...forget feeding the family

It's unfortunate our lobster prices are where they are but the conclusion of this report does not surprise me. The economy is not very strong in our major U.S. market and people just don't have the disposable income to be out dinning on expense meals. I recently took a road trip from California to Florida and then up the eastern seaboard to PEI and I had the opportunity to see firsthand some of the housing troubles that are effecting the U.S. economy. These housing woos are filtering down to the service industries and everyone is starting to feel the effects and it doesn't appear as if it’s going to end soon. I can't imagine that our lobster industry is going to get any stronger soon. Probably the best way for the industry to work through this is for the fishers, buyers and processors to work closer together and not be so suspicious of each other. On Sunday night I went for a walk down to the harbour from our cottage and was surprised to see a fisherman moving around some lobster on his boat so I asked him if he had just got in from fishing. He told me that he and a few others hadn't gone out for a few days, as it had been quite windy, and although some went out on Saturday, they still felt it was too risky so they went out on Sunday. They had called a buyer who agreed to meet them at the wharf later on Sunday but by the time they got in another fisherman showed up and was upset that this group was fishing on Sunday. He demanded the buyer refuse to buy their catch or he and his gang wouldn't sell to that buyer again. The whole thing ended up with the local buyer not knowing what to do so he called his boss who decided he didn't want to ruffle any feathers so he told the buyer to leave and the fisherman who went out to make their living on Sunday got stuck with no buyer. Something has got to give in this industry and people have to start working together particularly with the way the prices are going.
No collusion on lobster prices, study finds
Thursday, June 19, 2008
CBC News
Lobster prices are at a six-year low. (CBC) A consultant hired by the P.E.I. government has found no evidence of collusion among buyers keeping down lobster prices, says his report released Thursday. John Sackton of in Lexington, Mass., found four main causes for low prices being offered to fishermen at P.E.I. wharves, the primary one being the reduced value of the American dollar. "Eighty per cent of all the lobsters are sold into the U.S. market. When the lobsters get too expensive, the restaurant buyers and the retail customers and the tourists cut back and they stop buying," Sackton told CBC News. According to the report, other conditions leading to low prices were: An oversupplied European market. High landings flooding lobster processors. A slow U.S. economy hurting lines of credit. Problems with credit, Sackton wrote, were forcing processors to sell off product immediately in order to raise cash, rather than being able to wait for prices to improve. The report was paid for by the P.E.I. government at the request of the P.E.I. Fishermen's Association, which was concerned buyers might be working together to keep prices low. Prices at the wharf for small lobsters, known as canners, are at their lowest in six years. The price collapse comes at a time when prices for fuel and bait are on the rise.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Now here's a major priority....banning ditch filling!

This could be another great opportunity for our Government to create some new jobs...think about all the new inspectors for each County, people to do the training, clerks to fill out the forms and maybe a chief culvert inspector. And how about a ditch policing course at Holland College? If they can't come up with the "coin" to do all this then they could just make up another application fee to pass down to the taxpaying end-users so they wouldn't have to say they were raising our taxes. I'm sure going to sleep well tonight knowing that they got this issue under control.
P.E.I. halts all ditch filling because of contractors' shoddy work
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
CBC News
With shoddy culvert construction threatening to cause flooding of basements and driveways, P.E.I. has banned all public ditch filling outside of Charlottetown and Summerside.An installed culvert in the community of Stratford, east of Charlottetown, that is too small to function properly is one example of the kind of problems the province is dealing with, said provincial engineer Darren Chaisson as he pointed out the deficiencies to CBC News."You can see here you have a culvert coming underneath a roadway that empties out into a smaller culvert. If that culvert is running three-quarters full, you can see the smaller culvert's just not going to be able to handle that water," said Chaisson."Any homes downstream could be flooded, driveways could be flooded, basements could be flooded."Chaisson said the problem goes beyond one or two contractors, so the province decided the best solution was to put a temporary stop to all work. The province is devising a strategy to train contractors to do the work properly.Charlottetown and Summerside are not included in the ban because they have their own public works departments and their own policies.

Clifford's Stuck In The Mud, again...

The City had a press release last week indicating that this deal was done but they obviously forgot to tell the developer, they just "thought" we'll throw out a press release and the developer will suck it up...I sure would have liked to have been at the interview with Clifford when these famous words came out of his mouth, “Council must manage the city in a responsible manner and try to accommodate all business owners, not just one,’’ ...Cliff, it sounds so good....try that in the mirror one more time...and give your head a shake when you're doing it.
This is a great project for downtown and let's hope it will gets back on track soon.
Parking squabble bogs down project
The construction of an 85-room hotel on top of the Confederation Court Mall is still a go as far as the developer is concerned, but the project manager for the multimillion-dollar development said Tuesday they will not break ground until the issue of parking has been fully resolved..... Mayor Lee said the $4 million pegged to address the parking issue is all that is available, there is no more money available to purchase land. In light of that they had an engineer look at the Pownal Parkade and he said it was structurally sound and could accommodate two more storeys. “That building is already owned by the city so we would not have to acquire more land. So that option, we thought satisfied all the conditions set by the developer. Ten days ago we signed a development agreement and sent it on to the developer to sign. That’s when they sent us a letter saying no (to) the Pownal Parkade.’’ Lee said the conditions, as originally laid out, have been met, and that the city is not prepared to force taxpayers into further debt to purchase land adjacent to the Queens Parkade when the Pownal Parkade could be utilized. “Council must manage the city in a responsible manner and try to accommodate all business owners, not just one,’’ Lee said. “We want the project to proceed, but if this means the project does not proceed that’s unfortunate. We feel we’ve done all they asked.’’

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Give Me A Break....why tender anyway!

Years ago when I moved from my native Summerside to Charlottetown I ran into an old friend from Summerside who had moved away for what I thought was employment reasons, but after spending a few minutes discussing old times, I detected a sense of disappointment from his experiences in growing up in Summerside. He suggested to me something, that I didn't fully understand at the time, and that was "the Town should put up a sign at its entrance boosting The World's Greatest Collection Of Small Minded Thinkers". Although he was probably a little harsh in his comments I can't help but think that they may as well start digging the post holes if they are going to try and implement such a parochial scheme as preferred tendering. I'm almost scared to suggest it but they could probably call it the "The Great Wall of Summerside" and get another Government grant as a tourist attraction. Basil, you have a beautiful City with wonderful people, but don't screw it up with this backward thinking, as the next thing you know they will be wanting blood tests and they'll find out you're not a Summerside native and you'll be "booted" out.
City wants to cut local firms break on tenders
MIKE CARSON The Guardian
SUMMERSIDE — City council is looking to give local businesses a break when it comes to the tendering process, particularly on high-priced projects. The issue was raised at the June city council meeting Monday by Summerside Mayor Basil Stewart when the local firm of Curran and Briggs came in $32,000 above the lowest bidder, Island Coastal Services, on a water system upgrade project. Stewart wants to see Summerside businesses, or companies with head offices within the city, awarded tenders over companies outside the city, even though the locals are not the low bidders. The mayor said if the local firm is close, within a few percentage points of the low bidder, it makes more sense to keep the bid home and the money generated by the project in the city. Coun. Ron Dowling, chairman of the city’s technical services committee, agreed with the mayor and the policy for special treatment to local firms is now being reviewed.This is not a new concept for Summerside. The city does have a limited policy already in place.“In relation to the City of Summerside, it’s about a $15,000 ceiling on tenders for contracts on general purchases where we offer a percentage to local companies first that is in the city, Prince County, the province and, of course, off-Island,’’ he said. “We’re hoping to see that increased. When we get into major contracts where the money really counts during the summer, paving, sidewalks and other types of construction activities, sometimes the tenders are relatively close and, in some cases, for the sake of $2,000 or $3,000, we’re seeing $200,000 or $300,000 leave the community.’’ Dowling said one way to look at the situation is that it is a significant investment for the taxpayers of Summerside to keep those dollars bouncing around the community.“Summerside doesn’t have the benefit of some other areas of the province with relation to tourism attractions and we want to protect the jobs that we have in the area,” the councillor said. “We’re not talking about discriminating against other organizations. We’re simply saying, ‘Put your tender in bearing in mind that a higher percentage of preference will be given to a Summerside company versus a company outside of Prince County.”

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Prominent Liberal Sold Too Cheap...

The only story here is that Clifford McQuaid didn't get enough money for his land. We recently sold a one acre parcel of land on Pownal St. for around $700,000, a two acre parcel in West Royalty for over $900,000 and a half acre parcel neighbouring this property for over $300,000. We paid over $2,000,000 for a three acre parcel on University Ave. and over $450,000 for less than an acre on Spring Park Road. The math is pretty simple...30 apartments per acre by 4 acres equals 120 units for the site at a raw land value of $12,000 per unit which would easily make this land worth $1,440,000 at a minimum. Another approach to valuing this parcel would be to use the "going rate" for this area which is at least $10 a square foot which would put the property in excess of $1,600,000. The Government got a great deal here and I didn't see Mike Currie raise any "red" flags when he was a Cabinet Minister and his Government bought the former Eaton's property and also the parcel for the industrial park in his riding from a company that had Prominent Ties to the Tories!!! The good news and the only news here is that Birchwood School will finally get a much needed sports field.
Prominent Liberal sold land to province for sports field
A prominent P.E.I. Liberal is being paid more than $900,000 for a four-acre parcel of land in downtown Charlottetown that will be converted into new sports fields for inner city schools. Clifford McQuaid sold the land to the province through the Department of Transportation and Public Works. His company, Brown's Court Apartments Ltd., had wanted to swap the land, located near John Street, for a parcel of land owned by the province in the eastern part of the city. That land is located in Hillsborough Park. Foster Millar, director of public works and planning with the Department of Transportation and Public Works, said the land swap did not go ahead.“
"It’s a straight cash payment," Millar told reporters Friday. The new sports field will cost P.E.I. taxpayers $1.3 million. That includes the $900,000 to purchase the land, which is bordered by Lapthorne Avenue, John Street, Kent Home Improvement on Allen Street and the Confederation Trail. Birchwood Intermediate and its feeder schools will use the sports fields. The project will include a new regulation-size soccer-football field similar to the main Simmons field on North River Road in Charlottetown. Opposition public works critic Mike Currie said he's surprised not only by the purchase price but by McQuaid's connections to the Liberal government.

I'll say it again...We Need More Competition!!!

It's time to rethink IRAC... Sobey's, Loblaw's, Canadian Tire, Wal-Mart, etc...all have gas bars in other markets but they can't get through the "red tape" and "bullshit" of IRAC and allow some competition into PEI's marketplace...It's time for the Government to step in and relax the regulations...that's how you get lower prices, more jobs, and better service. It cost Islanders millions of dollars to run IRAC and our Island industries such as farming, fishing and tourism could make better use of this money. The Government originally put these restrictive measures in place to prevent large corporations from setting up on PEI and driving the small rural operators out of business. Guess what, it didn't work as most rural stations closed down anyway so why not toss out these "silly" rules that prevent some more competition?
Gas prices set to jump 6.3 cents
Island motorists should brace themselves for record-breaking gas prices this weekend.The Guardian has learned gas prices will increase 6.3 cents per litre overnight, pushing the price at the pumps to $1.40 to $1.43 per litre - the highest ever in P.E.I.An official announcement is expected today. Islanders will also pay more to heat their homes. Furnace and stove oil is expected to increase seven cents per litre. Diesel prices will increase 4.5 cents per litre. The new prices will come into effect at midnight. Gas prices peaked at $1.36 per litre in September 2005.That’s when Hurricane Katrina caused extensive damage to the North American oil production system. reports the average price for gas in Canada Friday was $1.38 per litre. In P.E.I., before today’s expected price increase, the average price was $1.31 per litre. Gas prices set to jump 6.3 cents WAYNE THIBODEAU The GuardianIsland motorists should brace themselves for record-breaking gas prices this weekend.The Guardian has learned gas prices will increase 6.3 cents per litre overnight, pushing the price at the pumps to $1.40 to $1.43 per litre — the highest ever in P.E.I.An official announcement is expected today.Islanders will also pay more to heat their homes. Furnace and stove oil is expected to increase seven cents per litre.Diesel prices will increase 4.5 cents per litre. The new prices will come into effect at midnight.Gas prices peaked at $1.36 per litre in September 2005.That’s when Hurricane Katrina caused extensive damage to the North American oil production reports the average price for gas in Canada Friday was $1.38 per litre. In P.E.I., before today’s expected price increase, the average price was $1.31 per litre.

No Bail...Lock Him Up and throw....

They say Gary might be a flight risk, if I was the Judge I MIGHT throw away the key...

Gary Webster Webster might be a flight risk, a U.S. court is told
BY STAFF The Guardian
Gary Webster could be a flight risk and has been warned by a U.S. judge not to leave the country. The former UPEI professor is being held in custody on a $100,000 US bail. He pleaded not guilty to two counts of reckless endangerment of a minor.The Hartford Courant newspaper reports that jailhouse chats between Webster and a Canadian phone number indicates he’s trying to post bond and leave the country, a prosecutor said Friday. A judge warned Webster that if he posts bond he must surrender his passport to authorities and not leave the country. Webster, 67, has also been found eligible for representation by a public defender. He’s back in court July 22. In 1994, Webster was convicted in P.E.I. of five counts of indecently assaulting three young men, two counts of assault with the intent to commit buggery and two counts of gross indecency.The victims ranged in age from nine to 11 years old.

Friday, June 13, 2008

How about another holiday...

We should all be celebrating this exciting occasion - that we have worked all year for nothing...
Canadian tax freedom day is Saturday, Fraser Institute
The Canadian Press
Tax freedom day — the day average Canadians have paid off the year’s tax load and begin working for themselves — arrives Saturday, according to the Fraser Institute.The free-market-oriented think-tank said today that governments are letting the citizenry keep four days’ worth of earnings more than last year.Niels Veldhuis, the Fraser Institute’s director of fiscal studies, says Canadians spend almost half the year working to pay all the various taxes levied on them by federal, provincial and local governments.Effectively, “every dollar they earn before June 14 would be required to pay the taxes owing to all levels of government.”The computation of tax freedom day includes income taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, profit taxes, health, social security and employment taxes, import duties, licence fees, taxes on alcohol and tobacco, natural resource fees, fuel taxes, hospital taxes and an array of other levies.

I claim "There Are No Rules" as my parade song...

I can't help but think when I read this article in the Guardian that the parade committee have been hanging around with the City too long and they want to enforce a bunch of "rules". My favourite part of the parade is the marching band that wear all the funny shirts and hats and don't really have any formation and the next thing you know they will have a rules committee who'll want to boot this band out because they don't conform to "band standards". A parade is about fun, not about rules, that's why we take a day off - to get a break from the rules.

Hallow's Eve was an Atlanta, Georgia power metal band which was formed in 1983 by Tommy Stewart and Stacy Anderson. The band had a following within the under ground scene, one only enlarged with the appearance of their song Metal Merchants on Metal Blade's Metal Massacre IV album. Follow the link below to "There Are No Rules" by Hollow's Eve and there is also a link for a ringtone to use on parade day.

Say It With Music selected as theme for 2008 Gold Cup Parade in Charlottetown DOUG GALLANT The Guardian

Summer does not officially begin until June 21 but if you plan to enter a float in this year's Gold Cup Parade the chair of the parade would like you to start thinking about it now. Bill Chandler said Tuesday it's never too early to start thinking about the float you want to create and how to create it. He said they've already had a number of inquiries. "We had our first inquiry just after New Year's and averaged one or two inquiries a week right through January and February," Chandler said. We expect the floodgates to really open up any day now" The biggest parade in Atlantic Canada goes Friday, Aug. 15, and the theme of this year's parade is Say It With Music, which Chandler believes will open the door to all manner of creative expression. "Take a song like Old MacDonald Had A Farm, you could take the lyrics of a song like that and build a float around them. You could take a musical instrument and build a float around that instrument. You could take a style of music like swing and build a float around that style of music. You can have a lot of fun with this theme. "Chandler urges those planning to enter a float to discuss their ideas with parade co-ordinator Nicolle Bradley as soon as possible. "Nicolle can discuss your ideas with you," Chandler said. "She can also tell you if somebody else has already contacted our office with the same idea you have." Rules for floats can also be discussed. And there are rules. One, for example, specifies that a float must in fact be a float. "You can't simply take a service vehicle with your logo on the side, put a couple of balloons on it and call it a float, that's not allowed."

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Grazing at "gio"...tops in Halifax

If you've been looking for something on my blog over the last 24 hours ....don't be alarmed as I've been off on a whirlwind tour..I had meetings in Halifax Tuesday afternoon and I was looking at a new development site in Bridgewater at 8:30 Wednesday morning then back to Halifax for a quick meeting at 11:00 am, then on the road to our call centre property in Port Hawkesbury for a meeting at 3:00 pm and then back to Caribou to make the 6:00 pm ferry to PEI which turned out to be running a little late. As if I didn't have enough to do, a friend and I couldn't decide where to eat on Tuesday night in Halifax, as there are just too many good choices. So we developed a plan to go "Grazing" on appetizers at some of my favourites and compare notes. We decided to walk from my digs on Oxford Street to downtown and our first stop was at "gio" which I believe is one of the top spots in Halifax. My friend hadn't been there previously so I had been bragging it up quite a bit, but it didn't seem that busy when we got there. I was getting a little nervous as sometime a place gets a little off and the crowd moves. We ordered up some New Brunswick oysters on ice which were excellent (that sported a couple of very nice sauces) but I still like them 'naked' and Malpeque's and Colville Bay's from PEI are still the best. Our waitress was extremely friendly, very knowledgeable and easy to look at (attractive) and as we polished off the oysters she presented us with a small taster of Duck, prepared by the Chef, that my friend raved about. We rounded off our order with a scrumptious seafood chowder (that has won numerous awards) and it hit the spot as it was really cold in Halifax last night. We tried to dig up some gossip about the "stars" that stay at the adjoining Prince George Hotel from our waitress but she was tight lipped, but teased us enough to know that the rumours that most of them stay and eat there are probably true. Gio has a very warm and comfortable atmosphere (with good prices) and with the great food in our belly it was going to be hard to leave but we had to get back to our mission of grazing. We then headed back out in the cold to "Cut", a new steakhouse at the Courtyard Marriott, that I've had the ocasssion to eat at a few times over the last month and it had been very good. Unfortunately we both chose a shrimp appetizer dish, with mine on top of a ceasar salad, and it was all very disappointing and the service just so, so... it kind of put a damper on the tasting night as we went from the best and the only to go from there was down. Although afterwards I said I was going to cut out "Cut" in the future I think I will give them another chance... from there we couldn't decide if we should try Bish or da Maurizio's but we decided just to opt for desert so we headed up to "Seven". I was there a few weeks ago with my darling bride and a bunch of friends and they have this chocolate mousse cake with a side of ice cream 'to die for' that was calling my name. "Seven" was also very quiet so we sat at the bar and I swallowed down the addictive dessert and with the great gab we were having with the female bartender, I had near talked myself into another desert before heading home...thank God I don't drink...bottom line is I had a night off from the "Blog", had some great food and "gio" must stand for "Get It On" as the food and service is happening there...time for bed!!!

Hope Springs Eternal...

From the mouth of Ron Wilson, "The furthest thing from my mind at any point in my hockey career was that I would have an opportunity - ever - to coach a team like the Toronto Maple Leafs with their incredible history." Some people strive for some strange things but without a "cup" since 1967 one might say it's not an "incredible history" but more an "incredible heritage".
Former Sharks coach named head coach of Leafs
THE CANADIAN PRESS TORONTO Ron Wilson said he was the happiest person in the NHL on Tuesday.After being named head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the 53 year old Wilson said he was fulfilling a dream.“This is an unbelievable day for me,” he said during a news conference at the Air Canada Centre. “The last couple weeks have been very exciting.”Wilson was fired last month by San Jose after the Sharks lost to the Dallas Stars in the second round of the playoffs. He succeeds Paul Maurice, who was fired in May after missing the playoffs in back-to-back seasons.“Obviously if you lose your job in the league you often wonder if you’ll get another opportunity,” said Wilson. “The furthest thing from my mind at any point in my hockey career was that I would have an opportunity — ever — to coach a team like the Toronto Maple Leafs with their incredible history.”Wilson travelled to Toronto on Monday to finalize the four-year deal. The Maple Leafs finished 12th in the Eastern Conference with a 36-35-11 record last season, missing a playoff spot by 11 points.“I view the Leafs as a team in transition,” he said. “It’s going to require a lot of work and a lot of attention to detail.”Wilson was joined by interim GM Cliff Fletcher at the news conference. The Leafs are still searching for a permanent general manager and Wilson is confident he’ll get along with the person the team eventually hires.“It’s putting the pieces of the puzzles together,” he said. “There’s no exact way to do it.”Wilson is hoping to turn the Leafs into playoff contenders within two years.“As a coach, you just want to put yourself in a position to knock on the door,” Wilson said. “And if we can be knocking on the door in two years, I think that will be a tremendous accomplishment. Then we’ve just got to knock the door down.”Wilson, who was born in Windsor and raised in Fort Erie, Ont., before moving south of the border, has a career NHL coaching record of 518-446-127 in stints with the Sharks, Anaheim Ducks and Washington Capitals. The former U.S. college player spent parts of three NHL seasons with the Leafs in the late 1970s.Rumours persist that Wilson’s hiring will set the stage for Anaheim GM Brian Burke to enter the picture once his deal expires with the Ducks next summer. Burke and Wilson played together at Providence when they were younger.Wilson, who is a dual citizen, played for the U.S. in three world hockey championships and has coached the Americans in various events, notably the 1996 World Cup of Hockey title and 1998 Olympics.Unlike his stops in Anaheim, Washington and San Jose, Ron Wilson finally gets to coach in a hockey-mad market. He feels he’s up to the challenge.“I’ve coached three teams in the National Hockey League and each team I’ve had to come in and kind of start underneath the radar and work my way up,” he said. “I feel I’ve accomplished those things.”

Monday, June 9, 2008

Members no more...

I got an invite to play Crybush today from a member who just arrived at his PEI summer home from Florida. As we have often played together I thought it would be rather rude if I didn't accept his invitation particularly when I knew he would be showing up at the tee box with some of his own "homemade" baking which in this case turned out to be the most decadent chocolate cookies I've ever eaten. As usual I was late arriving but quickly noticed it was quite busy and I did get to see a few of staff members, Ryan walked up to the clubhouse with me, "Leftie" kept us on course and I ran into Charlie sporting a hard hat at the half way canteen, most of the friendly girls were around and one even said it was "nice" to see me there which I really appreciated.... we played from the gold's on a windy day and I started out really strong with three pars and I had my friend on the ropes when all of a sudden on the 4th my game was back and I had an easy triple. Then my friend started pounding it out about 300 yards into the wind and lets just say it was spotty from there on and I got "pounded". Nancy finally took my advice and cut a pathway from number 12 green to the 13th tee box for walkers like us and the only real blemish was some spots on the 14th green otherwise everything was as good as God could make it...never even seen a mosquito. What I did see was Jack Kane sporting around with a clipboard (I understand he's under contract with the Province) and a lot of new red colours on the course including the red flags and the red tees. Speaking of tees, someone came up with the idea of putting 4 little red tees in a small stapled plastic bag and each guest now get two bags or 8 tees a round instead of a handful. I hope this isn't some job creation idea, but it may be a money saver, as I understand 10,000 tees cost approximately $150 and the few hundred dollars this may save in the long run might get this golf links million dollar train wreck back in the black. I got news today that the Rodd sales prospective is ready for potential buyers and this news will "put all the Provincial courses in play" and I'm hoping someone will buy it soon and sell me a I do miss the camaraderie of the staff and members who I understand they are trying to drive away! The good news is they didn't put the run to me today.

Nobody wants you Clifford...

Pretty small minded thinking there Clifford...there must be someone out there who wants the City for something other than your money, maybe for the skillful way the City handles its public relations?
'I don't think the city of Charlottetown is wanted at the federation.' Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee
Charlottetown reps a no-show, municipalities federation says
Monday, June 9, 2008
CBC News
The Federation of P.E.I. Municipalities says Charlottetown's complaints that it hasn't had much of a voice in the umbrella group could be because city reps haven't been attending many meetings lately.
Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee has said his city will cut all ties with the federation at the end of this month, mostly because the provincial body has historically done a poor job of representing the provincial capital's interests.
"The city of Charlottetown has had a voice for years with the federation and the voice has never been heard," Lee said.
"And the truth of the matter is I don't think the city of Charlottetown is wanted at the federation. What's really wanted is the $40,000 that the city gave them [in fees], year after year."
However, the president of the federation said it's pretty hard to fight for the capital city if its representatives don't show up for meetings.
Bruce MacDougall told CBC News that the city's official rep, Coun. Cecil Villard, has been to just one of eight federation meetings held in the last year — and neither he nor Lee has been to any meetings in the last six months.
MacDougall said Lee should look at his city's attendance record before publicly condemning the job the federation has done.
"I feel bad that that statement was made because you know, really, you have to be at the meetings in order to put your input for your community there, right?
"It's to their benefit that they be there at the table."
Villard couldn't be reached for comment on his attendance record.
MacDougall said he's talked to Lee about the city's lack of participation, and he hopes a meeting between the two sides later this month will result in a change of heart.
Despite that planned meeting, Lee insists that Charlottetown council's May 12 decision to walk away is final.

Guardian Winning Electronic Media War...

Nowadays I'm finding myself scanning the electronic media for the latest news mostly before heading to bed or when I get up early in the morning and it seems every weekend CBC goes dead on the news while the Guardian continues to post the latest news. I decided before putting my pen to these comments that I should actually test this out before making any comments, so this weekend I started reviewing both the Guardian's and CBC's web site starting at 6:00 pm on Friday until 7:00 am on Monday. My previous observations were dead on, the CBC must lock the place up when they leave on Friday as all the posts remain the same and there is very little news while the Guardian continues to post short captions of the latest local and national news. It appears that the Guardian have some of their roving reporters working on stories through the weekend which they obviously file and send a copy to their web site manager who post them when they come in. I would have thought the CBC in this age of electronic media would have been able to easily allow their reporters to post directly to their local site. I was curious about my observations so I spoke to a retired CBC staffer who suggested that the issue may not be the staff not knowing how to file the reports on the weekend but more than likely there are no staff working on the weekend!!! How do they expect to keep an audience interested if they close up shop on the weekends? It seems a little funny that a print media, being the Guardian, is outflanking a media that was built on an electronic platform. The former staffer suggested that CBC budgets and the unwillingness of staff to work weekends without overtime are probably the root of the problem but my feeling is that if they don't soon correct it their audience will abandon them for other media. CBC may not be able to extract more money from Ottawa under the current regime so they may have to get creative with what they have and figure out how to deliver on the weekends or they will be playing into the hands of their detractors and we will lose this institution. Well I'm off to work and I'll have to grab the Guardian to get "the rest of the story"....

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A Nice Evening....but no ass kicking

We went out early last night to City Cinemas to see "Shine A Light" a movie directed by Martin Scorsese about the Rolling Stones which I thought was excellent as it clearly shows how tough these road warriors are and it also proves that they are still at the top of their game. We then headed up to Kent Street to "Lot 30" Gordon Bailey's new restaurant to meet some friends for a drink. Gordon's new urban style digs just "opened last night" to a good crowd. As we had been there for a pre-open reception on Thursday night we thought we would wait a few days to let them get organized before we sampled what we expect will be one of the best spots to eat on PEI. After drinks our gang headed down to Victoria Row for dinner at "Costello's" a new Italian restaurant with a great decor that opened about two weeks ago by the Murphy group. There were lots of people out and about and it was a very nice atmosphere on Victoria Row until four teenage kids, two of whom were sporting skateboards, showed up with some open bottled beer that they proceeded to smash onto the street. It certainly put a bit of a damper on the evening to see these kids a little out of control and there didn't seem to be anything one could do about it? I didn't want to call the police as they were just kids but in my mind I was all set to go over and "kick some ass" and then I came to my senses only because I would have taken a worst "ass kicking" from my darling (she who must be obeyed) bride for being so stupid. I guess I should have called the police and asked them if they could give the kids a bit "of a tune up" and send them home as we need to get this type of behaviour on our streets under control before all the tourists start to arrive. I know a lot of the City police and they are pretty good at the common sense approach and the next time I see something like this I'm going to make the call.

Dylan backs Obama for surprise here

"The Times They Are a-Changin" is a song written by Bob Dylan and released on his 1964 album of the same name. In 2004, this song was #59 on Rolling Stone's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
Dylan's friend, Tony Glover, recalls visiting Dylan's apartment in September 1963, where he saw a number of song manuscripts and poems lying on a table. "The Times They Are-a Changin'" had yet to be recorded, but Glover saw its early manuscript. After reading the words "come senators, congressmen, please heed the call", Glover reportedly asked Dylan: "What is this shit, man?", to which Dylan responded, "Well, you know, it seems to be what the people like to hear".
A protest song, it is often viewed as a reflection of the generation gap and of the political divide marking American culture in the 1960s. Dylan, however, disputed this interpretation in 1964, saying "Those were the only words I could find to separate aliveness from deadness. It had nothing to do with age." A year later, Dylan would say: "I can't really say that adults don't understand young people any more than you can say big fishes don't understand little fishes. I didn't mean ['The Times They Are a-Changin'] as a statement... It's a feeling."
In 1996, "The Times They Are a-Changin" created some controversy for Dylan when he allowed Canada's Bank of Montreal to feature it in its advertising campaign.
Bob Dylan says Obama is redefining U.S. politics, says he's hopeful of change
The Associated Press LONDON
Bob Dylan believes Barack Obama is redefining politics in the United States and could deliver change to a country in upheaval, according to a British newspaper interview published Saturday. In an interview with the Times of London, the musician is quoted as saying that Obama has changed politics in the United States, though Dylan does not specifically endorse the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee "Well, you know right now America is in a state of upheaval. Poverty is demoralizing. You can’t expect people to have the virtue of purity when they are poor," Dylan is quoted as saying. "But we’ve got this guy out there now who is redefining the nature of politics from the ground up ... Barack Obama," he was quoted as saying. "He's redefining what a politician is, so we'll have to see how things play out. Am I hopeful? Yes, I'm hopeful that things might change. Some things are going to have to." The newspaper said the interview took place in Denmark during Dylan’s current tour of Scandinavia."You should always take the best from the past, leave the worst back there and go forward into the future," Dylan said, apparently referring to Obama's campaign.The 67-year-old singer has an exhibition of his art work opening in London next week.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Park this Investment Here....Great News

This is great news that the developer Homburg Invest (led locally by Mike Arnold) has reached an agreement to develop a new hotel in the Downtown. This will be a major boost to the Downtown and it is important to recognize the tireless efforts by Mike Arnold in originally developing the Confederation Court Mall and continuing to reinvest in Charlottetown providing jobs, investment and more choice in the marketplace. Kudos to all involved in getting this deal done and I trust the City will gets its return on its parking investment. updated Sunday June 8th Latest Rumour...maybe there still isn't a deal here as I learned last night that the City may still be "dicking around" which certainly wouldn't surprise me but let's hope it's only a rumour and this deal gets done...
Deal on parking opens door to build hotel
It appears that Dyne Holdings might break ground soon on a new hotel in the downtown core of Charlottetown.The City of Charlottetown completed agreements Thursday guaranteeing Dyne 175 parking spaces.The company told The Guardian Wednesday that it couldn’t move forward with an 85-room hotel on top of the Confederation Court Mall until the city and Charlottetown Area Development Corporation (CADC) finalized plans for new parking spaces.A spokesman with the city corporation said Thursday CADC is comfortable enough to move forward.That could mean a new parking garage or adding on to one of the existing three garages.However, the city won’t budge on those parking spaces until Dyne Holdings formally secures a foundation permit to build the hotel.The agreements the city signed on Thursday, worth an estimated $35 million, include the new hotel, renovations to the Confederation Court Mall and a new office tower on Fitzroy Street that would connect to the Queen Street Parkade. Council gave the OK to the new office building in late April.

Call the more "dumping"....

Is it just me or are things getting sillier, no more "dumping" at sea!!! Most of our oyster market gets scooped out of the Charlottetown and Summerside harbours where they have been lying on "God knows what" for years before they get moved to other sites for sometimes a minimum of a few weeks to cleanse themselves out before the are shucked down by fellow oyster lovers like myself. As the old expression goes "I've been eating shit most of my life"... I just hope we don't lose the flavour.. Any chance these Rule Makers could get that fox who dumps on my sidewalk to scoop it up too?
No more flushing for fishermen
Friday, June 6, 2008
CBC News
Starting July 1, when shell fishermen use the toilet at sea on P.E.I.'s oyster and mussel grounds, they will have to take the waste home with them.
While there is little argument with the new rule, some are wishing there had been a little more notice.
Gary Rogers, who has been growing mussels in Malpeque Bay for years, just installed two new toilets on his boat, the old type that flush into the sea. Now he says he'll have to replace them with chemical toilets, and find somewhere to dump them.
"That's not a very nice job for people at the end of the day, to be hauling that stuff home in the back of your truck," Rogers told CBC News on Thursday.
The new rule is being implemented at the insistence of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which says harvesters who want to export shellfish to the United States must ensure its harvested from clean waters.
"These shellfish are filter feeders and can uptake bacteria and viruses, and we're looking to improve the program to address that issue," said John White of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
P.E.I.'s Aquaculture Alliance supports the change.
"They're always looking at opportunities to identify ways to ensure safe food, and it would be important for us to comply," said Linda Duncan, executive director of the alliance.
The food inspection agency says it isn't necessary to spend a lot of money on a holding tank for sewage waste. Even a bucket will do as long as it has a secure lid.

Big Brown: Hooters... 2 to 1 favourite

This certainly takes advertising to a new level...but why not the girls in the winner's circle? Last week my wife joined me at the CDP (a rare occasion) to watch Sea Willy Win a 4 year old which I bred out of SeaRuby Win. We were sitting in the stands watching a few race before Willy's trip and the weather was clearing up and I noticed my driver Earl Smith warming Willy up, and he looked pretty sharp, so I was thinking maybe I'll get my "Darling" into the Winner's Circle. I hadn't made a bet on the previous races so when the tote board opened on Willy's race and he was the favourite, I started thinking maybe the "barn" has his number tonight and we'll have a winner. So with a few minutes to go I went to the wicket and bought a half wheel triactor ticket on Willy (him on top with any of the others as 2 and 3) and an $8 win ticket for a total cost of $50. Well you may as well go to the winners circle with your "girl" and some money in your back pocket...unfortunately before I could get comfortably back in my seat Willy "broke" on his way to the starters gate and finished dead last...Hey, it was worth the $50 to give my "girl" a great laugh at my misfortune...and for me had Willy won and they wouldn't let my "girl" in the Winner's circle would have been another story. My money's on Big Brown and I hope some of the girls show up for the win and bring some excitement to the track for guys like me!
Unlikely sponsor for Big Brown: Hooters
Jockey to wear logo during Belmont, but girls won’t be in winners circle
NEW YORK - Delightfully tacky, yet unrefined.
It’s not just the slogan of Hooters. It might well describe the sponsorship deal in which Big Brown’s jockey will wear the restaurant chain’s logo when the horse goes for the Triple Crown in Saturday’s Belmont Stakes.
Hooters joined UPS as a sponsor of Big Brown, owners IEAH Stables and jockey Kent Desormeaux on Wednesday. Its logo, an owl whose eyes are seen in the word Hooters, will be stitched into the side of Desormeaux’s pants.
A UPS logo also will be visible, as it was when Desormeaux guided Big Brown to victories in the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes. The horse was named in honor of UPS, a client of original owner Paul Pompa Jr.’s trucking business.
Trainer Rick Dutrow Jr., meanwhile, was amused when a bevy of Hooters girls in tank tops and tight orange shorts appeared at Belmont’s Barn 2 for a photo shoot with Big Brown and Desormeaux on Wednesday.
“I’ll tell you, this horse is so cool,” Dutrow said Thursday. “There are these five girls lined up looking away and he walked right up and put his head in between all of them. He didn’t move his head. Every time I see this horse do something, he absolutely amazes me.”
Dutrow described the scene as “cool.” Was it cool for Big Brown, too?
“It’s not bad,” Dutrow said. “He likes the women.”
IEAH Stables co-president Michael Iavarone said others may look at the sponsorship “oddly,” but added: “I think that you can cross the line a little bit. The regulatory side of racing will start to be a little more stringent. I can’t say I have a problem with Hooters.”
When the deal was first reported, Hooters’ vice president of marketing Mike McNeil was quoted as saying Hooters girls and company executives would be in the winner’s circle when Big Brown wins.
“That’s not going to happen,” Kelly Wietsma, the president of Equisponse, which represents IEAH Stables, said Thursday. “The sponsorship deal calls for Kent to wear the Hooters logo on his pants, for Hooters to celebrate Big Brown on Belmont day in over 450 restaurants and to benefit a foundation for Kent’s son, who has Usher syndrome.”
Desormeaux’s 9-year-old son, Jacob, has the genetic disorder that stole his hearing at birth and is slowly robbing him of his sight. There is no known cure.
The New York Racing Association, which operates Belmont Park, said Thursday that “reports of a corporate presence on the grounds of Belmont Park are in error.”
UPS and NYRA announced a sponorship deal Thursday that will allow the logo of the world’s largest package delivery company to be displayed on the starting gate, and signage will be seen along the stretch on Belmont day. The UPS logo also will be on Big Brown’s saddle cloth as well as on the jacket of the colt’s outrider.
Sponsorship deals involving racehorses and jockeys are rare. At the Derby, NetJets, a private aviation company, sponsored the jockeys in the race.
“We think corporate America is realizing there’s value in horse racing,” Wietsma said. “Big Brown has been on the national news, the morning shows and all over the media. There will be 40 million people watching to see of this horse can win the Triple Crown and if he does he’s going to be one of the most celebrated athletes in 30 years. And UPS and Hooters will ride the publicity wave with him.”

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Is Tiger Watching Tonight?

Its 11:42 pm and I'm sure Tiger was up watching the game! My brother started touting Tiger's skills back when he played as a Junior and I didn't pay much attention, but I soon learned that my brother was bang on with this we all watched him take the golf world by shock and awe I couldn't help but notice how mature and well spoken he was and this is one of the rare occasions that I think he'll want to take his words back. Yes hockey is not quite a major sport but it ranks up there with where golf was before Tiger came along and hopefully he will think about that before he dishes on other athletes...maybe he jealous that he can't get his name on the Stanley Cup...Tiger, the Red team won again and they were wearing skates.
Tiger Woods zings the Stanley Cup finals
The Associated Press
Published: June 3, 2008
Don't count Tiger Woods among those glued to their TVs during the Stanley Cup finals.
The world's top golfer appeared via teleconference on Monday, promoting August's PGA Championship at Oakland Hills in suburban Detroit.
Woods was asked if he was rooting for Detroit or Pittsburgh.
Woods started to laugh, then landed a zinger.
"I don't really care. Let's talk about the Dodgers," the California native said. "I don't think anybody really watches hockey any more."
But the improved television ratings for this year's finals doesn't seem to match Woods' assessment.
The Penguins' victory over the Red Wings on NBC drew the best overnight rating for a Game 3 of the Cup finals in six years. Pittsburgh's 3-2 win on Wednesday night earned a 2.8 national rating and an 18.2 rating in Detroit, beating out the 15.9 rating for the Pistons' matchup with the Boston Celtics in the NBA's Eastern Conference finals. The combination of Games 1, 2 and 3 have made this the highest-rated and most-watched opening games of the Cup finals since Detroit faced Carolina in 2002.

Good News Story, by Heather Reisman

I was told by one of my retail friends that Heather's business card title is "chief book lover" at Indigo and that she is a very avid reader so I hope she gets to read my Blog as I want to say a BIG THANKS to her for supporting literacy on PEI and everywhere. Keep up the great work Heather as you have now made "Tim's Picks" a list I'm going to develop for people who help fund some of the many much needed causes here on PEI...Thanks Heather...
Indigo funds literacy in 2 P.E.I. schools with $120K gift
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
CBC News
Two schools on Prince Edward Island are receiving $120,000 from an Indigo Books charity to fund literacy programs.
Prince Street Elementary in Charlottetown will be receiving $71,000 and Belfast Consolidated in South Pinette will be receiving $49,000 from the Indigo Love of Reading Fund over the next three years.
Heather Reisman, CEO of Indigo Books & Music Inc., created the charity. She says its mission is to encourage a love of reading in children.
This year 20 schools in Canada will receive a donation from the Indigo fund.

'Unmitigated Disasters'... big words Mitch!!

Mitch...A "Disaster" would be the City getting back into the garbage business...if the City should be doing anything it should be trying to find ways to reduce overheads and manage the City more efficiently and reducing taxes...the City, led by the Mayor, just sold (without tendering) a $1,000,000.00 property for less than $400,000.00 and they want to the Province to bail them out?? The Province should be giving the Auditor General powers to review the procedures and expenses at City Hall as they are currently accountable to no one...and I suspect out of control. Mitch, clean up the "unmitigated" waste at City Hall!
Garbage piling up across capital grabs city council's attention
Ward 4 Coun. Mitchell Tweel says council will be looking at the issue of non-domestic garbage piling up across the city.This comes after residents on Desbrisay Crescent complained when a massive pile of debris started forming on their street recently. Const. Philip Claybourne, bylaw enforcement officer with the city, said Wednesday he was talking to the public works department about having the mess on Desbrisay cleaned up and Tweel said it could happen as early as today.Tweel said council met to talk about the issue of non-domestic garbage a week ago, hinting that a resolution may be forthcoming when council meets on Monday for its regular monthly public meeting.'This issue is not new,' Tweel said, noting that big piles of garbage, including old furniture, washing machines and appliances, have been forming across the city since Waste Watch began.'Waste Watch did not allow for effective and efficient non-domestic garbage pickup. The current program is not conducive to residents in the city.' Tweel said residents just don’t have access to vehicles big enough to transport large amounts of waste to the Waste Watch depots.The Ward 4 councillor said the city met with the former Pat Binns government numerous times on the issue but got nowhere and he’s hoping things will be different with the Robert Ghiz administration.He’s asking for the co-operation of MLAs who represent Charlottetown.About two years ago, the city paid for a second blue bag pickup. Now, Tweel is suggesting it may be time for the city to get back in the garbage business since it usually has to respond to matters like the mess on Desbrisay Crescent anyway.Tweel said the problem on Desbrisay isn’t the only example of problem garbage in his ward, describing situations on Connolly Street and Douglas Street as 'unmitigated disasters'. 'Waste Watch has to take responsibility.'

Welcomed "Hot" News!!

Gee...I hope this crew is right as it's a little depressing out here at the cottage! It seems we can't get two days in a row with some good weather and this is what we need to drive some of those people out of the Cities to come and visit our beaches...great for tourism and maybe they can fill my spot at the "Bush"...
National weather office predicts hot summer
TORONTO — After an exceptionally cold and snowy winter, there’s finally some good news in the national weather forecast. Environment Canada is predicting it’s going to be a hot summer from coast to coast.The federal agency says temperatures will be above average for June, July and August. The only exceptions are the Far North and some coastal areas.Experts say this doesn’t bode well for efforts to limit energy consumption.This is especially true in southern Ontario, where temperatures are supposed to skyrocket above 30 degrees Celsius this weekend.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Penguin's clip in June you say!!!

Most people know I'm a "Red" guy...liberal loving, Ferrari feeling, "Canadian" to the core who was a little "red" in the face when my team got knocked out early. But it doesn't take me long to switch horses and its usually to another Red team particularly Detroit as I had the good fortune of signing Gerard "Turk" Gallant's card into the NHL system when Ted Lindsay was the GM and came to Summerside to have a look at one of our players. It was hard last night cheering for Detroit but somehow wanting the Penguins to's an odd way to be loyal but I think it goes back to my good friend Doug MacLean's line when he was in the finals with Florida and I called him and asked him how he was doing under all the stress of the playoffs and he said "look Tim there's no stress anytime you're still playing hockey in June" and I always thought that was a great line...I don't know who's going to win but I got $50 bucks that says the playoffs will be over by the end of the week...and $2 bucks it'll be "red" again. In any event, thank god it will be over, as maybe we'll see some "summer" as I need some sleep...
Sykora's triple OT goal keeps Penguins alive
DETROIT — The Pittsburgh Penguins hit the jackpot Monday night. Petr Sykora's goal 9:57 into the third overtime gave them a 4-3 victory and shaved Detroit's lead in the NHL's championships series to three games to two. Sykora planted a wrist shot into a top corner of the Detroit net 36 seconds after Red Wings forward Jiri Hudler took a seat in the penalty box for high-sticking. Evgeni Malkin assisted the winner for his first point of the series, while goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 55 shots to keep the Penguins alive in the game — and the final. The Penguins' good fortune all started just before the game when a winning number in the Pennsylvania Big Four Lottery came up as 7171 — Malkin's sweater number repeated twice — and it gained momentum when Detroit defenceman Niklas Kronwall scored into his own net to put Pittsburgh up 2-0 in the first period. After a furious third-period Detroit rally that gave the Red Wings the lead, Maxime Talbot scored the tying goal with 35 seconds left and with Fleury on the bench for an extra attacker. In taking the early lead, Pittsburgh's Adam Hall got credit for the goal Kronwall scored on his own goalie and Marian Hossa also scored for the Penguins. Darren Helm, Pavel Datsyuk and Brian Rafalski scored for Detroit, which outshot Pittsburgh 58-32 in the four-and-a-half-hour marathon. While Malkin’s scoring drought continued, the draw represented a great pre-game signal that the Penguins could avoid elimination. Now, after this solid Pittsburgh team effort and some great goaltending by Fleury, the teams return to Pittsburgh to go at it again Wednesday (CBC, 8 p.m. ET). This exciting marathon left both teams exhausted, and there isn't much time to recover.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Letter to the Garth Staples

Now I'm not going to jump right out and endorse this letter but it is certainly worth some some point we are going to have to get a grasp on the size of Government and we may be forced to do that just to get our deficit under control. Garth's letter may seem a little radical but at some time some Government is going to have to tackle something along these lines...done right amalgamating Stratford and Cornwall with Charlottetown could make some sense?
We Need Less Governance
The Guardian
Garth Staples, a letter writer from Charlottetown, says we should get rid of excessive governance. Here's his letter, which will be featured in Tuesday's Guardian
There never was a more opportune time to reform how we Islanders govern ourselves than now; property taxes are frozen, the municipal federation is in array, small villages are having financial troubles and the search for people interested in elective office is yielding fewer results. The burden of future taxation increases and growing inefficiencies in the delivery of government services is worthy of deep thought by our Island leadership. Seventy-five municipalities governing the ‘million acre farm’ with 138,000 souls is, putting it mildly, excess governance. Seventy-five governments running off in all directions leads to stagnation, and a growing inertia akin to Eastern European states in the 1960s.The solution is neither complicated nor extreme but rather easily achievable once egos are set aside.The following recommendation will set elected tongues wagging as they see their positions disappear and, in some cases, their entitlements.Seventy-five governments would be reduced to five, namely: Municipalities of Kings, Queens and Prince headquartered in Montague, Hunter River and O’Leary respectively.Municipalities of Charlottetown and Summerside (Stratford, Cornwall and Charlottetown would be amalgamated; Summerside, Kensington, St. Eleanors and Miscouche would also see amalgamation).The people deserve a modern and efficient system of governance. Let the leadership required step forward. Garth E. Staples, Charlottetown

Hard Work Pays Off...All the best Kara!

This girl is amazing... if hard work was part of the scoring she would have an automatic Gold and don't be surprised if she ends up in the metals. Over the past number of years we have been very fortunate to be able to sponsor Kara on her endeavours and during that time she has kept us posted by email and by many postcards after each competition. I always look forward to the postcards as they are usually from some exotic place but occasionally she gets pretty frank (down) on herself when she doesn't do well in a particular event and I know it must be pretty tough on her. The big thing with Kara is she always gets back on her feet and pushes harder...a sign of a true competitor. It is quite a feat for a young girl from PEI to be selected for our National Olympic Team particularly in such a gruelling sport as the pentathlon and we all should be very proud of her. We should also thank her friends, coaches, teachers and especially her parents who have all contributed to her outstanding performance. Go Kara Go, you can do it.
P.E.I. athlete heads to Olympics
Monday, June 2, 2008
CBC News
A Prince Edward Island pentathlon athlete will be going to the Olympic Games for the second time.
Kara Grant, from Stratford, will travel to Seoul, South Korea on Aug. 8 for eight days of training. She will then travel to Beijing to compete in the modern pentathlon on Aug. 21.
During a recent competition in Madrid, Grant, 28, received one of the best scores of her career in fencing, which is one of the components of modern pentathlon.
In 2004, Grant competed in the Olympic Games in Athens, where she placed 22nd.
Grant first became involved in pentathlon after years of equestrian training. In 1996, she won the Canadian Junior National Pentathlon title. Since then Grant has won five Senior National Championships.
In 2006 Grant had her best result at the World Championships, where she finished 9th. She said her goal is to achieve gold at the upcoming Olympic Games.
In modern pentathlon, athletes compete in five different events — fencing, shooting, swimming, riding and cross-country running.