Saturday, February 06, 2010

New Facebook fan page video

If you're a member of my Facebook fan page, check out a video I posted this evening to thank everyone for joining! 160+ members already! That's awesome! Thanks for the support!

Ode to the Canadian milk bag

What Canadians see as "normal", others see as completely... well... weird. Yes, Canadians can buy their milk in bags.

Some Canadian milk bag videos from YouTube:

(Photo courtesy of Dylan's Blog.)

Friday, February 05, 2010

Check it out, kids!! Moncton's "Mission Possible: Haiti" YouTube contest

Hey kids! Looking for a way to help our friends in Haiti? Are you fans of YouTube? Then this contest may be for you!

Here's a "cut and paste" of the sidebar mentioned in the above YouTube video:

"Buy a Mission Possible: Haiti t-shirt....make a video...1-3 minutes in length...upload it to the Mission Possible: Haiti Facebook event or YouTube channel...and YOU could be the winner of a pizza party for 10!!

Here's the sidebar link for Facebook!

Deadline to enter is Feb. 22 and the winner will be announced at the concert on Feb. 26 so you'll want to be there!

Make sure you post the link to your video on this page or on the Facebook page at the link above so we can find it!

Mission Possible: Haiti VIDEO CONTEST

1. Unless otherwise excluded by law or by the rules applicable to a particular contest, Mission Possible: Haiti contests are open to all students. Employees, agents and immediate family members of Mission Possible: Haiti, its advertising agencies, sponsors, affiliates and representatives are not eligible to participate. Immediate family members include spouses, siblings, parents, children, grandparents, and grandchildren whether by current marriage, past marriage, adoption or as in-laws. All contests are void where prohibited by law. No purchase is necessary.

2. All contest entries become the property of Mission Possible: Haiti. Each entrant may enter a contest only once. In the case of multiple entries by the same person, all entries may be withdrawn and the entrant disqualified.

3. Each entrant agrees that in the event he or she wins a contest Mission Possible: Haiti shall have the right, without further compensation, to publicize and/or broadcast his or her name, voice, likeness, city of residence and the fact that he or she won the contest.Entrants further agree that Mission Possible: Haiti may use such identifying information to publicize its radio station, website and/or other contests. Contest winners agree that they may be contacted by telephone and the call recorded for potential use on air.

4. Entrants agree to release and hold harmless Mission Possible: Haiti and its affiliates, including Mission Possible: Haiti and its officers, agents and volunteers, from any and all damages, liabilities or claims for injury or damage of any kind that might arise in connection with a contest, a prize, or the award of a prize. Mission Possible: Haiti reserves the right to condition the final award of any prize on the execution of a legally enforceable release of claims and indemnity agreement.

5. Mission Possible: Haiti is not responsible for service outages, connection speeds or other sources of internet systems which may influence or affect the chances of winning a contest.

6. Mission Possible: Haiti reserves the right to substitute another prize of equal or greater value for the prize originally announced if the original contest prize is or becomes unavailable. Mission Possible: Haiti is not liable if a concert or event with which a prize is associated is canceled due to circumstances beyond Mission Possible: Haiti's control. Unless impossible or impractical, prizes will be mailed to the winner within 60 days after the winner is selected and announced.

7. Mission Possible: Haiti reserves the right to disqualify any entrant or winner (whether or not the winners identity has been announced) who does not adhere to the rules applicable to the contest in which he or she entered or who gains an unfair advantage through fraud or unsportsmanlike conduct in participating in the contest.

8. For a list of contest winners send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Mission Possible: Haiti, Attn: Contest Winners, 663 Pinewood Road, Riverview NB E1B 5R6 and include the name of the contest you are inquiring about."

Good luck to everyone who wants to participate!

Adam Lambert's appearance on CBC's qTV

Check out Adam Lambert's interview with Jian Ghomeshi on CBC Radio's Q show this week. Adam's a great interview and Jian is a great interviewer. A real pro!

New video by 2008 Canadian Idol winner Theo Tams

Wait For You... very nice!

Thursday, February 04, 2010

My first CNN iReport

I posted my commentary on the abandoned puppies in Fredericton to CNN iReport. Will be doing these on a regular basis.

Click here to check it out.

Click on the photo for a larger version.

News item: '80s hit Down Under copies kids' song: court

"Australian band Men at Work copied a well-known children's campfire song for the flute melody in its 1980s hit Down Under and owes the owner years of royalties, a court ruled Thursday. Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree was written more than 70 years ago by Australian teacher Marion Sinclair for a Girl Guides competition, and the song has been a favourite around campfires from New Zealand to Canada."

Click here to read the full report from CBC News.

Here's Down Under by Men at Work:

Here's a version of Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree:

What do YOU think? Personally, I don't hear it.

Carrot clarinet

This is very cool!

Mission Possible: Haiti

News release:

"Advance Savings Credit Union, JumpStart720, Sun Life Financial and the Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce have just announced Mission Possible: Haiti, which includes a city-wide sale of Mission Possible: Haiti t-shirts and a benefit concert.

The Mission Possible Haiti benefit concert, which is being held at the Wesleyan Celebration Centre on Friday, February 26, at 7 p.m. includes the musical talents of ECMA winners and 2010 nominees for Entertainer of the Year, The Divorcees, ECMA winner and 2010 nominee for Pop Recording of the Year, Stephanie Mainville and ECMA winner, Chris Colepaugh.

Tickets for the Mission Possible Haiti benefit concert are $20 each and are available online at, Steve’s Diner and Frank’s Music.

Along with the benefit concert, the group had a stylish "Mission Possible: Haiti" t-shirt designed which they are selling for $10 each.

T-shirts are available for purchase by the general public at any branch of Advance Savings Credit Union and all Sobeys locations and will also be available at the Wesleyan Celebration Centre during the concert.

If you are with a corporation and would like to purchase a supply of t-shirts for your staff, please email and ask for the Mission Possible: Haiti t-shirt order form.

We want to see everyone wearing a Mission Possible: Haiti t-shirt on Friday, February 26!

Proceeds from the event and Mission Possible: Haiti t-shirt sales will go to the Canadian Red Cross and Samaritan's Purse to support their earthquake relief efforts in Haiti.

Special thanks to our sponsors: Advance Savings Credit Union, JumpStart720, Sun Life Financial, Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce, C103/XL96, Times & Transcript, Sobeys, The Hardman Group, Fundy Textile & Design, Damascus Coffee, Future Inns, Broken Coast, Sign-A-Rama and Orange Creative & Design."

Click here for a MAX FM radio interview with Jenn Marr re: the event.

Every month has its upsides and downsides

Hump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Editorial section
Moncton Times & Transcript

I'm not one for wishing an entire month away, but if someone asked me what my least-favourite month of the year was, I'd have to say January. It's a long month usually devoid of much celebration -- in fact, any semblance of celebration from the Christmas season is taken down and put away for another year.

Usually, it's cold, snowy and bleak. The days are short and there's no holiday until Good Friday, which falls on April 2 this year. Not bad. Kind of in the middle of "early and late" as far as Easter goes. Next year will be exceptionally painful as Good Friday 2011 falls incredibly late on April 22 -- practically in May!

There was some online chatter last week about favourite months. April was mentioned as a very depressing month by a couple of people, mostly because of the mud from the spring thaw and the fact that the trees are still pretty bare. One person I used to work with absolutely despised November for pretty much the same reason. For me, every month has its pros and cons.

January: The pros to January are a return to routine after the Christmas break. The kids go back to school. There's not a lot going on, so resting is not too difficult to do. The cons are pretty obvious. It's a long, cold, snowy month. The days are still short and the absence of Christmas lights makes them all that more dreary. And then there are the Christmas bills.

February: This is a month with a non-statutory holiday in there called Valentine's Day. The stores are all decorated in red and white. Lovers prepare for a cozy night together in a nice restaurant or in front of a fireplace. For single people, however, Valentine's Day is a time for stuffing your face with chocolate and trying to watch reruns of Golden Girls through your tears.

March: This is the teaser month. It usually starts off a lot like winter and somewhere in between we get visited by spring! Oh the joy! Things melt a bit. We even get to see the grass in our yards again. On a particularly balmy day, we may even see children drive by on their bicycles. Spring is here! Then, reality hits when the inevitable snowstorms come and we're buried again until mid-April. Well, at least the days are longer so we can see what we're shovelling.

April: This is the muddy month when things usually thaw out, but winter has not gone just yet. There's always that one big storm left in April that causes even the most positive people to contemplate mass murder. Kids, when it snows in April, let's just say that it's not a good day to ask mom and dad for a raise in your allowance. On the good side, however, Easter often occurs in April, giving us a couple of days off work and a reason to eat lots of chocolate!

May: The good thing about May is that the days are really long and the warm weather starts to return in a more regular manner. There's also Victoria Day, which means opening up the cottage for the year (if you have one) or taking a few days to clean up the yard. The leaves come out on the trees, which is nice. And the bad? Well, in some years, Mother Nature rears her ugly head like Jason at the end of those Friday the 13th movies. Just when you think she's dead and buried for another year, it starts to snow. (For instance, Moncton received 47 centimetres of snow throughout May 1985.) Many of us mow our lawns for the first time.

June: The kids get out of school and people turn their thoughts to vacations. Lawns definitely need mowing by now.

The longest day of the year occurs, usually on the 21st. On the negative side, there are some very warm days for those who don't like the heat. It's also the time you notice your home or car air conditioner is broken.

July and August: I'll lump these two in together. Lots of tourists around. Vacations are in full tilt. Kids start off super excited and then end up being bored. Parents start off super happy to have the kids home and then are super happy that they're going back. There's nothing on TV but reruns and some reality talent shows. Christmas decorations start to creep into stores, driving many people crazy. Various summer afflictions abound, including bee stings, sunburns, jellyfish stings, and bug bites.

September: The smell of a freshly mowed lawn -- so pleasant in May and June -- has now grown old and the chore of mowing has eclipsed the earlier pleasure. The kids are back in school. Vacations are over. Routine returns. Television shows return. The days get shorter. The weather is still very nice.

October: Usually very nice weather and nice scenery with the leaves changing. This is my favourite month. It's the month of Thanksgiving and the harvest. The kids get Halloween to enjoy -- and so do the adults. The first snowflakes of the year fly. People talk about seeing their first snowflake of the season like they've just seen a unicorn.

November and December, for all intents and purposes, are all about Christmas and getting ready for winter, especially after Remembrance Day, when the holiday season swings into full gear. The Christmas haters rue every waking moment.

The Christmas lovers revel in their favourite time of the year. Parents can finally use the "Santa card" again when disciplining their children. We wonder what we'll do on New Year's Eve.

Every month has its good points and bad points. The secret is finding the joy of whatever month it is and focusing on that. Thank goodness I like the Golden Girls.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Aaron Kelly and Lacey Brown were sentimental favourites on tonight's American Idol

Aaron Kelly, 16, has a great personal story, great look and great voice. Lacey Brown nearly made it into the Top 10 last year but was narrowly beat out by Megan Joy. Can she make it through this year? Her performance on tonight's show was amazing, I thought. Thoughts? First up is Aaron:

And here's Lacey:

Videos courtesy of

Forbes names top 25 web celebs

Many people have a little corner of the web these days. Lord knows, I'm doing my part to carve out my own... however some have become veritable web celebrities ("web celebs"). Through blogs, YouTube and other means, these individuals have made a mark for themselves on the web and have amassed huge followings.

A few surprises: The only major YouTuber on the list is Shane Dawson. I subscribe to -- and like -- his videos, however there are others I would have put above him, including Fred, Nigahiga, Kevjumba, Sxephil, Charlieissocoollike, Cory "Mr. Safety" Williams and a few others. But hey -- it's a thrilling honour for Shane and congrats to him!

I haven't heard of many on the list, simply because they're tech or business bloggers and those aren't things I follow very closely. I love that Seth Godin made the list. Also very interesting to see Star Trek The Next Generation's Wil Wheaton, as well. Trek fans have made Wheaton a veritable Twitter star with more than 1.6 million followers! (He also starred in one of my favourite movies of all time - Stand By Me.)

Click here for the list of Forbes' top 25 web celebs.

Do you agree with their choices? Post a comment a let me know!

The photo above is of the #1 person on Forbes' list. If you don't recognize him, click here for his blog.

Congratulations to everyone who made the list! Quite an honour!

Dear Mel Gibson...

... oh DO shut up!

This week's Hump Day column...

... is about the fact that every month has its ups and downs. Many people don't like January since it's a long, cold, snowy month. But other months have their downsides, too. The secret is to find the silver lining in any time of the year -- whether it's your least-favourite month or not.

Check out today's Hump Day column in the editorial section of the Moncton Times & Transcript, New Brunswick's largest-circulation newspaper.

It will be posted here online tomorrow.

Remember... if it's Wednesday, it's Hump Day!

Moncton's Vien Dong Restaurant closed due to health violations

After last weekend's tragic fire at Moncton's popular Château à Pape Restaurant, another well-known local eating establishment is experiencing a different kind of trouble: health inspectors.

A friend on Facebook who works on Main Street mentioned that she noticed that the Vien Dong Restaurant (Vietnamese and Thai food) at 880 Main Street has been closed since yesterday.

After visiting the online version of the restaurant's latest inspection report, it became quite evident that the place is in dire need of pulling up its bootstraps and has been closed until it complies with a numerous amount of infractions. Click here for a copy of yesterday's inspection report.

I've eaten there many times and have greatly enjoyed it. I hope they get their act together and re-open soon.


UPDATE - MAY 16, 2010:

According to the latest NB Dept. of Health inspection report online, the restaurant has a clean bill of health.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Please don't abandon your animals!

My vlog for Tuesday, February 2, 2010. Topic: Litter of puppies found abandoned in freezing cold in Fredericton's Odell Park.

Click here for my related blog post.

Litter of puppies found abandoned in freezing cold in Fredericton's Odell Park

A litter of eight puppies was found abandoned in a Rubbermaid-type container in Fredericton's Odell Park earlier today. Two young women found the container. When they looked inside, they found the abandoned puppies.

Although cold and hungry, the puppies were in good health. According to a vet who checked them out, they had thankfully not been outside for long.

The puppies were brought to the Fredericton SPCA, where they will spend in time in foster homes until they are old enough to be adopted.

Anyone with information on who may have abandoned the dogs should contact the Fredericton SPCA, the New Brunswick SPCA or the Fredericton RCMP.

Click here for my video commentary.

Click here for the subsequent related front-page newspaper story in The Daily Gleaner.

Click here for related coverage from CBC New Brunswick.

(Photo credit: Rick Williams.)

Concert for Haiti at Capitol Theatre this Thursday, February 4, 2010

Click on the photo for a larger version of the poster.

Happy Groundhog Day!

Is spring arriving early or late this year? Click here to check out, the official site of Punxsutawney Phil.

Here in Canada, Shubenacadie Sam has already declared that there will be six more weeks of winter (quelle surprise!) after seeing his shadow this morning.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Friday, February 5, 2010: An intimate evening of great music with Monette Gould and Trio Carte Blanche

An intimate evening of great music with Monette Gould and Trio Carte Blanche on Friday, February 5, 2010, at 7:30 p.m. at the Monument Lefevre Auditorium in Memramcook.

Monette Gould and the Trio Carte Blanche (Pierre Battah, double bass; Gilles Belliveau, flute; Robert Gaudet, guitar) will be joined by swinging guest drummer Jerry Martin for this very special occasion. They will perform old and new favourites from the great American songbook. Come hear great songs and standards made famous by Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Diana Krall, Eva Cassidy, Norah Jones and more.

Monette Gould is a celebrated and well-known singer who teaches voice privately and at Mount Allison University and l’Université de Moncton. Monette directs the award-winning choir Voce dell’Anima and sings with the Trio Carte Blanche at a number of special stage functions and events, most recently for the Tree of Hope radiothon on CBC Radio Moncton.

Trio Carte Blanche is one of the region’s premier function bands, having performed at hundreds of private, corporate and community events and fundraisers.

The concert will be in an intimate setting where the band and audience will all be on stage for the performance, a first for the venue. Background music will be provided by special guest DJ Alex Battah before and after the performance and during intermission. Tickets are limited and available by calling the Monument Lefevre at (506) 758-9808.

For more information, call Pierre Battah (506) 863-4945 or visit

Sunday, January 31, 2010