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Home September 2012
September 2012

Singles Day at the Ryder Cup - General Reflections

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I am expecting this to be a lot of fun before it ends. It would be hilarious if it came down to Woods, who has been singularly ineffective, though possibly improving.

a) So the story is that Rory McIlroy got his start time from The Golf Channel, who use Eastern Time, which makes perfect sense as their viewers are likely well trained to hear times and translate the time at which they tune in to that. McIlroy, meanwhile, seemed not to recognize that Chicago might be in another time zone. Now I do not see a real excuse there; he plays the European tour, and it functions in at least two separate time zones.

But this seems to mark another problem. What the hell sort of team organization allows a player to show up based on his own idea of what his start time his?! There are only 12 players; surely it is easy enough for the rather top-heavy team management to get this simple communication in place? I would be less surprised were the team captain not a Spaniard (and the player Irish).

b) Luke Donald did tee off first to a silent crowd. And as Bubba approached the tee, the crowd noise dropped, whereupon he turned around, hands upturned in a question. When the crowd resumed its cheering, he teed off, a little wildly. He did recover to split the hole. But he has not been the Bubba of Friday and Saturday so far since.

c) McIlroy seems not to have lost any form for having missed his warm-up. This is no surprise to me.

Back later.

UPDATE: Poulter is not quite yesterday's Poulter.

Last Updated on Sunday, 30 September 2012 12:58

How Timely - Blasphemy Day!

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Taslima Nasreen documents that today is blasphemy day, and observes it! I'll follow her suit by grabbing a couple of hercartoons and posting them here.


I Knew Love Would Do That - Ryder Cup

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I figured Bubba Watson would go out first. I sure hope Luke Donald has Poulter's attitude to first-tee chaos.

Watson having charged up the first-tee crowd, I suspect the atmosphere will persist.


Please Let This Ryder Cup Afternoon be a Roller Coaster

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Because the projected lead of the USAians over the Europers is now 11-5 and that starting score suggests we might not go down to the wire tomorrow.

Overall I tend to cheer USA USA in a qualified sort fo way but I certainly will not this afternon!


And Poulter Follows Suit at the Ryder Cup

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Teeing off just before Bubba Watson, Ian Poulter urges the crowd to cheer loudly as he tees off. Watson follows suit and repeats yesterday's tee-off through crowd noise.

Might this start to break the atmosphere of reverential silence so characteristic of golf?

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 10:08

Is Anything More Wonderful than this Great Ability to Make Fun of one Another?

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Come on someone has the balls for Islam Gangnam Style?

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 10:06

I Love Bubba Watson - Ryder Cup

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He completely ignores the crowd noise, does not await silence, and tees off with a bomb. This is so much fun!

Ryder Cup Friday Morning a Roller-Coaster

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Wow! It has been so up and down - at one point Europe had a projected 4-0 lead (these projections just take current scores). It's not quite over but it looks like a 2-2 finish this morning. 

Azinger is somewhat surprised Couples is sending Woods out again this afternoon; of course in the afternoon all the bad balls belong to you for redemption.

At least Europe is not starting out with an embarrassing lead over the US team. It may take a couple more rounds.



CSIS Recruiting Videos

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These apparently popped up recently - CSIS does after all have to recruit. (CSIS = something like Canadian Security and Intelligence Services, vaguely like the CIA).

I have seen all sorts of tweeting about how creepy the ads are.

So I watched them.

I see nothing creepy - the only creepiness, as far as I can see, would be perceived by those thinking these jobs should simply not be done, a view I consider ridiculous.

Every ad makes the job look interesting. Were I applying, I would want to be in physical surveillance. I like watching other people. And chasing one on a bicycle would be really cool! Especially on my new geeky bike (I suspect CSIS would not allow that).

Way back when in academia, I got visited by a guy who was somewhat vague about his purpose, and then grilled me for a long time about one of my students. CSIS was quite new then, and I was in math, and I finally told him I asumed it was a CSIS cryptography hire that interested him, and he did confess. I hope the student got the job he wanted. That guy who visited me was a security screener. It is the only direct contact that I know I had with CSIS.

More power to them. I love how they sort of stick it to the government by having Allison's intelligence officer job mention Chinatown (though the suspect gets out elsewhere).

Last Updated on Saturday, 29 September 2012 10:10

OK If You really want an Orator

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Here he is - will update with an embeddable link when I find one.

This was extremely good, despite the weird graphic at the end as he tries to explain how to build a bomb.

I can stand watching him so here is how you can do so (no transcript needed).


Here simply by example he makes Obama look like a relative buffoon, a guy with few really strong principles (which is what Obama is).

And how simply he points out that Viva la Muerte is the slogan of a big part of the world!

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 September 2012 19:01

Birds and Squirrels and Earth and Sky

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I had a pet dog only for a short period in my youth - it did not go well.

But this little cartoon about dogs has me close to tears if only because of the dogs I meet in my morning walks.

The last few panels are the sweetest - their simple enthusiasms, and short lifespans.

h/t vx

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 September 2012 14:18

Lucy Liu as Watson!

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My first response to a US Sherlock was dismay.

And then I saw the casting for Watson!

I can live with this. Starting tomorrow night!


Did Obama Hire a New Speechwriter?

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I cannot stand to watch the Great Windbag bag wind so I did not watch.

But if this transcript is right I am impressed. Clearly somebody new is writing the speeches.

My one quibble is I would like the future to belong to those who mock religions, no matter what their religion. (Especially those who point out that it is Muslim tradition that points out Mohammed was a pedophile.)

Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 September 2012 10:25

Hunger in the USA

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Just brilliant.

I love the guy (girls can be guys too) flat on her face on the basketball court. The crawling kids are pretty good too.

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We canot be rid of those asinine Obamas soon enough. (And clearly it is not just them - this idiotic policy apparently made it through Congress. Or was this yet another case of letting regulators loose?)

Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 September 2012 10:11

London Free Press Reviews My Fair Lady

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McCauley is a second-year student?!

Watch this. (Not in Firefox with Flash, which is utterly fucked.)

Vaguely contemplating wanting to see it again if possible, as I just love the musical and this whole production was superb.


On The Street Where You Live

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Here is what was in the My Fair Lady Movie:

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I am sure this made me cry almost 50 years ago when I was thrilled to watch it in a movie theater (and then later to validate Julie Andrews by watching Mary Poppins, also great).

But those Grand Theatre High School project kids made this both more touching and much funnier.



The Low Point of the Emmys

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This was no hard call:

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Not the whole speech - just the start referring to Sarah Palin.

"Vaidated?" Because Sarah Palin, who likely knows more about the character she plays than anyone (and is no un-self-conscious fool, unlike Moore), was not impressed and she's validated because the media industry liked what she did? Good God how stupid are people!

Palin was a successful business owner, mayor, governor, and parent, so far as I can see, and I hope to see Bristol dance tonight.

Even Tom Hanks winning later for the same movie did not fire such a cheap shot. He was very careful in what he said and he surprised me.

I doubt I will ever watch Julianne Moore with much respect anymore. But actually, when did I ever?

Has she ever played an interesting important role? I can't recall one.

UPDATE: Observation from William Jacobson:

But Moore might have a little more sympathy for the character that provided her a win; especially after Moore’s own gaffe on the red carpet. Twitterers were quick to pick up on the fact that while walking the red carpet, Moore referred to our electoral process as the “electorial college.” I give that a big thumbs down.

Bright has never seemed her strong suit.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 September 2012 17:31

Grand Theatre - Grow the F&*( Up

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I posed on my blog what I think was an utter paean of praise to you people.

No damn way to contact your site by e-mail.


 People - shows are still good!

Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 September 2012 08:13

Grand Theatre High School Project - My Fair Lady

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London, Ontario's Grand Theatre, in co-operation with local high school boards, does the most brilliant thing every year; it combines the talents of high school students from across the region to put on shows, treated really just like the pro shows, a couple of times a year. I knew about the fall ones and only noticed the spring ones yesterday.

A few years ago we went with some friends to see their West Side Story production and really loved it. I have skipped some years now, for example for 'Footloose' last year, which as a show has NO appeal to me.

This year I decided I really wanted to watch it again, as the show chosen was "My Fair Lady".  And what an utter delight it was.

It took a few minutes at the start to wash Rex Harrison, Wilfred Hyde-White, and Julie Andrews/Audrey Hepburn/Marni Nixon, and later Stanley Holloway, out of my brain so I could relax and start enjoying the performances. (I have not seen a production since the movie version I have on VHS tape.) But it did happen within the first ten minutes or so, and once I got there, they had me with the appropriate suspension of disbelief.

My smallest difficulty was with Rebecca McCauley as Eliza. She has a great singing voice, and just natural acting chops. I thought she was just amazing.

OK I am male and the rest of the major characters are male so maybe she has a small advantage. Ben Cookson's Higgins, deeply and profoundly not the Rex Harrison version, started to win me over and had pretty thoroughly pretty fast. I loved how Dallas Ensing's Pickering was stiff maybe in the same way as Hyde-White's, but it seemed much more vulnerable to me. His stiffness, beautifully performed, made his version of that character just lovable.

Brendan O'Brien's Doolittle was a pretty fine Doolittle and had me sold by the end.

What I do not recall at all from the movie is Freddy Eynsford-Hill (except by name) - but I must say, though I did not warm to him at all in the opening sequence (as I am sure I am not intended to), Joshua Van Belois just made him so goofily loverly that he was starting to steal bits of the show with 'I Have Often Walked' (I remember the song but not that it was Freddy). (It is almost 50 years.)

It's a bit wrong to focus on lead roles like this. The choreography and dancing, a major team effort, was so much of the fun. The number of people involved astonishes when you reflect. The costumes, the blocking, the sheer selection of dancing skills!  And actually some of the dancing was the most fun - the Doolittle numbers always featured athletic work short of break-dancing (thank you).

But it is more than that - the choreography featured constant geometry I loved (I am a mathie),and so dynamically that I found myself laughing a lot. That these students can combine so many skills just amazes me.

Where do they find the time to do all this work?!

I hope the McGuinty world does not turn this off, and it does seem Rae did not.

Thanks Grand Theatre High School Project. You made my yesterday.

BTW there was an enormous standing ovation the moment as McAuley and Cookson came out on their curtain call. I did not join in but I am a real standing ovation snob. I try to hold out for about one in 50, which roughly suggests every three years.

On reflection I was wrong. This was a spectacular show.

I was being a Grinch. I want to stand now and thank the whole team. It was terrific! I am not worthy!

Why does the GTA not do this?

The tone of this finish is quite different from the Grand show but gets it to a degree (yes - it is a matter of that old production 'getting' the High School one - yes I liked the Grand version better than either the movie or the Broadway record). It is always the song I loved most in this show before ever experiencing it.

Actors, eh?

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Of course this is NOT how Shaw ended the play.

Moreover what an interesting multicultural show this is  - Loewe from Berlin (I thought he was Austrian), Lerner USAian, Shaw Irish.

Not one of them central culture.

Thanks teachers. Thanks all you arts people. And good God, thanks all you students.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 September 2012 17:47

What a Great Culture

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You know you are living a good life when the media can keep fulminating for days because some local shortstop decorates his eye-black in a way that offends the media!

Gang. Grow up. Give it a rest.


What the H&*( is Gangnam

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Steve Sailer explains Gangnam-Style to me and he is almost as mystified as I am.

No question there is a certain delight in seeing South Koreans lead us culturally. An even better example is the current Samsung Galaxy ad lampooning the Apple iPhone5 launch. "But they make the coolest adapters", and those lovely parents de-cooling the queue by showing up. (If you have a nice link for me I will add it.)

In any case here's the US Naval Academy enjoying Gangnam-Style:

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UPDATE (2012-10-01):  OK Found the ad


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Last Updated on Monday, 01 October 2012 10:38

Pat Condell Summarizes the Last Week

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All I can say is 'Exactly!'.

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"We do understand and we do not care!" YES.

Let Mohammed go fuck himself.

If only the guardians of the US Constitution could do other than snivel in cowardly responses to infantile outbursts (granted, with guns - but the right response to the guns is to shoot back and kill those people using them).

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 September 2012 11:14

The Dandy in Traditional Literature

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I have finally managed to see Whit Stillman's latest movie, 'Damsels in Distress'. For some crazy reason it just makes me so happy, though I suspect I am a part of Stillman's obvious target audience, which he says is himself. In any case maybe it is more me!

This short extract contains a ton of what is great in the movie:

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Here's the trailer:

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It's a special taste. If you have loved his earlier movies, you will love this. If not, this one is likely to be utterly baffling. I just feel so good during the long ending sequence. (I would add that despite the trailer this is NOT for Woody Allen fans.)

(I want particularly to thank Greta Gerwig playing Violet who is the center of the movie and captures exactly the necessary tone.)

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 September 2012 09:54

Very European

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h/t Cafe Hayek

With them I agree that the clock is a great touch. It took me a good part of my viewing to get the time.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 September 2012 16:55

It's Like Being A Mosquito at a Nudist Colony

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Thomas Sowell is hilarious. Of course maybe he is a racist, as anyone opposing Obama must be. (Wait! Who is more black? It is manifest who is smarter.)

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This is a long but very funny interview.

I love his response to Clinton, "the biggest factor in creating the housing boom".

And I love watching a smart guy trying to keep a straight face as the Great Windbag bags wind.

UPDATE: Man those cuts make Obama look like Alfred E. Newman.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 September 2012 15:54


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Certainly one with the least concern for his oath of office.

And incompetent in so many other ways.

Why ANYONE would vote to re-elect this jerk is beyond me.

Use the Justice Department to expose this guys to the Islamists who will want to kill him, and then use the LA Sheriffs to make midnight raid on someone who MAY have marginally violated his parole.

What a slmie!

Last Updated on Monday, 17 September 2012 14:14

Ashbridge's Bay, Sept. 17, 2012

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I have been meaning to post on its status for a while.

It has been a really odd summer - red squirrels, barn swallows (in 25 years I had seen neither there) - as well as the usual suspects.

Of course most of the usual suspects are long gone; the red-wings left a while ago, leaving a vacuum in the soundspace, though making my walks a lot more comfortable - I got attacked much later in the season than I am accustomed to. Robins are gone. I am not sure which of the mallards and Canada Geese will migrate and which will stay, and I really wonder how they decide which risk to take.

Perhaps the oddest thing in the last couple of days (yesterday I walked the Terry Fox Run) is the swan scene. I have reported in the past that we had lost a swan and the breeding couple was down to one lonely guy (I have been told it was the guy). But yesterday I saw four swimming together on the lake. And today I saw these two on the inner bay, feeding so aggressively I could not for all my efforts get a picture of both of them with their heads up at the same time.

I am guessing this is two of the four and they are just stopping over for migration (hence the aggressive breakfasting), but I have not seen the lone male in a while, and so I rather hope they will not be chased off as others have been and settle here. It is clearly a decent breeding ground for swans.

This morning nicely featured sun-dappled trails.

There is no better season here.


Churchill Holds Up So Well on So Much

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Steven Hayward at PowerLine reminds us of Winston Churchill's comments from a century ago about Islam and it sure holds up well.

Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live.

Ouch. Still seems true.

The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property—either as a child, a wife, or a concubine—must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men.

This is a bit prophetic as he could hardly have predicted the sea change in the century since in the West though it was significantly underway.

No stronger retrograde force exists in the world.  Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proseltyzing faith.  It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science—the science against which it had vainly struggled—the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.

This bespeaks a really good observation. Christianity lost the great fight with the modern world and it has adapted. We have yet to see that Islam can do that. The pathetic contribution of Muslim countries to modern science and technology is utterly his point and it was far less obvious when he wrote this.

Prescient! Mind you I think he wrote that stuff after fighting in the Sudan or somehere like that but so are we in a different way.



Good for Lars Viljks

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It is just the right time to toss it back in their stupid faces.

The US is making itself an embarrassment (well, I mean Obama and Clinton are) in this struggle. I prefer this attitude.


Granholm at the DNC

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Jennifer Granholm, about whom I knew two things, one that she was a Canadian, and secondly that she was a governor of Michigan, gave a key speech at the DNC2012 and it ended with a war whoop vaguely reminiscent of what destroyed (I think unfairly) Howard Dean's primary campaign some years ago.

And now we discover the girl is still in the woman who was Michigan's governor.

You can see the coming war whoop in hur bubbly appearance on 'The Dating Game'.

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It fascinates me that she chose the male model. Roughly what the USA did in 2008. And it may explain much of what a mess Michigan is.

Last Updated on Saturday, 15 September 2012 11:39

Count on the Onion to Make the Point Clear

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The sheer infantile stupidity of the Muslim world is proven not by insults to it but by its crybaby response.

The Onion brilliantly skewers any of the diplomatic forgiving and moronic, in my view, discussion of what is going on.

The image ... went online at 6:45 p.m. EDT, after which not a single bomb threat was made against the organization responsible, nor did the person who created the cartoon go home fearing for his life in any way. Though some members of the Jewish, Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist faiths were reportedly offended by the image, sources confirmed that upon seeing it, they simply shook their heads, rolled their eyes, and continued on with their day.


I can fully understand why the Islamic world is the exception in not being able to simply "roll their eyes"; they fear they are inferior and all evidence seems to point that way. Most particularly, the inability to simply roll their eyes. But hey those religions in the cartoon are embedded in societies making great economic and social progress.

Who knows, there might be a connection.
Last Updated on Friday, 14 September 2012 10:22

I Woke Up This Morning in an Alternative Universe

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WAIT WAIT I should be sure it was by waking up the CBC, one of the most ridiculous bag-carrying news media in the world.

(Stephen - please take them down. I  understand the strategy of letting them thing their funding will continue. Keeps them slightly quiet,. But what jokes they are and you know it.)

Obama's administration posted some snitheling apologies for perfectly obvious free speech.

Infantile Muslims went bonkers.

Romney critized the utterly shameful apology.

And then the media went bonkers trying to blame him for something bad created by the truly dim bulb, The Great Windbag..

For Christ's Sake (and I say that as an atheist) there is the first amendment. Only a total loser who does not get the first amendment tolerates totally fatuous apologies. As he did last night and does again.

These Islamist assholes deserve only a response of 'fuck off'. I think that is about right. Arm the Marines and kill them.

Obama and his apologiezers have some new theory about this. It is not welcomne and cannot possibly make the world better.

Depressing night indeed.

Maybe the media will wake up after Islamic prayers tomorrow. That usually leads to something completely useless.

Maybe Obama can apologize again. What a joke he has become.

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 September 2012 12:38

OK I am Confused

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I make fun of your stupid beliefs.

You decide to kill me.

Who is the crazy person?

How stupid can people be? I do understand the CBC but who else can be as stupid as them.?

UPDATE: "who else can be as stupid as they?"

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 September 2012 10:09

A Tale of Two Countries

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There is much hilarious about TV news for me today.

On the one hand CNN is really trying to carry the bag for the asshole Muslims in Egypt and Libya - well, more likely trying to carry the bag for Obama and against Romney. I actually listened to Don Lemon allowing some activist to say we should not be allowed to make fun of Islam and taking it seriously. Damn there is little more worthy of mockery than Islam! But that's Don Lemon - he is not very bright.

And now when I switch to CBC News it is all about hockey negotiations!

I am not sure which preoccupation is stupider. If only there were Islamic hockey players we could make fun of them!

Hmmm. Maybe there are. I would not know - I find hockey boring and Islam stupid.

But it is starting to seem TV may experience a poker revival this fall as it did during the last hockey strike. Maybe it i time to start working on the poker face.


Ken Taylor as a McKayla

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Well he has not seen the movie, which I am sure is terrific, but what were the movie-makers thinking not engaging him! He is not impressed!

How dense are these arrogant Hollywood (or Massachestts) people? Well, pretty dense, and they are joined by all the TIFF acolytres who want Argo to be a great success story of the 2012 incarnation.

Ken Taylor will have none of it. 

“So much of the movie is total fiction,” says the 77-year-old former ambassador on the phone from his home in Manhattan. “My concern is that we’re portrayed as innkeepers who are waiting to be saved by the CIA.”

For some reason this seems a small surprise given this:

Taylor has not seen the movie. He wasn’t invited to the premiere. Neither the filmmakers nor Victor Garber, the Canadian actor who plays him, contacted him during production. “It’s been a total wall of silence,” says Taylor. But he’s seen the trailer, and friends who saw the TIFF screening in Toronto described the film in detail by phone. “My impression is that it’s very entertaining,” says Taylor. “I’m not feeling offended. It’s their movie. But it totally distorts the relationship between Canada and the U.S. with respect to the episode. I just think they didn’t want to be bothered with the facts. It’s a good story, which they stole.”

This does not really amaze me.

But Argo’s magnification of the U.S. role is “absolute nonsense,” says Taylor. “The departure went very smoothly. I bought the airline tickets—I bought sets from three different airlines and paid cash. And I had the final veto. For every hour spent in Washington, there were two spent in Ottawa. Mendez did not become involved until a month after we’d taken over. He spent two days there.”

I REALLY loved this comment from Affleck.

“Because we say it’s based on a true story, rather than this is a true story,” he said, “we’re allowed to take some dramatic licence. There’s a spirit of truth.”

That sounds to me like a stupid man talking. But he is actually a pretty good director in my experience, though not much of an actor.



Yeah It IS September 11

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One of those days in life you won't ever forget. Like November 22, or was it the 23rd? 22nd I think.

The details of both those days remain so clear in the mind.

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November 24 2010