Saturday, June 7, 2008

2 Minutes for Stupidity CBC

When the CBC indicated that its iconic theme song may no longer ring out in homes from Bonavista to Vancouver Island to the Arctic Circle - I felt as if I had been cross-checked in the face.

Scenes of the late CBC hockey broadcasters Foster Hewitt, Ward Cornell and Danny Gallivan flashed before my eyes.

Methought I heard shrieks of outrage echo throughout corridors of that Canadian shrine of shrines - holy of holies, the renowned Hockey Hall of Fame.

Why were not the very people who pay the salaries of CBC executives, you and I, consulted about such a seismic artistic leap? These same execs have no problem foisting tired reruns of Road to Avonlea or Degrassi upon their paying public.

Yet after the initial spasms of shock and indignation subsided - my cynical side emerged. What a brilliant way to capture the attention of the Canadian hockey faithful, especially the boomers, by sucker-punching them.

What better way to solicit and seduce 'youth buy-in' by focusing on the need for change and to move forward into the future? The topper was the $100,000.00 bribe to anyone who can create the winning 'brand new' Hockey Night in Canada theme song.

Anne Murray - Snowbird
Gordon Lightfoot - Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
Bob & Doug Mackenzie - Hosers & beer
Paul Henderson 1972 - Shot heard round-the-world
Stoppin Tom Connors - The Hockey Song
Wayne Gretzky - The Great One
Gordie Howe - Mr. Hockey
Bobby Hull - The Golden Jet
Bobby Orr - Poetry in Motion
Hockey Night in Canada Theme Song - done . . done done . done done . . . done done . . done done - DONE!

Join the chorus - sign the online petition to save the song!

This one is a 'no-brainer'. CBC - 2 minutes for stupidity!

Photo Courtesy: Dr Starbuck

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Faith, Tatoos & Technology

Special from the Catholic Media Convention 2008 in Toronto

Considering that the majority of those involved in producing Catholic media are more likely concerned with receding hairlines and facelifts than body piercings and Facebook - is it any wonder that their publications are largely ignored by today's youth?

According to one bright, articulate 17 year-old presenter at the Catholic Media Convention being held in Toronto this week, the best way for Catholic media organizations to connect with youth is to speak to them about issues and technologies that directly relate to them, to walk around in their shoes for awhile.

Youth Speak News is an exciting and relatively new feature (2003) of the Catholic Register national weekly that gives youth a chance to explore their own faith in light of contemporary issues. Youth are invited to share their views by responding to weekly opinion columns and articles or, if so inclined, to apply to be one of its young writers.

Salt & Light TV, which literally took root and grew out of the Canadian media coverage of World Youth Day in Toronto in 2002 - is another venue for youth to express and explore their Catholic faith. S & L, currently a subscriber-based digital cable channel, will soon be included as part of the Rogers VIP cable television package. S & L has produced engaging, high quality, meaningful programming on challenging issues of faith.

S & L encourages Catholics to get involved in their organization through: volunteer job opportunities, contests, feedback and donations.

The Catholic Register's Youth Speak News and Salt & Light's invitation to youth to learn more about and explore their faith, according to one of the teenage workshop presenters, would also give youth a break from the 'pop culture slums' they sometimes get caught up in.

Photo Courtesy -

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Promised Land

Before we even slipped the surly bonds of earth for the heavens above - I knew in my heart of hearts that we would be safe.

With a hot air balloon pilot by the name of Moses guiding us - how could we fail?

Oh sure, we faced temptations in the psychological wilderness: queries from jittery passengers like, what improvements have been made in the industry since the recent balloon fire tragedy? Can you actually steer this thing? Or, how quickly could you land this thing if you had to?

The pre-launch preparations took about 30 minutes - a pretty much 'hurry up and wait' event as giant fans filled the massive balloon with air. Then within a span of about 30 seconds 8 of us scrambled into the wicker style basket that would be our home for the next hour or so.

After the initial heart-pounding 'shock and awe' of launch and jolting blasts of hot air from the propane burners - we soon settled into the indescribable beauty, exhilaration and tranquility of flight.

Time stood still as we absorbed and marveled at the magnificent serenity of the moment and the lush landscape below. Moses had delivered to us, sweeping vistas of Waterloo Region . . . the 'promised land'.

Our journey soon came to a fitting ecumenical end as we landed safely in the barren corn field of a welcoming Mennonite family.

A sweet toast of Champagne to our traveling companions, a safe journey and memories for a lifetime.

Thanks for the great Christmas gift kids!

Photo: M. Redfearn