May 12

Hypocrites In Action – The Prostitution Of Jasper National Park

(editor’s note: This is the first of hopefully many articles from my Uncle Kevin. While he doesn’t share my passion for swearing and blasphemy, he does care a great deal about our planet and Jasper National Park in particular. He loves it so much that he has spent most of his life there, thoroughly enjoying all that it has to offer.

He is an accomplished photographer, guide, and steward of the land, and even though a lot of it falls on deaf ears, what he has to say is of great importance to the future of our national parks, and our country as a whole.

If you would like to contact him about possibly purchasing some of his superb photos, you can email him at kahass at live dot ca. I probably should have asked him if he is even selling them, but why wouldn’t he? ~Chris)

***********************************************************

It’s fascinating watching hypocrites in action. You just have to wonder if they realize their own hypocrisy, or if they are totally oblivious to it. I watched the Superintendent of Jasper National Park of Canada dance with First Nations peoples at an event held here in Jasper National Park. He wore a green Parks Canada baseball cap, but I think a cap that stated, “I’m a Brewster Toadie!” would have been more appropriate. A good hypocrite at least knows that they are one; a perfect hypocrite is oblivious.

Moon over Mount Wooley

Moon over Mount Wooley

Being from Jasper himself, I now consider him a traitor to his home town and his home National Park, but hey, he’s just trying to keep his job and from being relocated to the arctic.

This was one of the most flagrant examples of arm-twisting, purposeful obfuscation, and lying that I have ever seen Parks Canada commit, and I don’t think it will be the last. It may be trumped soon! Now, Maligne Lake Tours wants to build an hotel on beautiful Maligne Lake, in Jasper National Park, and Parks Canada is seriously considering it! More to come on that later.

The Brewster’s Environmental Assessment report is a piece of self serving garbage and junk-science, all wrapped up in a pretty package with meaningless charts and tables. I take back that word, science, and will never use it again where the Brewsters Glacier Discovery Walk is concerned. Sorry, they’ve changed the name already, and it’s not even open. What is it now? Glacier Skywalk?

Woohoo. The nearest glacier is 6km away. What do you see when you walk out and look down through the transparent floor? A pile of rubble. That’s it. Would you pay money for that experience?

Mount Athabasca

Mount Athabasca

Now we have a new permanent scar on the stunning landscape of Jasper National Park of Canada. Why? For money, for greed, for lack of foresight, for not caring about the future of this Park and the ideals that Canadians and others, hold for the National Parks of this world.

How much money is Parks Canada getting, initially and long-term, from Brewster’s for allowing them to build the Glacier Skywalk? They won’t tell us.

I refuse to accept Parks Canada initial statement published in the Fitzhugh, Jasper’s local paper, that this amount won’t be disclosed as it was part of the “private” negotiations with Brewster’s. We all know that means “secret” and that is not acceptable at all.

Concerning the market survey done for Brewster’s by Salt Marketing, I quote;
“88% of Alberta residents say they would visit the site on a day trip”

Thank you so much to Brewster’s for actually including this so-called market survey at the back of your silly assessment. Here’s their summary, and again I quote;
“Distribution:
Survey was sent to 7,859 email addresses (combination of subscribers to Explore Rockies
and Brewster Vacations Canada) 1) Note: Both are Brewster’s promotional websites!

Response:
474 completed surveys
6% response rate”
They sent out 7,859 e-mails to their target market and only received 474 replies! A whopping 6% response rate (from those already on their own mailing list!) and they extrapolate this to include ALL ALBERTANS!

Hoodwink alert!

These are junk statistics at their worst and Mr. Greg Fenton, Park Superintendent of Jasper National Park of Canada, didn’t so much as raise a whimper. This had his complete approval and the approval of the Parks Canada Agency and the federal government. They must assume Canadians are stupid and that we can’t reason for ourselves.

Mount Kitchener

Mount Kitchener

There is absolutely no way on earth that you can extrapolate these pitiful numbers to confidently state that they represent the views of “Alberta residents”. Shame on all those involved.

At the end of this silly survey it also states,
“Two open ended questions were asked related to what the respondents liked
most and least about the GDW concept. These results have been attached and
may provide insights for the development of the GDW marketing strategy.”
They actually were NOT attached and I now ask Brewsters and Salt Marketing to please publish them. What are you hiding now?

Last thought for the day: Brewters is no longer owned by the Brewster family, nor Canadians. It is owned by Viad Corporation, USA. Thanks for ruining my National Park.

Uncle Kev

(another editor’s note: Uncle Kevin sent me this explanation with his article. It works better than anything I could write, so here it is. ~Chris

“I have been able to stop at this viewpoint, where I took these three photos, and so have all guests of Jasper National Park, ever since the Icefield Parkway was opened in 1940. This is the spectacular roadway that connects Jasper and Lake Louise, alongside some of the highest mountains of the Canadian Rockies.

But no longer.

Since Parks Canada has allowed Brewster Canada to build a glass-bottomed walkway here, they have also allowed Brewster Canada (VIAD Corporation USA, remember), to monopolize the entire length of the once public viewpoint; for no reason necessary to the actual construction project. It was only to allow Brewster a monopoly of the entire site, so that we all will have to pay Brewster for the damned privilege!”

Awesome footnotes   [ + ]

1. Note: Both are Brewster’s promotional websites!
Nov 08

Oh Nothing, Just A Post For Friday

MOBROS

Like our banner this year? Mrs. B made it up for us. She’s peachy keen. She does a lot behind the scenes for our Movember thing, because she knows how important it is to me. We all do, really. Not that it isn’t fun, but it’s still something that takes a toll on me at least.

That’s why it bothers me when I find out that people are using the blog posts to further their own Movember campaigns. Don’t get me wrong, I know the money all ends up in the same place and it’s nice that people share the posts around, but I can see when it gets shared, and by who in a lot of cases. Sadly there are people who share it and ask their Facebook and Twitter friends to read it and then donate to their/their husband’s Mo.

I know it probably seems petty, and I was just going to leave it alone, but it really does bother me. I guess it’s because I work really hard to try and organise this, and those who know me know that I’m not an organised person, so it really is a lot of work for me and the rest of the team. There’s also the monetary investment too. Sure it’s only a few hundred dollars, and I could have just donated it and that would be that, but I feel that if we try to do something fun and fresh, we might get through to a different bunch of people than the usual couple times a week post on Facebook that people just ignore anyway. I hope that we can work it into a yearly thing, something fun that people could look forward to every year. A Mo party with some of our amazing local talent and maybe a bit of food or something. Maybe we could get some local businesses on board and actually make a difference.

I know that I am going to need to start planning before October, do the shavedown photoshoot earlier, muster up the courage to ask local merchants to help out, and have the party on a weekend night that isn’t Halloween.

You live and you learn. Hopefully.

About the sharing of the content thing; I really do appreciate it when it’s shared for the right reasons. More than you will ever know, but please give credit where credit is due. People work hard to create things every day, and most of the time they will give it away for free, but they would like a little acknowledgment for their work. That goes for sharing news stories and tweets too.

It only takes a second to add -Sarah Silverman, or whoever wrote the joke you are using, to your status, tweet, or post. Sure they are never going to see it, but shouldn’t they get the recognition for their creativity? I think they should, plus, it isn’t right to pass something off as your own, even if it only makes your two hundred friends think that you wrote something you didn’t.

I’m a big offender, or at least I used to be. I would Google search for photos and copy them onto this very blog. Then I was thinking about how that was no different than other people’s written content. Sure, it’s mostly memes and stock photos that are free to use, but I’m sure some of it is something that someone worked hard at to capture. You know, that one graphic of a male reproductive system that I needed so badly, or maybe the picture of the dog bite suit. Either way, I’m putting links in to where the image came from now, if it’s at all traceable, and I feel better about myself. Usually.

This dude is serious about moustachery.

This dude is serious about moustachery.

So there you go. My pissypants whine about people stealing my thunder, but hey, I don’t make any money off of this, so thunder is all I got. Now go and donate to http://moteam.co/change-the-topic. There are a few slackers that haven’t broke their doughnut yet, maybe you could help them feel better about themselves. They need to feel loved too. 🙁

Gotta get up, listen to me, clappa your hands, stompa your feet,

Birdman

Oct 21

Dog Fuckers

Birdman

 dog fuck-er (dôg  fũk’ǝr)

n. Vulgar Slang

1. A lazy bastard that would rather spend their time figuring out ways to avoid work than actually working.
2. Someone who fucks dogs.
I hope you are talking about the first one, because I'm not afraid to punch a motherfucker in the nuts.

I hope you’re talking about the first definition, because I’m not afraid to punch a motherfucker in the nuts.

I’m going to rant a bit here, so if you don’t like a lot of swearing and talking mean about assholes that probably don’t deserve it, then you should walk away now, because this might get ugly.

I should also mention that if you are here from a Google search for anything to do with fucking dogs, you are out of luck. I do however have an archived article that you twisted fucks may be interested in. Click here to have your mind blown.

Anyhow, back to business. We are on a shale haul in what I guess are the foothills of the Northern Rockies, and there are a bunch of dump trucks in the rotation. We get loaded by a dude in an excavator and dump where we are building the road into the gas lease. It’s about a 20-30 kilometre round trip, depending on where we dump. The trip has four relatively steep grades while loaded, so it takes about an hour to do on average.

The problem is that a few of us are above average, while a few are far below. There are several factors involved, but the main reasons are truck power and dog fucking.

Some guys/girls have shitty trucks. It’s a fact of life out here, and I don’t have a huge problem with that, except for when it interferes with my day. I mean, the shitty trucks are making the same money as their counterparts that are outperforming them on a daily basis, so they really don’t have an excuse for not having decent equipment, but that’s beside the point. The fact is that I understand the differences in equipment, and I sympathize somewhat. I don’t get really mad at these “unintentional dog fuckers”, because I know that it’s just the circumstances of this point in time.

My boss used to drive the truck I’m in, so it has probably more power than most tandem dump trucks, and because the box is smaller, I don’t generally pull as much weight as a tri-drive. This gives me the luxury of pulling hills much faster than some of the other trucks. Sometimes three times the speed.

That means that I usually catch up to others pretty quickly, and then ride their ass to wherever we are going. I do this in hopes of shaming them into telling me that I can go by them. Generally I am yelling at them to just “move the fuck over”, but occasionally I mutter something like “I will punch your fucking head off, you cunty fuck.”

Yes, that’s right. I get violent when I’m safely behind the wheel of a giant truck. Whether it’s the person’s fault or not.

Let’s not be mistaken though. I’m not brave. I yell these things with all of the windows up and I double check the mic on the radio to make sure the transmit button isn’t depressed. That’s because I really don’t want them to hear me and come back to punch my cunty head off. I just like to vent, and as you may have noticed, I am a bit warped.

All of this annoyance brings me to the real pisser offers here. They are the “deliberate dog fuckers”.

These are the ones that, after the three o’clock coffee break, slow down to a crawl for the last two hours of the day. This is so that they might have to do one less load, thus “putting one over on the man”.

I’ve actually seen some guys slow down to 20 km/hr on the road, just so they can’t get back to the hoe on time for a last load, or some of them might just stop and repair an imaginary piece of broken duct tape or some other minor thing that just had to get fixed right then.

Sure, we were all teenagers once, and we would try to figure out short cuts for every task, but as you grow up, you realize that the work still has to get done, and if someone is paying you to do a job, then you should just do it, and try to do it to the best of your ability. The other option is to quit and find something you are better suited for.

“But Birdman, I’m getting paid $5 less an hour than all of you guys and I have to run a decrepit, old truck. They get what they pay for.”

Bullshit! The customer is paying your boss the same rates as the people with the good machinery. They deserve the best job that you can do. If you don’t think you are being treated fairly, then move on. Get a job with one of the better companies if you can, but I suspect the reason you are stalled at that wage is because of your attitude. Perhaps if you tried working a bit harder, you would find more opportunities for advancement. Other truck owners know if you’re a dog fucker right away, and will possibly hire you out of desperation, but the minute a quality employee comes along, who is the first to get skidded? That’s right. It’s you.

At the end of the day, I suppose it doesn’t matter. They need a ton of workers, and they will take whatever they can get, but when it’s not so busy anymore and they can pick and choose who works for them, who are they going to call?

Who am I kidding? They will probably call you, because nobody gives a fuck out here. Carry on, dog fuckers.

Today I don’t feel like doing anything. I just wanna lay in my bed,

Birdman

Sep 18

And So It Happens

mindofbirdman

I got a call on the long weekend from a buddy out west. He lost a couple of his drivers to illness or injury, I can’t really remember which, and he wondered if I was interested in filling in for him until he could get someone else.

“No, I don’t want to come all the way out there and then not have a month of work. If you can guarantee I’ll be working, then I’d consider it.”

“You know how it is here. I can’t guarantee anything like that, but I’m busy as hell here and have trucks parked with no drivers, so I can say that as long as the weather is okay, you’ll be going.”

I said I’d think about it, but we were busy at work, so I didn’t think too much. I did think it would be nice to see my friends again, so that may have had some bearing on my decision making process.

Then it got slow last week and I only worked half a day, this week wasn’t looking any better, so I talked to my boss. He said that unless something disastrous happened (I work for a disaster restoration company), then we were caught up with everything from the ice storm in the spring.

So I called Tracker to find out the expiry date of my tickets. Looks like I need my H²S and GODI, so I got calling around to set that up. I didn’t want a repeat of last time where I had to sit around for a week, waiting for schooling when I should have been working. It’s not that I don’t like sitting around, and if all of my friends were on welfare I would like it more, but when you invest your time and money into making more time and money, then you kind of want to get at it.

I then got ahold of Alpha Safety in Fort St. John and booked the GRRDI course (GODI equivalent) for Friday. I explained to the girl that I would book my flight early to take the course, because the only other option was Sept 26th at the college and I didn’t want to wait that long. I was able to get into St. John’s Ambulance on Saturday for my H²S, so I would be ready to work on Sunday.

I then booked my flight for Thursday and called Jimmy to tell him when I’d be able to start, because I know he’s got people crying for trucks. Everything was good.

Fast forward four hours and I get a phone call from Alpha Safety to tell me that they didn’t have enough people enrolled in the course, so they were cancelling it.

Really? You didn’t know four hours ago that there wasn’t enough people? When I explained that I would fly out a few days early to make this course, because I couldn’t work without, you didn’t think to mention that you were short a few people and might not be having the course? No? That’s perfect. Bang up job, Alpha.

This doesn’t reflect how pissed of I was, because when I called Jim back later to tell him the shit news, he said that someone had called about a camp job and needed trucks until probably the new year, and I didn’t need the defensive driving course for that.

Sweet, but it doesn’t change the fact that Alpha fucked up. If they had have called and said that they were sorry and had made a mistake, but here are all of the other companies offering the course and what dates they had available I wouldn’t have been so angry. I probably would have applauded their customer service, but they didn’t. They told me when their next course was and made some excuses as to why it wasn’t their fault that there wasn’t enough people.

Maybe it isn’t your fault, but how you handle it is how customers perceive your level of service. I mentioned to you on the phone that you wouldn’t be getting any more of my business, and I meant it. I just hope that you learn from it and don’t do this to someone else.

Now on to sadder news.

I had to say goodbye to the girls this morning. It wasn’t as bad as times before, because I was able to wait until they were gone before I started crying. Well, maybe they weren’t out of the driveway, but they were out of the house. The good thing about it is that today is Liv’s birthday, so at least there were pancakes to soak up my tears. Mmmmm, a short stack of salty flapjacks. It’s the breakfast of wayward stepdads.

Now on to even sadder news.

We are going to visit Sebastard today.

I’m partially kidding, but after that we will be staining the sheets of an airport hotel room on our last night together for over a month. Oh, you thought I was talking about the sexy staining? No. We will probably be having dinner at Lahore Tikka House and you know how a spicy butter chicken ends up.

I'll get my picture taken in this today.

I’ll get my picture taken in this today.

Anyhow, I won’t be blogging very much for the next month, mostly because I will only have my phone with me and I will be studying for my GED as much as I can while I’m away. I also hope to catch up on some movie watching as well. Shit. I guess I’m going to have to pull the old laptop out of the dead electronics bucket and see if it will work for me.

Don’t cry for me Argentina, the truth is I never left you,

Birdman

P.S. To Amber, I know you told me to never go back out there, but it’s different now. I need to know that you won’t beat the shit out of me the next time I see you.

Sep 16

So We Did A Bit Of Timekeeping

birdmandesk

My good buddy Gadget asked me to come and hang with him while he fulfilled his fatherly duty of volunteering at The Mullet’s hockey tournament this weekend. We were going to be timekeeping a couple of games so that they wouldn’t have to pay people to do it.

I guess it’s to help keep costs down, because HOCKEY IS A FUCKING EXPENSIVE SPORT TO PUT YOUR KIDS IN.

Did I mention that the tournament started on Friday.

Yes, Friday. The last day in the school week.

‘That’s okay, Birdman. It’s good to get an early jump on the weekend, so it’s no big deal to start a tournament on the Friday night.’

No it’s not okay. This tournament started on Friday morning. This means that the kids have to leave school and at least one parent has to book out of work that day. Maybe your kid is homeschooled and you are an Amway distributor*, so it’s no big deal for you to whip the little bastard over to the rink for his 10:00 AM game, but most of the parents I know had to leave work for several hours or the whole day because of this.

* – Can you grab me a box of that awesome laundry detergent that you brainwashed fuckers sell? It’s the shit.

Anyhow, I go to the game on Friday night to give moral support to my buddy, when I realised that it was going to take two of us to do this job. Mainly because I had never seen one of these boxes before, and Gadget had just been shown it a bit earlier in the day.

I got the hint that he may have really needed a bit of help when he said “So, you wanna be the stop/go guy?”

“Nah, I’ll just watch. I don’t know anything about this.”

“So you are going to be the stop/go guy?” He had a hopeful look on his face.

“What do I have to do?”

“You hit stop/go when you hear the whistle and then again when the ref drops the puck.”

“That seems easy. Okay, I’ll do it.”

“It’s not easy. If you aren’t paying attention, those hockey mom’s will tear you a new asshole for fucking up their kid’s game.”

I didn’t care, so I just shrugged and said “So? It’s not like they’re going pro or anything. “.

He gave me the “You will die, this day.” look and finished filling out his sheet and screwing up the period times on the scoreboard as we prepared for our maiden voyage.

Oh yeah, the scoreboard.

It’s rumoured to have cost $60000 and it looks like this.

60k? I Tim Hortons paid for it.

60k? I hope Tim Hortons paid for it.

Now the thing that gets me is that this amazing facility was built in 2011 and this is the technology that was chosen to run this wonderful scoreboard.

Really? They couldn't have come up with something a little more user friendly for the volunteer parents to handle?

Really? They couldn’t have come up with something a little more user friendly for the volunteer parents to handle?

Now Gadget is a fart smellersmart feller, so I know he can figure anything out if he’s given the proper amount of time, but when you have whistles blowing for penalties, refs yelling numbers and chopping away at their legs, and doors to open, it’s hard to read the fucking codes that they give you for each action.

It was something like:

Visitor penalty – Press and hold 911, rotate your pelvis 30° to the right, cup your scrotum and then press the symbol for magnesium.

Home goal – Put your left foot in, take your left foot out, put your left foot in, shake it all about, gently slide your thumb across the 1,2,and 3 buttons while you hold the time button down with your opposite ring finger.

These may or may not be true, but it was fun making up new dance moves while learning my new skill.

This brings me to the hockey moms and occasional dad.

We were lucky to do two games that had no players that we knew. I say “lucky” because that way I don’t have to out any of my friends as obnoxious, loud, and assholish parents that can’t just let the coach and their kid do the job that was appointed to them.

Most of the hollering was unintelligible from where we were, so I can just imagine what the kids on the ice could make out. The word I heard the most was “SHOOT!”, and I mentioned to Gadget that I wished the kids would shoot as soon as someone yelled it to them.

I mean the moment they yelled, and in whatever direction is easiest from where their stick is.

I should have went to school for graphic design.

I should have went to school for graphic design. Right?

How about you let the kid play the game. If he’s that fucking simple that he doesn’t know when he should shoot the goddamn puck, then you shouldn’t have bribed his coach into putting him in rep hockey. Instead, you should have saved your money for some Baileys to juice up your coffee and spent your time catching up with some fellow whores, while you watch your fatherless kids* play outside on a pond or someone’s backyard rink.

* – Hee hee. Sometimes I like to be an asshole. I know that you and your friends aren’t whores, and I happen to know that your kid has a dad, but you have to admit that this wound you up for a second. Didn’t it?

A bunch of friends with a couple of mittens for a net, a few old wooden sticks, and whatever ill-fitting pads they can find, will trump any fancy tournament that I can imagine. It’s when the kids have no pressure except to come in for a hot chocolate before they get frostbite, that makes for one of the greatest games that I’ve had the pleasure to watch.

Sometimes at night I can hear the ice crack, it sounds like thunder and it rips through my back,

Birdman