Top 5 Least Important News Items, 2008

This is the full audio of our annual year in review show, which looks to the the Top 5 things that we collectively talked about but, in retrospect, are not all that important. Joining Adam and I in the discussion were Josh Zanin and Romeo Maione.

Please note that, for editing purposes, I kept a bit of silence at the beginning of the file and between each segment. So, don’t panic if you hear nothing for the first 10 seconds or so.

Radio Topics, December 30th

It’s Tuesday! As has become tradition on the Tuesday Blend, Adam and I will be counting down our top 5 least important news stories of the year. Joining us will be Josh Zanin and Romeo Maione.

The show’s conceit deserves a little explanation: we talk about a lot of things throughout the year, many of which have a profound impact on our lives on some level. Other times we devote a tremendous amount of attention and time to discussing and worrying about matters that, with the advantage of hindsight, really don’t matter all that much. We’re going to focus on these “lowlights” of the year.

As always, we air on 93.1fm in Ottawa at 7AM, for those outside the city. I will podcast the show later in the afternoon.

Radio Topics, December 23rd

Happy Festivus! I will be hosting along this morning-  Adam is stuck in Kanata until such a time that someone confirms his car’s engine won’t explode or OCtranspo resumes service. I’ll leave it for you to determine whether or not this is just his very elaborate effort to avoid participating in the feats of strength.

At 7:30 we will air an interview between Charles Anthony Utovac and Charles Seems, author of Ready, Set, Hired!. In the second part of hour two, we will revisit Adam’s interview with Randall Hansen on his book Fire and Fury.

We will also air some of the following greivances:

Stephen Harper appoints 18 senators. Highlights: Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin, and Nancy Greene. Lowlights? The same list of unelectable tory hacks and bagmen that Stephen Harper used to complain about the Liberals appointing.

To help prevent alcohol abuse, the LCBO will make beer less than 2 dollars more expensive.

No end in site for the transit strike.

Another reason not to like Ontario’s municipal property tax assessment system.

Harper moving out of 24 sussex, letting the NCC renovate.

Mayfair, Ressurected

The new Mayfair schedule is up, and it is fantastic (PDF). Midnight movies, topical double bills, and even a couple of screenings with film makers in attendance. I kinda wish they were showing one of the better Mad Max films (Beyond the Thunderdome is pretty dreadful, but the first two are awesome), but I assume it has something to do with print availability.

This is the sort of schedule that encourages me to go to the Mayfair, and more closely reflects what I remember from my days in undergrad, where I pretty much only went to the theatre to see classic films on the big screen. The two good Indiana Jones movies? Check. All three Mad Max movies? Check.

I went last month to see Hamlet 2 (which is very funny), and left with some pretty mixed feelings about the theatre. I was certainly sad to see it go, was worried that another part of Ottawa’s cultural landscape would disappear, and genuinely concerned about losing another place to see a film in the core. But at the same time, the seats were uncomfortable (and had nowhere to put a drink), the popcorn was cold, and the sound a film quality (on a movie only a couple of months old) left much to be desired. In short, I really liked the idea of the Mayfair, and was going to miss that very much. But my attachment to the then current incarnation was based on nostalgia alone, and with Rainbow Cinemas, DVD, and the Internet competing, nostaligia was bound to lose. Indeed, I hadn’t been to see a film there in more than a year.

So I was very happy when I heard about the current group taking over management of the theatre. I really enjoyed Lee Gordon Demarbre’s monthly Saturday Night Sinema series (and, of course, his various exploitation films), they are apparently replacing the seating and upgrading the sound, and the January program looks positively spectacular. Obviously, there are challenges still ahead, but there is a lot to be optimistic about, and a lot of reasons to go there beyond a sense of obligation to the institution.

Radio Topics for December 16th

Welcome back to the deep freeze this Tuesday morning as we enter into day 7 of the OC Transpo strike. Mike is sick this week so I will be on my own. This weeks show will be a little more music intensive as we focus on our favorite albums and songs of 2008. We will also have our usual mix of news, music, concert listings and community announcements. As per usual we air on CKCU 93.1fm in Ottawa. For those out of town we you can listen to us on the web at by clicking on the listen live link.

The OC Transpo strike drags on into its second week

Stephen Harper supports an elected Senate…sometimes.

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates wants Canada to stay in Afghanistan beyond 2011. Peter McKay however disagrees

First the auto sector gets a 3 billion dollar bailout, now the forestry and mining industry is getting their handout too.

NCC to review Greenbelt Master Plan and wants the public’s input.

A show in for best news story of the year… Iraqi journalist throws his shows at President Bush

Turns out the Ontario government doesn’t only ban things, it allows them. Like serving alcohol at movie theaters.

Radio Topics, December 9

Welcome to the real December: it is cold, and Christmas is around the corner! Adam and I will be on air at our usual time, 7am to 9am on 93.1FM or

So, OCtranspo might be on strike tomorrow. Don’t worry, the city has a plan! At least we won’t be short a bridge. What? Shit.

Governor General prorogues Parliament. Liberals return to infighting.

Remember when the tories had an expensive consultant look into contracts issued under the Liberals?

H.M. Dies: a man that could never know how important he was.

Competition Bureau acts against Rebate price advertising.

Greyhound ups security. It’s not too bad: don’t lose your head.

Ted Rogers dies.

Jean Charest re-elected to historic third mandate.

Radio Topics for December 2nd

It was quite the week so to match we have quite the show lined up for you. At 7:30 I will be speaking with Christie Blachford about her book Fifteen Days which recently won the Governor General’s Award for Non-fiction. At 8:10 Adam will be speaking with Michael Jenkin, the president of the Old Ottawa South Community Association. Finally at 8:30 we will be speaking with Scott Thurlow about the political events of the past week. We will also have our usual mix of news, music, concert listings and community announcements. As per usual we air on CKCU 93.1fm in Ottawa. For those out of town we you can listen to us on the web at by clicking on the listen live link.

Shineeramagate at Carleton. CUSA pulls its support for the Cystic Fibrosis fundraiser only to reinstate it Monday night.

Constitutional Crisis? Is it King-Byng or 1985? Who can tell. Either Way, the agreement to form a coalition is in writing now.

Baird desperate to keep the Tories in power so is promising all he can for Ottawa’s New Transit Plan.

By the way, Ottawa finally has a Transit Plan

Dalton McGuinty wants to take away your fruit-flavoured cigarillos.

Carleton University names Herb Gray as the new Chancellor of the University.