Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Late Nights On Air

Late Nights On Air by Elizabeth Hay is a novel set in 1975-76 in the Northwest Territories. So far, most of the setting for the book has been a CBC radio station in Yellowknife. However, as of last night I am beyond midway through the book and four of the characters are setting off on a canoe trip, retracing the fatal journey of explorer John Hornby on the Thelon River. So far the book has dealt largely with the screwed up relationships of various characters with the backdrop of an impending gas pipeline through the north. My opinion of the book to this point is not all that positive, but now that the canoe trip through the barrenlands is underway, I am optimistic regarding it's potential. If nothing else, I now am interested in reading more about Joh Hornby and fellow travellers Edgar Christian and Harold Adlard.

Update: Jan 29 '08 - Well I finished off the book last night. In the end, the book was interesting and overall was not bad. I'm not sure I get it all though and I can't say it was one of my favourites. The canoe trip portion was good and I was interested as it's a region I'd really love to paddle some day (Thelon River through NWT and Nunavut). I'll get my wife to read it next so that she can give me her opinion. I am also very intrigued by the idea of living in the north as the characters in the book did. However, I am not all that intrigued by messed up people having messed up relationships.

Next up: Reading the River: A Traveller's Companion to the North Saskatchewan River, Myrna Kostash

What I'm Reading

There's a new feature here at which I've called "What I'm Reading." I have been wanting for some time now to add a list of books that I'm reading to my web presence with the occasional book review. I've finally taken a step towards implementing this. On the sidebar on the right I've added the "What I'm Reading" heading. Under that heading you will find a list of what is currently or has recently been on my bedside table with links to a post specific for that book. My intention is to write some of my comments on that particular book which will show up as it's own post here in the blog. I'll use the tag "books" so you should be able to use that tag to find all of the book posts easily once I figure out how to set that up.

The first book for the list will be Late Nights On Air by Elizabeth Hay.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Kent Heads Home

I just heard the news - less than 2 months after the Roughrider's Grey Cup triumph, Kent Austin has accepted a job offer from his former team, University of Mississippi, Ole Miss. Austin is from Nashville originally and quarterbacked for Ole Miss from '81 to '85 before, he led the Riders to Grey Cup victory in '89 as quarterback. Austin is, without a doubt, the single most popular human being in Saskatchewan right now and his leaving will leave many in grief. It was reported that Austin was not leaving for money, but rather to return home.

It's a sad day here in Saskatchewan.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Busy, Busy, Busy

The last 4 evenings have been spent working into the wee hours of the night on the website for the Saskatoon Canoe Club, as well as putting together a poster for some upcoming events.

The SCC has just switched hosts in advance of the demise of the Saskatoon FreeNet. I spent an inordinate amount of time worrying over the decision of what host to move to, mentally debating such issues as whether to support local companies or go with cheaper but non-local hosts, and how much disk space and bandwidth we might need. In the end I went with what will probably be more than enough space from a local company, for what seems like a reasonable price (though cheaper hosting can be obtained).

Moving everything over to the new host, I took the opportunity to clean up the files and update some of the pages and it was this process that has kept me up at nights. In particular, the coming events page needed major work to update and generally improve. Now tonight I was going to bed early (~10:30 or so) and here I still am after midnight. In the past I used NVU html editor. I have recently started using an older version of DreamWeaver and am finding it much better. I think now I'll be able to do a better job of cleaning up and maintaining the pages; I think it was the tables in the original set-up that have been causing me fits.

I'll try to paste in the info from the poster (which will shortly be seen in some local libraries, Eb's Boomtown, Outter Limits, etc.) in case you're interested.

Saskatoon Canoe Club

2008 Winter Events

January 18th, 6pm – 9pm: Potluck Supper & Larry Easton Presentation. St. Paul’s United Church, 454 Egbert Ave. Professional photographer, Larry Easton, has paddled and photographed many places in North America. Larry will give a multimedia presentation and discuss some of his favourite trips including Baja, Nahanni, Broken Group Islands and Cree River.

February 28th, 7pm – 9pm: Annual General Meeting & Thelon River Presentation. J.S. Wood Library, 1801 Lansdowne Ave. Join us for a short AGM, have your input into the club’s activities, and view a presentation from Bill Bishopp’s trip on the Thelon River.

March 28th, 7pm – 9pm: Trip Presentations. St. Paul’s United Church, 454 Egbert Ave. Mark Holmstrom will discuss his Churchill River trip and Adrian Johnston will discuss his Cree River trip.

April 24th & 25th, 5:30 – 8:30 pm: Paddle Building Workshop. Lee Valley Tools, 820A 51st St. E. Cost: $85 with tax. Space is limited; to sign up call Mark @ 955-4587. Participants will complete a straight-shaft paddle to take home.

May 4th: Boathouse Open House and 35th Anniversary Festivities. We are planning a party so watch for details!

For more information visit our website:

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Roasted Tomato Dip

I came across this recipe for Roasted Tomato Dip today on Laurie March's website, I think I'll have to head to the grocery store to pick up some shallots and tomatoes then give the recipe a try.

I've made a shredded pork dish of Laurie's and it was great. We ate it fresh rather than dehydrating it for camping use but I'll have to make it again and dehydrate it for use next summer.

While perusing the Wilderness Cooking blog, I also came across this link to home-made hot sauces. It looks like I'll have to pick up some chiles while at the grocery store too!

By the way, you might also like Laurie's other sight: Outdoor Adventure Canada.

Update: Jan 29 '08 - I made the "Tropical Fire" hot sauce from the web site mentioned above on Saturday and it turned out great. I now have about 3 litres of a sweet mango-tasting hot sauce. It was made with double the mango, banana and kiwi from what was called for in the recipe, but no papaya (papayas in the local grocery were too expensive) and spanish onion instead of scallions (scallions were also too expensive). It has lots of kick, but is not too hot and very flavorful. I would rate the heat a 6 out of 10.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Richard Flohil on Music

"If you can't make music, try to help make music happen."
- Richard Flohil

Let's just say I can't make music.