Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Manitoba Links Weekly: We Got Roads Ahead (ManLinkWeek 4)

I'm still experimenting with post themes and post times for this segment, so let's jump right in with week four:

[bigsugar.com: REVOLUTION PER MINUTE fall NATIONAL TOUR dates announced.]
Very few things in the big wide world warm the cynical cockles of my heart quite like the knowledge -- the very idea -- that Big Sugar and Wide Mouth Mason both have new albums and are touring the country together in the year 2011. The tour rolls through the Walker dammit the Burton Cummings Theatre for the Performing Arts this Thursday (and through The 40 in Brandon tomorrow night, if that's closer for you); I've already bought my ticket, and inner fourteen-year-old me is totally stoked about getting to go to this.

If I had my way -- reference, uh, unintentional -- if I had my way, these guys would staple this list to the wall and then hurl darts at it until they had enough bands together for a great big Can-rock summer tour. Not infeasible! Big Sugar, Wide Mouth Mason, the Watchmen, Econoline Crush and the Tea Party are all currently reunited; the Tragically Hip never actually stopped; Matthew Good was literally just through town yesterday. Somebody throw money at David Usher until Moist emerges, everybody agree to dedicate the tour to Dan Achen, and let's put on the best cross-Canadian tour ever! And, while I'm dreaming, I'd like a rocketship.


[The British North American Blog: Winnipeg street plan driver’s nightmare and developer’s dream]
"Do people complain that we need an underpass at Waverley? Or do they complain that we need to extend the Charleswood Bridge all the way to Bishop Grandin? I bet if you asked a thousand people to choose you would get a thousand 'what a stupid question' looks before being pummelled in the head. Underpass Underpass Underpass."

Following the recent unveiling of the City of Winnipeg's Master Transportation Plan, suffice it to say that nobody's much impressed. (Ditto for the city's short-term transit plans, too.)

[One Man Committee: You can't get there from YWG (at least not directly)]
Remember how everybody had a good laugh when Barry Rempel tried to convince money-savvy Winnipeggers that flying out of Winnipeg was every bit as inexpensive as flying out of Grand Forks? Oh, man, those were good times. (They've since deleted the comments thread on that story, which is really too bad, because dang if the public reactions to that claim weren't amazing.)

But even if Winnipeg could hypothetically close the price gap, through some combined miracles of fare competitions and wildly beneficial exchange rates, this fine Walter Krawec post reminds us that there'd still be the problem of actually getting anywhere efficiently from our airport. Ahh, it's always something, I guess.

Interesting sidenote: the front page of the Grand Forks International Airport website boasts that "GFK is proud be the closest U.S. international airport to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada." How odd must that proclamation look to anybody from anywhere else?

[Google Maps: Brandon Beer]
You know how it is, sometimes: you find yourself in an unfamiliar locale, and you don't really know where you're going or where anything is, but you have a dire and urgent need of beer. Hey, it happens! So if such a scenario should strike while you're in or around Brandon, this recent geolocational initiative of The Cranky Beer Blogger will have your back.

[Winnipeg Free Press: Gang war hits ticket revenue]
This is a real thing: according to Winnipeg Police Service Chief Keith McCaskill, the police department is $1.4 million short on its financial statement for the year because gang activity and violent crime in the summer meant they couldn't have enough police issuing traffic tickets. The city was very, very much counting on these tickets being issued, having predicated its overall budget on the expectation of continuous traffic revenue, so this unforeseen circumstance -- "reduced resources for traffic-ticket enforcement", the continued inconvenience of having to deploy police officers for crimes rather than infractions -- directly caused a quarter of our civic deficit for the year.

To recap, keeping people safe from violent crime isn't as lucrative as sitting in a van on Bishop Grandin, so the police chief had to go to city council and explain why he doesn't have the money they wanted. Well, we have to have our priorities, after all; what good is public safety if it isn't profitable? What kind of world do we even live in when the new cops we hired aren't paying for themselves? Knowing our city, the solution is obvious: we must hire more cops.

[Love me, love my Winnipeg: One stop shopping?]
The reactionary NIMBYism of Winnipeggers is so overwhelmingly powerful that people don't even want 7-Elevens in their neighbourhood, and that's in a city that prides itself on its Slurpee consumption.

(I'm not entirely sure which section of that last sentence is the worst part.)

But it bears mention that these assorted Slurpee stations, new and old, may also soon become the cheapest and most convenient way to rent (physical copies of) recent DVD releases -- especially since everywhere in town that used to be a Blockbuster location is now either a fitness centre or a "leasing opportunity".

[RetroWinnipeg YouTube: Valu Rent a Car commercial (1984)]
I tell you what: every time I watch this, every single time, the third guy playing the butler cracks me up with his maniacal cartoon villain laughter at the very end. Nothing against David Keam and "You'll find us!", but holy hell, local commercials used to be amazing.

"When you're stars, image is everything!"
"hyeh ha ha ha"

And that's your ManLinkWeek!


Anonymous said...

Next year I would like to see Rock and Hyde reunite for a 25th anniversary tour of their masterpiece 'Under the Volcano'.

Please use all of your influence to make this happen, Mr. Howard.

Anonymous said...

I personally would like a Headstones reunion show!