Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Manitoba Links Weekly: A Hypothetical Scenario, Sports and Sports and Sports, and (sigh) "Vuanh Street" (ManLinkWeek 47)

Blah blah something something nobody actually reads these intros -- it's time for ManLinkWeek! So let's check in on the week(-and-a-bit) that was, starting with:

[ Observations, Reservations, Conversations: The Fort Whyte By-Election ]
Despite the bits and pieces of media attention here and there, this byelection was never really in any serious doubt; the combined efforts of a basketball coach, a nonprofit manager, an airport security worker and an accused sex offender weren't quite enough to stop the new Progressive Conservative leader, who was running in place of the old Progressive Conservative leader in a riding that has never not voted Progressive Conservative. So... yeah, no, it wasn't really a close one.

Geez, can you imagine if he had lost somehow, though? There wasn't really any way for it to happen, of course, but man, that would have been some really funny political fallout. ("THAT'S IT! BACK TO PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE!")

Speaking of political fallout:

[ Winnipeg Free Press: Katz nixes examining process behind fire-hall land swap for now ]
[ The Black Rod: The Firehall Scandal. What did Sam Katz know, and when did he know it? ]
[ Winnipeg Free Press: Katz blinked, but review too narrow to be useful ]
[ Urban Compass Winnipeg (Metro Winnipeg): Who's really running this city? ]

Let's say, hypothetically, that there is an unelected, unaccountable position of extreme power within a government, and that whoever holds that position has the ability to control the availability of all government documents related to a given matter. Let us also say, hypothetically, that the person in that position has already publicly announced his or her full commitment to a controversial land transaction, as well as his or her unwavering belief that every official involved in said transaction acted properly and in complete adherence to all laws and regulations. Let us also, also say that this hypothetical person in this hypothetical position happens to have very close personal and business ties to the person in the highest elected position of the government in question.

Got that? All right: your assignment will be to explain how that hypothetical person, in that hypothetical position, could possibly be counted on to conduct an honest and unbiased review of that hypothetical controversial land transaction. Hypothetically.

Suppose that person, while conducting his or her review of all related writings (and "verbal agreements", but let's not overcomplicate this), finds a document with damning evidence of wrongdoing at a lower level. The person conducting the review has already, prior to this discovery, expressed absolute faith in everyone involved, and has assured the public that no wrongdoing was committed. Nobody outside of the department has been allowed access to the document in question, and -- given the reviewer's relationship to the highest figure in the government, as well as the complete absence of recall or dismissal protocols for the reviewer's position -- there are absolutely no possible penalties or repercussions whatsoever for submitting an incorrect or incomplete review. Do you believe, given these considerations, that the person conducting the review would come forward to present the evidence of wrongdoing, reveal where and when the process was not followed, admit his or her mistakes in previous statements about the case, tarnish his or her own personal reputation, and potentially jeopardize his or her favourable status with the highest elected official and the only possible person who could theoretically remove him or her from the position?

Again, this is all hypothetical, of course. Can you imagine how suspicious, untrustworthy and overwhelmingly awful this would all look if it were to happen in real life? Ha ha ha! Oh, the very idea.

Well, moving on:

[ Imperial Properties Signs Landmark Property Management & Leasing Agreement ]
[ Metro Winnipeg: New six-storey building moving into Confusion Corner ]
To swipe a line from Robert Galston -- six storeys? What is this, New York?

I certainly don't mind seeing density increase in the developments around the Osborne rapid transit station -- boy, you can imagine what land near there must be worth! -- but what I'd really, really want to see is some of this development and progress and vertical achievement start trickling southwest along north Pembina. Any time now. Just... any time.

[ The Uniter: Celebrated U of W politics professor retires ]
Congratulations and best wishes to Christopher Leo on his retirement from the University of Winnipeg!

You the reader can view a summary of his academic career in the link above, and can also view examples of his recent work on his web site. The Uniter article probably understates the matter by quite a bit when it mentions his being difficult to replace -- but his classes for this year will instead be taught by Brian Kelcey, and that's awesome, so the department is off to a pretty good start.

Hey! In an absolutely unrelated segue, do you want to see something adorable?

[ Manitoba Major Soccer League: League Standings ]
I had no idea this was actually a thing until I read a Stonewall Argus article about its season being over, but here are the final standings for the various divisions of the Manitoba Major Soccer League. I get a real kick out of the team names displayed throughout, because the clubs at the higher levels have super-serious, largely European-inspired handles ("Germania FC", "Bonivital United", "Winnipeg Juventus", "Lucania", "Winnipeg Dynamo Kyiv") and the clubs a bit further down the page... don't ("Reservoir Dogs", "The Dangerfields", "Friday Night Dingers", "Transcona Chexxx", "Constantly Offside").

I bring this up because:

[ Winnipeg Sun: Goldeyes going to finals ]
[ Winnipeg Sun: Goldeyes won't take Wingnuts lightly ]
[ Winnipeg Sun: Goldeyes, Wingnuts mirror images ]
The most recent major sports championship won by a Winnipeg team was... was, uh... well, the most recent professional sports championship win was by the Winnipeg Goldeyes, who claimed the trophy of a now-dead independent minor league for the first and only time during their (wait for it) 1994 season. Now, eighteen years and three Blue Bomber Grey Cup misfires later, the Goldeyes have the chance to bring home another first championship from a different independent minor league: the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball! A league of tradition, of distinction, of... of... okay, you know what? The longer I read about this league, the more it sounds completely made up.

The Winnipeg Goldeyes are competing for the championship against the "Wichita Wingnuts", who advanced to the American Association finals by sweeping the "Laredo Lemurs". The American Association also features the "Lincoln Saltdogs", the "Kansas City T-bones" and the "Gary SouthShore RailCats" [sic]; the 2011 championship was won by the "Grande Prairie AirHogs" [sic]. I'm starting to wonder if the whole thing isn't a put-on, that maybe the league doesn't actually exist and that the Goldeyes just hired a troupe of actors to come in and pretend to be different fictional teams.

"Okay, guys, this week you'll be... the Laredo Lemurs!"
"The wh--the Lemurs? No. Hell, no. Nobody's going to believe that's a real team."
"Oh, don't worry! They used to play against a team called the 'CrackerCats'. So the fans will believe anything at this point."
"...the 'CrackerCats'?

The American Association commissioner's name is "Miles Wolff". "Miles Wolff". C'mon, man, no. That's the kind of thing a fifteen-year-old names a self-insert fanfiction character.

(This has already been way too much time spent writing about the American Association, of all the things, but remind me to come back to this later. This will bear further investigation.)

Also in sports:

[ Blue Bombers Win a Game? Free Donuts for Fans ]
"The coffee giant [Tim Hortons] will give away free donuts to fans who bring in their game-ticket on the following Monday to any Manitoba Tim Hortons restaurant. That is, if the Bombers win their game."

Tim Hortons will not be giving away doughnuts, ever.

Meanwhile, in Brandon:

[ Brandon Sun: Senior arrested for drunk-driving lawn mower ]
I, uh... I... huh. Welp! I guess there's that.

And, finally:

[ Kijiji Winnipeg: Cant put out the fire in my hart on vuanh street (eventual Google Cache version) ]
"hi, u are sweet looking gurl like a angel. we met in the backlane for thos apartents on vaungh street they r fixing up, my frends n me were burning stuff in the garbage can and u came out n said dont burn stuff n we were laffing and saying sxy stuff and u got mad, n im rely sorry cuz u r so nice n i will by u cofee but we cant meet by those apartents cuz now the cops said i cant go back there, but if u see me on the steert then we shud go sometim. "

Here's the thing: I'm pretty certain that this is some sort of meanspirited fake, but the idea of it being a genuine listing is still more plausible than almost everything else that I've already written about in this post. So, I don't know. I don't know! I don't know what to tell you.

Thank you for reading ManLinkWeek! You may have noticed (and if you hadn't, I'm too fundamentally self-loathing honest to let it slide) that I'd gradually lost a week somewhere during this feature; it began as a Tuesday-ish thing, leisurely skidded rightwards along the calendar, and then eventually wrapped around again. So! To rectify this slide and right the ship, I'll be posting a second installment of ManLinkWeek this week; in fact, dividing content between the two posts is what delayed this one in the first place. So I'll see you back here soon, true believers!

1 comment:

The Great Canadian Talk Show said...

James surely video is also considered a viable source for this kind of compilation :)

Here is the link to the City Circus on Shaw TV review of the first week of Firehallgate:

Part 2 is running this week, check your local listings (not for real estate, for TV).