Sunday, February 28, 2010

No time left for you

Someday I might get back to this ....

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Tornado tragedy

One of the heroes of this tragedy, 14-year-old Zach Jessen, with Governor Chet Culver. Zach threw himself on top of another boy to shield him from flying debris.

This weeks tragic tornado in Iowa that took the lives of 4 Scouters has spawned literally thousands of news articles and opinion pieces ... from as far away as Australia. This is the best I found.


It's hard to imagine the pain facing love ones of the four Boy Scouts who were killed when a twister ripped through their camp in Iowa this week. Don't forget them. They are: Aaron Eilerts, 14, Sam Thomsen, 13, Ben Petrzilka, 14, and Josh Fennen, 13.

This was the loss of four boys who were likely to become extraordinary men - the kind who would become leaders in their communities and put others ahead of themselves. How would anyone know this? Because they were Scouts, meaning they were statistically likely to succeed. There's no shortage of cadets, at the Air Force Academy as well as the other service academies, who were Boy Scouts. Many of them were Eagle Scouts, the pinnacle of Scouting's ranks.

Boy Scouts organizations are a genuine gift to the United States and other cultures of the world. They teach boys and young men to be prepared, instilling in them the life skills to live as men - real men who can survive hardship, build fires, change tires, handle guns and knives, and help people in need. They live by the Scout Promise, which says, "A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent." That sounds like good folks to have around.

When an assassin tried to kill Maldividan president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Boy Scout Mahamed Jaisham risked his life, got between the president and the attacker, and saved the president's life. Boy Scout heroics are common, though most don't make news.

Moments after the tornado turned their camp to shreds, it was evident how the Iowa Scouts had been prepared to serve. They immediately began putting their training to work, digging through rubble to free and tend to their injured peers. While most children understandably would have panicked, the Boy Scouts went to work. Some broke into an equipment shed, grabbed tools and a chainsaw, and began clearing fallen trees from the road so parents and rescuers could get to the scene.

The boys who died can never be replaced. But their deaths should bring attention to the need for more Boy Scouts, in a culture that's suffering from an abundance of weak men, barely prepared to care for themselves. More Boy Scouts, like the four who died, would make our future world a much better place.

As word broke on Thursday evening of the tragedy I googled the campsite and found an email address for the director of communications for the BSA area to let him know, on behalf of our group that we were thinking of them.... much to my surprise he responded within a couple of hours that he appreciated the gesture.

Rest in peace boys.

Cross-posted from the Second Smiths Falls Scout website

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Reaching for a new height

The kiddies and I attended the somewhat washed out fly-in breakfast at the Smiths Falls-Montague airport Sunday ... no matter, we were treated to a great performance by Bob Hanson and his crew, as well as a great meal at a great price.

In other local flying news, the local club has announced in The Record News (I'd link but they STILL don't have a website !) they are building a new clubhouse to replace the one lost by fire two years ago.

The plan is impressive -- a two-story 4000 square foot building complete with an Elite Pro simulator for the flight school, an overnight room and an observation deck. Also included in the plan is the construction of a new hangar to house a small interactive museum for the kids.

Kudos to the club for their ambitious plan -- and nary a mention of asking for tax dollars to finance the project. In fact, the club intends on raising the money from within, use a local contractor to frame and finish it off over the winter themselves.

How refreshing .... I wonder how many hockey moms will be wielding paint brushes to finish off the new arena ??

Sorry, couldn't help myself.

She has all the makings

to be the biggest "star" ever to come from Smiths Falls .... watch for it. A female "Tiger" ... perhaps to finally give the LPGA the respect it deserves.

Brittany Henderson of Smiths Falls was not to be denied her first CN Future Links title yesterday.

At the Stratford Country Club, the 17-year-old junior shot an even-par 72 to win the girls title at the CN Future Links Championship to win by a commanding five strokes over Jennifer Kirby of Paris, whom she had been tied with entering the day.

Henderson, who's due to play in a CN Canadian Women's Tour event in London, Ont., this week, finished with a 3-over 219 total.

Here's a profile of Brittany from the 2007 Spring Flagstick magazine.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Wash, rinse, repeat

Regularly you'll hear crime stories from the area that go something like this :

Vehicle stopped on the 401 for speeding nets illegal cigarettes (or pot or goods from a break-in,etc ).

I sure didn't expect to see this story repeated any time soon .... less than two months later, it has.

Six people face charges after Ontario Provincial Police discovered a marijuana grow operation containing 1387 plants when they responded to a report of a break-in on Waba Road in Mississippi Mills on Monday.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

This should not be an embarrassment

.... sadly, it is.

The kiddies and I have recently taken up geocaching as another hobby. If you haven't heard of it, basically you use a hand-held GPS unit to find "treasure" hidden just about everywhere. It's a great hobby that gets you out hiking and finding places you never knew existed.

There are over 2000 caches hidden within 100 km's of Smiths Falls. Some of the interesting local ones are an old alloy factory near Port Elmsley, one at the Mill Pond Conservation Area, one at the intersection of the 45 & 76 parallels in Montague and "the Poonamalie Monster" (this one has a riddle to solve to get the final waypoint !).

As you might have guessed there is also one at the old CN bridge in Smiths Falls. From the cache description:

Be careful about feeling around under stuff. The locals have smashed many beer bottles here.

Beautiful. Not local teens or yahoos ... locals.

Me. You.

Ya'd think between the Town Crews or Parks Canada or the Smiths Falls Police this situation could be remedied .... sadly that's not the case. A local geocacher who blogs his finds visited over the weekend .... here is his impression of our fair town:

You have to be really careful though, as the locals think this is a grand place to throw beer bottles.

Sounds like a job for my Cubs ... only the rest of the year is booked up.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

To, two, TOO !!

Here's a hint .... if you are going to mount an 8ft sign in your front yard, you might want to ensure you have the correct grammar on it.

Just so you don't look like a bloomin' idiot !

Monday, May 19, 2008

"This was a murder of morality."

"My daughter's action made us aliens in our own land. But we have managed to redeem our honor. She paid for her ill-gotten action."

Among the Jat caste of the conservative northern state of Haryana, it is taboo for a man and woman of the same village to marry. Although the couple were not related, they were seen in this deeply traditional society as brother and sister.

"From society's point of view, this is
a very good thing," said 62-year-old farmer Balwan Arya, sitting smoking a hookah in the shade of a tree in a square with other elders from the village council or panchayat. "We have removed the blot."

Cave dwellers.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Fame and fortune ...

if you can tell me what the fork this is:

View Larger Map

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Fishy business

A quick post .... reaction to the final report released Tuesday on the assaults on Asian Anglers.

The final OHRC report ... even more lop-sided than the preliminary. It's all whitey's fault ... I dunno, but the report seems to me to be every bit as racist as, well, you know. Racial profiling training for conservation officers ... WOW.

Building Barbara Hall's empire one racist community at a time ... it's a subscriber Globe piece, but you can read it (and all newspapers) for free on the pwsgc website.

Bob Runciman isn't worried ...

"I don't give it much credibility. They draw conclusions without having any sort of point-counterpoint or testimony for the defence," said Runciman.

"They are tarring the community without any documented evidence."

Runciman said residents of Westport and the Rideau system "are overwhelmingly good people" who care about their fellow Ontarians and Canadians.

"Just don't lose any sleep over the conclusions of Barbara Hall," he said.