Category Archives: Ottawa

fashion’s coming out(aouais) party

It’s a bit too much like one of those old jokes about our city.

Did you hear about Ottawa Fashion Week?

It’s three days long and takes place in Gatineau. Continue reading

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Sparks and recreation

Some years ago while walking down Bank Street I was confronted by a pair of German tourists. I knew they were German, because they looked like this. I knew they were tourists, because in their quest to find the “action” in Canada’s capital, they asked the following question: “Please can you tell us where Sparks Street is?”

It’s a question no local would have asked. Certainly not after 5 p.m., which it was. To Ottawans, the question when it comes to Sparks Street has long been not so much where, as why. Why, for example, were pedestrian streets in smaller communities such as Burlington, VT, populated noon and night while Sparks was transformed each evening into a ghost town? Continue reading

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on the bus yet again

It’s either so clever as to be over our heads, or it’s particularly dumb. Either way, I cannot avert my eyes from the bus ad for Ottawa Midway Magic, the SuperEx substitute slated to take place next month at the future site of Ottawa’s very own casino. (Well, one of Ottawa’s casinos. And, come to think of it, why is our mayor demanding a mere two casinos for the nation’s capital? I say a casino on every corner! Or, at least, in every social-services centre.) Advance passes, the ad promises, can be purchased at half-price. Also promised is the following: “All rides. No admission. Limitless fun.” Continue reading

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what’s going on

I’ve spent the past week out of circulation, recovering from too much sun. True, it’s the same Sun we’ve had for ages. But for me, it’s just too much.

That has left me with time to alternate between hangin’ with Snorri, watching episodes of Secret Agent and The Prisoner, and becoming reacquainted with an old friend called daytime CBC Radio. And I’d like to take this opportunity to commend CBC Radio for its thoughtful, informative and heartrending coverage of events in Lac Mégantic. What happened in that small Québec community some 10 days ago is beyond horrid. And with little else to do, I spent the days following the tragedy, glued to the radio for each update, each in-depth analysis of the situation, each interview with those affected. And, ultimately, each addition to the number of confirmed dead. Throughout, I have trusted CBC Radio to provide me with the information I sought. Continue reading

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off the bus

A few things I have considered doing for you, dear reader, but have decided are not worth the effort. By sharing these with you today, I am finally able to break those chains and move on. I feel better already.

Of course, if anyone has an answer to any or all of these mysteries…

Is any of those smiling faces on the PRESTO bus ads purchasing one mode in English and another in French?

How many advertisements is one exposed to during an average Ottawa Senators game at the Palladium (or whatever it’s called)?

How many local chip wagons offer the “best fries in town”?

What are the precise boundaries of Vanier — not New Edinburgh, not Overbrook, but Vanier? Admit it, people, you’re in Vanier!

How many Elvis fans can’t be wrong? (Fifty-four years ago, the number stood at 50 million.)

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