Archive for March, 2010

Grumpy old …

Friday, March 26th, 2010

“If you’re not a hemroid stay off my *ss” – Sign in the rear window of a Calgary sedan When our preconceptions are broken it might be funny – or revolting. For example, it’s not a bad guess to assume an older person might be more polite or deferential than a high school student. At [...]

People are feeling better. But why?

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

My “Letter from Calgary” column in the March 2010 issue of the Investment Executive newspaper Some are suggesting that Alberta’s blockbuster boom needed to cool Some recent polling got me thinking about the relationship between psychology — people’s beliefs and outlooks — and objective reality. After 18 months of economic hammering, Canadians report feeling … [...]

Rule by the terrified

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

To listen to some of my neighbours, Calgary’s residential streets are are either training lanes for the Daytona 500 or, worse, vehicular killing grounds waiting to happen. These concerns appear to be behind a recent call to reduce speed limits in Calgary neighbourhoods to 40 (or 30!) km/h. Such limits have been introduced on a [...]

Green SUV

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

“WNDPWR1″ – Vanity license plate on Toyota 4-Runner, Calgary You see them everywhere, in a traffic jam, at top speed on the highway, and something always makes you want to look. Vanity plates. They range from the inevitable HERTOY on a yellow VW Bug and the sportsman’s special HABSNR1, to almost undecipherable code. This one’s [...]

Reality’s Invisible Hand

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

My “Open Range” column from the March 2010 issue of Alberta Venture magazine: One by one, the utopian dreams of yesteryear are getting spanked by hard truths Within the space of three weeks, ministers in the Ed Stelmach government were recorded saying at least three things that appear…sensible. Also tough-minded, fitted to the circumstances and [...]

How objective science really works

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

Throughout the debate on world climate there’s been a narrative put forward, mostly by those concerned about carbon.  The story goes that climate scientists, and really scientists in general, are a kind of intellectual priesthood. Robed in white lab coats, they work selflessly to uncover nature’s truths.  They collaborate willingly and collegially. Their work is [...]

I’m Loving It

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

My Open Range column from the February 2010 issue of Alberta Venture magazine: Self-employment is disparaged as something less than a job. It shouldn’t be “I’ll tell ya, by the end of the last semester, one-third of my MBA class had become ‘entrepreneurs,’” the young robotics genius cackled as we rode a chair-lift on a [...]

Stink, stank, stunk

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

“The entire crew and passengers were rescued after the tall ship sunk” – CHQR AM 770 news broadcastpersonlady As per MrK‘s last Stupidism, we don’t want to make humour of other people’s misfortune, but can’t help pointing out this fumble. It seems to epitomize common confusion around the time sequence of several similar words. Now [...]