Sunday, November 24, 2013

101st Canadian Football League CFL Grey Cup Final in Regina, Saskatchewan Nov 24, 2013

101st CFL GREY CUP FINAL NOV 24, 2013: 
(Saskatchewan Roughriders 45 - Hamilton Tiger-Cats 23)

OMG, the Saskatchewan Roughriders' Darian Durant and Kory Sheets are just unstoppable !!!

The last time I cheered for the Riders was when Ronald "Ron" Lancaster (October 14, 1938 – September 18, 2008) was their quarterback.

I was living in Flin Flon then, working for the mining & smelting company there.




Related article: The Toronto Sun

Grey Cup 2013: Ron Lancaster should be here
Here, in the place he made football famous.
The sun is trying to shine. The winds are blowing. The temperature is biting. And in a Grey Cup Week unlike any other, the most famous of all Roughriders didn’t live long enough to experience all this.
To see a growing and wealthy Saskatchewan as host city for a Grey Cup at old Taylor Field with these young Roughriders as healthy favourites: How much would Lancaster love this?
How much does the memory of him of linger this week — and when I mention that to others — somehow the sentiment is shared, they just knowingly smile.
This is a week of football celebration in Canada Ron Lancaster didn’t live long enough to see all the growth. He coached the last Grey Cup Hamilton team and the coached the Ticats when they were all but bankrupt. He coached the Roughriders before he was ready to in two of their worst seasons. “Regina, he once told me, “there’s a town that takes some getting used to.”
More then than now. Wonder what Lancaster, gone five years and two months ago, would think about all this today.


* The Toronto Sun:

Photo Credit:

* Wikipedia:  Saskatchewan Roughriders & 101st Grey Cup
* Canadian Football League: Photo of the two quarterbacks
* Facebook: T-shirt in support of the Riders
* The Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan:  Ron Lancaster

"Up There" - A Deadly Funny Movie from UK

K and I watched the UK movie "Up There" at Library And National Archives Canada's auditorium on Wellington Street. The United Kingdom is one of the many EU countries participating in the 28th edition of the European Union Film Festival hosted by the Canadian Film Institute.

Here is a summary of the "Up There" story according to IMDb:

"..... Martin (deceased) is stuck in a dead-end job, welcoming the newly departed into the afterlife. All he dreams of is going 'Up There'. But his plans are thrown into disarray when he has to team up with the relentlessly chirpy Rash and together they lose a new arrival. The mismatched pair give chase and end up in a remote seaside town populated by cocky teenagers, sinister old women and the enigmatic Liz, who has 'suicide written all over her'. Can they stop bickering long enough to find the lost soul? Will Rash be reunited with his brother Chunky? And can Martin get back in time to finally get 'Up There'? UP THERE is a killer comedy about life, death and irritating friends.... "

Apparently, there is more fun "down here" than the final destination "up there" !!!

Related links:

*  You may also view the official trailer via YouTube at

* Wikipedia:

".... Up There is a 2012 British feature film comedy, written and directed by Scottish based film-maker Zam Salim. It stars Burn Gorman, Kate O'Flynn, Aymen Hamdouchi, Chris Waitt, Jo Hartley and Warren Brown. It is financed by the Bfi, BBC and Creative Scotland. It is based on Zam Salim's award winning short film 'Laid Off' which has over half a million hits on YouTube. 'Up There' received its World Premiere at the International Film Festival of Mannheim-Heidelberg on 18 November 2011. It won the award for Best Feature Film at the 2012 British Academy Scotland Awards....."

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Mr. Justin Trudeau at Ladies Night: Admiration for China's Dictatorship?!

Justin Trudeau has just given the Canadian Prime Minister and the Conservative Party exactly what they want to characterize the young politician: 
While we all know Prime Minister Harper gave China the cold shoulder when he first became Prime Minister, he quickly learnt that the world's most populated and fast-growing country is important to the future of our resource-based economy. As a seasoned politician, he turned around, changed his tune and even visited China to promote bilateral trade and try his best to improve and warm up the relationship.
But as much as the Prime Minister praises the economic achievement of China, he is always careful not to endorse the one-party political system of the PRC.
On the other hand, Mr. Justin Trudeau has inadvertently shown off the "fluffy" side of his personality in more than one occasion, mouthing off abt smoking pot (which of course is being quoted ad nauseum by Ford Nation supporters to justify the Toronto mayor's smoking crack cocaine), hosting a "Ladies Night" (which was blasted quite articulately by Conservative MP Michelle Rempel as unacceptable and disrespectful to women), and then the statement abt his apparent admiration for China dictatorship (which he later had to clarify and do damage-control).
So, as much as I want to give Mr. Trudeau the benefit of the doubt, I really have to say Prime Minister Harper is definitely the more seasoned politician based on what I have seen so far, not to mention the Hon. Thomas Mulcair who performs well in his role as the Leader of the Opposition. 
The young Trudeau has two years to convince voters like myself that he has the "right stuff" to potentially become Prime Minister. Now you don't have to take my words for it. Below are two articles that you should also read.

Justin Trudeau’s recent gaffes undermine his political strengths

National Post  |  | Last Updated: 10/11/13 6:02 PM 
"......   Thursday there was the strangely juvenile promotion, advertising a “ladies night” with “Justin Unplugged,” whereby Liberal women could contribute $250 apiece for the privilege of “really” getting to know “the future prime minister,” complete with soft-focus dreamboat shots of him ......
..... More problematic was the event itself, during which Trudeau said the following, in answer to an audience member’s question about which country’s government, other than Canada, he most admires:   “You know, there’s a level of admiration I actually have for China because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime and say ‘we need to go green fastest. . . we need to start investing in solar.’ I mean there is a flexibility that I know Stephen Harper must dream about of having a dictatorship that he can do everything he wanted that I find quite interesting.” 
.... The promotion and the China remark together are the worst kind of unforced, bone-headed error — the equivalent of Stephen Harper kicking a chair in public, or Tom Mulcair bellowing “Viva Che Guevara!” on the steps of the Centre Block.
.....  They go directly to his weakness — a lack of experience and, occasionally, judgment — and undermine his strengths...."

Justin Trudeau's 'Foolish' China Remarks Spark Anger

CBC  |  Posted:   |  Updated: 11/09/2013 8:48 pm EST
Members of the Asian-Canadian community are demanding an apology from Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, following his comments on Thursday expressing admiration for China's "basic dictatorship."
A round table of people from China, Taiwan, Tibet and Korea — all of whom say they suffered at the hands of China's dictatorship — said they were insulted by Trudeau's remarks, made on Thursday at a women's event.
The Liberal leader was asked which nation he admired most. He responded: ""There's a level of admiration I actually have for China. Their basic dictatorship is actually allowing them to turn their economy around on a dime."
That statement was upsetting for people who say they were wrongly imprisoned or tortured by the Chinese government for speaking out for democracy.
"Can I use the word 'foolish'"? said one member of the Federation for a Democratic China, characterizing Trudeau's words. The political group advocates for the democratization of China.
'A bit silly'
"It seems to be that he's not well-informed," another member of the round table said of Trudeau.
Federal NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair also reacted with surprise to the Liberal leader's words, calling it "a bit silly" to laud China rather than to praise democratic values.
At a press conference on Saturday in Quebec, Trudeau said his comment was a reflection on a growing economy.
Canadian members of the Federation for a Democratic China say that along with an apology from the Liberal leader, they also want an opportunity to meet face-to-face so he can listen to some of their personal stories of persecution at the hands of the Chinese government.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

馬拉松賽跑訓練計劃:比賽準備,長跑競賽, 賽後復原 / Marathon Training Plan: Preparation for a race, running it, and Recovery

Below is the presentation I made at a running workshop in October, 2013. Obviously, the information below are based on my own personal experience as an amateur runner and they might not apply to you at all. Please consult other more qualified athletes and use your judgment.


PRESENTATION (20131031 16h00 version)

1. Pre Race (3-4 weeks)

* Realistic Assessment: Run-for-time or Run-to-finish?
* Changes: Avoid new shoes, keep routine diet, maintain running weights, manage injuries
* Transportation/hotel: Confirm locations, distance, map, etc
* Health: Confirm insurance coverage abroad, replenish medications, etc
* Race details: Verify start time? where? corral? bag-check? route map, etc

2. Pre Race (1 week)

* Tapering: Keep moving/stretching, follow training schedule
* Packing: Start early esp if out-of-town travelling is involved
* Race kit pickup: Read instructions/info re time chip? start line? route changes, etc
* Clothing/gears: Check weather forecast regularly, draw head2toes body-diagram c/w gears (e.g. headlamp w batteries), avoid cotton undies, wear same outfit as in training if possible
* Health: Manage injuries, set realistic time goal, bring medications, insurance papers
* Food/drinks: Begin carb loading? choose low-risk food, don't suddenly change diet, don't eat/drink excessively 1-2 days before race
* Mind + Body: Visualize race event from start to finish e.g. start line (freezing cold?), pacing strategy (divide race into 1/3 chunks), drinking/fuelling ....
***** Racing could be 90% mind-game esp last few kilometres (ref: Winterman, Spartan Beast) *****
* Night before: Set up alarms, eat little/nothing after 6 pm, 5 hrs sleep min, one kungfu master said sex makes your feet wobble :O

3. Race Day

* 3 hours: Wake up early, start routine (drink coffee, light breakfast, etc), get dressed, check list, final packing, call taxi ahead of time
* 2 hours: Allow sufficient transit time (taxi, bus, parking, road-closure, etc)
* 1 hour: Arrive early, find warm place to settle/focus, start fuelling, vaseline/body glide, final check-list, baggage check, line-up washroom (or bottle?), check bib & time chit, walk to start-line (squeeze in & keep warm)
* 3 min: Be at start-line, drink liquid, set watch/mobiles, pump up, enjoy the moment
* 0 min: Off you go, run at your own pace, stick to plan (e.g. run 10 walk 1, "1/3" plan, fuelling/drinking, peeling off clothing), enjoy the experience, think positive - remember the mind game, check regularly running form/efficiency (foot-strikes, gliding, hands, core, breathing), listen to your body (cramps, heart, over-hydration, etc), enjoy the cheering crowd, smile to photographers, run up-right as you dash toward finish line

4. Post Race (on-site)

* Keep walking, eat/drink as req'd, get baggage & put on dry clothes, enjoy the crowd/ceremony/etc, wear proudly your medal & t-shirt cuz you've earned your bragging right !!!!

5. Recovery (off-site)

* Rest, take a bath, monitor health (e.g. blood pressure), healthy meals to replenish protein, electrolyte, nutrients etc as req'd, be careful walking downstairs, self-massage or hire someone
* Walk & stretch moderately for rest of week, listen to your body, get back into running and/or other strenuous exercises slowly, manage injuries, seek medical advice on lingering or emerging health issues, enjoy resting in the short-term but STAY ACTIVE (mind & body) for life !!!!


Photo Credit:
* Wikipedia / Grete Waitz
"..... Grete Waitz (1 October 1953 – 19 April 2011) was a Norwegian marathon runner and former world record holder ..... She went on to win the New York Marathon race nine times, more than any other runner in history. ..... She also won a silver medal at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles and a gold medal at the 1983 World Championships in Athletics in Helsinki ..... and broke the world record three years in a row ....."

Sunday, November 03, 2013

富有想像力的照片: 混合普通物体和簡單的草圖 / Imaginative Photographs: Mixing ordinary objects with simple sketches

下貼的照片是厄瓜多爾藝術總監Javier Pérez 哈維爾·佩雷斯創意和幽默設計, 微小的假想世界是由一些小物件和一個簡單的草圖組成

例子:  葡萄成為一個年輕的男孩手中的氦氣氣球。花成為創紀錄的球員。奧利奧奶油和餅乾被視為一個轉動的地球。














Photo Credit / Related Links:
* Imaginative Photographs That Mix Ordinary Objects and Simple Sketches
* Images on Pérez’s accounts at Instagram and Behance.


And here is an imaginative photo I made on Oct 7, 2013 with the caption "David Against Goliath"

David is the little guy I painted on a chicken egg on the left. He is poking his opponent with a yellow plastic corn-on-the-cob holder. The pain is represented by some broken Italian bread-sticks.

The giant on the right is a double-faced stone sculpture carved by an aboriginal artisan. The dark waves that overcome Goliath are actually used coffee grind that I pushed around with my fingers.

Related link:

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Dare Devil Katie Hansen's Precision Skydiving into a Moving Car

A clip of this amazing precision skydiving stunt was reported by Canada CTV News on Nov 2, 2013.

YouTube credit: Uploaded by AviatorShow

The following description is based on a separate ABC News' transcript:

"..... This is a stunt you have to see to believe. A dizzying descent skydiver Katie Hanson is making spirals in the sky for a truly death defying challenge - she will lock in on a moving target to make a dramatic landing. How did she maneuver this incredible fall from the sky? .... The daring stunt seems nearly impossible in the sky: she's flying between twenty and forty miles per hour !!! There you see the convertible, the driver is carefully matching her speed and just as she approaches. Oh no, it looks like she's not going to make it. ..... But with a last-second glide, she has a flawless touchdown into the backseat .... Look again at the precision of her glide as though she'd done it a million times while in fact it was her first try !!"
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