Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Real Winter of Alberta

It started to become really cold last Sat. when I went to The Chef's on my Robobike! I had to dismount and walk the bike a few times because of the snow on the ground. The the temperature plunged and got really cold on Mon. when I did a 12:00 to 20:00 shift which will be told later separably. Lat night it was -30℃ with Windchill and I wanted to go for a walk but didn't! I've lost my gloves and I don't think it's a good idea going out without gloves even I put my hands in my pockets because I might have to take them out whatever reason and that we'll be a disaster. It's -19℃ now and almost -28℃ with windchill and it's only 14:33! I would like to see how down the temperature would go in the evening!
One of LRT stations in Downtown Calgary at 08:44 hours shows -16 C. This is the furthest station on the west side called Kerby. The temperature later went deeper and reached -21 C
I will probably go for a walk in the evening because although I exercise a little bit, I need to be more active, although I will have to do the same shift tomorrow which has a different story.
(Photo, top: This is not new to me but I wanted to have it here. The two-layer window of my bedroom is frozen in morning)

Thursday, December 01, 2016

American Hustle: Nonsense

There are times that I start watching a movie and then as much as I try, I realize I can't continue. For a while I had not have an issue like that until I came across this movie American Hustle. I found it so fake, unreal and phony. I tried it for the second time with the hope that I overcome my dislike, not that it was a big deal or something but I realized that I could not just sit back and listen to their nonsense, particularly because like many recent movies, it's said that it's based on actual events! 
I'm not even going to point at parts and scenes of the movie, not because it'll be a spoiler alert as I'm sure whoever wanted to see it, had watched it  by now but that's it. Not a movie which attracts me.
(Photo: Amy Adams in a scene of the movie. Images like this and girls like Adams is one of the reasons many went to see the movie and came out disappointed!)

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Used Condom in McDonald's

I've criticized McDonald's several times here and everywhere else and I'm still going to a McDonald's most of the time when I want to get a coffee, particularly now that they have reduced their price! The fact is their coffee is much better than other major coffee franchises and their reward program is good. Just before this new price adjustment their prices were higher than Tim Horton's but Tim Horton's is so cheap and phony! They never had a breakfast sandwich until a few years ago. They copied everything from McDonald's! They have no free refill policy and they are so fucking cheap that you see no good newspaper in a Tim Horton's cafe but the nonsense free ones!
Nevertheless I had a very bad experience just a few weeks ago in a location that frequents by homeless although it's not located in Downtown. In fact there's barely any location that is not a hang out for the homeless, Natives and deranged but the closer it is to Downtown the more you see these people and its not that I have a problem with that but some of them become a pain in the ass by soliciting or getting too close and even assaulting.
Anyways I was at this damn location on 17th Ave. and 35 St. SW for a coffee and noticed that people are sleeping underneath a cover at one of the tables. I was not surprised or anything like that as I knew that if I'm drinking a coffee here I have to expect the company of all the ones I named above. However this time it was different, I called upon the manager or supervisor who happened to be a short Filipino girl, similar to many other locations. She, after a while, went to the person which appeared shortly that they were two girls who looked like Aboriginals, sleeping underneath a blanket-like cover! They left shortly after they were awaken and I guess I sat and drank my coffee. I didn't pay much attention to my surrounding after that but I knew that location frequented by Aboriginals. Then when was leaving the location, and I have to say here I always look where I set my foot in(!) I noticed an used condom right in front of the main entrance! Being in McDonald's, you expect everything extraordinary and strange but I certainly didn't expect this! I also didn't expect that the thing had not been noticed and no one had not said anything to the staff unless it had happened just a few seconds before I saw that. Considering I had already talked to the useless so-called supervisor of the location, I decided to leave the issue untouched and get the hell out. I wish I, at least, had taken a photo and sent to the media, their headquarters or someone although I doubt anyone would do anything regarding that. The fact is McDonald's is a hangout for poor, hungry, homeless and all sorts of people of the same kind and that does not mean I have a problem with that. There are people who had unfortunate things in their life and their life was turned upside down. I'm one of them myself, it's just not that bad yet! However it is not acceptable that people get involved in sexual intercourse in a restroom and then throw their used condom on the floor. That is despicable and disgusting.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Bridge of Spies: An Impressive Work

I remember, vaguely, The Six Million Dollar Man, a TV series of late 70's and that is partially because kids at school imitated Lee Majors, the main actor who played Steve Austin a pilots who gets injured seriously and they have to replace a number of his members in the series. There was comics, action figures, you name it and these were shortly before the so-called Islamic Disgusting and Fake Revolution, which it was a plan basically to get rid of the Shah (king) as he had become disrespectful to West! That's another chapter that I'm not going to open here now.
Then I saw this Lee Majors guy in a movie named The True Story of U-2 Spy Incident. He plays Gary Powers whose U-2 plane is shot down over the USSR at the altitude of over 71,000 ft. and is captured by the Soviets. This story is briefly pointed in the movie JFK too. It is said in there that Lee Harvey Oswald, who is the main suspect in the assassination of John F. Kennedy might have given secret information to the Soviets to make them able to the unreachable U-2. I watched part of this movie in the old country and then tried to find it here but then I realized that it was a TV movie and is not available easily. I found a few copies of that on VHS down in the States through eBay and wanted to order one but was afraid to use my credit card due to some electronic fraud I had heard about.
Rudolf Abel, who his real name was a British one and he even was born in England on left was arrested in 1967 in New York on charges such as espionage. On right Mark Rylance a British actor whom I had not seen him in any other movies previously but performs very well and looks like real Abel too
Then I realized that Tom Hanks plays in this new movie of Steven Spielberg about exchanging a Soviet spy with Francis Gary Powers. I immediately remembered a scene of the TV Movie where Lee Majors is standing on the bridge awaiting exchange. So I said that is it. I don't have to get the old movie! But now after watching Bridge of Spies, although I like it, I still think I should get The True Story of U-2 Spy Incident. Bridge of Spies emphasis on an insurance lawyer who not only defends Rudolf Abel, the Soviet spy who is arrested in New York, but also is sent to East Berlin to organize a swap between the Soviets and Americans after Powers' plane is shot down.
Like most American movies, this one is not free from fiction and extra emphasis over American hero who here is not Powers, as I said and is that lawyer. He, although has not practiced criminal law, succeeds in defending Abel in a way that he is sentenced to prison instead of being electrocuted. It also indicated in the movie that Powers is basically was free and back to the US because the lawyer thought Abel could be used for an exchange in near future and surprisingly that happens!
The movie has little on Powers and that's why I still think I should get The True Story of U-2 Spy Incident. I guess I read a few days ago that Gary Jr., Powers' son has approved the movie but didn't read what he said in detail. I contacted him once a few years ago. He has established a museum called The Cold War Museum in Virginia.
This post would not be complete without at least a photo of Francis Gary Powers in his famous flight suit and helmet. I hope I can go to The Cold War Museum one day, meet with his son and have a little chat with him
Anyways regardless of the twists to the story, Bridge of Spies remain a good movie and worth spend time and money on. The British guy who plays Abel is good as well but he has a limited role. As I said the movie is stressed upon the lawyer and even at the end is said that Kennedy sends him to Cuba due to his ability in negotiation in order to discuss the Bay of Pig prisoners of war release and apparently he comes out of that as a winner too. I would give probably 3.5 out of 5 starts to the movie.
(Photo, top: Hanks as Donovan the lawyer who defended Abel is seen here in this scene talking to East German authorities and showing his passport to go to East Berlin and meet with the Soviets in the embassy. It is not said how Donovan learnt German that fast and there's no English sub-title in this scene and one other scene that he speaks German!)

Monday, November 21, 2016

End of Fitbit Flex

I had a problem with my Fitbit Flex about two weeks ago again. This was the second time. The first time they replaced that. I think it was covered by warranty. This time I realized that the piece of shit, pardon my language, doesn't synchronizes. I tried different angles and distances and result was the same. So I contacted them and they provided guidance and although it was not very useful because it was based on a tracker synchronizing with a Smartphone, I eventually managed to have the damn thing synchronized somehow. Then another problem emerged just a week later: It didn't charge! I contacted them again and this time a nut-head told me to use a pin and poke the devise from the hole in the back! I did that killed the tracker! No vital sings after that!
I contacted them and explained what had happened. They offered me a 25% discount to get a new devise! Although I didn't want a new one but I checked their website and realized that the one that I bought almost 2.5 years ago, is not offered any more. I bought a pack of three wristbands from West Edmonton Mall last year because Fitbit Flex does not have a durable wristband and I have used one at the time this whole thing happened, I had the second one on. So basically the one which is left worth some $10. I realized if I get a new one, with that discount and tax, shipping and all shit, it would be around $80 and I'm already losing at least $10 which is useless now. So I'm paying at least $90 for a new device which probably has all the same faults of the old now. So should I buy that or not? I don't think so. Especially now that I'm in this deep shit up to my neck! Would I buy, if I was employed? Probably yes but that still is stupid! When you have money, you're nonthinking of the rainy days! As The Lady said once: If you want to do exercise. Do your exercises! You don't needs any tracker! And she's right! I have been recording every exercise since Jan. of 2015 in an MS Excel sheet. I really don't need to spend more than $100 on such a piece of shit which is not even durable enough to last a year! You go ahead guys! Buy all these fancy stuff and show off! I'm done with it!
(Photo; This image shows how the device of FitbitFlex is taken out for recharge. Fitbit has stopped offering this model. That is one reason that I'm not using the 25% discount offered by them. There will be no use for the spare wristbands I purchased separately last year)

Friday, November 18, 2016

With or Without Tie

I received a surprise telephone call from someone that I would not to say from where he or she called a few days ago. The conversation, after the usual greeting started by mentioning December and I was analyzing in my head as why I had received this call at the same time! When I heard the world December I immediately thought the person did not even know me last December so i must be something in the coming December! This happen all simultaneously while the person was talking! And I realized that it was a temporary part-time job offer for the next month and I kind of sighed but slowly so the person did not hear that on the phone! I have done lots of fuck-ups and when I receive a call like that, I expect a punishment but I barely had done anything wrong, even minor with this person and still did not expect a pleasant thing! 
It is not actually a very pleasant mainly because it might affect my EI benefits negatively. I attended a sort of meeting with two individuals, not the one who called me and I convinced them. That happened the next day. Then they contacted me and indicated that they would hire me. When I discussed the EI issue briefly with one, the person sent useful information and it appears that I might be able to work. I guess I should have considered that for the safety job last summer but it's too late because I turned that down after the first day of training. The problem with that was it was not a paid training and it was too fucking far and too fucking boring! 
Anyways another interesting thing is the main person who actually has signed the offer letter, which I soon has to accept, used to live in the city that I worked and I had multiple issues! Thank heavens that I did not run to him for an argument or some bad encounter! It's a small world! Imagine that you sit at a table waiting for the interviewer to come. He opens the door and there he is: The guy you had a very bad argument with a few years ago and it was so bad that you still can remember it after years! 
Anyways everything was OK and I have received the offer letter. All I have to do is to check with Service Canada to see how I should contact them to report the hours I work as their telephone service does not provide any answer. 
I had a decision to make before going for the meeting. Even one of them said that it would not be a formal interview. Honestly who would interview a person for a 3-week part-time, low-paid job?! Even that job, which was supposed to be for 5 weeks did not have an interview! However I was not sure weather I should wear a tie or not! I eventually at the last minute before heading out wore a tie and noticed that they were looking at that during the meeting! They probably found it weird but it's over now. There's nothing wrong with being neat and well-groomed. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sicario (Hitman)

When you are unemployed you have to fill your hours,  sometimes it's not easy especially when all of your friends are gone, each for a reason, or employed. I usually watch more number of movies more than what a normal person does but being out of money has prevented me from going to theaters for a very long time. In fact I guess the last movie I watched in a theater was Black Mass. However Calgary Public Library offers a variety of old and new movies and I have managed to find a number of films that I wanted to watch them for a long time. Of course it's not the same feeling you get but it's better than nothing. It feels your hours!
Sicario (meaning hitman in Mexico they say not sure it has the same meaning in Spanish!) was the one that I recently watched and I was a little surprised by the story. Apparently an FBI agent is asked to volunteer for a joint task near the border with Mexico and when she joins, she realizes they operate at the other side of the border and strongly oppose to that. The story is interesting and is not just firefights with drug dealers. It has its twists but that part which eventually gets intense at the end and other moments of the game, is the climax of the movie, at least for me because I think if you're arresting drug dealers who destroy families, kill people and mutilate their competitors or innocent ones, doesn't matter where you are going. Jurisdiction and shit like that doesn't matter. You need to sweep them but the main character of movie doesn't think like that especially because they mostly either keep her in the dark or ignore her. Recommended movie but I'm not going to rate mostly because no one cares! And rather than that it's not an easy task!
One scene is funny in a way: The main character of the movie, an FBI female agent who is divorced and frustrated due to lack f sex(!), meet a police officer is a bar who happens to be not only his partner's buddy, but also a corrupt cop who links to the very same people that they are trying to dismantle their operation. This meeting, before any penetration happens(!) leads to recognize the bad cop! He empties his jean's pocket to be more comfortable during the foreplay and the FBI woman sees something that triggers her. There are two things here:
1- They condone fucking around with anyone particularly is OK, when they are both divorced! You can have sex with the first person you when your pussy is itching or you have a hard on(!). This is part of the Western culture! 
2- The woman's reaction is very unprofessional which is not expected from a law enforcement officer, especially the one who works for FBI and has such a high morale that opposes to crossing the border to bring a bad gut to the US for interrogation! She could easy finish the sex and enjoy that(!) as that's what the massage is and then simply leave and call her partners to arrest the guy. I think that would have not deteriorate the quality of the story and in turn the movie. In fact she would come out as a heroin who not only satisfied her very basic need but also blew a bad cop's cover and destroyed a network of corrupt police officers in Arizona! I guess for these guys who mix sex with everything that actually could have been a boost to their movie! No matter what kind of American movie you watch, there should be a scene of nudity or sexual act in it. Horror, si-fi, action, war, you name it! They have to show a woman's boobs or a scene of deep kissing or pumping(!) Why didn't they do that this time?!
(Photo; The three major characters of the movie, from left FBI agent, standing in camouflage suit Josh Brolin, the CIA guy and on right the Mexican hitman or sicario. I don't know the sitting guy and I had not seen the woman and the Mexican guy in any movie before. Brolin, though, had been seen in a few movies by previously, including W and No Country for Old Men)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Carbon Tax

Carbon Tax that many Canadians and to be more specific many Albertans are very terrified of that in Alberta is part of the Climate Leadership Plan proposed by the NDP Government. Let's have a look at that as it comes into effect in 2017:
Carbon Tax or by its official and correct term, Carbon Levy (and for those who don't know what Levy exactly Levy mean, it is an imposing tax or collecting by authorities) will be included in the price of all types of fuel which emit greenhouse gases when combusted. This, as I indicted earlier above, will be applied to the fuels in 01-Jan-2017 at the rate of $20/Tonne and will be increased next year. Here's how it will work:

Type of fuel                                                         2016                                     2017

Agriculture used                                                     0                                           0
Gasoline                                                       4.49 Cents/Liter                      2.24 Cents/Liter
Natural Gas                                                    $1.011/GJ                                $ 0.506/GJ

I only mentioned the two most popular fuels used by the families. The other two are not as important and are not listed. Also in the first row I mention that the fuel marked for agricultural use is exempt which is an excellent idea. I guess that would consist of not only agricultural machinery such as combine but also maybe their trucks, pick-ups and similar vehicles which is fair.
Based on the above, for example the price of gasoline which is 86.9 Cents/Liter in Calgary would jump up to 91.39 Cent/Liter, if it remained the same in Jan, the first.
The questions here is why Albertans are making a fuss out of this? It's obvious that no one likes taxes. No one likes to pay more for what he or she is buying. But what if this is for better environment and less pollution? Does anyone care? Apparently not because a bunch of lazy, wimp nuts have already rallied again Carbon Levy in Edmonton
These people are spoiled really badly. For decades because of the cheap price of oil and vehicles, they have gotten used to go from point A to point B which is only 15 minutes walk, by car! High School kids go to calls driving a car every day!!! And people wonder why obesity and diabetes the concern of the current generation! When I used to go to U of C in 2002 for an Advanced ESL Level II course, I saw many students being picked up by either their parents or boy/girlfriends!! When I started SAIT in 2002, also I realized that the majority of Caucasian students drove, parked and paid for parking while Calgary Transit has a station called SAIT right at the entrance and is very convenient! 
The fact is if you're too lazy to ride a bike, walk a few blocks or take the public transit, then you'll be worried about Carbon Levy. I already know that when the new tax kicks in, I will reduce my drivings significantly but for The Chef who lives in northeastern part of the city and works near Downtown, the increase will be felt. As well for the people who live in nearby towns such as Airdrie, Okotoks, High River and similar.
The other thing is you were the ones who vote for Notley and her people. Now you are organizing rallies against her? Are you stupid? Brace for impact!
(Photo: A Shell gas station on 14th St. is showing 86.9 Cents for a Liter for regular gasoline. It's not a bad price)

Saturday, November 05, 2016

Messed up a not so Difficult Test

I was again given an opportunity to apply for a Federal Government job and I blew it again! It was a job in Atlantic Canada and a good one I believe. An examination session was scheduled and there were only three of us. I don't know if that's the case or not but when I had another opportunity in summer and blew it as well(!) there were only three of us as well. That one, I'm not sure if I have mentioned or not, was very unfair. The easiest examination I had ever written. I was then called and told that I didn't get a certain percentage in one section while did well in all other! 
Anyways I was there and the first part of the exam, I'm not going to reveal the content of course, was all about English comprehension. Although I came short in time but I guess I did average. There's a hope to get the minimum requirement! 
Then there was a break and we wrote the second part which was some mathematics and technical. This part was not hard but I didn't do well! I clearly remember that a very easy question was answered incorrectly by me! I need at least 70% for this. I still am positive to get that percentage or above. The last part was a combination of vocabulary and some letter and number series as well as shapes moving and turning which their samples are available when the applicant is notified that he or she should write the examination. They are also available in the web. This part was the hardest among the three and I am not positive at all! There were vocabulary questions that I had never seen or heard the term! 
I did not have a very good night sleep and there was a nasty East Indian donkey making noises with his nose and asking questions loudly. Careless, rude and stupid in public behaviour similar to majority of East Indians! Because of that and my tiredness I did not have a good focus during the examination but that is not an excuse for failing. Even him was complaining about the hard questions afterwards! I really hate inconsiderate people who act like a fucking jerk in the public without any respect for others. 
This pig, when we finished and leaving the room and asked me if I was from a certain country. I normally have no issue answering that question but I was tired, mad and annoyed by this piece of shit and asked him why he cared! He answered he was just asking. I replied back by saying that I did not answer stupid questions and that was a stupid question! We reached the elevator at the time and were about to get on it. He said nothing and left, pretending going back to the room as he had forgotten something or going to washroom! He, the piece of shit, stinking, animal practically ran away! The other one was a gentleman. A very nice and polite man that we had a nice at the beginning but this East Indian sack of reeking shit annoyed me a lot and I was just looking for an opportunity to pop him(!) but thankfully it never appeared! Disgusting animal. 

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Calgary Police Funny Business!

Policing here in Canada is a good business, I believe. Not in the US though, particularly in the past two years which two many shooting have happened. Canada used to be a very peaceful and quite place. It seems that the trouble and violence in the neighbouring US and the whole world has significant affect on the country. I can simply compare Calgary of these days to when I came first:

There were not these many women with table cloths on their head walking with an army of children and beard men around the town, benefiting from the Federal Government. Population was much smaller, There were not high employment as much as 9.5% or more like now, prices were much lower, etc. Don't you think these have all affects on the way people and in turn the police act? A few officers have recently been accused of using excessive force on people who they were arresting. Something that I had never seen in this town. This is in addition to the number of police shootings in the recent months. All of these are fine by me. I certainly believe that in most cases the officers were doing their job. Maybe in a case or two they went over the line. but this thing that I read in the news today made me laugh quickly. See for yourself:

A man is in critical condition after being stabbed in Calgary's downtown core early Thursday morning.It happened in the 1000 block of First Street S.W. around 1:30 a.m.It's not clear what led up to the attack, but there were reports that several people fled the scene.Officers interviewed witnesses at the scene, but many of them were intoxicated and gave conflicting accounts, police say. 

Are you kidding me?! Is that what really happened or is it a joke?! Everyone who is not home at 01:30 AM in downtown is a crook, a homeless or a drunkard! They are all the same shit! And police interviewed them?! Where they making a fool of themselves or they were bored and said: Hey officers! Lets go and have some fun with street people at 01:30 AM? Lets make sure though that they have injected or inhaled or ... swallowed their drugs and they are really loaded!!! I know that police would say: We had to interview the witnesses. They were the only people available there at the time. But comm on! You have to have common sense too. Don't act like third grade kids. Use your head. Respect yourself a human being and a an officer on the force. Don't do something that people doubt your proficiency and sanity!

(Photo; This picture taken from a clip shows CPS officers are struggling a man who is resisting arrest. It is said that they used excessive force. I don't know)