Just forget the words and sing along

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Playing Catch-Up

WOO!! Yesterday was windfall Monday! A full two months late, my Alberta prosperity bonus finally came! And, also in the mail, was my tax refund! It pays to file early, kids.

And, with any luck, the windfall isn't over. Sometime this week, I should also hopefully, finally, be getting my paychech from my MuchMusic VJ Search chauffering gig. So, yay me!

I was reading the news this morning about the big lawsuit that just hit British courts. It's Apple vs. Apple! Here are our champions:

Apple Corps, Ltd. - This is the company that still looks after the business affairs of the Beatles. You buy any Beatles merchandise, they get the money. It's owned by the two surviving Beatles, and the estates of the two deceased ones.

Apple Computers - One of the biggest names in home computing. They make Macs and iPods.

Now, these two companies have long-fought over who owns the name "Apple." The two companies finally called a truce back in 1991 when they entered into an agreement that it's OK for each other to use the name "Apple" as long as they don't intrude on each other's business. That is, Apple Corps will never get into computers, and Apple Computers will never get into music.

And that's what's causing the trouble right now. "Apple Computers will never get into music." With the explosion of the iPod, and the millions being pulled in through the iTunes online music store, Apple Corps claims that Apple Computers has broken the agreement and gotten into the music buisness. Apple Computers says no.

It's now gone to trial in the British courts. And the judge owns an iPod.

I caught a few reruns of seaQuest DSV these past few mornings. I loved that show when it was on about 12 years ago, but now it's so dated.

As you may remember, back in the early-90's, environmentalism was quite the fad. Cartoons and TV shows were produced with "ecologically conscious messages." It's was the growing push that led McDonald's to abandon their styrofoam containers and adopted classic paper wrappers. And, as someone once said, "You can tell a fad's gone mainstream when the fast food companies jump onboard."

This is best shown in that first season of seaQuest. Villains were quite often eco-terrorists, doing things like blowing up factories because that factory's not following the Kyoto protocals. And our heroes would come charging in on their super-submarine and give a variation on the traditional "violence is not the solution" speech. "Violence is the only way, because the people are listening! They're not doing anything to save the planet!" the villain would reply. And the producers would hope that we, the people, would get the hint.

I've always wanted to write this article for my website. Hell, it's been in the back of my head ever since the Dag. The working title is "Whatever Happened to Environmentalism?" My core thesis would be that it's sad that environmentalism had such a huge awareness about 15 years ago, but now, not so much.

Don't get me wrong, environmentalism isn't gone completely. Cities have set up massive recycling programs. Many of us have become more waste-conscious in our homes. But it's sad that environmentalism doesn't have the heights of awareness that it did in, say, 1992.

I've also wanted to make a few comments on Edmonton's new hockey team.

For those who haven't heard, Edmonton was just awarded a WHL franchise. The WHL is minor league hockey, although you've probably heard of several of the other teams. The Calgary Hitmen, the Red Deer Rebels, and Medicine Hat and Lethbridge are all teams in the league.

This isn't the first time Edmonton's had a WHL team. The Edmonton Oil Kings of the 1960s are still legendary in the Edmonton sports community. They were more or less replaced by the Oilers. And Edmonton briefly had the Edmonton Ice in the mid-90s. They only lasted two seasons, before being moved to Cranbrook, BC.

So, how will we not repeat the incident of the Ice? This time around, the WHL team (they're still unnamed) will be owned by the Oilers, and pretty much be the Oiler's farm team. The Oilers and the Ice were competitors...this time, the Oilers and the WHL will be partners.

Now, you might be going, "Whatever happened to the Edmonton Roadrunners?" Well, the Roadrunners were AHL - American Hockey League. They were originally the Toronto Roadrunners, but the AHL couldn't make it in Toronto. The team was on the verge of collapse, and with the NHL lockout looming on the horizon, the Oilers (the major-league affiliates of the Roadrunners) said, "Hey! Why don't we move them to Edmonton so we've got something to fill Rexall Place during the lockout?"

And that's what they did. When the NHL came back, the Roadrunners finally died.

I'm not a big sports guy, but I love the business of sports, the history of sports, and the merchandising of sports. I like pretty much everything but the games themselves.

Still wondering what to do with my Tuesday.

As you know, I'm volunteering now with an Edmonton radio station as part of their street team. I'm the guy who hands out stickers and events and stuff.

Sunday was "training night," and that was a disaster. I was warned about it. When they want volunteers for this street team, they want the die-hard listeners...people who love the station so much that they want a peek behind the curtain. When they found out about me - a broadcasting grad who was doing this to get his foot in the door - well, the big boss man in charge of this program suddenly developed a very low opinion of me.

I volunteered to help out with an event today. I then heard from the second in command - actually a very decent fellow - that today, he and the big boss man were going to be having a big meeting discussing the aftermath of the training night, and deciding where to go from there. I walked away from that conversation with the impression, "Don't bother volunteering until you hear from us." I e-mailed them to get clarification - to see if I walked away with the right impression - and I've yet to hear back.

So, I'm kind of in limbo right now. Do I wait by the phone for the OK to come and volunteer today? Or do I get on with my life?

I'm just trying to follow the advice of my mother. "Just because you're working for free, it's no excuse to let them jerk you around."

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