Archive for September, 2011

Labour Day

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

It is officially Fall.  It is the last day of the Exhibition and true to form the temperature has dropped by about 20 degrees.  I woke this morning to see the Labour Day parade moving past my front door which came as a surprise as I was unaware that there WAS a Labour Day parade.  I looked it up and apparently there have been 140 of them so I am a bit behind the times.

I celebrated this last day of summer by taking in the Air Show with my pal Jen, who not only is a lovely individual but also sports the added bonus of sitting on the board of the Exhibition so she gets free passes and VIP treatment wherever she goes.  It is a great way to see the festivities.  In the past few years I have seen a side of the Fair that I didn’t know existed.  Today was no different, starting with the facilities available to the well-connected set.

Here’s the VIP washroom standing next to the one reserved for the common folk.

The interior was quite spectacular and certainly unlike any public portable lavatory I have encountered before.

The air show itself was rather what one might expect.  Planes, and plenty of them.  There was a Lancaster bomber from WWII, one of only two left operating in the world.

There was a MIG and a CF-18 and a bunch of other planes I couldn’t identify (Ok, I could only identify these two because I had a program and the announcer said that was what they were).  There were fly-bys and stunt pilots.  One of the pilots was a gentleman named Mike Wiskus.  The program offered several pieces of information about Mike, not the least interesting of which was this little gem:

I feel I am a bigger person with this knowledge.

September.  Start of a new season, psychological start to a brand new year.  I have shined my shoes, bought a brand new pencil case and am waiting to see what the future will bring.

Cultural Events

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

Summer is winding down and the great harbinger of Back to School has come around again.  The Canadian National Exhibition is in town and I took some time out with my pal Kim to enjoy it.  We met at the Princes Gate and made a beeline for the food building as the Ex is notorious for featuring some crazy victuals that we felt we must try.  The first stop was just inside the fair proper:  deep fried butter.  Tastes and looks just like a Timbit (I believe these are known as donut holes to the readers south of the parallel) only with a teaspoon of molten salted butter in the middle.  A bit of a disappointment, frankly.  We moved on, pausing only to hop on a ride and get dropped about the equivalent of six stories, and entered the food terminal.  I am not sure which was more frightening.  We ate, then paused, then ate some more in the following sequence:

1.  A Donut Burger – meat patty between two Krispy Kreme donuts with lettuce & tomato

2.  Deep fried Coke – deep friend syrup really that oddly didn’t taste like coke

3.  Deep fried Mac & Cheese – of which there was little evidence of the cheese portion.  More like deep fried overboiled macaroni noodles.

The burger won, hands down.  It actually wasn’t too bad, kind of like pancakes and sausage.  For $8 and around 1500 calories.

Bellies full we made our way out, pausing to hop our last ride and get swung and whipped about for a few moments.  Another Ex under my belt.  Perhaps I will have digested everything by the time it rolls around again.

Later that evening I made my way to another event of an entirely different stripe.  The Cirque Du Soleil is in town with a new show called “Totem” and I went to check it out.  This show is a combined effort between the Cirque and Robert Lepage, a French Canadian playwright and theatre director.  I was introduced to Lepage’s work in LA oddly enough and I have made an effort to see as much of his works as I can.  He has a truly amazing vision and I was not disappointed with this incarnation as well.

I am quite amazed by the creative minds behind Cirque du Soleil.  I know it isn’t for everyone.  Sometimes I wonder why I like it so much as I loathe musical extravaganzas as a rule.  I think in another life I should have been a circus performer and I am very taken with what I like to call “boingy shit”.  Every time I see any kind of trampoline action I have to seriously suppress the urge to leap on stage and join the fun.  There was plenty to be had in this show.  I do wonder how they come up with this.  Do the creators sit around (possibly with the benefit of some medical marijuana) and say things like “I got it.  How about we take 5 teenage girls and stick ’em on 6 foot unicycles.  They we make them throw mixing bowls at each other with their feet and make them catch them on their heads?  And backwards too”.  Cause that was in there.  The mind boggles.

2 Ex rides + weird food + Cirque = one fine day.