Tag Archives: French

Two Minutes in Canada

25 Jul

July 25, 2014


Americans have always looked towards Canada with fear and mistrust. But all that worry really just hides our own national insecurity. If Canada is America’s funny hat, what does it say about us? Why would we, as a nation, wear such a hat? Is America hiding a bald spot? Is it a hipster?

Fear not, Americans, the good ol’ US of A still has a full head of hair. It turns out that Canada is more than just a geographic chapeau; it has a rich history all its own, one that many of us who live under the Canadian brim are not aware of.

Being so far north, Canada has more than its share of hardships: Ice, snow, even many people who speak French. And worst of all, despite being so far north, Santa Claus shows it no special treatment and usually delivers Canadian presents last, on his way back to the North Pole.

But what do we learn about Canada in school? Fur trading. Canada has a lot of fur traders. At least it did back when the text books took place.

First, Americans traded with the Native American Indian* trappers.
Then, they traded with French fur traders.
December 10, 1984: New York Mets traded Hubie Brooks to the Montreal Expos for Gary Carter.

*Notice they don’t call them “Native Canadian Indians.”

Why was there so much trapping in Canada? Beavers. There were so many beaver dams in Canada that in 1833, official records show that a full 63% of Canada was underwater.

FUN FACT: The Montreal Expos were named after the expo, a small burrowing mammal hunted to extinction by French fur traders.




Breakfast- The Most Important Meal of the Day (Delicious-Tasting Repost)

4 May

May 5, 2013

Mr. Blog is off trying to talk Allan Keyes out of rigging the Kentucky Derby. so for today, enjoy this Classic Repost, not seen in five years.

from June 30, 2007

The Editors and Staff of Mr. Blog’s Tepid Ride would like to Congratulate BMJ2K – Winner of the 2007 NAACP Image Award on his Outstanding Achievement.

NOTE: The following originally appeared in Woman’s Day Magazine, February 2006, under the pseudonym “Breakfast Betty”

Breakfast has long been known as “the most important meal of the day.” Indeed, though there has been fierce competition from both brunch and dinner, it has always been the morning meal which gives us the strength to make it through our rough days.

Back in the badly misnamed “dawn of time” (misnamed because time actually began about six months earlier) the early hominids that would later evolve to become both the human race and the French (“la culture de la sauce crémeuse“) lived in a state of near-perpetual hunger. During the day fierce predators roamed, and at night the scavengers came out. Early man would hunt in the twilight and try to find whatever sustenance they could. It wasn’t until the discovery of fire led to the innovation of bacon and eggs did humanity’s ancestors feel secure and able to meet the daylight hours. Hash browns soon followed, then coffee, then the pyramids, and then, ultimately, The Federalist Papers.

In today’s modern age, it seems silly to look back just a few decades and realize that our great-grandparents never had the opportunity to eat an Egg McMuffin. Nor did they drink Sunny Delight or Hi-C. (Both of which, by the way, contain no more than 10% juice.)

The Egg McMuffin was created by a McDonald’s franchisee who wanted to increase his profits. He reasoned that his restaurant was only open half the day, but if he opened during the morning hours he would increase sales in the previously closed early hours. He hit upon the McMuffin because it could be easily made on existing McDonald’s equipment. (True story- look it up.)

Today, McMuffin-penetration in our urban areas is fast-approaching 98%. There is not a man, woman, pre- or post-op transsexual, or child who does not have the opportunity for a hearty morning McMuffin.

The question is not, of course, whether or not to eat an Egg McMuffin for breakfast. The question becomes where do you eat your McMuffin? Important as breakfast is, many of us take the McMuffin for granted. Eating on the subway or in your car is not breakfast. Eating at your desk and dripping crumbs on your computer isn’t breakfast. Neither is gobbling your McMuffin while trying to sell a house. (If you are a realtor, this is also not a good way to sell a home.)

Breakfast should be the most human and humane meal of the day. Lunch is often just whenever you can squeeze it in. Dinner is a hassle to be endured with your family or a bad date.

Breakfast, however,  should be the basis of a good day.

Heed my advice: Make a good breakfast the center of your morning. Take it from Breakfast Betty- this column would not have possible without a strong morning meal of pancakes and vodka.


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