THE NUTSHELL: Too Hot To Bother

A weekly feature, with a collection of random thoughts on random things.


The Don Valley Parkway, Toronto, Ont. July 21, 2011. 4:48 pm.

My apologies if this version of “The Nutshell” is a little shorter. It’s just too hot to type. Maybe if I moved my computer inside from the top of my barbecue. It’s just that, no one on tv told me I shouldn’t word process in this heat, so I guess it’s okay. I mean, they CONSTANTLY remind you to put on sunscreen, stay hydrated and look for a place where you can cool off, but no mention of not blogging on the top of your barbecue. So, I’ll keep going. Seriously. Could everyone on TV, in radio and in print STOP telling us we need to wear sunscreen, drink water, find shade and “not overdo it”? Or, are there really people out there who would forget to drink something if they feel thirsty?

A guy on tv said we could go and cool off at “one of Toronto’s 3 world-class water parks.” I didn’t even know there were different classes of water parks. And we’ve got three WORLD-CLASS ones? Suck on that, Paris. Eat it, New York City. Hey, London, how many world-class water parks are you rockin’? Thought so. Go cool off in “the tube,” or something.

Weather guy put a block of ice on the station parking lot last night, as an experiment. He did some weather, then the camera came back to that block of ice a wee bit later. There was a slightly smaller block of ice there, with a small puddle of water underneath it. It was melting. Oh, my, look what the heat can do. Important to remember, folks. If you’re taking your pet block of ice for a walk in this weather, first slather it with some sunscreen. And keep it hydrated. Oh, and for God’s sake, don’t let that block of ice overdo it.


Tiger and Steve. "Misty, water-hazard memories..."

Tiger Woods dumped his long-time caddie, Steve Williams. Big mistake, Eldrick. What if Steve decides to write a tell-all book and you come out looking…  never mind.



Yesterday marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of Canadian super-brain, Marshall McLuhan. All he did was predict the internet 30 years before it happened. He also predicted that the continued advancements in communication would shrink the planet into a global village. He DID NOT predict that Twitter would unleash legions of “Global Village Idiots” on us. Well, maybe he did. Meantime, I chatted with McLuhan’s son, Michael, and tried to track down Marshall’s old couch, yesterday. You can read about it in my blog: “Where is Marshall McLuhan’s Couch?”


President Obama auctions off the state of Delaware at a debt-ceiling charity dinner.

With the temperatures soaring on Thursday, all trains in Toronto had to travel much more slowly, because the heat was so great, it actually expanded the rails. This meant that gravy deliveries to City Hall were delayed. Not to mention that the heat curdled the gravy.

U.S. President Barack Obama gave a speech, today, on that country’s looming debt crisis. Said Obama, of the possibility of defaulting: “The United States doesn’t run out without paying the tab. We pay our bills.”  Let’s hope so. Because you know that if they get evicted from their country, they’re all gonna need a place to stay. And we’re the rich relatives right now.

Silvio Berlusconi was denied in his bid to have his sex trial moved from a Milan court. I wonder what strip club was he hoping to hold it in?


Global warming? More like global scorching. Or scalding. Hell, I don’t know. That’s it! Global helling.

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THE NUTSHELL: Shakespeare A Pothead? Obama Tweets And Kate Gets Gripped

A weekly feature, with a collection of random thoughts on random things.


  • An anthropologist from South Africa, by the name of Francis Thackeray, would like to know if William Shakespeare should actually have been named William Bakespeare. He has a theory that the bard partook in the smoking of the marijuana, and that an exhumation of Bill’s bones can definitively answer the question.

    Doobie, or not doobie?

    I, myself, am a little conflicted on the issue. It seems to me that if Shakespeare smoked pot, his most famous soliloquy would actually have read: “To be or not to be….ummm…what was the question?” However, let’s dig deeper and explore the possibilities. I can easily make the case that Shakespeare was often high, without having to disturb his 400 year slumber. A floating dagger, Faeries (I believe that is the correct Shakespearean spelling), a donkey-headed man…. Hello, yeah, had to be the dope. In Romeo and Juliet: “What light through yonder window breaks….” It WAS Juliet, but probably the glow off her spliff. King Lear wasn’t mad when he took a stroll in the storm, it was just a bad trip. When Lady Macbeth cried “out damned spot…” she probably had just dropped an ash on the bedspread. Don’t even get me started on “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” That’s just one long, long, continuous bong hit. Maybe it’s just much ado about puffing. Mr. Thackeray, if you really want to investigate a dead writer’s drug habits, go with Dickens. Had a character named Marley in “A Christmas Carol.”

  • The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (great little starting point – maybe one day they’ll be the Count and Countess of Kitchener) stopped off in the Territories during their Royal Tour. William took part in a ball hockey game and went oh for 3 on penalty shots. If these were the good old days, the goaltender would have immediately been escorted to the gallows. A breach of protocol occurred when Kate stood a little too close to the stick rack and was mistakenly grabbed by a young player and used to win a critical face-off.
  • Lady Gaga decided to sport some full underarm hair, dyed green. Nothing I haven’t seen at a Saskatchewan Roughriders game. Actually, wearing a hollowed out watermelon on her head would probably be a fairly blaise thing for her to do.


"What the hell? I thought we shut down Weiner's Congressional Twitter account."

  • Statistics Canada released a poll this week, with results based on reasons given by eligible voters as to why they didn’t exercise their right to political choice. Nearly 4% said they merely “forgot.” The Prime Minister immediately appointed them to The Senate. Over 50% just couldn’t really be bothered. Guess Rick Mercer could have done more. He could have physically taken people to the polls.
  • Barack Obama held a Twitter Town Hall this week. His first answer to a tweeted question was 2,300 characters long. That’s about 2,160 characters too many. Obama may be a good President, but, he’s no Richard Nixon when it comes to editing.


  • Ron Artest is seeking to legally change his name to Metta World Peace. I’d poke some fun at this, but it’s just nice to see a pro athlete making a court appearance that doesn’t involve a plea bargain.
  • Dillon is a fictional town. A good thing, too. Because if it were real, how could it ever overcome the incredible ongoing drama that was, Friday Night Lights. The critically acclaimed television show about the best little field house in Texas, airs its final episode tonight. next Friday. Political intrigue and backstabbing, a self-defense killing, racial disharmony, drug scandals, unwanted teen pregnancy, jail terms, affairs, fist fights…how in the hell did they ever find time for football?  So long, coach Taylor. Thanks for the hospitality, Tammy. I got used to reuniting with that big, beautiful, dysfunctional gridiron family every Spring. I’ll miss y’all. What I may miss most – that way cool opening theme song, by Snuffy Walden.


I think William is taking this “Duke” thing to a John Wayne level. And, hey, isn’t that Debra Winger from “Urban Cowboy”?

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