Four In The Afternoon, Early Edition: Featuring Egypt, Pipelines, Bad Dye Jobs, and… Kittens

4 in the Afternoon

1. HURRY UP ALREADY  Egypt’s military says they’ll hand over rule of that country to civilians… soon.

2. DETOUR  Nebraskan lawmakers have voted to reroute the Keystone XL pipeline.

3. LUCKILY, GREY IS MAKING A COMEBACK  An ingredient commonly found in hair dye has been linked to some very scary allergic reactions, and at least one death.

4. DRUG BUST IN BC TURNS UP KITTENS  Police in Castlegar found pot plants and two cuddly wuddly kittens in a grow-op this week.

Six In The Morning: Not Particularly Newsworthy Edition – Because I Knew I’d Be Pressed For Time This Morning, And I Drew It Up Last Night (Before Occupy Regina Was Evicted From Victoria Park).

1. HOW COME U DON’T CALL ME ANYMORE?  That dirty bird Prince has cancelled his Saskatoon concert.

2. GOOD BOY! An Ohio couple’s newly adopted dog has already earned his keep.

3. AND IF YOU SCROLLED DOWN BELOW THE ADOPTED DOG STORY, YOU MIGHT HAVE FOUND THIS  A 9 year old girl survived being trapped for two days in an overturned car by subsisting on Pop Tarts.

4. AN ALBINO SPIDER, YOU SAY?  Expert “nearly fell over” when he discovered it.

5. PROOF THAT MISUNDERSTOOD WRITERS ARE AS OLD AS TIME  These ancient cave markings might be evidence of very early writings.

6. WE’RE GOING TO SEE A LOT MORE OF THEM, SO Here’s a little something that explains why no two snowflakes are the same.

Six In The Morning: I Don’t Want To Talk About It.

1. JIM HAS BAD NEWS An increase in EI premiums that was to take effect in January will now be halved.

2. TIME TO GO? Apparently the rumours that have been circling about the potential eviction of Occupiers in Victoria Park are true. The city has confirmed that it plans to remove the protesters, citing bylaws that say camping in the park is illegal. Occupy organizers are holding meetings today and a response is expected to be delivered on Wednesday.

3. COMIC RELIEF We could all use a good laugh right about now, yes? Well, Herman Cain is only too happy to deliver.

4. NOW, THIS IS JUST ENTRE NOUS… Nicolas Sarkozy is overheard telling Barack Obama that Benjamin Netanyahu is “a liar”.

5. I IMAGINE, THIS MORNING, THERE’S MUCH WE’D LIKE TO FORGET Researchers are working on helping patients work through bad memories and phobias through neuroscience.

6. AND NOW, TO COMPLETELY DISTRACT YOU… LESTER BANGS & LOU REED! The Guardian is celebrating the 10th anniversary of ‘Rock’s Backpages’ by republishing an article on Lou Reed by the late Lester Bangs.

Four In The Afternoon

4 in the Afternoon

1 ALMOST SCIENTIFIC PROOF THAT BAD MUSICAL TASTE HAS A DETRIMENTAL EFFECT ON YOUR LOVE LIFE Apologies to anyone who actually likes these acts (but it’s best that you heard it here).

2 OH, MON DIEU A new right-of-centre political party is a-brewin’ in La Belle Province.

3 PREDICTABLE On the heels of UNESCO’s acceptance of Palestinians, Israel is stepping up the schedule on building more settlements.

4 NEW ROBOT CAN CLIMB WALLS How about that?

Six In The Morning: Prisoner Swaps, Slick Politicians, and Chewin’ Tobaccy!

1. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE ARCHIVE? Treasury Board president Tony Clement wants the federal government to go paperless.

2. RESEARCH IN MOTION UNVEILS NEW PLATFORM: Yep. They did.

3. BAD NEWS FOR STEM CELL RESEARCH: The European Court has just made stem cell research more difficult.

4. AND THEY LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER One Israeli and 477 Palestinians have been released in a prisoner swap.

5. U.S. SENATORS SEEK TO OUTLAW TABACCO FROM BASEBALL Chewing tobacco that is.

6. HE’S SLICK Silvio Berlusconi has ducked a media tax fraud indictment.

Six In The Morning: Braids, Books, and Babies, Babies, Babies!

1 IT’S A THANKLESS JOB Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has been found guilty of abuse of office and is sentenced to seven years in prison.

2 BOOK LIST The Governor General’s literary award nominees have been announced.

3 THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT THAT GUY Secular Tunisians are wary of an increasingly popular presidential candidate.

4 UNDERACHIEVER A woman gave birth after running the Chicago marathon on Sunday.

5 TAKE THIS JOB AND… The Slovakian prime minister is saying that she’ll quit if her country doesn’t get a bailout from the EU.

6 “BLACK ROBE AND SWILL, I BELIEVE ANITA HILL” Anita Hill looks back over twenty years since the Clarence Thomas hearing.

* Bonus news item: WIN A BABY! There are number of things about contemporary life that make me want to go live in a bunker, and this one of them.

Six In the Morning: Bad Neighbours, Love Haters, and Dick Predicts

1. TELL US SOMETHING WE DON’T KNOW  In a scintillating interview with Der Spiegel, Dick Cheney defends water boarding, and predicts more “Terror Attacks”.

2. THE MOST ANNOYING NEIGHBOURS ON EARTH  Fresh on the heels of the Palestinians’ appeal for UN membership, Israel has given the green-light to begin construction on 1100 new housing units in East Jerusalem.

3. DEMANDING ANSWERS  Human rights experts are demanding an inquiry into why a Canadian citizen diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia was detained in Afghanistan by the U.S. for 18 months.

4. WAIT AND SEE  World stocks are expected to do well today.

5. NOT SO FRIENDLY SKIES  A woman was reportedly escorted off a Southwest Airlines flight for “excessively” kissing another woman. This is the same airline that kicked director Kevin Smith off a plane last year for being fat.

6. SPEND MORE OR LOSE THE FALKLANDS!  Former armed forces chiefs say the UK needs to spend more on their military lest they lose the Falkland Islands.

Six In The Morning: (Just Past Noon Edition) Featuring Money Problems, Ingrates, and Hay Bales!

1. BACKSLIDING INTO ANOTHER GLOBAL RECESSION? Why, what would give you that idea?

2. THANKS FOR NOTHING The Federal Government is short-changing Toronto after effectively laying waste to its downtown during the G20 last year.

3. HERE’S THE NEW BOSS, NOT THE SAME AS THE OLD BOSS Qatar’s government has replaced the director-general of Al Jazeera with a member of its royal family.

4. OBAMA APPROVES He thinks Libya’s transitional leader is a-okay. For now.

5. NAZCA-ESQUE STRUCTURES FOUND IN ARABIA Google Earth found them, and they’re pretty amazing, so you should definitely have a look.

6. AND ANOTHER UNEXPLAINED PHENOMENON A Regina woman living in the South end woke to find a hay bale on her front lawn! There’s no explanation! Be sure to click through the photos for different vantage points on the bale. Har har!

Six In The Morning: Comeuppances and Coconuts

1. BACK IN BUSINESS Canada is reopening its embassy in Tripoli and freeing up $2.2 billion in frozen assets.

2. IT’S CURTAINS FOR GARTH Livent’s Garth Drabinsky and Myron Gottlieb are going to the big house.

3. LIGHTS OUT FOR MEDIA IN ZIMBABWE? Their government doesn’t like it when newspapers do their jobs.

4. AMERICAN HIKERS FREE TO ROAM AGAIN Iran is set to release two American hikers who were arrested on suspicion of spying after unwittingly entering that country illegally.

5. WHAT TOOK SO LONG? A group representing victims of sexual abuse is calling upon the International Criminal Court to investigate Pope Benedict for his part in allowing the abuse of countless children.

6. WHY CAN’T WE DO THAT? The South Pacific Islands of Tokelau will soon be powered by sunshine and coconuts.

Six In The Morning: Fire, Feud, Flight, and Falling Markets

1 FIRE! A forest fire has forced the evacuation of an area west of Kelowna, BC. (via CBC)

2 TURKEY CUTS MILITARY TIES WITH ISRAEL And Israel still probably won’t apologize. (via Guardian)

3 DON’T TAKE TOO MUCH TIME NDP Party president Brian Topp warns against rushing into a leadership race. (via Globe & Mail)

4 ON THE LAM Gaddafi’s convoy has been spotted in Niger, but Gaddafi himself, apparently, hasn’t yet. (via Al Jazeera)

5 BECAUSE THERE WAS NO PRECEDENT OF MOUTH-BREATHING SPORTS FANS CAUSING TROUBLE IN THE PAST? An internal review by the Vancouver police department has concluded that there was nothing they could do to prevent the riots in that city this past June. (via Toronto Star)

6 AND AGAIN… World markets continue to falter. (via BBC)

Have a nice day.

Six In The Morning: Money, Carnage And Faded Love

1 WHAT’S THE POINT?:  The Conservative party is going to put the “royal” back in Canada’s air force and navy. (via Globe & Mail)

2 THEN YOU TRY TO REMEMBER WHAT YOU EVER SAW IN HIM IN THE FIRST PLACE… Some guy in Quebec dumped a 20-tonne rock on his ex-wife’s driveway. (via CTV)

3 IRAQ IS A MESS: 39 people were killed and 315 wounded yesterday on what authorities are calling the most deadly day all year in Iraq. (via NYTimes)

4 SECURITY SUMMIT IN WINNIPEG: The U.S. Homeland Security secretary is in town to talk about border security. (via Winnipeg Free Press)

5 OVER THE FALLS: A 19-year-old international student fell into the Niagara river and went over the falls yesterday. I’m actually surprised this doesn’t happen more often. (via Toronto Star)

6 BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO KEEP BAILING EVERYONE OUT: You know it’s time to get really nervous when Germany’s economy comes to a screeching halt. (via Guardian UK)

Six In The Morning: Very Rushed, I Forgot I Have To Be At Work Early Today Edition

1.ANOTHER ONE! Conservative transportation minister Denis Lebel has confirmed former ties to the Bloq Quebecois. (via Globe & Mail)

2. FAIRLANE AVENUE IN WINNIPEG IS CLOSED: Because of a house fire. (via Winnipeg Free Press)

3. THEY’RE KAYAKING ON THE L.A. RIVER!: I think that’s great! (via LA Times)

4. DISMAL MARKET STUFF: I’m going to be eating cat food when I’m an old lady. (via NPR)

5. THEY WANT TO KNOCK DOWN THE THE SAFEWAY ON 13th AVE AND REPLACE IT WITH A PIECE OF #$*@%: Did I mention this before? I can’t remember. Anyway, if you don’t want to lose a beautiful example of modernist architecture (not to mention the mural by Bob Boyer on the west wall, adjacent businesses, and several houses directly behind the current Safeway), you should really consider going to the Cathedral Neighbourhood Centre this evening between 4:30 and 8pm and let the City and the Developers what you think. Here’s another article on this story. (via Leader-Post)

6. TURKEY TAKES SYRIA ASIDE: Maybe they’ll listen to them. (via Christian Science Monitor)

Proposed Redesign Of 13th Avenue Safeway Would Bring A Whiff Of The Suburbs To The Cathedral

Adding to the annals of proposed redesigns scheduled to be put forth for “public consultation” is this proposed redesign of the 13th Ave Safeway (sorry the picture is so small).

The current building, as is plainly evident to anyone who beholds it, is a gleaming Modernist gem of a structure with a gently arced roof and expansive windows that let in the loveliest Northern light.

Personally, I don’t think the proposed new design fits in with the neighbourhood, and the scale is totally off. It looks like something one might find in Harbor Landing or the east end of the city, but not something that would integrate well – certainly not aesthetically – in the Cathedral neighbourhood.

There have been murmurs about the need for an expansion of the current building, so why don’t they just do that? This redesign requires that the back end be extended, and properties currently behind the store would be purchased for that purpose. If they really need to expand (which is debatable), a simple extension at the rear would probably solve any problems the store currently has. And who’s complaining, anyway? The only complaints I’ve ever heard about that store is that they don’t offer stuff that meets the needs of the market in that neighbourhood. The building isn’t the problem.

Maybe it’s just me. What do you think? There will be an Open House on Tuesday August 9th from 4:30 to 8pm at the Cathedral Neighbourhood Centre where plans will be on view to the public and, apparently, there will be an opportunity to give your feedback.

Here’s a link to the City of Regina website where you can get a load of the plans.

Six In The Morning: Water, Money, And Preserving The Dignity Of Poor Helpless Women

1 OH PLEASE. THEY STILL HAVE NO IDEA The FBI is saying they think they’ve found the guy who hi-jacked a plane and absconded with $200,000 in 1971. What I want to know is who cares anymore? (via Hamilton Spectator/New York Times)

2 US SENATE PASSES DEBT PLAN Now this is a news story! The US Senate has just passed an agreement to raise the debt ceiling. (via New York Times)

3 DON’T FILL YOUR MR. TURTLE POOL JUST YET The cities of Regina and Moose Jaw have relaxed their water restriction advisory, but they’re still asking you to conserve your usage until they know we’re in the clear. (via Leader-Post)

4 SHOULDA WOULDA COULDA A recent study claims that Wales would have been better off economically if they’d joined the EU independently. It certainly didn’t work out too well in the long term for Greece and Ireland. I wish I understood economics. (via Guardian)

5 ITALY BANS THE VEIL Italy has banned women from covering their faces in public because they feel it “annihilates their dignity”. Are they serious?   (via NPR/Associated Press, plus a lurid video clip via YouTube)

6 WELL IF THEIR MEATBALLS ARE HALF AS GOOD … The Chinese home furnishing company 11 Furniture is ripping off Ikea in a glorious instance of ‘what goes around, comes around’. And just like Ikea, they probably won’t bother to open a store in Saskatchewan either.  (via Reuters)

Six In The Morning: Hateful Politicians, The Undead, and Something To Do With Hockey

1. I FOR ONE WELCOME OUR NEW INSECT OVERLORDS: Businesses in Beijing are being told (not asked) to install surveillance software to spy on their customers. (via Guardian)

2. MICHELE BACHMANN MAKES PEOPLE WANT TO KILL THEMSELVES: Over the past two years, nine teenagers from the Minnesotan Representative’s school district have taken their own lives. (via Mother Jones)

3. THIS SEEMS TO HAPPEN WITH SOME REGULARITY: Another person has woken up in a morgue 21 hours after everyone took them for dead. When you consider that stories like this surface in the news every year or so, you’d think the morgue staff would be more thorough. It’s pretty embarrassing. (via Toronto Star/Associated Press)

4. I REMEMBER THE TIME MY CAR WAS IMPOUNDED: A jet belonging to the Thai crown prince has been impounded in Munich. Imagine his outrage; he shows up for an idyll weekend of strawberry picking and würst, and then this happens. (via Der Spiegel)

5. I DON’T KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS, BUT.. The Winnipeg Jets have signed a Russian Centre.  (via Winnipeg Free Press).

6. WHO’S GOING TO SAVE TORONTO’S PUBLIC LIBRARIES? MARGARET ATWOOD, THAT’S WHO!: The author is helping to lead the charge against Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s plan to close and/or privatize many of that city’s public library branches. Yes, this a Toronto story, but the privatization of public libraries is rapidly becoming a North American story. And take a look around; do you really think it couldn’t happen here? (via Globe & Mail)

Six In The Morning: Better Late Than Never Edition

1. EDITOR’S CHOICE: A spunky Chihuahua fought off two armed robbers when they tried to hold up the dog’s owner’s smoke shop (do they call them smoke shops in California?). Anyway, they got it on video! (via Winnipeg Free Press)

2. THAT’S JUST CRUEL: The French minister of agriculture is threatening to boycott a food fair in Germany after the fair’s decision to ban fois gras from the festivities. (via The Guardian)

3. POOR GREECE: The number of Greeks living below the poverty line is swelling as their country’s economy continues to nosedive, and it’s only going to get worse. (via Der Spiegel)

4. MARRIAGE IS A LOTTERY ANYHOW: New York City is holding a lottery for those who wish to get married on the first day that same-sex marriage will be legal in that state. (via Globe & Mail)

5. OH THERE IT IS: Turns out the Vegas Valley leopard frog isn’t extinct after all. (via New Scientist)

6. WELL I’LL BE: Apparently some researchers have linked hearing loss in teenagers to second-hand smoke. That’s not how I lost my hearing. (via ABC)

Six In The Morning: Missing Money, Genocide, The Other Royal Wedding, and The Noise Emanating From That Bug’s Bathing Suit Area

SHIFTING BLAME: A Dutch court has ruled that the Dutch state is responsible for the deaths of three Muslim men after they were forced out a UN safe-zone in Srebrenica in 1995. (via BBC)

EVERYONE IS INTERESTED IN MARK ZUCKERBERG: Apparently he’s the most followed person on Google Plus, which is a newish social network anticipated to be Facebook’s biggest rival. I don’t know too much about the Google Plus Project and I’m too tired to look into it myself at the moment. Perhaps you’d like to. (via Los Angeles Times)

NOISY DICKS: The male Lesser Water Boatman (Micronecta scholtzi) is the loudest animal on earth (relatively speaking), and it’s all because of its penis. (via Wired.com)

BECAUSE A NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE REALLY WOULD MAKE YOU STOP AND THINK: Divorce parties are on the rise in post-tsunami Japan. (via Globe & Mail)

FAHR’N FAHR’N FAHR’N AUF DER AUTOBAHN: One million Euros “fell out of a truck” while driving on the Autobahn in Bavaria yesterday morning. Sounds fishy to me. The Germans are way too fastidious to let something like that happen. (via Der Spiegel)

HOW IN THE WORLD DID WE MISS THIS?: What with all the whoop-de-doo over what’s-his-name and his wife’s Canadian vacation, we’ve completely dropped the ball on that other new royal couple; Prince Albert II and Princess Catherine of Monaco! They were just married this past weekend and I didn’t hear a thing! Now they’re honeymooning in South Africa! It’s a similar pairing of a non-descript groom with a much better looking bride, and it’s every bit as mind numbingly boring. (via Montreal Gazette)

Six In The Morning: Space, Gardening, Hot Blondes, and Stockwell Day Has No Shame

MORE PROOF THAT SOME CALGARIANS HAVE TOO MUCH MONEY. Some family from Calgary has booked a space flight that will cost $200,000 per ticket. (via Vancouver Sun)

THAT WAS CLOSE: The Earth was buzzed by a teensy asteroid on Monday morning. (via Wired)

AND THEN!… Six astronauts had to take cover this morning after space junk was sighted orbiting in their area. What is space junk? It’s litter. Our litter. Because we’re not content with keeping it confined to our own planet. (via Washington Post)

HERE’S A NICE ARTICLE about community farming in Brooklyn, New York. (via Dowser)

FOR SALE: Zsa Zsa Gabor’s Bel Air home is up for sale. Personally, I think whoever buys it should just let Zsa Zsa keep living there. (via The Guardian)

STOCKWELL DAY IS BACK IN BUSINESS. The “government relations” business that is. Which is apparently how lobbyists describe their line of work. In other words, he’s trading a life in politics for a life of political manipulation. Didn’t he say he wouldn’t do that? (via Globe & Mail)

Dear Ghost Of The Novia Café: Forgive Us, Because We’re All To Blame

Today is the last day of operations for the 93 year-old Novia Café on 12th Ave.

Maybe no one will miss it that much. After all, the Novia of the past decade was a shadow of the original establishment that first opened in 1918. Still, it’s hard not to think about what might have been.

Old diners in other cities are now regularly taken over by young, savvy business people who see the potential in their beauty, character, and history. Sometimes they maintain the menu (albeit with some healthier additions) and other times they revamp it entirely, following more contemporary trends in cuisine. The Novia could have filled either role in Regina’s gastronomical scene. But not any more. Today the restaurant closes, and any hope of opening something like that in its place will be gutted along with what is left of the Novia’s original interior.

This is infuriating, but who’s to blame? The landlord who wouldn’t offer a lease, thus discouraging any proprietor from investing in upgrades? The construction of City Square, which took place over the past year on the Novia’s doorstep? The proprietor who wouldn’t open on weekends even when the Farmer’s Market and the Folk Festival brought thousands of people to the downtown?

Maybe we’re all to blame; Us, the people of Regina, who don’t seem terribly interested in hanging onto things (namely pieces of our shared heritage) and have thus allowed the destruction of buildings like the Capital Theatre, and the McCallum-Hill, and the old City Hall and (insert your own favourite heritage building that has been knocked down).

Regina is unlike any other city I’ve seen. Over the years, the evacuation and demolition of its once beautiful downtown has left the place pockmarked with parking lots and eyesores. Now one more piece of the downtown is heading out the door.

(photo of Novia Café via National Post)

Six In The Morning: Debt, Floods, Mass Extinction And A Dancing Gorilla

1 HERE’S AN INTERESTING ARTICLE on the perilous life of the Euro (that’s the currency, not the Louis Vuitton fanny-pack sporting fellow offering to buy you a Campari and soda at O’Hanlons). Why did Germany and France ever think it was a good idea to tie their economies to those of Portugal and Greece in the first place?  (via Der Spiegel)

2 SPEAKING OF DISASTERS, all this flooding has pretty much killed hope in the hearts of Prairie grain farmers.   (via CTV Winnipeg)

3 MARINE LIFE IN THE WORLD’S OCEANS FACE MASS EXTINCTION if we don’t take serious measures now to stop polluting them with fertilizers, plastics, detergents and fire retardants. What is wrong with us?  (via The Guardian)

4 SPEAKING OF PLASTICS, the Bank of Canada is rolling out our cheesy new banknotes. Apparently they’ll be almost impossible to counterfeit, but who cares? They’re going to look, feel, and (worst of all) smell awful. That’s it. I’m moving to Europe. Suddenly the Euro is looking pretty good. Plus I happen to love Campari and soda. (via Globe & Mail)

5 THEY’RE NOT HERE FOR OUR AMUSEMENT. When I came across this item, I was reminded of a quote about zoos that I can’t seem to find online. All I remember is that the last line went something like “when we keep animals in zoos, we don’t just diminish the animal, we diminish ourselves”. (via Star Phoenix)

6 SPEAKING OF DUMB MONKEYS… In news that is probably a surprise to no one, it’s highly unlikely that most of the police officers responsible for assaulting, harassing, and generally abusing peaceable protesters at last summer’s G20 summit in Toronto will ever get their comeuppance. (via Globe & Mail)