1. THE OSCAR NOMINEES HAVE BEEN UNLEASHED. It’s a warm morning in Regina (but cold and storms are coming), so in consideration of the balmy weather, the Academy of Important Flicks announced the nominees for the Oscar ceremonies. It’s the usual round of pious and portentous films (Life of Pi, Lincoln) with a couple of interesting choices thrown in (Django Unchained, Amour). More interesting by far is a consideration of the snubbed and ignored. Moonrise Kingdom? A writing nomination. The Master? Acting nominations only – not even a nod for the 70mm cinematography. And where the hell is Holy Motors in the foreign language category? What, did they only release twenty films in 2012? Screw those guys.

2. WAIT, YOU HAVE TO PAY A LICENSE TO OWN A TV IN THE UK? According to the TV Licensing Authority, there are still 13,000 black and white television sets in use in the UK. The number surprised me initially, but it turns out that annual television licenses are only a third of the price for black and white sets. Then again, we’re talking about a country where the biggest book distributor is set to be McDonalds.

3. I GUESS THEY DIDN’T POLL THAT FARMER WHO HATED “VOICE OF FIRE.” Canadian Heritage polled the Canadian public (that’s us!) on our engagement with the arts, and it turns out that, dudes, we are so super-engaged that we’re all like, “Go arts! Fund that shizzle! Let’s book it to a live performance now!” Because that’s how we roll, bro. The Harper Government is expected to roll up the results of the poll and cover it in cheese and a mild salsa verde.

4. WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON WITH THE DEFENCE DEPARTMENT.  Here’s a disheartening read about counterfeit Chinese electronics in Canada’s Hercules C-130J aircraft. Oh my God, you may be thinking, I’m glad that they discovered those fake electronics six months ago. Now they can get on with the business of replacing them with genuine parts. Ah hah hah, no. Apparently the government has no concerns, because the planes have been working just fine so far. Just fine! The fact that 27 per cent of the counterfeit chips failed in lab tests doesn’t bother them, I guess. In related news, we’ll be hiring soldiers from Matchbox for the foreseeable future. Minister MacKay is scheduled to conduct a recruiting drive from one of those vending machines at the grocery store. “I hope I get a few paratroopers,” Mr. MacKay said as he twisted the knob on the machine.


6. GOOD NEWS FOR THOSE DERANGED FREE WILLY FANS OUT THERE. A pack of killer whales, trapped for the last two days in pack ice off the coast of northern Quebec, is now free to go about its previous business. Of killing. Hey, they’re not called event planning whales.