Archive for January, 2007

Monday Hockey Roundup

January 15, 2007

Wild weekend on the minor hockey front. We kicked things off with a Regina Pats game attended by both teams which was a lot of fun, although a ticket mixup meant the two teams were on opposite sides of the arena. I got some good mileage walking back and forth to check on the kids.

The rest of the weekend was spent with dueling ice times, but somehow everyone showed up where they needed to be.

Robyn got her second start in goal and earned her first ever shutout. She was on top of the world all night after that game, to say the least.

Ben played well in a 5-2 loss to the Phantoms, in a game that was marred by some chippy play and some really nasty hits. The Phantoms had a large size advantage over the smaller Sharks and their coaches seemed to encourage the players to knock the pee out of everyone regardless of size. Why crush a kid when a push will do? I don’t know. In the end there were 18 penalties called and one Phantom got ejected [the irony is the ejection wasn't the worst hit of the game.]

I don’t think there is a place for smaller kids to play minor hockey once they turn 11 and that’s very sad indeed.

Have you heard of this iPhone thingy?

January 15, 2007

Not sure if it made the local paper but those kooky funsters at Apple have announced a new cellphony/music player/web surfer thingy. It got a little bit of press on cable.

Honestly, I was worried that I would end up as the only blogger who didn’t post about the iPhone announcement. But then I couldn’t figure out how to market the fact that I didn’t post about iPhone without posting about iPhone. It started to make my head hurt. I’m glad that’s finally been resolved.

What I found most interesting was how the CEO of Cingular got skewered for being such a poor presenter. I guess style matters, at least when you’re on the stage with the Grand Master himself, Steve Jobs. I’ll be watching my own executive’s performances with a new set of filters from here on out.

Some links:

iPhone announcement [Apple.com]

Steve Jobs is a Great Presenter [Presentation Zen]

And the Cingular CEO isn’t

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I’ve been Burned, and it feels Great!

January 15, 2007

This blog is now available as an RSS feed thanks to Feedburner. If you don’t want to come back to this blog day after day, just hoping against all hope that there’s a new post, you can click the little ‘subscribe’ chicklet on the right [over there ---> ] and subscribe to the feed.

If you’re using a useful browser like Firefox, it’ll create a live bookmark which will show new post titles as they are published. If you use multiple computers, or just want to manage all your blog subscriptions, Google Reader or Bloglines will make blog reading easy.

It makes me giddy just thinking that one of my posts may one day show up on the same screen as Seth Godin or Doc Searls. OK, it’ll likely only be on my own reader, but I can dream, can’t I?

Am I Fiscally Conservative? Do I Want to Be?

January 8, 2007

In Left or Right? « Touamoto Sakimata-Smith my buddy Greg talked about being ‘fiscally conservative’ and it got my blood flowing a bit — brought back an earlier conversation I had with my city councilor.

I’ve had a problem with the term ‘fiscally conservative’ for a while now, because I see it as having mixed meanings.

I think I’m ‘fiscally conservative’ with my own money because I don’t do into debt for things (pay cash whenever I can, pay down the mortgage ASAP, do without if I don’t have the money.) I also don’t own any penny stocks or precious metal funds.

But insofar as public policy, I believe that we’re better off as a society if there is a strong ‘Common Good’. I believe that there is value in public services far beyond the cost of them. Because of that I’ve been a strong advocate for public libraries, public education and city services.

I don’t subscribe to the opinion that all taxes are evil by definition and that we should cut every public service possible in order to keep taxes down. I want to make sure my governments are managing our shared pool of money well, but I WANT to pay taxes and I WANT my taxes to go toward strong public services. So I’m much more concerned about getting the most common ‘bang’ for my tax buck than paying fewer tax bucks.

I also don’t have a problem paying more taxes than someone who lives in a smaller house or makes less money. If I have ‘more’, I don’t have trouble paying more.

Can I still call myself fiscally conservative? Has the term been co-opted to imply ‘I Hate Taxes’ or am I using the term incorrectly?

Hockey Round Table

January 8, 2007

Another fun weekend at the rink. Robyn got her first start in net on Saturday in Lumsden. She played well all game, but really got strong as the game went on. She had quite a bit of fun but I think she’s already thinking about playing forward again. It was a fun change of pace but I think the cachet of being a goalie has passed.

One highlight of the week was a practice in Sedley on Wednesday night. Robyn’s team was practicing but the coach invited Ben to come out so they would have two goalies. As Robyn was getting ready for her big start, that meant both kids were in goal gear at the same time. Quite a treat to see them practicing together. It’s especially neat to since they are two years apart but pretty much the same size. They had fun and I sure had fun watching.

In Pee Wee news, the Sharks practiced at 7AM this morning but that was about it. Our savvy manager scheduled picture day for this practice to make sure everyone showed up. Ben’s got tournaments the next two weekends so we’re ramping up for some serious action!

Inspiration in Dog Walking

January 8, 2007

I’ve been having trouble thinking of topics to write about this week. Well, ‘Personal Blog’ stuff anyway. I spent some time pulling together a quick ‘Business Blog‘ to show some colleagues at work. If there’s some interest I might get one started at work. But it’s been tough finding things worth writing about once I finally sit down at the computer.

That is, until I took Buddy for a walk tonight. I wasn’t three houses down the street before I started formulating several ideas in my head. Too bad I couldn’t write and walk at the same time.

I think this calls for a new routine — dog walking followed by a beeline to the blog site. Maybe I’ll put my laptop on the kitchen counter by the door…

Motivated to Innovate

January 1, 2007

I’ve been reading a lot of Seth Godin’s stuff these days. LOTS — books, e-books, blog posts and anything else I can find. He’s not only a breath of fresh air but he’s helped me look at the work I’ve been doing in a new way.

How’s that? Well, in Free Prize Inside he talks about how white collar workers have been living a lie for a while now. Our ability to innovate (i.e. our ideas and creativity) are the only reason we’re worth our salaries, especially considering all the people who would be willing to do our jobs for the same or less money. So do we innovate like crazy? Generally, no. Instead we want processes, rules, and detailed instructions about how to do our jobs — those things which make us closer to an assembly line worker (skilled, yes, but also easily replaceable.)

I never used to be one to use “the rules” as a crutch to protect the status quo, but lately I’ve slipped into the easy trap of “going with the flow.” It rings hollow inside.

Normally I’m not one for New Years resolutions, but this year I have one. I’m going to re-focus on creativity and innovation — in gaining new customers and building better business partnerships. I’m going champion my own ideas and those of my colleagues. I’m not going to stop the first time I get told ‘no’ or get told it’s ‘outside the policy.’

And I’m going to do it only because it’s fun and personally fulfilling. I know up front that, outside of leaving the company, I won’t get paid more, get a promotion or even get a better chair. What I will get is another fun, fulfilling project. Or fired. At this point, either result is better than status quo.

My Political Compass

January 1, 2007

I found this neat survey over at the Doc Searls weblog last week. It attempts to plot one on a 2×2 matrix based on the more traditional ‘left – right’ political continuum but also on a social axis.

I ended up “Left Libertarian” and quite a ways on the edge at that. Not exactly in vogue these days, but I knew that already.

How about you?


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