Last updated on: January 24, 2012

Pictures of last Friday's IWS Show At the Veteran's Hall

Nat Granzotto Passes Away

One of the quietest men in the Deux-Montagnes community. Nat was the proud co-owner of Garage Nat Inc. He always had a smile for everybody. Taken far too soon, suddenly, and unexpectedly at the Saint-Eustache hospital, on March 23, 2011.
Nat (Natalino) Granzotto was 64 years old, husband and best friend of Danielle (nee Narbonne). He also leaves to mourn his two sons Sandro and Ico (Charlene), his Sister Marie Angela (Adriano) plus nieces, nephews, cousins other relatives and friends. He will be dearly missed by everyone who knew him.
The family will receive condolences on Sunday, March 27 from 9 to12 pm and 2-5pm, a brief memorial service at 4:30 pm at les Salons Funéraires Guay, 146, rue Saint-Louis, Sainte-Eustache. Donations to Ride to Conquer Cancer would be greatly appreciated (Rider Rob Attenborough). Click here for his online obituary and guest book.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the family.

Important Announcement Regarding This Friday's Wrestling at the Veteran's Hall (142 Grand Moulin)
Due to an glitch in communication channels and provincial liquor license laws, the IWS wrestling this Friday (March 25th) is NOT and all ages show as advertized on Facebook. The entrance will be restricted to 18 and over and there will be carding at the door. On the brighter side, the show no longer has to be toned down for an all ages crowd. That means an all out battle for the IWS honours as this is your last chance to witness the wild and wacky world of the IWS. This is definitely 'their last show ever'. The line-up card has been finalized and will feature Shane Matthews and Jagged vs. Twiggy and Franky the mobster, Urban Miles vs. Alex Silva, Mathieu St-Jacques and the Arsenal vs. the Hardcore Ninjas,
Don Paysan vs. Beef Wellington, Sexxxy Eddy vs. The Green Phantom and PCP Manny. The evening will be hosted by Iron Mike Patterson. Admission is a $20 donation for James Bryant who has been stricken with Leukemia. Doors open at 7:30 and the action starts at 8:00pm. The bar will be open with very reasonable Legion prices for beverages. Click on the poster for more info.

Pictures of the 187th Montreal Saint-Patrick's Parade

Heritage Social Club Hosts a Scrapbooking Crop
On Saturday April 9th, The HSC will be putting on a 'crop'. If you're a scrapbooker, then you're familiar with the term "crop." For others, it does not come from the verb, as in "to crop something," but the noun, as in "I'm going to a crop." Crops are essentially scrapbooking parties. It's a great way to get people together to get some layouts completed while talking, eating, and having a good time. The cost is $20 and includes lunch and refreshments. You should book by April 1st by contacting Brenda at 450-491-1187. Click here for all the details.

St Paddy's Day at Emma and Mike's
Unfortunately, we were not able to attend the Saint Patrick's Day celebration at its new venue this year as we were driving back from our Florida winter break. Fortunately, Casey Rose caught the action with her camera. Louise and Dorian were crowned Queen and King of this year's festivities. The attendance this year was over 80 which is great considering that it was a Thursday AND Mike and Emma now live near Vancleek Hill, Ontario. Next year's Saint Patrick's Day falls on a Saturday, so be prepared. Here are Casey's pictures. There is still a lot of Saint Patrick's activity going on if you have the stamina for it. Downtown Montreal will remain green all weekend with the Parade being held on Sunday the 19th this year. The parade is only pencilled in my agenda as Squidjigger will be playing at the Tartan Pub on Saturday night and that usually means a great and late night. Join in the fun on Saturday and see if you are in shape for the parade on Sunday....

Florida Winter Getaway
As you read in the previous article, we missed the celebration at Emma and Mike's as we were driving back from Florida. We had planned to take our time driving back but when we got within 12 hours of home, we decided to sleep in our own bed instead of stopping at the halfway point. Also the cool weather was hard to take after the beautiful warm weather we got in Florida. The entire trip there and back is documented in pictures. It was a first for us as we had never attempted to drive to Florida because of limited vacation time. It was an experience and the car is now over 6000 kilometres older and the winter tires (that we left on in case we hit bad weather on the way down) are a little more worn. The jury is still out on whether driving is the answer. We paid up to $3.79 a gallon of gas in the U.S. so it's not as cheap as it used to be. If you are interested, the pictures can be found here

Reminder - Spot Going Fast for the Drive for the Cure Golf Tournament
Spring is almost here and it's really not too early to register for the Drive for the Cure Golf Tournament that will once again be held at the Fontainebleau Golf Club on June 23rd, only days before the Champions Tour takes over for the Montreal Open. Although the deadline for registration is May 1st, the spots are available on a first come first served basis. Last year, after the initial 144 golfers booked the tournament, 30 more players were assigned to play at Ilsemere which is definitely a notch below its newer big sister course. For all the details and a registration form, please click here. Don't delay or you will be disappointed. Click here to read a letter from the Royal Vic regarding the tournament that has being going on for over 10 years and has raised well over $100,000 for the cause.

Squidjigger At the Tartan Pub - The Tradition Continues
For the fourth year in a row, The band Squidjigger will be raising the roof on St Patrick's day weekend at the Tartan Pub. The Tartan has been part of their St Paddy's tour as they will pass this year on Saturday March 19th at 9:00pm. David, Peter and Jes are playing 6 gigs from March 17th to the 20th and we are privileged to be one of them. Admission is free and they will be the first live band to perform at the 'new and improved' Tartan Pub. Don't miss it. To know more about the band, please click here. For the Tartan Pub site, click here.

IWS Wrestling Back In Two Mountains For a Great Cause
After a lengthy absence, the International Wrestling Syndicate is back at the Legion Hall on Friday March 25th.This time it's for a great cause as your $20 donation/entry fee will be going to help out young James Bryant who is bravely battling Leukemia. The action promises to be exciting as these professional wrestlers will be laying on the line for the cause. Doors open at 7:30 and the action starts at 8:00pm. Click on the poster on the right for all the info.

Valentine's Supper and Dance a Huge Success at the Heritage Social Club
On Saturday February 19th, more than 120 people had a great steak supper and then danced the night away to the music of 5 O'clock Shadow. There was also a surprise that evening: The unveiling of the new bathroom facilities. Below is a note from Rudy Neumayer, President of the HSC and here are some pictures of the old and new bathrooms.

As part of my business I see many a bathroom in need of some sort of repair or total makeover. The bathrooms at the Heritage were in the latter category. Yes, you read it correctly, “were”. Indeed, it has been a long time coming. How many years is a matter of opinion but I would say at least fifteen.
So another of the weak points that has plagued the Club is being put to the side of the road. Not only are the bathrooms new, they are larger. Now both the women’s and men’s bathrooms have wheelchair access. Both men’s and women’s facilities have three sinks, hand dryer, and paper towel dispenser. And women will no doubt appreciate that there is an additional toilet.
The unveiling came as a surprise for many, as the old crappers were sealed off just in time for the Valentine’s party (which was a huge success). Many patrons did the Cha-Cha as they approached the old bathroom locations and realized access was blocked. The worried looks, however, changed to smiles by the time they emerged from the new facilities. There were many comments as to how people “loved the bathroom”. Well, it was the Valentine’s Party after all. But at least nobody was seen hugging a bowl.
So, forward we go, better than ever. Come see, come join us, have fun, bring back the good old days.
Rudy Neumayer - President, Heritage Social Club - Re-linking the community

Bert Forget 1947-2011
Obituary from the Montreal Gazette.
In Deux-Montagnes, on February 27, 2011 at the age of sixty-four, Bertrand Paul Forget passed away. Survived by his mother Marguerite Larouche, his children Caroline and Justin, his sister Christiane and his brothers Jeannot and Pierre-Benoit. The family will receive condolences on Friday, March 4 from 7 p.m. at Complexe funeraire Goyer ltee 147 boul. Arthur Sauve St-Eustache 450-473-5934 A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, March 5 at 3:30 p.m. in the chapel of the salon. Visitation Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. To view his online obituary
please click here.

Big Catch for the Rose Brothers
Brad and Dale Rose are avid fishermen and often go ice fishing on the lake (of Two-Mountains) or on the river (Milles-Iles). On February 25th, they got little surprise at the end of the hook while fishing off the shore of Pointe-Calumet. Dale spotted the rod moving & ran for it. When he got close to it he saw the line being dragged out, he yelled for Brad, to bring the gaff hook. Brad was already running for the rod so, in turn yelled to his buddy Bryant and his cousin to bring the gaff hook. It took almost 15 minutes before they could see the fish down the hole and couldn't believe their eyes. It's the biggest fish they've caught in this lake. It was a sturgeon that weighed over 45 pounds and was over 4 feet long. It was a good day out on the ice as they caught another 40 lbs of fish that day, including pike, dory & perch. Click here for the amazing pictures of the sturgeon. Click here for the Youtube video but be prepared for a lot of swearing as the boys realize what is at the end of the line. The video lasts more than 12 minutes and the fish only comes out in the last minute to a lot of excitement and more 'R' rated language.

Here is proof that we are cutting down too many trees

Valentine's Supper and Dance at the Heritage
For all you couples in love and even the ones in like, the Heritage Social Club is putting on a Valentine's Dance and Supper on Saturday February 19th. The evening starts with a steak supper and the band 5 O'clock Shadow will be providing the entertainment. Since the evening is the weekend following Valentine's Day you will be able make up if you forgot the 14th on your calendar. You can use the excuses that you were waiting for the dance to give her (or him) the V Day present. Of course, I recommend using this approach only as a last resort. Just put on your dancing shoes and haul yourself over to Cedar street for an evening of great music fun and romance.

Click here for all the info.

Click here for pictures of the Kite Surfing Event on the Lake

2011 Score for the Cure Ball Hockey Tournament
Once again, the athletes took to the Klimas Ice Complex for the annual ball hockey tournament with proceeds going to Danny Klimas' Drive for the Cure Golf Tournament Cancer research efforts. Eight teams took to the ice playing a total of 17 games in order to crown a champion. The 3 on 3 tournament drew players from Toronto, Hamilton, Ottawa and even Laval West with most teams comprising 6 players and a goalie. The near 0ºC weather was great for the fans and players on the sidelines although the ice surface showed some of the strain of heavy traffic. Games started at 8:30 with Mayor Marc Lauzon dropping the official first ball to open the action. This year's tournament raised over $3,200 as compared to last year's $2,700 as the Young Guns beat the 50 and Over Gang in the finals. I have posted some pictures already and am waiting for a few more to be sent to me. Click here for pictures. More pictures added on Monday

Pampered Chef Fundraiser for Agapé
This time of year is traditionally a low season for getting help for the needy. After all the Christmas basket drives are over there are still families that are struggling to get by but it does make the headlines like a Christmas. Agapé helps families year-round therefore needs financing year round especially at this time of year when heating bills are taking their tolls on everyone.
Agapé can only afford to provide
fresh food like meat three times a year. This food is very important to the nutrition of young families in need. With this in mind, Cathy Bobkowicz is putting on a fundraiser on Saturday February 12th from 10am to 1pm at the Salles des Loisirs (beside the library). For all the info on this worthy cause, please click here or to visit Cathy's site please use this link:

Keeping in Shape
On the fitness front, we all know how important an exercise regimen is to good health. Some of us do it by playing sports, going for long walks or go to the gym. The fitness industry is on the upswing, as it should be since America's (I mean North America) eating (and drinking) habits have taken their tolls on our collective bodies. Joining a gym cannot only make you healthy, but as we can see here, it can also make you famous. Yes, for you who don't recognize the people in the picture, they are our friends Bob and Mimi, getting in shape before the Cabane a Sucre season starts. Bob is an accomplished swimmer who has competed on an international level although it seems it was before the news press was invented but we will take his word for it. Hats off to Bob and Mimi and the rest of you who are committed to regular exercise even through the doldrums of winter.

Super Bowl XLV (45 for the non Romans)
This year's Super Bowl is one of the most anticipated in recent years as the Pittsburgh Steelers take on the favourites, the
Green Bay Packers in what promises to be an epic battle. The 'Pack' are favourites and have not been in the big show since 1998 and are looking for there 4th ring while the underdog Steelers have a very desirable 6 and 1 record going into this game. The showdown takes place at the 2 year old Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas which has a retractable roof so weather will not be a factor. It's bound to be a great battle and you have many choices of where to watch it this year.
Those choices include the Tartan Pub, the Heritage Social Club and the Legion (Click on the links for all the info). If the Super Bowl is not enough excitement for you, you can also join a Texas Hold'em Tournament at the Tartan starting at noon. The half time show will feature the Black Eyed Peas with help from the Prairie View A&M University Marching Storm.    

Mon Chez Moi Bulletin
As mentioned on my site previously, Mon Chez-Moi is non profit charitable organisation dedicated to providing permanent housing and support to young intellectually challenged adults. The group was formed almost 5 years ago and received their status as a registered charitable organisation in September of 2007. They have had many fundraisers and are planning some in the near future. Click here for a copy of their latest bulletin and check out their
(soon to be redesigned)
website  to see how you can help. It's a great cause and the money helps our local community.

Lions' Club Carnival Saturday January 29
The annual Lion's Club carnival will be held again at the Olympia park from 11:00am to 4:00pm this Saturday January 29th. Activities include Sleigh rides, broom ball games, skating, snow man competition (weather permitting) and other games still in the planning, Admission is free and all refreshments and food served on this day are provided courtesy of The Ville de Deux-Montagnes such as Chilli, hot-dogs, soup, coffee and tea, and Maple sugar on snow. For information call Lion Linda Hogue at 450-473-2388 who is in charge of this event.


Skating in Nature
Many of you have surely gone skating on the Rideau Canal, a great winter fun activity. There are other skating rinks on our waterways such as the one behind the St-Eustache Church which at times can be accessed from the Legion. There are some people however than don't like (or don't trust) the thickness of the ice and wouldn't be caught dead on natural ice over a body of water. Well, less than 2 hours east of Two-Mountains (just north of Trois-Riviere) there is a skating experience you might want to try. It is called Domaine de la Foret Perdue (the lost forest). It is a labyrinth in the woods consisting of 10 kilometres (I think that this is a little exaggerated) of perfect ice carved by a specially designed Zamboni. The trails are therefore about 8 feet wide and meander though a little forest between some farmers fields. There are also many animals which you can feed including many Chickadees that will land on your hand especially if you bring them their favourite treat, a half peanut (they can't pick up a whole one). The setup is quite rustic, but there are plenty of picnic tables where you can put on your skates. There is also some rainbow trout fishing for an extra fee. The price is $12 for adults and $10 for children. At the end of your day, you can pick up a tiny jar of a homemade honey product that is included with your admission. Although their snack bar chioce is limited you can enjoy a good pea soup either before you hit the trails or when you come in from the cold. I have posted some pictures and a video here and if you need more info, their website site is here.  

NFL Playoffs at the Heritage Social Club
The HSC (formerly the Masonic Hall - 503 Cedar) invites you to join us to watch the NFL Football Playoffs on the Big Screen on Sunday, January 23rd, 2011. The first game is at 3:00p.m. which is the NFC Championship game, Green Bay Packers will take on the Chicago Bears.The second game starts at 6:30 pm which is the AFC Championship game which features the New York Jets versus the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Food will be available at both games at a very reasonable price.
Chilli, hamburgers, hot dogs, chilli dogs, all will be available for $1.00 per item.
Also SUPER BOWL PARTY on Sunday February 6th, 2011 - further details to follow shortly.
Hope to see you there...For more info please call 450

Jimmy Gibson 1931 - 2011
From the Montreal Gazette - James Spence Gibson - Passed away peacefully in his home on January 12, 2011, at the age of eighty. He was the beloved husband of the late Eileen Watton. Devoted father to the late Sandra (David), Cheryl, and Jamie (Rhonda); loving grandfather to Tracey (Ted), Jarred (Megan), Lee (Fiona), James, and Sarah; proud great-grandfather to Kai, Chloe, Jessica, and Samantha. He also leaves behind his brother Alex (Irene) and many other family members and Friends. He will be sadly missed. Visitation to be held at Salons Funeraires Guay, 146 rue St-Louis, St. Eustache, Tuesday, January 18 from 2:30 to 5 p.m. and 7 to 10 p.m., Wednesday, January 19 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Funeral will be held on Wednesday, January 19 at 2 p.m. at Christ Church United, 214 - 14th Avenue, Deux-Montagnes. In lieu of flowers, donations can be given to the Heart and Stroke Foundation. My sincere condolences to the family. Click here to view or sign his online guestbook.

A Call To My Fine Feathered Friends
As you entered my website, you saw one of the visitors to the bird feeders I set up for those birds who have decided to stick out the winter in the Northern climate. The ones that are either too lazy to fly South or have realized that there doesn't seem to be much point in flying to Florida when the weather is really only a few degrees warmer than here anyway. Case in point, Bradenton Florida woke up to 4º this morning. The bird on my entry screen was coming around every day this year and I believe this is the first year we have had that type of bird. My birding experience is very limited and compares to my wine connoisseur skills so I had originally identified it as a Red-Breasted Nuthatch. After looking at further pictures on the internet, it doesn't match the pictures in the beak area and the back feather colours. I know that there are a few birders that read access my page. If you can identify the bird, drop me an e-mail. For more pictures of that bird and as well a few others that hang around my feeders please click here.
UPDATE - Thanks to Guy and Casey for identifying the bird on my entry screen. The bird is a Wren which is a species I had completely forgotten about. I think this one is a Winter Wren which is slightly smaller than a House Wren with a shorter tail. Here is a Youtube video of the Winter Wren. This bird is quite vocal. Thanks to Guy for forwarding me the link. Bird Man Geoff has sent me an e-mail identifying it as a Carolina Wren. Although the Carolina Wren is abundant in more southern climates, it is a rare sight this far up north. He also sensitive to cold (the bird not Geoff), so it would be rare sight indeed if one has made it all the way up here and is surviving. I guess it's time for me to send an e-mail to David Bird in charge of Avian Science and Conservation Centre at McGill. Latest update - David Bird quickly sent me a reply and confirmed that it is a Carolina Wren which in his words; ' a species that has in recent times invaded Quebec to now breed not commonly but occasionally in suburban areas.' Thanks to David and congrats to our local Bird Man, Geoff Bliss for identifying it correctly.

No Canada No!
What happened? The Russians are coming is what the coach should have told his players in the 2nd intermission. Russia came back with 5 unanswered goals in the third period to beat annihilate Canada's 3to nothing lead. Collapse is the only word you can use. I have decided not to publicly (at least through this site) as I am afraid I brought bad luck. I only started really watching in the 3rd period and it was all Russia from then on. It's hard to feel sorry for a team who tries to sit on a 3 goal lead. So congratulations to the Russia U20's for winning their 4th gold medal game against Canada and going ahead 4 to 3 in their rivalry. Look for a great series next year in Calgary and Edmonton where Canada won't be defending champions.

Go Canada Go!
Team Canada is one game away from the Juniors world title in hockey after beating Team USA 4 to 1. Now they have to beat Russia in what should be a great game. The game is on TSN at 7:30 Wednesday night. If Canada plays like they did in the semi-finals against USA, it should be a cake walk. However Russia had a good game against Sweden to make it into the gold medal game so they won't lie down without a fight. One of the 'kids' on Team Canada mentioned the 1972 Canada-Russia series. At 20 years old, he's obviously read some history books or his grandfather told him about it.

Happy 2011 to all visitors.
For pictures and a short video of the Tartan Pub New Year's Eve party, please click the Happy New Year Icon on the left. You are welcome to download any pictures you would like. Also if you have pictures you want to share from the evening, use the drop box icon on the upper right hand side of the screen. It looks like this I_I .
My New Year's resolution is to try to update this site more often with news of the city and other interesting stuff, even if I have to make things up and start rumours in our little one horse town. Actually there are too many rumours already, so have a good 2010 with Health, Happiness and Love.

Sorry for the Lack Updates
It probably feels like I am taking a break from updating my website. Actually there is not much going on in Two Mountains during the holidays. The biggest piece of action around our place is the fact that our 10 foot Christmas (which you may have seen in our Christmas greeting) fell down on the 27th taking along with it a few of our prized ornaments. It happened while we were both out of the living room but it made quite a noise. We put it back upright but we had to strip it from its remaining decorations and put it outside. It was a really nice tree but now it is sitting naked waiting for the Thursday January 6th pick up. There is a also a pick up on the 13th and 20th for you people who like to leave the tree up longer. Here are a couple websites you might like to visit if you have nothing to do. The first one was sent to me by Jean and it supposedly calculates you brain age. It's a series of 5 tests that challenge you mind and reflexes. I got a brain age of 32 which I am not sure is good. The test is here.
Also, I stumbled upon an interesting (cat) video on Here it is. If you enjoy listening to prank calls, an Australian radio announcer named Graeme Gilbert used to run a quiz on his radio show. Back in May 2006, most of his callers gave one answer to any question he had. The answer was India. The recording goes on for almost 10 minutes and you can just feel his frustration. I assume he's not doing that anymore. Here is the clip (also from Wimp)

W.N.D.L. Fun Night of Darts
The Wednesday Night Dart League is in its 26th year and from its beginning, there has always been a mixed fun tournament on the Wednesday between Christmas and New Year's. This year is no exception as the WNDL will host the annual affair in its new premises, Legion Branch 185. The entry fee is still $6 and all the money is given back in prizes. All are welcome. Just show up around 7:00pm on Wednesday December 29th  for registration and the action starts at 7:30. The format is the same as usual where you are randomly teamed up with other people for each game.   

Two Mountaineers, Get Ready For A Municipal Tax Hike
As many of you know, Two Mountains has been struggling with its monetary situation. Much of its infrastructure has been neglected over the last 30 years and is dire need of repair or replacement or just to meet environmental requirements. There are also many essential services that are costing more in recent years. Combine all the increased costs as well as new ones like the public transit contributions with the fact that 2mo's tax base is limited by the inability to expand due to its size and you have the burden having to go back on the citizens. The only solution for a municipality is to increase taxes or reduce services to a point where Two Mountains would be unrecognizable. It is impossible to reduce some services like police and fire as the level of security is mandated by the province. As for other services, are we ready to eliminate them?
I attended last Thursday's budget presentation and here are my observations. Firstly I was amazed that the mayor and all six (yes, even the 3 in opposition) had come together to work on this budget. Both sides know the trouble that the city is and for the first time in this administration 5 years at the helm that there seemed to be a team working for the betterment of the city. All of them worked long hours to cut down the expenses as much as possible. According to the opposition, the original estimate to balance the city's budget would have required a near 40% tax increase. This would have been really outrageous. After the final cuts, the average household in 2 mo will have a tax increase of 13.6%. This means about $300 for a home evaluated at $180,000 (which is the average 2mo evaluation). This tax increase is very high and is going to upset most citizens but what can we do? Just this morning, the water main right in front of my house broke. It took the city most of the day to fix it and there are currently 5 more leaks in the system. 50 year old water pipes are fragile and they tend to spring leaks. There has been up to 50 breaks in a year usually caused by the cold weather. This cost a lot of money. Mayor Lauzon often refers to the city as a 50 year old house that has been neglected for a while. For years, you can live in that house free of maintenance but when things start breaking down, bring out the cheque book.
There is a fear that many people on fixed retirement incomes will find it hard to cope with an increase so much over regular inflation. It won't easy for sure but to keep our city afloat, it looks like everyone agrees that there is not much choice. The only suggestion I have if there is an extra 5 dollars in the budget that is not being used, tomorrow's LotoMax jackpot is $40 million. Maybe the city should take a chance and buy 1 ticket on behalf of all its citizens. That's about $5000 as household. If we don't win, one less coffee as day at Timmy's should cover the increase. I haven't found the full details online but here is a link to Echo St-Eustache. The article is on page 3 in French.

Full Lunar Eclipse Coming Soon
Next Monday night (really Tuesday morning), starting at 1:33am in the Eastern time zone the full moon will be dimmed by earth's shadow until around 5:00am. Totality will start at 2:41am and will last for one hour and 12 minutes. The particularity about this eclipse is that is will be the northern most eclipse in our lifetime and won't be more north until December 21st, 2485 (don't mark your calendar). The reason for this is that this eclipse is happening very close to the winter solstice. This eclipse will also be presented for the first time ever in 3d, you will be able to reach out and feel like you can touch it. JK but you will find all the info and times right here.  Thanks to K. Dechamps for pointing this event out to me.

Dam Wednesday (December 15th)
Just to let you know that the dam will be completely closed to all pedestrian (and bicycle) traffic on Wednesday from 7am to 5pm. This is due to the final stages of the dredging project. The provincially funded project is almost complete but ran into many unexpected problems which explains some of the delays. If you haven't seen the pictures of the project they are available here

Against the Odds
This week, I got a call from Golf Town in Boisbrand. The gentleman on the line told me that I had won a drawing for a $500 gift card. I didn't remember entering a contest but I didn't argue and agreed to meet him at the store on Thursday to claim my prize. He did mention it had something to do with the Leaderboard club. This 'club' is simply a group you join when shopping at Golf Town and by supplying them with your e-mail address, you are informed of some specials ahead of time and sometimes even allowed into the stores early to try out some new equipment. I have never taken advantage of that but I joined on the premise that they keep all my receipts online. As I am notorious for keeping all receipts except the one that I need when something breaks before the guarantee is up, I thought this was a great service and that eventually it would pay back. A few years ago when I joined, they had also mentioned that they drew a prize of a $500 gift card from their members who had purchased something in the previous month. Sure sure... as we all think when these things are mentioned. Anyway, when I went in to claim my prize, I was greeted by the staff and they were very happy that one of their customers had the luck to grab the November loot. It was only then that I realized the magnitude of my luck. The prize is drawn across all 57 Golf Town outlets using all the invoices for the previous month. One of the staff estimated this number at something between 150,000 to 200,000 invoices.
Now the question of the day; Does this mean that I 'wasted' a chance at winning something really big with 200,000 to 1 odds? I know, it doesn't really affect any other odds but there are two camps of thinking. One says I should go buy a lottery ticket because I am on a lucky streak and the other says that that was it and you are never beating the odds again. Regardless, I am a happy camper and I am sure to make good use of this gift before the next golf season starts.
I had but one purchase at Golf Town in November which is late in the season for me. The reason I went there was to buy golf gloves and balls for my golf vacation in Mexico in mid November. The balls are but a memory as all of them remained in their watery graves on the Mayan Riviera on what was a great but fairly difficult course. I could almost see Ixazaluoh (the Mayan Goddess of Water) reaching out from the many water hazards (called cenotes* in Mexico) to grab what was a freshly unwrapped dimpled sphere. She was in cahoots with Kukulcan (the Mayan God of Wind) who for 6 days relentlessly blew away any chance of hitting a good shot. Anyhow, the weather was great and the constant wind kept us cool. If you want to see some pictures and the scores you can either go to the Latest Golf link above or go straight to the photo album by clicking here.
For those who have already seen the pictures, I added a short video of the flight down to Mexico. After this flight (and the return flight), I am on a mission to have parents with misbehaving children be isolated to a sound proof section of the plane, preferably the cargo area. I am sorry, but Mexico is not the best place to bring 4 rambunctious offspring, the oldest being barely 5. The youngest, at 17 months, was by far the loudest for 4 continuous hours. This was not simply crying, but wailing at a decibel level that even Pratt and Whitney would be proud of. It wasn't crying because of pain some the cabin pressure either. It was screaming at mommy to get her the magenta crayon from the 3 year old brother, getting it, and then screaming for the aquamarine one. This was 23 days ago and I thought I would forget it by now but my ears are still ringing. On the way back, my golf partner (Ron Potter) and I were not able to get seats together. I was stuck between two other hollering babies but their parents had the sense to dip their susses into some of their duty-free acquisitions and they fell asleep after a hour. Lo and behold, Ron got to sit right beside the devil child who was still not responding to her father's plea of "arrete donc mon Amour Peanut". And I thought peanuts were banned from commercial airlines. UPDATE. I have received a few comments on my rant but the best solution for problems with rowdy kids was forwarded to me by Geoff Bliss. I am sure he doesn't really approve of this method but it probably works. Here is the solution.     

41st Annual Santa Claus Parade
This Sunday December 5th, the traditions continues with the 'running' of the Santa Claus parade in 2 Mountains. Starting at 1:00pm at the corner of 20th avenue and Oka road the route winds its way east until 15th avenue where it heads north to Henri-Dunant. A right turn brings it to 9th avenue where it continues into the St. Agapit parking lot. Drop by and get into the Christmas spirit. Hats off to the Santa committee for not succumbing to pressure of moving the parade to November. Christmas in December is where it should be. There has been a move in recent years to put pressure on department stores to only start decorating their stores after remembrance day. Nordstrom stores in the US have an even better policy where they wait until after (American) Thanksgiving before decorating for the 'holiday' (don't get me started) season. They say they do not want to cross decorate. Next time I am in a Nordstrom store I will definitely support them. I am however boycotting Reese's Peanut butter cups for airing their first Xmas commercial on November 1st.
As for the Santa parade, they are predicting a little snow for the weekend so it is probably a good time to get into the Christmas spirit.

Click here for 100 pictures of the parade and a video. For best results, do start slideshow and then use the full screen icon. 

Grey Cup Options in 2 Mo
The Alouettes will try to defend their 2009 title on Sunday November 28 and you will have a few viewing options on where to watch the big game. The Heritage Club on Cedar Avenue will be having a Grey Cup party as the game will be viewed on a large screen with food and beverages being sold. The Legion Branch 185 will be showing the game on their large TV and there will also be snacks available. Of course, the Tartan Pub will be showing the big game on the largest HD screen in Two Mountains. There are lots of choices on where to cheer the Als on and all the choices will probably be much warmer than watching the game in person in Edmonton. Although it will be around minus 5 there for the game, yesterday the weather in Edmonton dropped to near minus 30. BBBRRRRR........

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