Must See

Okay, not much to say except go and watch this: Lego Starwars... pretty well the coolest ever.


a tim hortons economy

My Fellow Canadians:

I appear before you tonight to address a dire situation. Recently, we've watched as our economy has been imperilled by competeing factors: the cost of crude oil going up seems to devalue our dollar. Fluctuating world currency markets seems to devalue our dollar. Heck, Martha Stewart Entertainment seems to devalue our dollar. But, I bet that Martha herself likes Canadian money, cause think of all the pretty crafts she can do with it... all those great colours. But, I digress...

Today we face an economic challenge that is incomparable. As much as we Canadians appreciate crude oil, world currencies and Martha, there is one item that I believe serves as the bedrock of our society; one item that, with every shift in its cost, threatens to crumble the very foundation that this great country is built on.

That's right: Tim Hortons coffee. Now, we've all been through rounds of Tim Horton's inflation before. The most recent one I recall was when the large went from 1.29 to 1.35. Man, that bugged me for a while: but then I realized they were really just keeping the penny that always annoyed me, plus a five cent service charge for storing the penny. Anyway, our markets re-aligned, and we survived that scare.

Unfortunately, today we are faced with another round of inflation. This time it won't hit you when you buy that double-double (yes, that is a word -- it made it into the dictionary this year!), instead it'll hit you when you buy a canister of the good stuff to brew at home. You see, until recently, you could buy a small can (13 oz) for $4.49. You could also opt to go big -- a 39 oz -- for 11.49. That's a savings of six cents an ounce! Unfortunately, Tim Hortons in conjunction with their retail partners (A&P in this buyer's case) have decided to lay the smack down on bulk buyers. No more do you save when you purchase the larger canister... in fact, purchasing the same amount of coffee in the smaller canister saves you two cents over all.

The impact of price gouging like this is dangerous and obvious: as the cost of coffee goes up, the value of our dollar plummets. If Tim Horton and Dave Thomas were around, would they let their chain run the Canadian economy into the ground? I think not. It's time for us to stand up, united in Canadian pride, and say "No more price gouging on my coffee!"

This has been a public service announcement. My name is Andrew Mackay, and I endorsed this message.


observations from chilling with my nephews

now playing: clifford the big red dog.

just a quick observation: cartoon characters never (or almost never) have to brush their teeth. Clifford's owner just woke up several days in a row, and went right to hanging out with her friends. No brushing of teeth, whatsoever.

It'd be cool to be a cartoon charater. Or... maybe not.


and a week later...

now playing: the derek webb girl songs. what a great playlist. good for when you're missing someone.

Well folks, I've had a pretty long, great couple of weeks. Sit back and relax, I'm going to tell you all about it!

Rebecca came to visit on the 20th of June. I was pretty excited to see her. She came up with her parents, who are family friends and hadn't seen my parents in 4 or 5 years. It was good to all be together. We got to see some old friends who were passing through (Betsy and Laurie, from ESD where my parents were missionaries for 8 years), and generally to hang out a lot. There was even an attempt at a trivial pursuit game, which -- to be honest -- Rebecca and I were losing. Big time.

Anyway, Rebecca's parents left on friday, and Rebecca stayed an extra week. We started out that time by going to Peterborough to hang out with some friends.

To our left, we have Luke and Matt with Rebecca. It was the first time Rebecca met Luke, and the first time she'd seen Matt in a LONG time. Luke had just come back from Europe, and every story started out with "So, we were walking the streets of Munich..." or "We were in Berlin and..." Yeah, SHUT UP!!! ;-) Anyway, it was pretty hilarious.

So, then we went to Caleb and Megan's wedding. It was gorgeous! Well done guys... it was pretty darn cool. In addition to the fact that Caleb and Megan got hitched, and we got to see that, Rebecca got to meet a lot of my friends (she's detailed it on her blog, you can check that out). It was a blast, and it was super cool too. You know, it's pretty neat when two parts of your world merge and everything works out great. I really enjoyed getting to introduce Rebecca to everyone. She's pretty cool, and I'm pretty happy that she seems to like hanging out with me.

I lucked out, and I got to take a couple of half days off work. We got to do touristy / date-y things... We went to Bloomfield (in Prince Edward County... the only Island County) one day, ate ice cream at slickers (which is fantastic... highly recommended), and took pictures of funny things. Yep, like Dead People's Stuff Antiques. How funny is that? Prince Edward County is great - there's like a MILLION bed and breakfasts, which I'm sure are good for something, and lots of little chicky shops - which I wasn't forced to enter on this trip. Lucky! We stopped on the way home at Zwicks park right on the bay of Quinte, it was awful pretty. We looked at water,

played in the park, and did silly stuff like that. It was great. Then, a couple of days later, we started a bit of a minigolf tournament that -- I hope -- will continue for many years to come. I won the game we played in Ontario. Not by a lot, but I won it. I was pretty proud.

Anyway, on Canada day we woke up early to drive down to West Virginia. We lost two hours at the border (if you ever want to hear a funny-ish story, ask me about the jamaican guy who was running between cars with me on the way to the bathrooms). Then, we got lost for about an hour when I got us lost in Erie, PA. We never did find Mercyhurst college - but I'm sure we will one day. And when we do, many ridiculous pictures will result.

So, we got to West Virginia Friday night. West Virginia is a pretty state (see picture to the right). As we pulled up Rebecca's driveway, I heard a funny noise in the car, and as I backed in, it was loud... but we figured that "it was probably nothing." We went out Saturday morning to play round two of the mini golf tournament. (yeah, I lost this time, big time. Really big. If Rebecca's short game hadn't fallen apart on the last few holes, I think she would've won by 12 strokes. As it was, it was a 5 or 6 stroke victory. She also beat me at p'diddle on the way from Ontario to West Virginia... I can't win, seriously.)

Anyway, we got home after eating some lunch (at a restaurant where the entire staff welcomes every guest to come through the door) and I decided (owing to the very loud noises every time the car turned) that I'd let someone smarter than me look at the car. Rebecca's dad took the car out for a drive and to a mechanic friend of his to check out. Turns out the coil over the strut was broken. And of course, by the time we figured that out on Saturday the parts places were closed. So, repairs were going to have to wait out the long weekend. I got to spend extra time with Rebecca. What an awesome deal! We did stuff with her family, celebrated the fourth of July, and generally just had a blast. I even golfed (real golf) for the first time ever. It was a blast... even if I did awfully. I guess I need some practise. Also, Rebecca and I WON a round of Trivial Pursuit. Are you impressed? I sure am.

And oh yeah, we even got to see some fireworks. Anyway, on the morning of the fifth, we went down to the ford dealership to hopefully by the part - turns out, there's a "campaign" on for that part (I think campaign is a polite term for recall), and they fixed it for free. So, an extra few days with my girl, the chance to hang out with her family, and a car repair for free. I really got the best deal possible.

Oh, but when I got home, the mazda had a flat. Meh. You win some, you lose some. That was pretty winsome. :-)

Anyway, this has been your "where the heck has andymack been" update. Pretty soon, I'll blog about some metaphysical things just to make sure you're all entertained. For now, thank you, you're beautiful, good night!


from West Virginia

now playing: the sound of birds singing, and the whirring of my girlfriend's laptop's hard drive.

I'm sitting in the living room of Rebecca's house. We drove most of the day yesterday to get here, and now, having slept quite well, I am ready to face another day. It seems like a beautiful morning out -- kinda foggy, not too hot, like I said the birds are singing, and I'm in West Virginia. It's a very beautiful place. The drive down yesterday proved that fact. Just a gorgeous state. Of course, with all the mountains, and a speed limit of 70 mph, and the intermittent-at-best guard rails, well... the driving feels more adventurous than it is. Also, for those of you who wonder, it's more fun to do the trip in the summer than in the winter. Guaranteed.

The past couple of weeks have been great. Rebecca and I have gone to weddings, gone to movies, gone to places I've never been (searching for ice cream in bloomfield, for example), and in general, hung out. It's been a lot of fun, primarily because the company has been so good. I won't lie to you, long distance relationships can be challenging at times, but man, it makes you appreciate the time you get together a lot more.

So I'm going to close with that I think. The trip has been good. The trip back will hopefully go well as well. I'll talk at you guys again soon.