It's all about the caverns. Name them!!!
People say you need three weeks off to get to that point when you can't recall the day of the week, your local phone extension or your boss's wife's name. I am lucky. I get there by about 5:43 pm on any Friday. So I am a little unclear why I am doing this bullet point stuff to get you through the last day of your work week.
- I have been following the Barry Bonds homer talk this week probably a little more than I would like. If he was on steroids, what was his handicap? I mean did it add 30 home runs or 70? He is still one of the best of all time. And what if he is actually the Tiger Woods of baseball as he implied in an interview on Fox, getting special help all through his career from his Dad and Dad's pal - Bobby Bonds and Willy Mays? We will never know unless we do but the guy who got the ball needs to know one thing and one thing now:
And the ball: Before he celebrates, Matt Murphy, 21, the Mets fan who emerged from a violent scrum with the historic ball, should probably call his accountant. As soon as Murphy snagged the piece of sports history, worth an estimated $500,000 by most experts, his souvenir became taxable income in the eyes of the IRS. "It's an expensive catch," said John Barrie, a New York tax lawyer. "Once he took possession of the ball and it was his ball, it was income to him based on its value as of yesterday." That puts Murphy, a college student from Queens who went to the game on a stopover on his way to Australia, in the highest tax bracket for individual income, facing a tax rate of about 35 percent.Drag. I don't think you could call it income under Canadian tax law if it was never sold. But he is, of course, selling it. I would. I wonder what my Coco tossed ball is now worth?
- Canada is rocking. It will be interesting to see how the credit bubble burst will translate across the border. They will still buy gas and oil and we will not have the same level of credit retraction...unless we learn again that our big banks have dabbled in the scam:
Canada's unemployment rate edged down to 6.0 per cent in July, from 6.1 per cent in June, to the lowest rate since 1974. In Toronto, the rate rose slightly to 7 per cent. Only Alberta showed a significant increase in jobs, however, with 14,000 more people working in the province. There were 20,000 new manufacturing jobs created, along with 25,000 new positions in the professional, scientific and technical sectors and 17,000 more in transportation and warehousing. Those gains, however, were offset by the loss of 57,000 positions in educational services and 13,000 more in finance, insurance and real estate. Although Ontario's overall employment level was little changed in July, there were 27,000 new manufacturing jobs created in July. That was the first significant increase in this sector in more than a year.57,000 in education services being the main source of job losses? What does that mean? Did ten universities shut?
- While floating on a VISA card induced haze of well-being for the last few days, I have been trying to think about things. It is tough but I have been wondering why Ontario and New York do not have greater integration of their history as a tourism thing seeing as each was basically created as a reaction to the other. I was thinking about whether Canada is simply sorta lame given the lack of decent lawn trimming standards, weaker variety at grocery stores and the absence of locality in fast food. And I have been wondering about the place of North American style democracy as are others:
"It’s the kiss of death," said Turki al-Rasheed, a Saudi reformer who watched last Sunday’s elections closely. "The minute you are counted on or backed by the Americans, kiss it goodbye, you will never win." The paradox of American policy in the Middle East — promoting democracy on the assumption it will bring countries closer to the West — is that almost everywhere there are free elections, the American-backed side tends to lose.Why does the wonderful thing not get lapped up globally - that thing is apparent in every corner store discussion, in every nut bar who decides to make a idiocincratic display in his yard, in the reverence for sport or art where folk can pretty much make of their skill what they want? Then I spot a frozen custard shack and the mind wanders elsewhere.
- Another thing we decided is that we really do like Kingston a lot. It is near enough to the assets of places I would not otherwise move to. It is also near a bunch of places that are quite distinct from each other: water, woods and cities, lakes and hills, New England, New York, Quebec and the Mid-west are all within three to seven hours drive. And it is not just that. The town is full of places to eat, parks to lay about upon and a shoreline that makes you look at second hand boats with for sale signs. Last night we left with kids with the grandfolk watching the movie Babe on an inflatable screen with about 800 people behind our City Hall - an extraordinary civilized sight on a warm summer evening.