Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Something Nice for a Change

With propane companies exploding and much wringing of hands by the mayor, Toronto has been full of bad news this week.

That's why I was tickled to see something nice for a change.

Driving down the northbound on-ramp to the DVP at Don Mills Road I saw a flash of brown at the top of a treed hill. Standing there was one of the biggest deers I've seen anywhere. It was an 8-pointer, with large fuzzy antlers, just watching the morning bottleneck just starting to form before Eglinton.

Nice to know the city can still surprise you with something nice once in a while.

Brother Richard at the Olympics

I would not be a very good brother if I didn't plug my brother's Beijing Olympic blog at The Star. Little brother Richard is there for the duration and has a great eye for photos and the real, human colour of the games in his written commentary.

You can check it here:

Monday, August 11, 2008

Look Ma - No Wires!

I called Rogers about the new wireless modem USB stick for laptops that has been advertised furiously in all the paper for the past few weeks.

The answer from my Rogers rep on the phone? Never heard of it.

I was passed back and forth among the service reps (as a "valued Rogers wireless customer") for 45 minutes. Yes - 45 minutes, according to my Roger's cell phone log.

I explained that there were half-page ads in all the major newspapers - posters in the subway - TV ads where the smarmy guy beats the tech doofus for playoff tickets by sniping him on eBay. No bells. I knew I was in trouble when my phone rep said she would have a look in their "Knowledge Book". That's the kiss of death, not to mention an oxymoron.

I asked to be sent to a website (because of course there is no website homepage tie-in to the major promotion). Finally she found something in her big book, and asked me the best question of the day ' "Do you have a fax?"

A fax? Why not ask me if I have access to smoke signals? The irony of asking me if I have a fax to get details about cutting-edge wireless access was lost on her. And no, she couldn't email the details to me.

This was followed by a long discussion about the mysterious world of data / voice plans, none of which would do what I wanted. We ended the conversation with her trying to sell me an iPhone, which seems to be their solution to everything, but was probably just a diversion.

Next stop - a Rogers kiosk, where I can start the conversation all over again.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Telemarketer Don't Call List

It's not just a Toronto thing, but I can't resist a plug for my link to the new Canadian "do-not-call" registry for telemarketers at I registered it as an easy to remember alternative route to get to the sexily-named Government of Canada's site: