Friday, January 26, 2007

Wil Wheaton up for Lifetime Bloggies Award

Most of you know about the Bloggies, an annual award ceremony for weblogs. All Bloggie winners are chosen by the public, through a series of steps that include the nomination, a finalists vote, and a final vote to choose the best weblog in each category.
The 2007 Bloggies is now accepting votes for the best weblogs in many different categories, from regional ones (American, Canadian, Asian, etc) to sports, music, development and politics. There are also awards for best-written blog, best photography blog, best design for a blog, and more.

Up for the Lifetime Achievement Award for 2007 are Heather B. Armstrong, Peter Maling, and Slashdot. And also, my personal favorite, Wil Wheaton.

Now those who read this blog know that I am a huge Wil Wheaton fan, for many reasons. While Wil himself believes that Fark and Slashdot are better deserving for this award, I think Wil also deserves this honor.

I encourage those of you who agree with me to go vote for the 2007 Bloggies @

There are many other great sites up for awards this year, such as, Post Secret, YouTube, Boing Boing, Tokyo Girl Down Under, and Cute Overload, to only name a few.


Thursday, January 18, 2007

The power of yoga

I was thinking about what Mike Boone had said about the Montreal Canadiens needing a yoga retreat, and I think it might actually work! Picture this:

Twenty-three muscular Montreal Canadiens players sitting cross-legged in three rows on the floor. They're saying "ohm" and trying to balance their chakras.

I can just see Sheldon Souray thinking that the yoga won't solve any problems, but he'll try anything once... and then struggling to rid his mind of thoughts of world peace and international politics.

And there's Saku Koivu, sitting front and centre, already in a deep meditative state, his mind blank as the Finnish snow.

Then there's Aaron Downey, who is having trouble sitting still because his groin just isn't used to this type of stretching. All he can think about is the punching bag in the other room, and how good a Bell Centre hot dog would be just about now.

And don't forget Cristobal Huet and David Aebischer! They're thinking this yoga thing is easy on the knees, and they should do it more often!

And on the other side of the room, we see Sergei Samsonov and Alex Kovalev, who don't really understand yoga, but really want to prove to everyone that they can do it!

And of course, there's Mike Komisarek and Chris Higgins in the back corner in perfect yoga form. They think this is way too easy, but are sitting still because they want to show off.

Yup, I can see it now. It would make a hell of a picture!

Note 1: The expression, "It would make a hell of a picture!" was coined by Montreal Gazette photographer and my photojournalism teacher, Phil Carpenter.

Note 2: This is meant as a piece of humor, so feel free to laugh out loud! If you don't like it, simply click on the giant X in the big red square at the top of your screen. No, not with your finger. With the clicky thing.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Bilingual song builds bridges

Jed Kahane's CTV Success Story from tonight's National News with Lloyd Robertson is one of my favorite features of all time. It's a feature report on two Canadian musicians who met by chance in Quebec City and decided to get together and write a song. A bilingual song.

Joel Kroeker (Vancouver) and Dany Bedard (Montreal) wrote "Deja Vu", the first bilingual song in Canada in about a decade. The song talks about being on different sides of the country, yet being the same people. Truly inspiring.

Here's the YouTube video:
Lyrics below.

Dany Bedard:
Joel Kroeker: or

Press Release (in French):

Written by Joel Kroeker/Dany Bedar

Shadows fall on every town
Like a déjà vu
The wheel keeps turning us around
Is there nothing new

Le jour se leve un peu partout
Autour de nous
C'est different
Deux oceans qui se tiennent debout

Are we lost in time

So far away
Proche en meme temps
Are we the same
Si different
On the same road
Sur le chemin
Guiding us home
Dans le meme refrain

Photographs and souvenirs
Just a memory
The hours crush these stones to sand
To make us free

J'ai oublie mes souvenirs
Et mon sourire
Le temps qui passe
La langue qui casse
La legende qui court

Are we lost in time

So far away
Proche en meme temps
Are we the same
Si different
On the same road
Sur le chemin
Guiding us home
Dans le meme refrain

Game story: Concordia puts up a fight against Carleton, loses 3-0

Concordia puts up a fight against Carleton, loses 3-0

By Naila Jinnah

For the first time this season, the Carleton Ravens woman’s hockey team beat the Concordia Stingers by a score other than 4-3. Carlton goaltender Valerie Charbonneau stopped all 32 shots against her to earn a 3-0 shutout, her first of the season.

“It’s amazing,” said Charbonneau. “I’m really happy that it was a team effort, more than just a shutout.”

The first period ended tied at zero, with both goaltenders keeping their team in the game. Despite both teams hooking and slashing away, only four penalties were called.

The second period was much more aggressive. Carleton started out strong, scoring two goals in the period’s fourth minute. Right-wing Carly Snell passed the puck to Kristina Romeo in a 2-on-1 that caught Stingers’ goalie Meggy Hatin-Léveillée in the middle of her lateral movement. Forty-eight seconds later, Caitlin Cadeau accepted a breakaway pass from Amanda Stillar to secure a two-goal lead.

Concordia retaliated by tightening their defence and dishing out a strong forecheck, spending most of the next two minutes in the Ravens’ zone. The Stingers’ aggressive play forced Carleton to take three consecutive penalties, but the Ravens were excellent in killing the penalties.

“Out of the 10 penalties called in the period, (8) were against us,” said Carleton head coach Marco Ouellette after the game. “I really think the penalty-kill came strong for us, especially from our goalie.”

The Stingers’ offensive efforts ended with a two-minute hooking call on captain Andrea Dolan.

On her next shift, Dolan and Carleton defender Maxime Vaillant collided at the Stingers’ blue line. Vaillant received a delayed cross-checking penalty. As the play moved to the Ravens’ zone, Carleton captain Michelle Higgins elbowed Dolan, who was in mid-stride. For several minutes, Dolan writhed on the ice. Finally, she was carried off to the dressing room, helped along by her teammates and cheers from the stands.

Higgins was served with a 5-minute penalty for cross-checking, a 10-minute game misconduct, and a 2-minute subsequent penalty for elbowing (served by Jessica Bradley).

“It was unexpected,” said Charbonneau. “I knew emotions were running high, but my captain is always in control of her emotions. I asked her after the game and she said she wasn’t intentionally trying to (injure her).”

“She was just trying to get off the ice,” concluded the Carleton goalie.

With less than a minute left in the second period, Concordia had a 5-on-3 opportunity, but they were unable to capitalize on their chances.

Dolan returned to the bench to start the third period and brought with her a renewed and energetic team. But motivation was not enough, as star player Angela Di Stasi was called for roughing.

“We were in a position to get back in the game,” said Stingers’ coach Les Lawton, visibly disappointed. “We had a 5-on-3 for three minutes, then we took a needless penalty.”

Carleton would add an insurance goal midway through the third period. Veteran Stingers’ defender Esther Latoures handled herself well on the one-on-one, but Hatin-Léveillée gave Ravens’ centre Tara O’Reilly a soft rebound.

The Stingers could have stopped trying, but instead, they battled with almost fierce determination until the final buzzer.

“We never got control on the ice,” summed up Lawton. “We’re working on that, but I think everyone was on a different page tonight.”

On paper, Carleton and Concordia are evenly matched. Carleton is only four points in front of Concordia in their division, with one game in hand, and all four of their wins have come against the Stingers.

The Carleton coach thinks both teams are very talented. “Concordia only won one game,” said Ouellette, “but they’re one of the strongest teams in the (Canadian University Sports League), as they proved at the Theresa Humes Tournament.”

It remains to be seen if Concordia can be competitive when it actually counts – not just in exhibition games. The Stingers next take the ice against the Ottawa Gee Gees on Friday, Jan. 19 at 7:30 pm at the Ed Meagher Arena.


P.S.: My Canada's Top Female Athlete in 2006 article earned me an A+

Netscape: The social news site

You guys should check out Netscape. The NEW Netscape. It's a social news site, kinda like Fark or Digg, where people submit news stories, and tag them, and then other people vote and comment on them.

There are several different categories, like Do No Evil, Gadgets and Tech, Politics, Celebrities, Popular Videos, and much more!

The coolest part of it all is that it's not your typical social news site, where users completely dictate the front page material. There are a team of navigators and anchors that help provide a frame to the site, so the front page stuff isn't just a stupid article submitted by the guy who has the most friends.

There's also a clever duplication check system that forces you to make sure your story hasn't been submitted before. Stories with the same headline or URL will not be accepted twice.

It becomes an addiction and a competition... Everyone wants homepage articals. So far, I've got 2 ;)

In a few short months... 1 or 2... I've become one of the top submitters on the site. I find that I know more about the world, my world, and all kinda cool stuff I would never had known if it weren't for Netscape.

So, to make a long story short, join Netscape, and ADD me. starshinediva, of course ;)

Thankies! :D

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Canada's Greatest Athlete - Female Edition

Here's an article I wrote for my sportswritting class. Enjoy!

Canada’s Best Athlete of 2006 – Female Edition

By Naila Jinnah

At the end of each calendar year, experts and fans alike weigh in on Canada’s best athletes. The Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy made 2006 an especially fruitful year, as Canada placed third overall, earning a record 24 medals.

Canadian athletes also dominated the professional sports. Steve Nash was named the NBA’s most valuable player for the second consecutive season, and Joe Thornton won several prestigious NHL awards, including the Art Ross Trophy and the Hart Memorial Trophy. The MLB also profited from the play of a Canadian first-baseman Justin Morneau, the American League MVP.

But what about the women? Apart from the Olympics, there aren’t many competitions where female athletes can broadcast their talents to the world. That makes their accomplishments harder to spot, and tougher to applaud. This top three of Canada’s best female athletes for 2006 is sure to stir up some memories.

Speed skater Cindy Klassen indisputably takes the top spot. The 26-year-old Winnipeg native earned record-breaking five medals at the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics, making her the most decorated Olympian ever in Canada. Klassen placed third in the 3,000 and 5,000 meters, came second in the 1,000 race, and earned her first gold medal in the 1,500 meters. She also won a silver medal for her performance in the 2,400 team pursuit, playing a major contribution to Canada’s third place finish. Klassen also won the overall title at the world championships, and was crowned the World Cup champion in the 3,000 meters race. She set numerous world records in the 1,000, 1,500 and the 3,000. Klassen has six career Olympic medals, having won the bronze in the 3,000 during the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics.

Christine Sinclair is not a household name, but the Burnaby, B.C. soccer player is making a name for herself on the international scene. Sinclair was named the MVP of the 2006 W-League Championship Tournament, leading the Vancouver Whitecaps to their second title in three years. The 23-year-old university student was also on the Canadian national team that finished second in the Women’s Gold Cup, playing the full 90 minutes in most games. Sinclair was named to the FIFA shortlist for the 2006 player of the year, her second consecutive nomination for the award. Sinclair also received honours for her performance in the NCAA, having played with the University of Portland Patriots for the 2005-2006 season. She was named the top female college athlete of 2006, taking the Honda-Broderick Cup for her record-setting 39 goals in one season. For her strong performances in many different circuits, Christine Sinclair is the runner-up for Canada’s best female athlete of 2006.

Clara Hughes won her first-ever gold medal at the 2006 Winter Olympics, topping fellow Winnipeg native Cindy Klassen in the 5,000 speed-skating event. But it’s her determination that places her third on this year’s list. Trailing by nearly four seconds halfway through the race, Hughes pushed herself to the limit on her final lap, finishing in six minutes and 59.07 seconds. Hughes also earned a silver medal in the team pursuit event. The 34-year old became the first-ever Canadian to win multiple medals in both the Summer and Winter Olympics, having earned two bronze medals in cycling at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games. Inspired by American speed skater Joey Cheek’s donation of his $25,000 medal bonus to the athlete-driven charity Right to Play, Hughes donated $10,000 of her own money, since Canada does not give out medal bonuses.


Feel free to comment!