Halibut chaser

    Posted on: Friday, July 10th, 2009

It’s been a bit of a cranky day here at Signal, especially with regards to our last post. So I figured, much in the style of BoingBoing’s unicorn chaser, where a harsh post gets followed up with a picture of a unicorn to brighten up your mood, we’d do something similar here, only with halibut.

A 149kg halibut, to be precise.

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Caught on June 24th in Bay St. George, NL.

Happy Friday, folks!

[via cbc.ca/nl]

Photographic evidence: Missing flag the work of vandals

    Posted on: Friday, July 10th, 2009

Photos taken by Karen Chappell of Bitstop during a hike on the South Side Hills earlier this week confirm that vandals not only knocked over and damaged the flag pole and stole the flag we put up there last month, but also cut the rope to shreds, demolished an Inukshuk and even tore down a poor, defenseless tree.

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Hey vandals: congratulations, you’re idiots.

And I get that the fact you did this is a refleciton of how crappy your lives probably are, but it doesn’t excuse the damage you’ve done.

I hope your summer sucks.

Will Hits FM be punished for their 9 stunt? Nein.

    Posted on: Friday, July 10th, 2009

99_1_HITS_FM_Logo_biggerRemember when Hits FM ran that controversial find the 9 contest last year? It wasn’t long before it was revealed that, after a month of clues about its supposed location, when the 9 was finally discovered in the back of some pick up truck it had only been placed there that day.

The whole thing sounded scam-ola and a lot of people felt like they’d been taken for a ride.

But it turns out it’s even worse than that. Hits FM weren’t scamming people per se. They were just being completely inept and irresponsible. Totally different!

The original hiding place of the 9 was a private storage locker. Right off the bat, that seems pretty ridiculous to me, but let’s continue.

After weeks of crappy clues on the radio about the 9 being in this storage locker, the gang at Hits found out that (duh) their storage locker was an impenetrable fortress, making the act of someone retrieving it from there impossible.

Rather than owning up to their blunder and trying to make things right,inf_hammer_lg they decided to improvise and put the 9 in the back of a truck parked outside the gates of the storage locker facility, as if this proximity to the original hiding place would somehow still validate all the previous clues.

After a thorough investigation into the incident, the Canadian Broadcasts Standards Council brought the hammer down on Hits FM. Unfortunately, it looks to be of those novelty inflatable hammers that squeaks when you bash it harmlessly against things.

According to the CBSC, Hits FM violated Clause 12 of their Code of Ethics, and as such they must admit to this on the radio twice.

Here’s what you may or may not ever hear them say:

The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council has found that CKIX-FM (99.1 Hits FM) has violated Clause 12 of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ Code of Ethics.  In its Missing 9 contest of September and October 2008, Hits FM felt obliged to change the location of the missing 9 from inside a private storage facility to the back of a truck on the street outside the facility.  Consequently, Hits FM did not ensure that the location of the missing 9 on the final day of the contest was accessible to listeners from the very beginning of the contest.  This violated Clause 12 of the CAB Code of Ethics, which requires that contests be conducted fairly.

[image via]

Bike to the future

    Posted on: Friday, July 10th, 2009

Just when you thought it wasn’t safe whatsoever to ride your bike on the streets of Sin City, it was announced yesterday that phase one of the St. John’s Cycling Master Plan is a go, to the tune of $1.5 million dollars in funding from the Newfoundland and Labrador Green Fund.

Phase One of the project will consist of 43 kilometres of on-road painted bike lanes, installation of signs on an additional 73 kilometres of roadway to designate roads without painted bike lanes as bike routes, the installation of 20 bicycle parking facilities throughout the city, and the installation of bike racks on the fleet of 53 Metrobuses.

The other phases have to do with a promotion and information campaign (cyclists: be safe, motorists: be nice, etc.) and the maintenance of the new system.

No word in the press release on exactly when construction will start or finish, but I’d like to think that by the time the salt has washed away next year and they start painting the lines again, the new cycling lines will be included.

Hopefully, over time, cycling in St. John’s will really catch on as a mode of transportation. Hopefully enough that we’ll eventually get in on the Bixi action.

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Bixi is a phenominal bicycle renting service that allows you to take a bike from any of a number of automated stations and drop it off at any other station when you’re done. Montreal has Bixi, and the number of stations available makes Starbucks look Mom & Pop.

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That’s them in red.

The price is pretty sweet, too. You can have full access to Bixi for 24 hours for just five bucks. For less than $80, you can ride with Bixi for an entire year.

Bixi is designed for A to B style commuting. As long as you’re only 30 minutes or less between stations then there’s no additional charge. But if you feel like joy riding then they start to bill you for the extra time.

These are durable, well made bikes that require no maintenence from you whatsoever — not even a bike lock.

Bixi is probably a long ways away from coming to St. John’s, if ever. But some incarnation of it might be worth considering as a possible phase five or nine or whathaveyou in the future.

Either way, yesterday’s St. John’s Cycling Master Plan phase one announcement gives us all something to look forward to: a greener St. John’s and some leaner city streets.

Meanwhile, the Tour de France is here to offer us a little two-wheeled inspiration.

[photo by Jean Gangon / Attribution ShareAlike 3.0]

Ode to Newfoundland metal medley

    Posted on: Friday, July 10th, 2009

Grand Falls-Windsor native Chris Feener gives us a face melting rendition of Ode to Newfoundland, mixed in with some Salt Water Joys and The Mummers Song for good metal measure, that you may just feel like thrashing out to.

I mean it’s Friday, right?

Yes!!!

And I quite like that awkward bit of acoustic there near the end, too.

Nice work, Chris.