Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Who Needs Freedom? Not Farmers.

The FBI recently released a warning to local police to be on the lookout for people carrying farmer's almanacs. In other news, the terrorists surrender. Osama admits, "You got us, we've been using the farmer's almanacs to pick our targets."

More Ticket Fighting
The other day I wrote about James taking his friend down to see the crown prosecutor about her ticket. Here a continuation of the friend's story. (From Jame's blog)

Well, she in turn passed on the knowledge to a friend, who had some tickets for some crazy lights on her car. Of two tickets, one was thrown out and another reduced to, literally, under $10.

I don't know how much the origional tickets were for.

-Gary Milner, sure glad I don't own an almanac, that would be un-patriotic.

Water Moccasins?

No, dry land moccasins, the ones Tracie gave me. At first I thought that they were pretty ugly. I still think that they are kind of ugly because of the fur. I'm not really a fur type of guy. It's like I'm stepping on a pair of bunnies everywhere I go. The moccasins are growing on me though, and not because of some weird, native american foot fungus. I'm starting to like them a lot. They are perfect for going on to the deck to barbecue or run out to the car.

When it comes right down to it, I love every single present that I was given this year.

Tracie's parents gave me a sweater, a pair of Levis, a tool kit (with 225 pieces), some socks as well as some wonderful joint gifts to Tracie and me.

My parents gave me 2 pairs of jeans, a t-shirt, and cash.

Tracie gave me a pair of sweaters and the afore-mentioned moccasins.

I read an article the other day about the economics of gift giving. It discusses the economic pros and cons of gift giving. It goes on to say that in a lot of cases, gift giving doesn't make sense mathematically. (Unless you're giving someone a calculator.)

Monday, December 29, 2003


Here is some news from the hat and you're getting it before anyone else because the fire engines are still at the scene and it's eleven thirty at night. The garage across from the airport and right next to the Nissan dealer in Medicine Hat is completely gutted by fire and is still smoking. We saw it as we were returning from Lethbridge.

Sunday, December 28, 2003


We went to Medicine Hat for Christmas vacation. It was quite fun, Tracie and I both enjoyed our visit. We both got a lot of very good presents. I was worried that Santa wouldn't be sure if he should leave our stuff at Tracie's parents or mine.

By the end of the week, we were both very anxious to get home. We just love sleeping in our own bed.

Boxing Day

We went to the mall on boxing day (there is only one in medicine hat or I would have told you the name). It was one of my worst shopping experiences ever. It was like a feeding frenzy. Shoppers were filled with the blood-lust of looking for a good deal. The stores for teens had the gates mostly shut so that only one person could enter or exit at a time, and lots of stores had guards posted to combat shoplifting.

It was sickening. Seriously. I plan to avoid boxing day sales from now on. The worst of it is that the people probably weren't even getting the great deals that they thought they were. People have been conditioned into thinking that if you buy it on boxing day it's a bargain.

Ring a bell, and I'll salivate just like Pavlov's dog.

-Gary Milner, the only thing worse than Christmas shopping is Boxing day shopping

Tuesday, December 23, 2003


I played squash against Tracie's dad, Ralph. He beat me this year. I think I could beat him if I had a better racquet and if I played a little more often and against people other than only Tracie. I'm issuing a challenge to anyone from the Gauntlet who plays.

I went Christmas shopping with my Mom. I made my Mom buy herself a present, and I'm sure that she will be very happy with it. In fact I wish it was already open.

I reminded my Mom to bring her cellphone with her, but we forgot it in the car, and so Tracie couldn't reach us anyway. I was disappointed that we didn't see her and her family in the mall. It's probably because I drag who ever I am with to the same three stores that I go to every time, and Tracie and her sisters only go to stores for girls.

The cellphone thing was really stupid of me. I don't have a cellphone, but if I did, I would take it where ever I go and it would always be on. I wouldn't be one of those people who have a cellphone and give the illusion of being easy to contact and then leave my phone off. I mean what's the point? That being said, I don't really want a cellphone yet. I have said in the past that, "you can give me a cellphone when you can pry it into my cold dead hands". I guess you would have to take my gun first, though.

-Gary Milner, still alive with no cellphone.

Monday, December 22, 2003

Let Christmas Begin

I finished typing my mission journal. It's pretty long, 66,903 words long to be exact, which works out to 109 pages in Ms Word. I'm pretty happy to have it all entered into the computer now. Next up for the journal is for it to be laid out for printing. I'm not sure if I want to add photos or not. Adding photos would be a huge task even if I only did 50 or so. The book would be a lot nicer, but it would add a bunch of pages. I'm not worried about the number of pages or anything, but adding photos would probably push it to 70 or so pages, if I figured out how to print on both sides of the page. If I did photos on every third sheet, I could even get the pages with pictures done in colour at Kinkos. I think that it would be best if I found a way to break it up in even numbers of pages. Groups of 12 pages would probably be best, if it there is a remainder at the end it wouldn't really matter.

I am ready to go to Medicine Hat, but Tracie seems really apathetic about the whole thing. I think she is preoccupied with getting short changed on her last check. The forgot to pay her for an eight hour shift. Getting them to print a check is turning out to be quite the ordeal.

I'm looking forward to the visit. We might get into the Hat late this evening, but it's looking more and more like we will be there for lunch on Tuesday.

-Gary Milner, ready for Christmas.

Saturday, December 20, 2003

In the Halls of the Mountain King

Tracie and I went to the mountains today to have a picnic and take a few pictures. We had a really good time. It's really sort of surprising how little we head out there, even though we are so close.

Here is a photo that Tracie took of me. We might be posting some pics of Tracie if she has a post and wants a photo added.

We're thinking that we will be heading out much more often this summer.

-Gary Milner, looking for employment in the mountains.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

How to Celebrate Being Done University

I recommend getting a Whopper at Burger King, with cheese and supersize the fries and drink. Then watching a movie that you downloaded off the internet. That's what I did anyway. It might not sound that great, but Tracie had to work over night, right after my exam.

It did get me thinking though. I think that no matter where you are in the world, you could get a combo from a Burger King or McDonald's even if you didn't speak the language. I say this because all you have to do is say, "Big Mac, Coca-Cola" and then nod when they ask, "as;ldjfasdofh?" (Translation: do you want fries?), nod when they say, "as;ldjfasodfijwe?" (Translation: do you want cheese?"), and nod again when they say, "asld;fjwoihlkcn?" (translation: do you want to supersize it?).

Really the system the Ray Crock invented crosses cultures. You don't need to be a linguist to order in Russia, Argentina, or Japan, you just need to know that they all ask the same questions in the same order every time and nod.

-Gary Milner, still looking for employment, just not at a fast food place.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

The End

Today is the day. The day of my one and only final exam. I am so happy. I am only three hours away from being done University. Until today it seemed so far away. Even now, this is going to be a long three hours. The end has always just been over the horizon. Now it is here. What will I do?

In other news, I need a job. If you are seeking an employee in Calgary, drop me a line via one of the shout outs, or call me 202-5653 ask for Gary Milner. I'm graduating with a B.Comm degree, and I specialized in management of information systems.

Seriously, call me.

-Gary Milner, now seeking employment

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Some interesting things have happened to Saddam Hussein in his life. Here is a time line of important events in Saddams career. Read it over, you'll find out some things that don't seem to be very widely known. Like the fact that at 21 years old, he murdered his brother in law and was sent to jail for six months.

This would be a good time to see how newspapers and other media outlets from around the world report this story. It's important to consider what you are reading and compare it to various sources.

The CBC is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

The Globe and Mail is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

Reuters is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

The BBC is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

CNN is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

The Gaurdian is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

ABC news is reporting that Saddam has been caputured.

CBS news is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

Fox News is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

USA Today is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

Canada.com is reporting that Saddam has been captured.

Reaction from around the world from The Gaurdian.

The Broken Newz is reporting that Saddam has been captured in Montana dressed as a mall Santa.

Cousin Blair...

Recently I was in Grande Prairie for work, and I met with our cousin Blair. I asked him if he is afraid of getting caught for downloading movies off the internet, and he told me that Canada is "immune" to the laws, because we pay a fee everytime we buy recordable CD's. Also, his computer that he built for himself is really cool and fast. He put lights in the tower so it is very colorful. He showed me a craft he made for his future wife, made out of toothpicks, a 3-D heart that is sooo sweat. He plans to string chocolates through it. Gary, you should invite him to post on here.

Saturday, December 13, 2003

Not Just a Train Ride, An Adventure

It's not stealing when you download a movie, it's copyright infringement. Here's an interesting article about the recent court decision about the topic in Canada. It says downloading music is legal in Canada, but that uploading it is not. Here, I've been feeling guilty for leaching music off the internet and giving it back. Now I know that I've just been obeying the law.

I haven't given up on going to the theater altogether. In fact, Tracie and I went to see a movie at the Globe Cinema called, "Shattered Glass". A true story about a writer for a prestigious Washington D.C. magazine who basically started making stories up to advance his career. Of course just like the two guys in Medicine Hat, the writer is eventually discovered. It was quite a good movie, but an independent film. Unfortunately, most people will not get the chance to see it, unless Blockbuster purchases a bunch of copies on DVD.

We have decided that we will likely only be going to independent movies from now on. Of course we will be making exceptions for the Elvis movie, "The Return of the King" and the new Harry Potter movies as they are released. The thing is with those movies there is some value in seeing them on the big screen, like James said, he's a sucker for Dolby surround sound. With most movies, the surround sound doesn't make that much difference. In fact with most movies, there isn't even much of a story. This is one of the reasons we will be sticking to independent films. The movie generally has a good plot, and besides that, the admission price is lower.

Anyway, the train ride wasn't really an adventure, but there was a native gentleman sleeping (possibly passed out) on one of the benches on the train. He was unknowingly causing quite a stir among the other passengers. We realized that there wouldn't be much of a point to kicking him off the train, because he would just get onto the next one anyway. Really all he wanted was a warm place to sleep it off for a while.

-Gary Milner, advocates fighting tickets and downloading stuff off the internet.

The System Works For Normal People, Not Just Murderers And Young Offenders

My friend James posted this in a shout out, but I wanted to make sure that everybody who comes here sees it.

I took my friend Amanda downtown to take care of a speeding ticket Wednesday morning. It was pretty crowded, but we got their early, waited.

She was going 41 in the 30 (playground zone), and the ticket was just over $80 (which sounds low, but it said apparently even said "Playground Zone" on the ticket). So she sees the prosecutor.

Him: I have some bad news.
Her: ...
Him: Know, I don't want you to cry, but
Her: ...
Him: I think 11 kilometers over doesn't show enough tolerance, so I'm going to withdraw it. You're free to go. Have a merry Christmas.
Her: ...

Another ticket bites the dust. God bless the system.

James (who also advocates stealing music and movies, but doesn't steal movies because he is a sucker for Dolby surround sound)


A while back somebody stole a quantity of new computers from a Medicine Hat computer dealer. I think the dealer was Ty Schnieder. The paper reported yesterday that the thieves have been caught. They were caught because computers have identification devices built into them so that when they go on line everybody and their dog knows who the culprit is.
A while back also, a twenty six year old male turned on a fire hose on the upper floor of a four story apartment building and the water did about half a million dollars of damage. I said to Jane at the time that the cops would be on that guys door step within the hour. Sure enough now he's caught. My advice to anyone who wants to pull that stunt is to do it where you don't have a dispute with the managment.

Friday, December 12, 2003

Mr. Sparky

I changed the spark plugs in my car today. The old ones were pretty shot. I don't know if they have ever been changed before. The car seems to run a lot smoother now. I still need to replace the seal that prevents oil from leaking into the spark plug area. I may do that in Medicine Hat though, because I lack tools, and know how. Kris Jensen, a friend of mine said that it is really easy and that I only have to take the a cover off and I should be able to slap the seal in with no problems.

We'll see I guess.

-Gary Milner, changes spark plugs and advocates downloading movies off the internet.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Death Knell For Spammers?

Holy Crap! A man has been arrested and charged with a felony for sending spam emails.

The Virginia indictment alleges that Jeremy Jaynes sent more than 10,000 e-mails a day on three days in July and August, through servers located in Virginia. More than 100,000 messages were sent over a 30-day period, it says. Those amounts are enough to trigger the criminal provisions of Virginia's antispam law.

This may be the beginning of the end for spammers. The guy could be spending the next 1-5 years cooling his heels in prison, which is better than he deserves.

According to antispam organization Spamhaus, "Jaynes" is well-known for pornographic and "get rich quick" offers online and was ranked No. 8 on the group's top 10 spammers list for November.

If only they could send the people who set the movie prices to jail too.

-Gary Milner, still encourages downloading movies off the internet.

Man Searching for a Farmer's Market, Finds a Bank

There was a big crash by my house the other day. From the CFCN article:

A car slammed into a bank Wednesday morning, killing one person inside and injuring nine others. It happened at the Alberta Treasury Branch at 388 Country Hills Blvd. N.E.
When emergency crews arrived, they found a car lodged inside the building. The vehicle fell approximately six-metres from a road above the building.
That bank was open at the time. The car landed in a boardroom, trapping three of the nine people inside the room at the time. All were injured, including the driver. Three were taken to the Foothills Hospital in critical condition. One person was killed instantly.
The 68-year-old male driver of the car sustained serious chest injuries and was transported to the Peter Lougheed Hospital.
The Calgary Fire Department's search and rescue team was called in to search for those trapped.
Police are still investigating the incident.

There is video of the scene on the CFCN site, click the link underneath the photo that says, "Kari Eyles reports". This is a photo that I took at the scene:

The car flew over the fence in front of the Canadian Tire sign, you can see where the fence is bent. The car must have been going pretty fast, because the fence isn't much lower than the level of the sidewalk. You can see there are no tracks in the snow between the bend in the fence and the hole in the bank, so the car must have at least made it to the asphalt.

Christmas is Coming

In other news, I have discovered the perfect gift for young and old alike!

-Gary Milner says, "Please download movies from the internet."

Tuesday, December 09, 2003


Gary and I went Christmas shopping at the Market Mall today. Well, not so much Christmas shopping as shopping for ourselves. We did buy something for Becky though, and I would have got something for Eva, but Gary thinks she will be too spoiled anyway. Anyway, Gary really needed some new shoes because the ones he wears now squeak every time he takes a step. That's a lot of squeaking, and listening to it gets old fast.

We went to Sport Chek to buy the shoes because that's where we always go. Even though we make big purchases there quite a bit, I have many gripes with their store and would definitely go elsewhere if there was a comparable place in the malls. My biggest complaint about Sport Chek is that their stuff is always on sale. That may seem good, but let me explain.

Sport Chek puts out coupons all the time that say things like "Buy any regular priced item over $50 and get 10% off". We even bought a student price card with a similar deal that cost us 7 bucks. The worst part is that these so-called "sales" are only pennies less than the original. So when you can't use your 10% off coupon because $100 shoes now cost $99.88, it is very frustrating. My sister Amy used to work there and she said she would frequently put sale tags on items for the exact same price as the original. Next time you go to Sport Chek, look around. I guarantee that 90% of the stuff will be on sale, but only by a few pennies. Especially the shoes.

After we bought the shoes, we decided to eat at the food court. When we got there, Gary wanted Chinese, and I really wanted a pita. How fabulous that we both got exactly what we wanted from two completely different places, and we still got to eat together. I sat there pondering it for a while, and came to the conclusion that food courts are pure genious. I may never go out to a real restaurant again.

Tracie, hates Sport Chek but loves food courts

Monday, December 08, 2003

Boo Hoo!!! Please Don't Pirate My Movies!!! Boo Hoo!!!

Tracie and I went to see "Elf" on Saturday. It cost us $21 to get in. Can you believe it? $21 for a matinee at two in the afternoon. Then they have the gall to show five commercials and call us bastards for downloading movies off the internet, (painting sets is hard work, blah blah blah, at least you have a job jackass)

The movie itself was good, but there were nearly 20 seats marked out-of-order. It got me thinking, what have the stupid cineplex people done to make the experience better? Put 11 screens in one building? Oh yeah, that's just super. Charging $12 for a popcorn and a drink? I'll bring my own, thanks.

For a while there, I was on the fence about getting movies off the internet, I could have been convinced to stop doing it. Now, I am actively in favour of it. HEY EVERYBODY, DOWNLOAD MOVIES OFF THE INTERNET!!!

As we were leaving Elf, Eddie Murphy's movie "The Haunted Mansion" was just starting. I would have gone in, but Tracie was too chicken. I tried to convince her, but she really didn't want to. When we got back to the car, I said, we just paid $21 for a matinee. I don't think that she'll make that mistake again.

If you go to the show anytime that isn't on a cheap Tuesday, or a matinee, it would be cheaper to buy the DVD. Very few movies need the big screen to properly tell the story. A TV will do just fine for most.

In our case, we could drive from Calgary to Medicine Hat, go the the show there and still save money by not getting popcorn and a drink. Avoiding the masses of people, especially the teenagers would make getting the DVD instead of going to the theater the right choice all by itself. If someone's phone rings, you can pause it. Think of the snack savings $12 worth of popcorn would fill your basement!

Gary Milner, now promoting getting movies off the internet.


Yesterday the cat messed on the rug in the bathroom then tore the rug half to pieces trying to bury it. Enough said.

Saturday, December 06, 2003

On Tuition

This is a response to Dad's shout out about the tuition increases.

If the increased tuition was going to raises for the teachers, I'd be all for it. Like the students at the University of Manitoba, who have begun an uphill battle to see their tuition raised by 112 per cent. It's not often Canadian students lobby to pay more, but the I.H. Asper School of Business wants to ignore the Manitoba government's tuition freeze.

There are several problems with the tuition increase, here at the University of Calgary.

First and foremost is the fact that a 4.8% increase won't solve the University's problems. We still need more money.

Second it pits the administration against the students. Really the administration doesn't want us to have a high tuition, they want us to have a fair tuition. Dr.Bond (one of the administrators) said that tuition should not be free, but that it should be fair. If the admin could get the money from Ralph Klein or his more liberal federal counterparts, they would.

Third it doesn't account for those sneaky accountants. By law, the University can only charge 30% of it's operating budget to students. The accountants then start fooling with the budget. Suddenly things that were charged under the capital budget last year are part of the operating budget this year, and the 30% that the students have to pay is bigger this year than last year. Another sneaky thing they do is jack up the prices in the bookstore on everything, not just the books, although the books are the worst. Now the bookstore is gouging the students much more, but the tuition stays the same.

-Gary, sees problems with tuition all around.

Friday, December 05, 2003

Also glad to be done...almost

This may sound selfish, but I don't really care if they increase tuition next year because I won't be a student next year. Maybe I don't know all of the facts and it will somehow affect me horribly, but if it doesn't affect me personally-although it sucks for next years students- it doesn't bother me.

Well, maybe that's a bit harsh, but I'm just so glad that this time next year I won't be here. Right now I'm sitting at the computer lab in the nursing building, where about 30 students from my class are busily discussing and writing their papers. We have no final exam, just one whopper of a paper. My group finished ours last week. It feels so good to be done, especially knowing that my classmates are spending their friday night here. Too bad for them.

All I have left now is a poster presentation for 2 hours on monday morning, and a final evaluation with my practicum instructor that afternoon. Boy am I glad to be done that practicum- the one in the weight loss clinic. I had a preceptor that actually works there that I went to work with over the semester. But I also have an instructor.

She doesn't actually instruct me, in fact I hardly ever see her, but she determines my final grade. She was horrible. I would hand in assignments almost nightly and would frequently have them returned because I never used enough professional references, or canadian references or nursing references. It was so frustrating. I'm a good student - an A student. I've never had work handed back, let alone every week. I gave her a poor evaluation. Another girl in my class even wrote a letter to the dean. Rumor has it that letters to the dean are written evey year, and that some staff have quit because they couldn't work with her. Those are rumors though, I take them with a grain of salt. (But I wouldn't doubt it)


A spaceship is traveling in space at half the speed of light.. Someone turns on powerful beam of light and aims it in the direction the space ship went so that the beam of light catches up to the spaceship and passes it. This is the question: How much faster than the spaceship is the beam of light traveling when it passes the spaceship.
According to scientists the beam of light would pass the spaceship at the speed of light the same as it would have if the spaceship had been stationary. They say they have the experiments and the math to prove it too.

Tuition Increases Again

The University will be increasing tuition again next year. The increase will be 4.8%, as predicted. James was so confident, that he published an article about the 4.8% increase a day before the board of governers even met to vote on the issue.

The students held their token protest, which amounted to blocking traffic on one road leading into the University for 15 minutes. The police came, but didn't arrest anyone, which is too bad, because it would have made for some great news in my paper.

I only have a couple more hours of homework in my university career. I finished my last class yesterday, my 'things and stuff' class. I got this email from my prof later that day.

Hello Gary,
I wanted to convey my sincerest appreciation for the many times you have
volunteered to assist me with 333 activities. Thank-you for taking care of my
teaching evaluations.
Good luck with your exams.

I feel kind of bad about my previous posts, but really I stand by the fact that she said a lot of words, but not a lot of info, quite often. You may wonder why I volunteered so much as to warrant a thank-you email. Well, I just wanted the class to end. I had to do something to keep it moving. No one else seemed like they were going to volunteer ever, and I just wanted to end the painful silence.

-Gary Milner, close to being done university

Thursday, December 04, 2003


This is another quote from Steve Bensen:

"I say deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in it's churches , has been and still is , the principle enemy of moral progress in the world."

Now that everyone has been straightened out on that point I can imagine a wild stampede to join groups that do promote moral progress in the world. Here are some suggestions: the Nazi Party, Stalinists, Satanists, Hells Angels, the mafia., the movie industry.
I suggest that anyone who is questioning there religion,don't use Steve Bensen as a confidant or a person you can trust. He is not traveling with a full suitcase.


The following quote is from Steve Bensen, the grandson of Ezra Taft Bensen.
" As a newspaper editorial cartoonist , I have worked for several years in the world of journalism, where lieing, hypocrasy, intolerance, bigotry, self righteousness,abuse of power, corruption, and downright stupidity are regularly exposed and reported. Sadly, those doing the deeds often wrap themselves in the vestments of the church. "

Whereas you actually can find people like that in the church, what makes Steve Bensen think he is the first persen to discover this. As a member of the church I have to say that we have this pointed out to us every sunday of the world right there in Sunday school. According hundreds of letters from ex-mormons one of the principle reasons they left the church is because they were being made to feel guilty all the time.
I wonder if Mr Bensen has noticed any of the stuff he mentioned in his paragraph, amongst the people at the newspaper. He fails to mention it if he did notice it. This makes him a lier, a hypocrit, intolerant, bigoted, self righteous, corrupted, and stupid.

The Only Bank I Love

Is the President's Choice bank. It's the bank run by the real canadian superstore. I have about $1700 in an account there that I'm going to pay Tracie's winter tuition with, and in the month of November, I made $2.93 in interest. Last month, I received about $1.50. I have now made more interest on my PC savings account in the last four months than I have ever made on all my other accounts combined over the last 20 years.
I would have all my money in this account, but we have a lot of preauthourised charges coming out of our CIBC account and we don't want to close it. We also keep a minimum balance, which probably saves us $30-$40 a month in fees.
When I get a job though, I will probably use the PC bank almost exclusively.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Attention Crappy Drivers

Signal, then change lanes.

That is all.

-Gary Milner

ps. This post should bring a lot of hits.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

All These Presentations, and Not a Single Present

I have to do two presentations tomorrow, and one on Thursday. Other than that, I have a major assignment that is due on Monday, but that I have to have done on Saturday night so that one of my group members can have it bound. The stress of school is moving ever lower. Soon I may be done.
I am thinking of taking one more class, is a class called Management Information Systems Field Project. It's description says: Structured and supervised experience in assessing the feasibility, developing and/or implementing of business information systems. Student project teams are assigned to field projects in organizations.
I don't know if I really want to take one more class. The only reason I would take this class is to meet people and make contacts for getting a job later. I think that it would probably help a lot. Getting a job is taking a lot bigger place in my mind lately.
Now that school is ending, I will probably be able to think of a lot more funny things to write about because I won't be so preoccupied or busy.

-Gary Milner,