Archive for February, 2009

Deep in debt

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Scary article in today’s Financial Post …

Complacent Canadians now deep in debt

No matter how you look at it, there is no mistaking Canadians debt is rising fast and we can no longer thumb our noses at Americans as reckless spenders with little regard for savings.

A report released by professional services firm Deloitte & Touche LLP Tuesday said Canadian consumers had a debt to disposable income ratio of more than 130% at the end of the second quarter of 2008. At that ratio, we have surpassed our American cousins who had a debt to disposable income ratio of just under 125%.

… etc.

By the way, I’m thinking of buying some new living-room furniture at the local big-box furniture store.  I can’t afford it, but luckily I won’t need to come up with the money right away (Don’t pay for 15 months! No money down! 0% interest! No monthy payments!).

Yeah, the economy will probably have rebounded in 15 months and the good times will be rolling.

A pedestrian-unfriendly city

Monday, February 2nd, 2009

I usually walk the shortest route to and from the office.   However today when returning home I  cut through Gateway Mall for a bit of variety.  I waited for a red light on the northeast corner of Bishop McLean Crescent and 15th Street West, then proceeded south across 15th Street with the walk signal.  Several cars were waiting to turn left from Bishop McLean Crescent onto 15th Street eastbound.  Two of them hurried to beat me, with the second cutting just a few feet in front of me.  The third car braked for me, but gave me a blast of his horn.

I wonder if they even realize that pedestrians in a crosswalk have the right-of-way?  Probably not.

I’ve seen enough of this P.A. driver attitude that I generally just shrug it off.  It’s when I see young children risking their lives trying to cross the street that my blood pressure rises.

I generally like Prince Albert as a place to live, but I wish it was a bit more pedestrian-friendly.

(Thanks for letting me vent – sorry if I’m reinforcing the impression that blogging all about angry middle-aged guys complaining about stuff)

An evening of culture

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

I’m no culture vulture.  Given my druthers, I’d generally rather listen to John Prine than some symphony orchestra performing the 4th movement of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto.

However last night’s concert was excellent.  I probably wouldn’t have gone if Fiona hadn’t been singing in the massed choir.  The concert included the Saskatoon Youth Orchestra, the Saskatoon Strings, the Prince Albert Strings Orchestra (including Linea and Joanne from our church), and a Prince Albert Massed Choir (including Fiona with the École Vickers School choir).

Congratulations to the organizers who worked hard to pull this event together, and to all the musicians who practiced hard to make it sound great.