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    Surreal moments

    We've all had them. Those moments in life where the world gets so weird, so surreal, that the only thing you can do is sit back and take it all in. My moment of surreal zen came a few months ago. I had just finished moving a few boxes of personal things out of my parents' home, when I decided...
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    I need help from an audiophile

    Recently, a set of decent speakers came into my grubby little palms. I want to use them as speakers for my computer, as they have much better sound quality than those which I'm currently using. The problem, though, is that my computer lacks the proper jacks to plug them in. If I could convert...
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    German History question

    I have you in mind for this, Perun, but anyone who knows WTF he's talking about can answer. I can't find clear confirmation of this anywhere one way or the other in English, and I haven't been practising my German in the past few years so I'm a bit rusty. After WW2, Germany was divided into...
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    Recession got you down?

    Around the world, the economic outlook pretty much sucks. Thousands are losing their jobs in the EU, the USA, and Canada. People's retirement savings are going down the tubes. Governments are spending trillions of dollars and Euro to prop up failing businesses. But that's all hard to understand...
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    Guess who's back!

    Hey everyone! Just thought I'd make a triumphant return to the forums. I really do miss some of the posts on here. I hope the place hasn't burnt to the ground during my long absence!
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    Who shares in the blame?

    I recently had this put to me, and to be honest I don't know where I stand on it: Average American Christians should be accountable for Fred Phelps inasmuch as average Muslims are to blame for Osama bin Laden. For you Euros who don't know who Fred Phelps is, he's the guy who runs the Westboro...
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    Stock market hiccups

    So the Toronto Stock Exchange, Canada's main centre of high commerce, is in the shits today. It lost about CDN $90,000,000,000 in value just today (about 500 points lost, in all). Apparently world markets have gone crazy today too. The US markets were closed due to the Martin Luther King Jr Day...
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    Next Week's Headlines

    Most of us on these forums are smart people. Let's use our collective brains to try to predict the future. Post what you think are plausible headlines for major newspapers next week. What do you think will be the "big story" in the world seven days from now? Will there be an assassination? Will...
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    Coolest Window display EVER

    So imagine my surprise when I saw this in my conservative little Nova Scotia town's main street....I had to get a picture! (for better resolution, right click and select "view image")
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    If you could meet one person from the past...

    If you could meet one person from the past (recent or distant), who would it be and why? I'd like to have dinner with Alexander the Great. He's one of those people whose impact on world history has dominoed as time progressed, and yet we have nothing in the way of primary sources actually...
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    Is Atheism a religion?

    The topic says it all. Are Atheism or Agnosticism religions? The question is as old as atheist beliefs themselves, I think. I had to ask myself that a while back when I was filling out a survey. One of the questions was about religion, and I had to write in what I was. I was about to write...
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    The Greatest Human Who Ever Lived

    Who’s the greatest person who ever lived? Alexander? Jesus? Mohammad? Churchill? Napoleon? We can disagree on the answer, I suppose, but I think it is “none of the above.” The greatest human being who ever lived was born in Iowa in 1914, five months before the First World War began. His name is...
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    Racism in the oddest places

    I'm in graduate school. To save expenses, I'm living with three other grad students in an apartment close to campus. We're basically the United Nations scaled down: There's me, the Canadian (Masters in Environmental History) The Nepalese Med student (he's actually already a doctor, but he needs...
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    The American Boogey Man

    This post is a little something I wrote last night for my blog....I thought I'd share it with you toughtful ladies & gentlemen. What is a Canadian? Think for 10 seconds before you read on. Come up with an answer. I bet you though instantly “not American!”. Admit it. This will be important...
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    How stupid is your country?

    In Canada, you can legally drive a vehicle when you're 16 (if you pass the tests) You can consent to sex (legally) at 16 You can vote at 18 You can join the military and die when you're 18 too But to buy beer, wine, liquor, or tobacco you have to wait a year. How looney are age laws in your...
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    The de-intellectualization of Canadian universities

    I’m marking papers from a Canadian history course. It’s at the 2nd year level, but the quality of some of them seems to be what one would expect from grade IX or so. I keep saying people this incompetent don’t belong in university; they’re dumbing down the content and critical thinking skills...
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    Why I hate people

    I hate people because they have no respect. Some background information is important here: I'm in graduate school, far from my home and (importantly here) my fiance. My department hosted a "mixer" in which people get together, have a drink, socialize, and get to know each other outside of an...
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    Do you hate laser pointers?

    these little things have been known to severely damage people's eyesight and ruin Megadeth concerts. Dave Mustaine flipped out at the use of them ( http://youtube.com/watch?v=jicWEmS3CHA ) I was at a movie with soem friends once, and the teenagers in front of us were using one on the screen. It...
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    Little Mosque on the Prairie

    CBC TV has begun a new sitcom series called "Little Mosque on the Prairie". It's about a community of Muslims who have located themselves in a small town in rural Saskatchewan and are coping with the every-day realities of being a Muslim Canadian in a post-9/11 world. They joke about religion -...
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    Quebecois nationhood

    So just a few minutes ago, the Federal Parliament in Ottawa passed a motion recognizing the Quebecois as "a nation within Canada". This came after a surprize announcement by the Prime Minister that he was going to table such a resolution, and after a candidate for the leadership of the Liberal...
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