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Wind Broken, Apologies Made, Shiloh Born, Monkeys Fingered...

The Tyee's fast rewind of May.

By Mark Leiren-Young 2 Jun 2006 |

Mark Leiren-Young is a writer/director/performer who spends too much of his free time worrying about the environment, the Canadian political scene, and the Vancouver Canucks (not necessarily in that order). Mark won the Leacock Medal for Humour for his comic memoir, Never Shoot a Stampede Queen: A Rookie Reporter in the Cariboo. He was a finalist for the WGC Award for screenwriting for his first feature film, The Green Chain. His most recent book, This Crazy Time, was written with/about controversial environmentalist, Tzeporah Berman. He's half of the satirical duo Local Anxiety. Their latest comedy CD, Greenpieces, is available on iTunes and their 21st century version of O Christmas Tree is becoming a holiday favourite thanks to The Tyee.

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Anna Nicole 'Moneybags' Smith.

It was time to shout "mayday" as the loonie soared, the Dixie Chicks flew and David Blaine sank -- along with George Bush's approval ratings. It's the month ReformaTory™ Prime Minister Stephen Harper refused to comment on, so we have to.

Fixing elections and breaking wind

Stephen Harper announced plans to fix election dates -- as soon as he can order enough of those nifty machines from the U.S. to fix elections.

Harper also proposed plans to elect senators, allowing them to serve for an eight-year period or until they die in their sleep -- whichever comes second.

The ReformaTories are opting out of the Kyoto accord and have decided to endorse the U.S. government's alternative plan for dealing with global warming: Ignore it. Harper added that Canada will consider honouring the terms of the Kyoto accord -- as soon as Alberta runs out of oil.

The Canadian government has asked the U.S. government to delay implementing plans that would force Canadians to carry passports when crossing the border starting in 2008. Says Harper, "If we're re-elected we won't need the passports because by 2009 we'll all be Americans."

Generalissimo Stephen Harper announced plans to keep Canadian troops in Afghanistan until 2009...or until the U.S. pulls out of Iraq, so we won't be asked to go there instead.

Harper also announced plans to try to hold his breath longer than David Blaine. Harper has refused to talk to Canada's national media because they claim he's an evasive weasel who won't speak to the national media. Harper says from now on he'll only talk to reporters at Fox News.

The federal Liberal leadership race continued to heat up as several more people no one has ever heard of announced plans not to run.

Vancouver loses Mojo, the Dose gets clapped

CanWest Global pulled the plug on its free youth newspaper, Dose, after discovering that the few young people who want to read newspapers, actually wanted them to contain words. Dose will continue to be available on cell phones, where all headlines will be reduced to ring-tones.

Meanwhile, MOJO radio pulled the plug, switching from all-sports to all-gone as the station plans to fill airtime with reruns from CKNW. Apparently the new programming format is known in the industry as: "reason #17 to switch to satellite."

A new study by professors at UBC claims that friendliness is now "cool." The study was, of course, performed by geeks.

Another study showed B.C. farm income dropped more than 70 percent last year -- at least for legal crops.

Canadian cigarette companies will no longer be allowed to advertise their products as "light" or "mild" and will now have to use the terms "less carcinogenic."

An inconvenient truthiness

The U.S. Senate voted to declare English as America's national language. However, the bill is unlikely to become law until the president learns to speak it.

The U.S. government admitted it's been illegally monitoring millions of phone calls, but officials claim it's worth it because they're now one step closer to finding Jimmy Hoffa.

Enron founder Ken Lay and his former chief executive, Jeffrey Skilling, were found guilty of fraud, conspiracy and first-degree hubris. After stealing billions of dollars and destroying thousands of lives they're both expected to be sentenced to slightly less prison time than an African-American jaywalker.

U.S. President George Bush and U.S. Pawn Tony Blair admitted, in a joint press conference, that some mistakes were made in managing the liberation/invasion/occupation/hazing of Iraq. Bush claimed the biggest mistake was the Abu Ghraib incident where soldiers were photographed torturing prisoners. He said the U.S. has learned from that catastrophe and ensured it will never happen again by outlawing cameras on military bases.

A new study shows that Americans tend to be less healthy than Canadians or Brits -- in part because so many Americans can't afford regular check-ups or treatment. Coughed a U.S. spokesman: "We're number one!"

Da Vinci decoded, Canadians derided

The Roman Catholic group Opus Dei (no relation to Opus, the penguin) condemned the new movie The Da Vinci Code for not carrying their proposed disclaimer: "Any similarity with reality is purely coincidental." Producers refused to add the disclaimer unless it was also added to The Passion of the Christ and The Ten Commandments.

A new study shows that B.C. is the least religious province in Canada -- and the one most likely to believe The Da Vinci Code is non-fiction.

A controversial scientist defended his decision to impregnate a 63-year-old British woman, explaining that she has "a biological age of about 45" and the maturity of a teenager.

Pope Benedict blamed Canada's low birth rate on "the pervasive effects of secularism" before pausing to add, "unless they're actually taking this chastity thing seriously."

Scientists discovered that the AIDS virus originated in monkeys in Cameroon. However, Jerry Falwell has yet to explain what sins the monkeys were being punished for.

Brangelina's baby bumped as Chad left hanging...

Academy Award-winning actress Hilary Swank split from Academy Award seat-filler Chad Lowe -- but there was apparently some confusion after she forgot to name him in the divorce.

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt delivered a major new release in Namibia: über-baby Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt. Jolie-Pitt has already been signed to a seven-figure, three-picture deal with Universal.

And just in time for Shiloh...There's finally a channel for audiences too young to watch The WB. BabyFirstTV is the first station created entirely for babies. Yes, really. The first original show consists entirely of an old woman rattling her keys and saying, "aren't you a cutie pie."

Meanwhile, a new study shows that 26 percent of American children under two have TVs in their bedrooms -- and 80 percent of them are already obese.

UNICEF announced plans to end its 50-year-old Halloween orange box campaign explaining that they'll make much more money auctioning off Shiloh Jolie-Pitt's Halloween candies on eBay.

Former Playboy playmate and oil magnate bedmate Anna Nicole Smith won her case in the U.S. Supreme Court to continue to fight for her late husband's fortune. Smith said she never doubted she'd win -- especially after she lap danced for Justice Clarence Thomas.

Original Survivor Richard Hatch failed to win immunity on charges of tax evasion. Hatch has been sentenced to 51 months in prison after turning down the judge's offer of performing a genuine community service and promising never to go on another reality TV show.

Folk singer Joan Baez joined a treetop protest, apparently protesting against the treetop in Fiji that attacked Keith Richards.

And, finally, Heather Mills announced plans to divorce 63-year-old ex-Beatle Paul McCartney, finally providing a definitive answer to one of life's great mysteries. Asked about her future relationship with McCartney, Mills told the courts she will not love him, squeeze him or please him when he's 64.

Mark Leiren-Young, a screenwriter, playwright and journalist, files his 'Fast Rewinds' of the news for The Tyee at the end of every month.  [Tyee]

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