Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Briefing notes (2007-07-26)

Before quitting time last night, I was held up on the phone for nearly six minutes by someone who was obviously trying to place a fake order for about $1500 worth of food to a store that could not possibly handle it in a short time frame. What was the tipoff was that I offered to cater the order that would have given them bigger pizzas for less money plus offered a substantial discount; but they kept refusing, then added, "If you can get it here in an hour, I'll give the driver a thousand dollar tip."

Folks, we like most other major pizza chains have a catering department that's open during regular business hours. If you're going to do something that huge, you should be giving us at least a day or two's notice to give the store plenty of time to prepare or to be able to split the order between two, three, even four stores. In a case like this one where the store is fairly isolated (Woodstock) and the nearest location at least a half hour away (Stratford), lead time is even more essential.

To the person who's out there and tried to pull this stunt: You tried to pull this two nights in a row, according to the store when I spoke to them. I hope you have at least some kind of a conscious, because reckless orders like that cost stores money and if there's nothing to show for it there's no compensation. Make no mistake, we will trace the call to the real phone number and you will be blacklisted from making future orders, even for a nine dollar pickup.

On to today's news. Three items that merit comment:
  • The IDF "accidentally" bombed a UN position in Southern Lebanon, killing at least three observers, including one Canadian, even though Canada is technically not part of the mission. There's no doubt UNIFIL has been a total joke and their mandate should have been changed to peacemaking instead of just peacekeeping. There's a strong argument that NATO should be taking over the job, just as they did in the former Yugoslavia when the UN also fucked it up. They couldn't do any worse -- and given that Hezbollah and the rebel Taliban (in Afghanistan) are of the same terrorist, anti-Semitic and misogynist ilk, one might find in a force with teeth someone who could at least have a fighting chance of finishing off at least one of them.
  • Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki made some rather bizarre comments that labelled Israel's attacks on Lebanon "aggression" and also seemed to support Hezbollah. In response, several Democratic officials, including House Leader Nancy Pelosi, are saying they'll boycott Maliki's address to Congress today. An argument can be made that the current Israeli campaign is anything but measured; but it was Hezbollah that fired the first shot when they kidnapped two soldiers. If the purpose of getting democracy in Iraq was to have created another state dedicated to the destruction of Israel, then there should be trade sanctions against Iraq -- and its leader is certainly not entitled to address any foreign legislature.
  • Finally, the Dalai Lama will formally receive an honourary Canadian citizenship today, something which Parliament granted in a resolution last month and that has been granted to only two other people -- Nelson Mandela and Raoul Wallenberg. Long overdue, in my opinion; and any time we actually get to spit in the faces of the Butchers of Tiannamen Square, it's a good thing.

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