Crude Observations

Calendar COP

Public Service Announcement. Before I get into my annual recycling of holiday blog ideas, I first wanted to say a few words about COP 28. Actually, who am I kidding. Is anyone else as fed up with this annual boondoggle as I am? 70,000 people descending on Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates to finger tent and act oh so pious and concerned about emissions and the environment, hosted by one of the largest oil producers in the world in a city that by all rights shouldn’t even exist because it’s in a freaking desert.


Fine. Emissions reduction. Yes, we all get it and we agree. Wealth transfers from rich to poor countries. Yup. Got it. But this annual spectacle has become so much less of a working group and so much more of an environmental “happening” – a place to see and be seen. It’s like a Taylor Swift show without, you know, Taylor Swift.


But it’s sure popular. Although it does depend on where it’s happening, that’s for sure. But this current Middle East swing appears to be pretty hip on enviro-junket tour. Last year was in Sharm-El-Sheik Egypt. Pretty bougie place as well.



Among the 70,000 attendees are Danielle Smith and 100 of Alberta’s finest conference goers. Not that we will ever find out who they actually are or who paid for their attendance because, transparency and all that stuff.


At any rate, on to more festive thoughts!


Now that our friends down South have finally finished celebrating Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday, Whittling Wednesday, Thirsty Thursday and Frugal Friday, I think it is safe to say that we have finally hit the holiday season.


I don’t know what gave it away – the endless deluge of Christmas ditties while standing uncommunicative in the grocery store check out line, the Valentine’s display at Costco, the lack of snow in Calgary. Maybe it’s the annual Hallmark channel assault of Christmas movies or the lights and the trees that have sprung up on pretty much every house in the neighbourhood (even mine). Any one of those factors could be the giveaway.


At any rate, Christmas is that time of year that always seems so far away until whammo, there it is – and we all come to the crushing realization that we haven’t even started shopping or otherwise getting ready for the festivities. Interestingly, one way of managing that crisis is to use a calendar, because that shows you how many days you have until you really need to hit the panic button.


And as luck would have it, you can buy a calendar that actually does the counting down for you and rewards you with a daily chocolate for doing so! You are out of chocolate? Dude, you are out of time!


I am referring of course to Advent calendars. Look, I know the purpose of the Advent calendar isn’t to serve as a shopping guide, so please don’t come to my house and scare my kids. But given that you can now get a cannabis Advent calendar, I think you should all cut me a little slack for suggesting my own uses for one.


So, in the spirit of the season and the first of my lazy holiday themed blogs (warning – there is a top movie list coming!), I present to you my very own Crude Observations Advent calendar, complete with an energy or related treat for each day.  I will leave it up to you if you want to read it all at once or actually use it for the purpose it was intended.


I am more of an immediate gratification kind of guy, although the bourbon advent calendar requires some moderation – so you can guess which course of action I would recommend… I have included a “preview” version that let’s you see everything at once and a “calendar” version, that restricts you to one a day.


This is the link to the one where you get instant gratification:


Advent Calendar Link – Preview


This is the link to the one where you have to wait in breathless anticipation:


Advent Calendar Link – Calendar

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