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Needlepoint Class - Chuck Poulsen  

No angel of mercy

City councillors will call a path at Parkinson Rec: Angel Way.

They will spend $10,000 in signs announcing it is in honour of victims of domestic violence or just plain victims of violence. They might as well spend another $10,000 on signs explaining why they are doing this.

Staff was told to go back to the Women’s Resource Centre for a further consult on which way to go. If you don’t think WRC won’t recommend the domestic violence tag, I have a path to sell you.

The path links with the new $2.5 million pedestrian overpass of Highway 97. The primary function of the overpass will be a perch for police to nail speeders. In a half-dozen trips underneath, I have yet to see one pedestrian on the overpass.

The path and overpass should be named after the taxpayer. Call it the Yellow Brick Road.

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The long-established Okanagan Life magazine is in for a battle over advertisers from a new, top-end publication that rolled out late last month.

In its first edition, Icon Okanagan magazine has a lot of ads.

Icon is high-end and cosmopolitan in its production values.

As with Okanagan Life, Icon is free. It will be a quarterly and is available at 550 locations, shopping malls, stores and such.

“We thought there was a gap - a whole huge balloon of space - for a high end lifestyle magazine in the Okanagan,” said co-publisher Julian Snarski. “We’re filling that void.”

Next issue will be out at the end of February.

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The old debate about the intelligence of dogs compared with cats has finally been answered.

Maybe.

Dogs are smarter than cats, say Oxford University researchers.

The Oxford people studied how 500 species, both living and fossilized, have evolved over 60 million years. The ones that lived in social groups, such as dogs, had much larger brains, relative to body size, than those species that that were loners, like cats.

"Dogs have always been regarded as the more social animals while cats often go it alone," says researcher Susanna Shultz. “That social interaction requires larger brains.”

Shultz says that the cooperation within a group is more mentally challenging than animals which are self sufficient.

Cat lovers already have their claws out over this report.

"The domestic cat is highly intelligent thanks to its wild ancestry," says Beth Skillings, a veterinarian with Cats Protection. "Unlike dogs, they are smart enough to hunt alone and don't have to depend on others."

The paradox is that while dogs have bigger brains, cats have twice as many neurons in their cortex, the “thinking part” of the brain.

Audiences at veterinary conferences are almost evenly split. About 30 percent bark for dogs, and 40 percent purr for cats. (Sorry, I couldn‘t help that - a cat made me do it). The other 30 per cent say dogs and cats are the same.

Says one pet expert: “Both species are smarter than the folk who issue press releases on behalf of researchers."

We have four cats and a dog. What I know for sure is that they are all trouble in their own unique ways.

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Trivia that may interest only me:

The Green Bay Packers, greatest team in football, will spend up to $13 million for two new digital scoreboards. Lambeau Field is considered the Mecca of football stadiums in the U.S., even by sissies in San Francisco, latte sippers in Seattle and lost souls, such as my son Eric, who cheer for the nearby Chicago Bears.

The taxpayers spent several hundred million to renovate Lambeau recently but the cost of building the original in 1957 - the whole stadium: $960,000.


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