Merry Christmas, Holy Shit, Where’s the Tylenol?!

Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the house…there wasn’t an effin’ peep, because I was trying to be as quiet as possible so as to hear my postal carrier’s knock on the front door.  Which never came, because I’m talking about Canada Post here, and they are wildly incompetent thieves, charlatans and goons.

To back up this cheery Christmas fable a beat or two, the union representing Canada Post, the taxpayer-funded Crown corporation that manages the Canadian postal system, launched a short-lived, pre-holiday strike that was about as successful as their usual approach to business – drowning in complaints, the federal government quickly legislated them back to work, with a promise to re-open the negotiations in the new year.  And I vehemently hope that when that time comes, the government mails out the invitations via Canada Post, so they never, ever get to their recipients.

Our postal system is, and always has been, a colossal joke.  But I thought it was just your garden variety unionized incompetence.  But with this strike, timed to inflict as much damage as possible on customers (commercial and civilian, Canadian and global alike) they have shown their true colours – they are ignorant, crass opportunists willing to hijack an entire holiday for their own dubious gain.  The Grinch comparisons are apt.

What has my fur up today is the fact that I rearranged my entire schedule so I could be home for a time-sensitive, need-it-by-this-weekend delivery.  For days now I’ve tracked my package as it’s bounced back and forth between various distribution centres, many of them hopelessly backlogged because of the short-lived strike.  Also, not too surprisingly, there are reports of continued intentional slow-downs and informal strikes by the most devoted of the union’s members.

Without getting into the politics of UNION GOOD/BAD (I have actually worked in both kinds of environments, and each system has its pluses and minuses) I believe the union’s demands to be wildly out of touch with Canada Post’s proven track record of near-complete ineptitude.  You won’t find a person in this country who doesn’t have multiple stories of misplaced mail, destroyed packages, completely undelivered packages, disinterested, snarky customer service and trampled landscaping.  On review site trustpilot.com, there are 917 reviews for Canada Post, and a full 93 percent of them fall under the bad/one-star category.  The one thing they seem to do consistently well is piss off their customers.

Like yours truly, who sat here all morning – didn’t run down to the gym, didn’t push the vacuum around, didn’t even take a call that might have tied up the line – anticipating a delivery that I KNEW was not going to come.  And it didn’t.  After some hours, I went down to the mail room, and there in my mailbox, nestled in beside the bills that always seem to show up on time, was a delivery notification informing me that I could not be reached, and I could pick up my own damn package at a postal outlet tomorrow afternoon.  You cannot access my mail room without accessing the entire building as a whole, which means the carrier was here, actually IN my building, and couldn’t be arsed to drag his lying butt up to my apartment or, alternately, call up and ask me to come down and meet him.  The truly galling part of all of this is that a different delivery, this one through UPS, showed up on my doorstep about two minutes later – nice, friendly guy carrying out his professional duties like a professional.  Take notes, Canada Post.  Then drop them on the slushy ground, step on them and lose them under the seat of your van for the next three and a half months.

And please take note, Canadian government, of the taxpayers who are no longer willing to broker with a bunch of lying, duplicitous laze-abouts.  Because the fallout is greater than just some people being horked off that their Christmas gifts didn’t arrive on time.  Rather, we’re talking about the wholesale defrauding of the Canadian people and their postal partners.  Canada Post’s service has NEVER warranted the nearly bulletproof protection afforded to it by its government and union affiliations, and the organization as a whole has done itself precisely zero favours with this pre-Christmas Grinch grift.  ANY negotiating leverage they think they may have amassed is about as effectual as their actual service.

Last year, completely dissatisfied with my dealings with both Walmart and the entire Loblaws group of companies, I sought to cut both out of my retail experience.  And for the most part, I was successful – I think I shopped at Walmart maybe five times in 2018, and even less than that at a Loblaws-owned entity.  It was a pain, and in many cases the workarounds I found were more expensive than if I had just gone to the stores in question in the first place, but sometimes our convictions are more important than nabbing 72 rolls of three-ply at a low, low, low price.

2019 is the year I cut Canada Post out of my life.  That this may harm businesses I like to shop from is without dispute, but I will no longer deal with any company that uses the postal system as their default carrier.  I will find alternate carriers to transport my goods, and if I can’t manage that, I simply won’t buy from that retailer in the hopes that they, too, strike this toxic entity from their business rosters.

Shame on you, Canada Post, you petulant, foolish children, and thank your lucky stars Santa isn’t one of your employees, or this year you’d be getting jack shit.  Merry Christmas, ho ho ho, and oh yeah – get fucked.

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My Canadian Roots

My Canadian Roots

Here on the final evening of the Canada Day long weekend, I wanted to do a manicure inspired by Canadian manufacturer Roots, designers of one of my favourite items of clothing of all time, my pink Roots Athletics sweatshirt.  Considering there was not a Canadian kid alive in the mid-1980s who didn’t have one of these sweatshirts (including yours truly!) there are no photos of me in my beloved baby pink, mint green and white pullover, because we didn’t run around with cameras all jacked up in our faces at all hours of the day.  So I have no “adorable” throwback photos to share with you, just my nostalgic memories of an iconic Canadian trend (really, everyone had a Roots sweatshirt; they came in an assortment of bright rainbow hues – my best friend’s was a gorgeous indigo blue – and some people had one in every colour.  And they were not exactly inexpensive either.  Not bad for a sweatshirt bearing the silhouette of a chunka-butt beaver.) 😉

Northern Humidity Sends Its Love

Happy Canada Day, friends!  Because it’s hot as beaver balls in my neck of the Canadian woods (hotter and more humid than Orlando, Florida, whose summer weather I’m convinced occupies its very own circle of hell) I am celebrating this national drinking day holiday indoors, as close to my air conditioner as humanly possible.  I see a lot of Trailer Park Boys in my immediate future, as well as the possibly ill-advised plan, given the humidity, to have a roast turkey dinner at my parents’ house tonight, because apparently we are masochists (or are we?  My parents’ house boasts some very nice central air, and I think there’s no foodstuff more Canadian than gravy; we will put it in and on anything, including, but not limited to, toasted sandwiches, fries and cheese curds, and pizza.)

I didn’t do any new nail art to commemorate the 1st this year, but I thought it would be fun – and, let’s face it, easy! – to look back at these Canada Proud manicures I’ve done over the years.  They feature a wide range of beloved Canadiana, from Timmy’s and 50s, to traditional maple leaves (not to be confused with the Maple Leafs) and the almighty beaver.  Happiest of days, Canadian pals!

Finger Candy Gets a .ca

Trailer Park Mustard Tiger

Timmy Ho

Beaver or Dog?

Team Canada

Mr. Dressup’s Tickle Trunk

The Tickle Trunk

One-Fiddy

Snow Much Fun?

Snow Much Fun 1

Eh, I’m not sure how much fun a snowstorm is at this time of year.  Even us loony (Loonie?) Canadians are tired of the wet, tired of the ice, tired of the slush (and where I live, it frequently snows straight through to about the middle of April.)  Ugh, why do I live here again?  Oh right, because Canada is awesome. 🙂

And so is this nail polish, KB Shimmer’s optimistically titled Snow Much Fun!  I typically drag this lacquer out around this time of year, if only to remind myself that snow really is beautiful, and ONE DAY it will eventually stop.  Right?!  Oh my word, PLEASE let it stop!

Snow Much Fun 2

Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons

Closing out this Canada Day long weekend with a nod to Tim Hortons, the beloved Canadian coffee and donut chain.

So if Canada has, as I assert, a bit of a national drinking problem (most of our holidays devolve into some sort of excuse to get blisteringly drunk whilst lakeside) Tim Hortons is the caffeine and starch purveyor that puts hangovers in their place the morning-after.  I don’t love Timmies, as it’s affectionately called, as much as many of my fellow countrymen and women, although I have warm memories of my dad and I making late night Tim’s runs when I was attending university and he’d shuttle me to and from class. I’d get this powder-based “espresso” concoction that was nothing but pure, ear-splitting sweetness and watery milk; my gateway coffee drug. 😉  They also serve these little donut holes called Timbits – they’re essentially legalized Canadian crack. Perfect for putting some much-needed spring in your step the Tuesday after the long weekend, so chow down and, as always, drink up, Canada.

Canada 150 Ale

Canada Day One-Fiddy

Canada is celebrating its 150th year of Confederation this Saturday (also known as its sesquincentennial anniversary; rolls right off the tongue, don’t it?) so I thought it would be fitting to create a manicure honouring a beloved (?) Canadian beer, the Labatt 50.

For any non-Canuck readers out there, 50 Ale, a product of the Labatt Brewing Company, is pretty much on par with Budweiser or PBR (as in it’s yellow, wet, carbonated, contains hops and will get you seriously screwed up on the cheap if you drink about a dozen of them.  And I never have, partly because I’m an old fuddy duddy who turns up her nose at wildly inappropriate alcohol consumption, but also because 50 is nigh undrinkable. I think I’d sooner down a Schlitz.)

“But wait!” you may be saying.  “I thought you Canadians hailed from the land of fantastic beer.  Isn’t every second building in your city a microbrewery now?”  And the answer to all of those questions would be YES (I actually know someone who rents farmland on which to grow his specially-cultivated hops.)  A big old YES…50’s just perhaps not one of those beers.  Then again, we also have LXD (Labatt Extra Dry), Molson Dry (*shudder*) and a high octane, out-of-production animal by the name of Molson XXX, which is the first alcohol I ever drank.  It tasted like cardboard and nightmares.

But 50 will always hold a special place in my heart, and presumably also in the hearts of many, many Canadians across this great country.  It’s the beer of university house parties, homecoming weekends, moves and cottage weekends, and one epic night of karaoke at the Duke of Somerset.  So I can think of no better way to usher in Canada’s 150th than by raising a sudsy pint to the beer that’s been here for the big moments, the little moments, and all those other moments in between that we just call Canadian life. To the next 150!

FingerCandy.ca, eh?

FC.ca Full

This post has been edited for clarity.  As in when I wrote it, I could not have been less clear.  So let’s try this one more time!

These nails – which I am super proud of, by the way; that lettering was not easy, and drawing maple leafs has never been my forte – honour my recent acquisition of the FingerCandy.ca domain name.  As it stands right now, this blog, which I publish via WordPress, is somewhat encumbered by its lengthy URL (FingerCandy.wordpress.com.) Moving to a .ca address simply makes Finger Candy easier to find during web searches, all by removing that bulky “wordpress” identifier.

So what is required of you, my dear readers?  Follow/unfollow?  Re-up your subscription? Clear your cookies and, um, cache your browser something-or-other? Actually, there’s no action required of you at all – type “FingerCandy.ca” into a browser and you’ll automatically be re-routed to the FingerCandy.wordpress.com page, same as it always was.  Or if you’re super wedded to typing “wordpress” into the URL, you can stick with that, too – both addresses take you to the exact same site, so it’s really a matter of personal preference.  And if you’ve been kind enough to subscribe to my blog or follow it via the WordPress platform, nothing will change there either – you’ll still be subscribed and you’ll still receive notifications (you *can* turn those off, by the way, in the event you’re feeling inundated.)

So basically nothing has changed, eh?  Just the way we Canadians like it. 🙂

FC.ca Fingers