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We will be recording a live episode of the podcast (with stand-up comedy and live music) on Thursday, April 21st at Frank and Oak Ottawa. Check out the details here, and we'll see you there!
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Week 4 closes Dec 3rd!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

#96 - Ana Gherasim & Jeff Huang (Azucar Latin Dance)

This week on the show, we sat down with Ana and Jeff from Azucar Latin Dance Company. We learned all about salsa (the food, and the dance), and how to meet-cute in the public service!

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This episode is also brought to you in part by Audible.com. Visit audibletrial.com/ottawhat today and get a free audiobook and free 30-day trial, and feel good in helping support the show.

Azucar Latin Dance Company
Ottawa Tool Library


Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Jim Watson to Marry the Year 2017

In an attempt to further increase the hype in Ottawa for Canada’s 150th anniversary, Jim Watson has announced he will marry the year 2017. With a star-studded lineup of events coming next year, Watson’s marriage will surely be one of the highlights.

News breaks nearly every other week with more events being announced to celebrate Canada’s sesquicentennial party. “We just want the whole world to know how excited Canada is to be turning 150,” says Watson. “My marriage to the year 2017 will be one of the things people will remember both about me and about the big one-five-oh.” The celebrations will include Red Bull Crashed Ice, the Junos, the Video Game Awards, a huge fireworks show, an interprovincial picnic on a bridge, an Inspiration Village with art from all over the country, a special Winterlude exhibit, all the music festivals pulling in well-known artists and acts from around the world, and hundreds of smaller community events. Despite all of this, Watson asks “Can they really compare to me marrying the entire year?” This is truly a classic story of boy meets year, boy falls in love with year, boy plans massive national party for year, and they both grow old together.

Ottawhat News spoke with legal expert Henrik Evangelikos about the legality of a man marrying a year. “It’s the first such case I’ve heard of, but according to an old case dated November 8th, 1886, the Supreme Court of Ontario ruled that a man was able to marry his pocket-watch, thereby essentially marrying time.” The marriage to a pocketwatch is said to have raised questions concerning whether he was only married to the watch for the span of time it was operating. “I think with the right judge, Mayor Jim Watson could actually be allowed to marry time, specifically a section of time with the time in question being the year 2017,” explained Evangelikos. “After December 31st 2017, however, he will no longer be allowed to claim a marriage status because the time period in question would no longer exist. He would instead claim widowed status.”

When asked if he was alright about becoming a widower after the end of 2017, a close friend to Watson said, “I think it’s beautiful, getting married knowing that it won’t last forever. He will cherish every day he has with 2017, and he’ll really grow as a person and as a Mayor. Besides, after it’s all over, he’ll have his new train set in 2018 to keep his spirits up.”

The Mayor did not indicate whether he will be buying a ring for 2017 or discuss any details for the wedding.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Quebec considers changing “Arrêt” signs to “Whoa Tabarnak”

Earlier this month, members of Quebec’s Cultural Identity Board met to discuss and plan how they could make Quebec’s unique French-Canadian culture more accessible to all citizens, especially new Canadians. The ultimate goal is to make conversational French the only language spoken in Quebec. One method of achieving this goal, as discussed by the board, is to change the “Arrêt” sign to say “Whoa Tabarnak.”

Gatineau Cultural Identity representative, Gilles LeDouche spoke on the issue: “The ‘Arrêt’ sign is a major issue for us here in Quebec. It is a literal translation of the English ‘Stop’ sign. We can’t have the English language creeping in and corrupting our culture,” declared LeDouche. “To replace it, we suggest changing it to say ‘Whoa, Tabarnak’ because how many times have you been driving with your friends in the car and they tell you to ‘Arrêt’? None. They all say ‘Whoa Tabarnak’ if you need to stop and that’s the sort of representation that we want in Quebec.”

The Quebec provincial government estimated the cost of changing the signs to be $6 million, which is less expensive than when KFC was lobbied to change “KFC” to “PFK” in Quebec only.

“The KFC-PFK change is exactly the sort of thing I’m talking about. If [the government] is not going to let us separate, then at least let us name things the way we want them to be named,” says LeDouche. “Casual swearing is part of Quebec’s culture much like smoking and bad driving. We’re also trying to appeal to the newcomers to Quebec. They see a sign saying ‘Whoa Tabarnak’ and maybe they’ll think ‘Quebec is the place for me’.”

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

#95 - Dani Alon & Chris Hannay

On the show this week, we spoke to improv comedians Dani Alon and Chris Hannay from Experimental Farm Theatre. They're also running the Ottawa Improv Festival from April 14-16 at Arts Court, where you'll be able to see several of our past guests (and Chris himself) perform!

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This episode is also brought to you in part by Audible.com. Visit audibletrial.com/ottawhat today and get a free audiobook and free 30-day trial, and feel good in helping support the show.



Ottawa to Host “More Sombre” St. Patrick’s Day

Preparations for St. Patrick’s Day are in full swing, but residents may be surprised with the tone of the event this year. The City of Ottawa has vowed to make the Irish holiday a more sombre, respectful occasion for 2016.

“Previously, St. Patrick’s Day has encouraged binge drinking, hooliganism, and violence,” says Donovan Chong, a senior official from the Department of Arts and Culture, “ This year we will instead commemorate the hard work that the Irish have done in Canada.”

This week’s event will be dramatically different from other St. Patrick’s Days. Most shockingly, all bars and restaurants will be closed for the day, in order to allow people to properly observe the holiday. The day will focus heavily on the history of Irish Canadians. Both Carleton and Ottawa Universities will feature guest lecturers all day, who will speak on issues ranging from immigration to cultural appropriation.

“These changes to St. Patrick’s Day may be unpopular to some, but I think future generations will look back on what we have done and be proud” Donovan asserts, “ I wish you a solemn, thoughtful St. Patrick’s Day.”

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Ottawa Vegetarians Protest “beaver” in Beavertails

Members of the National Capital Vegetarian Association held a demonstration today by the War Memorial to protest the use of the word ‘beaver’ in Beavertails.
Although the winter pastry doesn’t actually contain beaver, eight members of the Vegetarian Association are protesting the insinuation of the term. “We believe using an animal’s name in a dish or food product promotes consumption of flesh,” says spokesperson Nathalie Leek. “For that reason, we suggest the name be changed.” One protester held a sign that read, “fried fritters, not fried critters!”

Jeremy McKinnon, who runs the Beavertail shack in Byward Market, is defensive of the traditional name. “Beavertails have been an Ottawa staple for almost 40 years,” he says. “I don’t see any problem with the name.”

Despite pushback, the Association has started an online petition. So far they have collected 41 signatures. “We’re hoping for 10,000 names,” says Kale Moore, “but it’s really about sending a message and getting people to realize the problem with naming foods after animals.”

The Association has planned another demonstration to protest the name “moose tracks” next Friday outside of The Daily Scoop.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

#94 - Tania Laham

This week's podcast features Tania Laham, a public servant with Service Canada who is passionate about education and learning. She also enjoys volleyball, board games and escape rooms around Ottawa!

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This episode is also brought to you in part by Audible.com. Visit audibletrial.com/ottawhat today and get a free audiobook and free 30-day trial, and feel good in helping support the show.

Send Tania an email at tap.movement@gmail.com to get involved with the event she's helping plan with the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Ottawa this fall.


LeBreton Development Group Proposes New AHL Franchise With Alfie, Yashin

In light of Eugene Melnyk’s recent refusal to sell the Ottawa Senators, Devcore Canderel DLS Group has made a bid to create a new AHL franchise called the Ottawa Parliamentarians, which would be captained by none other than Daniel Alfredsson. In addition to the stick-wielding Swede, the Parliamentarians will also feature other prominent Ottawa Senators, NHL free agents and recently retired players from leagues around the world.

On the right wing for the new Ottawa franchise will be Jaromir Jagr, the ageless Czech wonder who led countless teams to epic Stanley Cup runs in the NHL. To complement the two aforementioned superstars, the left wing will feature former Sens sensation Alexei Yashin, who will be making a highly anticipated return to Ottawa.

The Parliamentarians’ scout was able to track down Yashin, now 42 years old, in Siberia, where he was serving the first year of a 5 year exile. The Ottawa team paid off local officials for his release on the condition that Yashin sign a 4 year contract with the Parliamentarians.

The main defensive pair will be comprised of Henry Burris, who plays football for the Ottawa RedBlacks during the AHL offseason and current Barefax manager Patrick Brazeau. Dion Phaneuf offered to join the team once his contract expires, but the Parliamentarians declined to pick up his contract.

The goaltender will of course be none other than Ray Emery, who’s spent the last year playing in the AHL with other franchises. Some have asked what will happen if Devcore does not win the Lebreton contract, but Jean Pierre Poulin (President) seems confident the team will flourish in Ottawa regardless..