Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

December 25th means something different to us all. In fact, to some of us, it has no meaning at all. And you know what? That's okay! There is NO right OR wrong answer!

My hope is that you're having a wonderful day regardless of what it does or doesn't mean to you and that you're enjoying it doing whatever makes it meaningful to you or at least makes you happy. Such activities can include but are not limited to playing Rock Band and Grand Theft Auto with your roommates or friends; going to church; spending time with your family or significant other; sleeping all day; watching concert DVDs or Seinfeld re-runs with your dog.

To each, his or her own after all!

With love,


Monday, December 20, 2010

Links to Interesting Studies and the My Need to Question and Critique

Hi Everyone:

'Tis the season to be jolly? I say 'tis the season to get sick.

I just read an interesting study ( about echinacea not being as effective in preventing or shortening the common cold as some of us thought.

Personally, I've tried echinacea and while I think it may have prevented me from getting a cold or two in the past, I wonder how much of this perceived "prevention" was due to placebo effect as opposed to reality. Then again, I have at least a friend or two who swears by the stuff. It's really up to your experience and what you believe to be true or not.

This study challenged me to question what previous studies have said, for as a journalist (and a curious person in general), I believe it is important to question everything I read rather than automatically assume and/or believe that it is true. Although I acknowledge that doing so is not always easy as I have my personal views, convictions and biases, I do my best to use my brain efficiently and question things. By doing so, I better understand why I think the way or believe what I do and it makes my beliefs and convictions stronger. "Just because" doesn't cut it for me. Then again, I am only human (as Alexander Pope said, "To err is human...") and will probably never master this area, but at least I can do my best!

I also plan to never stop striving to be more open-minded and respectful of other people's opinions as theirs are as equally valid as mine. The world would be a more peaceful place if we could just agree to disagree rather than argue about who is "right" and who is "wrong" (life is full of grey areas after all) and not put people down because their views differ from our own. If we want to be respected, should we not respect others as well? Alas, I digress...

And for those fine folks who are interested in the animal kingdom, including mating rituals - how 'bout them she-squirrels (



*Updated January 2, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Meet Red Chair HR: A Celebration of People Award Nominee

Tonight's Celebration of People (a collaborative partnership of community organizations, which include lead partner Citizen Advocacy of Ottawa, Ottawa Hospital Rehabilitation Centre, CNIB, East Region, Ontario, providing services and programs for people with disabilities) Awards Dinner is the ninth annual event of its kind. The awards presentation coincides with December 3 - designated by the United Nations as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

The awards "recognize the achievements and contributions of individuals, businesses and organizations promoting accessibility, inclusion and full community participation by citizens with disabilities" (

One of the nominees in the Employment category is Red Chair HR.

Red Chair is unique because it "is the only private staffing service available in Canada that specifically accommodates people with disabilities in finding and securing temporary, freelance and permanent work placement. Through education, employers learn of the benefits of an inclusive and diverse workplace; while employees with disabilities have access to skill marketing, résumé writing and interview preparation services" (

"We skill market people's talents and abilities to potential clients," Kimberley Butler, the founding president and CEO of the agency, told me during a chat late this morning.

"We really make sure we connect with that person, so we know what their intentions are and what they want ... I don't feel people should just settle (for any job)."

Butler, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis earlier this year, started the agency in March, as a way to help both herself and others (

She added: "I feel there's a huge business case for hiring professionals with disabilities and an inclusive and diverse corporate culture. Red Chair is part of that culture."

I agree! Bonne chance tonight, Red Chair HR!