One of the statistics I've always heard had to do with the extreme gender imbalance here in Fort McMurray. Depending on the source, men supposedly outnumber women here by a margin of 2 to 1, 5 to 1 or even 10 to 1. Given the nature of most employment here, I suppose it can be expected that we will be a few notches away from a 50-50 balance. Since I'm not a 20-something frequently the bars here, this isn't something I pay all that much attention to. While perusing the morning online news, I did come across a couple reports from last year's census. Here's one from the National Post. Yes, we do have a gender balance here. But it's no where near what you've probably been told. According to the latest numbers, 54% of our population here is male. A bit high, but I really don't find it that big of a deal and certainly nothing like the imbalance I've read or heard spoken of. Fort McMurray I'm sure gets called lots of things. I suppose you can now add "Canada's Manliest City" to the mix.
I had to chuckle to myself as I read further that the city of Cobourg, Ontario has the largest imbalance in favour of females (53.6%). For those not in the know, I grew up within an hour's drive of Cobourg.....and now I'm way out here. Oooops.
On another note entirely, I read with interest that Toronto will be implementing a plastic bag ban starting in January 2013. And from what I've read they aren't too happy. So much for progressiveness I guess. Here in Wood Buffalo, we've had a plastic bag ban in place since September 2010. Come on Toronto! You can do it! Truthfully, I don't really think about our ban all that much anymore and it's only on my mind at the moment because of a few articles I read this morning about Toronto and the fact that I had to do a quick grocery run after work.
Finally, while waiting for the bus the past couple mornings I noticed these strange yellow rings on the pavement. I'd never seen anything quite like them before and was curious. What exactly were they? Did a bunch of neighborhood dogs decide to join forces and mark their territory all in the same spot? Did a mustard truck crash? Yes, strange thoughts go through my head at 5:30 am.
A closer look tonight after work and while much of the circles had since vanished given the recent rain and wind we've had, there was one small line left at my bus stop. As it turns out, its nothing more than tree pollen, washed into the street from the rain. Nothing more than an arboreal orgy as we head into summer.