Author: greeter

Fentanyl, the crisis that does not have to happen

Fentayl is a prescription drug in Canada and the United States. It is a potent opioid pain killer similar to morphine, however fentanyl is 100 times stronger than morphine. As such, it remains a useful tool in the fight against pain when used and administered under the supervision of a physician. However the risk of addiction to fentanyl is real and its properties make it usable as a recreational drug similar to morphine or heroin. In 2016, the Canadian province of British Columbia declared a public health emergency over the number of overdose deaths from fentanyl. While not as common in Eastern Canada, fentanyl is surprisingly easy to transport, problematic to intercept, and as such is growing in popularity. What makes fentanyl so dangerous? Because it is 100 times more potent than morphine, it is also much more toxic, making it easier for accidental overdose to occur. Its toxicity also increases the difficulties that law enforcement officials have in intercepting illicit fentanyl shipments. When a law enforcement agency intercepts a suspected fentanyl shipment, the officers involved must use special gear and procedures in order to avoid toxicity from the shipment as even trace amounts of the drug can have a toxic effect. Additionally, because a large number of doses can be transported inside a container a small as a standard envelope, transporting the drug is easy. This makes it...

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Chess Tactics: Sacrifce

All images in this article come from the lichess website and are freely available under the MIT license In chess, a sacrifice occurs when one player deliberately loses a piece in order to gain a tactical or strategic advantage. Sacrifices can be either real or sham sacrifices. A real sacrifice implies that the sacrificing player will be at a material disadvantage for a significant portion of the game. A sham sacrifice on the other hand implies near immediate tactical or strategic gains. As such, players usually use sham sacrifices in order to deliver checkmate. Players can also use sacrifices to gain material worth more than the sacrificed piece(s). Additionally, in timed games, players may struggle calculating whether a sacrifice is sound or not. This can cause the sacrificing player’s opponent to spend more precious time analyzing the position of the pieces. Real sacrifice In the above position, black is at a material disadvantage. However, black has prepared to deliver checkmate against white by using the rook in the lower left corner. The only way for white to avoid checkmate is to sacrifice the bishop. Under ideal play, black will take the bishop using the king. White will then move the queen to deliver check against black’s king. Black’s king will then retreat back to the original safe square. White can then castle queen side, moving the king out of...

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You’re hired

I don’t typically talk about myself in posts, but I thought I’d share some great news that I got recently. I finally managed to find a job, despite the unemployment rate here officially being almost 10 percent. I was hired on August 26 to work at a call center. This call center handles calls for several companies. The one I’ll be taking calls for is called Shark Ninja. In case you haven’t heard of them (and I hadn’t before I started to work here) they’re a company that sells cleaning and kitchen appliances. You can buy vacuum cleaners, steam mops, blenders, coffee bars, and a whole assortment of other goods from them. It’s a relief to finally be getting work after being unemployed since August of last year. This job is also easier than the last job I had (confined space safety watch at a pulp and paper mill) or the job before it (working overnight shifts at a Subway restaurant). I have done call center work before too, so that should also help make this job easier. While the pay isn’t great, I have the impression that we work with great people and for great clients. Plus, with the job comes health and dental insurance which will definitely come in handy. Needless to say, I feel like I’ll be celebrating this little victory in life for some time....

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Chess tactics: Discovered attacks

All images in this article come from the lichess website and are freely available under the MIT license A discovered attack occurs in chess when a player moves a piece, exposing the line of attack from a piece that had been blocked before. Discovered attacks can be powerful because both pieces can pose separate threats at the same time. You can also use it to attack an opponent’s piece with two of your own. This forces that piece to move in order to eliminate the threat of capture. It is impossible to take two pieces in one move or to block two lines of attack with one move. At the beginner level, pieces often fall victim to a discovered attack. This is especially true if the attacking piece has not yet moved in that game. Such attacks are easy to overlook if you are not sufficiently careful in your moves. Several types of discovered attack exist. We will cover each of them below. Discovered attack This is the simplest type of discovered attack. Discovered attacks can sometimes lead to gaining pieces if your opponent overlooks them. An overlooked discovered attack is a careless and costly mistake in chess. Discovered check Similar to the discovered attack above, however the attacking piece attacks the king. The moved piece may threaten another of your opponent’s pieces after being moved. This makes it...

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Rest In Peace Elsie Wayne

I was browsing the news yesterday, seeing if anything interesting had happened in the world. In my little corner of Canada, it is not terribly often that something happens which makes front page headlines. However, something like that did indeed happen. I found myself reading the obituary of one of our most famous politicians, Elsie Wayne. She passed away peacefully in her home on August 23 at the age of 84. Introduction to politics Elsie Wayne got her start in politics by contesting a seat on the city council of Saint John, New Brunswick in 1977. One of her first projects as city councilor was to tackle flooding issues in the Glen Falls neighborhood of Saint John. Glen Falls was prone to flooding upwards of six times per year. Her work led to the construction of a lagoon in the area to absorb flood waters. Flooding is still a problem in Glen Falls. However, flooding does occur much less frequently today. The lagoon has also led to greatly reduced flood damage in this area. This led to constituents seeing her as a problem solver, cementing her popularity in all of her future political endeavors. Stepping up the political ladder In 1983, she won the Saint John mayoral election and became the city’s first female mayor. As mayor of the city, Wayne worked tirelessly to improve the lives of Saint...

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