Barry Penner gives his report to cabinet on “How to Remain Youthful and Awesome While Being a Minister”.

Clearly, nobody is paying as much attention as they should.

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In addition to being a superb MLA and a downright incredible Minister of The Environment, Barry Penner also volunteers his time to help people with their taxes. He’s so good at it, he doesn’t even bother sitting down.

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I think at this point that it should be obvious why Barry Penner is wearing an orange jumpsuit out in the woods, especially given his pose. A bigger question is why he isn’t wearing a hard hat. It isn’t like he’s had trouble sporting one before…

On an unrelated note, that’s some nice hair he’s got there.

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Barry Penner knows exactly where everything in The Environment belongs, and you had better believe that he will exercise all of his Minesterial Might to make sure that things stay where they belong, from the mightiest tree to the littlest fuzzball. Long story short, a yellow-bellied marmot (native to BC’s southeast) has appeared in Victoria, without even the decency of being elected  to the legislature! This, of course, represents a threat to local Marmots, who aren’t smart enough to suck up to the people staying at the Empress for free food.

You can watch the whole video below, but if you don’t feel like watching a minute and a half of pointless cute animal scampering (and I wouldn’t blame you), click here to go to the really important part.

Just look at this face. This is the face of disease, the face of parasites, the chunky, chubby face of evil.

Chilling.

Of course, that’s not the whole story. Barry Penner doesn’t just show up when the press is around, oh no. He patrols the grounds at all times, looking for the nogoodniks that feed this threatening alien marmot.

Penner caught two women feeding the marmot Rice Krispie squares.

“I expressed my opinion that Rice Krispie squares would not likely be part of its natural diet,” Penner said. “We then had quite a conversation about marmots.”

Can’t you just picture it? Two shady-looking women, glancing around furtively to make sure the coast is clear, then offering the fuzzy little mooch a snack. All of a sudden, Barry Penner springs from behind a bush! “Ladies,” his booming, authoritative voice rings across the lawn, “I can’t help but notice that you are feeding that yellow-bellied marmot (a cowardly, untrustworthy creature which is technically not a marmot at all, but a ground squirrel, and is not native to this particular region of the province and may be carrying disease or parasites which may be deadly to the honest and hardworking Vancouver Island marmot, which is itself already recovering from dangerously low population levels) some sort of dessert square! I hardly think, and I expect you would agree, that such a creature as that would usually eat such a meal in his natural habitat (which is far away from here), though his chunky chubby girth may hint otherwise! Please stop immediately!” Abashed, they hand over the Rice Krispie square, and Barry Penner grins widely. “Now, who wants to learn more about Marmots?”   I think you know how it goes from there.

Geographically displaced marmots eating marshmallow treats?  Thank goodness we have Barry Penner to protect us from this madness.

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Barry Penner likes to bring along visual aids when he does a presentation. He finds it helps to have something specific to point to, plus it makes it a lot easier for everyone to understand what he’s going on about.

Of course, sometimes he still has to explain things two or three times…

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