Fruit Salad

Not to be confused with White Lady In The Hood’s poke salad, this is just an excuse for another little serving of a bit of this and a bit of that, with some humor dressing.

If KayJai goes back to Chatham, Ontario to visit friends and family, she’s going to find that she’s got some new neighbors.  A Fundamentalist Jewish sect from near Montreal, has been ordered to surrender 14 children, from two months to 16 years of age, to Child Welfare Services, on charges of neglect and abuse.  Instead of doing so, 200 of them moved 500 miles west, into a new province.

The newspaper article does not say how many families are involved, but 14 children were from only two families.  Even more so than our local Mennonites and Amish, they wish to do things the modest, old-fashioned way, a claim validated by photos, black clothing, hats, ankle-length skirts on girls, clunky shoes, adult females swathed in black blanket-like wraps, covering half their faces.

Most of the members speak only Yiddish and/or Hebrew. Despite this, and their declared dedication to a simple life, they have an English-language website.

The son has a young male temp at his shop who is white.  Not an albino, but the guys agree that he looks like he lives in his mom’s basement and eats chalk.  He is as white as the Elf, Legolas, from the Lord of the Rings movies.  If you built a child’s toy blocks replica of him, it would be a Lego Legolas.  If you broke the bottom off the figure, it would be a legless Lego Legolas.

The son insists that, if you read and inflect the following eight words correctly, they form a coherent sentence.  Anybody want to try? Buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo; buffalo buffalo buffalo.  Translation provided upon request.

The local Traffic Department seems to have been working overtime to further F**k things up.  There are two spots, one a mile to my east, another, a mile to my west, where small subdivision streets come out to meet the main thoroughfares.  In both cases, they do so at a tee intersection, and at the top of a hill.

The Works Department has installed a (partial) set of lights at each.  The main road faces the lights, but there are none on the side streets.  With reduced sightlines, it is surprising enough to have someone make a right turn in front of oncoming vehicles, but panic can ensue when lines of traffic are rushing up the hill, with a green light and the right-of-way – never faster than the 40MPH limit of course – and have some asshat little jackrabbit driver perform a perfectly legal, but highly unsafe, left turn, in front of four lanes of traffic.

Many bus stops were located just before intersections.  Apparently there has been much complaint about drivers not being able to make right turns on green lights, so, with agreement from the Transit Department, many of the stops have been moved to the other side of the intersections.  Now, the buses go through the lights, and immediately stop – and traffic backs up behind them, right across the intersections, despite regulations about not entering unless you are sure you can clear.

Even after the lights turn red, and there is no following traffic, the sheep refuse to pull out and pass the bus, and just sit there and wait for it to proceed.  Thanx Traffic Department, I see how this new system is so much better.

A local city councillor has chosen a strange hobbyhorse to ride.  He was quoted in the paper recently, railing against the proliferation of used clothing donation bins around the city.  I agree with most of his rants.  They are everywhere, beside corner stores, in mall parking lots, sometimes two and three, side by side.

They’re often overflowing.  There are often boxes of wet books and magazines, broken toys, even old black and white TVs, beside them.  This guy wants to licence and restrict them.  (Doesn’t every politician?)  He wants to get the names and addresses of all these charities, so that they can be notified and held responsible for cleaning up the mess.

I’m with him through most of that – right until he gets to the word “charity.”  Just because the word “donation” appears on these bins, doesn’t make them the property of any charity, except for the odd Salvation Army one.

Almost all are owned and placed by commercial companies.  They take the used clothing that you throw in.  They sort it out, and anything worth reselling is shipped to a third-world country.  When your raw material is free, even sorting, shipping and sale at pennies on the dollar means you can turn a tidy profit.

The next time you see some kid on television after the tsunami in Malaysia, or typhoon in Bangladesh, wearing an AC/DC concert tee, just like you used to own, it doesn’t mean he’s got the same shitty taste in music you do.  That’s your old shirt!  The unsalable balance is ripped to pieces, and winds up at places like my son’s plant, in fifty-pound bales of rags, again, turning a further profit.

If you’ve been putting clothing in these boxes, thinking it goes to underprivileged kids, or homeless people, you may want to think again.  Then again, maybe not.  We occasionally donate used clothing and other household goods to either Muscular Dystrophy, or Juvenile Diabetes.  They call us and tell us when they’ll be in the neighborhood with a truck for pick-up.

Okay, the meds are kicking in.  You may want to take some now – or a three-martini lunch.  I hope you’ve all had a good Christmas, and we look forward to New Years.

12 thoughts on “Fruit Salad

  1. whiteladyinthehood says:

    mmm…I love a good salad with humor dressing! 😉
    AC~DC is not a shitty band!
    The Buffalo thing drove me nuts! Do tell…
    and I have a truck that comes around the Hood and puts a neon green flier/flyer (you pick) on my door and then when I put out boxes of old clothes, I just tape the flier/flyer to them and they come back on say, Friday, and pick them up…(I have no idea where this stuff is going!)


    • Archon's Den says:

      We’re on a couple of telephone call-lists. They say, “We’ll be around next Thursday. Do you have anything?” Then it’s up to me to use a broad-tip magic marker to put a big M, for muscular dystrophy, or D, for diabetes on the side of the box left on my porch. The flier/flyer label sounds like a good idea maybe I can talk someone into it.
      Buffalo translation:

      (Some) bison, from a city in northern New York, (puzzle, confuse, impress or intimidate) (other) bison from the city at the east end of Lake Erie, (because) (some) bison (will always) (puzzle, confuse, impress or intimidate) (other) bison. See, clear as mud!


  2. aFrankAngle says:

    Off to my three martini lunch!


  3. I suspect that “buffalo” thing is a lot of BS. But then again, as my favourite old saying goes, “When the chips are down, the buffalo move on”.
    But if the elf liked waffles, and didn’t have any, would he be an Eggo-less legless Lego Legolas? (My apologies if your upper plate just slipped. 😀 )
    My dad (very rigorously trained in safe driving via the old Bell System) also had a great saying regarding what’s legal in driving and what’s safe – “There’s right, there’s wrong, and there’s dead”. I may be zero and infinity on the first two, but so far, I’m winning on the third!
    Yeah, it’s my pill-time, too – again. Happy Boxing Day, ya silly syrup-sucking sot! 😉


    • Archon's Den says:

      I know about my sanity, but you doubt my veracity??! Buffalo translation is below WLITH’s comment above. Your toaster-breakfast addition caused my plate to slip – the one in my skull. I see your Amish are taking cash payouts from the frackers, buying new tablets, and moving elsewhere. I signed up to be Rants’ kid’s alter-ego Grandpa, but they want a guarantor, so we’ll have to wait till your adoption papers finalize. And a Happy Snowshovelling to you too. 😀


  4. benzeknees says:

    This is why we take our clothing donations directly to the Goodwill Store. Even though we know they will sell the clothes to financially challenged individuals, we like to make sure our donations go to a registered charity. I have to admit I also hate those collection stores at shopping centres. They are often over full. Unfortunately, if you have to rely on volunteers to help empty them I think this can often happen.


    • Archon's Den says:

      As I try to clean out a lifetime’s worth of accumulation before THE END, we also have taken some things to Goodwill. There’s one a half a mile away, on one of the two main roads out of the subdivision. No matter who, it always seems a good idea that someone gets some use from our “junk”. Son just bought a new BBQ from his company (who make them) and offered the still-working older model to the grandson and fiancé. 🙂


  5. Wade Larsen says:

    Yes, the donation bin dilemma is being widely reported across the country. Check out:


  6. Kayjai says:

    Alas, I did not go home to Chatham for any Christmas celebrations…or Hanukkah? ugh…Hope you had a great Christmas!


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