From Bad To Worse

Heeeere’s John E.  This is a tribute to the pride of Chicago – a man so impressive that he was born three days before Christ.  He said that he had no trouble turning 50.  He’s done it 10 times.  Happily Birthday!  😀 I wish him many more, but I want Quality Of Life” to go along with that wish.

This is the man who put the ILL in Illinois, to the point where they forced offered him a free lifetime citizenship in South Turnipville, Ohio.  Older bloggers have seen his muddy footprints in their posts for years.  They can be distinguished from Sasquatch footprints by the fact that there are two left feet.

The (at least temporary) ouster of Donald Trump, has removed a pain in his ass, but as the age counter inexorably ticks upward, he has accumulated aches and pains elsewhere – migraines, and rheumatizz.

Bureaucrats at all levels are rushing to be at the forefront of the Woke movement.  To solve the problem of opioid overdoses and addiction, the DEA raided the offices of the only pain-management doctor – a physiatrist – in a large section of Kentucky.  Aha, you’re prescribing thousands of pills!  That’s dealer level!  He protested that he had hundreds of patients in extreme pain, careful, complete documentation, and justification.  Doesn’t matter!  We’re shutting you down, and seized his computers, files and stock.

A pharmacist in Virginia refused to fill an opioid prescription for a woman in final cancer stage, because he didn’t want her to become addicted.  Her adult daughter came in and screamed at him that her mother was in final stage, in constant, debilitating pain, that the medication had been legally prescribed, that her mother would be dead long before she ever became addicted, and if she wasn’t, addiction would be the least of her worries, and that if he didn’t perform his legally-mandated function, she would sue his ass.  Even then he wouldn’t do it without a signed waiver form.

My daughter is in a similar situation, not for any ethical or moral reason, but because the Provincial Government has wasted so much money on projects like paving over fertile farmland, to build unwanted, unneeded highways, that they’ve cut back on benefits to the vulnerable.  They wouldn’t replace her power wheelchair until a local manager raised a huge fuss.  I used to drive her 75miles to get xylocaine pain-med infusion – and met others who had driven 150 miles.  Too expensive the government said.  Go to one of the now-legal cannabis dispensaries, and pay for you own CBD oil, that doesn’t work anywhere near as well.

Johnny-In-A-Spot – Dear John – Big Bad John’s doctor, possibly worried about the same thing, recently sloughed him off to a local pain clinic, who told him that they had also stopped providing any opioids.  Dear Big Government, thanx for saving us from ourselves.  We’d like to remember your care and concern for us at the next election, but those of us still alive won’t be able to reach the polls.

I baked John a special birthday cake with a surprise ingredient – some oxycontin pills that ‘fell off the back of a truck’, near my dealer’s place.  This getting old is a real pain.

Big Shot

I hear many some a few couple of you asking, Archon!  Why aren’t you shooting off your mouth about shooting off several handguns, like you promised back in July?”

It’s like being nibbled to death by ducks.  Want to make God laugh??  Tell him your plans.  😦 What follows is a sad tale of Karma and bureaucracy run wild.

The Grandson’s wife phoned Employment Canada on three separate occasions, to assure that his paternity leave would seamlessly kick in at the end of her maternity leave.  NO PROBLEM!  She called again on November 2, to ask if two unused weeks of her mat. leave could be added to his pat. leave.

Suddenly, there was a signed, physical document that needed to have been in their file by Halloween.  Despite having booked off eight weeks with his employer, now the Government would not pay for it – oh, and her two unused weeks were forfeit.

With a young child and all accoutrements, he recently purchased their first (used) car, and is making monthly payments.  Then he got COVID.  Fortunately, neither his wife nor the little guy was infected.  With two main inoculations and a booster, it wasn’t bad, although her younger brother, who is seeking employment, had to come over for a few days to care for two babies.

The woman who had agreed to become babysitter/daycare about the end of December, wasn’t yet getting that weekly payment, so she applied and got a job.  Search and negotiations for a replacement are still ongoing.

Bad enough that the Employment Canada tentacle of the Federal octopus snatched away ten weeks of benefits, the Income Tax Department tentacle now added insult and injury.  The tax return that he had filed, and was accepted, back in April was re-reviewed, and for some reason, he owed $2300 – payable NOW!  There just is not, currently, the $250 available to pay for this gift.

Meanwhile, over at the gun shop….  They finally emailed him to inform that they did not have a previously-fired Berretta 92F, to substitute for a Glock.  The package had to be accepted as-is.  Oh well…. okay.  He and I had both assumed that we could just make a mutually agreeable appointment time – perhaps one afternoon during his time off.

The gun-shop does not want the clerk to be away from the main sales area for a random hour.  They are trying to book enough clients to fill an entire day, but especially with the resurgence of COVID, they are finding it almost impossible to do.  Neither of us is giving up hope.  It’s just that this little dream might not get fulfilled until this time next year.  If it ever comes to fruition, you’ll be the first second to know.  😀

Lyrical Fibbing Friday

This That week, Pensitivity101 wanted to know who could have written these 5 books or sung these 5 songs?

  1. From Here to Eternity.

It’s a publication found in any government bureaucratic service (Hah!) department, like the DMV.  By the time you read your way completely through it, you might be able to see the front of the line.
2. The Glass Mountain.

I. M. Pei, and he should be ashamed of himself. Going to the Louvre now is like going to hear a Bach concerto, and having AC/DC as the opening act.
3. The Shining.

The scullery maid in Downton Abbey, always busy polishing the silver – knives, forks, spoons, serving trays, teapots, candlesticks – it’s a never-ending job.
4. Little Women.

It is a communally-written biography by all 17 Kardashian mother and daughters.  It is regarded as high satire – by everyone except them.
An embarrassment of riches
Too much of a good thing
“O, wad  some Power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
It wad frae monie a blunder free us,
An’ foolish notion.”

  1. Pride and Prejudice.

Donald Trump, with a preface from Vladimir Putin

  1. I want it all

Mark Zuckerberg
7. Bat out of Hell

The local idiot who just got caught by the police, doing three times the speed limit, coming into the city.  Police claim that he was doing 200 Kmh in a 50 Kmh zone.  His defense was that he was only doing 150.  His car was impounded for 14 days.  He summarily lost his driving license for 30 days.  His court case may cost him $1000s in fines, and a further year’s suspension.  Aside from risking his life, and everyone else on the roads, he lends unwelcome justification to the Go Slow – Be Safe, do-gooder crowd.

They’ve already profaned innumerable city streets with speed bumps, chicanes, plastic Slow Down stakes in the middle of already narrow residential roads, rows of them stealing car lanes for bicyclists, rarer than blue moons.  They want to reduce the city speed limit from 50 Kmh to 40, the limit in school zones from 40 Kmh to 30, and now there’s a vocal group campaigning for, “Twenty Is Plenty.”  This will be the reason I’m late for my own funeral.
8. Space Oddity

The guy who started building his own house by erecting this frame.
9. Help!

That would be me, loudly and (not so) proudly, any given day that I’m blogging.  The Luddite support group called up to revoke my membership.  If it’s anything more complex than putting one word behind another, or sticking a picture in a post to demonstrate what my prose leaves murky, I am thankful that the wife took advantage of a government program to learn seven different computer programs.  She can make this PC sit up and beg for RAM.
10. For Your Eyes Only.

That shining scullery maid above, lied.  She does have a bit of free time, and she often spends it with the studly stable-boy.  She’s been known to drop her pinafore and let him curry her withers a bit.  Not wanting to be thought, “loose,” she assures him that the nicely rounded view is, For Your Eyes Only.  A new Papal decree says that priests and nuns can neck a little, they just can’t get into the habit.

Jack Fell Down

Jack fell down and broke his crown, and bureaucracy damn near killed him.

Actually, it was the wife who fell down.  She was just pulling up her pants after using the main-floor washroom, when her tinnitus, and other inner ear disorders upset her balance, and she keeled over backward, smacking her head against the door, and the floor.  Then followed five minutes of painful wriggling to move far enough so that the son and I could get the door open and help her up.

With COVID distancing mandates, it was three days before she even got a telephone interview with her doctor.  The doctor called at 2:00 PM.  When she heard of headaches, sleeping for 12/14 hours, and slurred speech, she suddenly insisted that we attend her clinic, immediately.

At 3:00 o’clock, she found bruising, and a droopy eye.  What we took to be a mild concussion, might be internal cranial bleeding.  She needs to know ASAP!  The city has two hospitals, but only one, shared, MRI machine.  A scheduled appointment could take weeks – too long.  She apologized, but said that, the only way to ensure an MRI today, is to go and sit in Emergency for seven hours.  Eventually, it will get done.

At 4:00 o’clock, we got the wife registered at Emerge.  It seemed simple.  Take the doctor’s work order out of the fax machine, and do the test as soon as a tech could be scheduled.  First, we waited twenty minutes to see a triage nurse.  She checked blood pressure, heart rate, blood-oxygen percentage and temperature, and directed us to the dreaded waiting room.  After another twenty minutes, another nurse showed up with a small cart, and took a blood sample for testing, and warned of a later urine sample requirement, and the need to see the on-call doctor before anything is done.

Then we settled in for the siege.  It is not first come – first served!  We know that she will be seen after the guy who slashed his fingers in a DIY accident, the woman with a bloody nose running down her face, and the young man knocked off his bicycle in traffic.  If we have to wait (and wait, and wait), at least we could enjoy the floor show.  Stupidity and larceny are in plentiful supply.

A chubby street hooker, with more ink than the New York Times, but no obvious distress, showed up.  A young homeless (?) woman, with a giant backpack and two stuffed shopping bags, managed to find a seat in the crowded room, to get out of the rain.  A young, female addict, who survived a minor overdose, stormed out and across the parking lot, still wearing the hospital’s blanket, and screaming, “Get away from me!  I don’t want to have anything to do with you!” at a boyfriend who has had enough, and is already half a block away.

Two security guards have an office with security monitors, just inside the entrance.  We caught a glimpse of them rushing outside, and chasing someone around the building.  Two male, and one female, Police officers patrol in and around the Emergency ward.  I looked for Tasers, but in tight quarters they might get grabbed.  At 6:00, I got her a coffee, and me a hot chocolate from the in-house Tim Hortons outlet, upstairs.  At 7:00 I got her a buttered tea-biscuit, and me a crème-cheese bagel.  It’s going to be a long night, and her diabetes needs to be fed.

At 8:00 a patrol-car cop brings in a young, female shoplifter.  He’s wearing a Taser, and she’s wearing handcuffs in front of her.  The wife later said that, around midnight, two cops brought in three young males involved in a bar fight, not only handcuffed behind, but also connected to ankle shackles.  One of them wailed that, He was just being paraded around, and everybody was going to know!

I had to reluctantly leave her alone at 8:30.  Our two little dogs have been locked in a cage for six hours.  The son needs the car to get to work at 10:30.  I was going to drive him across town, pick her up when she called, and drive back out to pick him up at 7:30 AM.  Already under work-stress, when he heard what was (not) happening, he took the night off, and ordered a pizza, because none of us was eating properly.

At 3:00 AM, she called to say that the (next-shift) doctor had examined her, and she was on her way to Nuclear Medicine.  At 3:45 she called to be picked up.  She entered the hospital at four PM, and finally got out at four AM.  The threatened seven-hour wait had stretched to twelve hours, for a five-minute test.  Thankfully, we now know that all is well.  Without any visible blood or injury, she still could have collapsed out of her chair at any moment.

Do you have a hospital horror story that you’d like to recount?  I will listen patiently, and commiserate.

Son Of A Gun

Or in this case, a grandson.  In an attempt to dilute and disperse my fanatical, homicidal, antisocial obsession with possessing dangerous weapons, he has already given me a

Sacrificial Stone Dagger
We’ll call it a Scottish letter opener.

And a



Gorgeous rapier
We’ll call it shiny, sharp and pointy.

The United States has recently endured several domestic terrorism attacks, where assault-type weapons have been used to murder numbers of people.  In an attempt to look like they’re doing something – anything – more of the wrong thing, and solving someone else’s problem, the Canadian Federal Government has passed legislation that further tightens gun-control laws that are already some of the most restrictive in the world.  At least temporarily, the purchase, sale, or transfer of legally-owned handguns has been suspended.

Unlike Hercules, the grandson cannot cut the Gordian Knot of bureaucracy, and present me with a Government-authorized pistol.  Ingenious little devil he, he has found a way to tap-dance past the restrictions.  It is legally permitted to hire the services of a licensed gun-shop/shooting range owner, who will provide supervision and safety instruction, and temporarily lend and allow me to fire, five of my favorite handguns.

A sixth, my more favorite, the Berretta Model 92, is not included in the offering.  I plan to (reluctantly) ask if it is possible to substitute it for one on their menu.  Being Canadian, I have only fired two hand-guns in my life – a Police .38 Special, and a .32 caliber Spanish officer’s semi-automatic, a darling little thing with shiny stainless steel, and mother-of-pearl handles, suitable as a lady’s purse gun, or in the don’t ask – don’t tell brigade.

I received this I Am Impossible To Shop For package as a Fathers’ Day present.  The grandson and I, and the range owner, will negotiate a mutually acceptable Saturday, probably near my birthday in late September.  This is the most useless, but at the same time, the most treasured bucket list present that I have ever received.

I’m sure that some, make us feel safe at any cost, even if we’re not, Chicken Littles will want to know why I want to fire these dangerous guns.  As Willy Sutton said, when they asked him why he robbed banks – that’s where the money is.  Or George Mallory (not Edmund Hillary), when asked why he climbed Mount Everest – because it’s there!  I feel no need to justify this adventure but, that’s where the enjoyment is, and, because I can.

I will employ my hundreds of hours of gun safety training to ensure that I don’t shoot myself or anyone else.  With my worsening essential tremor, I won’t reveal target scores.  It will be enough just to keep flying lead between the range walls.  I will report later on this guys’ escapade.  You’ll know me by my goofy smile.

Flash Fiction #278

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

WRITTEN IN STONE

We’re getting a new city hall??!  This is the third in fifty years!  Another monument to bureaucracy??!  😯

Drug addicts and paraphernalia litter the streets.  Guys sleep in alleys and on vents.  The police force, social services, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, abused women’s homes and food-banks are underfunded and overwhelmed.  Still, council budgeted $24 million, most of it siphoned from the capital contingency account.

This will be a glorious legacy project to exalt outgoing, long-time mayor Priapus Swaggart.  He must really know where the bodies are buried.  The drunks will appreciate a new, warm lobby to sleep it off in.

***

If you’d like to join the Friday Fictioneers fun, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

A Perfectly Good Day – Ruined!

 

The son recently collided with “What If?’
Somebody rear-ended him on his way home from work.

He left work at 7:30 AM.  Four or five blocks down the 4-lane, cross-town thoroughfare, he realized he’d forgotten his drink thermos at work, and went back to get it.  Back on the road again, he was soon humming along in the center lane, in light, 8 AM traffic.  Suddenly the car, two vehicles ahead, came to a complete stop, to make a left-turn across two lanes of oncoming traffic.  The car behind it slammed on its brakes, and the son managed an abrupt stop.  He just had time to look in the rear-view mirror to see a windshield way too close.

THUMP!!

Damn!

Now the What If kicked in.  What If I hadn’t gone back?  I’d be home, safe, having a snack.

The other driver works in the next city, 15 miles away.  He was also coming home after a midnight shift – a little tired, a little distracted, with perception, attention and reflexes a bit slowed.  The son lifted the tailgate, and used the big, flat storage surface as a writing desk to exchange information.  We both have the same insurance company, just different brokers.

Neither driver called the police, but someone must have.  Soon, a sport-brute, Police power-wagon pulled up behind them, and Officer Zygote turned on his flashers and climbed out.  The son said, “I felt like John Wayne in True Grit.  Hell, I’ve got work-boots older than this kid.  Is he really old enough to drive that thing?”

He spoke to the cop first.  They were just finishing when a steady drizzle began.  He and his co-worker passenger sat comfortable and dry in the back under the improvised awning, while the other two exchanged info in the rain.  It’s not the vehicle damage that’s the biggest piss-off.  The insurance company will pay to fix that.  It’s the lost time, and bureaucracy.

Already 30 minutes behind, the officer told them that they had to go to the Police Accident Reporting Center on the south edge of town.  The son dropped off his co-worker, and drove another 20 minutes to get there.  With COVID, you don’t just walk in and report.  There’s a sign on the door, instructing people to text an extension.  You are assigned a number, and wait your turn.  Thinking that there would be a delay, the son called home to report, and woke me.

He was immediately called in, and had to tell me that he’d call and explain later.  Cute, little, blond, female, Special Reporting Constable took his report, and slapped a Police sticker on the bumper.  She was impressed that he had all the necessary information at hand.  Car accidents do not bring out the best in people.  Many of them stumble in, not sure of their own name, much less the other driver’s, licence plates, insurance policy numbers, etc.

Now the clerical haze began to thicken.  First, the son re-called me, and explained.  When he arrived home, it was after 9:00 AM, so he called the actual insurance company.  Then he called the broker, and talked to the agent.  Then he called his passenger to tell him that he was now part of an official accident report, and might get a call from police and/or the insurance company.  Next, he chose one of the two authorized repair shops, called them, and drove over for an inspection and repair estimate.

Damn these all-electronic cars!!  Two of the three back-up proximity sensors don’t work.  The impact is barely visible to the naked eye, but the entire wrap-around bumper may have to be replaced.  A June-bug splat may take $2000/$3000 to fix.  We might never know the final cost.  The insurance company will pay, and the agents can argue it out.

On the way home from the body shop, the son heard a traffic report on the radio.  We have a report of a collision in the center, westbound lane, Victoria at Chestnut.  Property damage, but no report of injuries.  Be careful in that area.  The son said, “That was over an hour ago.  I’ve been home twice since then.  I always wanted to be on the radio, but not this way.”

Since the car would be in the shop for several days, he had to call a car-rental agency to arrange for a replacement.  He took a pain reliever and a muscle relaxant.  The wife told him to call the Chiropractor, who had an immediate opening, and took him in, but he had to later call the insurance company again, and speak to the Personal Claims clerk to get this, and continuing treatments, covered.

What if?  What if??  What If??!  Like the story of how a wasp in a car caused an accident and killed three passengers, such a tiny irritation has caused so much chaos and confusion.

***

We lost our handicapped parking permit.  We took it from our car, and put it in the rental.  When we returned the rental to the body shop, we both forgot to remove it.  A week later, some woman in a parking lot got pissy when we pulled into a handicap spot.  “Where’s the permit??”  The repair shop staff deny ever seeing it.  The young man from Enterprise, who retrieved and cleaned the rental, claims it wasn’t there.  Today, we begin the arduous bureaucratic, and possibly expensive, task of replacing it.

Smitty’s Loose Change #15

There are many people in this country today who, through no fault of their own, are sane.  Most of them are Atheists.

***

And God created the universe it expanded exponentially. Then god divided this sky from the sea that then created life and he told it to multiply. After this he added man and subtracted his only son.

Standing back he looked on in confusion and wondered why this equation didn’t work… At this point a mathematics teacher came over and said, “You forgot the brackets ( ).”  And that was the last time God worked with BEDMAS.

***

I recently got within touching distance of two original Volkswagen Beetles, within hours of each other.  I found the first at a French fry wagon.   (Don’t tell the wife! She thinks I’m still on my diet.) It was greenish-yellow, in decent shape, with a little rust, mostly in the rain-gutters above the doors.  The owner said that it was a ’75 model, and it had custom license plates that read KAFER VW.  That’s a deficiency of the License Bureau.  Kafer, translated from German, means ‘coffee(maker).’  What it should have read, was KӒFER VW.  The addition of the umlaut over the A, changes the meaning to ‘beetle.’

The next one I saw was Fire-Engine Red, and in pristine shape.  I saw no rust.  Even Beetles had year-to-year (tiny) model changes.  Slightly smaller and different-shaped tail-lights told me that it was pre-’73.  It had Historic license plates, and its owner said that it was a ’68 version.

FUN WITH NAMES

The service tech at my Kia dealership is named Faucher.  It’s a French verb that means to mow (grass) the lawn.  His Father worked for, then purchased and ran, a landscaping company, all his working life.

A farm boy that the school bus picked up on one side of my town, was/is named Coulter.  I recently discovered that a ‘coulter’ is a plowshare, a cutting wheel or bar, in front of an actual plow.

A farm girl that the school bus picked up on the other side of town, was/is named Collard.  Back then, I did not know of the cultivation and, mostly Southern culinary, use of collard greens.

***

To err is human, but to really fuck up, you need a computer – with a bureaucrat running it.  Locally, we have been blackmailed into recycling green waste.  Garbage pickup has dropped to every two weeks, but blue-bin and green-bin waste is collected every week.

The region has issued every dwelling two green bins – a small one to put kitchen scraps in, and a larger ‘garage’ one to repeatedly dump the smaller one into.  Compostable-plastic-lined paper bags to hold wet waste are available at all local stores.

The larger bin is 12” X 13 ½”.  The Region-approved bags are 8 ½” X 12 ½”.  No wonder it must be dragged to the curb each week – the bag isn’t big enough to fill!  The smaller one, which I use for cat-shit – (it’s compostable) – is 6” X 7”.  The bureaucrat-authorized bags for it are 3 ¾” X 7 ½“– so long that they partly collapse when inserted, causing loss of volume, and barely half wide enough, causing more lost space.  I sense two different departments, each too self-important to communicate with the other, (You change!  No, You change!) involved in this, and Dilbert in the middle, shaking his head.

***

We’ve all seen the movies, or TV shows…. The CSI forensic technician enters the crime scene.  He/she plucks one dust mote from the air, and a couple of tension-filled moments later, gives the age, sex, name, address, phone number, and shoe color of the culprit.  What then to think of this newspaper story??!

A body was pulled from a lake.  She (at least they got the sex) was 28 to 50 years of age.  28??!  Why not 25?  Or 30??  How in Hell did anyone come up with 28?  Was someone converting from metric??  She was between 4’ 5”, and 5’ 1”.  😯  😳  Put her on an autopsy slab and measure her!!

They didn’t give her weight, but did publish a nice photo of a bead bracelet she was wearing…. Oh, and she might have been Asian, based on the keen observation of her yellow complexion, and lycanthropic epicanthic fold at the eyes.

Remind me, if I die of suspicious causes, I should do it in the big city, not in West Hickstowne, where an exciting day for police is one that has a moose fall into someone’s pool.

***

N.B.

In the above VW story, I downloaded a capital A with an umlaut over it, and put it in my post.  For some reason, WordPress separated the A and the two dots, into two adjacent spaces, and I don’t know how to get them back together.  Just try to visualize it correctly.   😳

Gahh!!  I’ve Been Shot

Just found out that I qualify for the Pfizer vaccine….
….Apparently if you buy 20,000 Viagra a year, you’re a preferred customer.

Despite the incompetence and disorganization of the Canadian Federal Government, the Provincial Government, the Waterloo Regional Council, and the local medical association regarding COVID19 vaccinations – the wife and I each managed to get our initial shot on Easter Sunday, April 3rd.

The clinic was held at a new medical building, about a mile away.  This is where I took the wife last November, for her standard flu shot.  In the fall, they did a drive-thru system at one end of the building.  Since the main floor is not yet leased, with the volume of customers, this time we had to walk inside.

We were accosted by a greeter at the main door, who would not allow us in until we’d sworn that we were not suffering from a long list of medical ailments that I’m sure included leprosy.  I worry about the future of the human race.  There was enough hand sanitizer being splashed around to sterilize the entire next generation, not that it mattered to this crowd.  The clinic was for those over 70.  It looked like a false teeth and hearing aid sale down at Codgers-R-Us.

The bureaucratic duplication was thicker than usual.  The greeter directed us across the atrium, to a pre-screener, where we presented our health cards and gave our names, address, and birth dates.  This is something I learned to do long ago, when I received someone else’s dental anesthetic – plus my own.

We then proceeded to a screener in a large U-shaped room as big as half the building, which wrapped around the elevator shaft… where we presented our health cards and gave our names, address, and birth dates.  Following colorful dots on the floor that looked like the Easter Bunny had hopped through, the maitre d’ soon escorted us to a small table near the washrooms.

We were greeted by an Oriental man…. where we presented our health cards and gave our names, address, and birth dates.  He did not profess what medical training he might have.  He might have been the maintenance man, but he was quite quick and efficient.

We were given a cash register type of receipt, giving our names, Health Card number, date of injection, and the type of vaccine.  For the medically morbid, we did, in fact, receive Pfizer-Biontec COVID19 mRNA-PB.  He then directed us to a waiting area where we would be observed for any adverse reactions.

We sat for 15 minutes to prove that we could stand and move safely on our own, although there was a forest of canes and walkers.  Aside from possibly the hypo-wielders, most if not all of the attendants were volunteers – and there were a ton of them.  I don’t know how we maintained a 6-foot clearance.  The place looked more like the Wuhan wet market where COVID was born, than a socially-distanced medical recovery area.  It was like Jeff Foxworthy’s Grateful Dead Seniors Tour.  It’s Metamucil!  Take a hit. Pass it down.

I took the photo below as we left, during an unusual lull.  There were twice this many people when we sat down.  We then had to proceed to a liability-waiver, after-mission debriefing…. where we presented our health cards and gave our names, address, and birth dates – to prove that we were as hale and healthy leaving as we were when we arrived. We’re scheduled to go back for our second shot, and play this game again on Sunday, July 25th. 😯 For as many Stations Of The I-Was-Cross there were, it still moved though quickly and smoothly. Including the 15 minute cool-down period, we were in and out in half an hour.

If/when you get your chance, take it.  If I can do it, any wimp can do it.  The only reaction that I got was that the next day, I felt like the school-yard bully had punched my bicep.

How Not To Solve A Problem

Colt 1911

Yet another example of how legal Canadian gun owners – and not the criminals – face all the hassles

If you’re a legal gun owner in Canada, you’ve probably heard the buzz about how the Liberal government would like to ban all handguns. Maybe you’ve even begun to wonder why it is that every time there is a high profile shooting, “progressive” politicians come after you, rather than targeting criminals with illegal guns.

After all, over the last 25 years you’ve enrolled in (and passed) the government’s lengthy courses on the safe handling of firearms. You’ve applied for, and been granted a licence to possess firearms, and to buy ammunition.

For a time, when it was required, you registered every old gun you had, and every new gun you bought. You acquired (at significant expense) all the trigger locks and gun safes needed to comply with safe storage rules. You informed the government of your new address every time you moved. And when you went to renew your firearms licence, you dutifully informed the government of any changes in your marital or employment status.

You even went to the trouble of acquiring a transport permit to carry a gun from your home to an approved shooting range, locked in a case, locked in your trunk. And rather than stopping for a pee at a gas station, you held it on the way home because, technically, that’s what Canadian law requires.

If you are an official gun collector, you’ve even agreed to let police search your home randomly, without notice, once or twice a year. In other words, you’ve jumped through every new hoop that Ottawa could think up to burden law-abiding gun owners, in the name of solving gun crime.

Now you learn that’s still not enough. If they can figure out a way to do it, the Liberals want to take away any handgun that you own altogether. All of that is frustrating enough, but there’s something that you didn’t know, that will blow your lid: No-one who has ever been banned by the courts from owning firearms is subject to the same scrutiny.

Neither Canada’s criminal justice system, nor its police information computers, keeps track of the whereabouts of people subject to weapons prohibition orders. The federal firearms center reports that there are nearly 450,000 convicted criminals prohibited from owning firearms, including thousands who should be “monitored closely because of their high risk to acquire firearms illegally and use firearms in the commission of a subsequent offence.”

The Federal Government doesn’t keep track of people who have been banned from owning guns, as closely as it keeps track of ordinary duck-hunters, and target shooters. Here’s the ultimate irony – or is that hypocrisy? We know that the banned 450,000 already have criminal records, and we also know that crime rates among law-abiding gun owners are lower than for the population as a whole.

Governments who want to ban, restrict, or register legal guns in the name of reducing crime, are truly going after the wrong people. Of course, to justify this unwarranted targeting of legitimate gun owners, governments and police services have recently begun spinning the tall tale that legal owners are the No. 1 source of guns used in crimes, either because they have carelessly stored them and the guns have been stolen, or because they have sold their legal guns on the black market.

This is utter bullshit! Little by little, over the past few months, Public Safety Canada, the Toronto Police Service, and others, have been forced to admit that they have no data to support their contention that most crime guns start out as legal guns in Canada.

This is just another way that legal gun owners in Canada are being blamed for a problem that they have not caused. If governments want to reduce gun crimes, they need to stop wasting so much effort on the good guys who own guns.