This Ain’t No Dang Instagram

This is not Instagram, but an incredible simulation!

This past Sunday, with COVID’s permission, we had the entire family over to film another episode of Smitty’s Loose Change.  It was a delayed Easter, and an advance celebration of the great-grandson’s birthday, which is today.  (Oops!  Got my publishing dates mixed up.  It was yesterday.)

The culinary centerpiece was our version of a Black Forest cake.  Everybody eats – everybody helps.  Since the grand-daughter-in-law has come to love the base cake, and since it evades the grandson’s food allergies, she has learned to bake the spelt-flour/dark chocolate/mayonnaise cake.

The wife mixed up the whole-cherry sauce for it.  The grandson whipped the cream, fine-shredded a block of dark chocolate to sprinkle on it, and plated and served to everyone in the living room after dinner, while I wowed the crowd with my fantastic fork-work.

The daughter sent along some food for thought.

The grandson brought two 25 cent coins for my collection, from the East Caribbean States.  Canadian vending machines will reject American quarters because they are the wrong size and weight.  They cannot tell the difference between these and Canadian quarters though, which is how he got two of them in change.

The Grandson’s path from the bus stop to his housing complex, is along a community trail.  He spotted a piece of fluttering paper, and also brought a Nigerian 100 Naira note.  I did my usual money laundering, using warm water and liquid hand soap, getting rid of skin oils, dust, and COVID viruses.  Then I ironed it smooth and flat.  I have African bills from Zambia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and South Africa.  This was a welcome addition.

When I told the grandson that I had somehow lost the pictures of the stone cat for my The Year In Photos post, he riffled through his Smart phone, found them from 9 months ago, and emailed them to me again.  No excuses this time.  I claimed that I almost stepped on it, but the owner actually had it up on a porch railing, in the sun, much like a real cat.

At last, the star of the show, the closing act, the birthday boy himself, great-grandson, Rowan.  We thought that he might be getting Italian or Scottish red hair.  In a certain light, it seems that there is a slight, reddish cast to it, but in strong light, it shines a golden brown.  The women took another in, what apparently is going to become a tradition, a photo of four generations of males – me, the son, the grandson, and Rowan – showing how he develops, and the rest of us deteriorate, over the years.  😉

April, and this BEDA act, are rapidly drawing to a close.  Thanx for joining in the fun.  I’m going to slow down to my usual schedule again next week.  I have to!  One of the wheels on my walker has jammed.  😳

Where America Went Wrong

I’m pretty sure it happened somewhere between Plymouth harbor, and Plymouth Rock.

Great leaders have great ideas, and make great plans…. and then their selfish and moronic followers mutate them into something against their own best interests – and everyone else’s.

The Pilgrim Fathers (because they listened to the Pilgrim Mothers about as much as Arabs listen to Muslim mothers) sailed their flocks across the Atlantic to obtain freedom from religious harassment.

The Pilgrim rank and file, many of whom were quite rank, and abrasive, found a wide-open land with no controlling central government – a place where might was right, and inter-racial policy was established at the point of a flintlock.

These greedy idiots set a pattern of confusing freedom with rebellion.  Their descendants mistake liberty with licence.  They seize all their ‘rights,’ but refuse to accept responsibility.  They have turned independence into anarchy.

They care only about themselves, and not the country, or their fellow-citizens.  I ain’t getting’ no dang COVID shot, an’ I ain’t wearin’ no faggy mask.  40,000 folks was killed by firearms last year.  I got no gun trainin’, and I stick my loaded Glock under my pillow, where the kids can find it, but you can take my gun away from me when you can pry it outta my cold, dead hand.

There are several thousand middle-school graduate, ego receptacles, who call themselves Sovereign Citizens.   They claim that they are not part of the country, and are not subject to the rule of government.  They hold jobs in ‘the country,’ and accept payment in coin (bills) of the realm, but refuse to buy the land that they occupy, or pay taxes to fund the roads and infrastructure that they get to use.

Politics and religion are the two arenas where this problem is most noticeable.  #MeToo has become me only.  Red States vs. Blue States….  😯  Co-operation and compromise have become four-letter words. Freedom has become something that is not applicable to the whole, but rather, something that has been appropriated by the most vocal fraction.  ‘Woke’ is no longer a joke.  It is a tsunami of ego-trips that is washing away all care and consideration for others.  If only these arrogant assholes could be taught some good manners.

The problem isn’t that Johnny can’t read.  The problem isn’t even that Johnny can’t think.  The problem is that Johnny doesn’t know what thinking is.  He confuses it with feeling.  Once upon a time, schools used to teach students how to think.  More recently, they’ve been teaching students what to think.  Many of them have finally reached the point of teaching students not to think.

Is there a solution to this situation??  I fear not.  Perhaps it is just best to stand well back from the imminent, inevitable explosion.  Make friends with a ‘prepper,’ hope for the best, and ride it out.

If we’re all still here, I’ll see you again in a couple of days.  Keep your powder dry.   😳

I Have A Head Cold

Please be sure to disinfect your keyboard before commenting.

I have a head cold??!  WTF!!  How in Hell did that happen?

We have spent much of the last two years avoiding COVID.  In doing so, we have evaded most of the normal infections – colds and seasonal flu.  We (well, most of us) have worn masks, and sometimes plastic gloves.  We have remained at least six feet from others in public.  Canada, being the second-largest country in the world not currently invading the Ukraine, has enough room for polite Canadians to stay two whole metres from each other.

We have used antiseptic wipes and sprays on shopping carts and baskets.  We have doused our hands in pump-disinfectants.  My hands have absorbed more alcohol than I have.  I fear that the human race may die out, because the next generation will be sterilised.

The wife reluctantly admitted that she may have caused this.  She had to.  She was already complaining, two days before she gave it to the son, who graciously shared it with me two days later.  She feels that she might have been confused and misled by the relaxation of local mask mandates, into subconsciously thinking that COVID’s over, and not doing her due diligence, and sterilizing a cart that had been ridden in by someone’s snotty-nosed kid.

The son coughed himself awake all night.  The next day he was woozy and tired, not a good condition to be in while driving a forklift.  He called work to report an absence.  The HR Health Manager accepted that it was not COVID, but still didn’t want the rest of the shop infected, and enforced a five-day suspension – Thursday, Friday, fortunately Saturday and Sunday, and Monday.  When he called on Tuesday, his voice was still husky, and HR told him to take another day off.  He worked his Wednesday shift, and will work Thursday, and get Friday off with pay – a tough two-day week.

Like the son, the worst of the cold is not the aching head or scratchy throat – it’s the lack of sleep.  Two coughing people in the same bed means that neither of them gets any rest.  I’ve been dozing in the recliner and on the couch.  I just can’t wake up.  I could get up if there were a fire – in my pants.   😳

How quickly we forget how tough things can be.  We had a half-hour power outage Monday night, and had to talk to each other, because all the electronics were dead.  I complained that I had no shoes – until I met a man who had no feet.  I will have a Fibbing Friday post for tomorrow – hope to see you then.  😀

Tell Me If You’ve Heard This One – VI

Something old, something new,
something borrowed, something blue

BINGE-WATCH (verb)
To watch (multiple videos, episodes of a TV show, etc.) in one sitting, or over a short period of time
Due to COVID19, there’s been a shit-ton of this going on over the last two years.  Netflix may end up ruling the planet.

CHIASMUS (noun) Rhetoric
a reversal in the order of words in two otherwise parallel phrases, as in
“He went to the country, to the town went she.”

DECATHECT (verb) 1930-35
To withdraw one’s feelings of attachment from (a person, idea, or object), as in anticipation of a future loss
from de-cathexis, the investment of emotional significance in an activity, object, or idea.
He thought it best to decathect from his cherished toy, since he would soon have to sell it.

EPISTEMIC (adjective)
of or relating to knowledge or the conditions for acquiring it
An example of something epistemic is a journey to discover new sources of truth.

FOREMOTHER (noun)
A female ancestor
Virginia Woolf was the foremother of writers like Joan Didion.

HORSEFEATHERS (noun)
Something not worth considering
This usage refers to something which does not, and perhaps cannot, exist – like feathers on a horse.  In the MASH TV show, Colonel Potter’s usage of the term horse-pucky, is a euphemism for the round, puck-like material often found on the ground behind a horse.

INFIRMARY (noun)
A place (as in a school or prison) where sick or injured individuals receive care and treatment
A large medical facility
Like the forgotten roots of dis-ease, this word shows that it is used by those who are infirm.

FLOTSAM (noun)
the part of the wreckage of a ship and its cargo found floating on the water
material or refuse floating on water.
useless or unimportant items; odds and ends.

JETSAM (noun)
Goods cast overboard deliberately, as to lighten a vessel or improve its stability in an emergency, which sink where jettisoned or are washed ashore

LAGAN (noun) Law
anything sunk in the sea, but attached to a buoy or the like so that it may be recovered.

MAJORDOMO (noun)
A man in charge of a great household, as that of a sovereign, a chief steward
a steward or butler
a person who makes arrangements for another
Alfred was Bruce Wayne/Batman’s majordomo.
In the TV show, Magnum PI, Higgins was ostensibly the majordomo for the author, Robin Masters.  His name comes from the Irish Gaelic uiginn, meaning Viking.

MARMOT (noun)
Any bushy-tailed, stocky rodent of the genus Marmota, such as the groundhog
In 2021, Wiarton Willy, Ontario’s albino groundhog equivalent to Punxatawney Phil, died before Groundhog Day.  Somehow his handlers failed to mention that fact until late November.  They may still be looking for a replacement – for all the difference it makes.

MUFTI (noun)
Civilian clothes, in contrast with military or other uniforms, or as worn by a person who usually wears a uniform
A Muslim jurist, expert in the religious law
The Army agent behind enemy lines, tried to blend in, disguised in mufti.

SAGGITATE (adjective)
shaped like an arrowhead
Sagittarius, the name of the astrological sign of The Archer, the bowman, doesn’t actually refer to the bow, or the man, but to the arrow which is launched – for all the difference it makes.

STARDUST (noun) alternate definition
A naively romantic quality
There was stardust in her eyes every time her beloved entered the room.
Astrophysicist, Carl Sagan said, “We are all stardust.”  He meant, literally, that we are composed of heavier atoms which were produced when stars die and go (super)nova.

So, our vocabularies are expanding to match our waistlines.  I’ll be dropping some more great words in a couple of days, in a vain attempt to lose weight.   😉

Tweets For Twits

I can’t be everywhere, and do everything at once.  I’m only G.O.D.  so I prayed to my friend God, to increase Mankind’s average intelligence.  It’s a long, slow job, so He opened a Twitter account, to say some things on my behalf.

Homosexuality is not a choice.
Homophobia is.

Abortion should only be permitted in the case of rape, or incest, or when a woman wants it.

If I had wanted people to wear COVID masks, I would have made them with the ability to manufacture and wear them – which I did.

Most people who question the legitimacy of the COVID vaccine, do not question the legitimacy of a 2000-year-old book that says I had a son who rose from the dead.

I’m going to turn the Universe off, and then on again and see if that works.


He didn’t have a driver’s license either, dipshit


Wrong!  That’s why I gave you two hands.

Every word in the Bible is literally true.
It’s just when you group them together into sentences, that problems arise.

I don’t recall making you this stupid.

Funny, you never hear of anti-ventilators.

Next time, dogs own people.

Every dog is a therapy dog.

The same people who won’t believe the sea is rising, happily believe My son could walk on it.

There is no vaccine against stupid.
And if there were, the stupid wouldn’t take it.

Every day I meet more and more unvaccinated people.

Out of curiosity, where were you all planning to move, after you’ve destroyed the Earth?  Because I assume you’ve thought that through, right??!

At this point, the idea that I would ever “Bless America” is so absurd it’s funny.


And soon you’ll get to thank him in person.

This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful to those who don’t believe in me, for protecting the world from those who do.

Swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, ON A BIBLE, is one of life’s great ironies.

Will the owners of the blue planet between Venus and Mars, please attend to your vehicle!
It’s overheating!

Bullshit

I applied to be a god in India, but apparently they’re overstaffed.

The great thing about COVID is it’s willing to change to be part of your life.

The COVID vaccine is part of a secret Government plot to keep you alive, so that you can work productively and raise your children.

If you think I’m pro-life, you’ve never read the Old Testament.

Fuck You!

When someone says, “I have a right to my opinion.” They mean, “I have a right to someone else’s opinion that I found online.”

People, I can’t just ‘damn’ any ‘it’ that you’re mad at.  That’s a procedure. Do the paperwork.

The first step in saving life on Earth, is admitting that you are the problem.

I apologize to my non-American followers for the strictly US focus recently.
Now that the election is over, I promise to tell you how shitty your countries are too.

My Son’s middle name is Fucking.

I never would have made you this smart if I knew you were going to be this stupid.

When people say, ”Jesus take the wheel” they forget that He no longer has feeling in his hands.

Thinking that ”They’re out to get you,” falsely implies that you are worth getting.

I TOOK BETTY WHITE??!  NOW?
I am a terrible, horrible cruel, miserable God.

I am developing a new strain of anti-vaxxer that is even more resistant to reality.

Instagram and Facebook are currently not working, as are Democracy, Society, and a healthy sense of self.

Sometimes in life, all you need is for half the country to shut up.

MY NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
Lose twenty planets
Exorcise more
Blight more veggies
Work on the Upsilon variant
Bless fewer sneezers
Bless fewer countries
Save fewer Queens
Be more judgemental
Work more mysteriously
Floss

I cannot believe what people can believe.

He says it much better than I can, but He’s not done talking.  He’ll/we’ll be back.   😛

One I-Liners

How do you milk sheep?….
….Bring out a new iPhone and charge $1000 for it.

Darwin told his son….
….You’re adapted.

My computer just gave me an “Error 404” notice….
….That’s not right.  I’ve made a lot more errors than that.

My hands are consuming more alcohol….
….than my mouth.

If someone has sex on an airplane….
….Does it count as a flying fuck?

I once entered the World’s Kleptomaniac Championship….
….I took Gold, Silver, and Bronze

Infants don’t have nearly as much fun in infancy….
….As adults do in adultery.

Why did the chicken cross the Moebius strip?….
….To get to the same side.

I had to remove the battery from my carbon-monoxide detector….
….The constant beeping gave me a headache and made me feel sick.

I’m considering a life of crime….
….I’m going to run for Governor

How many surrealists does it take to change a light bulb?….
….A fish.

I’m glad I don’t have to hunt for my own food….
….I have no idea where sandwiches live.

Why do I always carry a knife??….
….The last time I tried to open a bag of chips with a 9mm, things did not go well.

I’m not crazy….
….I prefer the term, mentally hilarious.

Cowboys don’t roll joints….
….They tumble weed.

I joined a support group for procrastinators….
….We haven’t met yet.

Dwarves and midgets….
….Have very little in common.

I joined a group for Tourette’s sufferers….
….It took four hours to get sworn in.

I was born a male, and identify as a male, but….
….according to Stouffer’s Lasagna, I’m a family of four.

Without freedom of speech….
….We wouldn’t know who the idiots are.

Some people are such treasures….
….You just want to bury them

Maybe broccoli doesn’t like you, either.

Welcome to the Assumption Club….
….I think we all know why we’re here.

I hate peer pressure….
….And so should you.

I wish more people….
….Were fluent in silence

If a pig loses its voice….
….Does that make it disgruntled??

I thought the dryer was shrinking my clothes….
….Turns out it was the refrigerator.

I am currently experiencing life….
….At several WTFs per hour.

’21 A To Z Challenge – Y

As I reach my second childhood, I also reach back more and more to the comforts of my first.  Helping me put back more than a little familiar frivolity, is

YOUTUBE

There was a ‘Zits’ cartoon strip, where a 16-year-old male was asked what he did during summer vacation.  His answer was that he “Watched Netflix” – the whole, entire, complete, 100%, F**king, thing!

I can’t claim to have watched that much, but I’ve watched just about all of it that I want to.  Like social interaction, politics, and religion, I don’t care for the flavor of much of what passes for modern entertainment.  Netflix keeps commissioning tons of movies, but most seem to be made in foreign countries, and sub-titled or dubbed into English with varying degrees of (lack of) success.

I recently discovered that YouTube has a ton of old movies that the copyrights have expired on.  I’m often looking for some light comedy, to get my mind off things like, Trump In ’24, pandemic mandates, gas prices, and spiralling real estate costs.

First I found that they have almost every British ‘Carry On’ farce.  I’ll watch Three Stooges, but only the ones with Shemp Howard.  I’ve viewed some clips of Laurel and Hardy, trying to decide which complete movies I’ll watch.

I remembered The Bowery Boys.  Those films always used to provide some no-brain-needed amusement.  Research showed that they began as The Dead-End Kids, changed to The East-Side Kids, and finally morphed into The Bowery Boys.  YouTube has almost 50 of them on tap.  Most of them star Leo Gorcey, until he drank himself out of a job.  I’m going to look to see if any of the old black-and-white Flash Gordon, or Buck Rogers serials are available.

In between, I can dip into Charlie Chan flicks, and may begin re-watching Basil Rathbone’s Sherlock Holmes series.  My complaint about these movies is about the commercials.  I don’t object to commercials.  They’re a cost of doing business.  I used to have to endure commercials when I watched movies on network TV.

My complaint, and the difference between network and YouTube is; on network TV, commercials were inserted by a real, live human, who placed them in natural breaks in the action, or conversation.  YouTube commercials are inserted by a heartless, brainless computer, whenever the Hell its electronic brain feels like, in the middle of a scene, or a line of dialog.  “So tell us Charlie(INSERT ADVERTISMENT FOR ZEHR’S FOOD MARKETS HERE!)Chan, who is the murderer?  I am developing a lightning-fast, gamer’s thumb, clicking on that little button which reads Skip Ads!

Does anyone besides me have any guilty YouTube pleasures they wish to admit to, or any other suggestions for my viewing enjoyment?

Flash Fiction #277

PHOTO PROMPT © Lisa Fox

FORTRESS MENTALITY

With the advent of COVID, Bruce’s neuroses finally became useful.  Social distancing?  Check!  He was a loner, something of a sociopath.  No physical contact?  Check!  He didn’t like to be touched.  Disinfecting?  Mr. Germaphobe carried his own hand sanitizer and wipes.

Work from home?  He was a ‘Prepper’ who’d bought this bunker of an old stone barn and was fixing it up.  He’d laid in a ton of government-surplus dried foods.  The windmill pumped water through filters, and supported a satellite dish for phone and internet.  The roof was solid solar cells.

“Call me when it’s safe to come out.”

***

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.

The Year In Photos

Inspiration strikes – when Inspiration strikes.  This ‘Year,’ will begin and end on March 1.  Hang onto your seats!  Here we go.  The theme will be Chaos And Confusion.  I’ll be Chaos, if you’ll handle the confusion.

March 1/21 – the monthly Costco visit

COVID masks, COVID masks
COVID all the way
(To the tune of Jingle Bells)

March 8 –

We washed the son’s work jacket…. And his 10 year old flip-phone.
Might be the origin of the term “Clean and Jerk

March 15 –

The wife’s last visit to a Physiotherapist, for a pulled back muscle.
My last cold wait outside – here.

March 22

The neighbors’ version of Groundhog Day.  Canadian weather changes quickly in the spring.

March 29

It’s Ours!  It’s Ours!  It’s Ours!
Paid off a 25-year mortgage in just over 17 years.  Can’t decide how to celebrate – McDonalds for a sundae strains the entertainment budget.

April 5

Here we go round the Mulberry bush
Hardly a bush, this young tree was 6’ – as tall as the Grandson – when we planted it five years ago.  The winter’s snows have all disappeared.  Soon I will have to mow my back yard again.

Week of April 12

The daughter and I got some COVID freedom and fresh air when I drove her to a dental appointment.  During the wait, I rewarded myself with a visit to the second-best French fries outlet – on the other side of town.  Finally open for the season at Easter, in a freestanding ex-Dairy Queen building.

W/O April 19

With a great-grandson on the way, the wife went into nesting mode.  She knitted a 36” X 48” crib blanket.  The checkerboard pattern is ‘Wee Bean,’ for our oncoming wee bean.

W/O April 26

Step on a crack – Break your Mother’s back
I’ll set you straight.
A visit to our Chiropractor.  Just another on the long list of our medical specialists.

W/O May 3

Our magnolia bush.  Its blossoms only last a couple of days, but it’s gorgeous while it lasts.  Usually it is completely covered in blooms, but a late-April freeze and snowstorm delayed/killed about half the flowers.

W/O May 10

A shopping trip past the new Google building, erected on the bones of my old auto-parts plant.

W/O May 17

Took the wife and daughter to Podiatrist, in a renovated Century-house.
At least the COVID wait outside was getting warmer.

W/O May 24

A visit to the daughter, held up by the new LRT Street Railway.  It sure holds up a lot of non-PC, car traffic, while it transports a half-dozen eco-friendly hipsters.

W/O May 31

When I finally get past that damned street railroad, this is the daughter’s single-level, handicap townhouse apartment.

W/O June 7

She doesn’t rub me the wrong way.
The ‘Happy Ending’ at our massage therapist is loosened computer-shoulders.
Dolly Parton once said that it cost a lot of money, to look that cheap.
It is fortunate that it’s my retirement benefits package which pays so much, to keep us in good physical shape.

W/O June 14

A free, origami Lotus blossom, picked up at our Multicultural festival, before COVID struck.  It represents peace and tranquility – I need all I can get.

W/O June 21

A trip to our out-of-town Vet, past 1920s Commemorative ‘Pioneer Tower,’ to recall the 1820s arrival of Pennsylvania Dutch/ German immigrants

W/O June 28

The best French fry wagon in town.  Sure looks permanent, for a trailer.  Hello delicious.  Goodbye diet – and I found a new little knife.  See Look Sharp

W/O July 1

To celebrate Canada Day on July 1, the son adopted an immigrant.  It crawled over the remains of Trump’s wall, shouting, “To Hell with Dia de los Muertos, I’m here for the Maple syrup.”

W/O July 8

The replacement building at the nearby Farmers’ Market for the wooden structure that burned, five years ago.

W/O July 15

The nearby branch of the city library.  With up to 5000 total books per day located, moved and curbside delivered, these folks were local heroes, getting me and many others through the lockdown.

W/O July 22

My 1952 print dictionary, which I am giving up for digital.  2000 pages for $20.00 – purchased at a country schoolyard flea-market in 1972, in Mar Ontario – population 4.

July 25

The wife and I finally got our second COVID vaccination.  That’s one infection you don’t need to worry about contracting from me.

W/O Aug. 5

 

Ex-Public Utilities Commission building which handled the 20th Century electrification of Kitchener, and eventually   became the Grandson’s Starbucks.

W/O Aug. 12
*

A lovely, hand-made glass flower that the daughter gave us.  I stuck it in a planter on the back deck.  Storm winds turned it slightly.  The neighbors worried that we’d installed a security camera – facing them.

W/O Aug. 19

I helped the grandson pick up a new chair for his mother, and almost stepped on this cat.
(It was a carved stone cat which we both thought was real  The photo may be added later…. if I can just find it.)  😛

W/O Aug. 26

Perhaps the most boring week of my life – not that I’m complaining.  At my age, boring is good.  The most exciting thing that happened was my newspaper got delivered.

W/O Sept 14


I discovered that my Lilac bush was growing crab-apples, which I could make crab-apple jelly with.

W/O Sept 21

I did it! I lasted long enough to celebrate my 77th birthday.  We voted in a Federal election the day before.  I did not get the present of a new Prime Minister – one who wasn’t a spoiled trust-fund baby.

W/O Oct 11

Canadian Thanksgiving.  COVID restrictions on group size had been relaxed, and all of us had had two vaccine shots.  We were all able to gather for a family meal, with the GREAT-grandson (above) as the honored guest.

W/O Nov. 8

COVID19 is going down for the count.  The Americans let vaccinated Canadians into the country – but the Canadian bureaucrats insisted on a $200 test to get back into Canada. Soon, Galleria and Boulevard Mall, soon.

W/O Nov. 15

Spring has sprung – Fall has fell – and there’s 6 inches of Partly Cloudy on my Canadian deck.  I published this photo a few years ago, but it’s become ritual with this home-owner.  This year’s version is indistinguishable.

W/O Nov. 22

Those who do not learn from the mistakes of history, are doomed to repeat them.
George Santayana

Dec. 2

The relaxation of COVID19 restaurant restrictions allowed us to go to Red Lobster to celebrate our 54th wedding anniversary.

W/O Dec. 5

And the lion shall lie down with the lamb
With our three cats and two dogs, our Vet wonders if they get along with each other.

W/O Dec. 12

Two weeks ago, I took two quarters from a pay phone slot.  Last week I found a dime in a change-counter machine overflow.  This week I found 61 pennies, because the machines are now set to eject them.  15 of them were American – which went in our We’ll get to Detroit for a weekend shopping after COVID, fund.

W/O Dec. 25

At a COVID-permitted family Christmas gathering, I found some strange man holding my GREAT-grandson Rowan back, to keep him from lunging at the camera.

W/O Jan. 3

Well, here’s another fine year we’ve got ourselves into. (Laurel and Hardy – here’s another fine mess) Survive, or submit, it’s up to us to make the best of it.

W/O Jan. 10

We don’t have enough knives in this house, so we adopted yet another, which came back to the son’s plant in an ‘empty’ shipping container.

W/O Jan. 17

To get our third COVID (booster) shot, we had to go downtown, to the recently-ex Regional Municipal Building.  Are more COVID and booster shots still in the future??  Will this never end?

Jan. 31

I think I can.  I think I can.
I thought I could.  I thought I could.
Slow and steady wins the race.
After ten+ years, I published 1500 posts.

W/O Feb. 19

COVID restrictions relaxed – again, just in time to book a reservation to celebrate the wife’s 73rd birthday.  Dining was at half capacity.  Our timing was perfect.  Everyone else found out about it, and the NEXT DAY you couldn’t get a table at gunpoint.  😯

March 1/22

*

So we end the year right where we began it – at Costco – only a little closer to free food samples again.

Thanx for strolling through a year in my life – lotsa good readin’, if ya like pitchers.  I will be purveying prose on Friday.  C U then.  😀

Woke Up, Kitchener!

I had hoped that all this Woke Society/Cancel Culture, delusional fad-du-jour would remain in the Excited States.  Alas, t’was not to be.  This is the Information Age, which means that it’s on the internet, and spreading faster than COVID.  It has wafted North across the border, and settled on Canada like wildfire smoke, including in my usually staid, sane-thinking Kitchener.

The first symptom developed a couple of years ago, when a local artist donated a bronze statue of Sir John A. MacDonald, Canada’s first Prime Minister and the one in charge of the beginning of Indian residential schools, where thousands of unmarked graves are only now being found.

A huge fuss was raised to prevent the statue from being put in the big, down-town park.  It eventually was shipped to a small town, ten miles west, where there is an historic mini-mansion.  It was doused with red paint twice, and finally knocked off its pedestal.

More recently, the statue of Queen Victoria in her namesake park has been painted red twice.  While she was mostly a figurehead monarch, apparently she’s being blamed for British colonialism.  A brown-skinned immigrant from India has started a petition to rename the city.  Beginning as ‘Sand Hills,’ it became ‘Ebytown,’ and then Berlin, Ontario.

105 years ago, the woke generation of English-speakers demanded that the town change its name, to show loyalty to Britain during WW I.  The local German burghers didn’t really care.  Victoria, the ‘English’ queen, was actually German nobility, from the House of Saxe-Coburg-Anhalt.

British Lord Kitchener’s name was a last-minute addition to a referendum with six names.  The outstanding feature of the plebiscite was the absolute indifference displayed by the ratepayers.  With about 10,000 voters, (All of them men  😯 ) only 892 bothered to cast a ballot, and the name Kitchener got a plurality of 346.

Kitchener (the man) was not excessively colonialist, or racist.  He was just steeped in the unthinking beliefs of the time and place.  White, British males held a Manifest Destiny to own and control the world.  It is a huge mistake to try to retroactively apply 21st Century morals.

In 1973, Waterloo Lutheran University went public, and adopted the name Wilfrid Laurier University, partly to honor the subject of my Where’s Willy post, and partly so that they could retain the same initials – WLU.

Now there is another petition being circulated to have that name also changed.  True, Willy helped administrate the residential Indian school system which damaged so many Indigenous, but, like Lord Kitchener, he did what he did out of an honest belief that it was in their best interests.

I think that we are taking this name change of streets, cities, schools, etc. way too far.  The past is the past, which we cannot, nor ever will be able to, change.  Really people, this needs to stop.  Move on.  We need to learn from it, not bury it.

I ask the woke folk to take a good look in the mirror, and ask themselves two questions.  “Looking back at your very short existence and past behaviors, is there anything that you now regret doing and would do differently if you had the chance?”  Judge not, lest ye be judged.  Let he who is without sin, cast the first stone.  “Second, how did Canada become one of the best counties in the world in which to live?  Could it be because of the leaders of the past – the ones whose contributions and reputations you so eagerly want to tarnish?”

Name changes are not only inconvenient, but are also very costly.  Anything that’s associated with a data-base which contains addresses will be affected.  Passports, drivers’ licences, health cards, property and automobile ownerships, Federal, Provincial and municipal taxes, utilities accounts, postal services, road signs, mapping, GPS – the list goes on and on.

Come on, Snowflakes!  Nowhere in the American or Canadian Constitution are you guaranteed the right not to be offended.  😳