Sunday, 24 September 2017

HAPPY BIRTHDAY

I suppose that I should write something today since it is my 65th birthday.

I have never been very concerned about the passing of time and this birthday isn’t any different than the many that came before. I am officially a senior citizen now in the eyes of the government and any business that have special prices for senior citizens. I imagine that there will be fewer and fewer of those deals since all of us baby boomers will be taking advantage of the deals and having an effect on the bottom line.

We had the family over for a celebratory birthday meal that ended with cake, ice cream and jello. We have to have a variety because Hurricane, Tornado and Tsunami (the grandkids) can be unpredictably picky eaters. Imagine not wanting cake and ice cream in favour of plain Cherry Jello!

I received gifts, but when you get up in years you have pretty much everything that you want and need, so the gifts tend to be gift cards. Always appreciated, but unnecessary. The things that I really want are much too pricy for anyone to buy for me and to tell the truth I am not sure I would want them if I did get them. The attainment of one’s goals is rarely a good thing because it leaves you goalless.


Anyways, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to me and with any luck I will be around next year and for years to come.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Off To Save a Life

Today Louise and I will once again donate blood. It is the one thing that I do which insures that I will actually save someone’s life.
Image result for canadian blood services

Sure I can simply stop talking and whoever I am with will think they have been saved from a fate worse than death, but that isn’t real death. Well…probably not.

The blood donor clinic has moved from its old location to new digs right downtown. I have been assured that there will be ample free underground parking available. Normally I wouldn’t believe it, but the nurse telling me was pretty pissed off because the employees didn’t get free parking so the move to them is like taking a pay cut. Who doesn’t like to take a pay cut? My worry is that the good nurses (the ones that can find a vein) will look for work elsewhere and I will literally get stuck with a cross eyed nurse with Parkinson’s. I will let you know how things work out today.

So, since it is a relatively early appointment and I don’t like to be late for anything, we have to get up around 7:30AM. I need to wash and dress, eat and have some drink with caffeine in it and give myself time enough to shake the cobwebs from my mind. There is also an online questionnaire that needs filling out and printing so that it needn’t be filled out at the clinic. I liked filling it out at the clinic, but I suppose I shouldn’t stand in the way of progress. The Q-Pass can somehow be put on my smart phone, but my smart phone has a less than smart owner so I need to print off the pass. It all takes time.

I should have set the alarm and I did mean to. However I didn’t.

I put on a jesters hat and went to tuck the kids in for their afternoon nap. Maegan and Brendan were still in cribs and Arwen had graduated to the big girl bed. They all smiled a sleepy smile at silly daddy and their eyes closed while they entered dreamland. I should have started to clean up the house or at least get prepared for the onslaught when the kids woke up, but instead I lay down for a short rest. I could hear water dripping or was it the dog’s breathing? I tried to ignore it, but the rhythmic sound continued. Try as I might, no matter how tight I shut my eyes the sound continued. I got out of bed and when I got to the hallway there was a large mouse. I had never seen a mouse that was three feet long before and usually mice tend to run away from humans, but this one seemed angry and bent on revenge. I had killed a few mice in recent days, but they broke the unspoken agreement where they live outside and I live inside. The big mouse didn’t agree. I explained that we had to go and give blood today and that the family would be over tomorrow, so today wasn’t a good day for it to kill us since when we were found dead or missing an exterminator would be called. Thankfully, mice aren’t very smart, even very large mice.
 Image result for princess bride rodent
I have no idea what the dream means, but it did wake me up plenty early. If tonight I hear water dripping or the dog breathing I will send Louise out to check on it.


Well, I’m off to save a life.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

The Rest of Your Lives

Today is back to school day 2017.

The kids are all excited and dressed in new “back to school” duds which will hopefully tell all their friends how much cooler they are this year than they were last year. Some kids won’t have new clothing because their parents don’t understand the need or they simply don’t have money to spend on new clothes when the old clothes are perfectly serviceable. They all will have new binders, duo-tangs, pencils, pens, rulers, calculators/computers and hopefully a new attitude to learning. Exciting times!

The parents are relieved to have the kids back in school. They don’t have a need to find things to entertain them and keep them occupied for weeks on end. No more camps to send them to and no more vacation days to spend because the day home operator wants a vacation week or two. Of course the parents have to come up with the school fees and pay for all of those items I mentioned in the first paragraph. I hated the fees when my kids were going to school. No, I didn’t mind the fees, what bothered me most was getting nickel and dimed every week for something else all through the school year.

On the whole, back to school is a good thing for all involved.
Today when Buster and I were on our walk, I met a woman and her young son coming into our street. I thought that she was returning home with the little one after dropping an older child off at school. Turns out that she home schools her child and was coming back from a walk and about to hit the books. I wished her well and Buster and I went on our way.

Buster mentioned that he wasn’t sure about the effectiveness of home schooling. He had a couple of good points, wondering if the parents had to have any minimum education standard or aptitude for teaching. I know that I couldn’t teach my kids how to cut the lawn, never mind new math. We decided that the province probably has all of this under control and carried on trying to find the perfect spot to drop a load.

I wondered if some parents decide to home school because in the short term it is less expensive than going to regular school. I have no idea what the actual cost is or what hoops you have to jump thru to teach your own kids the skills they need to become productive members of society, but I am sure it isn’t easy.

I suspect that for most parents who home school want control of curriculum and perhaps to be able to direct their kids away from or towards some religious belief. I know of a mom who decided to home school to keep her kids from being picked on by the other kids at the school. It certainly solved the immediate problem, but I have often wondered what the long term effects have been. I have met the kids over the years and they seem to be as normal and well adjusted as kids that went to school. I guess by that I mean they haven’t taken a high powered rifle into a tower at some university and started killing random strangers.

They are still young...ish.


Anyways, to all of those kids and parents out there, I hope you have a good year and learn things that will stay with you for the rest of your lives.

Monday, 7 August 2017

Try To Make Someone Smile

I am not what anyone would call a religious man. Sure there have been times in my life when prayer seemed like a good idea and times when I would gladly have made a deal with the devil.

For a number of years I went to church on a regular basis, listened to the sermons and afterwards I would mill around talking to the other parishioners drinking that horrible church coffee. I did some odd jobs around the church and was in a Christmas play once. That didn’t mean that I believed any stronger then than I had in the past, I just needed the sense of belonging at that time in my life. I tell myself that I wanted the kids to have a solid knowledge base so that when they decided that religion was bunk they knew what they were talking about.

Well, as much as anyone can “know” about religion.

Sometimes I envy those who have a very strong belief in a loving God and rewards in the afterlife. When I was working as a mailman, I wore a uniform to work and every day I knew just what clothes I had to put on. Uniforms take that early morning decision making of what to wear away from you and protect you from the wagging tongues about your choice in fashion. It would be wonderful to wake up every morning and KNOW that you had a place reserved for you at the right or left hand of God.

Religion is based on belief and belief is not an iron clad certainty so no one can be sure that they will end up in whatever version of heaven they happen to believe in.

My faith seems to alter almost every time I really start to think about it. Not a lot you understand but enough to keep it fluid. The basic precepts remain the same, be nice to people if I can, try to do the right thing in any given situation, do my best to leave this world just a little better than it was when I arrived. The last one is tough because it is difficult to make even a tiny change. I think I will have to hope that the people I have chosen to surround myself with during my life will have learned something from me that improves them and their world. It is likely that what they learn is what not to do, but that works for me.


I hope that when you read this you are having a good day and try to make someone smile if you can.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

Easy

Generally speaking, if something is “easy”, that something just isn’t worth doing. Well, that seems to be the general consensus in our society. If you work hard for a long period of time with multiple failures along the way, then you have somehow succeeded. You’re worn out and near death, but yea…success.

There are of course those that manage to succeed the easy way. I guess the easiest way to succeed is to be born into a wealthy, hard working family who have generations of struggle and success behind them. Then, you can be the ne’re do well that just wants to enjoy the fruits of that labour. Of course this is all speculation because I don’t have first hand experience at being wealthy. There was a chance I could have been born wealthy. I understand that my great or great, great grandfather came from a well to do family that owned a lot of real estate in downtown Toronto. It is possible that one of those great, greats was the one who decided to screw work and start to piss the family fortune away. I guess I was just too little, too late.
cartoon 
I have a feeling that the Puritan work ethic was developed to keep the masses in line. I remember reading that societies based on hunting and gathering would work about four to six hours a day. I am assuming that would be the norm if there was an abundance of food to gather and animals to hunt. When we were in Hawaii we found that when the first Europeans arrived at the islands there was a population of about a million people and they were totally self sufficient. Today with all of our labour saving machines and improved farming and production techniques, there are 1.5 million or so people and 95% of food and goods are imported. From talking to the people, they work much longer than four to six hours a day.
 Image result for early hawaiian natives
I don’t know if those figures are accurate, but it seems that in our current political climate we are able to create facts and figures to suit any situation.
 Image result for lazy rich kids
Anyways, all I really wanted to say is that it is really very easy not to write a daily blog. My life is pretty much the same except that I have a little more time each day to put to more productive uses. Nah, just kidding, I am watching more TV and reading fluffy, mindless drivel. Strangely, I feel that I am letting myself down. I know that no one else needs to have this blog, but I think I do. If nothing else, at the end of a lazy day I can say that I have at least written something. Sometimes I am even proud of what I have written, not often, but sometimes.


Hopefully I will be able to find the time to be a little more productive in the future.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

A Long Day

I am sitting in the backyard and it is 9:30 PM. It is still light, still warm and the neighbour kids are still playing instead of sleeping. Everything is good.

Normally, it is far too cool for me to sit outside at this time of night, but we are smack dab in the middle of a heat wave that shows no sign of letting up. It isn’t a heat wave like my friends in Ontario endure from time to time. It will still cool down to 13 or 14 and be quite nice for sleeping. Well, until that fucking crow starts up at 5:30AM. It could be a fucking magpie, but whatever it may be…if I ever get my fingers around its neck…

According to the weather network there is really no end in sight. I put off installing the air conditioners in the kitchen and bedroom because last year we only had one day over 30 and just not worth the effort to install them. This year is going to be a warm one though. I put them in the other day and am still experiencing the effects of strained muscles. I think this will be the last year I don’t ask for help from Brendan. It won’t be any easier, but shared misery is much preferable to just plain old misery. It will be six or seven years before I trust Hurricane and Tornado to help.

Let’s see, what else you don’t care about. The garden is growing more or less. Some of the plants are more and some are less. The roses are doing really well and I treat them badly. Not intentionally, but just thru ignorance. The tomatoes are doing Calgary well; they are growing and will produce tomatoes. I don’t know if they will ripen on the vine, but I live to dream. My potatoes are doing well but I have no idea what I did to help them along. Probably stay away from them is the key. The onions are growing as are the carrots. The carrots aren’t doing as well as they should and I have had several stern talks with them to no avail. We planted bell peppers this year and they haven’t died yet which I think we can all agree is a good thing.

If the weather stays warm, the crop should be a bumper one. By a bumper crop I mean that the garden produced more food than I could have bought with the money I spent on the plants. No, I don’t get a lot of satisfaction from watching my garden grow, that is what Mary, Mary does. The food tastes better I guess but I am not and never have been a foodie. Just boil it, toss it on a plate, salt, pepper and butter will make anything taste good.

Well, I have to go and psyche myself up for tomorrow; it is going to be a long day.


Wednesday, 28 June 2017

A Guy Has To Make a Living

I have been writing a blog now for a number of years and for the most part it has been an interesting way to spend part of my day. Sometimes it is just an onerous task, but for the most part no one gets to read that because I just don’t write. That works for everyone.

I don’t have a large following or what anyone would call a following at all. Just a few curious people that check it out from time to time. They are like people rubber-necking while driving past an accident scene. They have interest, but not the morbid curiosity that would cause them to get police scanners so they wouldn’t miss any of the gory details. My followers would never go out of their way to read this drivel and quite frankly, I don’t blame them.

On the particular blog platform that I use, I am able to change the way my page looks, control who reads it, read any comments that anyone might make and check the statistics of who is reading and where they are. I can see what their web browser is, where it is located and how they got to my blog. I don’t mess with the look of the blog and there are rarely any comments, a few from friends agreeing with my opinion, but not so strangely, few of those. I do get some cryptic comments every now and then and I am convinced that spies use random blog comment boards to pass secret messages to each other. The bulk of the comments seem to be from non English speaking countries. I suspect that reading and commenting on a blog is part of an English as a second language course. The words are correctly spelled and probably every sentence has a verb, noun, adverb and dangling participle needed for correct structure. They just seem odd and really quite meaningless. I like to think that those odd comments are high praise in whatever language they are most comfortable with.

More often than not lately, when I check the site that led some poor, unsuspecting soul to my blog I find that I am at a Slovakian bearing companies web site. Slovaks need bearings too and probably more than most. I wonder just how bored the Slovak employee had to be at work to struggle through reading my blog. I have to assume that English wouldn’t be a first language and probably not even a second one. French or Bulgarian would be much more useful in the Slovak bearing industry.

I get my fair share of comments from European or Russian porn sites. I assume they are porn sites from the pics of naked women, but they could be models in the Russian version of Victoria’s Secret. I don’t read Russian so I am really in the dark. I suppose it could be a catalogue to find an Eastern European woman that is looking for a North American husband. Sorry ladies...I’m taken! Get back to me when and if Louise ever comes to her senses. You would think that I would enjoy getting linked to from porn sites. I’d rather that bored office worker in Bratislava struggle through my site.

Maybe the porn sites and bearing manufacturing places are getting me down. You know, I just had a thought. What if the same guy in Bratislava is running the porn site and teaching ESL on the side at night. Anything is possible…

A guy has to make a living.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Buster Can Be a Real Dick Sometimes


If anyone has read this blog for any amount of time, they would have read about my dog Buster. Buster and I go for walks together where he gets to smell all sorts of interesting things, sometimes if I am not watching he will skarf down something dead and or rotting by the sidewalk. We both manage to get some exercise and I think he likes it when I have to pick up his shit on a corner of a busy intersection. He can be a real disk sometimes.

The rest of his day is spent either sleeping or sitting at the window keeping an eye on the neighbourhood. He missed the guy across the street getting all of his tools stolen from his garage, so I question just what he is looking at. There is this high school girl that he just hates and will bark at until she is well out of sight. He also barks at other dogs, birds (he hates birds), some cars that drive by and the guy that drops off the flyers once a week. Oh, and he barks at the wind, ghosts, hallucinations, airplanes, his reflection in the window, odd shaped clouds, time travellers and me if I appear to have dozed off on the couch. He can be a real dick sometimes.

Last fall I replace the old screen door that had a doggy door with one that actually kept the winter wind out. This impacted on Busters ability to run outside so that he could bark when the urge came upon him. The house was much warmer this year and the heating bill was a trifle less than previous years which made me happy. Buster not so much. However, the little jerk continued to bark and I would have to get up and open the door so that he could bark when he really ...really....really needed to. Thankfully we have a PVR so that I could pause my show no matter what mind numbing TV trash I happened to be watching.

Well, this spring we took a vacation for a couple of weeks and there was a wedding to go to which caused Buster to be pawned off on very nice in-laws with an acreage. He loved it up there, running free like his wolf ancestors had. The wolf ancestors probably didn’t have a bowl of food waiting for them when they finished running and when they slept it probably wasn’t on a king sized mattress. Even so, I am sure he missed me.

While we were away, I happened to see a wooden screen door at Norms Deli in Bowmanville. Great perogies, cabbage rolls and Kielbasa. The door was the kind that I remembered from my childhood in cottage country. It was basically just a frame with a very large screen area to let in the maximum breeze and minimum flies. I looked at the door and thought to myself that it wouldn’t take a lot of skill or materials to make a door like that with a doggy door. I could have fun making something I don’t really need and assuage my dog guilt at the same time.

So, that is what I have been doing for the past couple of days. I brought my lack of skills and left over materials into the garage and began constructing. Long story short, I am pretty much finished with the door.

Hopefully tomorrow will see me begin some other useless project. I just have to install a push bar to keep hands from going thru the screen and a little bit of trim work. It isn’t a work of art, but I feel good that I actually built a door and it works!

Buster isn’t as impressed as I thought he would be. It seems that he enjoyed making me get up and letting him outside. He is reluctantly starting to use the door, but it is under protest..

Buster can be a real dick sometimes.


Saturday, 3 June 2017

Dickie Dee…Again

I suppose that when I was a kid if the ice cream guy came by I would run into the house and pester my mom for a popsicle, Buried Treasure, Creamsicle or any of a number of ‘sicle things. I would go to my mom because there was a very slim chance I would get one from her and no chance at all if I went to my dad. In those days, the ice cream man was a teenager peddling a bike with a large cooler on the front filled with his merchandise and probably dry ice to keep things cool. The kid would ring bells as he rode around the neighbourhood to give advance warning to all the kids that it was the time of day we should go and pester our moms.

Flash forward twenty five years or so and I would hear kiddie songs being played over a loudspeaker that heralded the arrival of the Dickie Dee ice cream guy into our neighbourhood. I hated that guy! Times had changed for the ice cream guys, now they drove trucks filled with more product and I imagine they were able to cover more ground, pissing off more parents as they did. I heard that sappy music and saw my kids make a beeline to their mom. It kind of hurt, but they knew that I would never buy anything from one of those guys. I wouldn’t buy anything if I were dying of thirst in a desert.

Sometimes, Louise wasn’t around when the ice cream guy came around and I would tell my kids that I would gladly take them to the corner store and buy them a popsicle. I knew that the store popsicles were ten times less expensive than from the truck. The kids would whine and say but “The popsicles in the truck are shaped like a rocket ship!” I would mutter something like “Sure they do, the prices are out of this world.” Let’s just say that if the kids have any ill feelings they harbour about me, one would be caused by the Dickie Dee guy.

I had the feeling then and I still have the feeling that May to September should be open season on Dickie Dee. I would gladly have shot and had the head mounted on my rec room wall. Maybe that’s just me and I need to see a therapist.

A couple of days ago I was sitting in the backyard enjoying unseasonably warm weather for June 1st when I heard the distant sound of music. The music came closer and a little more distinct as I knew that it would. I don’t have any little ones around any longer so I didn’t break out in a cold sweat. I was just intrigued by the selection. The ice cream guy was playing “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”. Personally, I love Christmas music and will listen to it year round. I am aware that a lot of people feel that it should only be played in the month or two leading up to Christmas. I can’t imagine what those parents of young kids were thinking when they heard the Christmas music being used to entice the kids to buy those rocket shaped popsicles.

I can almost hear the shotgun blasts...


Friday, 19 May 2017

Waiting

It seems that a large part of my life is spent waiting. I wait for the weather to change so that I can walk the dog. I wait for people to get ready to go and have coffee with me. I wait for my favourite TV show to come on or for the producers to make more episodes for me to watch. I wait in traffic because someone doesn't have a firm grasp of how to control a vehicle weighing two tons speeding along the highway at 130 KMH. 



I wait...I wait...I wait...

Right now I am waiting and watching the hands on the clock slowly turn and in a short while we will go out to eat. I am sure that when we get in the car we will wait at a red light or thirteen red lights before we get to our destination. When we arrive we will probably be told that we will have to wait for ten or fifteen minutes before we can be seated. Then of course I will have to wait for my dinner companions to decide what they feel like eating tonight. I of course will be starving and order the first thing my eyes light upon. The waiter will wander off and we will wait for the chef to make our meal. The only thing we won't be waiting for is the cheque. 

All of this waiting is because I am waiting for the day that my daughter Maegan is to be married. It was over a year ago that I started to wait for this and now it is days away. The venue is set, the catering is arranged, the clothing has been pressed and hung, most of the guests are either in the city or soon will be. Excitement is at a fever pitch. Days to go... 

Today is a down day and everyone involved is taking a collective breath before it gets crazy again. Tomorrow is a down day for me, more waiting, but others are welcoming soon to be in-laws to the city. My only job tomorrow is baby sitting Hurricane and 
Tornado while mom and dad pretend to be single while visiting some friends that now live in the Big Smoke. That isn't until tomorrow night so guess what...more waiting tomorrow. We may go and find something interesting to do. The nice thing is that we are spending our time with Mike and Sharon who are wonderful company.

I can hardly wait until Sunday when Maegan andRyan exchange their vows. We are all happy for them and wish them all the best in their new life together. They can't wait to be married and we can't wait for them to be married. It is all so exciting!

I just have to wait a little while longer...


Sent from

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Learn To Love Baseball



Today was a first for me, I went to my first Major League Baseball game, Toronto Blue Jays played Atlanta. I'm not going to say who won, but twenty thousand people or so went home unhappy.

Like any large event, it was really interesting. I love watching the people and how the people react to the stimulus of being and sharing an experience with all of those people. What are it extra special for me was that my family were all there and watching the grandkids enjoying being there was wonderful.

I find that due to some flaw in my mental makeup, I am unable to enjoy something as simple as a baseball game. Part of the reason is that the constant buzz of a large crowd makes it difficult for me to concentrate. Whether it is the tinnitus or just that I am losing some of my hearing, it is a challenging process. I am also very cheap. I don't mind spending money, but I have trouble understanding why a beer is $12.25 and a small bag of peanuts is $6.00. I know that is the going price, but they aren't going to get it from me. 

Money is just paper and a way of keeping track of where you are in life and just what and how much you can get. I suppose I can get the things I need to have a good life but the things that I don't need I don't have to spend my money on. It is another flaw in my character which I am on this planet to work on. Not very successfully I might add.

I can watch a baseball game on TV and although I don't get why so many people watch the game, I can watch most of it. I have no need to pause it while I go to the bathroom or to the store for an hour or so. Even if I never get back to this game there will be another that is virtually the same and I will care just as little about that one as all the rest of them. I am not invested in the game and I never have been. My problem.

I can watch a kids game for a while on the local diamond, but I can easily walk away from it.

While I was watching today I couldn't help but think that I would like the game more if I watched from the comfort of my own home. I could channel surf if I got bored and even if I didn't, if there happened to be a great play, I could rewind and watch it again. 

I know there is something wrong with me, and with any luck that is what I am here to learn. I just hope that I don't have to learn to love baseball.


Sent from my iPadLearn To Love Baseball

Today was a first for me, I went to my first Major League Baseball game, Toronto Blue Jays played Atlanta. I'm not going to say who won, but twenty thousand people or so went home unhappy.

Like any large event, it was really interesting. I love watching the people and how the people react to the stimulus of being and sharing an experience with all of those people. What are it extra special for me was that my family were all there and watching the grandkids enjoying being there was wonderful.

I find that due to some flaw in my mental makeup, I am unable to enjoy something as simple as a baseball game. Part of the reason is that the constant buzz of a large crowd makes it difficult for me to concentrate. Whether it is the tinnitus or just that I am losing some of my hearing, it is a challenging process. I am also very cheap. I don't mind spending money, but I have trouble understanding why a beer is $12.25 and a small bag of peanuts is $6.00. I know that is the going price, but they aren't going to get it from me. 

Money is just paper and a way of keeping track of where you are in life and just what and how much you can get. I suppose I can get the things I need to have a good life but the things that I don't need I don't have to spend my money on. It is another flaw in my character which I am on this planet to work on. Not very successfully I might add.

I can watch a baseball game on TV and although I don't get why so many people watch the game, I can watch most of it. I have no need to pause it while I go to the bathroom or to the store for an hour or so. Even if I never get back to this game there will be another that is virtually the same and I will care just as little about that one as all the rest of them. I am not invested in the game and I never have been. My problem.

I can watch a kids game for a while on the local diamond, but I can easily walk away from it.

While I was watching today I couldn't help but think that I would like the game more if I watched from the comfort of my own home. I could channel surf if I got bored and even if I didn't, if there happened to be a great play, I could rewind and watch it again. 

I know there is something wrong with me, and with any luck that is what I am here to learn. I just hope that I don't have to learn to love baseball.


Sent from my iPad

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Slowly But Surely

Here we are in the GTA again. It is wonderful seeing those that we love and catching up on all of the latest gossip. The last trip was a sad occasion, but this will be the celebration of life that all weddings are. Well, not the drunken weddings in Vegas, that is more of a celebration of Jim Beam, Jack Daniels and Captain Morgan. We will be spending time doing touristy things and all of those last minute pre-wedding things that always seem to need doing.  I am excited for Maegan and Ryan beginning their lives together.


One of the things that I have noticed over the years of coming to Toronto area is just how bad the traffic has become. Whenever you get a lot of people together that need to go in the same direction, you are going to have problems. I suspect that moving people is one of those things that define a great civilization. Our civilization was good, but is getting progressively worse as the years go by. We are losing our ability to move people from where they live to where they work and play.

There is an acceptable amount of time for a commute, but here it seems to be pushing the boundaries quite a bit. Thankfully I won't need to drive to work or anywhere else in rush hour traffic this trip. I won't need to "press the flesh" on the buses and subways for an hour at a time. I can stay blissfully unaware of the troubles the average citizen faces every day. Lucky me!

Someone, somewhere needs to address the problem of moving all of these people in an orderly and timely fashion. Some solutions are being looked at and enacted. Mass transit is pretty good at getting people from there to here and the road system is congested but still works to a certain extent. What is needed is a change in the way that we live.

More and more people are finding that they can work from home which allows employers to save money on brick and mortar head offices and allows the employee to still function through the Internet. Not everyone can do this of course, a lot of Jo's need to be hands on and involve physically moving things around.

I think that the only way to find a solution is through a change in expectations and a change in the way we locate our homes and businesses. We will need to go back to the way things were before the automobile enabled us to travel vast distances in rather short periods of time. We will need to live within walking distance of where we work. The stigma of living in an industrial area will have to be forgotten and businesses will have to evaluate if they really "need" to locate themselves in the locations they are in.

During the early part of the twentieth century there was a mass exodus from rural areas to urban locations. This was brought on by the desire. To earn more than farm wages and the development of a more industrialized farming methods. We will need to move back out to the rural areas and find methods to work from home or in businesses that can relocate in. A rural environment. To do this we will need to focus less on the bottom line and more on what is best for our society as a whole.

Unlikely to happen, but we can work to that end slowly but surely.
Sent from my iPad

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

In Coming Blogs.

Just a real quick blog tonight. Quick because I should be working on my father-of-the-bride speech and I’m resting after packing for my trip.

In all probability there won’t be blogs for the next couple of weeks. I realize that no one is in tears because of that announcement, but just thought you should know it isn’t because I am a lazy SOB. I am a lazy SOB, but that isn’t the reason this time.

I am excited about this wedding, mainly because my daughter will be embarking on this crazy trip called marriage. Her hubby to be is a nice guy and seems to love her very much which is all a father can ask for. Like all brides, Maegan is stressing just a little too much, but that is her prerogative, as a nearly wedded woman.

I don’t get weddings really. I have always felt that jumping over a broom stick and pledging your undying love should be enough. Then all the friends and family do a pot luck and show the young couple that they are loved and not alone. Somehow weddings have morphed into the big deal they are today, the size and scope only limited to the wealth of the people involved.

I guess that everyone wants to feel like a princess at least once in their lives. Probably real princesses would opt for a simple ceremony. We always seem to want that which is unobtainable. The truly happy person wants to remain just as they are, learning to be a better person each and every day.

I hope that this wedding has everything that Maegan wants and it is my desire that she smiles and laughs until her cheeks hurt. I wonder if she knows just how much she is loved.


I am sure I will have more to say about this in coming blogs.

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Full Circle

I am not sure why, but lately I have been thinking about the music that played in my formative years. I suppose it may have something to do with Maegan’s impending marriage. She is embarking on a journey that will take her to the end of her life. Maybe I am reflecting on that journey and realizing that my journey has been a long and more or less happy one. I wish her all the happiness that I had and more.
 Image result for madman across the water
What has that to do with music? Yeah, I don’t know. Right now I am listening to Elton John’s “Madman Across the Water” album in its entirety. Only nine songs, so I will still have some life left when it is over. I just had the thought that the song was written in 1971 and in 2017 there really is a madman across the water. This album resonated with me then as it does now, I would sit in a comfy bean bag chair with my Roots shoes, smoking a joint or two, having a cup of tea and reading Tolkien.
 Image result for ereader
Next July, I will be able to smoke a joint while sitting on my couch with a coffee, orthopaedic shoes and a choice of a thousand books on my eReader. I will probably re-read Tolkien, but I find I like to play Carol King’s “Tapestry” album. I think it was written with the Lord of the Rings in mind. Carol doesn’t agree, but what does she know, she only wrote it.
 Image result for tapestry carole king
I still have most of my albums collecting dust in boxes in the basement. My music listening now is done mostly with help from iTunes and Youtube. They say that vinyl has a better sound quality that MP3’s, but I can’t really tell the difference and if I can’t tell the difference, what does it matter. Besides, most of my albums have been badly mistreated over the years. Drunk and stoned people trying to place the needle on a particular track and dragging it over the rest of the side. I’m sure that some of the albums have a few burn marks from those same people. I remember coming home to find Rick Parker washing my albums in the kitchen sink because they were “dirty”. Surprisingly, they played at least as good after the cleaning as they did before.
 Image result for washing vinyl albums
I am missing some of my favourite albums of course. I would have taken them to a party and missed picking them up in a smoky haze. One of my roommates still has some of my albums that he insists were his. Who knows after forty years? I do! They are mine! A couple of the albums were lost when a good friend passed away suddenly. You can’t go to grieving parents and ask to go through their dead son’s record collection. I can and did live without them.
 Image result for cheech and chong

Like I said, they are in the basement and I am happy with pulling my music from the ether. That is where the inspiration for music comes from after all. It’s nice to see things come full circle.