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Wasting Away in Geezerville

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Issue: 2017-10-18, PHOTO: foter.com

The first week of September, the mice fled the fields and snuck indoors, as mice are wont to do. It happened in the quiet hours of one night. The day before, the kitchen drawers and cupboards were spotless. The next, they were festooned with... more

Oct 18, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-10-04, PHOTO: William Warby - Flickr

It’s the age-old debate about the chicken and the egg. Sometimes, we simply don’t know what is cause and what is effect. This is especially true when it comes to matters that touch on personal feeling. As a for-instance, do you love cream of... more

Oct 4, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-09-13, PHOTO: Pixabay

One of my favourite pastimes is exploring the origins and meanings of common English words and expressions. Our language is such a hodge-podge (dare one say “hotchpotch”?) of thefts, borrowings and adaptations from others, that an etymologist can... more

Sep 13, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-08-30, PHOTO: Pixabay

The way some people talk, you’d think farmers’ markets were a recent invention by eco-conscious millennials spurred to action by reading a book about the 100-mile diet. Nothing could be further from the truth. more

Aug 30, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-08-16, PHOTO: Pixabay

Those of us who relish a good outdoor music festival – especially of the grassroots-and-granola variety – have learned to endure any number of indignities in the pursuit of someone else’s towering art. more

Aug 16, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-08-09, PHOTO: Pixabay

As family reunions go, the event I attended in Ontario’s Georgian Bay district on a recent weekend was a fairly small-scale affair. At its peak, a mere 24 people were in attendance. Officially, it wasn’t really a reunion, just a gathering in... more

Aug 9, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-07-19, PHOTO: Pixabay

He was a foundling on the streets of Edmonton – a golden cocker spaniel whose hair was so matted with burrs that much of it had to be shaved off. It was my 6-year-old daughter and two of her friends who brought him home, after he had attached... more

Jul 19, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-07-12, PHOTO: Jonas Bergsten

It was a strange encounter that still has my brain abuzz. I was walking home from the grocery store in my current city of residence southeast of Whitehorse. My route took me past the site where small men and large machines have been toiling for... more

Jul 12, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-07-05, PHOTO: Pixabay

The emptying-out of Yukon’s schools signals the official start of that much-anticipated annual ritual: the Summer Holiday. We all know the narrative arc of that story. For the first little while, the kids are bursting to be outside every moment... more

Jul 5, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-06-28, PHOTO: Pixabay

Recently, I waxed nostalgic about my beloved first bicycle, a cherry-red Raleigh three-speed that went missing (temporarily, I still insist) on an August day in 1953. But another bike held just as big a place in my heart for the 19 years or so... more

Jun 28, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-06-14, PHOTO: Pixabay

Did I just miss skipping and hopscotch season? Marbles and jacks? No matter. For me, this is, and always will be, bicycle season. I don’t test my mettle on the pedals very much these days, but I confess to having a lifelong passion for bicycles... more

Jun 14, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-05-31, PHOTO: Pixabay

I'm sitting in my skivvies, contemplating what pearls of wisdom to cram into a 400-word space. As I advise my writing students, when you feel stuck, start with a word. Any word. Today, that word is "engagement". In my days as a working journalist... more

May 31, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-05-17, PHOTO: Pixabay

Until fairly recently, I had no interest whatever in the idea of writing a book of memoirs. Like most people, I assumed nobody would care to read about the life journey of a nobody-in-particular. After all, autobiography is the purview of... more

May 17, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-05-10, PHOTO: Ken Bolton

Somebody once said a gardener is just a philosopher with dirty hands and an aching back. Well, maybe nobody actually said that until I just did, but I believe it to be so. Of all life’s pursuits, few can match gardening when it comes to bringing... more

May 10, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-04-26, PHOTO: Pixabay

Recently, I was meandering through my trusty Shorter Oxford English Dictionary (shorter, as in not quite as gargantuan as the Encyclopaedia Britannica). This is a habit I acquired in my youth, but indulge less frequently these days, usually when... more

Apr 26, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-04-19, PHOTO: Pixabay

Until a couple of years ago, there was a wonderfully entertaining fantasy writer by the name of Terry Pratchett. Perhaps there still is, somewhere on an alternate plane of reality, since Sir Terry Pratchett succumbed to Alzheimer’s disease in the... more

Apr 19, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-04-12, PHOTO: Pixabay

It was a dark and stormy night a few weeks back. Dark enough and stormy enough that one might be forgiven for thinking the End Times were nigh. It began with little fanfare, when the evil OS known as Windows 10 (aka the pale rider of the digital... more

Apr 12, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-03-22, Photo: Wikipedia

We don’t know for certain that anyone ever warned Julius Caesar to watch his back on the Ides of March. We do know that the Greek historian, Plutarch, included a second-hand tale in his biography of Caesar about a seer warning the Roman leader to... more

Mar 22, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-03-15, PHOTO: Pixabay

Consider Murphy, whoever he was. When anything goes wrong, people assume it's somehow his fault. Being a forgiving sort of guy, I try to give ol' Murph the benefit of the doubt. Still, there are some situations in which I am convinced his famous... more

Mar 15, 2017 12:00 AM Humour

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Issue: 2017-03-08, PHOTO: Marmite.co.uk

Three foods top my No Thanks list: schmaltz herring, Marmite and kale. My sole experience with schmaltz herring - basically, raw fish preserved in rancid chicken fat - was anything but a gustatory delight. I also tried Marmite once. I even sampled... more

Mar 8, 2017 12:00 AM Humour 2 Comments