Archive by Author

Getting Better

14 Jan

Fixate On Your Cell Phone, Remote Control, and Daily Pills

“Here I go again, another time of retiring,” I told Ed. I told him this because once you retire, you do not necessarily stay retired. For the last two years, I was filling in at a church during their pastoral vacancy. It ended last week with the installation of their new pastor. Ed, my old neighbor from Saskatchewan, sees retirement as a time when the living is secure and comfortable for others. My old neighbor could retire himself, but he would rather be chained to his Quonset and face a firing squad.

To say that Ed has a negative view of retirement would be right on the money. Retirement for Ed is a slow death where you fixate on your cell phone calling others to tell them what you miss from the good old days. No one cares if you miss coal furnaces, outhouses, water from the handpump at the well, or coonskin hats. For Ed, the worst thing about retirement is that nobody even your longsuffering wife cares if you control the remote control anymore. According to Ed, the most laborious thinking a person does in retirement is keeping their pills straight and taken every day not three times a week.

The Double Test

3 Jan

Surprised By A Mean Dance Partner For New Year’s Eve

I explained, to Ed my old neighbor, in Saskatchewan, that as the past year slipped away and the new year arrived, I was in an unexpected wrestling match with red, itchy, patches of rash, invading one side of my body.

Roughly sixty years ago I caught the disease, chicken pox in public school. It was an uncomfortable disease that introduced me to calamine lotion to help with the itching. The childhood disease of chicken pox has a permanent side to it.

Spoiled Grandparents

3 Jan

Not Just Spoiled Brats, But Spoiled Grandparents As Well!

“This Christmas taught me that the wife and I are spoiled grandparents,” I told Ed. My old neighbor thought I was bragging about our grandchildren showering us with a lot of gifts or affection. I set him straight that I was talking about how spoiled we are in our lifestyle as a couple. We found sharing our condo with our family this Christmas put a monkey wrench in our well-established routines and ruts. Company upsets life as you usually live it.

We are a king and a queen in our home, rising and going to bed as we desire. We share up chores by our preferences and pursue our hobbies and responsibilities with an unspoken agreement. We co-exist together with little drama or noise. When our nineteen-year-old granddaughter visited last fall, she was appalled by the lack of music and sound at our house. When she is not on her phone or her computer, she must have music to live by, because silence is unnatural to her.

2018 Predictions

16 Dec

In 2018, The Best Will Come Or Maybe The Worst!

As 2017 slips away into over and gone, Ed, my old neighbor from Saskatchewan has his predictions for 2018 ready for anyone who will listen. My old neighbor’s predictions were prepared early because Ed and Ruby will be in Edmonton for New Year’s Eve. Their traditional New Year’s Eve party at Melville will not take place. Ed has had copies printed of his predictions for people to keep throughout 2018. His printed copies come with the title: “I Told You So!”

I was surprised with Ed’s whole new way of predicting events in 2018. Gone are his predictions about the weather, and political leaders in the coming year. He has focused on 2018 as being a “Breakthrough Year,” that will have people shaking their heads in wonder or disgust.


14 Dec

Joy Comes In Sips, Not Gulps

Ed, my old neighbor from Saskatchewan, wanted to tell me that there was no joy when it came to his bank account. He withdrew money for his children, and grandchildren because they like to have cash as their Christmas gifts. Ed says that they hardly deserve socks or a tee-shirt, but they get the joy of his money. The Christmas season frustrates Ed. He scoffs at the religious meaning of Christmas, and he quit believing in Santa when he was about five.

As long, as I have known Ed, he has had his own Christmas carols, not religious. His favorite carol celebrates Jeremiah the bullfrog his mighty good friend. Ed sings with a spiritual fever, “Joy to the world, all the boys and girls, joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea, joy to you and me.” Ed objects to the traditional carol, ‘Joy to the World,’ Ed questions if the Savior has come and reigns, he (Ed) cannot find the wonders of Christ’s love. He contends that if Jesus reigns there should be nothing but love, laughter, joy, hope, kindness, and happiness in this world. I said to Ed that is what Jesus desires for us, but it won’t come entirely until heaven. 

Peace on Earth

14 Dec

Choosing Peace, When Folks Are Spoiling For A Fight!

“We tend to take peace and goodwill for granted until a squabble blows up in our faces,” Ed said. He was talking about his curling team. Last week his curling team had a meltdown among themselves. Ed likes to exaggerate but in his words, “It seemed like everyone, but me, was spoiling for a fight, and ready to let all of Saskatchewan hear them yapping.”

“What did you do to restore peace?” I asked. Ed said I told them, “I don’t care if you hate each other, but nobody wants to hear you barking at each other. Have your dogfight after the game.” Ed confessed that the team became silent and stayed that way even after the game was over.