Archive by Author


25 Nov

Asking For Volunteers Can Result In A Disaster

Ed, my neighbor next door, has lots to say to me privately because we live next door to each other, but he makes it a steadfast rule to avoid me in public. Ed and Ruby were seated at OSAC Concert Series when we arrived last Saturday night. We were far enough away that Ed could completely ignore me. Almost at the end of his performance, Norman Foote asked for a couple of men volunteers.  He had done so well with audience participation until that point. The first volunteer from the audience was a bright, confident four-year-old little girl who sang the ABC song like a professional child-star. The second time a lady volunteer sang wonderfully, “You Are My Sunshine.”  The performer struck gold again the third time with an older girl volunteer who became a puppet that did movements to his song. If only he had left well enough alone.

In the second half the concert I was a bit distracted trying to discretely eat the bowl of party mix on our table. Then out of the blue performer Foote asked for men volunteers and picked a guy at back. Unfortunately, he also asked me to come up as a volunteer. I should have refused. We men volunteers had to put a flower petal affair on our heads and were to dance as flowers. The other fellow was a good dancer and performer.  I am not a good dancer, never have been, and the whole idea of dancing like a flower was pretty hard for my rusty old mind to assimilate. I know my attempts were pretty lame, and the performer had a look in his eyes like there is always one dud volunteer in every show.


25 Nov

You Will Not Have a Weight Problem If You Keep Off The Scales!

Ed, my neighbor next door, was told that I have been gaining weight. My neighbor keeps telling me that my walking at the walking track is a failure. He has offered to be my weight-loss manager for a small fee of five dollars for every pound that comes off my weight.

He wants me to consider smoking. “Every time you are about to pop food in your mouth have a cigarette instead,” Ed said. “You have to have bacon and eggs for breakfast with toast and jam, for lunch have three cigarettes and three coffees, and supper can be a full meal but no desserts except for a cigarette. All snacks during the day or at night are to be one or two cigarettes,” was the outline of my weight-loss plan. Ed is sure after a month I will have lost twenty pounds, and I will owe him one hundred dollars. I told him that I couldn’t afford bacon every breakfast or the cost of cigarettes. My neighbor was disappointed that I passed up on his weight reduction plan for me, but he had one last bit of advice for me which was to avoid scales, mirrors and being photographed.     


13 Nov

Plenty of Challenge in Providing What the World Needs

Ed, my neighbor next door, is determined that it’s now time for the wise ones to head south to Arizona or Texas. Ed informed me last week that rather than waste his money going south that he is planning on becoming an entrepreneur this winter. He feels that he will have plenty of time to plan for the startup of his own business if the winter is as long as usual. My neighbor is certain that if others have turned an idea into a profitable finished product that he should give it a try.

I asked Ed if he is willing to take risks, and if he has some innovative ideas for his business that haven’t been tried before. He said that he was not disclosing any of his business secrets until he is rich and famous. I agreed with him that it was probably wise. I mentioned to Ed that Thomas Edison is reported to have said, “I find out what the world needs then I proceed to invent.”

Ready or Not

11 Nov

Ready or Not, There is No Stopping the Unimaginable

Ed, my neighbor next door, didn’t have a ready comment for the killing of a reservist and the gun fire on Parliament Hill on Oct. 22, in Ottawa. I have never found him to be short of an opinion before, but the events of that day left him without any quick or easy comments, like most of us.

Corporal Nathan Cirillo was one of the two ceremonial guards stationed at the Canadian War Memorial in Ottawa that Wednesday, when a gunman shot and killed him in cold blood. The same gunman died later in a shootout in The Centre Block of Parliament.

It is hard to believe a soldier could be shot down for standing in honor at our National War Memorial. Prime Minister Harper called the event a terrorist attack. Ed and I discussed that the terrorist way is not the Canadian way. It goes against our Canadian spirit, when another gladly kills the unsuspecting or cuts off heads of kidnapped victims. It is a detestable thing to bomb marathon runners. Ed and I, often have big differences of opinion but allow that neither one of us is right. We both agree the worst kind of enemy is the two-faced, sneaky enemy who has been plotting to kill others for his gain or glory now and in the next life. We like to believe people are good, but there is a lot of proof to say it isn’t necessarily so. People prove again and again they hate, lie, murder and steal for what they perceive as good for themselves.

Homemade Soup

1 Nov

Don’t Waste Time Making Homemade Soup – Just Open a Can!

Ed, my neighbor next door, told me the other day that soup is just an appetizer that leaves a person ready for real food. Last week, Ed came to our house to borrow some WD-40, which he knows I hold in great esteem. I was making some homemade soup when Ed came to borrow from us. I was chopping vegetables and meat for beef vegetable soup. My neighbor not only thought I should know enough to keep out the kitchen, but that soup is such an unimportant dish that I should just open a can. He confirmed that Campbell’s makes good soup and that I should open a can instead of wasting time and energy making soup from scratch. According to Ed, good cooks know where to put their time and efforts for the best results. He wanted to know what else I was cooking for the rest of the meal. He was not impressed that homemade soup was going to be our whole supper.

Often we do have some Campbell’s soup in the pantry. We use it in our cooking, rather than for a bowl soup. A teen came collecting for the food bank last week, and when I went to the shelf for cans of beans, I noted that the cans of soup were depleted. We have been gradually emptying the pantry shelves, so that, when our house sells there will be less to move. Many folks have empty cupboards because hunger is a part of their lives. Food banks are a blessing to the hungry. They can help those in need, because people are willing to share their food, so that, those who come to the food bank can receive food there.

One of the Best

22 Oct

October 31 is The Best Night of the Year for the Young at Heart

Ed, my neighbor next door, can never get enough of Halloween night. My neighbor would have Halloween celebrated every month that has thirty-one days, if he were the boss of the country. Those of you who know my neighbor will know he threatens that he will make a great many changes once he is in control and things are done his way. Ed gets cranky if you tell him that probably they will only change if Ruby, his wife, will allow it.

This year Ed has decorated his yard with an even greater assortment of ghosts, spider-webs, bats, witches and pumpkin lights. He has also added an impressive, inflated, black cat that takes up a sizeable chunk of his front yard. My neighbor loves to wear an elaborate costume on any Halloween. This year Ed has some scary plans for those who come to his front porch trick and treating.  Halloween brings out the kid in Ed, and I’m sure glad I didn’t know him as a kid, as he is still full of tricks and mischief as a grandpa. My neighbor thinks I should let him put two large glowing accordion eyes on our real estate sign in the front yard. It isn’t going to happen.