No news is good news

Watching the nightly news on television has become like a bad habit, even an addiction that's hard to break. I don't particularly enjoy it; I end up feeling worse afterward, and there seems to be no distinguishable benefit derived from the entire effort. It's difficult to describe exactly what I do expect but I know instinctively it's not what we're currently getting. Every night the news opens with the latest on-the-spot police action; someone's robbed a store using a gun; there was an accident on the highway and traffic is…

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My chance meeting with Gladys was one of life’s little gifts

She looked like Marie Barone (played by Doris Roberts), Ray Barone's mother on Everybody Loves Raymond. Sitting next to me at the lunch counter in a fast-food restaurant the other day, she was beautifully turned out with her blonde coiffe and gold hoop earrings. She was wearing a  discreet amount of makeup with a touch of blusher and pink lipstick. Her name was Gladys and she's a ninety-two year-old retired high school mathematics teacher. When Gladys commented that she was too warm in her bright red wool jacket, I suggested…

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You can’t always judge a magazine by its cover

One of my (many) dirty little secrets is that I'm a subscriber to ELLE Canada magazine. I don't advertise this as I wouldn't want anyone to label me as shallow, superficial and materialistic. Subscribing to a seemingly fluff magazine targeted at young, hip fashionistas would certainly lead one to think this is the case, but after reading the March 2015 issue I feel somewhat vindicated. First of all, it's the Canadian edition so I'm supporting Canadian retailers and contributors to the publishing side of the magazine. But it also surprises…

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Hey! I’m Canadian eh!

In case you hadn't heard, the 2015 winner of the Westminster Kennel Club's annual show in New York is a four-year-old Canadian beagle named Miss P and she's from Enderby, British Columbia. What a coup for Canadian breeders. Unfortunately, hardly anyone knows about her provenance. In all the press and television announcements in the United States, they conveniently omit the fact that the dog is Canadian. I guess they're recovering from the shock that it wasn't an American canine who stomped over all contenders. And like most Canadians, Miss P…

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Stop studying and start building already

Oh. My. Nerves. How much more can we take of the endless studies and debating about Toronto's transit woes. I moved to the city in 1965 to begin work. Over the past fifty-or-so years I have watched our home town triple in size and the brilliant minds who oversee our city's transit needs seem to be stuck in a time warp somewhere in the middle of the last century. Anyone who has ever been to Paris, London, New York or any other major city in the world has experienced and…

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Have you tried snorting chocolate yet?

If you're looking for a new adventure, I understand there's a device available that was designed to allow you to snort chocolate, or more accurately, cocoa powder. Who among us doesn't experience the most incredible high when we bite into a piece of good quality chocolate? Imagine huffing it up your nose. A Belgian chocolatier by the name of Dominique Persoone originally developed a cocoa puffer thingie for a Rolling Stones' party in 2009 and voila, a new past-time was created. Personally, I can't imagine cocoa dust blowing around in…

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