Free is just another word….

I have a mantle clock. It is just a small little thing. I received it as a going away gift when I left my position as a Shipper / Lead Hand at a small manufacturing company back in the winter of ’99.

The curious part of this was that I did not receive the going away gift from my employer, but from a supplier who took me out for breakfast and gave me a catalogue from Amway. I was allowed to pick anything I wanted from that catalogue, it was already paid for.
I’m never good at picking a ‘free’ prize. It’s like some kind of test that I ultimately end up failing.
In my senior year of High School I won a writing award. the prize, donated by the local historical Society, was a $10 gift certificate at ‘Sam the Record Man’. This is back in 1986 and $10 would have gotten you any album in the store.
So there I was, standing in the store and looking at all of the cassettes. Anything I wanted! I must have looked for over an hour!
Def Leppard? Dire Straits? How about some Men Without Hats?
All the choices in the world and what do I walk out of there with?
ABBA, The Album.
The last time I remember listening to it all the way through was on a mini vacation, driving across Manitoulin island right around Midnight back in ’93. I still have the cassette though….
Years later, I was at a Fork Lift Rodeo (there used to be such a thing). It was a skills competition. I was pretty good at it, but truth be told I liked it just for the chance to be able to drive the nbice new Toyota propane Fork Lifts. At the end of it all, there was a prize table and you got to pick a prize from the table based on your standing. Being that the competition was put on by the Industrial Accident Prevention Association, most of the prizes were safety related. I found the one that wasn’t.
A propane torch.
Realistically, I did not own a house. But I knew that I would….someday.
Three years later I bought a house. Now I would finally be able to put that torch to use!
Interestingly enough, home ownership does not guarantee the need for a propane torch.
So I waited. I was patient.
In 2004 my patience was finally rewarded! In a cold snap of over -40, the pipes in the crawlspace under my house froze solid! No problem! I had just the tool to tackle that task! A brand new, nerve been used propane torch! I knew right where it was not just a little bit of smugness that I retrieved it from its safe storage in the garage and eagerly prepared to save the day! I turned on the propane and flicked my bic and…..
Nothing happened.
Apparently if you leave something like a propane torch sitting for 13 years, it may or may not work. My model came down decidedly on the ‘may not’ side of things.
Which brings me back to my clock.
My clock and I lost tough for a few years. Many things happened in my life, much change. Some change the clock was around for, some it was not. At some point though, the clock stopped working. I knew it awhile back, but had always assumed that it was a dead battery type issue. So the other day I ‘found’ the clock again and happily put a new battery in it.
Nothing happened.
The clock hands remained immobile.
Well, there goes another ‘pick your own prize’ down the tubes!
No worries though. It really is a good looking little clock, and it still tells the right time, if only twice a day!

Just some thoughts…

Free write…

She had said that we needed to write more often.

Not to each other, but to write.

I couldn’t have agreed more, although to type that makes it sound just silly. Like a sliding scale of ‘do not agree, somewhat agree, strongly agree….and COULD NOT AGREE MORE!’

Still, I took what she said to heart and I realized that while it may never amount to much, there is something to be said for getting ones thoughts out of your head and onto ‘paper’. If I were a more talented mortal, perhaps I would draw. Art class was not something that I ever exceled at, and truth be known, in my very early days I was probably the kid who if he wasn’t eating the play dough, was at least contemplating it off in a quiet corner.

In fact, to illustrate the point, one of my memories from an actual art class was doing Paper Mache masks. We were cutting the newspaper into strips prior to dipping it and I can still remember the ¼ page ad for “Smokey and the Bandit” with a picture of Burt Reynolds and a very cute Sally Fields (before everyone really liked her). So that’s what I took away from art class.

Still, as I grow older (at an increasingly alarming rate of acceleration), I find that I appreciate art more and more. Sometimes, I even get to be part of the art. One of my favorite pieces involved a pencil sketch that involved, among other things,  a version of myself and a rubber chicken.

True story, I’m not even kiddin’ ya!

A cliché it may be, but you don’t always find art hidden away in a gallery of faces with no names.

Hold, please?

Life can be oh so very interesting sometimes. Now and zen something happens to illustrate just that! I will explain….

Shortly before Christmas, while at work one morning, I had to make a phone call to a courier company. I was, of course, immediately placed on hold “due to the high volume of calls”.  The music being played while on hold was a piano piece, and while I certainly did not recognize it, it spoke to me without hesitation! All too soon I was off hold and placing my order with the Customer Service Rep. At the end of our dealing, I asked her to please put me back on hold.

She did so, and I was once again listening to this absolutely beautiful piece of contemporary piano music. But then, less than 30 seconds later, the CSR was back on the line.

“Are you finished sir?” she asked.

“No! Please just put me back on hold!” I snapped.

“But sir, you are tieing up my line.” She did not sound pleased.

“I realize that”, I told her, “But I need to finish listening to the piece of music that is playing!!!”

She put me back on hold. By this time I had attracted the attention of my co-worker in the next cubicle.

“Seriously?” I heard him say.

“YES!” I hit the hands free button so that everyone in the office could hear the soft sounds of one of the most beautiful piano pieces I had heard. Strangely enough, no one else seemed to share my enthusiasm for this music. I felt a bit dejected as I hung up the line, The music was gone, and I knew that I would never hear it again. It was a fleeting moment in time….and now it was over.

I tried to remember the tune, but within an hour it was gone from my head. Too late, I was kicking my butt for not having recorded some of the music on my smart phone. That afternoon I downloaded the “app” Shazam. This app is supposed to take a few seconds of a song or music and idnetify it for you. I knew that I had lost out on this piece of music, but I was determined to be ready for the next piece that caught my interest.

Fast forward if you will….a couple of days later. It is morning, the Saturday before Christmas. I am trying to locate a 15 gallon aquarium that I wish to give to someone special as a Christmas gift. I had tried getting one at Petsmart, but they had none in stock when I visited their local store. By chance, I ended up on their website and they showed one in stock, which I promptly ordered. But, not wanting to drive into town for nothing, I decided to call the local store to confirm the availability.

I dialed the number and as soon as it was answered I was put on hold.

You guessed it.

The mystery piano piece was playing!!!

All too soon I was taken off hold by a young sounding man. I quickly asked him to put me back on hold.

“Really?” he asked. Apparently this just isn’t a common request!

I assured him I was serious and he put me back on hold.

I put the house phone on ‘speaker’ and got my smart phone out and opened up Shazam.

I’ll be damned.

In less than five second it had identified the music. I was still skeptical, and loaded up Youtube to try it out.

Shazam had nailed it!!!

The music in question:

Lavender Skies, by Gary Lamb.

Life is good. Life is an awesome journey…..

Cheers everyone!!!

All the news that’s fit to….wait a minute!!!

This morning, on Google News portal, under WORLD NEWS, the following articles:

WHO backs use of experimental Ebola drugs in West Africa outbreak


George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin Kiss During Romantic Dinner in Italy …

From my blurry eyed, just woke up perspective THIS is what is wrong with our society!!! Why should I care that George Clooney and his fiance engaged in PDA??? Hell, if they saw some of the things that my gf and I have done in public…oh wait, different blog!
My point being….fluff news does NOT belong under “World” subheadings!!!

Still, I wonder what they had for dinner?


Mid summer post

There are people who follow my blog.
There are blogs that I follow.
I have a lot of admiration for the blogs I read. Ordinary people taking a chance and putting there thoughts out there for all the world to see.
That’s brave!
I also admire the people that i see who have found the will to write on a regular basis! Good job by you all!

A special shout out to Frugoal and her 93 days of summer writing campaign! I have really enjoyed that, and find myself looking forward to the daily e-mail notification that she has added yet another post!

I hope to find some inspiration from you all!!!



Sometimes the choice in letting go is made for you….

So even though the calendar says Spring has sprung, the weather seems to want to dictate otherwise.
After a rather surreal 24 hours which included having everything she had of mine dumped on my front door step (and that ended up being the tame portion of the day!)…I woke up early on Saturday morning and went to get a haircut.
Then it was off to the big city to have lunch with an old friend. He lives almost 5 hours away from me, so we always meet in the middle.
We had a great lunch, and after many hours of pleasant conversation and catching up we parted ways. I went to use the mens room before beginning my long drive home.
Here’s the thing.
I’m a pack rat. I keep small things as souvenirs of events. Ticket stubs especially, or hotel room cards. That kind of thing.
A little over a year ago I was dating a nice woman who just happened to have a more screwed up life than mine. Her estranged husband had just been sentenced to jail for having sex with an under aged student. Her teenage son had just returned back home and was rebelling. But worse of all, he tween daughter was acting out by pathologically lying at school, making every ones life unbearable.
In to this mix enter I.
We went on a few dates, art gallery visits and the such. The last time we went out was to an independent film festival.
Things fizzled after that, and I moved on, as I always do.
But I kept the ticket stub from the Film Festival in my leather jacket.
I don’t know why. i felt bad every time I tripped over it.
Then, while I was using the facilities in the mens room….the ticket fell out of my pocket.

Problem solved!
There it stayed.

Life’s strange sometimes…..


Pubs of Halifax

It’s no secret that this has been one heck of a winter. It just wouldn’t let go! So many things on the go, yet I seem to be stuck in the doldrums of the winter that will not quit!
I was walking up to my car the other day and noticed something in the back window. I knew it was clothing of some sort, and assumed that it was a sweat shirt or something of that nature. The only reason I even paid attention to it on this particular day was that I had noticed that the constant exposure to sunlight was starting to fade the black colour in several areas.
A T-shirt and a pair of shorts. The T-shirt was a graphic T, depicting “The Pubs of Halifax”. The shorts match the shirt in material and colour.
They belonged to a woman.
I just don’t know who.

Life can be VERY strange sometimes….

Quoth the Raven……

Well heck…..a guy can’t even bugger off for a nice relaxing day slogging it out at work without all hell breaking lose in this little corner of the interwebby!

When last I left this little blog this morning, I had traded barbs with one Ravenpaine. It would seem the Raven took exceptional exception to my writings when it considers one Linda Tirado and her now somewhat infamous Gofundme haul.

You know, after reading some of the things that people are saying about her on the wired community, well I think that I was downright generous and neighborly with my assessment.

I was going to direct the raven to

Ann Brocklehurst has done a better job than anyone at flushing out the truth. I can’t even begin to get into it…better to read by yourself.

But…the Raven had already found Ann, and between sparring with Darling ( of ) and fighting with EVERYONE at Anns blog, well I think the Raven has had a very busy day.

A very outmatched day…taking on an investigative reporter? WOW!!! But losing horribly…. 😦


Well I am washing my hands of the whole Linda Tirado thing and moving on to better things. maybe a nice gripe about how much I HATE winter I it is SO here!), or I can describe what it is that truly makes me an asshole.

But raven….one last thing.

That was SO not cool the way you tried to pick on Darling when she defended me. BAD RAVEN! BAD!

Let me hear you say it…..



Be good to yourselves…and let those you love know you feel that way!!!raven