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Shock and awe

Shock and awe—that’s the only way I can describe it.

The snow that greeted me the other morning gave me a niggling feeling we had waited too long to head south. But I had to make the best of it, so I dug out of the garage the musty old coat and shook it out.

The toque I had left in the sleeve was still there, along with a 10-pound stash of weed seeds some chipmunk is going to be really ticked off about losing.

The insulated gloves I’d hidden in the tool drawer were well-chewed on by the resident mice, but they will have to do.

A real haunting

At first I thought it was the approach of Hallowe’en. The gaunt, haunted look plastered on the faces of many around the debating table at the Bakery in Rainy River was upsetting.

What was causing it? The composite truth leaked out after some intense questioning.

I first noticed the Runt was more morose than usual. What was bothering him, I asked.

I’m too sexy for my clothes (not)

I was on a mission. Those comfy old shoes with the Velcro fasteners were down at the heels and in true senior fashion (cheap and tender footed), I would rather get them re-soled than break in a new pair.

I headed through the mall in search of the shoe repair kiosk with my wife, the Pearl of the Orient, trailing 35 yards behind.

As I rounded the corner, I heard her shout at me that I could pick her up right there when I was finished. Great, I waved back, and hurried on my quest.

Lightening the load

I finally found it! The floor of the garage, that is.

It all started with the approach of the hibernation season.

“Elliott, you left the garage door open again. If we get a skunk in there, you’ll never be able to root it out of that jungle of junk on your side of the garage,” my wife, the Pearl of the Orient, chastized one morning on her return from a close encounter of the stinky kind.

“And you’ll need a place to live if I get sprayed!” she warned.

Use proper finger protocol

Giving the finger, flipping the bird, the flying digit—whatever you want to call it, there are certain protocols that should be followed.

First off, it should be reserved for truly special occasions. No point on wasting an insult on someone unworthy of your attention.

You really should mean it when deploying the golden digit. As well, it is necessary to follow through and make eye contact.

Slow burn has begun

What to do with all that abundance of garden produce?

You only can eat so many zucchinis and the loaf, although supposedly healthy, has so much fibre, one’s bowels can be permanently distended—not to mention the gas.

Fortunately, the frost has put an end to excessive production . . . zucchinis that is, not gas.

The potatoes also are ready for digging and what a whopper of a crop! It has been taking two men and a small boy with crowbars to roll some of them out of the hills.

Use soothers to chill out

The other morning at the Bakery in Rainy River, Don pulled up to the debating table with his youngest daughter.

A bubbling, effervescent bundle of joy; all smiles giggles and sunshine. That is, until bored with her toast, she headed for the cookie and candy counter.

First Auntie blocked her way, then Dad grabbed her and tried to stuff her back in the high chair.

“Gad, you’re a worse whiner than your Uncle Kirk . . . or any other CN Hoghead!” exclaimed an exasperated Don.

The rest of us, plugging our ears, agreed.

The latest dance craze

American Pie and his bride have been spending the summer in their honeymoon retreat on the Rainy up by Hooterville this year.

“It has been just wonderful! Peace and quiet with just enough work, including the new garage, to keep me just busy enough,” Am enthused as he pointed out several of his latest projects and I have to admit the joint looked pretty ship-shape.

The only problem is he’s making it terribly hard on the rest of us to come up to our own spouses’ expectations on everything from landscaping to home repairs.

Ahh, summer

It’s here at last—summer!

So many great things happen this time of year. School’s out and all that wild shouting and screaming is, of course, the teachers. Even the students seem pleased.

With graduation ceremonies in full swing last week, several old alumni were in town—returning to their alma maters to hand out bursaries and other awards to deserving students.