Tuesday, April 19, 2022


Remember cat's cradle? One pair of hands constructs the string cradle, then someone else gathers it from those original hands and reconstructs it, pulling it together at the end, hoping the cradle reforms, altered, perhaps even transformed; its new composition surprises. Isn't this essentially the relationship between writer and reader? I construct these words and yet you, the reader, reconstruct them based on your thoughts, experiences, and feelings.   

Writer Sarah Manguso said, "the purpose of being a serious writer is to keep people from despair." These words were new to me, and welcome wisdom. Cradles, indeed. 

Despair. It's in everything lately, especially ongoing news about Russia's war crimes in Ukraine. What words could I hope to construct to keep you (& me) from despair? I know a few that dispel despair: trees, sunrises, ice-cream, music, children. Words can seem fleeting though, can't they? Many are not so impermanent though. Which words do you return to when you need them? I think about tattoos featuring words including gratitude, dream, worrier warrior, continue, and so on. 

Anne Frank apparently said, "I have often been downcast, but never in despair." I thought about Anne Frank a lot in 2020 as the pandemic raged on and on; she isolated for 761 days. That's some perspective, isn't it? I continue to think about her legacy: her words continue to resonate, anything but temporary. Think of Anne, friends: be downcast if you need to, but do not despair. 

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Things that deserve the stink-eye:

Sure AI, proof of humanity is something you know all about. But I get it. In 2022, humanity does indeed need to be verified. Sigh. 

However, if today you seek a fine example of humanity, an example for us all, read about Gabriel Clark

Friday, April 1, 2022



Before our granddaughter was born, I asked my last Grade 9 class for advice on grandparenting. Their suggestions made me emotional and reminded me again how meaningful grandparents can be. As my granddaughter celebrates her first birthday, I wanted to share two of my favourites. I will say that my former students would be proud of me (except for the clothes...but my wife excelled at that one). Today I am grateful for youth, for my daughter and her husband, and for the opportunity to be Grandpops to one special girl

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