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|The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Ottawa|
That was fast!
It's already time for November's review and update.
Here we go:
Some of the Greatest Canadians Were Americans
Remembrance Day month started off with a nod to some of our earliest veterans, the Loyalists.
I've often felt that they are the clue to the elusive Canadian identity.
A quick search of Wikipedia suggested a few characteristics of the Loyalist refugees, Larabee (1948).
What do you think? Is this us?
a) they resisted innovation
b) they were big on law and order
c) they disliked violence
d) they were procrastinators
e) they liked to take a middle of the road position
f) they lacked confidence in the future
Oh Oh... are you squirming?
But wait! There's one more!
g) they were funny
Grave Faces III
I loved taking these pictures of the faces on some of the cenotaphs in the Niagara area.
Nothing, however, could have prepared me for the one in Welland.
I was shocked by its massive size and its warlike message. It was the last memorial commissioned in Canada to honour the dead of WW I.
It showed no mourning figures though, just a bare knuckled soldier warning that the country would fight to the last man to defend freedom.
The year it was unveiled was 1939.
The Weapon That Won the War in Europe
I laughed when my Dad told me this story.
It is one of the few I know about his experiences during WW II. He said they laughed about it too - after it was over.
And okay, I made up the part about why Hitler killed himself.
A Family Remembers
During WW 1 in small town Ontario, no one delivered a telegram to your door if a loved one was lost overseas.
My grandmother and great-grandmother had to go to the telegraph office to pick up the news of the death of my great uncle, Alexander McKay, at Vimy Ridge.
I was absolutely charmed by this chilly, whimsical garden.
Loose Teeth at the UN
Okay so we didn't get a seat on the Security Council at the UN for the first time ever.
Who do they think we are? People who resist innovation? Law and order freaks? Procrastinators? Middle of the roaders? Scaredy cats? People who fear the future?
But hey, did you hear the one about the Canadian, the American and the giant talking beaver?
The Staples of Life
Because in my heart of hearts I'm really an NDPer who dislikes Jack Layton's policies, I usually feel like a faker when it comes to the Green Party.
I don't feel GREEN enough, or maybe at all. Anyway, I was thrilled to find a real, live, green gadget. At last I'm doing my part.
Saving the world from a few staples counts, right?
The Three Biggies
Can you eat it? Can you have Sex with it? Will it Kill you?
News o' the Week
How sexy is potash in Saskatchewan, eh?
Once I had forced myself to sort of figure out what the whole thing was about, I thought I would force it on my readers.
I'm cruel that way.
Car Insurance. What's Not to Love?
Car insurance companies are going to roll out the big guns and go after people who make fraudulent claims? I'd say great if I thought it would make a difference.
I'll eat the spy car's back fender if our insurance rates go down.
This is another story from my years in the Yukon.
Topless in a Jail in Ottawa - a Commentary
Sunday night is when I post a comment about the news of the week - if anything interests me.
The 2008 jailhouse video that was released last week certainly got my attention. I felt myself turn cold as I watched an unresisting woman being manhandled in the Ottawa Police Station.
I did understand that it was just a short clip from what must have been a long event and I really tried to find something in the news stories to justify the police actions.
After having read as much as I could about it and taking into consideration the comments by the judge I have come to the conclusion that for some reason a few police acted like sadistic bullies.
But they were only three or four out of thousands of decent, honourable police officers in the province.
My advice is to scratch that phone number for the Bandido Biker Club off your wall. If you bother them you might end up going for a swim in the Welland Canal wearing cement socks.
The police are still the people to call if you are in trouble.
And that's it for November. Tomorrow is December 1.
It is the beginning of the month that Christians celebrate the birth of baby Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Let's hope in His honour the threat of terrorism and the ominous nuclear sabre rattling in Korea can be resolved.
See you Friday!