They take us for fools

I am by Canadian standards low-income. I try to live simply here on my secluded, rural property on a modest pension income, supplemented by a relatively small amount of money from

I’ve always worked hard, and always will, for as long as I can. In that respect I daresay I’m the same as the vast majority of people in the world, especially these days.

And like most Canadians I’ve always paid my taxes. Now that my 2015 income-tax return is done I have a small amount to pay to help support the cost of government, including the projected $29.4 Billion federal, economic-stimulus budget.

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An unexpected but rewarding visit from “The Emperor”

The sun is shining. The driveway has been snow-blown as we say here in Hope Ness. And all’s right with the world.

Yesterday wasn’t great. My cold was getting me down. But today it’s getting better; so I’m going to pick up where I left the day before with the residual effect of an unexpected moment in music.

Here’s the thing: never underestimate the power of music to lift your spirits when the day seems to be getting off to a discouraging start.

So it was a couple of days ago. At a certain point in mid-morning – for various reasons I’d just as soon not get into – a certain level of turmoil was starting to make me feel overwhelmed. As usual I had the radio on, tuned, also as usual, to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) local “Radio 2” FM frequency. Familiar music was playing. I recognized it as Beethoven’s 5th Piano Concerto, “The Emperor.” Continue reading

“Blue Monday,” no way

Well, so I hear it’s “Blue Monday” today in Canada, the day when the various midwinter factors in this good country supposedly come together to make people feel blue. There’s some truth in it, I suppose. I am after all one who experiences Seasonal Affective Disorder (SADS), a feeling of being somewhat depressed, or “blue.” It’s brought on by a lack of sunlight at this time of year in northern latitudes. Hope Ness is just south of the 45th Parallel, halfway to the North Pole from the equator. The village of Lion’s Head, about 10 kilometres north of here is exactly halfway, by the way. (Pretty place that, especially when the rays of the setting sun shine like gold on the Niagara Escarpment cliffs just across from Lion’s Head harbour.) Continue reading