To all the moms in my Care2 friends, and in their friends, and in their friends - I wish you a happy day.
"Most of all the other beautiful things in life come by twos and threes by dozens and hundreds. Plenty of roses, stars, sunsets, rainbows, brothers, and sisters, aunts and cousins, but only one mother in the whole world." ~ Kate Douglas Wiggin
I know - that may seem a little harsh, but we have enough of the home-grown variety without importing them. Why yes, Miss Coulter - as a matter of fact I was referring to your visit. Before you go (here's your hat - what's your hurry?) there are a few small matters we should clear up. To be warned that a country's laws don't allow for your usual bullshit is not a hate crime. It is a courtesy to prevent your arrest and conviction for hate speech, which here carries a penalty of two to fourteen years. Unnecessarily meddlesome of the university provost to tell you that, in my opinion. You are not 'dangerous'. Here in Canada, we know dangerous. We have polar bears and grizzlies and a whole backyard (10 million square km or so) of assorted predators. This is a country where a person can die simply by being caught outside. No, you are at worst a nuisance. Sort of like mosquito season. Your assumption that anyone who disagrees with you is intellectually bankrupt shows a certain talent for self-delusion. Whatever gets you through the night, I suppose. Never let reality get in the way of a reassuring assumption. Perhaps you were relying on our proverbial good manners to allow your speaking tour to proceed unhindered. True, given a choice, I would not have been among the protestors in Ottawa. No, no - given the choice, I wouldn't have let you into the country in the first place. There - so glad we had this chat. You can go now. You, and the horse you rode in on.
At least three times in the last year, I have been invited to go shopping for clothes. And/or shoes. By the same person, too. I don't get it. I own clothes. I hardly ever show up places naked - which, when you think about it, is hardly an option in Canada this time of year anyway. I own shoes too. At least, I own one pair of fleece-lined hiking boots for winter, one pair of sandals and two pairs of sneakers. Admittedly, some - well, most - of the clothing is not new. Or, for that matter, particularly fashionable. A good deal of it came from thrift shops. But it is clean, intact and covers me decently and comfortably. As for the shoe fetish - well, let's just say I am not prepared to pay $150 for three straps and a 3 inch heel. Or spring for whatever a podiatrist's fees are these days. No, I am not a miser. I spend money on books, music, craft supplies (Green Dog Creations - proceeds to the SPCA), new windows for the house and a heating system for the cabin. I just hate wasteful spending.
I went to mail a couple of packages last week, one to eldest son at university, one to friend Bird in Labrador. When I arrived, it was apparently at peak mailing time, since the double line stretched from the doors to the counter. Ah well, I have nothing but time. I'm retired. After waiting long enought to read - and write a dissertation on - War and Peace, I laid my packages on the counter and dug my wallet out of my pocket. "You can't mail those," said the clerk. "They're liquor boxes." I assured her that, while generous in spirit, my budget does not extend to mailing a case of Captain Morgan Dark to my son and a case of Blue Ice Vodka to Bird. The boxes do not contain liquor. They are just - boxes. Makes no difference, said the clerk. It's against the rules. If I go home and cover the offending markings with brown paper - which they just happen to sell at the post office - I can mail them. Otherwise, no. I pointed out that even covered in brown paper, the boxes are still liquor boxes. But no - rules are rules. If I mail towels and church sale items in boxes that are seen to have contained booze, I will bring down Western civilization. Apparently. So I left the boxes by the counter, walked to the dollar store down the block and purchased paper and tape* to cover the offending markings, and mailed them at a price that should have allowed me to have wrapped them in asbestos, tied with det cord. It does make sense that certain items cannot be sent by mail. Post office employees have the right to be protected from poisonous and hazardous materials, and objects such as cigarette lighters, which can explode. But I fail to see how the printing on a cardboard box can constitute a hazard. Unless, of course, the liquor corporation has taken to printing its labels in radioactive ink. If it has, a layer of brown paper ain't going to cut it. I gave the matter some thought on the way home - Canada Post says they have to assume boxes contain what they say they do. For the life of me, I can't see why - if it's a used box, it's pretty certain that it does not hold the original contents. If in doubt, shake it. If it clinks, refuse it. The other conclusion I came to is that the head of Canada Post may have been possessed by the spirit of Carrie Nation. Too bad, though. Liquor boxes are the crème de la crème of mailing boxes - sturdy, and with those neat dividers to separate breakables. I foresee a lot of brown paper in my future.
* Yes, the post office does have those items for sale. I was feeling bloody-minded about it.
The next time I have a prescription filled at the pharmacy, I'm asking for a bottle without a child-proof cap. Oh, I know that in homes where there are small children, they're necessary. But the youngest person in the house right now is the dog (in people years, anyway) and as smart as he is, I don't see him worrying the cap off a container of antibiotics. And even if he did, once he finds out they're not candy, he'll lose interest. I'm a senior. My hands aren't what they used to be, and getting the cap off involved about five minutes of wrestling with it and a good deal more bad language than a woman my age should be using. The first time anyway. When I was due for the second dose, I chopped the plastic cap off with a knife and dumped the pills into a small snap-top food container. It was that, or make a second trip to ask for some blood pressure medication. Without the child-proof cap, of course.
3. For every word you match correctly with its definition, the site's sponsors donate 10 grains of rice. That may not sound like much, but in 2007/2008, people playing accumulated over 55 billion grains of rice. This year, though, totals seem to be falling off, so please go there and play the vocabulary game. http://www.freerice.com/