All posts by leslie-daniels-online@cogeco.ca

The Summer of Transformation – 2016

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BEFORE . ..

 

Every year it is something new in our garden. This year it was the incredible, heat and drought conditions from early spring to almost fall… Spring was lovely. My husband worked hard getting our gardens open. Then the rain stopped. The heat continued for days, weeks. At one point my husband said he was thinking of getting a third rain barrel. I asked what he was going to put in it.

The only thing that prospered and actually ‘grew’ in our garden this summer was my fairy tale shed. Out of the ashes and burnt earth dust arose this magnificent little crooked shed nestled in the shaded area at the back of our garden under the large billowing summer blooms of the purple Smoke tree and its puffy, cloud-like “smoky” overhang…

After a long, hot, sweaty summer of building, no nails used on this baby, all dowels and glue my husband’s vision of my shed began to emerge. Cedar smells lovely and weathers well too. No paint required. The cedar shingles were a feat on the steep pitch of this crocked little roof, but they look great. Two “owl windows” on the north wall just add to its charm.

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I have had friends ask to move in but until we get a long enough extension cord there is no electricity and the garden hose just barely reaches so alas it will stay a beautiful, unique garden ornament, sheltering our many pots, hangers, gazing balls and faux animal decorations from the winter freezes and thaws.

 

Wonder what we’ll ‘grow’ next year?

 

 

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Plans for this project will soon be available for purchase online. Stay tuned. (We have to pay for it somehow – just kidding…lol)

 

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William Faulkner – William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition

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2016 Winners & Finalists

William Faulkner – William Wisdom
Creative Writing Competition

The Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society, Inc. announces short lists, other finalists, and semi-finalists in three categories: Novella, Novel-in-progress, and Essay. We will be posting for other categories shortly, as soon as preliminary round judges have completed their work.

Novella

SHORT LIST
Abraham’s Wound
Dora
Drunk with Fire
Further
Molly’s Hope
Newborn
SEE NO EVIL – Leslie Daniels (me)
The Love Bank
Terminal
The Trouble with Goats
Uncle Phineas and the Letters

LEGACIES

I’m afraid Mr. Ford should have thought of “his children” when he undertook a criminal act. Just because he has passed away doesn’t change the facts or legacy he has left his family.

And other ‘politicians’ need to realize that just because they are in a public office they cannot get away with things like this….

Lies eventually catch up with you and as they say, “Karma can be a bitch.”

Now maybe Mr. Trump might argue this fact, but hey – we are in Canada – eh?

And what about The Donald’s own version of “Hanoi Hannah”, Katrina Pierson?

hhShe couldn’t argue her way out of a proverbial paper bag but my bet is she gets paid big bucks to slap on the makeup and try on national TV no less. Really?

Does he really think she’s effective at – anything?

Maybe it’s time for Donald Trump to look at the legacy he is leaving, not only to his children, who at present seem content to follow in ‘daddy’s  well-heeled’ foot-prints all the way to the bank, but now to his grandchildren as well.

TOO LITTLE – TOO LATE

My father was a person who I consider a WWII hero. After landing on D-day with a pulverized knee cap, broken shoulder, ankle and having been blown off target when parachuting to behind enemy lines he was captured by landing almost on top of a German  machine gun nest.

He spent months in POW camps, sabotaging brick making works, escaping and being recaptured twice. At 22 years old he was finally placed in a concentration work camp and although they were treated better than those in the concentration part of the camp, it was no picnic.

After escaping a third time he went back to the last camp with the liberation forces and recovered a ring my grandfather had given him that the camp commandant had confiscated.

After his return to Canada and his military discharge, he spent years in the hospital recovering. Finally released home he slept on the floor, the bed too soft and strange to him after the time spent in the camps.

In 1947 he and my mother, a nurse he met while recovering from his many surgeries, got married and went to live in a small apartment in Toronto. If it had not been for his neighbours, Jewish families that took them under their wings, sharing what they had and helping them establish themselves a life in post war Ontario their lives would have been much  harder than it was. They were forever grateful to them, my father fully understanding from his experiences just what they as a people had suffered before , during and after the war.

Well after reading Elie Weiesel’s books and just recently the Weight of Freedom, part of the Azrieli Series of Holocaust Survivor Memoirs, by survivor Nate Leipeiger, I for one am delighted that our Prime Minister brought him to my attention through his visit.

https://www.thestar.com/…/trudeau-tours-auschwitz…

I was shocked by the book that showed what he and others went through even after coming to Canada. I am in awe of the work he and other survivors have done to correct the messages and mis-information that was made available to visitors to Auschwitz in the past.  How that could have survived for so long is to me beyond mind blowing…

Even today, in 2016, I read the words that one Canadian is wondering why there are so few “Jews” in Poland. Really?

It is high time the world really focuses on what is important, or we will get another round of the horrors of WWII.

In my opinion, it is a small price to pay for our Prime Minister to visit Auschwitz and am shocked that some  in our society have described it as a frivolous trip. In my mind it is VERY important to those survivors and humanity that we understand how mankind went down that road so many years ago.

I suggest instead of complaining about the expense of this trip, those worried about the cost should spend their money to find out just WHY it is and always will be, too little, too late….

Elie Wiesel

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Elie-Wiesel/108197219208037?fref=ts

Where’s the Money, Honey?

Don’t Blame Elizabeth Holmes, Marissa Mayer, and Tim Cook. Blame Their Boards. (E. Jay Saunders, Jul 24, 2016)

Theranos is crashing and burning, losing over 90% of its value, and its founder and CEO, Elizabeth Holmes, just got barred from owning or operating a medical laboratory for at least two years. Yahoo! is in the midst of a fire sale, and is desperately trying to sell off its core business. And Apple is down over 25% in market cap value (compared to 21st July 2015), despite having one of the largest cash piles in history and one of the most attractive capital return programs.

I know it’s heresy to lump Apple, the world’s most valuable company by market cap (US$546.26B as of 18th July 2016), with two companies that have no future as standalone entities. However, there is no denying that currently, Apple is significantly underachieving. And the problem facing Apple is the same problem that’s facing Theranos and Yahoo! – i.e. the reluctance of their boards to shake things up at the top, and that’s because all 3 boards are smitten by their CEOs.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/dont-blame-elizabeth-holmes-marissa-mayer-tim-cook-boards-saunders

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And it is not just high profile companies that fall into this abyss. Home grown, citizen groups and charities can suffer from the same fate, losing tons of income and donations by the lack of a long-term plan for their project and the where with all to orchestrate and organize fund raising ventures that keep their supporters invested throughout the year.

While it is fantastic what small groups can raise in their communities, most projects are costly and at best could take 50 odd years to finish all the works planned using yard sales and once a year special events.

This is where those with the professional skills to ferret out the big bucks and good long-term planning come in. They can direct the group to the dollars and know the words to put down on paper to both attract and keep those types of investors interested.

A board of directors made up of well-known, respected community leaders, lawyers, businessmen and a philanthropist or two help immensely in this online world. Credible biographies put trust into an organization when seen online. We must all be aware that these days donations can come from half a world away if those targeted understand and support the group’s digital message.

Unfortunately like the organizations mentioned by Mr. Saunders, small community groups also often get less than value for the dollar by not taking advantage of all the help available. It is all well and good to ‘love’ your leader, even respect him but to do so at the expense of your goals is pure and utter folly. Sometimes you have to spend money to make money and that is not a crime just smart  management.

Looking to the future – short and long range, is the only way to survive these days when competing interests are always looking to snag the moneys available from the same stakeholder groups.

We should all take heed and learn the lesson from big corporations that are today starting to suffer from their fear of ‘shaking things up.”

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, Losing Weight Is What I Seek

Absolutely amazed at the research on sleep and how it was shown on the TV show, The Nature of Things, that getting 5 hours of sleep instead of 9 under research conditions (being able to eat as much as they want)

caused the participants to gain 20 kilograms in 5 days!

Apparently most of the eating was done after supper and made their days filled with 4 daily meals instead of three.

In cases such as this diet won’t help because it is sleep that is needed.

Sleep deprivation apparently disrupts the two hormones that regulate hunger, ghrelin (which signals hunger and tells you to eat) and leptin (which signals you are full and to stop eating.) Your body sends the signals but due to lack of sleep the signals are never received.

OH PLEASE RNC . . . Let’s Do It ALL On National T.V.

Walking the dog job is still up for grabs…

If the Donald ever got elected it seems he knows his own limits and is busy farming out the running of America to others. That somehow should make people feel better, no?

What I want to know is who takes the black box, atomic/nuclear football, home at night and who is in charge of cleaning up after the dog?

And the highlights of the convention’s 3rd prime time evening festivities were the “Hair” Fuhrer salute and Senator Cruz’s ‘surprising’, non-allegiance, thumb-nose speech in favour of “conscience” voting.

You can’t make this stuff up…

WHAT DO BOZO THE CLOWN AND THE RNC HAVE IN COMMON?

 

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I wanted to write something lighthearted and funny about the Republican National Convention – but the RNC beat me to it.

Well them and the guy who just said it was amazing, that being as anti-LGBT as the GOP is, that they could “appropriate” Freddy Mercury and Queens’ song “We are the Champions” – again.

However, as we all saw –  again, against the wishes of the band itself, there they were with BOZo, ummm “The” Donald Trump, rising from the smoke and ashes of the Republican Party to center stage  rocking to Queen’s anthem.

To the writer who commented: “Let me guess. Mrs. Trump actually wrote it.” Kudos.

Best line of the RNC so far!

Okay and just in case you need a reminder of what not to take to this party, the following are verboten: stoves; any and all projectile launchers; your sword, saber, hatchet, or axe.

And put your cestus (ancient battle gloves) back in the dresser drawer because they are NOT allowed on site either. But cowboys, police worries aside, get out your guns and wear them proudly.

Now you CAN also bring fresh white bread, which deforms elastically, but no biscuits, or crackers because they are considered to be “frangible” material. Yes. Really!

Canned goods and tennis balls are Not allowed. However baseballs seem to have made the cut <g> since they aren’t listed as prohibited items.

And don’t get me started on Melania Trump’s use of Michele Obama’s speech from 2008. Although I don’t condone plagiarism I do think in this case she showed she is capable of recognizing the ‘best’  {drum roll} in something.

And the week has just begun… Stay tuned!

 

NOTE: Larry Harmon, (same hair as … DT… No??) the entrepreneur who brought Bozo the Clown to television as a children’s show host in the late 1950s and spent the next 50 years promoting the flame-haired circus character, died Thursday, July 4th, 2008. He was 83.