This Writer: What I Learned on a White Sandy Beach in the Middle of Canada

Grand Beach

Grand Beach (Photo credit: Travel Manitoba)

About three weeks ago I spent an amazing eight days on the prairies in a nice little place called Lockport Manitoba.  Now, I had been to the city of Winnipeg in the past on business and did not care for the swarms of homeless who came out of recessed doorways in groups and surrounded me and frightened me so I had no desire to go anywhere in that province ever again.  Lesson one which should not need to be said:  Don’t judge people or a place based on one experience.

Then my dearest friends relocated to Lockport to be closer to family and friends so a little reluctantly I boarded a Westjet and headed out.  Lockport itself and its surrounding beauty will have to wait for another time because today is about the beach.  An easy drive my second day took us to Grand Beach Manitoba.

Now in my experience, Canada does not have a lot of Caribbean comparable beaches, and certainly none that stretch for miles of white sand and dunes.  Shallows extend quite far into the lake making it an ideal playground for families, young people, and seniors.  The second lesson is pretty closely tied to the first:  If you haven’t been somewhere don’t assume it doesn’t exist.  Funny thing is that mountains, rivers and prairies often depict Canada in photos but I can’t remember ever seeing a beach quite like this one.

Grand Beach is fresh water of course, so no, there was no pounding surf.  It lies on the eastern shore of Lake Winnipeg which is the sixth largest lake in Canada at 9,465 square miles.  The first five comprise of three Great Lakes, Huron, Erie, and Superior, and the other two are in the NWT (Northwest Territories), and are called Great Bear and Great Slave Lake.

I never have considered myself an ornithologist as I can pretty well only identify Blue Jays, Red Winged Blackbirds, Robins, and Sparrows.  Oh and Hummingbirds.   But darned if I didn’t learn a couple more things that enriched the experience.  Lesson three:  Birds are incredibly interesting especially when seen in their natural habitat.

Piping Plovers

PIPING PLOVERS (charadrius melodus) are an endangered species of bird protected on Grand Beach.  They are a small sandy colored sparrow sized bird that nests and feeds along coastal sand and gravel. (Just as an aside there are two more things I learned – Manitobans – uh Manitobians – people in Manitoba take their wild life and food markets very seriously – but that’s another story.)

American White Pelican

AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS (pelicanus erythrorohynchos).  Go figure.  If I was on a game show like Jeopardy and my fortune depended on my knowledge of Pelicans in Canada I would be going home in a sorry state.  This spectacular aquatic bird breeds in the North American interior and migrates south each year.  Including its long huge beak it can be between 50 – 70 inches in length and has a wing span of 95 – 120 inches.  Is that amazing or what?  Its bill is flat on top with a large throat sac that allows it to scoop fish out of the water.  Now that is what I call ‘fast food’.

Our Pelicans are both smart and naughty.  They are smart enough that in shallow water they form a line or a semicircle and corral fish.  The naughty part is that they suffer from Kleptoparasitism which means they steal food from other birds.  Thieves they are.  Their victims can be other Pelicans, Gulls, or Cormorants.  Wikipedia reports that at least on one occassion the victim was a great Blue Heron who lost its treasure mid-flight.

Now some of you are shaking your heads and saying you knew all this but it was new and exciting for me and here is the last lesson: Just because I am old(er) and at times feel like I have the wisdom of Methusala  never ever assume that there is nothing I can’t continue to learn and that learning is still exciting.

Now before I dash off to find out what the heck a Cormorant is I will leave you with a wee limerick my father liked to recite to us as children written by Edward Lear.

A wonderful bird is the Pelican.

His beak can hold more than his belly can.

He can hold in his beak

Enough food for a week!

But I’m darned if I know how the hellican!

 

 

 

Let’s Pretend Tuesday is Monday: Oh the Plots We Weave

I know!  I know!  There is a large percentage of people who hate Mondays.  Really hate them.  That first workday of the week signifies the end of weekend fun and the beginning of toil.  Now you see, for me, Mondays have always been about new starts, list of goals and objectives to be reached.  A day of such optimism.  Fridays conversely are not so much as I must come to terms with what I did not achieve.

Today ( Monday) is always ‘Oh The plots We Weave’ day when we look at a couple of actual news stories and comment of ‘what ifs’.   This sort of came about when I would post on a news piece and generally rant or comment.  Then I got thinking, this is where stories and books come from.  News stories, observing momentary interactions and letting our imaginations fly.

So first thing right out of the front page of the HAMILTON SPECTATOR there are 2 items which caught my eye and my ‘Oh Lord where is the sanity when you need it’ button.

1)  FATHER SUES PUBLIC BOARD OVER ITS GAY EQUITY STAND   Oh Boy, this isn’t even some backwoods notion, it comes straight from the mind of Eustathios ‘Steve’ Tourloukis a dentist in Smithville.  His claim is that as a praciticing member of his Greek Orthodox Church his rights are being violated.

Now now children, play nice.  Would someone please point out to our dentist that this province provides a large number of Christian Churches with the sole purpose of raising students in the environment you desire and that his child or children are part of a PUBLIC school.  You know Public as in every one of every denomination is free to attend.

‘ What if”?  What kind of plot could we develop from this little bit of information?  Well it could be the father has to loudly decry the learning material because he is in a personal secret struggle from these very urges…nah that is too common a thread.  ‘What if’  ..ah you know what?  Whichever way this plot goes it could be trouble.  Can you think of anything provoking?

2)  COURT ORDERS LONG-GUN DATA TO BE TRANSFERRED TO QUEBEC  I have to admit that there are a couple of things about Canada that make me squirm a bit perhaps even to the point of embarrassment and the Gun Registry is one of them.  Several years ago a registry was put in for guns.  It was badly managed, very expensive and about as effective as flying into the sun.  So now in a fit of rare insight it was decided to take down, nullify, disband, destroy, the long-gun registry.  In doing so the government continuing of its life long mission to give meaning to ‘stupid’, ‘most stupid’, decided to also destroy all the information they had gathered on the registry quest.  One province spoke up – Quebec – who is trying to keep its portion of the registry alive.  The Quebec court said the government has no right to destroy registry data….

‘What if”?  We created a super hero to fight stupidity –  faster than a speeding bullet? Where to start? Where to start?  Well first there will be the need to gather up all politicians and give each one’s head a good shake so they in fact will have their heads on straight.  Could you imagine a world where everyone was sane in political arenas?

What if then our dentist had the same thing happen?  Hello!  A moment of clarity!  I think I will send my child to a school that does meet my requirements for education.

**Please note there are far and wide implications in each of these cases.  There is also more detailed info that one needs to consider before being pro or con.  The only consideration I have presented in the subject matter as a possible story line or plot.  Besides the fiction will certainly be more interest than the reality of it all.  I think.

Following in the footsteps…..Jaime

I have a few, well quite a few blogs I read everyday – must read everyday even when I cannot find the time to blog or actually have nothing to say. (Who ever thought such a thing could happen to  me?)

What has me stymied is that many bloggers actually have a system or plan to what they post and for the life of me I cannot find a personal theme and through my own good taste read only the best of the best.  (This statement may not be 100% accurate as one cannot possibly read every blog to determine the best.  Let’s just say everyone I have on my list excels.)  Amazingly enough it is the excellence of my bloggers that has made me feel a certain degree of shyness in putting my own contributions forward and the frequency of my posts and my writing in general has suffered mightily.  So still feeling overwhelmed by the sharing the stage with the greats I have pledged to return to blogging daily in the hopes that my personal genre will become evident since not writing at all has done nothing good for me. Nuts, there I go getting off track.  I guess what I am trying to say – short story long is that for a bit I would like to follow in the footsteps of these great folk. The order of presentation from day to day is not related to best first since I consider all I read ‘best’.

Today I am looking at Jaime who has a couple of things going regularly one of which is her ‘What I learned this week’ series.  Now I don’t have the patience to choose articles over a week but there is usually one day of the week in which the news reported seems just plain ridiculous and begs comment.

1)  Food Fetish Teacher * previous post of The Ontario College of Teachers   I have long had an issue with this College for its ability to hide teachers’ crimes from the public.  There have been changes – thankfully or rather nauseatingly.  Gavin Bradford lost his licence for inappropriate sexually laced on-line  web cam conversations WITH AT LEAST 21 OF HIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS.  Sorry about the shouting but the worst part is that this all happened in 2006.  Investigations started in 2007 a full year before this jerk actually resigned.  Shame, shame, shame on you College of Teachers.  Obviously child safety in Ontario, Canada matters everywhere except in the school system where children spend their whole childhood.

2)  Beware the libraries in Ontario.  Seems that sniffer dogs (specializing in bed bugs) have picked up the scent of BEDBUGS in our libraries.  While no live bedbugs were found in the books, the eggs were.  I immediately thought of my friend who loves her library.  She will be weirded out.  Too bad they can’t teach sniffer dogs to dig up fetish freaks in education.

3)  “Slut walk returns”.  Never heard of this before and I immediately pictured something like Hollywood’s walk of fame and wondered if the city was building a special walkway for local sluts but discovered instead it is a walk to combat sexual violence and victim blaming.  I wonder if sexual violence to non-sluts is also covered?

4) “Cops bust 154 drivers in Binbrook”  Nice.  Too bad they did not put the same effort into busting bad teachers.

Well that pretty much covers today.  There probably is more but to tell you the truth I am sick of news for now.  At least I did not come across anything about TomKat divorce.  I know I would not be able to keep my breakfast down on that one.

 

That Search Engine Google

First..apologies to those who hate iPad presentations…please click in the bottom where it says ‘standard site’ or whatever it says there. Because you see, I missed my window of sleep. You know..the window..where I could drift off to the land of Nod but did not.
Secondly, I seem to be fighting..well actually struggling with a cold..you know, a few sneezes perhaps a little sinus congestion…geez.

I have watched in wonder and awe as folk have described their search terms. Those googled by who knows who receive all these hits based on misinformation.

Shucks I wish mine was that exciting.

Soft Kitty Warm Kitty took top honors and why not. My G2 seems to have outgrown the stage where he snuggles down at the very start of the song but I have to tell you..three versions into the song he is gone..hmm could it be aversion therapy? Funny thing though..it comforts me….sigh
If Snowflakes Fell in Flavours took second…I don’t care where you are from this is the best children’s record ever. I MEAN EVER!

Marie Bottrell and the Memphis Cats website was next.

My search terms are pretty tame I guess although ‘grandma dressed in blue sitting on the loo’ is a little strange.

So I’m thinking this is about right.

Two Year Olds To Start School

 

Two Years Old?
You know sometimes I feel like a dinosaur.  Not the big purple dancing kind but the bones in the museum having left behind an oil field type.
It could be triggered by prepubescent fashion with excessive exposure of midriffs and upper thighs, or actions by our various Ministries in Government which more and more are resembling those wicked ones out of Harry Potter, or like today by idiots who do studies and then make recommendations that you just know those with power will embrace.
Now the interesting fact about studies is that they are often done to support a decision already made.  The ‘study’ is tailored to give a desired outcome.  That particular fact should not surprise anyone who breathes and understands words.
Last night’s broadcasts and today’s newspapers are giving a peek at what I figure is already a done deal.
Two year olds, our babies, should be in school and away from the control of parents and private care givers of choice.  Put our babies in the hands of the state.  It is assumed that all school staff are better equipped to raise our young
‘uns.
The next step I assume with my dinosaur spidey sense is that newborns will be wrenched from the delivery rooms and raised by the state.
Hmmm that is sounding more and more like the science fiction novels of the past were in fact more prophetic than imaginary.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2011/11/22/children-should-start-school-at-two-years-old-study/

I Marked A Wonderful Day Pakulaked With Fun

I Marked A Wonderful Day Pakulaked With Fun


Did you notice what I did there?  Thanks to Mark…Pakulak of course..who allowed me to do a guest post on his golden site I got to meet and find and subscribe to some major A listers and I had a ball!  Thank you redriverpak.wordpress.com!

Now here comes the tricky part….we absolutely must give Mark his 2 millionth hit on March 15th.  That’s the date I chose and the prize is to be adored by him for one week..and yes his wife is fine with this.  So here is the plan….I’ll watch his stats and if he has not reached it by the Ides of March we must, all do us click ourselves silly.  I am beginning to think he will hit it before The Ides HOWEVER if we miss that one we will do it for the 3 million mark.  I love it when a plan comes together! ( As Hannibal, no not Lecter but the other one on A team says).

I have had some great things happen in my life but I gotta say…this was special!,

Mark..I am glad your surgery has been approved and would like to offer free nursing care for that month..but no I do not do poop patrol..but will be happy to direct!!

An Outside Opinion on The Ontario College of Teachers

Last evening I received a very detailed response to a post I did on October 5, 2011 regarding Jacques Trembly and The Ontario College of Teachers. It is not the kind of fare I normally post on my bridgesburning site but I have posted the whole article on my justmyownopinion.wordpress.com site.
I cannot attest to the veracity of what is written but would welcome other opinions or information before I agree to help this lady and her cause.

justmyownopinion.wordpress.com is a small blog in which I vent on matters that are not fun or light.

Scuzbag Educator Resigns..Straight From Vancouver Sun

Ontario educator resigns over erotic novel for teens

BY DEREK ABMA, POSTMEDIA NEWS OCTOBER 5, 2011 2:01 PM
 

STORYPHOTOS ( 1 )
 

Book cover: The Sexteens and the Fake Goddess.

Photograph by: Handout., Handout.

A prominent Ontario educator resigned Wednesday amid controversy over an erotic novel featuring an under-aged teen who joins an “aphrodisiac cult.”

Jacques Tremblay, who was chairman of the discipline committee for the Ontario College of Teachers, co-authored the 2008 book, The Sexteens and the Fake Goddess. The novel, written for teens, features a high-school freshman described as having a “gorgeous bosom” and “barely fleshy buttocks” exploring her sexuality.

The college’s website on Wednesday said Tremblay had resigned his position as a committee chairman and council member of the college because of the controversy.

The College of Teachers regulates and certifies public teachers in Ontario. Its discipline committee is responsible for conducting hearings into allegations of misconduct and incompetence of teachers.

“I have accepted Mr. Tremblay’s resignation,” the group’s chairwoman Liz Papadopoulos said in the online statement. “The college makes every effort to maintain public confidence in the teaching profession’s self-regulatory processes.”

Tremblay, who could not be reached for comment, is still a teacher with the public French-language school board in eastern Ontario, and is in good standing with the College of Teachers.

The college’s website says he is high school teacher with 16 years of experience, and is also a writer of “fiction and non-fiction books related to self-growth and education.”

A website for the Sexteens book promotes it as a “novel for teens and adults” and adds it is “the most controversial teen novel that will change your life forevermore.”

The cover features a boy and girl, both topless with their backs toward the viewer and facing a silhouette of the CN Tower. The girl is wearing a cowboy hat and a short white skirt.

In the novel, main character Leila Montana is introduced as a “young teen” just starting high school. She is also joining a group called the Sexteens’ Select Society.

As she awaits initiation into this mysterious alliance, the book describes her appearance as follows: “Her half-open shirt divulges the roundness of her gorgeous bosom. Leila’s particularly short skirt exposes her barely fleshy buttocks.”

There are several other detailed references throughout the book about the bodies of Leila and other girls.

Taking an oath to the mysterious society, Leila promises to “develop my teenage life at my own rhythm inspired by the aphrodisiac cult, which is based on the power of love and the emancipation of my sexuality.”

On the day after the initiation, “Leila wakes up and feels a new energy swelling within her. . . . Despite her efforts, however, Leila can’t remember what really happened. She is peaceful and undisturbed by this lapse of memory. Meanwhile, Leila feels a very light, but quite pleasant, tingling on her upper right buttock.”

This society’s website “acts as a support throughout each step of teens’ sexual discoveries. It encourages a positive sex life while exploring eroticism and sensuality.”

The other writers are Marie-Ange Gagnon — reportedly Tremblay’s wife — and Frederic Tremblay.

The villain of this story is the deputy headmaster of St-Valentine High School, Harry Dick. He doesn’t allow girls to wear provocative clothing, but is discovered to have pornography stored on the school computer and be part of a cocaine ring.

dabma(at)postmedia.com

Twitter.com/derekabma

© Copyright (c) Postmedia News

There is Bad, Perverted, Stupid, Incompetent.. Then There is The Ontario College of Teachers and Jacques Tremblay

There is Bad, Perverted, Stupid, Incompetent.. Then There is The Ontario College of Teachers and Jacques Tremblay

An author, The Sexteens’ author is almost the worst kind of human trash imaginable, promoting through publication of his book softporn for teens.  According to today’s edition of The Hamilton Spectator his book ‘chronicles the sexy adventures of Grade 9 girls and boys at a mythical Toronto high school.’. (striptease, sexual touching, orgasm, blackmail, two mail teachers having a threesome with a female student.on and on…

So let’s see that would make the kids about thirteen years old.

What people choose to write and read is up to them.  This post has nothing to do with censoring or taste.

What it has to do with is the fact that the author is one of the most important education officials in the province of Ontario.  This (in my opinion only) slime is a watchdog, presiding over the colleges disciplinary committee.  He is chair of this committee which deals with teachers ‘alleged to have violated the trust of students and the public through sexual assault, verbal and physically abusive attacks, or incompetent behaviour.’

His name is Jacques Tremblay and while the very thought of him turns my stomach I am even more appalled at the Ontario College of Teachers.

Oh and it’s not a new publication.  It was published in 2008.

The inmates are in control of the asylum and the first thing they are doing is to protect bad teachers and help your thirteen year old achieve orgasm and jump to a seamier side of life all in the name of education.

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