Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Post 3573 - Yawn!

I have spent the last few hours watching the elections results on tv and listening to them on the radio. CTV should be ashamed of itself for its coverage. They had a political panel, but barely used them. They went to commercials every few minutes, losing continuity and credibility.

I am a civil servant. I cannot really comment publicly on how these elections turn out. I can only say that this situation, where it looks more and more like a Liberal minority government, will be interesting. Very interesting.

Patricia remains sick. I left work early to take her to the walk-in clinic in Tantallon. We got there only to learn that they had closed at 4pm. Obviously closed early so staff could go out and vote, which is their right. Doesn't help us. It just means I will be late for work in the morning.

I also worked this evening on my next true crime piece for the next issue of Frank, out in two weeks. I am not happy with the draft I wrote this evening, so I will hack and slash at it  during my lunch hour on Wednesday. I will make the changes to make it look pretty and may send it to my editor tomorrow night, a day and a half earlier than I had originally promised.

I think I will turn in for the evening. Long day tomorrow.


Monday, May 29, 2017

Post 3572 - Keep Hydrated

Well, that's what you get when you brag.

Patricia was proud of herself last week, stating that she had not had a major cold or flu or pneumonia so far in 2017.

She has a combination of all three, today.

She took a sick day. Slept most of the day away. I was fine, so I went to work. Got some provisions on the way home and prepared them for dinner tonight. She woke up long enough to eat but admitted to me that she fell asleep tonight whilst eating strawberries. An hour or so she woke up and finished them.

I just got her some more tea and water. Got her an ice pack.

The new Frank Magazine went up today. You can read it now online, or buy it in Nova Scotia stores on Wednesday. I "only" have my media column in there. My editor changed virtually nothing. There was some last minute material I sent him late on Thursday afternoon that he edited into my column, but that's about it. Nearly two full pages of content. Stuff you will find nowhere else.

I already have a couple items for my next media column, and am working on my next true crime piece. If it works out, it will be a different kind of true crime piece from any of the ones I have done so far. So, with a bit of luck, I will have two articles in the next issue of Frank. We'll see.

We're off on Friday. That means three more days left in this work week. Our plan is to go to the cottage this weekend, check the place out. Depending on how we're feeling, that is.

I just love this computer monitor. The one I got for $5.72 on Friday. I can angle it back. It was seemingly made for the space allocated for a monitor on this computer desk. It's wonderful. I hope I get years and years of use out of it.

I think I will turn in. I want to keep rested so that I don't get the cold/flu/pneumonia that Patricia has.

See you tomorrow.


Sunday, May 28, 2017

Post 3571 - This And That

Well, hello there, handsome. How are you doing?

My body shut down pretty early Saturday night. It does most nights after I have spent hours and hours at the Archives, researching unsolved murders and missing persons cases. Something about investigating death tires me out.

After I finished there, I picked up Patricia. We voted at the advanced polls in Lakeside. Or is it technically Beechville? I am not sure, but at any rate, the voting process is over for both of us. I look forward to seeing how the results will turn out, and whether the candidate I supported will win on Tuesday night.

There are some strange elections laws in Nova Scotia. I think I understand some of them. But I do not understand why the law states that a provincial election must fall on a Tuesday. A weekend, I get that. People may be out of town or traveling or something. But why, specifically, a Tuesday?

Time was, liquor stores had to close on an election day, but that has not been the case for quite a few years. That law went back to the day, back when my parents were young, when politicians would openly bribe the electorate with bottles of liquor, usually rum. My mother once told me that when she was first able to vote, around 1950 I guess it would have been, that the candidate asked her if she had voted "correctly". When she replied that she had, he gave her a crisp ten dollar bill. The men were given bottles of rum. That candidate was Liberal, but the Conservatives did the same thing.

Also, back in the day, some candidates got their hands on actual voting ballots and devised a method by which they could ensure votes for themselves. They would procure these ballots somehow and fill them out with the X next to their name. They would give those filled-out ballots to willing voters, who would go into the voting booth, pretend to fill out the ballot and return it to the voting clerk. The already-filled-in ballot would be put in the box to be counted. The blank ballot, given to the voter just before he entered the voting booth, would be returned to the candidate. Satisfied he had just got another vote, he would give the voter a small sum of money, or, more likely, a bottle of rum or other liquor.

I am sure there were other scams and schemes along the way. For all I know, there still are, but those are the ones they had back then that I heard about. Today, voting ballots are jealously guarded. I can't imagine how a candidate could get his hands on them ahead of time. Even if he could, he would be found out and driven out of town, and rightly so. There is a little strip containing a unique number that the voting clerk tears off the returned ballot and places in a separate bag before the clerk gives the remaining portion of the ballot to the voter, who places it in the box to be counted when the polls close. That is supposed to fix the problem I described in the previous paragraph.

Hey, here's what we can do. If you know of any past scheme employed by political candidates to ensure votes for themselves, tell me about them. You can put a comment on my Facebook, leave a comment on the blog, or write me directly here. I look forward to hearing from you.

Oh, someone wrote me the other day saying she did not know how to leave a comment to a blog post. You need to have an account on Google and be logged on to that account when you access this blog. Once you do, you can leave a comment on a given blog post. I am pretty sure I turned off anonymous blog comments some time ago. I was getting too many abusive comments.  So, now you know.

Another work week beckons. Yippee.

See you tomorrow.


Friday, May 26, 2017

Post 3570 - Two Days Later

Once again, I must apologize for not writing on Thursday. My body pretty much shut down around 8:45. I was trying to play back the political roundtable when my eyes grew heavy. I will watch it over the weekend. I mean, I have pretty much decided how I'm gonna vote, but I still feel I should watch the thing.

I took Friday afternoon. Half a vacation day. Patricia and I hit the road. We had lunch at the Chicken Burger in Bedford. We go there a couple of times a year just to remind ourselves that we don't know what the fuss is about the place. 75 years of nostalgia, I think.

From there we went to the BFM thrift store, a short distance away. Every time you go in there, you check the whiteboard to see what that day's or week's specials are. Today it was stuff priced with a blue tag, excluding jewelry, 50% off. I found a couple books that would have been 75 cents, down to 38 cents. And, I found a computer monitor with a blue tag on it. Normally $9.95, half of that. With tax, it was $5.72. I hooked it up this evening and am typing this here blog post using that monitor. It is a bit dirty, so I have to put Windex or something on it, but other than that it is lovely. It is an Acer 19 inch monitor, widescreen. I think it is the very same model of monitor that crapped out here a few months ago. I'm pretty happy with the purchase. If I only get a year out of the monitor, then that will have been money very well spent. But I hope to get a few years out of this monitor!!

The monitor that was hooked up to this computer will go back in a closet for the day it is required again.

We went from there to the nearby Bedford Common shopping area. I went to Wal*Mart to get a couple shaving soaps. Drove over to the Winners. Patricia thought it was a lovely store compared to some of the other Winners stores around. I went to the Staples two doors up. I found a 19 inch Acer monitor there. I am surprised they still make them that small. It was $100.00. Man, I made out like a bandit.

We were getting tired by 4:30, but we decided to bop over to Dartmouth to Princess Auto. I got some batteries. Then we went to Dave's Fruit and Vegetable Market, if for no other reason than to see what the fuss was all about. Nice store, and good prices. Some of the produce was cheaper than was at the Gateway Meat Market, which we also visited. Sale on chicken legs. We got some.

We returned home and I cooked dinner. Found room in the fridge for the meat we bought. Came down here and hooked up this computer monitor and monkeyed around with the settings. And, now, after a very long day, I think I will turn in.

I plan to go to the Archives in the morning. We will see if I have the strength to get up comparatively early. Ha. Of course I don't.

See you tomorrow.


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Post 3569 - Yawn!

Pushing midnight. Just put my Frank media column to bed. Time to put myself there, too.

My goodness, it has been a long day. Non-stop fun from about 5:30 until now. And I have to get up for another work day in naught but a few hours.

No, I did not go to the Timberlea Dental place after work tonight. I will try to go there tomorrow. After Patricia finishes her Pilates class, that is. They're open until 8pm, so there should be time to get there before they close. I am still royally ticked about how they treated me at Gladstone Dental on Tuesday morning. Grr.

Anyway, bed beckons. See you tomorrow.


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Post 3568 - Why, I Oughta!

Man, what a long day at work.

First day back after a pretty good long weekend. The weather was terrible. Rained all day. Matched my mood.

I had a dental appointment today at 11. I made sure I was there early because I love to go there so much. I got some... well, let's go with "news". The hygienist told that the previous dentist at the practice had left, and is frig knows where now. The new dentist on staff wants fresh x-rays of her patients. I have a gag reflex the likes of which are hard for mere mortals to contemplate. I fight the hygienists every step of the way. I can't help it. X-Rays are the worst. We nearly come to blows. Once again, I can't help it.

They are urging me to try out another dentist, at least for things like X-Rays. Deal with a dentist who uses something to relax me, maybe even put me out. Not fussy about that. They are putting in a referral, and will call me about that soon.

I don't like how this is being handled. They could have picked up the phone and told me about this issue, rather than wait for me to show up for an appointment that never happened. I psyched myself up to go in for the teeth cleaning or whatever fresh hell they had in store for me. Dwelled on it for days and days. Then, I show up, and they all but kick me out. Makes me want to go to another dentist, if only to spite them.

There is a dentist here in Timberlea. They are open most nights until 8pm. Here is their website. Been there. Seems nice. And I like to support local where I can.

I think I will give them a call. Perhaps I will even drop by after work later on this week. It can't hurt.

Even if everything else about going to the dentist does.

See you tomorrow.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Post 3567 - Three Days Later

Well, hello there.

I didn't write on Saturday because come that evening, I was tired. We had spent hours that day running the roads. Patricia and I attended a talk at the Tantallon library about vegetable gardening. We thought it would go on for the full afternoon but after about 75 minutes it was announced that the session would reconvene at a woman's house, where people would be put to work in the fields. We bailed. I'm sorry. Wrong word. We ran for the door.

We ended up going to Lefty's Bar and Grill for a late lunch. We each had bangers and mash, were most delicious, but started off with Irish Nachos. They are thinner, like a potato chip, and everything was smothered in cheese and onions and bacon bits. We loved them. They were 100x better than the nachos we had had the night before.

Patricia wanted to go to the Lee Valley in Bayer's Lake. We did. After that, we went to Value Village. I found some interesting local history books. For whatever reason, VV is becoming an excellent place to purchase books about local history. People must be clearing out their collections and donating them to VV.

We got home around 7pm. Stayed in and watched episodes of The Outsiders on Crave TV. I am not sure how I feel about season two. One was building toward some kind of war between the town folks and the mountain people, but in season two, they still are. Is it a budgetary thing or something?

Sunday morning, I drove to the Valley by myself. I wanted to mow the lawn at the house down there. In keeping with my policy, I did not announce it here on the blog, my twitter, my facebook. I arrived just in time to see a neighbor finishing a rough mow. The grass was apparently very high. I had not had a chance to go there for a few weeks. I thanked him.

We got to talking about my true crime series in Frank Magazine, which he says he loves. I told him why I cannot do one for every bi-weekly issue. We discussed a couple of the Valley missing persons cases. He asked me whether I had ever received a late night phone call from someone warning me away from writing about these cases.

I replied that nobody had, but perhaps I should have mentioned the time someone threatened to sue me over one of my articles. Nothing ever came from it, and nothing ever will. People often threaten to sue as a way to discourage the so-called offending party, but suing is not something that one enters into lightly. It is not for the faint of heart. It is expensive in any sense of the word. My editor even expressed pride in me for having had my first law suit threat. He told me he felt a little verklempt about it.

Anyway, I went into the house and hooked up a device to the tv so I could get sound from the stereo. The tv only had one of those new coax cables, and the stereo had no such attachment. Had to buy an adapter thingy whose output was the familiar RCA jacks. Works like a charm. Same arrangement as upstairs, by the way.

I went into New Minas. Went to the Value Village there and donated an old computer monitor. Went in and found yet more local history books, and got ones I did not already have. One was by a local... eccentric named Ted Hennigar, who wrote several books in the 1960's and 1970's containing content one could find nowhere else. Local history. Local folklore. Not sure what to make of this guy, but my parents had several of his books, some of which were barely above the level of pamphlet.

I returned to the house and whipper snipped around the property. The anti-histamine I took made me groggy and I fell asleep early, after watching just one episode of Netflix's "The Keepers", one of those long-form murder mysteries they do so very well.

I got up this morning. Made coffee and breakfast. Did some cleaning up. And packed my bags and returned to the city.

Been doing not that much since I came back. I am always tired upon a return trip from the Valley. I am not sure why.

Anyway, that's where I am at. Another three day weekend is behind me. A shortened work week yawns before me. And I think I will yawn before it.

You guys have a good night. Talk at you tomorrow.


Friday, May 19, 2017

Post 3566 - A Pleasant Evening

The long weekend is here. Yes!

After work, Patricia and I strolled around the Public Gardens for a few minutes before deciding to go further downtown and grab a bite. We ended up on Argyle Street, at a place called East of Grafton. They opened at 5:30 and had half price appetizers. We ordered the following:

That's a strangely-wrapped thing of nachos, which we had never seen presented that way before. Some chicken wings in the middle. And a few soft pretzels on the left.

The nachos were not only presented in a strange way, wrapped in paper, but were skimpy in terms of the stuff that was on them. There was some cheese, but not the quantity one would typically expect. The salsa and the guacamole in the foreground were what you were supposed to dip the nachos in prior to stuffing them in our pie hole. The salsa in the above picture looks like uncooked hamburger. The guacamole was not smashed up enough. There was a big chunk in the middle that Patricia mashed up on her own using her brute strength (of character). The salsa was okay. The little ramekin on the left was some damn thing or other that didn't taste like anything I would want to put in my mouth.

The pretzels were fine. Nice cheese sauce to dip them into. But with only three of them, we had to cut one in half to be equitable.

Patricia found the chicken wings too spicy. Only ate one. I managed to finish them. Acceptable.

She had a glass of Tidal Bay Wine from Pete Luckett's vineyard in the Valley. She reported it was fine.

There are, well, a lot of wineries in the Annapolis Valley. Pushing 20 last I heard. That part of the province is hoping to be like California's Napa Valley, I suppose, but my knowledge of wine is so scant that I will never be able to be in a position to judge. I fear, however, that the area can only support so many wineries, so I wonder how long they can keep building new ones before some of them fold.

The bill came to just over $30, so it would have been nearly twice that amount (the wine is discounted by two dollars a glass during happy hour) for what we ate. Not nearly worth that much, but at half price, I could live with it.

We drove home. Watched some tv. And around 10, we both started to doze off. I woke up long enough to write this blog post, but already my eyes are getting heavy.

You guys have a good evening. I will bark at you tomorrow.


Thursday, May 18, 2017

Post 3565 - I Wonder Why?

Okay, so, after  work I had to hang around for a while because Patricia had Pilates. I heard that another murder case had been added to the province's list of awards for major unsolved crimes.

I found a bit of online information about this person. Located his obituary. Found some family members. After some digging, I found his sister on Facebook. Messaged her.

About an hour ago, whilst washing dishes, she wrote me back. Says she's interested in talking to me about her brother. I told her to go check out the most recent issue of Frank, as my latest article is there, right on page nine, and is three pages long.

Every time I think I have hit a brick wall with this true crime series, something happens. Something falls in place. And I get a lead on another story.

Why do other news media not do this again? Too much work? They have five other stories to do that day? Unsolved murders are not a priority to them? They can't be bothered? It is just easier to go to the police website, get the information there, and "present" it as a new article?

I wonder why? You tell me.

See you tomorrow.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Post 3564 - A Wonderful Night

Got home from a pretty good Toastmasters meeting earlier tonight. Not that many people, but we had two guests, which is only a good thing.

We had a debate. The resolution was along the lines of whether a political candidate's social media history should be a determining factor in whether that person should seek political office. We have had three such people be forced to drop out of the Nova Scotia election campaign in the last week or so, because of tweets or FB updates that they wrote years ago.

Nobody is without sin. We have all said and done things we should not have. Have we set the bar so high that A) nobody can vault over it; and B) nobody would even want to bother trying? It's the second one that scares me the most. If you get people of high quality who would really make a good difference in Nova Scotia, but they wrote a dumb dumb tweet six years ago, should they bear the burden of that mistake for the rest of their lives? Or if they didn't do that, but just don't want the scrutiny into their private lives that seeking a political office seemingly requires, then we may be missing out on some really good representatives. Not sure if I am stating it very well. It's late.

The PRO side won the resolution, by the way.

I may be beat to heck, but even after 25 years of Toastmasters meetings, I always feel better after a meeting is over than I did before it starts. It is the strangest thing. 

After TM was over, we went to the Superstore on Young Street, which is where my pharmacy is. I had left work early today to go see my doctor. He renewed some meds for me, so I picked them up tonight.

Watched the season ender of "Designated Survivor". It ended on a pretty decent cliffhanger. I look forward to what they do in season two. I just hope they do something about the pacing issues on the show. We started to watch an episode of "Bosch" on Crave, but Patricia was getting tired, so she toddled off to bed.

Patricia has Pilates after work tomorrow. You can guess how excited I am about that.

See you tomorrow. Keep smiling.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Post 3563 - Much, Much Better

Here is what I looked like about 12 hours ago:

Then, I walked across the street and now look like this:

I also purchased the following hair care products:

My glorious tea tree oil. How I missed thee.

I feel much better now. The hair was becoming hard to manage. I was using ever more product to keep my glorious locks in place. Now, I can dial it way, way back. What do the kids say these days? "Awesome sauce". Yeah, let's go with that.

I look so serious in the second picture because it is deemed a military haircut. I wanted to get in character.

Some women who read this blog may have some idea of what I am referring to, but I find it so challenging to find someone competent enough to do my hair. The lady who takes care of me at Helen's on Kempt Road is quite good, and I will continue to go to her.

So, what do you think of my hair, folks? Do you like it? How much? Tell me. I want deets.

Time for bed. See you tomorrow.


Monday, May 15, 2017

Post 3562 - Don't Be Cruel

So, I read a lot of crime fiction, in particular, short crime fiction as published in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine and Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine. The editor of "AHMM" was interviewed a couple of years ago and noted how many stories crossed her desk that started off with a weather report. Kinda brought things home for me.

When someone noted last week that I was starting off many of my blog reports with what time it was, it really hit home for me, too. I am working really hard not to mention that, but work with me, will you?

The new issue of Frank went online this morning. My humble contributions this time come in at seven pages, which surprised me. I was doubly surprised at lunch time when my editor wrote to inform me that my cheque was ready for pick up. Patricia, who works downtown, close to the Frank offices, picked it up for me.

I have written about this before, but I can remember times in my life when it seemed that getting paid for my efforts would result in near fisticuffs. Once or twice, I felt I was inconveniencing those who were paying me. Putting them out.

My dad never forgot the people for whom he did work who never "got around" to paying him, sometimes mentioning them years and years later, with ever-increasing bitterness. He would have to pay his men, and the businesses that had sold him the supplies necessary to do this work, but the so-and-so's never actually paid him. And then there were the people who took their sweet ever lovin' time to pay him. They were always the ones who had the nice cars and houses. Doctors. Lawyers. One man strung Dad along in the early 00's. Guy with the same last name as one I hear on the news from time to time. An unusual name. Wonder if they're related? Makes me not want to trust him, just by association.

I never forgot those experiences, when Dad would have to almost beg these people to pay, and the excuses they employed to delay doing so. So, when it came time for me to start earning my own money, I was particularly sensitive to what he had gone through. The few times it happened to me stung me as much as his experiences, stung my father.

This has never been the experience with Frank. They pay me on time every month. Sometimes, it is literally the last day of the month, which is fine, but I get that money, and it is broken down by each piece that I submitted that was published. This media column has X number of words at Y cents per word, working out to a certain amount. That true crime piece with Q number of words also at Y cents per word, working out to another amount. That kind of thing, covering my contributions for the full month, which is usually two issues. Add up those numbers, and that is the amount of my cheque. Easy peasy. And very much appreciated.

I'd be interested in your stories of getting paid late, or not getting paid at all, for work you performed. 

Anyway, we got home after a quick trip to Costco. Had some more of those astonishingly-good salmon fishcakes. There are enough for tomorrow night's dinner, I hope, so that is six meals we will have had using stuff we already had on hand. We finished the night by watching two more episodes of season one of "The Outsiders", which I know is canceled, but let's hope that there was some kind of resolution. Don't tell me what happens.

It is getting late. We were up extra early this morning to get the car to the dealership to have the Winter tires swapped out with the regular tires. So, we are extra tired tonight.

Turning in.

See you tomorrow.


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Post 3561 - Where Did The Weekend Go?

I mean, seriously. Where did the last three days go?

The weather outside has been wild and woolly for the last six hours or so. Thank goodness for television and Netflix and Crave TV on demand.

We had salmon fishcakes for dinner tonight. My goodness, they were delicious. I had made dinner Saturday night, of haddock with mashed potatoes. Patricia cooked some salmon and mixed the remaining haddock with it, before adding that mixture to the remaining mashed potatoes. Added some herbs and stuff. Then, I fried them and near-instant ambrosia.

I am showered and shaven and ready to turn in. Back to work in the morning.

Yay. Work.

See you tomorrow.


Saturday, May 13, 2017

Post 3560 - Oh, My!


Sorry I haven't written the last couple of days. Thursday night, by the time we got home around 7pm, I was so tired, that it was all I could do go to bed. I slept all night long and well into morning.

We were off on Friday. That morning, we went out to breakfast. We had grandiose plans to go to breakfast at the Westin in the downtown, but by the time we got going, that mealtime was about over, so we ended up going to Smitty's on Lacewood, which I just realized I don't know whether it's part of Bayer's Lake, or part of Clayton Park. At any rate, we ate there.

Then, we went to see Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2. Because it was a day time viewing, on a Friday, there were very few people there. Maybe a dozen. I don't know how they make money on those viewings. I didn't like it as much as the first one. There was a whole middle act that sagged like an overloaded diaper. But the final act was excellent. I got most of the in-jokes. And we stayed until the very, very end to see the final vignette. It really puts Stan Lee in a different light, seeing him talking to those other characters like that. I will leave it at that.

We were not content to see just one movie. Because of the timing of the next movies, the one that fit out schedule the best was "Boss Baby", the animated film featuring Alec Baldwin. It was a cute, fun little movie best for young families to watch. Why we went I am not sure. A scheduling thing.

We hung out at Chapters for a spell. I finally bought the missing Steve Berry thriller to complete my collection, at least in paperback. I know it's weird. Just work with me.

Patricia had a book club meeting not far from the house, so she walked to that. Got home around 9 or so.

Turned in around 11.

Today I washed the dishes.  This afternoon I cooked an early dinner. Tonight we watched some stuff on the PVR. And because I hadn't written much of anything on the blog in a few days I wanted to let you know I was still alive.

I spoke to my Frank editor today. The boy never takes a break. He tells me I will have three more articles in the next issue, which goes on sale this coming Wednesday. My media column, another unsolved murder piece that he said was one of my best, and something else. Just check it out and you will see for yourself.

Sunday awaits. Housework awaits, too.

See you tomorrow.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Post 3559 - Zzzz

Well, I won't give out the time because I was teased about that. Let's just say it's late. I have spent the last couple of hours putting my latest Frank media column to bed. I filed it a few minutes ago. Like with most parades, I start working on the next one, tomorrow.

Once again, there is content in this column you will find nowhere else. And some different content this time.

Patricia has Pilates tomorrow night, so I will hang around work until six or so. We are off on Friday. I have promised to take her to a nice place for breakfast on Friday morning, so if you can suggest a place in Halifax that's nice, maybe a step up from Smitty's or Cora's, then let me know. Gotta spend some of that extra Frank money on something like silly old bills.

It has been a long day. I get up for work in six hours and do it all over again. So, please excuse me.

See you tomorrow.


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Post 3558 - Well, Well, Well!

Why, hello, you!

Last night I wrote that I was getting far too many notifications with certain Facebook updates. A couple of my Constant Readers took the time to tell me that you can just click on the little down arrow by any FB notification and select the option for turning off notifications. Thank you, Ken and KellyAnne.

Ken also supplied some prospective blog post titles. Here they are:

-Lord it's hard to be humble... about my hair.
-The saga of my hair continues.
-Valley born & maybe proud of it.
-So, what is this thing called hockey?
-I'm going to call it a night...  never mind
-It's pushing 10:00.
-Live & direct from Newbie's house.

I will use all of these titles, except maybe the one about what time it is. I hadn't noticed that I was putting the current time in my blog posts to such a degree that people would notice. I am now aware of this, in the same way that someone at  Toastmasters points out a nervous tic or walk or wink that I may effect.

The hair ones are low-hanging fruit. Of course I will write about my hair. There is almost no subject I would rather write about. I could go on for hours and hours. And because of Ken's wonderful suggestions, there will be more!

Valley stuff? Of course. In the top five of things I like to write about.

Hockey? What the hell is that? Is it, perhaps, a team sport or something? I must jump on Wikipedia and find out.

And Newbie? Of course. Posts about Newbie practically write themselves.

Maybe I could write a post about the time I had Newbie with me in the Valley while I was doing my hair. Man, that would be a good one!

In all honesty, please keep sending along blog post title suggestions. They will be used in future blog posts. As you can see, I have come up with a new label for this promising series, "Suggested_Blog_Post_Titles.

(Labels in Blogger are the equivalent to hashtags in Twitter, in case you were wondering.)

The excitement all starts tomorrow, folks. Watch this space.


Monday, May 8, 2017

Post 3557 - This Title For Rent

Pushing 10pm.

You know, a couple of weeks ago, a reader suggested I come up with more meaningful blog post names. Since then, my stress level has gone through the roof. You have no idea how difficult it is to come up with a good blog post name, day after day.

So, how about this: you suggest blog post titles. The ones I like, I will use. They may not have a blankety-blank thing to do with the content of the blog post, but the names will certainly be catchy and unique. Let's go with that.

How was your day? Mine was okayfine. This evening I sent off 40 pictures from the top secret story I covered, to my editor at Frank. I alluded to something extraordinary in a couple of pictures I had not sent. He insisted I send those, too, so I did. I hope he is not disappointed.

Say, I know. I will tell you about a recent mistake, one that is still kicking my rear end, days later. By telling you, it will remind me not to make that mistake again. Okay? Okay.

I joined a true crime-based Facebook page a couple of weeks ago. Because I follow true crime. In case you didn't know. One of the posts asked people where they were from. I chimed in, proudly proclaiming I was from Nova Scotia. Like anybody would care.

Anyway, for the last 5 days I have been getting FB notifications from people with their own answers to that fine, fine, fine question. Five. Days. Several times a day, people reply to that damned question. And I am not sure if Facebook notifications can be turned off for a given page, or if it is a FB-wide thing. So frustrating.

So, don't answer questions on Facebook. You'll never hear the end of it.

On that fine note, I will call it a night.

See you tomorrow.


Sunday, May 7, 2017

Post 3556 - A Weekend Gone

It is three days later. I have not had a chance to write.

I was in the Valley with Patricia from Friday afternoon until Saturday afternoon. Returned late afternoon and stayed in last night.

Today we ventured over to Dartmouth. Patricia was buying some stained glass supplies from a woman who was getting out of the hobby. Afterward, we went to the Dartmouth free market or whatever the hell it's called. It's on Canal Street, where the Value Village used to be. Let's go with eclectic.

Met Bill Mont, who's a character to say the least. Lots of stories, some of which I may be able to work into my Frank media column.

We returned home. Patricia resumed watching "13 Reasons Why" on Netflix. People who are harping about the show and how it glorifies suicide have not seen it. It was renewed for a second season today.

What we did in the Valley will be revealed in the coming days. And once again, when I go to the Valley I no longer announce it here on the blog. I think you know why, but if you don't, and write me privately, I will tell you.

I think I will turn in. Ten pm. 5:30 comes early.

See you tomorrow.


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Post 3555 - The Weekend Is Here (Again!)

Pushing 11pm.

I just spent the bulk of the evening transcribing another interview for my editor at Frank. The family of a deceased broadcaster in the Valley let me look through some of the cassettes he left behind, which were full of interviews. The current issue of Frank has an interview with Vera Lynn, conducted in the Spring of 1978. The one I just sent off to my editor was a few months early, September of 1977. It is quite long. I am not sure how much of it he will want to run. I will let you know.

Tonight was my window for working on this interview because we will be out of town on Friday, a vacation day. I will tell you all about it when we get back, but we likely will not be back until Saturday afternoon. And by the time we do return, it will be time to start work on my next media column. That should prove to be another interesting column. Just read the one that is in the current Frank and you will see what I mean.

I have found there are a couple sure fire ways to rile things up on Facebook. Mention religion. Doesn't matter the context. Be in favour of it, or against it. People on each side of the debate will rise up and express their opinions, to sometimes comedic effect. My goodness.

Donald Trump is another way to get people going. Just the name. You could write your FB status update with just his name and walk away and see the feces hit the fan. Good times. Good times.

A third way is read my current Frank column (issue 766) and see how that might cause some vituperation. It just hit newsstands on Wednesday, and already I have been taken to task over part of what I wrote. I am not a controversial guy. I hear things and comment on them. Try to present both sides of the story. Try to be fair. But not everyone sees it that way. You cannot win. My goodness gracious. And that is the only comment you will see about it, any time, anywhere, ever. Further, affiant sayeth naught.

I think I will turn in. We will have a busy day tomorrow.

See you then.


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Post 3554 - Something to Consider

Pushing 11pm.

I just sent off a draft of my next true crime article to my editor at Frank. It's more than a week before the final deadline. I'm happy to have it under my belt. Assuming it is okay, my editor will be happy to have it done and locked and loaded for the next issue.

I will be transcribing a 1970's era interview for the next Frank, too. I'm told that lunch hours are a good time to kick back and relax and eat something. But it is about the only time I will have to do this other work.

And, of course, Friday is the special assignment day. Taking a vacation day and everything. Looking forward to it.

There is a guy in town named Robert Devet. He has an online publication called the Nova Scotia Advocate. Lots and lots of SJW stuff that becomes tiresome after a while. Patricia knows the guy. Recently they were advertising on Facebook for freelance writers. They pay real money and everything. They went on to state that you didn't have to have any real writing ability. They will take whatever stream-of-consciousness stuff that rolls off your fingertips, decipher it via a method known only to them, write it so that it makes sense to people who know how to read, and then publish it in their fine, fine online publication. After that is over, they will decide what to pay you.

Anyway, Patricia suggested I pitch some ideas to Robert Devet.

I've met him. He seems like a nice guy and everything. I'm sorry that he lost his wife so suddenly, several years ago. But I have no interest in writing that kind of material. And, quite frankly, Frank Magazine is keeping me busier and busier. I have three articles in the current issue, and hope to have that many for the next issue, maybe even the issue after that. I have no time to come up with a pitch for the NS Advocate, and no interest in doing so, even if I did.

But you can. If you live in these here parts and wanna make a little extra money, and feel you can get behind writing about social welfare issues, then write Robert Devet and send him your pitches. There are too few writing opportunities out there for writers, and I am getting more and more work from Frank, so you can rest assured I will not try to go after this market, too. Contact him here.

Tomorrow is my Friday. Looking forward to my day off.

See you tomorrow.


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Post 3553 - Tuesday Night

Past 9:30.

I have finished going through the audio files recorded two weeks ago, have typed them up, printed them off, and marked the most interesting aspects of the conversation, so I can now start writing the next true crime article in Frank.

The hardest part of these articles to write is the opening paragraph, even the opening sentence. I want that sentence to be something that if someone is skimming the article in the grocery store, or has a copy of it at home and is trying to decide whether to read the article at all, decides in the end to read it on the basis of that opening line or two. It is the approach I use to my leisure reading. If the author can't hook me from the opening why should I stick around to the bitter end?

After a half dozen false starts, I think I found one that works. I may throw it out tomorrow, revise it, or build on it. Not sure, yet. Will let you know.

Our work week is half over. We are taking Friday off to do a super secret excursion. Will tell you about it in a few days.

Toastmasters is tomorrow night, too. Those meetings sneak up on you.

I think I will turn in. Need to get up early, and lots to do tomorrow.

See you then.


Monday, May 1, 2017

Post 3552 - The Last Few Days

Pushing ten pm.

So, the last couple of days.

I went to the Valley Saturday morning, by myself. Left Newbie and Patricia behind. Wanted to check out the house. I no longer announce when I will go down there. I have sound reasons for not announcing this. I don't want to get into them here. Sorry.

If you want to hook up with me when I'm in the valley, let me know beforehand and I can work it out with you.

Anyway, the house was fine. I ran a few errands but was settled in for the night by mid-afternoon. I started working my way through the audio files associated with the next true crime article for Frank Magazine. I had a couple of beer while I was working away. Even though I was using the headphones, I still had the radio on next to me at the computer desk, tuned into the K-Rock Saturday night all request show.

I returned to the city Sunday afternoon. As was in keeping with other visits there, I returned tired, so I napped for a couple of hours before deciding to take the rest of the day off.

Work today was uneventful. I had brought back from the valley the Soul's all season tires. I learned today that it will be a full two weeks before we can get the snow tires removed. What a drag. Mid-May while still driving on snow tires. I am hoping they are not overly damaged. I am told that it is not a good idea to drive on snow tires once the good weather hits. Or is that an old wive's tale?

The new Frank Magazine went online today. I have three articles in there. My usual media column. An article about an unsolved murder. And a neat little interview with Vera Lynn, conducted in 1978. It was on a cassette tape that I dubbed this Winter from the family of the man who used to work in radio in the Valley, who interviewed plenty of celebrities back in the day. I have a full six and a half pages in this issue of Frank, and my editor would like me to keep up that kind of output for a few issues at least. I will do what I can. Strike while the iron is hot. May hay while the sun shines. Et cetera.

All of this content, by the way, will never appear here on this blog. Not gonna happen. You have to take money from your damned pocket and go to the newsstand and buy it. The articles are long enough that you can't sneak peek them at the grocery store while you're waiting to buy your victuals. Besides, they are of such high quality that you will want to keep referring to the articles for years and years.

I think I will turn in. I need some shuteye.

See you tomorrow.