A gentleman’s primer to facials

I went for a facial this week. Who doesn’t love a facial? All that creaming and smoothing and massaging. Before I left, MrWI64 told me I deserved this. Which was nice. Then he said, “you’re going to look and feel beautiful.” Also nice but wildly inaccurate. Women know this. So in that vain and what…

Welcome to my focus group

Dear friends; I’ve been thinking. Should I be doing something more with this space? I’ve been writing here for 10 months now. I started on a birthday eve and, just so you know, even when the name no longer applies specifically to me, I think I’ll keep it. When I’m 64 forever. Think of it…

When a wee hours call means tsunami

The phone rang at 4 a.m. This could only mean one of two things: Bad news. Don’t answer it. A ‘computer repair’ scam call from a far away time zone. Don’t answer it. I answered. It was my pal Pauline calling from Hawaii. Had we heard about the Alaska earthquake and the resulting tsunami warning?…

So long to my good doctor

I said goodbye to my doctor today, all verklempt and blubbery as I sat in the thinnest of thin patient gowns. I hate change. Dr. K isn’t so much retiring as choosing to have a life. She’s moving into a medical field that will have her caring for patients all day and then going home…

30 years later – thank you, lady

Dear lady; It’s American Thanksgiving and – since I didn’t act on the impulse during Canadian Thanksgiving last month – I’m borrowing our neighbour’s holiday to say thank you. Some 30 years late. On our own Thanksgiving in October, I went to church with my daughter and her family. Each member of the congregation was…

What not to say to Sears employees

A little advice on what not to say to Sears Canada employees when you visit the death throes sales of the old girl over the coming weeks. Do not ask them if they’ve been screwed in their pensions. They will only tell you that they’ll be fine, thank you. Will your purchase be on debit?…

The return of mom jeans

It’s too bad mom jeans are back. This was Linda from the bow of the boat we row around the harbor on Sundays. You should write a piece about fashion and what people should and shouldn’t do at our age. Linda has a big public sector job that keeps her more or less paying attention…

Forgiving friends, trees, and a swoony jam

Here’s how you recognize a true friend. You set their kitchen ablaze (true story, told here) and months later they give you a heaping bowl of damson plums. Damsons are tiny and tart jewels of autumn fruits. The jam, beloved by the English isn’t as well known here in Canada. Brit-born Chris (of the flaming…

Soccer and the meaning of life

Stoke City just scored a goal. I know because, despite being several rooms away, I can hear MrWI64’s excited roar of ‘Yes! Yes! Yes!’ His fist will be pumping the air and he will be awash in excited emotion. What with it feeling like the End of Days with hurricanes chewing up the south and…

Behold, my tiny harvest

From time to time, I’d like to think I’ve provided useful information in this space. My summer heat-beating mojitos had a few people reaching for their muddlers, and a handful of readers produced fragrant crusty loaves from my easy peasy almost-as-good-as-it-gets baquette recipe. I thought my tip of placing a plastic fork barrier between the…

How to be a good guest

With visitor season in full flood here on Canada’s west coast, I’m reminded of a piece I wrote several years ago about how not to be a guest from hell. The rules were basic: Remember your mother’s caution that guests, like fish, stink after three days. Don’t impose. Don’t overstay. Be helpful. I’ve an addition…