The cat who cancelled Thanksgiving

Regular readers know that I harbour a certain prejudice against cats, and like most prejudices, it’s defined by my own narrow experience. But this summer, our middle daughter Katie moved back home along with her own two cats, Lincoln and Chandler. That’s when I discovered not all cats are jerks; only our cats are jerks.

Not all cats, for instance, perform track-and-field over sleeping torsos or confuse” snuggling” with “barging,” just our cat Polly. And while I’m sure Nellie is not the only dangerously overweight cat who cannot properly clean herself, she may be the only cat that meows insistently outside the bathroom door each morning until one of the humans dampens a baby wipe and cleans her butt.

Lincoln and Chandler, on the other hand, possess the qualities I look for in a cat: avoiding contact and staring blankly.

Lincoln is the blank one, a bit of a dullard. His head is too small for his body, which makes me certain he’s functioning entirely on a primitive brain stem. His favourite thing in the world is an eraser. When you pick him up, he goes limp, as though the thought of escape never occurred to him. As though thought never occurred to him.

But Katie loves him, so we take good care of him while she’s studying in Ottawa. If something needs wiping, we’ll wipe it.

That’s why when Lincoln seemed not himself early last week —not eating, not drinking, not a bit of eraser time — I called the Coaticook vet Wednesday morning, and they told me they could see Lincoln at 9:00 o’clock.

Within the space of two hours, Lincoln had an appointment with the vet, had travelled to the vet, had seen the vet, had blood work done, had received results of said blood work and had been checked in overnight for treatment. Meanwhile I was on a waiting list for seven years to get a routine checkup.

I took time off work for the visit, but that was okay, even if it was for a cat, because Katie loves her cats. Likewise, we cancelled our Thanksgiving plans at Deb’s sisters, where all our children had planned to converge, because now we had to take care of Lincoln. Plus Katie loves her cats, and she wanted to see them, especially the sick one.

So all our kids came home instead. We found a last-minute turkey, at Walmart of all places, and it tasted like a regular turkey, and we bought sweet potatoes there too, and they tasted like what you’d expect Walmart sweet potatoes to taste like.

Katie arrived Friday evening with Em and her partner Altan, then James arrived Saturday evening, and Abby was here all along, though most of the time in her room, because she’s 16 and possibly part cat, the avoiding and staring blankly kind.

And we ate and we drank and played geeky games. We hiked up Mount Orford thinking we’d glory in the leaves at their most brilliant, but halfway up the clouds and mist rolled in, and by the time we got to the top, we couldn’t see fog-all, so we hiked back down and ate and drank some more.

We picked apples, feeling pretty clever eating the free “samples” off the trees and then paying for more than we’ll ever eat, which is Western commerce in a nutshell.

Then everyone dispersed, taking the leftovers with them, and I went to the fridge and thought, WTF: Where’s The Food?

And while all this climbing and geeking and picking and eating were taking place, we were all the while watching Lincoln, picking him up to see if he was purring happily, asking who had last seen him drinking, keeping the toilet water fresh because he’s that kind of cat. At one point we wondered if he was looking dopey, which is no easy assessment when a cat is naturally dopey.

When it became clear he had not been eating the vet’s special cat food at five dollars a tin, Deb and I had to forcibly get some in his mouth as instructed, only to discover later that Lincoln simply didn’t like the vet’s special cat food at five dollars a tin.

We were all thankful he was okay and were grateful to be together for a short time, even if none of this was what we had planned and all because of a cat.

And if you see me trying to coax Lincoln out from under a chair or rubbing his belly or making meowing noises or tossing an eraser his way, I assure you it is solely because Katie loves her cats.

 

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Revenge of the Thanksgiving turkey

Everyone? Everyone? Can I have your attention please? Uncle Charlie, stop palpating the pumpkins for just a minute. Kenny, if you could refrain from gnawing the charred carpet… Thank you. Can you all see me through the smoke? I’d like to say a few words before we get to my traditional Thanksgiving grace.

I know this is not our usual Thanksgiving setting, out here on the sidewalk behind the police tape. I swear I had no idea the oven would burst into flames like that. Bart, you’re my brother, and I don’t blame you for selling me what turned out to be a fire hazard. Caveat emptor, right? That’s Latin, Bart.

I do admit I had been worrying about the stove, what with the fuses blowing every time we made tea. Why, just the other day I said to the wife, “My grandfather turned his back on a toaster once and it cost him his lower extremities.” But did she listen? Yes, she did. And I’m not just saying that because she’s standing beside me holding some kind of leg iron.

Obviously we won’t be having turkey. It was one of the first things to go. Explode, really. That’s not something you see every day. I’d especially like to wish a quick recovery to the firefighter who was rushed to the hospital with stuffing-related injuries. I’m not sure what his name is but the wife described him as “not the hot one but the one who was hot enough.” Best of luck to you, sort-of-hot guy!

Next, I want to thank all of you for sticking it out, despite the inconveniences you’ve suffered. Jenny, I’m confidant those burns are superficial and in no way require medical assistance or a call to your family lawyer. Just keep icing it. I know the house is out of bounds but luckily you can apply the frozen giblets Aunt Sherry grabbed as she fled the house. Way to go, Aunt Sherry. Don’t quite understand your priorities but well played nonetheless.

Of course, not everyone is still here. I don’t think any of us knew there was an arrest warrant out for cousin Andy until the police showed up. Who knew Andy could run so fast, eh?

The important thing is that we’re all together. Boy, there’s nothing like a three-alarm fire to make you think. No, Grandma, I said “think,” not “drink.”

That’s what Thanksgiving is all about, right? Being grateful for what you have, not the things you’ve lost, like the turkey, the house, the wife’s collection of porcelain chinchillas. When you’ve been in a turkey-related fire, you come to appreciate what’s really important. I mean, at least we have our health, right? Oh, sorry, Uncle Pete. I forgot about your skin condition. But for the rest of us, it’s important to remember your health. And to not get too close to Uncle Pete.

Now, I see the investigators are waiting to take statements — and please, don’t mention the time Andy set fire to the mime; that really has nothing to do with today’s unfortunate incident — so I think we should proceed with grace. We’ve managed to salvage four sweet potatoes, a jar of hot dog relish, a kielbasa that was curing in the basement and several tins of cling peaches. I know it’s a tad distracting with the news helicopters circling overhead but if you would just bow your heads…

Lord, it’s us out on the street
Our feast we will not get to eat
Fled the kitchen – couldn’t stand the heat
Scorched the turkey, smoke was murky
Burned my loafers (size: petite)
And still to You we are most gracious
For mountains, streams and meadows spacious
For people shy and those loquacious
(Feeling pious, showing my bias
Feel just like Saint Ignatius)
Grimy with soot and turkey parts
We’re thanking you with all our hearts
And when we order out à la carte
(Maybe Thai, don’t know why)
Please pass the bill to my brother Bart

 

Originally published in Don’t Everyone Jump at Once, Blue Ice Books 2013

Posted in Holidays | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

I am running for town hall?

A number of people have asked me about a rumour going around that I plan to run for municipal council. If ever there was a time to address such a rumour – one day before the nomination deadline – this would be the time. It gives me great pleasure, therefore, to confirm today that I have also heard the rumour and that the rumour is, indeed, going around.

Am I running for council? That’s a good question, although, like many questions, one must wonder whether it should be asked in the first place. For instance, “Where, oh, where can my baby be?” is a simple enough question but one that might draw the attention of Child Protection Services.

What’s important is that we all agree that I would make an ideal local representative, and not only because I know words like “promulgate” and “bildungsroman” and “glottal,” which, as you know, are terms used in the sewage treatment industry. They also double as words that can be deployed at your garden-variety ribbon-cutting ceremony.

It certainly makes sense that I would run for council. I have lived in Stanstead for 25 years and been fully awake for 16 of those. My background in journalism and public relations has taught me not to trust a word I say, and you can count on that.

If elected, I would espouse a collaborative approach with my fellow councillors to find solutions that align perfectly with my views. My strong convictions are evidenced in my extensive and well-documented history of hissy fits in professional, volunteer and household settings.

Am I maybe not running for council because my French isn’t good enough? Or is it possible I am not considering not running because my French isn’t not good enough? You decide; here are some examples of my bilingual prowess:

“If elected, I promise to eliminate ‘work sessions’ wherein officials hash out matters behind closed doors and later rubber-stamp these decisions at public meetings, thereby preventing voters from seeing which elected officials are effective and which are great big drips.”

« Je suis une banane avec le gros camion, donc ben voyons, j’arrive sur le porte de poulet et je chante, ‘bye-bye mon cowboy.’ »

“Of course, this is an empty promise, since I am just one voice among six councillors with no significant influence other than unseemly pouting.”

« Non, je ne regrette René Simard. »

Truthfully, my only handicap is that I have a difficulty understanding people when they speak French. However, I also have difficulty understanding English people, so it’s fair.

At this point, I should probably address the elephant in the room: the elephant and I are just good friends, and those photographs were clearly taken out of context.

I would also like to be up-front concerning allegations of under-documented pets that may or may not be residing with us at this juncture and at previous junctures and a juncture to be named later.

Two of these alleged pets do not belong to us but are on permanent loan from our middle daughter who thought that kittens were exactly what she needed while her life was in flux. (Flux, by the way, is a lovely suburb of Ottawa but not especially cat-friendly.)

As for the other three alleged cats, a certain animal protection agency conned us into fostering them “temporarily” when they were alleged kittens, knowing full well that we (my wife) wouldn’t have the heart to send them back to that euthanasia joint, so we allegedly rescued them from oblivion, but only after we paid to have them neutered, and now they allegedly have a good home, with our weekly alleged purchases of cat food and litter representing 15% of the alleged local economy, which makes you realize that instead of being reviled for my not entirely licensed alleged pets, I should be commended (although for something so alleged, they’re awfully unallegedly fat).

Not to mention the fact that a few years ago when two of our earlier, fully licensed cats went missing, this certain agency responded with nothing more than a bureaucratic shrug, so forgive me if I’m not inclined to fund an enterprise that provides squat and then turns around and offloads soon-to-be-morbidly-obese cats that are plotting to kill me by waking me up three times a night, thereby promulgating long-term sleep deprivation and shortening my life-span. Plus litter. So much alleged litter.

And that, dear voters, is the kind of substance and hissy fit you could expect from me were I to run for office, which I’ve heard might be true. But probably not. At least not anymore.

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Bye-bye pool

We warned the children we were getting rid of the swimming pool. I swear we warned them. Maybe they didn’t believe us, thinking it was one of our idle threats, like “We’re going to move to the country!” or “We’re going to organize the yogurt containers under the sink!”

But we did get rid of the pool. We tore it down on Saturday, an unseasonably hot day when, ironically, we really could have used a swim.

For some time now, our pool had been showing signs of aging – extensive stains, sliminess, leaking – which, coincidentally are identical to my own signs of aging, not to mention that hardly anyone frolics around me half-naked anymore either.

The pool had lost its will to live, and I had lost my will to vacuum it. In fact, someone asked me this week, “When did you decide to get rid of the pool?” I told her, “About five years ago.” “Oh, when did Debbie decide to get rid of it?” Well, that was this summer. “If we can’t find the leak, we should get rid of it,” she said. As the person who maintained it the most and used it the least (water is wet), this was music to my ears.

I’m positive we mentioned this possibility to the kids.

We never did figure out how it was losing water, and with its years of usefulness (again like me) past, we decided to pull the plug.

I started draining it last week and by Saturday was ready to dismantle. There was still three feet of water in it, but I figured that would drain as I worked. First thing was tools. Correction: first thing was borrow tools. I called Steve.
Along with Steve’s tools, I got Steve. “I’ll come over and help, if you don’t mind,” he said. “I like taking things apart.” A man after my own heart; destroying things: what can go wrong?

While the water drained, we set to work unscrewing the aluminum rim of the pool, then the braces. Soon our good neighbours Clint and Bonnie came over to assist. It was a regular pool party. We unhitched the lip of the liner and began rolling away the siding. By then, there was still about two feet of water trapped in the bowl of the liner. Nothing that a good stab with a crowbar couldn’t fix.

As the water flooded into the neighbours’ yard, we began tearing at the liner and ripping out the pipes like we were polystyrene-starved savages. Soon there was nothing left but a basin of sandy water in the middle of our lawn.

I took a photograph and posted it on Instagram. “Low tide. #byebyepool,” I wrote.

A few minutes later, Abby, our youngest, texted from work: “What the damn hell!?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!”

“It was time,” I wrote back. She responded with a sad emoji.

Soon the other children chimed in.

“No way,” Katie wrote from Ottawa.

“What!?” Emily piped up from Montreal.

“WTF,” said James with a GIF from North Bay.

“Wow!!!” commented former neighbour kid Sean from PEI.

Nothing like a bit of yard renos to bring the family and pseudo-family together.

Having gone through the denial phase (“I used the pool all the time!” Abby argued, inaccurately) and anger phase (“I’m still not happy about this decision”: Abby again), the children quickly moved on to the bargaining phase, namely what were we going to put there.

“A hot tub!” suggested Abby. “An infinity pool! A trampoline!”

“How about grass?” I suggested.

“Lame,” James texted.

“Maybe horseshoe pits?” I suggested.

“Better than nothing,” he replied.

“You don’t have to mow around nothing,” I noted.

As with getting rid of the cable no one watched and the land line no one called, the children have jumped right into the acceptance phase. Not that they have a choice. The pool is gone. The last of the water has seeped into the ground and there’s nothing back there but a vast circle filled with sand.

I’ll admit there’s a certain bittersweetness to this, as with any passing. I think in particular of all the pool parties, the cheering and splashing, the floaties and noodles. This marks another stage of the children growing up and moving on.

The cats, however, are here to stay, and I see them eyeing that great big circle of sand in the back yard. They think they’ve gone to heaven.

Posted in It Really Did Happen! | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

Please do not hassle me about my therapy toaster

No, this isn’t a “toaster” I’m holding on my lap. It is my therapy toaster, and, no, I will not put it in the overhead compartment, because that would clearly defeat the purpose of bringing my therapy toaster onto this airplane. If I store the therapy toaster, it would no longer be soothing my anxieties. It would be luggage, and luggage never soothed anyone.

Yes, I do plan to hold this therapy toaster on my lap for the duration of the flight. Do you think I would entrust my therapy toaster with a stranger? They don’t know the settings! They’ve probably never used a “defrost” button in their lives! They’d have no clue how to properly empty the crumb tray!

Oh, you mean, will I be putting it away during take-off and landing. No, I won’t be doing that either. Trust me, if there’s turbulence, my therapy toaster won’t be a hazard to other passengers because I will be clinging to the thing for dear life.

My, you’re full of questions about my therapy toaster, aren’t you! I’m glad, because this gives me a chance to speak to you about my requirements. I need you to accommodate my special needs by finding an electrical outlet for me. To plug in my therapy toaster, obviously. It’s not a therapy toaster if it doesn’t toast! Duh!

I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to say “Duh!” That’s the cold toaster talking. I’m afraid I’m going to need my therapy toaster operational as soon as possible. I’m beginning to feel somewhat antsy, or it might just be my socks won’t stop sliding down to my ankles. Either way, I’m slightly uncomfortable, and that violates my right to unconditional bliss at all times.

So if you would just run this 20-foot extension cord down the aisle to the nearest outlet, that would be wonderful. If it’s not long enough, I’m sure someone would be willing to switch seats with me, once you explain to them the nature of my condition. Unless they’re ignorant.

Now I’m starting to feel less glad about your questions. In fact, I feel you are being highly insensitive and possibly racist. Yes, racist – you clearly prefer white bread to stay white.

I will calm down. That’s what the therapy toaster is for, obviously.

There is so such a thing as a therapy toaster. You’re looking at it.

Fine: here’s the paperwork demonstrating that my toaster is a certified therapy toaster.

There is so such a thing as “The Black and Decker Institute.”

How dare you suggest I printed this myself using Microsoft Publisher templates! Does Publisher laminate? No. This is laminated. Professionally!

What makes it a therapy toaster? It makes perfect toast. Don’t scoff! Never underestimate the power of perfect toast – not too dark, not too light, crispy, but no sharp edges that cut the roof of your mouth. I’m calming down just thinking about it.

This toaster has gone through months of testing to be perfectly calibrated for maximum toasting satisfaction, with options for various breadstuffs. Most days, I just need toast, but bad days are bagel days. And I can count on my therapy toaster to be there. Believe me, I’ve been frustrated by toasters in the past, toasters you don’t dare turn your back on.

And here is my card stating that I am entitled to have my therapy toaster with me at all times, including in the workplace, at restaurants and on public transportation, but not in the bathtub.

Who diagnosed me? I’m sorry, I don’t think that’s any of your business. I would appreciate if you would respect my privacy. And I wish everyone around me on this plane who has never known what its like to live with psychological needs that I certainly don’t need a “doctor” to “diagnose” – I wish everyone would stop staring at me and think about how lucky they are not to need a therapy toaster in their lives.

What do you mean it might as well be a therapy waffle maker? Don’t be ridiculous: hinges are highly stress-inducing.

No, this is my therapy toaster, and I would appreciate it if you would show a little sensitivity to my otherness from your position of privilege.

Also: could you get me some English muffins?

Posted in Never Happened | Tagged , , , , , | 18 Comments

Literary giant

Photo: Tourism New Brunswick

On the way back from Prince Edward Island this summer, we passed Shediac, NB, home of the world’s largest lobster. Children climb on it. Don’t worry, it’s made of concrete. Watching children climb on a real giant lobster, now for that I would definitely pull off the highway.

A little further on, we passed the exit for Nackawic, home of the world’s largest axe. That’s got to be something to see. We didn’t.

But some people must, otherwise why build these outsized entities – the giant nickel of Sudbury, the giant Ukrainian egg of Vergreville, the giant ego of Jason Kenney?

Meanwhile, back in PEI, we visited Green Gables, not because I’m an 11-year-old girl but because it was free. All national parks were free this past summer to mark Canada’s 150th birthday, and the Anne of Green Gables tourist attraction was on our route, and I was damned if I wasn’t going to get all the patriotic free stuff I could.

That’s how we found ourselves waiting in line to traipse through the heritage home, which turned out to be a low-ceilinged, sparsely furnished hovel that would go for $1.2 million on the Toronto market. And get this: author Lucy Maud Montgomery never even lived there! No, the house was the home to Montgomery’s aunt and uncle, Bud and Vivian Green Gables.

My takeaway from this visit was that, as with oversized everyday objects, there’s a market in literary tourism.

Which got me thinking of my own town here in Stanstead. We need something to draw tourists off the highway. Sure, we have the Stone Circle, but that’s essentially a miniature Stonehenge, and no one wants to see small versions of normal-sized things; just ask my old girlfriends. (Ba-dum-TISHHH!)

What we need in Stanstead is something big, both physically and culturally, something beloved yet awe-inspiring, famous yet approachable, imposing but cuddly.

Stanstead should construct a giant Louise Penny.

This, but bigger.

The award-winning mystery writer is big internationally, so why not make her big in Stanstead? Plus, Louise Penny has built her fame around novels set in a fictionalized Eastern Townships, therefore it’s only fair that the real Eastern Townships should build some fame around a fictionalized Louise Penny.

I know what you’re thinking: “When are sock garters going to make a comeback?” But I bet you’re also thinking that Penny’s Inspector Gamache mysteries are set in a fictionalized Knowlton area, nowhere near Stanstead. I’m sorry, but Knowlton already has the real Louise Penny and the Louise Penny tourist maps and the adorable ducks and an actual, legitimate book store! DOES KNOWLTON HAVE TO HAVE EVERYTHING?

I apologize for the outburst. I’m confident that this would never happen if I had the calming presence of a giant Louise Penny nearby, which, unlike the normal-sized Louise Penny, would be impervious to cold and critics.

We could erect our giant Louise Penny – the World’s Largest Louise Penny! – right next to the American border, the author’s eyes fixed resolutely on U.S. markets and acclaim, which are the only markets and acclaim that matter.

But let’s not get too political about this. The point is that it’s a giant Louise Penny for all to enjoy. Children could climb on Louise Penny, which, as with lobster, they should not be allowed to do in real life.

Because this will be the World’s Largest Louise Penny (and we want it to stay that way), it will have to be really, really big, so big that people could go inside Louise Penny. Imagine a doorway in Louise Penny’s shin leading to a staircase up to her abdomen. Obviously there’d be a book store there, a café serving biscotti and Gamache goulash, and of course a team of detectives on call 24/7.

Up a further set of stairs, tourists could witness a murder scene in Louise Penny’s neck, daily at 1 and 3:30 p.m. For an extra fee, you could stand on top of Louise Penny’s head to scan the landscape – the literary landscape, if you will, though you probably won’t.

The gift shop would do brisk business selling penny candy, penny loafers, Louise Penny pens. Who-donuts. T-shirt that read, “I Climbed to the Top of Louise Penny and All I Got Was This Lousy Deus-Ex-Machina.”

Intriguingly, it would be easy to get into Louise Penny, but how to get out? A bit of a mystery.

People pulling off the highway to take pictures of Louise Penny, families picnicking in the shade of Louise Penny, overnighters staying at the Dead Cold Motel beside Louise Penny – ah, yes, a giant Louise Penny is exactly what Stanstead needs.

Either that or an inflatable Donald Sutherland.

Posted in It Could Happen..., Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Resting heartbeat

It started one evening when James was closing the door to the car. He leaned out and, with a pained look on his face, said, “Mom, I don’t want to go Concordia.” Then he drove away.

Well, goodnight then.

For months, James had been weighing his university basketball options. Coaches were coming up to Deb and me at games, flattering James, flattering us. I’m not going to lie: I kind of liked it. I kind of liked saying things like, “But what kind of academic support do you offer?” and “What about scholarships?” Considering at one point we were a little worried about James ever finishing CEGEP, you can forgive me for feeling a little giddy.

Finally, James opted for Concordia University in Montreal. It was close to home, the team was solid, and Quebec tuition is cheap, cheap, cheap. Good decision.

The thing is, the only program he could get into was Political Science. And he did get in. Then he went to orientation and realized he would probably hate Political Science.

By then, he had signed an athletic contract, meaning that if he went to another school, he would be ineligible to play basketball for a year.

But James decided that his basketball goal was less important than his life goal – study and teach Phys Ed. It was a mature decision, and we were proud of him for making it, even if it did come a little late. So late, in fact, that Deb and I were on our planned vacation when James rode the 8-hour bus from Montreal to Nippising University in North Bay, Ont. No tearful goodbye, no wise words, not even bus fare. Just James making his own way, figuring things out.

Meanwhile, Katie, our middle girl, found herself back home this spring after a couple of false starts at university. If only there were a career in being enthusiastic about mealtime, Katie would have it made. But as it stood, she was somewhat adrift. Then this summer, she decided to set anchor in a one-year bookkeeping program at Algonquin College in Ottawa – practical, intensive, a smart decision. It was also four hours away.

Four hours and eight hours. Half our children are now out of province.

Children move out. That’s normal. In fact, both children have been studying away from home these past four years. But they were just a grocery load away, fetchable in a crisis. There’s no speedy food or people delivery when you’re in a whole other province.

There’s also the bigger socio-political picture here that only anglo Quebecers understand. It’s normal for young people to move out of province. But for anglos, every such move becomes another statistic, and not for the better. But you can’t mention that. You can’t saddle your children with guilt, especially Poli-Sci guilt. Instead, we deal with it. Ils partent, nous restons.

We moved Katie up to Ottawa last weekend. James got a drive down from North Bay and met us there. He was happy to see us but I suspect even happier to get the rest of his stuff. We got Katie settled, visited Parliament Hill together, had a final breakfast, said our proper goodbyes and left. Ils restent, nous partons.

Distance is relative, of course. There are phone calls, emails, Instagram, Snapchat. We text (“Just checking in…”) and master the art of emojis.

In the end, Concordia released James, and he is able to play ball at Nippising. He reports in by text, such as news that someone broke his nose on the first day of training camp and on day two someone whacked it back into place. Or this text: “I had an echocardiogram today and my heart rate is 43 beats per minute which is apparently rare but it’s a good thing.”

I wrote back: “Should we poke you on occasion to make sure you’re alive?”

Despite the contact, it’s not the same. With Katie gone, for example, who’s going to laugh at my jokes? When she didn’t like the goat cheese brie she sampled, and I said, “So I guess it’s not going to be your goat-to cheese?” I could count on her to laugh. “Ha-ha! Goat one!” she said.

It’s quiet, and even though the pair have been away for school before, this feels more permanent, like it’s the start of something we’ll need to get used to, as factual as a statistic.

While we were in the pharmacy in Ottawa, I decided to stick my arm in one of those health monitoring machines. Blood pressure: normal. Resting heart beat: 79, nearly double my son’s, but normal for a man my age whose children keep doing what children are supposed to do.

Normal, normal, normal.

James, Katie, us and friend Myriam on Parliament Hill

Posted in Family - whadya gonna do? | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments