Oh hi there! How’s it going? Would you like some tea? Earl Grey? It’s okay, it’s decaf. It won’t keep you up. I know you have a big day tomorrow.
So what would you like to know? (Sugar? Milk? No? Excellent…!) About this blog? It’s funny. Next question? Do I bare my soul like it’s an all-you-can-spill therapy spree? No, I’m a white man from Nova Scotia with a Presbyterian Scottish background so I keep my feelings where they belong — deeply, deeply repressed.
About the name of this blog? “Drinking Tips for Teens” is to me just the perfect title of a piece I
will someday write finally wrote. It’s a necessary piece because young people are going about underage drinking all wrong! I have some good experience and advice to offer. Someday…
About me? I live on the Canada-U.S. border in Stanstead, Quebec. You might see my kids up on the banner. Adorable, right? Or maybe it’s a cat. Stupid cat! My weekly humour column appears in The Sherbrooke Record, for which I was awarded Best Columnist by the Quebec Community Newspapers Association for 2008, 2013, 2016 and 2017. I also contributed a bi-weekly radio piece for “Breakaway” on CBC’s Quebec Community Network for eight years. A collection of my columns, You’re Not Going to Eat That, Are You?, was published by Townships Publications Canton in 2010, with a second, Don’t Everyone Jump at Once, published in 2013 by Blue Ice Books. I self-published my debut novel, A Hole in the Ground, in the fall 2016 and my latest collection, A Jerk in Progress in 2019. Also in 2019, I directed my original play, All Together Now, at the Haskell Opera House, which sits on the Vermont/Quebec border. My work has also appeared on McSweeneys, Errant Parent, The Yellow Ham and The Big Jewel and CBC’s WireTap.
It’s a good life. It’s a good blog. Enjoy.
I hope that my not wearing pants hasn’t made you uncomfortable.
enjoyed your blog and nominated you for reader appreciation award http://jilliankermani.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/148/
Thanks so much. I understand there’s some “paperwork” involved. I’m still travelling but will get to it when I’m back on solid ground.
Thanks for following my blog – which then lead me to your delightful one. I love your writing style (and the name of your blog is just wonderful, not to mention the photo header!)
They be my kids. Thanks.
Nice to meet another Canadian blogger. Great pic of the kiddies, BTW.
Spell “neighbour” with a U; it makes them crazy.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hi! I’ve nominated you for the very inspiring blog award ~ it will be published Sat 1/5/2013.
Well, aren’t you a sweet little turnip! Thanks! What’s the drill for this?
All will be revealed on the morrow 🙂 ~ patience, Rosemary
And you must be a U2 fan also. “I will follow… I will follow.”
The Unforgettable Fire is the only cassette I’ve ever stolen. Take that for what it’s worth.
Most of my U2 collection is still on cassette.
I lack a cassette player, so I have to play them in my head.
Steal an old car.
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Thanks for following the blog! You have a nice one here yourself!
Why, thank you. Welcome. Hope I don’t embarrass myself.
Now why would your not wearing pants make us uncomfortable?
Not you, obviously…
You won a Inspiring Something or other on my page. I know you don’t need my stinkin’ award – I just want others to be able to bask in your awesomeness. Or whatever it is you’ve got going on. http://bit.ly/12h9NWd
I just saw that! And my polar bear and I are tearing up a little. (Isn’t it weird that “tearing” can mean “crying” and also, pronounced differently, “ripping to shreds”? Isn’t it weirder still that my polar bear and I are in fact doing both those things simultaneously?) Thanks so much. I’ll be sure to publicly acknowledge this in some vague but gracious way.
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Great ‘About page’ Love it!!! 🙂
Why, thank you!
Just did an award post and listed you as one of the nominees. Please take it or leave it, but just know I’ve really enjoyed your blog and wanted to say “thanks!”. http://thegreenstudy.com/2013/06/20/the-awards-show-part-5/
Awesome! That’s very sweet of you. Thanks.
Say, you have a vaguely geeky aura (geeky as in I Know More About Computer Stuff Than You Do, not geeky as in I Went to Prom Stag) so maybe you know the answer to this one….
I’ve noticed that when I do a search on “cats” on your site (that is, actually searching within your WordPress site using your own Search box, not Google), many search results pull up in a list but when I do a search on a relevant topic on my own site, only one item pulls up at a time even though I know there are many relevant hits. It’s annoying; people think I only wrote one post on each topic. I put this question to the forums but the WordPress support person that answered me is either drunk or doesn’t understand English. Can’t decide which.
Do you have your front page set to show only one post at a time or multiple posts? If you have it set to one, then your site puts to rest my question of whether different themes allow more than one search result to pop up within them at a time. If you have it set to multiple posts, then in the immortal words of Eddie Murphy, “I be screwed.”
Please let me know either way as I am eager to stick it to that support person if I am right. Thank you.
PS: Cats rock. I have seduced the neighbor’s cat to the Dark Side with fresh catnip from my garden. Muwah-ha-ha!
Update: I was right but the WordPress support person backed me up so I can’t stick it to them now. Sigh. And I had my torch and pitchfork all ready, too. I’ll have to go out and do some burning and pillaging elsewhere.
Glad you got it all sorted out because, my geeky facade notwithstanding, I am merely a WordPress dabbler. I do find their search unreliable, though. It has failed to find posts I know I’ve written. What about adding a tag cloud as a widget to help people find your posts?
Also: Who doesn’t love a good pillage?
Ha, ha–thanks for the good laugh. Yeah, I’ve had a tag cloud since day one. But it seems that no matter how you search, certain WordPress themes will only display one search result at a time. Snort!
The only pillaging I ended up doing was on a gourmet chocolate bar but the carnage was awesome.
Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed. I wrote a piece long ago that one of the ways to get Freshly Pressed is to write about your pet cats, and just letting you know, I’m using your post as supporting evidence, and labeling it Exhibit B (one of my Freshly Pressed posts is Exhibit A) 😉
You may be onto something because, as pleased and grateful as I am, I’m scratching my head why this particular post was FPed. It’s not my best work. If it’s any consolation, though, it’s not getting anything near the hits that my first FP got, which may mean cats are the editors’ bias, not the readers’ preference. This also tells me I need to stop writing about my pets. Thank you, by the way.
Dear Mr. Murray,
I really enjoy your blog. You are hilariously funny and create exceptional satire. This is something I aspire to. I read your work and after laughing sufficiently about it, I sit and analyze the words “How does he do that?”
Basically I’m emailing to tell you that your work is great. And that as a new writer and a humour writer I look up to you.
I even nominated you for an award.
It’s WordPress’s equivalent of a participation award but gosh darn it I was so excited to receive it. And I wanted to pass it along to you, because I think writers need to encourage one another. Unlike teaching or basically any other job writing, is a completely solitary activity. It’s tough, so it’s nice when other people tell you that they appreciate what you’re doing.
I wrote questions for you. My Mom thinks they’re funny.
Ten Questions That I’m Posing To Bloggers
1. If you had to choose between Anna Karenina, War and Peace and Steve Martin’s acclaimed novella “Shopgirl” which book would be the best weapon in a bar fight?
2. What is the longest period you’ve ever gone without bathing? Please note, stays in Turkish prisons do not count.
3. You’ve decided to take on three additional husbands and or wives, who are they? Both living and dead people may be included, although admittedly an attraction to the deceased is a little beyond me.
4. What is your most unfortunate public transportation story?
5. Go back in time, you’re attempting to sell your five year old sibling, what is your asking price?
6. In a bid to secure the Guinness World Record for “Longest and Highest Transport of Tom Cruise” you’ve decided to piggyback this superstar across the Andes. What phrase do you repeat to yourself during the tough parts of the trek to spur yourself onwards when Tom’s pointy hip bones are digging into your spine?
7. What do you consider to be a valid reason for a hunger strike?
8. Name three items you hide from your spouse or significant other or even better, yourself.
9. Where are the hiding places for these items? Wait! Don’t tell me, I’m a terrible secret keeper.
10. How do you feel about my interviewing skills? Will they make Oprah love me?
Thanks for reading and please keep writing, I look forward to your posts.
Flattery will get you everywhere. Except Rimouski, for some reason. Thanks for the award. I love your questions; very surreal. I will do my best to answer them, though it might not be right away. I’ve even pasted them into a post draft to remind me.
As for how I do it, I do it by doing it a lot. So keep doing it. Wait, we’re still talking about writing, right?
Oh, and call me Ross. Mr. Murray is my parole officer.
I nominated you for the WordPress Family award. http://crown7cacb.wordpress.com/2013/08/06/the-wordpress-family-award/
Thanks very much!
I love the whole “anything schmanything” construct. But you know what doesn’t work? “Ahhh, schmaltz schmaltz…”
Then you’ll appreciate this: http://www.buzzfeed.com/aj8/19-jokes-only-grammar-nerds-will-understand-cfe3
Saw that the other day. I like.
I like your blog. I think you’ll like mine. I am following you.
Thanks for the follow. I will check yours out.
Tag! You’re it! I’ve chosen you for The Versatile Blogger Award! Follow this link back to my post to find out more … http://puckerupbuttercup.wordpress.com/2013/09/09/let-me-entertain-you/
And yes, I see that you’re already a recipient. But I don’t think that precludes you from being recognized for your excellence again. I do, however, think it gets you off the hook for having to go through the whole Q&A/nomination ritual again.
I feel strangely validated by this award. Thanks very much. And thank you for the “Get Out Of Jail Free” card. You totally get me. Seriously, I do appreciate the nod.
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Best “about me” I’ve read in some time. I see and laugh at your comments on blogs I follow and for some reason it has taken a while for me to come see your blog. Loving it so far. Yer funny n stuff.
Well, welcome to you. It’s a pretty friendly place. Tomorrow’s pot luck. What are you bringing?
I make a pretty good lasagna I’m told. It’s not veggie or vegan. In fact it’s downright good n nasty with sausage and ricotta. People shouldn’t mess with lasagna…spinach lasagna is NOT right!
That is all.
I think we’re besties now.
I just wanted to get away from the comment string and seriously thank you for pointing out my bloopers in today’s post, and to apologize. I haven’t made a mistake that big since as far back as I can remember, which was my last post. Truly, thanks my friend. And again, my apologies.
Good lord, no need to apologize. I pointed them out just to be a smart-ass. Now I feel like a wanker for making you feel bad. So it’s me who should apologize. It’s a vicious cycle…
No! It is I who should apologize for making you feel like you should apologize, so please accept my most apologetic apologies, and I mean that most apologetically… wanker 😉
I’m lov’in your blog fellow Canadian. Had to press follow! Looking forward to your posts.
Thanks for the love. Glad to have you.
I see that you have some WordPress award badges on this page, Ross. Well, now, I am nominating you for the granddaddy, the big kahuna, the pick-seven of these things because, well, I like to read your work. I nominate you for The Seven Awards, and I hope it has some good luck involved with it, too.
You are too kind, good sir. Thanks.
I’m not shy, I just have more wrinkles than you and you called yourself old-looking in one of your posts and I’m fifty and a woman so where does that leave me? I guess with more wrinkles. I like your style. I love your family values. I adore your humor. Many folks don’t wear humor well – you’ve got yourself a tailored suit my friend. I will read on here, expecting no less than a hearty chuckle and generous belly thwomp!
new blogger, old wrinkled person
Thanks AnnMarie. Welcome. “Tailored suit of humor” may be among the nicest things anyone has ever said about me.
Well-deserved, I believe the description fits perfectly!
I’ve been enjoying your posts. I was wondering if you would be interested in participating in a Blog Tour on the writing process. Long story short, you would answer 4 questions about what you’re writing and your writing process and then pass the torch onto 3 other writers. Let me know. Will send details if you’re interested.
Doesn’t sound too onerous, so I’ll give it a shot. Thanks for asking.
Cool, thanks! I can’t find your e-mail address, so could you shoot me an email at email@example.com so I can give you the deets? Thanks!
Nice! Very cool About page and very funny writing style. I shall follow and so will the LastWord :).
Glad to have you on board.
I always thought of you as an Ontarian. I don’t know why. Take no offence! PS. I love Wire Tap so much it hurts.
Frankly, I don’t know what I am anymore. I did live in Toronto for eight months, so I’m tainted.
To be honest, I have never given Wire Tap its due. Just never got around to making in a habit. It’s my radio version of “The Sopranos.”
So this is how you write an about page…Jeez, I’ve learned so many things already on this site. How to decorate cake, how to dress and all whilst laughing my ass off. Great work. One day when I’m all grown up then…
Wait until you read my post, “How to carry out a home appendectomy.”
Hello, this is your strangely-immature-despite-no-longer-being-a-minor-geek blogger here. I stumbled across your blog and just wanted to say, the world needs more stuff like this. I was reading through some posts and couldn’t help but be reminded of the good old days when I could read G.K. Chesterton without being interrupted by Other People. 🙂 Thanks!
You have been busy, I see. Chesterton, you say! My!
I’d say “Hell is other people,” but that would be to Sartre-astic.
I like to think of myself as a normal kid who just happens to like more sophisticated literature. 😉
Good for you. Recommend: the essays of E.B. White. Not literature and not “classic” but the guy put his “Strunk & White” money where his mouth is.
Ahhh… 🙂 Thanks!
Impressive writing resume! That’s wonderful. I lived in Canada for a few years as a child. Weyburn, Saskatchewan. We had a trailer on the prairie. Literally. Bitter cold in the winter and tons of mud in the spring. Good times.
Thanks for visiting my site. Much appreciated. Glad you’re no longer blocked! I look forward to your posts. 🙂
Thanks for the follow. Your childhood sounds as bleak as the setting in Richard Ford’s Canada. Hope it wasn’t bleak.
Nah. When you’re a kid, the excess snow, cold, and mud don’t bother you. Were I to return today, however…
Thanks. Pleased to have found your blog. Look forward to lots of reading here. Regards from Thom at the immortal jukebox (drop a nickel).
Glad to be found. See you around.
Can’t believe I’m only discovering you now, Ross. Loving the humor, and looking forward to catching up on the stuff in your vault. See you around! 🙂
Help yourself, and welcome!
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A refreshingly good about section in a sea of bad ones and by that I mean boring.
Really? I was aiming for trite.
Seriously, thank you. I try to keep it lively around here.
Exactly, trite and lively beat out serious and boring.
Shoot me if you’d like info on a guest spot:
holistic wayfarer (one word) at gmail.
What on earth would I write about?
Am about to step away from the computer. Feel free to shoot me if you’d like me to explain. No obligation, though.
It is the perfect title, as it makes following this blog irresistible. I enjoyed your post on rereading interrupted. Looking forward to more laughs, paz, Abby
Glad you liked. Welcome to my… whatever this is.
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Hey I think your blog is very entertaining so I nominated it for the Liebster award! Check it out here if you’d like: http://lifeloofah.com/2015/07/22/and-now-to-interrupt-my-regularly-scheduled-programming/?fb_action_ids=10155856726720593&fb_action_types=news.publishes
Just curious, wae part of Scotland is yer kin from? Me mum’s from Kirkintilloch (near Glasgow). Och Aye. Am frae near Philadelphia, PA.
I typed that with Scottish accent 😉 I’m practically bilingual.
My ancestors are Murray of Athol, and as I never tire of reminding, careful how you say it.
Oh, I’ve been to Blair Castle. It was awthome. 🙂
I just realized how much more successful you are than yours truly, Ross.
(Which, admittedly, isn’t a very position to occupy.)
But seriously, well done!
You’re Canada’s Ned Hickson.
And I’m… nobody.
Time to go; I have posts to write… that no one will read…
Remember: “pity” is just “Pi” and “TY” for “thank you.” I have no idea what that means but I hope it was distracting.
For a moment, yes!
Haven’t been on here for a few years: Damn, your kids got bigger. That’ll learn ya for feeding ’em, especially the boy. Keep him away from peanut butter or you’ll be shopping in the basketball player’s section at graduation.
He’s already headed that way. Ball is life. Nice to see you.
Glad you’re still kickin’–er–vibrating. I may have to resume stalking, some muscles have gone soft.
‘I’m a white man from Nova Scotia with a Presbyterian Scottish background so I keep my feelings where they belong — deeply, deeply repressed.’
I’ve spent a lifetime treating white men with Presbyterian Scottish backgrounds, and that made me laugh out loud. Laughter is the best medicine!
I should’ve read your ‘about’ first… Oh well, so be it – From your ‘fun…about’ summary, and your nice picture of your family…..and the seemingly ‘good things’ in your life, despite the not so great news of your cancer… (again, so sorry…. hey, I got the whole liste of family members lost to that shit disease…so I feel for ya…) but whether you realize it or *not* – YOU’RE IN SUCH BETTER SHAPE THAN MOST – YOU GOT A ‘FAMILY’ WHO LOVES YOU, CARES FOR YOU, WANTS GOOD FOR YOU…’that’ I can’t say the same – lets just say my ‘background’ – my relatives didnt give a shit when my dad was dying from melanoma, they didnt go to his funeral, since their vacations to paris and mexico ‘came first’ , or unless we ‘change the date/ and move his body to accomodate them”‘ etc… heck – we are ‘trapped in usa’ – the country that most often cares zilch for anyone & has the attitude of which I speak about – and so, even with your bad luck, you got it so much better than many…including me, – so I wish you all good things – and I apologize for my earlier comment…. I may have been a bit blunt – and I’m sorry – as I said, I should’ve read your ‘about’ first…..hope things all work out for you….. best of luck
I completely appreciate I am in much better shape than 1000s of other people, and I am truly grateful for the privilege of my life. I wish you the best.