Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Politics? What about politics?

Finally an American has come up with a concise description of what Canadian politics is all about...

A Canadian Electoral Primer - http://is.gd/FTFbUN

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Doctor, doctor, give me the news (part 2)...

In a previous post, Doctor, doctor, give me the news..., I discussed the difference in attitudes toward heath care (and health insurance) between Canada (specifically Kelowna, B.C.) and where we are from in Tennessee. Today, Castanet posted a story about the local hospital's ER department: ER at KGH gets failing grade.

This is really a disgrace. Back in Kingsport, TN, we had our choice of privately run hospitals and they were well maintained because of the competition.  Maybe they need that here.

I am guessing that the next article will be about how much better health care is in Canada than the United States.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Whites from WV (and other addicts)...

Last Friday, I stopped by a local drug and alcohol "recovery house" for men. I talked to a couple of new comers, and one in particular seemed to get it.  Cam was a thirty-three year old guy that talks too much, and while this usually frustrates me, it was clear that he finally understood a problem with his life.  With just a couple of days being sober, his thinking had seemed to clear up a bit.

"You know, I would do something crazy and because I was drunk, I would say to myself, 'Well, that was weird. Why did I do that?'  Now as I think about it, I think, 'Man, that was insane. My thinking was really screwed up.'" he told me.

The following Monday I stopped by to see one of the other guys, and when Cam saw me.  He seemed to want to ride me a bit about my accent.

"I want to talk like you. What do I have to do to get that accent?"

I told him that I grew up in West Virginia, but had lived in Tennessee. "Most of my accent probably comes from Logan County, WV where I spent my early years," I replied.

When he heard "West Virginia," he seized upon another opportunity to raze me a bit more and probably was trying to gain the upper hand a bit (addicts are manipulators).

He said, "Yeah, I know about West Virginia. I saw that movie The Wild & Wonderful Whites of West Virginia. Have you seen that movie? Those people are crazy!"

I had not seen the movie, but I did catch the name "White" as he was explaining what the movie was about.

"Yes, they are just crazy. They do the most outrageous things! And they think it is just 'normal' and that there is nothing wrong with their thinking."

Jesco White, the Dancing Outlaw
Jesco White
I replied, "Ah yes, but aren't they like every guy here? Aren't they like you and me? All addicts need to getting their thinking straightened up."

He walked off thinking about what I had said and probably wishing that he hadn't spoken to me. Maybe he hadn't gotten it as much as I had thought.

UPDATE: When I was looking for a link to the movie, I discovered that Jesco White had died. Jesco White (a.k.a. The Dancing Outlaw) was the more famous (infamous?) of the family and had made an appearance on the Roseanne TV series.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Pink Shirt Day

This week in Canada (February 27th) was Pink Shirt Day.  Pink Shirt Day is used to promote awareness of those that bully and the effects of bullying.  The anti-bullying day is "celebrated" by everyone wearing a pink shirt to work or school. There are parades (demonstrations?) and speeches.

I don't really understand all of it.  What is actually accomplished by all this?  Has one bully stopped?I understand the cancer awareness days: money is raised. There is no money raised to prevent bullying.

I talked to a pastor friend of mine that evening. He and I both had experienced bullying growing up. He was a preacher's kid and wore glasses, which made him the brunt of jokes and target of the bullies. I was was the new kid (since we moved several times) and I was a bit book smart.  Both us expressed that we experienced a bit of fear at the hand of bullies.

Solutions? It seemed to us that society (Canadian and American), is trying to emasculate little boys. Sometime boys need to fight. The guy that is being bullied needs learn to stand up, while the bully needs to learn a lesson. A lot of times, after a good fight, the boys end up being the best of friends.

I am not saying that this is the solution in every case. With our societies, the fathers have bowed out of their relationships with their kids. Mothers ofter work outside of the house (necessarily) and are not seeing what their kids are going through. As a result, there is no parental guidance, or at least as much as is needed.  In the perfect world, things would be different.

We are not in a perfect world....