Rhymes, Rants & Accolades from North Central BC

Archive for October, 2017


So glad I purchased one of Lynne Hanson’s CDs. Really enjoyed her musicality, both her guitar playing and her beautiful voice, during this evening’s concert at the Legion. But I wasn’t able to pick up on all the lyrics because I’m becoming more and more “audio-challenged” [translation: deaf] as years go by.

I’m pleased that the words to Lynne’s songs were included with the CD. The lyrics to “Stronger” are what’s been going through my mind lately.  Especially the line that goes, “You can curse or you can pray, world spins anyway”
[That’s when I need to remember to get on my knees]

Stronger by Lynne Hanson & Lynn Miles

Some things don’t make us better they just break us
Make us holler to the sky and ask how could you forsake us
You can’t always win this game, some things won’t ever be the same
It’s living with the pain that shapes and makes us.

chorus: I used to believe in the stories
Where the good guys win, the underdogs get the glory
I don’t believe it any longer
Sometimes what don’t kill you won’t make you stronger

Heart of steel only bends so far
It’s the deepest cuts that always leave a scar
It’s not weak to bleed, sometimes tears are what you need
It’s the toughest lessons teach us who we are.

chorus:Even the tallest mountains crumble
Most graceful dancers sometimes stumble
You can curse or you can pray, World spins anyway,
It’s the biggest mistakes that make us humble.



In the fall of 1999 I was on a book tour set up by my publisher Cynthia Wilson of Caitlin Press. As publisher Cynthia knew everyone of any journalistic significance in British Columbia. My book “The Ghosts Behind Him” was about my son Bruce’s battle with the symptoms of schizophrenia.

Cynthia knew Rafe Mair and was in on a secret that very few others were privy to. The loud, gruff, often confrontational CKNW radio talk show host suffered from clinical depression. During my interview with him he confided that if he didn’t take his antidepressant medication he would dissolve into tears in a very short time.

Rafe Mair passed away yesterday. Today I’m remembering when my cousin Florence drove me to the large building in New Westminster where he ruled in his glass and chrome domain. Florence and I sat all alone in the waiting area listening to Rafe’s angry rasping voice in a telephone interview with a politician named Moe Sihota who was part of the NDP government of the time. Moe seemed to be holding his own in the conversation but I was pretty intimidated. When it was my turn to enter Rafe’s glass enclosed cage I expected to be eaten alive in a lion’s den.

I was surprised to meet this friendly, soft-spoken gentleman who appeared to be far more of a pussycat than a lion. And Rafe was an excellent interviewer. He admitted that he hadn’t read the book but his queries and gentle comments drew the devastating story out from my heart and soul.

From my perspective Rafe Mair was a class act. And he went out of his way to let his audience know about the book signing I was to do in Langley that evening.

GUNS: tools or weapons?

I thought I’d put out my own personal perspective about the use of guns. Being a Canadian I will try to be polite.

I’ve been a part of the gun culture in rural British Columbia for most of  my life. As a child living in the bush with very litle money coming in, our family very often subsisted on moose meat and venison. I still have no qualms whatever about accepting the good healthful food that nature has to offer. My main concern has only been that the hunter’s rifle be properly sighted in, and that he aim precisely – not wounding the animal and causing it to live in pain and possible impairment. The rifle is a tool.  It needs to be a good one and be in skilled hands. That way the dying part will occur quickly; possibly quicker than what happens in meat processing plants.

I understand that in the States “the right to bear arms” is significant, dating back to centuries-old confrontations. People who are being shot at are given the inalienable right to shoot back. And everyone- even sweet little old ladies- are permitted to store derringers in their handbags.

One such lady from Montana stopped by our tourist information center during the last American election. She said, “If Hillary gets in, I’m moving to Canada.  You know what? She wants to take away our guns!”

If I kept a gun in my handbag I’d be dangerous. Weapons of any kind make me paranoid. I used to ride a bicycle through our rural neighborhood. On one occasion I was attacked by a dog soon after disembarking from my bike.  Using my bicycle as a shield, I managed to repel the beast until its owner saved me from being lunch. Even so, I was traumatized for weeks.

I had read that postmen sometimes carried an umbrella as a weapon to repel dogs when they made their rounds. Dogs were apparently intimidated by the sight of an umbrella opening up before their eyes. I tucked one in the basket for when I went bike-riding. If I spotted a dog I would clutch the umbrella, preparing to scare off any large, middle-sized and even little-bitty dogs I encountered. It got so bad that my “fight-flight” primal instincts lit up no matter how friendly the dog turned out to be.

After I began leaving my weapon at home I found I was no longer paranoid. Dogs and humans are alike in that there’s very few that actually need an umbrella in the face.


Do You Wanna Get Religion?

I am a lucky woman in that I have friends and relatives of all genders, cultures, personal choices,  disabilities, personalities, races and religions.  And probably a few other things I don’t know or care about.

I spent much of my life not really worrying about religion.  My friends and relatives were mostly atheists or agnostics and I sort of categorized myself as being one of the latter. But sometimes things happen in life where you want a bit of enlightment.  Anyway in my decling years I have come to a few conclusions about how to make life easier for myself.

The best part of joining a religious faith is that it empowers you to believe in God. In my younger years I’d sometimes  surmised, “It would be so nice if there really were a god but there is no real evidence that there is one.”  It wasn’t until a situation came up in my life that I found myself reaching out for some spiritual assistance. I discovered that I no longer had to fight battles that I could not win; that I could call out “Please!” to the universe and wait upon the expectation of saying of “Thank you.” I had finally got religion and for me it was a good thing.









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