Feb 18


It’s the damnedest thing. One moment I pick it up after a night’s rest to recharge, push the button at the bottom, the screen of my hand-me-down cell phone refused to jump into action. My constant companion. Dead. Gone without a whimper.

Maybe ‘trusted warrior’ is somewhat misplaced. I took it for granted. It had started out as our son’s first cell phone. He learns fast. Give him something like this, and he’s soon the one to be asked for help.

When he bought a new version of the iphone, he passed the old one on to his mother. She got the jist of how it worked, and bought a new phone for herself. That’s when I inherited the passed-down iphone 4. Or was it iphone 5? Whatever.

The learning curve for me was long and frustrating. When I’d asked Nathaniel or his mother for help; I got stuck in finding the text icon. They sighed, clicked something at the speed of light, and handed it back.” That’s all you have to do,” they’d say in unison.

Once you pick up your first cell phone, life abruptly brings you into a new era. That old cell and I became attached at the hip. I wasn’t into social media; nor did I pull up games when bored. It took some time to ask those closest to me not to take out their cells during meals.

“I can text while you talk, so don’t worry,” one of them would say. Maybe they can, but when having a conversation and someone pulls out a cell, the true moment is lost, gone forever.

Author’s comment: I picked my cell up the other morning, unplugged it, and pushed the little button at the bottom to let it know a new day dawns. The screen didn’t respond in its happy little way. Its screen lay there, black. Dead, as in no pulse.

It’s time for a proper burial: a mental letting go. It struck me in all the years I’ve been using a hand-me down cell phone, tomorrow I’ll go out and buy myself my first brand new one.

Posted on February 18th, 2018 by Clarke
Feb 11


It’s only Day Three of the winter Olympics 2018 in Pyeongchang, South Korea. I’m glued to the TV. You want drama, passion, pressure, excitement, devastating failures, tears, triumphs, squeak-throughs, first on the podium, all rolled into one, you’ve got it right there in front of you.

Competitors in do or die moments. Win or lose. Athletes who spent a lifetime working on their specialty, are ready to give the viewers one hell of a ride. Four years of building up their passion, going for broke and one misstep, one missed mogul, and that’s it till 2022.

Nothing does my heart more good than watching Mark McMorris fly high through the air, twisting and turning in the snowboard’s slopestyle competition, and nab a bronze medal last Saturday, after what he’s been through.

It was a year ago when he was snowboarding in B.C. Whistler’s back country with his brother Craig and friends, when he flew off a jump, went off course and slammed into tall, rugged pines. They got him out  before hypothermia ended his life.

Every moment caught on camera. He ended up with broken bones, including ribs, an arm and a ruptured spleen, among other injuries.

If you want to see what damage he did to himself, check out a CBC doc, aired during the Olympics, lying in the hospital. Mark fought back during the past year determined to be in Pyeongchang. Where he pulled off a third-place finish.

You have another competitor, Denny Morrison, speed skater who is competing this year as well. He survived a stroke, and healed, through a lot of patience and hard work.

I’m not one to sit and watch curling. For me it’s okay; so you throw a few rocks down a sheet of ice to knock your competitor out of the game. Then I began watching something new for the Olympics. Mixed doubles! Canadian Kaitlin Lawes and John Morris. With Kaitlin the skip. Wild stuff. They make those heavy stones sing.

Author’s comment: We’ve a lot more to watch over the coming days. If you’re someone who admits watching the Olympics isn’t for you, do me a favor. Sit down and watch CBC’s wonderful coverage for 20 minutes. If you’re not sitting on the edge of the couch waiting to see who pulls this event out of the fire, it’s your choice.

Posted on February 11th, 2018 by Clarke