Category Archives: Our World

Leadership: Secrets Are Not What They Used To Be

When the Cold War ended in 1991 and Russian archives were opened for a while a lot of mysteries were revealed. Some revelations still cause problems, not because so many myths were disproved but because about the same time the Internet came along and made it much more difficult keep secrets or create false realities and maintain them in the future. Thus Russia and China, as well as traditionally the more open societies in the West, could not revive the useful (for all governments) secrecy and control of information that reached a peak in the 20th century. It was the reach and control of pre-Internet mass media that made so many corrupt and murderous dictatorships possible. A few are still trying to hang on, but that proves difficult in an age of instant worldwide communications that cannot to a few.



High Line to Shake Shack

Sunday we walked the High Line. To paraphrase Mark Twain – a good walk ruined by the litter of left wing crap-art.

The High Line was an elevated railway that once served Manhattan’s industries. After falling into disuse it was reborn as an elevated public walkway that wends its way through the city’s re-purposed factories and warehouses. It really is a pleasant walk and Sunday morning was just a beautiful time to take it in.

Yup people do complain of having their privacy invaded.

This is some of the crap-art that litters the way, all of it colonialism this and colonialism that and look at me I’m a victim of the fascist patriarchy even though that same patriarchy bought my crappy art!

Here’s the explanation for the above bad art.

And it just wouldn’t be New York without an anti-Trump billboard, visible from the High Line.

After the High Line we stopped in at the Chelsea Market where I paid a buck each for 6 Tiny Tom sized donuts, don’t get me wrong they were good, but like the market itself way oversold. K has written more about it on her FB page.

From there we meandered over to the Hummus Place and enjoyed an excellent meal featuring Shakshuka, I highly recommend it. Boy that K is a Trencherman!

Dessert? Big Gay Ice Cream! (Yea it was good)

This morning we walked some of Central Park and stopped in at the famous Lexington Candy Store Luncheonette for a sammy. Was great! That’s a collection of special event coke bottles etc in the window. The diner was last renovated in 1948 and they’re quite proud of that.

We just window shopped the rest of the day away as we strolled down Lexington. Eventually ending up at Madison Park for dinner. The Shake Shack does make a great shake. Good thing we’ve walked a lot on this trip.

That’s K’s enuff with the camera I’m eating look (above). I enjoy Madison Park, it’s a pleasant oasis in the city, that is the Empire State Building in the background, clouds were rolling in.


Times Square

Unhappiest person in Times Square… ever

Every time we have visited NYC I have insisted we take in Times Square.

Every time K has suggested we avoid it.

Every time I expect different results.

Every time we go it seems worse than the last time.

I try very hard to discern some redeeming quality to the Times Square experience.

I fail every time.

We get there and immediately look for a route out. I blame myself as perhaps my eyes are unable to divine the glamour and excitement found there by so many or maybe it’s a victim of its own hype.

This was the highlight of today’s walk through. That’s some patriotic fire hydrant there.

But New York has so much to see it never gets dull. In future I’ll avoid the square.

Our next hike will be the High Line followed by a visit to the Chelsea Market and then Big Gay Ice Cream, which comes highly recommended.

Today was K’s shopping day. We hoofed it down 5th Avenue and then down Madison window shopping until we arrived at K’s Nirvana – Lily Pulitzer. A couple of tops were purchased and then the long march home, about a 10k slog when you tack on our meanderings. Then we checked out the Tommy Bahama store down the street and discovered they have a pretty nice restaurant. I’m not kidding.

Pro-Tip – Avoid the Baskin-Robbins on 43rd near Times Square. I swear it’s staffed by ISIS. To their credit they did serve more than adequate portions.


We made it…

We are in New York City!

I almost thought we would not make it. Our vacation got off to a less than auspicious start when I got the full frisking by airport security having declined the x-ray machine But it wasn’t the end of the world.

Being good scouts K and I opted for the early flight 6:30 AM out of Pearson.

We were boarded as normal and then…and then… Sat on the tarmac for the next 3 hours.

Seems fog at JFK diverted incoming flights to La Guardia which created a huge backlog.

Twice we were told on the tarmac that we would soon be on our way and twice we were disappointed.

We de-planed with assurances that we would be on the 10:30 am flight, but it wasn’t very reassuring as no one at Air Canada seemed to know where we should be. Scenes of minor chaos ensued as an entire plane load of frustrated passengers ran back and forth between gates and customer service on the flimsiest of rumours.

We finally received a boarding pass for the 10:30 flight which itself was delayed as they were missing a crew member.  Finally at 11:25 we were airborne, only to sit on the tarmac at La Guardia while a gate was made ready.

Oh well at least our luggage showed up, we were warned it might be late but thankfully Air Canada was wrong again.

At any rate we finally checked into our Hotel shortly before 3 PM, dead tired but happy to be here.

Here’s the Roosevelt Hotel Lobby where we’re staying on a renovation discount, more pics to come once we get our wind back.



Pirate Mom Update

Just back from the hospital. News is good.

They took the sutures out of the eye, a surprisingly smooth and painless procedure, well they did apply some freezing.

The infection is gone. How much vision returns only time will tell though it is returning bit by bit, she’s seeing general shapes and colours now. (Just did a test, she can see my blurry face but not me sticking my tongue out from about 6 feet away, mind you she had some some other stuff put in the eye to dilate the pupil so that may be affecting things)

Another week of drops and then a follow up appt. a month from now.

Thank you all for your kind wishes and prayers!


‘Rosie The Riveter’ Iconicized The American Women Who Truly Fought Fascism

This Memorial Day, don’t forget the American women who fought on the home front during World War II, and who ultimately helped defeat fascism.

This Memorial Day, as we honor all those who have served and sacrificed on our behalf, let us not forget the American women who fought on the home front during World War II, and whose efforts ultimately helped us defeat the horrors of real fascism. It all started with a fictional gal named “Rosie the Riveter.”


You Won’t Believe The Entertainment Centers Set To Replace American Malls

The medium-sized and generic, forgettable malls are going the way of the dinosaur, just like the Main Street, family-owned stores those same malls once put out of business.

American retailers are going bankrupt at the fastest rate since the Great Recession. Many are sitting on mountains of volatile debt. J.C. Penney, Sears, Abercrombie & Fitch, GameStop, and others are shuttering locations left and right.

As Business Insider recently put it, dying shopping malls are wreaking havoc on suburban America. As they close down or fall into disrepair, shopping malls are, “in some cases, leaving jobless communities and rotting buildings that are hotbeds for crime in their wake.”

The commercial real estate firm CoStar “estimates that nearly a quarter of malls in the US, or roughly 310 of the nation’s 1,300 shopping malls, are at high risk of losing an anchor store.”

The Honeydale Mall died a prolonged death, in it’s final days it housed a “Flea Market”. It’s not far from where I live. Just up the road from there is Cloverdale Mall which lost an anchor store with the Target bankruptcy.


Pirate Mom – Latest News

Just back from the hospital where we spent a very warm afternoon.

The doctor was encouraging, after performing an ultrasound on the eye he said that he liked what he saw.

The retina is not detached and the cornea is not nearly so cloudy now.

How much vision she’ll have left remains to be seen, it’s a waiting game. Right now all she sees is light and shadows.

She now has four sets of drops that we administer 4 times a day.

We are back to the doctor in 2 weeks and will hopefully see additional progress.

Thank you all for your kindness and concern.


Pirate Mom… is back

We’re back as of 6:30 PM.

This was a long day for me, imagine what it was like for Mom.

We dutifully arrived at 8 am as instructed and eventually sorted out where we had to go.

Mom was told to fast from midnight on. One by one the hours ticked by. We were moved through a succession of waiting areas.

Finally about 4:30 PM we were escorted to pre-op. By that time Mom had been without food or water since midnight, 16.5 hours.

I complained that it seemed more like abuse than patient care to deprive a 93 year old woman of food and water for that duration, especially given she was not being put under  a general anesthesia but only receiving local freezing and some sedation.

It was explained that the long fasting regime is mandated for everyone by the system so they will have no concerns about slotting someone in earlier than was scheduled if cancellations occur. There were no cancellations today. Health care is a machine and you are an outcome named “next”, eventually.

We might learn a bit about the success of today’s operation at tomorrow’s check-up, the antibiotics injected Thursday evening did not help much. It’s all about saving as much vision as possible with the unspoken fear that none will be.

There was no explanation of today’s procedure, we saw the surgeon for perhaps a total of 6 minutes in advance before he was off to inspect the next defective part.

But on a happier note, Mom was alert and in good spirits when we met up again in the recovery room.

We’re home and Soup’s on.

Thanks everyone.


Hospital Daze…

For the last several days Mom has complained of a sore eye. Initially it looked no more irritated than Pink-eye.

But today it was far worse, she woke up with her left eye entirely discolored into a cloudy white mess accompanied by a milky discharge and a contracted pupil.

I called her ophthalmologist who unfortunately was out of town and was advised to head to ER.

So at noon off to St. Jo’s we went. The Doctor’s expressed concern but no ophthalmologist was available to consult.

The St. Jo ER doctor then made arrangements for us to see an ophthalmologist off site – the associate of my Mom’s doctor at the clinic we called first.

Off we went.

The Dr. did an exam and determined that Mom had a severe infection in the eye. Where it originated from is still up in the air as it may relate to glaucoma surgery she underwent some years ago.

Then began the long process of finding a hospital that could accept us.

After a couple of hours hunting Toronto Western came through. I was instructed to bypass ER and head straight to the 6th floor Eye clinic.

Except we couldn’t find an elevator that would let us off at the 6th floor. I’m not kidding.

We had to settle for getting off on 7 and finding another set of elevators that would drop us off at 6 , which of course meant hauling a 93 year old woman and her walker around half the hospital. Great fun.

We finally found our contacts. The diagnosis was made and the first step taken.

They froze the eye then injected antibiotics, freezing does not work as well with a bad infection I was told. The procedure was not pleasant to listen to.

We left the hospital at 9 pm and headed for home.

We have to return for 8 am on Friday morning. It is then that a decision will be made about surgery.

The Doctor is concerned Mom may lose the eye and says surgery is likely the only option.

It is a day procedure but that means we will be there all day till at least 5 PM I am told.

Mom is doing OK under the circumstances, plenty cussed which is a good sign. We removed her bandages and did our best to apply the drops they provided but her eye is a zombie like mess. We put on a patch and off to bed she went.

Please thank Nightmouse, Denyse, Black Mamba, Osumashi, Frau and  DB Cooper for keeping it all together.



Russian interference? What about US, Saudi Arabia?

On Monday, U.S. senators on the judiciary subcommittee investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 American election campaign, spent hours grilling ex-national intelligence director James Clapper and former acting attorney general Sally Yates.

But there was one question they never asked:

“Has the United States ever interfered in the election campaign of any foreign country?”


Trump, Putin, and Pope Francis — and the Plot to Kill Pope John Paul II

On May 13, 1981, shortly after 5:00 p.m., Pope John Paul II, the first non-Italian pope in 455 years, the first Slavic pope ever, and — to the great dismay of the Soviet Union — an intensely anti-communist Pole from the heart of the Communist Bloc, slowly rode through St. Peter’s Square in his white Fiat “Popemobile.”

Among the onlookers gathered for the pontiff’s weekly audience were Americans and Italians, Chinese and Germans, Latin Americans and Africans — Turks and Bulgarians. And observing intently from still further away were Russians posted at the Kremlin. Moscow had recently described this pope as a “malicious, lowly, perfidious, and backward… toady of the American militarists,” who was seeking to undermine communism with his “overseas accomplices” and “new boss in the White House.”

His new boss: Ronald Reagan.


Venerating Havoc

Another five-year anniversary of the 1992 Los Angeles riots, another opportunity for media glorification of racial mayhem. The New York Times outdoes itself this year with a fawning profile of one of the sadists who stomped and bludgeoned trucker Reginald Denny nearly to death on April 29, 1992, as Denny tried to maneuver his truck through the already anarchic intersection of Florence and Normandie in South Central Los Angeles.

Henry Keith Watson, an ex-con who had just assaulted an Asian man, stood on Reginald Denny’s neck and head as others kicked him. Watson never served any time for his participation in this grotesque explosion of racial hatred. The Times notes admiringly that Watson apologized to Denny on a talk show.


What I Learned About Civil Unrest During The Los Angeles Riots 25 Years Ago

The last 25 years of urban unrest in America, and around the world, show how rapidly domestic tranquility can collapse when law enforcement steps aside or is overwhelmed.

The age of cell phone video ubiquity treats us with daily outrages over people in authority behaving badly towards the powerless. Unreasoned passion leads to a thirst for justice, or at least the appearance of justice.

In 1991, there were no cell-phone cameras and the Internet was still in its infancy. In March of that year, after a high-speed chase through the night, Los Angeles Police Department officers arrested Rodney King. King was intoxicated. He later admitted that he tried to evade the police because a DUI charge would violate his parole conditions for a prior robbery conviction.


The Gramscian March and the Suiciding of the West

The term “suicided” refers to a homicide that appears to be, or at least is ruled to be, a suicide. One of the tropes of the Left is that Western Civilization, be it Capitalism, the Patriarchy, or White supremacy, will inately eat itself, and thus, in a sociatal way, commit suicide.

The Gramscian March, which has been the slow infiltration and mutation of key elements of society as a vanguard to total conversion, is, in effect, a “suiciding” of the West.