My dear old dad celebrated his 94th birthday last week, and he and my step-mother, Jean, are happy to be living in their comfortable condo in Victoria. B.C. Mike Sr. worked at the Provincial Mental Hospital at Ponoka for more than 30 years and has many fond memories and mementos of working, playing, and raising my brother, Peter, and me, with my late mother, Irene for many years in this friendly community.
The Anglican Church in Victoria, where Dad and Jean have been members for many years, treated them after the Sunday service to a surprise birthday party, during which, as always, he enjoyed the chats, the hugs, and a chance to flirt with the ladies. In extending the best wishes of the family to our father, grandfather and great-grandfather, I can only hope that I can achieve and enjoy half as much as he has during his active lifetime.
I will always cherish and try to follow my dad’s jovial outlook on life: “Most days will turn out just fine if we share them with family, friends and a good cup of tea!”
Keeping our politicians in line
A wise old rancher named Bud was overseeing his herd in a remote and hilly pasture along the foothills when suddenly a brand new BMW roared out of the dust toward him and screamed to a halt.
The driver, a young man in a flashy suit, Gucci shoes, Ray-Ban sunglasses and a flashy YSL tie leaned out of the window and boldly asked the rancher, “If I tell you exactly how many cows and calves you have in your herd, will you give me a free calf?”
Bud calmly answered, “Sure, why not?”
The yuppie parked his car, then whipped out his notebook computer, connected it to his cellphone, surfed to a NASA page on the Internet, where he called up a GPS satellite to get an exact fix on his location, which he then fed to another NASA satellite that scanned the area into an ultra-high resolution photo.
The young man then opened the digital photo and exported it to an image processing lab in Hamburg, Germany. Within seconds, he received an email on his smartphone to inform him that the image had been processed and the data was stored.
Finally he printed out a full-color, 150-page report on his hi-tech, miniature printer and turned to the rather bored rancher and said, “You have exactly 1,586 cows and calves.”
Old Bud finally had to admit, “That’s right, and I guess you can go ahead and take one of my calves.” He then watched the young man select one of his animals and looked on with much amusement as he stuffed it into the trunk of his car.
Then with a big smile, Bud asked the young man, “Hey, if I can tell you exactly what your business is, will you give me back my calf?”
Without any hesitation the young man replied, “Of course I will.”
Taking a deep breath, Bud boldly replied: “You are obviously a politician, with a great big expense account, and a whole lot of toys to play with.”
Bewildered the yuppie replied, “Wow! That’s correct, how did you ever guess that?”
“No guessing required,” answered the rancher. “You showed up here even though nobody called you; you want to get paid for an answer I already knew, to a question that I never asked. You tried to show me how much smarter than me you are; and you don’t know a thing about cows, as this is a herd of sheep. Now please give me back my dog!”
The groundhog forecast
Whether they managed to dig out of the snow or not, I don’t think it really matters what Balzac Billy, Wiarton Willie, Manitoba Merv, Punxsutawney Phil, Shubencadie Sam, and all the rest of the groundhog forecast fraternity saw last week, because I really have my doubts if Old Man Winter will go away that easy. As most of our wise weather prognosticators will say, what will be will be, so just wait and see.
Whatever the case, we should dare not forget Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14 because if we do, it could get rather cool around our house for quite some time.
So rush right on out and get your sweetie a treat, just keep right on enjoying our mini-February thaw, and have a great week, all of you.