Our Alberta colors are now orange and yellow

NDP takes the lead in The Hemmer column this week.

After a provincial election that had most everyone quite shaken up by late Tuesday evening, the New Democratic Party had swept away the opposition with an overwhelming majority (also referred to as the Orange Crush) and will now lead our government for the next four years. Meanwhile, as spring slowly sneaks in, pausing only for a few annual wet snow squalls, the trees are becoming buddies, and the first flowers to pop up on the scene, as always, are those beloved dandelions.

In the meantime, what’s left of the devastated Alberta Progressive Conservative party will now gather to attempt to pick up the pieces and try and put their long-standing political dynasty back together again, while the rejuvenated Wildrose Party are really looking forward to becoming a progressive and pesky opposition. As usual, those PCs who lost their seats or retired before the election will be quietly cleaning out their desks and will then walk away with a hefty farewell package that is claimed to be over $13 million. The colourful campaign signs have long been taken down, but the coffee shop chatter will still go on hot and heavy full of questions and suggestions of what is going to unfold for all of us along the political trail in the not so distant future? I think, in all fairness, that we need to give these newly elected MLAs and their newfound fair leader and Premier-elect Ms. Notley a chance to get settled in their plush chairs in the Legislature before we make too much judgement. Win or lose, congratulations to all those candidates who threw their hats in the ring in this red-hot 2015 election and were willing to represent our province in this most vital political role.

Welcome to a new golfing season.

Just about now, our golf courses will be full of exuberant swingers and duffers of all ages and personalities, and this week I will devote half of this column with this just for fun tribute to all of you.   Most of all, while you are out there in the fresh air, please have fun and if you get to stressed with your swing or your score, please stop at the ‘beer tent’ to calm your nerves and remember that there will always be another better day out on the links.

*Golf is the art of playing ‘fetch’ with yourself. Typical club house chatter. ‘I was one under today…one under a tree, one under a bush, one under the water, and one under a car somewhere in the parking lot.’

*Suggestive signs on the golf course. At the tee box….you are now 150 yards from the centre of the green and 175 yards from a $200 picture window, so please choose your club carefully. Deep in the rough….you are now 87 yards off line. Golf instructions and lessons are available at the Pro Shop. Half way through the front nine….If you are not at this point one hour after you teed off you are either lost or you are playing way to slow.

*Best Golf Quotes. ‘If I’m on the course and lightning strikes, I get inside fast. If God wants to play through, let him. (Bob Hope). ‘They call it golf because all other four letter words are already taken. (Ray Floyd).

*On some days out there on the course, we will hit a two-acre fairway 10 per cent of the time and a two-inch tree branch 90 per cent of the time. The game of golf is quite often referred to as the adult version of an Easter egg hunt.

*Question to caddy….’Do you think I can get there with a five iron?’ Best politically correct answer from his caddy….’eventually sir.’

*Wife out golfing for the first time. ‘I’m so sorry dear, I lost the ball again in that little hole with the flag in it.’

*The room was full of pregnant women with their husbands, and the instructor constantly reminded the ladies that exercise was very good for them. She stressed that walking is especially beneficial because it strengthens the pelvis muscles and will make delivery that much easier. It is important to pace yourself, make plenty of stops, and always try to stay on a soft surface like grass or a path. The instructor also reminded the gentleman that each couple were in this together, and that it wouldn’t hurt for them to go walking with her, and in fact that shared experience will be very good for them both. The room suddenly became very quiet as the men carefully absorbed all this information, and after a few moments a young man at the back of the room slowly raised his hand. “Yes?” said the instructor. “I was wondering if it would be all right if she carries a golf bag while we walk?’ Kind of brings a tear to your eye, doesn’t it? This kind of sensitivity just can’t be taught.. Whatever game or event you take part in this spring/ summer, please have a great season, share the experience with others, and also have a great week, all of you.