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Some rough numbers from a recent Catholic high school graduation ceremony in our area.

  • Region population: 142,000
  • Visible minorities: 18,000
  • Graduating class size: 380
  • Number of non-white/male students missing the "honour" level (>80% average): 30
  • Number of white/male students missing the "honour" level: 80
  • Number of non-white/male students earning an award in excess of "honour" level: >100
  • Number of white/male students earning an award in excess of "honour" level: 15
  • Number of racial groups specifically rewarded for graduating: 1 ("As an Indigenous graduate, [...] receives his eagle feather. The eagle is the strongest and bravest of all the birds, and to receive this feather is a great honour. It is our sincere hope that this feather brings you success and strength as you go forward in your future endeavors. This gift of achievement is presented by Miss [...]")
  • Number of un-Catholic religion awards issued by the Catholic school: 1 (Islamic)

Posted Tue Jul 2 09:02:10 2024

Hey you.

If you really just can't bear to live any more, I will naturally emphasize. If I know you and see a chance, I'll try to talk you out of it. In Canada, the federal government will "help" you, but it really is not hard to go through with it. We live in a world full of things that can privately and "safely" maim our own bodies. It may ruin your friends'/families' lives, but I guess, whatever. I will pity y'all.


I will find you absolutely despicable if, in the act of offing yourself, you endanger other people. It crosses the line from sad mental illness to outright EVIL. No pity. No sympathy. Closer to hatred. Legally speaking, someone may be entitled to use lethal force against YOU, to defend innocent drivers on a highway beneath the bridge you're on. Ironic, but still better than letting you kill someone else down below. Damn you.

Posted Sun Jun 16 19:38:36 2024

Just on the odd chance you were hanging out on the local flying club's facebook page and something flickered on your screen:

leaving just this behind:

this is what the social media person at the BFC thought you were unworthy of seeing:

Posted Sat Jun 8 07:52:11 2024

The boys are at it again. After a brief "surprise appearance" at the Kevin Williams Band show on May 24, the next event is on Saturday 2024-06-15, just beside the Farmers Market, presented by the City of Brantford. We hope to entertain a whole new audience.

Posted Tue May 28 21:21:32 2024 Tags:

Fortysomething years ago today, these two people became the bravest I know. Previously, they were merely my parents.

But at the ripe old age of 30something, they gave these three no good boys a chance at a good and free life.

How? After years of intense but completely secret planning, these two people packed up as much as they could safely carry, and crossed a border with three little kids. Why the secrecy? Because this took place in early-1980s Hungary, when the Iron Curtain was still locking its citizens inside the prison of communist totalitarianism. Had any neighbour, any family member, any friend even had a clue that we were about to leave, very likely secret police would have taken my parents away one night. This is not an exaggeration.

Instead, they planned silently. They considered where it may be possible to go, so far as to investigate various African nations with which the communist bloc had relations, and could have an excuse to send a young engineer and family for a while. That was just too dangerous, with machete-wielding natives. That left a direct crossing to neighbouring Austria. We had (have!) some family there, and a brief tourist visit was sometimes permissible to the authorities. Emigration was of course illegal. Only enemies of the state would do something so heretical.

As far as the kids knew, we were visiting some village in our own country. If we had known anything, any mention to friends could have resulted in secret police attention. They could not carry much, because that would raise attention from the border soldiers at exit. Identity documentation? University diplomas? Basically instant arrest if found. But my parents judged it was crucial to have anyway, so they smuggled it out somehow among the suitcases.

After arriving in Austria, they reported to a local police station (in some very broken language) that they were asking for political asylum. After the police saw they were serious, they were eventually assured that they would not just be sent back. It was only at this point that we kids were told what was going on, after it was a done deal.

Well, it wasn't really a done deal. It took almost a year in various security & holding locations inside Austria (learning German), along with many other escapees from communism, until they convinced another country to accept us. Off the Vancouver, BC, Canada we went, learning English and assimilating as rapidly as possible. I think we were a public burden for a matter of weeks or months until jobs were found, lives restarted.

And here we are now. Fortysomething years later, people living in comfort, contributing, having model marriages and stable families, grandkids, and granddogs. The level of achievement would have been literally impossible back in the communist nation, even after those folks eventually got rid of that millstone and became a democracy.

But my parents could not know all that at the time. Thirtysomething barely-adults, with three small boys, faced down the might of a totalitarian state. Emigrated into nations across oceans, learning two languages, assimilating twice, struggling a lot with money and little with culture. Eventually flourishing, but barely, and much more so for the next generation. None of it was a sure thing or even very likely, but they gave us a chance.

Thank you, always.

Posted Sun Apr 7 10:13:33 2024

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