Showing posts from 2020

Dear Journalist Katie

- jim Young“Based on the state of politics in the world today, is there really any such thing as ‘political correctness?’” - jim Young

Dear Journalist Katie: (Or whoever is the true originator of this meme.)
While I recognize your right to interpret anything I say or do based on your personal, past life experiences, I hope you will not be disappointed by my total disregard for this opinion you have shared.
Actually, I kind of resent the fact that you are automatically including me in a group without knowing anything about me, based solely on my gender. Isn’t that in fact counteractive to the very point you are trying to make?
I hold doors open for women and I will continue to do so regardless of your misinformed interpretation of what that might mean to you. I also hold doors open for men; and children; and the elderly; and the physically challenged; and people of any race, colour, age, sex, religion or political affiliation.
Why? Because unlike you, my first assumption about everyone I me…

Thanksgiving Chores

- jim Young Thanksgiving chores when I was young, Was a weekend filled with laughter and fun.We’d head to Muskoka to tie off the docks,Then carry the boats up over the rocks.Stored in the shed were motors and oars,Gas cans, lifejackets, paddles and more.Things put away and stored for the year,Memories shared o’er a few pints of beer.The young ones scampered through the woods to play;Or fish from the rocks to help pass the day.Capture the flag, building forts, catching leaves,Hide and seek, or just climbing trees.We’d cut down a tree, sometimes two, maybe more,Cut, split and piled, near the back door.While the men worked hard at growing some blisters,Mom busied herself with the help of my sisters,Preparing stuffed turkey, potatoes and treats.There was always something good to eat.The meal was enjoyed in happy reminisce, With a tear shed in memory of loved ones we missed.Plates were emptied as we sat back with a sigh,Then dessert would be served in the form of a pie.Apple or pumpkin, with…

The Problem Faced by America Today


Gimme Some Truth

- jim Young"I've had enough of reading things by neurotic, psychotic, pig-headed politicians." - John LennonKnowing how much of a Beatle fan I am, my nephew Kory recently sent me a link to a review of a new John Lennon album, Gimme Some Truth.Gimme Some Truth is a “Greatest Hits” release of 36 John Lennon songs, selected by Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon, and remixed by Paul Hicks.It’s release was timed to coincide with the celebrations of what would have been Lennon’s 80th birthday on October 9th.When I was listening to the title track Gimme Some Truth, it occurred to me that this song is as relevant today, perhaps even more so, than it was when it was first released on Lennon’s Imagine album almost half a century ago.“Fake News” has become the battle cry of the opposition while the blatant lies of world leaders has become an accepted norm. False information spreads like wildfire through Social Media with the flick of a click, with cries of censorship, dictatorship and loss o…

Trump: In A Class With Kennedy

- jim Young  "Don't let it be forgot, that once there was a spot, for one brief shining moment, that was known as Camelot." - Alan Jay LernerI think if I had to compare Donald Trump to any previous U.S. President, it would be John F. Kennedy.
They have a lot in common and they both have a very loyal fan base. Kennedy and Trump are both man-whores that cheated on their wives.And let’s face it, Kennedy and Trump were both elected for pretty much the same reasons.Kennedy was elected in 1960 primarily because he wasn’t Richard Nixon. Trump was elected in 2016 primarily because he wasn’t Hillary Clinton.I’m not saying Kennedy wasn’t the best man for the job but I’m not saying he was either. What I’m saying is, Kennedy didn’t win his election based on his ability to do the job. Kennedy was young, fresh and vibrant. Nixon was perceived as a dishonest used car salesman. Nixon looked shady when he appeared in the first nationally televised presidential debate sporting a five o’clock…

Trump Learns A Lot About Covid


Trump Tests Positive For Covid-19


If Trump Was Alone In The Forest, Would He Still Sound Like An Idiot?

This is how a world leader explains to a crowd of thousands? how trees fall down, explode and create forest fires.

Published in The Great North Arrow, October 2019: Why Do You Do That, When You Do, Do That?

(He said ‘Doo-doo’)- jim Young In some ways, siblings, and especially sisters, are more influential in your childhood than your parents. - Deborah Tannen
We are all creatures of habit. We often do the things we do without ever really knowing why we do them or where we learned them in the first place.When asked “why do you do that when you do, do that?” the answer will likely be something like, “It’s just the way I’ve always done it.”But that doesn’t really answer the question “why?”Some people will put both of their socks on and then put both of their shoes on while others will put one sock on followed by the accompanying shoe before moving to the other foot.Whichever way you do that, you probably don’t know why you do, do that.I always check to see how others eat their corn on the cob.Some people eat their corn right to left with no regard as to whether the tapered end is facing left or right.Others will take their bites randomly at any spot on the cob, jumping all over the place. I l…

Breakfast Sausage Casserole

- jim YoungThis is a great recipe to make ahead when you're having overnight guests. Prepare it in the morning before they arrive, then let it sit overnight in the fridge. The next morning just pop this in the oven and an hour later breakfast is made. No fuss, no muss. Note: If you don't have enough room in your fridge and the evenings are cool enough, you can also store it overnight in the trunk of your car.Prep Time: 20 min.Set Time:  2 hours to overnightCook Time: 1 hourTotal Time: 3 hours 20 min - 15 hours 20 min.Serves: 6-8Stuff Required:1 lb sausage meat1 bell pepper, chopped3 large green onions, chopped
10 eggs, beaten2 cups milk1 tbsp ground mustard1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce2 cups shredded cheese, divided½ tsp basil1 tsp salt1 tsp pepper10 slices of bread torn into small pieces1 tomato, thinly sliced (optional)Do This:Use a large frying pan to cook the sausage meat, breaking it up as it cooks.When the sausage begins to brown, add bell pepper and onions and cook until t…

Good Fences Make Good Neighbours

- jim Young “Good fences make good neighbors.” - from “Mending Wall” by Robert FrostLiving next door to the U.S. has been kind of like living next door to a pretty nice family. New families come and go every few years but they’ve all been pretty nice.Until a few years ago.Oh, the family is still really nice but the dad is a bit wonky. He lies all the time and cheats on his wife as well as all his business associates. The dad’s a bully and a fraud and prone to temper tantrums. He doesn’t have any respect for anyone, not even himself.Some of his family are willing to overlook his faults when he fools them into thinking he’s doing it all for the good of his family. We don’t agree with how he treats his family a lot of the time but for the most part, that’s not really our business.He’s pretty rude to most of our neighbours though and sometimes even us and when he crosses those lines, it does become our business. A few years ago some of his family threatened to move in with us because they…

Jambalaya sans Shrimp

- jim YoungWhen offered a serving of Jambalaya you'd likely be expecting it to include crawfish or shrimp, as at least one of those is a main ingredient most often associated with Jambalaya. This recipe however is for people (like My Shirley) who just don't care for seafood but don't want to miss out on this otherwise tasty delight. If you're more of a traditionalist, feel free to add some crawfish or shrimp when you make it.Serves: 10Stuff Required:1 lb chicken breast, boneless, skinless 1 ½ tbsp paprika3 tbsp cooking oil1 cup onion, chopped1 cup sweet pepper, chopped3 stalks celery chopped1 tsp minced garlic1 can tomatoes, crushed (28 oz/795 ml)3 bay leaves3 ¼ cups chicken broth2 cups rice, brown, long grain2 tsp thyme, ground1 ½ tsp salt½ tsp pepper½ tsp Tabasco® sauce1 lb sausage (mild, medium or hot) cut into small bite-sized piecesDo This:Wash chicken and pat dry with a paper towel. Rub chicken with paprika.Cut up chicken into small, bite-sized pieces.Heat cooking…

Breaded Fried Cucumbers

- jim YoungThis year we had an exceptionally good harvest of cucumbers. Normally we don't eat that many cucumbers so we started giving some away. We even considered putting a small table at the end of our laneway and offering them for sale. However it seems all our neighbours had a good cucumber harvest as well and there were no shortage of them for others to purchase.It seemed that every time we visited our garden a new cucumber had sprouted up out of nowhere and was ready to be picked. We don't like to waste food but we don't consider feeding it to the wildlife as a waste. The problem is deer and squirrels are about the only animals that seem to like cucumbers. We don't like to encourage the red squirrels that live on our property, however and the deer probably won't be around until the Mountain Ash Berries are a little more ripe.My Shirley was already feeding me cucumber slices with dip for breakfast but our supply continued to grow. Finally I came up with this r…

Horseradish Sauce

- jim YoungThis recipe calls for mild prepared horseradish but of course you can use a hotter horseradish or add some extra Tabasco sauce if you like your sauces spicy.Use this as a dip for raw vegetables such as carrot or celery sticks, cucumber slices and pieces of sweet pepper. It makes a great topping for baked potatoes and salads and a nice side serving for scrambled eggs or a roast beef dinner. I use it for my Breaded Fried Cucumbers that you'll also find in the recipe section at Dog On A Root.Total Time: 10 min.Yield: 1 cupStuff Required:½  cup drained horseradish (mild)¼ cup sour cream¼ cup mayonnaise1 tbsp lemon juice½ tsp kosher salt¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper1 tsp Worcestershire sauceA few drops of Tabasco sauceDo This:Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl.

Time To Put Up Or Shut Up!

- jim Young"Not only must justice be done; it must also be seen to be done." - Vincent Bugliosi, “Till Death Do Us Part: A True Murder Mystery” A few years ago when running for the presidency, Donald Trump called Senator John McCain a “loser” and suggested McCain was a war hero only because he was captured. Trump added that he didn’t like people who were captured.Trump can’t deny that. Well, actually he can and often does, but who’s going to believe him?There’s an old adage that says if you tell a lie often enough, people will eventually believe you. Of course that theory was developed long before almost everything we do and say could be captured on video.So here’s the video clip that proves Trump called McCain a loser and denied McCain’s status as a war hero.
More recently, The Atlantic has accused Trump of calling fallen American World War I veterans “losers” and “suckers”. In 2018 after cancelling a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris, Trump was allegedl…

My Covid-19 Test

- jim Young “The hardest thing of all is to find a black cat in a dark room, especially if there is no cat.” - ConfuciusLast week I underwent my first test for Covid-19.I had no reason to believe I had been infected, however a prospective employer for a one-day contract job required the testing be done to protect them against any liability.Calling the North Bay Regional Centre on Monday I was pleased to learn I could make an appointment to have the testing done the next morning at 9:00 am. The job I had been hired for was just 3 days later.However, I was advised that the results from my test would not be available for 2 - 6 business days.My employer was not concerned. She was confident that should my results be positive, I would be notified much earlier. She further speculated the extra time was required just to update the website where my results would be available.The drive-through testing option seemed like the best choice for me. Not only was it more convenient, the advantages of …

Published in The Great North Arrow, September 2019: Respect And Responsibility

by jim Young

“Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility.” - Eleanor Roosevelt I have over 46,000 digital pictures on my hard drive. That doesn’t include many that I have saved to DVD. 
I also have albums and shoeboxes filled with hundreds of old black and white and colour photos that had to be developed before digital cameras were invented.
Safely stored away somewhere in one of my closets is a box that contains a few hundred feet of old 8mm and Super 8mm home movies.
Almost everyone today has a digital camera or a camera phone and moments that were once only filed away in our memories are now readily available to share, not only with family and friends, but the whole world.
Who is ever going to see even a small percentage of all these moments in time that we seem obsessed with capturing?
Gone are the days when you might take one or two pictures because taking more was expensive and a waste of the precious 12, 24 or 36 picture limit on your ca…

What Qualifies As Canadian Made?

- jim Young
“I am not Anti-American, but I am strongly Pro-Canadian.” - John Diefenbaker
I recently saw a FaceBook post encouraging me to buy Strub’s pickles because they are made with cucumbers grown in Canada and prepared by Canadian workers. So I googled it. Apparently, while Strub’s facilities in Quebec, Ontario and B.C. still process and package their pickles year round, during the winter months, the pickles are actually procured in the U.S.
Do they still qualify as “Canadian Pickles”? Should I only be buying Strub pickles at certain times of the year?
I have recently switched ketchups. After learning that Heinz sold its processing plant in Leamington and moved their ketchup operations to the U.S., I switched to French’s.
Now I’m being told that’s not good enough because, although tomatoes for French’s Ketchup are grown and processed in Canada and the ketchup is manufactured in Canada, the French’s company is actually U.S. owned, whereas Primo Ketchup meets ALL those Canadian qualifica…

Grilled Chicken Wings

- jim Young
Anyone that knows me, knows I love Buffalo Wings. Whenever we are out for dinner, if they're on the menu, Buffalo Wings are always my guaranteed go to.
They are also a favourite at home, although once in awhile, when it's time for a change just to mix it up a bit, these grilled wings make a great substitute, especially when grilled on the barbecue.
So invite a few friends over, crack a few cold ones and load up the grill with these delicious alternatives. Better yet, make everyone happy and fill half the grill with these and the other half with Buffalo Wings.
Prep Time: 15 min.Cook Time: 20 min.Total Time: 35 min.
Serves: 4
Stuff Required: Do This:WingsMix first 7 ingredients in a medium sized bowl.Wash chicken wings and dry with a paper towel. Place in a large bowl.Add spice mix and shake to coat wings.Heat barbecue to medium heat.Brush vegetable oil on the grates.Place wings on the grate and cook 15 to 20 minutes until meat is cooked and skin is crispy.Flip wings occasi…

Why We Need Two Incomes

- jim Young

“Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.” - Dolly Parton

We live in a disposable world. Everything from paper cups to spouses are disposable these days. And it costs us big time (especially the latter). Not only has this become a problem for our environment, it’s also the cause of a lot of our social problems.

Excessiveness is also part of the problem. We all have too much stuff.

People complain that two incomes are required to survive in today’s world. It is very rare to see a stay-at-home mom anymore. The decision to become a career mom may be based on many facets but economic need remains a major contributing factor.

I think our attitude towards material things has a lot to do with it too.

We have a pair of scissors in our kitchen. We also have a pair of scissors here in my den. I can’t be bothered walking all the way down to the kitchen to get the scissors when I need them.

When I say “all the way down”, I don’t mean down a flight of stairs, I m…

Northern Ontario Sunshine

- jim Young

When most people think of Northern Ontario, they often think of cold and snow. But we get lots of hot days here in the summer too. When it gets really hot, I turn to something cold and refreshing such as this drink I came up with that I like to call Northern Ontario Sunshine. I make it up ahead of time so no matter when the sun's out, once the work is done all I have to do is put the last few ingredients together and sit back and relax.

Time Required: 10 min.

Yield: 9 cups / 2 litres
Servings: 6
Serving Size: 12 Cdn oz / 333 ml
Calories per serving: 222
Cost per serving: $3.27

Stuff Required:
1 cup Coconut Rum1 cup Pineapple Rum2.5 cups Orange Juice1 litre Club SodaCrushed IceDo this:
Mix Coconut Rum, Pineapple rum and Orange Juice in one large container and refrigerate until needed.Fill a Highball or Collins glass with crushed ice.Half-fill the glass with Rum/OJ mix.Top up with Club Soda.Serve with a straw.

Cost per serving is based on the following data:

SPECIAL NOTE: Please jo…

Microwave Butterscotch Sundae Sauce

- jim Young

Looking for a good summertime treat? Try this sundae topping. It's a great recipe I got from my Aunt Mary many years ago and it only takes a few minutes to put together. The hardest part is waiting for it to cool so it won't melt your ice cream. The addition of the ButterShots Liqueur was my contribution. And while it's a great topping for any ice cream, Aunt Mary always recommended using it on Kawartha Ice Cream!

Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 3 min.
Cool Time: 2 hours
Total Time:  2 hours, 13 min.

Yield:  ½ cup

Stuff Required:
¼ cup butter, softened⅔ cup brown sugar⅓ cup whipping cream½ tsp vanilla extract¼ cup ButterShots Liqueur (optional)Do This:
Stir butter with brown sugar and whipping cream in a medium sized microwave bowl.Cook in the microwave on high heat for about 30 seconds.Stir well, then cook in the microwave for another 30 seconds to a minute or until slightly thickened. (Note: cooking it too long in the microwave will cause it to harden.)Stir in vanilla …

Wearing A Mask In Public Places

- jim Young

“Who was that masked man?” - from the Lone Ranger Radio & TV Show

To be honest, I’m not sure that I totally buy into the hype of wearing a mask when out in public.

There are a lot of pros and cons and debates about the use of masks, which masks should and shouldn’t be used and even how they should and shouldn’t be used.

I have seen plenty of very impressive dramatizations online demonstrating the effectiveness of masks although I am not certain they necessarily have any real scientific backing.

But, at the same time, I don’t understand why so many people are so resistant to wearing a mask.

Is it vanity? Some people think wearing a mask makes them look silly. Don’t worry about it. Who’s going to recognize you anyway? There’s safety in numbers. So what if you look silly? So does everyone else. Is it worth the risk? How will you feel about how you will look in your coffin?

Some people will tell you that it’s too hard to breathe and they are not getting enou…

Published in The Great North Arrow, August 2019: My Family Name

- jim Young
“What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet;” - William Shakespeare
Last month I touched on the importance of my family name.
Family names are an interesting topic. 
In Canada and most Western cultures, children typically take on the father’s family name. Of late however, it has become more common for a child to take on a mother’s family name, particularly if she is a single mother or has chosen for whatever reason, not to adopt her husband’s family name.
In other cultures such as Cuba, children more often take on their mother’s family name. The Castro family however didn’t follow this rule or Fidel and Raúl Castro would have been known as Fidel and Raúl Ruz.
Our family name is often also referred to as our last name in Western cultures although in many parts of the world it is listed first, followed by given names.
Family names once described a man’s profession such as Baker or Smith (for a Blacksmith). Sometimes a person’s last …