Saturday, September 24, 2016

The Meaning of Justice

The Meaning of Justice
Watchin’ the tely this last while with all them homicides occurrin’ or havin’ occurred in the past got me to suddenly take notice of recurrin’ statements of wantin’ justice to be done. It got me to thinkin’ about what justice actually is, so I looked it up in the dictionary. It says; ‘quality of being just; fairness; judicial proceedings;’ ad infinitum. Well that leaves us pretty well at the startin’ point. If that committee o’ buck passers can’t decide on the meanin’ o’ things, I guess we then gotta figure it out for ourselves.
The way I see it, justice is viewed as an instrument of the law an’ the courts. It’s got very little to do with the crime and/or the victim/s. Basically it’s a chess game of lawyers. The crime becomes the chess board around which the players manoeuver to deliver a verdict upon the perpetrator. Any participation by the perpetrator and/or his victims in it is purely for the purpose of manoeuverin’ the game. That’s as close as I can come to it. There ain’t no humanity attached to any of it.
Well what about the victims then? In the case of murder, the dead person or people don’t really count. They’re already dead so they don’t care. But they’re not the real victims. No, the real victims in the case of murder are the families and friends of the dead people, and incidentally the families of the perpetrator/s too. They’re the ones justice must serve. But does it? I mean, how do you un-kill somebody? Or how does one un-rape somebody? I can’t see how it’s possible for justice to be served with the outcome of any trial.
Oh sure, you have your victim impact statements they’re makin’ a big deal out of these days. These are necessary, and a step in the right direction, but they fall far short of what is needed. What we have to do is to turn again to our Indigenous community and their traditional Restorative Justice system. That involves the perpetrator, the victims (all of them), and the community at large.  Of course it’s a lot of work and a lot of involvement, but it does work. If ever justice is to be served, this is the way it must be done, or at least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.  

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Twenty - Nine Elephants



Twenty-Nine Elephants 

Have we got elephants in the room or have we got elephants in the room? Well, I’ll tell ya = we got elephants’ in the room. There’s twenty-nine o’ them to be exact. Let me put this into a little bit o’ perspective. See, a number o’ years ago the Missus came home from overseas with the statue of an elephant she got from her mom that she’d admired. Well, people figured she liked elephants so every occasion like birthdays, Christmas, an’ other days when they didn’t know what to bring her, she’d get another elephant until she had quite a collection. First thing ya know, she’s got a whole herd o’ them things. An’ they’re all over the place too. Ya can’t turn around without runnin’ into one or more o’ them critters. It’s frustratin’ to say the least.
“We need a shelf”, says the Missus. “We gotta gather them all together so I can see ‘em”, she says. Well, fine! We go to the shelf store an’ sure enough we find just the thing. That was the easy part. Knowin’ where to put it, now that’s a different story all together. Of course, I know exactly what to do in puttin’ it up too. That is, I put it exactly where the Missus told me to, an’ I was done. The rest was up to her.
I should’a known better. The shelf goes up directly behind my desk an’ it’s big enough to hold the whole gaul danged herd o’ them critters so that every time I turn around, they’re all sittin’ there starin’ down at me! Can you imagine twenty-nine pairs o’ elephant eyes zeroed in on the back o’ yer neck while yer tryin’ to work? Well neither can I, but I guess I’ll have to. At least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin’.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Wasp Update

Wasp Update
 
I've never paid much attention to the wasp situation around our place. I've got sort of a non-interference pact with them. Well, it's more or less like ignorin' one another. An' we seem to co-exist quite well that way. As I said, I didn't pay it much mind until up comes a memory on facebook about what? Turns out it's about the thing we had about wasps last year - exactly at this time. I guess it's the season.
The Missus on the other hand pays a whole lot o' attention to them miserable little critters. She becomes highly agitated at the site o' the pests, an' defends her territory with a ferocity as fierce as if she's battlin' giants. Much like Zorro, she swash buckles her way across the patio with an agility that only a yellow jacket wasp can avoid. You wouldn't catch me laughin' at a dance like that! No siree - not me!
Well, havin' chased a little varmint away, the Missus sits down to read her book. Surprise, surprise! The wasp sneaks back an' lights on her arm, just under her sleeve,-- an' panic sets in. The result of course is that the wasp plants his stinger squarely in her arm an' takes off, thumbin' his nose at her as he disappears outa' sight.
Okay, now it's getting' serious. The Missus puts a poultice on where the sting is an' continues readin' - in the house. She's had it with them insects. In the meantime I gotta find a solution to these "Missus attackers". So I go on the internet an' some guy says to put some apple juice an water in a bowl an' put it out fer the wasps to sip at. They'll go right for it. Well, he's right! They buzz right past us an' past the bloomin' flowers an' go straight for the apple juice. I figured they'd slip in an' drown. Oh, they do slip in but manage to get back out again, shake their little bodies an fly off. Nobody drowns! Not only that, but they start bringin' their buddies to the party.
Well, I'll fix them Yellow Jackets! I pour out the apple juice an' replace it with anti=freeze. That'll kill about anythin'. Four days later, I got one dead wasp - but there's hardly any visitors, so that's a step in the right direction. I guess the best way to deal with them critters is to give 'em a place they don't like, an' they'll go bother somebody else. At least that's how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin'.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

A Word About The Top Shelf

A Word About the Top Shelf
I figure after all these months of me spoutin' my opinions, observations an' rants from my place up on the top shelf, I should say a word or two about its place in my life. An old Ojibway Elder friend of mine used to refer to this part of my life as the slow slope down the last hill of our journey on this earth. Well, THAT just sucks! It's right up there on a par with "These are the golden years". Yeah - right.
The whole business started when I seen our picture sittin' on the top shelf of somebody's bookcase somewhere's an' I thought to myself that this was a good omen_ sittin' way up there lookin' down on everybody's foibles an' follies an' havin' a good laugh about it. It provides a degree of separation between the observer an' the observed. Well you gotta know we're the ones who provided the pictures in the first place, frames an all, so you get some idea of who these people might be. There was a time when we were important in their lives to one degree or another. In fact, we may have exercised some influence on them from time to time.  At that time our pictures would'a sat on the mantle or maybe even on a coffee table. Of course now they need that space for their own pictures, or their children's pictures - so we get moved up progressively until we reach the very top shelf on top o' the bookcase.
You'd think on the face of it, we are bein' relegated to oblivion, waitin' for the grim reaper. Ha ha! They forget that it was people like us who made them what they are. Do they really think we're gonna stop now? Not on yer life! We can just smile down on them while they make the same stupid mistakes we did an' go "tut, tut", purposely forgettin' our own follies of another era.
Come to think of it, we've got photos of our parents and grandparents hangin' up on the wall in the bedroom above the closet door. Well it ain't a bookcase but it's just as high up. Neither one of us think about them a great deal neither. They're just there in case we wanna have a look once in a while an reminisce. Then we go on with our business. I guess that's what the children and grandchildren do. At least that's how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin'.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Helpful

Helpful
I think everybody should take the time to read Re Green's "The Beginners Book to Women". Well it ain't foolproof but it sure does have a lot o' useful information in it. To me it's pretty well the reference book I use whenever a "situation" arises. One o' the things I got outta it was that it's pretty good politics to try bein' helpful to yer spouse = or at least suggest that yer willin' to help at just about anythin'. It's the butterin' up process that improves with the thickness of the layer o' butter you apply.
Well, I done that last Tuesday - or Wednesday, I don't remember which. I was quite proud o' myself, in spite o' the fact that it didn't really work. The gesture itself was just fine, but it turns out the help was neither needed nor wanted.
We'd been out runnin' errands, shoppin' an' all sorts o' sundry stuff the day before until we were about done in. It all started out well enough. First we went to the dry cleaners. The Missus says, "Wait in the car, I'll be right out."
I reply, "My name is Victor and I'll be your waiter today."
"Ha ha," she says (with a wry little smile on her face). It was shapin' up to be a good day. Well it went on like that 'til about 2:00 p.m. when we finally got home. It was another hour before the Missus finished puttin' everthin' away (includin' ourselves for an afternoon nap).
The day was hummin' along just fine by the time dinner was done. The Missus was out on the patio readin' her book an' I was bein' helpful by doin' the dinner dishes. Well I finish up an' retire to the patio, all smug an' self satisfied when she says, "I'm all pooped out. We done too much today. Tomorrow I'm gonna do absolutely nothin'!"
"You want some help with that?" I ask enthusiastically in the spirit o' bein' helpful.
"Naw, I can manage," she replies, rollin' her eyes.
Well I get nervous when she's rollin her eyes, so I say: "No really, I got lots o' experience. I can help."
"Don't talk," she says, "I'm readin".
That pretty well ended my efforts to be helpful. At least that's how it seemed to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin'.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Name Calling

Name Calling
 She says; "Ah damn, that's a beautiful apple! Have a bite."
He says; "Oy vey! That's one sour apple." an' spits it out.
Ya get the connection don't ya? Well it stands to reason don't it? The amount o' times he screwed up, or forgot to do somethin' after they was kicked outta the Garden of Eden had got her naggin' him about it an' every time she done it he knew she was hollerin' at him until he figured his name was Adam.
An' Oy vey, that's actually the Yiddish pronunciation of the Arabic word Eevee. Well you know how things are between the Arabs an' the Jews. Every time she started "Ah damning" him, he'd just roll his eyes an' say "Oy vey". Well you know that didn't go over very well. She didn't much like it at all. That 'Oy vey' business seemed to be a derogatory term, the way he said it. An' that 'Eevee' business wasn't much better neither, but at least it had a bit of a ring to it, if ya left off the last 'e'. That was it! She's call herself Eve! If that horse's petoot wanted to talk to her, that's what he'd have to call her or she wouldn't talk to him at all.
Well, Adam. Or Ah Damn, whichever you wanna call him, he had to mull that one over for a bit. On the one hand, the silence would be a relief. But on the other, he'd just have to put up with them two boys o' theirs. The one, the sugar cane farmer, he was about as interestin' as a root canal. Adam just called him Cain (that was his accent comin' out again). An' the other one; the aggressive hunter, well he was no bowl o' cherries neither. But he was able to pick his boring brother off with a rock at a hunnert paces, which would shut him up. Well the able guy was able to provide meat for the table, so he became called Abel in Adams vocabulary.
What's that got to do with anythin', you ask. Well  . . . . . nothin'; zero. An' that's what you find when you look up how names was first invented on Google. Nearly every site tells you how the Egyptians invented "zero". So they don't know neither. So you can take my explanation of it as gospel. Who's to refute it? Nobody   . . . . . . Zero! At least that's how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin'.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

It's all About Decoration

It's all about Decoration
Well I suppose I could write about all them things goin' on in the world an' lament about all the injustices bein' wrought on humanity. But what's the point o' that? It's all over the news an' social media anyways. Besides, I don't agree with any o' them yahoos anyhow. Naw, I'd rather write about somethin' far more important to the men of this world: an' that's women's perception o' things. The degree of importance is directly proportionate to what kind o' misery you wanna find yerself in for eternity.
See, I'm the sort that's got to keep busy. The day usually starts on my computer at about five a.m., then on to my picture puzzle when I get bored an' so on. But in the mean time my hands get fidgety so I gotta work on somethin to make them happy too. I used to love wood workin' but don't have much chance to do that nomore.
The other day I just had a yen to make somethin' - maybe another walkin' cane. I've made a few o' them before an' I just like makin' them. So I glued some pieces o' white maple together an started carvin'. It was a comfortable little handle to fit a lady's hand but didn't look like much because o' the glue joints. So I painted it - bright red along with the brown stained stem. Well that was apparently a big mistake! I should'a painted it all black. That, along with the fact that it was downright ugly, and also that it wasn't all black - I considered throwin' the whole thing out.
But then I had an idea. I went down to the dollar store an' bought some o' them glue on rhinestone stickers. Havin' glued one on over the screw holdin' the red handle down, I now had a "diamond cane".
"Oh," says the Missus, "Let me see that!"
Suddenly this old piece of no class "junk" that wasn't painted black had a new personality. It fit nicely in the hand an' that "diamond" makes it just perfect. "I could use that if I ever needed a cane" says the Missus. "Put it up with the other ones."
Imagine holdin' a diamond worth a whole bunch o' karats right in the palm o' your hand - even if it's a fake piece o' glass. Well I don't know about that. What I do know about is that I pulled the proverbial rabbit outta the hat without havin' to paint the thing black or throw it out. At least that's how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.
Just sayin'.