Saturday, July 26, 2014

Student Loans

Student Loans


I wonder whatever happened to them Quebec students who was protestin’ against higher tuition fees in Quebec Universities. It’s awful quiet up there these days. In fact, it’s more or less quiet across the country. The only place it ever comes up these days is in Indian Affairs, but that’s another story all together.

Cathy was bellyachin’ the other day about her student loans tyin’ her down for the next umpteen years, causin’ untold grief at gettin’ ahead with her career of choice. Well she ain’t the only one, an’ that’s a fact! It’s a pretty big club. But it don’t have to be that way. What it should be is that there is no such thing as tuition for students at all.

See, I got this picture of all them big corporations hirin’ freshly graduated students at entry level salaries to do the jobs that will make big money for them. Well ain’t that a nice big bonus for the corporations. They get their soon-to-be retirees to teach the graduates the ropes at a fraction of the cost an’ carry on rakin’ in the profits. Not bad for the companies. But in the mean time the students get stuck with the bill to educate theirselves in the field of discipline the corporations need.

Well hold ‘er right there Newt! This ain’t no fair ball here! Since when do students pay through the nose to get the education they need to go, cap in hand, to them big shot employers an’ askin’ can they please go there to provide a humungous profit to the companies whilst payin off their student loans for forever an’ a day?

Sure, the universities and professors need to be paid, no question about that. The  real question is, who should be payin’ them? Certainly not the students who can’t even get a summer job at McDonalds for all the foreign workers that already have them. In fact they can’t even get jobs in the disciplines they’ve chosen to study.

Well I think it’s about time to upset the applecart! It’s time the government took control of the government an’ not leave it to industry to dictate an’ run. The oil industry an’ the auto industry an the chemical companies an’ the tech companies shouldn’t be runnin’ the country (although that’s what they been doin’). Of course the Conservatives are in bed with them buggers an’ they’re just afraid they’re gonna end up sleepin’ on the couch unless they tow the corporate line.

Harper is the boss, right? Right (theoretically). Well he oughta take a page outa the biggest, oldest business in the world- the Catholic Church. What the Pope says is Tithe. No ifs, buts or maybes, just shut up an’ tithe. Ten percent of yer income goes to the boss – period! Just think of what kind of education fund THAT would provide. If you wants to do business in Canada, you pays ten percent to education, right off the top. That way, students will become educated in the fields industry requires without goin’ into hock for the rest o’ their lives, an industry will have its necessary man/woman power to continue makin’ their immense profits.

Mind you, that could throw a monkey wrench into the social structure of University life. But then, the students have to sacrifice somethin’. At least that how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Summer of Celebrations

Summer of Celebrations


This is the way the summer of the world stacks up:

On the athletic front:

The Sochi Olympics and Paralympics

The Brazilian Fifa World Cup Adventure

The Calgary Stampede


In entertainment:

Country Fest

The Winnipeg Folk Festival

The Fringe Festival

Those are only a couple of things I know about, but enough to give an example of the mood we’re in these summer months. Nobody really gives a rip about the storms in Atlantic Canada or the flooding in Manitoba, or the forest fires in British Columbia or the Northwest Territories, or the fact that my rent went up again this year.

It seems the world needs a bit of a holiday every year from the ravages the rest of the year puts on us, to recuperate from killin’, pillage an’ plunder an’ rape an human traffickin’ of one sort or another, not to mention corruption. Otherwise I suppose the stress would become unbearable. Not that anyone would consider stoppin’ the killin’, pillage an’ plunder an’ rape an’ human traffickin’ an corruption of course, or my rent increase.

Well take them Philistines and them Israelites for instance. They’re hard at it again, the Philistines seein’ how far they can fire their rockets, an’ seein’ if their drones can penetrate Jewish airspace. They seem to have a goodly supply o’ rockets an’ drones cause they just keep ashootin’ an’ afightin’. An’ the Israelite Prime Minister Net an’ Yahoo keeps shootin’ everything down whilst poundin’ the Gaza Strip with his own ammunition. Human caualties is obviously not even an issue cause they just keep blastin’ one another with no end in sight.

An’ that Stalinist Putin who runs the biggest country on earth still ain’t satisfied. He keeps lookin’ for somethin’ he ain’t got. Then there’s that greasy head of the CIA who labels Snowden as a traitor. Yeah, talk about who’s a traitor. He says Snowden is endangerin’ the lives of (American) people. Well I can tell you, I can think of a number o’ them people could do with losin’ their lives. An’ it would make the world a better place, the CIA for one an’ Congress for another. Well, I could go on, but that would spoil the enjoyment of the summer entertainment now wouldn’t it? At least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Wisdom of the Elders

Wisdom of the Elders

Listen, by the time your reach a certain age, you automatically become an Elder. It’s a right of passage when the Federal Government sends you that seniors card, you’re qualified to practice Elderism. First thing you know, you feel obligated to dispense wisdom, encouragement an’ other nonsense, you know, bein’ helpful an’ stuff. Let me tell you, this Elderly dispensin’ of wisdom an’ encouragement to all them young whipper snappers can get a little tricky from time to time unless yer careful.

There’s such a thing as gettin’ carried away with yer own importance. First thing you know, you’re blowin’ off a whole lot of wisdom an’ or encouragement to somebody that don’t really want it, or even more embarrassin’, to somebody who don’t know what in blazes you’re talkin’ about in the first place. It happens, you know.

Just such a thing took place the other day when my granddaughter Cathy phoned the house. She never phones unless she’s prodded into it. See, the thing is, I spy on my grandchildren on facebook. I pride myself in knowin’ their moods an’ their aspirations an’ their shortcomin’s just by their conversations with other folks of their own ilk. An’ I’m always ready to jump in an’ help with words of encouragement. Well, that’s my job ain’t it?

The thing is, I got the notion that things were not goin’ to well with her an’ it had been suggested that she call her Opa if she needed somebody to talk to. Well, like it or not, you always want the best for your grandchildren so with that in mind when she phoned, I was all over her with encouragement and ideas for her career and who knows what all else. Good Lord. I never peddled so much advice in such a short time in a long time.

Finally she asks if she can speak to Oma for a minute, so I hand the phone over to the missus, feeling well satisfied that I’d done my duty well an’ true.

“Yeah,” says the missus (laughing) in response to whatever Cathy said to her over the phone, “once he starts, you can’t shut him up.” (meanin’ me of course) An they both busted out in a gigglin’ spree.

Turns out that Cathy wanted to talk to Oma in the first place, not me, the Elder. Shows you what I know about the price o’ rice in China. She was packin’ to go on a trip first thing in the mornin’ an’ the last thing she needed was my sage advice on everything under the sun but the kitchen sink. She’s runnin’ short o’ time so in desperation she just cuts in, askin’ to speak to her Oma. I can just visualize her rollin’ her eyes tryin’ to figure out a way to get rid o’ all this advice she didn’t even give a rip about in the first place, without bein’ offensive.

Me an’ the missus had a good chuckle over it later. We could just imagine the poor kid tryin’ to get packed on time an’ bein’ stuck with this old outa control whacko poundin’ her ear on an’ on an’ on.

The wisdom I got outa this was to learn to keep my trap shut an’ listen to what somebody has to say before I let loose with both barrels full o’ wind. Both parties will be much better satisfied. At least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Beautiful Game

The Beautiful Game

I couldn’t let the opportunity pass without commentin’ on this extravaganza they call the beautiful game. Beautiful game indeed! It’s just amazin’ what advertisin’ can do. You can start with how Brazil was selected to host the games for starters. There was only two countries competin’ for the rights to host the games in the first place, them bein’ Columbia an’ Brazil. Suddenly Columbia drops out an’ it’s all for Brazil. Look at that! Go figure. There’s enough drug money in Columbia to buy the world cup outta petty cash, so it leaves one scratchin’ one’s head. Well that’s for starters anyways.

Then there’s the games thereselves. Mind you, the skills these players have is somethin’ to watch. They’re like a bunch o’ gazelles prancin’ around out there with some kinda magnets on their shoes for the ball to stick to. Holy crackers! I never seen anythin’ like it. But as you get a closer look, you begin to see what’s really goin on. This ain’t no sissy game, an’ that’s a fact. I’ll bet if you suited them up in hockey gear an’ let them loose on the ice, even Don Cherry would be speechless (for once). Or the converse, if you let the NHL loose on the soccer pitch for one game, there’s be no more NHL an’ Obamacare would have a field day.

What I mean is the fierce competition between opposin’ players. They’re dead serious about the game an’ they’ll do what it takes to win. Of course I’m talkin’ about the Uruguayan who tried to have the Italian player for lunch. All the Italians got outta that was a free kick. Then of course there was the Dutchman who yanked on the Mexican’s jersey just as he was going to kick the ball. Reminds me of my late brother in law who played semi pro in Austria after the war. His favorite trick was to grab onto the shorts of the man he was covering, and slowly pull on them until they were around his knees. Neat trick. But that poor Mexican, givin’ all he had to boot the ball changed his momentum and went ass over teakettle down onto the pitch. The Dutchman never even got a yellow card.

The worst of it, leastwise in my mind was the penalty shots. I mean them goalies are like springs. They boink around like jacks in a box in them nets. You couldn’t get sand past ‘em if you tried. An’ yet, on the very last penalty shot o’ the game, the Brazilian got past the Chilean goalie to win the match. Well I ain’t sayin’ the fix was in, but then I ain’t sayin’ it wasn’t neither. All I’m sayin’ is it’s a little too much of a nail biter to be dismissed as a bit of a nail biter. But we’ll never know, will we? At least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.