Has there ever been a more monotonous song than “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald?

And speaking of monotonous, is there anything in sports more boring than watching National League pitchers bat?

Has there ever been anyone who earned the right to be president of the United States more than John McCain? Or less than Donald Trump?

Trump’s Leadership Shortcomings

Those of you who follow my “Thought For The Day” feature on Facebook or Twitter know that I often mention attributes of effective leaders. Here is a list of Donald Trump’s most egregious deficiencies:

Is a pathological liar

Is thin-skinned and paranoid

Is perpetually angry

Is usually foolhardy

Is incapable of separating issues from personalities.

Can’t disagree without being disagreeable

Doesn’t know how to balance dignity and passion

Rarely focuses on the real issues

NY Times Anti-Trump Op-ed

As much as I enjoy any legitimate slagging of Donald Trump, I don’t think the New York Times should have printed this piece anonymously. Whoever wrote it should have had the guts to resign his or her position in the White House and sign the piece.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s Big Gamble

Although I’m an unabashed Conservative, I’m not a fan of Doug Ford. However, by introducing a bill in the legislature containing the so-called notwithstanding clause (a move that could cost him dearly in the long run), he exhibited backbone rarely seen in today’s politicians of any stripe at any level of government.

While I wholeheartedly agree with his stand that one unelected, seemingly activist  judge shouldn’t be allowed to stifle the will of a duly-elected majority government (especially by speciously stretching two constitutional provisions beyond the breaking point), I think the premier picked an inappropriate battlefield. 

In the grand scheme of things, the number of councillors in Toronto is very small potatoes. I would have preferred that he just let the government’s appeal of the decision run its course, especially since the vast majority of constitutional law experts I’ve heard opine on the subject say that the trial judge was clearly wrong and will be overturned.

Did Ford have the right to do it? Absolutely. 

Should he have done it? Absolutely not.

Serena v.s. The Umpire

I was initially on Serena’s side in this one, but after watching a number of replays, and listening to people who know a lot more about professional tennis than I do, I’ve concluded that, although both Serena and the umpire were in the wrong, Serena was more egregiously so. 

Although the umpire was apparently completely right in his rulings, he managed to break an important unwritten rule in sports by becoming the main story, a distinction that should have been reserved for Naomi Osaka.  

Serena, on the other hand, as a mature, experienced champion should have been able to control her emotions and not carry on like a spoiled, petulant eight-year-old.

An Incredible Young Talen

At a concert this summer in Montague, P.E.I., I witnessed the most promising young musical talent I’ve ever seen (and I was heavily involved in the entertainment business for almost thirty years). He’s 16-year-old Charlottetown native Julien Kitson. If the name Kitson is familiar to you it’s probably because Julien’s father is Joey Kitson, the Juno award winning former lead singer of the Newfoundland group Rawlins Cross.

But back to Julien. He’s already an extraordinarily accomplished guitar player and an astonishingly talented singer with a strong voice augmented by exquisite phrasing and interpretation, all of which he amply demonstrated while performing covers of The Beatles, Neil Young, Wilco/ Billy Bragg, and Stan Rogers. His encore performance of the classic Ron Hynes hit, Sonny’s Dream, raised hair on necks and brought tears to eyes. 

In addition to guitar, he plays piano, drums, mandolin, banjo, and bass. When you add that he’s poised, handsome and likeable, the sky’s the limit for this young man. 

While watching Julien I couldn’t help but think that this is probably what Glen Campbell looked and sounded like at age sixteen.

Unmistakable Summer Cottage Sounds

Screen door slamming

Empty garbage bin being wheeled

Gate latches

Buzzing of mosquitoes

Slap of a fly swatter

Ice cubes rattling in an empty glass


Outboard motor



Wind in the trees

The creaks of a building expanding or contracting


MUSINGS, MAY 12, 2018