MUSINGS, MAY 4, 2019

Which is correct, slow down or slow up?

Why do people say “I don’t mean to interrupt” when that’s exactly what they’ve just done?


Brian Burke is the perfect replacement for Don Cherry.

Many people wouldn’t listen at all if they didn’t think it was their turn next.


Trudeau’s one-trick-pony environment minister Catherine McKenna established a new level of Liberal hypocrisy this week when she accused Conservative leader Andrew Scheer of cozying up to big business because he met with some oil industry executives in Alberta.

I guess she forgot that she recently doled out twelve million dollars to Loblaws, one of Canada’s most profitable companies, and which is controlled by the Westons, one of Canada’s richest families, to pay for part of the cost of upgrading their freezers and refrigerators, which probably had such a minuscule effect on the environment that even the Hubble telescope couldn’t detect it. And I guess she was so busy feeding and grooming her pony that she didn’t notice the dozens of “cozying up” meetings that her colleagues had with SNC-Lavalin.


This year’s NHL playoffs are upside down, inside out, or whatever other unusual figuration you want to apply to them.
None of the division leaders (Tampa, Washington, Calgary and Nashville) made it to the second round while all the wild cards (Carolina, Columbus, Dallas, and Colorado) did, and only two of the top ten finishers in the regular season (Boston and San Jose) are in a position to make it to the third round.

Only four of the regular season’s top twenty scorers are playing in the second round, and it could happen that only one will be in the third round and none at all in the finals. Although Kucherov, McDavid, Patrick Kane, Draisaitl, Crosby, Gaudreau, Stamkos, Barkov, Marner, Point, Huberdeau, Wheeler, Ovechkin, Tavares, Giroux, and Scheifele are now on golf courses rather than on the ice, the games have been highly entertaining and the calibre of the hockey, particularly the goaltending, has been top-notch. 

Too bad the same can’t be said for the refereeing, which has been atrocious. It baffles me that the league allows, if not mandates, a radically different standard of officiating for the playoffs than during the regular season. 


I took the subway downtown to meet a friend for lunch, a trip that normally takes about twenty minutes. Because there’s no internet service on this part of the system, I usually pass the time by people-watching. But on this particular day there were very few fellow passengers within my view, so when we suddenly stopped in the tunnel between stations and an announcement was made that we’d be held up for a while, I had to fall back on one of the things I firmly believe, which is that being bored is usually our own fault.

I decided to recall how many people named John I knew, or had at least met. By the time we got moving again I’d come up with ninety-six names, and therein lies the oddity: not one of them had the last name Smith.


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had to apologize for his appallingly discourteous treatment of an attendee at a recent $1,500-a-head fundraiser in Toronto when she challenged him about ignoring mercury in the water supply at Grassy Narrows; his shabby treatment of former justice minister Jody Wilson-Reybould is well documented; and, back in 2012 he pummelled Senator Patrick Brazeau in a well-publicized boxing match.

Is it an oddity that all three of these victims of Trudeau’s wrath happen to be Indigenous people? Liberals will insist that it is, but cynics may see it as proof that his constant posturing as a champion of Indigenous people is simply another Trudeau hypocrisy. 


Hockey, and for that matter the country, lost one of its finest gentlemen when Red Kelly passed away on Wednesday at the age of 91. 

I had the honour of knowing Red fairly well. Not only have we lived in the same neighbourhood for the last fifteen years (and even have the same barber), but we go back much further than that. I first met Red in the mid 70s, and for a number of years during the 80s our families met on Good Friday for fish and chips. 

He will be sorely missed by people from all walks of life.

MUSINGS, MAY 11, 2019