Apple sauce

Among my fund of what are I suspect by some accounts less than endearing conventions is one which I cheerfully embrace on several grounds. The custom to which I refer is that of breakfast. For starters, breakfast is predominantly a morning repast even if extended by drunken delay or overt design (usually with the same calculated purpose through such elevating beverages as a Bloody Caesar or Champagne) to the anodized ceremony of brunch. Breakfast entails more often than not an early rising.  The meal traditionally punctuates a soothing sleep and a natural gusto for a new day. Breakfast is thus a placemat for the very idea of inspiration!

Continue reading


by Marina Hyde

No grace, no dignity, no humility, no magnanimity, no class, no morals, no empathy, no soul. He has no friends, not even a dog.

His wife can’t bear his touch, his daughter can’t avoid it. Devoid of humour he doesn’t make jokes, he doesn’t laugh. Not ever. An occasional dismal rictus, a necrotic gash in his ochre-lacquered face-bladder signifies nothing more than his satisfaction in transacting failing with no compensating virtues. A craven coward. A sociopath. A serial rapist. A racist. A quisling. An opportunistic grifter. An inveterate cheat. A deceitful toad. A chronic liar. A shameless braggart. An ignoramus who lacks curiosity. He doesn’t read, he doesn’t care. Trump is a ridiculous, combed-over cartoon villain, a deranged clown with a face sprayed the colour of hang-over piss and toilet paper stuck to his shoe, whose wits are defeated by an open umbrella.

Continue reading

We ain’t goin’ nowhere!

This pandemic business is becoming more than an obstruction; it’s positively recasting our world. Whatever big or small ambitions one may once have had – whether a winter sojourn or going out for lunch at a Pho beanery – it’s all changed. After years of planning and practicing, the scenery is entirely altered.  There is no escaping the present, the immediacy of it, the inalterable mould of it.  It requires a complete rethinking of what one does. The traditional habits of grocery shopping, fuelling and washing the car, collecting the mail, laundry and house cleaning all prevail – but with renewed imperative. And the imperative is that that’s all there is!

Continue reading

Saturday afternoon at the park

There is a term in the practice of law called a “legal fiction“. A common (though inaccurate) example is the “reasonable man“, a creation used particularly in negligence cases in order to establish what a reasonable person in the position of the defendant would do in the circumstances. It is meant to distinguish an objective test from a subjective test.  A more accurate description of a legal fiction is for example, if a person renounces a legacy (which is a gift by Will) that person will be deemed (presumed) to have predeceased the testator (the one who makes the Will) for the purposes of distributing the estate. The presumption effectively creates a fact which though false is used by the court for convenience. A more recognizable legal fiction is the concept of a corporation which is presumed by the court to be a legal person though clearly it is not.

Thus, the fiction that a corporation is, for many purposes, a person separate from its members is equivalent to saying that, for those purposes, the law deals with the group as a unit, disregarding for the moment the group’s individual members as such.

Continue reading


“He had dawdled over his cigar because he was at heart a dilettante, and thinking over a pleasure to come often gave him a subtler satisfaction than its realisation.

Excerpt From
Edith Wharton. “The Age of Innocence.”

It is improbable that two of us harbour an identical account of treasure.  One for example may express a passion for guns; another for automobiles; some for horses; still others for clocks or oil paintings.  I’ve even known one consumed by cranberry stemware. A more predictable likeness is the narcotic effect of materialism, the unparalleled commotion surrounding its acquisition and display, and the remarkable assuredness of its re-enactment no matter how diverse or prolonged the zealousness may be.

Continue reading

Walking the dog

“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”
by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Continue reading

Whew! Quelle journée!

Things started with a headstrong stir at 6:30 am this morning! We had an appointment in the city at a medical clinic. Besides it was “refresh day” which is to say, laundry day! The gears began rotating in a sustained fury! The calculable performance demanded heed and exactitude! And when we drew back the drapes we revealed blizzard conditions.

Continue reading

“Skyrocket downwards”

Shortly before midnight we were awoken by the startling sound and flashing light of a fire alarm on the bedroom ceiling. It turned out that the recently installed system backfired. Apparently an ensuing communication between the building manager and a representative of the fire department disclosed a malfunction in the north wing stairwell of the building. It was a fitting start to the end of the Trump presidency.

I wish the new administration great luck and great success,” Trump said. “I think they’ll have great success.

Donald J. Trump, reality show entertainer

Continue reading

In the shadows

Who doesn’t relish a find! Not unlike car accidents most of the worthiest discoveries are within a 5 mile radius of home, basically in your own back yard! It is perhaps a small compliment that my recognition of the proximity of this unearthing is a result of the COVID pandemic (which limits the horizon of one’s exploration) and my physical decline (which prohibits my interest in prolonged walking).  Only today for example as I hobbled up Mill Street from the book store to the car parked adjacent the Old Town Hall I recalled my last punishing attempt to mount the stairs in Rome; and, how a similar congestion would await any revisit to Paris for other than a short trot to the nearest café to sit watching the traffic go by.

“The Spanish Steps (Italian: Scalinata di Trinità dei Monti) are a set of steps in Rome, Italy, climbing a steep slope between the Piazza di Spagna at the base and Piazza Trinità dei Monti, dominated by the Trinità dei Monti church at the top.

Continue reading