Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Do you ever wonder what it might be like to be famous?
I mean really famous.
Like Celine Dion, Jesus or William Shatner.

If there was a lot of money attached to fame, I believe I could handle it.
I believe I could.
Yes. I know I could.
If world-wide fame snuck up behind me tomorrow and smacked me- right up the side of my head, I could adjust.

Now I have had a moderate amount of fame in my life.
Being in Broadcasting for 25+ years gave me the opportunity to be known- a celebrity if you will, in the various communities where I lived. The positive side of “Radio Fame” was the fact that many people- although familiar with my voice, didn’t always recognize me in public. Frequently, when I was out “on location” doing a live broadcast for a radio station, someone would walk up to me and say- “Who are You?”
A fair question since listeners mostly knew voices- not faces. Of course, that all changed in the computer age when our faces were plastered across Internet websites.

How do I live with Fame?
One of the funniest chance meetings I had with a faithful listener happened right here in Orillia at the old Loblaws store that was located on West Street North just south of Coldwater Road. The location is now a health club.
I had stopped into the store to get something to BBQ on my way home from the radio station. I started browsing through the sausages, moved to beef and hot dogs and segued to poultry. There was a lady standing to my left dressed in yellow chiffon who appeared as if she had just come from an elegant summer garden party. She sported a wide-brimmed summer sun hat which sat low on her forehead. She reminded me of Greta Garbo standing there anxiously picking through the chicken bits.

I had read when Garbo walked through outdoor Farmer’s Markets or flea markets in New York City, she would wear a large, wide-brimmed hat to disguise herself.
She rarely talked.
However, she was usually recognized. People expected her to show up on Saturday mornings or Sunday afternoons at her favourite haunts. Some even went looking for her. Apparently, she was never bothered by over-excited fans or paparazzi.
She was such as icon, people just admired her from a distance.

Meanwhile, back at the chicken counter, I started to sort threw the chicken thighs to find just the right package.
The lady in yellow chiffon eventually broke her silence-
“Darling, aren’t the prices terrible for a piece of chicken?”
The voice was low, distinctly British and definitely had an upper class timbre.
It sounded vaguely familiar. I didn’t pay too much attention at first.
“Yes, for a little piece of chicken they certainly want a lot- don’t they?”- I said.
She stopped sorting through the poultry, looked up at me and placed a left hand across her chest and said-
I looked up from the chicken, recognizing the voice and the person standing next to me and said- “Constance?”
“Yes Darling. It’s me! We finally meet, face to face after all these years!”
“It appears so. Who would have thought?”
“Yes and can you believe it? What fate. We meet over packages of raw chicken at the meat counter” she pauses and looks around and says in a disappointing tone- “at Loblaws!”
We laugh.
“Darling,”- she says clutching my arm, “Let’s make a pact!”
“All right.” I say with a little hesitancy in my voice, “Just what kind of a pact?”
She leans towards my face and in a deep, throaty voice- pausing between each word, she says quite simply-
“Never ~pause~ tell ~pause~ a soul!
We shook on it, chose our chicken and that was the first and last time I ever talked to her- face to face.

Constance continued to be a faithful listener for many years. She would call me up when I was “on air” and- usually dispensing with telephone pleasantries such as “Hello, it’s Constance”, she would get right to the point-
“Darling, that song by Perry Como. I detest that song!”
“When is it going to stop raining Robert?”
Some times she had had a glass or two of bourbon and it would sound like this-
“Woberrrrt Dahhhling. Dooo you shuppose I could hear a tuuuuune from Pppppeggy Lee?”

The price of fame.
I never got rich from radio. Hardly made a dime.
I haven’t gotten rich from theatre either- at least not so far.
I do have people stare at me from time to time when I am around town.
A couple of years ago a pair of ladies standing a couple of metres from me at Zehr’s pointed to me and said- “That’s that guy from that show!”

Sitting at Theo’s having dinner one evening a man turns to me at the next table and says-
“You were wonderful in that show, what was it called?”
Not being sure what show he meant,I said- “What show was that Sir?”
“You know, the one where you played that guy!”
“Oh. That one. Well, thank you very much.”
I had no idea what show he meant.

Then, last weekend at Street’s Alive, I had wandered ahead of Tom and was talking to one of the artists who had painted a guitar. As I spoke with the artist, I could see Tom speaking with a lady who kept looking at me and pointing. Eventually, he brought her over to meet me.
“I just loved you in that show where you played a butler!”- she tells me with a laugh.
At least she knew the part I had played.
“Oh yes, I was Cogburn and the show was “Out of Sight, Out of Murder”.
“Well it was good, I just wanted you to know.”
“Thank you. I appreciate that.”

Here endeth the one important lesson.
Fame is fleeting.
If it’s what you desire, grab it and hold on because it doesn’t last.
You’re only as famous as the last package of chicken you bought at Loblaws!

Have a good day!

Monday, June 28, 2010

RobBlog #94

There are a few things I want to cover in my blog today.

After all the protests over the weekend- see yesterday’s blog for thoughts on the violence, I have a few images lingering in my mind. What I saw had moved me.
Scared me a little too- apparently.

Monday afternoon as I rode my bike along the Lightfoot Trail, I approached the intersection of Forest Avenue East and Atherley Road. As I came to the corner and turned right, towards the continuation of the trail, I saw an OPP Cruiser- with two policemen inside, sitting at the entrance to the trail just opposite the street that leads south to the Leacock Museum.

I actually panicked for a few seconds. Images of what I had watched on television over the weekend flooded into my mind. Would these police officers suddenly fling open the doors of their cruiser and rush me, beating my body with their night sticks and dragging me off to some detention centre –handcuffed, hungry and thirsty?

It took a few seconds to return to reality but I didn’t dare look at the officers inside the car as I passed the cruiser. I had made sure I signalled my intent as well.
So, this is how a police state would feel.
Those television pictures really did a number on me. I am trying hard to remember that-
“Police are Friends”- unless they are beating you with a stick and throwing you in a cage with no water and only a cheese and butter sandwich every 4 hours.

On a brighter note, “Betty and Phil” have landed in Canada- Halifax to be specific, on a Canadian Forces Aircraft. The weather was downright wet. Her Majesty was unruffled.
“Hmmm, weather looks just like home Philip!”.
That’s what I would guess she was thinking.

What I would like her to be thinking is a different story.
“Shite Philip! It’s bloody raining and this is the first time I have worn these pumps. Damn. Damn. Bloody Hell!”

Betty carried a “see-through” plastic umbrella- so as not to cover the Royal Face, and clutched a bouquet of summer flowers. Phil followed his wife down the air stairs in a beige London Fog trench coat- I’m guessing here, clutching a black umbrella.
They were beaming.
In a speech, delivered a few minutes later with our- ugh, Prime Minister in attendance- guess he didn’t get arrested and thrown in a detention centre to be fed cheese sandwiches on Wonder Bread, Betty had these words to say:

“My mother once said that this country felt like home, away from home, for the Queen of Canada. Prime Minister, I am delighted to report that it still does and I am delighted to be back amongst you all. Canadians have by their own endeavours built a country and a society which is widely admired across the world. I am fortunate to have been a witness to many of the developments and accomplishments of modern Canada. As Queen of Canada for nearly six decades, my pride in this country remains undimmed. ... It is very good to be home.”
I cried.
We give you a rainy day, you give us a heart-wrenching “hello again- it’s me, speech.”
Your Majesty you are one classy lady- even though I have always questioned your hand bags.
Finally, another one bites the dust- or at least the ice!
Iceland, the country up there to the right of Newfoundland, has made Same-Sex Marriage the law of the land. The first to tie the knot was the Prime Minister and her partner. I would mention their names here but I don’t have all the letters on my keyboard.
So how many countries does that make now recognizing Gay Marriage- a dozen?
Those still lagging behind include America and Britain. America has sporadic Gay Marriage- like in Vermont.
Although the UK has Same-Sex Unions, it’s still not a marriage, like that between a man and a woman. No equality there. I still wonder why Elton John and David Furnish don’t re-tie the knot here in Canada.

So there you have a bit of this and a bit of that all in one compact Blog.
Oh yes, this just in. There was another demonstration in T.O. Monday night. 1500 plus “peaceful” marchers all calling for a better explanation of the violence and arrests by Police Services- especially after detaining all those citizens in the rain for 5 or 6 hours Sunday evening. If I could have been in Toronto to march with them- I would have. I didn’t hear about the peaceful protest until 6 o’clock.
I walked in spirit.
Have a good day.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

RobBlog # 93

So, how was your weekend?

I guess I spent about 12 hours watching the events unfold in a city where I once lived.
A city I love to visit.
A city where I feel safe.
A city known for "live" theatre, concerts, sports, history, architecture, kindness and the Canadian National Exhibition.
The Capital City of our Province of Ontario, where I know street names and the best places to shop.

I felt many emotions rise within me watching the protesters on Saturday and Sunday. To begin with, leading up to the G8 and G20 I thought that I would just be hearing about a group of men and women who got together to ultimately do nothing at a hefty price tag of almost 2 billion. That part has come true but what I didn't expect was the violence.
The total disregard for a beautiful city.
The total lack of repect.
The wanton destruction.
The thugs.
The anti-police stance held within the minds of many of the marchers.
The bad things the police reportedly did at the detention centre on Eastern Avenue. That story is yet to unfold completely. I am sure there will be pictures of the "cages" where those arrested were detained in the former Toronto Film Studios lot.

There is much blame.
The locals who just had to see what was going on and filled the streets.
The Saturday night crowd looking for a good time and a chance to shun the law- and decency.
The Anarchists from the so called Anarchist League of Southern Onttario. Have you ever heard of them before this past weekend?
I haven't.

However, mostly I blame Stephen Harper. The Prime Minister.
As I have said before in this blog I respect the "office"- but not the man.
In fact I have little repect for most of the leaders.
They smiled and laughed and ate and laughed and mugged for the cameras.
The British PM and the German Chancellor skipped part of the meeting to watch soccer!
They flew here and there to come for dinner. They were extravagantly entertained by the Canadian Tenors in a world far, far away, safe inside that damned fence just outside the Metro Convention Centre.

There has to be a better way to hold these meetings. A place out of the way and far away from the "terror" of the criminals that you and I saw roam the streets of downtown Toronto. Maybe on an ice floe.

I blame Stephen Harper for even thinking about using Downtown Toronto as a backdrop to his "party"!

The cost of this one event could have built schools, paved roads, helped kids in this country on reserves, on the streets, on drugs.
Helped those who have HIV/Aids.
Assist communities that need new infrastructure.
Build more Food Banks.
Assist Housing, Education, Policing.
I could go on.

The Toronto. The Ontario. The Canada that I saw on the weekend is not my Canada.
I blame Stephen Harper and his smirk and I hope you do too.
I hope that voters like you will see fit to kick his butt so far away from poilitical office that he will never be able to rise again.

Right now we wait and see what repercussions there are from a "wild" weekend. For the immediate future, we need to focus on other events.
Canada Day Celebrations from coast to coast on Thursday. Happy Birthday Canada!
For Toronto, Pride Week and the hude Pride Parade through Downtown Toronto this Sunday.
A real Love-In.
A million people and none of the problems and violence assocaiated with this G8 and G20 traveling Road Show.
Then there's "Betty's" visit, starting in Halifax on Tuesday.

I know we'll re-group.
The City of Toronto, The Province and our Country will put this bad dream to rest and move forward.

Have a great Day!

Friday, June 25, 2010

ROBBLOG W E E K E N D Edition #92

The two Mormon Boys- one blonde haired and one dark, stood all fresh-faced and lightly scrubbed on the front verandah. Their hair immaculately groomed. Fingernails clean, with an almost “polished look” and shoes both sensible and comfortable as well as cobalt black and shiny.

“Sacrilegious, that’s what it is.”

They cinched their buttocks tightly, expecting a reprisal and when there was none said simply in unison-


“I said Sacrilegious. To think you boys would match those cheap Tiger Store shirts with splendid black dress trousers- such as those!”

The Mormon Boys looked briefly at each other, then turned back to me-

“God doesn’t care how we clothe our earthly bodies, sir.”

“Oh, but she does. For Heaven’s sake you wouldn’t for a moment consider showing up at St. Pete’s Gate looking like a couple of frumpy, Catholic School Girls- would you? And don’t call me sir- boys!”

“These are not our clothes!”- chimed the blonde one, “They are the uniforms of God’s Army.”

“Please Darling, even God wouldn’t force you to wear…”

A sudden gasp!

“Is that a pair of white socks under those pant legs?”

“No. They’re beige! Honestly. ”- says the dark one.

“Ugh! Much worse. What in the name of Jesus Cripes do they teach you at your tabernacle- 50 ways to break the laws of fashion.”

“ Sir…I mean to say Mr....ummm- what is your name?”

“Just call me "Sir". You were about to say?”

“I don’t believe I can call you ‘Sir’-sir, without some sense of feeling that it is morally wrong and against the church’s teachings.”
“Dear boy, what in the holy names of Donny and Marie Osmond is wrong with you? Do you have a couple of prayer books rammed up your virginal white butts? Beige socks is just wrong no matter how you look at it. Peter, Paul and Mary Magdeline how simple can I make it, black goes with black- even if it’s a simple little black cocktail dress and pumps.”

“Oh Mr. Sir!”- they cry giving each other a surprised look as if they were caught off guard-
“We would never wear black cocktail dresses. Jesus wouldn’t be pleased.”

I frown and look each of the pretty boys square in the eye- one at a time.

“Boys, just what in the name of Tom Cruises’ Church of Scientology do you think the Lord wore while flibbity-gibbing around Galilee?”

The boys stand there on the verandah clutching their bags with their Mormon Mouths wide open.

“That’s right kids”- I continued, hands firmly planted on hips, “He wore a Goshdarned dress. A Cotton shift. 100% natural beige- a little rough in the nether regions, cut low at the neck to show a hint of pectorals then “free form” from tits to toes.”

“Now, wait a second….Sir…”- says the blonde, pretty one, “Our beloved Christ did not wear a dress with a scooped neckline.”

Taken aback I said- “You! You just said the words “scooped neckline”. Now just how does a pretty little Mormon boy… Hmmmmm, let me see your hands.”

He shows them to me.

“A pretty little Mormon Boy with “girly” hands knows all about scooped necklines? If I didn’t know better, I would think you’re both…”

“So what? I know a few fashionata terms.”- says the blonde lad.

“Yes.” –says the dark one, “So what if she…I mean HE knows a few terms that only a certified dressmaker would use.”

I gasped!

“Holy Mary Magdeline!”

“Look,” says the dark-haired lad, “Please do not spake the name of the whore of Galilee. It is unclean and lacks the milk of human kindness.”

“I see. Mary M’s a whore but peddling your little ivory tushes door to door is just fine. Someone here is prostituting and it’s not Mary. Besides the Catholics "de-whored" Mare a couple of years ago. She’s pure as the driven snow. Now she can turn the world on with her smile! ”

“Oh Honey”- says blondy-lou and sheepishly adds “I mean, Sir, we don’t believe in the Roman Catholic Church.”

“Or homosexuals!”- adds the darker one.

“How convenient. Pray it doesn’t exist and it doesn’t. So let me play ‘devils advocate’ here.”

“Now you’re talking!”- says blondey-lou, his face beaming, “The Devil. Satan.”- He rubs his hands together and punches the dark one in his bag as a sort of “manly” stamp of approval. The dark one flings his bag over an athletic right shoulder.

Blondey-lou’s absolutely beaming and says- “Now we can fight the demon that’s caught you up inside.”

“Demon!!”- I screamed. “Haven’t you boys learned anything? The demon is your total lack of faith towards fashion dos and don’t. Like getting rid of the freeking beige socks and go "black" young man. The Lord at least had the fashion sense to wear simple barefoot sandals with his frock but you with the beige sock thing."

The boys appeared lost for words. This time the dark one punched the blonde one in his sack.

“Good grief Mr. Sir, would you be happy if I removed my socks and went barefoot?”

I thought for a brief moment.

“Yes. Yes, of course. It would be a start.”

The lad removes his socks and stands there brazen and buff with bare, athletic looking feet on my verandah.

“There. Now can we talk about Jesus, our lord?”

“Oh Dear Boy…”

I look to the other-

“I’m sorry- boys…I would love to chat more but I have a cake in the oven and it’s about time I set it out to cool. Now run along, be good Mormon boys and bother someone else.”

The boys seemed sadly rejected. They re-adjusted their bags and with half smiles on virginal faces, they headed down the steps and along the path to the sidewalk.

Briefly they turned and looking back to the verandah from whence they came asked-

“Can we come again tomorrow, Sir?”.

It was “blondey-lou” who asked first.

“Of course, Dear Boys. Come as many times as you like!”

“Wow. Thanks! See ya.”- adds the dark one.

They smiled and merrily pranced off down the sidewalk clutching their bags in one hand and their Mormon literature in the other.

I had to chuckle as I waved goodbye.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


Read the following in your best “Ed Sullivan” parody voice:

Now tonight

~ clasp hands together~

reet here on r-uh stage Laydies and Gentlemen we present…

~cheers and screams~

All right. All right. You youngsters up there-

~he points~

just calm down.

~ Arms now folded across his chest as he walks in a sort of block step~

Especially you youngsters from the extreme right for you know not what you do.

~he laughs out loud above the roar of the crowd~

Tonight here on R stage to viewers across the United States and Canada, we present the Royal Moscow Ballet. Topo Gigo and Canada’s Wayne and Shuster. But now, here on R stage, for the first time anywhere, give a big hand and a wave of the Maple Leaf- in Conservative Blue, to Stephen Harper and the G8! Let’s hear it for them!

~ silence~

Good Lord! What is your problem Canadian People?
Your Government of Mr. Stephen Archibald Harper- not his real middle name I just made it up, has spent about 2 point one billion dollars.
930 Million Dollars for security and a half mill for that fake lake at the Energy Centre at the Ex Grounds. I hope they at least keep the lake in place for the Canadian National Exhibition in August. I think Canadians should see what a “fake, half million dollar lake” really looks like before they place their ‘X” in the next Federal Election.
Fake, probably.

The military and police are out in droves. Thousands of officers are in Downtown Toronto from forces across the country accompanied by a Water Canon and a big fence. Let’s see.
Take a few million.
Carry the one.
Add 2 million. Divide by 33 and add another 90 million.
Good Gosh! 930 Million dollars on the nose.

Funny that most of this “G” business takes place in Toronto because Mr. Stephen Archibald Harper hates Toronto, so why did he choose Toronto instead of say Ottawa or Three Rivers Quebec.
One answer to that might be the fact that Toronto is Liberal Red and perhaps many big “red” businesses are going to see some extra cash come their way as a result of all those protestors buying things in their shops. Things like 2 pieces of Bristol board for a dollar and a ton of black felt pens- oh- glue sticks too.

These Liberal Red people may have dollar signs in their eyes and begin to believe that Archibald Harper is a good guy and decide to vote for him.
Haven’t we learned anything by living in this man’s idea of “Democracy”? Why he’d have the troops and tanks in the streets every day of the week if he thought that he could sway us to his way of  "rightful” thinking.
Look at my eyes. You are growing sleepy.
Now say after me.
Jesus is Lord.
Praise Jesus.
God is Good.
Stephen is better.
He could drive the tanks into Orillia too. If we saw those tanks crawling through the streets of Orillia Town we’d just think it was another driving school from Toronto clogging up Matchedash and Peter Street North.
We’d just merrily drive by heading to Mariposa Market to buy some brownies- as usual. How long are Canadians going to be hoodwinked into thinking this man has a “grasp” of what he’s doing?
He has a Minority for cripes sake!!

~ Be calm now. Keep the blood pressure down~

Nobody seems to care and the Libs and NDPers are too afraid to stand up and say-
“Chuck you Stephen Archibald!!”- you are coming down!!
They should bring him down.
Chuck him. Just like he’s chucked that poor old Governor General and just before Liz’s visit too. Although, I don’t hold Madam GG in the same high reverence I once did after she bailed “Archie” out of trouble- twice!!
What were you thinking Miss Jean? Where did it get you?
Dumped out of Rideau Hall after one stinking term and after you had just re-papered the downstairs throne room and installed matching his and her towel racks!
The Towels racks weren’t the only things that got screwed to the wall.
Just where is he sending you during the majority of the QE II’s visit?
Why China of course.
I hear China is delightful this time of year.
The beheadings and firing squads in Squares across major Chinese Cities are absolutely at their best this time of year!
Better practice the art of eating with chop sticks cause you’re stuck with it.
Rots of Ruck Yawn.

Anyhoo, Stephen Archibald Harper’s G spots are no secret now. A bush with a golf course and a hot tub in the middle of bug-infested Muskoka and a Convention Centre on the shores of a “real” lake in a city that will resemble a ghost town for two weekend days.

It’s a tale that seems incredibly bogus and yet it’s real. All two billion dollars of it!
It’s a really big shoe!


Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Did I go on and on about that perfect little hideaway Tom and I found in Hawaii back in March?
It was called “The Cabana at Waikiki”. It was such a find!
A little walk-up at just three floors.
A block and a bit to the beach.
Nicely appointed with full kitchen, living area, bedroom, bath and Lanai- that’s a balcony for those of you who have never been to Hawaii.
It was the right price too.

We were looking forward to going back again. Then, a couple of weeks back we get an e-mail from Miho- the Manager, saying the 15 suites were all up for sale as condominiums.
Not our little, new-found paradise in paradise?
Yes. The Cabana’s 15 perfect little suites would be sold starting at 199,000.
If we wanted to experience the Cabana one last time, the e-mail advised us we had to do so by September 6th.
Fat chance.
Especially when it’s summer here.
Waikiki from atop Diamond Head

I have been meaning to e-mail Miho to ask if she thought the new owners would allow their suites to be rented back to visitors. It’s one way for the current owner of the Cabana to make a bundle of cash selling all 15 suites and the new individual suite owners to have the option to rent their properties to visitors familiar with the property.
As an example, for years we stayed at the Waikiki Banyan. Originally it was a Wardair Hotel- until Wardair folded. We used to get condo suites for 50 bucks a night. Much larger than The Cabana suites- which by the way is only a block away from the Banyan, but still a “home away from home”. The suites- privately owned, were managed by Wardair Hotels Canada.
Would we buy a suite at the Cabana?
If we were a little rich- yes. Maybe our million will come through on Saturday- maybe 50 million. I’d be on a plane to Hawaii the next day.

I will also do a google search for other “like” properties in Honolulu. That’s how I found The Cabana. I recognized the building from walking past over the years but had always thought it was a condo. Maybe there’s another nice little side street off the Ali Wai Canal with another hidden treasure. Even a bit further away from Waikiki would be fine but it would still have to be within a comfortable walk.
It’s nothing that I have to be concerned about right away but maybe on some rainy day I’ll start searching.

Oh, keep an eye to the sky. If the rest of the week is anything like yesterday there’ll be plenty of helicopters and fighter jets flying over Orillia keeping our true north strong and free.
Maybe not free exactly, since the security cost for Huntsville’s G8 and Toronto’s G20 is somewhere in the neighourhood of one billion dollars!
That is quite a neighbourhood! Sure couldn’t afford to vacation there!
Time for Mr. Harper to get voted out of the "tourist business".

One more item. Only the provincial and federal conservatives were missing from Toronto Pride's 30th Anniversary booklet. Business, tourism, other political parties were all there. Just not the Harperites and the head of the Tories in Ontario. Who is that anyway? The name escapes me. Oh well. Who really cares.
When are the Conservatives going to get with the tour. Apparently after 30 years the Gay Community is still a lively part of the Toronto Scene.

Have a Happy Day!

Sunday, June 20, 2010


A Day in the Life of a Garage Sale

0614: Roll out of bed all bleary eyed.
0615: I Need a coffee. Real Bad.
0617: I realize the coffee timer doesn't come on until 730!
0618: I need a coffee REAL bad. Why didn’t I
remember that damned timer!!
0619: I perk a pot.
0625: Ahhhh. My first sip of Coffee. Ain’t life
0630: Update weather on Swisssh Radio and head
for the garage.
0640: Dragging boxes out to the front of the garage.
0650: Water a couple of plants. More Coffee. For Me- not the plants.
0700: Shower and Shave.
0725: Back to Garage and set up a couple of tables. Drag stuff here and there.
0745: Nothing priced yet- except for the large items.
0800: Our friend Cathy arrives in her car with a trailer behind- loaded with “stuff”
0830: More Coffee. Set up departments- electronics, home décor, kitchen wares
0831: Tom puts two “Garage Sale” signs up down the street.
0835: Cars start to pull up.
0840: First Sale. 10 cents! Wow!
0859: Customer says: Do you have any dressers. Nope. That department is closed today.
0912: Man buys two small items. Owes us a quarter. Goes to the car to get the quarter and drives off.
0912:15: We all yell- “Cheap Bastard!”
0915: Two ladies looking at a $5 dish set of 20+ pieces. One says to the other-
Gladys, what would we do with it?”
Eat & drink from it!”- my inside voice says!!!
0917: “Will you take 5 bucks for this dish set?”
“No.”- I say. “It’s antique and I paid $250 for it more than 10 years ago.” They turn
and walk away.
0940: More coffee.
0952: Does this electric BBQ work? Does it get hot? Can you adjust the heat? Is it heavy
to carry?
0952: Bathroom Break because of all the coffee.
1025: “What does this cute little Santa Claus do?”- says a customer.
“Well...”- I begin my sales pitch, “It dances and walks, rings the bell
and music plays.”
“Does it sing?”
“No Ma’m. It does not sing.”
She walks away.
“Shit. What does she want for 2 bucks?”
1046: The driveway is chock-a-clock full of customers. A couple approach me.
“We’re just starting to furnish an apartment and we don’t have much money.”
They buy 6 chairs- from our friend Cathy, a water cooler and small fridge from us.
50 bucks total.
I feel sorry for them and offer a place setting for 6- for free- to help them. The couple is most appreciative. Then, it comes time to pay. They give me a 100 dollar bill.
Cripes. I never carry a hundred dollar bill!! They must have seen the flashing “sucker” light emblazed across my forehead.
1115: “Do you have any Music CDs? Country, Perhaps?”
 "No - but I have a Santa Claus that does everything but sing!”
“ Sorry but I was looking for Music CDs.
1116: Pee break again.
1200: Table and 4 Chairs sell for 40 bucks. A kid's pool- used once, for $5.
1220: Some mugs, old tin cans and antiques bottle go for a few bucks.
1221: Santa’s still there on the table only now he’s being kept company by
small platoon of cute tin soldiers in bright red tunics playing a variety 
of musical instruments.
1245: Just a few customers now. No big spenders. A few books for a buck and a tent canopy for 5.
1310: We start to clear up the items left. A box or two go to the curb marked “FREE”. Good stuff packed back in boxes for another day. Poor “silent” Santa. There he is standing in the affternoon sunshine, ringing a bell that nobody hears.
1400: All cleanup done. We made 150 bucks. Too much work for too little return.
1402: Exhaustion sets in.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

ROBLOG W E E K E N D Edition #88

It's been on my mind for a couple of months- if not more.
Will I continue with Swisssh Radio?
A week ago, I made the decision to continue with Swisssh the Website in it's current abbreviated form. The Website takes up a bit of time but I manage it better today. I try to keep it vibrant and fresh, although I have had cut out a lot of information, pictures and pages!
I do less not more.
So sue me!

With writing my Daily Blog and the process of putting my scribblings into book form, I needed more free time. The RobBlog has a bit of everything. You can find it at:

So the decision.

With Listenership holding its own (about 3000 hours tuned each month) and weekends garnering a bigger audience, I have decided to keep Swisssh Radio on the air.
Now hold on there cowboy, let me finish!
I will keep Swisssh Radio on-air until the end of the summer!
I don't know why I have made that decision. It would have been easier to pull the plug now. However, I have high regard for those listeners who tune in faithfully every day and for the local stores and businesses- like Tiffin's and Sanderson, who support what I do.
I've also had a few dreams these past nights.
A couple about radio. Those dreams have helped me consider the future.

I have also had dreams about doing theatre again. That's another Blog, although, I must admit that watching the Tony Awards last week got the blood flowing again too. Nothing definite but it's good to dream.

I listen to my dreams. After all, that's where the original name "Swisssh"- yes with 3 S's, came from- a dream. It's the sound that crushed ice makes in a martini glass when you "swisssh" it around.
No. It's nothing Gay!
I couldn't spell it "Swish.ca" or "Swissh.ca". Just go to those websites and you'll see they exist!
As I have said before, I am repeatedly told- "Internet Radio is going to take off in the next year!"
I've been hearing that for three years now.
One of the problems is the simple fact that Internet Radios are not readily available for the average radio listener to buy. Those on the market at shops like The Source and Future Shop are pricey. Internet Radio is "free" unlike Satellite feeds and there are thousands of stations to listen to. No, until Internet Radios become as common place as weeds in our lawn, Net Radio will not grow.

I did get a couple of e-mails. Thanks for that. One person was completely honest telling me they listen while they read the website but other than that they cling to CBC Radio2. That's classical. I can't ask for more. A few minutes a week is much better than "no" minutes a week. Net Radio is still a hard sell. There needs to be a national identity- an association of Net Radio Broadcasters. Do I want to start such an association?

In the meantime give a listen to Swisssh Radio. It's easy from this home page. Just click on a player of your choice up top- or the embedded player as you read the page. Just remember the "embedded" player stops streaming when you leave the page. Easier to listen to one of the other two players and just keep Swisssh Radio playing in your taskbar if you surf the net.
Of course, you could buy an Internet Radio and listen when and where you want through your WiFi.

Finally, there's a new Swisssh Radio Blogsite too. Still in it's infancy but it's at

A new Swisssh Radio Blogsite?
Now, that spells hope for the future- doesn't it?
You be the judge.
I know you will be.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


“Don’t let the bedbugs bite.”
Didn’t your Grandmother say that to you when she tucked you in for the night?
It was sweet.
Quite endearing.
Much better than-
“Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If I should die…


Granny, how’s that supposed to help me have pleasant dreams when I have to think about death?

I was reading about the bedbug problem in Toronto. Bedbugs in hotels, condos and even a hospital. These things get into everything- couches, beds- even clothing that you might have purchased at a “vintage” clothing shop. It means spraying and throwing mattresses out to garbage .Yet, that’s no guarantee that the little “buggers” will stay away for good.

It’s a lot like Stephen Harper’s Conservatives.
You can plug your ears and refuse to listen to their “rightist” propaganda, yet they still continue to get under your skin. Why we might even be so lucky as to have them hold a majority in government- unless the Liberals can grab our country back from the little pests. There’s no spray or pesticide that can keep a good Alliance-Reformer down. Oh, they disappear for a while but they return- usually with a simple name change.

I wonder how much Queen Elizabeth knows about the Harperites?
She must be briefed ahead of time and then I expect she and Phillip have a bit of a nosh in the south Parlour over tea.

“Philip, what is going on in the colonies right now? I was told that this Harper guy tends to think of himself as a “God” of sorts who sits on his throne and reads things, telling the Canadian people what to do.”

“My Dear- isn’t that what you do too here in Great Britain?”

“Yes. Well. Oh ~giggle~ right Philip. That is what I do. I know what. I’ll just smile at him and give him the impression I give a fuck. What a laugh. Tea?”

“Yes Dear, please.”

“Oh and Philip…”


“Remember, to pack a clean pair of undies for each of the days we are away in Canada. No more “commando in the colonies” like last time!”

“But my Dear, it’s so liberating!”

Now Philip, would you like your Queen to let “these puppies” bob all over the place from Winnipeg to Ottawa. Why My Dear Philip, they could do damage bumping into flag poles or bumping into door frames. No, it is best if you just keep the boys in place in a good pair of whites from Marks and Sparks.”

“Yes My Dear. You are quite right. Biscuit?”

“Yes. Thank Q. Do you think they’ll really ask Captain Kirk to be my representative for all of Canada. My. Imagine Dear if that were to happen?”

“Quirky at best Elizabeth but you know they are a “randy bunch” this little country of yours called Canada. I wouldn’t be surprised one little bit. Not one bit- eh what?”

“Well I suppose it’s out of my hands, although I would prefer that Mr. Harper to be seen and not heard. I used to have such fun with Jean.”

“Chretien- my Dear?”

“Yes. He was good for a laugh and a giggle although sometimes I didn’t get the joke.”

“Too dirty for my Queen, My Dear?”

“No Philip, at times I couldn’t understand a thing he was saying to me!”

“Oh! Say after tea, shall we go shooting things in the forest?”

“Oh yes, lets and Philip…”

“Yes Dear?”

“You can go commando out there- if you like! ~giggle, giggle~”

“Why you little royal minx!”

Monday, June 14, 2010


This RobBlog is just shameless self-promotion or cross-promotion at best.
I do shameless self-promotion quite well.
I'm a Leo after all.

So, consider this a request. I encourage you to read the website http://www.swisssh.ca/ and listen to
Swisssh Radio.
Listening to Swisssh Radio is easy enough. Just click on the logo   the right as you read this Blog.
Go ahead.
Click now.
I'll wait for you.


When you read the Swisssh Website-which you'll have to do after you read this Blog, take a moment and send me an e-mail at swisssh@rogers.com
Let me know your thoughts about the site.
Do you read it a few times a week? Every couple of weeks?
Maybe once a month- or not at all.

A week ago, I made the decision to continue with Swisssh the Website in some form. That is
dependant in part as to whether I continue with Swisssh Radio. I have been musing about this for more than a month and I really have to come to some conclusion by mid-July.
In a way I would like to pack it all in. It takes up a bit of time- as I have told you before, to keep the website fresh and keep Swisssh Radio up-to-date.
I must admit, I give a bit less than I used to.
If I gave up both the Website and Radio Station, I would still have this blog site to "fiddle" with.

Honestly, I don't know what to do about Swisssh Radio. Listenership is holding it's own but there's not a lot of growth. Weekends seem to be garnering a bigger audience though. I don't know why.
Still, when you tally it all up- it could be massively better.

After being on-air for more than 3 years, I had hoped for more. I keep hearing- "Internet Radio is going to take off in the next year!"
I've been hearing that for three years now.
One of the problems is the simple fact that Internet Radios are not readily available for the average radio listener to buy. Those on the market at shops like The Source and Future Shop are pricey.
The last Net Radio I purchased a month ago was 200 dollars from Grace in Peterborough at http://www.gracedigitalaudio.ca/
Not a cheap buy for someone who shops at Zellers or Wal*Mart where one can't even buy a Net Radio.
Until Internet Radios become as common place as Ipods and MP3 Players, Net Radio will not grow.

Even someone with the knowledge that an Internet Radio station can be heard through a Blackberry
Phone or IPhone is few and far between.

So I muse about the future. Swisssh Radio may get another reprieve but how long- I don't know. Will Swisssh Radio be around this time next year?
Again, I really don't know.

I was thinking about sending out a survey but opted instead to just ask listeners and readers to send me an e-mail at swisssh@rogers.com and tell me straight.
Your remarks can't be any more brutal than those I received a few weeks back from a radio friend who
thought he was doing me a favour saying the sound of Swisssh Radio pretty much sucked the big one. I have since had someone go over the sound with a "fine toothed ear" and that is simply not the case- but you be judge as well as the jury. This is the same fells that hints to me about doing a daily mid-morning radio show on Swisssh- even though he says the sound stinks like "a pair of cats in heat."

In the meantime give a listen to Swisssh Radio. It's easy from the home page at http://www.swisssh.ca/
Just click on a player of your choice- or the embedded player as you read the page. Just remember the "embedded" player stops streaming when you leave the page. Easier to listen to one of the other two players and just keep Swisssh Radio playing in your taskbar if you surf the net.
Of course you could buy an Internet Radio and listen when and where you want through your WiFi.

In the meantime, I'm still mulling and musing and thinking.
No pressure.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


So, how was your weekend?
What did you do?
Did the rain spoil any outdoor events for you?
Sunday was warm and sunny. Quite unexpected.

Apparently the Spring Blues went on as scheduled. We heard it from several blocks away at our house.
Blues in the night- Friday Night.
An all day “bluesy” Saturday.
Saturday Night Blues
Sunday- blue on blue.

Then Sunday just after 5 o’clock we took a walk through Couchiching Park and they were ripping it all down. Besides the Spring Blues, the Water, Boat and Home and Cottage Show- whatever it’s called, was on too. From the tail end of what we saw it was a combination of-
The same two Barrie Radio Stations.
Flea Market junk like sunglasses priced at two for one, hats and tee shirts.
The same guy who sells magnetic bracelets every year was there. We bought these bracelets a couple of years ago until we were told that they contained “lead” and to “take them off right away.”
Great, we’ve been pumping “lead” into our bodies for a year and a half. That is until we bought new expensive copper and magnetic bracelets last fall.
Now, I know why the hair is growing twice as fast in my ears and nose these days.
All that lead. Who knew?
Question: Why is it when these events are on at the park the assholes come out in droves?
Answer: Because they need to show all the regular folk that they “are” assholes.

Honestly, from this point in June until at least October- after Thanksgiving, it’s useless to try to have a walk in the park, a bike ride, a rollerblade or anything else because all the assholes- mostly kids, ruin it for everyone else. They cling to the beach and grass areas like leaches on a weeping wound. They swear, spit, yell, curse and either walk across your path or rollerblade up your ass.

I love summer in Orillia.
Now you could always choose to take a nice walk downtown and browse past store windows- the one’s that actually have stores in them. Downtown is an opportunity to stroll by shoppers spitting on the sidewalk in front of you or someone blowing cigarette smoke in your face. You might be serenaded by a guitar picker or two while watching young girls cross the street with their cotton shorts wrenched up their tiny butts. A pair of heeled sandals complete their ensemble. Some have the added accessory of a baby stroller and a 15 year old “yo yo” walking next to them with the top of his undershorts hanging just below the crack of his ass and the crotch of his jeans bunched up between his knees.

Then, prepare to meet the folks who congregate around the downtown benches both smoking and spitting and standing in your way when you’re trying to pass. Sometimes they even stand still- right outside a store, so when you exit you can take a deep breath and suck in all that second hand smoke!

Hey, aren’t we all glad that the “water pipe” business is back on the main section of Mississaga Street. If you want to blow water ~wink, wink. nudge, nudge~ through a glass pipe this is the store for you. Now if only that Pot Shoppe on Andrew Street- just south of Colborne Street West, could find an appropriate storefront downtown we’d be packing in the tourists.

So how was your weekend?

Friday, June 11, 2010

ROBBLOG #84 W E E K E N D Edition

Here’s a post I received from Jed Cockburn out in “Stephen Harper Country”. More of a Media release of sorts- I guess. Residents of Ropeburn Alberta read my ramblings about Mr. Harper. Below, a representative of the town sets me straight- as if that could ever happen, in the re-printed letter I received- postage due. I wrote back and said I would print it on my RobBlog.


Ropeburn, Alberta (Special Information Release)

Let me tell you people there in the east about us God-Lovin’, golf-fearing folks who live the way nature intended. I live in Ropeburn. Ropeburn, Alberta. Population 1,112. There’s no golf course within 53 miles of here- since those “Mary worshippers” moved, taking up valuable space and keeping “certain people” at arm’s length. Ropeburn’s located a yank of a cord and a hop, skip and step in a southerly direction from Waylayed Alberta. Waylayed being famous for its fine “Western Hospitality”- but now, this here story is about Ropeburn, so let’s dispense with the Waylayed crap.

Ropeburn is home to our community centre, library, a nice downtown filled with shops- but none of them water-pipe places- and a dozen or so churches- mostly Baptist ones. We used to have one of those religious places that the Pope fella is head of but the low life kept spraying graffiti on the front door, peeing on the cedar shrubs and stealing the Baby Jesus from the Nativity display every Christmas. So, they finally closed up shop and moved to Waylayed. They said it was just a decision based on economics and church decree but we know different. It was probably them Presbyterian Pre-teen Bible Study kids- doing the peeing at least!
No. I ain’t gonna say what that graffiti said- wouldn’t be ethical and if it’s one thing we got in Ropeburn- it’s ethics. Why just look at the people who live here. The Indians across Bone Marrow Lake were here first. They actually lived on this side of the lake until we very nicely asked them to move across to the other side- yes the dirt was a bit rockier than this side- but we paid them off in heavily in wooden beads, tobacco, gin and pieces of cotton cloth. Next we allowed a few Mexicans in to pick our radishes. Then the Newfies, some “pepsis”, a Yank or two- we try not to hold that against them and now even a coloured fella who actually looks kinda white until you see him at night or on an overcast day. So, don’t go telling us nothing about being just a bunch of wasps- we have some ethical people in town too.

Now as far as them folks who don’t know how to finish the Lord’s Prayer in the proper fashion, you know, them no-meat-on- Friday eaters, we say- good riddance.
If you can’t stand the heat- get out of Ropeburn.
So they did- eventually. They wandered down to Waylayed much in the same way as that great Christian (Baptist) man Moses led his people round and round in circles for 40 some odd years. These folks didn’t wander so much as booted it out of town early one Saturday morning.
Oh, but did we get a tongue-lashing from their religious authorities. Seems they accused us of twisting the truth- or at least their nipples. Hah. Hah.

Anyhoo, we proud folks in Ropeburn want you to know that we think your lick-ass treatment of that Mr. Harper is wearing a bit thin- like cheap “rubber conundrums” you’d buy down at the Rexall Drug Store on Main Street. We gottta tell you that we love that guy. In fact, Tuesday next our Town Council has declared that the town square be re-named “Harper Green”.
We couldn’t be happier than pigs covered in shit.
Sarah Ballsover even sent an electronic mail to that Mr. Harper asking him to come and cut one for us. A ribbon will be stretched taut between two Bammagillia trees, much in the way that that Liberal leader’s mouth looks, stretched between those two things he calls ears! The ribbon comes from Old Mrs. Cuttone who went and dug it out of an old chest she keeps in the basement- mostly filled with old Beaver Magazines from the 40’s and 50’s. Some of then “French” Beavers. Lot’s of good Christian stuff to be learned reading one of them old editions Mrs. Cuttone tells me.

We just received a nice reply to Sarah’s note saying “the PMO’s Office has received your letter and wants you to know it is appreciated when we receive comments from fellow Canadians.”
Ain’t that nice?
We are sure the PMO Office will send the mail along to the Prime Minister’s Office in due course.

In the meantime it’s party, party. The lemonade will be flowing and if Billy Parsons gets his contraption repaired in time- wherein he makes a very tasty “communion wine” I might add, we might just have some “juice” to wash down the groundhog burgers and the turnip hash browns at the BarBQue.

Sam Two Rivers from the Chacahatcha Indian Reserve across Bone Marrow Lake- once again note we are ethical, is having a few big posters of Mr. Harper commissioned and they’ll be nailed to a few trees in “Harper Green”. He says some of them “feathered folk” might even whoop and holler around a fire, right in the centre of “Harper Green” to cast a few good spells to the mighty Spirit in the Sky, ensuring Steve gets the majority of his way in the next election.
Of course, most of us here in Ropeburn think he’s just doing a fine job dealing out his extra-right, Jesus-is-a-friend of mine “values”.
Praise his name. It be- Stephen Harper.

So you lefties out there and in particular you “smart-ass” Ontario types- sorry for the bad ass language- but read ‘em and eat me. The West is rising again and we just wanna say that you all had better not hurt our boy there at 24 SusSex Drive. He’s a good boy with the right ideas- top or bottom- even though he can’t say “queer” if his mouth was shoved full of one, else he’d make the papers and get in all kinds of trouble.
Tarnation, you just have to have something like “lock-jaw” to stay out of trouble as a fella forces himself into the many political bedrooms of this fine country of ours.

I was in one of those once- in Waylayed. It was all panelled with dark wood and had a pitcher with a bunch or water glasses sitting in the middle of a big walnut table. Always wondered what was inside one of those Political bedrooms that made it so special. I’ll betcha there’s a lot of grunting and verbal hog-tying going on in one of them rooms too.

So, just keep your F’in Eastern digits off our boy or we’ll catch the next haywagon out of Ropeburn Alberta and head East for a great big ole whoopin’ party.

Yours truly,

Jed Cockburn.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Bear with me for a moment.
I have a few things to get off my chest.

For God’s Sake Iggy- Mr. Ignatief, get your freeking voice on the radio and picture on the TV and in the newspapers. Let Canadians know the Liberals are still there to save our Canada! Have tea with Liz and tell her this Stephen guy has got to go before this "Dictator in Canuk Clothing" rips down the Parliament Buildings and builds his Palace- just like yours back home.
Maybe slip some Bailey’s into that tea and she’ll be more receptive.

I should throw this same message out to Mr. Layton too. Let’s get Steve!!
I like Mr. Layton.
Jack- if you will.
Tom and I got a hug from Jack at Toronto Pride last year. My he is a handsome devil, I’ll give him that much. It’s just that I don’t think his party can overtake the “beasty” currently in the PMO. Maybe Iggy and Jacky together could but Michael says it’s just a rumour, two rolled into one. However, tough times call for tough measures.

So Gentlemen, enough is enough with this blowhard PM of ours. Good Lord he’s getting away with things that previous governments never would have- yet he has a minority government. Why is everyone afraid to touch him.
To curse him.
To cross him.
To bring him down. Why I’ll wager a hard-fought campaign could lick the smug smile right off his chubby cheeklets.
Of course we all have to have respect for the office. I wish him no ill.

He’s spending like there’s no tomorrow. One Billion dollars on security for the two “Summits”.
Yet Toronto Pride was cut from Conservative funding.
Because the minister who passes out the money for the Harperites happened to have her picture taken with a couple of good old Drag Queens last year and the Max Factor hit the fan!

If I remember correctly, it was difficult to tell who were the Queens and who was the “real” girl in the photo.
All I’m saying is get the lead out and get Harper out!
I’ll be keeping an eye out for both you boys at the 30th Pride Parade and yes Jacky, I’ll be looking for a hug and a squeeze afterwards too. Of course Olivia can have a squeeze too. She did last year after all. We even discovered their anniversary is day or two away from ours.
Cute, eh?

While on the topic of our “Conservatives”. Watch out for a “person” running in an Orillia Ward for Councillor. He’s from “out west” and his website says he moved his family here to Orillia because of the “Small Town Values”. It’s that word “values” I am worried about. Look before you make your ‘X”!

Thanks for “bearing” with me.
One more thing.
Now yesterday’s RobBlog number 81 got some interesting response. No, I don’t want to write “Gay Porn” but I am sure I could. I was telling a story straight from the heart- or at least memory. Both were true. The one about the bat I told in person to theatre audiences during my one man show a few years back called- “It’s All About Me”.
Yes, it was on the cusp of dirt and titilation but as a write I have to be able to “bare” my soul. I was a young thing back then and like all young things you could have called me “Randy”!

Finally, once upon a time there were 3Bears. Four if you count “baring my soul”.One chomped on a guy’s calf while stranded up a tree. Licked his lips and made slurping sounds, so I heard.
Another chased a guy on an ATV.
Now a lady gets chased in daylight down a country road on her bike. She says it was a stupid thing to do- to turn and ride, however, rather than taking a moment to think about making a big sound- like what a fart, I too would have peddled my ass along the road hoping a car might come by or at least the hand of Jesus would swoop down from Heaven above and scoop me into the safety of his bosom.
Being chased and partially devoured by a bear is not an item on my “bucket list”.

Beware people. Keep your eyes open. Have spray with you or a can of “horn”. I think they have cans that make a “horn-type” sound at Canadian Tire.
Maybe put on a Whitney Houston song on your IPod and turn up the volume.
Anything to scare it off.
I find staying out of the woods and off country roads is the best plan.

It’s like the best contraception in the world is not having sex, so too, staying away from places where Yogi and his friends live is 100 percent effective.

Have a good one.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


I feel nostalgic about summertime.
No, it’s not a disease.
I can’t go to the corner drugstore- even if there was such a thing today, to buy a tube of crème to rid myself of “nostalgia”.
It’s a feeling.
A harkening back to what we call the “good old days”.
I remember one summer in particular- last century.
It was July 1967.
Centennial year.
That was the summer that I was infatuated with a guy named Rick. He was trim, blonde, tan and looked fab-u-luss in a tiny speedo swim suit. He also had a brother- his name escapes me, who was built like a brick shite house. I think he was a mechanic. He had huge biceps and chest. He also looked terrific in a bathing suit. One day that July, Rick, what’s his name the brother and myself- along with a handful of girls, went swimming at Elizabeth Rutherford’s house on the lake. The three boys changed in a little cabana on the Lake Simcoe shore. I vividly remember Rick’s brother quickly stripping right down to his bare-nakedness. He was brown as a native and climbed into the rafters of the cabana and swung naked from one rafter to the next.
Hello Tarzan!
I practically fainted! (Below: Me-left. Rick-right)
I had already seen Rick completely naked a couple of times but never his brother devoid of clothes- although his tight, summer shorts left little to the imagination- in a big way! Rick and I had slept together more than a few times that summer in a cozy little bedroom in a tiny little cottage on someone’s property near a lake.
There was nothing dirty going on.
We had underwear or swimsuits on.
I remember him cozying up to me though when the summer night turned coolish.
He was delicious. Wiry blonde hair- everywhere.
I think I was in “puppy love”.
I got such a charge ~ ahem~ being around him but I don’t think I ever saw him again after that summer.

A couple of summers later I had another “love bug crush”. His name was Charlie- again a terribly trim young man- my age- but dark-haired and not as hirsute as Rick. He was in my class in high school.
We were best friends.
I stayed overnight with him at his house many times that summer of 69. It was a big house right in Orillia. His family seemed to be away a lot because we were alone in the house most of the time.
Even though there were several bedrooms, we always slept in this big queen-sized bed. God, I remember some of the nights that summer were extremely hot and humid.
Again- nothing dirty going on.
Well, not really.
You see, Charlie wore skimpy little undies to bed, which at times were more off than on!
I don’t remember wearing anything.
God, I was such a slut.

Anyway, one of those hot, hot nights- it was like being in a Tennessee Williams play, a bat came into the room. I don’t hate bats but having this one swoop back and forth caused us to dive and hide under the white sheets.
You’re right!
There’s nothing wrong with that.
It was quite fun and how should I say this- stimulating?
After a while though, it was time for that blasted bat to leave.

Charlie jumped off the bed, ran out of the room with his Marks and Sparks rolled down below his butt cheeks. It was a marvellously moving sight!

He returned a few seconds later with his fists tightly wrapped around the thick, smooth, wooden handle of what appeared to be a new corn broom.
What the hell was he going to do with that?
Whatever it was, I was up for it!

Suddenly, he jumped back on the bed. Marks and Sparks undies hanging half down his pelvis as he waved the broom back and forth in the sultry night air. He was attempting to swat the bat out one of the open windows. At one point his legs straddled me. There was a naked foot securely planted under each of my armpits. It was a glorious sight- at least from where I was laying and from my “helpless” vantage point.

He continued to swing the broom back and forth- maybe a hundred times. Every muscle in his athletic body was taut with excitement. His sweat glistened in the moonlight that muggy summer night.
Now, it might have just been the glow of the streetlamp outside the bedroom window but saying “moonlight” just makes it more romantic.
He missed hitting the bat on every single swing.
Eventually, we started laughing and his “hot” body fell on top of mine.

I can’t remember much after that….
Well, maybe I can but I choose not to at this point in time. There are websites a plenty for that sort of thing!

Ahhhh. Warm, nostalgic summers. Does it get any better?
Another time, I’ll tell you about a lifeguard friend of mine who filled out a nylon swimsuit like no other. Is it getting warm in here- or is it just me?

Monday, June 7, 2010


“Roger Turcott has a big schlong!”
“I said Tizzy, Roger Turcott has a big schlong. Pat Darlington saw it!”
“And you know this for a fact Henry?”
He nods.
“I don’t believe it. Let’s get to the long and short of it.”
“Tee Hee. Funny you should say that Tizzy.”
“Nevermind. I mean, let’s confront him. Honestly Henry, the humour you find in things is sadly shameful.”
“You mean just march right to his office and say it- right to his face?”
“My!”- says Henry, fingers fanned across his face.

A few seconds pass…

“Miss Pendulous, we are here to speak with Mr. Turcott.”
“You can’t. He’s in a meeting with the Nettleton Twins- Jedidiah and Bruce.”- she smiles curtly.
“We’ll see. Come Henry.”
Pushing her swivel chair away from her desk and clutching the pink sweater draped around her soft shoulders, Miss Pendulous- Mr. Turcott’s “Girl Friday”, lunges to block Tizzy and Henry’s path attempting to clutch her sweater before it falls to the floor. She’s misses. It drops softly and she lunges too late to block Tizzy and Henry’s entrance into Mr. Turcott’s office.
The pair glide through the French doors leading into the office. Inside sits the Nettleton Twins with Mr. Turcott opposite, behind his big oak desk.
They confront him.
“Mr. Turcott. Roger. Is it true what Henry here is saying?”
Miss Pendulous enters. “Sorry Mr. Roger. I mean Mr. Turcott. I tried to…” Her voice trails.
“No problem Miss Pendulous. I’ll deal with it.” He pauses and says- “Miss Pendulous, might I say you look quite lovely today.” She blushes. "You may return to your desk now.”
Miss Pendulous blushes again- broadly, scoops up the sweater from the floor and returns to her position, at the desk just outside the French doors of Mr. Turcott’s office.
All the while the Nettleton Twins sit with their mouths hanging wide open.

“Tizzy. Henry. What is the meaning of this? Can’t you see I am in a meeting with the Nettleton Twins- Jedidiah and Bruce?”
Tizzy glares at the twins and pointing to the French doors of Mr. Turcott’s airy office he calmy says- “Shut your gobs. You’re letting the flies out! Now get the Hell out!”
“Tizzy!”- says Roger gruffly, “That’s rather inappropriate, wouldn’t you say? It's a damn good think I like you. If you know what I mean.” He winks at Tizzy.

“Oh, I...”- he points a finger back and forth between himself and Henry. “I know what you mean and we have plenty to say.”
The twins depart.
“What, then?”
“Henry here tells me that you have a…well, it seems that your ~ahem~ Roger you apparently have a big schlong! There. I’ve said it.”
Roger looks Tizzy right in the eye. A bright smile stretches across his face as he says smugly-“Yes, as a matter of fact I do!”
The two inquisitors gasp loudly! Together no less.”
“What’s the big deal?”. Mr. Turcott leans back in his chair, hands supporting the back of his head.
Henry giggles.
“He said “big!”.
“Yes. I heard it Henry.” Tizzy gives Henry a “just nevermind now” look.
“Look here you two. You barge into my office. Interrupt a meeting and blurt out the fact I have a big schlong? What gives?”
Tizzy looks to Henry.
“Well”- says Henry, “I heard it from Betsy Andover.
“That girl in accounts receivable with the zits all across her forehead? The one that has coffee with Martin Tinsdale every day after work?”
“That’s the one Mr. Turcott.”
“Well boys, rumour has it that she’s almost four months with child.”
“Who’s child?”- asked Henry.
“Not sure.”- replies Mr, Turcott.
Tizzy interrups.
“Now hold on a minute you two “gossiping Gerdas”. We’re here to talk about your humungous schlong- not Betsy’s bad skin and unfortunate circumstance!”
Mr. Turcott stands.
Henry and Tizzy’s eyes drop to a spot just below Roger’s belt. They blush.
Mr. Turcott catches the drift and says with hands firmly on his hips- “What??”

There’s silence.

“Oh, Roger!”- Tizzy breaks the quiet. “What you have there. Right there at the big crease in your slacks.”
Roger glances down while Henry stifles his giggles and tries to get the blush in his cheeks to subside.
“Hmmm, that’s odd. It must be a bit of catsup sticking there from the fried egg sandwich I had at the diner this morning.”
He licks a centre finger and scratches the offending spot- vigorously.
More giggles from both Tizzy and Henry.
As Mr. Turcott finishes rubbing hard, he looks up and says- “That looks good, don’t you think boys?”
They nod affirmatively.
“So back to the matter at hand. You’ve heard that I had a big schlong so I expect you want to sit on it.”
“What??”- cry the boys.
“Sit on it?- questions Henry.
“Why Roger!” Tizzy is overcome with emotion. Roger continues.
“You both like a thrill- don’t you. My “Big Schlong” is moored at the Marina down at the base of South Street. Why don’t we go for a quick sail around the lake after work and you both can see how big it really is?”

Both Tizzy and Henry melt to the floor in front of Roger’s desk.
“That’s strange. Uh, Miss Pendulous-“
He presses the intercom button.
“Could I have a couple of glasses of water in here please?”

Friday, June 4, 2010

ROBBLOG W E E K E N D Edition #80

I have been in a conundrum of sorts the past month or so.
My knickers have been in a tighty whitey twist!
I have had a decision to make and I have made part of it- at least.
However, it didn’t come without a bit of thinking.

At this point in time, I have decided to keep the Swisssh Website on the Net. The domain name was up for renewal. Then, next month the annual server fees for the website come due. If I were to give up the domain name, someone would buy it and hold it for ransom. Then if I wanted to use it again, I would have to pay the company holding the name an exorbitant amount to get it back. Such is the Net. Since I have a goodly number of hits a month on the Swisssh Website, it wouldn’t be cheap.
I renewed the domain name.

It’s not the first time I have decided to “review the situation”. Swisssh takes up a lot of my time. It has evolved over the past 4 years (Birth date: July 20, 2006). Swisssh is not the fanciest website on the block. I’m still using the same programme to put the site together and upload it to my server that I always have. It does limit doing some of the “fancy” things other websites do- but it uploads fast. I am familiar with what I can do.
I can make changes and additions quickly and still keep it fairly simple and straightforward.
I have changed the look of the site a lot since January.
The biggest change?
Now readers see just one page instead of four- coupled with the fact the page is called the Swisssh Radio Page. The other changes you may have noticed already.
Basically- less stuff.
So, I’ll keep “swissshing” for now.

The other half of the decision- my conundrum, is regarding Swisssh Radio. Swisssh Radio was three back on March 7th. I enjoy Swisssh. I like the music.
I should. I chose every song. I should like listening to it- shouldn’t I?
I have also reviewed the positives and negatives of running an Internet Station before in much the same way I consider the advantages or disadvantages of the website.
Sometimes I get new ideas. Sometimes I leave it the same. I think it’s rather healthy to re-assess from time to time.

I haven’t entirely considered Swisssh Radio’s future at this point. There’s a good chance it will stay on the Internet Airwaves but that is my decision alone. Two things have made the decision more difficult this time around.

First of all money is a consideration. I pay for two servers every month. That allows people like you to listen. If I don’t get advertising or donations, I end up paying it myself each month. That’s not too bad but if I need to update equipment it becomes costlier.

Secondly, a few weeks ago, I received an e-mail that made me feel incredibly bad.
A portion of the e-mail I received said this:

“ Swisssh Radio sounds awful.
You have a problem. It's over-modulated and well... swissshy.
I'm not making this up.
Two tin cans strung together with string and a cat in heat singing
from one end would sound better, though granted, not as entertaining.
Did I say "swissshy"?
Add "muggy" to that list also.”

Needless to say, I was taken aback. This was from someone I repected. I have Swisssh tuned in all day long on an Internet Radio. It always sounds good to me.
Maybe I have a tin ear.
Maybe the sound of cats in heat is like a Beethoven Symphony to me.
Perhaps I like muggy, over-modulated, swissshy sounding radio.
I asked a friend- who has helped me with technical problems since the birth of Swisssh Radio, to listen. I just asked him to listen to see if Swisssh “sounded” Good to him.
I didn’t tell him I received the e-mail.
He did listen one day- all day.
He couldn’t hear anything wrong.
I e-mailed a few friends.
They all said the same thing.
“Sounds good to me”.
One friend listens through a surround sound and wondered what she should be listening for.
I said- “I don’t know.”

Now this person who sent the e-mail may read this blog.
I want the sender to know that I am not adverse to hearing comments good or bad but this series of negative remarks was just a huge “kick in the balls!”
It really brought me down. I agonized about the sound for days.
Just ask Tom. I drove him nuts!

I don’t have unlimited funds to add a bunch of fancy-dancy equipment. I know the author is in the same “dinghy” in this ocean of sound called Radio.

I have a 64k player and a 128k player on the Swisssh Website. It was suggested I try a 192k player. I honestly don’t think many of my listeners would detect the difference. After all Swisssh Radio is not on the Net for “audiophiles.” I appreciate that there are stations out there at 192k- but there’s a heavy duty price to pay per month to broadcast T 192k.

So, I am still thinking about Swisssh Radio’s future.
 Maybe eventually the Copyright Board will bring all net stations to their knees.
Maybe when SOCAN actually forces Tariff 22 to include Internet Radio- which is not mentioned in the tariff currently, that will be the death knell.

In the meantime, I can pull the plug on Swisssh Radio myself. It just takes a second in the studio to push one button. Maybe I will one day when I feel right about it.
You’ll hear the dead air.
I certainly would have a lot of free time to do other things, however, a guy has to have a hobby- doesn’t he?

Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


Are we becoming a Police State here in Orillia?

This thought crossed my mind when I read about kitchen garburators the other day. The simple, sad fact is that if you live in the City of Orillia and don’t own one now, you can never have one in this city. If you have one now and it then breaks down from this day forth, you may never own another garburator again. Thus spaketh the law of Orillia. Oh yes, there’s a sub-section too. If the aforementioned garburator doesn’t masticate your table scraps to a finite bit of lumpy liquid and it clogs up the entrance to the sewer from your house, then you will be required to pay for the “roto-rooting” of the sewer.
So garburator owners beware. You tread a fine line between righteousness and wrongness. Besides, the City wants you to use your green compost bins for table scraps. Those are the green plastic bins where you store nuts, screws, bolts and other important items- everything of course but the table scraps they were intended for. Those are the same plastic bins that neighbourhood racoons open with great ease. I would guess the racoons had the instruction manuals delivered to the front doors of their hollow stumps.

In case you were wondering, these Municipal laws- called bylaws, are in place to keep “things” in place. A bylaw makes us all equal- although I personally feel quite superior to many of you living in this City of ours.
Please don’t judge me.
I won’t apologize, I just happen to be superior.
These “bylaws” are meant to keep regular folk- yes and superior folk like me, in check. Bylaws keep us from doing the “wrong thing”. It brings us closer together.

What could be termed a “wrong thing?”
A wrong thing to do- besides installing a new garburator, would be watering your lawn on an “even” day of the calendar month even though your house is “odd”. Now, I know there are many “odd houses” in Orillia but in this case it’s not a put-down, it simply means you live in a house with an “odd” street number as opposed to an “even” street number.

Dog licences.
It’s such a big deal in this burg of 30 thousand people. If you don’t buy one, the “Secret Service Dog Police” come knocking at your door. If you don’t answer they leave a threatening note describing the circumstances of non payment of the licence fee.
You don’t want to know.
It’s ugly.
Oh, don’t try “meowing” behind the front door either to throw the Dog Police off track. I’ve seen them sneak up to fences, peer over and look for evidence of dog poop, leashes and dog houses.
These guys are relentless and aim to get their “dog”.

If you live in Orillia you’ll know what a “Sump Pump” is all about. It keeps water from seeping into your basement keeping the bag of onions- propped up next to the dryer, from becoming waterlogged and soggy. Your sump pump must be drained outside and not into the sewer. Don’t get caught with your hose shoved into the wrong hole.

For those of you addicted to setting off fireworks, you should know that you can’t set them off in any public place or in a spot where anyone can hear them go off. Now that limits the number of locations within the city limits just a bit.
So stop buying the damned things and scaring my dog shitless!!
That is a good bylaw.
Finally- street parking.
A simple rule of thumb and remember I am superior to many of you and have a better grasp of what looks right and what looks wrong.
Please heed my “bon mots” below!
If you don’t have a driveway or garage that is big enough to house more than one vehicle, then don’t buy a second car or truck. You can’t park from November through to April on the street at night anyway without getting a hefty ticket from those “gentle” bylaw/cop wannabe officers. Parking on the front lawn is always an option but not a pleasant one. It’s akin to putting an old chesterfield on the front porch. Of course many Orillians believe that placing an old couch on a porch and parking a vehicle on the front lawn just adds to the property’s street appeal.

Now about that 5 cent charge for a plastic bag.
Don’t get me started.
However, I wonder why those of you upset with the Ontario Government for bringing in the HST, aren’t you absolutely livid at having to pay 5 cents for a plastic bag.
5 cents!!
If you’re good at remembering your cotton bags- that’s swell! You save a bundle. I can’t tell you the number of times I have walked into a store, shopped and then remember my cloth bags are out in the van. Of course I go fetch them. I’m not paying the “piper” which in this case is the “big bag devil” at city hall.
So we save a few plastic trees. How about all the chemicals and pollutants sent into the air by plastic bag manufacturing plants- huh?

My point is- enjoy the “Police State” in which you dwell.
It could be worse.
We could all be forced to live in Barrie.