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It’s neither here, nor is it there

Bill Fox

Bill Fox

By Bill Fox/Columnist

This week, I just wanted to share some of my random thoughts.

When I came to Canada as a four-year-old immigrant from England, my first few months in school were very difficult.

When I was in Grade 1, my mom went in to St. Theresa’s Shrine School in Scarborough and was told that I needed to improve my reading.

In those days it was no easy task to get into Toronto’s Eaton store to purchase a “Dick and Jane” reader. Seeing it was before the subway was completed, my mom had to take the bus and two streetcars to get to Eaton’s.

The lesson here is the best thing parents can do to help kids is to read to them, read with them, and have them read to you. As a result of both my parents helping me, I ended up skipping from Grade 2 to Grade 4.

I love the huge Canadian flag that you see as you approach Oshawa from the west along the 401. Every morning as I have my coffee, that flag helps me to judge the winds for that day.

Recently it disappeared for a few weeks. I emailed the Sail Store, thinking it was their flag and got a nice response from the assistant manager Gary Hashimoto explaining that the flag is actually the property of Smart Centers, the owner of the retail complex.

Gary explained the flag had been damaged and other customers were inquiring about when it would be fixed. Great to see it is flying again.

I, like many of you, am on the “no call” list. In recent weeks, I have had several calls, with my call display showing 905 or 613 numbers, so of course I answer it.

Half the time it is about duct cleaning services which really bothers me as we live in an apartment. If my wife answers she simply says, “we have no ducks.”

Recently these disturbing calls have been about my Visa card being used at 4:30 in the morning. It’s common knowledge that this is a scam.

However, what really bothers me is that the phone is now ringing at 7:30 a.m. even on weekends.

Another thing I have noticed from my call display is that some calls now start with a letter such as “V” followed by a long number. I hate being rude, but someone must be getting ducts cleaned or these calls would all stop, don’t you think?

Of course the secret is that, if when you say hello and no one answers then you know it is a scam of some sort.

Thank goodness we Canadians don’t have the blind allegiance to the flag or to the Office of the President of the United States. I could go on and on about Trump and how he should have been kicked out of office long, long ago.

He is so much like a child – if someone says something negative about him, he has to tweet right away with insults. As you would certainly notice if you ever watch CNN, the man has distorted the truth with fiction.

Johnny Cash once had such blind allegiance to the Office of the President. But Johnny had been to Vietnam visiting the troops and saw first hand that Cambodia was being attacked without congressional approval.

President Nixon vehemently denied that Cambodia was attacked. So, a few months after his Vietnam visit, Johnny was invited to the White House to meet Nixon, and hopefully talk about prison reform.

Nixon, trying to break the ice in front of the press, asked Johnny to play two of his favourite songs, “Okie From Muskogee” and Guy Drake’s “Welfare Cadillac.”

Johnny insisted he couldn’t play those songs but he had another he would like to play. With the leader of the western world held captive, Cash launched into “What Is Truth?” – a song that championed the idea of youth and freedom, with a pointedly anti-war second verse. Nixon sat listening with a frozen smile.

I wish Johnny was still alive today so that he could meet Trump and play that song for him.