Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sunshine, Executions...and a Contest

We have been spoiled here on The Rock. That's now two glorious, sun shining mornings in a row. It's 10 deg. C at the moment (50F) but going up to a balmy 16 (62F) [provocative music plays as Al flops to floor and wriggles out of sweaty snowsuit]. I just won't talk about all the rain that will fall with the warmer temps. All of the sun and rain is causing the grass to grow at an alarming rate and it will soon need cutting. The boy will have to scoop up the land mines (dog poo) ahead of time. Such an enjoyable way for the lad to spend this Victoria Day weekend...

I notice that my neighbour across the street has birds nesting in an opening in the gable of his house where he removed the chimney last fall. Nothing like communing with the wildlife up here in Canada. We once had squirrels nesting in the rafters above our deck in our last house back in London. I came home after work one day to discover my wife up on a stepladder, wearing a set of rubber gloves, trying to extricate the babies from their nest with a set of BBQ tongs.

Last years dead clematis vine, its skeletal remains woven throughout and hanging from a wrought iron frame on the side of the shed, is showing signs of new life and will flower soon. That was a blatant segue to a blog posting at the Toronto Sun website the other day by journalist Alan Parker. Here is a link to the story where Mr. Parker presents a few facts and figures about crime and punishment in Canada...and just in case you don't want to read the story, I'll present the accompanying photo below at the scene of the last public hanging in Canada in 1902.



The whole public hanging business is, or course, another skillful segue to remind you all of my upcoming contest to be announced here Saturday morning. One of the prizes to be offered up is a copy of the novel Catherine Snow, a story about the last woman to be hanged in Newfoundland (what did you expect, I write horror stories...).

The contest is to celebrate the first anniversary of this humble blog. There was some discussion after my last post about the availability of cake at this celebration. In my experience I have discovered that both cake and fish products do not fare well in the Canadian or US postal systems. My solution will be to purchase one of those nasty Christmas fruit cakes. You know the kind...the big heavy ones that folks mail back and forth to one another for decades. Each time one of you visits me here in Newfoundland I will break out the Sawzall and carve you off a hunk (to be washed down with a glass of rum, of course). So sharpen you pencils, or whatever your writing implement of choice, and check back on Saturday for details.

15 comments:

Laura Eno said...

Your segues are, uh...well...I want to see a segue from dog poo landmines. LOL!
Please, not fruitcake for me or I will threaten to mail you back some.

K.Hinny said...

ah... a segue after my own mind! Nice little post, I enjoyed the skipping around mentality. Keeps my ADD brain on it's toes :D

Have a great day Alan!

(and my Husband actually watches TRAILER PARK BOYS, so I do know who Bubbles is :D)

Cathy Olliffe said...

I'll take Laura's share. I LOVE fruitcake (pretty sure I know what that says about me).
I followed your link and read Parker's piece for the Sun. Very interesting. I find that kind of stuff morbidly fascinating. And I love the photo. Look at the killer's hands, clasped at his front like he's in church. I always wonder what is going through a person's mind at a time like that.
I look forward to Saturday, Alan.

John Wiswell said...

Give Cathy my slice, too...

Aaron Polson said...

Cathy might have to fight me for the extra fruitcake. I make about four, 10-lb (4.55ish kilogram, eh?) loaves each year and send them by pack mule to family. Yum.

Rebecca Nazar said...

My clematis--aren't they amazing?-- is much better this year too. Yay!

Laurita said...

Oh, I don't think your boy is going to enjoy his weekend chore. Picking up land mines is not nearly as fun as a public hanging (or reading about them anyway).

Elspeth Antonelli said...

We're paying for your nice weather on THIS coast- rain, wind, and snow on the passes through the mountains. I'm not impressed. By the way, anytime you want to send fruitcake to me, I'd take it with a warm thank you.

Marisa Birns said...

I had fruitcake last Christmas and it was delicious, so am a fan!

And it's meant to be eaten in a thin slice, and with tea. No chunks of cake.

Have fun on Saturday!

Michael Solender said...

hmm.. that fruit cake looks very similar to one I sent my aunt Mable..

Alan W. Davidson said...

Laura- I get the feeling that you don't like fruit cake...

Kara- I try to keep everyone's ADD brain busy. LOL, glad to hear you know of the Trailerpark Boys. Disclaimer...they are not representative of Canadians. Well, maybe a few...

Cathy- I hadn't noticed about the killer's hands in the photo. All fruit cake goes to you...

John- Duly noted, sir!

Aaron- Perhaps you included a fruit cake passage in 'Lothesome'?

Becca- They're nice looking when in full bloom. They spread across the trellis like weeds.

Laurita- You are correct. I don't doubt he'd choose to watch the public hanging, morbid little creature that he is.

Elspeth- I think Cathy would hijack the fruit cake shipment as it passed through Ontario.

Marisa- I believe the cake should be in slabs and therefore usable as a weapon in case of intruders.

Michael- Your aunt Mable sent me that photo. She noted you sent her the fruit cake in 1974...and it's still as fresh as the day she received it.

Danielle Ferries said...

Mmmmm, fruitcake.

Bukowski's Basement said...

I'm not the biggest of eaters --- but I'll take the rum!!

David Barber said...

Been busy of late so just doing a little catch up. I'll have the rum also...oh give me the cake as well. Be back Saturday.

Alan W. Davidson said...

Danielle- I shall mark you down as another 'yes' for the fruit cake. You bunch are a rare breed.

Anthony and David- The dark, demerara rum is popular here. I shall make sure we are well supplied in case either of you shows up!