I had never given caterpillars much thought before.  But the other day I saw a black fuzzy caterpillar wiggling through the grass, and stopping to nibble now and again.  I watched and wondered, “Does this caterpillar have any idea how much its life will change?  Does it know that where it lives, how it travels, what it eats, how it looks will be so different, and have no resemblance to its present life?  Wow!”

Some say that caterpillars and butterflies are symbolic of what happens to us when our bodies die.  Our spiritual existence and appearance have no resemblance to our present lives.

It is a good thing Mother Nature has not allowed human beings to influence her ways.  If she did then, caterpillars would be offered courses and counseling to help them to prepare for their new lives.  And butterflies would be offered treatment for Post-Tramauric Stress Disorder (PTSD).


What? No Smell? Not For Long

Today, October 18th, I did not smell marijuana until the middle of the day.  I was on a bus on my way to my storage unit.  An old man—a really old man!—reeked of skunk and was munching on a bag of chips.  When I got to my storage unit, the building was high from all the pot smoke in the air.  From storage I went to the library.  Near the library, on the street, a couple of teenagers shared a joint.

I fear a drug test will show marijuana in my blood.  And who will believe me when I say, “I don’t smoke pot, but I’m around a lot of people who do.”?

What? No Smell?

I was not looking forward to today, October 17th, the day they legalized marijuana in Canada.  Prior to today, almost everywhere I went, I smelled marijuana.  This happened every day, every day, every day.  If people were not smoking it, then they had just smoked it and smelled like a skunk.  If I was smelling it almost everywhere when it was illegal, then I assumed I would smell it everywhere after they legalized it.

I never used to mind the smell of marijuana, but began to dislike it because I was smelling it almost everywhere every day, every day, every day.  I also worried that it would show up in my blood if I did a drug test.

Did I worry about October 17th for nothing?  I have gone almost everywhere today, and I have yet to smell marijuana.  Unbelievable!  It is Day One of legalized pot, and I have yet to smell it or see anyone smoking it.  I cannot remember the last time I went an entire day without smelling marijuana or seeing people smoke it.  How long will this last?

A Little Black Humor


Humor is subjective.  What is funny to one person is not funny to another.

Nothing is sacred for me when it comes to humor.  Anything goes.  I do not let the subject of the joke decide whether I will laugh.  I have had some dark times in my life, and humor has helped me to cope.  As a result, I ended up with what some people call, “a sick sense of humor.”

Yesterday I met a friend who shares my “sick” sense of humor.  We joked and laughed about a few taboo topics, and did not have to worry about offending anyone.

Naturally, we joked about death.  I said that I would like as an inscription on my tombstone:  You never know how your day is going to go.

He came up with inscriptions far funnier than mine.  He said that he had three things he wanted on his tombstone, and that he could not decide which one to have.

I will leave you with his three choices:

1 – An arrow on his tombstone pointing to the next grave with the words, I’m with stupid.

2 – Inscription:  I’m losing weight.  Ask me how.

3 – Inscription:  Don’t tell my wife that I am here.

Blank Page

He sat there facing a blank page.  What to write?  The words would not come.  Where were the voices to tell him what to write?  On a break?  Do voices in your head take breaks?  If so, then where do they go?  Someone else’s head?  Do the voices compare heads?

I like So-and-So’s head better than What’s-his-name’s head because there is more space.”

“Yes, but I don’t like the echo, in So-and-So’s head, when we talk to each other.”

The blank page stared back at him.  Perhaps if he went for a walk, then the words would come.  Walking worked for Charles Dickens when the words would not come.  Someone once said that not only should we think with our minds, but also think with our bodies.  And how do we think with our bodies?  Movement!  Walking, dancing, jumping, shaking—it does not matter as long as our bodies are moving.

He put his pencil down and got up to go for a walk.  Perhaps while walking he would meet the voices in his head, and they would tell him what to write.

The Number One Regret of the Dying

Based on her experiences as a palliative care nurse, Bronnie Ware wrote, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.  The number one regret?

I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”

Twenty-eight years ago, I quit a high-paying job.  I was burnt out.  I hated going to work—hated it!  I was terrified at the time, but I found the courage to follow my heart.  Financially it was a stupid move to quit.  Emotionally it was a smart move—one of the best moves I have ever made.  (It would have been easier to quit if I had known this at the time.)

Following my heart brought disapproval and lectures from family and friends.  I was not living up to their expectations.  Twenty-eight years later, I am still following my heart and still hearing lectures.

I used to get angry over people telling me how my gut feelings were wrong.  People told me that I should be doing what they thought I should be doing.  But over the years I have grown spiritually and emotionally, thanks to following my heart, and the lectures no longer bother me.  You would think that after twenty-eight years the lectures would stop, but people still have their expectations which I should meet.  What people are saying is, “It’s okay for you to follow your heart as long as your heart agrees with what I think is best for you.”

I did not say much while getting a lecture from a friend the other day.  But the next time someone lectures me about me being true to myself, I will ask, “Will you be lying on my deathbed having regrets over the choices I made with my life?”

Voices After Thanksgiving

“So, did you have a good Thanksgiving?”

Yes, I went to my sister’s for dinner.  I always like going to my sister’s because she treats me like family.

“And what are you grateful for?”

Many things.

“Can you name one of the many things?”

Well, I am grateful for you.


I can never be lonely.  I love crawling inside my head and listening to what you have to say?

“You should write what we have to say.”

I do.

“But not always.”

True, I should write more.  But if I did write more, would I still think, ‘I should write more’?  Can I ever write enough?

“Why not try writing more and find out.  We have so much to tell you.”

I want to promise I will, but I know I have a pile of excuses that can’t wait for me to use them.  And then there is self-doubt.  Does it matter whether I write?  Will the Universe stop if I don’t?

“You have to walk your own path.  We cannot walk it for you, but we can offer support.  When you are ready to write, we will be here.”

And for that I am grateful.  Thanks.

One of Those Days


The Moon was not in the Seventh House and Jupiter did not align with Mars.  No one really knew where the Moon was.  Was it in someone’s pants waiting to be exposed?   As for Jupiter and Mars?  They were aligned and then they broke up.  In other words, it was one of those days.

When I got up this morning I stubbed my toe and taught myself some new swear words.

I got lost on my way to work.  This was odd because I work from home.

Just after lunch, I dropped my heart and it broke.  How do you mend a broken heart?

My neighbors, who are cannibals, invited me for dinner.  I would have gone, but my toe was still sore and I had not found my way home from work.

I will be going to bed early.  And as I lay me down to sleep, I will hope that tomorrow the Moon will be in a house instead of someone’s pants.  I will also hope that Jupiter and Mars get back together.

Way To Go, Premier Ford!

We here in Ontario, Canada, are lucky.  Our newly elected Conservative government has only one problem to solve: too many councillors on Toronto City Council.  Premier Doug Ford, leader of the Conservatives, has solved all the other problems that plagued the province prior to him being elected.  Since being elected, Premier Ford eliminated Ontario’s debt; he reduced taxes; he brought the price of a bottle of beer back to a buck; he eliminated poverty and homelessness; he stopped the opioid crisis; he solved all the Aboriginal land issues in Ontario and improved conditions on reserves; he reduced gas and electricity prices; he addressed the gun and gang violence; he improved public transit; he improved healthcare by reducing waiting times; and, finally, he eliminated unemployment.  The only problem he has not solved is that there are too many councillors on Toronto City Council.

From the Manitoba border to the west, the Quebec border to the east, Hudson Bay to the north and the U.S. border to the south, all Ontarians worry about the number of councillors on Toronto City Council.  This is the only thing they worry about.  It is the first thing they think about when they awake and the last thing they think about before falling asleep.  And since Premier Ford is for the people, he is urgently trying to solve this problem so all the people of Ontario will stop worrying about the number of councillors on Toronto City Council.

Premier Ford will stop at nothing to resolve this issue quickly.  He will even use Section 33 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms to override a court decision which declared his reduce-Toronto-City-Council legislation unconstitutional.  It is an urgent issue, and he must solve it as soon as possible.

Ontario will have no problems once Premier Ford reduces the number of councillors on Toronto City Council.

Way to go, Premier Ford, way to go!

Why I Do Not Like Dinner Invitations

People do not listen to me after inviting me to dinner and asking me what I want to eat.  Food is not a big deal for me.  If I could live without eating, then I would.  But since I have to eat, then I like to keep my meals simple as opposed to mixing everything with everything else.  The simpler my meals, the easier they are to digest.  Also, if I keep my meals simple then they do not end up in my pants.  Eating complex meals does not give me much time between having to go, and going.  I have lots of time between having to go and going when I keep my meals simple.

The following is a typical conversation involving a dinner invitation.  The speakers change, but the words stay pretty much the same:

“Gary, what would you like for dinner?”

“Rice is fine.”

“What else besides rice?”

“A bowl of rice is fine.  Whatever dishes you are making with the rice, just set some rice aside for me.”

“You can’t have just rice.  You have to have something with it.”

“Water.  I’ll have a glass of water with a bowl of rice.  Remember, I am not visiting to eat.  I am coming over to see you.”

“I know, but you can’t have just rice and water.”

“But you asked me what I wanted and I told you, and now you’re telling me that I can’t have it.”

“Because you need to eat more than rice.  I have this wonderful vegetarian recipe for goula-goula-boula rice.  It’s got lentils, tofu, tomatoes, onions, carrots, celery, spaghetti, potatoes, garlic, honey, apples, raisins, chickpeas, grapes, chocolate, and cherries.   Doesn’t that sound yummy?”

“It does, but you don’t have to go to all that trouble.”

“It’s no trouble.”

“Okay so make it for everyone else, and just set aside a bowl of rice for me before you mix it with everything.”

“No, you can’t have just rice.  You’ll love the goula-goula-boula rice, and that is what I’m going to make.”


This is why I do not like dinner invitations.  The hosts always ask me what I would like to eat, and always ignore my simple answers insisting I eat some fancy-schmancy meal.  The meal is tasty, but anxiety stops me from enjoying it.  While eating the fancy-schmancy meal I keep thinking, “I hope this doesn’t make me shit my pants.  I hope this doesn’t make me shit my pants.”