They say that involvement in sport is good for seniors. For senior teachers, involvement in coaching is the best of both worlds. When you retire as a teacher who has truly enjoyed the vocation of educating the next generation, you are left wandering and wondering – what next? There is this insatiable desire to teach, to inspire, to foster critical thinking, and so little time. You know, inevitably, that your teaching career has an expiration date.
Enter Kaitlyn Lawes and her now infamous Rocks and Rings dance. An entire generation of young curlers were inspired to take up a sport that had previously been the domain of the old heavy drinking white boy's club. Kaitlyn, and Team Jones competing against Team Homan, became role models for youth across Canada to pick up their brooms and sweep – HURRY HARD!
The "tick" became the most practised shot in the country and high school and club teams began to renew their memberships. As a consequence, clubs needed coaches and the paper chase began anew. So here we are, teaching and coaching once again, with a wonderful group of Little Rock, Bantam and Junior Men and Women who will continue curling as a lifelong sport. We now have teams of young curlers developing into skilled competitors, and the resources provided by our provincial and national organizations are developing skilled coaches to support them.
In our little corner of the world at the new King Curling Club, this "elder" teacher is honoured to be coaching another generation of rock stars. And the joy comes with realizing that it's all about the journey, not the destination.
Skid Crease, Caledon
The vote wasn't even close. An overwhelming 1,614 members of the jury found David Suzuki not guilty of "seditious libel for defaming and discrediting Canada" in his battle to protect Earth for current and future generations. A mere 117 disgruntled extreme right-wing Conservatives and extinction economists voted against his carbon manifesto.
Laurie Brown's play, The Trial of David Suzuki, was held, significantly, the week before Remembrance Day at the Royal Ontario Museum complete with real environment commissioners, economists, judges and the children who will inherit the earth.
While we drive at full speed into the twenty-first century looking in the rearview mirror, Suzuki is focused clearly on the brick wall ahead of us. He knows full well, as do all of the muzzled government scientists, that our forests were never the creditable carbon sink that the Martin Liberals spun, that our tar sands were hardly the Ethical Oil that the Harper Conservatives spun, and that the impacts of accelerating climate change are very real, as the IPCC has been predicting. The jury got it right for once.
This mock court was only the first in a series, I hope. I can't wait for The Trial of Stephen Harper.
Skid Crease, Caledon
"I couldn't care less!" Those were the defining and defiant words from the mouth of Prime Minister Steven Harper at the opening of the Conservative Party of Canada convention. There was no apology for the confusion, corruption, or cost of the scandal enveloping the Prime Minister's Office and the Senate. There was no acceptance of responsibility for the appointment of, previous praise of, and current condemnation of his three now disgraced Senators. There was not a single clear answer or explanation to any of the direct questions that had been asked in the House of Commons by the representatives of a majority of the Canadian people.
"I couldn't care less," was the response to months of confusion, prorogation, and channel changing in parliament. This current scandal has been as much about the need of an incredulous public to have an honest explanation from the Prime Minister as it has been about the accusations surrounding Senators Duffy, Wallin, and Brazeau. How is it that expenses checked and approved by the Prime Minister for Senator Wallin suddenly become worthy of an RCMP fraud charge? How is it that Senator Duffy, the PM's star crowd pleaser from the last election campaign, suddenly gets the bums rush from the Conservative Caucus and the Senate? How is it that Nigel Wright, praised by the Prime Mnister for his honesty and humanity, suddenly becomes the devil of deception?
The truth, Canada, is that there is no Captain at the helm of our ship. We have a delusional, micromanaging megalomaniac at the wheel and the ship is off course. To every question begging a responsible answer, comes the current battle cry, "Jobs, Prosperity, Growth. and the Economy, stupid, the Economy." And the party faithful rise and cheer and wave their thundersticks.
A Eurpoean Union Free-Trade deal, still to be approved by the Provinces and every separate member nation of the European Union, will not be enough to mask the stench emanating from the Prime Minister's Office. You should care a whole lot more about what the majority of Canadians think, Mr. Prime Minister. The majority of Canadians are singing along with This Hour Has 22 Minutes, and their brilliant parody song, "Tories' by Borde – check it out on YouTube – the only thing we can do right now is laugh. Until we get an honest answer.
Skid Crease, Caledon