….of wisdom & a sensational summer week…



…”BREXIT: UK economy must endure ‘short sharp shock’ after vote”…”Does it matter what the new Prime Minister wears?”…”After the Nice attack: If he’s a nobody, who do we blame?”…

All in the day’s headlines as the new Uk Prime Minister Theresa May will make her first foreign trip as Prime Minister this week to Berlin on Wednesday and Brussels & Paris, thereafter.

Cheers to a wise and wonderful Monday & a sensational summer week!



…of ‘perfect storms’, explorer, & internet…


…”World Bank: Perfect storm warning for 2016″…”RIP IE: Older versions of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer lose support next week”…”Surviving Without Internet: BC town offline since November living like it’s 1990″…

It seems the BRICS economies–Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa are all in trouble and could inhibit economic growth worldwide for 2016!

It’s been quite sometime now that Microsoft’s XP operating system has been unsupported & now starting January 12th the older version of the IE browser will meet the same fate. Users caveat emptor is the message!

It seems the residents of Stewart, BC are having quite the time!
“It’s frustrating. How do you say that in French? I’m pissed off”, grumbled one resident!
The good news apparently, thought not soon enough for many, is that all should be re-connected by February!


The Internet is just a world passing around notes in a classroom. ~Jon Stewart

The Internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow. ~Bill Gates

Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day; teach that person to use the Internet and they won’t bother you for weeks. ~Author Unknown

Warning: the Internet may contain traces of nuts. ~Author Unknown

Almost overnight, the Internet’s gone from a technical wonder to a business must. ~Bill Schrader

The age of technology has both revived the use of writing and provided ever more reasons for its spiritual solace. Emails are letters, after all, more lasting than phone calls, even if many of them r 2 cursory 4 u. ~Anna Quindlen

Cheers to a thriving Thursday that sings— connected!!!


…of dignity & sublime…


…”It took me six months to get from Syria to the UK. Now I want to live with dignity”…”It’s not the Chinese economy that’s on life support”…”Wikipedia’s view of the world is written by the West”…

It seems the UK, USA, France, Germany, and Italy are responsible for 45% of the edits on “geocoded Wikipedia” according to an Oxford University study.

Something about the Western world depending on zero interest rates combined with Chinese growth. If the latter falters, western economies fragility will be very evident while Beijing, they say, will have concerns but not panic.

And so go the headlines, when in every corner of the world, everyone wants, needs, and should be entitled to a life with dignity.

It is often easier to become outraged by injustice half a world away than by oppression and discrimination half a block from home. ~Carl T. Rowan

There is a healthful hardiness about real dignity that never dreads contact and communion with others however humble. -WASHINGTON IRVING

A wise man has dignity without pride; a fool has pride without dignity. -CONFUCIUS,

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. -Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Cheers to a respectably most excellent Tuesday that sings—sublime!


…of air, economy, & wine…

Photo:  BRIAN SPROUT       9/9/03  Tel:   250.763.6888       Web:  www.briansprout.comt


…”Alberta on track to have worst air quality in Canada, provincial environment minister says”…”There’s a 55% chance China will drag the world into global recession, British economist warns”…”Will the smoke from the Okanagan wildfires affect the flavour of the region’s grapes?”…

It seems it’s all about pollution “from coal fired power plants, oil & gas facilities, & vehicles.”

Apparently, it will be all about “sliding demand from emerging markets, especially China.”
Other emerging markets in Brazil, South Africa, & Russia are already in trouble they say, with lacklustre performance. “Commodity prices, trade and inflation remain sluggish as corporate earnings are slowing.”

Good to know that the answer is “probably not.” “Smoke has mainly stayed clear of the vines. The flames that came close to vineyards in the South Okanagan in August were met with mercifully light winds. This permitted smoke to rise up rather than to move across the land and settle on grapes.”

Cheers to a fine 2015 harvest & flavourful Okanagan wines at their finest!

Of air, economy, & wine sings–fine Friday & weekend dine!!!

Salut to a delicious weekend!


…of nasty, ghastly & no…


…”Canada’s outlook seen as bleakest since recession, amid oil collapse, global uncertainty”…”Government interest policies have created a mess that will only get worse when they start to rise again”…”Toronto/Vancouver house prices could plunge 30% says economist who predicted crash that never happened”…

Doesn’t all that sing storm clouds as the election writ dissolving the Canadian parliament will be dropped this weekend and Canadians will go to the polls on October 19th after the longest campaign period in Canadian election history!?!…

Meanwhile, the tv pundits seem to be saying ‘enjoy your summer folks’ things are going to get nasty…

One doesn’t have to look very far into the headlines or when channel surfing around news channels to see & hear alot of grim, alarming and appalling.

Summer can be the time to take a break from some of it!

Bury your head into some good books by a lakeside…

Set out on an adventure to exotic or simply undiscovered places…

Sail, swim, cycle.

Learn, lead, live out a dream.

Summer wandering into comforting, delightful & pleasing!

Will there be humming & hilarity in your upcoming long weekend?!!!…

Here’s hoping you can join ‘the chorus’ that will be singing “we have joy we have fun, we have seasons in the sun!…”

Cheers to a fine perspective that shouts YES!!–life, live it!


….of + & – & good cheer!…


…”Loonie falls fast & furious: the race to the bottom continues”…”Message behind interest rate cut: resist the urge to borrow more”…”PM Harper says there’s more to the Canadian economy than oil”…

So there you have it. Some economic headlines of the day as the cross-border shopping malls experience fewer parking spots with Canadian licensed vehicles.

So with the ups & downs of the job market, interest rates, & the dollar, the foray downward seems to foretell of ever increasing real estate prices, tourism revenues & some good news for exporters.

So to everything there is a season! A plus side & a minus side.

Where do you, where do we, fit in with all of that?….

If you’re like me, you likely find yourself using a pen or pencil less & less often as the
keyboard seems to get priority in many things.

Although we use that pencil less & less it seems, remember “In case you thought optimism was dead–the average pencil is seven inches long, with just a half inch eraser!”…pencil

Cheers to a fine felicity filled Friday & weekend overflowing with optimism!…

Good cheer!!!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAoptimism2optimism3optimism4optimism5

….of highs & lows…

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“California droughts most severe on record while floods overrunning Saskatchewan & Manitoba-are they here to stay?”…”Canada to sell $5.2 million mansion, official residence of Miami consul-general, in bid to find ‘more appropriate’ home for diplomat…”Loonies flight defying policymakers”…

Why? Why? Why? we might ask. Torrential rain backing up infrastructure and sewer systems, they say, with excess draining into river systems and heading downstream towards Manitoba.

Apparently, in the last 15 years the area has gone from some of the driest drought weather ever seen to now the wettest on record.

Studies reveal weather extremes over generations are cyclical.

The message in it, say the experts—we musn’t become complacent…

At first thought, how many Canadians would even know or think that we have a Consul-General in places like Miami? Not to mention, that they would occupy a 7,500 sq ft mansion in city suburbia-Coral Gables.

Apparently, the Miami consulate is responsible for consulate services in Florida, Puerto Rico, and the United States Virgin Islands.
There are others in Washington, New York, Los Angeles, Seattle and Detroit and possibly more.
One wonders how streamlined that whole system is beyond the idea of ‘more practical and economic housing’ for their functionaries…

And so it goes…

Apparently, our loonie is so off course of our policymakers!

Hitting a new six-month high, it’s threatening the competitive advantages we may have had in our biggest export markets.

A sign of Canada’s economic strengths and at the same time reflecting the weakness of the US economy, the experts say.

Water levels across our land are rising and falling.

So too, will the loonie, they say, with current highs not expected to be sustained…

Cheers to a thriving Thursday!–economically appropriate–where the highs outweigh the lows!…

And in the spirit of positive camraderie wherever your day’s agenda sees you

Hesitate-NOT & smile to everyone—-



…of our & shine!…

“Drinking alcohol more than twice a week, in any amount, spikes risk of stroke threefold for men: study”…”Bug serving French restaurant lost Michelin star because of creepy-crawly menu, chef complains”…”Is porridge a miracle food?”…”Vancouver port strike puts chill on economy”…”My girlfriend broke up by text, what do I do?”…”Top Ten Tips for First Time Nakations”…

And so it goes!…staycation, daycation, nakation…
One can barely keep up!…

This 80th day of 2014 is International Day of Forests by proclomation of the United Nations and also, in most of the Arab world, Mother’s Day.

Not to mention, Harmony Day-Australia; Human Rights Day-South Africa; Truant’s Day-Poland; (it’s true!), AND International World Poetry & International World Puppetry Day!!!

In many parts of North America the main theme for the day is simply #TGIF Thank God It’s Friday!

International World Puppetry Day eh!–doesn’t that just make you wanna ask have you met Marion yet??…yes yes, Marion the marionette!…

Seriously now, what a good segue to that phrase– no strings attached!

According to urban dictionary: no strings attached – 1) Doing something for someone without asking anything in return; 2) Being in a relationship with someone, while still dating other people. This is so there is not anxiety or worrying about where him or her is or what him or her is doing. 3) Free of conditions, restrictions, costs or any other obstacles, as in “I will buy you a waffle iron, no strings attached”

I’m dating myself in saying this, but a childhood memory brings to mind, there used to be a commercial on television some years ago that expounded “Feed your furniture FAVOR–it’s good for the wood, ’cause it’s wax!”

In truly Canadian fashion & spelling, Friday cheers for a fine favOURable “our” weekend!

Do yOURself a favOUR and do a favOUR for someone else—no strings attached!

You both will shine!!!

…crab apples…

Did you know that crab apples are members of the rose family and are native to North America and Asia?

“The tart mouth puckering fruit are smaller than regular apples and can be woody in texture. Often fragrant and full of flavour they are especially good for making  jelly and preserves” according to a recent foodie article. 

My grandmother used to peel and core, roll in butter and brown sugar and then bake them with a sprinkling of  a favourite brandy and serve alongside a dollop of vanilla ice cream.  

The souring economy is fodder for lots of complaining these days.  Much of what’s happening  could make anyone crabby.  As an old song says, we need to try to “accentuate the positive… eliminate the negative”.  Always easier said than done.

As pension trends move from defined benefits to defined contributions and companies scramble to stem the losses or increase their bottom lines, it’s people and their lives that are most affected by uncertainty and circumstances.

Most of the people I know are intelligent and sincere.  They can be humourous and helpful and most of all they are generous in spirit and giving.   Likely anyone reading this shares many of these fine qualities too. 

Together, as people, we can see pluses over  minuses and solutions over problems. 

It’s a fact that in the right formation, the lifting power of many wings can achieve twice the distance of any flying bird alone.  Perhaps this is in part where that saying ….birds of a feather flock together…comes from.

….just a few thoughts on a sour crab apple…..may you think, hear, see, and speak  “sweet” today!


…upgrades & downgrades…

Upgrades and downgrades prevail this morning. 

Upgrades in conditions, downgrades in outlook for the economy.  Light on the horizon in labour negotiations, an upgrade to business class on a flight, storms downgraded and software utility lessened with the next update.

Indeed life is jam-packed with ups and downs.  No wonder euphoria, sadness, angst and awe can be seen on faces as we walk on any Vancouver street.

We read and hear it every day….advance with this, better that… boost and enhance an assortment of all kinds of things to up your game……progress!

Nevermind the declines or deteriorations that can make life  more challenging….just get on with it!

In the tension sometimes we might yearn for and benefit from taking a day to just “be”.

“To be or not be, that is the question” said one famous playwright who could shake a spear with his writing.

So….. in the hamlet that’s your life, for today, Wednesday September 14th, take a moment if you can to just “be”…. feel the fresh air & a sense of calm.  Perhaps you might see things in a new way.


So be it.