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Life Coaching, Observations, Reflections, Things that make you go hmmmmm

Tag Archives: visualization

Ontario’s Liberal Trickle Down Health Care Spending

My news feed told me that Ontario’s Provincial Liberals are promising 800 Million dollars in health care spending on hospitals to acquire staff and reduce wait times.

The header probably should have also said “and among other things, be relevant“.

We know what tap that new gush in spending is coming from don’t we.

Recently and personally, since February 14 I’ve had a couple MRI’s and a couple x-rays. Something I saw when I was having those procedures really pissed me off.

Going back a number of years under Dalton McGuinty we had the eHealth scandal. Kathleen Wynne was a player in that debacle. That little liberal misadventure cost Ontarians 1 Billion dollars. Ontarians are paying about 1 Billion a month to service the Province’s current debt.

The dust settled and Doug Ford is the leader of the Ontario PC’s and is a blustery and well-known commodity, municipally. The Wicked Witch Wynne is in full blown pander mode, but when isn’t she.  The Naturally Delusional Party’s Naturally Delusional Poobah showed her true colours when the ALLEGATION against Patrick Brown broke, invoked Ghomeshi to a Toronto Star Reporter, there by displaying her inner FemiNazi.

There is the cast of Leaders for the Ontario Election on or before June 7th, 2018.

Sorry Green Party of Ontario, I appreciate your tenacity but you’re a nonfactor.

Again, we find ourselves tilting hard to strategic voting.

OVote 2018

This is a missive for whom ever forms Government.

As far as fiscal responsibility goes, who knows what either the Politically Cantankerous or the Naturally Delusional will do until they are empowered by the electorate to be doing it. Will both hold true to previous people empowered times when they formed the Government?

There is so much to drill Wynne and her contemptible cronies for over the course of their ruinous run on the empowered by the people track. The people empower all the parties to govern, so when you get right down to it, that “who’s the real fool” axiom is playing on a loop in my head.

I like many have a stake in the horse race that is the Ontario General Election.

It isn’t a simple matter of analyzing and predicting whom you think will be the Government when the polls close when you are invested in the result. It is difficult to be detached when you have a stake.

In fact, I have several stakes, just like all other Ontarians. Where health care is concerned, the stakes are high for all of us.

I spoke previously in my Practical Indignation piece about records and there being nothing attached to me. There isn’t anything really attached to you either and had a Billion dollars not been wasted, we would have had a real good start to easier access of the records that belong to us.

The records belong to you. Like a mechanics report on your car, your health mechanic doesn’t own the reports. You don’t leave the mechanics report on your vehicle behind when you leave the shop.

You should be able to leave with a report after you’ve had your own body in the shop. Sometimes the report is a prescription and you can keep record of that before giving it to your pharmacist.

That 1 Billion that belonged to you Ontario, it was supposed to be part of people being more involved and better able to manage their own health care. Easy access to information.

Great concept for something that we absolutely need in health care with piss poor implementation and oversight.

I had MRI’s and x-rays done recently and the MRI’s were in one place and the x-rays in another place. Different service providers if you like.

In the change rooms of both places there was the sign I’m showing you here.

IMG_20180214_233417The signs were pretty much identical except for the entity that is managing the access. Access for a fee.

That is your trickle down Liberal Health Care in a province that is spending 1 Billion a month to service debt. There is no central database for you and your doctors to draw on. No easier access to your personal history, Increased repetition of procedures which I speak to in my “Practical Indignancy” piece.

It falls to us across all generations to prod and probe those we elect to put the measures in place that have already been paid for.

It is up to we the electorate to make the changes when those we empowered fail.

Here in Ontario we must make change. We have no other option because the “No Wynne” Liberals have made it so that the electorate have no other reasonable choice but to remove their power.

Wynne’s promise of 800 million for hospitals to reduce wait times and add staff? I’m thinking with performance as the measuring stick, we’re gonna get Liberally stuck again.

When the time comes to cast your vote, please “Be Relevant“.

G.R. Hambley ©
April 10, 2018

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Signals

Signals

Lyric

It’s a funny kind of time
trouble causing in so many minds
get no early warning signs
just keeps running on and on

This new age game of outrage
used to grab the front page
this way for all shout the sage
just keeps screaming on and on

Vices from the Kool-Aid choir
god… the things that they admire
not fun watching them conspire
just keeps tormenting on and on

Signaled loud and profanely proud
Glory glory halleluiah
     not gonna hit you with a ruler
Glory glory halleluiah
     we only want to rule yah

People being used, abused and shred
crocodile tears from media over the dead
doesn’t matter cuz it’s never on their head
just keep running the rhetoric on and on

Raising up above the signal voices
there’s so many other noises
making all the right choices
just keep counter screaming on and on

Free will in a death dive drop
don’t care, don’t share, don’t shop
fire’s gotten to big to stop
just keep willfully tormenting on and on

Signaled loud and righteously proud
Glory glory halleluiah
     not gonna let you be a ruler
Glory glory halleluiah
     we only want to school yah

G.R. Hambley ©
April 01, 2016

My New Year Eve, 2017

My New Year Eve, 2017

Today is the winter solstice and tomorrow the days start getting longer again. The world turns over and while some parts of this big old world have their winter sleep, other parts welcome the days of summer.

The winter solstice to me as a spiritual person, my greatest time of reflection while looking forward to what will come next year.

GRH Enjoy Shades 002

For me this day is also the day of giving thanks.

Out with the old and in with the new, it just aint that simple.

I’ve so much world open to me now that all the work I did to achieve something I wanted so badly is complete. When 2017 began, I had no idea that when the year ended I’d be an English Teacher and technically qualified to teach anywhere in the world. I may have had a few of my friends shaking their heads over my commitment to achieving the goal. Thankfully, I got good friends who understand what it means to be driven, in a good way.

Good Friend” and “Pen Pal” heard much more than others of the education path I was on. My rants were over things that would piss anyone off and had nothing to do with my abilities or lack there of. If you follow those links, you’ll get a look at the regard I have for those two individuals I call friend.

Another community friend who has become friend in our discussions and meandering around, we help each other out. He’s gifted me with some terrific photographs.

GRH Relevant 01

Ara Sagherian Photograph ©

He is both happy and not that I’ll be leaving. He wishes me nothing but the best. This is what you call honouring friendship on a direct emotional level. You speak the words. He took this shot

Driven and committed are not bad things though I do think those two people a couple of times would have been okay with driving me somewhere to be committed. I’m thinking it’s a shame, “The Hotel California” aint what it used to be. That is a tale I will someday write, maybe.

I’m thankful and appreciative of all my community friendlies too. The relationship is different. I talk about relationship in some of my narratives. My belief is that it is important to recognize those in your community. Most of the people do but there are a couple who just won’t. We aren’t talking about a relationship where you’re kissing someone in the ear. Being aware and personable is all we are talking about here.

I’ve a note this morning from an artist I’m fond of asking about being ready for the season and putting up the tree. The person notes going to work in the dark and coming home in the dark. I know all about those feelings and have suspected this person, like me, has some level of S.A.D., “Seasonal Affective Disorder”. I had noticed the mindset before and offered up some help.

This other artist doesn’t know what today means to means to me. I don’t know if this other artist knows where and what the “Christmas Tree” actually represents.

Sammy Tree 01In this day and age, most people call it “Cultural Appropriation”. This tree thingy like any other thingy, I would hope you know the history and honour it. Simple stuff.

I’m pleased and thankful that more people from around the world visited me this year when I have published less new content than last year.

I’ve now opened my email this morning and I’m smiling big cuz someone special has gifted me a, “Happy New Year”. I love things like that. Another person special to me is thanking me for remembering their birthday. I’m blessed to know and have these people in my life. What goes around comes around folks so if ya want it ya gotta give it. I would suggest the adaptation of one of my favs, “Freely, Joyously, Willingly”.

I’m also doing grunt work as I write this at my year end. Backup, backup, backup. Losing the computer would be one thing but losing the content I’ve created would be a hell of a lot worse!

A stray thought gets triggered about days of birth as I meander along this morning. I share the same birth day as Jack Nicholson and I do tell people this should explain a lot. Those people ponder that statement, look at me and usually just nod. By that logic people born on the same day would have characteristics of others born on the same day. Not born in the same year and yes born on the same day. I have very good reason to think that.

All my life’s a circle, seasons spinning round again, the years keep rolling by. Then there is, “So off you go horizon bound”.

Chapin Shot 01Thanks again Harry and I still miss you and I’m still angry with you all these years later. I can’t believe how much time has passed in my own circle of life since you left us.

My time in this place is about done and for how long I will be away, I do not know. There is no timetable beyond thinking that at age 65 I’ll have to be in Canada and teaching will be in Toronto and/or online.

I went out and got me something that goes well with what I already love and has the potential to be sustaining for a long time. I do have that 150-year plan, as some of you who read me know.

I have a couple things to put in their place including the current melancholy and wistfulness.

Do not misconstrue dear friends, I am excited to greet the future and I shall adapt to my life’s changes.

My heroes have all been story tellers and I have more stories to discover in this big beautiful world. Stories and my love for the word, that’s why I’m going.

Another friend set off a trigger, Damn drummers are almost as bad as bears for getting in to shit. This is for you and thanks man but how about Toronto California?!

And that Drummer’s trigger set this off… “I said to my reflection lets get out of this place“.

To all of you the best of this season and all seasons.

I am out of here!

G.R. Hambley ©
December 21, 2017 – New Year Eve

What Happened to Harry Chapin

Chapin Photo Pinterest

 

My Exit Slip

My Exit Slip

The powers that be informed me when I asked them why I hadn’t received certain things after being shown as course complete. I was told I had to complete those “Specialty Electives” before receiving their official blessing and benefits.

Ring kissing was not involved, and the electives are done.

I had looked to change “Teaching English to Korean Speakers” but it was a no. So, in I went in and did that elective over 4 days. I had waited the previous 4 days without a response to a few questions and had to resend the email.

I made my choices and that is it. Fair enough, and it didn’t hurt to ask.

South Korea has the Winter Olympics in 2018 and my plan was to do the Korean elective after the Olympics were over.

When I elected to take my TEFL through University of Toronto and OISE, well that was part of the appeal, University of Toronto and OISE (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education). I told the powers of higher education that when I ran in to some serious technical issues that those issues didn’t have to happen. I’m midway through the course and they rolled out a new and improved web site design. I went so far as to suggest they get the old site back online.

I hit glitches in both Specialty Electives, and both of those were presented in the old format.

If you look at my results on the “Teaching Test Preparation Courses”, final assessment you will see I passed by making 70% with zero attempts.

We’ll just call this an exemption on the final assessment for my demonstrated knowledge. No, I don’t like that “70” number and I’m reasonably certain I could get the “100” but I aint going backwards for the sake of that number!

I’m somewhat disappointed because Teaching those who are preparing for an ELPT (English Language Proficiency Test) or ESP (English for Special Purposes) is my preference for my Teaching English. I can do them all and as I just noted, teaching the ELP and ESP is what I like best.

Yes I am receiving some of what goes with a certain completion level. China among other places is looking very interesting,

As I’m writing this I received email notice on how to get my Certificate. Name as it appears on your Passport is recommended. I asked for my Certificate to show in the same way my name appears on my Passport.

I would have entertained using “Gary R. Hambley” as it appears on the business cards I had made up.

I haven’t had the entire benefit of course completion long but these folks are showing me some real good stuff! Yeah watch me tell you what I’m pursuing on the teaching abroad front.

There were technical issues that never should of happened and I addressed that with U of T.

Simple stuff, your new and improved aint working, get the old and functional back online!

You want to change the rules of the game, that’s fine too. But when you do that you create 2 paths and those already on the path stay there and those coming in new, they go on the new path.

There was flat out hypocrisy that I never addressed with the School and will address that here. I also hit a few things that flew directly against what I know to be true as a Life Coach.

This is applicable to all courses of study and not just “English as a Foreign Language”. You are taught about fair and valid assessments. You’re taught that you don’t spring surprises on the students in your assessments.

After the rollout of the new and infirm web platform that replaced the old and functional with poor typography platform assessment changed. The passing grade on Quizzes in the lesson sections went from 70% to 80% while the passing grade for the entire lesson assessment remained at 70%.

I don’t disagree with the number and in fact agree with the number the school set to pass the quiz. It was the hypocritical manner in that the change was made that perturbed me.

They changed the rules of the game after the game had started and that is one giant no no!

In the “Teaching Test Preparation Courses” elective “Exam Anxiety” was brought up. This is the statement that is made, “Help students to change or suppress negative thoughts or worries”.

No, no, no, not ever do you teach suppression!

If you have “Exam Anxiety” and I have it a bit more than the average person, you contact me and I’ll work with you to get you more comfortable and at ease. We Coaches and others call that endeavour, “Coping Skills”. Taking the exam is still gonna suck but you’ll be much better prepared to cope with those feelings and at no time will you ever hear me say, “Suck it up buttercup”.

Previous to that tidbit of information it was noted that if you’re finding yourself possibly over critical, put a Coach in the classroom with you to monitor your performance. I gave that piece of information when I hit it an audible, “no shit”. I had good reason when I hit what I hit to say what I did and more reasons later.

One of the things that Higher Education appears to need to learn is that their students are clients. I made that point clear on a couple of occasions because it was necessary to enlighten the bringers of Higher Education that while I am a student, I’m a client as well.

Education is different now. I’ve been computer literate for over 25 years. The changes in education brought on by the functionality of the computer in the last 25 years is wonderful. The delivery method of this education suits me to a tee. It didn’t take me long to tune out the audio and stick with the visuals of reading and then exploring the material outside the course work.

There were exceptions to me eschewing the audio and the “Teaching English to Korean Speakers”, I listened to everything! I will learn to make those sounds.

I learned a lot. I adapted myself. My thinking is different and the way I speak and express is a little less bombastic. I have my moments, as we all do.

Through this course of learning for me I created a teaching philosophy and figured out what my preference to teach is and why I have that preference.

So as the University taught, “Exit Slips” from your students regarding how they saw the lesson and even critiquing the teacher at term and year end are excellent sources of information.

Careful what you wish for because you just might get it and did you like, “My Exit Slip”.

Now if you’ll excuse me, the powers that be have placed the world at my fingertips and shown me how to go about garnering a teaching position.

G.R. Hambley ©
December 20, 2017

Writings from on the path.

Orbital Thoughts
Forever More, I Am A Teacher of English
It’s The Final Countdown
Oh My Head Again, or Watch Your English
Adapting Me
There Goes Perfection, For Now
Teaching Philosophy, Mine
English 101, 100
The Final Act

Day 7 of the 7 Day B&W Challenge

DAY 7

7 days, seven black and white photos of your life. No people, no explanation. Challenge someone new each day and tag the person who tagged you.

Day 7

G.R. Hambley © December 06, 2017

It’s The Final Countdown

It’s The Final Countdown

Here I am staring at the final assessment. There is a bit more to go but this is the gold ticket to the Wonka Factory. Wilder or Depp, take your pick.

A long time ago in a lifetime far away, I had it all figured out. Ultimately, I wanted to teach. A split second on a highway and life going on, the plan changed. The wanting to teach was dormant for a time but it never went away.

I’m already a Teacher. Those who have talked to me already know it. Very soon, the world is going to know I’m a teacher.

I’ve done a lot of work in the last 3 months. There have been a couple serious impediments that required serious attention. That attention was given by both sides. I’ll write more when it’s all said and done with the elective courses.

I’ve even designed a new card for myself. The card has my phone number and email on it so I’m not posting it.

The exam has a 2 hour time limit. I’m tempted to pop it right now and get it done. And I remind myself that is not the way to take on a final.

Me and “The University of Toronto Faculty of Education”. Well aren’t we the pair. Who saw that happening?

No man is an island. This is for you “Good Friend”. Me and Mr. Donne are smilin’ atcha.

‘No man is an iland,
intire of it selfe;
every man is a peece of the Continent,
a part of the maine;
if a clod bee washed away by the Sea,
Europe is the lesse,
as well as if a Promontorie were,
as well as if a Mannor of thy friends
or of thine owne were;
any mans death diminishes me,
because I am involved in Mankinde;
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee

How many of y’all knew that bell is attached to that island?

Other friends have contributed their verse to this journey of mine and I thank them.

Part of my telling of this journey is in the hope of being inspirational. More so for the older than the younger.

I’m 60 on my next birthday and parts of the world can be seen with English.

My last statement was not an, “If I can do it you can do it” statement because I don’t do that shit.

Life doesn’t end until it ends. If you are happy armchair quarterbacking, then you keep on quarterbacking from your armchair.

One of the conclusions I came to is this and it has correlation with Life Coaching, you need life on you. You shouldn’t be allowed in a classroom to teach until you’re 45. In this province it is 16 to drive and 19 is the legal drinking age. No reason you can’t set an age restriction for teaching.

I have studying to do and I am living proof you can teach an old dog new tricks, if that old dog is willing to learn.

G.R. Hambley ©
November 18, 2017

Teaching Philosophy, Mine

Teaching Philosophy, Mine

I’ve made it known along with showing bits and pieces of the work and results that I’m taking a TEFL course. The question was asking about practicality and as I saw it, philosophy because it was asked what I would do.

Challenges you face in the classroom. How you going to manage it. How are you going to meet needs. They’re asking about practical knowledge and coping skills. I got above average coping skills. My recognition skills aren’t to bad either.

Not only will I be watching my students, I’ll be watching out for my students.

So here you have it. As I wrote and submitted for the assignment. But now, I call it, “The Teaching Philosophy of G.R. Hambley”.

I don’t even know if teaching is the correct term anymore. I see the role of the teacher as being that of mentor.

Meeting the needs of all the students, I would hope that when they walk in to the classroom they would understand that I have something they need. That position, I have something you need (and hopefully want) and that by being here you are entitled to what I have, but you have to earn it. Those understandings will be in the opening address to the class.

My delivery would be far more loquacious and sensistive than is written here.

The needs of the usual adult learner are different than the needs of the grade school student. The grade school student could be harbouring resentment at having to take a foreign language.

Specifically, my students, to a degree will be treated as I was as an apprentice. Most of the mechanics I worked with as an apprentice were terrific mentors/teachers as well. Learning the requirements of my trade, any trade, it isn’t enough. You must learn how to communicate and work with your peers and the other trades. Those other trades people are also peers, or cousins if you like.

My students, mistakes are expected as it is part of the learning process. My students will also be allowed to fail if that is what they achieved by word and deed. Adults understand failing where a child may not and the child needs to understand the ramifications of failure. Fortunately, with my class being language, you can run an exercise where the result is failure and how to cope with it.

Meeting the needs of each individually isn’t possible. I believe in a class that has dialogue as exercise you should be even more careful because the language classroom isn’t a political office or soap box to name a couple.

I read this in The Toronto Star and it is from the story, Ontario to launch review of how students are tested. “The shakeup comes at a time of growing concern that the system is too focused on EQAO tests which critics say don’t broadly reflect the many skills students need to keep learning — such as creativity and critical thinking.”

Ontario Launches Testing Review

Creativity and critical thinking, I started learning that from my specialty teacher in High School. That behaviour wasn’t just expected, it was demanded. To this day that man gets the nod as my favourite teacher and I had some good ones. I shall set the same standard with my class.

I’m going to be walking in to my classroom with many tools at my disposal. Those tools include my own poetry, narratives and life lessons.

The students will know that a failure isn’t the end of the world. My students will know their successes will be celebrated and are shared successes with me.

G.R. Hambley © – all rights reserved
September 06, 2017

English 101, 100

English 101, 100

I took the final assessment of the first TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) module this morning., September 01, 2017. Feels and seems somewhat fitting with this being Labour Day and the kids back to school on Tuesday. Thanks Harry

Everyone looks forward to that day as summer closes down for another year.

If I satisfy me, it will more than satisfy the minimum requirement. Mind over matter. I mind so it matters. This certificate is not the prize.

The Brass Ring

The minimum requirement isn’t good enough for me. I spoke with a couple of friends prior to taking this examination. I explained my position, my attitude this way. Tipping, the service staff want 20%, expect 15% and settle get about 10%. For me on this path, I want 100%, I expect 95% and I’ll settle for 90%. On this one I got what I want and I deserve what I got. I’ll be expecting the same from myself going forward.

Assessment - Intro to Enflish Langiuage Teaching

 

 

 

Quite literally, this endeavour means the world to me. This is my current world and I want more of the world.

The photograph above taken by my good buddy “Ara Sagherian” is a clue to this posting’s Theme Song, it’s “Harry Chapin” and could be one of a couple songs. Do the research. Trust me, it’s a pleasant trip.

G.R. Hambley ©
September 01, 2017

The Final Act

The Final Act

A long time ago I planned to teach. Knew the what and where I wanted to do the teaching. The plan made sense with logical order and progression. A couple seconds on a highway, and the plan had to change.

The desire to teach never went away. I coached a bit of hockey. Got my “Life Coach” formal accreditation in July 2010. Coaching is teaching.

On August 17, 2010 I pulled the trigger on something I’ve given serious consideration to doing for about a year. I build triggers in to people with their help, that is why I chose to say trigger. I’ve built them in to myself as well. Like everyone else, those triggers don’t always engage.

A long time coming and the times they are a changin’!

I am now 10 days in to a TEFL course. TEFL is, “Teach English as a Foreign Language”.

There are a number of courses to choose from out there in the cyber world. The one I chose is in conjunction with OISE (Ontario Institute of Studies in Education) and University of Toronto. Lots of choices, caveat emptor, you get what you pay for.

Now that I appear to be through the “Retraining Camp” with all those parts of speech, reading and writing reconstituted in my brain, it is on to where I can show off my skill set. It’s education; you’re expected to show and tell your skill set off.

It’s been a long time since I’ve written for a higher education audience. I’m finding it challenging and stimulating. In the showing off, gotta show them you know the stuff while not sacrificing your personal writing style. That presumes that you can and do write, creatively.

I’m enjoying the formal learning. Enjoying this learning like never before. Probably has something to do with my love of the word.

This arrived in my mail and gave me reason to take a 5 minute laughing break. I’m a tad wired in to this stuff and that laughter arrived at exactly the right time.

aliens phonicsI don’t care that people were looking at me funny and not funny ha ha. Not like people haven’t looked at me funny before when I’m laughing in public.

So why “The Final Act”? Well it’s partly this way, not going to be looking to add on any more disciplines. You’ll learn stuff as you move along that are relevant to you and it is all about you so please pay attention.

Some of the things you learn leave you no choice but to move on them.

I’ll never stop learning. I am the epitome of the educational goal, a lifetime learner.

TEFL and then teaching are, barring living forever, my final act. Don’t know how long the show is gonna be on the road. Maybe forever. Some people I know have spoken of ones they know who didn’t come back.

Me, I see it being until I can’t travel anymore. I’ve got a couple other ideas percolating that aren’t ready for public consumption.

Age is part of the reason I’m doing this. Talk about duality.

grey-cup-paradeThese two characters perfectly illustrate my feeling. I was going to use “Baby New Year” crawling after “Father Time”. Yes, these are both me some; couples of decades apart.

GRH WeatheringPersonal status is another reason. There is nothing to keep me here. Winter is getting more difficult to cope with. I have a skill set that with this formal add on presents me the opportunity to teach English pretty much anywhere in the world.

Part of the decision to do this is about practicing what I preach and making my little piece of the world better.

In a recent tale, I said I’m older and better than when I was a twenty something. Well 3 decades later, I better get seeing what I wanna see before older doesn’t allow it.

I don’t have a bucket list. In supposition, you could say teaching is in that bucket pail if you like.

Y’all think my learners are gonna have good time with English? Reminds me I’m going to have to let Microsoft know that “MS WORD” doesn’t recognize “Y’all” as the compound word we know it is. That’s okay, I’ll recognize it.

I’ve stated a number of times I’m a proponent of the global village. I’ve stated that one of the things that has got to go to achieve that village is multilingualism. To communicate there can be only one language.

I’ve never said until here what I think the language should be. I’m still not saying what the language should be. I’m just doing my part to help it be English.

Sure I am an irreverent but I’m not an inconsiderate. I also know what “Modicum of decorum” is and practice it, daily.

I’m a lot of things and should this last lap leave my legacy as being a teacher who could write and not a writer who can teach, I’m good.

If it all goes according to plan, It will also mean that for my final act, I did something real good, for myself, for others and the words I love.

G.R. Hambley ©
August 27, 2017

Older and Better

Older and Better

All he kept talking about was glory days.

I was thinking about this piece this morn and then Springsteen’s , “Glory Days” came on. Now that’s what I call a set your dial to write clue. “Good Friend” calls that summoning something else. Barely got any coffee in me, damn.

Many of us know one or two or three people that are like that. One of the best film portrayals of the “Glory Days” individual was by Dennis Hopper in “Hoosiers”.

You’re not getting older you’re getting better. A well known campaign with an affirming PSA touch by Clairol.

Once upon a time I was a member of the “Yea right” brigade as it applies to the “You’re not getting older you’re getting better” slogan.

Change of perspective, and it happened a good while back, changed the mindset.

Yes I’m old. We have statistical data for a reason and statistically, I’m in the last quarter of my life.

I’m adverse to dragging my old glory days out. Even writing it in this context where it’s actually useful, it doesn’t fit well with me.

You can find the following online and is an older posting. Which do you think I was…. Bear, Ram or Hawkeye?

CJFL
The Toronto area really needs to look at getting back into the Canadian Junior Football League (ages 19 to 22 years).  Back in the day there were at least three teams in the GTA.  The Lakeshore Bears playing out of Centennial Park in Etobicoke, the Scarborough Rams playing out of Birchmount Stadium, and the Oshawa Hawkeyes playing out of the Shwa.

Back then talented football players who couldn’t attend college or university because of grades, money or whatever reason had a place to keep playing a high level of football in Canada.  Back in the mid 70s the Scarborough Rams having winning records of 10 and 0 seasons along with the Ottawa Sooners, and the Hamilton Hurricanes could give any University ball club a run for their money. Bring Junior ball back to the GTA!!!!

I see in my research for this tale that the Ontario Football Conference in 2017 is again part of the CJFL. Toronto is represented by the GTA Grizzlies.

So yeah, I had some Football glory days. Last one I signed, it was with Junior Argonauts. I’m pretty sure you can figure out the affiliation.

I remember it well. A weekend in mid March colder than a witch’s…., down at old CNE Stadium (I could tell you where to find pieces of CNE Stadium today but that’s a story for another time). Wind was blowing in through that gap between the 3rd base line and the North Grandstand.

Bulova Tower

The Bulova Clock Tower which used to be the Shell Tower was stuck at a balmy -6 C. Fun Wow!

There is an eeriness to an empty stadium. It’s both a bit haunting and really thrilling looking around all the empty seats when you’re down playing on the field. Visualization is an important tool and yes I envisioned 55,000 people cheering for me.

If the witch image isn’t working for you, try going with, “Brass Monkey”. Equality friends, equality, something for everyone.

I do appreciate why football players bitched about that outfield fence seam on the CNE gridiron! You hit that seam the wrong way, hey what’s a new ankle or knee between friends! Back then they had, “Turf Gripper” footwear. All those things did was make it easier for the “Turf Monster” to get you!

CNE Getty Images

I’m old. This is a fact. Using our measuring sticks, ¾ of my life is over, I’m old.

I had a brief conversation some months back with one of the people in my community I’m friendly with. You don’t need the entire context. What I told the individual is this, at this point in my life, if I want a story I write one. If I want a pretty picture, I make one.

Community friend was not made aware of what is in my past. I’d love see the face of community friend when they’re reading this piece.

I’m a far better writer, photographer, artist than I ever was a football player. We’ve already established, I was a good football player.

How wonderful is it to be able to do those things? How much better is this legacy of art? Sure, those questions are debatable, debatable to everyone but me that is and it is all about me.

To sit down and create. To be seen and read in 103 countries around the world. Now that is one glorious ego stroke. I worked and pushed out, I earned it.

My top 5 countries in order of viewership:

  • USA
  • Canada
  • India
  • South Africa
  • Italy

Number 1 and 2 aren’t a surprise. Those two should be where they are. Now number 3, if you know what I am now and what I espouse, it isn’t a great surprise.

When comparing numbers between Canada and the USA, Canada has about 10% of the people that the USA does. When I look at the stats I’d kind of expect to see the same ratio of 10 to 1. It’s about 5 to 1 and that pleases me.

“Far have I travelled and much have I seen”, Mull Of Kintyre. I don’t have your miles on me but hey, thank you Sir Paul!

What I’ve become is much better and far more powerful. I grew stronger and better. As I grew, I touched others significantly. I’ve met some real outstanding individuals and made a couple lifelong friends. To my mind, that’s the glory.

It isn’t all one way. I have been significantly touched myself. This makes me stronger, it makes me better.

“Carry me back to the days I knew then”, thank you, no. I have mulled it over and I have no desire to return.

Yeah, I’m older and I’m better. I’m worse too, the physical thing. I have that aspect of my life under control. It’s a non issue in the older/better sense.

The better not older campaign was aimed at the preoccupation with aging and death. That preoccupation is still with us. If you can give someone something they can rationalize a condition with, they just may.

If quarterbacking from the armchair and reliving whatever your “Glory Days” were and are, you can. Being the intelligent donkey I am, I’d say enjoy your retirement!

I’m telling you, if stronger and better is what you want to have as you move through life, then you gotta be engaged in life. Why? Why because that’s how it works.

When people tell you that your style or something you’ve done reminds them of the greatest of dead poets, you know you’ve achieved your goal of someday being one of them.

Try wrapping your head around this one. I knew it when I first started writing poetry. Monetary returns, never a real concern. I write for me and share. I happen to think some of my stuff is gonna live forever.

I don’t expect to realize the full glory until 150 years after I’m dead.

No, no, no, don’t fret for me!

I will be checking back to see if I’m correct. What!? You don’t think someone as glorious as I wouldn’t be able to check back and see what y’all are up to. Not a question.

G.R. Hambley ©
July 31st, 2017