New Normal

I went to the same store a few times to buy some Christmas gifts and found it closed. Not because it is out of business, but because they don’t have enough staff.

Since the pandemic (although, truthfully, the pandemic is still on) I have noticed that shops and restaurants have not returned to normal hours, and can be closed at various times of the day for differing amounts of time. This is the new normal.

It is not because staff are out on break. It is because there is no staff.

I have listened to such establishments whine about people not wanting to work.

Truth is, many businesses treat their staff like slaves or worse.

They do not pay a living wage.

They demand long hours.

They have the audacity to police their employees on their time off, and micromanage and monitor employees while they are working, so an employee is under constant surveillance, almost 24/7.

They take their tips.

They have crazy rules and regulations, but don’t provide safe environments.

They treat their employees like children.

The jobs offered are dead end jobs. There is little or no opportunity to advance. Raises are miniscule, if ever.

You want people to work for you?

Pay them a decent wage. Treat them like adults. Leave them alone on their days and time off. You are not Big Brother. Have them work less than 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Money given to them is theirs. Trust your employees. Provide a safe place to work. And here is the best tip of all:

Compliment your employees efforts, no matter how small. Every employee. Don’t play favourites. Even if it is one small thing they do, praise them for it. Stop looking at the faults and beating them up. And see what happens. They will reward you.

Treat your employees like human beings.

You are not entitled to anything. These people are not your property. They are not slaves. If your business goes belly up because you think people should crawl over glass for you, well, you deserve to go broke.


My absolute favourite place in the world is the library.

I don’t hang out there, I just pick up books I have on hold, but I know plenty of people who do and for a good reason.

The library is a sanctuary for many. Young people go there to escape bad home environments. Street people hole up there to stay warm, dry, safe and unbothered. The lonely find company, and those who want to be left alone, isolation.

The library offers free courses, free books, free education, free programs. You can borrow books, magazines, tapes, CD’s, DVD’s, musical instruments, museum passes, even pedometers! They lend out special players for the visually impaired to listen to books on tape or CD. You can use computers and printers, peruse the internet. There is even a laser cutter and a 3D printer available. You can hold meetings, present a seminar., be part of a knitting group or book club. Bring your children for group play or learning activities.

You can keep up to date on any subject. You can read all the latest books and magazines. See all the new movies. Listen to all the new music. All for free. The library is open eight to ten hours, six to seven days a week.

The librarians are always accommodating and friendly. But if you want to be left alone, there are plenty of little cubby holes to curl up in and read a great book.

What’s even more amazing, is they not only put my books on their shelves, but they also displayed one of my books and helped to promote it.

When I enter the library, I can feel the calm and peace in that room. Being surrounded by walls of books is comforting.

In the library, the world is yours, for free.

You just need to go check it out.

Small World

During the pandemic, I came to realize just how small one’s world can become, especially when you don’t have a car. And money.

My range of travel has whittled down to perhaps a 5 km radius since my Mother died back in 2010.

My mother and I used to rent a car nearly every weekend in the summer and fall, and on occasion in the winter, and we made day trips all over the place. We explored back roads and were always looking for new places and adventures. I was a crazy obsessed photographer in those days, my finger never far from the shutter release. I took thousands of pictures. And this was before digital cameras. I singly handedly kept Kodak film in business.

To say I miss those days is an understatement.

The last time I rented a car was in 2019, but that was to do work, not a vacation.

Perhaps, now that I am working again, I can save up enough to rent a car for a couple of days and take a little road trip on my summer vacation.

Gee Whiz

I am so tired of introversion being labelled a disease.

This is of course, by extroverts, who do not even try to understand us introverts.

People who are forced to be alone and are suffering because of it, are the ones who are made ill. These people are not introverts, they are people rejected by society for one reason or another and are in a lot of pain because of it.

If an extrovert is put in solitary confinement, of course he/she is going to be upset.

Likewise, us introverts are unhappy if we are forced into social situations. It completely drains us.

Us introverts want to be alone. It is a choice, not a disease. Gee whiz.

I ask you to not label us so harshly and demand we require treatment. We just want to be left alone. We get to choose when we want to socialize, if at all. If we want to be hermits, then let us be. If you want to be the life of the party, the belle of the ball, go for it. Just don’t drag me along.


People are not taught the why of things.

Our education consists of endless hours of the how. How to do things, but not why. We place a high value on skill at the expense of understanding.

To explore the why of things gives people critical thinking skills.

Without the why, we lack the big picture. Without the ability to figure things out we are stalled when things don’t work. We don’t know how to fix things. We don’t have a clue what to do, even with the simplest problems.

Why promotes curiosity, exploration, development, creativity. Things that are desperately missing in today’s world.