I didn’t like school……….being a lousy student will do that.

I loved watching Facebook and Instagram these past few weeks and seeing all the proud parents and relatives with their little graduates. It brings back great memories when we had little graduates…….every year was a celebration. Moms and twos, JK, Elementary, High school and University.

All students have one thing in common. Their teachers.

No teachers. No school.

I have a ton of respect for educators and support staff. It’s not easy and you need to find people who like, no love, what they do. If you get into teaching or any public services and you don’t love it, I don’t think you’ll be very successful. Or at least as successful as you could be. If you are a teacher or were a teacher…….Congratulations for what you do and thanks. The only way this planet will survive is with advancement and it all starts in the classroom at a tender age.

I wasn’t very good at school. I was a lousy learner and poor performer right up until I left at around 17 years of age.  I remember enjoying being in class, but for the life of me, I couldn’t retain anything. Very low comprehension. I sort of struggled through elementary school. I got in trouble at elementary school. Who gets in trouble in elementary school?

Then it was on to Junior High and the fate of my scholastic future was sealed in Grade 7 when I came home on the second last day of school, all ready for summer Holidays and the fun ahead…………and my Mom told me that the school called and I had failed that year. It was so traumatizing to me. It was humiliating and embarrassing. Just writing about it brings back the angst. To make it worse, I remember vividly that my home room teacher announced in class that only 2 people are being held back. At least I wasn’t alone.

Jay-sus….ouch much!

I have reconciled the reasons all these years later, in so far as “the system” believed I was enrolled too early due to my late December birthday. I probably should have not started until the next September, 8 months later, rather than 4 months earlier. By the way, I’m not purging here about anything my parents did. My Mom was 100% supportive and empathetic towards me. They did nothing wrong. In fact, that was really the only bad childhood memory I have outside of the odd bit of trouble I’d get in. As mentioned earlier.

In fairness, I had a very successful repeat year with decent grades and was a member of the Student Council and helped organize fund raisers and dances. I played in the school band and was even a Bantam football player. A&W Wolverines. Center.

But the next year, I was just young and restless and bored (Thanks Mr. Seger) and with 1970’s puberty raging in me, I had many other interests than school work. I wanted to earn money, and I did, I wanted to party, and I did, I wanted a big stereo and lots of records and I had them, I wanted a motorcycle and I got one, then I wanted a car and got that and with transportation I knew I had to get out in the world and live. I did. I got into radio and that’s been pretty good.

No regrets. How can there be?

We were raised catholic and the schools I attended were all catholic.

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My first memories of organized education were going to Kindergarten at St. Josephs Convent on 135th Ave in Edmonton. It’s now a nursing home. It was just down the street, but seemed like a long walk when you’re 4. Yes, I was influenced by Nuns. I have no baggage from it. I don’t recall KG being terrible, but I can’t say it was fun either. Our subconscious is a puzzle, because I do have memories of classmates and accidents. Seemed someone warmed the floor everyday……..not me.

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I then went to Father Lacombe Elementary school. Grade 1-6. I remember one teacher liked Simon and Garfunkel and she would bring in that bulky school record player and put that on during social days. I also remember changing that flag every morning for a period of time. And oh ya, getting the strap for something weird.

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I then went to St. Cecilia Junior High. Grade 7 (liked it so much I did it twice), to Grade 9.

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Because my grades weren’t great, I went to a technical high school. St. Joseph, for an incomplete experience. The one good thing about that was I took cooking and actually learned many skills from many good chefs about the culinary arts. Didn’t really know it or appreciate it at the time. I’m still a decent burger flipper today.

Recently, my son told me that I probably had ADD when I was young. It made some sense the more we chatted about it. It wasn’t something that was diagnosed in my day. If that was the case, I find it very fortunate on my part that I love learning now. The pursuit of personal and professional growth is really what drives me and I can’t get enough learning. I took my GED about a decade ago just because I wanted that piece of paper. Mr. Late bloomer got a Top 2% of all grads in Ontario marks. I’m not sure the bar was too high though. The one thing I was proud of is that we had to write a several thousand word essay by hand. I think I received a 99% grade. So there’s that.

Keep learning…….what could it hurt????

World Cup….what’s the big deal?

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I know 3 soccer fans….give or take…….and I mean they REALLY like soccer. Bona-fide Jersey wearing, scarf carrying, bumper sticker displaying, English Premiere League disciples.

Good for them.

It’s not my beautiful game, but I respect and admire the immense following around the world and those fans and Countries who really have little else but soccer. Not the fair weather, once every 1,460 days for World Cup or Euro Cup band wagoners….. but those 365, 24/7, “my life is meaningless without soccer” fans. Now that’s passion!!!

We all could do without the hooliganism, and unless I’ve missed something, that’s been curbed this time around. I’d never have the courage to attend a soccer game for that reason alone. I don’t need a rock or bottle or sparkler bouncing off my head.

I’m a typical Can/Am soccer observer. It’s a bit slow, no?

In the best 70 year old British accent, “After 90 minutes of time, it’s nil/nil…….ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT”. “A mere 5 red cards for flopping after being brushed by the striker…such discipline”.

I kid of course. I enjoy a lot of different sports and I’m up for a Game 7 of anything………honestly………”the backgammon regional finals are on, get in here”!!!!

HD and now 4K has dramatically improved the quality and therefore the enjoyment of watching sports. The clarity of the action and seeing replays of good, bad and ugly plays in super slow motion is a treat. It gives we viewers a much better appreciation for the talent on the pitch, field, ice, diamond, or court.

I have found myself more and more engaged in this World Cup as it progresses. Except for the infantile fake injury displays. It can be an exciting final 10 minutes.

Did you know?

  • I loved the heat of Canada Day this year……..we did our annual dress up.

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  • I’ve been travelling a lot. I love how technology makes it easier. On line booking, electronic boarding passes, Uber, etc. I still don’t love all the prima donnas associated with travel……but…….
  • My lease was up on my Range Rover and as much as I loved the vehicle, it was going to cost too much to get another one. Couldn’t pull the trigger. I now own my first Hyundai. Well I had a 1986 Stellar when they came out. It was not. But they’ve come a long way. And I can spend the savings on the grand kids. It came with Satellite radio. Meh.

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  • I am employee testing the new Rogers Ignite IPTV. It’s pretty sweet. The voice activation is the game changer. When it comes to your area, consider it. I’m happy to provide a reference ahead of time. Call me.
  • At the time of writing this, they’ve rescued a couple of those lads in the cave in Thailand. Here’s hoping. My god what a story.

Have a great week. Thanks for reading.

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