Ode to an Anthem

| February 26, 2018

If you ain’t from around here, you probably won’t know how many tweaks and revisions the national anthem of Canada — O Canada — has undergone since it was first performed, as a French poem set to music, on 24 June 1880. As with any popular patriotic song, it went through a series of translations, […]

Musings on Musketry — Part the First: Back in the Day

| February 19, 2018

The first firearm I came to own was a Lee Enfield No.4 Mk.1* service rifle built in 1942 by the Savage Arms Company as part of the U. S. lend lease programme in aid of the British war effort against Nazi Germany. In 1973, at the age of 16 and with the approval of my […]

Long Story Short

| February 5, 2018

I had cause this morning to reflect on how often I begin a statement with the words, “Nothing annoys me more than ….” As it turns out, a great many things annoy me, and they all appear to be vying for the position of top dog.


| February 4, 2018

The most fulfilling moments in my so far 37 year career as a security consultant have involved engineering nasty surprises for miscreants, mostly human but occasionally from other tribes, who thought they were smarter than everyone else but weren’t. Oh, sure, along the way we’ve saved a few lives, but that was just collateral un-damage […]

Mud, Rightly Considered

| January 14, 2018

Our title today paraphrases G. K. Chesterton’s observation that, “An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.” The poem was inspired by a combination of current meteorological realities here in Nova Scotia, and some reading I’ve been doing on daily life of British and Commonwealth soldiers in […]

Meanwhile, in Nova Scotia

| January 4, 2018

Nova Scotia is currently swaying like a drunken sailor under an assortment of winter storm warnings including snowfall warning, heavy rainfall warning, extreme wind warning, and storm surge warning. Mostly rain in our area, falling on frozen ground leading to nearly instant ice formation on paved surfaces. Winds are expected to increase in intensity through […]

A Long Winter’s Night — 2017 Edition: Day 6

| December 26, 2017

Culturally, the hospitality aspects of festivities prevailing at this time of year exist in a maelstrom of ill considered and contradictory drives. Year after year, many will attempt to answer seasonal motivations to visit people who sometimes live at a great remove and may be reached at no small peril to life and limb, even […]

A Long Winter’s Night — 2017 Edition: Day 4

| December 24, 2017

Someone most of us here have enjoyed the benefit of “knowing” since our childhood embarks on another perilous journey tonight, and few have every paused to consider the strategic, tactical, and logistical realities of a Grand Mission that, done half-assed, could end up being Nick’s last ride. He’s been at this a while so it […]

A Long Winter’s Night — 2017 Edition: Day 1

| December 21, 2017

Winter in Nova Scotia will arrive at twenty-eight minutes past noon Atlantic Standard Time today when the Solstice heralds the start of the long, slow plod to Spring. For those of us of whatever species who haven’t already migrated or gone into hibernation, this is a time of uncertainty tempered with incipient joy. The Black […]

War and Remembrance — We’ve Been Here Before

| November 26, 2017

In its ascension, the organization known to the west as ISIS successfully branded itself an unstoppable juggernaut, defiance of which promised a terrible retribution that included such horrors as having your immolation or decapitation broadcast to the world in surprisingly professional “official” releases. Take a nasty looking knife and cut a bound man’s head off […]