Random thoughts

Sharing some thoughts, ideas, and some laughs

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Prof. Siegel’s column on #StCath governance; missing the mark on a few issues.

I have a great deal of respect for Professor Siegel – so much, in fact, that he was one of the first people we had come and speak to the Governance Committee in the last term of Council. I suppose that is why I find the title of his column so strange.

The Governance Committee DID define the problem; quite succinctly, in fact. The problem is one of knowledge for the decision-makers in government; that is, the elected officials. No one doubts that staff at the two levels of government speak to one another – if they didn’t, there’d be some serious low-hanging fruit for this Council to pick off. But staff don’t set policy for the community.

The ‘Answer’ that we developed was quite clearly an answer to that problem. When the problem is one of lack of knowledge at the two levels of elected officials, the answer is to…

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The Date

When I was sixteen years old, I was invited out on a date. Due to the involvement that I had in sports and various other activities I had been on many dates with many different guys. My parents were very good about my dating and in fact I think to some degree my Mother lived vicariously through me enjoying my social experience as much or more than I did. Apart from which I had two older brothers who frankly could not have given a damn about my virtue and would no more of kicked the crap out of anyone for inappropriate behaviour than flown under their own steam but hey, my dates didn’t know that.

This guy was quite a bit older than I was. Again this was not unusual in fact I seldom if ever dated anyone my own age. He was however quite experienced and certainly “knew his way around”.

We were going to dinner at The Moorings on Yonge Street in Toronto. In the day, this was known as a  high end place specializing in seafood and was considered to be a pretty classy joint. As was usually the case, when my Mother learned of the dinner invitation, she immediately set to making me an outfit for the occasion. It was a stunning cream coloured simple sleeveless little dress that  hugged my shape perfectly and showed off my rich lifeguard tan. I felt like a million bucks !

That night I ate oysters for the first time and then enjoyed a delightful concoction of shrimp and crab in a cream sauce that was divine. I don’t know how but I was also was able to imbibe in some wine during dinner.

Between the main and dessert, I paid a visit to the ladies because quite frankly I really thought that I was going to be sick. Whether it was the excitement, the oysters, the wine (not likely) or that I was with such a handsome, charming man I really do not know. When I returned to my seat at the table I found  a glass of club soda and a beautiful red rose waiting for me.

I sat down and my date reached across the table for my hand.  I raised my eyes and looked into the blue eyes of the man I loved more than any other man in the world and it was then my Father looked at me told me how he loved me and how very proud he was that I was his daughter.

I miss you Dad.

My Date, My Dad

My Date, My Dad

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Mother to Mother

This morning I was treated to a lovely breakfast with two thirds of my sons, half of my grandsons and and one of my two daughters (in law but that’s just a technicality). I was showered with cards and really nice gifts that are thoughtful and useful. The one from the little boys is pictured here;Nana mug

I am missing the one third of the sons, the other half of the grandsons and the other daughter (in law but that’s just a technicality).

And of course I am missing my own Mother.

I then began to think, after all this blog is called “my random thoughts”. Days like today evoke all sorts of emotions and memories and even though I miss my Mother I had the joy of loving her and having her with me for fifty-four years. Yes, I desperately want to squish that new baby face of my 2 month old grandson and play with his older brother in the meadow and hug my son and daughter but I look forward to all of that the next time I am with them. In the interim I know that I shall see them this evening via SKYPE. Thank you technology!

This is not the case for too many Mom’s. Today there are 21 Mommies in Sandy Hook that will not feel their babies’ arms around them nor will they smile through the tears as they read the handmade Mother’s Day Cards full of love tissue paper and smelling of library paste. There are children who no longer have a Mom to whom they can make and deliver a breakfast in bed of lumpy pancakes and truly dreadful coffee. There are Moms who shall see their daughters’ eyes shine back at them only in a picture on the mantle.


Closer to home, Mickel Sylvain’s Mom is struggling with fresh grief at the loss of her son just last Thursday in a cruel random vehicular crash. She will be choosing hymns and pall bearers on this Mother’s Day.

Mickel Sylvain

On Friday, the day he would have turned 13 years old, Matteo Mancini’s birthday was recognized at his funeral. This brave young man fought for life and lived it with  a grace and dignity well beyond his years and while his Mom is proud and full of love she too will never forget this Mother’s Day.

Matteo Mancini

As I write, the Mother of Tim Bosma waits for news of her son. Tim’s wife Sharlene is spending today holding on to their little girl and waiting.

tim bosma

Today we Moms celebrate how lucky we are to be Daughters and Mothers. We are fortunate and we are grateful.

As we eat half baked cookies and try to arrange broken stemmed flowers in a leaky  vase made with loving little hands, maybe take a moment to send some kind thoughts to those Moms mentioned here and to others whose Mother’s Day is one of challenge or sadness or grief. Just for a moment, and then relish in the joy of your loved ones as will this Mother and Nana.


No Kill? No Give a Damn!

I continue to be a proponent of a No Kill philosophy BUT I continue to fear the “movement” (NKA & NKN) are more concerned with  the optics of “clearing the books”, “getting them out the shelter” than they are about the welfare of the dogs and cats that are “cleared” and “transported”.  I have asked and asked but to date no one has taken the time or made the effort to reply, Does anyone follow up on the dogs and cats that are transported or transferred to the numerous rescue groups? Does anyone know or care what happens to the dogs and cats that are sent to these rescue groups. Does anyone know or care to perform checks and on site visits to these rescue groups?’ How many dogs and cats are adopted,transferred yet again or just live a miserable, diseased, starving existence until they die either naturally or predated my those hungrier and stronger.  Does anyone take the time or make the effort to care? BUT, they are not killed because this is No Kill – at all costs. Just another form of exploitation of innocent animals in order that others may write books, make speeches and garner donations.

This is the other side of No Kill, the “rescues” to which dogs and cats are sent in order to empty the cages at the shelters. They are gone, they are forgotten, out of sight- out of mind, they are neglected, they are abused  but the shelter statistics are great and the public relations train just keeps on chugging. The law suits against those that have the audacity to disagree continue to be fought (with donor money) and the animals continue to rot in hell on earth.

I recently read a superb blog by “fromamaddogwalker” and was so impressed with this piece that I asked permission to share: How I Failed as a Rescuer, Lessons From a Sanctuary

This is not pretty, but this is reality:INSIDE THE OLYMPIC ANIMAL SANCTUARY

It’s time that No Kill Movement be held accountable for the animals they have KILLED by “saving”.

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What The??????

Okay, back up the truck. What am I missing?

For years Nathan Winograd, the guru of No Kill has ranted and raved against the cruelty, irresponsible behaviour, lack of ethics, and deplorable practices of the ASPCA.

read Winograd’s March 19th 2013 anti ASPCA et al blog  The Myth of “Animal Welfare” or  March 5, 2013 What’s In A Name? 

or this particularly condemning attack of December 12, 2012 The ASPCA Allows Dogs to Starve

Repeatedly, Winograd and his disciples have espoused that the No Kill equation is the only manner in which animals may be saved from “shelter killing”. Okay, I get it but how is it that Winograd’s virtual “right hand” , Bonnie Brown is working with the ASPCA?  Ms.Brown is trotted out by Winograd at every opportunity to preach the gospel according to Winograd. She is at if not all then most of the No Kill conferences as a headline speaker  regaling the no kill equation and the miracles that have been realized at  Washoe County in Nevada and how she achieved a community wide live release rate of over 90% by dramatically increasing pet adoptions and engaging their community.

IF, Bonnie Brown is in fact working in cooperation with the ASPCA, then good for her. It is cooperative efforts that will make change not the constant ugly, vicious attacks a la Winograd that will ultimately save lives. The question remains how does this jibe with Winograd’s stance on the ASPCA?

The ASPCA provides free webinars for those interested in education themselves in the many areas of animals health and welfare. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that on April 25th, 2013, Bonnie Brown is conducting a webinar  in cooperation with the ASPCA!!!!

The True Cost and Value of Pet Adoptions

I have heard Ms.Brown speak and found the experience very enjoyable, enlightening and definitely worth the listen. It will be interesting to hear if this particular presentation is peppered with the usual anti ASPCA, HSUS shots or will the talk be tempered in light of the sponsoring agency.

It is truly my hope that this is an indication of future cooperation between animal welfare organization and agencies. Maybe this is a precursor to greater understanding and enlightenment and a willingness to work together to save lives.  Today Bonnie Brown and ASPCA, Tomrow Nathan Winograd and PEtA

Or not.

If I really am missing something or misunderstanding the situation then hopefully some one will “set me straight” in the interim……I am not holding by breath.

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puppy mill 1

A petition to “ENACT LEGISLATION TO SHUT DOWN ONTARIO’S PUPPY MILLS” was read into the Ontario Legislature on March 21, 2013 by:

Michael Prue, MPP (Beaches & East York) http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/members/members_detail.do?locale=en&ID=81
Gilles Bisson, MPP (Timmons & James Bay) http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/members/members_detail.do?locale=en&ID=7
Cherri Dinovo, MPP (Parkdale & High Park) http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/members/members_detail.do?locale=en&ID=7044

As you all know, in the Fall the Ontario Legislature shut down…  the above mentioned Petition is now in the hands of our Ontario Legislature. Let me add that his petition which HAD to be hand down (No internet or electronic versions) collected approx 15,500 signatures.
Here’s the thing now. The Legislature has 30 days to reply the the MPP’s who introduced the petition. So, NOW is the time to act to help close down puppy mills.  Go to your constituency office. Lobby your MPP. Let him or her know that there are people in his/her riding who are passionate about this Legislation. If you’ve ever said you hate puppy mills… now is the time to act and visit, call, write, and/or lobby your own MPP. They have a vote…. let it be the right one to close down  Puppy Mills.



Cindy Forster MPP- Welland

Jim Bradley MPPSt Catharines

Kim Craitor MPP – Niagara Falls

Tim Hudak – Niagara West Glanbrook Leader of the Ontario Provincial Party and Leader of the Opposition

for contact info for the above Members of Provincial Parliament http://www.niagararegion.ca/government/levels/mp-and-mpp-niagara-region.aspx

It doesn’t get any easier than this. The heay lifting is being done by others all we have to do is lend some support. COME ON – NO EXCUSES- Let’s stop breeding for profit at the expense of innocent lives!

Please forward this post to anyone and everyone that you can think of that at anytime said “I hate puppy mills”

puppy mill 2


Time to Party ? Time to Mourn? Time to ACT!

There’s a party going on! Yep, no doubt there will be much backslapping, cheering and mutual aggrandizing at LCHS today and deservedly so. Well done Strooband, Kushner, Davidson et al, you did it. You and your one minute one dollar proxies won the day.

We Did It! We Won!

We Did It! We Won!

CONGRATULATIONS, now let the killing commence

We lost

We lost

It had NOTHING to do with animal welfare, NOTHING. The LCHS AGM was all about sticking it to the taxpayers and donors of St Catharines. It was nothing more than a group of vindictive, immature, spiteful , egotistical, small minded, morally bankrupt individuals more concerned with maintaining a death grip on their pathetic “positions” than caring for the well being of animals.

The meeting had been choreographed for weeks and in the end, mission accomplished. Had this “operation been carried out with any degree of ethics or responsibility or with even an iota of decency I would not be as bothered but it was a case of pure and simple bullying. Apparently Roberts Rules of Order, the Ontario Corporations Act and a specific motion of City Council are of no consequence to the mighty demagogues of LCHS. Apparently there is one set of rules for we, the unwashed masses and then there is the golden rule for LCHS. “He who owns the gold rules and in this case the gold was the purchased proxies.

Sorry, I just cannot conjure up the energy to go through the whole charade again.

You can “read all about it” in the Standard

St Catharines Standard

St Catharines Standard

and in Ros’ blog   .http://rosalindwent.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/lchs-membership-so-close-yet-so-far/#comment-943

To those beautiful healthy, treatable dogs and cats that have been killed in the last ten years – OVER 25,000, think about it, TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND, we tried. To those thousands of healthy, treatable dogs and cats that will be killed at LCHS, we tried.

The Kushner Cocktail

The Kushner Cocktail

We have not given up, we shall continue in our efforts to STOP THE KILLING!