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Macca cheers me up, again

Don’t know what I can say to make this day better: B.C. is drowning, farm animals are dying in the thousands, people who had to move out because of wildfires have to move out again because of extreme flooding. And yet again, a white vigilante has gone free in the States. I’m reaching the point that I can’t read news from there any more, what the Repugs are doing is so reprehensible. Last night Bill Maher talked to Fareed Zakaria who believes that though authoritarian China is moving ahead with incredible rapidity on all fronts, the US has myriad resources and will keep up. Maher doesn’t believe it. Neither do I. 

Sick at heart. I guess it’s also that it’s fall, days are generally gloomy, the trees increasingly bare, the bright colours littering the ground. The real cold is around the corner.

It’s also that I’ve invested in a huge mailing to book club members, trying to entice them to read my memoir and have me as a guest at their clubs. So far, nada. I’m trying, sweet book. And also, that I found out one of my favourite places in all Toronto, the Merchants of Green Coffee coffeeshop not far from here, a wonderful friendly room full of battered furniture and the smell of roasting coffee, has closed and been sold to be renovated. Renovated! Phooey!

I was supposed to go out to two in-person events yesterday – a movie with Ken and a concert in the evening with old friend Ron, the first live cultural events in two years. Cancelled, feeling under the weather, wanted to stay home with my head under a pillow. So I did. 


Really, I’m fine. Judy and I were talking on our weekly Zoom call last week about how it helps to be positive and resilient, and we are. That doesn’t mean we don’t get hit, periodically, with sadness or fear or a sense that things are pretty dire in the world. Because they are. 

Two dear friends right now are awaiting results of a biopsy.

On a cheerier note, Paul McCartney is everywhere, because the three Let It Be films open on the 25th. As you know, a sighting of him always makes me feel better. Talk about positive and resilient! He was interviewed by the brilliant Terry Gross on NPR, one of the best interviews I have ever heard, not of him, of anyone. She’s sharp, direct, insightful; not once does she ask, “And how did that make you feel?”

To really cheer myself up, I read obituaries. The other day, a woman with the last name Smellie. Can you imagine high school? And a man with the last name Jaszczyszyn. Can you imagine how many times he had to spell that, laboriously, over and over? How great to be a simple Kaplan. I just have to shout “K! K!” over and over. But they get the rest.

This morning, riding to the market in a cold wind, loading up — no floods here, no shortages, stacks of produce, everything ticking along – could we be luckier? Except for our lunkhead premier planning to spend billions on a highway to nowhere. My tech assistant Nishat is coming over now to help me with various snafus, and then I’m walking with Ruth. And then I’ll light the fire, pour a glass of wine, and read a book. I have nothing, nothing, to complain about, except that occasionally, the world is too much with me.



6 Responses to “Macca cheers me up, again”

  1. Susan Kargut says:

    I hope it encourages you to learn that your book is on my Christmas list, and if the elves aren't wise enough to choose it, I will treat myself to a copy in the new year. And yes, I know about hastily adding " . . with a 'K'. . . 'K'" to those who are already poised to write 'C'. I'm glad your Paul is helping you keep your spirits up. Cheers.

  2. beth says:

    Hooray – thank you, Susan, I hope you enjoy the memoir. Merry Christmas! And yes – why is "C" the default letter? I guess for you it's the word 'car.' I've always believed that the K – Kaplans are simply nicer people than the C Caplans. I'm sure of it.

  3. Susan Kargut says:

    And speaking of nicer Kaplans, there couldn't be a finer one than David Kaplan who was head of the music department here when I took my B. Mus. His teasing humour suited me perfectly and he added so much to our music community. He is greatly missed.

  4. beth says:

    Glad to hear it, Susan. Unfortunately, I don't have any nice Karguts to tell about, except you.

  5. theresa says:

    "Can you imagine high school? And a man with the last name Jaszczyszyn. Can you imagine how many times he had to spell that, laboriously, over and over? How great to be a simple Kaplan. I just have to shout "K! K!" over and over. But they get the rest." Oh, I can imagine high school with an odd name, believe me. And elementary school. I was the child sitting with such anxiety as the teacher called the role, esp. on the first day of classes. Mary Anderson, Jim Cook…Theresa Krishnan? Kripcan? And me, trying to pronounce it carefully (just as it looks). Spelling it — oh yes. The thing is, no one listens.

  6. beth says:

    Oh my, Theresa, yes, I get it. But at least Kishkan or Kaplan is not Jaszczyszyn. We do an exercise in memoir class about our names; it's amazing how many people do not like theirs.

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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