Don’t Say That! - theHumm March 2020
Don’t Say That! - theHumm March 2020
By Glenda Jones
Old Nellie has been in the barn all winter and she’s getting spring fever, so it’s time to saddle up the old girl and get on my high horse for a trot around the countryside. Riding can be a pain in the butt for those of us who don’t get out often enough, so this saddle will likely bring out all the complaints I’ve been storing up for the past couple of months.
If I hear the phrase “the vast majority” one more time, I think I’ll have to assign the perpetrators to a statistics course. The majority is an amount more than half. Just go with that; no adjectives required. The adjective “vast” isn’t needed at all! As an aside, journalists are taught that adjectives muddy the waters of good reporting, and further tend to indicate a bias on the part of the reporter. Remember the old Dragnet series? Joe Friday used to say, “Just the facts, Ma’am”, and that’s all I want too. If it’s the “vast majority”, I want to know if it’s 52% or 98%. “Vastness” makes me think the perpetrator has scoured the land east west south and north to come up with every known opinion he can garner.
Are there burrs on this saddle? I’m in pain here! “Unfortunately” I can’t get off this horse until the ride is over. “Unfortunately” has become the catch phrase for customer service people when they don’t want to give you that little perk you know you should have. “Unfortunately” actually means, “Nope, not this time. I can’t be bothered getting you the service you deserve. Waayyy too much trouble for little me!” Rules are meant to be broken if it is what a customer needs, especially a customer of a certain age, when the service person is knee-high to the proverbial grasshopper! I am noting of late that a sweet little old lady smile, and the little addition of “Well, unfortunately I will be going somewhere else” has gotten me a long way. Surprisingly fast changes come about then, especially when I add that of course I’ll be posting this unfortunate service on social media. Don’t mess with the old ladies!
We’re heading into elections, and a plethora of inane phrases. Interviewers are working diligently to educate the public. Imagine their pride when one of their questions gets this accolade: “That’s a very good question”. Have you ever heard the host reply, “Why, thank you. I spent hours formulating that in the fervent hope that you might give me a straight answer instead of evaluating my ability to be a journalist”? We recognize that the politician has to get his brain in gear before answering with the stock phrases they store for such occasions.
Here he goes: “Obviously, that issue is of the utmost importance to us, and we’re working hard to resolve it.” First off, “obviously” denotes a condescending attitude towards an audience assumed to be naïve and uninformed. Secondly, if every issue is of the utmost importance, how are they prioritized? Surely not every issue is on the top of the heap. And thirdly, the ubiquitous “we are working hard”. I wonder if employees only work hard when they are bashed over the head with a big issue. Do they slack off most times? Do they now have to do without coffee breaks and maybe work overtime? Are they on a deadline to solve an issue? No. None of that; they simply are putting in the nine to five, passing the load to the next fellow, and wiping their brows when the politicians come by the desk. It’s a ruse, this working very hard, and the solutions will only take a couple of years… at which time they might have to work hard again. Want to see hard work? Follow a farmer for a few days; or watch the mother of toddlers.
Yikes, Nellie, not so fast here, old girl!
Agencies in our midst are formulating plans for the improvement of everything from sidewalk cleaning to youth addiction by touting phrases that sound like “looking at infrastructure through the seniority/gender non-specific familial lens” (which means it’s seniors and parents with strollers who use the sidewalks), or “family-oriented open dialogue relating to societal peer groups and authority figures” (which means they’re going to have kids, parents, school teachers and the police in a room together). Just the facts, Ma’am!
Don’t obfuscate every issue with complicated language that hinders the conveyance of ideas. If you don’t know, just say so; if you do, then tell it like it is. Don’t snow us with cotton wool phrases that have no relevance to the answers. Don’t hammer us with trite slogans you repeat like some demented parrot on a perch.
Okay, we’re back at the barn. Time to get off this horse and walk her around ’til we’re both calm again. Is it any wonder she doesn’t like to see me heading her way?
The sun is shining here in the paddock, and there are geese overhead. So here are some things I do hope you’ll say. Say “I love you” more often than you do now. Say “thank you” even for a tiny thing. Say “Yes” more often than “No”. And for sure say “I’ll try” way more often than “I can’t”.
By Sally Hansen
Art… and Soul
The mere mention of Transylvania anywhere in the Anglosphere immediately conjures up the occult adventures of Dracula. Having never met anyone from Transylvania before, your intrepid arts reporter was both mesmerized and intimidated by my utter lack of knowledge of the background of this month’s featured artist from Arnprior.
Mária Moldován’s astonishing art is as unfamiliar as her background — and just as fascinating. This accomplished and multi-talented artist weaves he......
Maple Marches into the Valley! - theHumm March 2020
By Sarah Kerr
March! I can’t believe it! We’ve made it through the darkness and are heading to the light — with longer days and spring just around the corner. I find March is a favourite month of mine, not just because it’s my birthday month, but it’s also Nowruz (Persian New Year on spring equinox) marking a new year, a fresh start, spring!
I love planning March with kids because its full of maple goodness; there’s still snow but lots of sunshine to get the sap running. The beginning of the agricultural seaso......
In April 2018, ten Mississippi Mills artists held their first show, expecting 500 people to visit. By the end of the two-day exhibit, more than 1,200 had attended the show and visited the town. In 2019 attendance increased to 1,600. Visitors came from Mississippi Mills, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City and Toronto. The artists were overwhelmed and sold many of their paintings. It was also very busy weekend for the local restaurants and stores.
“The overwhelming success of the last two shows and......
By Submitted Maureen Running and Nancy Chevrier, Social Justice Committee, CFUW Perth and District
In 2020, youth homelessness continues to be a difficult and complex problem across Canada. In Lanark County youth homelessness is often invisible but is nevertheless very real. Man......
Stand-Up and Take Notice! - theHumm March 2020
By Article submitted Vicki Graham, standup comic wannabe. Vicki lives in Merrickville and is active in her local theatre group. A retired Bank Manager and breast cancer survivor (two things you don’t ass
I always enjoy going through the Humm monthly. While looking for a winter adventure, I came across an article promoting stand-up comedy. I jumped at the chance, and for the last four weeks, seven......
By Barb Purdy
To take on the climate emergency, we need to inspire voters and volunteers to join us, the Green Party first responders. What are the best ways for us to work hard and work smart together?
ADHS Presents Noises Off - theHumm March 2020
By Elizabeth Golding is a grade 12 student at ADHS
Come see Almonte and District High School’s latest play, and don’t forget the sardines! This year ADHS will be performing Noises Off, which was written by Michael Frayn in 1982. It was during a t......
By Sebastian Weetabix
The word restaurant derives from soups sold “to go” in marketplaces. As we know them, restaurants date to the time of the French revolution. Today the term restaurant covers a very wide range of ......
TheHumm’s Daily Dose for March 28, 2020 Support Almonte Merchants, Get Out and Run, and Stay Healthy with Modern Thymes - theHumm March 2020
Destination Almonte has created a wonderful online resource for folks wanting to support their local merchants. At destinationalmonte.com......
TheHumm’s Daily Dose for March 27, 2020 Art Kits for continued creativity, and original art in exchange for ordering books! - theHumm March 2020
JB Arts in Almonte and Art & Class in Perth are both offering a creative way to stay creative: custom art kits that can be delivered or picked up! In Almonte, you can email email@example.com and......
TheHumm’s Daily Dose for March 26, 2020 Good food for dinner, the history of Fortune Farms, and Mississippi Mudds-wear. - theHumm March 2020
If you find yourself running out of flour (or inspiration), why not order dinner tonight from The Good Food Co? Petra writes: “We are trying to keep food waste and traffic into the storefront to ......
TheHumm’s Daily Dose for March 25, 2020 Bubbles & Bites, YouTube Yoga, and band banter with Blackie & the Rodeo Kings. - theHumm March 2020
Good news! Artizen Kombucha is teaming up with friends to deliver an assortment of delicious goodies made right in Perth. They write: “Our small rural town boasts incredible culinary creativity a......
TheHumm’s Daily Dose for March 23, 2020 Online yoga, delivering groceries to seniors, and a virtual April Humm! - theHumm March 2020
Starting today (Monday, March 23), Carp’s Yoga & Tea Studio will be offering their daily schedule of yoga classes LIVE online since the studio is temporarily closed due to Covid-19. Find out ......
May 22 - Sep 5 Head Over Heels
Jul 12 - Sep 6 Eric Uren
Aug 2 - 31 Exhibit: Ghosts of the Highway
Aug 4 - 31 Jazz Night w/Spencer Evans Trio
Aug 6 - 7 Rideau Artist of the Year Competition
Aug 8 Matt Dickson
Aug 11 The Tempest
Aug 12 - 14 Puppets Up! International Puppet Festival
Aug 12 Jeff Callery
Aug 13 - 14 Perth Lions Garlic Festival
- David Dunn — Doing What Comes Naturally
- Richard Gill’s Annual Show Burnstown Sculptor Sheds Light on 50-Year Career with Milestone Show
- Travel to Wonderland with Alice! Summer Fare at Smiths Falls Station Theatre
- Ghosts of the Highway New Exhibit at Perth’s Concave Gallery
- Calling All Hippies… To the Killaloe Craft and Community Fair!
- A Midsummer Night in Perth Landscapes Interpreted Through Art and Fashion
- MMLT Presents The Festival of the Wild Child Outdoor Family-Friendly Event is Better than Ever!
- Perth Garlic Festival
- 3 Galleries; 3 Shows
- Beautiful Art in Beautiful Westport!