May 30, 2018

May 22, 2018


Our condolences to our friends Heather & Holly and family, on the passing on their father Bob on Sun. May 20.

Bob was what you would call "the strong, silent type" with emphasis on the latter of the two.

There were two things you could pretty much guarantee Bob would be wearing when you ran into him. His trusty suspenders and a great big smile. Another familiarity, never far from Bob's side, was his dear wife Liz (who I still swear is secretly named Dorothy.)

It was not unusual to see the happy couple enjoying burgers and fries (Hey... don't forget the condiments) at local Wendy's restaurants. That was one of the places I saw them often, as well as Weir/MacNeil family functions such as weddings, stag & does, Christmases and birthdays.

Bob was an avid card player and good with math (meaning you likely wouldn't want to bet against his hand unless you were darn sure you would beat him.)

At one time, the words 'Dad's Deliveries' could have rightfully been painted on the side of his cars. Many was the time when I would be visiting Bob's daughter Heather and her husband Doug, when he would show up, there to either drop off or pick up something to or from his wife. 

Whenever I think of him, that contagious smile will always come to mind which in turn will always bring a smile to my face. That's something Bob had the uncanny ability to do....make us smile...and it's something that will live on forever, when we think of him.

He was a devoted husband, father, grandpa and friend to many, who will be greatly missed.

Rest in peace Bob. 


WEIR, Robert Douglas. Passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 20, 2018. He leaves behind his loving wife Elizabeth (Liz) Weir, his children Peter, Heather (Doug), Holly (Tim), and John, grandchildren Graham (Erin), Kevin (Amanda), Andrew (Melisa), Matthew (Lauren), Danielle, and Valarie, as well as great-grandchildren Airicka, Sakari, Hannah, Sapphire, Addison, Kylie, Arley, Sarica, Shou-Ren, Deegan, and Evan, and sister-in-law Lindsay. He was an avid euchre player and loved everything that had anything to do with math and numbers. He will be sadly missed by his family and friends. In keeping with Robert's wishes cremation has taken place. Arrangements entrusted to the Hulse & English Funeral Home & Chapel, (905-684-6346). Online tributes may be made at

^As featured in the St. Catharines Standard

YOU | Another Big Birthday Blast

May 17, 2018

YOU & ME | A Few Mother's Day Moments ...

YOUR WORDS | When Real Life Happens

REVIEW | Desperately Speaking Susan

Local Community Theatre Boomerangs Crowd to Australia & Back Again, in Smash Production of 'Just the Ticket'

Shows put on by the Dunnville Community Theatre [DCT] should have to come with a disclaimer.

Something along the lines of, “Warning: Attending a DCT production may cause spontaneous outbursts of laughter, teary eyes as a result of heartfelt moments and a uncontrollable desire for more and more and MORE!”.

All of the above applied when I had the pleasure of attending the production of Peter Quilter's Just the Ticket, recently put on by the DCT.

Joining me for the event were my sister Kim and my neighbour Deanna. We had front row seats and sat with the show’s producer Nancy Erskine as we enjoyed a clever production where five talented ladies portrayed one somewhat flamboyant and vocal character by the name of Susan.

Susan is going on vacation to Australia. Traveling solo on her trip "down under", she chats up a storm with other airport passengers, fellow tourists and a bartender she is smitten with, by the name of Bill. What makes this part unique is that we don’t actually see the people Susan is speaking to, but through the magic of convincing acting, we are lead to believe they are right there on stage with her.

Collectively portraying the role of Susan were Judy Wenjina, Tracey Stirling, Diane Morris, Candace Stern and Sheila Schumacher. 

One actor would play out a portion of a scene then cleverly exit the stage with the next actor quickly picking up where the other had left off. Making it appear seamless meant plenty of rehearsals and the purchasing of five identical for each of the five “Susan’s” (and there were several costume changes.)

I imagine it could also be a challenge for the actors. If they were to forget their dialogue, there was no one else on stage to prompt them to recall their next line. Fortunately everyone on stage was a seasoned actor and if there were any flubbed lines, they were barely noticeable.

This was the first DCT production I had attended in well over a year and there was a multitude of emotional, friendly hugs shared with the cast and crew of this close-knit community theatre, both before and after the show.

We laughed, we got choked up and we were thoroughly entertained. When it came to an enjoyable night out at a live show this production was truly “just the ticket”.

This Little Piggy Went Wee Wee Wee All the Way Home...Wherever That Is

YOU & ME | A Pocketful of Memories

Keepin' our Domain the Same

BEFORE & AFTER | What a Difference a Year Makes

REVIEW | Roseanne Barr: Her Live Stand Up Act Made Us Laugh ... A Month Later Tweets Lead to Her Demise


It seems hard to believe that just over a month from the date friends and I saw Roseanne Barr perform live at PAC in downtown St. Catharines, she would implode after posting a racist tweet.

Since that time, 'Roseanne' was immediately cancelled by ABC, repeats of the 9 reboot episodes were pulled from streaming services and the original 'Roseanne' series from over 20 years ago was bumped from numerous TV networks lineups and removed from Netflix, Hulu, etc. Plus the agency representing Barr dropped her.

Roseanne blamed everything from her medication to being overly tired, as the reason she posted her appalling tweet, which she then removed, before apologizing and begging forgiveness.

Personally, although I totally get why trying to move forward with a second season of the reboot would be pretty much impossible now, I don't agree with the removal of the original series from TV networks and streaming services.

For me, it has always been the perfect grouping of actors that became the Conners and their friends, that made the Roseanne series believable, identifiable and funny. Without them, the series would not have been the hit that it was and continues to be...well, up until Tuesday, it appears.

The Laff network is a US sub channel. They air 6 episodes of Roseanne, 7 days a week. It's arguably the best series on their limited lineup of sitcoms. Roseanne posts her horrible tweet in the wee hours of Tuesday morning and a crushing snowball begins to grow. By late Tuesday afternoon, Laff decides to stop airing the original series "for the time being".

While some applaud this decision, since Barr gets residuals every time the show airs, I don't see why the other stars (who also get royalties), the viewers, and the sponsors should also be punished for her actions.

As for Barr. Any good she ever did on her original series and the popular reboot is forever tarnished by a series of tweets, with one being particularly cruel and the straw that broke the camel's back.

There's some, including Jimmy Kimmel and myself, who feel Barr is having a breakdown. It would not be the star's first struggle with mental illness.

Having had my own emotional battles throughout much of my adult life, at times being institutionalized, I would hope that if ever I made a blunder the magnitude of Barr's, at least a few of my friends would see this as a sign that I need help and support, instead of trying to remove any and all signs of my existence.

-Jun. 2, 2018

REVIEW: Roseanne Barr at Performimg Arts Centre in April

It was late May 2017 when the First Ontario Performing Arts Centre hosted their annual reveal gala. That’s when the downtown St. Catharines venue announces what acts are lined up for their next season. 

When they announced Roseanne Barr was coming on April 23, 2018, my friend Shelly and I quickly purchased tickets.

A few months later I found out that Barr was an avid supporter of Donald Trump [insert gagging sound here.] Suddenly the thought of seeing her in person lost much of its appeal.  

Later in 2017 it was announced that the Roseanne TV series was returning. It was also revealed that art would imitate life, with Roseanne‘s TV character also being a Trump supporter. This really irked me because the Roseanne Conner in the original series would never have supported someone like him. 

When the Roseanne reboot aired its first episode in March, there were actually very few political jabs featured. Would Roseanne show the same restraint in her live show? I would soon find out.

In her stand-up routine, Barr made reference to the new president only one time. She did not say she was in favour or opposed to him. She simply asked how many people in the crowd liked Trump (sadly there were quite a few who cheered.)  Then she asked how many people did not like him, at which time the audience went wild. She joked "So it's pretty even then", but the crowd's reaction clearly indicated otherwise. Perhaps this was Roseanne’s way of taking the pulse of those at the sold out venue, as she then moved on to other topics.

Roseanne covered everything from being a senior citizen, her fame and smoking pot, to how the definition of a good spouse at age 65 was much different than when you’re 25. 

"At 65, a spouse that's good in bed is someone who farts and snores less than you do" she chuckled. 

She lovingly joked about gays and lesbians, she joked about being fat and her spoiled adult children. Even Canada’s cold temperatures made the hit list. 

"My coordinator said to me, Roseanne you'll be there in spring" she said, "Ya, right" she added (Barr resides in Hawaii these days.)

Nothing was off-limits when it came to her routine, nor did I expect anything would be.

When I entered the Performing Arts Centre the night Roseanne Barr was appearing, I was less than enthusiastic. I told Shelley months earlier that I didn't want to go. But Shelley was quick to point out that we had already paid for the tickets and asked me what I would otherwise be doing on a Monday night...a valid point.

I feared we’d be exposed to a non-stop Trump storm and I had even visualized myself walking out of the venue in a dramatic huff. 

Instead, I was pleasantly surprised and found myself laughing out loud many times at Roseanne’s amusing takes on life.  

Barr's live act was nothing like I thought it was going to be. And that was a very good thing.

PETS | Busted!

Taken at my mom's house on Mother's Day. It's her cat Patches and our "joint-custody" dog Timmi.

May 14, 2018