Aug 22 – summer is coming to a close

The curtain is dropping on ‘the good old summertime’….garden harvesting is nearing, the CNE has opened for another show,

Win Some….Lose Some
“Awww rats, Toad” I said (to myself) as I checked my garden plot over at Hope CR early last Thursday aft, staring at the beefsteak tomato plant that had produced what was surely a blue-ribbon-winning specimen (by Paris Fair standards)….(*see below) the pride and joy of Rotzy’s Plot #8….and there it was. Gone! ‘First Place’ in the Beefsteak Division!….out the window! Actually, it was/is one of 8 plants I picked up at Zehr’s Nursery clearance for two bucks! And tho it was the only fruit on the plant, it became ‘my fave’. “Look Toad, I TOLD you not to plant it there! Too close to the lawn/walkway and easy pickins for somebody/anybody/everybody with no scruples to just help themselves”. To which I retorted “Oh thou of little faith” in your fellow man/woman!! “Whatever. Hey, ‘faith’ didn’t help your tomato. But perhaps some starving person ate it, and I’m fine with that. Sort of. But whilst dealing with the ‘prize-winning’, AWOL tomato I spot this round ‘pumpkin-orange’ object right at the back side of the plot….pretty sure it’s a ‘red kuri squash’, after some Google-ing*tm. Rotzy’s never seen one before and I KNOW it’s not growing there, hence somebody has placed it there!…but who? And why? “Aha, Toad! I said (to myself). A ‘trade-off for a ribbon-winning tomato’??!! ;’Well, I can figure this one out’, and away I went….checked all 58 plots (including my own) and it’s very clear only ONE gardener is growing ‘red kuri squash’…..TWO plots west of me, and a very well kept garden it is! I know not who it is, never seen/met him/her….but there are also a few dozen tomatoes as good as/better than my ‘blue ribbon winner’. “Well, you can scratch ‘suspect number one’ off the ‘perp’ list, Toad”. You dink. So….SO….I had a laugh on myself….somebody LIKED Rotzy’s tomato best of all!….and picked IT over literally hundreds of other ‘entries’!! Like I said, ‘blue ribbon winning’ (*see above)!! Now I gotta figure what to do with the ‘red kuri’….says it’s good for anything from desserts such as muffins or baked as a side dish for dinner. Yours truly might go with the latter. Will let’cha know, so stay tuned.

”Aim High And Your Deeds Will Grow”
I heard a spokeswoman from a group in Germany on CBC Radio One Sat ayem which is doing just that. Aiming high. To the skies in fact. They are yet another organization who want a squeaky clean/carbon-free planet Earth in the next 10 or 15 years…..and their plan would/will effectively remove all jet airplanes from the skies, business/pleasure/charters….I believe military and cetera is/are included. And….what seems to be one of their main arguing points is….(Get This!)….80% of the world’s population will NEVER be near a jet plane. Al Gore must LOVE these krauts, you think? Ditto for Dave Suzuki….until the next tyme he’s gotta go give a motivational speech….in Auckland, New Zealand. And sayeth Orville to Wilbur Wright? ”Dammit Bro….I thought we finally had them on OUR side of ‘lighter than air flight”! As far as cutting ‘pleasure flying’….they said you don’t HAVE to go! IF you do….take a Greyhound….it’s cool, they’ll be electric….or go VIA Rail….boats and ships. Ride your bike. Walk. Jog. As far as ‘other air travel’…..Rotzy’s gonna go out on the proverbial limb here and say hot air balloons SHOULD be OK. Anyway, yours truly has only flown once….to Florida…..twice if you count the return trip to Toronto….and that was on Wardair, hence you see how often Rotyzy flies. Plus I don’t have a passport (that’s another story!) so I’m earthbound until I ‘catch the bus’….the ‘other’ bus. Anyway, ”Aim High”, gang….and ‘guten tag’!

The CNE…..It’s Back!!
The Grande Old Lady of Fairs is back!!! following a hiatus since 2019, like all other large attractions, inside or out of doors. Altho the CNE is NOT like ‘other attractions’. At all! ‘The Ex’ is ‘The Ex’. And Rotzy’s gonna relive some of my own memories in a minute or three, but I thought “From Nakina’ needs to do something special to welcome it back….like a contest….’A CNE TRIVIA CONTEST’! And with a swell prize for the winner….like free tickets to the Ex! OR…….A Trip To Hawaii….the usual….one week for 2 persons at Sandals-Honolulu/all incl/flight/all tips. OK? You ready? Here goes….the outside wall of The Grandstand….opposite the seating side….was (still is?) red brick, and it faced out on a large ‘plaza area’ where the Shopsy’s Booth (Jumbo Dogs and Corned Beef On Rye) and the Princess Margaret Fountain (make a wish, toss a coin) were located. OK? Well inside the grandstand pretty well in the middle, looking left to right (or vice versa) was a LARGE restaurant….and, looking in the restaurant windows, it was clearly ‘upscale’…lots of linen, fancy water glasses/cutlery and a well-dressed staff….not to forget the ‘small bowls of water with a slice of lemon floating in it’ that were NOT meant to be a beverage. OK?….on the brick wall above the windows and the entrance where the Maitre d’ met customers, in LARGE white letters was its’ name. So what was its’ name? I’m sure it was there for decades and methinks it was open year round. Like I said, what was its’ name?? *PS….Bye the bye….nope….my Dad and I never dined there….never even went in there. Anyway, get your responses in ASAP….as many as you want. Aloha!!!

The Memories….
….of a 5-yr old kid from 1950 to 1955. We didn’t have a car then so it was the same routine every Labour Day w/end and we stayed at Grandpa Frankie’s at Kew Beach. 60 Hubbard Blvd. Took the coal burning CNR locomotive to Tronna….we had to ‘back up’ for the Hamilton Station….and we got off at Sunnyside, parked our suitcases in a storage bin, handy to the Queen St East street cars (they weren’t ‘Red Rockets’ yet) for later on, so it’s about 11:00 and Bobby is HUNGRY. Same Honey Dew booth every year for a Large Honey Dew Orange and a Ritz-Carlton Hot Dog, w/mustard only! MMMmm! I can still taste it!! And we were off! So….SO….in no particular order….the glass Shell Tower with the clock and the temp on the top, and we climbed the mother, each step! Easy for Bobby, cause l’il Bobby wasn’t afraid of heights. Yet. Dad was terrified but HE DID IT! Then, there were all the buildings. Horticultural Bldg where you see anything/everything that grows; The Automotive Bldg…..I LOVED IT!….too cool….AND all of next year’s models, before they hit the dealerships!! The Coliseum….my Dad coulda/woulda stayed there forever as he’d done some farming in his youth and he was still gardening 25 acres of veggies. Of course there wasn’t ONE four-legged creature in the entire building of livestock, etc. whose head, ears, snout I didn’t want to rub…except for Elsie The Borden Cow, the life-size model who was ‘sculpted’ out of a huge block of butter, so look but don’t touch! Getting hungry at 2:00, so it’s into the Food Bldg right next door, and did a quick scouting report to check almost every booth…they all had signs posted with the tyme of their next ‘free samples’, be it pork and beans, slices of salami, yellow beans, ‘new’ frozen french fries….kinda like a poor man’s smorgasbord. I recall finishing our munching at the Double-Bubble stand….got a lot of gum AND a ‘Pud’ Beanie (Pud’ was their cartoon ‘star’) and the red, white and blue ‘Beanie’ had a ‘helicopter propeller’ on it. It didn’t work worth s–t. The propeller. I may have cried. And then I boycotted Double Bubble, switching to Bazooka instead as ‘Pud’ is a Dink. Anyway, full of Food Bldg freebies, tyme to make our way to the luggage locker and catch our Queen St East car for the long ride way out to Kew Beach…I always LOVED that ride. So….SO….to quote Rick Danko, ‘If my memory serves me well”….The Lord’s Day Act was still very much in effect (and enforced) in those days, meaning The Ex was all but shut down on the Sabbath and it was Grandpa Day for Bobby….we’d walk eastward along the boardwalk all the way to the Balmy Beach Canoe Club….or the other way right to Woodbine Race Track! The ‘original Woodbine’. ‘Frankie’ with a fancy walking stick and his King Edward Cigars….I can still smell them. Also, I’d take a bagful of his handmade wooden toys/boats/ships, and I’d play with ’em for hours in Lake Ontario. Cowboy heroes and cetera….next week.

*Thought Of The Day….Jack Spratt could eat no fat, his wife could eat no lean….Put ’em together and whaddya got…? A Meatless Vegan Machine. (Grim Fairy Tale)

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