Author Archives: Sobieski

Congratulations to new CEO Jackie Flowers ( Pickering Public Library )

Congratulations!Jackie Flowers on her appointment by the City of Pickering as the CEO & Director of Libraries, Pickering Public Library effective May 6, 2020. Jackie has spent the past eight years at the Calgary Public Library (CPL) and was most … Continue reading

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ABC ASSOCIATION a group of subscribers joined by a common interest in the love of books. Subscribers will periodically receive: book reviews; book news; invitations to teleconference meetings with authors; invitations to occasional teleconference meetings to discuss particular books or … Continue reading

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ZOOM…some thoughts about this service

So many people have criticized ZOOM for its connections with China, for its vulnerability issues, for its risk with Zoombombing, it is time an old codger writes some feedback thoughts. I am not a technology guru, but I am somewhat tech savvy … Continue reading

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Are Ontario pharmacies guilty of ageism?

A commentary relating to a recently published column written for the Toronto Star by Rachel Mendlseon. See Mendleson: MENDLESON Recently, CARP (Canadian Association of Retired Persons) proposed that the Ontario government cover the added  prescription dispensing fees currently charged by … Continue reading

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May 4 – Virtual reality

Many wrong things happening, ‘virtually?’ Readers WriteAnd this one was wondering how I’m doing with my ‘learning how to park in the big city’, seeing as how I hadn’t made mention of it lately. Well, thanks for asking, and at … Continue reading

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Fake NEWS! No NEWS! US news? What NEWS?

I am NEWS junkie. I enjoy reading the latest NEWS, from local to International, mostly for its news value and angle. Each reporter approaches his or her news story from a different perspective which I appreciate and enjoy. I also … Continue reading

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6 books that are tickets to ancient times

The chapters of history are filled with pages of debauchery,  vice and depravity, along with scheming and conspiring. Revisit those days of sin and amorality with these reads.   A SHIELD IN THE SHADOWS by Cheryl Bristow A love story … Continue reading

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Ginger KUENZEL – humorist

Registration by email to:[email protected]

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Centre for Equitable Library Access

CELA (Centre for Equitable Library Access) has some news that may interest book lovers and authors. Click the following link to access their latest news: CELA

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Howard PELL – fitness guru

  Visit Howard’s website at: Howard PELL

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Howard PELL – fitness guru

Howard Pell is a Rotarian, author, amateur filmmaker and retired computer science educator. He has never been a financial advisor, fitness trainer, or emotional coach, but is just a regular guy who is finding fulfillment in retirement. He lives in … Continue reading

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Rick PYVES – military historian

Visit Rick’s website at:  Rick Pyves

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Rick PYVES – military history

Rick Pyves is a published author, avid historian and genealogist and grew up in Montreal, Quebec. Rick is a graduate of Concordia (Sir George Williams) University and McGill University and holds both a Bachelor of Science and a Masters in … Continue reading

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A SHIELD IN THE SHADOWS, Cheryl Bristow

A Shield in the ShadowsCheryl Bristow If you are a student of history, a Latin scholar, are curious about Roman times, this is your book. It carries you into the past on winged and entertaining feet. This book is an … Continue reading

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Ginger KUENZEL – humourist

Visit Ginger’s website at: Ginger Kuenzel

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Lucy E.M. BLACK – short stories

Visit Lucy’s website at:  Lucy Black  

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Author live: Ginger Henry Kuenzel, MAY 11, 7pm

Meet the author Ginger Henry KuenzelMondayMay 11, 7 pm Author Kuenzel will be doing a live online interview. Register for this event by email to [email protected] Read our review of Downtown at DOWNTOWN review  

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Lifespan – Why we age and why we don’t have to

It was only after I finished reading the first section that this well researched non-fiction book became an unexpected treat.

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Aria

AriaBy Nazanine Hozar In the fall of 2019, Aria appeared on the special “Heather’s Picks” list for Heather Reisman of Chapter’s Book Store.  This is usually a recommendation for a good read so I was anxious to begin this 434-page … Continue reading

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Akin

Akinby Emma Donoghue This delightful story about an ageing octogenarian and his unexpected parenting of a great-nephew was totally engaging.  After reading Emma Donoghue’s books, The Wonder and The Room, I was prepared for a challenging and perhaps dark or … Continue reading

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A Deli Obsession

A Delhi ObsessionM.G. Vassanji M.G. Vassanji has won the Giller Prize for excellence in Canadian literature twice and is a recognized Canadian author with a current body of nine books.  He is also an Order of Canada recipient so it … Continue reading

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Courses online

Never stop learning Online courses during the COVID pandemic. Here is a list of short courses online, via ZOOM teleconferencing.They are an easy and quick way to learn with an veteran teacher: ZOOM:               1 … Continue reading

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Apr 26 – COVID-19 and all that jazz

Readers Write   And a large number of them have taken to emailing out funn stuff on an daily basis, I suppose in an effort to lift peoples’ spirits and maybe get their minds on other things, whilst other cartoons, jokes … Continue reading

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This will freak you out

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COVA update: International mortalities

It’s a very sad situation. Here is a comparison of the number of mortalities internationally. It’s not a competition but merely an attempt to put a little perspective on how well different countries are doing in fighting the pandemic battle.

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History repeats itself…eerily so

It could be time for a bit of escapism…ya think ?

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Staying home…is there more we can do?

Staying home may be helping. It may be flattening the curve. It may be inching us closer to ending this pandemic. But staying home may be killing some of us, speaking metaphorically. After all, how much TV can one watch, … Continue reading

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USA headed for economic disaster

Americans are great people. However, they wear blinkers. They see themselves as the greatest nation in the world, the nation with the greatest innovators, greatest thinkers and the most creative people in the world. They were, at one time.

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Ya just gotta laff a little or go insane a lot !

Some new ones, some old, but all good chuckles in here I’m having a quarantine party this weekend! None of you are invited We are just two to three weeks away from learning everyone’s real hair color. Gonna ask my … Continue reading

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Investing and the COVID-19 virus

Your financial matters still need attention even during this very challenging time of the COVID pandemic.

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ZOOM update

Teleconferencing, the whole Internet communications world for that matter, is changing so much, so quickly and so frequently, it is becoming very difficult to keep up. ZOOMZOOM has been criticized for being insecure and vulnerable within months of its creation … Continue reading

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Which one are you?

In these unprecedented times of isolation, quarantines and social separation, it is crucial to have some skills with technology. You need to be your own information manager.  If you do not have electronic/technological skills, get some. If you don’t have … Continue reading

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ZOOM on iPad

on the iPad is very easy to learn. These instructions assume you are the PARTICIPANT in the meeting. HOSTS have a few more wrinkles to work out. Host menus differ from the Participant menus. HOSTS have more controls, more managerial … Continue reading

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Apr. 20 – tuff times at COVID High

I Always Keep….….a note pad handy during the week for anything that might make an interesting subject/topic for an item in next week’s “F/N” column and scribble something down in such a haphazard way that I’m sure only yours truly … Continue reading

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ZOOM – learn the basics

    Tutorial  Friday, Apr 24th, 11 am RegistrationRegister by email to  [email protected] with “ZOOM” in the SUBJECT LINE.  Or click  “ YES “ Approximately 1-hour tutorial covering ZOOM menu icons, what they mean and how to use them. Instructor Richard has years … Continue reading

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Grocery shopping during these COVID times…an adventure

Having been out of the country and then in quarantine for 14 days, our food supply in our house was seriously depleted. Time to bravely venture out to the store to get some groceries. I had not been to our … Continue reading

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Company mergers likely after COVID ends

Our investment broker has been in touch regarding investments. Of course, it’s too early to buy, but he sent along some suggestions to keep an eye on when this crisis starts to turn around. Wanted to share with our friends… … Continue reading

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Big banks are gouging us…sign the petition

Read the details at BANKS Sign the petition at PETITION

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Women leaders prove themselves to be better

What Do Countries With The Best Coronavirus Responses Have In Common? Women Leaders Avivah Wittenberg-Cox Click to link to source post: Forbes   Looking for examples of true leadership in a crisis? From Iceland to Taiwan and from Germany to … Continue reading

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Beware: Food from China

Too many times we have receive cautionary messages about imports from China. In the case of food, buying from China can be fatal. Be cautious and wary. Smithfield Farms, the largest pork producing farm in the USA, was sold in September … Continue reading

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ZOOM teleconferencing

Recently, more and more criticism is being applied to ZOOM teleconferencing. Some may be valid, some not. Here are our thoughts about the application…. RISKS/VULNERABILITYZOOM was originally created by a Chinese based company. It took off beyond belief, the pandemic … Continue reading

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COVA: Trump cuts US payments to WHO

Trump never ceases to amaze people. He is the very best at pivoting, deflecting and distracting. He arguably mismanaged the American response to the coronavirus pandemic, but rather than own up to it as a mature individual would, Trump deflects … Continue reading

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Guidelines for effective video conferencing

 MEETING ETIQUETTE ZOOM meetings will be more effective, productive and successful with these guidelines: HOSTS RESPONSIBILITIES: Meeting settings need to be configured with appropriate mic and video controls; Waiting rooms should be used to screen/vet participants before admission; Passwords should … Continue reading

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6 SCAMS seniors should know about

Click the link:  6 SCAMS 

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Minimize your ZOOM risks

Many claims have been made about the vulnerability of ZOOM video-conferencing. This American company has created patches and notified users about procedures they have installed on ZOOM to minimize the risks associated with the app. Here is a list of … Continue reading

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Apr 13 – Issues with toilet paper tissues

Renaming consideration: “Report from Nakina outhouse?”     Happy Easter….….belated as it may be, and seeing as I’m writing this on Good Friday, starting into the long weekend, please join me in song (tho Easter will have passed by the … Continue reading

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CELEBRATION OF BIRTHDAY # 101

PICKERING’S OLDEST RESIDENT CELEBRATES   101st   BIRTHDAY Happy 101 Birthday   Ama ButtRead her at  “BIO“

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Stop the world. I want to get off.

Life is becoming too complicated. I’m old. Life is too complicated now. I am faced with a constant barrage of change. I learned to use a desktop computer. They threw a laptop at me. I learned to use a laptop. … Continue reading

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COVA: 3rd week of isolation

Week 3 in isolation….cabin fever’s settin’ in.

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MODERATORS Calendar

View Post MONTH         BOOK           MODERATOR JAN    FEB –  –  Barbara MAR – – Karen APR –  – Paula MAY  11  –  DOWNTOWN   –  Richard JUN 8 – What the psychic told the … Continue reading

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COVA: How to disinfect what is dropped off

Home delivery is becoming something used by an increasing number of people. In these times of the COVID pandemic, it is crucial to minimize the risk to you and your family by what you bring into your home.

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COVA: grocery shopping update from LOBLAWS

LOBLAWS has issued an update regarding food shopping at its stores. Click LOBLAWS

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Please help us update our subscriber list

Dear COOKz, BOOKz & NOOKz site visitor, Please help us update our mailing list When I started publishing this website many years ago, there were no laws/regulations about spam, emailing and Internet confidentiality. I created my subscriber list via personal … Continue reading

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Very disturbing news about prescription dispensing fees

Here’s some very disturbing news if you are a senior who needs prescription refills regularly.

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Apr. 6 – 75, a personal high!

Rotzy hits a new high, 75, and he’s in the best form of his life on here…HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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COVA: Coronavirus and your pets

The Broward Library in Florida offers some very good advice in regard to your pets and the coronavirus. Click COVA and your pet  

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COVA: Reading to escape isolation

Isolation can become a problem by elevating levels of anxiety and stress.

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COVA: scams alert

The steps to action: 1. RECOGNIZE, 2. REJECT, 3. REPORT The crooks, hackers, fraudsters never let up. So be wary, be cautious. 1. RECOGNIZEAny incoming message, be it phone, text, email, or computer, if you do not RECOGNIZE the sender, … Continue reading

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News media irresponsible in crisis times

Here’s an interesting exercise to try the next time you are watching a news broadcast during this pandemic: divide a page on a page of a notepad; one side becomes NEGATIVE, the other, POSITIVE. Now, rank each news story with … Continue reading

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We aren’t masters of our world

This message came across our desk recently. The message is so powerful, it has to be shared.

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QUARANTINED: our status

We are snowbirds who escape the frigidity of Canada’s winters by going to Florida. This year our Florida migration was cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic. Florida situationThe news media in the US is a strange beast, focussing reports more on local … Continue reading

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COVA – FOOD DISINFECTION – YES

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COVA – FOOD DISINFECTION – NO

There opposing camps regarding disinfection of foods brought into the home from grocery stores.

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COVA: The danger of Hand Sanitizers

Hand sanitizers are highly flammable. Hands should be thoroughly dried after using them. DO NOT COME NEAR AN OPEN FLAME AFTER USING A HAND SANITIZER.

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COVA: Strengthening your immune system

Consult with your doctor whenever considering medical advice such as suggested in this link. Vitamin C is highly recommended as a means of bolstering the immune system. Studies have also shown that it benefits persons who are being treated for … Continue reading

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Joe Biden: smoke or fire?

The 2020 American presidential election may be the election of all time. Trump’s impeachment failed. It had no chance of success given the Republican dominance of the American congress. However, another spectre, even uglier than the failed impeachment proceedings has … Continue reading

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This doctor deserves a medal !

Here’s a doctor that goes beyond doing just the bare minimum.

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Vital PHONE NUMBERS

A reference guide to VITAL PHONE NUMBERS     for emergency and life threatening situations.         for info on community & social services that can help you with life’s challenges.           for customer … Continue reading

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Impact of coronavirus on Hallandale, Florida

In the beginning of March, we moved from Kissimmee to Hallandale for the second part of our winter get-away. Already at that time Coronavirus was in the news in Canada, where, as a result, a whole new way of life … Continue reading

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GRAPHS? CHARTS? Links to interesting graphs & charts

Graphs are easy ways to digest information from visual displays. Data is easily processed and information is often  easier to understand and quicker to  comprehend. Below are LINKS to some graphic websites we find to be informative and interesting: Visual … Continue reading

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COVA: Stop the spread

Crucial precautions you should use to stop the spread of the COVID-19 VIRUS:

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COVA: Fake news?

First and foremost, we are not trying to scaremonger, raise anxiety levels or instil fear in anyone. We are directing people to information which may be food for thought. We are not in any way suggesting COVID-19 is a hoax, … Continue reading

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Anti-cancer diet: reducing the risk by eating better

Protect yourself from cancer by adding these anti-cancer foods to your diet.

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COVA – CPAP machines, poor man’s ventilators?

Can Continuous Positive Air Pressure (CPAP) machines be considered as emergency substitutes for a Hospital Ventilators if the need warrants it?Source:        Prof. JOHN F. BANZHAF                    Valuewalk.com WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 15, 2020) – A growing number of medical … Continue reading

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COVA – chart comparing plagues throughout history

The COVID-19 virus is not the worst plague in history and we do not want to sensationalize aspects of the virus as some newscasts seem to be doing. It is a very serious epidemic which is being researched and explored … Continue reading

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ALBATROSS by Terry Fallis

AlbatrossTerry Fallis Fallis, the Stephen Leacock of our times, maybe. But not with his latest work, Albatross. With this novel, ‘philanthropist,’ ‘humanitarian’ may be more appropriate labels. SynopsisPhys ed teacher, Bobbie Davenport does some physical measurements on four of her … Continue reading

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Some considerations about editing costs

Editing is a crucial process to publishing a piece of writing. No matter whether an email, a letter, a short story or a novel, the writer must polish the work before publishing it.

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Handy resource guide for Pickering/Durham residents

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2020 – ‘Escape from Florida’…our version

The best of times became the worst of times.

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COVA – For those who aren’t listening

People are contagious very early on in the infection, potentially even before they’re symptomatic. A study conducted by researchers in Germany found that nine people infected with the novel coronavirus were shedding huge amounts of the virus — thousands to millions … Continue reading

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COVA – Hopkins University professor with some COVID facts

From an Asst. Prof in infectious diseases at Johns Hopkins University, quite informative.In our community chat, here, they sent this excellent summary to avoid contagion .  I share it with you because it is very clear: The virus is not a … Continue reading

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COVA – CDN border crossing advisory documentation

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COVA – Western University doctor w COVID facts updates

Dr. Andy Thompson is a rheumatologist and a founding partner of the arva clinic. He completed his medical training and residency in internal medicine at Western University followed by a fellowship in rheumatology at the University of British Columbia. Dr. … Continue reading

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COVA – SPAM ALERT!

Fraudsters are trying to profit from consumers’ fears, uncertainties, and misinformation. These scammers are exploiting the crisis to facilitate fraud and cybercrime.

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COVA – ONT GOVT self assessment tool

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COVA – GOVT PHONE numbers for information

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2020 – ‘Escape from Florida’ from Maclean’s magazine writer

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CHART – cases worldwide by country

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Mar 23 – Trump, an easy target…but ya gotta be right

“What The Heck….….you gonna write about this week Toad”?….I said (to myself) last Sat. Or something like that. Other than the ‘Corona thing’, of course. In fact yours truly did some rough calculations last w/end in regard to our ‘news … Continue reading

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2020 – Ghost towns…people hunkered down

Southwest Florida, Venice, Sarasota, Port Charlotte, Englewood, all becoming ghost towns. Traffic, if any exists, is absolutely minimal.

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2020 – Lend Me A Tenor

Englewood has a lively and very active theatre, the Lemon Bay Playhouse. Every performance, sold out as they should be based on the performance we attended.

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COVA – what you should know

The information about the coronavirus cannot be summarized into one ‘quick read.’ However, this summary will help you to learn some fundamentals about it.

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Vinegar vs bleach as disinfectant?

Vinegar vs. Bleach While vinegar is not classified as a disinfectant by the EPA, guess what is?

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2020 – COVA isolation, quarantine, social distancing

We may stop posting Florida whimsies with this piece as there is nothing whimsical about staying in the region. Everything is either shutting down or closing or being cancelled because of the fear and preventative measures being taken against the … Continue reading

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COVID-19 response phone lines, Durham, ONT

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COVA – social distancing best defense.

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What the virus gives…

Rene Fisher is a blogger who has had a life of tragedy and devastation.

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Eating well in spite of COVID-19 quarantine

Improve your immune health through diet!  Vitamin C, Zinc & Vitamin A info There are a few key nutrients that can help improve your immune health – Vitamin C being one of them! Oranges are probably what comes to mind … Continue reading

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Singing the praises of American generosity…then!

Gordon Sinclair wrote an editorial defending the USA in 1973. It said what all people in the world recognized, the United States was the greatest country in the world in terms of caring, helping and supporting people in need anywhere … Continue reading

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April newsletter – Corona update

Special issueIn light of the COVID-19 situation, our newsletter is modified to reflect the   latest updates we have received, as well as our personal situation. We are also including health precautionary notes as received from the Lakeridge Health Services in … Continue reading

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COVA – a guide to COVID-19 and self-isolation

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5 promising COVID-19 vaccines/drugs

  There are 5 promising preventive and antiviral therapisin the works that may survive clinical trials and reach the market in the near future. The unstoppable coronavirus Covid-19 is now officially a global pandemic. And we still haven’t found a … Continue reading

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COVA: Do the FIVE

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Mar. 16 – Corona of thorns

March madness includes a rush on toilet paper at grocery stores and big shop retailers…gougers sell toilet paper upwards of $25 a roll. Guy in NYC was selling at $100/roll…he found a buyer. I some swamp land here in Florida….

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COVA – hygiene and cleaning

Here is our shortlist of articles and sites that will help keep you informed. List N: Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2.(The U.S. EPA) How to Clean Your Tech Products, According to Cleaning Experts Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Clean … Continue reading

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Fermo, best in class

Hello, my name is ‘Fermo.’ I’m a one year old Scottish terrier. I know you are a youngster too and are going to bed, so I want to tell you a little story to help you go to sleep. It’s … Continue reading

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Bridge of Sighs, a love story

Bridge of sighsWritten by [email protected] I am Eduardo Castillo and my story begins in Mexico. I was the head bartender at The River Cafe jazz bar on the Rio Cuale in Puerto Vallarta. The rio splits old Vallarta from the … Continue reading

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2020 – A morning chat between a Canadian and an American

Fermo and I were out for our morning constitutional this AM, when we encountered a man putting some mail into his mailbox at the end of his driveway. “Good morning, nice day isn’t it?” “Yup.” “That’s very handy. You put mail in … Continue reading

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COVA – constructive steps in defense against it

The comments below were written by Dr. A. Bitton from the Ariadne Labs in Massachusetts. Current situationWhat I can clearly say is that what we do, or don’t do, over the next week will have a massive impact on the … Continue reading

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COVA – beware of bogus information

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COVA – symptoms information

IMPORTANT NOTES ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS 1. If you have a runny nose and sputum, you have a common cold2. Coronavirus pneumonia is a dry cough with no runny nose.3. This new virus is not heat-resistant and will be killed by … Continue reading

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DOWNTOWN by Ginger Henry Kuenzel

DowntownGinger Henry Kuenzel Ginger Henry Kuenzel has a bio as interesting as the characters of her fictional town, Downtown. A journalist, a columnist, a writer, a translator and a keen observer of everyday life around her. Kuenzel spent a good many … Continue reading

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Canada: how to get tested, what the symptoms are, where to get help

MacLean’s magazine:  Canada: how to get tested, what the symptoms are, where to get help

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COVA: stay away, isolate, stay home, social distance

COVA is a horrendously developing problem. The linked article below is eye-opening in its comprehensive explanation of how serious COVA is. It is too late now for many countries hoping to stop the virus’ spread. They should have acted sooner. … Continue reading

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Canada leads in fight against COVA

As of March 12, Canada had conducted over a thousand more tests than the United States, and we are one-tenth the size. As a result of testing and other measures, the growth rate of the virus is substantially lower in … Continue reading

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COVA – vs. SEASONAL FLU

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COVA – people at highest risk

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COVA – self care at home

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COVA – If you are sick

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COVA – best self-defense

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COVA symptoms

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COVA – CANADIAN GOVT INFORMATION SITE

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2020 – Coronavirus scaring the world, pissing off the USA

Alerts in dealing with the Coronavirus have been handled differently throughout the world. ENGLANDThe English are feeling the pinch in relation to the virus threat and have therefore raised their threat level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, the level … Continue reading

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Brain awareness week

Brain Awareness Week is part of a global campaign that aims to increase education about, and support for, brain science. The brain is the most complex part of the human body and is at the centre of our nervous system, … Continue reading

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2020 – A town hoping no one else discovers it

In 1985, Hollywood star and director, Ron Howard, directed a film called ‘Cocoon.’ Its storyline: a group of aliens return to earth to retrieve cocoons containing the people they’d left behind from an earlier trip. These cocoons had been resting … Continue reading

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