From the mind of a mild mannered maniac

A Trucker’s Tale

Early morning, and the sun was yet to put in an appearance.
I pressed the accelerator down a fraction harder, and motored along that lonely stretch of highway.
Not a soul about anywhere for miles upon empty miles.
My Semi tractor trailer, hummed along to the tune in my head, interrupted only by an occasional rattle as she navigated an uneven chunk of tarmac. Note to self, change the fuse on the radio circuit.

Around about sunrise, I reached my first destination. A misty, backwater town off of Route 5. At the appointed delivery bay, I unhitched my trailer, and went in search of coffee.
The office was unlocked so I walked in and stood in front of a big messy desk. There was no one on duty, I called out a friendly
No answer, and after a few minutes of Staring forlornly at a cold empty coffee pot, I helped myself to the paperwork, I needed. I went back out to track down the trailer, I would be hauling to the next drop off.
I found the one I was looking for, retrieved the papers from its dossier compartment, then hitched it up to my rig.

When I got back to the loading bay, there was still no signs of life. Not an entirely unexpected thing. The dude was probably sleeping off a wild night, or had forgotten to set his alarm, or something.

I went back out to my truck and waited. I couldn’t leave, until someone checked the order and signed off on it.

I waited for hours, checking every ten minutes or so, but still there was no signs of life. Then I called dispatch and told them my predicament.

There were some unhappy, and not overly polite words exchanged, but they called me back after another agonising thirty minutes, and gave me the all clear to move on to my next port of call, I’d hate to be the one to deal with that bureaucratic nightmare, but time is money, so what could I do? These goods don’t deliver themselves you know.

I drove approximately two hundred miles to my next stop, where I was greeted by the same eerie silence. Dispatch couldn’t believe it when I called it in.
Two in a row? That was completely unheard of.

I hung up the phone, and was idly thumbing through my email, when I heard a loud bang. It was coming from inside the closed loading bay.
” So you are in there.” I mumbled.

Another loud bang, and then I could swear I heard a low, throaty, growling. A guard dog, perhaps? I tried the side door, it was open. I gazed into the darkened interior.
“Hallo” I called, “you okay in there?”
There was no reply.

I listened for a moment in the doorway. There was a rustling noise, then some grunting, like that of a bear or giant ape. Something moved in the shadows.
“Hallo?” I tried again, then something rushed at me. I only caught a brief glimpse, It was the size of a man, but seemed to have hideous fangs, and clawlike hands.

I ran for my open truck, and dove in head first. The angry beast was close on my heals. I wrestled the door closed, just in time, and got a close up view as it its razor sharp claws, etched five concentric lines across my window.

I fumbled with the key, and finally managed to start my truck. The beast was clawing maniacally at my door, it lost its grip, and was glaring at my reflection in the mirror, as I sped away.

A few miles down the road, I pulled over to gather my wits. I was trembling like a leaf.
I heard a scratching at my door, and looked on in horror, as what seemed like a hundred of the beasts descended on my truck. They snarled and growled, as they closed ranks. Then violently tore open my locked doors, with apparent ease.

I reached behind the seat for my baseball bat, but not in time. I thrashed and struggled as the hideous, creatures started ripping and clawing at my clothes, their gnashing fangs inching closer and closer to my exposed throat.

I let fly one final, blood curdling scream, then closed my eyes to shut out the horror. I knew it was too late.

“Get up, get up!!”
I opened my eyes in surprise, my beautiful wife was standing over me. A quizzical expression on that beautiful face. Where was I? Had I died and gone to heaven?!

“Wake up, Sleepy head!” She was saying. “Breakfast is ready, and you’re gonna be late for work.” My confused expression prompted her to add,
“That truck won’t drive itself you know.”

That’s when I made a big decision.

No more Zombie movies at bedtime.


100 Things Canucks Fans Should Know  Do Before They Die

I was given an autographed copy of this excellent book for Christmas. This is my, very, brief review.

100 Things Canucks Fans Should Know Do Before They Die by Thomas Drance

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is recommended reading, not just for true blue Canucks fans, but Hockey fans in general. It documents the journey from early, pre-expansion era days, to glory days and near misses. It doesn’t skirt through the trials, tribulations and failings as much as it weaves a pathway through heartbreaks and dawning mediocrity and on to the heady euphoria of near success. It was fun to revisit so many old friends and personalities who had a part in the birth and/or building of my favourite Hockey franchise. This Is a fascinating story told in a very entertaining style. I couldn’t put it down.
I have followed the team from the beginning and am a life-long fan. I have struggled through the doldrums and rejoiced in the good times, and this book has been a great way to relive, and refresh some old memories.

View all my reviews

Just a few short hours until the dawning of a brand new year, and with a few quiet moments to reflect, I find myself in a contemplative mood. This hasn’t been a banner year for most of us. We have seen and lived through some tumultuous times.

In the past twelve months we have been rocked by natural disasters, devastating wild fires, the side effects of global warming, geo-political upheaval, civil unrest, race riots, mass murder, the passing of some much-loved people etc…

I could expand that list exponentially, but no, those tears have been spilt. I have to try and look forward with hope and perhaps just a tiny pinch of guarded optimism to the future.

German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, probably said it best:

“That which does not kill us, makes us stronger”

He was right, we can learn from the past and strengthen our resolve to soldier on through adversity. Sometimes that is all you have to cling to.

Not everything was bad about 2017, including, on a personal note, the arrival, not quite a month ago, of a, healthy, beautiful baby boy, my Nephew Jett. He is a true blessing. I hope, and pray that he never bare witness to such a year, but if he does, I know He is surrounded by family and friends who will love him and provide him with all the tools he will need to face the years to come.

And so, with every fiber of my being I close the doors on the year just passed, and greet the New Year with open arms, hopes for brighter days to come, and well wishes to one and all.

Happy new year vector created by Harryarts –

~Cliff 

A Touch Of White

These photos were snapped in my Neighborhood (Port Coquitlam, BC, Canada) at about 8am (pacific time) on my smartphone.

A Crisp, chill, Sunny, day, delicately hilights our first, wee, smattering of snow.

So refreshing and invigorating, after weeks of overcast, dreary, rain-slicked days, and just in time for the holidays.

Depite the cold, the day brings with it such joy, elation…..

and jubilation!

The crunch of snow, under our feet

A Frosty, white blanket, over everything.

One household, even managed to muster enough snow (& mud) to build this charming character.

It can be a headache for commuters, I know, but it is lovely to behold.

Stay safe, warm and Happy everyone,


Merry Christmas!

Just a week away from the blessed event, and in case I don’t get the opportunity to post something nearer to the day…

As I gaze into the flickering flames of this toasty fire,

serenaded by the elegant strains of angelic choir

The true meaning of Christmas, though sometimes obscured by the neon glow

Beats on in hearts and minds, that are open, even so.

Joy to the world, peace on earth, The Herald Angels sing

Rejoicing and announcing the coming of The new-born king

My fondest wish for one and all as the blessed day draws near

Is A Very Merry Christmas and glad tidings for the coming year!



On the night before Christmas Eve, Jonas and Amanda picked out the perfect Tree and ran off to track down there Mother. When the excited twins returned, with their beleaguered Mother in toe, it was gone. They searched and searched, but the beautiful Douglas fir was gone.
“But it was right there, cried Amanda. She pointed in despair at the, now, empty space. ”It was perfect”
“Its not the only tree, guys.” Her Mother let out an exasperated sigh. “there are plenty more to choose from here.”
“No, Mom!” Jonas blurted, he was trying hard to bite back the tears. “Dad always said when you find the perfect tree, you’ll know it.”
“Well maybe it wasn’t really the right one, maybe it was the perfect tree for another family “ Mom scanned the rapidly waning selection. “what about this one?” Nope all three shook their heads.
They hunted high and low, but none could match the tree that had been.
Too tall, too scrawny, too this and too that, none could quite measure up, to the vision of perfection that had been just within their grasp.
It was getting late, and the tree guy was glancing anxiously at his watch
Mrs. Graham just smiled and said, “Don’t worry guys, tomorrow is another day,
They left with sinking hearts and tear filled eyes.

As he sat back in his seat, and watched the snow laden streets and festive lights, pass by his window , Jonas’s mind drifted back to happier times. Times long ago before his Daddy had gotten sick, and then gone to be with Great Grandma in heaven.
Dad had loved Christmas so much. Jonas smiled to himself, as he remembered them Sledding together down Gabardine hill, building the perfect snowman, Amanda had borrowed Mom’s old green scarf, and lovingly wrapped it around. His dad hoisted him up on those big strong shoulders, so he could give the snowman a face, and prop Grandpa Joes old fishing hat on top. He remembered his Fathers easy smile, and deep hearty chuckle as they lay in the freshly fallen snow giggling and making, the most ridiculous looking, snow angels.
Then they invariably had a snowball fight. Dad hunkered down behind one crudely made snow fort, while he and his Sister teamed up behind another. Looking back now, he suddenly realized that his father had always let them win. He missed his Dad more than anything in the world.
The thing he and Amanda both held nearest and dearest to their hearts though, at this time of year though, was going with Dad, to choose the Christmas tree.
They would hunt high and low, until they found one that they all agreed upon. It was a tradition, that the Graham family, had stuck to, in Mr Grahams memory; Only now, Jonas realized sadly, their perfect tree was gone.
They pulled in to the driveway, and Mom glanced over her shoulder at the twins. She studied their solemn expressions for a moment, then she said,
“That cant have been the right one, you know, but we’ll find it tomorrow, I promise.” Her smile was warm and reassuring, but Jonas gazed into his Twin Sister’s hazel eyes and realized that she felt as doubtful as he did.
Amanda went to unlock the door for them, while Jonas stayed behind to help Mom carry the shopping in. Jonas was just at the bottom step when he heard his Sister’s Joyous exclamation.
He hurried in to the house.
Amanda had a look of puzzled astonishment on her face, and her wide, hazel eyes were focused on something in the corner of the family room.
Jonas followed her gaze and gasped in amazement. For there it stood in all it’s lustrous, wintry glory,
The perfect Tree.


Brrrr it is officially cold out there, this morning! Minus any amount of degrees is cold in this moist, moderate climate, actually.

I just checked, and my vehicle’s locks and doors are frozen solid. It is quite an amazing site to behold. Jack Frost has been a very busy lad. Every car on our street is bathed in a thick latticework of pearlescent white.
The sun is trying to peak out through the fog, but the icicles hanging decoratively from the eaves have icicles of their own.

I’m really not complaining though, just making an observation.
I just came back from walking my nephew to school, and thought I would just try and post something. Naturally, the subject of The weather was foremost in my strange, little, mind.

If the calendar, the dazzling light displays and all the little helper elves bustling to and fro with their foot-long lists and bulging shopping bags, wasn’t enough, this weather is a reminder that the Holiday Season is almost upon us.

I love Christmas, and all it represents, but the commercialism involved is out of hand. This year, before the trick-or-treaters had even donned their costumes, the stores were full to the brim with festive fare.

I was at our neighbourhood Walmart on the last day of October, on some fool’s errand or other. The stock boys were erecting artificial trees, inflatable snowmen, and gift wrap, where moments before, stood racks and racks of costumes and gory accoutrements.

Time to think about shopping I guess.
I suppose I will be fashionably late again this year, oh well. I can only imagine what the Malls will be like this time next week. I never learn, do I? how about you, are you finished, way through, or panicking like I am? 🙂 Any helpful tips for hopelessly misguided gift hunters like myself?

Anyway, stay warm everyone.

Keep a smile on your face, and love in your heart,


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