My Lofty Sky High Plans

By Jim Hagarty

I hate it when I have a good idea and somebody else gets to the patent office with it first.

A Canadian company has just been granted a U.S. patent for a 20-kilometre-high space elevator. Thoth Technology of Pembroke, Ontario., says the freestanding structure would allow astronauts to launch from a platform high above the Earth. The elevator will be pneumatically pressurized and guided over its base to allow such a tall and slender structure to stand freely.

The space elevator could also be used for wind-energy generation, communications and tourism.

Well, that all sounds pretty fancy but I wanted to build it because I love heights and to be in an elevator that stretches from Stratford to Mitchell would be a blast.

Oh, well. On to my other plan which is to built a giant escalator up one side of the Rocky Mountains and another down the other side.

Rats. I just gave away another amazing idea.

The High Cost of Marital Bliss

By Jim Hagarty

The keys to a successful marriage, I am here to tell you, are these: Balance and Priorities.

A few weeks ago, our Internet router sputtered. It had to be restarted once a day, sometimes more. It seemed to be slowing down. I rushed out the store and bought a new one for just under $200. Life is good again.

Last year, our vacuum cleaner powerhead quit. Without it, attempts to vacuum the carpets were very sad.

Months went by. I went into a second-hand store and there it was. A beautiful, bagless Hoover upright. Perfect. Even better was the price: $7.

Computer network: $200. Housecleaning: $7. A good marriage is also a matter of math.

Forward any further questions you might have to my lawyer.

(Update 20017: A few weeks ago, my wife sucked up a sock in the beaters of the Hoover, burning out the motor in the process. Total accident, of course, though it is odd that the match for the churned up sock has never been found. It is almost as though this one was especially selected. A brand new Hoover has now joined our arsenal. Cost: $200.)

This Is The Party For Me

By Jim Hagarty

I am voting for the Rhinoceros party in the next Canadian federal election for various reasons.

First off, unlike the other parties, they have a 1,000-year plan and I admire people who look ahead. And they have history on their side. They have been around since 1963, almost 30 years longer than Stephen Harper’s so-called Conservatives (they are actually the Reform party).

Rhinoceronians have smart, sensible ideas. If elected, they will move Canada’s capital to Kapuskasing because it is the geographical centre point of the nation. They will privatize Canada’s armed forces and nationalize Tim Hortons. They lean Marxist-Lennonist in their approach (Groucho Marx and John Lennon).

Some members of the party favour the return of capital punishment with one leader saying, “If it was good enough for my grandfather, it’s good enough for me.”

One ambitious plan the party has had was to tow Antarctica to the Arctic Circle. This would give Canada a monopoly on cold and a big advantage if a Cold War ever breaks out again.

During an election campaign in 1984, the party planned to eliminate big businesses and allow only small businesses which employ less than one worker. Other smart ideas were to repeal the law of gravity, lower the boiling point of water, make Illiteracy the third official language of Canada and tear down the Rocky Mountains so Albertans could see the B.C. sunsets.

They would also abolish the environment because it takes up too much space and is too hard to keep clean. And they would end crime by abolishing all laws.

Other neat ideas include making the Trans Canada Highway a one-way road. And if elected, they would count the Thousand Islands to see if the Americans have stolen any.

These are my people.

A 1952 Buick Rolls In

Last night, at dusk, I saw this beautiful 1952 Buick at a service station in Stratford. I talked briefly with the owner. He took possession of the car two weeks ago and is only the second owner of the vehicle. It was owned since new by one person, from 1952 to 2017, or 65 years. It appears to be in great shape and was a “two-tone” car, red body, white roof, that were common in the fifties. JH