And then one day I found myself standing on a platform in the Lyons, France Airport railway station. Otherwise this photo is a kind of non sequitur, but it enabled me to use non sequitur, which is appropriate since I was in France at the time, and also because I find a lot of my life to be a non sequitur as well.
I began my grownup days as a high school teacher of English and history. Initially I really liked it. I enjoyed the teaching part, and liked the kids, and especially liked the fact that I, at 24 and reasonably tolerable to look at, seemed to appeal to all the pretty little thangs of 17 and 18. I finally got to be an appealing dude just a few yeaers after I finished high school. Not that I ever took advantage of my position, for that is a behavior I find despicable, despite the trendiness (it seems) of teachers boffing students these days. As my grandfather would have said: “They should be horsewhipped!” No, I am only talking esthetic appreciation.
As time passed I realized — for a host of reasons — that I no longer wanted to be a teacher. This left me in a quandary. What was I to do for the rest of my life? Well, I had always loved to write, so a number of circumstances led me in the direction of the newspaper business. I first became a columnist, and then a reporter, and later an editor at the sorely missed and much beloved Green Sheet (aka the Comox District Free Press, voted a number of times as the top community newspaper in Canada). In my first year there I earned the award for the top community newspaper columnist in Canada (ahem), so it seemed obvious that my career choice was working.
In 1980 and 1981 my then wife went on a teacher exchange to Great Yarmouth, England. I went along for the ride and was able to secure a column in the local paper, The Mercury. I loved my year abroad and gained a wealth of experience from the venture.
In 1994 the Green Sheet folded, much to the dismay of the community, and much to the dismay of me. I later went on to the new Comox Valley Echo. At that paper, in 1998, I wrote a series of articles on the illicit drug scene in the community. It was well-received and I decided that rather than just write about it, perhaps I should become just a tiny part of the solution. So, I got accredited as an addictions counselor.
So, today, I still do some counseling, I write freelance, and I work on book manuscripts and I cherish the diversity of my life. I also cherish my home and my marriage to Wendy, and , as Linda Elerbee used to say, so it goes.
Otherwise, I love to travel, I read, I garden, and I just generally try to keep my sanity in a world seeming to grow increasingly mad. Probably it’s not but, as I said in my former and still lamented blog Or So I Thought, I try to keep curmudgeonliness at bay. Sometimes I succeed.