Haunted House? Wullbrandt Spoils the Myth!
By Leslie Westbrook   |   April 29, 2021

Last month, I wrote about The Big Yellow House – now the big white house – which evoked lot of reads and plenty of memories for many people. In one of our early morning Facebook Messenger chats, Wullbrandt texted me photos of one of the old Green Gables restaurant (pre-Big Yellow House) jackets he wore, […]

It’s the Law
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   April 29, 2021

Quite apart from our legal system, there are so many laws in Science and Economics and other disciplines that it must have been inevitable for satirical “laws” to appear, usually commenting on the perversity of life as we experience it. Probably the most famous of these “laws” states (in various versions) that “If anything can […]

 

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The Oak Group: Artist Activists
By Leslie Westbrook   |   April 29, 2021

Summerland boasts an array of natural beauty. The sea is the most obvious asset, but gently rolling hills dotted with wild mustard, when rains and Mother Nature have cooperated, and other spots beckon nature lovers and wildlife, including Brandt’s cormorants, which I will get to in a moment. The landscape has long lured artists with […]

What are the Root Causes of the Border Crisis?
By Robert Bernstein   |   April 22, 2021

“Radical” is often used to disqualify an idea as “extreme.” Did you know that it comes from the same origin as “radish” and means to “go to the root” of a problem? Every night, the news is full of the crisis at the US-Mexico border. The “analysis” is limited to the immediate humanitarian issues along […]

The Recognition Racket
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   April 22, 2021

One thing that many of us feel we don’t get enough of is appreciation. We want to be recognized for our accomplishments, our contributions – or at least for our efforts. All around us, people are receiving prizes and awards, being written about, celebrated, honored in all kinds of ways. Isn’t it time somebody took […]

Out With the Old Locks, in With the New ‘Do
By Leslie Westbrook   |   April 15, 2021

What’s the first thing you want (or wanted) to do after getting vaccinated? Hug somebody? A trip (who’d a thunk it?) to the dentist? A trip – any kind of trip? I’m down for all of that as well as aching for a massage and/or a chiropractic adjustment. (Reminder to self: Call Charlie Bissell in […]

No Stone Unturned
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   April 15, 2021

When you think of something permanent, what first probably comes to mind are the “everlasting hills,” or at least a piece of one, which we call a rock or a stone. That’s why we use stone to mark graves, which has the additional advantage that you can “inscribe” something on it. But of course, we […]

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Beyond Our Solar System
By Tom Farr   |   April 15, 2021

Twenty years ago, there would have been nothing to write about under this topic. There were no known planets circling stars beyond our own. But in 2009 a revolution happened with NASA’s launch of the Kepler telescope. Within a few years, Kepler had found so many planets that scientists realized that there were more planets […]

A Gray and Common Day
By Ernie Witham   |   April 8, 2021

“Oh man! There are thousands of them.” “What species are they?” “They are Delphinus delphis,” the captain said.  Seems like during every Star Trek movie there comes a scene where they hit the dashboard button that says WARP SPEED. Then they can only hope that the coordinates they set don’t deliver them into the middle […]

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Long Division
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   April 1, 2021

In many marriage ceremonies, the couples swear to stay together “Till Death do us part” – and some manage to fulfil that vow, even though Death may be a long time coming. No similar oaths, that I am aware of, bind parents and their children – in fact it is assumed that, at some point, […]

How Can We Be Smarter?
By Robert Bernstein   |   April 1, 2021

“Mistakes were made (but not by me)” is a quote attributed to President Reagan and later to President George W Bush. It is also the title of the book I would most recommend everyone should read. Before we can get smarter, perhaps we should find out “Why we justify foolish beliefs, bad decisions, and hurtful […]

The Farmer + The Flea
By Leslie Westbrook   |   March 26, 2021

On the last Sunday of every month, the Summerland Post Office parking lot on Lillie Avenue fills up with a cornucopia of flea market and food vendors. Even volunteers from CALM (Child Abuse Listening and Mediation) are onsite to raise funds and awareness of the nonprofit. While parking may be a challenge – “It’s a […]

Perish Prolixity
By Ashleigh Brilliant   |   March 25, 2021

When I was first privileged to write this column, I was set a 750-word limit. I knew that I could go a few words over or under, and nobody would care. But I decided to make a game out of turning in exactly 750 words each time. What made this relatively do-able was that, unlike […]

Our Solar System: The Leftovers
By Tom Farr   |   March 25, 2021

We all learned in school that there are eight planets (well, nine if you’re as old as I am), but our solar system is messier than that. There are millions of leftover rocks called asteroids; bits of ice and rock that come and go called comets; and objects out there beyond Neptune called, in dry […]

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