Commentary – What’s all the fuss about?

Commentary by
Chris Clegg
“It’s not summer if your tongue isn’t purple!” – Calvin
The cartoon character of Calvin and Hobbes fame isn’t too far off the mark. He made the remark after climbing a chair and looking into a mirror. Yes, he stuck his tongue out to check!
Calvin’s attitude should bring children and adults to more innocent times when a popsicle on hot day, or a comfortable chair under a shady tree, was the best way to spend a few hours.
Ah, there is nothing like summer holidays, or at least a few hours of relaxation after a busy, hot summer day!
Some of us get so busy with our lives that we don’t take the time to appreciate the little gifts afforded us after slaving away all day. Some enjoy dozing off in a boat waiting for a fish to bite, or roasting hotdogs or marshmallows over a campfire. Others hit a golf ball or baseball as far as they can, only to chase it around and whack it again.
As a child, summers were spent playing games. I was lucky to have a few older brothers and several cousins around so it was easy to strike up a competitive game of baseball or soccer. I also spent hours riding my bicycle around the yard and up and down the rural roads. To this day, I believe every child should have a bicycle.
Work? We had a few chores, but I certainly do not remember being overworked. Attila the Huns my parents were not!
Thanks also to a couple of older and much stronger older brothers who had to shoulder the hard work. Ha! Good on them!
The cool evenings after a hot day were spent playing soccer. There was something magical about the cool crisp air, and the wet dew later in the evening. It was invigorating. We usually played until it was dark, with only a single light by the house to see by. Sometimes the moon would help.
It’s odd the things you remember. We made pitcher after pitcher after pitcher of Kool-Aid, usually cherry or grape. I think mom bought orange just to cut down our sugar intake.
“Gee whiz, mom, nobody likes orange!”
When we discovered we could freeze Kool-Aid into popsicles, well…Calvin knows the result! We couldn’t freeze enough of them fast enough to satisfy our needs, or keep our tongues purple.
As I approach another holiday, most of the time will be spent by the fire. We light a huge one every night when weather permits, and roast hotdogs and smokies. We also shoot the breeze to put it lightly. Sometimes, our shooting the breeze turns into a hurricane but that’s another story.
The warmth of the fire versus the cool mid- to late August air is a contrast I enjoy. Fall seems to invigorate me. Call me crazy, but I’d rather have 30 below and than 30 above any day.
When you toss in a few fresh garden delights, or raspberries or saskatoons if the season is late, it’s a perfect evening. Watermelons will certainly do in a pinch.
Summer! The perfect time to get away from it all! Let Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump play their games. Just relax and forget about all the trouble in the world.
How can there be trouble when you have a hotdog in one hand, a cool drink in the other, and a blazing fire in front of you?
What’s all the fuss about?

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