8 Years Later Boyfriend and I Are Still Going Strong

I found Boyfriend on Kijiji. He and his mother were homeless. I was just looking for a new dresser and some nightstands, but I decided to respond anyway, things seemed desperate. I took them both in. His mother moved out a few months later. Shacked up with some senior down the street and acted like she didn’t even know me after that. But Boyfriend and I are still going strong 8 years later. He is an absolute jerk sometimes – but I love him anyway. Boyfriend…. is my cat.

Boyfriend’s stunning. All the ladies love him. He has gorgeous, sleek jet black hair & dazzling green eyes. And He’s all mine. He’ll slide in close and want to cuddle. He’ll roll upside down and demand to be cuddled so hard you can’t possibly resist. And as if to say “Hey Baby, everything’s going to be alright” he’ll reach out and always have to touch me when we are on the couch together. But it wasn’t always this way.

When Boyfriend came to live with me I barely seen him. He was traumatized by the move. I would dig him out from his hiding spot and he cried and he cried, rolled over in my arms and wailed. I decided to leave him alone. I worked 12 hr shifts and put in a ton of overtime. He did his thing I did mine. About three months after I got him & his Mother I was cooking bacon and they decided to come join me in the kitchen. I started telling him them that they were ungrateful felines, that I didn’t really feel they were happy living me and I wasn’t the one for them. His mother must have agreed because the first time the door was left slightly ajar she took off. She decided to move into the senior’s building next door. Sometimes I’d see her, but she had no interest in coming home. Boyfriend stuck around though. In fact he’d never even go close to an open door in the beginning. I hadn’t given him his name yet I just referred to him as ‘My Ungrateful Feline”. We coexisted, and rarely saw each other. I knew he was there though. He ate a lot, used the litter box ripped apart my garbage and stole food off my counter I left to thaw. Such a jerk.

My girlfriend Sue and I were on my patio one summer evening having too many drinks, laughing and chatting. The door was open and out popped my ungrateful feline. Silence from us girls, he wandered out a bit further. I said something and he bolted back inside. We laughed. I talked about what a jerk this cat had been and all the chaos and grief I came home to daily while he freeloaded off me. She said “He sounds like a lousy boyfriend” And it stuck. His name was Boyfriend. Eight years later we are still together. He’s more social than he used to be, but that’s how he’s learned to manipulate me and get what he wants. It might not be the healthiest relationship, and we’ve had our share of ups and downs but I love him. And he’s gotten me out of several awkward situations over the years when I’ve been asked “Hey, Do you have a Boyfriend?” and I get to answer – “Yes, yes I do have a Boyfriend, and I really need to get home and get his dinner”. It’s not really a lie now is it folks?? What do you think?

Image from Personal Files

Facebook: How Boyfriend and I Met https://wp.me/p3QRy0-nds

Twitter: The beginnings of Boyfriend and I https://wp.me/p3QRy0-nds


Friends I’ve never met

‘Vicky’ and I have been friends for 10 years now. She lives about 2 hours away from me. We have supported each other through losing our fathers, shared online dating stories, and kept each other going by chatting in the middle of the night while we were both working night shift. I’ve watched her children grow older and discover new interests and cheered them on through their accomplishments. My heart is breaking for her right now as she’s working the front lines through this crisis. Her kids were traveling with their father and have been away and then in isolation. Her heart aches to see them, she’s scared to expose them since she continues to work. My heart aches for them too, and I’m scared for them as well.


‘Rhonda’ and I have been friends for 3 years. She has a great sense of humour, a strong faith, & loves her family. She has the biggest smile you’ve ever seen. I enjoy her posts on Facebook, we chat sometimes through messenger and she’s always positive and fun to talk to. She lives in Alabama. We are a lot alike but we get a kick out of the differences between Canadians & Americans. We often laugh at our differences and our similarities. She’s nick named me ‘Sweet G.’ I think she’s a smart, kind, funny woman and I’m so glad we are friends.


I consider them to be some of my dearest friends, and I can’t imagine not having them in my life. I care about them as much as I do my circle of friends I’ve had since high school. Vicky and I became FB friends when I accidentally sent a friend request to 10 years ago when I was looking for my (other) friend Vicky. I explained the mix up and she politely left me on

her friends list. And Rhonda and I became FB friends when her hilarious video she shared went viral. Somehow some people who viewed the video automatically sent her a friend request. When I asked her how we knew each other, she explained she had gotten dozens of friend requests since the video went viral. She said I was the only one that ‘looked safe to add’. She assured me she was harmless and we have been dear friends ever since.


I’ve never met either of these women. I think the universe sometimes connects you with people you need in your life… or in this case Facebook did! I’m lucky to call them friends. Do you have people on your list you’ve never met, but would consider dear friends?


Facebook Promotional Post: Are there people on your Facebook List you’ve never met like this blogger?


Twitter Promotional Post: Friends from StrangersDo you have Facebook friends you’ve never met?


Images found in WordPress media files




Social Media – Is fake the new trend?

The “ take a selfie, fake a life” era seems to be upon us.

Many of us find ourselves questioning if everything we see in our news feed is actually real, such as posts about our friends relationships, the influencer lifestyles, different men and women with their luxurious lives and picture perfect bodies or families. It can be very frustrating for an average person to see posts like this every day in their feeds as some say it causes a feeling of “not measuring up” or  a feeling of a “failed life”. But why would people allow themselves to feel so low if all of it is possibly a lie ? Here’s the thing, most people don’t because they choose to also follow the fake trend instead. 

We compare ourselves daily with the lives of others. This has been an issue with humans since the beginning of time and has always been challenging. Today however, being confident in ourselves and believing in our own success without comparison has become nearly impossible for some as we are constantly bombarded with on screen versions of the so called perfect life. 

I see how the trend must of have started. Why would we post a photo of ourselves that we think is unattractive? We want the people on our followers list to see the best about us.

The problem with this, is that it has made our own egos love to be fed by all the likes and shares that our followers have given us. We are allowing others to judge us for the lives we portray online and not by who we are in person. Ultimately, this makes our feelings of “failure”, that I was talking about above, diminish. Or, so we think in that moment… 

Take a look at this video which explains how toxic this trend actually is.

Also, watch this award winning short film about social media and depression.

With all this social media “love” we get from others, our egos start to crave more. We add more and more content making it look better than the last. It’s a vicious cycle that has led us into a competitive and dangerous online world where we aren’t just in competition with our last post. We have become in competition with other profiles as well. We create content that isn’t even realistic anymore so that we can be part of the highest followed accounts. Why? Because it makes us feel good to be better and for others to think we’re more successful. It feeds the ego, as I mentioned before, which will convince us that we are superior than others when realistically, it is all a lie. Deep down though, we do know it’s a lie, which is proven in the video I posted above.

I honestly do think that fake is the new trend and most people are stylish with it. Why do I think that ? Because we continue to allow the people we hate to follow us and live on our feeds, so we can try and prove to them and ourselves that we are better. Shocking isn’t it? 

We believe that when they begin to “like” and “comment” on our perfect photos, of our perfect bodies and perfect lives, they truly like and believe what we’re posting. 

In conclusion

Social media is a world that we live in with our devices, and many have felt the need to pretend to have the life they want and wish for. We choose to ignore the fact that it’s all fake news because it has allowed us to escape the challenges of reality and simply makes some of us feel better about ourselves.

We certainly shouldn’t have to prove anything to others and we should practice believing in ourselves daily. The real world would be so much easier and simpler this way. It would be amazing if our social media accounts wouldn’t be such a mest up perception of reality. We’d learn how to set our egos aside and truly be happy. 

None of us have perfect lives. Not even the rich and famous. So why pretend we do online? Let’s stop the fake trend and make it as outdated as a pair of Nike kitten heels.

Picture from http://bit.ly/2CMXCGw

I invite you all to start being more real. #beingreal

Here’s another interesting video relating to the “fake trend”.

New blog, Check it out! http://bit.ly/353evJs

COM0014 – Blog #1;Cruising the High Seas without Jack Sparrow

Holland America Line cruise ship on pier with mountainous terrain in backgroundHolland America Cruise Ship (CC)

Avast me hardy!, and other incessant childhood fantasies about pirates, Peter Pan and Long John Silver shan’t apply in this situation. In this moment we are discussing travel, destinations, food, entertainment, cuisine, games, brunches, socializing, midnight buffets, fun, and, did I mention food? This given holiday was, indeed, the cruises that one hears about over the years, yet may not have generated enough intrigue to look seriously at it as a vacation option. Gangplanks are optional.

One gets considerable advantages that other forms of vacationing and travel may leave wanting. In fact, if one views such means objectively, there is a variety of travel and vacation nicely packed into one given bundle when on a cruise. It seems it is a floating resort, a boat of hikers going to destinations, a thespian life jacket, a casino with a rudder, a variety of bars and lounges at sea, an amusement arena weighed anchor,  and both a restaurateur and foodie haven ocean voyage. Contests, games, sport, cooking classes, theatre, comedy, magicians, on board and on shore destinations abound inclusive of good television movies, midnight movies and 24 hour room service included.

Hedonism, you say. Perhaps? But given variety and spice of life this may qualify to your taste. Answer these questions:

Vacation Survey

a small chalkboard standing up on desk. Surrounded with pen, paper clips, spinner toy, calculator and plant in bowl nestled in white stones

  • 1. Do you look for a variety of things to do while on vacation?
  • 2. Would you like to travel to different destinations in one vacation?
  • 3. Do you enjoy fine food and cuisine?
  • 4. Do ocean voyages interest you?
  • 5. Do you like to both relax on vacation and have many activities as an option?

Should you answer “YES” to any or all of these, you may consider a cruise ship vacation or at least research, investigate or talk with friends about it.

Personal Experience

I blog this with enthusiasm. I must say one can enjoy a number of activities and experiences as aforementioned. A given day on a cruise ship can encapsulate a plethora of events, tastes or hi jinx; or you can just relax by the pool with a taco and pizza bar nearby. The fact is, one can do just about anything. Allow me;

In the morning I would have breakfast in the dining room, or breakfast buffet on the Lido deck. The I would make my way to library to enter a quiz contest for prizes. I would then take a leisurely stroll on the wide deck inhaling the sea air. Shortly, thereafter, I would stroll to my cabin to pick up fresh fruit left by the room staff, and head to a discussion given by the chief chef on the boat.

Food, food and more food

Holland America Line Mariner's Brunch Menu cover listing menu items. Glass of wine and woman looking at food in background.
Holland America Menu

Certainly, after leaving such a talk, there would be lecture about magic given by the entertainer the previous evening with his magic hats and wands. Harry Potter would have been up for grabs. Post magic, I would then head to the Lido deck for lunch at a variety of outlets, depending on one’s taste for food, given, a variety of cultural and taste genres ranging from Greek salads, smoked meat sandwiches, to a vegetarian repast and health driven smorgasbord.

The afternoon may pack a given round of mini golf on a swerving deck as ball wildly changes direction and speed. Later a steam bath awaits in the spa with a swimming pool to cool down and iced tea and taco stand to fill that micro gaps of hunger since lunch. The ship later docks on an island owned by the cruise line for ocean swimming, chaise lounging (sic) as it were, and burgers grilled just off the beach.

Beach Walking On Shore https://www.pexels.com/video/woman-at-the-beach-1093665/

three layer cake, all white with white roses and blue green trim sitting on table
Ahoy, Dessert

A formal dinner will be required for a sumptuous feast in the dining room where the ship’s Captain joins a certain reserved table and the serving staff later creates a parade through the large room hoisting baked Alaska as the piece de resistance for the well fed patrons.

That evening, I would attend a musical in the theatre hall, and top off the evening with a midnight movie in the show room with popcorn and an enthusiastic crowd of newer movie patrons. Post facto, I would lug my engorged body pasted with a day of activities to my clean cabin for a much needed rest to dream and await a food and games laden day at sunrise.

Fitness on Raft

Five spinning cyclists in gym, blue colour theme
Spinning Fitness Onboard

At last, for the indulged guilty a cornucopia of onboard fitness centres, training classes, schedules on deck walks, health spas, and pool can begin to cut into the obtained calories and dessert smatterings foisted upon one’s self. Leave a little room for other guilty pleasures.

It may be a obvious that a vacation with Holland America may have impressed me. But, nonetheless, as a consumer of vacation and travel, a given overall critique may later render tips to observe and calculate into your decision making process in choosing a specific cruise and travel plan for yourself. I am certainly not an expert. Yet, with more cruise experience I shall later discern as to what is fitting and what may disappoint. That being said, the entire cruise concept is certainly worth the effort and experience. See what be out there for you. Bon voyage.


46743231381_aaaf8f8835_b Online Survey by Got Credit is licensed under CC BY 2.0, Creative Commons, CC Search, https://ccsearch.creativecommons.org/

Bordeau, Jessica, Blogging For Web Designers Editorial Calendars And Style Guides,Smashing Magazine, August 30, 2010 , https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/08/the-importance-of-consistency-using-editorial-calendars-and-style-guides/

Couple Walking on a Beach Filmed with a Drone, Pexel Videos, https://www.pexels.com/

CC Search, https://ccsearch.creativecommons.org/

eMarketer, Younger Users Spend More Daily Time on Social Networks, Facebook’s user penetration is more than double that of any other social network, November 18, 2014, https://www.emarketer.com/Article/Younger-Users-Spend-More-Daily-Time-on-Social-Networks/1011592

Hodkinson , Matt, Influence Agents, The Essential Social Media Toolkit for Small Business, June 2018, https://www.influenceagents.com/blog/essential-social-media-toolkit-small-business

Holland America,  https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US.html Holland America

Pexel https://www.pexels.com/ https://www.pexels.com/video/woman-at-the-beach-1093665/

Tam, Simon, Huffington Post, 5 Social Media Listening Tools That Every Business Should Be Using, Updated Sep 11, 2014, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/simon-young/5-social-media-listening-_b_5317531.html

Don’t Get Squished by Social Media and Depression

depressed person, female, anxious crying into hands cannot see face

Photo by Kat Jayne on Pexels.com




The advent of major changes in socialization, time management, leisure activities, outdoor activities, family priorities, after-school recreation, parties, and occasions for individual undertakings have shifted significantly in recent years. The culprit? Hi-tech, ominous changes in personal and business computing, the internet, mobile/smartphones, and, yes, social media.

There is little doubt that the benefits of such change have been brilliant. Business, marketing, science, communication, retail, social organization, medicine, etc., have all benefitted from this era of considerable technological advance. Fighting disease, research, aerospace, entertainment, design, transportation, and the remaining plethora of advantages from this development becomes speechless by nature, yet overwhelming in terms of advancement and its concomitant speed.

I have little doubt that our great class has thought about this issue, made contributions to the news portion of our postings, and hazard to examine this as a serious matter as we move forward through the social media learning process. Certainly the nature of communication and employment are two matters that concern us regularly given the state of technology and changing times. This, indeed, gives rise to worry and creates an era of “catching up” and worry.


At one time the intersection of mental well-being and technology hardly seemed disquieting. Shopping, travel, communication, services, travel, vacations, work and daily life seemed predictable and orderly. We are approaching the third decade of the 21st century and the seismic sea of technological change hath wrought havoc on many bystanders in its midst.

“For the Millennial then, technology may mean only digital or biotechnologies. If we were to speak broadly to some individuals from the Silent Generation,Boomers, Millennials, and Generation Y, technology may also mean automobiles,airlines, overhead projectors, flashlights, microwaves, ATMs, and so on. Hence, technology in the 21st century can mean many things. For example, technology could mean software applications, hardware, social media platforms, functional magnetic resonance imaging, mobile technology, and learning and content management systems, just to name a few ”(Tettegah,2016).

view of earth from space seeing oceans and land

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com



Today, social media provides our proverbial window on the world, and hence, that window is a lens through which we look. In terms of how we interact with that window and, therefore, that world, it comes down to the social media tools we choose, or the tools that are chosen for us in order to interact with others. My friends are on Facebook, your friends are on Facebook, we follow one another on Twitter, everyone appears in certain chat rooms, and previous traditional methods of communication are, somewhat, relegated to a back burner.

We now must rely on texted words, and not facial expression, we may not be able to interpret body language, but allow the text to be determined and delayed with no spontaneity, one may not be able to observe blushing or facial contortions to deduce the true mood of another.


man in santa claus costume

Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com


This disruption of body language, tonal displacement, and physical interaction could lead to a detachment from human interpersonal interaction. We must then “trust” others and avoid aspects of our instinctual nature. Are we disconnecting, or are we too connected. Therein lays the issue and a call to arms for this matter to be discussed. We must look at our media ecosystem in an attempt to create a healthier dynamic between social media and human frailty and study “networked individualism” and its relationship to mental health (Serrano-Puche, 2017).


A study to be publisher in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology by Hunt, Marx, Lipson, and Young, from the University of Pennsylvania looking at the causal relationship between the times spent on social media and loneliness (CNN 2018).

men working at night

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com


Social media are here, are now and are bringing its own problems as well as its own advances. Acting as students, users, promoters and beneficiaries of social media, we must safeguard society from any detrimental flotsam and, yes, jetsam that ebbs in from this seascape. As social media-tors, a term I just arrived at, with, no doubt, thousands of others has as well, we can insist on a forum of our peers and those in the industry to mitigate such harm and complications in this matter. Alcohol impaired driving and text driving does not assist the automobile industry.  Tainted food does not assist the restaurant industry. Precarious working conditions do not help employees or workers.  We must provide the insight and Leadership to convene and address this dilemma and assist in resolving matters contrary to mental wellness and social media.


CNN Broadcast, Smerconish; Michael Smerconish, 2018, https://www.msn.com/en-us/video/downtime/study-social-media-increases-depression/vp-BBQ2IZj
Laura Hensley, Unplugged: Why these people deleted social media and prefer life offline, November 17, 2018, Lifestyle Global News, https://globalnews.ca/news/4669640/deleting-social-media/
Serrano-Puche, Javier , Chapter 9, P.202, Developing Healthy Habits in Media Consumption: A Proposal for Dealing with  Information Overload in;  Information and Communication Overload in the Digital Age, Copyright © 2017 by IGI Global
Gary Schwartz, How Haiti Changed Mobile Forever, Mobile Marketer, Posted Jan. 19, 2010, https://www.mobilemarketer.com/ex/mobilemarketer/cms/opinion/columns/5135.html
Jenny Q. Ta, What Impact Has Social Media Truly Had On Society, posted August 13, 2014, https://www.business2community.com/social-media/impact-social-media-truly-society-0974685
Sharon Y. Tettegah, Emotions and Technology Communication of Feelings for, with, and through Digital Media, 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved, Academic Press is an imprint of Elsevier.

Patrick Meagher is an online student enrolled in the Introduction to Social Media course at Algonquin College in association with Ontario Learn.


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3 Tips to Help You Unplug From Technology

person holding black android smartphone

Photo by Oleg Magni on Pexels.com

Do you ever catch yourself so focused on capturing a moment through your phone or simply just being distracted by it, that you missed what’s actually happening right in front of you? Me too! That’s why I have decided to compile this list of 3 tips to help you unplug from technology and focus more on the moment…

1.  Designated no phone time

I think that a great first step to unplugging is designating a couple hours each day to turning off all the devices and just enjoying yourself and/or other peoples’ company, whether it be dinner time, breakfast time, or maybe a couple hours before bed.

2.  Keeping the tech out of the bedroom

I know to some this may sound drastic, but I think that keeping the bedroom a technology free room is a HUGE step to giving yourself time to unplug at the end of each day as well as bright and early in the morning. Click HERE to read more.

3.  Have time for a hobby

Whether it be working out, meditating, arts and crafts, sports or whatever else you may be into.  Make sure to have yourself some me time doing something you enjoy that’s separate from the world of social media, something just for you to enjoy.

Unplugging is definitely a tricky thing to do in todays’ world of technology, but where there’s a will there’s a way! Let’s not let the world of technology stop us from making memories and having real intimate moments with the people we love.

Have you already tried any of these tips? If yes, comment below your experience and if you still use them today

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What in the World is the Walt Disney Co. Building?

This past long weekend, I binge watched Season Three of Narcos through my Netflix subscription. Before bed tonight, I intend to catch up on an episode or two of Big Bang Theory on my Crave TV account. And finally tomorrow, I plan on watching the Sens vs. Blackhawks game on my NHL Gamecenter App.


  I, like many others in my generation, “cut the cord” on cable subscriptions several years ago in favor of on-demand streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Shomi (R.I.P) , Amazon Prime, etc. I prefer to watch what I want, when I want and I don’t want to pay for five dozen channels that I have no interest in.

Netflix for example, has been my go to source for movies for the last five years. For TV series, I log on to CraveTV, If I want to TV-stream my favorite music, I’ll go to YouTube. I think you get the point. Over the last near decade, streaming services such as these have given consumers most of their entertainment needs at their finger tips. In fact, a couple of the only remaining enticing factors drawing consumers to modern cable are live sporting events and live news.

That being said, I am going to put on my Nostradamus hat and make a bold prediction on the future of streaming: The Walt Disney Company is about to change that all. That’s right. Disney is building the streaming service of all streaming services.

Let’s look at their billion dollar acquisitions of IP in the last several years. Lucas Films (Star Wars Library), the entire Marvel Studios portfolio (which they have began to pull from Netflix), and most recently Twentieth Century Fox. 

This gives Disney a very impressive library of acclaimed TV Series and Movies to launch a competitive streaming service of their own. However, Netflix offers the exact same. Disney doesn’t want to just grab some of the streaming market from Netflix, but to utterly dominate it. And it can.

As I mentioned above, one demand great streaming services like Netflix have not been able to offer to this point to consumers is live news and live sporting events. With global brand-name news and sports properties such as ABS News and ESPN, the Walt Disney Co. most certainly can do so…and I predict they will.

I love my subscriptions for Netflix ($13.99/month), CraveTV ($8.99/month), HBOGo $6.99/month) and NHL Gamecenter ($19.99/month). However, if and when Disney introduces us to a new streaming services that brings together the quality TV series and movies that I’ve come to love, and the live sports and news aspects that I’ve been longing for– all under one roof — then all I can say is…




Blog 3 COM 0014: Target Audiences

Third Wave Coffee, or coffee treated as an artisanal foodstuff, has been growing exponentially in the last 40 years or so. Along with that growth comes the followers of the Third Wave Coffee trends and the patrons to the cafés that supply it. Those people are my target audience.

Being in a suburban town there are mainly seniors or young families comprising the demographic. Through the use of Twitter Search, Instagram, and Facebook I’ve found that my target audience is neither of those things. Womp, womp. Generally, they are 20-50 years old and male but there are certainly some females as well. A handful of them are running blogs around fashion, lifestyle and food which is an interest to keep in mind.

“Coffee Lovers” is the list I created on Twitter to organize all those that I found discussing Third Wave coffee topics. Since my demographic is not local my strategy is to expand my search parameters to surrounding cities like Toronto. I will hone in on the coffee lovers there while considering what Oakville might offer to the blogs they are running. I’ll need to listen to the conversations about events and interests for this audience and then recreate that genre of experience in Oakville for them to document on their blogs or partner with a business that can.

If there was an event about an interest of yours (knitting, painting, dancing, coffee etc.) but it was ~30 min out of town, what would it take to get to you to participate?

‘Tis The Season – Let’s Pay It Forward

During this time of celebration, joy, love, and giving, it’s appropriate that a friend of mine took me to a unique restaurant in Hamilton.  Called the 541 Eatery & Exchange, it’s a hidden gem in the city’s core (Barton Village).

Initially, I thought it was just a coffee shop/gathering place as it was bustling with activity and the delicious smells of home cooking all around.  Yet, this place was a bit different.  When we went up to order our meals, there were two large jars in front of the cash register.  Both contained a variety of buttons.

Image from http://bit.ly/2ARR8EH

What makes this place so special is that not only can you get a great meal at a reasonable price, but you can also donate by paying it forward.  Prices for meals and fresh-baked goods range anywhere from $2.00 – $6.00.  While ordering your food you can, if you want, purchase buttons at $1.00 each and move them from the Pay It Forward jar to the Button Bank jar.

When someone comes in who doesn’t have the funds to pay for a hot breakfast, they can take up to five buttons from the Button Bank jar to pay for their meal.  Normally, a latte is $3.00 there, but say you only have $1.00 – you can take two buttons from the Bank jar and enjoy.

Image from http://bit.ly/2C7LheF

This program is all about giving to receive in a way that maintains the dignity of those who may not be able to afford such things.  Everyone orders from the same menu; eats and enjoys the same food.  As Executive Director Sue Carr says, “It’s a charity…but it is not a soup kitchen” (Hayes, 2017, April 3).

The restaurant staff are largely volunteers; even though their goal is to make a profit.  Profits that are then reinvested to offer more to those in need.

According to Hayes, the eatery is,

More than a restaurant, it is a unique social enterprise, fuelled by, and wholly dependent on, the generosity of the community.

Sitting at the harvest table, it was very clear that this place promotes the feeling of community and allows people to be social.  Whether people want a cheap, healthy meal, a coffee, muffin, or just to sit in charming surroundings and chat, it’s a great way to help change the area one button at a time.

As with all good things, there are those who argue it’s not the job of the community to help the disadvantaged.  Rather, the government should be solely responsible for this task.  What are your thoughts?  Do we need more places like this?


Buttons as currency?  Do you think buttons are a good way to help the disenfranchised in a community?  Or should it be up to the government to support those who can’t support themselves?



Buttons r currency in this unique restaurant. Pay it forward has new meaning. #eatery #buttons #payitforward #community



Hayes, M. (2017, April 3).  Eatery’s Currency Concept Brings Hope to Hamilton’s Barton Street East.  Retrieved from https://tgam.ca/2z50cXy

Fake News! Social Media Promotes Herd Mentality

The Lemming Condition (Arkin, 1976) is a children’s book that changed people’s perceptions of the group dynamic and independent thought.

It details the unusual “condition” of the lemming.  In the book, these rodent-like animals run like sheep over the cliff for no apparent reason.  One follows another, to a certain death, with no time for rational thought…Until one day one of them – Bubber – is asked the question of why?  The story is about Bubber as he begins to question for himself why his species does this.  When he realizes he can’t come up with an answer, he decides not to follow the herd.  Independent thought rules the day – great teaching moment for kids.

In reality, lemmings don’t really decide to commit mass suicide every so many years.  But, in 1958, Walt Disney produced a nature documentary called “White Wilderness” showing lemmings throwing themselves off cliffs – most to their deaths.  In 1996, David Mikkelson wrote about this on Snopes http://bit.ly/2zL5mKo and confirmed that producers actually staged these scenes after purchasing countless lemmings from various Inuit children.

White Wilderness (Disney 1958)

For years, this was seen as being the truth because Walt Disney wouldn’t lie, would they?  We see such a strong comparison here with today’s ‘fake news.’  What can happen when something appears on Facebook or any other form of social media that causes an instant reaction?  Do we, as a species always apply critical thinking to all of our actions and reactions, particularly when we’re in a rush to respond before the next person?  I believe that a tool as powerful as social media has a tremendous power for negative and positive behaviour.

We must always filter what we read and say through OUR frame of reference to ensure the media responses we make align with OUR authentic values and codes of conduct.  This takes time and wise stewardship of our own time online.  I am not in favour of over control or overt censorship.  However, we must think first and then act, or we will be like the lemmings running off a cliff and believing Walt Disney’s production.  I believe rational thought will win the day when applied to social media and all other areas of human interaction.

Facebook Post:

How can we have independent thought when so much of social media centers on being part of a collective?  Are we all lemmings as we head toward the cliff along with the herd?


Twitter Post:

When was the last time you researched a post before responding?  Are lemmings fake news? #lemming #fakenews #herdmentality


Works Cited:

Arkin, A. (1976, January 1). The Lemming Condition.

Disney, W. (1958). White Wilderness Part II The Lemmings and Arctic Bird Life.  Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txI3D1waMfU

Mikkelson, D. (1996, February 27).  Did Disney Fake Lemming Deaths for the Nature Documentary ‘White Wilderness’?  Retrieved from https://www.snopes.com/disney/films/lemmings.asp