Jim Taylor's Columns - 'Soft Edges' and 'Sharp Edges'

To make Comments write directly to Jim at jimt@quixotic.ca





Now for something completely different

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday January 13, 2022


The only channel where I can watch Jeopardy is a U.S. channel out of Seattle. So, in addition to the contestants’ wit and wisdom, I get to listen to ads for U.S. pharmaceutical products.

            The first few lines urge you to try the drug. Followed by a full minute – or, in magazines, a full page, or more -- of warnings about possible risks and side effects.

            It got me thinking that maybe other human institutions should be equally up-front about potential consequences.

           The most obvious target would be religion. So I’ll chose the one I know best-- Christianity.

Comments (0) Number of views (148)




The people we rendered invisible

Author: Jim Taylor

Sunday January 9, 2002


Canada finally seems to have recognized that the original inhabitants of this continent have had a raw deal.

            On Tuesday, the federal government announced a “historic agreement-in-principle” worth $40 billion to “compensate young people harmed by Canada's discriminatory child welfare system while reforming the system that tore First Nations children from their communities for decades.”

            The discovery of 215 unmarked graves at the Kamloops Residential School, plus another 1,000 or so at other sites, shocked Canadians out of centuries of complacency. 

            It shouldn’t have come as a jolt.

            For seven years, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission exposed story after story of persecution and discrimination. 

            The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls provided further evidence.

            Did we listen?

Comments (0) Number of views (201)




Tears as a sign of rejoicing

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday January 6, 2022


I’m turning into a sentimental old fool. I find myself unexpectedly moved to tears, or at least to sniffles, by some act of kindness or caring. 

            It could be anything. A video clip about a group of people working together to extricate a moose from a mudhole. An anonymous donation to my church’s Thrift Shop that prepays purchases for a dozen or more shoppers. 

            The very best present I received this past Christmas was a letter from my granddaughter Katherine.  “Is it okay?” Katherine asked, when I looked up from reading her letter. I couldn’t answer; I was too choked up.

Comments (0) Number of views (174)




If I only did one good thing this year…

Author: Jim Taylor

Saturday January 1, 2022


Long ago, I read an article about doing a year-end review. It said that if you could look back over the last year and find three good things to celebrate, you’ve had a good year. 

            As I recall, that had not been a particularly good year. I felt more inclined to focus on all the things that had gone badly. No need to go into details. 

            Every year since then, I have deliberately and consciously made the effort to list the good things that made the year memorable. 

            This year, one good thing particularly stands out for me. I became a plasma donor. 

Comments (0) Number of views (383)
Read more

Categories: Sharp Edges

Tags: blood, plasma, donor




A toast to lost causes

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday December 30, 2021


There should be a day for celebrating lost causes. 

            My little hummingbird didn’t survive the cold snap after Christmas. She showed up here after all the other hummingbirds had migrated south. I assume that the “atmospheric river” swept her up from the coast and dumped her in an Okanagan winter. 

            I had not bothered taking down my sugar-syrup feeders when all the other hummingbirds had fled south. So there she was, one day in December. 

            Temperatures dropped to minus-6 Celsius. And still she came back, every day. 


Comments (0) Number of views (187)




Christmas -- how God does things

Author: Jim Taylor


Thursday December 23, 2021


What I like most about Christmas, I think, is that it forces me to sharpen my beliefs.

            I call myself a Christian (though I’m sure some would consider me a humanist at best, an atheist at worst). Certainly, I come from a Christian tradition. And Christian tradition has asserted, for centuries, that God was born as a human baby. We call him Jesus. Other cultures call him Jesu, or Yeshua, or some name that I don’t know. 

            Think about the sheer audacity of that claim. God became human! God didn’t just pretend to become human. God didn’t put on a human mask and go around in disguise. God became a human. A very specific historical human.

            The Incarnation makes my faith much simpler. If I want to know what God is like, I need only look at Jesus. 

Comments (0) Number of views (176)




When Christmas is a difficult time

Author: Jim Taylor

Sunday December 19, 2021


I had trouble doing my Christmas decorating this year. 

            Last year, I found the bins of Christmas decorations Joan had put away in our basement the Christmas before.  I set them up as I remembered what she had done.

           This year, though, I couldn’t remember all the details anymore.

            This Christmas, I realize, I’m not decorating for her. I can now only decorate for me.

Comments (0) Number of views (168)




Christmas dinner reveals hidden prejudices

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday December 16, 2021


A few years ago, my daughter invited three temporary Jamaican workers for Christmas dinner. 

            As the oldest male in the family, I got to carve the Christmas turkey. Of course, I served the guests first. “White meat or dark meat?” I asked.

            The three women looked at each other. Then one of them ventured, “Dark.”

            The other two agreed. 

             When plates were emptying, I offered seconds. This time, all three of the Jamaican women asked for white meat.

            It turned out that they had made an assumption. They thought that references to white and dark related to their skin colour, not the meat. 

Comments (0) Number of views (188)
Read more

Categories: Soft Edges

Tags: racism, Prejudice




This IS the new normal

Author: Jim Taylor

Sunday December 12, 2021


Things were just starting to get back to normal. Restaurants and drive-ins were open again. Sports events could have fans in the stands. People trapped in Canada for the last 18 months were booking flights to exotic locations. 

            And then the Omigod variant appeared. (Sorry, the OmiCRON variant). Some old rules were re-instated. Some new rules were imposed. 

            Suddenly, a return to  “normal” -- whatever that is – looked a lot farther away. 

            I suggest that we’re kidding ourselves if we expect that the world is ever going to go back to whatever we once considered normal.

            On a personal note, I know that, since my wife’s death last year, going back to any former “normal” is impossible. 

Comments (0) Number of views (170)




We are more than our masks

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday December 9, 2021


The woman standing in line looked vaguely familiar. But because she was wearing a Covid mask, I could see only her eyes and forehead. 

            “Holly?” I asked, tentatively. 

            Her eyebrows shot up. Her eyes crinkled. “Jim!” she exclaimed, flinging her arms around me. (Take that, Covid!)

            I find it hard to recognize people with half their face hidden. 

            In the old days, people used masks to cover other parts of their faces. The Lone Ranger and Batman wore masks over the upper half. 

            Now it’s the opposite. 


Comments (0) Number of views (164)
«December 2022»


"gate of the year" #MeToo .C. Taylor 150th birthday 1950s 1954 1972 1984 215 3G 4004 BC 70 years 8 billion 9/11 A A God That Could Be Real abduction aboriginal abortion Abrams abuse achievement Adam Adams River addiction Addis Ababa adoption Adrian Dix Advent advertising affirmative action Afghanistan agendas aging agnostics Ahriman Ahura Mazda airlines airport killings Alabama albinism albinos Alexa algorithms Allegations allies Almighty Almighty God alone ALS alt-right altruism Amanda Gorman Amanda Todd Amazon American empire Amerika Amherst amnesia analysis Andes Andrea Constant Andrew Copeland Taylor anger animals anniversaries Anniversary Anthropocene antidote Ants aphrodisiac apologetics Apologies apology apoptosis App Store Archives Ardern Aristotle armistice Armstrong army Army and Navy stores Art artifacts artists ashes Asian assisted death astronomy atheists atonement atropine Attawapiscat attitudes attraction audits Aunt Jemima Australia authorities authorities. Bible autism automation autumn B.C. election B.C. Health Ministry B.C. Legislature B-2 Baal Shem Tov baby Bach bad news baggage Bagnell Bahai Baldi Bali Banda banning books Baptism Barabbas Barbados barbed wire barbers barriers Bashar al Assad Batman baton BC BC Conference Beans bears beauty Beaver Beethoven beginnings behaviour bel-2 belief systems beliefs bells belonging benefits Bernardo Berners-Lee berries Bible biblical sex bicycle Biden Bill C-6 billboards billionaire BioScience Bird songs birds birth birthday birthdays Bitcoin Black history Blackmore blessings Blockade blockades blood blood donations blood donors Bloomberg Blue Christmas boar boarding school body Boebert Bohr bolide Bolivia Bolivian women BOMBHEAD bombing bombings bombs books border patrol borrowing both/and bottom up Bountiful Brahms brain development brains Brazil breath breathe breathing Brexit broken Bruce McLeod bubbles Buber Buddha Buddhism Bulkley bulldozers bullets bullying burials bus driver bush pilots butterflies butterfly Calendar California Cambridge Analytica. Facebook cameras campfire Canada Canada Day Canadian Blood services Canal Flats cancer candidates cannibalism Canute Capitol Capp caregivers Caribbean Caribbean Conference of Churches caring Carnaval. Mardi Gras carousel cars Carter Commission cash castes cats cave caveats CBC CD Cecil the lion. Zanda cell phones Celsius CentrePiece CF chance change Charlie Gard Charlottesville Charter of Compassion Checklists checkups chemical weapons Chesapeake Bay Retriever Chesterton Child Advocacy Centre child trafficking childbirth children Chile Chile. Allende China chivalry chocolates choice choices choirs Christchurch Christiaanity Christian Christianity Christians Christina Rossetti Christine Blasey Ford Christmas Christmas Eve Christmas gathering Christmas lights Christmas tree Christmas trees Christopher Plummer Chrystia Freeland church churches circle of life citizenship Clarissa Pinkola Estés Clearwater Clichés cliffhanger climate change climate crisis clocks close votes clouds Coastal GasLink coastal tribes coffee coincidence cold Coleman collaboration collapse collective work colonial colonial mindset colonialism colonies Colten Boushie Columbia River Columbia River Treaty comfort comic strips commercials communication Communion community compassion competition complexity composers composting computer processes Computers conception conclusions Confederacy Confederate statues confession confessions confidence Confirmation confusion Congo Congress Conrad Black consciousness consensual consensus consent conservative Conservative Party conservative values conspiracies conspiracy constitution construction contraception contrasts Conversations Conversion conversion therapy Convoy cooperation COP26 copyright coral Cornwallis corona virus coronavirus corporate defence corporations corruption Corrymeela Cosby Cougars counter-cultural Countercurrents couple courtesy courts Covenant Coventry Cathedral cover-up COVID-19 Coyotes CPP CPR CRA Craig crashes Crawford Bay creation creche credit credit cards creeds cremation crescent Creston crime criminal crossbills cross-country skiing Crows crucifixion Cruelty crypto-currencies Cuba Missile Crisis Cultural appropriation cuneiform Curie curling cutbacks cute cyberbullying Cystic Fibrosis Dalai Lama Damien Damocles Dan Rather dancing Danforth dark matter darkness Darren Osburne Darwin data mining daughter David David Scott David Suzuki de Bono dead zone deaf deafness death death survival deaths debt decision decisions decorations deficit Definitions Delhi Dementia democracy Democratic denial Denny's departure Depression Derek Chauvin Descartes Desiderata despair determinism Devin Kelley dew dawn grass Diana Butler-Bass Dickie dinosaurs discontinuities discussion Dishwashing dissent distancing diversity division divorce dog dogs dominance Don Cherry Donald Trump donkey Donna Sinclair donor doorways Doug Ford Doug Martindale Dr. Keith Roach Dr. Seuss dreaming dreams Drugs ducks duets Duvalier dying Dylan Thomas earth Earth Day earthquake Earworms Easter Eat Pray Love Eatons Ebola echo chambers e-cigarettes eclipse economics Eden editing editing by committee Edwards-Sawatzky ego
Copyright 2022 by Jim Taylor  |  Powered by: Churchweb Canada