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

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24

Mar

2023

When Prince Harry chooses a surname

Author: Jim Taylor
Thursday January 19, 2023

No, I haven't read Prince Harry’s autobiography, Spare, yet. But I see that the book’s cover doesn't give the author a last name.
He is just “Prince Harry.”
It turns out, Harry doesn't have a last name. His birth certificate names him Henry Charles Allen David. No surname.
I haven’t been able to find out how U.S. Immigration processed an entry application from a man who left “Surname” blank. Although I imagine that Bob Newhart could create a hilarious monologue about it.
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24

Mar

2023

Put that rebate to better use

Author: Jim Taylor
Sunday January 22, 2023

My B.C. Hydro bill arrived this week -- $1.16. For two months of electricity. At first, I thought it must be a mistake. Then I realized that the B.C. government had given me a $100 credit to compensate for the skyrocketing costs of living this past year.
One of my preferred charities provides menstrual kits to girls in Uganda. Each kit contains eight re-usable menstrual pads, and two pairs of undeerpants. Because many of the girls cannot even afford panties.
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24

Mar

2023

How media messages hook you

Author: Jim Taylor
Sunday January 15, 2023

A witticism on the internet says, “I found a solution to all the bad news I see on TV. I quit watching TV.”
I feel that way about email sometimes.
I subscribe to a number of mailing lists. Several are news oriented. Mostly bad news – although a couple of newsfeeds always end with “something to brighten your day.”
Several mailings try to be uplifting, insightful, or devotional messages or meditations.
And then there are the ones I never subscribed to
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20

Feb

2023

Working in amiable anarchy

Author: Jim Taylor

Thursday January 12, 2023

 

On New Year’s Day, I helped serve dinner to 120 or so homeless people in a downtown church hall. It was an oddly satisfying experience – and I hope I didn’t find it satisfying because I felt superior to them. 

            I didn’t have time to feel superior, anyway. I was too busy setting tables, buttering rolls, mixing salads, pouring glasses of water or juice…

            And I had a great time doing it. 

            Why? I’ve wondered that myself. I suspect that I like to work in a kind of creative anarchy --  almost the opposite of military discipline (which, I hasten to add,  is also essential sometimes).


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20

Feb

2023

About those New Year’s resolutions

Author: Jim Taylor
Sunday January 8, 2023

Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions last weekend? When I broached that subject informally, a group of friends more or less agreed – they don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. Mostly because they knew they’d break those resolutions. Maybe even that same evening, if the resolution involved chocolate or wine.
Or else they knew their good intentions were too idealistic: “Peace to the world.” “End poverty and starvation.” “Cure the climate crisis.”
I share those misgivings. But I also feel it’s worthwhile to make resolutions, periodically. And a New Year seems as good a time as any to make them.
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