‘Chapple Chuckles’ remembered

Before I came here from brand-new Carleton College’s journalism facility in Ottawa (now part of Carleton University), there was a district lady columnist named Hazel Clink during the 1940s who gave us “Chapple Chuckles,” as many may remember. Her grandson, Bill Clink, knew something of the background of my column last week on Ukrainians. He stopped at lunch to remind me so many of them came from Manitoba, especially from around Sundown. He also reported Hazel lived to become 101 years of age and is still well remembered by her readers. Now I’ve got my own birthday coming up on March 8 and am still appreciating this opportunity to submit my weekly column—although it’s extremely unlikely I’ll ever experience Hazel’s age! I do this column to ward off memory loss, which has afflicted so many of our community. As I wander down the years and enjoy reminiscing with such old peers as a couple I met lately, Steve Lawres and Ernie Brunetta, I am grateful for this opportunity to help escape the Alzheimer ailment that has snared so many veterans.
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Farmers frequently recognize each other, so when Ian Morken came along with his tiny son to ask me whether I had sold my River Road place in Alberton, I learned of his acreage near Tribe’s Rock at Barwick, where he keeps a shack mostly for watching nearby deer. Ian is employed at Barwick’s oriented strand-board plant and he described its manufacturing process, which I have never witnessed.
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It’s been a pleasure to welcome Betty Penney from Stratton back again to wheel the handi-van and spell off Diane Cousineau around town. Both add sociability to their skills.
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Let’s all remember to congratulate Mrs. Barker, who manages the huge Super 8 motel in the west end of twon. Winning that international award among all rivals in that company deserves much credit.
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I’m happy our great band of singers, the “Choraliers” (with their more than 60 voices), can be heard again throughout the Easter season, as reported by their hard-working director, Diane Maxey. Nor is her full attention being given to them right now because she will be introducing a second promising group in the Border Bellringers. The Choraliers’ Easter Cantata will be composed of three programs, starting Monday, March 26 at 6:30 p.m. at Rainycrest here and followed by one Sunday, April 1 at 3 p.m. at St. Mary’s Church. Their last performance will be held Monday, April 9 at 7 p.m. at the Backus Auditorium over in International Falls.
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Sybil Johnson, who became 90 last Wednesday (Feb. 21), was entertained by friends during a “come and go” party.
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Two high school youths were telling me they will be ready to work as electricians or millwrights when they finish school because trades training is part of their education. Their cheerful personalities won’t hurt, either.
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Since a water line froze and broke lately, the Idylwild and Pither’s Point Park neighbourhood has been boiling its drinking water, I learned while Mrs. Kay Boucher was leaving our handi-van bus with help of driver Diane Cousineau.
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Most made it again through Valentine’s Day without going broke! I told lady friends to pick up flowers I would soon pay for. And yes, my intentions were appreciated!
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With two artificial hockey rinks here now, tournaments know no limitations. Our senior Canadians won the Allan Cup in 1952 inside their home rink, which only the year before had replaced our Nelson Street “barn” and natural ice. Now, though, it can be non-stop hockey—from fall through to the next summer! And lots more fans from all over know to find good competition here!
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Barrister Ken Koprowski is back again from down east and shaking hands while conducting his non-stop conversations! Ken reports coming from Walkerville, home of a well-known fellow named Hiram Walker, who made all that great refreshment!
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Another courthouse personality is the wife of my old friend, Ed Katona, who could remember the trial in connection with the “hot stove murders.” Her Ukrainian name (Joskow) was not included in last week’s column. Ed reports his own family came from Romania.
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Now that springtime has begun lurking just down the block and around the corner, it’s symptoms are showing everywhere! There is a growing number of “For Sale” signs on homes and fewer heavy coats on the streets. True, there were bare bellies and canvas running shoes seen everywhere even on our coldest days, but fewer residents here are remembering warm hats and scarves while gloves and heavy mitts are left at home more and more. Diminishing anxiety over temperatures, and more hopefulness for heavier snowfalls to swell our lakes and rivers, now are constantly in conversations while everyone is making garage appointments to ready their vehicles for longer drives or else discussing vacations down the road. I have not heard of any ordering of seed catalogues just yet, but gardening, like fishing, is always a temptation to consider. And have you had a pleasant winter despite some of the coldest weeks on record? Objections to our climate have not been very severe while opportunities to go further afield are beginning to lure everyone concerning the months ahead. Yes, Canada may never become 100 percent attractive in all her moods, but she’s ours to appreciate for better or worse!
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The huge snowflakes last Wednesday, the size of a “toonie,” did not last long, badly as they were needed. Don’t rush yet to unpack those skis and snowshoes.
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Things keep happening at McDonald’s—sometimes enough to keep this column going! Such as observing the lady with bare arms, back, and shoulders at a time when our winter had barely started warming up! B-r-r-! And some teenage girls also appear immodest, making observers wonder whether school dress codes are sometimes being overlooked!

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