Well, this is my first full month on the job and I have to say it has been an experience. Learning a new software module is always exciting and at times very exasperating. Thank goodness I have John Charlton, who built the new web site, to call on when things get screwed up or complicated or both. There have been a few hiccups; some very minor and one that looked very serious but turned out to be correctable after John spent 30 minutes dealing with the problem.
You'll notice I changed my picture to my 1960 grad photo. This was done in an attempt to get into more of a "high school" mood. I've been retired for 16 years and working to a deadline and producing a specific product has not been my thing. My main concerns have been what am I making for dinner (I'm the cook), what time does my curling game start, what's my tee time and when is my next doctor's appointment. I also devote time to my hobbies, brewing beer, making wine and reading. If the newsletter work load becomes too much I'll have to cut back on my reading.
We are still looking for content from all of you out there - pictures, articles, clean jokes - all would be appreciated, your input keeps us going . Send them to me at email@example.com
Thanks to Lorne Perry, Class of 1948, for his "best job" piece. I worked for CP Rail, CN's competition so I can relate to some of his reminiscing. If you don't have a "best job" piece, how about telling us about your "worst job" and how you got out of it (if you did). I'm sure there are some very interesting stories out there.
Angus is still undergoing chemo therapy and is having a rough time of it - we can only hope for the best. The good news is he still helps out with the newsletter when he is able. Stay optimistic.
PS Go PatriotsHarvey Carter
Welcome New Alumni Association Members and renewed Members
New Regular Member
from Victoria, BC
Class of 1960
from Halifax, NS
Class of 1964
from Port Orange, Florida
Brenda Kipps (King)
Class of 1972
from St. Laurent, QC
Catherine Paquet (Ascah)
Class of 1969
from St. Lambert, QC
Class of 1971
from Oakville, ON
Class of 1973
from New Brunswick
Class of 1964
from Pickering, ON
Barbara Handrahan (Shotton)
Class of 1964
from Toronto, ON
Memberships expiring in February
Phillips Robert (Bob) 1959
McLennan (Reoch) Cathy 1977
Humphrey Heather Elizabeth 1966
Morrison Ward 1956
Arlene Bardin (Greene)
Class of 1957
from San Diego, CA USA
Class of 1965
from Deep Brook, NS.
Veronique Le Kim
Class of 1980
from Brossard, QC
Memberships expiring in March
Stephen Brethor 1968
Suzanne Hubbard (Dean) 1970
Jennifer Exton (Stanley) 1963
Carol Johnson (LeBlanc) 1959
Bill Hand 1961
Enjoy this memorable tuneAngus Cross
What was the best job you ever had?
My Grad year was 1948 - probably not too many of us left. That makes me 87 and counting. You may have seen some of my earlier contributions, particularly a series on Growing Up in St. Lambert, several years ago, and now I am prompted by Sheila Dorion's account of her best job to reminisce a bit more;
In my youth, the Dorion family lived at the corner of Victoria and Upper Edison. I palled around with Sheila's two brothers, David and Peter but Sheila was about six years younger than I was. Back in the Thirties, cookies were normally homemade, but Sheila's mother offered us those flat raisin rectangles (I think they were made by MacLaren's), that we regarded as a special treat.
But back to the Best Job. After CCHS (St.Lambert High at the time), I did Grade 12 at Montreal High and then two years at Sir George Williams University. I didn't care for that, and opted to hire on at CNR in Public Relations. That particular department was daily occupied with the business of every other department, giving me an amazing overview of railway operations and management. After a couple of lowly jobs in the old H.Q. building at 360 McGill Street, I moved into Newswriting, and never looked back. CNR, and later CN, gave me all the higher education I needed to turn out creditable copy.
But the best part was that the seniors in the department recognized that I had a bit of an artistic sense and thrust me into a liaison job in 1959 that was the prelude for development of the CN logo and accompanying graphics and colour schemes for trains, trucks, signs, uniforms, stations, offices, etc. What fun! I was privileged to play trains at a scale of 12 inches to the foot. We hired a talented design team and they patiently taught me the basics of good design. Perhaps my most important part of the process was a role I happily took on of interpreting management to designers, and vice versa -- a real go-between task. In those days of narrow-focus management minds based on engineering and logistics, design was unknown territory. They knew they needed an updated identity but otherwise didn't have a clue
The CN logo is now 58 years young, and has undergone no changes -- a credit to forward-thinking professional designers. In the mid-sixties during an invitational trip to the U.K. to explain to British Rail what we'd done, one of their officers was amazed that I could parlay on my subject directly with the CEO and any number of Vice-Presidents. In the extremely hierarchical British structure, there were several layers between my level and the exalted terrain of VPs. The Canadian environment was much more casual, and was dictated by knowledge and need, not position in the ranks.
I can't say it was the Best Job in the World, but it certainly matched my personal interests with the work to which I was assigned. After 40 years I retired in 1992 and since then have continued writing; including "St.Lambert - a train of thought", published in 2014, the story of CN in St. Lambert. And besides that, life is full of Christian endeavour, family, world travel and community service.
Best regards, Lorne Perry
When the cat’s away the mice will play!
It was a cool and rainy mid-December Sunday when five CCHS Alumni, their spouses and kids took over the new gym. The grads were: Jana Jensen – 94, Julie Dawson – 94, Patricia Armeni – 94, Roanne Proctor – 94 and Kim Carter - 95. Phys Ed Teacher Tom Crowe gave them keys to the equipment room so there were fun and games in the gym. I'm told the library was used for arts and crafts and lunch, from Miss Italia, was served in Jana Jensen's class room. Oh, by the way, Phys Ed teacher Tom Crowe did not go to CCHS but his father Paul Crowe was a CCHS principal for many years and he is married to Virginia Armeni, class of 91 and sister of Patricia - its a small world.
As long as no one relocates and the school stays open, all eleven kids shown, including my two grandsons, Nathan and Jacob, plus Tom and Virginia's three, will end up at the high school. Eight of them are currently at St. Lambert Elementary. And just so you know, it was a sanctioned event. New Principal, Jean-Rene St-Cyr opened the school for them in the morning and then came back and closed up at the end of the day.
Some good advice for those of us over 65
- It’s time to use the money you saved up. Use it and enjoy it. Don’t just keep it for those who may have no notion of the sacrifices you made to get it. Remember there is nothing more dangerous than a son or daughter-in-law with big ideas for your hard-earned capital. Warning: This is also a bad time for investments, even if it seems wonderful or fool-proof. They only bring problems and worries. This is a time for you to enjoy some peace and quiet.
- Stop worrying about the financial situation of your children and grandchildren, and don’t feel bad spending your money on yourself. You’ve taken care of them for many years, and you’ve taught them what you could. You gave them an education, food, shelter and support. The responsibility is now theirs to earn their own money.
- Keep a healthy life, without great physical effort. Do moderate exercise (like walking every day), eat well and get your sleep. It’s easy to become sick, and it gets harder to remain healthy. That is why you need to keep yourself in good shape and be aware of your medical and physical needs. Keep in touch with your doctor, do tests even when you’re feeling well. Stay informed.
- Always buy the best, most beautiful items for your significant other. The key goal is to enjoy your money with your partner. One day one of you will miss the other, and the money will not provide any comfort then, enjoy it together.
- Don’t stress over the little things. Like paying a little extra on price quotes. You’ve already overcome so much in your life.You have good memories and bad ones, but the important thing is the present. Don’t let the past drag you down and don’t let the future frighten you. Feel good in the now. Small issues will soon be forgotten.
- Regardless of age, always keep love alive. Love your partner, love life, love your family, love your neighbor and remember: “A man is not old as long as he has intelligence and affection.”
- Be proud, both inside and out. Don’t stop going to your hair salon or barber, do your nails, go to the dermatologist and the dentist, keep your perfumes and creams well stocked. When you are well-maintained on the outside, it seeps in, making you feel proud and strong.
- Don’t lose sight of fashion trends for your age, but keep your own sense of style. There’s nothing worse than an older person trying to wear the current fashion among youngsters. You’ve developed your own sense of what looks good on you – keep it and be proud of it. It’s part of who you are.
- ALWAYS stay up-to-date. Read newspapers, watch the news. Go online and read what people are saying. Make sure you have an active email account and try to use some of those social networks. You’ll be surprised what old friends you’ll meet. Keeping in touch with what is going on and with the people you know is important at any age.
- Respect the younger generation and their opinions. They may not have the same ideals as you, but they are the future, and will take the world in their direction. Give advice, not criticism, and try to remind them that yesterday’s wisdom still applies today.
- Never use the phrase: “In my time.” Your time is now. As long as you’re alive, you are part of this time. You may have been younger, but you are still you now, having fun and enjoying life.
- Some people embrace their golden years, while others become bitter and surly. Life is too short to waste your days on the latter. Spend your time with positive, cheerful people, it’ll rub off on you and your days will seem that much better. Spending your time with bitter people will make you older and harder to be around.
- Do not surrender to the temptation of living with your children or grandchildren (if you have a financial choice, that is). Sure, being surrounded by family sounds great, but we all need our privacy. They need theirs and you need yours. If you’ve lost your partner (our deepest condolences), then find a person to move in with you and help out. Even then, do so only if you feel you really need the help or do not want to live alone.
- Don’t abandon your hobbies. If you don’t have any, make new ones. You can travel, hike, cook, read, dance. You can adopt a cat or a dog, grow a garden, play cards, checkers, chess, dominoes, golf. You can paint, volunteer or just collect certain items. Find something you like and spend some real time having fun with it.
- Even if you don’t feel like it, try to accept invitations. Baptisms, graduations, birthdays, weddings, conferences. Try to go. Get out of the house, meet people you haven’t seen in a while, experience something new (or something old). But don’t get upset when you’re not invited. Some events are limited by resources, and not everyone can be hosted. The important thing is to leave the house from time to time. Go to museums, go walk through a field. Get out there.
- Be a conversationalist. Talk less and listen more. Some people go on and on about the past, not caring if their listeners are really interested. That’s a great way of reducing their desire to speak with you. Listen first and answer questions, but don’t go off into long stories unless asked to. Speak in courteous tones and try not to complain or criticize too much unless you really need to. Try to accept situations as they are. Everyone is going through the same things, and people have a low tolerance for hearing complaints. Always find some good things to say as well.
- Pain and discomfort go hand in hand with getting older. Try not to dwell on them but accept them as a part of the cycle of life we’re all going through. Try to minimize them in your mind. They are not who you are, they are something that life added to you. If they become your entire focus, you lose sight of the person you used to be.
- If you’ve been offended by someone – forgive them. If you’ve offended someone - apologize. Don’t drag around resentment with you. It only serves to make you sad and bitter. It doesn’t matter who was right. Someone once said: “Holding a grudge is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die.” Don’t take that poison. Forgive, forget and move on with your life.
- If you have a strong belief, savor it. But don’t waste your time trying to convince others. They will make their own choices no matter what you tell them, and it will only bring you frustration. Live your faith and set an example. Live true to your beliefs and let that memory sway them.
- Laugh. Laugh A LOT. Laugh at everything. Remember, you are one of the lucky ones. You managed to have a life, a long one. Many never get to this age, never get to experience a full life. But you did. So what’s not to laugh about? Find the humor in your situation.
- Take no notice of what others say about you and even less notice of what they might be thinking. They’ll do it anyway, and you should have pride in yourself and what you’ve achieved. Let them talk and don’t worry. They have no idea about your history, your memories and the life you’ve lived so far. There’s still much to be written, so get busy writing and don’t waste time thinking about what others might think. Now is the time to be at rest, at peace and as happy as you can be!
AND REMEMBER: “Life is too short to drink bad wine and warm beer!”
Class Contacts Needed
If you are interested in representing your class year as Class Contact. Please contact Harvey Carter
Class of 1966
October 10, 1948 – December 27, 2018
Bruce passed away peacefully in his sleep with loving family by his side. His life was cut short due to complications associated with spinal cord injury.
He will be sadly missed by his sisters Connie, Gail, Wendy; brothers Ron, Ken H, Gordon, Ken E; brother and sisters-in-law as well as his many loving nieces and nephews.
Bruce was the second son of John Thomson Mason and Mary Catherine (McCune) Mason and was raised from the age of 8 by his second mum, Joan Barnson (Cole) Mason.
On completing high school, Bruce worked full time and took night courses at University graduating with a commerce degree from Concordia University. He worked for several corporations achieving success at the executive level. Subsequently, he formed his own company, 'Bruce Mason and Associates', and was in high demand at home and abroad.
Bruce loved working, travelling and shopping in the United Kingdom, USA and Canada and at the time of his injury was looking forward to his next adventure in Dubai.
Bruce took care of his family, moving his parents to his Toronto duplex when his father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. He was a supportive care giver and advocate for his father and mother for many years.
He had a keen interest in the symphony, theatre, reading and shopping. He especially liked reno projects and cooking shows on television. He loved to cook, share good wines and food, and enjoyed entertaining. He took great pleasure in serving 'afternoon high tea' after many Toronto Symphony concerts. Another passion of Bruce was his love of the family pets. Both Cassie and Phoebe were rescued from the Toronto Humane Society and found their ‘forever’ homes with Bruce.
Bruce will be remembered by friends, family and support persons for his love of family, lavish generosity to both family and friends and his kind consideration and support for all.
Bruce demonstrated great strength of character when faced with the realities and challenges of his sudden, unexpected state of paraplegia. His attitude was “It is what it is and I have to deal with it". He never complained or felt sorry for himself.
Despite his constant challenges, he remained fiercely independent doing everything he could for himself and others.
He will be so dearly missed.
If you notice an obituary of a classmate in your local paper
please forward details to Harvey Carter at firstname.lastname@example.org
A man tells a Rabbi: "I have a strong desire to live to eternity. What am I supposed to do?"
Get married replies the Rabbi.
"Its that simple? Would that allow me to live forever?"
"No, but the desire will disappear"