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Ghost Army

The new episode of The Agency Podcast is now available. Listen right here or find it at all the good podcast places.

Eugene is fine-tuning his passions and Candy is lost in space. The agents read a listener’s email, get their cards read, and prepare for a literary conference.

What do Bill Blass, Star Wars, spy novels and fiddles have in common? Who knows but this podcast brings them all together!

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Our sweet dog Ruby has died

Our lovely Newfoundland dog Ruby passed this morning unexpectedly. Ruby was just about to turn 6. She was the sweetest dog who wanted to be best friends with every human she met. Ruby brought us great joy every day.

Filed under: RIP
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A wet walk at Lambton Woods

Great Blue Heron

Over the past few years, I’ve been enjoying nature walks with naturalist Miles Hearn. These are put on via the Toronto District School Board and they’ve become super-popular, so much so the registration fills up for each set of walks in the blink of an eye. The autumn walks started today and the first one for our group was at Lambton Woods, an area along the Humber River that features both woods and river.

find the egret

This morning it rained off and on but still we saw Great Egrets, a Great Blue Heron and even a Spotted Sandpiper. As well, Miles showed us 5 different species of asters and identified many trees and bushes and flowers.

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Is it time?

I was more or less indifferent to the Queen and the royal family and all that went along with it, because our awkward democracy, tied up with the British monarchy, has been reasonably successful. With the passing of Queen Elizabeth, it gives me pause to think, is it time to chuck all that? We’re big kids now. I feel that Canada has changed so much in my lifetime and I have to question the monarchy. Is it time to cut the colonial ties?

Of course getting agreement across the provinces on anything is extremely difficult, and cutting ties to the British monarchy calls for a serious rethinking of our political system that goes beyond eliminating the role of Governor General and provincial counterparts. What about the Senate? Do we need one? What should its role be in the future?

Meanwhile, we have other problems to cope with. It looks like the Tories here are going to elect a leader with some scary ideas and ties to the ugly far right. This is alarming to me, especially after watching over 70 million people in America twice vote for a President who has all the hallmarks of a two-bit con man. I suspect some of our immediate challenges will dwarf dialog around a monarchy-free future for Canada. Still, if we’re going to have that discussion, we ought to start now.

Charles may be the King of Canada, whatever that means, but he’s not my king. Of that I’m sure.


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Separating the Art from the Artist

Listen to the latest episode of The Agency Podcast right here or find it at all the good podcast haunts.

This week the Agents talk about whether or not they can, or should, separate art from it’s creator. And what are the perimeters of objectionable actions that would stop them from listening or viewing.

The incredible Art Rosenbaum was not an artist leaving doubt of his great worth. This episode is in honour of Art Rosenbaum and his inspiring body of work. The opening music is Art Rosenbaum performing “Shout Lulu” at the Tiki Parlour.

There’s plenty more this week. Please join us.

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Art Rosenbaum RIP

Art Rosenbaum was a painter, but I learned about him not through his artworks but through his music.

He played banjo in many tunings. He played fiddle. He sang. He told stories. He traveled and created field recordings and in 2008 he won a Grammy Award for Best Historical Album, for his music collection Art Of Field Recording Volume I: Fifty Years Of Traditional American Music Documented By Art Rosenbaum. I was lucky enough to see and hear Art Rosenbaum perform at a banjo camp a few years ago, and to briefly chat with him. Mr. Rosenbaum passed September 4 at 83. RIP

Filed under: RIP
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Sky Dancers

Listen to the new episode of The Agency Podcast right here or find it where the best podcasts are stowed.

Eugene ferments; Candy sews.

Do you watch Jeopardy? Do you watch Game of Thrones and it’s new prequel HOUSE OF THE DRAGON? Are serial killers extra smart?

Both Agents saw Jordan Peele’s excellent new movie, NOPE. Their review begins at 34:45.

We’d love to hear from you. Email the Agents anytime.

NOTE: We’re taking a 1-week vacation, so no episode next week.

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The Right Combination

I really enjoyed listening to Porter Wagoner’s The Right Combination performed by the Caleb Klauder & Reeb Willms Country Band on the YouTube machine this evening.

Klauder & Willms are also half of the fabulous Foghorn Stringband. Both bands really deliver.