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by Christopher Mudiappahpillai

One of the first set of novels that I ever read was the “Little House” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I borrowed them from a neighbour and spent countless hours reading and rereading them around the time I was in the third and fourth grades.1

If I had to choose just one book out of the series as a favourite, I think it would be “Farmer Boy”. But I distinctly remember liking the latter books, the ones about her courtship and marriage to Almanzo Wilder, as well. Yes, I’m afraid it’s true. I was a sodding romantic at even such a tender age.2

A few years later, I discovered that someone had written a set of sequels based on Mrs. Wilder’s diaries. If I remember correctly, it’s called “In the Days of Laura Ingalls Wilder” and covers some of the happenings of her life and that of her neighbours’ after her family moved to the Ozarks of Missouri. I definitely recommend them.3

There’s one particular scene that comes to mind though when I think of the latter set of books. It involves an episode in a restaurant where a customer orders “a cup of java that’s mud thick”. Unfortunately, the children who were left to mind the tables at the time hadn’t a clue as to what java was and ended up giving him a cup of mud. Hilarity ensued.

And while the customer who ordered the coffee come across as being rather vulgar, I must admit that I can commiserate: too often is mud passed off as coffee.

A little whiles back, I read something wherein the writer was recounting a visit to these here parts that are north of the 49th. He concluded by saying that even the coffee up here isn’t all that great. And really, I do feel his pain. One can hardly expect to find good coffee at Tim Horton’s.4

I think I might have said this before, but here it is again: Tim Horton’s is the McDonalds of coffee. It’s attractiveness lies in it’s uniformity. You can go to a Tim’s in Vancouver and then to another in St. John’s, and order the same beverage. And it will taste very similar, if not exactly the same. That’s why its coffee is popular. That doesn’t make it good though.

But Canada actually has some of the best coffee in the world. I kid you not. There was even a lengthy interview on the CBC with a professional coffee taster who said that the coffe up here so good that it amounts to us being spoiled.

Of course, now you’re asking, “So where is all this good Canadian coffee then?” The answer’s pretty obvious, actually – at a good Canadian coffee house. Like Second Cup. Or Timothy’s World Coffee.

Truthfully, I’ve only had a cup of Timothy’s once. But I’ve frequent Second Cup quite regularly. And believe you me when I say that the extra $0.50 or so is well worth it.5 And if you’re looking for recommendations, try Second Cup’s Irish Cream or Caramelo. There’s also another fine blend called Bavarian Chocolate or something like that.

Cheers.

  • 1 And despite what anyone has told you, no they’re not just for girls.
  • 2 Rose coloured specs still firmly in place, thank you very much.
  • 3 They’re a little different from the original series in that they’re not as sombre, with several laugh out loud moments especially where the local parson’s children are concerned. But again, with my highest recommendations.
  • 4 Oh c’mon. Don’t all the Canadians that read this start bristling at that comment. It’s not a matter of national pride. Besides, last time I checked, Wendy’s isn’t Canadian.
  • 5 I suppose Starbucks might have could coffee. I had an Egg Nog Latte there once. But I try and avoid it on a matter of principle.

As much as I love coffee, I still can’t drink it without sugar. But just one teaspoon, please.

Pour Some Sugar On Me
Def Leppard
As covered by Emm Gryner
From the album, Science Fair

Love is like a bomb, baby, c’mon get it on
Livin’ like a lover with a radar phone
Lookin’ like a tramp, like a video vamp
Demolition woman, can I be your man?

Razzle ‘n’ dazzle ‘n’ flash a little light
Television lover, baby, go all night
Sometime, anytime, sugar me sweet
Little miss innocent sugar me

Take a bottle, shake it up
Break the bubble, break it up

Pour some sugar on me
In the name of love
Pour some sugar on me
C’mon fire me up
Pour your sugar on me
I can’t get enough

‘Cause I’m hot and I’m sticky sweet
From my head to my feet

Red light, yellow light, green light, go
Crazy little woman in a one man show
Mirror queen, mannequin, rhythm of love
Sweet dream, saccharine, loosen up

You gotta squeeze a little, squeeze a little, tease a little more
Easy operator come a knockin’ on my door
Sometime, anytime, sugar me sweet
Little miss innocent, sugar me

You got the peaches, I got the cream
Sweet to taste, saccharine
‘Cause I’m hot, so hot, and sticky sweet
From my head down to my feet

Do you take sugar?
One lump or two?

Ruisqu&eacute, I know. But you should hear her sing it…

Oh yes, one more thing. For all you regulars, how’s the new font?