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Old as dirt. Twice as gritty.

Where are the clowns?

Feb 24, 2014 / 5:00 am

In a shocking disclosure, news that clowns have been put on the endangered species list has triggered panic in the once-thriving clown industry. But are the clowns hiding or have...

GoPro Jo

Feb 10, 2014 / 5:00 am

I was given a GoPro Hero 3+ Black for my birthday this year. A GoPro is not a regular camera, it is an action camera for adventure-seekers: bungee jumpers, hardcore skiers, rock climbers, extreme cyclists, scuba-divers, and sundry other kindred spirits. And so, I set it up, charged it and...

The crazy one

Jan 27, 2014 / 5:00 am

My column this week is an ode to my Andrew, my grandson, my kindred spirit. He is a boy who just turned eight last week. Eight! Since the day he was born, Andrew has been a non-stop source of joy, frustration, and every other emotion imaginable for the hapless band of innocents...

Needles abound

Jan 13, 2014 / 5:00 am

It happens every year, typically starting in late fall. You’re reading the news and suddenly there it is, the annual ‘Uh-oh, it’s flu season’ news item. It is as sure to appear each year as the sun is to rise in the morning, as the robin is to eat the worm, as Christmas...

Week after Christmas

Dec 30, 2013 / 5:00 am

'Twas the week after Christmas, and all through the cabin, Each creature was tired, and all of them crabbin’. The stockings lay savaged on the ground at my feet, Everything gone, down to the last treat. The grandson wasn’t sleeping all snug in his bed, He...

On a quest

Dec 16, 2013 / 5:00 am

Welcome to The Jo Slade Christmas Romp O’ Good Will, Eggnog and Other Stuff Too Merry For Words column. Since my curmudgeon-esque Christmas column two weeks ago, I have felt driven to find the upside to Christmas. You know, the things that make curmudgeons feel all warm and fuzzy...

Christmas curmudgeon

Dec 2, 2013 / 5:00 am

Ho. Ho. Ho. It’s December. My quest at this time of year is to find ways to maintain my elusive delicate-like-a-flower ‘Christmas Spirit’. My dilapidated Christmas Spirit is so fragile, so delicate, that a mere puff of Christmas boosterism and...

Asylum for me

Nov 18, 2013 / 5:00 am

For over a year, Jim and I kept our television unplugged and unwatched. Not one movie or TV show played before our delicate eyeballs. Upon our return to the world of movies, and return we surely did, one of the first things we stumbled upon was an Asylum film. The movie was called ‘100...

Oh no! Mercury's being bad

Nov 4, 2013 / 5:00 am

We live in perilous times, and never more so than now, with Mercury pulling a retrograde number on us. The retrograde Mercury gig, well-known among astrologists, started on October 21 and continues through November 10. The retrograde Mercury event is an occasionally occurring...

Winter is a meme

Oct 21, 2013 / 6:00 am

So, you’re looking out at the sunshine, and when you see the words ‘winter is a meme’, you’re thinking, “Umm, no . . . no thanks. I don’t want to know about winter. Go away.” Thing is, though, short of running off to Hawaii, winter is...

How to write a column

Oct 7, 2013 / 5:00 am

So, you’ve been thinking about writing a column. You’re muttering, “That Jo Slade, what a bunch of garbage she writes. Each lousy word is like a dagger through my heart. I need to write my own column in order to override her drivel that keeps looping through my addled...

The dog ate my column

Sep 23, 2013 / 5:00 am

Okay, so I had a 2000-word column ready to go today, OMG it was a beauty. Best work I’ve ever done, actually. It was a story of hope and beauty mixed with some sweetness and light, and filled with bits of humour, pathos, and sundry two-and-three syllable words. And then, just...

Keeping abreast of Lori

Sep 9, 2013 / 5:00 am

Here we are, at a downtown sidewalk café for early-morning fried eggs and beer. My companion, the now-famous columnist and radio personality Lori Welbourne, is sitting stark naked across from me. I am naked as well, and it feels pretty good, despite the gasps of horror from disapproving...

The Castanet conniptions

Aug 26, 2013 / 5:00 am

I did something this past week that has all but destroyed the peace and tranquility of a large group of people. Did I murder someone? No. Did I rob them blind? No. Did I tell them that their grandmothers all wore army boots? No. Did I run stark-naked down the street yelling obscenities? Well, yes,...

The neighbourhood catwalk

Aug 12, 2013 / 5:00 am

For the past five years or so, I have enjoyed the occasional and highly questionable pastime of sitting in the car (or on a bench or at a sidewalk cafe) to watch the impromptu street catwalk put on by unsuspecting locals. I never get tired of it. And whoever I’m with, well, I hate to...


Jul 29, 2013 / 5:00 am

There are two kinds of interviews one might possibly conduct with singer/songwriter/actor Kris Kristofferson. One is real, the other not so much. My goal is to do both. The first interview came on July 13, after his concert at the Red Robinson theatre in Coquitlam. ...

Ina gadda da craft beer

Jul 15, 2013 / 5:00 am

When I first met Jim, which was something like 100 years ago (oh, close enough. . . it is ten years shy of 1/2 of that) (that sounds complicated, but isn’t really) (okay, OKAY, 40-and-change years ago), I was able to just about drink him under the table. He, an American sailor, stood no...

The full hipster

Jul 1, 2013 / 5:00 am

I am not a hipster. I’m far too old, too uncool, and really, just too tired. But that doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy them. What exactly is a hipster? Well, best to ask, are YOU a hipster? If you answer yes, you’re not. If you answer no,...

A poundkeeper's story

Jun 17, 2013 / 5:00 am

One day I get a call from an elderly lady about a little dog on the loose. We went - there was this tiny little Shihtzu, scared to death. We couldn't get near her. Don went one way, I went another way until we got her cornered. This little girl had teeth flashing in every direction,...


May 20, 2013 / 5:00 am

My daughter, Heather, likes to torment me by sprinkling the following two terms throughout email messages: ‘forsure’ and ‘nevermind’ When I reply to the emails, I carefully put a space between ‘for’ and...

About the Author

This bio was written by Jo Slade. As you can see she has written about herself in the third person. What normal person would do that? They just wouldn't. Who knows how many other persons might be involved in this thing, a second person? Another third? I worry about it. I - she - we - can't even keep it straight, this paragraph is a damn mess, there are persons all over the place. Round 'em up and shoot 'em. That's what I'd do, and by golly I think that's what Jo Slade would do as well.

Biographic nutshell: Jo has been messing around with words for a long time. Sometimes she'll just say words instead of writing them, it saves on paper.

This column: The columns that will appear here are of a highly serious and scholarly nature, therefore it is advised that you keep a dictionary and ponderous thoughts nearby.

If, after reading the column, you find yourself tossing and turning at night, burning with the need to email me, just do it. I answer to [email protected]


The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.

New feature For more stories from Jo, please visit the Old as Dirt. Twice as Gritty. archive


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