Picked up in passing

Wow! Have you seen the flower pots downtown? They’re gorgeous. Huge sidewalk pots, spilling over with fuschia petunias and hanging pots of petunias, geraniums, lobelia… bravo to the Downtown Improvement Board and its contracted gardening expert. What a nice shopping environment.

It’s funny how a brain takes on information

Every day as I drive to work I pass the former St Mary’s School property, at the corner of Codrington and Berczy streets. Some creative genius has retained the core of the building and is adding exciting new dimensions to it. I’ve been interested in its progress, and wondering who’s going in there…

And, when I dropped off my income tax installment to the Ferris Lane Revenue Canada office, it was logical to ask why there’s a “For Rent” sign on their building. It used to be the offices for both Simcoe County and Roman Catholic School Board officials before each went into their own facilities. For several years, early 90’s, I think, it’s been Revenue Canada’s domain, GST offices, income tax etc. Now there’s a For Rent sign on it.

That’s because the Revenue Canada, Customs and Excise folks are moving down to the old St Mary’s School location. It’s not a government building; they’ll be paying rent as a tenant, but it will give them more space to offer income tax return assistance for local people.

So, there you go. Curiosity satisfied once again.

Chamber of Commerce Volunteer Awards

The Chamber of Commerce is once again celebrating its Volunteer Awards. Next Wednesday, June 14, the Chamber will be giving awards and accolades to 12 community volunteers, for service to church, art & culture, Chamber, seniors, disabled, hospital, health & welfrare, recreation & education, charity and fundraising, seniors, youth & children, sports & fitness and horticulture. The awards themselves are named after Chamber presidents, themselves volunteers.

The event is scheduled for Molson House and it’s always an energetic place to be… full of people who are making rich the fabric of our community life.

Thank you, Chamber of Commerce, for providing this showcase and opportunity to allow the community to say thanks.

Donna Douglas.com

And now to my column two weeks ago, on donnadouglas.com, and my dilemma about whether to give Elly Mae Clampett my paid-for domain name in deference to her celebrity status.

You were generous, very generous in your response and support of the sheer validity of what I do. And of the 30-odd emails, and telephone votes, the comments as I made my way around town the tally is overwhelming in its support of donnadouglas.com being centred right here in Barrie. One individual said I should heave it over and re-establish myself. Another questioned the sincerity of my comment that I feel privileged to deliver the Self Employment Assistance Program–I do, I truly do! Another suggested I should sell the domain name, not understanding that the offered purchase price was an autographed picture. But the wild majority suggested that the validity of my site shouldn’t be overshadowed by the celebrity expectation.

Perhaps one day there will be flashing Beverley Hillbillies icon with a direct link to the celebrity Donna Douglas. For now, I wanted to share some of your comments, great humour, wonderful insight and lots of kindness.

“…’come ‘n listen to a story ’bout a man named Jed poor mountaineer barely kept ‘is family fed ‘n then one day he was shootin’ at some food ‘n up from the ground come a bubblin’ crude… oil ‘at is… black gold… texas tee… wellu first thing ya know ‘ol Jed’s a millionaire the kin folk said Jed move away >from there! they said Californeea’s a place ye outa be so they loaded up the truck and they moved to Beverleeee… hills ‘at is… swimmin’ pools… movie stars… The Beverly Hillbillies… starring Donna Douglas daughter of…” Pam Douglas Hill

“Going rate for a demand name is minumum $5,000.—> the moon. It can’t hurt to ask $100,000. as that may be a drop in the bucket. The worst that can happen is they will say no and you won’t have to negotiate any further OR they may counter offer an attractive ammount like $20,000.” Rob Smith, Dr. Computer Logic

“I doubt .org or .net will seriously affect how her fans feel about her. A dot com address will help you out much more than it will hurt her, and your cause is just.” Sheryl Thomson ‘Go forth with a clear conscience, you certainly have my respect and you have conducted yourself as the true lady you are.” Heather Taylor, Imaginet Tech Support

“What’s this bit of bribery about sending an autographed picture—Pullease!” Jan Craig

“We both think you should keep the .com. They just missed the boat.” Eugene and Denise Sutherland.

“I didn’t know that Elly Mae’s name was Donna Douglas.” Laila Beniston

“Keep the website and keep doing the good things you have been doing for so long.” Patti Kvamme

“Stick to your guns, Donna! Be the kind of strong ambassador for our wonderful country that we deserve.” Michelle Stong & Peter White

“First come, first served. DonnaDouglas.COM all the way!” Jeanne Best

“Some commercial sites can be great and provide good quality of information, but the VAST majority of commercial sites are simply digital advertisements that want you to BUY, BUY, BUY. My advice to you is keep your domain name, because to me and all your future customers, YOU are the REAL Donna Douglas. I wonder if there are any famous Rick Towns’ out there? :-)” Rick Towns

There were lots of phone calls, several yelled-across-the-street opinions, a comment or two at the bank, some feedback at meetings. With this kind of universal support, all I can say is… thank you, and log on!