Hallelujah and a Haircut —Faces of St. James 1976


An actual “Letter to the Editor” with “a few slight additions” thrown in from The Carleton Place Canadian files Carleton Place, Ontario: December 16, 1948 edition-photos 1976 except the last one. Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


In a letter to the editor of The Carleton Place Canadian newspaper in December of 1948 a concerned citizen simply known as J.R.P. wrote a scathing letter about the ongoing power shortages. He was furious about the outage the day before and said it was a complete joke. J.R.P. was angry the lights had gone out while he sat relaxing in the barber’s chair. Apparently his “tonsorial artist” as he called him, was in the middle of trimming his beard, an appendage he admires, even though the ladies don’t like how it tickles.



The barber informed him he could continue trimming J.R.P.’s beard in the dark and so he did. As our fair gentleman strolled down Bridge Street later several friends greeted him with a hearty “Good Evening George!” His name was not George, and as he looked at his reflection in Oklilimins he realized the barber had made him look like an exact facsimile of George Bernard Shaw. Not bad for a power outage he thought, but when the cleaner told him he had only pressed one leg of his trousers due to the blackout he began to change his tune.


J.R. P. had enough and as the children dressed as shepherds opened the Parish Hall door and marched towards St. James Anglican church he had some serious thoughts. Was this power shortage business just a political stunt or could God be at work in this force? Is this force God? Will learning more about electricity bring us closer to God? Maybe electricity is the Holy Spirit? I’m going to have a shot of whiskey he thought and then I’ll see if I can figure this out. After all I learned long ago from George Bernard Shaw, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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