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

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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