Teresa’s Episode Guide for Corner Gas

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I can’t deny it — I’m a big fan of Corner Gas. The acting is excellent and the writing hilarious! Back when I worked a lot of night shifts, Corner Gas kept me awake! I started writing an episode guide for Corner Gas so that when I was wondering which episode has Oscar’s hilarious version of a washing machine in it, or when Wanda hosts Canada AM or Hank drives Wanda’s car around, I could just search for the keywords I wanted. Once you know the episode, you can watch it on YouTube. They’re all there — all 107 episodes!

In case you’re curious, Oscar gets credit for 50 of the funniest lines (according to me), Hank gets 44, Brent 33, Wanda 18, Lacey 13, Davis 11, and Karen 8, Emma only gets 7. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily say who is the funniest overall, it’s just some fun statistics. 🙂 I think my overall favourite episode is “Get the F Off my Lawn,” although there are so many great ones, it’s hard to pick! If you have a fav, leave it in the comments! 🙂


Episode Guide for Corner Gas!


Season 1

S01E01 – Ruby Reborn – She’s the talk of the town — the woman who is taking over the diner after Ruby Burrows passes away. Hank worries that she might be a ex-convict, and Davis is just desperate for a good coffee. Meanwhile, Brent is making a change at the gas station too — he’s now offering movie rentals, which, of course, Oscar objects to.
Best lines/scenes: The surveillance bush, Emma/Oscar/Brent showdown, “She’s turned it into a gay bar.” (Hank), Lacey’s final change

S01E02 – Tax Man – When a tax man (not THE tax man!) comes to investigate Oscar, things get ugly in Dog River. Davis gets upset that he doesn’t get free coffee any more (and he won’t let Karen pay) and Lacey is flabbergasted that people think coffee refills are free. Emma knows where the tax papers are, of course, but Oscar is, well, Oscar.
Best lines/scenes: “I pay your salary!” (Oscar)

S01E03 – Pilates Twist – Brent and Hank buy the same shirt and Brent is tempted to abuse his shirt powers. Oscar and Emma go to a funeral where Oscar is distracted by the cheap coffin, so he starts building his own. Lacey starts teaching pilots, unknowingly competing with Wanda’s mat class.
Best lines/scenes: “Don’t laugh about Y2K, it could still happen.” (Oscar) “Yeah, but he did kill Jesus.” (Davis) “Then bring back some that are e=square. I’m tired of eating rectangles!” (Oscar)

S01E04 – Oh Baby – Brent agrees to babysit Wanda’s kid, Tanner, so she can go to the dentist. He gets a book out of the library which doesn’t help at all. The whole town starts betting on Brent’s injuries at the bar. Oscar watches the gas station and doesn’t burn it down (almost, but not quite).
Best lines/scenes: “Chives on top of me?” (Alice, the librarian) Brent with his pants and back of his shirt shredded.

S01E05 – Grad 68 – Karen starts investigating the cold case of graffitti on the water tower, which she solves! Meanwhile Lacey tries to get a column at the Howler.
Best lines/scenes: “Oh no, no more writing for me. I just want to direct.” (Hank) Scene with Julie Stewart, “I don’t have all the answers!” (paint store clerk)

S01E06 – World’s Biggest Thing – Hank gets the idea to make “the world’s biggest something” to promote tourism. A committee brainstorms and when Fitzy’s grandma suggests the world’s biggest hoe, no one can bring themselves to tell her what else it means.
Best lines/scenes: “A big dirty hoe!” (Brent)

S01E07 – All My Ex’s Live in Toronto – Steven, Lacey’s ex-fiance comes to town, and as Hank hatches a plan to scare him off, he spins a story about him being Colchek the Night Stalker. Meanwhile, Emma bugs Oscar to go to the doctor.
Best lines/scenes: “Don’t point your pickle at me.” (Brent) Brent and Lacey sharing a chili cheese dog. “No ridiculous schemes = Hank, do whatever you can to help me.” (Lacey) The backwards interrogation room.

S01E08 – Cousin Carl – Brent meets his nemesis head on and it all comes to head at the talent show. Hank does a magic act, Wanda does the decor and MC, and Lacey is the judge. Oscar starts brewing his own beer when Wes won’t give him a refund for his old bottles.
Best lines/scenes: “Wes won’t take them! I’m a senior!” (Oscar) “Geez Dad, did you mix this in a skidoo boot or a crow’s nest?… It tastes like you beat a skunk to death with a salmon.” (Brent)

S01E09 – Cell Phone – Hank and Brent’s competition over who has the smallest cell phone goes over the top when one of them ends up with “a barbie phone” (Lacey), and Oscar gets hooked on The Claw.” Lacey gets rejected from the chamber of commerce, so she works to get the grain elevator declared an historic site. The only problem is, that’s where all the rats are coming from.
Best lines/scenes: “Let me answer a question with a question. Shut up.” “I’m hot! There’s a fuzzy lobster over there with my name on it!” (Oscar)

S01E10 – Comedy Night – The ladies of Dog River start a book club (plus Brent), and Hank mics the comedy night when a visiting comedian comes to town. He practices heckling and being heckled and takes it a little over the top.
Best lines/scenes: “I’m never sarcastic about sandwiches.” (Brent) “You can never leave the game.” (Brent and later, Lacey). Colin Mochrie

S01E11 – Hook Line and Sinker – Davis has aromatherapy, so Karen has to go fishing with Hank alone (and doesn’t sleep with him!). Brent gets the whole town to fool Oscar into thinking his mind is going (alfa-getti), and Brent and Lacey play word games on their highway sign.
Best lines/scenes: “You can’t spell with dinosaurs!” (Oscar)

S01E12 – Face Off – Hockey season is starting, and Brent gets an offer to play for a competing team. They all discover Lacey has an encyclopaedic knowledge of hockey, but are reluctant to take her on for the coach. Wanda announces the game, which Oscar and Emma miss because they are trapped in their car.
Best lines/scenes: “Our defensemen can’t skate backwards. That’s the crux of it.” (Brent) Wooden goal pads, “So you’re probably bringing forwards hard on the forecheck, pressuring your D into bad passes out of the zone.” (Lacey) “Practicing is good in theory, but in reality, it just tires us out.” (Hank) Sports Centre interview

S01E13 – I Love Lacey – Crazy antics happen when the gang from Dog River goes to a football game. Brent and Lacey run out of gas — twice — Wanda and Emma have to give their ticket away to avoid getting arrested for theft. Hank and Oscar get caught in the act of stealing Oscar’s deceased friend’s belt, so they end up in the slammer, where Davis also nearly ends up when he tries to buy football tickets from a hooker. Brent and Lacey nearly kiss, but when the moment has passed, Brent returns to his usual, clueless self.
Best lines/scenes: “She says she loves me.” (Tow truck operator)

Season 2

S02E01 – The Brent Effect – Oscar wants to buy an outboard motor from Hank, but he steals money from Emma, which gets him in deep water with her. Davis gets in trouble with Karen over firing his gun willy nilly. Lacey polls everyone in town and they all say he’s handsome and sexy.
Best lines/scenes: Davis talking nervously about shooting his gun. “Talk to Oscar. He’s the one who stole your money from your nightstand last Thursday while you were out with the church ladies getting ready for bake sale, I don’t know nothing about it.” (Hank)

S02E02 – Wedding Card – Emma finds an old Darryl Sitler card in the basement, and Brent discovers his parents were never married. Davis becomes the wedding planner from hell and Hank tries to win his Darryl Sitler card back playing knuckles. Lacey thinks Oscar can’t read because she overhears him sounding out a cat-sup bottle.
Best lines/scenes: “Daisy arch? You’ll never get me under one of those death traps.” (Oscar) Oscar and Hank looking each other in the eye to see if they’re mad at each other. Davis & the minister walking into the wedding rehearsal where everyone’s fighting.

E02E03 – Smell of Freedom – Davis regains his sense of smell after falling after a ladder helping Oscar with a cat up his tree. Lacey challenges Hank to Scrabble, who wins twice — he as a beautiful mind. Brent, normally clueless, tries to pay attention to those around him.
Best lines/scenes: “…bunch of do-gooders, telling me what I can and can’t set on fire.” (Oscar) Hank messing up the names of TV shows. Davis smelling the asphalt and the hood. “Just remember — money talks, but it don’t sing and dance… and it don’t walk.” (Oscar)

S02E04 – Whatophobia – The episode all about fears! Everyone discovers Lacey has globophobia (and Davis secretly), so Wanda tries to find out what her phobia is. Oscar takes up baking (not really — Karen does it). Oscar gets banned from the mini-putt, and then later Emma gets banned when she tries to defend him.
Best lines/scenes: The zombie bringing balloons to Lacey. “Being intimate with a sasquatch.” (Wanda) “You had me at pants.” (Davis) “I doubt that Battlestar Gallactica actually happened.” (Brent) Code for Code 10-19: trouble at the mini-putt.

S02E05 – Lost and Found – This is the Karen-hackysack episode, with the twists and turns of people “owing each other one.” Oscar takes up the hobby of picking up trash on the side of the road.
Best lines/scenes: “Prepositions are fun, aren’t they!?” (Wanda) “That’s because it’s the kind they use for practice. It’s like a blank. They improve their aim and nobody gets hurt.” (Oscar) “My footbag./It’s called a sock, Einstein.” (Oscar) “Some monkeys have strings…. string monkeys.” (Hank)

S02E06 – Poor Brent – Brent buys a big screen TV and then try to prevent Hank from finding out. Hank spreads the rumour that Brent is broke and Oscar and Emma have an epic fight — “no more free ride.” Lacey and Wanda get into a fight over jewellery.
Best lines/scenes: “You bet! What is she, a stripper or a wrestler?” (Hank) “Plus we can pee standing up” (Hank) “I know what a washing machine is!” (Oscar) Oscar using the bath mat as a towel.

S02E07 – Hero Sandwich – It all starts when Wanda thinks about getting a tattoo, and Emma offers to draw it for her. Fitzy decides the town needs a traffic light, and Hank and Oscar end up on the lam due to all their jaywalking tickets. Lacey invents a new sandwich, the Ruby Club, which becomes too popular for her liking.
Best lines/scenes: “Call before you dig.” (Oscar) Above the Law movie reference. “That’s pretty far-fetched. Left tun signals.” (Hank) Oscar hiding behind the toaster.

S02E08 – Security Cam – Brent gets a security camera and in time, Lacey, Karen and Wanda do skits for it. Davis gets a stun gun and Hank hounds him to zap him. Oscar and Emma go on a romantic holiday. The episode culminates in Oscar and Emma doing a little skit of their own — flirting — without knowing there’s a camera.
Best lines/scenes: “I can club you if you want.” (Karen) “Aah, been there, done that.” (Hank) Bullet resistant vests. Bed scene at the hotel. “You know there’s more to me than just a pretty boy tough buy cop.” (Davis)

S02E09 – Bingo Night – Karen has a week off due to a bad drug test result, and pretty soon Hank is competing with her for Brent’s hang-out time. Much to Emma’s dismay (and bad luck), Wanda takes over calling bingo,
Best lines/scenes: “I’ve been out-hung.” (Hank) Hank on the rebound, hanging out with Davis. Fitzy at a jazz exercise class.

S02E10 – Mosquito Time – The town prepares to bury a new time capsule; Lacey gets new coffee carafes, and everyone is plagued by mosquitoes until they realize Hank has some sort of special mosquito-repelling force. They think it is the lemon soap he uses to wash in, but it turns out to be his hat. Oscar works at the gas station for a few days and drives Brent and Wanda crazy instead of Emma.
Best lines/scenes: Hank’s brain with filing boxes in it. “What are you looking at.” (Brent, talking to carafes) “Licky disco?” (Oscar)

S02E11 – Hurry Hard – It’s curling season in Dog River! Davis tasks Karen with guarding the Clevette Cup, which ends up as a bacon-grease cup. Team Leroy splits into two, with Oscar skipping one team and Brent the other.
Best lines/scenes: “I’ll see you on the coloured circles.” (Brent) “Have a heart! Have a heart!” (Lacey)

S02E12 – An American in Saskatchewan – The town goes into upheaval when Wes gets an ATM, and pretty soon people are gathering around it, talking. An american stumbles into town and Hank gets appointed, then retracted. Canada jokes abound. Brent becomes goodwill ambassador in his place, and abuses his diplomatic immunity.
Best lines/scenes: “Hank, you know my rule about circus music.” (Lacey) “…Mush, mush!” (Hank)

S02E13 – Pandora’s Wine – Hank wins the lottery, salsa is racy, and Lacey stirs the pot by bumping Oscar and Emma into a new wine bracket. A revenge brunch is in order. Meanwhile, Davis is breaking in new shoes, taking it out on the whole town.
Best lines/scenes: “I told you I’m fine. Fit as a fiddle, twenty-three skidoo, I’m the cat’s pyjamas.” (Davis) “There. They nearly killed me.” (Emma) “Finder’s keepers, losie Susie.” (Oscar)

S02E14 – Doc Small – Lacey gets picked to show the new potential doctor around town, and it seems everyone has conspired against her. ONE OF THE BEST EPISODES!
Best lines/scenes: TOO MANY TO SAY!

S02E15 – Rock on – Brent, Hank and Wanda resurrect their high school rock bank, Thunder Face. Davis and Karen investigate Oscar’s claims that Dewey Macleod stole one of his songs and Lacey writes the history of Dog River for the town plaque.
Best lines/scenes: Scene of “where would we be today.” “Maybe Tony the Poh doesn’t know when he’s being ripped off!” Oscar, Tragically Hip, Colin James, “Rumble Stuff, Cloudy Puss… Tornado Face… You know, I’m pretty sue it’s Rumble Puss… Rumble Puss?” (Lacey)

S02E16 – Air Show – Brent has to shut down the gas station for a while because of a level 5 health hazard, meanwhile Lacey gets in trouble for staying open during the air show. She overreacts, as usual, as does Fitzy when there’s a rash of crime in town. He starts a bike patrol, which is tough for Karen because she can’t ride a bike. Hank opens a corn stand, hiring Wanda to help.
Best lines/scenes: “Stop the goose rash!” (Davis) Brent borrowing money from Hank. The Snowbirds!

S02E17 – Slow Pitch – Summer’s here and Corner Gas has a team, the Guzzlers, in the local beer league. Hank’s new glove is problematic, and Oscar’s third base signals are incomprehensible.
Best lines/scenes: “This coming from a guy who once punched a skunk.” (Brent) Scene with Wes at the bar – “he’s a lunatic!” “Don’t blame the glove. It’s me. My hamstrings are loose.” (Hank)

S02E18 – Harvest Dance – As Brent and Oscar try to out-do each other in making up excuses not to eat Emma’s jelly salad, the town prepares for this year’s harvest dance. Lacey can’t seem to keep her mouth shut, messing up Brent and Oscar’s secret, but ultimately playing into Karen’s plan to get a raise. To everyone’s surprise, Hank gets a girlfriend from Wollerton, and takes her to the dance, where Lacey is crowned “Harvest Honey.”
Best lines/scenes: where Lacey goes around at the dance, saying sorry to everyone who she blabbed about. Everyone spitting every time Wollerton is mentioned.

Season 3

S03E01 – Dress for Success – Hank and Oscar play the stock market, meanwhile Wanda tries to see if Brent’s male instincts are still intact — wearing a skirt, brooch and make-up to work. Lacey’s dishwasher breaks down, and after Emma helps her out, soon they are at odds. Karen makes Davis queasy and to get her back, he plays a bunch of practical jokes on her.
Best lines/scenes: “Fine, I’ll give you your imaginary cash. Hold my monkey.” (Brent) “I’ll be on the corner of easy street, and … something good avenue.” (Oscar) “… weed weasel, weed witch, weed wizard… mmmmmulch monkey? Garden gremlin?” (Wanda/Emma) “You’re fakerupt?” (Brent)

S03E02 – Key to the Future – Davis loses his keys, Lacey rocks the boat by changing water pitchers, Equal, and waitress pads. Lacey, risking looking eccentric, decides to fix the pothole on main street, and Hank starts having premonitions. Karen locks her keys in the trunk, and Oscar eggs Lacey on and then heckles her while teenagers fix the pothole. Hank predicts something bad happening to Emma, and she spills the tomato juice.
Best lines/scenes: “… then the door opens to our old foes, chaos and anarchy. Plus, I like people to like me.” (Davis) “You have five seconds to make my skin stop crawling.” (Brent) “I mean, maybe there’s some higher power using me as a tool. ” (Hank) “Hank is Phycic… contunied on page 3” (Howler)

S03E03 – Dog River Vice – Hank gets an electronic organizer, which he ends up using to keep Karen and Davis’ ride-a-long schedule on track (it becomes a taxi service). Meanwhile, Brent and Emma go head to head giving up their vices: coffee and knitting. Oscar and Emma take up Ukrainian dancing — and everything Ukrainian — and Lacey tries to help Brent function without coffee. Wanda spends the episode spouting fairy tale puns.
Best lines/scenes: Oscar trying to knit. “[beep-boop beep-boop] Be right back. Bathroom break.” (Hank) “Ah, tell it your pumpkin, Rapunzel.” (Wanda) Hank drinking a beer according to his electronic organizer. Emma dancing with her purse on her arm. “Decaf? … I’m not just jonesin’ for some hot, brown liquid.”

S03E04 – Will and Brent – Lacey gets overly fastidious about her new bulletin board; Karen and Davis get a new breathalyzer that plays chimes when it works. Hank is his usual annoying self, getting between Brent and his parents and hogging the breathalyzer. Oscar and Emma make a will which may or may not give Brent their great couch.
Best lines/scenes: Oscar and Emma’s legal will kit commercial. “Then you’ll have a ball of yarn and two hats.” (Wanda). The Leroys riding a three-person bike, and playing twister. The big cheque with Oscar donating his fortune. “So where is the axe and the mask come in?” (Hank)

S03E05 – LIttlest Yarbo – Dog River gets a fire department, and Hank tries to prove that a stray dog is the Littlest Hobo. Lacey and Brent order travel mugs. Oscar lights a pile of leaves on fire, but, of course, the fire department is nowhere to be found.
Best lines/scenes: “The dog hears voices?” (Oscar)

S03E06 – Mail Fraud – Wanda and Hank are jealous, but Lacey can’t understand Brent’s annual “staycation.” The potluck stresses Karen out because she wants Davis to cook, meanwhile Emma and Oscar get a computer and start learning about email. Karen ends up helping everyone in town make food for the potluck and forgets to bring napkins.
Best lines/scenes: Ian, the computer geek kid who helps Oscar. “I put the gigabits into the floppy drive and, boom.” (Oscar) “He’s got the bug spray right beside the cooking spray. That’s got lawsuit written all over it.” (Wanda) Various mangled techno-lingo.

S03E07 – Fun Run – Wanda, Lacey and Karen decide to train for a 5K run, meanwhile Hank trains to be a crossing guard. Oscar convinces Doc Russell to give him handicap license plates. Emma enjoys parking close to things. Brent tries out 60’s beatnik phrases.
Best lines/scenes: “Look, you wanna talk or get gooned?” (Oscar) Hank taking the stop sign test. “Being disabled — best thing that ever happened to me.” (Oscar) Hank with sunscreen on my nose. Brent stretching his windshield wipers. Oscar wearing a sweat band on his forehead. Special Guest: Jan Arden.

S03E08 – Trees a Crowd – Hank and Brent retake their treehouse, thanks to Hank’s front end loader. Karen teaches Lacey how to do kung fu. Wanda gets out of the back seat of the cop car. An old flame comes on to Oscar… and Lacey tries to give advice to Emma.
Best lines/scenes: “I don’t swoop. Idiots swoop.” (Oscar) Scene near the end where Wanda is working at the till with handcuffs on.

S03E09 – Picture Perfect – Brent gets a new camera, Karen tries to teach Davis how to gamble, and Paul, the bar owner installs a trivia game. Hank teams up with Lacey, and Wanda teams up with Davis. Oscar steals a gnome from the neighbour next door, one that looks a lot like him.
Best lines/scenes: “We know all stuff!” (Hank) Celtic music that plays when Oscar looks at the gnome.

S03E10 – Safety First – Oscar kicks the ladder down, so he and Davis get stuck on the roof, while Hank tries to reinvent himself when he realizes he isn’t a Virgo. He ventures into the realm of “accountancy.” Karen recruits Brent and Wanda to work on her bike safety colouring book .
Best lines/scenes: “My whole life I’ve had the wrong personality.” (Hank) “I didn’t know you were having medical problems.” (Karen) “…and I’m sure you’ll be satisfied with the fiscaliness.” (Hank) Ted the bus boy. “Fudgee-puppies are for closers.” (Fitzy)

S03E11 – Hair Loss – Wanda scores an elephant lamp, which turns out to belong to Emma. The big showdown takes place while Davis tries to pawn off his large stuffed fish. Oscar thinks Lacey does magic tricks– illusions, mostly. Lacey teases Brent about losing his hair — and teases his hair!
Best lines/scenes: Painy the clown. “Don’t let gossipy geese get your goat.” (Lacey) “Your desk, your fish.” (Davis)

S03E12 – Ruby Newsday – Hank loses his paper route to Oscar, which inspires Lacey to start a coffee shop newspaper. She thinks the trivia is great, but Hank says people prefer Brent’s cartoon. This leads to a series of tip jars and Wanda acting creepy trying to win people’s tips.
Best lines/scenes: “You’re taking the food out of your own mouth.” (Oscar)

S03E13 – Merry Gasmas – Lacey decides to go back to Toronto for Christmas, but ends up all over the country and then back in Dog River. Hank convinces everyone to donate gifts for a needy family. Wanda gets in a gift-craze for Transfarmers.
Best lines/scenes: “Take me with you.” (Brent) Transfarmers! “It’ll be just like when Frosty got his nose and he was able to lead the sleigh.” (Hank) The ambulances of Christmas

S03E14 – Friend of a Friend – Lacey’s friend Connie is incredibly rude to everyone. Wanda invents a customer rewards program, which has everybody comparing levels — prestige, elite, gold elite, titanium, platinum… Karen thinks she’d be good at undercover work.
Best lines/scenes: “Ooo, I wanna do it! Pick me! Pick me!” (Wanda) Hank playing himself singing folk songs on the mini tape player. “Plutonium! Platypus! Geranium!” (Oscar’s flashback)

S03e15 – Block Party – As part of Dog River’s centennial celebrations, Hank decides to make a scale model of the town — using LEGO bricks. Soon, he has every block in town. Meanwhile, Wanda throws herself a birthday party, Karen reveals her sport (static apnea),
Best lines/scenes: Davis miming rhythmic gymnastics. “This is an 8-block! Where’s your head at, Brent? This is a load-bearing wall!” (Hank)

S03E16 – Physical Credit – Wanda gets in a tizzy when she gets rejected for a credit card that Hank got. Hank, of course, brags about his card. Meanwhile, Karen tricks Davis into thinking he needs to pass a physical, and Oscar becomes his trainer. Davis goes from reading Hardy Boys books to doing Participaction. Brent and Lacey have a contest to see who’s a better confidant.
Best lines/scenes: “All that matters are story and character. Production values aren’t important.” (pushes microphone up) (Wanda) After Participaction song — “I don’t want to do it.” (Davis) Oscar timing Emma’s knitting with a stop watch.

S03S17 – Telescope Trouble – Wanda tries to find a safe place for her telescope, meanwhile Brent’s door needs fixing. He gets accused of being a fiddler by Lacey’s door guy, Terry. Emma and Oscar buy an RV, and they end up parking outside the police station.
Best lines/scenes: “Coffee already tastes like coffee. A LOT.” (Brent) Davis singing Kumbaya.

S03E18 – Bean There – Hank takes Wanda to a lamborghini BBQ where she has to pretend she has one. The Ruby gets overrun with truckers, and while Oscar bugs one for a ride, Davis complains about them. Brent, Emma and Karen put together a bean jar fundraiser to buy new equipment for the play park. Davis ends up befriending the truckers and telling them that Lacey only has 6 weeks to live.
Best lines/scenes: how bad the play park is. “…but the humidity is very high today, and the UV index–” (Davis) The trucker who cries and runs from the room. “Come on! clint Eastwood didn’t keep his monkey waiting!” (Oscar)

S03e19 – Road Worthy – Lacey decides it’s time to get a new car, so she takes Brent along to help so she won’t be intimidated. Hank bugs Karen and Davis about eating donuts, so they switch to muffins. Oscar asks Wanda for help picking out an anniversary gift for Emma, while Oscar’s present, sunglasses, goes traveling around the episode. Lacey ends up taking Hank to the car dealership to get the best deal.
best lines/scenes: “Hey, Guff Brooking.” (Brent) “The fake reverend is right.” (Brent)

Season 4

S04E01 – Hair Comes the Judge – Wanda starts acting as the town judge, like Judge Judy, in a case between Lacey and Hank. Hank didn’t stain the deck after Lacey paid him. Karen cuts Brent’s hair, and Oscar drives around town with a broken muffler.
Best lines/scenes: ” Wuffy and scraggly… Bescuffie and rumplish…” (Brent) “Dinglenuts, dinglehank” (Wanda) “Cold, then hot, then cold hard cash?” (Brent)

S04E02 – Dog River Dave – Emma orders take-out and messes with the whole town. Hank delivers and Wanda takes over managing the take-out service. Karen and Davis work-to-rule. A radio host makes fun of Brent on the radio.
Best lines/scenes: “… ungrateful ungrates… ingrateful ingrates.” (Oscar)

S04E03 – Two Degrees of Separation – Lacey convinces Oscar and Emma to get a new thermostat, which Hank installs, and it causes continuous fighting about the temperature in the house. Davis installs a security decal (sticker) at Corner Gas but it’s too high up to read Wanda’s height. Karen discovers Lacey had an expired out-of-province driver’s license, and Emma is the part-time tester.
Best lines/scenes: “That sticker is all that separates Brent from being shot and beat up by someone he doesn’t even know the height of.” (Davis) The whole sequence where Hank sets the thermostat the first time. “El-Salvador-like heat… The hot part of Japan… the hot part of Greenland!” (Oscar)

S04E04 – Just Brent and his Shadow – Lacey and Brent have job shadows, and Hank gets a fondue set at a garage sale. Oscar starts showing interest in Wanda when Emma starts being nicer to him.
Best lines/scenes: “So, fondue accident?” (paramedic)

S04E05 – Demolition – Hank agrees to demolish a barn, and convinces Brent and Oscar to help, while Oscar competes with Davis (and sort of Karen) to become Newsmaker of the Year. Lacey does Emma’s nails in exchange for flowers. Wanda is unofficial photographer for the gang, due to her professional-looking photos of grain elevators.
Best lines/scenes: Hank imitating dynamite “pfft, boom!” (Hank) Howler headline “Cop Naps Barely Thief.” Oscar blowing up a salad. “Walk the juice to it!… Give ‘er sneuse!” (Hank) Guest appearance by Adrienne Clarkson

S04E06 – Jail House – The police department does a fundraiser locking Davis in a jail cell, where he nearly goes crazy with Hank keeping him company. Lacey tries to spruce up The Ruby and Corner Gas with flowers and incense. Wanda tries to make a little money doing renos at Oscar and Emma’s.
Best lines/scenes: Hank’s almost-soliloquy: “I’m not going to leave ya…. Karen and this charity have driven you to the point of madness, where you lash out at me. I’m not going to leave ya, buddy, not when your mind is starting to comprehend the cage.” “Now I know these things are supposed to come hidden in a cake, but time’s a-wastin’ and I don’t know how to bake.” (Hank) Brent handing tools over the counter, “I’m on a roll.” “Now what is wrong with a little citrus brambleberry eucalyptus potpourri?” (Lacey) Guest appearance by Mike Holmes (from Holmes on Homes)

S04E07 – I, Witness – Wanda helps Karen with a police presentation about eyewitness testimony, while Lacey becomes Oscar’s replacement as Emma’s bridge partner. Hank has an epiphany (two!) about being a rodeo clown, where he ends up saving Lacey from telling Emma the truth.
Best lines/scenes: “What, give up my dream?” (Hank, referring to being a rodeo clown.) Scenes where bridge terminology is “blah blah blah.”

S04E08 – Blog River – Hank starts a blog, Lacey gets depressed because of a friend’s success, but everyone conspires to cheer her up by getting Oscar to throw a game of horseshoes so Lacey can be “the Horseshoe Queen.” Wanda does Davis’ taxes, and doesn’t save him any money.
Best lines/scenes: “You don’t throw horseshoes! I mean, you throw horseshoes, it’s the nature of the game, but you don’t throw the game.” (Oscar)

S04E09 – Outside Joke – Fitzy hires Hank as a temporary garbage man, shortly after Karen and Davis tell Brent his business is outside the boundaries of Dog River. Everyone in town is in an outrigger over the red bug washer juice. Karen tries to teach Davis how to do a proper practical joke, while Emma and Oscar try to hide the extra money the bank gave them.
Best lines/scenes: “…we prefer janitorial, I mean custodial worker. Civic custodial worker engineer technician… Just wham, bam, thank you Orville. ” (Hank) “You pulled an impractical serious.” (Karen) “Brent and his devil-juice.” (Fitzy’s grandma) “Sanitorial janitation technologist.” (Hank)

S04E10 – One Piano, Four Hands – Emma starts teaching piano lessons again, and her first two students are Wanda and Davis. Davis is a natural and Wanda, not so much. Meanwhile, when the air pump at Corner Gas breaks down and Brent gets a new one, he takes a bit of flack for charging for air. Lacey slips and breaks her arm, which Hank gives her advice on, and Karen avoids signing it.
Best lines/scenes: Emma and Wanda in a wrestling ring (Emma taking Wanda on). “I can’t guarantee we won’t be back with torches,” says Davis, “and marshmallows” says the big serious dude. “He’s always been a slave to the big air companies.” (Hank)

S04E11 – Kid Stuff – Emma gives Brent’s old kids stuff away to Hank, after Oscar realizes he’s on an allowance. He tries to make some extra money by selling cookies — like a little girl — and Karen ends up helping him. Davis bugs Lacey over and over again until she lets him order macaroodles. Emma takes up sewing again, by fixing Brent’s pants and sewing him a groovy polyester suit.
Best lines/scenes: “Holy Hell! I’m on an allowance!” (Oscar) “… as dangerous as a badger in a rain barrel. I can’t stop!” (Wanda) Scene where the boy asks Davis through the window “what do I want to drink” and Davis replies, “coffee.” “Where’s my money, Leroy?” (Molly, girl scout)

S04E12 – Mother’s Day – Brent drops the ball on Mother’s Day and doesn’t get Emma anything. Oscar lives a dream life — nothing he does can get him in trouble. Karen and Wanda buy a Yagenpluts.
Best lines/scenes: “I got a Yagenpluts! / Well, don’t do it in here.” (Karen/Lacey) “…it’s you screwing up, and Hank sucking up, it’s formed some kind of magic sweet spot! I’m flying under the radar! These are the best days of my life!”” (Oscar)

S04E13 – Census Sensibility – Police jokes abound as Hank and Oscar get hired to take Dog River’s census. After Karen and Davis stand by while Hank chokes on a pickle, they get sent for first aid training. Lacey misinterprets their weekend away together, and Davis giving Karen earrings, to mean that they are dating. Brent and Wanda start selling pressed bars of soy from Uzbekistan (Organo bars). Then Emma thinks Lacey and Davis are together.
Best lines/scenes: “What’s this, the 8th time? / First time with a pickle. Er, sweet pickle.” (Brent / Hank) Romantic scenes of Davis and Lacey. “I’m a loose cannon, I can’t control me.” (Oscar)

S04E14 – The Good Old Table Hockey Game – Davis gets a table hockey game, and soon, Karen and Brent are battling it out in the “Table Hockey Summit Series.” Meanwhile, Lacey nominates Emma for the Dog River Youngish Women’s Association award, and then has to try make her look good.
Best lines/scenes: The conversation about distinguished woman. “I’ll show that stuck-up cop who’s a knob!” (Oscar) Close up of the players at the end of the series.

S04E15 – Lacey Borrows – Karen and Lacey start a chain of borrowing each other’s stuff that culminates in Karen borrowing Lacey’s house and Lacey borrowing the cop car. Emma and Oscar decide they need to make Brent a man by showing him his first horror movie, and they all spend the rest of the episode freaked out. Rather than getting a wallet, Hank starts collecting things in his pants.
Best lines/scenes: “I’m fully loaded to pant capacity.” (Hank) “Your sentences are like quilts.” (Brent) “It’s these pants! They’re never satisfied… I don’t know how much longer I can keep this up. There’s just no pleasing these pants!” (Hank) Scene at the end where Hank throws his pants into a wood chipper.

S04E16 – Potato Bowl – Oscar gets in trouble with the Harvester’s club when he doesn’t pay dues or into the kitty for coffee. He, Davis and Karen start their own club. Lacey tries to teach Hank some toastmaster’s/public speaking tips (with a pork chop on your face). Wanda breaks Emma’s potato bowl, but finds them on bay for cheap.
Best lines/scenes: “And that’s not embezzled!” (Hank) Scene with Karen, Davis and Oscar driving little cars. “I was just doing what you told me to do, I was embroidering.” (Hank)

S04E17 – Seeing Things – Brent tries to fake getting laser eye surgery, meanwhile the DRPD (Dog River Police Dept) gets a new slogan — No Crime Too Small. Oscar makes sure Karen and Davis stick to it. Hank steals slogans from Emma for Corner Gas and the Ruby, too.
Best lines/scenes: “No! No warrior princesses!” (Karen) Brent imagining laser eye surgery. “Raisins!? Book this dirt bag!” (Oscar, after telling Fitzy how to make banana muffins) Scene with Brent trying to put contact lenses in. Wanda and Lacey doing “schemy fingers.”

S04E18 – Happy Campers – It’s time for Oscar and Brent’s annual camping trip, and Davis worms his way along. While they’re away, Lacey and Wanda switch jobs, and Emma and Karen end up helping them. After 20+ years, Hank finally has a good hair day!
Best lines/scenes: “It’s the one where the bunny goes down the hole. It’s a sailor’s knot.” (Oscar) TOO MANY OTHERS TO SAY

S04E19 – Gopher it – Hank’s idea of prairie dogs (gophers!) to attract tourists to Dog River changes everything. It’s campaign time for the mayor, Fitzy. Emma decides to run against him on the platform of bringing a casino. Features Canada AM (Wanda flirting) and Stephen Harper (prime minister)! Lacey leaves, Brent sells Corner Gas, and Emma is mayor.
Best lines/scenes: Oscar and Wanda in Pump N’ Go uniforms, Blue Rodeo song

Season 5

S05E01 – Cable Excess – When the cable company comes to town, Brent gets to pick which show will be produced. Davis wants to do Crimestoppers, the ladies want to do a talk show, and Oscar, well, he’s just Oscar. After egging the cable van, Hank spends the episode hiding from the police. In the end, it’s a scene of the horizon…
Best lines/scenes: “Where’s the gotcha? Where’s the water cooler?” (Oscar) “I have this pet who egged the cable van.” (Hank) Bad movie references by Hank, Davis flirting with Brent, “It’s no fire log, that’s for sure.” (Lacey) “Be quiet!” (everyone else)

S05E02 – Spin Cycle – Karen and Davis sign up for Hank’s spin class, where Karen accidentally becomes the teacher’s pet. Meanwhile, Wanda gets a new cordless phone for Corner Gas which Oscar steals and uses as a cell phone, and Lacey agrees to be in Emma’s “Ladies of Dog River” naked fundraising calendar.
Best lines/scenes: ” Scene from The Breakfast Club at the end (Hank & Karen)

S05E03 – Whiner Takes All – It’s golf time, and Hank, Lacey and Brent take to the links. When Lacey wins, Hank whines Emma goes shopping for a new bed and comes home with a “slumbermatic” luxury model and dreams about Lloyd. Wanda bribes Davis to get out of a parking ticket, but it doesn’t work on Karen.
Best lines/scenes: “…losers and those who lose to losers. And you just lost to me!” (Hank) “Gotta go. My soup is here.” (Oscar)

S05E04 – Dark Circles – Hank decides to freak people out by making crop circles (dirt circles) and Brent freaks people out with a new, black shirt. Lacey drools a little over Black-shirt Brent, Wanda teases her, and Karen makes her own burnt crop circle. Oscar moves out when Emma hires a painter, and the whole town is abuzz about their “separation.”
Best lines/scenes: Emma hallucinating the painter is a vampire. Hank making lawn circles. “Does Davis know you’re wearing his pants?” (Hank) “Okay, I thought it was an exploding cow at first, but you set me straight.” (Hank) “Never mind my muffins.” (Brent)

S05E05 – Wash Me – Hank doesn’t want his truck washed, and Wanda flirts with the milk delivery guy. Oscar and Emma switch toiletries, so Brent thinks his smell is off. Karen draws sketches of Davis sleeping, so Lacey has an art show.
Best lines/scenes: “Is Mom here? Cuz I a kinda smell Lavender, Berry bouquet… Peach sensation, mountain rain…? Citrus breeze?” Later “Musk splash, arctic breeze… aqua sport… Mountain mist” (Brent) Scene where the boy scout smells Emma walking by… “Want a wash?” (Boy Scout) Oscar puts hair remover on his head.

S05E06 – The Eight Samurai – Wanda fills in for Phil at the bar, causing all kinds of problems, while Lacey tries to convince Brent to be kinder to the environment. Meanwhile, the twinning committee gets a samurai sword from Japan, and everybody uses and abuses it: Oscar cuts branches, Josh cuts sandwiches, Davis cuts paper. Hank helps at the bar, mixing appalling drinks in hollowed out potatoes.
Best lines/scenes: “Compostage … How about I just try not to step in any carbon?” (Brent) Drinks for Swinging Cats (the book) “That’s great if you want to get drunk and swing cats.” (Wanda) “We don’t want another Hankenvyorken.” (Oscar) The RCMP musical ride checkstop!

S05E07 – Buzz Driver – Hank gets Lacey to use his advertising board and Oscar drives school bus. Wanda gets all hopped up on the H (Haywire). Karen knocks out Davis with a punch.
Best lines/scenes: Kids with their noses on the windows of the bus. LOTS MORE

S05E08 – Classical Gas – The mayhem starts when the Leroy’s foster child, Jonathan, comes from Africa to thank them for sponsoring him all those years. Emma treats Jonathan like a little kid and Oscar can’t stop bragging about his doctor son. Lacey tries to introduce new items on the menu, but no one bites until she starts calling them “classics.” Karen breaks Corner Gas’ till, and Wanda reveals she can’t do basic math.
Best lines/scenes: “yeah, somebody’s got to pump gas for the healers.” (Lacey), Hank bouncing off Brent in the bar, “It’s just a ball of string.” (Hank)

S05E09 – Game, Set and Mouse – Davis helps Oscar help Wanda trap a mouse in Corner Gas. Hank and Brent invent a game where they try to get someone to believe something unlikely, which Lacey can’t seem to do properly. Karen and Emma try to cure Wanda’s sore back, using amateur chiropractics and hillbilly paste.
Best lines/scenes: “I prefer the kill and flush method.” (Oscar) “Holy hell, what’s that stink! Smells like you’re boiling fish heads in gasoline.” (Oscar) The ultimate mouse trap (the game), Brent and Hank giving Wanda the bumps.

S05E010 – Knit Wit of the Month – Hank takes up knitting as a hobby with Emma and her friends, only to discover that Emma just bitches about Oscar all the time. Lacey gives Josh an “Employee of the Month” award, Brent gives himself “Employer of the Month,” and Wanda becomes “Customer of the Month.” Oscar writes the seniors beat and Karen and Davis end up helping him.
Best lines/scenes: “It got cancelled. There was a derailment. No one was hurt.” (Emma) “Yes! Customer of the Month!” (Wanda, dancing), Wanda as an obnoxious customer, Brent’s sandwiches (pickles and jam, olives and sour cream), “This isn’t a Disney film, this is Oscar.” (Karen), Emma helping Hank shovel manure, complaining about Oscar, with her purse on her arm.

S05E11 – Top Gum – Wanda works as a fake real estate agent, selling a house to Lacey and Davis, which they flip. Hank gets an old gum machine and soon he and Oscar are in competition with Karen’s gumball machine. Brent discovers he has his mom’s water divination abilities… only his work on finding sewage.
Best lines/scenes: Hank singing a gum jingle, “…water deviation…” (Brent), many nicknames for Brent: man witch, warlock, Mr. chilly jolt, crap man, “No, you’re a pretty face behind the big bubble.” (Hank)

S05E12 – The ‘J’ Word – Davis wants to experience being locked in a car trunk, but after his 7-second experience, he can’t stop talking about it. Lacey decides to have a girls night, and a tarot card reader tells her she is going to marry Hank. Brent challenges his dad’s constant use of the word “Jackass” by doling out “Hammerhead,” only to find he can’t stop. Oscar comes up with some great alternative put-downs, and Hank is a goof pretending to be Lacey’s fiance. Wanda decides to give girls night some ‘nards.
Best lines/scenes: “Oh yeah, Hank’s first name starts with R!” (Brent) Davis writing poetry, Oscar’s new insults: moron, pinhead, butthead, nincompoop, fish brain, cabbage breath, barn smell

S05E13 – Outside the Box – Oscar catches on to Wanda crashing funerals. Karen and Brent start obsessing over Lacey’s un-opened box. Fitzy hires Emma to promote getting a call centre; Davis and Hank start calling people to petition against a call centre.
Best lines/scenes: Hank tranq-darting someone to get their signature. “But I like my shoes.” (Oscar) “…some people died, we had a few laughs, and snacks… now it’s time to move on.” (Wanda) “Would you say the quality of this call was somewhat satisfactory, very satisfactory or extremely satisfactory?” (Davis)

S05E14 – Contagious Fortune – Hank contracts pinkeye, which he then gives to Wanda and Brent. Oscar uses the cops’ photocopier to copy Dog River dollars and starts buying stuff, including gifts for Emma. Davis starts copying Karen in food orders, and she starts copying everything he does.
Best lines/scenes: Oscar butchering the word “chip clip”, Brent and Wanda trying to give away a floor bar (the chocolate bar Hank used to scratch his eye). Lots of great horror references! Wanda banging her head on the window. “…breached the pedometer!” (Hank) **ONE OF THE BEST EPISODES!!**

S05E15 – No Time Like the Presents – Oscar leaks info on what Emma got people for Christmas. Hank tries to go to Daylight Savings, and Lacey gets all insecure about whether Wanda is her friend or not.
Best lines/scenes: The whole scene with Brent, Hank and Davis discussing watching a fight on TV: “Ten to be specific, nine to be Pacific.” (Brent) Oscar pretending to be a cop (wearing Karen’s hat and using Davis’ nightstick.

S05E16 – Coming Distractions – Everything gets uncomfortable between Brent, Davis and Hank when Hank blackmails Brent and Davis to take him to Raptorman 2. Oscar convinces Fitzy he needs a sidewalk, and Wanda strikes again. Meanwhile, Emma and her friends invite Lacy to join the purple hats.
Best lines/scenes: Davis wearing raptor claws. “Don’t people know how to keep cat-bags shut!” (Oscar), cement-surveilance 101, Lacey wiping something off Hank’s face. Space Frat Party 3

S05E17 – The Accidental Cleanist – Karen and Davis try to take advantage of Emma’s quirk: she starts cleaning things when she’s mad. Brent buys a tree as his legacy, which drives Oscar crazy, and Hank and Wanda spend time under Lacey’s deck.
Best lines/scenes: Hank and Wanda at the end with Wanda in a mustachio.

S05E18 – Bed and Brake Fast – Davis starts using Brent’s car as a ghost car, and pretty soon, Karen is using Wanda’s. Oscar and Emma start an unregistered bed and breakfast. Lacey bids on Hank as handyman-for-a-day, and he is mostly just a pain in the a$$.
Best lines/scenes: “Oh, yay, charades.” (Oscar)

S05E19 – The Final Countdown – Brent’s birthday approaches with much ado — 40-year-old scotch (which Hank drank), fireworks (which Wanda, Oscar and Davis set off), and two cakes baked by Emma and Lacey. Karen chases everyone around to get the birthday card signed.
Best lines/scenes: At the beginning, setting the clocks: “No, not now, then!” (Wanda) Guest appearance by Keifer Sutherland, Oscar baking fireworks in Lacey’s oven. All the stuff Oscar says after he loses his hearing!

Season 6

S06E01 – Full Load – Brent gives Emma his MP3 player, which Karen loads up with rap songs. Oscar gets away with murder, almost, because Emma can’t hear him with the “ear bugs” in her ears. Lacey’s competitive streak comes out when Brent enters her in an eating contest. She earns the perogy pig nose. Karen sells Hank’s truck to Wanda, and then vice versa, which starts an epic battle.
Best lines/scenes: “empty tree player… What station is this?… em bee pee player… MD2 player…” (Emma) “No, I’m not a pro. The pros know who I am.” (Brent) “I just ate 40 perogies in under a minute. Oh my God, I am a porker.” (Lacey)

S06E02 – Self-Serving – Hank wants to sell his laptop and before long, pits Oscar against Davis. Wanda tries to reinstate her status as rumour queen, starting rumours about Karen having a low IQ and Emma being an arsonist. Meanwhile, Lacey and Brent both discover the ups and downs of offering self-serve (and a buffet).
Best lines/scenes: Pyro and the Idiot

S06E03 – Bend it Like Brent – Brent and Lacey sponsor Davis’ soccer team, but soon become the “owners from hell.” Oscar and Emma buy a VHS tape with Wanda’s old news anchor audition tapes. Karen hits the ditch with Hank and makes Hank drive her around.
Best lines/scenes: Wanda being Winston Churchill.

S06E04 – Meat Wave – Karen and Davis win a meat raffle during a heat wave. Hank teases Brent about the air conditioner being cranked
Best lines/scenes: “You mean I put 5 sticks of butter down my pants for nothing?” (Hank) Scene where Lacey is giving compressions to “Darren” her electronic pet. “My buddy’s got a pound cake baking in his long johns. What do you mean what does that mean?” (Brent), Guest appearance by David Suzuki

S06E05 – All That and a Bag of Chips – Wanda tries to guess Hank’s password; Karen is a muffin-stealing cop, and Lacey and Davis just makes it worse. Emma and Oscar are fed up with Brent mooching all the time, so they decide to go to his house for supper.
Best lines/scenes: “He’s always over here moochin’. Drinkin’ our drinks, foodin’ our food… eaten’ our eats. He’s a no-good freeloader.” (Oscar)

S06E06 – Good Tubbin’ – Davis becomes Safety Pete to promote safety week, until Karen does it once and does back flips. Oscar and Emma get a hot tub, and Lacey learns they are creepy, frisky tubbers. Hank can’t stay at home — he backed through his front window — so Wanda tells Brent she is hosting him, but she’s actually just letting him camp at Corner Gas.
Best lines/scenes:”You drove here asleep? That’s not safe!” (Hank)

S06E07 – American Resolution – Hank, Wanda and Karen are all competing for bragging rights over who kept their New Year’s resolution the longest, unaware that Lacey was also in the running. Meanwhile, Davis has to learn how to make coffee and Brent and Emma — and half the town — trick Oscar into thinking he’s an American. They tease him about being too aggressive and perform goofy skits using Canadian terms for things — priceless!
Best lines/scenes: “This isn’t what it looks like.” (Hank, with a crow bar), Brent singing the American national anthem, Mr. Jackause at the passport office

S06S08 – Reader Pride – Brent, Lacey and Hank compete to be the best football fan, meanwhile, Karen has to read a book to Mrs. Carmicheal, with Oscar and sometimes Emma listening in. Davis starts making mix CD’s and Wanda gets in on the action.
Best lines/scenes: “Joe Dementia played baseball, jackass.” (Oscar) When Fitzy’s grandma asks Karen, Emma and Oscar to help at the seniors centre: “No. See how easy it is?” (Oscar) “No doubt” over and over again, with the high five (Lacey and Hank)

S06E09 – Rock Stars – Madame Wanza gets in trouble with Lacey when she gets caught scamming Davis for favours using the horoscope. After working out using an old army brochure, Hank starts “working out” with Emma in her garden — but mostly, he’s all talk. Brent takes guitar lessons from a young man who becomes his nemesis, who is related to an old enemy of Oscar.
Best lines/scenes:”Guns, pipes, pythons… hey, easy easy, I don’t you they’re new.” (Hank) “How far apart are the contractions.” (Emma) “How long does it take to hand over one little hammer!” (Oscar) Special Guest Gordon Pinsent as “Corky”

S06E10 – Shirt Disturber – When Karen earns “Officer Second Class” ranking, Wanda gives her a sweater Lacey had donated to a thrift store. Wanda goes back and buys all Lacey’s donations and wears them just to bug Lacey. Davis sells a security system to Oscar and Emma, but it’s too hard for them to operate, so they install a “Casio.” Brent and Hank go to Regina to meet a Peter Moore, a famous comic book artist, where Brent embarrasses himself and Hank is surprisingly cool.
Best lines/scenes: Davis practicing his shpiel for the alarm company. “It won’t explode, it’s decaffeinated.” (Emma) “I like the ducks.” (Wanda)

S06E11 – Cat River Daze – This episode has a distinct Archie comic book theme! Lacey stages a dunk tank to raise money for Dog River Days — Hank and Davis fight for their turn to be dunked, one-upping each other to be the most-disliked in town. Emma bugs Oscar to catch a stray cat, and Oscar falls in love with it, so Karen helps by adopting it. Brent pretends to hurt his foot, but then later he does it for real.
Best lines/scenes: “…one of the worst can-related injuries he’s ever seen.” (Brent), Emma and Oscar using the lyrics from “The cat came back,” “Mittens! Mittens! I’ve lost my mittens!” (Karen) Band appearance by The Odds

S06E12 – Super Sensitive – After telling one too many blonde jokes, Davis gets sent for sensitivity training — and he comes back a different man, uh, person. Hank’s seven-year string of bad luck finally ends, but Lacey’s superstitions are starting to show… so, of course, Brent has to tease them. Emma gives her gym membership to Wanda, and then she wins the raffle for a big screen TV.
Best lines/scenes: Sensitivity training video montage, Oscar and Wanda having their photo taken, “Friday’s the thirteenth, gas truck coming, Brent’s third thing, do the math, carry the two equals boom!” (Hank) “You ready to be desensinated?” (Oscar)

S06E13 – TV-Free Dog River – Emma tricks the town into entering a contest to go without TV for a whole week. Oscar and Lacey soon team up to offer secret TV to people in the Leroy’s basement. Davis starts an all-jazz radio station, which Karen ruins with cheesy sound effects. Brent sets up Hank and Wanda to fight each other and watches through a window, calling it “The Hank and Wanda Show.” It doesn’t take them long to sell out to advertisers!
Best lines/scenes: “A little Punky Brewster?” (Oscar), Wanda with her hair all done up (to advertise), Guest appearance by Michael BublĂ©!

S06E14 – Queasy Rider – When Wanda gets her aunt’s moped, she pretends she’s cruising Europe, while Emma goofs up Hank’s classy French greeting — the double kiss — resulting in a brief bumping of the lips! Lacey tricks Davis into helping her move, and he in turn tricks Karen into helping. Brent runs over Wanda’s moped, leaving it slightly scrambled.
Best lines/scenes: “It was a riding mower… I had to start it for him. He was afraid of the grass clippings hitting his legs.” (Emma) “I’m still releasing the safety.” (Karen) Hank imagining the kiss, “You did what with my wife?” (Oscar), Wanda and the Italian hit men, Hank fist-bumping Karen in the face

S06E15 – R2 Bee Too – Hank gets a robot, Davis orders R2D2 off ebay, Wanda and Oscar try to get rid of a bee hive, Brent starts trying new foods and becomes a food critic.
Best lines/scenes: ” Ooo, that’s heaven in a tube.” (Brent). Hank dances like a robot at the end.

S06E16 – Crab Apple Cooler – Brent and Hank try to relive their youth by invading Old Man Hafford’s yard to steal crab apples. Wanda puts her scathing wit to good writing consumer complaints to Crispy Spuds and, on behalf of Davis, Zoinks Cola. To pass the time, Lacey, Karen, Emma and Oscar start playing charades, where Oscar proves to be surprisingly good — at cheating!
Best lines/scenes: “… and may you all roast in hell. Respectfully yours, Davis Quintin” (Wanda) “When I was one, I put my back out reaching for a rattle.” (Brent) “…and when you say ‘grab his apples’ –” (Brent) “Doopity Doo!” (Oscar, playing drunk charades)

S06E17 – Happy Career Day to You – Davis convinces Lacey to convert the Ruby into “Ruby-Lou’s House of Food,” and Emma substitute teaches a class of 10-year olds. Wanda and Karen try to empress the kids, meanwhile, Oscar, Brent and Hank play tricks on each other with a 30-year-old Dingle-Puff.
Best lines/scenes: “Press 3 if you’ve found an old dingle puff.” All the scenes where Oscar is pretending to have food poisoning!

S06E18 – Get the F Off My Lawn – Need I say more? The title says it all! 🙂 Besides the missing letters, Wanda is upset about the working conditions at Corner Gas, and Karen gets roped into judging a jam contest. When Emma doesn’t win, she goes a little Cujo-crazy.

S06E19 – You’ve Been Great, Goodnight – The series closer starts with a mystery — where does Brent go every Wednesday night? When the truth comes out, everyone overreacts in their own way! The ending? Brent’s not going anywhere, because everything he likes is right here.
Best lines/scenes: {sing-songy} “You have a girlfriend! Kissing, kissing up a tree!” (Lacey), the cop car hiding behind the surveillance bush, Hank pretending to talk to someone important, “I’m going to have to get you two different coloured tank tops.” (Wanda, with Kyle and Jared), “…zipped up on goofers.” (Oscar)

Life is Not a Movie

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June trailThe other day, while walking on a beautiful forest trail, I suddenly thought “this would make a nice scene in a movie.” The thought was so out-of-the-blue, it really struck me. I had been thinking about what the North was like before pharmaceuticals, how people truly lived off the land. They used the plants that grow naturally to cure things that bothered them. They learned what plants helped what problems by trial and error, and by following their intuition, and the knowledge was passed down verbally from one person to another. I was completely focused on nature, which is why the thought about movies was so surprising, and, of course, it got me thinking about media.

I wonder how much of the time we relate our real lives to things we see on film and on TV. How often do we compare our lives to the glamour we see on screen, and feel unsatisfied or inadequate? How often do we think about what we look like from the outside, or how our situation must look? I think we do it all the time, sub-consciously. We are all like Abed from the show Community, we just don’t say it out loud. And I just did it again.

Go back in time (like Michael J. Fox), in your mind (it’s such a beautiful one) and imagine a time before there were movies, TV or the internet. Think of Little House on the Prairie. See how it goes? By just mentioning shows or actors you know, I can very quickly get us all on the same page and go from there. Starting with the obvious things, before there was TV, people never thought about getting home in time for a show, or recording it, or when the next episode will be or what might happen. They never shopped for a new TV or a flatscreen. They never thought about bandwidth or usage. There was no Hollywood and they never thought about what the stars were doing. They just went about living their lives — okay, they might have listened to the radio! — and they never talked about something they’d watched with their family or friends. They must have talked about other things.

Think of how much we refer to media in conversation. We do it to make analogies so that we understand each other. A friend recommended I watch Warm Bodies. It’s a love story about a young-man-zombie who falls in love with a normal twenty-something girl. He saves her life and cares for her, and she gradually starts to like him, too. As a result, he comes back to life and starts a biological/spiritual movement that sweeps through the zombie world, causing lots of others to remember their humanity and come back to life. It’s a great story, and because my friend and I shared the experience (even though we didn’t watch it together, we can talk about it now), we have all sorts of great zombie jokes and references.

It all seems harmless until we think about the deeper consequences. Watching a lot of media makes us think of our lives as if they were movies. We want to be entertained, informed, or get caught up in the drama, like when we watch media. We subconsciously expect everything we do to fall into one of those categories. We think of our life as it if had a plot. We hope there’s a happy ending. We want our love lives to be full of romance, and we want our vacations to be glamourous. We love hanging out with that funny friend of ours because he makes us laugh. If one day he goes through a tragedy and isn’t funny any more, we don’t know how to relate.

I wonder if too much media might make us seem less vibrant, more shallow. Comparing our lives with movies or TV can lead to discontentment. Of course, it’s not all bad if it gives us jokes and helps us relate. But if we need media to relate to one another we’re in trouble. I have an acquaintance that watches very different things than I do (I’m almost completely off-TV as it is), so it can be a challenge to find something to talk about. When we do find something, however, we have great, meaningful conversations — much deeper than which shows are good and which aren’t worth the time.

Another thing to consider is this: how would you cope without any media? Would you be able to have conversations with others? How would you keep yourself entertained or spend your time in general? Would it be so bad if you didn’t watch the news? You know I love making you think, and that’s really all I am doing in this post.

Off Coffee

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I’m off coffee again. I used to drink it like a maniac, but these days I go through phases where I drink a cup or 2 a day and then go off it for a few days. I usually get a headache on the second day off coffee — it used to be my Sunday headache because I drank it every day Monday to Friday but didn’t have any on Saturday. I have heard various things about it being bad for you, good for you, and that it adds to your “fire” or “yang” energy. Either way, I’ve pretty much decided I am going to stay away from the cheap stuff (especially instant) but enjoy a nice, hand-ground cup whenever I feel like it.

And what is hand-ground coffee, you ask? It’s what you do when you have some really great beans you want to brew but you don’t have a grinder — you grind it by hand in a cast-iron frying pan. With a rock, preferably. 🙂 This is what my awesome roommate and I did in Wrigley when I was there. It was, hands down, the best coffee ever! (The beans were Kicking Horse Coffee.)

A little over a week ago, I went to visit this roommate of mine, and he offered me a cup of tea. It was evening, so we weren’t going to get into coffee. I chose a nice black tea with loose leaves and put a few into my cup. I hadn’t had any coffee or black tea for about a week or so, and let me tell you what the first sip of caffeine felt like! It went straight to the frontal lobe of my brain — I’m not joking — and I could feel it doing something there. It was so obvious and so strange!

This got me thinking — are there any other times I have done this — gone off something and noticed a big effect when I started up again? One time, it was television.

I was totally off television for a couple of years, only watching tiny bits in restaurants and at friends’ places. Now, I’m still “off television” in principle, but my landlord likes to watch it sometimes, and I seem to find myself eating with him in front of the TV occasionally, or visiting with him in the living room with the TV on. Let me tell you how it affected me!

The first time I sat in front of it and actually watched some, I felt like someone was trying to program my brain. I felt like I was being manipulated and sold certain messages. I also felt like I was being “talked down to,” like I was stupid or at the very least, slow. It was so clear to me, it was startling. I remember turning to my landlord while the news was on and saying “do people actually believe this? Do they think this is all there is to this issue?” He had a sort of numb look on his face, but then he agreed that there was more to it. I don’t even remember what story was on the news. I felt a little better watching football — at least the message was straightforward and I didn’t feel manipulated.

I was off the internet (almost completely) for about a month this year too, not by choice. There were major delays in getting the phone and internet hooked up (read the story here), and when I went back online, I noticed something then, too. I felt a slight stress come back — stress to check my emails regularly and respond, to check facebook, to be reachable, and of course, to get all sorts of blogging and other things done on my various websites. Life had been so simple before…

I have realized something from this experience: Caffeine, TV and the internet are not inherently bad, but if I want to know how they effect me, the best way to do that is to go off for a while and then try a sample again. By paying attention while trying that sample, I can learn a lot about myself and how I react to whatever I had cut out. Then, I can decide if I want that affect on my life all the time, or if I want to stay “off.” So, for example, if you think TV is totally harmless, I challenge you to go off TV for a couple of weeks and then watch something again. How does it make you feel? Do you feel like I did? I am curious if you’ll have the same experience. Perhaps more than a couple of weeks is needed — let me know what your experience is.

I also think that things like TV and internet and coffee complicate our lives. We arrange our schedules around when certain shows are on, we use up large amounts of time on the internet and we change our travel route based on the drive-thru coffee shops along the way. When you eliminate these things, it is simpler, but then again, didn’t I recently discover it’s not about having a simpler life? Aaah well, I slipped back into an old pattern there! 🙂

Materialism in the World

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Boxing Day. The most materialistic day of the year. I am still coming to terms with modern society after my sabbatical-of-sorts in Wrigley. As we drive around Edmonton, I just can not get over how many stores there are! And new developments — whole new neighbourhoods have sprung up since I last noticed. But I think it’s the stores that bother me the most. I even said out loud on the way home after supper, “do we really need this many stores?” My family agreed that no, we didn’t.


Yet I don’t want to be a hypocrite. I need stuff too sometimes. I have to remember that there are thousands of people that need stuff, so of course there are going to have to be stores to serve them. There are students, freshly moved out from their parents’ places who need to furnish whole new apartments. There are people who have moved from across Canada to take advantage of Albertan opportunities. These people I understand. They make sense to me. But I have a feeling a lot of people who really don’t need new stuff spend a lot of resources (time and money) buying stuff they don’t need. More candles. New curtains. Just stuff.

This bothers me. I don’t know why. But, when something bothers me, I try to understand why it bothers me so much. It must be a mirror to me — showing me something about myself. It’s an opportunity to learn something new about how I tick.

It could be because I see how people are trying to fill a void in their lives with material things. It could be because I think people are being programmed by commercials on TV until they believe they need things they don’t. It could be because I lived without stores and was totally happy! It could be because I lived without new things of any kind for so long when I was a university student — I joke that I was food bank girl — that I know it can be done. It could be because I feel that the world’s resources are so limited, we shouldn’t be wasting them on more scented candles and unnecessary curtains.

boreal forest near WrigleyYet I know that the world is far more abundant than we think. I have seen abundance in the trees, snow, and the immense size of the Mackenzie River. I know that the world is healing itself faster than we can hurt it. Little old mankind has less effect than we think — it’s egotistical to think that we can “destroy” the whole planet. We make significant marks on the surface, to be sure, but Gaia is not in danger. But I digress.

I think what bothers me the most is this: I perceive that people are very materialistic. This isn’t actually true, so as a result, I feel unsettled. That is all. If I can adjust my thinking to see stores as a good thing, or a sign of a prospering economy, rather than a sign of social disease, I know I will feel better. Edmontonians are actually kind, generous people.

Could it be universally true that when we feel bothered by something, it is only because we are thinking, or believing, something that is fundamentally untrue? I think so…

Or maybe I’m just a little freaked out by the $99 long johns at Cabella’s. I’m still buying everything at second hand stores if I can. 🙂

Top 10 Modern Products I Can Live Without

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Time for another top-ten!

Top 10 Modern Products I Can — and Do — Live Without!

Some of these things I consider scams, and others are just things I have left out of my life for simplicity’s sake.

10. A Coffee Maker. Yup, don’t have one. We have a one-cup-at-a-time funnel brewer thingy, and we have a bodum if we are making for more than one person at a time. Lots of people have those Keurig machines — I use the one at the fire hall and it’s great — but I can live without it! Our main reason for no coffee maker is to save on counter space.

9. Workout machines. You know, the Bowflex, the Ab Circle, Leg Magic, Vibraslim, Stairmaster, treadmills, ellipticals, etc… I’ve been doing crossfit workouts, and most of it is basic weights, using your own body weight (like in push-ups or pull-ups), or doing things from sports. Getting out and doing real things with your body is the best!

8. Fancy fabrics. I’m talking about some of these ultra-thin wool undergarments that cost $80 for a shirt. Or sweat-wicking workout clothes… an old T-shirt works just fine. Unless you are climbing Mt. Everest, I think most of these fabrics and clothes are a scam (and some don’t even look like they are made all that well).

7. Make-up. Although I own a little bit of make-up, I only use it a few times a year. Last time I wore mascara, I regretted it — I got a paint-covered eyelash in my eye and it wouldn’t come out for 3 days! And do I look ugly? No. My skin is as nice as ever, mostly due to what I eat.

6. Video Games (like Wii, Nintendo, whatever). I know, by now you think I am a total freak, but hey! I have never owned one of these, and somehow I have lived. I play games on my computer or online sometimes, but I just never got into these plugged-into-my-TV games.

5. Microwave. While we actually do own one, we only use it to warm up our wheat bags when we need a little heat on our feet (or wherever). We don’t use it to irradiate our food. Not that that’s bad exactly… we’re just keeping it real! And you can re-heat and cook everything better using other methods, like the oven, stove and barbeque.

4. Satellite dish. I don’t like TV, so I don’t have any. Don’t have cable either, so if we want to watch something, we use DVDs or stream it over the internet. So it’s not that I’m a techno-phobe, I just have no interest in TV, and especially dislike commercials.

3. iPhone. I don’t have one, and you know what? My life is not terrible! 🙂 I might get one, someday, but for now, my simple cell phone does the trick just fine.

2. Orthotics. I used to have them, then I didn’t. I massaged the arches of my feet with a tennis ball and switched to Vibram 5-Fingers (basically, the opposite of orthotics) and I couldn’t be happier. NO foot pain, more foot stability, and no problems (granted, I don’t wear high heels anymore). 🙂

1. Tooth paste. You can get tooth paste with baking soda, or… you could just use baking soda!! Baking soda really works every bit as well as tooth paste, and you can skip the nasty chemicals in most tooth pastes!

So, this post is not intended to make you feel guilty or make me look weird. It’s just the way I feel about some modern devices, and maybe it will make you think differently about them too! 🙂

P.S. Can you believe this is my 300th post on this blog!?! And I started over 6 years ago? Crazy! If you’re new to my blog, welcome! Feel free to browse the archives or use the tag cloud at right for topics you are interested in! 🙂

Too Much Reality is Not a Good Thing

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One unexpected negative side effect of the scientific revolution — the way that science has crept into every part of society — is that we have become quite analytical about reality. We want to measure things, inspect or observe things, quantify and describe things, and generally try to get a good handle on the objective reality of the world around us.

The problem is, we get so caught up in examining what is there, we forget that we have the power to imagine what we want and create our reality. We also tend to take a pessimistic approach to what we see, and this makes us more likely to get into a rut, or worse, a downward spiral.

For example, if you watch the news, you may hear about various aspects of a recession that is going on. They’ll give stats or anecdotal stories about how it isn’t ending yet, it’s worse in this sector or that area of North America, or whatever. But that is such a small part of reality! In lots of areas, things are looking up, business is increasing and people are prospering! I’m as busy as ever (hence I haven’t been blogging much, sorry about that), and this winter is predicted to be a really busy one. While there might be unemployment elsewhere, that sure isn’t the case around here. In our local newspaper, they reported that the only limit to our “boom” this winter will be staffing shortages. And I can’t help but think it’s partly because we don’t give too much attention to the “reality” that is talked about elsewhere. I’ve heard that US news is still very heavy on the the recession, while Canadian news is not. Could that be why it hasn’t hit us as badly — because we don’t give it as much attention?

I wonder what would happen if we went on a “news fast” and stopped listening to stories about other peoples realities, and just focused on our own? What if we spent just 2 minutes every day, imagining how our lives will be in 6 months? I bet that in 6 months, we’d be exactly where we envisioned ourselves, especially if we did this imagining or envisioning consistently.

Let me give you an example. I was able to manifest an incredible crew on the York boat last spring, once I got incredibly clear on what I wanted in a crew. I was very specific; I had a list of about thirty things that I wanted. After I got that clarity, the crew just worked out perfectly — and I mean perfectly — even though people still cancelled and I could have reverted to my mode of being stressed out about it. But I didn’t. I believed that the perfect people for the crew would be on board. Whenever I was tempted to feel stressed, I just reminded myself about the clarity and fanned the spark of faith — faith that I would end up with a great crew. And let me explain what I mean when I say “after I got that clarity.” I am not speaking of divine inspiration or a profound message of intuition. I just sat down and in my rational brain, with a hearty dose of imagination, said and wrote down exactly what traits I wanted/needed in a crew.

They key to it all was getting past my current reality. I was two people short. One guy could only do the first 4 days — then what?!? Who would I find to do the other 14 days? I only had a confirmed crew of 4, including myself — I thought it wasn’t possible to go with less than 7. It turns out we ended up with only 5, but they were the perfect 5 and we didn’t need anyone else. We managed superbly, so well in fact, I’d say we thrived. So even though the photo above looks like we are working hard, we were actually having the time of our lives! You just can’t tell by looking and you just can’t believe what someone else says is “reality.” Get your own!

**Look closely at the photo above, and count how many people you see. See 6? Extra people came out of the woodwork when we needed them, and we actually did have 7 people for about 2 days. Although it worked, we were a little crowded. So, you see, all that time before hand I was stressing about finding a crew of 7 when all along I only needed the perfect 5.**

Related Posts: Mind Your Television | Endpoints | Lies We Believe | What if…

Having the time of our lives...

Why Bad Things Happen to Good People

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I should be in bed sleeping. Or sending important emails, or working on other aspects of this huge project I’m managing, but I just got a flash of insight so clear, I had to blog it.

Why do bad things happen to good people?

Because they expect it to happen.

Watching a mere five minutes of the news will convince you that the world is full of terrible people, all your neighbours are criminals, war is breaking out everywhere, all policemen are corrupt, and Mother Nature is punishing us with natural disasters. And we are all pretty sure we know why — we deserve it.

Here’s an example of how the news has affected a lady I know. The evening news was filled with serious reports about forest fires raging through Slave Lake, a medium-sized town in Northern Alberta. There was a strong wind pushing the fire, causing it to spread faster than they could put it out, at least initially. The whole town, around ten thousand people, were evacuated and a whole neighbourhood, about a third of the town, burned down — a serious situation, even a tragedy. The Premier, being interviewed for the news, looked like he might cry.

One of the first comments I heard this particular lady make was “oh, there will be looting! With all those homes empty, there will be LOOTING!”

What?!? The town is empty! The only people there are fire fighters, and even if there were others around, that is the absolute LAST thing that would happen. I know this town, and it just would not happen. But years of living in a big city, listening to the radio news every hour and watching TV news throughout the day has completey skewed this woman’s view of the world, and also her expectations.

She expects the worse. Wherever she goes, whatever is going on around her, she sees crime, tragedy, illness, and other newsworthy stuff. I’m afraid to say that this is what she will attract into her life, because the Law of Attraction is ALWAYS at work.

You ever heard of the lawyer’s house that gets broken into repeatedly? The woman who continually has car trouble because she is always worried about her car? That man who gets ripped off because he’s always trying to cheat the other guy?

We each get what we THINK about most, especially if there is strong emotion involved, and what we EXPECT. It’s sometimes also what we WANT, but sometimes we get the opposite of what we want because the thinking and expecting are so strong.

Except for today, I have not watched the news for weeks. It’s a good thing, because I am working on focusing only on positive things, and I gotta tell ya, I get courteous drivers around me, holes in the traffic, mostly green lights (but red lights let me check my map or change my music), and I believe it happens because I know it’s possible. It is not only possible, it’s virtually* guaranteed when I focus on good things, and look for the best in people and situations around me. I have started expecting to have days that go smoothly.

Sometimes it’s hard. With the fires in Slave Lake, all I can think of is that this is a chance for our fire fighters and emergency co-ordinators to shine. And shining they are.

* only “virtually” because I’m sill practicing!

I’d love to hear your comments on this!

Surviving Cabin Fever

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It’s been a while since I did a Top Ten, so here you go! 🙂 Perhaps others don’t have such a hard time with this, but I think it’s relevant for the season!

Teresa’s Top Ten ways to combat cabin fever when it’s been too cold for too long:

10. Get smashed. Go to your liquor cabinet, with a tall glass in hand, and pour one shot of each liquor — whatever you’ve got — into the glass. Add ice, if you like, and a splash of orange juice, coke, or grenadine, depending on your tastes. Drink one of these every hour until you can’t walk, talk or think. JUST KIDDING! Don’t do this! If you do, you’ll have the worst hangover ever! But I guess you wouldn’t be bored any more! 🙂 Seriously, it can be fun to invent a new drink, with just one or two types of liquor and have one or two with a friend.

9. Clean something. Ya, I know, it’s not a very fun one, but it’s a productive way of spending some time at home… tackle that messy hall closet or scary corner of the basement. Keep reading, I have better, funner ideas coming up!

8. Eat something. But not just anything… Scour your cookbooks or go online and make something wild and fantastic you’ve never made before. Like this chocolate cake (it took me three days to make last year!), these brownies (so strange yet soooo yummy!), or a spicy curry dish (one of my favourite meals). Maybe you’ll have to make a trip to the grocery store, but you probably have a lot of crazy ingredients at home that you could use. Check out the “leftover wizard” at Don’t be afraid to substitute ingredients if you don’t have what you need and you don’t feel like leaving the house. Then savour your creation!

7. Make something. If you’ve got a project half-done, finish it! If you don’t, check out the Make webpage and see if you’ve got something around the house that you can transform into, say, a guitar!

6. Grab a book. You probably have a few books (or 20) that you’ve bought or been given, that you just haven’t quite started yet. Grab one, and a nice warm beverage, cozy up in your favourite spot and read the afternoon away.

5. Play a game. If you’re home alone, I guess it’ll be solitaire or something computer-based. But if you have family or friends over, convince them it’s time for Twister, Wii, or get out the cards. Aggravation is one of my favourites, or Blokus. No doubt you’ve got something you can play… strip poker anyone? (Not to be played with granny.)

4. Learn a new hobby. Got something you’ve thought about trying? Why not do it now? You can find videos for almost anything online, so as long as your internet (and your furnace) work, you can do anything! You could learn to knit or crochet, do yoga, do tai’chi, make fishing lures, build something out of wood, learn photography, start a blog or podcast… your imagination is the limit!

3. Play music. Get out that guitar you haven’t played in months (or the one you just made) and learn some new chords. Or, if you find your house strangely lacking in musical instruments, go through your music collection, listen to something you haven’t heard in ages (your fav’s from the 80’s!) and just enjoy the tunes! Dance your heart out. Air-drum along, or use pots. 🙂

2. Get off your duff. Step away from the TV, or computer (not right now, as soon as you finish reading this), and get some exercise. Most of us have some form of exercise equipment around the house, and most of it is rarely used! Blow the dust off, get out the track pants, and burn a few calories. Don’t do it because you have to, do it because you’re bored silly — do it for your sanity! (I promise it will help.)

1. Do something fun outside. This is perhaps the hardest cure for cabin fever, but it’s also the most effective. Bundle up, wear double scarves, toques, mitts, whatever it takes, and go outside. If you’ve got equipment like cross-country skis, snowshoes, ice skates, or a ski-doo use it! If not, simply take a walk, go tobogganing (cardboard will work on a packed hill), make snow angels, or stomp out patterns in fresh snow. When you get back, you’ll be glad to be inside, cozy and warm!

The overall strategy for curing cabin fever is distraction. Distract yourself from the fact that it’s freezing and you’re stuck inside… that you’re bored or lonely… that it’s cold and only getting colder… 🙂 I hope this blog will help you distract yourself with something that’s mildly productive or fun (more fun than TV)!  🙂

I think I’ll do my next blog on how to dress for cold weather. It’ll be practical and fun, yet serious life-saving stuff! Check back in a couple of days!

Life Without Christmas

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Christmas is fast approaching, isn’t it? The days surrounding Christmas can sure be fun! Crazy. Exciting. Busy. Frantic! But not for me.

I grew up without Christmas. (pause for the shock to sink in) The religion my family belonged to didn’t celebrate it. If you are an old school mate, you might remember what a “weirdo” I was; I didn’t make cardboard jack-o-lanterns at Halloween — it was strictly pumpkins for me. All the trappings of Christmas were stripped of art class — no Santas for me — I made “winter trees” or snowmen. My poor parents had to go to parent-teacher interviews each year and explain the situation. I think it was much harder for my older sister, with her classmates and teachers. At least when I came into the system 2 years later, the teachers remembered my weird sister and would say “oh, yes, we remember the drill. No Santas, no valentines, no Easter bunnies.”

We didn’t have anything to do with these holidays, with Christmas causing the most fuss. Think about it — what do kids talk about for a MONTH at school? Where they are going for Christmas, what they might be getting, the candy, and then in January, for another week, the only topic of conversation is what they got for Christmas. I don’t think the kids who rode the school bus with me were trying to be mean when they asked “what did you get for Christmas?” But my answer stunned them every time: “nothing.” I think some of them thought it was because we were so poor (I wore a lot of hand-me-downs in those days). Kids who weren’t in my class didn’t see the all the other signs I was different than the rest.

I am not bitter for growing up in this different way. My sister and I put up with quite a bit of teasing and shunning; I didn’t have any friends at school until grade 5 or 6. I am very grateful for the kids who did befriend me. Some of the teachers treated my sister and me differently too, besides the basics of being banished to the library during Christmas concert practices. Actually, that was kind of fun, ’cause we had the whole place to ourselves and could run, make noise, and throw paper airplanes.

I survived the school years without any aspect of Christmas. When our religion changed and started to become more main-stream, many people struggled with how to change their thinking and traditions. We had our own traditions and holidays, you see, that were quite meaningful and beautiful. It was as hard to toss them out as it was to accept new ones that had been the source of our rejection, and we’d been criticizing, for all those years. Christmas trees are pagan, phalic symbols, don’t you know!?!

So, it might come as somewhat less of a shock to hear that my husband and I aren’t really doing much for Christmas. We have lights on our house, and some family/friends will get small presents, but we aren’t giving anything to each other. I don’t think we did last year, but we got married at the beginning of December and things were pretty hectic due to that (our wedding was also a small, un-hyped affair). Do you think that strange? Impossible? Crazy? Maybe it is for you, but I think a LOT of what happens at Christmas is pure distraction. Some traditions are lovely and some families do manage to keep it simple, but MOST of the stuff that happens has nothing to do with Jesus (the reason for the season, you know) or family bonding. Never mind the soap-opera-like baloney that goes on among people offending each other, re-offending, being offended, shunning… mostly because of presents or other silly reasons. The stories I hear from some people make my head hurt!

This got me thinking that a lot of what happens in life in general is distraction. I use the radio as a distraction on my drive home, for example. To keep me from thinking about what, I don’t know. TV is a bad culprit for this, and so are books. We enter another world through these media… I wonder what is wrong with the one we’re in? Jobs, tasks, goals, children, hobbies, material things, holidays, traditions, and entertainment are all huge distractions to what we really are. Perhaps you’ve heard the expression: We aren’t human beings on a spiritual journey, but spiritual beings on a human journey.* I think that sums it up nicely.

In the busyness, craziness, and loveliness of this season, please don’t forget that we’re all on this planet to share an experience. Don’t try to control others, just as you hate to be manipulated. Be patient. Love the ones you’re with. 🙂

* quote attributed to Stephen R. Covey.

Just saw this, and it’s too funny!

Balancing Act

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Major intersection in Beijing, after a snowfall

I still think about China sometimes… the friends I made there, what living in Beijing is like… how they can be so happy in such a crowded, busy place! How they can find time to think or have any serenity! They do it, though… not sure if I could!

Life is such a balancing act, isn’t it? I need enough sleep, but not too much. Enough food, but not too much. I definitely need more exercise, and I don’t think I’m in danger of getting too much, but some people are! A little caffeine is great, but some days, coffee makes me jittery. A little sugar is okay… some vitamins… enough free time, enough work…

What about my mental state? I’ve realized that it’s okay if I’m not happy all the time, but I wouldn’t want to be down and out very often either. A person has to think about money sometimes, but if you start to obsess, that’s going to skew your perspective. I like to be positive, but also a bit skeptical of what I hear — it’s easy to go too far and end up a nervous basket case (which sounds so much better than “paranoid freak,” don’t you think?). I don’t even believe the news on TV, because I think it’s usually over-summarized and often has a slant to it. Finding the balance between taking some things seriously and others with a grain of salt is tricky.

Life naturally has good days and bad, happy and sad, easy and hard, and if it didn’t, it would be like living in a monotone world. I think we all naturally need these contrasts; if you’re dissatisfied with your life, perhaps you have too much of something?
You could be stressed because of too much instability, or bored from too much security. It’s good to avoid certain extremes:

Too much instability Too much security
Too much routine Too much adventure
Too much stuff Too much nothing
Too much money Too much debt
Too much work Too much down time
Too much busyness Too much laziness
Too much loneliness Too much togetherness
Too much freedom Too much religion (or too many social expectations)

Look at the table above — what areas do you immediately relate to? If you think to yourself “well, I certainly don’t have too much adventure” then it’s possible you have too much routine. A balance of both makes for an interesting life! Maybe you immediately realize you have too much stuff… have you thought of getting more nothing? Giving things away, and not buying things you really don’t need? If you recognize you have too much of something, rather than simply decreasing it, try increasing whatever’s in the adjacent column. If you realize you don’t have enough of something, try decreasing whatever’s in the adjacent column.

Also, we all need beauty and creativity in our lives! Make sure you have a creative outlet, whether it’s creative cooking, building, a hobby, music or art.

That’s all for now! Okay, one more China pic!

Nope, it's not daytime. That's a huge LED screen! It's showing dolphins jumping out of the ocean, but it also plays a few other videos, like a space voyage! Wow!