The Fountain Pen, Guelph's On-Line News

The Second Annual Lumpy Awards

Web posted on December 22, 2016

A Curmudgeon's View

By Les Enekes

Last year I gave out many lumps of coal to several of our politicians, a few other worthy people, and some deserving groups as Christmas gifts. This year I will continue that tradition and, if Donald Trump lives up to his promise of revitalizing the American coal industry I will have a constant supply for many years to come. It was recently announced that Canada would be phasing out coal fired power plants by 2030. That leaves more for me. We all know that the best way to use coal is to provide truly deserving people and groups with their very own lump or in some cases many lumps. We may run out of coal before we run out of deserving people.

On the other hand with all the carbon taxes coming in the new year, those extra lumps may no longer be affordable. I am using the lumps responsibly therefore I should not have to pay the taxes. For that reason I am being particularly generous this year. As we all know it's better to give than to receive.

This year there are a few more groups and individuals getting lumps than last year. There are also the many repeat offenders (politicians, of course) from last year who don`t want to share. Their greed knows no bounds. You would think they are heating their homes with coal, and driving coal powered cars.

Let's start with our local politicians and others. Everyone at 1 Carden Street deserves a lump of coal. Extra lumps for all those who supported the new Niska Road bridge, the downtown energy scheme, The Great Downey Road Debacle and the 75 Dublin Street North Fiasco just to name a few of the well thought out decisions respecting the wishes of the voters.

Moving down the 401 we have our beloved provincial politicians. She Who Must Not Be Re-elected gets a truck load, for all her truly wonderful decisions. That list would take up far too much valuable space. I would like to give lumps to many of the other deserving politicians, but someone does not want to share.

Those few lumps that fell off the truck go to Toronto city councillors for voting to put tolls on the Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway. There will be more about this in the new year.

Young Trudeau managed to earn his fair share of lumps. What a surprise! The pipeline decision, the CF-18 situation, the choice of the new search and rescue aircraft (I wonder if there will be another Airbus Scandal), and his comments about the late former Cuban dictator. There is his grand scheme to tax some carbon, but not all carbon. Let's not forget the fundraising issues. There is also the long list of broken or fractured promises. The list just keeps growing every day. He obviously did not want to share the lumps with anyone else in Ottawa. Now, if we could only find him somewhere in Canada.

In the tradition of giving lifetime achievement lumps of coal to outgoing politicians, I have one for President Obama.

I have lumps of coal for all the Hollywood types who said they were moving to Canada after the election down south, until they read the weather forecast and saw how much they would have to pay in taxes. I am sure that Donald will earn his fair share as time goes on, (he hasn't even been inaugurated) but for the moment I have run out of lumps for politicians.

All those network executives and program directors who decided that we needed Christmas before Remembrance Day get lumps of coal. Also lumps of coal to all those politically correct types who don't want us to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. There are also lumps for all the stores and malls out there for starting the Christmas buying season in summer, and extending through fall into winter.

With all the snow we have had over the last little while, I have some new categories. Everyone who does not clean ALL the snow off their vehicles gets a lump of coal. Clean off your vehicles!!! Lumps also go to all those characters who shovel snow from their driveways into the middle of the street. There are also lumps for those who don't use season appropriate tires. I also have lumps for all those people who insist on walking on the streets instead of the sidewalks. The city spends a lot of money to keep those sidewalks clean. I even have a few lumps for those individuals insist on riding their bikes in the snow.

Everyone who voted for Brexit gets a lump for deciding to go blindly where no one has gone before.

The singing of "O Canada" at the Major League Baseball all star game was a disgrace. The alleged artist (I refuse to use his name or his former group's name) who decided to sing his own lyrics gets the biggest lump I could find. Unfortunately it's still not big enough. I also have a lump for everyone who wants to change the lyrics or mangle the tune. A very special lump goes to the Queen of Soul (she should abdicate) for her extended version of the Star Mangled Banner at the Detroit Lions football game on Thanksgiving Day.

The CRTC (my rant on this total waste of taxpayers money is coming next year) gets all the leftover lumps (hey Donald, can you get those coal mines going again real soon?) for all those wonderful decisions that did absolutely nothing for the average consumer. Let's start with the so called skinny basic cable packages that they did nothing to enforce. Now they are telling the service providers that they have been very naughty and should think about maybe cleaning up their act. Wow, I am sure that all the executives are just shaking in their boots. Then there are the rates for cell phones, and of course for letting the companies come up with a solution for unwanted robocalls.

On the other hand, on extremely rare occasions politicians earn diamonds (lumps of coal that have aged for a few million years). By the way, why are they not putting a carbon tax on diamonds? They are a form of carbon.

Anyway, the Prime Minister of New Zealand decided to retire after ten years in power. He was expected to run again, but said that he did not want to overstay his welcome like too many leaders around the world. He wanted to go out at the top of his game. For that reason alone he deserves a diamond, and has earned my respect.

Politicians in Canada, take the hint. Many of you wore out your welcome a long time ago. Some of you even managed to do it before being elected.

Merry Christmas to all and as always don't drink and drive.

Les Enekes can be reached directly by owl. For those not owl equipped, he can be reached at

The views of columnists in The Fountain Pen do not necessarily represent the views of the principals of the publication.

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