A Letter To Ariel

Dear Ariel

I hope this letter gets to you germ free, as I currently have a sore throat that burns like a disco inferno. I haven’t started sneezing yet, but the occasionally sniffle is sending me warning signs.

I’m not responsible for any future maladies on your end. So don’t sue. Please.

You live in New Jersey, which begs the question, where is Old Jersey? Does Old Jersey smell like an old jersey? What’s the deal?

Also, I’m reminded of Jersey Boys – the musical group.

Do you mind if I sing some of their songs? You don’t? Great! Let me just clear my gridlocked throat and warm up my vocals.







Okay, everything is loose.

Sherry, Sherry Baby
Sherry, Sherry Baby
Sheeeeeeeeeeeerry, Sherry Baby
Sheeeeeeeeeeeerry, Sherry Baby

Whew, that took a lot out of me. Why couldn’t they just text Sherry instead of (seemingly) yelling from the street?

Another song? Sure!

Oh, what a night
Late December back in ’63
What a very special time for me
‘Cause I remember what a night

What’s that? You want a remix? No problem.

Oh, what a bite
Late night eating back two weeks ago
What a very special time for me
‘Cause I remember what a bite

Mmmm. What a bite. It was probably pizza.

Okay, I think I’ve done enough. You get the point. 

Oh, what? One more song? I guess I can…

NO. No more songs. I am sick and my voice has taken off and is three blocks away by now. Sorry. I know you wanted another.

Anyways, you asked me to tell you a story about how gophers took over North America using kettle corn and how we managed to regain control from them.

Well, like most stories, this is a short story, but long-winded.

It’s very simple. What do people like? Food. We like food. We can’t help it.

So the gophers fed (pun always intended) on that intel. They set up a long trail of kettle corn all across North America. That’s another thing people like. They like following trails until they reach the end of them. 

Don’t believe me? Then why is there always a mad dash to the pot of gold at the end of every rainbow? Exactly.

The gophers used kettle corn to lead us into bunkers they had dug all over North America. The bunkers were retro-fitted with televisions, phones, and veggie platters.

We were hooked. We were trapped. We were forced to eat raw broccoli.

They took over the continent and came across a few stragglers who didn’t follow the kettle corn. These people were deemed “the sane ones”. Together, with the gophers, they brought humanity back to respectability by going into people’s homes and rearranging the furniture to satisfy the “feng shui” inspectors (other gophers).

They also threw out any DVDs they came across that they didn’t like.  

When everyone was released from the bunker, they all rushed to the nearest washroom and forgot all about what had happened because they were too worried about how far behind they were on their Netflix series to question what the gophers did.

The End.

You also asked me about the current political climate in the U.S. and if I’ve ever thought about fleeing the continent.

I haven’t. I think Canada is far enough away from the circus, even though if we open our window we can hear the music and smell the elephant walk in for the grand finale.

The general discourse around your President is that everyone hates him and wants him removed. To me, though, I think of all the people who want him there. Millions of people voted for him.

You could tell me all you want about how he didn’t win the popular vote and how the electoral college is a joke. Whatever. I knew that back in high school. What took your country so long to figure that out? Did no one realize you could elect a President who received fewer votes than the opponent?

Sorry, I’m not really directing this at you. 

My point is: if people have a problem with the President, then they have a problem with everyone who voted for him. And if that’s the case, you have what seems to be a billion science project volcanos about to explode.

I hope you all got goggles for Christmas.

You also asked, “is the stereotype that says all Canadians are nice & that living in Canada is like living in an apartment above a raging kegger true? Do Americans seem like spoiled teenagers to you & you’re all too polite to say anything?”

I’d never heard the living above a raging kegger thing before, but sure, I guess?

Most Canadians are extremely nice. We say sorry when someone else says sorry. We say thank you when someone thanks us. It’s all very weird and I think it’s because we don’t want to anger anyone.

Our countries just feel different. Walking around Canada feels like a fun game of tag at recess. On one of my trips to the U.S., it felt like I was playing Russian roulette, just going to a Wal-Mart.

From the outside, your country seems consumed by politics and people create their identity based off of that. Like you’re either a Republican or a Democrat and that tells others everything they need to know about you.

We’re not like that here. At least, I don’t think we are.

Your culture seems to be built around toughness and football. Ours is built around a nice snowy afternoon playing hockey on an outdoor rink. And I think that sums up our differences in a small little kettle corn.

Thought I was going to say “nutshell” didn’t you?

Now you can say, “Oh, we’re not all like that.” I know. I can say the same thing. But stereotypes and perceptions can be very real sometimes.

Alright, I think I’ve gone on long enough! 

It is freezing here and my fingers feel like they have been attached to an ice cube.

I just want to thank you for being a consistent reader of my blog and I truly appreciate your interactions and comments!

With a fire in my throat,


About Paul

I think of my blog as an all-you-can-read buffet. There's something for everyone and complimentary mints at the door as you leave.
This entry was posted in Letters and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to A Letter To Ariel

  1. Rea says:

    I love reading these letters! I find them hilarious. Thank you for another riviting segment of “Letters From Paul”

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Another great letter, Paul! I think the “fire in my throat” illness is thriving in Toronto right now. I seem to have picked it up right before I left to visit my parents…thus starting the contamination of Huron County.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Ariel Lynn says:


    That’s how people in New Jersey express their excitement. We find it’s easier than having to say, “I’m most pleased with what you have done for me. Jolly good show, old chap!”

    Which, in fact, is how people in Old Jersey – AKA Just Jersey, AKA The Bailiwick of Jersey, AKA Channel Island, AKA Jersey, UK – express excitement.

    The explanation of how our glorious gopher overlords came to have control, bringing their reign of peace & a warm, feng shui’d burrow for everyone, makes perfect sense. As I rarely leave my house, & definitely don’t leave my house to follow random trails of (delicious, delicious) kettle corn. Especially not if it were left on the ground. So, I was confused as to why gophers were coming into my house & directing me where to move my furniture.

    But, I gotta say, they knew about what they were talking (chirping? what kind of noise do gophers make?).

    To be honest, I’d forgotten what I’d asked you completely. It makes this letter like a beautiful post-holiday surprise!

    I’m sorry that I asked you about politics. I’m sorry I ever heard the word “politics” this year.

    However, my question about your proximity to the U.S. was more about logistics. & missiles. Frankly, I’m afraid to be too close to this darned country. I’ve been looking into moving to Canada, but you have a lot of requirements for potential immigrants.

    You poor dear! It means a lot to me that you wrote this while you’re not feeling bad. As someone who has had some pretty nasty throat infections (one earlier this year, in fact! I hit 103.5 degrees; I guess I can say, “I’m hot,” without lying now LOL), I’d like to pass along a few tips for a sore throat, if you don’t mind –

    – Hot tea with lemon.
    – No milk or milk products. It makes phlegm & phlegm makes you cough. Coughing hurts.
    – Gargle with warm salt water. As warm as you can take it, as salty as you can make it!
    – Don’t sing songs that require you to be an alto. Some of those Jersey Boy songs are in my range, & I’m a first soprano! (Sorry, music geeks gotta geek.)

    Thank you for your wonderful, hilarious, thoughtful posts & for writing all these letters to us! It really makes me feel touched to be a dedicated reader. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      SQUEEEE back atcha!

      See, I figured you were one of the ones that wouldn’t be fooled by a trail of kettle corn. It was shocking how many were. I hope you like the new arrangement of your furniture!

      I’m sorry you asked about politics too hahah. I think if anyone launched a missile, the whole world would be in trouble regardless of country.

      Thanks for the suggestions to cure the sore throat! Fortunately I am feeling better. Ginger ale with lemon helped get me through whenever I got tired of just regular water. I also avoided singing any more Jersey Boy songs.

      I’m glad you liked the letter, enjoy the last day of 2017!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ariel Lynn says:

        My failure to fall for the fallen kettle corn folly (I had to do it; once I accidentally use alliteration, it goes bonkers LOL) was less me being “sane” & more me being “lazy.” LOL

        Smart idea avoiding the singing. Try the tea if it keeps bothering you. I promise, it won’t make you British. 😉

        I hope you had a wonderful New Year’s Eve & that your 2018 makes 2017 look like 1915. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        Happy to report that I’m back to about 95% full health. Happy New Year!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ariel Lynn says:

        That’s a great way to start the New Year!

        Now, don’t go singing too many falsetto-voice songs & cause yourself a relapse. *stern, motherly finger-waggle* 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wendy Weir says:

    And now I can’t get Disco Inferno out of my head. ‘Tis a very confusing time for many Americans—I remember the good old days when the governor of my state was the most frightening elected official in my world. I’m going to try and keep visiting your beautiful nation as often as I’m able. Thanks to you and your neighbors for saying sorry—for being kind and thoughtful and considerate, that is. I remember too when those qualities weren’t quite so rare.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Paul says:

      Ah yes, ’tis a difficult song to get out of one’s head! I’m glad you’ve had positive encounters with Canada. I’m obligated to say “thank you” at this time lol. Whether people agreed with the things Obama did or not, he brought grace and warmth to the position. Hopefully your country can get back to something like that in the future.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Jad says:

    Great letter,I am catching up on my blogging so I am sure the fire in your throats is now just some smoldering Ashes, hope it did not ruin your new year plans too much!!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.