Preamble: I am currently taking a class looking at the towering British humorist P.G. Wodehouse. Our writing exercise this week was to write a brief scene (500ish words) in which a relatively small event quickly spirals out of control. My aim in this course, besides pure interest, is to better understand how to write convincing dialogue.

As you can see, I’m a long way off.

When the rain had finally died to a whimper, I decided it was time to pick up the groceries I’d been neglecting since Sunday. …

The ugliness of when justice meets politics

The recent unearthing of a mass grave on a residential school campus in Kamloops, BC has resulted in national outrage. Erin O’Toole, leader of the Conservative Party, termed the discovery “heartbreaking” and immediately called on the Prime Minister to investigate. Trudeau himself was quick to acknowledge the “fault of Canada” for such atrocity and promised swift retribution from his cabinet.

Judging by these, and many other comments, we might almost imagine ourselves a nation of conscience. Here we stand, boldly standing for those who can’t speak for or defend themselves.

But of course we would be dead wrong.

For O’Toole…

Or Why Religious Gatherings Are the Least Of Your Worries

The Peterborough Examiner recently published an editorial stating that Alex Kloosterman, pastor of Hill City Baptist Church in Peterborough, merits an ever-escalating series of fines due to his organization of a small preaching service that takes place every Saturday evening in a local park. Their rational is that he is enabling those making use of their rights to gather in this manner to “break the law.” The Examiner goes on to affirm that during this time our constitutional rights have been set aside to “protect public health and safety.”

Imagine, if you will, a family practitioner who made it his…

How Bureaucracy Destroys Humanity

Bureaucracy: An administrative system governing any large institution composed of a complex web of hierarchical relationships and intended to steer human activity towards maximum efficiency.

That’s the technical definition anyway.

Those who’ve actually been part of a bureaucracy will likely paint a slightly less-rosy picture — like how it usually looks better on paper than it does on the ground. At their most embittered, they might even call it the enemy of all achievement.

Why the stigma? I want to propose three reasons why an ever-expanding bureaucracy is good for those fortunate enough to be on the inside, and terrible…

In which dead beetles and viking funerals play a significant part.

Time for a little game. What do the following three sentences have in common?

  1. “He had the look of one who had drunk the cup of life and found a dead beetle at the bottom.” P.J. Wodehouse
  2. “When I die, I want a viking funeral at a public pool.” Paul Grealish, Twitter
  3. “Peterborough porch-pirate caught on video.” The Peterborough Examiner

Give up yet?

The answer is that they all employ a figure of speech called “antithesis.” Antithesis is when you contrast two opposing ideas in a sentence in hopes of the sheer electricity that will result. In the hands of…

This is who we are, this is what we do.

The Blind Bards Literary Society began as a small collective of local Christians interested in writing, literature, and the arts. Though we aren’t exactly paragons of learning, we are united in our conviction that Jesus Christ is the cohering principal of the cosmos, and that true life — life as it was meant to be lived — goes beyond mere existence. Echoing the words of C. S. Lewis, we believe “more in how humanity lives than how long. Progress [for us] means increasing the goodness and happiness of individual lives.”

Beyond this, we generally share a love for the written…

Though the tenants undergirding this publication would be considered broadly evangelical, submissions will be considered based on their own merit and not simply because of a fluency in “Christianese.” Those familiar with the late apologist Francis Schaeffer will recall his abhorrence for the flotsam often approved as “art” simply because of its theological overtness. We wholeheartedly affirm his antipathy in this regard and hope you do too.

So what are we looking for?

In a nutshell, we want well-crafted prose and poetry. Beyond this, we’re looking for ideas with substance; and by “substance” we mean ideas that are solid, consequential…

The secret of saying more with less

The prudent writer will attempt to maintain his spending habits somewhere between Ebenezer Scrooge and Kim Kardashian. On the one hand, he rightly fears any method which — in language or form — might indicate a dearth of supply. And so he guiltlessly pursues good literature, employs his thesaurus with reckless abandon, and regularly pillages his literary storehouse for fitting allusions, analogies, and hyperbole.

On the other hand, the maxim that more isn’t always better often keeps him awake at night, wondering if a certain sentence shouldn’t have been divided or if that ten-syllable word wasn’t a bit of an…

The surprisingly simple path to personal emptiness.

The problem with trying to monetize creativity is that, well, art isn’t always strictly marketable. I’m not saying that beautiful things aren’t valuable — only that certain ones defy quantifiablility more readily than others. I mean, how do you set a price on a paper-mache owl that took you three months to build? It would seem almost irreligious to try.


Because at the end of the day, one’s creative process shouldn’t be strangled by constantly wondering if anyone’s going to buy what you’ve made. That kind of thinking will extinguish your flaming Sambuca before you’ve even had time to…

A Sober Reflection on Foodstuffs

I stood and stared at one last bag,
the weight of which I feared;
would cause it’s membrane to unwind
should sturdy ground be cleared.

Deep inside I knew ’twas true,
two sturdy hands required:
one to brace, and one to grasp
the doorknob, once acquired.

A man of stouter heart than mine,
would surely know the way —
though two trips may be more than one,
the latter doesn’t pay.

But though good sense be true and straight,
it often fails to see,
How one path may not be the right,
yet still it longs to be.

And so…

Ben Inglis

Book lover, copyeditor, sometime windbag. Peddling unconventional perspectives on life and faith.

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