October 4, 2016

New music video by Scott and John Griffin based on the book Polly Of Bridgewater Farm by Catharine Fleming McKenty.

Bonus footage of the author at the end.

Jean P.


October 4, 2016

Many of you might not know that Neil use to write for The Senior Times, he had a column called Pit Stop.  Since the weather is quickly changing here in Quebec, I found the perfect article for you.

Resist hibernating and enjoy the outdoors this winter.

”If you want to enjoy the Montreal winter, you’ve got to join it.”  I wish I had heeded that advice when I first arrived in Montreal in the autumn of 1972.

That first winter I was broadcasting editorial comments on CJAD and producing and hosting ”Prime Time”, a program for seniors.  On the week-ends I huddle with my wife, Catharine, (a writer-researcher at the Reader’s Digest) inside our apartment on the twenty-first floor of a high rise near the old Forum, and read the newspaper including the weighty Sunday New York Times.  This regimen turned out to be a recipe for lethargy, lassitude and recurring stupor.

At the time we didn’t have a car (once we toured a good part of the island of Montreal on two metro tickets), but the following winter, Catharine reconnoitred the lower Laurentians by bus to find a place to stay and to ski.  Happily, she discovered on the perimeters of Prévost, then Shawbridge, a sprawling white frame house with many appendages, the Laurentian Lodge Club, founded in 1923.

Catharine and I have now been members of the Club for more than twenty-five years, enjoying chef André’s savoury cuisine and cross-country skiing on trails with such evocative names as The Barking Dog, Fallen Women, The Madonna, and of course, portions of the Maple Leaf, laid out by the famous Herman Smith ”Jack Rabbit” Johannsen himself.

One stormy Saturday, I was chatting with Mr. Johannsen (then more than a hundred, still a skier and long-time member of the Club) in the living room beside the fireplace when the ”Chief” with a glint in his eye, lit a cigarette.  ”I never smoke before lunch,” he explained, ”but I usually have lunch early.”

Mr. Johannsen was not the only notable member of the Laurentian Lodge Club, chock-a-block in those early years with young families and their children.  Other distinguished members included the renowned Dr. Wilder Penfield and Brooke Claxton, a minister in federal Liberal governments.

Not that the Club was an elitist conclave or luxury resort.  Far from it.  The original iron beds were purchased from the Montreal General Hospital for three dollars each.  Their springs were so dilapidated the mattresses had to be propped up by large sheets of stiff brown paper that crackled down the halls whenever the sleeper turned over.  Still, the spartan bedrooms were merely a counterpoise to the charm and gentility of afternoon tea served in front of the blazing fire by ladies in long gowns.

From its beginning in 1923, the Club was at the heart of early ski developments in the Laurentians.  Just beyond the first door across the river and through the trees loomed the Big Hill where in 1932 Alec Foster, using an old Ford engine for power, installed the first rope tow in North America, charging skiers five cents a ride.

From those early days, the Laurentian Lodge Club developed and still retains a distinctive élan marked by enthusiastic and warm camaraderie.  ”The atmosphere,” as one senior member described it, ”was set by people in their eighties who had nothing to prove,” and who, it might be added, encouraged a tradition of fun skiing which meant taking time on the trail to stop to eat an orange and feed the birds.

This spirit continues, epitomized by the Club’s oldest active member, a vivacious ans elegant lady in her early nineties.  She still skis and still serves afternoon tea in a long gown.  She joined the Montreal winter a long time ago.  Obviously she had never regretted it.  Neither have I.

Published in February 1999

Jean P.


October 3, 2016

Exchange on CJAD with your host Neil McKenty

The Lines Are Blazing!!

Today’s subject is all about radio, with the live callers.

Jean P.


September 30, 2016

Brain Teaser

4 Detective Mysteries to solve.

-A man went into a party and drank some of the punch. He then left early. Everyone at the party who drunk the punch subsequently died of poisoning. Why did the man not die?


-A man walked in the house. He was about to hang up his coat when he heard his wife say, “No John! Don’t do it!” There was a shot and the woman was dead. There was a police officer, a doctor, and a lawyer standing next to her. The woman’s husband knew that the police officer did it. But how did the husband know?


-A man is found dead one Saturday morning. He was killed while his wife was sleeping. The wife tells the police all that she knows. She tells them that the cook was cooking breakfast, the maid was cleaning and the butler was getting the mail. The police immediately arrest the person who is responsible. Who is responsible and why?


-A crime has been committed at Freemont Street. The main suspect is a man named Sean Baker. It was said that a man had been walking along the pathway when he was suddenly shot in the stomach. The suspect had brown hair, blue eyes and wore a baggy Armani suit just like Sean Baker’s.

Sean was asked to tell the story right from the beginning. “Well,” said Sean, “I was just hanging around the park when I saw this man walking along the pathway. Suddenly, a guy came up from behind him and shot him! I ran home as fast as I could.” The policemen asked him to give a description of the murderer. “He had a red moustache, red hair and a baggy Armani suit on.”

“I think this man is telling a lie,” said one of the policemen. How did he know?


-The poison from the punch came from the ice cubes. When the man drank the punch, the ice was fully frozen. Gradually, as the ice cubes melted the poison was released into the punch.


-The police officer was a man while the doctor and lawyer were ladies. John is a man’s name. The husband’s name was David. So John was the police officer’s name. David’s wife was saying, “No John! Don’t do it!” to the police officer and the police officer shot her anyway.


-The wife because she was sleeping, how could she know that all of that happened?!


-How can the murderer shoot him in the stomach if he came up behind the man?

Have a good weekend!

Jean P.


September 29, 2016

Exchange on CJAD with your host Neil McKenty.

The Lines Are Blazing!!

Today’s subject: Has women’s liberty made men angry?  With the live callers.



September 28, 2016

September 28th

-551 BC, Confucius was born in Zou, Lu state, China.

-1066, William the Conqueror invades England landing at Pavensey Bay, Sussex.

-1528, Spanish fleet sinks in Florida hurricane; about 380 died.

-1687, Venetians take Athens from the Turks.

-1701, Divorce legalized in Maryland.

-1785, Napoleon Bonaparte graduates from the military academy in Paris.

-1867, Toronto becomes capital of Ontario.

-1892, First night football game played (Mansfield, PA).

-1922, Benito Mussolini marches on Rome.

-1928, Prussia forbids speeches from Adolf Hitler.

-1945, Canadian football’s Calgary Bronks changes its name to Stampeders.

-1972, Canada defeats the USSR in the eight and final game of the ice hockey Summit Series.

Jean P.


September 27, 2016




Catharine writes:

One third of Neil’s listeners were francophones. During that first referendum he kept everyone talking on his CJAD open-line show. He also interviewed Premier René Lévesque on the show more than once, with the last time being only a couple of week before Lévesque’s death.

A well-known Montreal lawyer later told me that without Neil’s efforts to keep people listening to each other there could have been violence on the streets of Montreal.

My question is: is there anyone out there in the United States in the midst of this divisive election keeping people listening to each other? The most divisive in US history. Is CNN doing that with its’ panels of commentators from both sides? My impression is they are trying hard – what do you think?


September 26, 2016

Exchange on CJAD with your host Neil McKenty

The Lines Are Blazing!!

This episode is about Aislin cartoon in the Gazette with guess Terry Mosher and the live callers.


Jean P.


September 25, 2016

Here is Neil on the other side of the microphoneisd

interviewed for his biography of John Main.

Two short clips, the first was for the show

Take A Brake ” on CFTV aired on January 29th,

1987 and the second one was for ” Midday

on CBC aired on April 17th, 1987.



September 22, 2016

Exchange on CJAD with host Neil McKenty


Today’s show is on Quebec politics in the 50’s and in more modern time with guess Gérald Pelletier and of course the live callers.

Visit the Bookshop: click here.

Jean P.