This book is a collection of personal stories ranging from humorous to inspirational. It begins with the author's youth in Saskatchewan, Canada, moves through an assortment of universities in Canada and the United States, and ends with his eventual career in education in Manitoba.
In the Portage la Prairie School Division he held a variety of positions such as teacher, counselor, Special Education Coordinator, and Consultant for the Gifted & Talented for the Portage School Division.
He spent time in Moosonee, on the tip of James Bay, doing upper ozone atmospheric research for the International Geophysical Year in 1958.
The author's interest in computers began when they were IBM vacuum-tube mainframe machines, and continued through the development of Commodore, Radio Shack, and Apple personal computers. He was actively involved with developing computer-assisted education including their use with the handicapped.
There are numerous photographs illustrating the author's experiences, as well as several photos by Kev Millikin because they illustrate the book's theme in an impressively artistic way.
Through the eyes of experience, the reader is able to see what the journey of life had in store for the author and his own variations on that theme which he was able to install along the way. With a penchant for green Morris Minors and a "take it as it comes attitude", he made his way from a small town Canadian boy who had "school smarts" as opposed to the needed "street smarts", to world traveling family man with two children, on which to share his rich past.
If one was a friend of Mr. Shirriff's growing up, you may have ended up purchasing one of his favorite old cars for the handsome sum of $1, or you very well may have helped him make liquid nitoglycerine in a school science lab. Whatever the situation, it seems you'd walk away with a greater knowledge of the problem, if not the solution, and a friend when in need. His many life adventures traverse the hallowed halls of the education system from teacher to principal to counselor. These lessons learned provided him with a needed "self-structure" on his continuing journey through life; one that enabled him to thrive.
Along with a peek into the universities of yester-year, Mr. Shirriff provides you with personal anecdotes to keep you smiling, nay even laughing, from his meetings with the Dean to his first encounter with transvestite "ladies of the night".
So, grab your drink of choice, your reading glasses, and a seat in your favorite reading sanctuary and settle in for a "meet-and-greet" with an interesting character with a story to share. Happy reading!