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Luck & Perspective

Recently, and for the first time in over six months, I went to the casino in Niagara Falls to play some Texas Hold’em poker. Amazingly, the second hand I was dealt was pocket aces. For those of you who don’t play, that is the absolute best starting hand you can get. ...I proceeded to lose hundreds of dollars in very short order. The guy sitting beside me, who was dealt a king and a queen, called my raise and hit two pair. The seasoned player would say “That’s poker” which is euphemism for “Wow, you got screwed”. We can all agree - that was bad luck.

Also recently, I was pulling out of a parking spot in my old SUV, going perhaps 10km/hr around a very tight corner, when I heard a strange noise.  The car shook, and then wobbled and wouldn’t budge. I got out to see what was going on, only to find out that the ball joint in the front suspension had broken and my left front wheel had completely disconnected from the drive train -my wheel had literally come off. We can all agree - that was also bad luck.

At least that’s how I initially felt as I sat in the frigid parking lot, waiting for the tow-truck. And every shmuck and passer-by confirmed that feeling with their stupid grins and shaking heads. I was supposed to take my daughter to the train station, I was sitting in my sweaty post-workout gym clothes and my phone was about to go dead. As the snowflakes began to fall Marty Feldman’s famous line from the grave-robbing scene in Young Frankenstein came to mind; “Could be worse. Could be raining.”

But luck or how we perceive luck is completely contextual. As I was cursing the cold in my car, I realized that less than 36 hours earlier I had driven to and from Niagara Falls. Had the ball-joint in my SUV broken on the QEW, I’d be dead. Hell, had the car broken in the casino parking lot, I’d have been stranded in Niagara Falls for the night (which some might argue is a fate worse than death). So I guess you could say, although I didn’t think of it initially, I was quite lucky.

Luckily for you, there is no downside to the February issue of Tonic. Lisa Cantkier discloses the bitter truth about sugar (p. 37), Joel Thuna and Claude Gallant ponder one of life’s larger questions, “tea or coffee”? (p. 27) And just in time for Valentine’s Day Carlyle Jansen provides some sage advice to “Nice Guys” whose partners may want them to be more assertive (p.24).  As always, if you want to discuss anything about Tonic,  please feel free to contact me at Jamie@tonictoronto.com

BTW - For those who’ve been asking: Yes, OmT.O. is back! Sunday June 21st at the Distillery District. Save the date.