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Author looks on the lighter side
Gordon Kirkland sure knows how to roll with the punches.
Perhaps a result of dealing with the bad hands he's been dealt, the 46-year-old Toronto native's refreshing sense of humor and outlook on life has come to the forefront.

Kirkland is debilitated as a result of a nasty car accident in the summer of 1990. Rear-ended while driving to the golf course, Kirkland suffered a spinal injury and now walks with the use of forearm crutches.

Somehow he has managed to keep his sardonic wit intact. Kirkland became a humor columnist after the accident and has been writing about everyday life for five years in a column titled, "At Large."

Nothing is sacred in his musings. His columns touch everything from video arcades to vasectomies to wheel chairs to weight control. His syndicated columns appear regularly in 15 publications including the Saskatoon Sun and the Fredericton Daily Gleaner.

He's written over 200 columns and magazine articles. Kirkland has compiled his best work in a book titled Justice Is Blind - And Her Dog Just Peed In My Cornflakes. Printed by Harbour Publishing, it's been on the stands for about three weeks.

Kirkland will be appearing at Chapters across from Square one, Wednesday from 7-9 p.m. He'll read from his new book and sign copies as part of a promotional tour of southern Ontario.

"I'm excited about how the book has been picked up in Canada and the U.S.," Kirkland said. "I've been compared to Erma Bombeck."

Over the years, comedy has played a big part of the author's life and he feels things needn't change in light of his mishap.

"I've discovered laughing is healthy. Laughing produces endorphins and they're 10 times stronger than morphine," said Kirkland, who resides in a community northeast of Vancouver.

Kirkland's older brother Jim lives in Mississauga.
-Tom Michibabta, The Mississauga News

Anthology of humorous anecdotes is a chuckle of a read
Prior to becoming a humour columnist and freelance writer, Gordon Kirkland was the senior consultant in the Vancouver office of a large multinational firm of management consultants and chartered accountants, where his primary practice area was international trade. That life ended when he became physically disabled because of a severe spine injury suffered in a serious golfing accident in August of 1990. (His car was rear-ended on the way to the golf course). In the four years following he suffered two additional car accidents.

A regular public speaker, Kirkland talks to his audiences about using humour to help cope with stress, pain and significant lifetime loss. And humour there is in abundance in his new book.

He examines the question, "When is something funny and when is it not?" His wife is afraid of spiders so he and the boys placed a plastic one in the fridge. Her screams sent all the male members of the family into hysterics. Now that's funny.

Kirkland, on the other hand, opened the fridge, only to find a snack item which his eldest son had overlooked. He opened the plate and ate it. It was in fact cat food with anti-flea medicine. That's not funny.

His conclusion is that humour depends on the perspective of the victim. What' s really funny is that he believed his "grocery-sucking appetite on legs", his son, would leave anything edible untouched in the fridge. On the plus side, he was not bothered by fleas all summer.

His details of the father's role in childbirth is really funny - and true. The nurse saw he was apprehensive and asked him "Is this your first?" "No, this is definitely my last," said Kirkland.

You have to read this book to learn of the problems Kirkland had with the painless vasectomy. Is this an oxymoron?

Psychologists say that husbands who agree with their wives have lasting marriages. Don't argue, just say "Yes, Dear". But you can alter the inflection in reply to convey all kinds of meanings. Try it sometime.

Kirkland also includes a number of "definitions" like "The cloning of Dolly - a baaaaad scene".

The kids might say "if you're having a green day, like, read your aura . . . or better still read Justice is Blind - and Her Dog Just Peed in my Cornflakes.
-Jack Savage, Daily Herald Tribune, Grande Prairie