A stop gap, July 2017

A Stop Gap is a method that is used to prevent something from happening. It starts as a short-term situation and it can then lead to a longer term situation. The idea of a Stop Gap is to prevent something unwanted to occur. It is often used in business communications.

(Photograph of Vincent van Gogh, with one ear cut off)

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No Tulips Please

In 1945 January my father was born in Amsterdam during the Hunger Winter. It is a miracle my father was born at all because there was virtually zero food in Amsterdam at that time. It was a time was a lot of Dutch citizen in this area were forced to eat tulips. Later on in my life, I learnt that both of my grandparents worked in the tulip industries in the province, North Holland in the Netherlands. When I was 17 years old in the Netherlands in the city of Haarlem, my grandfather took in to Hillegom to peel tulips forĀ  summer job. It was a hard job, and I could not peel as fast as the other Dutch people in my group. Later that week my grandfather took me to a tulip factory that he knew about in Velsen-Zuid and got me a job auditing the tulip bulbs. I did that job for 4 – 5 months. Later on in life, I moved to Victoria, Vancouver Island and when I landed at Company X they forwarded me directly on to the Garden Center because my last name was van der Pol. Somehow the upper management of Company X could stereotype me and my Dutch heritage in a matter of a micro-second based on my last name. But in actual fact I do not like tulips myself, I am allegic to them. I get an adversary emotional reaction to the different colors of live flowers – especially tulips.c16c9a05b8e229a996804d4ae19ed91b