It’s snowing as I write this—heavily. They tell us to expect 40 centimetres in Ottawa. It’s one of those storms that I remember as a kid, before the responsibility of shoveling—or much responsibility at all—was foisted upon me.
In those days, winter storms were somehow always big and what excited me most then, and what I remember with great fondness and no small amount of awe now, is that they meant a new round of war play—new forts, tunnels, trenches, bunkers, and epic snowball fights.
I don’t know what it was that fascinated me about war when I was a kid, but I seemed to spend an awful lot of time immersed in its history, and myth, at a very young age. We all did.
When not eating, sleeping or going to school, we baby-boomer kids spent most of the 1960s outdoors—riding bicycl...