Doug Speirs

Doug Speirs

Columnist

Doug Speirs’ humour column, In the Doug House, has appeared on Page 2 of the Winnipeg Free Press at least three times a week since 2006. No one is exactly sure why.

Doug has held almost every job at the newspaper — reporter, city editor, night editor, tour guide, hand model — and his colleagues are confident he’ll eventually find something he is good at.

In his columns, Doug strives to focus on the vital issues of the day, but generally ends up writing about himself and his family, especially his two dogs, because he isn’t overly fond of getting out of bed or leaving the house.

For column fodder, he has tried his hand at everything from barrel racing to playing Santa Claus for hundreds of screaming schoolchildren on a jumbo jet to performing with Canada’s top Elvis impersonators. He also bravely writes about the weather every Saturday, pets every second Tuesday and writes a new column, Speiriscope, in Saturday’s 49.8 section.

No topic is too small to escape Doug’s keen journalistic eye, especially if it involves his infamous war with the army of mice living in his basement or his frequent run-ins with public relations professionals who are just trying to do their jobs.

He is also known for columns on quirky news events, his insights on raising teenagers, his helpful insights on the key differences between men and women and his penchant for spending up to three hours floating in the bathtub.

Doug was born in Vancouver and still worships the B.C. Lions. Despite this flaw, readers find him approachable, especially in the checkout aisles at crowded grocery stores. He was a finalist at the 2008 National Newspaper Awards for column writing.

He and his wife, She Who Must Not Be Named, have two children, neither of whom thinks he is the least bit funny.

Recent articles of Doug Speirs

Bidding fond farewell to a career full of hilarity and hijinx

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Bidding fond farewell to a career full of hilarity and hijinx

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Dec. 31, 2022

The time has finally come for me to say thank you and goodbye — again.

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Saturday, Dec. 31, 2022

Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press

Doug Speirs circa 2009

A valuable lesson from the book of Bogey

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

A valuable lesson from the book of Bogey

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Dec. 24, 2022

It probably doesn’t qualify as a Christmas miracle, but we’ll take it all the same.

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Saturday, Dec. 24, 2022

SUPPLIED

At the age of 13, family pooch Bogey is juggling a few health challenges, but his humans are inspired by how well he’s just getting on with it.

Columnist really nailing the holiday spirit

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Columnist really nailing the holiday spirit

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas — and for the first time that includes my toenails.

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Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022

Doug Speirs photo

From left: Joe Grande, Bob Cox and Doug sipped single-malt scotch while enjoying their pedicures.

I’m dreaming of a grape Krampus, just like the ones I used to know

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

I’m dreaming of a grape Krampus, just like the ones I used to know

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Dec. 10, 2022

It’s shortly after noon on a frigid Tuesday and I’m sitting in the food court at The Forks Market enjoying lunch with one of my favourite holiday companions, Krampus.

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Saturday, Dec. 10, 2022

It’s shortly after noon on a frigid Tuesday and I’m sitting in the food court at The Forks Market enjoying lunch with one of my favourite holiday companions, Krampus.

What’s in a name? Whatever you call your pet is still just as sweet

Doug Speirs 6 minute read Preview

What’s in a name? Whatever you call your pet is still just as sweet

Doug Speirs 6 minute read Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022

When my daughter moved home about three weeks ago after spending several years working and living in northwestern Ontario, she didn’t come alone.

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Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022

Pet parents are starting to show their love by naming their dog after Canadian goalkeeper Milan Borjan. (Alessandra Tarantino / The Associated Press)

Ho, ho, hold on a minute

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Ho, ho, hold on a minute

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2022

Jeff Liba had some big boots to fill on Tuesday morning — and he’ll be squeezing into them again today.

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Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Harmayra Side, grade one student from Brooklands School, talks to Amber Westra as Elsa at Variety’s annual Winter Wonderland party.

Dazzle fellow fans with loopy Grey Cup lore

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Dazzle fellow fans with loopy Grey Cup lore

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022

What with only one sleep left until the Big Game, it’s time for all you hardcore Winnipeg Blue Bomber fans to look in the mirror and ask yourselves a difficult question: Am I emotionally, physically and spiritually prepared to cheer my beloved Blue and Gold to victory against the despised Toronto Argonauts on Sunday in the 109th Grey Cup in Regina?

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Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES

Sunday will mark the first time since the 1950 “Mud Bowl” that the Bombers and Argonauts will meet in a battle for the CFL’s Holy Grail.

Love for CFL’s toothless Lions brings torment, taunting

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Love for CFL’s toothless Lions brings torment, taunting

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022

I was lounging on the couch in our den Monday afternoon when, suddenly and without warning, a text popped up on my cellphone.

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Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022

I was lounging on the couch in our den Monday afternoon when, suddenly and without warning, a text popped up on my cellphone.

I, for one, welcome our new feline overlord

Doug Speirs 6 minute read Preview

I, for one, welcome our new feline overlord

Doug Speirs 6 minute read Saturday, Nov. 5, 2022

There’s no easy way to say this, so I’m just going to blurt it out — my family is going to the dark side!

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Saturday, Nov. 5, 2022

There’s no easy way to say this, so I’m just going to blurt it out — my family is going to the dark side!

You can have my candy when you pry it out of my zombie hands

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

You can have my candy when you pry it out of my zombie hands

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022

There are only two more sleeps until Halloween, and I think all you protective parents know exactly what that means, don’t you?

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Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022

JUSTIN TANG / CANADIAN PRESS FILES

News reports this week stated that Halloween-loving Canadians will be coughing up more cash this year on treats to hand out to sugar-craving kids.

Once upon a time… a columnist turned into a puddle of goo

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Once upon a time… a columnist turned into a puddle of goo

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022

Grab a book and prepare to curl up on the carpet, kids, because today we are heading to the library for family storytime.

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Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022

Grab a book and prepare to curl up on the carpet, kids, because today we are heading to the library for family storytime.

It’s a dog-eat-remote-control world

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

It’s a dog-eat-remote-control world

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022

In the high-pressure world of big-time journalism, your classic dog-bites-man story doesn’t grab many headlines.

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Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022

In the high-pressure world of big-time journalism, your classic dog-bites-man story doesn’t grab many headlines.

Tables work their magic with dementia patients

Doug Speirs 7 minute read Preview

Tables work their magic with dementia patients

Doug Speirs 7 minute read Saturday, Oct. 8, 2022

Modern medicine can work wonders, but residents at Winnipeg’s Riverview Health Centre are discovering that a little magic can also transform the lives of people living with cognitive challenges.

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Saturday, Oct. 8, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

‘I love them. I think they are going to add a lot of value and benefit and improve quality of life for our residents. I’ve already seen the difference’

— Resident care manager Jacqueline Reimer, on the new Tovertafel

It’s a dog-eat-pumpkin-spice world… and I’m wearing whipped-cream underwear

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

It’s a dog-eat-pumpkin-spice world… and I’m wearing whipped-cream underwear

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022

For more than a decade, I have been using this column to rage against the ever-growing pumpkinification of North America.

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Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022

Hormel Foods released a pumpkin-spice version of Spam in 2019.

When it comes to style, I’m just playing ketchup

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

When it comes to style, I’m just playing ketchup

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Sep. 24, 2022

Regular readers will not be surprised to hear that, for most of my life, I have been a self-styled slob.

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Saturday, Sep. 24, 2022

Regular readers will not be surprised to hear that, for most of my life, I have been a self-styled slob.

Tims’ cookie campaign something to smile about

Doug Speirs 4 minute read Preview

Tims’ cookie campaign something to smile about

Doug Speirs 4 minute read Saturday, Sep. 17, 2022

When I reached Jane Kidd-Hantscher on her cellphone Wednesday morning, I could tell the executive director of the Children’s Rehabilitation Foundation wasn’t sitting behind her desk.

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Saturday, Sep. 17, 2022

DOUG SPEIRS / FREE PRESS FILES

Jane Kidd-Hantscher is the executive director of the Children’s Rehabilitation Foundation.

Three dog nights over: Joy returns to Doug’s world

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Three dog nights over: Joy returns to Doug’s world

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Sep. 10, 2022

Our three dog nights are about to end — and I could not be more relieved.

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Saturday, Sep. 10, 2022

Our three dog nights are about to end — and I could not be more relieved.

Now matter how you slice it, bacon’s worth celebrating

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Now matter how you slice it, bacon’s worth celebrating

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Sep. 3, 2022

Of all the special days on the calendar, today is arguably the most special of them all.

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Saturday, Sep. 3, 2022

Of all the special days on the calendar, today is arguably the most special of them all.

Vancouver visit turns into Hitchcock meets Animal House

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Vancouver visit turns into Hitchcock meets Animal House

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022

It was a sweltering afternoon in Vancouver and I was doing what I do every time I visit the West Coast — sweating like a Butterball turkey on Thanksgiving.

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Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022

It was a sweltering afternoon in Vancouver and I was doing what I do every time I visit the West Coast — sweating like a Butterball turkey on Thanksgiving.

Raising a glass to 102 great years of great-auntie Ann

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Raising a glass to 102 great years of great-auntie Ann

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022

I hate to brag, but here I am in Vancouver, sipping sangria in a hip and happening sidewalk café while soaking up the West Coast sunshine on a gorgeous late-summer day.

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Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022

DARRYL DYCK / CANADIAN PRESS FILES

Doug will be in Vancouver sitting in a sidewalk café, staring at the mountains and thinking about his beloved B.C. Lions.

One year of grandparenthood couldn’t feel finer

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

One year of grandparenthood couldn’t feel finer

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022

If you are wondering about that big, stupid grin plastered on my face, there’s a simple explanation.

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Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022

Supplied

Doug and his granddaughter, Ivy Ruth.

Cool level red-hot thanks to hand-me-down shades

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Cool level red-hot thanks to hand-me-down shades

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Aug. 6, 2022

There’s no easy way to say this, so I’m just going to blurt it out — after spending 65 years on this planet, I have finally become a hip and happening sort of guy.

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Saturday, Aug. 6, 2022

Canstar Community News

Doug has always felt that putting on a pair of sunglasses makes the following fashion statement: “Hey, look, I’m wearing sunglasses!”

A kayak? This landlubber’s good on the dock, thanks

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

A kayak? This landlubber’s good on the dock, thanks

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Jul. 30, 2022

I was stretched out on the couch in the den the other morning when, suddenly and without warning, the dogs began barking at something on the other side of the living room window.

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Saturday, Jul. 30, 2022

Golfer? Sure. I bucketed a birdie and an eagle just last week

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Preview

Golfer? Sure. I bucketed a birdie and an eagle just last week

Doug Speirs 5 minute read Saturday, Jul. 23, 2022

For the record, I am not one of those people who always dreamed about honing his skills on the golf course after retiring.

No, I am one of those people who dreamed about perfecting his ability to relax on the couch in the den and lapse into a coma while watching hour after hour of the Weather Network.

The point is, even though I am now in a state of semi-retirement, I still get invited to participate in charity golf tournaments because I am the sort of person who is willing to accept free food and prizes for doing absolutely nothing.

It is not easy, using mere words, to describe how horrible I am at the game of golf, but I am willing to give it the old columnist try: I am really, really horrible at golf! It would make more sense for me to buy a dozen golf balls, drive to the nearest course, then stand on the first tee and throw them into the woods without going to all the expense of shelling out for a cart and green fees.

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Saturday, Jul. 23, 2022

ETHAN CAIRNS / FREE PRESS FILES
If, by some pure stroke of luck, Doug does make contact with the ball, it will careen wildly into the trees like an injured woodland creature never to be seen again.