CBC weather specialist Kevin "Boomer" Gallant is, like his best friend and colleague Bruce Rainnie, not really a man who collects or shows off his "stuff."
But you can tell a lot about the good-natured jokester by the things he does have and enjoy.
Boomer, who's about to retire at the end of April, agreed to share some of his favourite things as part of our ongoing series profiling interesting Islanders through their treasured belongings.
1. Well-worn kitchen bakeware
Boomer is a superb baker — most of the staff at CBC can tell you this, as he often generously shares — and he loves to make giant, fluffy muffins and light, airy biscuits pretty much daily.
"Baking started I guess when my schedule opened up and I had a few more hours in my day," he said. "I carried on the tradition of my mum baking, and shared recipes with her, and got a little competitive with her. I'm awful, I'm very competitive!" he laughs.
2. A tidy greenhouse
One of Boomer's major passions is gardening — he loves to go over the top, designing with thousands of colourful annual plants he has grown from local seed in his 12-by-8 foot greenhouse.
Boomer and his partner Heather along with a neighbour built it last spring, replacing an aluminum one they'd purchased that he said "wasn't built for this part of the world" — it blew down in high winds.
He currently has 600 wave petunia seedlings in pinks and purples growing there, as well as coleus in wizard mix.
"I'm looking to extend it," Boomer said of the greenhouse, to fit several hundred more plants.
"You can never have enough flowers."
He and Heather plant two rounds of seedlings each summer — one in January and one in May.
3. Red Sox caps
Boomer has a ball cap collection to rival any Islander's, with the Boston Red Sox holding a majority share.
"I remember when I was in Grade 1 somebody brought me a souvenir program from Fenway Park [home of the Red Sox] and I just was fascinated with the logo," he shares.
"I've actually cried over the years when they've lost," he reveals. "The year they won the World Series, first time in 87 years, I had to go out and walk around in the dark, with the window open so I could still hear the game — you never know in a ball game. I never get headaches but I had a headache, I hardly slept that night!"
He wears caps on all but the coldest winter days, preferring the peak to a toque any day.
People have even brought in their ball caps to Boomer to work into a peak exactly like his.
4. Hawaiian shirts
Boomer is well known for wearing shorts and Hawaiian shirts well into the fall and first thing in the spring.
Here's why: he's hot. Literally, he is always warm. He sleeps with his bedroom window open all year round, with a fan, he said, so he doesn't overheat. And under those jackets he wears on television? You might be surprised to know — he usually wears nothing.
"I just have a high body core temperature," he explains.
His son Brad and daughter Allyson will be happy when his television days are over, he shares — they hope he'll retire the loud shirts, for which they've often teased him.
5. His weather stations
Just because Boomer won't be reporting the weather for CBC doesn't mean his love affair with weather science is over.
Boomer has seven weather stations — these are his favourite two, he said.
"They give me a little more info than other ones, they're a little more visible than other ones," Boomer said. "Some just give temperature inside and out, but I'm pretty keen on barometric pressure, it tells you a lot about what's coming up," he said.
If people are looking for a good one for home use, Lacrosse sells a good variety, he shared.
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