So, late January — a time overtaken for slushy heartbreak only by March. (Or in Newfoundland, sometimes May.)
I’m not one to deny that there can be great wonder to winter: dry cold and bright winter sun, snow squeaking under the edges of cross-country skis, a flat-bottomed kettle brewing tea over a small fire of spruce boughs. But when it’s snow and rain and re-freeze (you all know it), it’s nice to occasionally daydream about a simpler season, one without coats or boots.
So here are a few doses of summer medicine: take one, any one, but if it doesn’t help, please don’t call me in the morning.
Walking the abandoned rail line — now an ATV trail — in Conception Bay North, heading south towards Carbonear, you can batter down through the thorny wild raspberry and simple roses and make your way along a shallow brook and then head upriver, crossing back and forth on the flat rocks, past the spot where a fallen tree has temporarily redirected the flow and cut away a whole clay bank, man-high. Keep going while it straightens out, draining the marsh on both sides, hemmed by alder and conifer, and at your feet, small trout dart away in fast triangled ripples, terrified.
Then, you can shuck your clothes, slip your shambly and older-now body into the bathwater-warm river, ogled only by the hovering and curious dragonflies, 10 linear miles away from embarrassment while the afternoon bakes the bog and the perfume of hot…
We’ve had a lot to think about in the past couple of months on the topic of free speech, what with the Charlie Hebdo events in France, and at home here with the Dalhousie Dental School kerfuffle.
Free speech comes in a variety of forms ranging from commentary, criticism, mockery, insults and so-called hate speech. You can see the full spectrum of free speech every Sunday at Speakers Corner in London’s Hyde Park. This is an area where open-air public speaking, debate and discussion takes place. Speakers here talk on any subject, and mock and insult any person or institution they please, as long as the police that are present consider their speeches lawful.
In thinking of free speech, and when it is OK to say what you like about people and things, the lawfulness of what is said is just one consideration. In truth what is lawful allows you say whatever comes to mind, providing it does not incite violence and hatred towards certain minorities. However, society now seems to be considering a narrower definition of what is “appropriate” and more particularly “inappropriate” in limiting public free speech.
At one extreme, it seems to be quite acceptable for the sports media to have no mercy in mocking the recent form of the Toronto Maple Leafs along with insults directed at individual players and management; similarly with the fans. However, while Don Cherry considers those who show their dissatisfaction with the team by throwing their jerseys onto the ice at…
Due to the pending storm, the town of Sackville has decided to cancel its Family Day at Beech Hill Park Saturday, one of the main events of this weekend’s Winterfest festivities.
The Family Day, which was slated for 1 p.m. tomorrow, was set to feature sledding (including the first-ever cardboard box sled race), skiing, wagon rides, hot chocolate, and much more.
The Sackville Lions Club has also cancelled its Winterfest breakfast Saturday morning due to the coming weather.
The other town-organized events scheduled for today and Sunday will still go on, including a lunch at the Legion today starting at noon, the Shelley Bean & the Duckety Muds children’s concert this evening, and tonight’s outdoor skate/dance party with a big surprise finale at the lake. On Sunday, there will be a figure skating show at 1:30 p.m., a Let’s Talk Science booth at 2 p.m., and a free skate at 3 p.m., all at the Tantramar civic centre.
Keep checking back for further cancellations or phone the numbers listed in the schedule if unsure of whether an event is still on tomorrow.
More details at http://sackville.com/community/events/winterfest_2015/
“For the present form of this world is passing away.” – 1st Corinthians 7.31
Saint Paul at one point in his letter to the Corinthians says, “For the present form of this world is passing away.” Given recent world events many might say the present form of this world is not passing away fast enough. We’ve seen police brutality of young black citizens in the streets of American cities and the subsequent unrest. There are beheadings of hostages at the hands of extremists and most recently the terrorist attacks in Ottawa, Sydney and Paris. Of course the immediate, as it happens, media coverage keeps us glued to these events to see what happens next. I often wonder how these events affect our lives.
I see two real dangers in witnessing violent acts as they happen. Becoming de-sensitized to these events because they happen with such frequency is one danger. The feelings of revulsion we should feel could easily be replaced with an apathetic, “here we go again” attitude. A second more present danger I feel is how these events shape our attitudes and treatment of people of different races, colors and creeds.
Hopefully we all can conclude that the recent alleged cases of police brutality south of the border do not reflect the attitudes of all police officers. The vast majority of officers are there to maintain the law and assist citizens experiencing any manner of difficulties. However, there also must be an unbiased way of finding the truth when…
The Nova Scotia Supreme Court ruling in favour of Trinity Western University discriminatory views on gays has the unfortunate result that human rights are ignored once more. TWU requires students and staff sign a covenant agreement to agree not to engage in same-sex sexual activities.
Various provincial courts are in the midst of determining what is fair.
This is a sad day for our province as this decision has far-reaching consequences for the gay community. The court ruled that the N.S. Barristers Association does not have the right to refuse graduates from TWUs proposed law school.
I see this as a potential for discrimination by these future students. If they agree to sign such a document then it seems they are in agreement with such views. If not, then I assume they would not enter a school where such discrimination against gays is so prominent.
To state that a graduate from TWU would not necessarily refuse to take on a gay client is totally unreasonable as he/she has already indicated and signed a document that clearly discriminates and decidedly homophobic.
The Nova Scotia Human Rights Act states that it is prohibited to discriminate against an individual or class of individuals on account of sexual orientation. It is clear that Nova Scotia’s highest court does not take this act into consideration.
In a country where we pride ourselves as a front-runner on human rights and many other aspects of a caring nation, we would expect a country where we practice respect…
Landlords just had another worry added to their list: tenants leaving animals behind.
There seems to be an epidemic of it happening. People are abandoning cats and dogs in apartments and rental houses. They just up and move away and either toss their pets outside to fend for themselves in the elements or leave them locked up with no food, water or heat to die a horrible death.
Just recently, the media reported on a man in New Brunswick who moved away and left his dog, Diesel, to starve to death in a rental home. He skipped out on the rent, told everyone he gave the dog away, and simply left. Weeks later, when his landlord went to the home, she found an emaciated dog corpse and the house trashed. The poor dog had destroyed everything trying to find food. In a cruel twist, the landlord said there was a full bag of dog food in the cupboard. I can only call this man, who left his dog to die, a monster, because to me that's what he is.
Closer to home, the Nova Scotia SPCA took into custody over 20 cats in an Amherst apartment after their owner moved out of province, having allegedly asked another person to come in and feed them. Once again, what's wrong with these people? Both the owner of the cats and the person who was supposed to care for them (but didn't) should be left in a cold apartment to starve and see…