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Posts Tagged ‘Canada’

[GAC_Canada] Canada agrees to pay millions to indigenous people taken from their homes

In Writing (all kinds) on October 23, 2017 at 7:26 PM

The Associated Press Published 4:51 p.m. ET Oct. 6, 2017

First Nations people wait for the Walk for Reconciliation to begin in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. The two-kilometer walk was held to promote positive relations between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Canada. (Photo: Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

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TORONTO — The Canadian government has agreed to pay compensation to indigenous people who were taken from their homes and adopted into non-indigenous families.

Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett announced the settlement Friday in what’s known as the “Sixties Scoop.” Indigenous children were robbed of their cultural identities by being placed with non-native families by child welfare services during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. Many lost touch with their culture and language.

The settlement for an estimated 20,000 people is aimed at resolving numerous related lawsuits. The victims will share 750 million Canadian dollars ($596 million), with individual amounts to be determined later. Many said they expected a settlement of around 50,000 Canadian dollars each.

Lead plaintiff Marcia Brown Martel, who was taken by child welfare officials and adopted by a non-native family, called events the “stealing of children.”

“I have great hope that because we’ve reached this plateau that this will never, ever happen in Canada again,” said Brown Martel, who was placed in the foster system as a child and suffered emotional, physical and sexual abuse.

Many had mixed emotions about the settlement.

“I had no idea I was native until I was a teenager,” Colleen Cardinal told The Associated Press. Cardinal was taken from her biological family at the age of two in Alberta and adopted into a non-indigenous family in Ontario along with her two older sisters. She said her sisters were sexually molested by their adopted father.

“There were ongoing attempts to assimilate our people into the mainstream culture,” she said, adding that the settlement doesn’t amount to much.

“It’s quite disappointing,” she said. “It’s quite low. It should be CA$80,000 or $100,000. A lot of us were taken out of the province, out of the country, taken so far away from our families.” Cardinal now lives with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Ontario Superior Court Justice Edward Belobaba ruled in February that Canada had breached its “duty of care” to the children and found the government liable.

A tearful Bennett, the government minister, said she couldn’t understand how it was allowed to happen.

“I don’t know what people were thinking,” she said.

The settlement package also includes up to 50 million Canadian dollars for a healing and reconciliation foundation.

The agreement is a “first step” in resolving Sixties Scoop litigation, Bennett added, noting the federal government is committed to working with other indigenous peoples affected.

The Sixties Scoop echoes the history of residential schools in Canada.

Some 150,000 First Nations, Inuit and Metis children were taken from their families over much of the last century and put in government schools, where they were forced to convert to Christianity and not allowed to speak their native languages. Many were beaten and verbally abused, and up to 6,000 are said to have died.

Canada’s previous prime minister made a historic apology in 2008 to residential school survivors.

Life in Canada by Joy (A Pseudonym)

In Writing (all kinds) on October 6, 2017 at 10:20 AM

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.         

                                                             Romans 8:28

 

I moved to Toronto in August 2010. As I started my new life in Toronto I did not know a single person. I was not prepared for the high rental prices of Toronto and, after being priced out of rental housing close to the University, I finally ended up renting almost an hour away by bus and subway from the university.  During the first year, I spent a lot of time traveling as well as studying and found that my greatest challenge concerned my housing environment rather than academics.  The problem was that I had neighbors (a couple) in my apartment that liked to turn loud the movie/music and fight and drink until the early morning. I called the building security guard/manager and reported them 3 or 4 times per week. Eventually, they became tired of me and said that I had to report it to the police by myself. I lived in the building until my contract of one year was up.

In my second year, I lived in a five-story building of a Jewish owner. This time, I had issues that arose regarding both loud music and loud children as well as the dirty state of the building.  I was once again seen as a troublemaker because I complained so much. This time I reached the unbearable point one day when I discovered a dead mouse on the bathroom floor that had seemed to come from a small hole in my closet. Again, as soon as my one-year contract ended I left the apartment.                    

I then decided I needed a new approach to housing.  My solution was to seek a rental room in a house. I lived with a Chinese couple about two years and after that they wanted to sell the house. So quickly, I found another new place. Now I continue to rent a small room in a house of another Chinese couple.                                  

The years quickly passed and are now almost a blur.  I met many good people who I learned with and from. I studied hard and was completely satisfied with every single grade I received except for one where the professor made it very clear that failure to support her views on a particular social topic in the class discussion would be penalized.  It was the one class where I felt dissatisfied with my grade.  

Otherwise, I had some very good professors.  I hesitate to mention specific professors because I fear I might leave out other good ones.  However, there was one professor that I do have to mention. He had received an early Confucian oriented education that was probably much like mine and he had later somehow ended up teaching at the university.  The reason I have to mention him is that he is living proof that you do not have to be a native English speaker and a cultural native to be an effective teacher of learners who are. The Chinese Confucian educational model has a term for those who have traveled far along the Dao, the way of the Heavens.  The term used for such a person/teacher is “junzi”. This particular teacher made me proud to be Confucian Chinese in the background. His superior knowledge, his ethical treatment of learners, and his kind caring attitude toward learning and learners gave clear evidence of his progress along the Dao and of his status as junzi.

At present, I have finished my work at the university this year and have received the degree toward which my effort for so long has been aimed.  However, it was with deepest thanks and appreciation to all my dear OISE professors, friends, colleagues and OISE staff that I ended my journey in Toronto. I understood that without their spiritual support, suggestions, encouragement and their help, I would not have finished.

My next step is following God’s instruction where He wants me to serve Him.

The New Canadian Experience from Joy (Pen Name)

In Writing (all kinds) on August 3, 2017 at 8:48 PM

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23)

Canadians are kind people!

I am from East Asia.  Before I came to Toronto, my first residence was in Calgary for about three months.  I was used to a subtropical island climate and when I came it was winter in Calgary.  It was the winter that I learned that minus 40 degrees Celsius is the same as minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Talk about a shock. The cold was unbelievable but even more unbelievable was that I saw a man wearing shorts.  I thought, what tough people these Canadians must be!

I wanted to work and after searching work advertisements, I discovered that there was an opening in a school for children with disabilities. This interested me, so after an adventure wading in snow up to my waist I arrived at the school. (The woman at the subway stop said the school was just over the hill so instead of continuing around the hill on the subway, I got off and tried to walk over the hill on private land.  After being chased by dogs and wondering if it was possible to drown in the snow, I arrived but I am sure I looked very sorry.)

The authorities of the school were very friendly and gave me a tour.  However, when I asked about working, I was reminded how naïve I was.  The vice-principal told me I was eligible to be a teacher at the school but only if I had an Alberta teaching license. Since I could not work at the school I decided to do volunteer work and my experience there revealed how kind Canadians are to children with disabilities.

Canadians are the kindest culture I have seen to children who have disabilities. True, it was only one school in one province and I only volunteered for a couple of months but it was such a kind atmosphere; kindness for the different levels of disabled children, kindness in giving them and their parents real respect (not pity) and in trying to give the children a chance to learn up to their potential, and the kindness shown in the quality of the facility and the investment that Canadians make in children who have limited chance to return interest on the investment. Though the characteristics of the students were different than in other schools, the staff, teachers, and administrators were just as serious and just as committed as schools for other children.  Even their language was respectful.  There was no use of terms like retarded or even crippling.  It was a learning place where even the weakest were respected and loved and it was a place that beat with sounds of a kind Canadian heart.

I did not know it then but Canadian kindness to disabled children is only one of the ways that Canada is kind.  I have later discovered their kindness toward the “exile,” their kindness toward other cultures, and even their kindness toward those who blame Canada for their own misery.

I will continue to talk about these kindnesses as well as other things that I see in Canada in my next articles.

Cheers,

Joy

Shea Butter Market

In Writing (all kinds) on July 28, 2017 at 10:35 AM
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JULY 2017SHEA BUTTER MARKET NEWSLETTER 

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We look forward to regularly updating our website & offering promotions & sales offers to our Shea Butter Market friends & supporters.

 

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(Shea Butter Market Founder)

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Our entire line of Shea Butter Marketproducts are on sale and waiting for you to enjoy or gift to someone special in your life.

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FACE SO PURE: Nature’s Shea Gift

All gift baskets come with a complimentary 100% pure hibiscus tea blend, and a 20% off coupon towards your next purchase!

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Toronto African Film & Music Festival

In Writing (all kinds) on July 1, 2017 at 5:07 PM

The Toronto African Film & Music Festival will be taking place from August 24, 2017, to August 26, 2017, at the Kingsway Community Life Centre at 186 Spadina Avenue. The opening film is an Egyptian film which is celebrating 100 years this year. The festival is looking for sponsorship. When you sponsor $250.00 CAD or more, you will receive five free passes to attend the festival which is savings of 60% on your sponsorship donation. Come celebrate the films, music, and fashion of African continent and all the diversity of Africa.

For more information, here is the website: http://torontoafricanfilmmusicfest.com/

For more information on how to become a sponsor, please contact me, Donna Kakonge, Festival Director at donna@torontoafricanfilmmusicfest.com

 

With this Ring Movie Event in Montréal, Canada

In Writing (all kinds) on April 3, 2017 at 11:55 AM
Ameesha Joshi invited you to With This Ring‘s event
With This Ring | Montreal Premiere
Monday, April 3 at 7 PM
Concordia University – Hall Building in Montreal, Quebec
Going
Interested
Not Interested
Back to where it all began! We’re thrilled to be finally showing our film in Montreal AND at Concordia University. We first met while studying at Concordia’s Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema and starte…

Change of Address for A Different Booklist in Toronto, ON, Canada

In Writing (all kinds) on March 22, 2017 at 12:17 PM

CHANGE OF ADDRESS

Greetings to all our suppliers,

This is to inform you that A Different Booklist has now relocated to a new address:

A Different Booklist

779 Bathurst Street

Toronto, ON

M5S 0B7

Our previous change of address notice had the wrong postal code. Please note the correct postal code above.

Please also update the following information:

Tel: 416 538 0889

Fax: 416 901 1662

Email: info@adifferentbooklist.com

Website: http://www.adifferentbooklist.com

All orders not yet shipped should be shipped to the new location at 779 Bathurst St.

Best Regards,

Miguel San Vicente

A Different Booklist

Have Fun in the Snow

In Entertainment, Living, Writing (all kinds) on March 23, 2015 at 3:00 AM

It’s here, so you might as well enjoy it. It’s snow, and if plenty has fallen in your area, there are many ways you can make of the most of it.

Read the rest of this entry »

Minister Fantino Names Major-General (R) Richard Rohmer as D-Day Special Advisor

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, cars, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Restaurant Reviews, Sports, Technology, travel, Uncategorized, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on October 17, 2013 at 3:39 PM

OTTAWA, Oct. 17, 2013 /CNW/ – The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs, today named Major-General (R) Richard Rohmer as his special advisor on D-Day commemorative events as the Government of Canadaprepares for the upcoming 70th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy on June 6, 2014.

“I am delighted that such a distinguished Veteran is sharing his experience and providing his input to the commemorative activities for D-Day, which many consider was the beginning of the end of the Second World War,” said Minister Fantino. “His incredible personal experience and expertise will help to ensure that Canada’s Veterans will be recognized and remembered on such an important anniversary.” Read the rest of this entry »

Minister Kenney urges employers to find skilled workers at home

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, cars, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Restaurant Reviews, Sports, Technology, travel, Uncategorized, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on October 17, 2013 at 3:35 PM

CALGARY, Oct. 17, 2013 /CNW/ – In a keynote speech today at the very first Skilled Migration National Employer Conference, the Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, emphasized the importance of addressing skills shortages to support economic growth and long-term prosperity in Canada. Read the rest of this entry »

New Northern Ontario Hydroelectric Project Creating Jobs‏

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, cars, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Restaurant Reviews, Sports, Technology, travel, Uncategorized, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on August 15, 2013 at 3:00 AM
Ontario Newsroom Ontario Newsroom
News Release

New Northern Ontario Hydroelectric Project Creating Jobs

August 6, 2013

Province Building Long-Term Equity Partnership with First Nations

Ontario is creating up to 100 new construction jobs in Northern Ontario while renewing its commitment to clean, renewable electricity with the New Post Creek hydroelectric project.

Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and its partner, Coral Rapids Power, a wholly owned company of the Taykwa Tagamou Nation (TTN), are moving forward to develop approximately 25 megawatts (MW) of renewable hydroelectric power through the construction of a generating station on New Post Creek near its outlet to the Abitibi River.

The New Post Creek project builds on the expertise and capacity developed in recent Northern Ontario hydroelectric projects, such as the Lower Mattagami project. The new project will include construction of a generating station, a dam and powerhouse. Associated activities will include improvements to existing access roads, establishment of a construction site and installation of a transmission line.

This project supports Ontario’s goal to facilitate the participation of First Nation and Métis communities in renewable energy and transmission projects while building strong communities, powered by clean, reliable energy.

QUICK FACTS

  • Construction of the New Post Creek generating station will begin in 2014 and is expected to be in service by 2017.
  • Construction of the Lower Mattagami project started in 2010 and will add about 440 MW of clean electricity generating capacity to Ontario’s energy grid, while providing $2.6 billion of investment in the North.
  • OPG operates 13 generating stations in Northeastern Ontario with a capacity of over 1,000 MW of clean, renewable hydroelectric power. Altogether, Ontario has nearly 8,200 MW of installed waterpower.
  • Over the past 10 years, Ontario has brought more than 3,300 MW of renewable energy online — enough to power 900,000 homes each year.
  • Ontario is committed to working with Aboriginal partners to ensure they are able to benefit from and participate in resource development opportunities across the province.

LEARN MORE

QUOTES

“Hydroelectric power has long been a central pillar in the government’s renewable electricity portfolio and will continue to play a crucial role in our energy mix. This partnership also offers a natural transition for the First Nations workforce in the region as they continue to develop expertise in hydro development in the province.”
— Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Energy
“OPG is proud of the commercial partnership we have built with TTN and other Ontario First Nations. We are one step closer to seeing our partnership create substantial benefits for TTN’s community and this region, including education and training, jobs, economic investment and an additional 25 MW of clean, renewable hydropower”
— Tom Mitchell , President and CEO, Ontario Power Generation
“This important partnership between Coral Rapids Power & Ontario Power Generation will provide Taykwa Tagamou Nation with a long-term investment opportunity for a sustainable economic base for the community. We look forward to working with the Ministry of Energy & OPG on the New Post Creek Project, which will also provide benefits to the surrounding municipalities with economic development opportunities and creating employment.”
— Chief Linda Job, Taykwa Tagamou Nation

CONTACTS

Beckie Codd-Downey
Minister’s Office
416-325-2690
beckie.codd-downey@ontario.ca

Kirby Dier
Communications Branch
416-326-4542
kirby.dier@ontario.ca

Ministry of Energy
http://www.ontario.ca/energy

 


 

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Edleun Announces change to Board and Management Team

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, cars, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Restaurant Reviews, Sports, Technology, travel, Uncategorized, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on January 29, 2013 at 3:00 AM

CALGARY, Jan. 4, 2013 /CNW/ – Edleun Group, Inc. (“Edleun” or the “Company“) (TSXV: EDU), the leading provider of quality early childhood education and care in Canada, today announced that Mr. Leslie Wulf has resigned from his role as Vice Chairman and as a director of the Company, effective immediately, to pursue other opportunities. Read the rest of this entry »

Zipcar Launches Membership Offer with No Annual Fee

In cars, Writing (all kinds) on January 25, 2013 at 3:00 AM

Zero Membership Fee ‘Access Plan’ Starts in Canada

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Jan. 4, 2013 /CNW/ – Zipcar, Inc. (Nasdaq: ZIP), the world’s leading car sharing network, today announced a new weekday, no annual fee driving program called the ‘Access Plan,’ which will be introduced as a pilot program in Toronto and Vancouver, Canada. Read the rest of this entry »

CRTC invites Canadians to comment on northern telecommunications services

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Sports, Technology, travel, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on December 11, 2012 at 3:00 AM
OTTAWA-GATINEAU, December 6, 2012 — Today, the Canadian Radio-television
and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) launched a public consultation on
the telecommunications services that Northwestel provides to northern
Canadians. Following this consultation, a public hearing will be held on
June 17, 2013, in Inuvik, Northwest Territories and June 19, 2013, in
Whitehorse, Yukon. Read the rest of this entry »

Diverse women of the North (Originally Published with Amöi Magazine)

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Health, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, travel, Writing (all kinds) on February 8, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Image result for Yellowknife Canada

Yellowknife is a well-kept Canadian secret.

Kate Wilson who is the Director of Family Housing for the YWCA in Yellowknife is from Ghana. She is a teacher by profession, trained in Ghana. Wilson did adult education at Aurora College in Yellowknife, as well as taking career development and life skills coaching through the YWCA. She’s been living in the city for 12 years with her husband, who is an electrical engineer, and their four children. Wilson currently finds housing for people who are temporarily homeless.

“It’s a very enjoyable job and very rewarding,” she says. “You’re working with people and with families so I have the opportunity to be with children and their parents and to be in their lives. I have a wonderful staff and we all work with the clients that come here and you see their lives going from A to B to C. It’s good to see the humankind going in a very positive way. There’s a joy in giving, it’s a selfish reason too. When you give, it comes back to you. I really enjoy the work I do here. Working with people from all walks of life. Not many people get the opportunity to do that. It’s a beautiful thing.”
Wilson calls Yellowknife the United Nations of Canada.

“You find everybody from everywhere,” she says. “It used to be that there weren’t too many black people, now you find people from all over.”

Wilson describes Yellowknife as a small town with a small-town way of living.
“The air is so clean, we don’t get smog and all those things,” she says. “It’s actually nice to breathe up here. There’s work here, with all the economic boom. We find quite a few black people coming here. If you want work, you’ll get work. For a black person living here, colour is not really a barrier. When I first came here I worked for the Native Women’s Association. Colour is not a barrier, not as far as my life has been in Yellowknife. From my view, I’m very well accepted.”

Yellowknife is such a close-knit community that when the Ambassador to Ghana came to the city, Wilson was able to entertain the Ambassador in her home.

“I brought her to my home,” she says. “Could you do that in a big city? We all gathered together in my home. That’s the beauty of Yellowknife, it’s easy to access. Theresa Handley with the Status of Women and her husband is the Premier of the North West Territories. Joe had lived in Ghana before…we’ve had a beautiful relationship since then – it’s easy to access. When you go to Toronto and you see all those people hovering around with degrees and they don’t have jobs. They should come up north. Canadians haven’t really taken the time to know Canada’s north. If you want a relaxing, restful life – Yellowknife is where to live.”

Sandy Lee agrees with Wilson. Lee was elected to the 14th Legislative Assembly of the Northwest Territories in 1999. She was re-elected to the 15th Legislative Assembly in 2003. For both elections, she was one of two women elected and she is the highest-ranking Korean-Canadian elected official in Canada and the world.

“It’s a surprise to me because I never would have imagined I would be in politics growing up in Korea,” says Lee. “I was 14 years old when I left Korea. We came to Yellowknife. Nobody ever talked about politics, but when I got here, I thought of Canada as a land of opportunity, somewhere where I could go to as much schooling as possible. It’s very expensive to go to schooling in Korea. All I wanted to do here is get schooling, I didn’t care about the degree.”

Lee started a business degree in Calgary but eventually graduated in political science from Carleton University in Ottawa with the encouragement of a friend.

“I absolutely fell in love with politics,” she says. “It was the best thing that ever happened to me. I came from such an underprivileged background, especially studying politics I felt so empowered. I was practicing law away from politics and someone asked me to run a campaign.”

It was right after Nunavut and there were positions coming up. Lee figured if she didn’t get in, she would get back into law. It turned out she beat out four guys.

“When I went door-to-door, I realized all these people were people I grew up with,” Lee says. “Every second door I knew them, or they knew someone I knew or my family. I didn’t have a political profile, but I had a good reputation.”

Lee gives talks to the Korean community and other ethnic minorities in Canada.

“Everyone looks for economic power first,” she says. “People know how to do that. But I think we need to know that we need to be involved in the political process. More minorities getting elected and the composition of our political institutions should reflect our diverse backgrounds.”

Lee notes that there are 160 countries represented in Yellowknife.

“I went to the citizenship swearing-in ceremony last winter and there were 200 people sworn in, and they were from every country you can imagine living in the north,” Lee says. “The diamond industry has brought a lot of new people. We have six or seven families from Mauritius. We have people from Nigeria, Somalia, Uganda, Thailand. When I was growing up 30 years ago, we had Chinese business people here. We have a huge Filipino population here compared to other places. The colour of our city has changed over the years. A lot of diamond producers here are from Australia, South Africa. Hardly any Koreans here. I’m just a Yellowknife girl.”

Measha Brueggergosman Asks Canadians to Take Care of Their Hearts for the Ones They Love

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Sports, Technology, travel, Writing (all kinds) on January 20, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Image result for Measha Brueggergosman

Internationally-acclaimed Canadian soprano shares her heart health wake-up call and helps Becel®, founding sponsor of The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s The Heart Truth™ campaign, raise awareness of women’s heart health

TORONTO, Jan. 18, 2012 /CNW/ – As mothers, wives, daughters, friends, and pillars of their communities, many Canadian women are quick to put their own needs aside for the benefit of others. Whether it’s caring for an aging parent, dropping everything for a sick child, or inspiring those around them to be and do their best, women are no strangers to self-sacrifice. Yet while their hearts are in the right place, their heart health may not be – and as a result, one in three Canadian women die each year from heart disease and stroke.

That’s why Becel®, the founding sponsor of The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s The Heart Truth™ campaign, has partnered with award-winning Canadian opera singer Measha Brueggergosman to spread a potentially lifesaving message to help empower Canadian women to protect their heart health. Measha underwent emergency open-heart surgery in 2009 after a near brush with death due to a dissected aorta.

“Even though I spent a lot of time in my 20s trying to get and stay ‘healthy’ by losing weight, I completely neglected factors like blood pressure and high cholesterol. As a result, I ended up in a scary emergency situation and now need to keep a close eye on my heart health for the rest of my life,” said Brueggergosman. “So many women don’t realize that if they don’t look after their own hearts first, they might not be there to take care of the people they love. I hope my story reminds Canadian women to protect and cherish their heart health.”

The facts are heartbreaking but true: heart disease and stroke is the #1 killer of women in Canada – and in 2008 alone, there were seven times more deaths among Canadian women from heart disease and stroke than from breast cancer2.

Know Your Number, Know Your Risk
A survey conducted by Becel® found that almost 70 percent of Canadians – about 20 million people – don’t know their own cholesterol number3. Yet it’s estimated that as many as 10 million Canadian adults have a cholesterol level that is higher than the recommended target4.

“Knowing their cholesterol number is one easy step that all Canadians can take to help reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke since high blood cholesterol is a key risk factor for the disease,” said Maria Ricupero, registered dietitian. “In fact, women can proactively reduce their risk for heart disease and stroke by as much as 80 percent by making lifestyle changes and taking action to improve their health.”

To help address this issue, Becel®, in its role as founding sponsor of the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s The Heart Truth™ campaign, is offering free cholesterol screening tests at eight malls and in more than 200 stores across the country during the month of February. Visit http://www.becel.ca for more information about testing locations and to learn more about heart-healthy living, or speak with a doctor about getting a cholesterol test.

Get pro.activ about Heart Health
Brueggergosman’s family has also seen its share of heart issues. In fact, her father had to undergo a quadruple bypass a few years ago, and there is a history of heart problems and diabetes in her family. Her mother, Ann Gosman, is also now acutely aware of how lifestyle choices can impact heart health.

“My family has seen so much heartache – literally – over the past few years, and I can truly say from experience that the time is now for a wake-up call for Canadian women to start taking care of their heart health,” said Gosman. “I want women to know that they should feel empowered when it comes to their heart health because it is possible to help control this disease. Proper diet and exercise are priorities in my life, and I make sure to get my cholesterol checked on a regular basis.”

Diet plays a critical role in heart health, and a healthy diet low in saturated and trans fats may reduce the risk of heart disease. Eating foods with plant sterols can also help significantly reduce cholesterol levels.

“Plant sterols can help lower blood cholesterol by partially blocking cholesterol absorption into the bloodstream,” said Ricupero. “They’re found naturally in vegetables, fruits, and nuts, but it’s challenging to get the amount recommended to lower cholesterol from these foods alone – so that’s why foods with plant sterols can help.”

One serving (two teaspoons) of Becel® pro.activ® calorie-reduced margarine with plant sterols provides 40 percent of the daily amount of plant sterols shown to help lower cholesterol in adults.

For more information, visit http://www.becel.ca.

About The Heart Truth™ campaign
The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s The Heart Truth campaign is calling on women to put their own health first, make heart-healthy lifestyle changes, recognize heart attack and stroke symptoms and seek prompt treatment. Heart disease and stroke is the # 1 killer of women in Canada, but most don’t know it. Heart disease is not a “man’s disease”: women are more likely than men to die of a heart attack or stroke. But by taking care of themselves and making incremental heart-healthy lifestyle changes, women can add more years to their life and more life to their years. In fact, women can reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke by as much as 80 percent by making lifestyle changes. The Red Dress is the official symbol of The Heart Truth campaign. It represents women’s courage, passion and their power for change as they share the truth with others and raise awareness about the importance of heart health. To find out more, visit http://www.thehearttruth.ca.

About Becel®
Becel® has always believed in the importance of caring for your heart. It’s why Becel® margarine was created, and why the brand remains dedicated to educating Canadians about the importance of heart-healthy living. Through its development of educational resources to help Canadians manage their heart health, its founding sponsorship of The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s The Heart Truth™ campaign, and in the development of products such as Becel® pro.activ® calorie-reduced margarine with plant sterols, the first food with plant sterols in Canada, Becel® maintains its commitment to heart health innovation and education. For more information, visit http://www.becel.ca.

About Unilever
Unilever is one of the world’s leading suppliers of fast moving consumer goods with strong operations in more than 100 countries and sales in 180. With products that are used over two billion times a day around the world, we work to create a better future every day and help people feel good, look good and get more out of life with brands and services that are good for them and good for others. In Canada the portfolio includes brand icons such as: Axe, Becel, Ben & Jerry’s, Bertolli, Breyers, Degree, Dove personal care products, Good Humor, Hellmann’s, Klondike, Knorr, Lipton, Nexxus, Noxzema, Popsicle, Q-Tips, Ragu, Skippy, St. Ives, TIGI, TRESemmé, and Vaseline. All of the preceding brand names are registered trademarks of the Unilever Group of Companies. Unilever Canada employs more than 1,600 people generating approximately $1.4 billion in sales in 2011. For more information, please visit http://www.unilever.ca.

____________________________________
1 Statistics Canada. Mortality Summary list of Causes, 2008.
2Statistics Canada. CVD – 34,909; Breast cancer – 4,955. 34,909 divided by 4,955 = 7.046. Per Stats Canada, November 2011.
3 A total of 1,521 Canadians over the age of 18 answered an online survey between December 6th and December 9th, 2010. The survey was conducted by Leger Marketing. For a copy of the survey results, please contact Edelman.
4 Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. http://www.heartandstroke.com/site/c.ikIQLcMWJtE/b.3483991/k.34A8/Statistics.htm Accessed October 11, 2011.)

CRTC releases 2010 financial results for Canadian television services‏

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Sports, Technology, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on June 7, 2011 at 3:00 AM

CRTC Has Made Decisions, Including Affecting the CBC – Photo Courtesy of Google Images

CRTC releases 2010 financial results for Canadian television services

OTTAWA-GATINEAU, June 2, 2011 —The Canadian Radio-television and
Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) today released statistical and
financial information on Canadian television showing increased profits for
all services for the broadcast year ending August 31, 2010. The data
includes information from conventional television stations and specialty,
pay and pay-per-view television services, as well as video-on-demand
services (pay and specialty services).

Profitability

Private conventional television

Revenues for private conventional television grew by 9% from $1.97 billion
in 2009 to approximately $2.15 billion in 2010. Expenses during the same
period increased by 1.7% from $2.01 billion in 2009 to $2.05 billion in
2010. As a result, profits before interest and taxes (PBIT) improved
significantly from a deficit of $116.6 million in 2009 to a profit of
$11.5 million in 2010 for a PBIT margin of 0.5%.

Pay and specialty services

Revenues for pay and specialty services grew by 11.1 % from $3.11 billion
in 2009 to approximately $3.46 billion in 2010. Expenses during the same
period were 8.1% higher, going from $2.31 billion to $2.49 billion.
Therefore, PBIT for pay and specialty services improved from $728.6
million in 2009 to $877.3 million in 2010 for a PBIT margin of 25.4%.

Sources of revenues

Private conventional television

The total revenues of $2.15 billion for private conventional television
were generated from the following sources:

$350 million in local advertising,
$1.6 billion from national advertising,
$65.9 million from the Local Programming Improvement Fund, and
$117.9 million from other sources.

Pay and specialty services

The total revenues of $3.5 billion for pay and specialty services were
generated from the following sources:

$1.58 billion from cable television subscribers
$668 million from direct-to-home satellite subscribers
$1.09 billion from national advertising
$19.6 million from local advertising, and
$99.9 million from other sources.

Canadian programming

After stagnating in 2009, investment in Canadian programming increased by
12.6% for private conventional television and 8.8% for pay and specialty
services.

Private conventional television

Spending on Canadian programming totaled $696.3 million, including $304.6
million on news programs, $50.9 million on documentaries and other
information programs, $141 million on sports programming, $85.5 million on
drama and $21.7 million on musical and variety shows.

Pay and specialty services

Spending on Canadian programming totaled $1.12 billion, including $179.6
million on news programs, $258.4 million on documentaries and other
information programs, $353.2 million on sports programming, $143.6 million
on drama, and $42.4 million on musical and variety shows.

Employment

In 2010, these sectors of the broadcasting industry employed 11,761 people
and paid a total of $925.3 million in salaries. Private conventional
television experienced a workforce decrease of 6.3% in 2010, while the pay
and specialty services workforce remained relatively stable.

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation/Société Radio-Canada

The 2010 conventional television report also includes financial and
statistical information related to the operations of CBC/SRC. In 2010,
the national public broadcaster experienced an increase in advertising
revenues of 14.1% over the 2009 year representing $338.8 million of
advertising.

CRTC reports

Each year, the CRTC compiles financial data on the Canadian broadcasting
and telecommunications industries to produce a series of reports. In the
coming weeks, the CRTC will release the financial results for radio and
broadcasting distribution.

This will be followed by the release of the CRTC’s annual Communications
Monitoring Report, which provides an overview of the Canadian
telecommunications and broadcasting industries.

These annual reports allow interested parties to stay informed about the
state of the Canadian communications industry.

Conventional Television – Statistical and Financial Summaries 2006–2010
http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/publications/reports/BrAnalysis/tv2010/tv2010.htm

Pay Television, Pay-Per-View, Video-On-Demand and Specialty Services –
Statistical and Financial Summaries 2006–2010
http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/publications/reports/branalysis/psp2010/psp2010.htm

The CRTC

The CRTC is an independent public authority that regulates and supervises
broadcasting and telecommunications in Canada.

Quebec: a case of cultural and linguistic imperialism?

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Sports, Technology, travel, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on September 9, 2010 at 3:00 AM

Quebec - September 9, 2010

Gaetan Tremblay’s essay poses the question – “is Quebec culture doomed to become American?” He answers that there is a real threat of cultural invasion. But, the situation is not that bad, he writes, at least in the early 1990s when the article came out.

This paper is a critical analysis of Tremblay’s essay. After a brief summary of the article, some points of criticism will be raised, followed by questions arising from the work. There will also be an attempt made to update Tremblay’s article by referring to the recent television ratings in Montreal done by the Bureau of Broadcast Measurement (BBM). The results of an informal survey will also be used to update the ideas presented by Tremblay.

Tremblay uses certain data concerning television supply and demand. He beings his thesis by citing the Broadcasting Act, and then reviews those elements which highlight broadcasting as a service to preserving Canadian culture. The Quebec government’s effort to defend and develop Quebecois culture is also examined. He contrasts this notion with the American one to see cultural products as commodities like any other, subject to free market rules. In the essay, Tremblay presents his research and makes observations. He notes that two-thirds of all programs broadcast by Quebecois networks are of Canadian origin. The remaining third of programming is foreign. Public television has slight higher quotas than private television. The situation in programming is in the area of entertainment, particularly drama programming, which includes series, “teleromans,” films, and cartoons. Films make up the bulk of these programs, and more of these films are of American origin.

Tremblay observes that there is a strong presence of American products. However, he says the 50 percent proportion is not out of control. The reason it is not out of control is that of the language barrier, CRTC regulations, and view preferences. The BBM reports that Quebecois programming makes up the majority of the 20 most watch programs. Tremblay asserts that the Quebecois want to keep their protective policies and regulations for fear that the problem will deteriorate. This fear stems from four things: the proximity of America, the limited internal market, Quebec’s status as a linguistic minority in North America, and market rules favour American products.

Though Tremblay accomplishes much in his essay, it does have some shortcomings. For instance, Tremblay asserts that the Quebecois want to keep protective policies and regulations on Quebecois culture, but he does not support this claim with any data or evidence. Since throughout the essay he supports his ideas with data and his own research, it seems odd that his claim in the essay has none. In the data that Tremblay uses, it would have been interesting to have an age breakdown. To know what younger people are watching would give some sense of the future of Quebecois television viewing habits.

Another shortcoming of Tremblay’s article is that he sets out to answer a question about Quebecois culture by only looking at television. What the Quebecois watch on TV is only a portion of what the culture is. If Tremblay really wants an accurate answer to the question and title of his essay, his research will have to include more than just television.

Throughout the essay on television and Quebecois culture, many questions arise: should cultural products be commodities like any other and thus be subject to market rules? What happens to a cultural form when you change the language? Does it become part of the culture, is it recreated? What is Quebecois culture? Should there continue to be laws protecting Quebecois culture? Tremblay’s essay was written in 1992. The most recent part of his data is from 1990. Tremblay’s article raises some very important issues that are still relevant today. In order to update the information in this article, an informal survey was conducted and recent reports of the BBM were consulted.

BBM conducts surveys for its members, who include media organizations across Canada, both Francophone, and Anglophone. It selects a sample of the population to see what they are watching on TV and listening to on the radio. For the purpose of this analysis, only the share of the television market in the extended Montreal area was consulted. Particularly, the Francophone stations were compared the American stations in terms of viewing habits in primetime, from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. Ratings and the share were taken from the summer of 1996, which includes surveys from the weeks of June 20 to June 26 and July 4 to 10. BBM monitors individual viewing habits in one-week windows. The results of this survey included 3,368 respondents from the extended Montreal area. The share is the percentage of the total number of hours watched on television in a time slot. For example in a 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. slot, CFTM’s TVA edition got a 32 percent share of the total number of people watching in that time. Yves Robert, account executive at BBM, says one should look at the share when figuring out how a TV station is doing compared to others. An example of the survey used for the following analysis is enclosed at the end of this paper.

The report reveals that at the supper hour most people are watching the news on the Francophone stations, but there is a significant number, between 16 to 22 percent of the share, who watch ABC News. Moving further into primetime, from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., the most watched shows on Monday night are American programs, such as Beverly Hills 90210. On a Friday night, however, the most watched show is Cine-Columbo on CFTM, Télé-Metropole and second is Family Matters, an American show. Overall, from looking at primetime viewing habits, the audiences of Francophone TV slightly outnumber the American programs. Tremblay’s research still holds true, but he never mentions the American sitcom, whose influence becomes apparent when looking at the BBM report.

To update the information in Tremblay’s article even more than give voice to his ideas, an informal survey was conducted on Saturday, November 8, 1997, in the Eaton Centre, Montreal Trust Place and the streets of downtown Montreal. The survey is in no way as representative as BBM’s. It was conducted with 30 respondents, but it still gives a sense of what the Quebecois (in this case Francophone) are thinking and feeling about issues that stem from Tremblay’s essay. Thirty Francophone respondents were chosen randomly in an effort to be diverse in terms of gender and age. The respondents were asked three questions.

1) What kind of television do you watch the most, Quebecois or American? Why?

2) Do you think that Quebecois culture will become American? Why?

3) Do you think there should continue to be laws to protect Quebecois culture? Why?

Overall, the results were in keeping with Tremblay’s findings.

Table 1: Quebecois versus American Television Viewing Habits

Quebecois TV – 12
American TV – 10
Both – 8
Total respondents – 30

Similar to Tremblay’s findings, overall Francophones are watching more Quebecois television than American television. A significant number are watching both. Not everyone gave reasons for their viewing habits. Here are some of the reasons for those who did answer the question:

Jean, 18: watches more American programming. He finds it funnier, watches American TV for movies.

Sara, 29: watches more American television. “It’s what everybody watches at work and this way I can talk about it too.”

Sophie, 38: watches more American TV. “I watch with my child and all he likes are the English sitcoms and cartoons.”

Denis, 43: watches more American TV. He watches the movies and the comedy shows. Denis watches French TV at the supper hour.

Constance, 32: watches both. “They both have good things to offer. I like the news on French TV and movies on American TV.”

So, just as Tremblay found, the Quebecois are watching American programs for the movies and cartoons, or basically the entertainment programming. It is also interesting to note from this survey that it is mainly those people who watch more American programming who explained the reasons for their viewing choice. Even seven years later, (from the original date of this publication in 1997), Tremblay’s findings are still relevant.

Francophones surveyed also seemed to agree with Tremblay in terms of the major question he raises in his essay, according to Table 2.

Table 2: Is Quebec Culture Becoming American?

Yes – 8
No – 14
Already is – 7
Maybe – 1
Total Respondents – 30

According to Table 2, the majority of Francophones do not think Quebec culture will become American, that’s 14 out of 30 respondents, almost half or 47 percent. However, a significant number thought there is a threat of cultural invasion, 8 out of 30 respondents, or 27 percent. What is also interesting is that almost as many people thought that Quebecois culture already is American, 7 out of 30, or 23 percent. If the respondents who thought Quebecois culture would become American and those who thought it already is American are combined, then that makes 50 percent, more than those who answered “no.”

Here are some of the reasons respondents gave for their answers. Again, in this case, not everyone gave reasons:

Jean, 18: “Quebec culture already is Americanized, look at the McDonald’s, the Burger King. I drive an American car, I wear American clothes [had a Tommy Hilfiger sweatshirt on]. Actually the culture is very similar so of course, were influenced.”

Sara, 29: “No, the language difference will always stop Americans from ruling completely.”

Sophie, 38: “Yes, I think Quebecois culture is in danger of becoming American, especially among young people.”

Benoit, 22: “Yes, Americans are going to take over the world.”

Suzanne, over 40: No, she says, Quebecois culture will not become American, it’s the same thing.

Virginie, 26: Yes. There are a lot of immigrants in Montreal. This makes her think she’s no longer in Quebec. She is from Trois-Rivérès. “I think Montreal will become American, but the rest of Quebec will stay the same.”

Mathieu, 27: Yes. “Quebecers like the American way, you see American fashion in the shows. Quebecers like the powerful way of Americans. They are like chameleons, Jacques Villeneuve wins and we’re proud to be from Quebec. We don’t have an identity, we go along with what’s cool.”

Louise, 35: “No, not necessarily if we are aware of the difference in cultures. If people were aware they would choose Quebecois culture.” The shows are the same. There should be laws to protect Quebec culture.

Yves, 38: “Perhaps, with independence, Quebec will become American. The States will take over.”

Kenel, 32: No. He said the rest of Canada will administrate Quebec if there are independence and Americans won’t take over.

Marie, over 65: “No. But if Quebec gets independence then it won’t become American. If it stays part of Canada then it will become American because all of Canada is becoming another state.”

Constance, 32: No. She said that laws will continue to protect Quebecois culture.

Martine, 34: “No, as long as there are strong supporters of Quebecois culture, like me, then the future will be OK.”

Angelique, 19: “Yes. This whole free trade is dangerous to Quebecois culture. Quebec is a small market, it can’t compete with the big Americans.”

A variety of reasons were given as to whether or not Quebecois culture would become American. A few people cited Quebec laws preserving the culture as the reason why Americans would not take over. Several people saw the power of the Americans winning out, and a few people noted the similarity of the cultures.

Although Tremblay did not have research as evidence for his claim that Quebecers liked the laws to protect culture, according to this informal survey, he was correct. All 30 respondents answered ‘yes’ to whether there should continue to be laws to protect Quebecois culture. Very few gave reasons for their answers, but here are some of the responses that arose:

Jean, 18: “The situation would get even worse for programming if there weren’t any laws.”

Sophie, 38: “It’s cheaper for broadcasters to have American programming. Without the laws, they will just do what is cheaper.”

Virginie, 26: “There should be laws to protect the culture because laws help people to do the right thing.” She’s a law student.

Mathieu, 27: “America is so big and close and powerful, we need something to protect our culture from such power.”

Lousie, 35: She says the laws help us to distinguish what is French culture versus American culture.

Tremblay again proves to be correct. He states four reasons why Quebecois want laws to protect culture, and some of these reasons come up in the answers from the respondents.

What greatly distinguishes this survey from Tremblay’s research is the age breakdown of the respondents (Table 3), and how responses can be categorized corresponding to age (Table 4).

Table 3: Age of Respondents

Under 25 – 8
Twenty-six to 64 – 20
Over 65 – 2

Table 4: Respondent Choices by Age

Question 1: what kind of television do you watch the most, Quebecois or American? Why?

Under 25
French TV – 4
American TV – 4
Both – 0
Number of Respondents – 8

Twenty-six to 64
French TV – 8
American TV – 6
Both – 6
Number of Respondents – 20

Over 65
French TV – 0
American TV – 0
Both – 2
Number of Respondents – 2

Question 2: Do you think that Quebecois culture will become American? Why?

Under 25
Yes – 4
No – 1
Already is – 3
Maybe – 0
Number of Respondents – 8

Twenty-six to 64
Yes – 4
No – 11
Already is – 4
Maybe – 1
Number of Respondents – 20

Over 65
Yes – 0
No – 2
Already is – 0
Maybe – 0
Number of Respondents – 2

There were definite differences in responses by age. For the purpose of this paper, the answers from the age group that is under 25, the future leaders, will be highlighted. An equal amount of people watched Quebecois TV and American TV, while no one watched both. Perhaps 38-year-old Sophie was “half-right” according to the survey. This number for the under 25-age group is less than those of the 26 to 64 age group. On the question of whether Quebecois culture will become American, only one respondent under 25 answered ‘no’ compared to 11 from ages 26 to 64 and all the respondents over 65. According to this survey, those under 25 tended to be more pessimistic about the future of Quebecois culture than other age groups.

These papers has critically analyzed the article by Gaetan Tremblay, “Is Quebec Culture Doomed to Become American.” A BBM report from the summer of 1996 was used to update the material in Tremblay’s essay. According to the report, the material from Tremblay is still relevant. Also, an informal survey of 30 respondents in the downtown Montreal area was conducted. The responses corresponded with the findings of Tremblay and also shed some light on issues he never raises, such as the sentiments of the future leaders of Quebec society.

Walking to Change

In Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, Religion, travel, Writing (all kinds) on July 18, 2010 at 5:00 AM

Jennifer Winters Writes About Racism – Photo Courtesy of Jennifer Winters

Jennifer Winters - July 18, 2010

Written by: Jennifer Winters

Every face has a story, does it matter what it is? Unfortunately no matter how many boundaries and walls that have been broken it seems that prejudice is still in the air and people that are a minority still get treated poorly. A few years ago I traveled to a small town called Tennant Creek in Australia, where I was the minority for this first time. A town of approximately 3,500 people and mostly of aboriginal descent and having a busload of 20 ignorant middle-class travelers not having a clue on how they live their lives. We were there for only one night and we had lasted about 5 minutes in the only bar they had.

Granted it was a poor area and the violence is quite high in that town, when we walked into this bar there was this uncontrollable stench and odor. The atmosphere was not welcoming and drinking no longer became our top priority. Had we have left with our heads held high and with respect, it wouldn’t have bothered me, however, there were a group of preppy kids with us that decided to be rude and laugh at them mocking their way of living. That was completely uncalled for and still bugs me to this day. This was an experience I will truly never forget and the feeling to be in the other shoe was not a comforting feeling but a feeling I cherish. Now, being on this side of the world, how horrible it must feel to live in a Country like ours and have the feeling of not being part of. The truth of the matter is we all judge even if it is on a subconscious level we all do it.

Multiculturalism is around us daily, racism does not need to be. Living in Toronto you can stand still in the middle of Dundas Square and most likely 10 different races, 10 different cultural backgrounds, and about 500 people will pass you by. People, People who want a taste of what it feels like to not watch their back to see if someone is going to call a name or worse produce violence towards them. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth when the “stereotypes” are bluntly obvious when talking about a person, how are we supposed to move forward when we have those that think backward? It would be nice to remember we don’t live in a world of hate but in a world of change to and to go back to basics and remember we all just want to live our lives in peace. If the world is changing shouldn’t our way of thinking do the same?

Olympic Spirit

In Beauty, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Sports, travel, Writing (all kinds) on March 24, 2010 at 7:45 AM

Sarah Moore Writes about Olympic Purchases – Photo Courtesy of Dreamstime.com

Sarah Moore - March 24, 2010

By Sarah Moore

Although the Olympics are over, many Canadian companies are continuing to sell Olympic-related paraphernalia in an attempt to stretch out the Olympic spirit, and keep one hand in the Canadian consumer’s pocket.

Roots, The Bay, and television station CTV are among but three companies that have jumped on the Olympic Memorabilia bandwagon, alongside the Official Vancouver 2010 Store, gas stations, McDonald’s, and much more.

While the concept is understandable as many Canadians would want to own a souvenir or two from Canada’s memorable success at this year’s winter games, the prices for much of the commemorative merchandise available is pricey, to say the least. That is to say, reliving the magic is possible, but it will cost you.

Official Team Canada Jerseys sell on CTV’s Olympic Website for upwards of $600, and 14 WFIE News reports the Winter Olympic Auction, hosted on eBay, has already generated over $200,000. Everything from hockey pucks used in the games to podiums that the athletes have stood on is up for grabs.

It is evident that although the games are over, the corporate world will try to hold on to that Olympic Spirit for as long as it is still profitable.

Sources:

CTV Olympic Store
http://store.ctvolympics.ca/Pages/category.aspx?cat=CTVOlympicsCatalog&category=Hockey%20Canada

14 WFIE News
http://www.14wfie.com/Global/story.asp?S=12092695

Olympic coverage

In Beauty, Business, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Sports, Technology, travel, Writing (all kinds) on March 3, 2010 at 9:08 PM

Patrycja Klucznik Writes about the Olympic Coverage – Photo Courtesy of Dreamstime.com

Patrycja Klucznik - March 3, 2010

Patrycja Klucznik
Feb. 23, 2010

Lack of Olympic coverage is glaring by our neighbours to the south. Not only are the major cable networks like CNN and NBC lacking in their coverage of the Vancouver Games, but even places like Detroit are about to be out of the loop.

Detroit’s ability to access CBC for their Olympic coverage, which according to Laura Sternberg’s Detroit blog, is more comprehensive than NBC’s, is no longer going to be available.

According to the post, CTV Inc. won the bid to against CBC in 2005 to the rights to broadcast the 2010 winter and the 2012 summer games, and this is not available our friends along the border.

This, coupled with a lukewarm response to the winter games held here as a whole, as well as heavy criticism that the organizers are facing because of warm weather conditions, technical issues during the opening ceremony, and the death of luger Nodar Kumaritashvili of Georgia during a training session on the track.

Patriotic as we may be, the men’s hockey games seem to be the ones that really get the Canadian crowd all riled up. So display your flags proudly and cheer for our local heroes. If anyone is proud of them, it is us.

TOK Writing Series

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, Writing (all kinds) on January 4, 2010 at 7:18 AM

TOK - January 4, 2010

As a professor, I was fortunate to receive the TOK reading series, issued by the University of Toronto. The TOK series is a collection of three books, all of them anthologies.

Once I finally got down to completing the series, other books interrupting the flow of my reading of the series, in general, I am glad that I did read this series. In particular, stories by Olive Senior and Lawrence Hill stand out. There are other stories in there that would be a great inspiration to an emerging writer to help them execute the craft of narrative.

Without giving away the plot to any of the stories, just know that this is a series worth investing in. The stories deal with a variety of topics, from the Russian mafia to wayward fathers, to the experience of being on Toronto’s public transit.

One of the most beautiful things about the stories is that they all take place in Toronto on the most part. These stories are all a way to connect to this city, as well to understand what lays in the heart of minds of new and old immigrants – be it right or wrong.

Ride Again Tomorrow

In cars, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, Writing (all kinds) on January 3, 2010 at 3:59 PM

Kirk Verner Writes about a Car Accident in Saskatchewan – Photo Courtesy of Dreamstime.com

Kirk Verner - January 7, 2010 - 3

By Kirk Verner

I was saddened to hear of a horrifying, fatal accident that took place in rural Saskatchewan, my hometown, over the holiday season. By the way, people drive on the blustery Saskatchewan highways you’d think this was certainly where a fatal accident would ultimately occur in late December, but nasty road conditions or invincible 4X4 drivers were not to blame. This lethal catastrophe occurred on a snow-mobile, a ski-doo. Hearing of this terrible occurrence brought two thoughts to my mind. The first thing I thought of was the uncontrollable power this modern day snow-eating machines come equipped with.

I was crawling down Highway 1 two weeks ago in the heart of the parkland, 25 kilometres east of Indian Head, Saskatchewan, when I found myself in a race. The divided highway was relatively lonesome that day; mid-week on a prairie highway is probably the furthest thing from Highway 401 on a Friday afternoon. But still I was in a race; my opposition, a frenzied snowmobiler flying eastbound between the two-direction highways. The lone patron on the bright yellow ski-doo appeared to me to be a male due only to the lack of long locks blowing rapidly in the wind from underneath a glistening black helmet. I glanced at my speedometer, it read 95 km/hr; I was not in the spending mood. As my eyes left the speedometer, I looked to my left and saw the man on two skis and one track not only keeping up with me but advancing into first place in a race that only existed in his mind. I momentarily lifted my white knuckles from my steering wheel and raised both palms in the air towards the maniac hovering across the snow. He saw me but did nothing. I suppose if he would have performed any type of gesture in my direction, he’d likely be picking his teeth up with broken fingers. He was soon out of sight; a cloud of snow left behind him like dust behind the comic character Roadrunner. This was the first time I accurately got the feel for the sheer power that lies dormant under the light-weight hoods of these dangerous snow machines. He had to be going at least 110km/hr. Insanely fast!

The second thought that entered my mind after hearing of the awful accident was that of my own good fortune. I too have had multiple near life-altering experiences dealt to me by the hands of one of these off-road, out-of-control, all-terrain vehicles; my ATV of choice, my big brother’s 4X4 motorcycle, a quad.

It was near the end in July 2009 when I found myself making tracks at 68 km/hr down an over-grown back road just a few kilometres south of Esterhazy, Saskatchewan. In my wake of dust and high-pitched yips was my best buddy and cousin, Reid. His quad was pocket-sized in comparison to the machine that roared between my legs, but still, he managed to keep up with me and my growing confidence. The morning led into the afternoon as the day seemed to disappear faster than our fuel; it was time to begin our trek back to town.

To be fair, Reid and I swapped quads for the trip back to Esterhazy; it was my turn to suck dust. We were on the homestretch; Esterhazy’s tall blue water tower was the landmark that kept us in the right direction. The back road that led into town turned into a makeshift back alley built through a farmer’s field; we jumped onto it in order to avoid the streets, and get the bikes back to the garage. I had been riding all day by this time, and my confidence was sky-high as I made my move and passed Reid on the unknown alley that felt to me like a speed track. I waved as he obviously let off the throttle, enabling to safely pass; I didn’t look back. My machine was wide open, humming like a lawnmower begging for an oil change. I loved the freedom and the fast fresh air as the town approached, now only a block away. What happened next did not, but easily could have changed my life forever.

Reid claims that his speedometer read 58km/hr at the time of my accident; I didn’t have a speedometer on my toy-like quad; it wouldn’t have mattered if I did, I wanted to win the “race”. With the homes that border Esterhazy now within a stone’s throw, I came upon a deep trench that had been dug, I’m guessing, for drainage. I had no time to slow down as I careened into the trench. The inflated tires hit the opposite side of the trench with great might, pole vaulting me into the air. Upon impact, my right knee smashed the engine of the bike as my ribs became tenderized by the handlebars. From behind, Reid says, “It looked like you were dancing on top of the quad’s seat…five feet in mid-air.”

The slow-motion feel of the incident did not last past my airborne voyage, and I came crashing down into the rough stubble field. I landed on the small of my back, whipping my head violently into the earth; this story could not be written if I was not wearing my helmet. As I slid to a halt, I could hear Reid approaching, his laughter loader than his quad; the quad I was riding now sat on all four wheels, staled. I understand how humorous wipe-outs can look to those not involved so I cannot blame Reid for his premature laughter; he quickly stopped laughing after I pulled my helmet off of my sweat-drenched head and he saw the agony on my face. I was concussed.

I tried to stand-up and play-off the crash like it was no big deal, but the stars that swirled around inside of my head caused me to collapse back to the ground. By this time, three locals who apparently witnessed the mishap came running to my aid. They could not believe what they saw. They could not believe that I didn’t want an ambulance; all I wanted was for them to leave me alone in my post-concussion state. The three concerned locals finally left once I stood back up and sat on the big quad. But, I was not well! My knee was bleeding profusely. My ribs throbbed. I felt like vomiting. I must have looked like a bobble-head sitting on that bike, trying to compose myself.

The eventful day ended with me being towed back to the garage by Reid and the bigger of the two quads. I was greeted by a worried mother, an angry brother, and a confused father. At least I was alive!

This story has not been glorified to make me look like a “tough guy”. I simply want to use my story as a warning to all those who love the outdoors and the exhilarating feeling of the open air at high speeds. I was lucky to not have become another unfortunate statistic dispensed by a recreational vehicle. Please be cautious…ride again tomorrow.

Bob Phillips: Canadian

In Business, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Music, Opinion, Technology, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on September 3, 2009 at 7:54 AM

Bob Phillips was the editor of a bilingual newspaper in Aylmer, Quebec. This tells of his story of a sensitive man who tried to bridge the gap between two language communities in the place where he lived:

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