Lobsters Are Not Eels and Other Truths

I’ve linked before to Andrew Roman’s clear and informed posts on legal issues: UNDRIP and SNC-Lavalin.

We are understandably preoccupied with COVID-19 these days, but there are other things going on, including the dispute over the fishery in Nova Scotia. Here’s the concluding paragraph of Roman’s prepared statement for his recent presentation to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans.

Today, 21 years after the Donald Marshall decision, Canada has no judicial support for non-compliant lobster fishing. If this Committee wants to recommend authorizing the Mi’kmaq to fish for lobsters out of season, recommend a new law to do that. Be honest: don’t hide behind the Marshall myth to pretend that the law is what it is not. That would be fake law, and inconsistent with a policy of transparency and accountability.

Pretending the law is what it is not doesn’t just absolve politicians of responsibility: It also fosters a sense of grievance among members of First Nations who believe that their treaty rights are being disregarded.

Read his full piece here.

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Fit at 70 – Update #7

This is me, still slogging through my exercise program in my basement. And delighted to have a basement gym. Most days . . .

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Choose & Perish?

Choose the form of the Destructor.

From a movie replete with them, this memorable scene comes to mind now and again: the interaction between the Ghostbusters squad and the Devil Minx (pretty sure that’s how the credits listed her role). Sometimes all we can do is choose the form of trouble, “whether there’s trouble” not being an option.

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Who Are These People?

I find a lot of Christmas music sort of sappy. Not this song, although it has been sung in a way that I would call over-styled: too many breathy or warbling notes in one lyrical syllable. Maybe it’s just jealousy: I can’t hit any of those notes.

But this version is fun. Kick off Advent with a rockin’ version of “All I Want for Christmas” courtesy of James Corden and a gaggle of singers, some of whom I even recognized.

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Worth Many Words

I’ve written a bit about watersheds (here and here). Here’s a fabulous set of maps of the world’s watersheds, but one sample suffices to show the beautiful complexity, the complex beauty, of the world around us, visualized aright.

Thanks to visualcapitalist.com


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The Week that Was; The Awards that Are (& Will Be?)

Word this week of Governor Cuomo’s Emmy for his COVID-19 briefings has inspired me to give out my own awards to political leaders and government officials.

To all the contestants who participated: Thank you! See you next week . . .

Week’s Best Apology (h/t to John Robson)

“This govt made a grave mistake in the spring
when we made a stupid arbitrary distinction
between essential and nonessential retail businesses.
… [it was] a stupid mistake that we made
and for that I apologize.”
Jason Kenney, Premier of Alberta

Week’s Worst Obfuscation (h/t to John Robson) (again)

“Let me be clear, we are not moving into a lockdown.”
Jason Kenney, Premier of Alberta
(yup, two awards in one week)

Week’s Best In-Your-Dreams Promise

“My fellow Canadians, today I am announcing
that I will not move on the issue that is closest to my heart,
global warming,
until every Aboriginal community in Canada
has clean, reliable drinking water.”
– Justin Trudeau, PM of Canada
as imagined by Rex Murphy

Week’s Weaselliest Excuse

“I made my decision as a husband and father,
and for those who are angry and disappointed,
I humbly ask you to forgive decisions
that are borne [sic] of my heart and not my head.”
Michael Hancock, Mayor of Denver
about flying to Mississippi for Thanksgiving
right after imploring Denver residents to stay home

Week’s Gentlest Rebuke

“This is awkward. The call isn’t until 5.15pm today.”
Melanie Paradis,
Director of Communications for Erin O’Toole,
commenting on the 4:34 release by the PMO
of a read-out from a call before it occurred

Week’s Straightest-from-the-Shoulder Comment : A Tie

“This is totally unacceptable that my neighbours
are being intimidated, being threatened,
and these people, they need to stop.
Stop acting like a bunch of buffoons out there
and start respecting the people of Ontario.”
Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario,
on protestors being outside his home

The confidential, internal conversations have been shared –
actions that are a violation
of the public service oath and code of conduct.
This is a personal betrayal, and a betrayal of the trust
that our hard-working team has placed in each other.”
Dr. Deena Hinshaw,
Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health
on the leak of a (surreptitious?) recording

And, the drumroll please . . . a winner in two categories . . .

Week’s Best Homage to 2001: A Space Odyssey &
Week’s Best Official Statement in any Category

“It is illegal to install structures or art without authorization
on federally managed public lands,
no matter what planet you’re from.”
Utah Department of Public Safety
on the discovery of a monolith in the desert


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The Clerk, Fleming, and Me

That’s an AMERICAN stamp!!!

Reacting to the tone more than the words, I take a half-step back. A clerk at the sub-post-office (sub-post office? sub post-office?) in my local drugstore has just snapped at me. I review the conversation to date.

Hey, good morning.

Me, sounding cheery.


Clerk, grunting.

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Never Overwhelmed

It turns out that, if you ask yourself “Can I keep going?”
rather than “Can I make it to the finish?”
you’re far more likely to answer in the affirmative.
Globe & Mail article on sports performance

I have whinged once or twice in these, um, screens, about the schedule uncertainty accompanying this pandemic. OK, OK, maybe a few times. As they say, global pandemics aren’t as much fun as they look: May you never live in interesting times.

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Bridge Face

What could be better than a face on a bridge?

I took this photo in Glasgow in 2012, and it happened to scroll by on the Big Guy’s screen-saver just now. Glancing at it from across the room, I saw a face I had never noticed before. With an imposing columnar nose, to boot.

I think that’s how most of these faces appear: A glance-in-passing triggers that pattern-recognition doohickey in the subconscious.

Pareidolia - bridge

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