The Montreal-based Center for Community Organizations (COCo) has just released this statement on the muchly debated and deeply socially divisive Charter of Values (Bill-60). The Charter of Values is the current Parti-Québécois-led attempt at contributing to Quebec's secularization and would arguably have significant impact on the rights and freedoms of anyone whose cultural makeup isn't, you know, white and soft-christian.
So last Friday, over drinks at McKibbin's, Alissa, Andrea, Vijay and I decided we were going to keep meeting on Friday eves to explore McGill's various buildings after work. McGill is like the Hogwart's of Quebec and there's a gazillion nooks and crannies worth exploring. It's quite possible I'll be reporting back on High Alert, but anyway - afterward, we got generally excited about urban exploration in general and Andrea figured she'd let us know about these Choose Your Own Adventure tours of Montreal that happen regularly and that are organized by the folks at Chromatin.
In early 2013, I contributed two comic strips to Alissa’s amazing zine on single-hood and happiness: Why Be Happy When You Could Be Dating? - a great cut-and-paste compilation full of thoughtful reflections by Alissa on this process that is dating. The first one was a contemplative piece about my own deal with the relationships and it was a bit heavy, and dealt to some extent with my dysfunctionalities and also my cats. So I did a second one called Bro it Up about all the things you can do with your bros when you’re single.
My grandmother was a remarkable woman. She was a rancher. She was a birder. She was college educated with a degree in agriculture. She was involved in politics and was at one time the leader of my home town's regional irrigation district (the rough equivalent of mayor in the unincorporated rural town that I grew up in). She was active in the United church and an early proponent of both gay and female priests.
She was also a member of something called the British Columbia Women's Institute and as a result, I occasionally found myself underfoot at BCWI meetings when I was a child.
Amiri Baraka died last week. I was introduced to him about a decade ago through a syndicated radio show we'd play at CJMQ 88.9 FM, the campus radio at Bishop's University. We got this amazing show once of him talking about Africa, it's rhythms and mysticism. Afterwards, I would listen to it again a few times, amazed and curious and wanting to know more.
So T.O. is only about a 5 hour drive from Montreal and I've been there many times, but it was only this past week that I had first opportunity to visit the Toronto Public Library's Merril Collection of Science Fiction, Speculation and Fantasy. I was fortunate enough to get a full tour of the stacks. With over 72,000 unique items, the collection the largest of it's kind in Canada with only a few private or University collections around the world that rival it.
There's a whole issue in my neighborhood with dog poop. There's someone(s) who's going around picking up their dog poop with these little black bags and then leaving them around where I then have to deal with them.