Literature

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

October 15, 2021 at 9:16 am

Backroom deals During Tuesday’s CBRM council meeting, CAO Marie Walsh revealed — very matter-of-factly — that she and regional solicitor Demetri Kachafanas had met with developer Martin Chernin after the expiration of Chernin’s waterfront pre-development contract to discuss a new proposal. She even admitted that she and Kachafanas had presented…Read...

Quietly Shrinking CBRM

Quietly Shrinking CBRM

October 6, 2021 at 12:54 pm

Maxwell Hartt’s book, Quietly Shrinking Cities: Canadian Urban Population Loss in an Age of Growth really made me think. Hartt, an assistant professor in the department of geography and planning at Queen’s University, makes the case for cities accepting rather than fighting population decline and uses the Cape Breton Regional MunicipalityRead More

Procrastination is Killing Us

Procrastination is Killing Us

September 29, 2021 at 1:06 pm

Great ideas to address climate change already exist — there are thousands of them — but they need to be categorized by the degree of impact they would have on climate change mitigation. Luckily, some authors have attempted this categorization. Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse GlobalRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

September 17, 2021 at 11:04 am

Board blessings A reader sent along an interesting piece of correspondence received from the Sydney Downtown Development Association (SDDA) just prior to the provincial election. Signed by board chair Jennifer Griffin, it concerns the executive director of the association, Michelle Wilson, and her foray into provincial politics. Griffin writes: Due…Read...

Literary map of world by Reddit User Backforward 24 (https://www.reddit.com/r/MapPorn/comments/5z1bau/literature_map_of_the_world_oc_57352913/)

Have Book, Will Travel

September 8, 2021 at 12:49 pm

I am certainly not a world traveler, more a visitor, but I’ve been lucky enough to see a few great cities in North America and Europe over the years and am grateful for it. I am often intrigued by what a novelist has had to say about a city whereRead More

Indian soldiers wander in destroyed Hiroshima, June 1946. (Unknown author, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.)

Speaking of the Unspeakable

August 11, 2021 at 1:02 pm

I could not understand why our surroundings had changed so greatly in one instant. I thought it might have been something which had nothing to do with the war, the collapse of the earth which it was said would take place at the end of the world, and which IRead More

Comic Relief: Reading ‘The Codfathers’ in 2021

Comic Relief: Reading ‘The Codfathers’ in 2021

June 2, 2021 at 1:21 pm

Had I read Gordon Pitts’ The Codfathers: Lessons from the Atlantic Business Elite when it first came out in 2005, I think it would have annoyed me — it’s just a collection of fawning portraits of wealthy Atlantic Canadian business types. But in 2021, post-financial crisis, mid-plague, as the worldRead More

Fort Worth Library Public Access computers, 2009. (Photo by

Patrons of Public Infrastructure

May 26, 2021 at 12:21 pm

I am absolutely furious that the CBRM council has once again decided a new library is not important enough, despite the present structure being aged and decrepit and inadequate to the community’s needs. The Public Library system is a vital, democratizing tool, providing access to services and information to allRead More

Time Travel and the Black Death

Time Travel and the Black Death

May 26, 2021 at 12:18 pm

Author’s Note: In this series of columns (see the first one here and the second here) I am using various works of science fiction and fantasy to consider some of the ethical issues generated by our current situation.   As I write this, the weather is warming and the pandemicRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

May 14, 2021 at 11:15 am

Awards season (I) I first met Rob Csernyik in April 2019. We had coffee at Dr. Luke’s and he interviewed me for a J-Source article he was writing about the Cape Breton journalism scene. We went back and forth by email for months afterward because J-Source is serious to the…Read...