Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

December 7, 2016 at 1:00 pm

This Content Is Not Sponsored Running a fledgling online news operation on a subscription basis is not without its challenges but it has some big benefits — I don’t have to fill my pages with “sponsored content,” my entire front page will never be given over to an advertisement and IRead More

Protests in support of teachers at Nova Scotia's Province House (Photo via Twitter)

Dr StrangeJob: Corporal Punishment

December 7, 2016 at 1:04 am

We’d all do well to start over again, preferably with kindergarten. – Kurt Vonnegut The education system in Cape Breton needs a lesson plan. The P-12 system is in chaos, NSCC faculty are more than two years without a contract and the CBU Board of Governors has placed its presidentRead More

Rod Nicholls’ Pillowman: The Best Production I Never Saw

Rod Nicholls’ Pillowman: The Best Production I Never Saw

November 30, 2016 at 12:06 pm

In February of last year, I arrived back in Cape Breton after 10 years away. The first evening home, I picked up a newspaper from my sister’s kitchen table and saw a publicity photo for the Boardmore Theatre’s production of The Pillowman. The play, a celebrated and controversial black comedy,Read More

Sistine Chapel. (Photo by By Alex Proimos from Sydney, Australia (The Sistine Chapel) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Robert Harris’ Conclave: To Pick a Pope

November 30, 2016 at 12:05 pm

Those of you who have long wished to get an inside look at how the Catholic Church elects a leader (the short line is to the left, or is that the right?) need wait no longer now that Robert Harris has written Conclave: The Power of God, The Ambition ofRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

November 30, 2016 at 12:01 pm

Repo Man I took a taxi from the airport recently (did I mention I was in Quebec? Quebec and Ottawa for 10 days in October). I got in late and didn’t like to ask anyone to take that drive out Grand Lake Road at 12:30 a.m. to pick me up.Read More

By Nicolas Perrault III (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Another Brick in the Paywall

November 23, 2016 at 9:08 am

This is not the best moment to be erecting a wall of any sort but the time has come to put a paywall — neither huge nor beautiful — around new content on The Cape Breton Spectator. My stats show me that there are enough people reading the Spectator eachRead More

Dr StrangeJob Aims Higher

Dr StrangeJob Aims Higher

November 23, 2016 at 9:02 am

My loyal readers (both of you) may be wondering why the Doctor stopped gracing the pages of this most valuable online news endeavor. The fact is, I was so busy planning my mayoralty coronation that I only now discovered that I lost the election. I am still shocked: my PierRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Subjects

November 23, 2016 at 9:00 am

Note: Fast & Curious will be a new weekly feature in which The Spectator will take a brief look at a number of stories that piqued its interest during the week.   Oh Readers! Oh Lovers of Books! First and foremost, Spectator contributor Sean Howard has published a new bookRead More

Sydney VAO Re-Opening: A Victory for Vets

Sydney VAO Re-Opening: A Victory for Vets

November 9, 2016 at 8:56 am

Never having served in the military, I can only image what this victory must feel like. In 2014, Cape Breton vets, like veterans across Canada, lost a valued service and a much- needed lifeline, their Veterans Affairs Office (VAO). Faced with that devastating news, veterans responded to the challenge withRead More

Canadian troops returning from the trenches. November, 1916. Battle of the Somme. (Photo via the Library and Archives of Canada.)

Snapshot from Hell: A Day in the Life of the Great War

November 9, 2016 at 8:55 am

As we approach Remembrance Day, at the midpoint of the centenary of the First World War, it is instructive to consider a day in the life of that terrible time: Saturday, November 11, 1916. An online chronology documents the weather on the Western Front—“Rain, trace. 55°-32°, misty day with lowRead More