Cheers: to preparations. This is the time of the year when we’re most likely to feel the brunt of hurricanes/tropical storms/post-tropical storms. Translation? Lots of wind and lashing rain. Be prepared for flooding. Keep your gutters and downspouts clear and directed away from property. Be ready for power failures — have batteries and flashlights and plan ahead for dealing with all the sorts of things Mother Nature can fling your way. Here are a few of the things you should consider, courtesy of the province’s fire and emergency services: follow local weather forecasts throughout the next few days and heed warnings and advisories; prepare and maintain an emergency kit — be ready to cope on your own for at least 72 hours, to allow first responders to help those in urgent need. Instructions on preparing a kit can be found at www.gov.nl.ca/fes/epw/readykitgo.html; develop an emergency plan — keep in mind the specific requirements of any person in your household with a medical condition, mobility issues or other special needs; account for the needs of any pets and ensure animals normally kept outdoors are safe from wind and rain; be aware of all local emergency numbers; understand your insurance policy and potential coverage for fire and emergency situations; ensure all patio furniture, barbecue equipment and yard tools are secured to avoid potential damage in high winds; should you notice downed power lines in your area, do not touch or attempt to move them, and instead advise your utility provider immediately; if you become aware of flooding on streets or blocked culverts, contact municipal officials.
Jeers: to strange and turgid pronouncements. Here’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in a written statement following the shooting at the PQ victory party: “It is a tragic day where an exercise of democracy is met with an act of violence," he said. “This atrocious act will not be tolerated and such violence has no place in Canada. Canadians can rest assured that the perpetrator of last night’s events will face the full force of the law.” And … why wouldn’t the perpetrator of any crime face the full force of the law as a matter of course?
Cheers: to art. This, from a court case in Grand Bank, as a judge dismisses a case between a woman and her movers: “the plaintiff claims that the defendant lost an original painting, which was painted by ‘one of the Group of Seven.’ She was unable to say which member of the Group of Seven painted the painting, or where or under which circumstances she acquired it, other than to say that she had bought it at an auction for $700. She did not have a certificate of authenticity for the painting. There was no confirmation of the provenance of the painting. Furthermore, while the Group of Seven were a group of Canadian landscape painters, famous for their portrayal of the Canadian Shield, the plaintiff said that her Group of Seven painting, by an unknown artist, was of a tiger.”