Cheers: to Mrs. Enid and Eulalia. Cathy Jones and Mary Walsh have gone to bat for the Bannerman Park Foundation with a fundraising video using their popular “This Hour Has 22 Minutes” characters. The foundation is trying to raise $3 million — an amount the City of St. John’s has agreed to match — to upgrade the park and add features like a skating trail. While we’re on the topic, here’s a little something about the arts community that few people think about: actors like Jones and Walsh are professionals, and are regularly asked to donate their time to support causes. The province’s artists, printmakers, musicians and writers are also regularly contacted to make major donations of their work or their time to support a variety of causes, but are rarely recognized for the sheer amount of effort they divert from the same basic effort that all the rest of us have to make — earning a living. Stop and think for a moment: what would you do if you were asked to donate a week or two of work (and the pay that comes with it) to a cause, however worthwhile? It’s a pretty giving community, for sure.
Jeers: to old-school drivers. It sounds like a broken record, but here you go: while city salters and plows are making some inroads clearing sidewalks in St. John’s, there are still plenty of times when those sidewalks are either blocked or treacherously slippery for days at a time — and that doesn’t mean that people who want to walk should have to stay home. Pedestrians have rights, too, and shouldn’t feel that they are taking their lives into their own hands every time they make their way to work or the store. You’re warm and dry in your driver’s seat; try putting yourself in a walker’s shoes once in a while. We have a lot of inclement weather in this city — the bulk of it for this winter yet to come — so the last thing we need is inclement drivers.
Jeers: to stating the patently obvious. Fires rarely start all by themselves — which is why, when you look at the fire right spang in the middle of the Newfoundland T’Railway bridge in Seal Cove (a fire that burned through the centre of the bridge deck), it’s pretty obvious that someone deliberately set the bridge alight. The RNC described the fire like this in a news release: “The bridge was damaged as a result of the fire and is currently unsafe and not recommended for public use. RNC fire investigators have determined that the fire is suspicious in nature and are seeking the assistance of the general public.” All police-speak aside, unless there was a flaming meteor strike or bizarre spontaneous combustion, is there any possibility whatsoever that the New Year’s Day blaze could not have been “suspicious in nature”?