Cheers: to artists helping artists. Or in this case, musicians helping chefs. Ed Robertson of the Barenaked Ladies and Alan Doyle of Great Big Sea were just a couple of performers that put off a show last week during a special rally of support for Mallard Cottage, which was damaged in an electrical fire the Friday before — just weeks before the new 65-seat restaurant was due to open. The musicians happened to be in town for the George Street Festival, which wraps up Tuesday. The show was held in Quidi Vidi Village and was organized by friends of the restaurant’s owners, Stephen Lee and Todd Perrin. The restaurant business is a hard slog by any standard. Sometimes, it’s the little things that count.
Jeers: to more ferry woes. How many times have we done this jeer? This one is spurred by a wee little incident last Wednesday when Marine Atlantic’s Blue Puttees ran aground in Port aux Basques harbour on its way to Cape Breton. The company says that ship will now be out of service until the end of August, and it has to scramble to shift the schedule around between the Port aux Basques and Argentia runs. “The removal of the capacity offered by the MV Blue Puttees will result in challenges,” said a Marine Atlantic spokesman. No kidding. And right in the middle of tourist season, too.
Cheers: to petits gâteaux. Or, as we know them in our little corner of the planet, cupcakes. If you happen to be on the Ile de la Cité in Paris, visiting Notre Dame cathedral, check out a little side street called Rue Chanoinesse. There, you will find a quaint little storefront with a familiar little icon hanging in the window — a map of Newfoundland. This is Bertie’s Cupcakery, run by Portugal Cove-St. Philip's native Bobbie Maker. When her husband’s job brought them to Paris two years ago, Maker decided to try out her lifelong love of cupcakes on a Parisian clientele. Business has been great, she says, though many of her customers aren’t quite familiar with the product. Some want to buy them before the icing goes on, while others want to eat them with a fork. It’s all just cultural exchange in action. Bonne chance, Bobbie. Et bon appétit!
Jeers: to Heartland. No, not the CBC show, but the so-called think tank in the U.S. A 2011 editorial in the Nature says this about the Heartland Institute: “Despite criticizing climate scientists for being overconfident about their data, models and theories, the Heartland Institute proclaims a conspicuous confidence in single studies and grand interpretations. The Heartland Institute and its ilk are not trying to build a theory of anything. They have set the bar much lower, and are happy muddying the waters.” Worse, the Huffington Post’s Elliott Negin has discovered how often top media outlets mention the Heartland Institute in climate stories without even reporting that it is funded by the fossil fuel industry. How often? Out of 54 articles published in 2011 and 2012, only 11 provided this important background information. When it comes to climate change, context is crucial.
This article has been updated