Throwing bricks and bouquets


by admin on June 30, 2010

By Nikki Mantell

Congratulations to Theatre Wakefield whose inspired, and seemingly tireless, volunteers put on yet another successful Piggyback Fringe Theatre Festival. The plays this scribe saw were professional, well acted, and very entertaining. From the concept, marketing, organization and promotional piggy posters and participation among local businesses, the whole thing cast Wakefield village in a glowing pink light. It’s another example of this small village punching above its weight (nearly 30 performances -the biggest Fringe fest, per capita) and just a downright oinking good time. We throw a bouquet to Theatre Wakefield.

Since they came packing bricks, how about we throw one right back at them. Apparently the Black Bloc is a tactic and not a group, but “protesters” (and I don’t even think that term applies) who smashed Toronto’s windows and set fire to cop cars did nothing but cement the idea that legitimate protest is now a useless tactic at events like the G-20. One has to wonder if a hyped-up Harper didn’t order his security team to leave those empty cop cars completely unsupervised (in a hot protest zone no less) as a temptation he knew the extremists couldn’t resist. If he needed justification for spending all that cash to make Toronto a police state, he got it. If those other thousands of people who took to the street had a message, we sure didn’t get to hear it.

Let’s throw another bouquet at the group of artists who may save a beautiful old piece of Chelsea’s heritage from the wrecking ball. Where the municipality and some councillors saw a run down old rectory beside the St Stephen’s church in Old Chelsea, some creative types with a vision (guess that’s why they are artists) saw a beautiful gathering place to showcase local talent. Kudos to those volunteers for organizing and making the sensible decision to get a professional quote on how much it would be to rehabilitate the rectory, rather than assume it was a write-off at a million dollars. At under $300,000 it’s definitely worth the next step – especially since Chelsea is just bursting at the seams with talented artists and artisans.

Throw them a bone!  The Quebec Superior Court judge said he needed more time to figure out if the defamation case facing Cantley’s Serge Galipeau and Christine Landry is a SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) or not? Puh-lease! The Cantley couple has been yanked around on this case more times than a yoyo. They, and other residents, spoke out about a dump that had multiple infractions and was proven to be emitting toxic gases. The owners slapped them with a $1.25 million defamation suit for doing their civic duty. It’s black and white and doesn’t need that much deliberation even if Bill 9 is new to this country. The dump owners have played every game in the book to slow the process down (the couple’s motion has been delayed six times) including one declaring bankruptcy. All Galipeau and Landry want is the case dismissed, their damage claim paid and to get their lives back after years of unbearable stress. Get on with it.