Friday, April 23, 2010

Local News

Welcome to a Cockpit Conversation recurring feature: "Aviatrix mocks your town by reading your local newspaper." Today we look at the Regina Leader- Post. I'm not actually in Regina, but, as two readers promptly figured out when I asked, in Estevan, Saskatchewan. This is the complimentary newspaper at the hotel.

Front page news here relates the intriguing tale that "Members of several religions took part [...] to celebrate Good Friday and Easter in Regina." Shouldn't that be "to celebrate Passover, Easter, Songkran, the Feast of Ridvan and the coming of spring?" I suspect that the 'multiple religions' involved in this ceremony were all flavours of the same one. The directory of religious services inside the paper supports that theory: there are forty churches listed under fifteen categories, but every one is Christian. But just when I think I have this community pegged, I see the leftover space on the same page is filled by an open-minded article on Buddhism. Perhaps the multifaith celebrations of other spring festivals were held on other days. The other front page story involves one politician giving another the finger.

Inside the paper we focus mainly on arrests, sentencing, and manhunts. One man who received the minimum sentence for possession of child pornography says he downloaded it because he was curious about whether it really existed. Police are looking for someone who cut across a field in the middle of the night, leaving tire ruts, and for a guy with lots of tattoos who has violated his parole curfew. I wonder if the latter has a tractor. A police spokesman said, regarding other incidents, "There's lots of collisions ... and the people who die, we don't really know what's in their heads." The paper also notes that, "Police say Thursday night and Friday morning were extremely busy, with domestic disputes, fights, and alcohol-fulled incidents." There's a photo of a man in a baseball cap riding his bicycle by sitting backwards on the handlebars and pedalling. He says he was hit by a vehicle once and rides this way to keep an eye on oncoming traffic. I suspect his cycling is alcohol- fuelled, and that if he has a domestic partner, they have had disputes about the wisdom of riding this way.

Last week's paper had a surprising number of reports of unidentified dead bodies. I think all the people that get lost or murdered over the winter here turn up in the same week of spring.

The most interesting news is a wire story on a Canadian named Julia Gaffield who found the Haïtian declaration of independence. No it wasn't lost in the earthquake. It seems that when they originally declared it, they printed up a whole bunch of copies and handed them all out, forgetting to keep one in a safe place. Eventually, as with most ephemera, everyone who had had one had moved or spring cleaned enough times that no one was known to have one anymore. They knew what it says, as they had lots of handwritten copies, just not the original item. Julia found it in the British Library because someone had sent a copy to someone important enough to have had his correspondence archived. Nice timing, and I hope it inspires Haïti during its rebuilding.

There's sports (ice skating, curling, bowling, running, baseball. lacrosse, and hockey, of course), movies (3D everything), homes ($250-600k), and classifieds. The announcements sections has four birthdays, a birth, a graduation, an anniversary and a congratulations to the girl who scored the most points in the playoffs, helping her team win the SFMHL hockey championships.

My favourite part was this cartoon, mostly because I looked at the picture, thought "okay, airliner" and then looked for the joke in the caption, before realizing that the picture is the joke, and the name of the airliner just echoes it.

Oh and the AME at the FBO calls to confirm receipt of the airplane and the work order, and to ask if I happened to notice if the NDB antenna was standing when I arrived. Apparently it blew down. So I guess it was windy enough to be worth tying down the plane.

Also, not local, but way too bizarre not to post, is this story of two eagles crashing into a snowbank while engaged in an aerial mating dance. The male was killed and the female may have a head injury and permanent ligament damage. These birds need to practise safer sex.

17 comments:

gmc said...

Maybe eagles can experience "white out" phenomena too? Maybe they just lost the sense of where "ground" was.

fche said...

FWIW, I recently witnessed a couple of canada goose couples coupling. It seemed less hazardous than these poor eagles, but still: the lady duck was submerged from the neck up by the male for fifteen seconds or so. They both survived and celebrated not with cigarettes, but with some loud bellowing. Party on.

George said...

The story about the Haitian Declaration was big news since it was also in the New York Times.

SkinnyDennis said...

So, I've often wondered;
Is that pronounced Regina or Regina?

Bob said...

@ Skinny Dennis

I believe it is the latter, at least for the cool kids

Aviatrix said...

Rhymes with vagina and not with Tina.

viennatech said...

heh, heh, you said Regina....

Sarah said...

I like the cartoon! Not sure why the gear has to be retractable though. It would perhaps be a practical ( and fun ) mode of transport on the long-distance outback roads across Oz. I just hope the turns are gradual.

The poor eagles. I'm glad the female may recover; bet she doesn't remember any of it. As for the male... what a way to go!

northwoods girl said...

Ahhh... beautiful downtown Estevan. Gateway to ... well, gateway to somewhere. I think it's the busiest there when the hunters head north....

Aviatrix said...

Oh Sarah, you're right: the gear doors make it even funnier. I wonder if I kept that page after photographing it.

Michael5000 said...

That was awfully gentle for an internet feature called "Aviatrix mocks your town by reading your local newspaper"!! Where was the corrosive anonymity-fueled venom we've come to expect from internet mockery?

At this rate, future installments are going to have to be renamed "Aviatrix fondly teases your town a little by reading your local newspaper"!!

Aviatrix said...

So noted, Michael. I'll save that title for the next installment.

I try to be gentle and open-minded about the attributes of the places I work. Except Wyoming. I really have a hate on for Wyoming.

Anoynmous said...

I really have a hate on for Wyoming.

That sounds like a challenge. I'll be in touch.

UnwiseOwl said...

I'm trying to work out what the joke is here...is it that the plane would obviously topple over in the wind, that airlines named after flightless birds are less likely to crash?
Perhaps it's just written by someone from my home town of Adelaide, where we all think Melbourne is an inherently funny word like 'dinkum' or 'noodle'.

Michael5000 said...

Emus being birds that can't fly, it's a good name for an airline with airplanes that can't fly.

That's the joke, anyway. What makes the joke interesting is how hard it is to get your brain to process the idea of "airplane without wings," or maybe how strangely easy it is for your brain to accept it.

Aviatrix said...

To me the name was just an extra hint towards the joke, because the thing that made me laugh was how willing I was to accept the entire scene as an airliner parked at a jetway, even though the airplane has no wings. I wonder if I would have even SEEN the lack of wings if it hadn't been for the name

Grant (Falcon124) said...

Amazing what the mind does when seeing something *almost* normal, no? It does require a double take to notice it has no wings.

Bloody hillarious, actually :)

And as someone from Melbourne, I definitely find it amusing that the poster from Adelaide appeared to not quite get the joke. I don't think Adelaide has ever forgiven Melbourne for taking the Grand Prix off them (despite the fact that most Melbournians would quite happily give it back these days :)

Sorry it's taken so long to comment - I've been catching up on blogs after being wrapped up in work & travel for a while.