About

Contrarian is a new blog by Parker Donham. Likely topics include politics and whimsy.

Parker operates the Kempt Head Institute, a communications consultancy with diverse clients. He also operates the Cape Breton Island Film Series. Like so many others, he came to public relations after a long spell in journalism, during which he won more Atlantic Journalism Awards than the province of Prince Edward Island.

A few things you may not know about Parker:

  • On April 13, 2000, the Nova Scotia Legislature lost quorum for the first time in 18 years when too many MLAs snuck out to the lobby to watch Parker debate Harry Flemming.
  • In 1968, Parker served as press secretary to a candidate for the Democratic party nomination for president.
  • Parker heard Martin Luther King give the “I Have a Dream” speech twice, once at the Lincoln Memorial and once at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama.
  • He invented the cheddar cheese waffle, and coined the term, “eco-narcissist.”
  • His favorite pieces of writing are the lesson of the moth by Don Marquis and Death of a Pig by E. B. White.
  • In his lifetime, Parker has had a beagle and a sow called Rosie, and a grandaughter named Rosa. Only the granddaughter survives.
  • He owns a 12-string guitar that Pete Seeger gave him in 1966. G.W. Francis of Huyton, Liverpool, England, built the guitar in September, 1960. You can see Pete playing this guitar here, here, here, and here.
  • He lives on an island within an island, and owns still another island.
  • Parker has voted for Liberals, Tories, Democrats, New Democrats, Republicans, and a few others.
  • He has stratified, germinated,¬†and grown an American Chestnut (not to be confused with a horse chestnut) from seed to young adulthood.
  • Parker knows how to operate a planetary transmission, having once commuted to work for a full year in a 1926 Model T Ford. No, he’s not that old.
  • He can milk a cow, but would prefer not to.