Tagged: St. John’s NL

Washroom pictograph watch

conventwashrooms

Things are different at the convent.

(H/T: Silas/ Presentation Sisters Convent, St. John’s, NL.)

Crowdsourcing Cape Breton stories

Ashley McKenzie and Nelson MacDonald need help finishing their latest movie about New Waterford. Their first two shorts, “Rhonda’s Party” (2010) and “When You Sleep” (2012), achieved exceptional success, screening to widespread praise at the Toronto International Film Festival and Cannes, as well as at festivals in Montreal, Stockholm, Whistler, and St. John’s. Along the way, they picked up half a dozen industry awards, including the top prize in CBC’s Short Film Faceoff.

AshleyDespite these early triumphs, the pair have had to turn to crowdsourcing to raise the last few dollars needed to finish post-production on their latest film, “Stray,” the story of a lonely New Waterford girl who tries to befriend a homeless cat.

They wouldn’t need this money if they had taken the expedient route of filming in Halifax. But director Ashley and producer Nelson are committed to telling Cape Breton stories in an authentic way. By paying the extra transportation and crew costs to film here, they were able to set scenes in magnificent post-industrial settings that just aren’t available anywhere else. (Lord knows how Nelson wheedled permission to shoot in some of these locations.)

We’re always bemoning the exodus of talented young people from Nova Scotia. Ashley and Nelson could easily flourish in a major film center, but they choose instead to stay here and tell our stories. We’ve been friends for years, and I can’t think of any two people who work harder, or bring greater intelligence and dedication to their craft.

Isn’t that something we should support?

With just 48 hours to go, their Indiegogo crowd-sourcing campaign is about $1,600 shy of the goal needed to finish “Stray.” You can contribute here.

Air Canada kneecaps Sydney

This is a tired tune, but indulge me for a few bars. A few weeks ago, a Halifax physician went on Air Canada’s website to book two round-trip flights: one to Sydney, Nova Scotia, 306 kilometers away; another to San Diego, 4,724 away (via Toronto).

Air Canada charged $827 for the Sydney flight; $548 for SanDiego. That works out to $2.63/km for the Sydney flights vs. 11ยข/km. for SanDiego.

Years ago, some Sydney friends attended a wedding in St. John’s, NF. Another wedding guest came from Cairo, Egypt. Guess who paid the lower fare?

Try doing business with that handicap. Or as my 10th grade math teacher would have said, “Capitalism fails again.”