Issue: 2014-11-13

The writing is on the plant

The Yukon is known for its vibrant fireweed; it’s used to make jelly, soap, and artwork. For Yukon-based artist Helen O’Connor, fireweed provides material for artistic paper. But the Yukon’s official flower is not the only plant she grinds to a pulp. The art adventurer has also used grass, clover, and even flax to make …

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Tibetan Peach Pie

It’s not often I give myself an impossible writing assignment but I’m doing so now because I’m intrigued by the challenge. Book reviews often have aim to provide a concise summary and make the reader want to read the book. Not this time. I’m only halfway through Tom Robbins’ non-autobiography called Tibetan Peach Pie, and, …

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Nebraska Turtle

Sid van der Meer has lived in Beaver Creek, Yukon since 1997. He’s made a comfortable home for himself, and a charming museum for friends and visitors. His collectables can be found in both his museum and his home. As you walk in the front door of van der Meer’s home, you are greeted by …

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The Wasteland

Andrea Kastner has been fascinated by garbage for years. The Montreal native, who now makes her home in Hamilton, Ontario became interested in waste while thinking about how we, as a society, relate to our possessions. “ We take things with us, ignore that we own them, then throw them out,” she says. “ It’s …

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Home Grown

The phrase “food security” is becoming common, and it can be interpreted in several different ways. Whether it is a lack of food due to environmental conditions, the inability to access nutritious food because of financial restraints, or the lack of food due to remote location — these are all are considered examples of “food …

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A Day in the Woods

The first snow is a long-anticipated event for me. It is not only eagerness, but also apprehension, that keeps me company on my tenterhooks. Either way, there is relief when the white stuff finally flies. I missed the first two snows that came and went, so I was truly chomping at the bit by the …

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War Stories

 “We were praying and killing each other at the same time.” — A German soldier reflecting on D-Day Once peace is waged what do we remember about the battlefields? Tales of war can become like the whispering game after a few generations have passed, apart from the “official versions” of the truth. But World War …

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People Will Always Need Stories

 “ One hundred writers from around the world in 86 events”, was the motto of the 2014 Vancouver Writers Festival. It kicked off with an author many were looking forward to hearing from: Karl Ove Knausgaard, a literary sensation from Norway, who has published an autobiographical six-book-series called My Struggle. He writes about big issues …

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Craft Boss

The Yukon is known for its craft fairs. From Dawson to Faro to Teslin, each community has its own craft niche. But when you get to Whitehorse, the niche transforms into something almost limitless called Spruce Bog. Entering its 39th year, Spruce Bog continues to grow. With its humble beginning at F.H. Collins, before moving …

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No Tuning Required

He may be a classically-trained pianist, but Chris Donnelly doesn’t get bent out of shape if his instrument is less than brilliantly tuned. “There’s nothing inherently bad about an untuned piano. It just sounds different. It has its own vibe,” he says. Donnelly is the pianist with the Toronto jazz trio Myriad3. Along with bassist …

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