Good News: 50 Reasons For Feeling Better

February 1 1971

Good News: 50 Reasons For Feeling Better

February 1 1971

No news is good news, so the saying goes. But to scan the front page, to watch the 11 o’clock news and, yes, to read this magazine, you’d think it was the reverse. Apparently, good news is no news, so they don’t bore us with it. Well, don't despair, the news isn’t all bad. Here’s what’s right with Canada today (you already know what’s wrong) , a few thousand encouraging words to sustain you through the year.

1 Pierre Trudeau didn't get married.

2 The Embalmers Association of Saskatchewan passed a resolution saying its members are opposed to U.S. take-overs of Canadian funeral homes (of the 1,400 funeral parlors in Canada 34 have been sold to U.S. owners in the past two years).

3 James Hamilton, an Arctic pilot from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, walked for a month, from Baker Lake, NWT, where his helicopter ran out of fuel, to a weather station at Ennadai, NWT, where he arrived a week after a Canadian Forces aircraft team had abandoned its search for him.

4 Anne Murray, singing star from Nova Scotia, was awarded a Gold Record by the American recording industry for her million-seller "Snow Bird"

5 IN 1952 SHERRITT Gordon, a mining and smelting company, had modest nickel deposits at Lynn Lake, Manitoba — and couldn’t afford a conventional “smokestack” smelter that burns off sulphur in the ore. So company consultant Professor Frank Forward, head of the University of British Columbia metallurgy department, devised a refining technique that eliminates this burning-off process. For $25 million (about half the cost of a conventional refinery), the company built a plant at Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, where refining is done in pressure tanks by “leaching” in an ammonia solution.

Now ecology conscious, Sherritt Gordon is proud of its smokeless smelter, which has been expanded to become a $75-million plant. And not only because it is pollution free : sulphur that would pollute the earth is recovered and turned into fertilizer.

Says Sherritt Gordon vice president, Peter Cain: “We hope our method will be accepted elsewhere. This ammonia-leaching process can be used to eliminate pollution wherever conventional smelting is in use.” Plants have been built under license in Australia, South Africa and Finland, and Sherritt Gordon is now helping the Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Company, under orders from the Manitoba government, to clean up its Flin Flon smelters.

Smokeless smelting produces nickel in powdered form, which makes better than usual coins. Blanks for all Canadian nickels and some quarters and 50-cent pieces are stamped out at Fort Saskatchewan. Ending pollution has helped Sherritt Gordon make a mint.

6 Dr. Patrick MacTaggart Cowan of the Science Council of Canada, directed the cleanup of 100 miles of Cape Breton beach fouled by oil from the tanker Arrow when it ran aground a year ago in Chedabucto Bay.

7 Sam Etcheverry, coach of the Montreal Alouettes, finally won the Grey Cup he tried so hard to win, but didn't, as the team's all-star quarter back in the 1950's.

8 Marc Modena, a 44year-old Montreal butcher, crossed 8,172 miles of Pacific Ocean, from Ecuador to Australia, on a 16-by-45 foot raft built from tree trunks — to test a theory that South Americans could have made the same trip the same way centuries ago.

9 C. Perrin Johnston, 56, of Toronto, celebrated two years of living with a transplanted heart—with a drink, a smoke and the observation that he was feeling better than ever.

10 Helen Narhirniak, 38, a $1.50- an-hour waitress from Edmonton, won $50,000 in the Art Gallery of Ontario lottery and said, "Well, maybe I'll take a trip somewhere because I've never been anywhere else but home before."

11 “FAMILY LIFE education should teach boys how to care for children, to cook and sew, and should encourage girls to acquire manual skills. Courses should be coeducational and begun in kindergarten.” — The report of The Royal Commission on the Status of Women, tabled in the House of Commons on December 7.

12 Sandy Hawley, the 21 year old jockey from Whitby, Ontario, was North America's leading rider in 1070 with 453 wins.

13 Arthur Erickson, the Vancouver architect, designed the Canada Pavilion at Expo 70, which was judged the best at the fair.

14 Phillip Aspinall of Montreal won a tax appeal on the grounds that of $150 he donated to the National Ballet Guild $85 was a charitable donation (National Revenue disallowed the original claim because the entire $150 did not constitute a gift, Aspinall having received tickets to a gala performance and the reception that followed).

15 WHEN VANCOUVER’S hippie hunting Mayor Tom Campbell had a score or so of youngsters thrown out of an empty downtown building in which they were camping last summer, a blond mother of four, Mrs. Diana Moore, 30, invited them to share her eight-room house on Broadway.

For a few weeks she had 13 of the so-disliked-by-manyof-her-generation hippies sleeping on mattresses in her living and dining room. Soon they moved to the basement, and for six weeks she had an average of six of them staying with her and the children, twins aged nine and the others six and four years old. The last visitor left late in November.

Says Mrs. Moore, separated and now a first-year law student: “The press has given people the impression these young people would make dangerous, desperate house guests. Yet while they were in my house I didn’t sweep a floor or wash a dish, nor did I ask anyone to do so. What’s more, my house was cleaner than at any time since my children began arriving. I left each morning confident nothing would be harmed, and had the confidence confirmed each evening when I came home. Poor kids — yes. But demented, dirty, disturbed lazy trash? Not on your life. The media have been putting us on.”

16 Rhonda Stallan, a 21 year old Toronto book keeper and novice sunbather, won the title Miss Nude World at a contest in a Hamilton "naturists" park.

17 Caroline Commisso, a 19 year-old student in Thunder Bay, Ontario broke with tradition by not bursting into tears when she was crowned Miss Canada, 1970

18 IN 1969 THEY said the novelty of “charity marches” was wearing off. But Canadians went on walking . . . and jogging and running, too. And in 1970, one in five of us, four million people, took to the road — not as carefree itinerant hitchhikers but in purposeful lineups of as many as 85,000 people. There were marches practically every weekend, April through September. The proceeds: more than five million dollars.

The beneficiaries? Miles For Millions, which organized spring and fall walkathons in 83 communities across the country — from Osoyoos, British Columbia, to Goose Bay, Labrador — will distribute about 90% of the money to underprivileged children throughout the world. As for the rest — well, there was $2,000 to buy new uniforms for a drum and bugle corps in Scarborough, Ontario; 1,700 marchers in Saskatoon raised $25,000 for the city’s crippled children; in Vancouver 800 people walked 100 miles to Hope, BC, raising thousands of dollars for the province’s Indians; and on and on.

Most of the marchers, of course, were youngsters. But not all. On May 23, Dr. Arthur Kennedy, 82, and his wife Gertie, 79, joined 1,300 marchers in Unionville, Ont., in a 20-mile hike that raised $30,000 for a senior citizens home. Arthur and Gertie walked the distance in eight hours and 45 minutes.


■ Mrs. Una Thurlow, 38-year-old mother of four, recently became Canada’s only certified woman crane operator. The president of a Toronto mobile-crane rental company, earning about $11,000 a year, Mrs. Thurlow decided to try for her certificate when crane operators received a wage guarantee of eight dollars an hour for a 40-hour week or $16,640 a year. She passed the Ontario Department of Labor examination with an above average 70%. “This proves,” says Mrs. Thurlow, “that broads don’t have to be stupid just because they wear skirts.”

■ Mrs. Jeniel Jolley was chosen last January to represent Simon Fraser University in the 1970 Miss Canadian University beauty contest. Unfortunately for the contest organizers, Mrs. Jolley is also a member of Women’s Liberation — “beauty contests,” she says, “are degrading and promote the plastic-woman image.” They disqualified her when she threatened to turn the contest into a protest. However, she did win two converts: Judy Darcy, the University of Toronto entry, withdrew; and Reva Rodnunsky, the 1969 winner from the University of Calgary, confessed to an interviewer that she was sympathetic to the Women’s Liberation cause and “even thought of attending a few meetings.”

■ After a year of pickets and protests, women journalists in Winnipeg celebrated a victory in October when the city’s press club, oldest of its kind in Canada, voted 21 to 11 to allow them full membership. Seven women have joined so far. Says press-club secretary Chuck Thompson: “The girls have given the place a little class.”

■ Toronto newspapers used to run Help Wanted ads, as most Canadian newspapers still do, distinguishing between “Help Wanted Female” and “Help Wanted Male.” But on December 1, 1970, the Ontario Women’s Equal Opportunities Act became law — making it illegal, among other things, to label jobs as male or female. So today, “Help Wanted Female” and “Help Wanted Male” have become “Jobs of Interest to Women” and “Jobs of Interest to Men.”

■ On November 12, Mrs. Christine Bennett and nine other members of a group called Women’s Coalition entered the Princess Lounge of Toronto’s Royal York Hotel, sat down at a corner table and ordered lunch. A “men only business lunch,” as the hotel then billed them, was in progress. Executive Assistant Manager Peter McArthur was called in to explain that the menu — ham and cheese sandwiches or beef stew — probably wouldn’t appeal to the women’s tastes, but they were welcome to stay, he told them graciously. And that’s what they did — ordering and eating lunch with a reproduction of the Bill Of Rights propped up on the table. “It’s not a free country,” says Mrs. Bennett, “when some people are barred from eating in certain areas of a public eating place.” A month later the Royal York began describing its lunches as being “mainly for businessmen.”

■ Five hundred women graduates from across Canada met in August for the triennial conference of the Canadian Federation of University Women. The subjects under discussion: pollution, campus unrest, discrimination against Canada’s native peoples. No beefs about inequality to women? “We feel the things our forebears had to fight for, such as women’s rights to higher education and equal pay for equal work, have been granted,” said president Margaret Orange. “Now the emphasis is on the rights of all human beings, both men and women.”

25 Morley Callaghan was given $50,000 by the Royal Bank of Canada in recognition of his achievements as a Canadian writer and, several months later, drove off a thief half his age (Callaghan is 67) who had broken into his house and hit the writer six times with a billy (the attacker probably didn't know that Callaghan was an amateur boxer in his youth and once knocked down Ernest Hemingway during a match refereed by F. Scott Fitzgerald).

26 IF YOU WERE in Ste. Scholastique (about 30 miles northeast of Montreal) right now, you might spot a couple of men slowly picking their way through barren fields, peering down at the snow and making notes with cold-stiffened fingers.

These men are animal ecologists and spotting paw prints in the snow is one way to study wildlife. The reason they’re so interested in the fauna of Ste. Scholastique is that the federal government is going to build a new international airport there. And, for the first time, the government is interested in what one of its airports will do to the environment.

Mind you, Ottawa is not saying it will actually do anything even if the experts prove jumbo jets are going to destroy Ste. Scholastique. But it’s at least encouraging to see they’re interested enough to have appointed an eight-man team of ecologists and to spend $250,000 to find out in advance what effects the new airport will have.

Experts will report on the likely impact on the animal and vegetable life of the region, on the soil and on the already polluted North River, which passes within two miles of the proposed runways. And the government hasn’t forgotten the people, either; part of the research project is a study of how people in the thinly populated area around Ste. Scholastique relate to the land and how their lives may be changed by the airport after it opens in 1974.

Whether engineers building the place approve of all this is another matter. One ecologist has already reported that trucking away sand in the area for use in runway building may cause a serious soil imbalance and the remaining sand, less firm, may vanish in terrific sandstorms.

27 Gerald Regan, a 41 year-old lawyer, led the Liberals to victory in Nova Scotia, ending a 14 year reign by the Progressive Conservatives.

28 Richard Bennett Hatfield, 39, and his provincial Progressive Conservative party deposed the 10 year-old Liberal government of Loius Robichaud in New Brunswick.

29 John Robarts, after nine years as Progressive Conservative premier of Ontario, decided to retire - undefeated.

30 JACK MUIR started shooting ducks during the Depression when it meant meat for the table. But 16 years ago he bought 70 acres of marginal land near Niagara Falls, where he works as a security officer, and, starting with a few ducks he had found strangling in oily goo in the lower Niagara River, turned it into a sanctuary where last spring more than 500 ducks returned to spend the summer.

Waterfowl were abundant in the Niagara Peninsula in the 1930s when Muir began hunting, but as the years passed he noticed fewer and fewer birds. Close-crop farming robbed them of protective cover and food. Pesticides rendered them less prolific. The water was polluted. And as the population grew, so did the number of hunters.

Most of the birds Muir rescued from the Niagara River that first year died. But a few survived and, as winter set in, headed south. Would they return? Or by spring would they have forgotten about their friend on the outskirts of the honkytonk tourist mecca? March came — and the ducks were not far behind. And it’s been that way ever since. Each year they returned in greater numbers, and soon they began to nest on Muir’s 70 acres. He feeds them from crops he harvests on the land, polices the ground against poachers and constructs nesting sites.

All this Muir has done on his own. He’s not a wealthy man, and the money he’s spent providing sanctuary for ducks might otherwise have painted the house or bought a new car. “Why do I do it? I just hope that my sons and their sons will be able to see a pencil line of ducks on the horizon just before dawn. I hope they will see some of the things I have seen.”

31 The People’s Committee, a Winnipeg community action group, got $47,000 from the Manitoba government to convert a four-unit slum apartment block into a home for six needy families.

32 Chief Dan George, 71, of Vancouver, made a breakthrough in the film “Little Big Man”: an Indian playing an Indian in a Hollywood movie. Chief George was asked recently by American talk-show host Dick Cavett if it was any easier being an Indian in Canada. “No,” he replied.

33 Betsy Clifford, the 17 year-old Canadian skier, won the world championship in the giant slalom at Val Gardena, Italy in February and the women's special slalom at the World Cup competition in Val d'Isere, France, in December.

34 PARRY SOUND, Ontario, is probably best known today as the town that gave hockey Bobby Orr. But it is also popular with cottagers and tourists by the thousand as a summer resort. It’s a yesterday town, the kind of place you can run to when you want to forget about today. And yet, Parry Sound is not oblivious to today’s problems. Parry Sound has its own branch of Pollution Probe.

Last summer 60 anti-pollution groups across Canada provided summer jobs for 270 university students in an environmental cleanup and research program organized by Pollution Probe at the University of Toronto and financed by John Labatt Brewery at London, Ont. In one of the most successful projects, 20 students working in eight teams tackled the problem of sewage disposal in the summer resort areas of Ontario and Quebec. Over the summer they talked to more than 25,000 people, and reached a further 40,000 through pamphlets, radio, television and newspapers.

The results? Seventy-seven cottage associations agreed to launch education programs in the construction of adequate septic tanks and communal washroom facilities. Thirty six agreed to begin regular testing of sewage facilities. Twenty-five are going to begin bringing community pressure to bear on delinquent cottagers. And on the community level — well, Parry Sound isn’t the only Ontario small town with a Probe-type citizens’ group today: the students were equally persuasive in Huntsville, Tweed, Madoc, Gravenhurst, Midland and Orillia.

35 Dale Tallon, the young hockey star, signed a first-year contract with the Vancouver Canucks of the National Hockey League, which his manager, Allan Eagleson, called "the highest for any amateur that I know, including Bobby Orr." (It is believed to earn Tallon around $60,000 a year)

36 Don Shebib produced and directed "Goin' Down The Road," a Canadian film that was good - and popular.

37 Robin Ridington, an anthropologist at the University of British Columbia, received a grant of $6,500 from the Canada Council to continue his research on . . . the symbolism of the American Indian sun dance.

38 Alastair Corston de Cusanse Maxwell Saunders, 21, of Halifax, won a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford University where he will study Medieval Spanish history.

39 BILL SEIDELMAN graduated from the University of British Columbia medical school in 1968 and interned in New York City at the City Hospital Centre in ElmhirstQueens. “It’s a poor people’s hospital,” he says, “underfinanced and understaffed. Doctors were overworked, the nursing was abominable. Patients left money under bedpans to bribe the nurses to remove them. I felt that the patients were penalized because they were poor.”

His internship over, Dr. Seidelman returned to Vancouver last year and went into private practice. But he hadn’t forgotten his experience at City Hospital Centre and when, after a few months back in Vancouver, he learned of REACH — Research and Educational Attack on Community Health — he volunteered his services.

REACH is a medical clinic affiliated with UBC and founded in 1969 by its present executive director, Dr. Roger Tonkin, who teaches community medicine at the university. It’s housed in an old one-story wooden store in Vancouver’s East End, an area populated mainly by Chinese, Italian and East Indian immigrants, poor people and social outcasts. REACH offers these people free health care — from volunteer doctors, dentists, pediatricians, psychiatrists, nurses, social workers, and students enlisted from all the branches of medical science — without red tape.

Seidelman, at 29 one of the youngest of the qualified REACH volunteers, puts in three four-hour shifts a week at the clinic, usually arriving in the evenings after 12 hours of office duty, hospital rounds and house calls. About 20 people, mostly young transients, were waiting to see him as he began his shift one recent Thursday. “Their problems range from the mundane to the dramatic,” says Seidelman. “They come with belly pains, suicidal depressions, sore throats, gonnorrhea, bad drug trips, acne, unwanted pregnancies, anxiety and birth-control problems.”

Seidelman isn’t pious about the time he donates to the clinic. “There’s a constant influx of new ideas and concepts here, and I want to do innovative things. I’m not interested in sitting in my office five days a week following the same routine.”

40 Dr. A. E. Wood of Vancouver earned $95,611 from the British Columbia medical services’ plan for services rendered in the fiscal year ending March 31, 1970.

41 Dr. Edward H. Simmons, a surgeon at Toronto General Hospital, developed a new surgical technique for the treatment of spinal arthritis (he breaks the patient’s neck, straightens the head, and then encloses the patient in a portable steel frame until the bones knit together again).

42 Cathy Robichaud, the 21 year-old daughter of the jailer in the New Brunswick town of Richibucto, foiled a jailbreak by two young prisoners when she remembered her father's instructions: "If anything ever happens, just close the jail door and call for help."

43 RAY SILENZI is a crane operator at the Stelco plant in Hamilton, Ontario, and happily admits his tastes in culture depend on the fads of his two teen-age sons (it’s Engelbert Humperdink right now). But three years ago he donated five dollars to help pay for an $8.5-million cultural centre being built in the so-called “lunchpail city.”

Ray Silenzi’s contribution to culture was made by payroll deduction — he and 11,999 other hourly-paid workers in Hamilton all contributed varying sums by having them taken out of their pay packets along with union dues, pension-fund payments and medicare premiums. It is a fund - raising method unique in North América, and more than $400,000 was raised this way.

One thousand or so companies, right down to a fourman painting contractor, made donations. In the threeyear drive to raise money for the centre it often seemed all Hamilton was involved: one recent gift was for $35, proceeds from a chrysanthemum sale staged by a group of gardeners. Fund raisers set a target of $2.5 million, and reached it. Adman Jack McNie, vice - chairman of the citizens’ committee that launched the project, says no Canadian city has ever raised so much money publicly for a similar scheme.

Says steelman Silenzi: “We’re a little bit sick of the things people say about Hamilton. Maybe now they’ll call us the Ambitious City again — they used to once, you know.”

44 Mrs. Carol Handford, a member of the Humber, Ontario, Ladies Curling Team, wanted triplets -and got them (two boys and a girl).

45 Jean Baptiste Beland, a 67-year•old Quebecker from St. Ephrem de Beauce, who according to the University of Ottawa "runs like a horse," is still doing 50 miles nonstop.

46 Leslie Dewart, a 47 year-old professor of theology at St. Michael's College, University of Toronto, became to Christian theology (a number of theological colleges are offering courses on "Dewartism") what Marshall McLuhan is to communication.

47 Farley Mowat, in accepting the Stephen Leacock Award for his latest book of humor, "The Boat That Wouldn't Float" did not catch a cold when he demonstrated what Scots do not wear under their kilts.

48 Rose Anne Hebert, 15, was reunited with her parents and seven brothers and sisters in Saint John, New Brunswick, the week before Christmas, after spending two months in Toronto hospital receiving treatment for what doctors called " a true case of amnesia"

49 FREEMAN “SKIPPER” KING is an 80-year-old Victoria naturalist who guides nature walks through the city’s Goldstream Park in the summer and oversees the salmon run up the five-mile-long Goldstream River in the winter. Last fall, Skipper King achieved something quite remarkable: he persuaded the people of Victoria to give up water they might need next summer for their much loved gardens to save the Goldstream River salmon run.

Victoria had experienced its second dry summer, and near the end of October there was hardly enough water in the Goldstream to make a cup of tea — and not nearly enough for the coho and chum salmon to make their way from Saanich Inlet, where the river empties into the sea, to their upstream beds. As many as 10,000 fish would die in the shallows before the winter rains. And in the spring, when more than 100,000 salmon fry would normally hatch and head for sea, there would be perhaps a few hundred. Skipper King knew there was only one hope: to send water into the Goldstream from the city’s already depleted reservoirs.

It couldn’t be done, said the city’s water commissioner. It would require millions of gallons of water — at least five million gallons a day — which might be needed by Victoria’s 200,000 citizens come summer. But Skipper King wasn’t convinced and took his case to the people. He organized a well-attended save-the-salmon rally at which he urged citizens to cut their water consumption by half — by eliminating waste at laundromats and car washes, by taking light showers instead of baths, by flushing less water down toilets. The saving, he said, would be 1.2 million gallons a day.

The people of Victoria responded. Housewives stopped using their dishwashers. Leaky faucets were repaired, cars went unwashed and gardens unwatered. School children taped up drinking fountains. The newspapers — and even the mayor — began promoting water conservation. They may not have saved enough water, but the message — that the people of Victoria were willing to make a sacrifice in order to save the Goldstream salmon run— got through. Municipal authorities met with federal and provincial fisheries officers and agreed to send 100 million gallons of water — eight million gallons a day — into the river. The next day, for the first time in many days, it rained.

The first water was released from the reservoir into the Goldstream on November 8, and during the day — a Sunday — an estimated 30,000 people came to the river bank in Goldstream Park hoping to see the salmon run they had helped save. Skipper King was one of them.


□ The rate of inflation has dropped to 3.6% from 4.7% in 1969.

□ The cost of living has risen only 3.4% as compared with 4.5%

in 1969.

□ Personal income is up from $2.9 billion in 1969 to $3.1 billion.

□ Our population has remained steady at 21.3million. □