The icing on the cake

Extra! Extra! Read all about it:

Rankin Inlet reporter gets facts wrong, leads to demise of local businesses. Young woman gets chased out of town by angry villagers weilding ATV bike pumps.


Issac and Ishmael

I’ve got goosebumps.

I sat down with my laptop this evening, switched on the first episode of the third season of the West Wing, and prepared to write a photo-heavy entry about my last couple of weekends, out on the land.

But that’s not going to happen.



Music, geekiness and veganicity tidbits

Instead of inundating you with a million posts today, all of about 100 words each, I thought I’d be kind and save Google Reader a massive headache by doing what I am now calling a “tidbit” post. Because categories on WordPress are fun. And I’m trying to be better at classifying things on this blog than I did on the past one.

  • The lure of the south is really getting to me right now. It’s so close, but yet so far, which is frustrating because ever since I decided (or semi-decided) that I’ll be making my way home to PEI for the summer (and maybe beyond… that’s to be figured out) I’ve been thinking up all these rad things I want to do…


Moving and general confusion

So I’m moving.

You all know that. Of course you do. When your job gets cut in a town like Rankin, you move. Or at least I do.

Last week I was all hunky dory, beginning the whole process. I was told I had six weeks. And CBC insisted they would have someone pack me up. And my last day of work was the 23rd of July. “But don’t worry. There’s some flexibility there.”




Me as a Mormon, Part 2

Reader asks….

Why does your polygamy have to include multiple wives? Would it work if you had multiple husbands?

Back when I was living in Quebec City (the immediate pre-Nunavut days) I tried dating more than one person at the same time. I wasn’t being a floozy, I just was VERY casually going out for drinks with two different people. And I didn’t like it.



Why I'll never be a Mormon

I could never be a Mormon.

Or rather, I could never be a polygamist. Because as I’ve learned (HBO is soooo educational) while most polygamists are Mormon, not all Mormons are polyamists.

But either way. I couldn’t do it. Maybe it’s deeply rooted in serious jealousy issues… because I really can not imagine sharing my husband with anyone else for the rest of my life.


Make no mistake

I’ve done a lot of stupid things in my life. I’ll admit it. Most of them harmless. Hopefully all of them forgivable.

But of all the seemingly silly, possibly dumb things I’ve done in my life… one thing I absolutely DON’T regret …


A fresh start

It’s strange, I’ve been at this blogging thing for years now. It started off with an online diary. Then a couple travel blogs. And then A Journey Northwards took hold. And now I’m hooked. I’m a blogger.



Swine flu cases in Canada: breakdown

Number of cases of swine flu in Canada (by province/territory) 
Data as of June 15th, 2009
Sources: Health Canada and Wikipedia

British Columbia = 172 = (0.0038%)
Alberta = 264 = (0.0072%)
Saskatchewan = 327 = (0.031%)
Manitoba = 154 = (0.0126%)
Ontario = 1907 = (0.014%)
Quebec = 971 = (0.0124%)
New Brunswick = 3 = (0.0004%)
Nova Scotia = 81= (0.0086%)
Prince Edward Island = 3 = (0.0021%)
Newfoundland and Labrador = 1= (0.00019)
Nunavut = 164 = (0.519%)
Northwest Territories = 2 = (0.0046%)
Yukon = 1 = (0.0029%)

Best places in Canada to catch H1N1 (swine flu)

Nunavut @ 0.0519% of population positive with H1N1
Saskatchewan @ 0.031% of population positive with H1N1
Ontario @ 0.014% of population positive with H1N1

Now you know.
Aren't you glad I didn't take my lunch today?

Canada Post: Epic Fail

Dear Canada Post.
My name is Jackie S. Quire and I live in a remote community in the Eastern Arctic.

Mailing things from the north can be difficult, not to mention expensive. And I understand you have to charge for your services. You are a crown corporation, after all... and crown corporations have to stand on their own and not expect handouts from the federal government, even when peoples' livelihoods are at stake...

Oops. Sorry. Got off on a tangent there.

Where was I? Oh yah. Charge for your services.

So I understand you have to make people pay to send letters and packages across our fair country and around the great wide world. And I've come to terms with the fact that you are going to raise the price of stamps even if it's not necessary. Even if gas prices aren't at their peak (I just buy your PERMANENT STAMPS IN BULK mwa hahah).

But what I DON'T understand is why you've gone and changed your fraking Expresspost envelopes. Understand, just for a moment, how bloody expensive it is to ship any kind of package from the north. Or TO the north. Family members don't even send me birthday presents anymore because it's too pricy to send them by mail. The ONLY saving grace has been Expresspost envelopes. Where for a nominal fee (your choice of either 10 or 20 dollars) you can stuff a padded envelope with whatever nicknacks and do-dads your heart desires.

But now, NOW you've gone and messed everything up. And REPLACED the padded envelopes with PAPER BAGS.


Paper. Bags.

This is ridiculous. You can't fit anything into a paper bag without it ripping. They don't come with the patent-pending Glad-flex stretchiness. THEY. ARE. PAPER.

And if I WANTED to mail a package in a PAPER envelope, I would... you know... BUY THE BLOODY EXPRESSPOST LETTER ENVELOPES.

NOT the Expresspost package envelopes.

Seriously? SERIOUSLY?


Jackie S. Quire.

Reader says: WTF CBC??

It's horrible that the MotherCorp would cut the only reporter position in a region as ginormous as yours. We are all worse off for this.

There are two ways to look at my layoff.
No. Make that three.

Yes. There are at least three ways to look at the way I lost my job. Wait. Maybe there are more. Hm.

I'm getting confused. Why don't we just look at the "facts:"

  1. Poor Jackie: she doesn't have a job anymore. And now has to leave the place she's called home for the past two years. Moving is hard. Moving from the north is harder. Leaving people and places behind you may never see again is difficult. Leaving without a job on the other end is even harder. Poor Jackie.
  2. Poor Rankin: there are a handful of reporter positions for the territory. One in Rankin Inlet. One in Cambridge Bay. About 5 or 6 in Iqaluit (giving half-points to the news reader and senior reporter etc.) The position in Rankin will soon be gone, leaving a huge gap in news coverage for the territory.
  3. Poor Regions: while there is *supposed* to be a reporter position in Cambridge Bay, this isn't the case, really. The reporter assigned to the Kitikmeot is actually currently based in Iqaluit. The plan *was* to move him to Cambridge Bay, but there are some logistical issues that have been tricky to work out. That means there are only reporters in the Baffin region now. All reporting outside Iqaluit will now have to be done by phone.
BUT there are a couple good things going on here.
  1. Locals doing local news: For the past couple months (and especially since I left for vacation) my coworkers here in Rankin Inlet have been doing more and more news clips. Instead of me taking clips from the interviews they've done and writing them into a story, they're doing it themselves. This means more chances for bilingual stories. And more stories grounded in the culture of the regions. This is a good thing.
  2. Jackie gets what she wanted: to head out of Rankin sooner rather than later. And she doesn't have to pay her own way to do it.
So reader, while I agree with you on principle... that cutting the only reporter position in a geographic area as stupidly huge as the Kivalliq is a real shame...

Having the local people here in Rankin do that job is probably the direction we should have gone in in the first place. Have them trained to do the reporting, or at least job-shadowing the reporter for a couple months so they know how things go.

The PROBLEM here isn't in eliminating a job (because in reality, though not in name, they are going to have others fill that void). The problem is that yet again we're going to have people in the Rankin station thrown into doing a job they've not been really trained to do. Sure, more often than not, you learn by doing. But there's journalistic theory involved in reporting. Guidelines and rules that need to be followed... and until you get someone up here to hold a session on Journalistic ethics and practices... the station's going to be at a bit of a loss.


New Blog: Serendipity Now

So I've started my new blog up and running.
After hearing Megan rave about Wordpress and how it's god's gift to bloggers, I thought I'd give it a try.
I'm still going to be posting here for a bit, but eventually that will stop and I'll be fully moved over to the new site.
I like the look better. It's cleaner, I think.
Let me know what you think...


Inuk music and altered states

Well I already wrote an entry for the day.

So this is just a bonus one. And not a real one. So there.

My sandbox. My rules.

Neener neener neener :P

  1. I was helping out an amigo of mine figure out where there's money to be had for budding recording artists (incidentally, the same talented woman who drew my Sedna picture) and I came across a "new" blog - one that exclusively features arctic musicians. Pretty neat photos and articles. Check it out here! (Clare, is this on the database?)
  2. I have become dangerously intrigued by The United States of Tara. It's a Showtime series exec. produced and created by Diablo Coady of Juno screenwriting fame. Though from what I've seen of it so far, it's NOTHING like Juno. The series is typical Showtime fare: take something somewhate out there and place it in a typical suburban setting. The show follows Tara, a woman dealing with DID (dissociative identity disorder) and her various "alters." I'm now hooked on reading the blog that belongs to a woman who worked as a consultant (holy qualifiers batman) on the show. She has DID, and it's just facinating to read about "integration" and "splits" from someone I can only describe as the most stable instable person ever. Check that blog out here.
  3. A friend of mine now has a shop on Etsy. (Please tell me I've told y'all about Etsy). If you are into earrings and do-dads I'm sure she'd appreciate your support. She's a pharmacy student who just happens to be the most creative and crafty person I know (besides my babysitter from when I was like, 4 - but then who can ever really hold a candle to Shelia?). Her site is here.
Okay, that's all. Buh-byyyye!

Non-reader asks: Did you go out?

As I was walking to the story meeting room this morning...

Co-worker: *mumble-out*?
Jackie S. Quire: wha?
CW: *you-mumble-went-mumble-out*?
JSQ: *giggle* whaaaat?
CW: You. Look. Like. You. Went. Out. Your. Face. Out!
JSQ: ohhhhhhhhh yah, I went out *squinch face*

So I went on a 2.5-week long vacation "down south." And came back nice and brown.

I went for a weekend at a friend's cabin. And came back with my skin feeling a bit tight, but not looking all that different.

And my co-worker can tell I've been out on the land.... and I don't even have the tell-tale hat/goggles tan line.

Go figure.

** I should mention said co-worker speaks perfect English, I just was feeling geriatric and he was mumbling a bit too haha


Reader & non-readers ask: Oink Oink?


I. Do. Not. Have. Swine. Flu.

So what the hell happened when I was gone? Seriously, I leave town, the GG snacks on a seal, creates a international ruckus and the entire territory comes down with H1N1.

Looks like we're not getting along very well with animals lately :P

According to yesterday's report by the GN Department of Health, the count's now at 140-something, split 60-40 between the Kitikmeot and Kivalliq regions. For some unknown reason no one's tested positive in the Baffin yet. But frankly, I'd say that's just a matter of time.

Seriously though, we're okay. Yes people have H1N1 (in fact, my skidoo buddy/inuk boyfriend was sent down to Winnipeg because of it) but it's still pretty much "business as usual". With a little bit of Purell thrown in for good measure.


I don’t believe in fate. I never have, and probably never will. As some of you know, I’m just too much of a control freak to even consider the possibility that I don’t have the power to choose my own destiny. I believe the choices I make affect the future. But I also acknowledge I can only control my own future, not that of others. Autonomy, you know?

But even though I reject fate, and I reject destiny, and I reject other notions of pre-ordained paths….

I do believe in Serendipity. I believe it, because I’ve seen it. I believe it, because I’ve lived it. I believe it because it basically describes everything my life has been and continues to be.

The CBC has cut the reporter position in Rankin Inlet.

My job has been eliminated. And my time in Rankin is up.

And that’s where Serendipity comes in.

I’ve been ready to leave Rankin for several months now. That probably comes as little surprise, I don’t hide my unhappiness very well. There have been some good times, I recognize that whole-heartedly. I made some good friends, had a fulfilling relationship (that has since ended, as some may have guessed) and dipped my toes in the waters of news reporting.

But Rankin is not my home. I think maybe I knew that from the beginning. I still remember with painful detail how scared I was, how panicked I felt that first night in town. Looking around at my “cat-lady” apartment and feeling utterly alone. But I adapted, and I got swept up in the “new-ness” of it all… and I think genuinely enjoyed it for awhile. It was hard, but it was new.

But eventually the novelty wore off. And now it’s just hard.

And while the timing is maybe awkward (I found out when on holidays), I’m looking at the whole layoff as a closing-a-door/opening-a-window situation. My union’s got my back. The Mothercorp is paying my way out (and moving all my belongings), and they have to try to find me another position somewhere else before I am COMPLETELY jobless. And I’m on a recall list for the next 15 months.

Basically, what I’ve been trying to do on my own, finding another job somewhere else in the country, has just been accelerated on my behalf.

So don’t cry for me, (Argentina). I’m doing just fine. Maybe the pup and I will find a place we can really call home this time. A place with grass, and trees and some of the many familiarities I’ve missed this past year and a half.

It’s a bit scary, and things could move quite fast in the next month or so. But I’m ready. I’ve got serendipity on my side.






I love new challenges.


Standardization, please!

Some things really should just be standardized already.

Seriously? I’m 24 and starting to get crotchety in my old age.

And if the world could somehow come together on a couple of these things, I would be eternally grateful.

  • Electronics cords. I cannot for the life of me figure out why there are so many little attachment do-dads out there. You can have two cell phones from the exact same manufacturer, and the jacks will be COMPLETELY different. And even when the bloody things LOOK the same, sometimes the voltages are different. To the naked eye, my two laptops have the same power cord… but unless I’m careful I could blow one of them up, because the voltage is significantly different. Yah, okay. Maybe I shouldn’t own two laptops and avoid that problem from square one, but still. It’s ridiculous.
  • While I’m on the topic of power cords, let’s talk plugs. Why why WHY do we need to have different types of plugs between North America, Europe, the UK… and beyond? I gather it has something to do with the infrastructure and less with general flighty-ness like the power cord conundrum, but you’d think we could come up with a better solution than converters and adapters, in this day and age.
  • Security procedures. Okay. So you go through security in Canada and you have to remove your liquids and gels and laptops/camcorders. In the states, it’s your shoes. In Europe, you are allowed to bring in liquids with more than 100 ml as long as it’s been sealed in a duty-free bag. Not the case in North America.
  • Airline rules. Same deal. If they are going to make such a big deal of what you can and cannot do when on board, couldn’t they see to make it a general code of practise? This one isn’t even standardized by country! West Jet allows you to have pets on board, Air Canada doesn’t. You can use your cell phone as soon as the plane lands on United Airlines, not until you get into the terminal for others. Air Canada lets you use earbud earphones (to enjoy their on-board entertainment system, of course) at all times, but no other airline I’ve been on recently lets you wear them during takeoff/landing.
  • Debit Cards/Interac: everthing else is so fluid across borders, but the rules about bank account access cards just don’t follow from country to country, it seems. Maybe it’s just that Canada doesn’t have bank cards linked to major credit cards, or the right security chips… but it seems so odd to this debit-card addict that cash or credit seem to be the only option when travelling.

Can you tell I’ve been flying around a lot??


Edmonton Airport: FAIL

So I'm not too impressed with the Edmonton Airport right now.

First of all, the airport is located waaay the hell outside the town. And you have three options to get from the airport to anywhere else in the city.

  • rent a car
  • take the shuttle
  • take a taxi
Car rentals in Edmonton right night are about $100/day.
The shuttle won't take me to a private residence, actually they will, but I have to rent out the whole van.
Taxis cost $58 dollars each direction.

Talk about unreasonable.

Edmonton, you are now on my black-list.

Error 401

So believe it or not, I've been posting to the blog over the past couple of days.

You just wouldn't know it, because none of them showed up on the site. And I was sending them via email, so now they are lost somewhere in virtual purgatory. Booo.

So I'm back on the island, for the rest of the day and tomorrow morning. Then I hop on a plane tomorrow afternoon, spend the evening with my cousin in Edmonton.... then am back in Rankin on Wednesday.

Pretty whirlwind trip all around, definately one of those scenarios where I feel like I need a vacation from my vacation. And that could be in the works as well, it's hard to say.

But for now, the pup and I are enjoying the totally REASONABLE weather (I love how PEI is the perfect happy medium between the silly-hotness and humidity of New Orleans and the depressingly cold-ness of Rankin), and are going to go visit with a friend from Rankin who is now back on the island too.

Wish this could last forever...


Take a tour of the Garden District

That's right, new photos from the New Orleans trip are up, this time of the BEAUTIFUL Garden District area.