Carnie's Comments - RuBarb Productions

As we help promote a dinner and performance from RuBarb Productions' School of Performing Arts tonight in Moose Jaw, I can't help but think about the late Gary Hyland and the things he talked about over 25 years ago.


He talked about, dreamed about the community building a cultural centre where local artists could create, where singers could sing and dancers could dance. He said we could have workshops and drama classes for local children. Hyland also believed we could attract some big name entertainers to come and perform for us.  He said we could have a thriving arts community.


I was skeptical then.  I'm a believer now.


Hyland lived long enough to see this happen but we've now seen all of Hyland's dreams unfold.  It's all happening.

I had a visit with Ed Koop from RuBarb Productions last night.  He says the RuBarb School of the Performing Arts has been well received.  He talked about local children thriving and creating, making new friends and growing as people.


Those involved in the local arts community are "livin' the dream."  Gary Hyland's dream.

Carnie's Comments - Wait Times

You heard them talk about it during the election campaign and a new study has found their claims to be accurate.


Our Saskatchewan Party government has told us about their work to improve wait times for surgery and the Fraser Institute concurs.


The new study found we've gone from having the longest wait times for medically necessary surgeries to the shortest in Canada.  They point to a set of "practical reforms" which have included more collaborative decision making, focusing on patients and the use of private clinics.


Saskatchewan's median wait times across 12 medical specialties came down by almost 50%, from just over 26 weeks in 2010 to less than 14 weeks in 2015.


The study's author said, "There was...a dramatic change in the culture of decision making:  a health care system that had been dominated by providers became focused on patients and the need to provide them with timely care."


She is Professor Janice McKinnon.  Yes, the former NDP Finance Minister in Saskatchewan.

Carnie's Comments - Cast Iron

If you take time to ponder, I think you can see both sides of the situation.


In a nutshell;  Moose Jaw city council has voted 4-3 in favour of moving forward with the Local Improvement Plan to fund the replacement of our old cast iron water pipes.  Under the plan, general taxation looks after 70% of the cost while affected residents, the property owners, must pay 30%.  


I don't like the funding plan.  I will fall into the "affected resident" category. I'd rather see the money come from a general tax increase.  


However, if I wanted to let my concerns be known by city councilors and administration, I would request time to address them.  I wouldn't picket city hall before a council meeting nor would I interrupt proceedings by hollering about my opposition to a decision.


You can see the photo of picketers on  There, you'll see two men with their faces partially covered by scarves;  at least one of those men kept his face covered in council chambers.  That, to me, is alarming and shouldn't be allowed.

Carnie's Comments - Who Knew?

He was born on this day in 1874.  He was a bright, thoughtful boy who grew up in Italy and became an electrical engineer.  He came from a well-to-do family and received his early education privately as he took an interest in science and electricity.


As a young man, he began experimenting in the attic of his home and, with the help of the family butler, he used radio waves to create a practical system of wireless transmission of telegraph messages without connecting wires.  It had been done before but nothing was technically or commercially successful.   


When he reached the point when he was sure it would work, he woke his mother in the middle of the night to show her.  The next day his father gave him all the money he could for new materials.  They believed in their boy.


In 1909, at the age of 35, he shared the Nobel Prize in Physics and by 1922, we were using his invention right here in Moose Jaw, Canada.


You know by now I'm talking about Guglielmo Giovanni Maria Marconi, the "inventor of radio".

Carnie's Comments - MJ BEX AWARDS

A tip o' the hat and a way to go is in order today for the nominees and certainly the winners at last night's Moose Jaw Business Excellence Awards.


A number of long-established businesses took home trophies, including Heritage Award winner, Yvette Moore Gallery and R.L. Cushing Millwork for Green Business of the Year.


The General Manager of the Moose Jaw CO OP, Gerry Onyskevitch, was recognized as Business Leader of the Year.  He's been at the helm during some major changes and expansion over the past several years.


Perhaps the most heartfelt acceptance speech of the night came from Barry Seaborn as Seaborn Insurance received the Pioneer Award.


Seaborn Agencies, as it was known initially, first opened in Moose Jaw in 1944 and Barry noted it was his father, Ted Seaborn, who built Seaborn Insurance into what it is today with hard work, honesty and integrity.


If you know Mr. Ted Seaborn, you know that is a most fitting tribute.

Carnie's Comments - DE-FRIENDED

Defriend and/or unfriend - either or, both are acceptable English.  If you're on Facebook, you probably know what I'm talking about.  It's hard not to take it personally when it happens and, it happens.


I saw someone commented on a recent Facebook post yesterday and thought, "Gee, I haven't seen a post from that person for a long time."  So, I clicked on that person's name and found I had been defriended.  I don't know when and I don't know why and I shouldn't let it bother me but it does.


It was about 8 years ago when I first joined Facebook.  I spent quite a bit of time looking around and finding old friends and acquaintances and requested their Facebook friendship.  One, just one, did not respond.  That bothered me, too.  I mean, when you request friendship with someone on Facebook, it's not like you're requesting a date.  It's just Facebook. 


You know, I have a number of friends and relatives who aren't on Facebook.  They don't deal with this kind of anxiety and rejection.  


Hmmm...Maybe they're on to something.

Carnie's Comments - The Price is Right

It sells out Casino Regina every time and tickets for the show at Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw on Thursday night are selling well.


"The Price is Right Live" is the stage show version of TV's longest running and most popular game show.  Oh, they play "Plinko" and "Cliffhangers", contestants spin "The Big Wheel" and yes, you could win a vacation or a car.  Exciting, eh?


I love The Price is Right.  When I was a kid it was the one show you could look forward to if you took a sick day from school.

I also recall a kid from our high school coming home from a California vacation to tell us he attended a taping of the show in Hollywood.


We called him Punky.  He was excited to tell us when that show would air and his friends planned a party around that day.  We'd skip school that morning to gather 'round a television to see Punky.  He never made it to contestant's row but he sat in the 3rd row so, every time the camera would swing to contestant's row for bids on prizes, we'd see Punky laughing and cheering.  


I'll bet Punky's at the show on Thursday night at Mosaic Place. 

Carnie's Comments - WARRIORS

I'm kinda sad it's over but certainly glad that it happened.


The Moose Jaw Warriors were eliminated from the Western Hockey League playoffs on the weekend, losing to Brandon 4 games to 1 in their 2nd round playoff series.  


There are some who believe we should have traded our top players before the deadline to build for the future.  I disagree with them, even after a 2nd round exit from the playoffs.


The men who operate our hockey club chose to keep Brayden Point and Dryden Hunt for a number of reasons.  They believed local hockey fans deserved a playoff team after a 4 year absence from the post season and, more importantly, they wanted our young guys to get some playoff experience.  I believe the experience, in and of itself, is a part of building for the future.


So, to our Moose Jaw Warriors Hockey Club, THANK YOU for what was a very entertaining season of Western Hockey League action.  I enjoyed it. 

Carnie's Comments - Hunter's Menswear

In just a couple of weeks Moose Jaw will be without a proper men's wear store.  Hunter's Men's Wear, the last of them, will close the doors for good.

My long-time friend and associate, John Hunter, will call it a career and retire at age 79.
It's an emotional time for Mr. Hunter and his dozens of regular customers as time marches on.

I understand there was a time when we had about 30 men's wear shops in our city.  It was a competitive racket.  I remember doing business at Ideal Men's Wear, Joyner's, Father and Son, Slater and York, Campbell Dixon Clothiers and, up at the mall, we had Jack Fraser and Tip Top Tailors. Those days are gone.  I miss those days and I will most certainly miss my regular stops at Hunter's Men's Wear.

It's all reminding me of a good laugh I had one day.  One of our salesmen came to work wearing a nice, new winter overcoat.  I said, "Wow, nice coat.  Cashmere?"

And the guy says, "No. Sears."

Carnie's Comments - TOM MULCAIR

One of the headlines this morning reads;  "Tom Mulcair left New Democrats wanting more, and now looking for what's next."


NDP delegates at a national convention in Edmonton voted 52% in favour of a leadership race.  


Tom Mulcair has the experience and he had the support of the party but I'm not so sure anyone could have been successful in the wake of Jack Layton's untimely passing.  Layton took the NDP to its most successful federal election in their history in 2011, winning 103 seats and becoming Canada's Official Opposition.  Layton lost his battle with cancer later that same year.


I'm not a member of the NDP nor would I consider myself a political expert but, I know enough to know the NDP should be learning from the governing Liberal Party of Canada.  It wasn't long ago they chose a bright, young leader with energy and charisma;  a young man who has always been engaged in politics.


The NDP might look to Saskatoon and a young man who turns 41 years old today.  In fact, he was born in Moose Jaw on this day in 1975.

He is Dr. Ryan Meili. is Westman's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.