Letters to the Editor: Feb. 17

Watershed concerns; Paraskevidekatriaphobia; Why I vaccinate; "Gypsy"

Watershed concerns

The Cty of Kimberley has every right to be concerned over the use of the Matthew Creek and Mark Creek watersheds.

Over the years of working in the City’s Water Dept., I witnessed several bad situations that occurred in the watersheds by logging and drilling companies.  On one occasion a  culvert on Matthew Creek side of Low Pass plugged and water with lots of clay ran down the road and over a steep embankment down into Matthew Creek causing very high turbidity in the water going to Marysville.  Active logging was occurring at this time.

On another occasion drilling was taking place in Mark Creek valley and muddy water from their access road was close to getting into Mark Creek.

Then there is the recreational use of both water systems.  At least this usage is not nearly as bad as contractor usage.  For the city to have a water department employee monitor the usages is a very costly thing to do as it takes time to check all roads and culverts.  Maybe the contractors should pay into a fund for monitoring of these water systems.  I don’t think self monitoring works.  This would at least pick up some of the costs involved.  But it still takes a employee away form work that is being done through out the city.  The city water department employees know what to look for as warning signs when delivering a safe drinking water supply.

I think a safe drinking water supply should be number one and everything else should come after that.  I am not saying to stop logging or recreational use but it has to be monitored.

B.L. Filip/Marysville

Paraskevidekatriaphobia

Regarding Reverend Yme’s article February 13th; I found it both entertaining and informative. It illustrates the fertility and the gullibility of the human mind which seems to have a real weakness for fantasy.

Apparently, there is nothing so incredible as to be beyond belief.

Bud Abbott/Cranbrook

Why I vaccinate

I often wonder if the reason for opposition to vaccination is the result of there being no one alive today who remembers life before vaccination.  I was born in 1964, so I don’t, but my maternal grandmother, born in 1886, would have.  She knew exactly what life without vaccination was all about.

My mother was born in 1928.  I heard all the stories, the poverty she experienced growing up on welfare in 1930s Germany, how all her siblings left school at age 14 to work – only one was fortunate enough to enter into an apprenticeship.  Then there was the amazing stroke of luck that won my teenaged mother a scholarship into teachers’ college, when otherwise she would have faced a future of employment on a factory assembly line, like her mother and sisters before her.

And the diseases.  The whooping cough that almost killed her.  Then the diphtheria that almost killed her.  She stopped breathing at one point, and they put her head under the cold water tap (well, the only tap – there was no running hot water in that apartment) and kept the water pouring over her until she started to breathe again.

As I always understood it, my mother was the youngest of seven, five girls and two boys.  When I was 21 and travelling around Europe on my own, I discovered, much to my shock, that there had actually been nine children.

I was visiting my mother’s best friend, who, it turns out, happens to be her sixth cousin (not altogether a surprise for a 900-year-old town in the Black Forest).  She showed me her family tree, and it was at that time that I found out that there had been two more girls in my mother’s family, both dying in childhood – one an infant, one a toddler.  Both had died before my mother was born.

I was speechless.  And how would I break this news to my mother?   She can’t have known – surely she would have said something, knowing my interest in all things historical.

It turns out that she did know.  She had always known, but the family never talked about little Ilse and Erika.

“What happened?”  I ventured.

“Diphtheria,” my mother answered succinctly.

“You mean what you almost died of?” I pressed.

“Yes, that’s right.  I was lucky.”

“Both of them?   But they died in different years.”

“Yes,” was the answer.

“Why have you never mentioned it?  Didn’t your family ever talk about them?”

“Well, I never knew them,” was my mother’s explanation.  “And I don’t think my mother could bear to talk about them.”

These days I think about those two little girls, and what it must have been like for my grandparents to lose two children (and almost a third) to a disease that could be virtually eradiated today if vaccination were better practiced.  My guess is that they would not be able to comprehend how a parent could turn away from vaccination, even scorn it, in the face of possible death.

Do we really need to return to the days where children routinely died of diphtheria, whooping cough, measles, polio?  How many more Ilses and Erikas does there need to be?

Michelle Fuchs/Kimberley

‘Gypsy’

Kimberley’s Turner and Adler Productions brought the 1959 Jule Styne-Stephen Sondheim musical to life in the Key City Theatre from February 12th to 14th, directed by Tylene Turner.  I saw the closing Valentine’s Day evening performance in the company of about 150 others.  Based on the memoir of real life burlesque striptease dancer Gypsy Rose Lee whose career was centered in 1930s New York, in the Great Depression.

The Cranbrook actors performed wonderfully in this classic musical; the anchoring actress was Elizabeth Adler who, as Gypsy’s mother “Rose,” gave us a memorably domineering showbiz mother from hell.  Rose is a tragic, delusional character who elicits some sympathy; desperately trying to survive in the dying Vaudeville circuit by featuring her young daughters June and Louise in cutesy child acts, hoping that June, the “talented” daughter, will become famous.

When June elopes with one of the dancers in the act (in real life at age 15), Rose and Louise are forced to accept the only viable stage option open to the young woman – burlesque, and Louise becomes Gypsy Rose Lee; to the great chagrin of Herbie, Rose’s affable, long suffering agent.

The older versions of June and Louise-Gypsy were played by Clara McLeod and Emily Bohmer, and Herbie by Jerrod Bondy. Preparing for her stage debut in evening dress attire, Gypsy, no longer forced to play an overage tomboy, eyes her mirrored reflection and poignantly exclaims “I’m a pretty girl mama.”

The musical features several songs that have become American songbook standards and the Cranbrook actors proved themselves to be songbirds too in their renditions of, among others, “Let Me Entertain You,” “Small World,” “Everything’s Coming Up Roses,” and “Together Wherever We Go.”

“Small World” (funny, you’re a stranger whose come here, come from another town) is Rose and Herbie’s introductory duet; when balladeer Johnny Mathis released his version to coincide with Gypsy’s 1959 debut on the Broadway stage, it became one of his enduring songs.  Gypsy was released as movie musical in 1962 starring Rosalind Russell, Natalie Wood, and Karl Malden.  Advancing the date to February 2015 in our fair city, this fine cast of twenty-eight, most of whom were either children or youths, graced a great musical play from Broadway’s golden era.

Dan Hicks/Cranbrook

Just Posted

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League met for their AGM and announced a number of new initiatives, new awards and changes in their executive committee, as well as the starting date for the 2021-22 season. Paul Rodgers file.
KIJHL announces start dates for 2021-22 season

Season set to begin Oct. 1 with league still following all health guidelines

Calvin Dickson photo.
Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for East Kootenay

Conditions favourable for the development of thunderstorms, hail and heavy rain

The Independent Investigations Office of BC is looking into a Castlegar incident. File photo
Police watchdog investigating Castlegar incident

IIO: Woman sustained a reportedly self-inflicted injury

Mount Baker Secondary School in Cranbrook.
Graduation ceremony in the works for MBSS Class of 2021

The Mount Bake Secondary School Class of 2021 will have a graduation… Continue reading

After being forced to cancel in 2020 due to the pandemic, the Wasa Triathlon is being organized for August. Bulletin file photo.
Information released for Gerick Sports Wasa Triathlon scheduled for August

In 2020 the COVID pandemic forced the Gerick Sports Wasa Triathlon to… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

B.C. ambulance station in Revelstoke is expected to get a new system called the Scheduled On-Call (SOC) this fall. (Liam Harrap - Revelstoke Review)
B.C. ambulance changes could put Revelstoke residents at risk, warn local paramedics

Paramedics said to expect a substantial increase in ambulance response time starting this fall

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

David and Collet Stephan leave for a break during an appeal hearing in Calgary on Thursday, March 9, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Appeal Court rejects stay for Alberta couple facing third trial in son’s death

Pair accused in their earlier trials of not seeking medical attention for their son sooner

Most Read