For most of my life I have hated Christmas. My father was often laid off just before the holidays and there wasn’t much money for presents. It didn’t stop me from wanting things. And I always wanted things.
Set in Montreal circa 1878, Portrait of a Scandal retells of an abortion, a suicide, a courtroom thriller and a story of forbidden love that threw anglo high society upside down.
Montreal history has just gotten a whole lot more interesting — sexier, even — thanks to Elaine Kalman Naves, Mark Lavorato, and Susan Doherty.
POLITICS. In this mayoralty race urban agriculture has hardly been on the lips of the front-runners. When asked by a Radio Canada journalist if he composts, Denis Coderre quipped: “I eat my compost,” a one liner that surely sums up his party’s well thought out environmental program.
For three years, Marci Babineau’s backyard chickens made her the poster girl for the urban chicken movement in Montreal. Media outlets big and small covered the story all the way to Toronto.
In the nineteenth century and into the twentieth, Verdun was covered with farms. In fact, it owes its status as a municipality to a group of English and French-speaking gentleman farmers in 1874 who wanted to avoid a perceived tax grab by the City of Montreal. Plus ça change…
How many of us in Quebec are still eating from our gardens in the month of December? Global warming aside, I would hazard very few. One such fortunate man is Bertrand Montpetit, a market gardener for over thirty years, organic for the last four.
When she was in chef school, Shelley Edward’s dream was to open a restaurant that served produce from her own farm. It was a novel idea back then.
Bernard Bonneau is over six feet tall, but when he stoops to pluck a leaf off one of his spinach plants he is like a kid in a candy shop. The grin on his face says it all.
I met Geneviève Dupuis of Domaine Delahaye on a windy day. The night before, the family goat, Juliette, had given birth to two squalling kids. Romeo, the buck, was in a stall nearby.
David Fennario, local playwright and all around shit disturber of On the Job and Balconville fame, is at it again. Having taken the pulse of the times, he recently penned Motherhouse, his second play in as many years with an anti-war theme. Written as a companion piece to Bolsheviki, a veteran’s account of the horrors of World War I trench warfare, Motherhouse brings the battleground closer to home by situating the action in the British Munitions Factory in Verdun, QC.
For those who missed out on a Christian education, or have forgotten the words, the carol Away in A Manger tells the story of the birth of Jesus in a stable in Bethlehem. Like the Occupiers today, Jesus and his parents were part of the 99%. They were poor citizens of an indifferent Empire. Ordered by government decree to leave their home in Nazareth and travel to Bethlehem, Joseph and a pregnant Mary were made homeless because Rome was preparing a census for taxation purposes. Some things don’t change. The man whose message of peace and love would inspire billions over the centuries, was himself poor and homeless when he entered this world.