In the harbour


1. Grafton Street

Photo: Google Street View
Photo: Google Street View

“A sizable chunk of property is for sale in downtown Halifax,” reports the Chronicle Herald:

The two buildings at 1521 and 1531 Grafton St. feature 33,861 square feet of office and retail space. Owned and operated by the Archdiocese of Halifax-Yarmouth, they are home to the organization’s head office and several small businesses.

Tom Gerard, a real estate broker with KW Commercial Advisors in Halifax, said developers are most likely to purchase the property and turn it into condominiums.

“That’s who’s got the highest value in terms of redevelopment,” he said in an interview Monday.

This is the building next to the Black Market, with Taz Records on the Spring Garden Road side of the building.

2. Peggys Cove

Photo: @BocuusJai
Photo: @BocuusJai

Someone has started a @MoronsOfTheCove Twitter account, showing photos of tourists walking perilously close to the raging water at Peggys Cove.

I guess Twitter is all about shaming and asserting moral virtue, but the problem at Peggys Cove is that for whatever reason the signs warning people off the black rocks don’t have their intended effect. Is that because people are “morons”? I’m not sure what that means, exactly. It is, however, a fact: the signs’ warnings aren’t registering.

I’ve seen a similar situation at Feather Falls in the California Sierra, where the appropriately named Fall River drops a wondrous distance to the rocks below. A three-hour hike takes visitors to an overlook, where a sign warns people from walking on the rocks above the falls. The trail then goes up along the river above the falls, close to said rocks. Every year people ignore the warnings, walk on the rocks, slip or get pulled out by an unexpected current, and fall hundreds of feet to their death.

Are these people simply “morons” and let’s leave it at that? Or is a better or at least fuller explanation that they discount the danger because it isn’t made plain to them? Oh, the water’s low today. I’m a healthy young person who can handle this, not some weak or elderly person that the signs are for. That’s probably just there for insurance reasons.

The signs should be more specific: “X number of people have died here.” Maybe even name those who have died, with their names and photos, and the conditions of the day.

Our society has warning signs for seemingly everything. We’ve all seen ridiculous signs warning of trivial, ridiculous, or remote dangers. So it’s no wonder that people start ignoring the signs — the very proliferation of such signs makes them ineffective. People ignore the boy crying wolf. That’s not moronic; it’s how we sensibly interact with the world.

So the trick is telling people, “yes, boys all over town are crying wolf, but lookee, there really is a wolf here.”

3. Nova Star


Nova Star Cruises spent $660,000 in Nova Scotia last month, and $1.7 million since January 1, reports the CBC.

The provincial subsidy for the ferry this year is $13 million.

4. Pets

Campaigns to get people to stop leaving their pets in hot cars seem to be working, reports Metro:

After an incident last year during which police had to be called to break into a car and rescue a dog in distress, [Mic Mac Mall] decided it needed to do something, and hired students to walk the parking lot, looking for dogs in cars.

When they find one, they use a walkie-talkie to call a mall security guard, who comes out with a heat detector to take the temperature in the vehicle and monitor the dog, and then the mall pages the owner of the vehicle.

“We ask that those customers go back to their vehicle and either sit with their pet, or leave the premises,” [mall marketing director Rebecca] Logan said.

That has happened 50-60 times this year, compared to more than 500 last year.


1. Cranky letter of the day

To the Cape Breton Post:

The children did certainly enjoy the (Action Week) events at the Open Hearth Park, on that part I fully agree.

But the failure to look at the senior citizen demographic was certainly recognized by us, the seniors.

There is no parking at Open Hearth Park and seniors would have had to walk many steps to get to an event. 

For how many years have the fire works been held at the boardwalk? 

And so it begins — leave the old folks out!

To the organizers, why fix something that wasn’t broke and how can no one disagree with the gentleman that said (in this very paper) after all the money that was poured into the boardwalk, how could they abandon it ?

The ironic part of the whole thing is they want folks in the downtown core. Way to go!

So, fire works at the park? 

(In previous years) both sides of the harbour were filled with people — in cars, on foot, on the boardwalk — to watch the display set off from the barge in the harbour, which in my opinion is and always will be the best spot in the city. 

There may have been an excuse for moving some events to Open Hearth Park, but the fireworks, I don’t think so.

Someone should rethink this and remember you will be old someday!

Don Dickson, Sydney



No public meetings.

The city is looking to rent snow removal equipment for the upcoming winter:

The HRM invites tenders for the following equipment, with a qualified operator(s) for snow and ice control services. Equipment offered is to be detailed on the attached form and separate rates submitted for each piece of equipment.

  • 1-  Up to six (6) Graders with front and wing plows.*
  • 2-  Up to thirty (30) Front End Loaders (rubber tired) equipped with front plow blades and wing plow blades.*
  • 3-  Up to ten (10) backhoes with front bucket and rear boom/bucket.*
  • 4-  Up to four (4) backhoes with reversible front blade and rear boom/bucket.*

* HRM to be the sole judge or the suitability/acceptance of the equipment provided under this tender. Owner-supplied equipment must be maintained by owner, including fuel.


No public meetings.


On this date in 1930, the legislature passed the Liquor Control Act, more or less repealing prohibition. This cries out for a celebratory drink on some patio.


Allison Sparling has a knack for making things go viral, and her offhand tweet the other day did just that:

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 7.14.07 AM

By yesterday, Buzzfeed ran with it under the headline “People Demanded Answers After A University Bought 372 Cans Of No Name Cat Food — A mystery revealed, a campus captivated“:

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 7.17.28 AM

Then, the Dalhousie Gazette did a full investigation of the issue, complete with a map of something or another.

Turns out, Dalhousie has cats.

In the harbour

Halifax police release:

Investigators with the Special Investigation Section of the Integrated Criminal Investigation Division are conducting an investigation into the circumstances surrounding a crew member who is missing from the Queen Mary 2.

Information received to date leads investigators to believe that the 26-year-old male crew member from Chile may have gone overboard early on the morning of Saturday, August 15 while the Queen Mary 2 was off the coast of Newfoundland.

Halifax Regional Police is considered the agency of jurisdiction given that Halifax was the Queen Mary 2’s next scheduled port of call. This matter was referred to our Integrated Criminal Investigation Division to explore the circumstances surrounding this missing person file. The Queen Mary 2 arrived in Halifax this morning, and investigators are attending the ship today to gather evidence and speak to people who may have had contact with the crew member prior to him going missing. Investigators will also be liaising with other agencies as required.

The seas around Nova Scotia, 8:30am Tuesday. Map:
The seas around Nova Scotia, 8:30am Tuesday. Map:

Bahri Tabuk, container ship, arrived at Pier 31 this morning, sails to sea later today
Oceanex Sanderling, ro-ro cargo, St. John’s to Pier 41
New England, oil tanker, arrives at anchor from St. John’s, then sails to Saint John anchor
Budapest, container ship, Norfolk to Pier 42
East Coast, oil tanker, Saint John to anchor

Nordana Sarah sailed to Sorel, Quebec this morning
Grand Vega sails from Autoport to sea this afternoon


How slow of a news day is it? Cat food is the big story.

Tim Bousquet is the editor and publisher of the Halifax Examiner. Twitter @Tim_Bousquet Mastodon

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  1. BTW, the picture of the cowboy and horse is from one of the funniest westerns ever. Cat Ballou. Mostly funny because Lee Marvin (pictured) plays an alcoholic gun slinger hired to save people from a bad guy also played by Lee Marvin.

    Lee Marvin got the best supporting Oscar and in his acceptance speach said (approximately) that the horse deserved or should have got the oscar.

    Thanks, brought back some memories.

  2. Perhaps a few signs like the one at Mt Wahsington NH as a blunt warning, then leave it at that. People still walk to the edge of cliffs, head out on thin ice etc etc…you can’t save everyone from themselves.

    This is found at the bottom of the trail.

    CAUTION: The appalling and needless loss of life on this mountain has been due largely to the failure of robust trampers to realize that wintry storms of incredible violence occur at times even during the summer months. Rocks become ice-coated, freezing fog blinds and suffocates, winds of hurricane force exhaust the tramper, and when he stops to rest, a temperature below freezing completes the tragedy. If you are experiencing difficulty, abandon your climb! The highest wind velocities ever recorded were attained on Mt. Washington. Since the worst is yet to come, turn back without shame, before it’s too late.

    There is one at the top of the Mt that is more blunt using terms like needless loss of life, recklessness and ignorance as I recall.

  3. The most egregious part about the cat food, is it is being served to retired cats that are no longer even employed by Dalhousie. Former cat-presidents with fat-cat contracts.

    1. Or, perhaps, what kind of useful, humanitarian research leading to deeper scientific understanding of our world or alleviating animal or human illness and suffering.

  4. I live near Peggy’s Cove and two of my kids work there. I have heard several stories from locals this summer about people calling out to those on the rocks, sometimes with kids, to tell them it’s dangerous, only to have the tourists say they are fine and there is no problem. I can’t confirm, but I have heard that when volunteers patrolled the rocks they were sometimes greeted with profanity when they told people to not get too close.

    So the issue is not just signs.

    1. A sage friend often opines: YOU CAN’T FIX STUPID…. EVEN WITH DUCT TAPE.

      There is a cohort of society who believe they are «special» read: ûber-privileged; invincible; above any respect for the peasantry; park in Fire Lanes; run red lights; drive egregiously overpowered gas-guzzling assault vehicles; and, bed down in gated community monster houses. I say: «BON DEBARRAS» . A few less boorish idiots to spit in our faces.

      SANE, SENSIBLE, CONSIDERATE people READ, THINK, and REACT APPROPRIATELY. Those who don’t/can’t simply contribute to the genetic triage which (for all its faults) rids homo sapiens of its weakest individuals.