Roundup: No new COVID in N.S., C.B. fishery group promises solidarity with First Nations, local blacksmiths carry on ancient craft, backyard drive-ins

As of yesterday, Sept. 29, Nova Scotia continues to have one known case of COVID-19, with no new cases identified in the latest media update. So far, the province has had 93,644 negative test results, 1,087 positive COVID-19 cases, and 65 deaths. The province’s sole pandemic patient is hospitalized in ICU.

Nationwide, Canada has 13,933 known cases of COVID-19, according to the latest federal government figures. The majority of those cases are just west of the Atlantic bubble in Central Canada, including 5,522 in Quebec and 4,791 in Ontario.

Sept. 29. Source: Government of Canada

Peace on the water
In Southwest Nova Scotia, commercial fishermen have waged a campaign of harassment and sabotage, amid many reports of racist language and actions, against First Nations crews conducting a legal treaty-protected fishery. But when the Native fishery begins on Oct. 1 on the waters of Cape Breton’s St. Peter’s Bay, the local commercial fishing association promises solidarity.

“They are just exercising their right,” says Gilbert Boucher, president of the Richmond County Inshore Fishermen’s Association. “We live alongside one another; they’re good people.”

Potlotek First Nation Chief Wilbert Marshall welcomes the solidarity, explaining the groups have a common enemy. “Our struggle is not with commercial fishermen, it is with DFO,” he says. “The federal government has got to stop playing politics with us. We want to fish and [commercial] fishermen want to know what will happen so they can make plans.” Drake Lowthers has more in The Reporter.

You’re not a great driver
Most drivers think they’re pretty skillful. Renegade cyclists, rule-breaking pedestrians, and all those other less talented drivers are to blame for any problems.

And most drivers are wrong. This is due to a psychological bias called “illusory superiority,” which causes us to overestimate our abilities relative to others.

An article from the Association for Psychological Science explains: “Across all experiments participants believed that they were exceptional drivers—but only according to their own definitions of good driving… provided with clear definitions for good driving behaviour from the National Safety Council, they rated their own individualized definitions as better.”

So armed with the awareness that, like you, I’m probably a more dangerous driver than I realize, I’ve become a big fan of protected bike lanes. “There’s the simple math that more bikers mean fewer drivers, but also when I see a bike lane, I can be reasonably confident where I’ll find cyclists,” I write in a September 2019 Halifax Magazine editorial exploring what this all means for vulnerable road users.

Hammering it out
In the 1800s, Halifax alone was home to some 1,500 blacksmiths. By 1940, there was just one. Today, like many ancient crafts, blacksmithing is enjoying a resurgence in interest. In his new book What Once Was Lost, Frank M. Smith shares the stories of 14 smiths working around the province and looks at the future of their trade.

“My questions in putting this book together included: Who is smithing? What are they making? And how did they get there?” he says. “If smithing is going to continue in the future, how do we get in contact with interested young people?” Raissa Tetanish reports for The Pictou Advocate.

A new twist on movie night
With the prospect of an isolated pandemic winter ahead, many people are looking to squeeze in all the outdoor fun they can get before the snow flies. One way to do that (and fill the Cineplex-sized hole in your old entertainment routine) is backyard movie night. In this new East Coast Living story, Allison Gaudett offers fun tips to create a drive-in experience in your backyard, even with autumn’s chill in the air.

Speak up
Know a community group, good cause, or inspiring local story we should share? Email the editor.

This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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