I’m a little late mentioning this, but The Beaver magazine, the magazine of Canadian history, published in Winnipeg, has been named Magazine of the Year at the first-ever Manitoba Magazine Awards.
I blushingly claim a small degree of credit for this. My article, The Boy in the Picture, copped the award for best editorial presentation. The article was about young Edward Mallandaine, the 18-year-old lad who got himself in the famous photograph of the driving of the Last Spike. That event marked the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway back in 1885.
When Mallandaine was a very old man, and I was a very young boy, I had the privilege of knowing him. He was the reeve (mayor) of my hometown of Creston, B.C.
I’m putting together a Young Adult book about his youthful adventures.
Another Beaver winner was my friend Christopher Moore who was recognized for the best regular column.
Chris is one of the writers for a book The Beaver and Harper Collins Publishers will publish later this year, 100 Photos that Changed Canada.
THOUGHTS ON THE MULRONEY INQUIRY
There’s no doubt that Brian Mulroney is a strong candidate for the unlikely title of most detested Prime Minister in Canadian history.
His current ordeal, where he’s facing tough questioning at the Oliphant Inquiry probing his business relationship with German-Canadian lobbyist Karlheinz Schreiber, is also, however, showcasing some endearing qualities.
It’s remembered that no Prime Minister had a more loyal Caucus that Mulroney (1984-1991). He inherited a fractious bunch of MPs after ousting Joe Clark, but by blarney and bluster, he won them all over.
Listening to his testimony on CBC Newsworld, I was struck by his facile use of colloquialisms.
In one circumstance, he commented that he’d be there “in a New York minute.” In another, about the honeymoon period of his relationship with Schreiber, he had him bouncing around “like an Energizer Bunny non-stop” while lobbying the government for an arms manufacturing plant.
For all the pressure he’s under, Mulroney is still able to show flashes of the easy-going personality that helped him cut such a wide swath in Canadian politics.