A Money Coach in Canada

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Credit:  Maria S Forever

I’m finally at the age that I believe I can defend a long-held-off splurge for myself:   A Good Wristwatch.  As in, TAG Heuer good.

Oh yes, much as I preach and try to live contentment with what I have, these watches have been my secret object of lust for quite some time.

There’s just one thing.   A few months ago, my watch (just a basic one) strap broke.   Guess what.  I haven’t missed it.  Not really.  When I want to know the time, I check my iPod Touch.  Or my BB.  Or my monitor.  Or the sign on the mall at the YK Centre (which, incidentally, let all us Yellowknifers know that it’s down to 4C these days).

Curses!  Just the time when I can justify this purchase, I find I know longer need a watch, and perhaps don’t even want one!

That led me to another thought.  First this internet/ShinyBrightObject age took down the music industry.  It’s currently taking down media as we knew it.  What do you think, readers?  Is the Era of the Wristwatch now over, too?

Sorry – I don’t know where I originally heard this!
Estate Planning

Peter was a single, ugly, pot bellied 45 years old guy living at home with his father and working in the family business.

When he found out he was going to inherit a fortune when his sickly father died, he decided he needed a wife with whom to share his fortune.

One evening at an estate planning & investment meeting he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen.

Her natural beauty took his breath away. “I may look like just anordinary man,” he said to her, “but in just a few years, my father will die, and I’ll inherit 20 million dollars.”

Impressed, the woman obtained his home phone number and three days later, she became his stepmother.

Women are so much better at estate planning than men.
Just a little fun for the weekend.

I grew up in a mining town. When I was a kid, it was gold mining. Now it’s diamond mining. Anyway, back in the day, Yellowknife had two working gold mines, Giant and Con. Any local readers remember the Miner’s Mess and the Rec? Yep, Yellowknife had an element of rough-and-tumble to it.

I was too young to know that the mines would some day run out of gold and they’d close. And like all of us, I would never have dreamed that a strike would become so tense that a union member would plant a bomb in Giant Mine and kill nine scab labourers – one of the largest murder investigations in RCMP history.

And. And. And: It certainly didn’t occur to me that the (US) owner of the mines would OOPS! declare bankruptcy and stick Canadians with the approx HALF-BILLION-DOLLAR clean-up (arsenic) bill.

And that’s just for Giant Mine. There’s also Colomac Mine and Tundra Mine. Oh, and that’s just in the NWT! There’s also Pamour Mine in Ontario, Hope Brook Mine in Newfoundland and Kerness Mine in B.C.

The owner (formerly known as Peggy Witte, now Margaret Kent) of the now-bankrupt mine, I see, is now CEO and President of a new mining company, Century Mining Corp. Interestingly, it looks like Century is up to some shenanigans this year in Quebec. I hear she has a second home in Hawaii.

There’s worse, folks. Much, much worse.

She’s baaaccccck: in addition to Century Mine, she owns Tamerlane Mine and just guess who’s mining in the NWT – Pine Point. They’re re-opening a portion of the Pine Point Zinc deposit. (We’re in good company. Tamerlane is also doing business in Peru.)

Dear us: Who is this Peggy Witte/Margaret Kent that not only does she leave us with nearly a HALF BILLION DOLLAR BILL, but now she’s allowed to have at us again?

I’ve been a bit glum recently.
Bono summed things up for me with the query:

When you look at the world
What is it that you see?
People find all kinds of things
That bring them to their knees.

What I’m seeing up here in the north, increasingly, is just how complicated is the relationship between Canada and First Nations peoples. And it’s bringing me to my knees, frankly. It’s pretty damn dark. And that’s probably all I can say about it.

Reminders that sometimes Big Ideas that Change the World actually do get realized and really do start to change the world provide welcome cheer to me on this rainy Saturday in Yellowknife.


The RED campaign initiated by Bono is one such Big Idea. Yeah, it can appear commercial. Yeah, it probably lets us all too easily off the hook. But as Raincoaster once pointed out (kicking my ass all over town, as only she can do! -I say with gratitude and affection), small starts can lead to deeper thinking about the underlying causes of injustice. So I say, YES! to RED!

What is RED? It simply offers each of us a choice as consumers, with several iconic brands, to select the RED brand item to purchase. A percentage of each sale then goes to a their global fund, and every penny goes directly to Africa, especially towards AIDS relief.

Products you can choose include:

Starbucks – RED card/mugs

Apple – RED ipod

Dell – RED computers

GAP – RED scarves, t-shirts

AMEX – RED card (UK Only?)

Hallmark – RED cards.

Sometimes when it all seems to overwhelming, and when I just can’t see how I can possibly be of any help to anyone, it’s nice to know other people with a whole lot more influence than me have done some serious legwork. The RED campaign has already raised millions of dollars, a scale I can barely comprehend.

Me? Sure, I’m in. I’ll buy RED when I can. That’s easy. The hard work for me is to find a way to serve (I am a civil *servant* after all) and not impose upon, the original peoples of the NWT – if it’s even possible.

Thanks @Paul for finding this!

IKEA Heights from DaveAOK on Vimeo.

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