Comité bilatéral de la Baie-des-Chaleurs,

Ahhh must I go all the way to North Carolina to find a group of artists who …
Who …
Who …
Qui … That’s it

Check it out at

Something like this might have happened here.
Yes our weather is somewhat not similar.
But we could have worked around that.
We might have had a great art community.
At one time we had the artists.
At one time …
Et aussi en FRANCAIS … Yes mon FRANCAIS … it is not perfect … I know that … Mais je fait en effort … Besides I probably do just as well as those translator-bots… Mais oui anyways … Je t’aime … Mais toi toi … Tous le monee … Je besoin pax. Et toi?

So where did the money go?

And what about health?
What do they say?
All our French speaking buddies
Across the Bay
Baie des Chaleur that is
Our heart
Is here
Our heart is there
Our heart is what
We have to share
With our best friends
Across the Bay


Ode to T Chaleur

T Chaleur

Hello hello

T Chaleur

Chaleur Bay
Just an afterthought?
Some might say yes
But I think not.
For those of us
Who live as we do
Along this Bay
Where jobs are few
Our young can’t stay
Not much for big
And glossy malls
But love is here
Within our walls
Of church and school
And homes
Where caring people dwell
We don’t need much
To keep us warm
Through all those months
Of winter storms
A couple of cords
Of wood will do
Will pull us through
Until almost into May
The ground beneath
And trees above
Show us green
And mourning doves
Will soon be cooing
And on our bay
With ice all gone
Boats fly again
Across our waves
We see them now
Our hope restored
Yet one more year
The spring has come
Our kids come home
From schools away
Back to our shores
We watch together
Sing our songs
Light our beacons
Along the shores
Each of us building
Our sacred space
Within the comfort
Of our Bay
Our beautiful Bay
Our own T Chaleur


Beautiful Bay

Artist … (Artsy Fartsy, Geek or not, talented or not)
Person … (Who may or may not know much about art but you know what you like )
Business … (owner, executive, tycoon, successful, wealthy or otherwise)

What in Chaleur Bay
Are you anyway?
Whatever you are
From here or afar
You are invited
To join us in May
Here oh here
On our beautiful Bay

Help us make Chaleur artsy

Warning … Communication Breakdown

Warning:Public-Private Communication Breakdown
Warning:This following communique might be seen by some as an act of passive-aggressive behaviour on my part. Such is not my intention nor is this an under-handed attempt to criticize any particular person. I am simply trying to illustrate that communication-breakdown happens and think this is a good example of such breakdown.

Communication is an interesting concept. While being the passive recipient of emails and newsletters and tv and radio is the ultimate in communication for some people, there are those like myself who appreciate a bit of feed-back. Sometimes even a bit is not enough. Perhaps a grunt of assent was sufficient for my neanderthal ancestry. For me, however, communication requires a bit more effort.

Following is one example of communication-breakdown between myself and a paid public servant who did not appear at a public meeting last August although he had assured me he would be there. I finally received an email from him this past week, five months after the meeting. He wrote in his email that he had indeed gone but nobody was there.

What are you supposed to do or say when a public servant tells you that he will gladly do what he can to help you, then when you make a specific request, replies that your request does not fall within his particular area of expertise? What are you supposed to do when he or she does not appear at a meeting he promised to attend? Are you supposed to try to find out what happened? When you reconnect months later and he assures you that he will gladly help you in any way he can, do you actually believe such words are to be taken seriously?

This is only one example of many. How are you supposed to communicate with all those people guarding the portholes of government power in these days of Twitter?

Do you suppose anyone nowadays would appreciate the effort I put into the following (edited version) wordy reply I sent:

Thank you for getting back to me. When you were not at the meeting I was disappointed. I did not knock you off my list, however. My focus changed and I was very busy “seed-spreading” for the Spring Garden of Artists Festival.

Although the attendance at the meeting on that Sunday was very small, we were definitely there about an hour before the meeting which went ahead on schedule and lasted about another hour. I am puzzled. Perhaps you were at the wrong door is all I can think.

As for the the artist festival I have spread the seeds as far and wide as one one person could. What others have done is according to how interested they are in having arts in our community I guess.

The whole idea of what I am trying to do is show that it is up to individuals in the community to try to do what they can within their means and not depend upon government for handouts. I am asking artists to have the courage to put themselves and their work out there in May. It might be a bit like a performer jumping off a stage and hoping someone will be there to catch them. But isn’t that what a supportive community does?

All I am asking of any government agency is take the initiative to do their best to help independent artists feel welcome in their own community. Artists should not be obliged to join some formal government-approved organization or pay membership fees or scrounge for space in which to make and sell their art. Most of all, they should not have to leave their community in order to survive. Artists should be seen as the valuable resource they are and there should be infrastructure already in place.

I have already spoken to you and asked about vacant space in the city. I can think of several places and I’m sure there are others that might be made available to independent local artists and possibly visiting artists at least during May. That might be a good place for government to start. Rather than tearing down buildings they might consider offering space to artists for at least that month.

What I have discovered is that almost everybody I speak to is waiting around for someone in government to do something for them. I have no such expectations personally and am looking for nothing for myself. Such support was hardly there for me in the past and I don’t expect things to change at this late date in my life. However, I do hope that those in positions of power in Bathurst will wake up before it is too late and yet another generation of artists has moved away or given up completely.

I am still having an artist festival in May. Anybody who is interested is invited to become involved. There is no big money, no paying jobs, no sponsors and no luscious contracts. There is just me, a local artist who is inviting the community to become involved in building something out of almost nothing.

Because my husband’s business is closing I have lost one loyal supporter. On the other hand I have been presented with the gift of an art space for the next four months. I am willing to share this space because I see this as an opportunity to try to energize this community into becoming more arts-aware. This space would be the focal point of the arts festival during May. By then the weather will have warmed some, heating costs will be down and I hopefully will be able to remain open more than two days a week.

What you could do, if you are interested and so inclined, is to talk to the local merchants and businesses and ask each of them to actively seek out and find an artist to sponsor during May. That sponsorship might be as simple as displaying an artwork in their window or it could be more as their resources dictate. You might even pass this suggestion to agencies in neighbouring municipalities.

Making such contacts is something I was hoping to do until my husband’s business took a sudden change. Due to our present circumstances, I must focus my energies on my own space and my own art and am now unable to do the outreach I had originally planned.

I will be running the art centre at 212 St. Andrew St. Bathurst, New Brunswick until at least the end of May. The door will be open every Friday and Saturday from 10:00 to 3:00 and people are cordially invited to drop by. I will also have a limited supply of musical accessories to sell, strings, capos, picks, drumsticks, etc. By the end of May I should know how much support Bathurst has for the arts and whether it makes any sense for me to remain here or like so many before me, just move away to an arts-friendly community.

Any artist who wants to sell their work or hold workshops here is invited to come into the St Andrew Street Arts Centre in Bathurst and discuss this with me.

Please feel free to pass this letter on to anyone you think who might be interested in reading it.

My website addresses are or

Art Garden Planning

Hello hello

Garden of Artists

Well George … Almost time to be thinking about the Garden of Artists …
Maybe write a poem or a song … Paint a picture … a vision of Spring …

Yes, I realize it’s still bitterly cold around the shores of Chaleur Bay. But the thaw has to happen eventually.

What is it? What is the Spring Garden of Artists? Well since you seem interested …

February begins with a new Celtic season appropriate to thinking about gardens and planning for Spring and getting things ready.

No George … The Spring Garden of Artists is Not an English Country Garden … Not at all … More like a Wild Flower Garden.

The Garden of Artists is not about neat little plots or pc containers with well-defined labels lined up according to tongues or nationalities or politics. Neither is about gender nor religious beliefs.

The Garden of Artists It is about independent artists getting together and sharing art … Visual art … Music … Songs … Drama … Creative Writing … Dance …

No George, I have no idea what sort of flowers will sprout. That’s the thing about wildflowers. You may spread the seeds but you never know how they will take or what wonder-blooms might appear …

Check it out George
Chaleur Bay … Where else?


Grace Too


Casting a vote is one step towards revitalization.

Thank you so much, everyone who helped.

You know who you are.

You are “AWESOME” as the kids might say.

Yes thank you
Thank you
Who are few
In number
Great in heart

Copyright 2014 MSO

Cease and Desist

The Eureka Notion


A woman senior is especially vulnerable.
100% of 0 is 0. That appears to be how the world has balanced her worth.


Cease and Desist

Well George, it is almost that time of year and I've decided to take your advice.
Cease and desist providing free entertainment for the masses.

As of November 1st, 2014 I begin work on my book and I'll probably be too busy to come by for our little chats.

You can still visit me if you wish ...

Time of year? Oh, well don't you know that the old Celtic year fades away on October 31?

... And every year on November 1st we Celts set out on some quest or begin a new project or take on a new job. Not just another list of resolutions too soon forgetten, George. We take action. It's the Celtic Way.

Happy 1st of November George. Happy Celtic New Year.

Think of me as off sailing my phantom ship for the next several months.

If you really need to reach me ... Try ...

The Eureka Notion


A woman senior is especially vulnerable.
100% of 0 is 0. That appears to be how the world has balanced her worth.


Here you go George … This is it! The final act! What?
What act? George, have you been sleeping on the job again?
It matters George … It matters …

Sigh … Yes George … sigh … Yes … Very frustrated … Here I’ve been working on my rock opera every day for … Well no I don’t put in eight hours a day … I do have other things to do … Art, George … When I’m not working on the rock opera I paint and … Yes George … Yes I realize you don’t really care for my paintings … That’s OK! I understand!

But about the rock opera … That is what I was trying to tell you George … the final act of the rock opera has …

Deus ex Machina? Is that what you said?
Hmmmmmm … Well considering that this is a low budget operation … Well I’ll just need to sleep on that one …

As I was trying to say … The last act will be the final gathering of the artists … One last ride if you will …

As the train carries our group of … Well I guess some might say anti-heros back home they are joined along the way by more
… And more artists …
Rajni Shah

Gallimard & Mauclet

Even at the Power Plant.

Paid? You are asking what I get paid?
Hilarious, as usual!
Ok George I do realize that we cannot expect the artists to work for free … You know George … The artists who are coming to Chaleur Bay for the Arts Festival next May 2015.
What’s what all about? Didn’t anyone tell you either?
OK George … Check it out … Take your time.

Oh yes, about the money to travel … Try

Hmmm well since they just announced that … Oh never mind …

Money to pay the artist?
You mean like a real salary?
Well what’s wrong with the way they usually do things around here … You know … a few beer …

Money for a Glass-blowers seminar? Well I’m not sure George … Do they do beer-bottles? I am serious George. You know the old saying … invent a better beer-bottle and the world will beat a path to your brewery.
Yes as a matter of fact I do enjoy beer now and then.
About that beer money

Oh no no no … Listen to what you are saying George. It is simply not true. Not all the big prizes go to someone in the larger more prosperous communities. I’m sure someone from Chaleur Bay has an equal chance … Look at that New Brunswick artist who won the Molson Prize … He was from a small place along the Bay and … Hmmm … you don’t say … Moved to Moncton, did he?

Suppose he would like to come to our little art festival George … After all he’s important now … Bride! I don’t think so George … Besides he doesn’t appear to be that sort …
Also since we cannot expect him to work for nothing we will need a source of funding. A reasonabe source

Bribe … That was the intended word George … Bribe not bride … Don’t you know the rules … These days it is ok to make mistakes … Typos are ok too …

Do I think there was bribery? No, I do not! That is the thing about artists. The real artists are not for sale. That is what makes artists what they are. Hmmm … Well George it’s a little thing called ethics.

Bribe? You want to know about bribe? Errr actually George … The word is usually not bribe … It is “bribes” … Yes George … Good old fashioned bribes … That is how the the rest of world mostly tumbles I guess … Didn’t you know? Across Canada? … No idea George … Not part of the Privy in Ottawa … Well … We all know what that stands for … No … Here in The Maritimes is really the only experience I have … Hmmm … bribes huh? You want to know about bribes? Wellll now here is how it works George … At least in my experience. First you find a contract … Yes George … A government contract … Is there any other kind these days. Sooooo … You find a contract … You say to yourself … “I can do this” well because positivity is the mandatory prerequisite these last years …no particular reason George … That’s the way things work in Canada … Positivity … So you find out who the government players are and you wine and dine … At the very least you never never never ever criticize government policies … Wining and dining? Well that is not what they call it George … They call it net-working … They tell you that if you want to get a contract then you must network … Well George … I guess it’s because networking sounds so much more innocent than wining and dining or bribery.

Step two … Well when you are offered the contract … Or even before … And the government agent suggests that you might hire his kid or another relative or friend or … Well whatever the connection … Of course there is nothing in writing that says you are obligated to hire the agent’s buddies or relatives … Get real George … What do you think they mean by networking?

See what I mean? And you ask me why I don’t like … Oh never mind George … let’s just end our rock opera like they did back when …

Eureka George! The Deus Ex Machina … Here we go … A huge screen … Think U2 … Yes that big … How about this for footage George?
Hmmm what is that song?
Where the pavement begins?
Where the pavement ends?
Ah yes … Where the streets have no name …
That’s it … That’s the song we need here …
Or Maybe Joni Mitchell…Parking Lot?
Maybe throw in a paving company or two
Fade out on a team of workers paving the lawn in front of City hall … around srniors homes and galleries … Well why should garages have all that lovely paving? Fair is fair especially when it comes to government grants and make work projects.

You and me George … Just you and me … We ride off into the sun… No no … We can’t afford to buy a beautiful solid black horse … George … Are those tears?


During the coming weeks and months this is where I will be mentioning all the wonderful people and organizations and businesses and government departments and politicians who are helping me pull together all the bits and pieces for a successful Spring Garden of Artists Festival.

So far it really is grass-roots, running on a $000.00 budget with anonymous individual artists and supporters and one lone business.

Thank you to all the anonymous people who are helping. Your support is inspiring.


Thank you Barbara for your encouraging words and for reminding me that “it just takes one”.

Thank you Karen for your enthusiasm and your suggestion for the music.

Thank you Patsy for all that printing and cutting.

Thank you Cyndi for the beautiful newsletter you produced.

Thank you in advance to whomever will follow up on an offer to help and actually help me set up a fb page to promote the contest.

Thank you Rachel for your insight into the challenge I have accepted.

Thank you Gilles for believing.

Thank you to everyone who is voting and inviting their friends to vote.