[an error occurred while processing this directive] FactsCanada.ca -- Sunday Newsletter 2001-08Su
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Sunday Newsletter 2001-08Su.

February 25, 2001.

I must inform you of a change we were not expecting to make around here. One of the three integral members of our group, Michael B. Hora, has been forced to resign from FactsCanada.ca due to health reasons. Craig and I have known Mike on and off for almost 15 years now, and between the three of us we decided last year that this would be a great venture for us to pursue together, each of us bringing specific talents necessary to make a go of it. As is outlined on our home page, a number of factors combined to result in the birth of the Friday Feature. Chief among these was that most of the Friday Features were to be authored by Mike in his inimitable style. Mike has done a great job, and the results are all archived on our site for you to read if you haven't been with us since day one.

With Mike's departure, and the fact that Craig and I are already over-committed in our respective lives, we will most likely suspend the Friday Feature for the foreseeable future after our current supply of articles dries up. The simple fact is that we would rather bring you one well-written newsletter every week, than two poorly-written ones.

We have occasionally published articles by guest authors, and will continue to do so in the Sunday Newsletter. We may even consider a Friday Feature wholly based on guest submissions for the time being. If this interests you, please review our mission statement at this link and contact me at john@factscanada.ca. The only caveat is that any articles so submitted would benefit the authors only by the intrinsic satisfaction achieved, and the exposure they would get through our mailing lists and on our Web site (both of which increase daily). Until Craig and I recover our initial investment of thousands of dollars and hours, we simply cannot consider payment for articles.

This is a repeat of the announcement I made in Friday's Feature, as we do have some subscribers who subscribe to one newsletter and not the other.

Please feel free to send any greetings or wishes for Mike to mike@factscanada.ca. These will be forwarded to me and I will pass them along to Mike personally.



= Question of the week
= Biography -- Edmund Harry Botterell
= Geek report
= The Shaw Festival
= Place names -- Twiggly Wiggly Road
= Forgotten history
= Humour for the week
= Quotable Canadians
= Words of the week
= Answer to this week's question
= Preview
= Links and resources
= Legal and subscription information



In Nova Scotia they serve a local dessert treat known as a "fungy". What is this local delectable? Answer near the bottom.



Edmund Harry Botterell.

Harry Botterell was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, on February 28, 1906. His specialty in the field of medicine was neurology, and what he accomplished with his reforming techniques still reverberates through today's medical studies.

After graduating with a medical degree from the University of Manitoba, Botterell followed up with further education at the University of Toronto in the specialized field of neurosurgery. Between his education in Toronto and frequent follow-up studies at Yale University in America, Botterell began developing some plans of action for individuals with spinal cord injuries. Before the Second World War, few patients with these injuries survived for long and physicians in general believed there were no effective ways to treat these patients.

During the mid- to late-1930s, Botterell, chose to try a new treatment on three men with "incomplete lesions of their spinal cords". Heedless of his colleagues' contentions that treatment would prove ineffectual, Botterell cultivated a new approach that emphasized active medical and nursing care along with the all important "physical retraining" of the subject. All three patients not only survived but, over time, returned to live and work again within their given communities.

At the outbreak of World War Two in 1939, Botterell joined the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps serving as senior neurosurgeon (he was only 33-years-old) to the No. 1 Canadian Neurological Hospital, located in Basingstoke, England. This gave him more patients than he could handle which, as it turned out, was a "blessing in dressings" as he was able to treat an almost endless stream of patients. Here he evolved his ideas, driven by his desire not to leave the patient to shrivel and die, and developed a specialized unit for soldiers with spinal cord injuries. This units' primary function was the prevention of bed sores, and respiratory and urinary infections, which were the most common causes of death for victims with this sort of injury. Through this seemingly simple procedure hundreds if not thousands of lives were saved. For the more seriously afflicted he ordered additional mental conditioning that promoted the soldiers re-entrance, as Botterell put it, "into the main stream of life rather than be set aside as a hermit."

In 1942 he received an advocate in Lieutenant Colonel John Counsell, who had received a spinal cord injury during the Dieppe landing. Botterell prompted Counsell's return to Canada, encouraging his home-side arguments for the treatment of veterans returning with spinal cord injuries. Botterell returned home in late 1944 and in January 1945 was appointed director of neurosurgical services at the Christie Street Military Hospital in Toronto. Botterell was frustrated to find some neglect still present for these patients and with the help of his newly appointed medical director, Dr. Al Jousse, they acquired Lyndhurst Lodge in Toronto as a base for his specialized treatment.

In a milestone article in 1946, Botterell and Jousse wrote that "the primary purpose of treatment at every stage from bed to brace walking is, to return the patient to independent life beyond the confines of hospital or paraplegic colonies." They went on to postulate (correctly) that depression was not always a direct result of paraplegia but often the result of the loss of independence and meaningful participation in community life.

In 1952 Botterell was appointed chief of neurosurgery at the Toronto General Hospital. He also served as dean of medicine there between 1962 and 1971, then moving on to vice-principal of health sciences at Queen's University at Kingston, Ontario. Here his personal magnetism and enthusiastic leadership stimulated unprecedented expansion in teaching, patient care and research at the school. Queen's University named their new Medical Sciences Building "Botterell Hall" in 1979. In addition to his many honorary degrees and society memberships, his biggest honours were his inclusion as a Member of the Order of Canada and the Order of the British Empire, bestowed upon him for his work during the war years. Botterell died in Kingston, Ontario, at the age of 91 on June 23, 1997.

Special biographical kudos go out to Henri "The Pocket Rocket" Richard, younger brother of Maurice Richard, who was born on February 29, 1936. Being a leap year baby he celebrates only his 16th and a quarter actual birthday this year. For those purists who recognized there was no leap year in 2000 (this anomaly happens once every 400 years), poor Henri missed a birthday and remains at having only 15 actual birth dates, until 2004 when he will officially turn 16. In normal human years, of course, he turns 65 this year. Henri holds the NHL record for playing on the most Stanley Cup-winning teams (11). Happy birthday Henri.



By Craig.

We have an exciting new feature on our Web site that you can use on *your* Web site (if you have one). The challenge that any webmaster faces is keeping one's site fresh (and visitors interested and coming back) when, perhaps, you don't really have anything new and exciting to add every day or every week. (Trust me, I know.) With the FactsCanada.ca "webfeeds", you can let your visitors know what's happening at FactsCanada.ca and keep them entertained with Canadian quotes and facts that change every day. We currently have four webfeeds available, and will be adding more (different content and different sizes) over the next few weeks. Check them out at this link and add them to your site today!



What is the Shaw Festival?

The Shaw Festival is an annual event taking place in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. It was founded in 1962 by lawyer, playwright, and producer Brian Doherty, and is the only festival in the world devoted to the production of plays by George Bernard Shaw. After an initial season of eight amateur performances, directed by Maynard Burgess, the festival went professional. In 1966 British actor Barry Morse transformed the festival into a major event, and in the ten years between 1967 and 1977 Paxton Whitehead consolidated its international reputation, broadening the repertoire and introducing musical events and mime.

Located for its first eleven years in the 316-seat Court House Theatre on the upper storey of the town's historic court house, the now-popular tourist attraction opened a second location at the Festival Theatre. This new, 861-seat theatre was inaugurated by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on June 28, 1973. The Festival now also stages plays in a third location: the 328-seat Royal George Theatre.

In 1980 Christopher Newton was appointed artistic director, the role he continues to this day. Newton continued the policy of diversification (in that Shaw plays would hold a precedence but not a monopoly) begun by his predecessor Paxton Whitehead. It was Newton who deftly chose plays written in very different dramatic idioms -- European farces in the play "Saint Joan", for example. His refreshingly offbeat seasons have included revues and Edwardian musical comedies.

The 1982-1983 season enjoyed great artistic success with Derek Goldby's production of "Cyrano de Bergerac" featuring Heath Lamberts (a Canadian actor brought to stardom by the festival) in the title role. Between 1984 and 1987 Newton launched his "Toronto Project", an attempt to extend the festival into the winter season by creating a base in Toronto and enlarging the Shaw mandate with contemporary co-productions. This experiment proved to be a financial liability, however, and was terminated in 1988.

This year's lineup includes:

- "The Millionaires", "Peter Pan", and "The Man who Came to Dinner" at the Festival Theatre.

- "Picnic", "Fanny's First Play", "Six Characters in Search of an Author", and "The Return of the Prodigal" at the Court House Theatre.

- "The Mystery of Edwin Drood", "Laura", "Love From a Stranger", and "Shadow Play" at the Royal George Theatre.

The performance season runs from April 5, 2001 until November 25, 2001. Consult their Web site (in today's resources linked to at the end of the page) for venues, dates and times. Of course, the best time to enjoy all or most of the offerings is mid-summer, when almost all the productions are in full swing. At the Web site click on the "send me a brochure" link, fill in your information, and you will receive (as I did) a free, 85-page pamphlet detailing this entire season.

What is "Festival Theatre"?

Festival theatre is a generic name given to theatre companies that present productions to celebrate a particular author or group of authors, a particular genre, or a particular period of time. Most often held in summer months, festival theatres help to create, nationally and internationally, an awareness of a dramatic tradition while promoting tourism in a particular region of the country.

The term "festival theatre" emerged in England in the 19th century to refer to special theatrical performances mounted to celebrate exceptional authors or dates. The festival held in 1864 at Stratford-Upon-Avon, England, to mark the tercentenary (300th anniversary) of Shakespeare's birth is an early example. Beginning in 1879 the Shakespeare Festival at Stratford-Upon-Avon became an annual event. In Canada, the term was applied to the Festival of Quebec in the 1920s and to the Dominion Drama Festival, founded in 1932, although it was not until after World War Two that it came into common usage. Before World War Two the term most often used to describe summer theatre was "summer stock". Many contemporary Canadian companies, like the Stephenville Festival founded in 1979, or the Festival Antigonish founded in 1988, are good examples.

With the growth of summer vacation resorts, summer stock flourished after World War Two until the late 1950s. These companies were established by theatre professionals as a business during the summer months and tended to offer an eclectic season of productions that the managers hoped would draw the resident summer audience. These included light comedies, thrillers, and popular London and New York fare. With the advent of television and better transportation facilities, summer stock lost its audience in the 1960s. By that time bigger, more permanent festival theatres were emerging. These theatres were community organized, non-profit companies that sought their audience among tourists, especially from the United States.

The Earle Grey Shakespeare Festival (from 1949 until 1958) and the Stratford Festival (founded in 1953) were created to present the works of Shakespeare, although Stratford rapidly expanded its mandate to include the masterpieces of Western drama, Gilbert and Sullivan, and modern classics. The Shaw Festival focuses on the works of George Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries. The Atlantic Theatre Festival draws from classical English authors such as Shakespeare and Goldsmith, as well as Moliere and Chekhov. Festival Lennoxville (1971-1982) and the continuing Blyth Festival (founded in 1975) concentrate on new Canadian plays. The Charlottetown Summer Festival mounts original Canadian musical productions.

My thanks to Sandra for requesting this information. I will be passing on my pamphlet for the Shaw Theatre's 40th season to her. My first pick would be "Laura", followed by "The Man who Came to Dinner" and finally "The Mystery of Edwin Drood". You can't lose though. If you like live theatre and are in the area during this long season, ensure you attend.



Twiggly Wiggly Road.

At first I thought the request I received for the origin of the name of this road was a hoax. However, I have prevailed and discovered the origin of this unique name.

This street name in Nanaimo, British Columbia (on the east coast of Vancouver Island) comes from the name of a character in a children's book that former mayor Frank Ney read to his children.

Frank Ney was a prominent British Columbia citizen. He was a member of the British Columbia Legislature in the 1970s, mayor of Nanaimo for two decades, and known around the world as the Admiral of the Bathtub Fleet. "Bathtub Fleet?" What do I mean by this moniker? Then-mayor Frank Ney started the Bathtub Races began as part of the City of Nanaimo's Centennial in 1967. Ney liked to dress up in a pirate costume whenever he attended a festival or function. It was his swashbuckling idea, originally intended as a spoof, that originally inspired 214 "tubbers" to enter the first chaotic contest. Only 47 completed the 36-mile course to Vancouver's Fisherman's Cove, and with 785 small and large observation and escort boats in the harbour, it was a choppy race. Despite the tempestuous beginning, the races are still going strong 34 years later. Today, international racers will proudly motor through the water, scrub brushes in hand, in their quest for a "world champion" trophy. For it is from these humble beginnings that the International World Championship Bathtub Race and four-day Nanaimo Marine Festival have sprung.

Frank J. Ney Elementary School in Nanaimo was also named after the gentleman, loving father, and fun loving politician who lived from 1918 until 1992.

My thanks to Christine Meutzner, Archives Manager at the City of Nanaimo's archive for providing me the initial details on which this article is based.



A couple of weeks ago I wrote a biography on World War One ace Billy Bishop. Although I provided a link to it, I never mentioned the museum dedicated to him, which is the home in which he was raised in Owen Sound, Ontario. The home was turned into a museum in 1987 and is dedicated to maintaining and preserving Canada's aviation history. The house was built between the years 1882 and 1884. It is located at 948 3rd Avenue West, Owen Sound, Ontario. Museum hours and admission charges can be located on the museum's Web site, linked to in today's resources.



Spencer Tracy sails up the British Columbia coast on a ship in the Hollywood movie "Alaska". He looks out a porthole, sees an iceberg drift by and exclaims, "I called room service for some ice, but this is crazy!"



"Living next to the United States, is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant. No matter how friendly and even tempered the beast, one is affected by every twitch and grunt." --Pierre Elliott Trudeau.



Also by Craig.

Since this week's Sunday Newsletter is a little shorter than normal, I have again picked four words from the text to define, and a fifth specifically requested by subscriber Mike (lacquer). If you have any words you'd like to see featured here, please let me know. My e-mail address is craig@factscanada.ca .

Genre -- (French, noun) kind; sort; style, especially of works of literature, art, etc.

Inimitable -- (adjective) that cannot be imitated or copied; matchless.

Lacquer -- (noun) 1. a varnish consisting of shellac dissolved in a solvent, used to give a protective coating or a shiny appearance to metals, wood, paper, etc. 2. a varnish made from the resin of a sumac tree of SE Asia. It gives a very high polish on wood. 3. wooden articles coated with such a varnish. 4. a dressing for the hair, made from gum or resin. (verb) coat with lacquer.

Neurology -- (noun) the study of the nervous system and its diseases.

Paraplegia -- (noun) paralysis of the legs and the lower part of the trunk.



In Nova Scotia they serve a local dessert treat known as a "fungy". What is this local delectable?

The answer is, a blueberry pie!



On Friday Mike delves into the spy world once again, taking a look at the mysterious "Camp X".


Well, I am going to stop committing myself in advance to articles not yet written. For the second week in a row, an article I promised does not appear in this newsletter. I usually have the best of intentions but, alas, the clock once again prohibits me from providing the story a just treatment. So I will humbly say my farewells until next week, and remind all those to whom I have promised articles of the following well-used quote: "Goods things come to those that wait." Talk to you next week.



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