We haven’t much time, dear readers, and we’re not getting any younger so pay attention. A quiz will be administered in a future installment. We come to you for the first time from one of the Cree communities. It is on a “need to know” basis so I can only say that it’s one whose name starts with the letter W. Send in your guesses and win a mystery prize.

The fame of the winner of The Nation’s Cutest Guy in The Cree Nation contest continues to grow ever wider. Lisa told me he was to be auctioned off to the highest bidder in Whapmagoostui. The big spender would have had, I would guess, a romantic dinner date with Robert Auclair (forever to be known as the cutest guy in the Cree Nation). But he was out of town playing in a hockey tournament somewhere. Proceeds from the auction had been slated for a trip for several community members to the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in New Mexico this April.

A silkscreening business has opened in Chisasibi. Cree-Ative Arts will place your logos, photos or artwork on t-shirts, sweatshirts and probably your underwear too.

Several items that may be of interest to our readers were faxed in to us. They are:
The 5th Annual James Bay CoEd Volleyball Tournament will be held on April 12 and 13 at the Philemon Wright High School in Hull. The first prize is 2,000 smackeroos, the second, 1,500 big ones and the third a measly 500 dollars. The entry fee is $250 per team and the deadline is April 5. For more information pick up that phone and call Reggie Tomatuk at (819) 722-9857 or Minnie Matoush at (819) 776-1685.

The Ecole Waapihtiiwewan School in Ouje-Bougoumou (known as Ojay to us mere mortals) invites all to the Cree School Board Regional Art Exhibition on March 18 to the 22nd. The “Art” exhibited will be by students of all ages from the nine communities. Three “judges” will select pieces to be displayed at the CSB’s offices for one year. And not a day more so go have a look-see. Call the school at (418) 745-2542 for more info.

An Associated Press story with a headline that read 2-headed snake evokes superstitious fears was left in my file by someone who probably just wanted to see it on our august page.

Waswanipi may or may have already asked for a five-year ban of a hockey player from Mistissini after he stormed off the ice, “slammed” the rink’s glass and threw his stick “like a spear” into the stands, hitting a woman in the knee. His chief has apologized to the people of Waswanipi. There goes his dream of a career in the NHL.

At the residential school conference in Waskaganish the Anglican Church of Canada sent a Native representative to extend a formal apology for the abuses its institutions perpetrated on Native students. They were not to be let off so easily though. One participant, a survivor of the system at three residential schools, refused to accept their apology and proceeded to list his reasons. Among them, his freedom to speak his language was taken away, as was his right to bond with family even though they were in the same institution. Later the next day several former students gathered informally at the breakfast table to reminisce and told of beatings by supervisors, forced marches and other acts too vile to mention on this page. It was not all doom and gloom though. The best way they knew how to cope was through humour and they told many funny stories. Unfortunately I am in no mood right now to repeat them. It’s nice to know these people have not lost their strength or more importantly their sense of humour. Surely they deserve more than an apology.