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With Halloween approaching, Alvin Patterson (left) is ready to scare the heck out of people with his annual haunted house at the abandoned school in Hawarden. Alvin said the clown room won’t be back after it was damaged last year by people trying to flee, but there are always new surprises. Halloween High School Hawarden is open from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 20, Oct. 27 and Oct. 31. It is open from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 21, Oct. 22,
Oct. 28 and Oct. 29. Hawarden is an hour south of the city. (Photo by Cam Hutchinson)
Doctor encourages us to get naked

Dr. Alok Trivedi is my kind of guy.
We were introduced recently through the inbox of my email account. I receive upwards of 50 emails a day, with most quickly deleted. The one sent by a person representing Dr. Trivedi caught my eye. The subject line said, “7 Things You’re Not Supposed to Do But Should.”
By way of introduction, Dr. Trivedi works with leaders and sales teams to create a high performance culture. It is a behaviour modification system using neurology and psychology to maximize performance. Those are his website’s words, not mine. I would say something like “Dr. Trivedi is a wise man who knows how to give you a swift kick in the arse to get you to work harder.”
Dr. Trivedi is Chicago based and has worked with companies such as Coke and Toyota, and has appeared on CNN, Good Morning America and The Today Show. Now he is in the Express.

Cable television, movies are getting me down

Well, I survived the ER last week. Once they decided I wasn’t dying of a perforated gallbladder, they shipped me out. I suppose that was the right thing to do, even though I was starving to death and kept hoping for an ultrasound.
No such luck. I had to fast another day, which always makes me weak and beside-myself grumpy, and go get an ultrasound elsewhere. Frustrated? Me?
Which has absolutely nothing to do with my topic for today, apart from the frustration theme.
I’m mad at movies. And much of TV. And reviewers of both. While I’m at it, I’m also mad at the purveyors of same.
We have, I don’t know, a zillion cable channels we never, ever watch, and a few we do on rare occasions. I’m talking major golf tournaments, Rider games, the news and one or two actual TV shows, like dramas and comedies and things. This, Riders aside, takes up maybe two or three hours a week.

Ted Hughes
Long-time lawyer, judge subject of new book

Ted Hughes was a Prairie boy at heart. Until 1977, he never imagined a time when he would look elsewhere for a different working environment.
Hughes, a University of Saskatchewan graduate, had been a lawyer and then a judge in the district court of Saskatchewan since 1962, having been appointed at the age of 35. But the political winds seemed to affect some changes in 1977.
His name had surfaced as a candidate for Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench. He hadn’t sought the role, which eventually went to someone else, but in a day of governmental influence, he was somewhat troubled by the working environment when surrounded by Liberal appointees.
“It was a tough time to think about a change,” said Hughes while visiting Saskatoon last week, “because Helen had just won her Saskatoon council seat by a landslide and our son Brian was going into Grade 12. But when I received an offer to work in the public service in British Columbia, it came with opportunities that turned out to be tremendous.”

‘Most beautiful art gallery’ in Canada set to open

The countdown is on, and the anticipation is rising.
After facing numerous construction delays, shifting timelines and increasing project costs, Remai Modern is now just days away from welcoming visitors. Canada’s new museum of modern and contemporary art — which overlooks the picturesque South Saskatchewan River — will officially open in downtown Saskatoon on Oct. 21 at a ceremony set for 8:30 a.m.
Thanks to sponsorship from KPMG and Rawlco Radio, admission will be free from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Oct. 21 and Oct. 22 for the museum’s inaugural exhibition, Field Guide (tickets are available online at
“One of the major things that will give me such joy is to be able to walk out into the gallery to see people enjoying the building and enjoying the exhibitions,” Gregory Burke, Remai Modern’s executive director and CEO, said in a recent interview.

Retired educators not always the best trustees

I wondered whether I was caught in a time warp, or maybe trapped in a “Back to the Future” sequel, when I read the newspaper article that the government had amended The Education Act to incorporate a cooling-off period for former school division employees before they were eligible to run for a school board position.
It should be noted that the government action was taken because of a recommendation from the Educational Governance Review committee.
A lifetime ago, when I served on the school board, this was a contentious issue. Based on my experience, I’m inclined to agree with the regulation. Years back, the public school board was comprised of seven trustees elected through an at-large system. During one term, five of the seven trustees had education backgrounds. Two were university lecturers (one retired and one actively teaching), one was a retired teacher from a private school and two were recently retired high school principals.


Police force should be lauded for its skill

It looked like something out of a movie — the picture of a guy, dressed all in black, standing in the street in downtown Saskatoon, holding a long-barrelled firearm at his waist as he shot at a Saskatoon police officer who was advancing towards him, his own gun drawn.
It was a terrifying reminder of the realities that face Saskatoon police officers every day, and without warning. It was broad daylight, in the middle of a weekday afternoon on one of downtown’s busiest intersections, surrounded by office buildings.
It’s a testimony to the skill and readiness of Saskatoon’s police force that they were able to take this guy down with absolutely no one getting hurt except him, and his wound was minimal (though I suspect that is dumb luck, given cops always shoot for the centre of body mass. This guy just managed to get hit in the shoulder instead of the heart).


World premiere of funny, affecting play hits Persephone

Persephone Theatre’s latest offering is being billed as a “humour-tinged drama about family and mental wellness.”
The play, Quick Bright Things by Christopher Cook, will have its world premiere when it runs at Remai Arts Centre this month. Persephone Theatre’s artistic director, Del Surjik, is directing the show and is excited to bring it to Saskatoon audiences.
“It’s a world premiere. So one of the things that’s inherently exciting about that, regardless of the particulars of this show, is that you come in (as) the audience (and) you haven’t read the novel; you haven’t seen the movie. You do not know what’s going to happen next,” said Surjik.
“It’s a very exciting sort of situation. For me, it’s the preferred situation.”
Quick Bright Things centres on family members’ responses when a teenage boy, Gerome, is diagnosed with schizophrenia. While all of the characters have “hearts that are huge” and are coming from “a helpful place,” they don’t really know how to help him, said Surjik.