Saturday, February 23, 2019

Sounds of the Orca........A Straight Goods Muse

Written by grant G

        Sometimes even slushy wet snow can send one's mind to drift, to times of youth, to times with family...

    Friday morning, too much unexpected snow, with regular visitors and a long steep path down to the house snow-clearing was a must, yikes, even cleared and salted the snow overwhelms....

4 inches of snow between morning and noon, enough to keep me hopping then it stops in a blink, an early year Sun is fast approaching and as I write this piece earth's life-giving planet warmer beams a blast of soothing warmth,  sitting, typing with an open window facing the glow and suddenly thoughts go adrift....Sounds of heavy fresh snow dropping and dripping like thick heavy syrup, everything is a thaw, water runs, ozone fills my lungs and thoughts fill my mind..

as a boy with feet and shoes soaked, trudging and sludging in a snow world suddenly turned to slush and mush...I see familiar streets, see friends, see family clear as today only the scenes aren't today they're memories, triggered memories brought on by heavy watery snow trying to outrun our sun's warm glow...futile in February...

Something else happened today, Canada's NEB(national Energy Board) once again approved the TMX pipeline and that was expected but even so, to be fair the NEB approved it with a much more somber tone than the first time..

  Memories of a boy fishing with dad flood my mind, Summer, Spring, Fall and Winter when fresh warm snow needs to be cleared from a boat beckoning to take a pair of one fishing, fishing in the Sun's warm embrace, it's there, ahead, it awaits in a fast approaching golden horizon.....

Rod, reel, father and son in calm life-filled pursuit of a wild salmon for dinner, plentiful bounty for all, including many Winter Spring Salmon to feed a hungry pod of Southern Killer Whales...The Orca.

These magnificent creatures are very fussy eaters, they're not fond of Chum Salmon, Coho or even Sockeye, it's Spring Salmon they want, and need, these big Salmon are also known as Chinook Salmon, they grow the largest, in some cases exceeding a 100 lbs plus....However, those giant Salmon are now rare...Chinook Salmon in the 20 to 50 pound range are the New norm..

I've written before of my joyous fishing escapades with my best friend, my departed dad...So many days drift fishing, so many stories of success, and failure, i've also written about the decline of all marine species, my once bountiful watery front yard is a mere shadow of itself, run after run of Wild Salmon are no more, each individual British Columbia river had it's own Salmon, same species but unique to each individual river.....Massive 100 lb plus Salmon that once returned in big numbers to Rivers Inlet...Why that particular river had such giant Salmon is somewhat of a mystery, a good fishing friend who was raised near that River Eden tells me the Salmon there were so large because of the River gravel, very large gravel, thus only the biggest and strongest of the returning Salmon could spawn....Weaker Salmon got weeded out..

Those Salmon runs are gone...Northern Coho Salmon runs, gone, so many individual runs have vanished, wiped out by bad commercial fishing practices, bad logging and industrial activity..and it's not just the Salmon that are vanishing, lingcod, Rockfish and most ocean bottom dwellers in steep decline, all now so scarce, even our once vast kelp forests have shrunken to near nothing..

I haven't fished lately and to be honest the last few times I fished more were released than kept..

The Blackfish, the mighty Southern Killer Whale...Orca are starving, it's bad enough with industry activity taking more and more from our environment but to see and hear of Orca starving to death makes me cry....Yes, some Salmon runs in bigger rivers still at times produce healthy returns but, Sockeye and Chum Salmon won't suffice, either will evasive escaped farmed Atlantic Salmon...Another deathblow to BC's Wild Salmon...

Howe Sound once so plentiful with Salmon, now barren, the beautiful Sunshine Coast had so many Coho, in my youth there were times when literally walls of Coho Salmon passed, so abundant you could look in the ocean and see schools of Coho zipping past....Herring spawns, black-cod, hake and sharks aplenty...Those abundant glory days have long since passed....and the decline continues everyday, year after year there are fewer fish, fewer species, less kelp....less life.

Corporate pocketed governments allowed hideous fishfarms to poison our waters, with all the mounting evidence.... even our current NDP government sits on their hands..punting any meaningful restorative action years into the future to a time when those governing now will be long gone, and we can't wait the Orca can't wait, they're are starving...Toxic disease laden evasive farmed Atlantic Salmon being reared in waters where they don't belong...Wild Salmon in Norway, extinct, Wild Salmon off South America's ocean have suffered the same decimation due to Farmed Atlantic Salmon...Lice filled open nets, a dead wasted ocean bottom underneath each and every Salmon farm....And still our elected leaders sit on their lobbyist greased hands..

My lifetime is only part way done, yet in that short period of time our British Columbia Oceans are near dead...

I mentioned the NEB announced that they believe the TMX tarsand bitumen pipeline is in the National interest even though, with a somber tone that GHG emissions will rise and more hardship will befall the once mighty and already struggling for life Orca whale...

Justin Trudeau with his warm smile promotes, promises and insists that this pipeline is needed to fight climate change, even with thousands of scientists from a myriad of angles all telling us that we have 12 years to stop this fossil fuel suicide or it will be too late to do anything....Yet Justin Trudeau smiles and grins and blusters that a carbon tax will make Earth's climate all better....Yet sane minds, my mind can't be strangled into believing a massive increase in tarsand bitumen tankers to service a monstrosity pipeline for the next 40 years can do anything but harm even more...

The NEB also mused about the potential, albeit not guaranteed bitumen tanker-spill and how it would be  "Catastrophic" to BC's coastline....I'm not alone in believing that a large spill in our southern waters will be the final death-knell for not only the Orca but for our wild Salmon too..

How many land animals have become extinct over the last 20 years, how many birds species, fish species have vanished and how on earth can any ethical government look me, or look any of earth's inhabitants in the eye and say a bitumen pipeline's economic benefits outweigh a Species right to exist..

My gawd Justin Trudeau, do you not feel do you not bleed not think about preserving life, preserving unique species, for once intelligent emotional family protecting Orca are gone can Mankind itself be very far behind..

The needs of many species outweigh the needs of the few, or the one, man.....

Canada doesn't need this destructive project, we will survive as a nation, Alberta will persevere, a future vision, a new direction will present itself we only need to open our eyes open our minds and embrace the Sun's warm energetic embrace..

Man's answer warms our planet everyday, enough energy filters down from the skies above to run everything...

We have no more time...there is no world oil shortage, we aren't saving future generations from a energy freeze by not shipping targoop to Asia...

My Dad isn't gone he lives within me, guiding me prodding me demanding I speak up demanding we search out and elect a real leader who won't govern for the next political term but govern wisely for generations not yet born,,,,

Justin Trudeau is not that leader......either is Rachel Notley, Jason Kenney or John Horgan....

If only we could hear the Orca's voice......Therein lies the answer....

Spirits in the Night

Written by Grant G

The Straight Goods

Cheers Eyes Full of Tears




  1. @ Ron2shoes....I agree with you comment...However, it doesn't belong under this article..


  2. I too remember days on the salt chuck and going up and down the coast fishing in the 70's. So many memories but that is all we have now. You don't post as much currently but keep posting as I always come back to see what is new. Don't always agree with your point but you always state an opinion and lay it out with links. Great job.

  3. Glad i came around here today: Felt your heart shining through brightly in this piece.

    Appreciate you being out there and putting it straight the way you do.

    Afraid our social system is heading for a collapse of biblical proportions, and the political parties are not going to save us or even help.


  4. Thanks Jon Ghun...Yea, Horgan...Trudeau..Notley....different parties, different faces but still marching to the tunes being piped by the corporate greed-monsters..

    JR....I haven't posted much lately...BC NDP partisans are no different than BC Liberal partisans...Governments can lie, break election promises, sell out to the corporates..bafflegab and reward their friends n spinners....But all is good if their chosen government does it..

    BC NDPers are upset with me because I continue to write The Straight Goods..

    Big Postmedia spinners(corporate cons) don't really care who is in power...Their agenda continues..they fail to reports facts...especially when it comes to energy, LNG and oil...LNG Canada project...A $3 billion dollar investment in BC...not $40 billion..Kitimat LNG Canada terminal project cost is...$14.9 billion..With $11 billion plus being spent out of Canada...The tax writeoff relief...That's where BC will see the $14.9 billion dollar number...LNG curse continues..