Something old Rediscovered

Friday, I discovered Pop Shoppe brand Root beer and Cola. Saturday I watched episodes of the iconic TV series “Facts of Life.” It would seem that what was new to so many “way back when” is new to me. Do I have any complaints? No, not really. Though, I can’t say as I overly care for the two flavours of Pop Shoppe pop mentioned above.

It’s interesting; experiencing things that are from years gone by. To my mind its fun getting to try things my mother enjoyed as a young adult. It’s about sharing experiences, learning what was popular then and paying tribute to years gone by.  Even, if it’s just a bottle of pop. For example, Pop Shoppe pop is in glass bottles. Nowadays if a person were to go buy a bottle of pop, it would be in a plastic bottle that might end up in a landfill. Not to say glass bottles wouldn’t find their way into a junkyard either possibly, but it is a point of observation I make about the differences between pop sold in the 60s and 70s and pop sold now.

Also it’s interesting to ponder what my mother thought of Pop Shoppe pop. Did she have a favourite flavour as a young adult? Which was it? Was there a flavour she just couldn’t stomach? For me, I admit freely I am not a fan of the Root beer flavour. Nor am I sold on the Cola flavour. I do however really like the Cream Soda and Orange flavours.

Maybe this won’t be a total bonding experience but I’d like to think it gives me new found knowledge of my mother and her generation. Hey maybe the “generation gap” idea is all wrong. Maybe parents weren’t necessarily all that different from us, when they were young adults themselves.

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Valentine’s, Radio and Shopping

Well let me tell you the poem I read on my valentine put tears in my eyes. It was absolutely beautiful and I feel so blessed to know such an incredible person. He said he liked the valentine to him too. It was a fantastic Valentine’s Day for sure.

Friday I was allowed the opportunity to see a radio station for the first time. Rob and Audie are very nice gentlemen. I am fortunate to have met them. As well, Kari Skelton was great to learn from and a great person all her own, as was the man in charge of the sound board, Shawn.

I was surprised afterward with an opportunity to meet a gentleman I have chatted with on Twitter for a while now. We had a great conversation and I feel fortunate to have met him face to face.

Then I set off for Delux Burger to try the Nicola burger (Note: 1 dollar from each Nicola burger goes towards cervical cancer research and is being sold all this month). Well let me just say it was simply delicious. Also to add to the deliciousness of the burger, was the friendly and professional service I encountered at Delux burger.

To finish my time at West Edmonton Mall, I went into Suzy Shier (first time there, yay!) and bought a new blouse and a dress. Both fit and I love ’em. 🙂 It’s been a busy week. Now with it being Sunday, I look forward to what this coming week will bring.

Meeting Media

Yesterday I went to my first Tweet-up. The “Meet the Media” Tweet-up was fun. I met so many new faces, and saw some journalists and others I had met previously. With great conversation and laughs shared, Meet the Media seemed to be a stellar success. There was an energy and enthusiasm in the room that was contagious.

Highlights for me were meeting Vassy Kapelos, Adam Rozenhart, Scott Bourgeois, Stacey Brotzel and so many others. Being able to speak to Daryl McIntyre, Jason Konoza, Laurel Clark and Archie McLean was great too. Joking and sharing good conversations, I can safely say I had a great time at my first tweetup. I’m now looking forward to hearing of more interesting and fun events such as this, that I can hopefully attend.

Interview with a Journalist – Erin Isfeld

My second last interview in the series of interviews with journalists, is with local TV journalist Erin Isfeld of CTV Edmonton. Thank you again Ms. Isfeld for taking the time for this interview.

1. First and foremost, what played the biggest role in your deciding to become a journalist?

I have always been a very inquisitive person. My love of information and story-telling began as a very young child.  Growing up in rural Manitoba, I was involved in 4-H which is a great opportunity for children to learn valuable leadership qualities, get involved in their community and to hone their public speaking skills. Also an early admiration of television news journalists helped to secure my fate.

2. Was there anyone in particular that you looked up to, as a budding journalist?

There wasn’t any one journalist, but rather a handful of individuals who I admired. Peter Jennings, a Canadian working for ABC News in the US was always one of my favourites. It was his quiet confidence, his descriptive story-telling and warm delivery that allowed the audience to be part of the story. On a local level, I always looked up to Diana Swain who worked for both Global News & CBC in Winnipeg. She is now in Toronto with CBC and I still feel she is one of the best anchors in the country.

3. What is your favourite aspect of the job? What’s your least favourite?

Learning something new and meeting new people every day is what I cherish most about this career. Continuously learning and developing as an individual is an integral part of growth as a journalist. For the most part, we’re generalists, but by the end of the day we are very educated about a particular topic thanks to the experts we interview every day.

My least favourite part of the job is the uncomfortable situations we sometimes find ourselves. News is often about tragic situations. As journalists, it is our job to tell the story which means approaching people in their time of grief and sorrow. Some we request to interview feel this is very therapeutic; others view us in a negative light for even asking.

4. You have earned a minimum of two awards thus far in your career, what would you say has been your biggest achievement professionally?

Achievements can be measured in so many ways. The stories you receive awards for are not necessarily the best or most important. One of my biggest achievements professionally has to be some of the commitment to community pieces.  For instance, the ATB Financial Charity Shootout.  I’ve produced this event for the last 2 years and am so fortunate to see our viewers engage by helping out the various charities we profile. Another example of this would be our “Giving Hope” campaign where we encouraged or viewers to give blood in honour of a young mother who hemorrhaged and almost lost her life after her baby Hope was born.  The additional stories that flooded in after we shared Holly’s journey were certainly inspirational.

5. What has been one of the most memorable stories that you have reported on? What makes that story stand out for you?

One of the most memorable stories for me happened several years ago when I was a young journalist working in Winnipeg. It was shortly after 9-11 and I traveled down to New York with 80 Winnipeg fire fighters to see the devastation through their eyes. The visuals said it all… grown, brave men reduced to tears at Ground Zero and the fire halls we visited. A very emotional, incredibly moving experience for everyone involved.

6. Lastly, what advice would you have for someone aspiring to become a journalist?

I believe the best thing you can do is to open yourself up to every aspect of this fine career. Journalism has changed so much even in the dozen or so years I’ve been involved. Social media and technology are game changers. Traditional media has had to adapt and give viewers the news they want, when and how they want it. So you’ll be doing yourself a tremendous service to immerse yourself in computer-assisted journalism. It seems that will be the way of the future.

UBB Controversy

There has been much controversy over the CRTC decision to allow UBB, usage based billing. This would allow larger internet providers to charge smaller providers for exceeding bandwidth limits. Local business owner, Gord Lacey worries this decision could seriously hurt local businesses, including his own. According to Lacey, when he first heard of the billing changes Shaw was planning, he switched to a plan with a higher bandwidth allowance. He says Shaw later changed the limits on their plans, and as a result his internet bill has seen a decided increase. Bell has told the CRTC they’re investing millions in broadband and old pricing structures need to be updated to keep up with the increasing number of people accessing the internet.

Two sides to a controversial decision. One that may now, be overturned by the government. So many have complained and even signed a petition against the move toward usage based billing, the government has now taken notice. Today the CRTC announced they will relook at their decision.

Reviewing New AHS Policy

On Christmas Eve last year I read an article on the Edmonton Journal website. The article, written by Edmonton Journal’s Elise Stolte, spoke of a memo sent out by AHS. The memo was to all Edmonton paramedics, urging them to slow down. Now this memo banned paramedics from speeding and going through red lights. The resulting controversial prompted a response from AHS that the memo needed to be reworked to be better understood what the new policy was for Ambulances and EMS.

Well it’s the beginning of February in the new year. I wanted to take a look at the new policy, how it’s been received by the public now that it’s been around a little while. So I decided to ask someone at Alberta Health Services, if I could. After awhile of phone calls back and forth, I was able to speak with Sue Conroy, Senior Vice President of Emergency Medical Services.

In speaking with Ms. Conroy I have learned the new policy, especially since the initial memo being revised for clarity of intent, has been well received by paramedics and EMS workers.  Also, I had been curious if the new policy crossed over into fire emergency services. It does not.

So as it stands, in situations where time is critical to an emergency call, paramedics are able to judge for themselves whether to speed and how much to accelerate. However there are exceptions to this. Paramedics still may not speed in school zones, construction zones and other specified areas.