She’s worried about being too forward

Columnist Claudette Sandecki just wants to keep others informed

Following years of clogging others’ email boxes with my “forwards”, I vowed I would curb, even eliminate, my practise of forwarding every news article or cartoon I feel deserves to be shared either because I enjoyed it, learned something, or want to be sure they have a chance to see it.

Articles like the nine ducklings who hatched in the garden on the roof of the Vancouver Police Department’s several storey headquarters. Officers shooed the nine into a box, carried it down to the street, and after blocking traffic, turned the fluffy little ones loose to waddle behind Mom to False Creek. National news outlets might pick up this B.C. story. Still, they might not.

Or the photo of the Mother Moose who calved in someone’s front yard in New Brunswick. There she stands near her resting calf, daring the residents to leave for work from the front door and walk past her newborn.

A news story I itched to pass along was headlined, “Texas A & M professor gets fed up with misbehaving students who lack honour and maturity and fails the entire class.” Seems the professor was so disgusted with the immature behaviour of his strategic management class he sent each student an email giving them a failing grade and declaring he would not teach the rest of the semester. That task will fall to the head of the department.

Several of my recipients taught school for years, two of them at community colleges. They share this professor’s sentiments, I’m sure.

Even though I worry without my emails my friends might not see these worthy articles, oftentimes eventually these articles end up in every national newspaper and on every national TV news channel. If only I could be sure …

One friend’s email box routinely rejects several of my “forwards” in a day. Whether or not that’s due to the prolific influx of my “forwards” alone or the cumulative total sent by his friends, I don’t know.

But on the chance I am crowding out his emails, I shall try to restrain myself and send only personal emails.

My friends and I chuckle at the same sort of humour. Our article choices, though, run the gamut from monster mining equipment to restored vintage cars to pottery, foreign travel, art, fiddle music, almost any topic. In return, they send me some of their favourite finds. It is a way of keeping in touch without setting our own thoughts on paper or expecting an individualized reply.

Humour is a small part of our exchanges. Some articles, political in nature and bound to receive nationwide coverage, are guaranteed to stir the blood. This week’s example is the evacuation of 1800 Kashechewan natives by plane from their northern Hudson Bay reserve to escape spring flooding from the Albany River … for the fourth year in a row.

At a cost of about $160 per person per day, these families are evacuated to Kapuskasing, Timmins, Cornwall, or Greenstone to languish in motels perhaps for months.

Interviewed April 27 on CBC’s Power & Politics, the Conservative spokesperson said the government has in previous years met with the chief and council offering to move the entire village to higher ground at an estimated cost of $750 million.

But the village refused. The NDP MP for Kashechewan wants the town moved to higher ground to end expensive annual evacuations so disruptive to families and their normal life. No consensus is ever achieved; each blames the other for inaction.

In 2007 the government gave $200 million to improve infrastructure and strengthen dikes. That solved nothing.

Curbing my “forwards” like solving Kashechewan floods is more difficult than anticipated.