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Showing posts from August, 2010

Lucky Gord. Poor Hilly. Renfrew Tales

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Renfrew. The luckiest town in the Ottawa Valley
The unfortunate love story of Lucky Gord and Hilly.
By Stephen Weir
a rare unpublished fiction short-story based on fact/family history

DeMoss, the hired hand who spent his winters in the lean-to barn at the end of our unpaved lane, said I was lucky that I lived in Renfrew. The clean Ottawa Valley air. The good huntin'. Best of all, an arena that let you play full contact hockey without havin' to wear sissy protective gear.
DeMoss never thought to talk to me about the women. Didn't say anything about the men either. He was blissfully unaware of Renfrew mating practices.
The young males and females in Renfrew had no trouble finding each other, but they were really lucky if they could find a place to be alone together. Priests. Neighbours. Fathers. Mothers. Noisy brothers and sisters. You know the drill.
My 17-year old sister Hilly and her 30-year old fiancée, Gord Ford, took to parking his Dodge (no kidding) in a field near our home …

Sublimnos - Muse for James Cameron

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Sublimnos No Longer Out Of Sight
… And Definitely Not Out of Mind

By Stephen Weir

It will take a long long time for a piece of Canadian dive history to rust into dust. Given the hard feelings surrounding the historic Sublimnos Project, the deteriorating, remains of that underwater habitat could well be an above-water Lake Ontario eyesore for years until rust indeed becomes dust.
Back in the summer of 1969 Sublimnos was set down in the waters of Georgian Bay near Tobermory, Ontario the self-described "fresh water scuba diving capital of the world" .It was a bargain basement underwater research station. Constructed from a railroad tanker for just $10,000.00, Sublimnos became Canada’s first subsurface research laboratory.
From 1969 to 1971 the Sublimnos project, funded and spearhead by physician, author, explorer and frequent Diver Magazine contributor Dr. Joe McInnis, was headline news around the world. Built to accommodate up to four divers at a time, in its first two-years o…

Deep Discount Habitat - sidebar to featured article on Sublimnos

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AN UNDERWATER FIRST FOR CANADA

Scientists. Students. Divers. Thanks to the media the world came to see
Sublimnos. In Canada almost every major news outlet from the Toronto
Star to the CBC came to Tobermory. The international media came too.
National Geographic Society helped fund the Sublimnos project and their
magazine covered the story as well.
“David Doubilet is notably one of the most famous National Geographic
photographers and a mentor to photographers today,” said film producer
Diana Woods. “One of his first photography assignments was Sublimnos
in Tobermory in 1969!”
Probably the most definitive U.S. article on Sublimnos appeared in Popular
Mechanics Magazine (PMM) in April 1971. Back then PMM was ‘the’ voice
of innovation and invention for Americans. At the time its readership was
over 6.6 million, so the MacInnis Sublimnos Project gained high profile
throughout the English-speaking world.
Entitled Bargain Basement Habitat, the story was written by Douglas
Hicks and informed readers how Dr.…