The Sunday Edition for January 26, 2020
Listen to this week's episode with host Michael Enright:
Michael's Essay — Canadians and the weather(s): "The thing about the weather is its damnable indifference. Humans have been praying to the weather gods since we slouched out of the primordial ooze. The gods haven't been listening. But we humans are nothing if not resilient. Canadians are a winter people, and we know the indifference of nature. It does its worst, and we prevail. This is especially true of Newfoundlanders."
How Finland is eradicating homelessness: As part of The Sunday Edition's continuing coverage of homelessness in Canada, Michael speaks with Juha Kaakinen, the architect of Finland's national Housing First program. Its premise could hardly be simpler: If the problem is that people don't have homes, the solution is to give them homes. Period. There have been naysayers, of course, but in Finland, at least, it's been a spectacular success. And the model is catching on in municipalities across Europe, Asia and North America.
Drama, eccentricity, tragedy, triumph: This is the story of nobility from across the Atlantic who gave up titles and riches to start a new life in British Columbia. Their names weren't Harry and Meghan — they were an Italian prince, Leone Caetani, his lover, Ofelia Fabiani, and their three-year-old daughter Sveva, who decamped to Vernon, B.C. a century ago. Jennifer Chrumka tells their story of hope, personal tragedy, isolation, and rebirth in her documentary, "The Riddle Is One's Life".
This obesity expert says we have far less control over our weight than we think: We've been ingrained with the idea that the path to losing weight is to eat less and exercise more. Jennifer Kuk says it's not that simple. She is a professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Science at York University, and her research suggests there's a wide array of social, environmental and genetic factors at play in obesity, weight gain and weight loss, that science is still discovering.
Uncomfortable conversations about sexual misconduct: In the age of #MeToo, #TimesUp, Harvey Weinstein and countless sexual predators, it can be hard to have a nuanced and open conversation about sexual misconduct in all its varieties without people becoming angry or defensive. But that's exactly what one of Canada's funniest and most talented playwrights — Hannah Moscovitch — encourages with her provocative new play Sexual Misconduct of the Middle Classes. She'll be Michael's guest along with the play's cast — Matthew Edison and Alice Snaden.
An ode to the "queen of colours": There are far more than 50 shades of grey, for the record. It may be no peacock as colours go, but grey is no less expressive than its more flamboyant cousins on the colour wheel. Author Megan Flaherty recently wrote an essay called "Ode to Gray" in The Paris Review — an appreciation of the world's most underestimated hue.
Mail: Linda McQuaig, pedestrian deaths
Music this week by: Sonny Stitt, Oscar Peterson, Ernest J. Moeran, Jean Sibelius, Abigail Lapell, Eric Satie, W.A. Mozart, Michael Kiwanuka, and Herbie Hancock