Xavier Kataquapit

All's Well That Ends Well

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

In November 1993, a group of eight students from my high school English class in Attawapiskat agreed to collaborate on a Christmas play. We wrote our own script which we presented at a combined elementary school / high school Christmas concert at the JR Nakogee Elementary school gymnasium. Our group of eight students from Vezina Secondary School of differing age groups and grades were excited to take part. The project was led by our English teacher Rhonda McKay, a bright young woman who started out her teaching career in Attawapiskat.

Bad Medicine

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

Drug addiction has always been part of my life. One of the most terrible drugs that has affected the lives of my people is alcohol. However, there were also illegal drugs that were part of the culture of addictive substances. I grew up watching more or less normal people I knew transform into desperate beings who only lived for their next high. Our elders were shocked at the changes in the lives of our young people and they blamed the non-Native culture to the south.

When I Was A Rink Rat

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

An early winter storm has subsided and I am on my way to the local outdoor hockey rink. The bitter breeze is still pushing from the north and grainy wisps of snow dance around my heavy boots. It is the winter of 1992 here in Attawapiskat and I am bored on a grey overcast Saturday morning looking for something to do. I have my favourite hockey stick with me and a plan of practising my slap shot. There are few people out and I am looking forward to spending my time alone at the rink. A powerful wind has blown falling snow into huge drifts all around the community.

Merry Christmas To One And All

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

Christmas is a stressful time of the year. It has always been that way for me. From the time I was a child I have more or less endured the coming and going of Christmas. Back home in Attawapiskat in the 1980s when I was a kid Christmas revolved around a lot of alcohol, drugs and general tragedy. My family did their best to make this time of the year happy but it was never easy.

‘Take a break from the insanity’

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

Christmas is a stressful time of the year. It has always been that way for me. From the time I was a child I have more or less endured the coming and going of Christmas.
Back home in Attawapiskat in the 1980s when I was a kid, Christmas revolved around a lot of alcohol, drugs and general tragedy. My family did their best to make this time of the year happy but it was never easy.
On one hand there was all the hype about what we should be getting for Christmas in terms of the latest new toys and gadgets and this information came to us through the television and local store.

Time to wind down

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

‘Let’s try to live a simple and meaningful life in 2011’
This year just before Christmas, while I was travelling in some bigger city centres in southern Ontario, I noticed just how crazy this holiday season has become.
There were long streams of traffic going from mall to mall and every store I visited had lineups of people at the cash. A normal part of this shopping frenzy seemed to be made up of screaming moms and dads and crying kids.

A lesson from Cuba

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:38

I recently came back from a vacation to Cuba. In the three weeks that I was gone, I managed to lose about five pounds. It was relatively easy to lose that weight.
Not only is food scarce in Cuba, it is also expensive and tourists usually have to eat in restaurants and resorts. I was not staying in the country on a resort package so I had to find restaurants that served good food at a fair price. Merely looking around the city of Havana for places to eat made for plenty of opportunity to walk.

The magic light box

Create: 12/01/2015 - 19:37

Television was never a big part of my early childhood. In the early 1980s, TV was a new phenomenon that had just been introduced to our community merely a decade before. Even though mom and dad furnished our living room with a new television set we had nothing to watch.
CBC was the clearest channel we could receive and it was fuzzy. TVO provided regional programs from Ontario. These two channels offered plenty of educational programming but we yearned for the big blockbuster movies we often heard about.

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