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Lost in the Pandemic

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4 minute read

By Daryl McIntyre

Lost in the Pandemic

Such a surreal time. So many of you have said it. So many of us are living it. The reasons are myriad. We all have our own stories. I’m just going to share mine; my personal perspective.

I feel like I should be informing people. It’s what I did for 36 years. Through every major news story since the early 80’s .. I had the privilege and duty to share information. Now, I’m the one looking for it. I’m looking for the credible news sources to tell me what’s going on in our world right now. I really miss being in the centre of it all. I miss being the source of information .. not just the consumer.

I’m also finding something new. There are a lot of options for information these days. (though you really have to curate your sources) I appreciate the major news organizations… the so-called main stream media. I used to work within that system and I guarantee that every individual working at those news organizations is doing their absolute level best to serve the public with credible information . That is something I was proud of and proud to defend throughout my time in the industry.

Six months after having to leave my broadcasting job .. I have had a lot of time to reflect. I completely checked out from the news of the day after departing CTV Edmonton. I understand now why so many people are happy to avoid reality. It truly is “blissful ignorance.” I also missed being involved in the world of daily local news and I simply didn’t want to watch. It was too painful.

The reality of the Covid-19 pandemic however has forced me to re-connect. I need information. My friends and relatives need information. I am getting it through main stream media because I know the individuals involved. They are doing the best they can.

I am also gleaning information from other cited sources through social media. This is a delicate world. You need to be fully aware. You need to be thoughtful. You need to question. You need to analyze but there is a lot of important, useful, insightful information on line.

Old news people like to “preach” to the public they used to broadcast to as a way to continue to feel relevant. I’m not preaching. I just want all of you to focus on real information .. not spin. Facts .. not rumour. The most important thing you can do right now is focus on your family, your friends, your community.

Be informed. Be factually informed. Fight misinformation. Stick together literally or figuratively.

I look forward to seeing you all on the other side.

Daryl McIntyre worked in television news for close to 4 decades.  He was anchor of CTV News at 6 in Edmonton for more than 30 years. 

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Alberta

Positive COVID-19 tests at world men's curling championship deemed “false positives”

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CALGARY — The four positive COVID-19 tests that interrupted the men’s world curling championship are considered “false positives” from potentially contaminated samples, according to the World Curling Federation.

The men’s championship concluded late Sunday night with Sweden’s Niklas Edin winning a record fifth world men’s title.

No games were played Saturday because four participants, including one from a playoff team, tested positive for the virus in “exit” tests before leaving Calgary’s curling bubble. 

None had symptoms of the illness.

All have tested negative in multiple re-tests since then, the WCF said Monday in a statement. All tests were conducted via PCR throat swabs.

“According to Alberta Health, PCR testing remains the gold standard for COVID-19 testing,” the WCF said. “Very rarely, there are occurrences through sampling or testing processes when samples may become contaminated and a false positive may result.

“Following an investigation over the weekend, it appears that this may have occurred in this case and follow-up testing was undertaken.”

All athletes and personnel considered close contacts of the four underwent testing Saturday with all results negative. 

Every playoff team member was tested before and after each game Sunday with those results also negative, the WCF said. Hotel staff were also tested Sunday and cleared.

“With the original four positive test results now deemed as false positives, the integrity of the Calgary bubble remains intact,” the WCF declared.

“The change also allows international athletes who were considered close contacts, and who would have had to remain in isolation in Calgary for 14 days, will now be able to depart Calgary.”

The fifth of seven events in Calgary’s curling hub, the Humpty’s Champions Cup, gets underway Thursday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 12, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Pulling the plug: Edmonton Folk Music Festival cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic

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EDMONTON — Despite Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s hope that the COVID-19 vaccine will allow summer events like the Calgary Stampede to go ahead, the Edmonton Folk Music Festival has been cancelled

The festival says in a statement that without full vaccination, people won’t be entirely safe from the spread of COVID-19. 

It says that with virus variants and an uncertain vaccine rollout, the impossibility of social distancing at the outdoor festival could lead to community spread.

Kenney has said that two-thirds of the population should have a vaccine shot by the end of June and things should begin to feel back-to-normal.

He says the Stampede, which is held in early July, along with sporting events and other festivals will be possible.

The Edmonton Folk Music Festival says it will continue to offer online content and, if small gatherings are permitted, it hopes to add some community engagement.

“With so many variables at play, the complexity of planning and delivering a festival of our size makes it impossible to move forward in our usual manner,” the statement said Monday.

“As profoundly disappointing as this news is, we believe this is the only safe way forward. The safety of our patrons, volunteers, and artists was of paramount importance in coming to this conclusion.”

The annual four-day festival in the city’s Gallagher Park usually attracts thousands of music fans and boasts approximately 2,700 volunteers.

Alberta introduced new health rules last week, closing restaurants to in-person dining and further reducing customer capacity at retail stores in response to rising COVID-19 numbers.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 12, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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