Historic Meeting Held Behind Closed Doors

The Gas Balloon travelled far into Northern Ontario
The Gas Balloon travelled far into Northern Ontario

THUNDER BAY – Normally on April 1, NetNewsLedger has posted an April Fools article. With all the crazy happenings this year. .. here is our report from 2014.

Historic Meeting Held Behind Closed Doors

THUNDER BAY – News – “Enough is enough!”, that was the message from leaders across Northwestern Ontario late Monday night. An emergency meeting of Mayors, Reeves, and Councillors from Nipigon to Kenora has decided to proclaim a new province of Nortario. This was the reason there was no regularly scheduled City Council Meeting Monday night.

The boundary is yet to be decided and will come after the Nortario Group meets with First Nations leaders in Thunder Bay later this morning. That meeting should be over by noon, and there will be an announcement afterward.

Citing concerns over provincial government engagement with the region, the group headed by the Mayor of Red Lake Road, Irving Smith, the decision came after an announcement that Premier Kathleen Wynne was headed for a tour of Northern Ontario.

NetNewsledger would like to thank you for enjoying our annual April 1st / April Fools Day story. Each year we have published a piece on April 1st, from wind turbines on the Sleeping Giant, draining Lake Nipigon into Lake Superior, Thunder Bay Superior North MP Bruce Hyer joining the Conservative Party, or the “Sleeping Giant View Tax”.

Frustration Fuels Nortario Movement

“The Premier’s Northern Tour ended at Sault Ste Marie,” stated Smith. “That is, as far as I am concerned, ‘south’. It is time that Nortario flexed our muscles”.

Forming a new province will have implications for the Ontario Government as Nortario will assume full responsibility for the Ring of Fire, and the diamond mine royalties from the Debeers Mine near Attawapiskat.

“The south simply does not understand the north,” Smith told reporters after the historic meeting of Mayors held behind closed doors at the Valhalla Inn in Thunder Bay.

Provincial MPPs were not allowed to address the gathering.

Proponents of Nortario are asking Mayors and Reeves in all of their communities to add a ballot question to this fall’s civic election to get voter approval of the decision.

EDMONTON, Alta. – NEWS  – On April Fool’s Day, we’re on red alert for pranks, hoaxes and fake news – and it’s been going on for centuries, from an era when court jesters were common.

With no TV, movies or Internet, jesters, jokers or fools were the entertainers of Medieval and Renaissance times. They often started out as traveling performers who, with minstrels, entertained at fairs and markets.

The fools who gained the greatest prominence were those who entertained monarchs and noblemen, as part of the household staff.

Being a court jester was the career pinnacle for the quick-witted and talented few. They could rise above the simple nomadic existence, entertaining peasants living in filth, disease, and poverty. Their new life was to entertain a captive audience and enjoy stability, shelter and more to eat in one meal than others had in a week.

No doubt everyone wanted to be a court jester but the supply of fools always exceeded the demand. There were no employment agencies or Monster.com. To get the attention of potential employers, jesters would take any opportunity to perform in front of the wealthy – not unlike what the paparazzi do to celebrities today.

Except you can’t behead a paparazzo, like what Henry VIII did to one fool on New Year’s Eve 1544. Despite being warned, this fool pushed the monarch too far just outside the Palace of Whitehall, in London.

That night, even the king’s personal jester, Will Sommers, couldn’t amuse the angry monarch. According to Sommer’s diary and stories passed down over the centuries, the evening was marred by drunken rants by Henry. The king even threatened to cast away the ships of fools or behead them all.

Sommers had been in service to the king for years and had become his friend and confidante. At the risk of his job, and perhaps his life, he tried to convince the king that serial execution of fools wasn’t a good idea.

Coming from a family of fools, perhaps Sommers made the appeal for selfish reasons. He attempted to convince the king that he needed to laugh, that all people need to laugh in tough times. Henry had just buried yet another wife, Catherine of Aragon, so his temperament was certainly suspect.

Failing to make an impression, Sommers then reminded the king of how they first met and how he had made a life-changing impression on his majesty. That made Henry smile.

With the tension gone, Sommers confessed he had concerns about his own health. He suggested that Henry audition other fools in search of a replacement, instead for waiting for his demise – either by natural causes or beheading (the ultimate job dismissal). If the King so wished, Sommers could arrange a trial performance at his majesty’s pleasure to “appraise the entertainer’s merit.”

Henry put Sommers in charge of the auditions and requested they take place immediately upon his return from a trip to Versailles – on April 1.

The event was an overwhelming success. Henry had never laughed so hard – and he found a successor to Sommers.

As a result, he decreed April 1 to be the “annual Night of Fools.” The king would only enjoy a few of these since he died in 1547, three years later.

Sommers outlived his master, in turn entertaining Elizabeth I until his death in 1560.

And the Day of Fools tradition lived on, although it gained a new name in 1582, when it became known as April Fool’s Day. The name was changed to conform with the Gregorian calendar introduced by Pope Gregory XIII that year.

Over time, April Fool’s Day has evolved.

Now, people work hard in search of more creative ways to get others to believe something that’s not really true – like this story.

April Fool.

Greg Gazin, The Gadget Guy and Gadget Greg, is a syndicated veteran tech columnist, small business and technology speaker, blogger, podcaster and author. Reach him @gadgetgreg or at GadgetGuy.ca.

© 2017 Distributed by Troy Media

The views, opinions and positions expressed by all columnists and contributors are the author’s alone. They do not inherently or expressly reflect the views, opinions and/or positions of NetNewsLedger.

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