User:Jetfire/Live At Five
|Paradise story universe|
|Works by Jetfire on Shifti|
Live At Five
Wednesday, January 9, 2008
The two news announcers stand on their marks in the busy news room, listening as Steve finishes his preview of the news at six. A warning light turns on and a director crouched next to the teleprompter begins a countdown.
The male announcer speaks first as the camera light turns on. "Thank you Steve. And now, First at Five, the big news of the day. Department of Fisheries and Oceans has announced they are are reopening the cod fisheries in the Grand Banks, and increased quotas for other zones. We'll have reaction from local governments, environmental groups and the DFO. But first, we go to Ryan MacDonald, live from Louisbourg with reactions from the fishermen themselves. Ryan?"
The scene cuts to a man standing on the docks, huddling against the cold wind coming off the water. "Thanks Bruce. As can be expected, todays news was greeted with elation in this fishing community, and similar communities up and down the coast."
The scene cuts again, same general area, but earlier in the day. "Sixteen years ago, the heart of Louisbourg was partly stilled with the shut down of the cod fishery and similar fisheries in the Atlantic. Louisbourg survived, but with great difficulty, relying on tourism and a processing plant that now brought frozen fish in from Halifax instead of fresh fish in from the docks. But now, with today's announcement, her heart can start beating again."
Another scene cut, showing a bobcat morph standing next to a fishing boat tied up on the docks. The reporter holds a microphone towards the morph. "Aye, this is great news for all of us here. Me father was a fisherman, me grandpa was a fisherman, and now me son can follow in my paw steps. The past few years, they've been tough, but the end is in sight," the cat was saying.
The scene shifts, bringing the old French fortress into view and a woman standing on a street below it. "This is wonderful. We've been holding on here, but too many young people have been leaving, heading out west to the oil in Alberta. Hopefully now we'll start bringing them home with new work available."
Back to the boats, and an angry looking man. "It's about damn time! We've been telling the DFingO for years now that the stocks were back, but would they listen to us? NO! They complained that we were catching too much cod in our by-catch, but they weren't seeing we were tossing twice as much overboard! We couldn't catch a turbot fer all the cod!"
Back to the docks at dusk. "As you can see, the news was taken really well here today. Of course there is still a sense of anticipation in the air, while they wait and see how large the quotas will be and how many licenses per zone will be released, but overall, everyone is excited. They are feeling they can finally get back to normal. Ryan MacDonald for CTV News, Louisbourg, Nova Scotia."
"Thanks Ryan. While the news was greeted well up and down the coast, not everyone is happy with the news. Juanita Ortiz spoke with Andrew Neilson of Blue Oceans, an Environmental Protection group," the male host said, segueing into the next segment.
An office setting appeared, two people standing next to a desk. Behind them framed by them was a promotional poster for 'Blue Oceans' with the group's logo and a scene of people cleaning up a beach. One of the beach cleaners is an otter morph.
"With the fisheries reopening, what are your feelings about it?" the reporter asks.
The man looks relaxed on camera, well used to speaking to the media. "Well, while we applaud the economic boost it will give to some areas that really need it, we are questioning the need to reopen the fisheries so soon."
"You believe it is too early?"
"These waters have been fished for centuries. Overfished to the point of exhaustion just a few decades ago. It just isn't realistic to expect species that were fished to the point of near extinction to recover enough to be fishable again so quickly."
"But the DFO is claiming the stocks have recovered to the 70's levels and rising. Your take on that?"
"Show us the numbers. We're gathering our own specialists to go through the DFO's numbers with a fine tooth comb. If we find anything fishy with them, beyond the fish themselves, we'll make sure they know it.
"As is, reopening these fisheries seems more the actions of a government desperate to build good will in this region, than a move that reflects reality."
"Any final words?" the reporter asked.
"This reopening is a mistake. Mark my words on that. Don't get too used to fishing, because it won't last. In a year or two, we'll be right back to 1992, and the zones will be shut down again."
"Thank you Andrew. I am Juanita Ortez, CTV News, Halifax."
The female host picked up the next block. "The DFO's announcement has wide ranging implications for this region and beyond. Reporter Shiloh Watson spoke with Shaun Mercer of the DFO in Saint John's, soon after the announcement was made."
The scene moves to another office, this one paneled with a large desk centered under a window overlooking the harbour. A man in a suit sits in a comfortable chair to one side of the desk. A raccoon reporter sits forward in a second chair partly facing the man.
"You really dropped a bombshell of hope in a region that really needs it. What made the DFO decide it was time to reopen the fisheries?" she opens.
"Well, the health of the fish stock in the Grand Banks, and the waters off Atlantic Canada, have always been important. Ever since we closed them down back in '92, we have watched them extra closely. At first, it looked like we were too late; numbers kept dwindling lower and lower. Even after the Turbot War in '95, it was looking like we were too late, but we kept watching, and kept the moratorium in place.
"Then in '98 and '99 we started noticing a change. Over the past 10 years, our efforts have started to pay off. Cod and other fish stock have been swelling at an incredible pace, surpassing all of our predictions and models.
"Now, we estimate the levels are back to what they were in the 1970's, and we believe the stock itself is mature and stable enough to allow careful fishing again."
"Speaking of the Turbot War, what steps are being taken to prevent other countries from stripping the nose and tail again?"
"Internationally, the government is working to expand our limits to include the nose and tail, bringing the entire Grand Banks into Canada's protected area. And even if that does not work out, we are working closely with the United States, the European Union and other Atlantic fishing countries to make sure everyone cooperates and only takes a sustainable amount.
"As a show of good faith in that regard, we are reopening our ports next month to Greenland and Faroe Island fishing fleets. We hope they will reciprocate and agree to the limits international committees will be setting up."
"Is there a risk that the stock could crash again? That we'll see 1992 happen again in a few years?"
The man nodded. "There is always a risk. But we know a lot more now than we did back then. We are VERY aware now that acting too late hurts far more than acting too soon. We will continue to monitor the waters, making sure that enough fish are left to keep the industry afloat. There will probably be years when we'll have to tighten quotas, and pull some licenses. But I am confident we will never need to do a full shut down again."
"Thank you sir." The raccoon faced the camera as it zoomed in to her. "This is Shiloh Watson for CTV News."
The view returns to the studio, the female host standing alone now. "Coming up after the break, we'll have an interview with the Nova Scotian Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, the Honourable Sheldon Godin.
"And coming up later in our news cast...."
"This is Lisa Rigby in Fredericton. We'll meet a UNB professor who believes there are some strange critters wandering around our city. Find out more later on."
"The Golden Globes are canceled, and the writers are still on strike. Get the latest from Hollywood, along with the latest on who's heading to Fredericton for the ECMA's in February on The Scene with Lois Parsons."
"Enjoy the sun while you can. We'll be digging out from yet another winter storm by Friday. I'll have your weather update, right after the break."
"Welcome back. Living in the Maritimes, we all have stories of wildlife visiting our cities. From the raccoons rummaging in our garbage cans, to sightings of deer and moose in backyards, we are used to dealing with wildlife. But one maritime professor believes there may be more to the animals around us than meets the eye. Lisa Rigby reports from Fredericton."
The scene shifts, a camera pointed down at a slushy driveway, two pairs of cloven hoof tracks, and a pair of horse hoof tracks can clearly be made out in the slush. "Animal tracks. We see them all around us, but never give them a second glance. But one Maritime professor believes we should start paying more attention to those markings, and the creatures that make them," a female voice over started.
Another scene shift and the camera is focused on the reporter, holding a microphone, standing next to a man in a snowy park. The sun is bright, and there are clear signs of a January thaw in progress around them. Behind the pair, almost out of frame, a white furred humanoid goat sits there, reading a book and apparently enjoying the weather.
"Professor O'Leary has specialized in Forestry Studies at UNB for the past ten years. And he's been poking at this particular mystery for the past three years, since finding an unexpected set of goat tracks in this very park. Tell us, Professor, what exactly is the mystery?" the reporter asks, lifting the microphone closer to the man.
"There are actually a few mysteries here, but the biggest would have to be the mystery of the source of these tracks. They are appearing all over the city, and based on other boot prints around them, they are being made during the day, when people should be able to see what is making them. Yet there have been no reports of any sightings."
"So the goats and horses and other creatures are leaving these tracks and people are not able to see them?"
"Correct. Whatever leaves them should be obvious to everyone, yet no one has seen them. I hope this call will bring more attention, and maybe bring out people who have noticed what is making them."
"There are other mysteries as well?"
"Right. All these tracks that I have examined, and I have tracked down a lot of them, always seem to have two distinct imprints, not four like you would expect a normal animal. None of them even match forepaws, always back paws. It is almost as if they are walking on their hind legs for some reason.
"Size is another mystery. The goat and pony tracks I find around here are not as strange. But around the UNB campus, I have found dog prints much larger than a dog should leave. Similar, but different dog prints have been found down in Halifax, along with porcupine, cat, raccoon, mouse, beaver and others in locations around the region. And they are all similar. Only two distinct prints, rear paws only, and much larger than they should be."
"So you haven't just been finding these tracks around here?"
The professor shook his head. "No, I've had students and colleagues and other interested people watching and coordinating via a website. Sightings have come in from Halifax, Corner Brook, Bathurst, Charlottetown, and even as far away as Calgary, New Orleans, Edinburgh and Helsinki."
"That is quite a range. Do you have any idea what could be making all of these tracks?"
"I have no idea. It could be some elaborate prank, but no one I've talked to has found even a hint of it. Still, that seems to be the simplest explanation.
"Recently, some people have reported that there are humanoid animals making the tracks, and they tried to post pictures of those 'creatures', but they turned out to be just normal people." He chuckled. "Of course, humanoid animals would certainly explain the theme of advertising lately, like those Bell Beavers."
"So what would you like people to do, Professor?"
"Please, keep your eyes open, and try to find who, or what is causing these tracks. And remember, if they are animals, to keep your distance. Wild animals can be dangerous at any size. Please report any observations on our site."
Behind the pair, the goat-man seemed to have trouble not laughing. He stood up quickly and walked off scene, his shoulders shaking.
"Thank you for your time Professor O'Leary." The reporter turned and faced the camera directly. "If you want to find out more about the professor's mysteries, or have some observations of your own to report, you can find a link to his site on the Live At Five site. For CTV news, this is Lisa Rigby."
The scene cuts back to the female host standing alone. "Animals as big as people, walking on two legs...." She shakes her head and grins. "Quite the story isn't it, Bruce?"
Another scene cut, the male host standing next to the weather desk, the meteorologist sitting next to him at a big computer screen. He looks quite shocked.
"Yes... That is quite the story," he gets out woodenly. "But not as much of a story as the weather in the next few days. Cindy?"
The meteorologist looks surprised as the male host backs out of the shot. She clearly had expected to do more banter, but she recovers quickly and launches into the weather report.
Chat Log started Jan 9, 2008, 19:32AST
<Shiloh_Coon> When are you going to stop tormenting that poor professor and fill him in?
<Jetfire> I dunno, whenever he can see past his nose to the real world I guess. It's not like I'm purposefully tormenting him or anything. *G*
<Shiloh_Coon> *shakes head* We're gonna so much explaining to do when more of them see us.
<Jetfire> As usual, we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. Speaking of seeing though, did you see Bruce's reaction?
<Shiloh_Coon> I know! He Knows. He definitely Knows. I never realized that.
<Jetfire> Neither did I. He's definitely not on our lists down here. I wonder.... He's got a kid doesn't he? Maybe he's like my cousin or something, got the parent's veil breaker condition.
<Shiloh_Coon> That could be it. Come to think of it, he did seem to be less talkative about his kid the last time I was at the studios. Man, I wish I was going back through Halifax.
<Jetfire> Well, do you think you can hook him and AT up somehow? If he's only got the parent's veil he may not know more of us are out there, or even what's going on. That would certainly explain his reaction to the prof's story.
<Jetfire> AND It'd be nice to have someone permanently down here in the press.
<Shiloh_Coon> I'll make some calls and see what I can do. It'll probably be a few days though; my flight leaves for Ottawa in an hour.
<Jetfire> That sucks. The life of a junior reporter I guess. Nice interview by the way. Glad to see some good news down here for a change.
<Shiloh_Coon> Thanks. I was nervous as hell. My first big interview. Took us three takes to get what you saw.
<Jetfire> Well it turned out well. Congratulations.
<Shiloh_Coon> So, counting your cameo there, that was what? 4 hits for "Where's Fur-do"?
<Jetfire> 7 actually. Two in the Writer's Strike picket lines coverage, and Freddy Mack was at the E.C.M.A. Press conference they showed.
<Shiloh_Coon> Nice. You submitting them or leaving them for someone else?
<Jetfire> Since I'm one of the hits, I figured I'd let someone else handle it. Don't want to toot my own horns.
<Shiloh_Coon> Sounds good. Anyways, I'm gonna go grab a snack before my flight boards. Talk to you later.
<Jetfire> Have a good flight. C ya Shiloh.