COLUMN: Good planning is essential to success

Searching through the sports pages of the daily newspapers these past few days revealed not one reference to “our” lingerie football team.

Searching high and low through the sports pages of the daily newspapers these past few days revealed not one reference to the debut of “our” lingerie football team.

Thus, with complete lack of interest from the sporting press, I have to assume that the team and the league are not considered worthy of coverage, and if I go by a photo I saw on Facebook taken during “the show,” fans were similarly lacking.

So, if anyone thought this event would be the saving grace of a financial white elephant, it’s time to think again. Or accept the reality that the ASEC is and most likely always will be a largely tax-supported community venue executed – like the block wall I am building – without a plan.

Not that this was the reason for keeping me from attending the scanty-panty gridiron display, but that wall certainly occupied my weekend simply because, like putting together a child’s toy, I didn’t bother to read the directions, or plan how it would all work out.

When the gravel base was in place, and properly leveled, I realized that my driveway/parking area has a six- or eight-degree slope. While the blocks were essentially at ground level at the start, the remaining rows would be sitting close to a foot high at the end of the wall.

I’m a reasonably intelligent guy, and will play Trivial Pursuit for money with anyone. However, when constructing things I can be dumber than a sack of rocks, or in this case gravel.

So it was with shovel in hand that I removed the carefully laid bed of crush, dragged the previously set 75-pound blocks off their moorings and began to chip away at a trench to properly establish and create a base run for the wall.

At least I discovered the error of my ways and corrected them before it was built, not after.

And perhaps that’s what Enbridge needs to do with its proposed pipeline through northern B.C. if it wants to achieve even a modicum of support in this province.

I have never been able to figure out the fixation on Kitimat as the terminus for the pipeline. Why would you route the line there, develop a deep-sea port and then have tankers try to thread the needle between myriad islands during winter storms when, by extending the pipeline just a few more miles west it could be in Prince Rupert?

Rupert has only one island, Digby, on which it’s somewhat scary airport is located, between it and open ocean. The opportunity for ship-land collisions and devastating oil spills would be vastly reduced, on top of which Prince Rupert already has deep-water docking facilities.

And why doesn’t Enbridge consider paralleling the CN rail route from Edmonton to Prince Rupert, rather than carving its way through essentially pristine wilderness with its attendant threat of environmental catastrophe every step of the way after completion of the pipe?

I realize that for many, the only acceptable result of this debate is to leave the oilsands in the ground. However, with the insatiable demand world-wide for every drop of oil that can be extracted, that is an impossible dream ended when the “last drop” is consumed.

The oilsands will be tapped, and the oil will flow, one way or the other (possibly south through Washington and then along the Columbia to Astoria, Oregon or north to the Beaufort Sea).

If you believe an oil spill will have a huge environmental impact in B.C., think about a tanker holed by arctic ice in the dead of winter.

There are no easy answers to this debate, but I’m convinced that the bitumen will eventually be shipped overseas. What we need is the best, safest, way to do this.

Unfortunately, the process, like my wall initially, hasn’t yet been thought out properly.

markrushton@abbynews.com