Star Wars Day; May the (Lethbridge) Force NOT Be With You

3 Armed Police Officers take down teenager in Star Wars Storm Trooper costume promoting local restaurant. [NOTE: This is the same police force that recently dealt with an injured deer by repeatedly running it over with a police cruiser in order to “put it out of its misery.”]

Lethbridge police criticized for takedown of Star Wars stormtrooper
Author of the article:Brodie Thomas

A woman dressed in a Star Wars stormtrooper costume was arrested by Lethbridge police on May 4, 2020. @XEVIUSS/SCREENGRAB
Article Sidebar

The Lethbridge Police Service has started an internal investigation after officers drew their guns on a teenager dressed as a Star Wars stormtrooper carrying a toy gun.

The arrest happened around 11 a.m. on Monday. Police say they received two 911 calls about a person in a stormtrooper costume with a weapon.

Tech billionaire Elon Musk and girlfriend Grimes had their first child

The person was a 19-year-old female employee of Coco Vanilla Galactic Cantina, a Star Wars-themed restaurant, according to business owner Bradley Whalen. The teen was holding a prop plastic gun as part of her costume.

He said he’d asked his employee to wear the costume and wave to passersby because it was Star Wars Day. The date, May the 4th, is a pun on the film franchise slogan “may the force be with you.”

“We don’t have an issue with the fact that police responded,” said Whalen. “We have an issue with how they responded.”

A partial video of the arrest circulating on social media shows the employee with her hands up and on her knees while police have their guns drawn. Police can be heard yelling at her to get on the ground, although she does not immediately comply. Later the employee can be heard crying.

Whalen said officers continued to treat the woman aggressively, even after they had determined the weapon was a costume prop.

“You could tell by looking at it, even 10 feet away, that it was a plastic toy,” said Whalen.

He said the woman was handcuffed and forced to the ground, but was later released at the scene of the incident without charges.

On Tuesday, the Lethbridge Police Service issued a news release announcing an internal investigation into the incident.

“Upon reviewing the file and additional information, including video circulating on social media, Chief Scott Woods has directed a service investigation under the Alberta Police Act that will look into whether the officers acted appropriately within the scope of their training and LPS policies and procedures.”

LPS has initiated a service investigation into the actions of several officers who responded to a report of a firearms complaint Monday morning. A public update will be provided after the investigation has been completed and reviewed. #yql

The news release said the girl sustained a minor injury that didn’t require medical attention.

According to police, the employee did not comply with requests to get on the ground. Whalen finds that difficult to believe given her background.

“What a lot of people don’t understand is that this girl is in a criminal justice training program to be a police officer,” he said.

Whalen said the employee is taking a few days to recover from the stress of having guns pointed at her.

He said the incident has led to calls from media organizations across the U.S., and messages of support from as far away as Europe and New Zealand.

“Something has to happen,” said Whalen. “We have been contacted by lawyers who are wanting to help us.”

Lethbridge police say they won’t comment further on the incident until the investigation is complete.

Never let a good crisis go to waste: in this case, to threaten freedom and rule of law

John Carpay: Alberta’s Bill 10 is an affront to the rule of law
The legislation, wh
ich rushed through the legislature in less than 48 hours, gives cabinet ministers new power to write de facto laws and create new penalties without the approval of the legislative assembly
COVID 19 Update 50 new cases, enhanced testing in Calgary zone4:17
Special to National Post
John Carpay
April 14, 2020
9:30 AM EDT

As though following Machiavellian advice to never let a crisis go to waste, the Alberta government has quietly expanded its own powers under the Public Health Act. Bill 10, which was rushed through the legislature in less than 48 hours, gives cabinet ministers new powers to write de facto laws and create new penalties without the approval of the legislative assembly.

Before Bill 10 became law on April 2, Alberta’s Public Health Act already empowered politicians and bureaucrats to take property away from citizens and organizations, to force citizens to render aid, to conscript people to help deal with an emergency and to enter into any building or property without a warrant. The chief medical officer was already empowered to forcibly quarantine any person who is ill, or any person who is caring for a sick family member.

Before Bill 10, cabinet ministers were already empowered to suspend the operation of provincial laws, in whole or in part, once cabinet declared a public health emergency. But now, cabinet ministers have acquired the additional power of creating and implementing new orders and penalties, simply through ministerial order, without them being discussed, scrutinized, debated or approved by the legislative assembly of Alberta.

Bill 10 has also increased the maximum penalty for disobeying the Public Health Act from $2,000 to $100,000 for a first offence, and from $5,000 to $500,000 for a subsequent offence.

The only justification provided by Health Minister Tyler Shandro for these new powers was to “strengthen our ability to protect the health and safety of Albertans.” Why ministers need the power to write laws on the fly was not explained.

Without review or approval of the legislature, a minister can now create a new order requiring people to install tracking devices on their cellphones, and requiring them to register their phones with the government. Without any oversight, a minister can create an exclusive list of people who are legally permitted to go outside, or legally authorized to drive a vehicle, and impose a $1,000 fine on those who walk outside or drive “illegally” because they are not on the list. The health minister could unilaterally declare that all sick people must be forcibly removed from their homes, as the World Health Organization has suggested. And an order could be issued for mass vaccination, without any discussion or debate in the legislature.

Cabinet’s powers to suspend laws and create new laws without input or approval from the legislature will eventually come to an end, after the government decides that the public health emergency has ceased. The Public Health Act refers to a 30-day period for a public health emergency, but nothing in the legislation stops the cabinet from declaring another public health emergency the day after the first one expires. Practically speaking, the provincial cabinet, on the advice of the chief medical officer, could maintain a public health emergency for months or even years.

With courts currently closed, or highly restricted to criminal law and some family law matters, the usual checks and balances on our system of government are limited or non-existent. Thankfully, the ministers’ new ability to write laws and create new offences excludes the power to tax and spend, and newly created offences cannot have a retroactive effect.

However, Bill 10 is still an affront to the rule of law, one of Canada’s foundational principles. “Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law” are the first words in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The rule of law means being governed by laws, not by the whims of a king or a cabinet minister.

During this pandemic, we should accept reasonable restrictions on our charter freedoms on a temporary basis, with defined time limits and clearly explained justifications. Yet Alberta’s legislation provides no assurance that the violations of our rights will be only temporary, and no specific justification for Bill 10 has been provided.

National Post

Hair freezing contest

Canada’s outlandish hair freezing contest offers much-needed laughs
Karla Cripps, CNN • Updated 1st April 2020

Bad hair day? Not a chance: The winners of the annual Hair Freezing Contest at the Takhini Hot Pools In Canada’s Yukon territory have been announced. This bearded couple walked away with the Nongshim’s People’s Choice prize, voted on by the public.

(CNN) — During these uncertain times, we’ll take the laughs where we can get them.
Which is why this insanely silly series of images of tourists freezing their hair into gravity-defying styles couldn’t have come at a better time.
The photos, featured in the above gallery, are the winners of the Hair Freezing Contest at the Takhini Hot Pools, an annual competition In Canada’s Yukon territory.
Contestants are awarded in five categories: Best Male, Best Female, Best Group, Nongshim’s People’s Choice, and Tim Horton’s Most Creative. (Names of the winners were not released.)
The winner for each category gets CAD$2,000 in addition to free hot springs passes.
The contest has been around since 2011, steadily gaining popularity over the years as the outlandish images began to get shared globally. This year’s contest received 288 entries — more than double what it got in 2011 — according to management.
“We like to think that this contest will bring some joy to viewers around the world — even if just for a few moments,” says Andrew Umbrich, owner and operator of Takhini Hot Pools.

Think you can come up with a style that will please the masses? To enter, you need to visit Takhini Hot Pools between December and March, on a day when the temperature is below -20°C (-4°F) — certainly not rare in those parts.

There are few steps involved in achieving the perfect look. First, dip your head in the hot springs and wet your hair completely. (Freezing your hair won’t damage it, they promise.)
Then, allow the cold air to slowly freeze your hair.
Staff advise visitors to keep their ears warm by periodically dipping them into the hot water. And you’re going to have to be patient — all that wet hair will eventually freeze — eyebrows and eyelashes included.
Finally, once you’re happy with your style, ring the bell near the pool entrance and staff will come take the photo.
Getting there
Located in Canada’s far north, bordering the US state of Alaska, Yukon is considered incredibly remote — even among Canadians — and known for its stunning scenery.
“The Yukon is Canada’s backyard,” says Umbrich. “We have all the wilderness, all the animals, all the natural wonders, without all the tension from large populated areas. Come to the Yukon to relax and experience nature, whether its winter with the northern lights or in summer with the midnight sun.”
The mineral-rich natural Takhini Hot Pools, in operation for more than 100 years, offer relaxing dips in temps between 36° and 42° Celsius. Umbrich says they’re currently building a new hot springs facility that they expect to be complete by the end of this year.
Normally open year-round — though currently closed due to the global coronavirus pandemic — it’s located 28 kilometers (18 miles) from downtown Whitehorse, Yukon’s capital.
The Erik Nielsen Whitehorse International Airport services flights to and from several major Canadian cities including Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary.
Takhini Hot Pools, KM 10/Mile 6 Takhini Hotsprings Road, +1-867-456-8000

The Cairo Affair: Olen Steinhauer

Not my first reading of this one. I always love when Steinhauer features Hungary somehow in his work, but this one speaks to me because I was living in Libya during the time the book is set (and we see now how that turned out (badly).

Good character work by Steinhauer here: almost all the people initially appear as sympathetic characters, but we soon find out how much damage they do to others. Somehow, we still sympathize with them nevertheless.

This could be huge….


Why engineers in Alberta think they’ve found a way for the oilsands to produce clean fuel

Team is trying to prove its method for extracting hydrogen works for business and the environment

Ian Gates, shown in his lab at the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary, is working on a way to extract hydrogen gas from oil and bitumen. (Tony Seskus/CBC)

As the world reaches for cleaner energy, hydrogen has long been viewed with a lot of hope.

Often called the fuel of the future, the gas can be used to generate electricity and power vehicles. It produces water — not carbon — when burned.

But among its challenges is the economics of producing the gas in a large-scale and environmentally friendly way. One of the least expensive methods for doing so, for example, using methane, has drawn scrutiny for its carbon emissions.

Now, engineers in Alberta believe they could have an answer — a method capable of extracting hydrogen from underground resources like oilsands deposits while leaving the carbon emissions it produces below the surface.

The team turned heads with their work this summer at the Goldschmidt Geochemistry Conference in Barcelona, making headlines from Britain to Japan.

A hydrogen dispensing pump is seen at the Washington Auto Show in 2015. Hydrogen is a potential fuel for the transportation sector. (Reuters)

Hydrogen can be found in many different organic compounds, including hydrocarbons like oil and gas.

One of the most common ways of producing hydrogen from natural gas is called steam-methane reforming, which uses methane and very hot steam under pressure to create a chemical reaction freeing the hydrogen and capturing it in special filters. The waste emissions are carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide.

“That’s been an industrial technology for over 80 [years],” said Grant Strem, CEO of Proton Technologies, the private company commercializing the new process for creating hydrogen.

“What we’re doing is very similar, but the big difference is, we’re using the ground as a reaction vessel, so our capital cost is a lot lower, and instead of buying natural gas to fuel it, we use the unswept oil in the reservoir as our fuel.”

How the process works

Through lab work and small-scale field testing, the researchers say they found injecting oxygen into the fields raises the temperature and creates a reaction that frees the hydrogen.

“You can envision that the reservoir is simply a hot, bubbling mix of oil, which some fraction of it is now combusting,” said professor Ian Gates, from his lab at the University of Calgary’s Schulich School of Engineering.

“And as it is doing so, it simply keeps producing more and more hydrogen as a consequence of its reactions.”

Gates said palladium alloy filters then allow the hydrogen to come to surface while filtering out the other gases, like carbon dioxide or hydrogen sulfide, which stay below ground.

Conceptually, Gates said, the oil in the reservoir could later be produced.

But the expectation is the process can draw up “huge” quantities of hydrogen relatively inexpensively.

And Canada would be able to tap its resources.

“There’s a lot of work toward renewables, hydro and all those other things, but you still have a huge amount of assets, chemical energy, stored in oil,” Gates said.

“What this is about is how do we make use of oil reservoirs — or even gas reservoirs — and get pure, clean energy out of it.”

Gates said after proving the concept in the field last year, they will soon begin testing to see how it works on a larger scale. A semi-commercial pilot project is in the works for next year.

Proton Technologies is working with an engineering firm to design a scaled-up version of their demonstration facility at its site in Kerrobert, Sask.

Now, the challenge will be to see how the process works in the field with all of the complexities of a reservoir.

“Does [the hydrogen] really transport as effectively as you predicted in your models, as you’ve estimated from the lab?” he said. “Everything so far is supportive. Yes, we should be able to access it, but we do need to verify that.”

Reservoirs that are open to the surface or very shallow would not likely be good candidates for such a system, he said.

Field testing needed

After the team’s work was presented at the Goldschmidt conference in Barcelona last month, some experts responded with cautious optimism, emphasizing the need for extensive field testing of the technology to assess how well it could work on an industrial scale and over time.

In Canada, Warren Mabee, the director of the Queen’s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy, said having a large source of hydrogen that’s relatively easy to access would be an important step toward a cleaner energy future.

“There are some technologies that can use hydrogen really well,” Mabee told CBC News.

“It’s very, very clean as long as there’s not a lot of greenhouse gas associated with producing it, which, in this case, it sounds like there isn’t. Which is a wonderful technology, if we’ve gotten to that point.”

A Shell executive demonstrates a hydrogen refuelling station in Vancouver while a photographer takes a photo during the station’s launch last year. (Rafferty Baker/CBC)

Significant research is being done on developing new ways of producing hydrogen, including microbes and solar technologies, among others.

China, Japan and South Korea have big plans to put millions of hydrogen-powered vehicles on their roads in the coming decade.

Hydrogen has had false starts

Hydrogen was also a key topic of conversation during a July meeting hosted by the International Energy Agency. The Paris-based body, which advises on energy policy to its 30 member states, said hydrogen was enjoying “unprecedented momentum,” offering ways to decarbonize a range of sectors, including long-haul transportation.

“But it has experienced false starts in the past and still faces big challenges to scale up infrastructure and bring down costs,” the IEA said in a release.

A lack of refueling stations for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles is often pointed to as a major barrier to the technology taking off.

The delivery process for the hydrogen — including pipelines, storage facilities, compressors and trucks — is also a work in progress when it comes to widespread consumer use.

Gates and Strem hope they can do their part to move things forward.

I’m very motivated by the idea of taking these [hydrocarbon] resources, which are of incredible value to Canada, and pivoting their use toward hydrogen production and ultra-clean energy outcomes,” Gates said.

“In my view, this is something that’s quite exciting.”

Meanwhile, back in Winnie the Poo-land…

Former Ontario minister sides with Beijing, pins Hong Kong protests on ‘outside’ forces

Former Ontario cabinet minister Michael Chan, seen in Nanjing, China, on a trade mission in October, 2014, recently condemned Hong Kong’s anti-government protesters in an interview with a Chinese state-backed news site.

A former Ontario cabinet minister, who held the province’s immigration and international trade portfolios under two Liberal premiers, has denounced acts of violence during the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong as the work of foreign actors intent on undermining the state of China.

Former MPP Michael Chan, in a recent interview with Chinanews, a Chinese state-backed news site, condemned the city’s anti-government protesters and applauded Hong Kong police for showing restraint in the crisis.

His assertions echo the statements by Chinese officials as the protest movement in Hong Kong gathered steam. China has blamed “foreign forces” for manipulating the protests and interfering in Hong Kong affairs.

“I have been thinking, why are these young people so radical, so passionate [and] committed to do these things? And why so many people?” Mr. Chan said in an interview with Chinanews that was published earlier this month.

“If there is no deeply hidden organization in this, or deeply hidden push from the outside, there is no way that such large-scale turmoil would happen in Hong Kong in a few months.”

Mr. Chan served in various portfolios for the Ontario Liberals, including as immigration minister, during his tenure in office between 2007 and 2018.

Last week, in an article posted on Mr. Chan’s public WeChat social-media account, he is quoted as suggesting demonstrators have been trying to enlist the Japanese for help with their cause. The article is titled “Exclusive interview with Michael Chan: Guerrilla actions.”

He said in the article that Japanese media reported an interview with a Hong Kong protest leader who travelled to Japan and mused that “Japan could send a self-defence force on the grounds that they could protect the overseas Japanese.” Mr. Chan went on to say the report was strongly condemned by Hong Kong residents and added that the protest leader has denied ever saying such things.

The protester Mr. Chan referred to, Agnes Chow Ting, stated on her social-media accounts on Sept. 5 that she made no such claims and demanded the Japanese media delete the report.

Any reference to a Japanese military presence in Hong Kong is especially inflammatory among the Chinese community, because of Japan’s brutal treatment of Chinese citizens during the Second World War.

“That protest leader is actually taking the initiative to ask the Japanese army to occupy Hong Kong again in order to guard … ‘freedom and democracy.’ This is incomprehensible,” the article on Mr. Chan’s WeChat page said.

This article was also published under Mr. Chan’s byline at, a prominent Chinese-language online publication in Canada.

Efforts to reach Mr. Chan through his public WeChat account were not successful.

Repeated calls and e-mails to Mr. Chan’s lawyers and workplace were not returned to The Globe and Mail. According to the Seneca College website, Mr. Chan sits on the board of governors.

In 2010, Mr. Chan was considered so close to the Chinese consulate in Toronto that Canada’s intelligence agency feared he was at risk of being unduly influenced by foreign officials. A senior intelligence official later met the province’s top bureaucrat to formally caution the province about the minister’s conduct and the risk of foreign influence.

Dalton McGuinty, who was then premier, dismissed the Canadian Security Intelligence Service’s concerns as baseless and kept Mr. Chan in cabinet. His successor, Kathleen Wynne, similarly dismissed the concerns and said the federal spy agency’s suspicions lacked substance.

CSIS’s concerns about Mr. Chan were never disclosed publicly at the time, nor was Mr. Chan named as the subject of the CSIS briefing. They were revealed in a 2015 report by The Globe.

When asked earlier this September about Mr. Chan’s interview with Chinanews, Ms. Wynne said she hadn’t spoken to Mr. Chan “for months.”

“We are no longer part of a caucus; I haven’t spoken to him for some time. He is a trusted colleague, but I have not had a conversation with him about the issues in Hong Kong, in China.”

After the Globe article appeared in 2015, Mr. Chan said CSIS’s concerns were “ludicrous” and “totally false” and he brought a legal action against The Globe.

“There is a persistent theme that there is a perceived risk that I am under undue influence and that I am an unwitting dupe of a foreign government,” he wrote in an open letter. “This is offensive and totally false.”

When he left politics last year, Mr. Chan joined the law firm Miller Thomson. A spokesperson for the firm said earlier this month that Mr. Chan no longer worked there.

In the Chinanews article, Mr. Chan said the violence in the movement in Hong Kong has been severe, and if there were similar unrest in Western countries, police would have “already fired bullets toward crowds.”

Protesters have accused Hong Kong police of excessive use of force, but Mr. Chan disagreed.

“It’s the opposite,” he stated. He said the restraint and courage of Hong Kong police should be praised, according to the article.

The months of unrest in the Chinese-governed, semi-autonomous city were prompted by a bill that would have allowed people in Hong Kong to be extradited to mainland China for trial. Many saw the extradition bill as an erosion of rights promised under a “one country, two systems” framework when the former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997. The bill was first suspended, but after the tensions in the city kept escalating, Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, announced on Sept. 4 that the government would withdraw the bill.

Hong Kong protesters have said the bill’s withdrawal was too little, too late.

In other remarks in the Chinanews interview, Mr. Chan noted about 300,000 Canadians are living in Hong Kong.

“If the system in Hong Kong is really that unfree, undemocratic, feeble, and bad, then why do these 300,000 (Canadians) live there?

“One country, two systems will not change. If whoever says Hong Kong wants to be independent and separated, then there is no discussion needed. Hong Kong belongs to China. This is unnegotiable.”

Some Chinese Canadians, especially those who have ties to Hong Kong, found Mr. Chan’s remarks appalling.

Gloria Fung, president of Canada-Hong Kong Link, said Mr. Chan’s remarks sound like the Chinese regime’s propaganda.

“It’s very clear that he is not using Canadian values nor the universal values of Western democracies in making all these comments. Rather, he abides by the values of the Chinese Communist Party,” Ms. Fung said. “That is troublesome.”

It was not the first time Mr. Chan publicly supported China’s stand on the Hong Kong issue. Last month, Mr. Chan spoke at a rally in Markham, Ont., expressing support for Hong Kong police, the government and Beijing.

Ms. Fung, who also lives in the Toronto area, said although Mr. Chan has stepped down from the political arena, he is still actively engaged in pro-China events.

The rally, organized by the Confederation of Toronto Chinese Canadian Organizations, attracted a few hundred attendees from the Chinese community. Online pictures and videos show leaflets resembling the Liberal Party’s old paid membership forms were distributed at the event.

Braeden Caley, spokesman for the Liberal Party of Canada, said the party had no involvement at the event. He said Mr. Chan has no formal role in the federal party.

The area that Mr. Chan once represented provincially is now held federally by Small Business Minister Mary Ng. A spokeswoman for Ms. Ng said the minister was aware of the rally, but declined to comment on whether Mr. Chan’s views are shared by many of Ms. Ng’s constituents.

Ms. Ng said in a statement that it is important that the situation in Hong Kong be de-escalated, and there is a diversity of views among Chinese Canadians as to how this can happen.

Thor, God of Thunder, buys his legal weed in Canada

Some Canadian used a fake ID of Marvel’s Thor to buy weed online

Some Canadian used a fake ID of Marvel’s Thor to buy weed online

Who creates a fake ID, no matter if it’s just a joke fake ID, that isn’t even up to date?

By Brendan Bures, The Fresh Toast July 19, 2019

In Canada, you can buy weed online. This constitutes one of the numerous perks Canadians enjoy thanks to the recreational legalization of marijuana. Most of you will read that and have no further questions. What a novel and enviable concept, you will think.

Here’s the deal though: online Canadian dispensaries can’t just sell cannabis to anyone who clicks the digital button for “One Weed Please, Sir!!” Instead, prior to selling, Canadians must undergo a verification process that corroborates the purchaser is at least 18 years old— the age required to legally consume cannabis — and a Canadian citizen.

With any system of legitimacy comes those determined to infiltrate that system through nefarious means. Enter this wonderful tweet from @cottoncandaddy. Her sister works at an online weed dispensary and received this ID from none other than Thor Odinson. You know, the popular Marvel character played by Chris Hemsworth in the movies? A totally legitimate human you should sell marijuana to, right?

All the details of this fake ID really tickle the loins. For example, the fact that Thor apparently lives at “69 Big Hammer Ln.” An address that won’t raise any suspicion obviously. Or the picture of an idyllic Hemsworth smiling sheepishly off-camera or the wavy Windows 98 font (which all Alberta provincial IDs have in real life, by the way) that reads “Odinson Thor.”

The best part, though? The ID is totally expired! It’s been out of date for more than two years. Who creates a fake ID—no matter if it’s just a joke fake ID—that isn’t even up to date? Never stop being you, Canadians.

Canada an even earlier adopter of cannabis than thought

Were the Vikings getting high on cannabis in Newfoundland?

Were the Vikings getting high on cannabis in Newfoundland?

Discovery of cannabis pollen found near a former Viking settlement in L’Anse aux Meadows has sparked controversy


A discovery of cannabis pollen found near a former Viking settlement in Newfoundland has sparked controversy as to whether Vikings were using the drug.

Ancient Newfoundland archaeological site L’Anse aux Meadows, located in one of the northernmost areas of the province, was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the 1970s.

Last summer, archaeologists excavating a peat bog near the site uncovered a layer of environmental remnants potentially left by humans, dating to the 12th or early 1300s.iStock / Getty Images Plus

While most archaeologists contend that the site was only a host to Viking explorers for a short time in the 11th century, Memorial University postdoctoral fellow Paul Ledger has published a new paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science journal suggesting that Vikings may have lived in the area far later than previously believed — potentially well into the 12th and even part of the 13th century, Live Science notes.

Last summer, archaeologists excavating a peat bog near the site uncovered a layer of environmental remnants potentially left by humans, dating to the 12th or early 1300s.

The remnants included charcoal, several insects, and caribou feces, in addition, pollen from cannabis and walnut plants — neither of which is indigenous to the region.

While the evidence seems to suggest that the ancient Nordics were prolific cannabis users, Ledger urges caution in jumping to that conclusion.

“Pollen carries in the wind,” he notes in the study. While there is some evidence from other geographical regions that Vikings used cannabis, the remnants from L’Anse aux Meadows may have been transported there by an Indigenous Newfoundland group as opposed to ancient Europeans — such as ancestors of the Beothuk, whose forced migration at the hands of colonizers centuries later led to the extinction of the people.

The mystery persists!