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Trevor Bought a Paper

So Trevor Greyeyes bought a newspaper.

It took me awhile to get my head around that. As it did when he first brought the notion up.

In the early days of the big idea I thought it was just that - a big idea backed up by some big talk. "I'm gonna rule the world" kind of talk. It was like that old friend of mine who once told that other old friend of mine, in an out of the blue non sequitur kind of way, that he was moving to Hawaii. But then he did.

Trev didn't move to Hawaii, but he applied for an Indigenous business loan and, for many of us Indigenous writer types in the know, there was a collective "Huh!"

It was like watching our collective child grow up. And so began Trev's long and arduous buying a newspaper saga. Much paperwork, bank statement printouts, lawyer fees, holding patterns, frustration, heartache, a bout with Bell's palsy and 14 months later he did it. He became the proud owner of the First Nations Voice.

Now don't get me wrong, the notion of Trevor Greyeyes buying a newspaper never veered into the range of impossibility. Trev's been a newshound as long as I've known him (1999, we'll get back to that). He finished at the top of his class or close to it at Red River's Creative Communications program. We edited the same newspaper, though not at the same time. I was the first Weetamah editor. Trev was the fifth, I think. After Stephanie Eyolfson, the late Doug Nepinak and Rosanna Deerchild.

If I ever have a question about journalistic procedures and ethics, I'll ask Trev. He knows journalism and he knows how to tell a story.

But back to 1999 just before Trevor and I met.
He was writing a column for Uptown Magazine about the time I was writing a column for the Winnipeg Free Press. So when the late Doug Nepinak told me that Trevor Greyeyes had dissed me in his column, and that he was a member of the Aboriginal Writers Collective (now Indigenous), I figured I would attend the next meeting. My motivation was simple. I wanted to know who the hell this Trevor Greyeyes was.

Before the meeting I read the column in question and discovered that Trev hadn't in fact dissed me. He was quoting a friend of his who dissed me. At the time that felt different. Now I find myself wondering why. The meeting date arrived. I took a good look at the Indigenous faces around the table, some familiar, some not, and guessed that the smartass sitting at the end was Trevor Greyeyes.

I was right and we've been friends ever since.

But grudges run deep in my family and I've always kept an eye out for an opportunity to quote someone dissing Trevor back.

Now that I'm writing a column for him I think I'll have that opportunity. 

Any takers?

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