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Monday, August 14, 2006

There's something about Arjun

Posted on Mon, Aug 14, 2006 at 4:06 PM

Last Thursday's "Reality Bites" criticized Halifax for fawning over 8-year-old Arjun Thaker. Then Friday's Herald said Arjun is dying.

What the? According to all the coverage of Thaker's trip to the east coast—and there's been a lot, lead by the Chronicle-Herald but picked up by such organs as the National Post—he's a regular boy from Calgary who asked his mom if they could spend their annual vacation in Halifax instead of Hawaii or Disneyland.

Which is fine for him. But when the mayor leads the charge of locals who want to give Thaker VIP treatment just for picking Halifax, our city starts to reek of desperation.

Unless Thaker's vacation is backed by the Children's Wish Foundation, and a helicopter ride with Peter Kelly is the least the mayor can do for a kid with a life-threatening disease. In that case, the outpouring of good will from Halifax makes more sense. After all, we're so nice out here.

Anyway, on Friday the online version of the Herald ran a story about Thaker's chopper ride with the mayor. The caption under the photo, pictured here, says "Arjun Thaker...who is in Halifax on a Children's Wish Foundation trip, took the half-hour trip with Mayor Peter Kelly."

But the print version of the photo doesn't mention Children's Wish. Which one's right?

An email to Herald scribe Jennifer Stewart confirms Thaker is "a perfectly healthy and happy little boy on a trip with his mother." And confirms the "Reality Bites" assumption that Halifax has gone overboard for no good reason.

Stewart, in her email Monday afternoon, said she'd tell the Herald's online editor about the mistake "right away." Monday at 6pm—here's the link—it still wasn't fixed.

UPDATE: Tuesday morning, the fix is made and Arjun's back to being a typical, albeit lucky, boy. Thanks, Team Herald.

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