The Canadian Writers' Collective

Writing, and writerly tangents

Monday, December 01, 2008


The political climate worldwide intensifies. And even here in the usually stoic and sensible Canada a word like ‘coup’ could be used without fear of exaggeration to describe our current state of federal politics.

I spent Saturday oblivious, wandering around malls in the US, on a day that many call the US Boxing Day. It’s so easy to lose oneself in the maze and cloister of holiday mall shopping.

Driving the I-5 home, it was like re-entering a storyline. The dire drained-iPod-battery situation forced us into scrolling through the radio stations, hearing clips and bits about the world outside the car: ...listening to—Mumbai—KISM 86.5 on your—militants—stranded—Saturday night—dead—tensions—classics from the ‘70s and ‘80s—Thailand—tensions mount.

Of course, no news-bulletins in the US covered the dramas going on in Canadian politics; that was left for us to piece together, causing our conversation to sound rather like a scroll along the radio dial, too: What do you think of—Oh, I love this song—coalition—Harper—denied—Who did this song again?—Refuse funding—deficit growing—I roller-skated to this—audacity—Remember this?

Yes, there’s something almost soothing about singing ‘70s K-Tel hit songs whilst immersed in a mental state of unrest about what lies ahead.


Blogger Tricia Dower said...

So you subjected yourself to Black Friday, eh? Glad you didn't get trampled or shot. I agree that Canadian politics is uncharacteristically dramatic these days. Makes me almost want to read the Globe before the New York Times.

Mon Dec 01, 01:50:00 pm GMT-5  
Blogger T. Lee said...

Somehow we missed all the stores with the real crazy going on. I'm glad; and a wee disappointed. I'd been looking forward to observing the screaming, pushing masses as a sort of social case study. Instead, we rarely saw a mass line up, and barely spent our day's quota. The real experience was driving and visiting and singing out loud in the car.

It's funny you should say that about the newspapers; I was just thinking about how under different circumstances, I'd be anxious to read about the Clinton appointment, and instead, I'm searching for more news on the proposed coalition. And how that, as a Canadian, is how it should be.

Mon Dec 01, 02:14:00 pm GMT-5  
Blogger J.A. McDougall said...

As the Americans push and shove in line at malls, the Canadian politicians elbow each other for the best seats in the House. This is how we prepare for Christmas.

Fri Dec 05, 12:28:00 pm GMT-5  

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