Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Corner Gas

It's about showing up...

Showing up is 90% apparently. A poll or a vote can be a showing, I believe after “show of hands”. An exhibition of some kind, a slow reveal. Stevie’s been rather calculating about his recent showings. A Bush birthday here, a flapjack flip there, but sitting out the AIDS conference in Toronto. Memories of Kyoto Dave? But would it be a sauce or a salad dressing…

Having snubbed Rick Mercer on many occasions and eschewing almost all opportunities to appear jovial, mildly sanguine or alive at all really, he is now poised for his non-campaign/party announcement television debut. Corner Gas. Prime Minister Stephen Harper will appear on an episode of Corner Gas. I can’t imagine him or the show becoming at all more popular for it, but there it is. It is not surprising, a show showcasing the desperation with which locals of the bleak prairie small town embrace the mildly farcical and mundane day to day in an attempt to enchant the rest of the country with the warm small town feel of the Canadian West. This appeals to Stevie and he may even perhaps feel that we are too inundated with show after show after show displaying the desperation and exhilaration expressed by city dwellers hooting over the latest equally mundane drama in their big city-small worlds. We must now be ready to accept our PM who would rather appear to the public in a generic Saskatchewan gas station than in a cosmopolitan city centre. And why not? The appearance of our country’s leader at an AIDS conference in our biggest city alongside Bill Clinton would only sour the palette of our friends South and West of the Canadian Shield. There’s no AIDS past Winnipeg, except for junkies in Vancouver and they of course were asking for it. Trade is important, and you don’t want to muddy the waters with those already up to the thighbone in oil sands. Oh, and the Northwest passage too.

We had a forum, we discussed the issue, we agreed. We invited the people who could do something, but they’re not around. Sound familiar? Is it Kyoto? Is it AIDS? Is it the UN (I’m talking about Darfur, but this really could be anything)? How about the other side of it? Isn’t it irksome that groups like the IMF, the World Bank and a “coalition of the willing” can get together and agree and something happens? Shall we look to our media and telecommunications to find our leaders and ask them what reasons they could have for not only failing but refusing to participate in the discussion? Look closely for Steven this fall: he won’t be next to Lloyd Robertson discussing lumber traffic; he won’t be with Peter Mansbridge discussing Canada’s participation in the Middle East crisis. No, to see our leader, the Minister of highest office in this country, the man who won us all (I would like to hereby remind everyone I voted for the Bloc just to cause trouble) by insisting on accountability, ethics and transparency can be found in his most comfortable place and time: Corner Gas.

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