Maxed Out 

O Canada, our home and native land...

By G.D. Maxwell

Not today and not tomorrow and neither the day after that nor the day after that but the very next day is... Canada Day. It’s a holiday. Most of the rest of the country and all the muni workers, except the really important ones, have the day off.

Canada Day is the day Canadians celebrate their Canadianess. From coast to coast to coast, Canadians rise and greet the day with affirmations such as, "Great to be Canadian, eh?" Or, "Umm, love the smell of back bacon in the morning, eh?" Or, "Where’s my damn EI cheque, eh?"

Except in Toronto where, like most of Whistler, people just get up and go to work. It’s not that they have tourists to look after in Toronto, which is the reason most of the workerbees in Whistler get up and go to work, tourists being a lot like babies, needing constant feeding and attention lest they break out in uncontrolled fits of pique.

Torontonians just like getting up and going to work, except of course for their pantywaist Liberal MPs who left work a week early for their "summer break" so they could go home, cut the grass, collect their Parliamentary payroll cheque – which is never, ever late – and try to figure out how they can appear to be supporting Paul Martin while not entirely dissing Popeye Manley just in case he pulls off a miracle. Go figure.

Canada Day, ironically, comes just three days before America Day, a.k.a. Independence Day, the Fourth of July. Ironic because America came first, countrywise.

With the exception of the big, western states, the US of A pretty much looked like itself shortly after the carpetbaggers got done rebuilding Atlanta after the country was forged from the fiery cauldron of the War Between the States, a.k.a. The Civil War, a misnomer if every there was one... well, maybe not considering they call all those government workers Civil Servants. There must be a language joke in there somewhere.

Canada, on the other hand, existing as a loose confederation of Have and Have-Not provinces, was busy trying to convince Joey Smallwood to join the "Great Experiment" back in 1861 when the US Civil War came to a close and the slaves who hadn’t escaped to Canada were "freed" to become fully-integrated members of society known affectionately as "ex-slaves" or, alternatively, "undesirable elements."

Canada needed Newfoundland for both cod and to fill much the same societal role, making even the existing Have-Not provinces feel good about themselves in much the same way ex-slaves made inbred southern crackers feel superior.

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