Friday, 29 May 2009

the city that rhymes with so what

Yikes, a week without posting. I am such a lazy slob. The good news is that you guys already know this about me so I'm not letting you down. Spent time in Regina, the city that rhymes with fun (such an old joke -- I remember hearing it decades ago, and laughing my teenaged head off. I told it to my son Ed last week and he laughed just as hard) and then Winnipeg, that city that rhymes with, I dunno, Minnibeg.
Actually, at the risk of sounding heretical, I rather like Winnipeg. Yes, it is cold and pot-holed, but there is more to it than that. Guy Madden and The Weakerthans (that's them over there, if you didn't know. Cool folky punk sounds, great lyrics, but their promo people probably wish they looked more like Feist or what's his name from Nickelback) have a love-hate relationship with the place. Me, I like its grittiness, its defiant run-down quality.
A few years ago Regina had a serious campaign about loving the city, complete with I heart Regina T shirts. (The charming librarian who drove me around last week gifted me with one of the shirts. I thanked her profusely, and almost immediately re-gifted.) Winnipeg does not run campaigns like this. Winnipeg runs campaigns against their idiot mayor (this isn't libel, is it? I mean, how can anyone -- let alone a mayor -- prove lack of idiocy?) and cherishes headlines like the one I heard about when I was visiting last time: WINNIPEG LEAST VIABLE CITY IN NORTH AMERICA. I don't know what makes a city viable -- infrastructure, tax base, crime stats, housing -- but whatever it is, Winnipeg has less of it than anyplace else on the continent. And Winnipegers, God bless 'em, think this is hilarious.
I'll try to post soon, but no promises. I'm behind on a rewrite and, as you know, I am lazy.

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