23 August 2009

Bill < Juan

I must say that Hurricane Bill has been a bit of a let down. Basically it was rainy and windy today. Here, at least. Not very exciting at all. We've been talking about this thing for a week. "What do you think of Bill?" "What have you heard about Bill?" "Remember Juan?" "What're the people at the Hurricane HQ saying about Bill?" Even last night, at the Kangaroo-BBQ, we were checking stormpulse every hour or so. At the moment, it looks like it'll make land in NLFD, so whoever is the Newfie-equivalent of me might have a different opinion about Bill.

Two asides:

1. The main "Bill" in my life is so un-hurricane-like that I find the name "Hurricane Bill" to be completely absurd. Like "Hurricane Cricket" or "Hurricane Fiesta."

2. The Kangaroo-BBQ was literally that, courtesy of A and her boy T, an Aussie ex-pat. It's a very red meat, kind of beefy. I know, I know. My stance on what animals I will and won't eat is messed up. Last night I ate a kangaroo steak, but today I refused to eat a Caesar salad because of the anchovies in the dressing. But I have to put the fish first!

03 August 2009

You're such a groovy thinker

Penguin Books has this newish series about Extraordinary Canadians, and it's a series of biographies written by some of the best contemporary authors we have. I'm not sure if there was any logic in the pairings of author-to-subject, or if the authors got to pick their subjects. I mean, shouldn't Vincent Lam be writing about Norman Bethune? And, I don't know anything about Lord Beaverbrook but I'm willing to bet that David Adams Richards turns his life into a soul crushing tale of growing up poor on the Mirimichi, because that's all he seems to write about (unfair, perhaps. I've only read one of his books...).

I bring all this up not just because I plan to read them all (somehow, someday), but because my beloved Douglas Coupland is writing the book about Marshall McLuhan. I'm sure most people in my generation know of McLuhan because of the heritage moment: the medium is the message and all that

Then, there are a few of us who can't hear that name without thinking of the Ballad of Marshall McLuhan. That's because a few of us had a 10th grade french teacher who, really, probably wasn't meant to be a teacher. He would play us the same Radio Free Vestibule CD, over and over until we had it memorized. (This same teacher let us use an english-to-french translation program to write our term paper. I think I got the second highest mark in that class and I barely even know french).

The Ballad of Marshall McLuhan is an infectious little song celebrating all that Marshall did for his people. I don't know how to embed music files in blogger, but you can listen to it here. It's really worth a listen.