On With The Show This Is It

"Their aging audience likes their Newfoundlanders plucky, their Albertans horsey and their Korean Grocers speaking accented, halting English.

“To flick through Canadian Television in 2016 is to visit a strange, unfamiliar country – a nation filled with strawberry blond horse whisperers and turn-of-the-century detectives, a place where every third person you meet is an exhaustingly plucky Newfoundlander with something slightly naughty to tell you.” – From Shop Talk October 2016 edition of The Walrus

How ungrateful!  Like it’s our fault the Canadians are so wanting for it they have to fly in a few Newfoundland pros to pluck things up. Typical.  Bring in the Newfoundlanders to tell a few funny stories, throw one of their kitchen parties, sing in tune … but for heaven sake don’t let them stay the night. God forbid one should sit on the Supreme Court.

Canada should be thankful we export our pluckiest and spare them our back-talking and congenitally crooked. They get the well-tempered Newfoundland dogs, we keep the crackies. If we sent them our Energy Warehouse Visionaries we could bankrupt the place.

The mainland love affair with Newfoundland may be coming to an end.  They will soon be asking for their key back. We are not part of the latest “diversity” equation.  There is no “Newfoundlander” box to tick on the forms. We too easily assimilate.

“Regional Representation” is no longer a thing and we are too small (and precipitously getting smaller) a minority to be of much interest to political aspirants.  We have no more political leverage now that all seven of our Federal seats are on the Government side than when Harper decided we shouldn’t exist.

Resentment over our few weeks as a “have Province” appears to have permanently revoked our charitable status within the confederation and the only reason for having been allowed entry in the first place, C. D. Howe’s covetousness of our natural resources, is of little value with commodities in the toilet.

Squeezed by our western neighbour we talk too openly about Canada’s Quebec issue and then piss off Quebec by reminding them that they ARE Canada and we are their colony.

Yet our colonial complaint with Canada is trivial when compared with that of its indigenous population. That horror show is intractable so will fully occupy the country and its commissions for decades. Not solving the problem is already an industry.

The comparatively simple solution to the aggravation that is Newfoundland and Labrador (and the Maritime provinces) is for us to keep our mouths shut until cultural extinction or until we are again called upon to play the fool because some witless Canuck runs out of things to say. It’s like Rex Murphy working the CBC’s election desk.

And then, as a final indignity, the Globe and Mail’s clickbait for oldsters, Margaret Wente, gives this place her endorsement. How better to know this was once the place to be.

I’ve never taken the time to try to understand the Ford Nation so shouldn’t be surprised when a fellow hack doesn’t get Newfoundland and Labrador. But he should have imagined that many sophisticated and challenging shows of Newfoundland and Labrador origin have been pitched to the CBC over the years and the national public broadcaster judged, probably accurately, that their aging audience likes their Newfoundlanders plucky, their Albertans horsey and their Korean Grocers speaking accented, halting English.

Successful show business is giving people what they want and upon learning what that is repeating it ad infinitum.  I tried saying so more elegantly in my novel Easy To Like wherein a CBC executive proclaims “Canadians Love Tiny Newfies!” Having more sauce than pluck that book never sold well.

The Walrus (for which I’ve written) is conservative, provincial Toronto trying to pass for liberal, cosmopolitan during a weekend in New York so can’t be arsed to care.  Hopefully they’ll find someone upalong  to don the jester’s motley once we’re gone.

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