fenella: (pearls)
War, like beauty, is in the collective consciousness. It's a memory etched into my mind, gnawing at the base of my stomach, that leaves an empty void; one that can not be filled with honour, respectful distance, or a silent promise that I will not, ever, forget. The lost are too many. I want to know their stories, be able to call their faces to mind. Do they prefer to be forgotten?

I remember them with a bright, plastic poppy; stories of a fallen cenotaph in New Brunswick, the cross shattered; a wreath at the base of a rural statue, a solitary reminder of the hundreds and a cold November morning in Toronto. Strangers, grandparents, men and women who continue to fight, and die.

All I can say, knowing it's not enough, is thank you. And, I'm sorry.
fenella: (Today has been OK)
Happy Birthday Canada - I love you very much.
fenella: (Today has been OK)
I was out by the lake tonight, walking with a coffee in hand, when I saw a large crowd of people hurrying towards me along the intersecting street. There were probably about twenty of them, and they were carrying two large, white objects overhead. At first I assumed that they were university students - coming from four years in Toronto, and the rest before that spent in a sheltered, old Ontario farm community - engineers or the like would be the only answer, since twenty below zero and dark is enough to scare away even the most dedicated performance artists.

In the split second that it took for me to process, I realized, startled, that they were in fact all wearing full military fatigue; many of them wielding rifles. And that the white objects, glaringly reflecting the streetlights in the dark, were sheets, on gurneys or stretchers, covering large person sized lumps.

It was a drill, of course. I live a short walk from the Royal Military College, and they were gone, hurrying back over the bridge and down towards their school as quickly as they had arrived. But it was such an anachronistic thing to see in a Canadian city street. I take safety for granted and as a girl, never hesitate to go out alone at night, even in a city with six maximum security prisons (you can debate my levels of self-delusion if you wish, at another time).

I am so lucky to live in Canada. There is so much love in my heart for this country, and also for every single individual in the Canadian military - I admire them more than anyone else on our messed up planet.

While military might, I know in my gut, is not the answer, all I wish for is a night in which everyone - this whole world over - feels safe to go outside and dance in their respective city's streets.
fenella: (Default)
Dear Country,

Happy Birthday to you,
Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday dear Canada--
Happy Birthday to you!

I hope you had a good Canada day. Whether you hugged a beaver, raised a glass of beer, joined the Kevin Lowe Sucks facebook group or laughed at Ben Mulroney's lame, lame Canadian Idol jokes, I hope you did it wearing red and white, with devout Canadian pride in your heart and a chorus of exploding fireworks in the background.

xoxo Fenella
fenella: (Default)
Photobucket. .Photobucket. .Photobucket

So there's this movie, All Hat, about the scrap of the world that I like to call home. It's about pretty boys (Luke Kirby, David Alpay), pretty girls (Lisa Ray, Rachel Leigh Cook), pretty horses (thoroughbreds!), pretty Southern Ontario (give or take some housing developments), pretty Ford pickups (which, you know, we all drive) and lots, and lots of plaid flannel shirts. Did I mention that it's pretty?

22 icons from All Hat under the cut. )

Comments are nice! Credit isn't necessary.
fenella: (Today has been OK)
[livejournal.com profile] imelford has been telling me to read Scott Young's Scrubs On Skates books for a while now (there are three of them as far as I know, the second of which seems to be... missing?) and because she's Imo, and I trust her in these things, I finally did. I'm not entirely sure why I hadn't already. I mean, the cupboard they come from is in my bedroom, and I've read virtually everything else in there. The only explanation I can fathom is that in my younger YA reading years, animal stories, young-girl-growing-up (see also: embarrassing sixteen year old girl anecdotes from the 1960's; Cleary, Beverly) stories and Murder in [insert Canadian tourist trap here] stories (i.e. the other genres in that cupboard - without disclosing the fact that our collection of Saddle Club books is too thorough to pass off as insignificant, and yet, somehow, not near thorough enough for some seriously horse crazy tween girls... or their very impressionable baby sister, apparently. Um, what? I said nothing! Stevie and Teddy 4eva! Um, what? I said nothing!) were more appealing than 50's boys hockey teams and team spirit.

Boy was I wrong. (Oh the irony: as I type this, I'm listening to the Penguins vs. Detroit, streamed live. Underdogs everywhere are dancing for joy - Pens 3, Wings 1 FYI. HAH!)

If you made it through all that: Pete is the best hockey player in Winnipeg. And then the town boundaries got redrawn and he got sent to Northwestern. This book is essentially Pete coming to terms with his new, not!shiny team, but mostly with himself. It's a coming of age novel. Like your average animal story. Without the animals.

Anyways, I've only read the first book so far, and these are the reasons I loved it so:

Scrubs on Skates; So Much Greatness, So Little Time. )

In conclusion, totally worth reading. Can not wait to read "A Boy At The Leafs' Camp; The Bill Spunska Show Comes to Ontario".

Oh, btw, Scott Young is Neil Young's daddy. Awesome.


Mar. 30th, 2008 03:45 pm
fenella: (Default)
There are several things in this world about which I am extremely passionate. Music is one of them, Canadian Content is another. For a long while, the CBC (The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) was, at least outwardly, a happy marriage of these two things.

For seventy years, the CBC radio orchestra - located in Vancouver, B.C. - commissioned and performed new Canadian works. It is not an exaggeration to say that this is the place where Canadian music found it's voice. Classical, contemporary, Canadian music has never been an easy sell but the government funded CBC has championed it for decades, dating back to the days when John Weinzweig, father of the Canadian Music Centre, wrote background scores for the radio documentaries being broadcast.

The artists whom, over the years, have collaborated with the CBC reads like a list of 'who's who' in the Candian music scene; Harry Sommers, Jaques Israeliavitch, Gary Kulesha, Raffi Armenian, Victor Feldbrill, Sir Ernest MacMillan, Measha Brueggergossman, Jane Coop, Alain Trudel, etc., etc. The list is endless. The CBC has launched careers and given work to generations of classical musicians. Apparently no more.

I don't care if the CBC is strapped for money. I sure as hell don't know anything about business. Canceling classical radio programs might be necessary, I don't know. Canceling the young composers' competition is a disappointment that leaves a bad taste in my mouth, but I'm a stable enough girl that it doesn't send me screaming down to the CBC offices, resorting to public acts of indecency.


You can not put a price on something like that, North America's only radio broadcast orchestra. Can't you, I don't know, cancel a documentary about Don Cherry or something? Or God forbid, try and expand your classical audience to new markets, so that that section of your operation is bringing in more return?

I am a twenty year old, admittedly a music student, who loves classical music. Yet I can't bring myself to listen to much of the Radio Two programming, which centers around classical music. My station is was CBC Radio One. Maybe, CBC, if you could find away to make your unappealing programming on Radio Two moderately interesting, you would have the funds to keep the orchestra alive.

Or you could, you know, stop producing new television series that get canceled after a weak run and stick to Road to Avonlea reruns.

There is something very wrong with our country. How is this even allowed to happen?

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