Is spending more or buying less the key to our economic survival? Photo By GETTY IMAGES
Top 10 pick tiff
Glenn Sumi, in Canuck Films That'll Make You Proud (NOW, December 25-31), seems to think that his love of Canadian movies is shared by NOW.
But closer to the front of the same issue, three other NOW film critics' Top 10 Movies lists picked a total of 27 different movies, only three of them Canadian and only one of them on TIFF's Top 10 Canadian Movies list that Sumi helped to compile. I miss the top 10 local filmmakers list Cameron Bailey used to compile for NOW.
Hate-on for Canuck film
I suppose I shouldn't let it bother me that NOW constantly trashes Canadian cinema (NOW, December 11-17). But it does.
You say you want to support single-screen cinemas, independent and Canadian film, yet each time a Canadian feature is released, you shit all over it, deterring those who don't know better from seeing the movie.
It's as if your reviewers have a congenital hate-on for Canadian film. It's difficult enough to preserve our culture and produce an independent feature in this country.
Why insist on making it more prohibitive?
Christmas with the crank
Regarding Humans: Spare Me (NOW, December 18-24). Robert Priest, you're misanthropic, scrooge-like and horrible, honest, accurate and funny. In short, keep up the good work. I love your writing.
Survival's radical rethink
To buy or not to buy: what do we do to save both our economy and our planet?!
Alice Klein writes (NOW, December 18-24) "People with guaranteed paycheques will be consumers, creating markets... for the products and services... (that) in turn will support the innovation that will feed the economic recovery."
Yet further on, Adria Vasil writes "The solution? Reducing and reducing. At the personal level, buy less."
The Western capitalist economy "survives" on people buying stuff, getting tired of it and then buying more stuff. But we now admit that our planet will only survive if people buy less.
Hmm, sounds like a fundamental contradiction to me. The solutions to our collective global economic and environmental woes will have to be a lot more radical than most of us realize. Economists, trade unionists, environmentalists, politicians, the big bad business world will all need to collaborate in ways most of them have not yet dreamed were possible.
Reading Small Is Beautiful, by E.F. Schumacher, would be a great kick-start to their dreaming.
Sheila Gostick's Vexing Virgin (NOW, December, 11-17) is what's vexing. She writes nothing but invective about anti-abortion groups, the blessed Virgin and the Catholic Church.
She says the Catholic Church enslaves every woman's body in the name of Christ. Has the writer looked at some the pictures in NOW, especially the last pages of the adult classifieds? I don't think women and men depicted there need to worry about the "holy inseminator."
For Gostick, it's clear abortion is never a problem. She's concerned, however, with the mass torture, rape and killing of women from the Congo to Guatemala.
But her argument is specious because if you don't care for life at all stages, then why protect children, the sick, the old or the disabled?
Her true purpose is clear: just make fun of the Church.
Cyclists just roadkill
I was almost killed by an aggressive SUV driver while riding my bicycle tonight. The guy just drove away.
I fear that one of these days I won't get up from one of these "accidents."
Last week, my neighbour's son, a sweet kid just starting college, was killed by a car while riding his bike. His family and community are devastated.
He was not the first person I've known to be killed by a car while riding a bicycle, and I'm afraid he won't be the last, especially if those who have the power to even up the odds continue to stall.
I could write a long list of things you need to do to make this city friendlier for bicycles. Unfortunately, though, I have a memorial to go to.
Paul Terefenko was obviously swayed by the feel-good rhetoric and self-congratulatory remarks of the assembled at the opening of the Wychwood Artscape location (NOW, November 27-December 3).
Did he have a chance to venture into those sad, dark, ugly and depressing spaces reserved for artists? I did, in the hope I might someday qualify to live/work there. But now I don't think so. What a travesty.
Letter-writer Matthew Andrews is right fuckin' on (NOW, November 13-19). Instead of tearing down the Gardiner, I would build another level over the existing highway. One level would be 10 lanes eastbound, the other 10 lanes westbound. Simple. David Miller, I just saved you millions by not tearing down the Gardiner. If you like the country, move there, you bunch of fuckin' wankers. This is a city. No bridge to the Island Airport? A gas-belching ferry instead? Are you people really this stupid, or am I on drugs?
Scooby snacks on squirrels
I like to go to parks, especially St. James Park, but some dog owners don't respect the law and let their dogs run off-leash. What I don't like is when dogs chase wildlife.
When I ask dog owners to keep their dogs on leash, it gets more problematic. They become very nasty.
"Go back to your country!" (I am Asian.) "I was born here. I can do what I want." "It is you that my dogs are going to kill?" "I pay my rent."
Unfortunately, it seems that some dog owners feel that parks belong to them and they can do whatever they want. I try to be understanding, but after all the insults and abuse I've taken, I can only wish the park laws would be completely enforced.