The word of the week was “COLD”, capital letter, blistering, teeth chattering, nose hair freezing cold. Even the New Year could not steal the lime light from old Jack Frost last week. The cold weather settled into Quebec early last week and by mid-week records that dated back to 1922 was being broken. In the afternoon of Jan. 2nd, the city of Montreal was twice as cold as Iqaluit, Nunavut! But take heart my frostbitten friends, it could be worst, we could be Winnipeg. On New Year’s Eve the max temperature in Manitoba’s capital was -31C that was 2 degrees colder than the temperature on Mars.
Speaking of the cold, Jan 2nd there was an incident that took place in front of Jean Talon Metro at 3pm. Adis Simidzija is passing by the Metro when he see something going on, he whips out his handy dandy camera and films an officer threatening to tie a homeless man to a pole for an hour. It seems the police had gotten numerous calls about the man harassing people for money. Here’s the kicker, the homeless man was wearing a t-shirt and shorts! This video has played everywhere in the northern hemisphere since it was taken. If you take time to watch the video you see the first thing the officer says to the guy is that they should calmly go somewhere inside. Look, I am not an advocate for police brutality or anything, but the cop doesn’t do anything here but make an empty threat. He doesn’t lose his cool, he doesn’t Rodney King the guy. But because of a slow news week this video had been played a gazillion times all the way to Timbuktu. Bad luck Officer, had it been a busy news week this story would have been nothing more than a quick blurb. I think the real question here is “What the hell is this guy doing outside in a t-shirt and shorts?”
One last thought concerning the cold weather. Last Wednesday was Vancouver’s 93rd annual Polar Bear swim at English Bay Beach. The first of every year the Polar Bear Club gets together and rushes into the water for a 100 yard swim. I am sure this is not a comfortable task, but let’s keep things in perspective, it is Vancouver. What was the temperature? 5 degrees? 10 degrees? If you want to impress me, let’s invite the Polar Bear Club down to the beach at Parc Jean Drapeau next year. I can see them now flopping around out on the ice in their bathing suits. We better call the police up, there might be some pole tying.
I won’t subject you to anymore top 10’s of 2013, goodness knows we’ve heard enough about the top 10 songs, films, people, bands, dog turds, enough is enough. But I would like to briefly touch on the three biggest Quebec news stories of 2013:
1. Charbonneau Commission, just how dirty is the politics of this city? Dirty enough to send a couple of mayors packing. But let’s be honest, did this tell us anything we didn’t already know and is it worth all the dough? Don’t think so. But stay tuned, this one is ongoing.
2. Quebec Soccer Federation bans turbans on the pitch. We are not talking professional soccer here, we are talking little kids playing soccer. By mid-June the ban was reversed and the Federation is “deeply sorry and hopes no one was offended.” Naw, no biggie.
3. Pastagate and the Secular Charter! Imagine me bowing my head, slowly shaking it back and forth, saying “tisk, tisk tisk”.
On the upside, just as it looks like Quebec is to be the laughing stock of Canada for a long time, along comes Mayor Rob Ford. Woo-Hoo!
Here is the last work of the week. I might be behind on this, but I found out last week that a Japanese Online distributor sells Disney Princess Lingerie. I swear that I am not making this up. There is so much wrong with this I do not even know where to begin. What, did you hear that? Creepiness just climbed to a whole new realm.