why the bleak midwinter?


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why the bleak midwinter?

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Aug. 2, 2006, 4:19pm

Why is the Canuckistan artwork/photo one of snow and bleakness? I've just come back from my annual week in the Gulf Islands, where the Canadian landscape is one of sea and kelp and whitecaps and otters and summer drought and - last week - forest fire. The Canadian experience is MUCH broader than the jokey Fergusonesque take on things or even the fwell-known fiction canon of the Blessed Margarets (Margaret Atwood and Margaret Laurence). What about regional fiction like Stanley Park by Timothy L. Taylor or Audrey Thomas's fiction set in B.C. What about the Maritimes? History? Multiculturism? Art? Am I the only one frustrated by the view of Canada as a frozen wasteland populated by hosers in toques?

Aug. 2, 2006, 4:33pm

Regional is wonderful- but it's hard to deny, I think, that our national identity has been shaped by our stoic endurance of winter. This ties in with our settling of the land mythology- both are about overcoming the challenges nature places before us.

On the other hand, the Gulf Islands are redolent of an Arcadian ideal, which, however lovely, doesn't have much of a place in our national mythology.

Aug. 3, 2006, 8:14am

Yes, you are the only one ;-) --- I quite enjoy the picture but had not quite read as much into it as you have. When folks outside Canada think of us I suspect they think of more than snow just as Canadians thinking of say, Jamaica, surely think of more than sand?

Aug. 3, 2006, 10:34am

I had just received this photo when I thought, hey presto, it's the newest Canuckistan Group pic.

5dj13 Erste Nachricht
Aug. 3, 2006, 1:54pm

I know it is summer in all of Canada even here in the North (Nunavut) and we do long for nice warm weather for most of the cold year. But no matter how much we would like to be known for something other than the snow, igloos and ice it is largely part of our identity. We share that with a few other countries as well, like Greenland, Iceland and Norway, heck even Siberia. When people think of Canada snow and ice is not all they think about. They think we are a kind, helpful and intelligent lot. We are kind, helpful and intelligent because of the adversity and diversity of our country. John Ralston Saul writes about this in his book "The unconsious civilization" It is an interesting read.

Aug. 4, 2006, 11:07pm

Hah! This reminds me of a movie I saw a couple times years ago, I think on CBC, called 'The Canadian Conspiracy' - a parody that accused Canadians of infiltrating the US via the entertainment industry. Everytime they showed Canada, it was a blizzard wasteland, howling winds, the whole bit. Very funny!

Aug. 5, 2006, 12:45pm

Hurrah! The image has changed! Gabriel raised an interesting point about our national mythology being one of settling the land (or, perhaps, taking the land from its original stewards??). But now that most Canadians live in sprawling cities and rarely see land other than the parking lot at the Tim Horton's/Canadian Tire/mega-mall, is there a more urban leitmotif developing in our collective psyche?

Aug. 5, 2006, 7:32pm

I was going to suggest the Canuckistan image be changed to a starving, desperate polar bear, but decided that it was a little too depressing :-(

Maybe a screencap of a woodchuck, from the Hinterland Who's Who parody of that name, as narrated by John Candy? You can download the pseudocommercial in its entirety from the official Hinterland Who's Who website (http://www.hww.ca/media.asp?mcid=4) - the link is at the bottom of the page.

Ah, lovely...

Aug. 6, 2006, 8:19am

Well, the original pic was a dumpster full of books. What does that say about our collective psycho, er, psyche?

Aug. 6, 2006, 12:09pm

That Canadians are such enthusiastic readers that we have to chuck out our older books to make room for all the new ones we keep buying? ;-)

Aug. 16, 2006, 1:56pm

I miss home sometimes. And I miss WINTER. A proper big f***ing snowstorm! But its true, that's not all we are about (obviously). Here is a sexy picture of me in Australia - can i be the Canadian poster boy? (please)

Aug. 16, 2006, 1:56pm

I miss home sometimes. And I miss WINTER. A proper big f***ing snowstorm! But its true, that's not all we are about (obviously). Here is a sexy picture of me in Australia - can i be the Canadian poster boy? (please)

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