If you’re Canadian (as I am), the jokes made at your country’s expense are usually pretty flimsy–in the realm of beavers, winter, the dubious word “eh,” and something about it being small and weird and everyone knowing everyone. By now, we’re used to this. But oh, how sweet it is to produce something truly jibe-worthy. Enter Rob Ford.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re by now aware of the mayor of North America’s fourth-largest city, inveterate “drunken stupor” sufferer, death threatener, and occasional crack smoker. And, ladies and gentlemen, this person is still the mayor of Toronto as we speak. A news story in Canada’s national paper, The Globe and Mail, posted this very morn, quoted Ford’s lawyer thusly: “I can’t comment on what’s in his mind but I know he’s going to not voluntarily [sic] give up his position.” So now it’s up to the people of his city to get rid of their crack-smoking mayor. Can you imagine the mayor of any other major North American city not having to resign immediately under these circumstances? The mind boggles!
Don’t get me wrong–this is horrible. He’s clearly ill, not to mention not fit for office, and obviously surrounded by people who put up with all of it for whatever reason. But the pointed jokes made about him have been golden, and a nice reprieve from the usual Canada joke fodder. So thank you, Rob Ford, you’ve served a nice purpose. Now see you later.
All of this got me thinking about the fine city of Toronto, and how such a great city could suffer a fate like Ford. I want everyone to know that Toronto is not just pasty, bloated, crack-sprinkled buffoonery, it’s also full of great art and music. I felt a song like “Almost Crimes” by Toronto stalwarts Broken Social Scene (off their excellent 2002 album You Forgot it in People) might be a nice, noisy way to end such a weird week for Torontonians. Is crack smoking while mayoring an “almost crime”? Seems like it is!
Oh, and here’s your crack-based tie in (not a phrase I thought I’d ever write): BSS also scored the fantastic 2006 film Half Nelson, starring Ryan Gosling as a middle school teacher who–you guessed it–has a crack problem. Full circle, everyone. Remember: Crack is whack. Happy Friday.