Columns and Letters

Column: Dirt Road Rant - Politics, Howie Meeker, and disco

-by John Gillis

    Well the wind is blowing and winter is around the bend and your mind begins to wander and wonder about writing a column...yes, indeed.
American Music Awards
    You know you’re getting old when almost all the new music starts sounding like disco to you.
    That’s exactly how I felt after trying to watch The American Music Awards the other night. I confess, I couldn’t get through the whole show. Disco has never died. It just keeps dressing up in different clothing through the ages. That’s my theory anyway. There’s a lot of different names for genres of music but essentially it boils down to good music and the not so good – which in my mind is disco!  Fine to dance to on occasion, but not what you’d want to listen to on any deserted island like Cape Breton in the dead of winter!
    The AMAs had plenty of spectacle, lights, and colourful paint, no doubt...but I guess I’m a lyrics man and because I couldn’t make out any lyrics, I finally changed the channel. Besides, I couldn’t stand to look at all those 20 somethings and old record company geezers pretending that they knew all the lyrics and that they lovvvvved everrrrry song!
    I will say congratulations to Taylor Swift though. I caught a recent video of her performing an intimate concert live, just herself and her guitar and piano, and it was quite impressive. It seems like only yesterday she was making her debut as a young artist being interrupted in her acceptance speech by Kayne West, but this week she, at the age of only 29, was crowned Artist of the Decade by the American Music Awards. She writes most of her own songs and recently won the right to perform her back catalogue of hits from her previous albums owned by her previous record label. When Carole King presents you with an award you know you’ve made it as a songwriter.
100 Women Who Care
    Speaking of strong women, hats off as well to the 100 Women Who Care Rural Cape Breton!  It’s a great thing you ladies have been doing these past few years for the local non-profits in need of funding. Last week’s Oran noted that more than $13,000 was recently raised that went this year to the Whycocomagh Fire Department. Maybe it’s time for a local chapter of the 100 Men Who Care - gentlemen?
Moose counts
    Like Rose Courage of Sydney, I too will be awaiting the next moose population survey from Parks Canada, The Province of Nova Scotia, and the Unama’ki Institute of Natural Resources next spring.  When your estimates of moose population in the park go from 1800 in 2018 to 469 in 2019 one does begin to wonder how accurate those surveys really are.
Don Cherry and Howie Meeker
    Much has been said and written about Don Cherry’s comments in the past week or two and it has got me thinking of where Rogers Sportsnet might go in terms of a replacement for Mr. Cherry. I am reminded of all those new tech music concerts that are bringing back the legendary stars in holograms. Maybe Rogers could get the rights to some old footage and make some holograms of Howie Meeker.  Although he’s still alive at 96 in Parksville, BC, I doubt Meeker would want to make a return. I still have fond memories of Meeker teaching us how to play the game, stick handling, breaking out of your zone, playing the box, two on ones, and power play strategies, all back in the day before Don Cherry began to rule Hockey Night in Canada. Here’s to Howie’s holograms!
    In an ideal world, we would ban political survey once a writ has been dropped. Imagine being able to go to the polls and voting for the candidate you really want to vote for and not having to think about voting strategically!
    The big question now seems to be if it will make a difference at all. Will American’s give a rat’s ass whether Trump lied to them about what went on with the Ukraine. The pundits are saying no... that the House will vote to impeach and the Republican controlled Senate will give Trump a pass and keep him in office. That appears to be the way the picture is unfolding and while we may not see President Trump impeached our savvy political science student and student intern Ben MacKay assures me that historically even if a President escapes impeachment in the Senate, he will likely face the music when the electorate has the next chance to vote.
    Well Ben, I doubt you’re old enough to gamble, but I suspect it would make an interesting wager!  Are you on?


















Oran Dan - The Inverness Oran -

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