As many people do, I reflect on the past year with leery eyes and see much turmoil and awful events that didn’t merit my attention. But, there were several embarrassing moments that will forever remain etched in a history that you would prefer to forget.
Take, for example, the transportation industry. Trains, once just noisy background sounds, endless rails, endless loads and railways cars, a relic of the past but a transportation staple, seemed to have a record year for derailments, which caught my attention. Train wrecks galore, people died, environments were destroyed, reputations were tarnished and the ones responsible claimed they were the victims.
Meanwhile, pipelines projects were opposed. Now, when was the last time you got hit by an out-of-control pipeline? I only hear about the occasional leak and some sabotage that actually hurt more than a few ducks and ponds. Just a perspective I guess.
Up north, Innu and Naskapi had a train breakdown in severe cold winter conditions in the middle of nowhere, making me wonder if cheap affordable means to get around may be around for a while yet. Bombardier should build a nice system for the Innu – just a thought.
Nelson Mandela, who captivated the world with his perspective on equality and purged South Africa of apartheid, teetered on the brink of life and death for some time before passing on to a better universe, leaving a legacy of hope and courage. Dignitaries from around the world paid respect, including President Obama, who delivered one heck of a goodbye from the good old USA. Unfortunately, the world’ non-hearing population were treated to a sign-load of gibberish from a signing fraud hired by the local institute to pass on Obama’s eulogy to the world at a crucial historical moment.
Apparently, the interpreter, a long-time clinically declared schizophrenic, experienced a hallucinogenic seizure and witnessed angels descending from the heavens, but couldn’t blurt it out in any language, for fear of all the heavily armed guards surrounding Obama. Days later, another blunder, this time in a large sign in India paying tribute to Mandela, featured the picture of actor Morgan Freeman alongside images of Gandhi, Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King.
Meanwhile, in our part of the hemisphere, extreme cold weather wreaked havoc and tore asunder the Greater Toronto Area, which had suffered many months of hot-air blasts from its mayor Rob Ford, making it most probably the worst year for hosers south of 50. I thought that Ford did rather well, considering the Conservative Senate scandal, where all personally picked by the prime minister himself, were cooked in their own ego basted scandals. Someone better get Harper a better PR team, or perhaps a slew of angels descending down in silence could have at least diverted the attention from scandal to the ridiculous but true doings of the world of politics.
Closer to home. the Idle No More movement, the Nishiyuu Walkers, the hunger strike of Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence and the harvesting of an entire pod of beluga by polar bears and Inuit hunters, comes to mind as memorable. Oh yeah, the Cruikshank sighting of a Bigfoot in Akulivik, raised some eyebrows, but hey, I believed her. Believing in Bigfoot is like buying stock in Apple back in the 1980s, it was cool but who knew it would grow into an i-Universe, making a single share worth a lot in two decades. Bigfoot is like that – it just might be real and big enough to become the next icon for the 21st century. Bye 2013, it was good knowing you.