Sunday October 13th, 2013 – Toronto, ON
I haven’t been to Canada in a while, and I forgot how much I like it here. I’ve always found the people to be really friendly and unassuming, and they’re especially nice if an American makes an effort to respect their country. They have “little brother syndrome”, and all it takes is the slightest bit of positive attention to win them over forever. They have an identity, and they want it known.
I’ve worked in Canada several times, and have always enjoyed it. I worked in Winnipeg a long time ago and Calgary not that long ago, but that’s not Toronto. Canadians look at Toronto like an American looks at New York. Unless one actually lives there, it’s usually a place to be avoided.
I’m a city person, so I don’t think I’d have any trouble living here. It’s a huge city, and I would bet millions of ignorant Americans know absolutely nothing about it. It’s very cosmopolitan, and very ethnically diverse as well. I was surprised at the percentage of people from somewhere else.
I’m here hanging out for a few days helping my friend Jerry Agar come up with some ideas for a creative project he’s working on. I don’t even want to hint at what it is, because someone could easily swoop in and steal his idea. I will say that it’s very ambitious, and he’s putting all kinds of time and energy into it and requested my help. He has helped me a lot so I felt I owed it to him.
We’ve actually helped each other a lot over the years. Every time one of us gets fired from our radio gig, we’ve been there to comfort the other and it’s happened far too often. I’ve been blown out of jobs in Lansing, Milwaukee, Reno, Salt Lake City and Chicago, and Jerry has been shown the door in Toledo, Tucson, Knoxville, Raleigh, Kansas City and Chicago. We’ve got a history.
Radio is a bug with a toxic bite, and we’ve both got plenty of scars. Both of us are really good at what we do, but trying to stay employed can be a challenge when neither one of us suffers the idiots in management well. We’re creative types, and that’s usually a recipe for corporate death.
Jerry got blown out of Chicago at WLS for no good reason, other than management wanted to try a new flavor of the month. I had the same fate at The Loop, and that’s just how it goes. I have comedy as my primary source of income, but Jerry has a family and had to take the job up here.
He’s originally from Canada, but his wife isn’t and that was a hassle just like it was when Jerry first came to The United States years ago. This is a process most Americans never have to think about, and I admit I didn’t until I met Jerry. I was born in America, and never thought about it.
This weekend happens to be Thanksgiving in Canada. Most non Canadians have no idea that it exists, and that’s part of the disrespect factor that irritates them so much. It wouldn’t take a lot to just wish them a Happy Thanksgiving, even though they choose to do it on a Monday in October.
One thing I’ve always loved about Canada is the Canadian Football League. It’s a fast moving game, and I totally love it. There are only eight teams, but there is just not that much population up here to have more. There’s a double header of CFL football tomorrow, and Jerry and I got to watch the NFL today. Most people here are Buffalo Bills fans, and I’ve always enjoyed working in Buffalo so today I was one too. Hockey I could survive without, but the rest of Canada is fun.
|Like Rodney Dangerfield, Canada gets no respect. Most Americans don't know these are provinces, and not states.|
|Listen to my long time friend Jerry Agar on AM 1010 CFRB if you need to bone up on what's going on to the north. www.newstalk1010.com.|