I talked to a telemarker in Georgia who called me to do a music survey
I told her that Canada was a county that was kinda like the 50s, but without the racist humour – that that was deemed offensive in Canada.
And I am telling the truth – Canada is being as conservative as the 1950’s under our most American of Prime Ministers – who is like your W Bush – and for my British Readers or Anglo History Buffs will understand – Bush The Lesser.
You see – I am Canadian and a lesbian – both at the same time
I grew up in Canada – sang like an Angel in a junior choir in the 1970’s – to the toughest audience in the world:
Dour Staid Presbyterians who were too Canadian to respond with anything but smiles and nods.
The toughest audience in the world wide world – around Vancouver BC – The Place that Rock Stars feared to tread for one very good reason
Beause there’s a reason that Vancouver is so hard to win over.
Vancouver BC was the birthplace of stadium rock concerts.
In 1956 – Elvis played in Vancouver’s beloved Empire Stadium
Where every testosterone sports or major community events took place
And Elvis played the very first stadium of his life
And when that stadium was torn down a few years ago within this past decade – after years of public “consulting” – the public protested with signs that read
“You are tearing down Elvis’ stage”
Everyone knows how American Audiences reacted to Elvis and the world
But there is very little in the Elvis literature that you can read
Because I have around 500 books about Elvis – so I know how
Little Canada plays on th eworld stage by the coverage in those books.
But I know what impact Canada had on Elvis and Elvis knew what impact Canada had on Elvis.
It’s why Vancouver is the toughest crowd for any lesser rock star.
This staid small town nation hosted Three Elvis Concerts.
Back east – they made girls sign contracts that they couldn’t go to the show – and those contracts were enforced by suspending or expelling girls from school – and I don’t know what the American response to that is – but in Canada – it’s really unfair to not be allowed to go to school – so those girls did not make the decision lightly – I mean school and a stain on your immortal soul – or go to an orgy-revivial conducted by Elvis……
Hmm, probably wasn’t that difficult a choice – but there’s nothing like – just a tiny bit of worry and guilt – to make an orgy feel even more deliciously decadent.
But Vancouver – they let the kids go – we’re more Seattle – but Lotusland is the name for Vancouver
Hollywood North – Gateway to the Pacific:
To a mosaic
A melting pot
So to any lesser Rock Star who didn’t like having to work so hard to impress and entertain Vancouver BC Audiences – and to any rock star fans who are thinking – hey, I got to concerts in Vancouver – the crowd goes wild –
Time and memories dim and younger generations do not respect their elders – and so blank out in their brains that those elders were once young kids – who lived in a far more conservative and reserved time –
And we look back on the 1950’s not as wholesome with a taint of unseemly prosperity – but as black and white – McCarthyism – and think that’s all in the past. But is it not.
I got a great reminder from the universe a few days ago – you see – I got a phone call from a woman with a soft southern drawl – and her voice was so tired and timid – that when she asked – I am calling to conduct a music survey – and I told her that I would be happy to answer her survey questions – and I told my spouse that I was talking the call to another room – because I wanted to do the survey because I had once been a call center employee myself and I wanted to make sure that this woman had at least one friendly voice to talk to – just once – on her shift.
So I sat down – and told the telemarketer to take a deep cleansing breath and let her mind relax because I was willing to take as long for the survey as I could.
But you see – there was a problem – a cultural disconnect in the language – because we were both speaking English – but she spoke in American English and I was speaking in Canadian English.
Now – we talked on the phone for a while – my impression was that it was 30 minutes – but I can’t be sure that it wasn’t just 15 minutes – I do not have any ability to track time.
Secret about me that I do not tell people because no one will believe this about me: I can’t read analog clocks
Well, except for one particular clock – when I worked in a Video store – we had a “Back to the Future” Clock on the wall and it started at 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 – so a reverse analog clock – and that clock – I could always tell the time on.
But other analog clocks – I can’t read them unless they are on the quarter time intervals.
And I learned years ago that by not wearing a digital watch – I was better able to manage my stress levels.
Now – the caller asked if I would do a music survey – but the questions she asked were about my radio listening habits.
And the survey was compromised of poorly worded generic and repetative questions – that given my particular and specific circumstances of being at home on disability – recovering from being bullied in the workplace and my workplace was the Federal Government of Canada – well, unclear communication that is indirect and never comes to a point and is less than truthful – that’s what I couldn’t cope with at work – so I had to stop the survey.
I told the woman that although we were both speaking English – we were not speaking the same language – and I had forgotten all about what the survey was – and I told her instead:
I explained at the beginning that I only listen to 2 radio stations at Home and I only listen to AM radio during the day – and it’s either CBC radio or CISL 650 – our Oldiest Station.
And she wanted to know what the call signs were and I explained to her that the only advertising on CBC radio is the call sign and I do not listen to commercials – I blank them out and do not retain that information – and on the oldies station – I love the music, but not the out of date 50’s borscht belt humor that they do – in fact, I find it offensive – but I love the music so – I just turn out the DJS.
And she said that she was working off a list of radio stations and I said that I understood that she could only speak from her script – but that I was at home on disability – and I was not going to burden her with anything about me – because I took her call so that she would have one pleasant conversation to think about.
Someone who told her to breathe and relax and take her time – because I had all the time in the world to talk to her.
She asked many times – are you unwilling to complete the survey?
And I told her – every time, I was willing to complete the survey – but I was unable to answer the questions that were poorly worded – and I know that she has a job to do and she has to follow the rules of her job – and I know what call centers are like in Canada.
So I never said to her – I don’t know what radio stations have to do with a music survery – because it didn’t really matter to me – what the survey was about – I have an opinion on everything – and all I wanted was to give her a pleasant caller to talk to.
And I told her something – I told her that I know how much bigger America is than Canada – but in Canada – anyone in a call center doing a radio survey – would have culturally understood what I meant by CBC radio – so if the survey was just more questions about radio stations – then my only answer to every question is CBC radio – so because the call was being recorded – she couldn’t just put that answer to every radio question and skip to the music questions – if there were music questions.
And I told her that Canada is like America in the 50’s but without the tolerance for intolerance – and sadly – not to mention, this part, I kept to myself – we have a bit of a McCarthy Thing Coming down from Ottawa. And – and it comes back to my request to my readers:
Please Email Stephen Harper and tell him – that he owes Nina Tryggvason: $50.
It is not a joke and it is not a publicity stunt – but I really really need this $50 Campaign to go viral – because I am in recovery and I am not able to defend myself – I have enough capacity to fend off – so I need help – because otherwise, the bullies will win – and I do not think that any government – especially a secular government in a nation as Diverse and Multicultural as Canada – should ever have the idea – that it is okay for them to bully anyone who is a citizen or a visitor or a guest in this nation.
So I am specificially asking each and every reader of this post – to email Stephen Harper – because no one has warned him about me – and I just told a woman in a call centre in Georgia that racism and bullying is not tolerated in Vancouver – and I have been telling gay people on line for over a decade to move north and come to Canada.
And Stephen Harper’s policies have had a very negative impact on many government departments – including Citizenship and Immigration – and Immigration and Refugee Board – and I have been telling gay people and southern people to move to Canada – and last week – I told a call center employee in Georgia – how great a nation that Canada is – and she thought about what she thought about – and if you don’t think that a soften spoken and friendly words to a stranger on the phone or an encouraging word on line – well, let’s just say.
I expect those two departments have been feeling the pressure of increased applications and less staff to do that more work – and Americans are starting to feel like displaced refugees in their own land – and I have been telling them –
Canada is like America – if every day was like Christmas
and no one has thought to warn Mr Stephen Harper about me……
So I told her that I would really like to do her survey – but I didn’t speak enough American English to be able to understand the questions.
The South, the 50’s and Elvis.
Elvis in Vancouver – right – lesser rock stars – you see – the reason why you all have such a hard time winning over Vancouver crowds – is because you see – Elvis played the first Stadium Concert in Vancouver in 1956 – and the kids were allowed to go without inteferance or threats – and Elvis show famously ended a scant 20 minutes into the show
Because every single teenager – grandmas and grandpas now – got out of their seats and rushed across the field to the stage – just to be closer to Elvis – and Vancouver is the only time – when Elvis – the King of 1956 – Fled the stage in fear of his life…..
So, think about Elvis in 1956 and you’ll understand
(thickened breath, tongue darts out of mouth to moisten lips, bedroom eyes, husky voice)
you see, when your first is Elvis…….
We’re behind schedule on the dirt sifting and shifting
BUT we did manage to get all the garden ties moved, with many many dead creepy scary spiders to show for it – the ties are all cut – and put in place for the backyard tree boxes.
The dogs were pretty excited to have us in the yard with them – and Nicky tried to help with pounding in the stakes – mostly sniffing Ms. Smashy the sledge hammer – because i wasn’t about to swing it with the golden boy near by me.
Finally they went and laid down at the other end of the yard, fighting over the new toys
Here’s a garden decoration I made a while back – a stepping stone of our cats. It’s a bit weathered now, but I think it adds to the cuteness