Quebec is not a nation - a blog, in 1000 Words or Less
Not long ago I mentioned to a friend that I had a blog. In response, he asked me a two-part question: What do you blog about? And, why? I took his questions seriously because I think he sincerely wanted to know the answers. The idea of sitting down at a computer and turning thoughts into words is a genuine mystery to him.
The first question was easy. I blog about any random nonsense that pops into my head. Since it’s my blog, I can do that. Perhaps a more targeted approach would be a better choice, but there’s a great deal of interesting shit happening in the world, so a random approach is easier than focusing entirely on a single subject that probably has a limited audience and has undoubtedly been done better than what I could do.
The second part of the question was more difficult to answer. Why do I blog? Initially, I started because I’d read other blogs and articles and listened to podcasts, and they all indicated that blogging was an excellent way to help build a platform.
My friend gave me an inquiring look; he’s not up on new age jibber-jabber.
I clarified: I have novels to sell. I want people to read them. Before they can, they have to know they’re out there and available. Therefore, I need an Internet presence across various forms of social media, that reaches a large number of people with fresh recurring content, that keeps them interested, attracts new people (those who aren’t simply looking for more Followers, I really dislike those types), and hopefully entices them to buy and read one or more of my novels. That’s a platform, as I understand it.
By this point, my friend’s eyes had fully glazed over.
I stopped talking.
It turns out writing a by-weekly blog is the "easy" part. Building a platform is difficult. It’s not something I enjoy. Or have much interest in doing. Or have any interest in learning how to do better. Considering I’m still blogging, my motivation has obviously changed. Now I think it’s about doing a load of mental laundry. Like I said, there’s a great deal of interesting shit going on in the world, and by interesting, I mean,
Interesting is a good catch-all word loaded with under-lying meaning, like when a dinner host asks, “It’s a new recipe; how do you like it?” and after swallowing an extra-large gulp of water, you answer, “It’s interesting!”
Anyway, all that laundry can pile up on a bedroom chair or the bathroom floor and eventually, it has to be dealt with. If you’ve read the blog before, you're knowledgeable about my thoughts concerning everything from woke sensibilities, to cancel culture, to Covid, to the erosion of the Canadian way of life, to my utter contempt for the child masquerading as a man who thinks he's leading this country. Some people are aware of this medley of issues in a vague and uninformed way; they don’t think much can be done about them so they try, and are largely successful, at ignoring them. I sort of admire that attitude. If you don’t pay attention to that which you cannot change, you’re never going to know the anger and frustration of a headline such as this:
Avoiding anger and frustration might be the goal of those who bury their heads in the sand, but they’re forgetting that every headline describes our lives. Each article is a snapshot of everything that is happening in the world. Each article is a projection of how events today will influence our lives tomorrow. Ignoring unpleasant facts doesn’t make them go away. That's why rose-coloured glasses aren’t for me. I mean, if I refuse to get a colonoscopy, does that mean I’ll never get cancer? When I see yet another way in which Trudeau is methodically ruining our country, I have to ask, “How is it possible to shrug indifferently at an issue that fundamentally changes the manner in which our country operates?”
I have to face the lunacy.
The province of Quebec’s continued struggle to define itself as a distinct society makes Canada worse than it should be. It divides us both physically and emotionally. Not only is the struggle (I’m not sure what else to call it), pointless, it’s blatantly discriminatory—favouring one group of people over another based on arbitrary factors such as skin colour, sex, intellect or language—is the literal definition of discrimination.
Speak French or don’t, it doesn’t matter to me, but know this: nothing about speaking French is distinct. Nothing. It's certainly not enough to create a nation. I’ve lived in places that could legitimately label themselves as a Distinct Society, based on a life style that isn’t a choice but, you know, an actual way of life, the least important part of which is the language. There are far less people in the world who speak Inuktitut than those who speak French. Perhaps we should consider protecting their language.
I’m sure there are some who’d say I don’t understand. Not being Francophone means I’m missing the complexities and the subtleties of the issue. In response, I’d refer that person to the previous paragraph. Everything can be boiled down to its quintessence.
In pandering to Quebec’s position, Trudeau is happily ignoring 29.5 million people in favour of a few million votes he hopes to garner in the next federal election. Without Quebec’s votes, the best the man-child can do is another minority government. Might as well buy the votes and mitigate the worst-case scenario.
How is any of this acceptable?
When it comes to issues such as these, I could gabble like a crazy person for hours, but my wife (like most wives after 78 years of marriage), doesn’t want to hear me talk, let alone rant. Instead, I mentally sift through the various facts and opinions and my own personal beliefs, and try to arrange it all into something that’s logical and makes sense. Then I write them down. I do the metaphorical laundry. Most people don’t write their stuff down, but everybody does something comparable. They voice their thoughts with friends,
or, if you want to be polite about it, they vent. As long as a person doesn’t make the mistake of believing venting changes anything, it is somehow therapeutic behaviour. In the case of this blog, my infuriation, frustration and horror frequently show up on the page. These emotions fuel the blog. Ideally, someone reads it, the words resonate and together me and that individual exorcise a common annoyance. It's inside that exact moment when I wish I had a titanicly large platform. If it was big enough and could be linked or associated with people of influence, then all our combined venting becomes something more, something powerful that the moron in Ottawa might have to listen to and address.
The friend I mentioned at the beginning of this post subscribed to the blog. I talked him into it and then showed him how. He’s not up on technical jibber-jabber. I don’t know if he actually reads it or not, but that’s okay. We whine, complain and bitch frequently enough on the phone…
What I meant to say was, we frequently discuss, in a meaningful and intelligent way, the events and people that influence and shape the world around us…so he probably doesn’t have to read it. I don’t mind. My platform grew by one with his subscription.