A Geezer’s Notebook, By Jim Foster
If you can remember that far back… last week we were discussing the difference between us and our neighbours to the south.
What about some of other famous Canadians?
Waldo Ives invented a wet suit that would enable a scuba diver to stay under a frozen lake for five full hours – and his widow, Melinda Ives who discovered she was the beneficiary of a $500,000 insurance policy, moments before she was supposed to pull him out.
Or the late Cardinal Rossini who taught us never to walk through a Mexican arena in a red cardinal suit until after the bulls have been put away for the night.
Who out there has heard of Two-Fingers Finkleman, the Rosedale veterinarian who discovered that the best way to neuter a pit-bull is to wait until after he’s been put to sleep?
Oscar Dweeb invented the electric carving knife and bled to death the very first day – and his wife Thelma, who invented the off switch.
All Americans are justly proud of Robert E. Peary the great Arctic explorer who finally found the North Pole. You never hear a word about Henri du Charlebois de La Maison, a habitant from Trois Rivieres, the bozo who lost it in the first place.
We don’t talk enough about our own history and our own people. We forget that some of the world’s truly outstanding people were Canadians and in spite of that fear of taking a chance, they hung in there, they risked everything to follow their dreams – and they won.
Some of the most successful people in the world today were once unknown Canadians, but they threw caution to the winds and just a mention of their names today fills us with pride in our country, pride in our people and pride in our accomplishments.
Take Oswald Tweege, a shy young lad from Cannington, whose dream was to play in the World Series. Oswald was a terrible ball player, never got out of the minors. But he did not give up. He kept on trying and trying and finally at the age of 41, he was called up from Toledo to the World Series of 1939 and set a record that still stands today – the first man ever to be killed by a bean-ball in the first inning.
What about our own Grace Grommett? Grace spent her whole life rehearsing and rehearsing hoping to get that big break and star in a Broadway musical. After years and years of auditions and rejections she finally got the female lead in Pajama Game. Then on opening night someone pulled her bottoms down.
Yes we have to do more than just dream my friends. We have to try. To succeed we need to listen to the teachings of the great philosophers, men like Aesop who told the story of the ant and the grasshopper.
The grasshopper played in the sun all summer long while the ant worked day and night. But when autumn came the grasshopper had nothing and had to stay with his mother. But the ant that had worked and worked, had chest pains and is on the waiting list at Southlake Hospital waiting for a transplant.
Or the Hare and the Tortoise! You remember the story of that great race when the tortoise kept on plugging away, mile after mile after mile. The hare took a nap and finally woke up just as the tortoise was crossing the finish line. The hare ended up with the silver medal. The tortoise had to pee in a bottle, tested positive for steroids and was disqualified. Not only that, the judge’s car backed over him.
Yes, we need to heed these stories and use them as a guide and an inspiration for our own lives.
My friends, we are Canadians and we are better than anyone else. Don’t forget that.
Our people have done wondrous things. Inventors; some of the greatest inventions in the world are products of the dreams of Canadians.
Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone. One of the greatest inventions the world has ever known.
If it wasn’t for Alexander Graham Bell, we would never know the thrill of having someone call at 2 in the morning saying, “Mr. Foster you helped out TVO in the past. Can we count on you for a hundred bucks?”
There have been so many great Canadians who have gone on to fame and fortune. Who can forget Woodman Gump, who invented a running shoe covered in dog poop for people too lazy to go jogging?
Peter Potlach invented an oversized scraper that will peal you off the front seat of your car when the airbag hits you at 90 miles an hour.
What about Percy Prinsmettle, who designed an off-the-shoulder pink biker jacket for people who want to join the Hell’s Angels and come out of the closet at the same time?
Oh we’ve had our failures, of course we have, so many Canadians who for some reason didn’t quite make it. There have been hundreds of proud Canadians who were willing to put their lives on the line for others and paid the price.
David Didsbury was last seen trying to train a seeing-eye tiger.
Merton Metcalfe is the great Canadian tragedy. Merton a poor blind fiddler who moved to Nashville and was arrested trying to pick out two cantaloupes at the A&P, while standing next to Dolly Parton.
Yes my friends, so many great Canadians. We are a race set apart by God because we are different – and we are different. Canadians are people who keep asking for more liberal divorce laws when everyone knows Liberals never get married in the first place.
Canada, our Canada, everyone here who’s over forty has to watch an American weather channel in the morning to try and figure out what the temperature is. Where you still see people over fifty wearing parkas in July, because they can’t decide whether twenty degrees Celsius is warm or whether they’ll freeze their bums off.
Where they hire consultants to try and figure out why there are so many accidents on the 401, when any idiot knows it’s because everybody is going 130 kilopascals an hour with one eye on the exit ramp signs and the other in a French-English dictionary.
We are a nation that is proud of its traditions and culture, where the ultimate in fine dining is six beers and a grilled cheese sandwich.
A Canadian is someone who won’t pay ten bucks to see the Swan Lake ballet but would gladly slip some girl a twenty to climb up on the table and wiggle until all the beer falls in his lap.
Yes, my friends we are Canadians
A Canadian is a man who goes to Stratford to see A Midsummer Night’s Dream and takes a change of underwear. I’ll explain that to the slower folks after.
A Canadian thinks a penile implant is a devise to stop his peonies from falling over.
Who thinks Mutual Orgasm is an insurance company from Omaha.
What a wonderful country, Canada, where a girl with two nipple rings, six loops in each ear, eleven tattoos, and breast implants sued her family doctor because he left a vaccination scar on her arm.
Canadians also are leaders in the high-tech industries. We are bringing out virtual reality computers where anyone can have a great sexual experience all by ourselves. What a marvelous thing, now you will be able to go blind and never leave the house.