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Jon Parris, a.k.a. Captain Canada
Valuing our icons
I watched the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. They reflected what I believe Canadians love about our country and what it is that soothes our souls. That being the wide-open spaces of prairies and oceans, vast forests of conifers and maples, wild rivers and wildlife we share this land and water with.
I'm pretty sure these are also the images we have hanging on our walls, sitting on our windowsills and in our photo albums. Unfortunately these are the very same icons we exploit to fulfill our insatiable needs.
In British Columbia we have cut down the majority of these conifers and in the process destroyed vast amounts of fish habitat resulting in collapsed runs of the Pacific salmon which feed the bears we hunt for trophies and the whales whose habitat we pollute with our capital city's raw sewage.
We cry that our debt is not our fault, demand someone else pay for our children and parents, insist we should have high-paying jobs and complain that Canadian-made products cost to much.
Well while you sit and watch your flat-screen TV, on your no-money-down sofa, drinking the beer you bought on credit while your children play one of their 50 games of Nintendo, ask yourself what you've done to make Canada the place you just shed a tear for, then ask yourself what you'll do different tomorrow to make it a better place.
And if the answer is nothing then ask yourself which one of the icons on your wall you're willing to live without.
An Olympic-sized thank you
I want to send out an "Olympic" big thank you for what will go down as one of my best Olympic experiences thus far!
On one of the most crowded days in Whistler, this past Saturday, I realized that I had lost my purse somewhere outside one of the shops in the middle of the festive afternoon. With a heavy heart I frantically made the circuit with my sad tale to the very sympathetic ears at the stores, info centre, RCMP office and finally the main visitor centre where, to my greatest and uplifting surprise, I was informed that it had just been turned into the "operations" office and would be walked over to me!