I don’t know whether I can sit here in the growing light of
dawn and finish writing and e-mailing this column before the battery in my
computer either runs out of juice or the kind folks at B.C. Hydro fix whatever
has left me sitting in the relative dark of its powered-down screen.
I guess you could say I’m pessimistic about my chances. The
gauge at the corner of the screen incessantly counts down the time to darkness
and with just over two hours to go, finishing is a long shot.
Ironically, my pessimism does not mean I’m a pessimist. Au
contraire. If I were a pessimist I wouldn’t even be trying. I’d have decided
— when I reached over to turn on my bedside lamp and nothing happened
— the task was a hopeless one. I’d have rolled over, gone back to sleep
and called Mr. Barnett later this morning to discuss a rerun of something I
wrote long enough ago no one would remember, earlier this year for example.
Quite possibly, the simple act of trying to beat the battery
may very well make me an optimist. A cranky optimist since I’m attempting it
without coffee but an optimist nonetheless.
This would come as no surprise to me. I believe I’m both a
cockeyed optimist and a hopeless romantic. That I am also deeply cynical and
highly suspicious of the motives of those around me is not as difficult a
juggling act as some may believe. In fact, the stasis resulting from balancing
those disparate traits is much easier to achieve and maintain than is any sense
of equilibrium if one finds oneself drinking both whiskey and wine in the same
Let’s face it, you can’t be a ski bum in an era of global
warming without being a raving optimist. And you can’t be a columnist in a
post-literate, on-line culture that, increasingly, is unable to focus on
anything longer or more complex than a soundbite without being a hopeless
Still… there are some of you out there — and you know who
you are — who believe both Pique and especially this page are mired in
negativity. In fact, there are some of you who seem to be a bit lathered up
about this perceived negativity and think it runs counter to what you’d like
Pique’s mission to be: spreading sunshine and bonhomie around like it was cheap
To this I say, (Insert raspberry noise here!)
I am, quite frankly, astounded sometimes at what a positive,
upbeat, cheerleading kind of guy I am. In unguarded moments, looking at the
world around me without the benefit of my rose-coloured glasses, I don’t think
I’m being nearly negative enough.