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"That sword, the mace, the crown imperial shall sleep so soundly as the wretched slave."
Cold And Loathing At The Front Page
06 Apr 2002
It's a Sunday night, and it's cold
in the offices of the Front Page. There's nothing like a touch of
frost to shock you right out of the glowing days of summer into
the blue thin-lipped tightness of a Canadian winter. Gone are the
bushels of fresh fruit and untinned, unwaxed greens. Gone are the
lingering dusks, children running after ice cream trucks, and the
chip wagon that sets up every summer in the mall parking lot.
Gone in fact, is the whole idea of evening; we go straight from
"work" to "night" with no time in between to
do that bit of gardening or have a quick game of lacrosse with
the neighbors. No -- once you reach the equinox, your reason for
living in Canada is pretty much over.
readers south of the border who might not be so
intimately acquatinted with these few acres of snow, I'll
just point out that most of Canada lies north of the
Arctic circle, the Earth's skull cap where the sun
vanishes for months at a time. Each fall, Canadians count
down the remaining days of sunlight until sometime in
late October when, with great melancholy, they watch the
final sunrise of the year. The sun barely clears the
naked trees, but if you climb to the top of your hut, you
may be lucky enough to have its orange rays caress your
face one last time before it leaves you under indigo
skies and the dance of the Northern Lights.
But it's only four months,
maybe five in the outlying areas. Five months of
darkness. Five months of streetlights, snow, and silence.
Couldn't Escape If You Wanted To.