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That sword, the mace, the crown shall sleep so soundly as the wretched slave.

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The Front Page is published monthly from Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

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"That sword, the mace, the crown imperial shall sleep so soundly as the wretched slave."

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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.

For our 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.

Waterloo
 

Waterloo.
Couldn't Escape If You Wanted To.