By Pam Dillon
Ottawa has been called the place fun forgot. Labeled Coma City. And “dissed” as a bland, white-bread burg that rolls up its streets as soon as the “suits” go home to the suburbs at 5 or 6 o’clock.
Harumph! (Are these critics from the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce?)
As you’ve probably heard, O Town was voted the most boring city in the country at the Boring Awards in Toronto this past week. Apparently we managed to squeeze out Brampton, Ontario and Lethbridge, Alberta in the boring-city stakes.
What does a city have to do to earn some respect and appreciation? It’s true Ottawa might not be as “exciting” as Toronto. Mick Jagger, John Stewart and Jimmy Kimmel haven’t cracked any jokes at all about our mayor.
Do you think Jim Watson is hanging out with the wrong people? All he ever does is affably represent the city at virtually every fundraiser and community activity.
It’s also true Ottawa might not be as “exciting” as Montreal. City hall hasn’t been locked down once this year (or at any time in my memory) while being raided by anti-corruption police. “Scandal-plagued” is not the term used to characterize our municipal government. Sigh.
Vancouver? It’s true. Ottawa doesn’t have its super-sized cost of living or its rainy forecast. Nope. Ottawa doesn’t have Calgary’s cowboys or Halifax’s ships or Winnipeg’s … ah … geography either.
How tiresome to have a world-famous canal, A Diefenbunker, a Central Experimental Farm and a greenbelt that results in all sorts of wild things – turkeys, deer, rabbits, raccoons and the odd bear – skedaddling around.
Not to mention our #peskysens and the other senators skedaddling around, with Shakespearean flair, at Parliament Hill.
Now that the throngs of international visitors have cleared out after the Tulip Festival and Race Weekend, we’re stuck with a major, endless snoozeathon.
After all, who really wants to see all those world-class attractions and stage shows? Or visit the many national historic sites? And why would anybody plan to go to the dozens of high-profile events and music festivals this summer? Or sit on some of the patios in the market and listen to the buskers perform.
Community activity, pleasure and culture are so tedious, aren’t they? Maybe those Boring folks are onto something – don’t you think? Compared to all the high drama in Toronto, life in Ottawa is low-key indeed.