By Medicine Hat News on November 9, 2017.
I woke up earlier than usual one frosty evening last week to the glow of flashing amber and burgundy lights on my living room wall. Being a farm boy from the country, airplanes and cars with oversized lights on its roof have always mesmerized me. Fortunately, or possibly unfortunately, the red neon glow was emanating from already abundant displays of Christmas lights in my cozy little neighborhood of Planet Earth. If I come across a little on the Scrooge side of things, please don’t miscomprehend my meaning; I’m all about witnessing Uncle Maury losing a battle with rum and egg nog as cousins, nieces and nephews devour everything in your cupboards and you lose complete control of the remote to the father-in-law while momma-in-law takes over your bedroom for the duration of their extended stay.
There was a time when you didn’t get excited about Christmas until the snow fell or until Sears shipped out the yearly Wish Book but to quote Dylan, ‘The times they are a changin’. We anticipate Halloween months early to make way for Christmas and now Easter has been pushed back to the year before to make way for Valentine’s Day and St. Paddy’s Day and yet in our collective mind’s eye as a nation, one of the single most important days of the year flies under the radar, namely Remembrance Day.
To sensationalize and commercialize such a significant piece of our ongoing history would be the equivalent of me setting my Bombers’ jersey on fire — downright blasphemous.
It’s been somewhat a point of contention for me when I hear water cooler talk and express checkout conversation revolving around our apathetic approach when referencing our nation, specifically the generation that will be looking after us when we’re looking after our false teeth and ordering spray on hair-in-a-can. We may be a quiet country and we may be a people that would rather swim with the current than against it but in the last 10 days I’ve seen more of our youth bearing poppies than my generation and those older than me, like the half-naked neighbour for example.
And similar to my uninhibited birthday suit wearing fellow citizen, I am also guilty of pointing my gnarled knuckles at our future adults, particularly when I catch them in my back yard offering to shovel my walk.
However, after hearing harrowing stories of these same kids voluntarily becoming guardians of peace and ensuring that we have a home and country to call our own, maybe those pointed fingers should be turned inward every once in a while.
And if you’ve got something on your mind, you can find Poncho weekday mornings on Medicine Hat’s Best Rock, 105.3 Rock3. You can also track him down at http://www.1053rock.ca or on Twitter @ponchoparker
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