Roxanne Tellier: – Smarm and Self-Righteousness Rule 2013

Roxanne DBAWISHistory will not be kind to the memory of 2013. It was a year of meanness and spite from people in power, and a deepening of resentment towards politicians, as the ever present goodbye2013surveillance and social media exposed every little thing people never wanted known. As they say, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing … a lot of knowledge is Facebook.

Yes, there were some fun moments last year, but our attention has been increasingly focused on catching bad people doing bad things.

pauladeenCelebrity Chef Paula Deen let her racism flag fly, and now the Food Network will not be renewing her contract. Nor will several companies, like Walmart, Target, QVC, Home Depot, diabetes drug company Novo Nordisk, J.C. Penney, Sears, and Kmart, be continuing lucrative endorsement deals. But the South will rise again! In August, a federal judge dismissed the claims of racial discrimination that were brought by a Deen’s restaurant manager, and former President Jimmy Carter is asking we forgive her. Can the Great Peacemaker negotiate this détente?

edwardsnowdenEdward Snowden blew the whistle on the NSA, revealing operational details of global surveillance run by the NSA,  its Five Eyes partners (a multilateral agreement for cooperation in signals intelligence between the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand,) and numerous commercial and international partners. Some called him a traitor, others a hero for exposing what all paranoid anti-government types have always snowdenironybelieved – they see you when you’re sleeping, they know when you’re awake. The only people delighted to hear about this non-stop peeping are the people who just can’t get enough ‘selfies.’ He’s hanging in Russia now, enjoying temporary asylum.  Maybe could use a celebrity spokesperson.

Putin’s Sochi Olympics, which begin in February, started out on a bad foot, with the media full of controversy and concern over the effects of Russia’s ban on “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations.” I’m not even gay and I’m offended. President Sochi gayObama will not be attending the games, but he is sending representatives, including tennis great Billie Jean King, to the Games. IOC member Mario Pescante accused the U.S. of mixing politics with the Olympics and criticized the decision to send ‘four lesbians to Russia just to demonstrate that in their country gay rights have (been established).’

obamaswitchesseatsBeyonce got reamed for lip synching at President Obama’s inauguration. Ha ha! Jokes on them … she’d sent in her stunt double, Beyonce B! Speaking of Obama, he did the stupidest thing possible at Nelson Mandela’s funeral, when he took a selfie with the blonde and female Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt and British PM David Cameron. Michelle was not amused.

In one of the weirder stories of the year, a Chinese zoo in Henan tried to pass off a Tibetan mastiff dog as a lion. Great outfit, but things went south when the ‘lion’ began to bark. tibetan-mastiff-story-bodyUpon further investigation, the zoo was also found to have another dog in the wolf cage, and a white fox on display in the leopard enclosure. Various explanations for the ruse were offered, but none made sense.

Closer to home, Canada Post angered their customers/owners when they announced phasing out door-to-door delivery of regular mail to urban residents and increasing the canadapostseniorscost of postage. The Canada Post CEO Deepak Chopra tried to get us to look on the bright side, saying “Let them eat cake.” Whoops! No, what he said was “seniors have told the corporation they want more exercise and fresh air.” This is all strangely reminiscent of presidential hopeful Mitt Romney strapping his dog to the roof of his car for a 10 hour drive because the dog liked ‘fresh air.’

I’m not even going to get into Mayor Rob Ford’s indiscretions and deceit. I’m just praying that voters in the GTA see past his antics and lies, and vote in someone more worthy of the position. Local musician Richard Underhill has thrown his hat in the ring, and you can read about his platform at An informed voter is a happier citizen, friends.

gayandstonedGay marriage made enormous inroads in America, just as pot laws began to ease, leading to a wonderful meme now making the rounds.

The Vatican was red-faced when they had to withdraw 6000 commemorative medals commissioned to celebrate Pope Francis’ first year, after misspelling Jesus as ‘Lesus.’ popeandmoneyRumours that they will be replacing those gold coins with chocolate coins are sadly untrue. But I like this Pope. He’s slashing and burning his way through the traditional thinking that made the Catholic Church something of a laughing stock over the last 50 odd years. Even if he’s made a lot of rich people very angry by pointing out that they and their money are not gonna fit through the ‘eye of a needle.’

bushpaintingsPast President George W. Bush took up a retirement hobby. He’s now painting pictures of dogs and self-portraits of himself in the bath. Well, at least he’s not running the free world any more.

On the lighter side … Russell Brand has emerged as the new ‘thinking’ comic. His latest touring show, “Messiah Complex,” has a lot of ideas and opinions on a number of issues pertaining to modern culture, politicals, economics, the environment, and how we define our ‘heroes.’ I loved most of what he had to say, but found the last part a little jejune and gratuitous. Your mileage may vary. Judge for yourself by viewing the complete show for free at this link:

Lots of other stuff happened, and most of us were titillated or outraged for a few minutes, and then moved on to the next shiny object.

drwhoCapaldiEveryone speculated on who would be replacing Matt Smith as BBC’s Doctor Who – my money was on Idris Elba – but it was Peter Capaldi who grabbed the gig.  Only time will tell if Xprime’s Phil will abandon his bowties for a new fashion accessory.

The top songs for the year were Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” and Lorde’s “Royals.” Miley Cyrus introduced a larger audience to the concept of ‘twerking’ while allowing your tongue to loll out like a dog riding in the front seat of a speeding car, but it never really caught on. So she did the next best thing, and took a nude ride on a “Wrecking Ball.” Kids these days …

deport bieberJustin Bieber had a busy year, spray painting graffiti around the world, trying to sign up Holocaust victim Anne Frank to join the ranks of the Beliebers, and peeing in a restaurant bucket, but he was just no match for all of the other entertainment scandals. So he tweeted his fans that he would be retiring, then apparently rescinded his retirement, then got busy with his real mission in life: egging his neighbors. If convicted of this felony, he could find himself deported. Concerned Canadians launch a crowdfunder to send him anywhere else but here.

We had a real Canadian rockstar in the form of cosmonaut Chris Hadfield, who achieved his dream command on humanity’s space outpost on the International Space Station, despite his fear of heights. A rabid fanboy of Canadian music, he brought along classic tuneage to keep him company on the voyage, including music from the bands Rush, Blue Rodeo, the BareNaked Ladies and Leonard Cohen. He also brought his guitar, and his rendition of Bowie’s “Space Oddity” has 20 million Youtube hits.

trumpStewartGlobalFolks in the Greater Toronto Area and southern Ontario lived to tell the tale of the Ice Storm of 2013. I’m still PTSDing from the event. Freakish weather went on all over the globe, causing such meteorological geniuses as Donald Trump to deny global warming. After all, it was cold where he was. And you thought countyourlifeTorontonian’s believed they were the centre of the universe!

That was the year that was, and I’m glad to see the back of it. Here’s a heartfelt wish to all DBAWIS readers that 2014 brings health, happiness, and whatever you need to survive. Bring it on!

= RT =

Roxanne’s column appears here every Sunday 

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DBAWIS_ButtonRoxanne Tellier has been singing since she was 10 months old … no, really. Not like she’s telling anyone else how to live their lives, because she’s not judgmental, and most 10 month olds need a little more time to figure out how to hold a microphone. After years of doing things she didn’t want to do, she’s found herself working with a bunch of crazy people who are as batshit crazy and devoted to music as she is, and so she can be found every Monday at Cherry Cola’s, completely unable to think of anything funny to say, as the co-host of Bob Segarini’s The Bobcast. Come and mock her. She’s good with that. And she laughs. A lot. But not at you.


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