Peter Gets Crooked and then Sets You Straight

Last Thursday, while the editor was valiantly attempting to “loose the Gordian Knot” of my purple prose, absolve me of my syntax and find pictures that were not only relevant to my column, but also tried to make me look brighter than I actually am, I was “trodding the boards”. My friends from “The Crooked” were filming a video and requested volunteers to be extras. Now, there is acting in my background. I remember my father telling me about being in a play in university. To his delight, there was a movie made of that very play, and he eagerly purchased a ticket, eager to see which Hollywood Heavyweight would try to fill his thespian shoes. Alas, his part was written out of the film. I myself once played Joseph Haydn in a grade 3 class play. I remember the pained look on my father’s face when I asked if I could borrow one of his prized violins as a prop. (In the event, I used a stringless plastic ukele and employed a ruler as my bow.) I also have had a lot of experience acting interested and engaged during meetings at work.

Engaged and Interested in a Meeting

So far this column is veering dangerously close to the old joke “How can you tell when a fighter pilot is halfway through a date? They say ‘But enough about me, let me tell you about my jet!'”

When I posted on Facebook that I was going to attend the filming, I got a very pleasant message from someone not connected with the video, thanking me for my overt support of the indie music scene.  I gave my standard “aw shucks” response, saying that I just hit the share button and try to take the right streetcar. When I got to the venue the next day, they were very pleased to see me, as was I to see them. “The Crooked” lads are some of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet. I did what I could to help them set up, including sitting still while light measurements were being taken. As people began to arrive, I noticed that several musicians from other bands were present. We spent a wonderful day filming, and they provided food and drink during the day, although not all at once.

Some of the more humourous vinaigrettes of the day included;

-Neelesh, one of the band members playing the part of a waiter, bringing me a glass of dark brown liquid and saying “Here’s your scotch, sir.” “Hmm’ I thought, ‘this is a nice surprise!” I took a sip, but it was either cold coffee or really weak scotch!

-I was positioned by the window. Someone told me I could get up and walk around, but I replied that I didn’t want to lose my “mark”. Having exhausted my lexicon of acting technical terms, I retreated to my “scotch”.

-Dell Orso  bought me a shot of bourbon. The “waiter” came over a few minutes later to place my “scotch” in front of my for the next take. My right hand darted out faster than it had in ..  a long time, to preserve my bourbon  in its rightful place in front of me.

-This wasn’t always humourous, but the amazing acting talent displayed by the cast was just well…., amazing.  They all worked very hard to make the video a success, and their enthusiasm is commendable. Special thanks to J.C.’s mum, who did a great job on the makeup.

-I was putting my coat on, ready to leave, when J.C. asked me if I would like a beer. The coat flew off my shoulders and I settled in with a pint to toast an outstanding day.

It truly was a wonderful day, and thanks to all the people who contributed time, effort and equipment. The finished video was released yesterday, and it looks really good.

My mind travelled back to the post I mentioned earlier thanking me for my support. I find that I’m always being thanked for supporting the indie music scene. By nature, I am a supportive person. If I “get” what you’re doing and I see that you are genuinely trying to make the world a better place, I will throw my support behind you wholeheartedly, to the best of my ability. I enjoy the “vibe” in the music scene here, the way that there is no competition, but cooperation at all levels. You can justly be proud of this scene that you have created. It’s like an extended family.

It’s always a pleasure to go to a venue and have people come over and greet you. I have parents coming over at shows and thanking me for supporting their offspring’s band. Once a young man asked me if I was a parent. I said “Hell, I babysat their parents!”

It’s Thursday, February 15th,  and I am going to end this part of my column prematurely, as I am not feeling very humourous right now.  However, I want to address my many friends in the indie music scene worldwide. Thank you for accepting me into your” family” without reservation. I will continue to share your videos, show notices, tour schedules and other band news on my timeline with pride. Especially at a time like this, we need your music, your enthusiasm, your positive attitude and your free embrace of cooperation over competition.

 

Cherish, Black Dog Ballroom, Ballroom Babies, Mushy Callahan, and James Blonde with Multiple Peters

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 It’s hard to say what’s more horrible about yesterday’s mass murder, whether it’s the fact that it happened at all, or whether it’s the fact that it happens with increasing frequency. Of course, society did take a turn for the worse when 5 and 6 year old babies and their education workers were slaughtered without remorse in a “safe place”, and while many jaws wagged and tsk tsks were uttered, nothing changed.

The Second Amendment was enacted at a time when a trained foot soldier could fire 5 or 6 rounds a minute from a smooth bore muzzleloading musket with a barrel around 4 or 5 feet long. It was not a very accurate weapon at much over 80 yards. Now you can buy a semi automatic rifled weapon that fits in a gym bag and has clip on magazines.

My American friends should be pressing their lawmakers for stricter gun laws, including a) a complete ban on semi automatic weapons and the ability to purchase copious amounts of ammunition; b) complete and protracted background checks; c) mandatory successful completion of firearms safety training at a recognized training institution before issuance of a firearms licence which expires on a regular basis; d) strict laws regarding storage of firearms, i.e. they must be unloaded, locked away and have a lock on the trigger, and the ammunition must be kept in a separate place under lock and key.

There are far too many incidents in which a toddler pulls a revolver out of Grandma’s purse, or a bedside table or a glove compartment and then shoots somebody.

“But Peter’ I hear you think’ I’m a responsible gun owner. Don’t lump me in with them!” As a “responsible gun owner”, you should applaud these measures as well. The idea is to restrict access.

My non American friends can show their support by signing petitions and defending their gun control position on Facebook. Be aware of tactics that people who hold the opposing view will employ, as the two following examples show.

“Stupid Libtards don’t even realize that AR-15 doesn’t mean “Assault Rifle 15!” Um, no, many people, knowing that knowledge trumps ignorance, now know through research that the “AR” stands for “Armalite “, the manufacturer. We also recognize your attempts at misdirection and misinformation.

“You may as well blame spoons for obesity!… The real problem is people who have no sense of the value of human life!” My response is that someone who has “..no sense of the value of human life!” would be hard pressed to commit mass murder with a spoon.

Let’s finish off with some perspective.

17 people went to school/work yesterday …… and didn’t come home.

Think of their immediate families.

12 people were wounded, 5 of them receiving life threatening wounds. (Note to the media; when you fall off a bike and break a bone in your arm, you’re injured. When someone shoots you with a rifle, you either die, or you are wounded. Please don’t minimize their situation!)

Think of their immediate families.

How about the countless police, ambulance, fire and medical workers who tried to bring the situation under control, who struggled, sometimes in  vain, to save lives.

Think of their immediate families.

Think of the thousands of students and teachers who had to be herded out of the buildings, unaware of what exactly was happening, except that it was terrible.

Think of their immediate families.

The peaceful community that is now reeling in horror, think of it.

Spare a moment for the extended families of everyone involved, and the people around the world who turned on the TV to witness this atrocity.

You see, it’s like dropping a stone into a pond. Note the ripple effect gradually impacting on more and more people.

Two final thoughts.

As of 11:00 A.M. EST, they still had not identified some of the dead, as they had no ID, and their backpacks and cellphones had been discarded as they ran for their very lives.

Finally, whether they were physically or emotionally wounded, recovery will, in many cases, be a long process, physically, emotionally and financially draining.

See you soon

=PJM=

4 Responses to “Peter Gets Crooked and then Sets You Straight”

  1. look at you, video star! Good on you Peter! Nice work! 😉

  2. Teresa Coulter Says:

    Peter the video was excellent. It was very professional and you did a great job! I was touched by the what you said about the shootings. You know just a few weeks my youngest sister was defending Canada’s philosophy and our customs when it comes to guns and shootings. She did this with great eloquence and pride. And she did this in front of several Americans in Florida who love Donald Trump! I was very proud when I heard what she did. I am also proud of you for sharing your convictions and showing your heart. I have been praying for those families for 2 days. This should not have happened and should never happen again. You give us a part of you every time you write. I am so proud of you!

    • Peter Montreuil Says:

      Thank you so much, Teresa. That was a “funny” column to write. It started off, and was going to finish, on a light hearted note. Then that shooting happened. I sat with Lois, watching TV, in tears. When I got back to my place, I scrapped the last half and wrote everything below the line “on the fly”. Something has to be done about gun control. That video with the sledgehammer is an actual NRA video, btw. The “Evan” video was made by “The Sandy Hook Promise”.

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