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heroes and hipsters

My apologies to the faithful out there. And the unfaithful -- heavens, I don't expect monogamy with regard to my blog. That'd be weird. I assume you are all promiscuous backsliding blog-readers and if you are not you should be. OR Melling has a quirky and informative page; Susan Juby's is funny; Art Slade's is charming; and these are just Canuck kids writers I know, a very small subset of the vast universe of blogging. Sorry, that got us off topic fast. I must find my thru line here.

So if any of you out there have been asking where I've been the past few days, I 've been in mild hibernation getting the rewrite done. Hibernation in that I have withdrawn, sunk beneath the surface of society in a fog of mumbled apologies and coffee stains. Now it's time to remove the plug (all right that'll be my last hibernation reference) and clean up my desk.

Back to heroes for a bit. The old picture on the last blog is of a real hero -- a WW1 officer from Canada who won the Victoria Cross for conspicuous bravery under enemy fire. He happens to have the same last name as I do, and I was trying to figure out how I felt about that, and why (and if you think this is bizarre behaviour -- trying to sort out your feelings on a random piece of news -- then you are not a writer). See, I feel pleased and proud of Francis Scrimger's VC -- much prouder than I am of Major David Vivian Curry's VC , say (I looked it up, and Major Curry certainly seems to have earned his medal). The last name makes the difference. It's not that I identify with Francis or military heroes in general (Major Curry oversaw the slaughter, wounding or capture of 3000 people -- I'm impressed, but I find it hard to say, Way to go.) I don't fantasize about myself in any military situation (except maybe being approached by Mata Hari and immediately giving up all my secrets). And I don't care about geneology. I don't attend clan gatherings. I didn't even get to my second cousin once or twice removed's 90th birthday (sorry, Stan). Hey, I figure if you go back far enough we're all coming from the same crowd of clever primates. In short it makes no sense that I feel this mild uprush of pride for the achievements of old Frank (family nickname).

I figure it's like the way fans identify with certain bands. There's a pretense of interaction. My daughter Thea is on her way to being a hipster -- caring about bands that she has discovered, and discarding them once they are popular. The attraction is the personal connection. When she discovers a band it is almost like they are family. Once everyone likes the band, then they are too far away from personal contact. Old Frank Scrimger doesn't care about me, and the Hidden Cameras don't care about Thea (a very cool group -- that's them in the picture. Though they are in danger of becoming successful and popular). But we can pretend.

I seem to have blathered on a bit today. Next time, something crisp and focused and sharp about apple cider.


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