This is a fancy faux hotel in Laval — a cosmopolitan red-necked town bordering Montreal where hearty Franco Canadian culture is paved over by suburban mall sprawl. This French provincial faux structure sits beside the MacDonalds and Burger King. Unless you hear people talk this could be the outskirts of anywhere. That being said it was a spectacular show last night in a beautiful theatre on the campus of College Montmorency. People went nuts. It was like music mattered. They were filled with joy…each one smiling and cheering in response to the flow…nobody just sitting back and “checking it out”…participating. Every person I’ve talked to here remains unflinchingly interested and ready with another good question.
Where is this antidote? There must be a counteracting mechanism for overcoming these oppressive aesthetics. The guy in the subway says it is a “closeness” that people want around here. They come here to be close together and not far apart. What if they cared about how they developed the land? In my travels I have found you can live anywhere and create a good life. Arrogance about one’s locale is just plain dumb. I find Vancouverites (my city) are about the worst — so proud of where they live but so unwilling to give it up for each other. Narcisists. In other cities its all business. Other cities have just plain given up. The cornerstones seem to be in place here in Laval but nobody gives two shits about making things good to look at. A few tweaks and we have paradise.