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While I was Typing

Ariel view of rioters burning a car / courtesy of CTV

Because I had taken some time out of my jobs search earlier yesterday, last night I settled down at the computer to get caught up. I’m not a hockey fan but during play offs 2011, especially when the Vancouver Canucks made the semi-finals, I got in the habit turning the TV on, mostly to check the score every now and then.

Busy at the Computer

But after Boston scored their third goal, I clicked the television off and got serious about typing three cover letters and catching up on some emails. Sure, it was noisy, even though all of the windows in the apartment were closed. People going down the back lane shouted slogans and verbal abuse at each other; fire crackers and car horns were constant background music; two choppers added their own special cacaphony.

The Phone Rings

Just before 10 o’clock, the phone rang – it was one of my married friends from Winnipeg. Since it was going on midnight there, the first thing I thought was one of the kids was hurt. But no; it was my girlfriend concerned about me. In response to her question I replied that I was fine – why was she asking? She had been watching the news and heard Robson Street and West Georgia. Knowing that I lived nearby (close but not that close), she called to see if I was okay. That was the first I heard of the Stanley Cup riots.

Life is Like That

After I hung up the phone, I turned the news on. It was like the world was on fire! This was happening in my backyard – mob mentality in technicolor. Today, with the television as white noise, it seemed that the Stanley Cup riot in Vancouver was the number one news story around the world.

I would like to think that we were gracious losers – disappointed, for sure; get ’em next year, you bet. But looting? Setting cars on fire? Smashing windows? When they reported that thousands of volunteers answered the city’s call to clean up the mess, I turned the television off – it seemed like a good note to end on.

Looters on Robson / photo by Geoff Howe, The Canadian Press (CP)

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