Yes, dear readers, I am still somewhat sickish and overslept again and missed the Big-Ass Briefing on Friday with both the Actual and the Deputy Prime Minister. I have failed you. I have failed you yet again. And yet, you return.
Come. Let us be codependent together.
Because it is March 224th of 2020 and there is fuck all else to do.
Here is our video, a Big-Ass two hours long, and truly, ain’t nobody got time for that normally, but what did I just say? You can fast-forward to the juicy bits if you like, because today we’re adding the sophisticated technique of timestamping notable…uh…times. You’ll see.
Previous Covid Briefing Bingo cards:
- First Generation
- Second Generation
- Third Generation
- Fourth Generation
- and previous posts are all on the Briefing Bingo category page.
0.01 I’m calling it “Begins in English” because although the first words were French, they were just basically, “Howdy, y’all” and then he got right into the content in English, so English. Quebec, you may feel slighted if you are so inclined. And we all know…never mind. As a technical Francophone, I’m not going to finish that thought.
Look at me, being so detail-oriented I put on my actual glasses. I don’t do that for everyone, dear readers. Only for you. You and Rowsdower.
Check your “blue suit” box, and, given that Rideau Cottage is off the table as a location, we don’t get to tick that box. This boring briefing room with its fancy wood walls and its carefully arranged flags is It for the time being.
Hey CPAC, do you think you might either hire someone to focus the video camera OR ease up on the Facetune? Not sure which is in play here, but c’mon, I put my glasses on and the picture got FUZZIER.
“Second wave,” there you go, mark that one off. And “app” as well. If we’ve gotten this far and it’s only 1:05, I wonder what happens the other 1 hour and 53 minutes of the briefing. We shall see, gentle readers, we shall see. At least so far we’ve gotten Stern Teacher Voice and not CBC Cadence, as we often do in these indoor briefings. It’s practically refreshing, I tell youze.
And of course, mark your “Deputy PM present” square. These briefings have the fanciest extras. And “Namechecks Dr. Theresa Tam” as well.
Wait, was that “donc?” I think it was. Mark that one off, too.
Dammit, I KNEW I should have been optimistic enough to add a square for “Finds a new way to give Canadians money” for these new business supports like the direct rent supports. Far better to give it to businesses than to landlords.
I really want to interview the person who is in charge of making sure the flags are deployed just so. I’m fascinated by things like that, that might be seen as small but have huge symbolic importance. For those who have NOT been following this blog since the year Dot, I actually did consider studying heraldry back when it was considered cutting edge social media.
Yay, foodbanks! Did you know that a food bank can turn a dollar of donation into three to nine dollars of actual food for its clients? And here we have “foreshadows later announcement by another person” for additional supports. So much money going out to provinces, territories, businesses, and food banks, that one person can’t give out all the news himself, it has to be delegated. #OnlyInCanada
That was a split infinitive the most Canadian of all grammatical errors. Somewhere, William Shatner trembles momentarily.
11:00 And now we are on the the DPM. It just occurred to me that I will need to do new, more ecumenical briefing bingo cards in the future; the ones I have are all pretty Trudeau-specific. Ah well, in the Time of the Pandemic there’s fuckall else to do.
Yet MORE supports for businesses. I almost wish I’d incorporated mine! And Freeland is giving you your “Gesticulates” square. Both PM and DPM have teacher voices, whereas Doug Ford always sounds like that guy at the Legion who always insists on being emcee, jovial and about 10% too loud and enthused.
Freeland may understand more French than me, but now I don’t feel so bad about my accent. French Canada does not have the time to pronounce each word separately: each sentence is more like one very long, annoying word.
Given that I don’t really have any applicable squares for Freeland, Tam, and the others (sorry, Others) we will skip ahead to the 53 minute mark, where the questions begin. Honestly, when the camera pulls back this looks like the world’s most dignified and staid game show. I should really just make a bunch of Covid-and-political-talking-points-focused bingo cards, because lemme tell ya, pandering to the cult of personality has NOT been paying off in terms of going viral. Is this the year issues overtake clickbait? It’s 2020, we can’t rule anything out.
And we get right into it with the question about the kidnapping plot, which Trudeau refuses to comment on, just reiterating that his role is to keep Canadians safe. How many times can one comfortably use the phrase “Keep Canadians safe” in one sentence? Because I think he’s gone over by like, three.
Ah, an excellent question about First Nations fishing rights. And your basic “thoughts and prayers” response.
I like how none of the reporters physically present want to sit in the front row.
Freeland looks like this question is absolutely straining her French, and she’s diagramming out the sentences, but she got it and I did not. And seems pleased to be able to answer without asking a translator for pointers. Oh, and she gives you not only your “gesticulates” square, but your “adjusts mic” square, so for that we should all give thanks. Is anybody going to give us “drinks water?” I have a horrible suspicion that is all happening off-camera. Readers, we are being cheated by secret drinkers! But when was that not true of Canadian politics?
Ah, there’s your “Maple Leaf Accessory” square, you can see the usual mask sitting on the desk to the right of the Canada.ca/coronavirus sign, which, meh, doesn’t rise to the level of podium dressing, so we cannot give you the “Plain podium or desk dressed up with accessory” square. That things’s always there. An accessory in this sense would be, say, a vase of flowers, a jade statue of a lion with a maple leaf inside it, bunting, ridiculous, extraneous plaques, that sort of thing. I can be a hardass; I want this bingo to be a challenge!
1:10 is that “Pushes responsibility to provinces?” I think I’m going to say yes.
1:11 I don’t know who that reporter is, but I like his voice. Wish I understood more than a third of what he’s saying, but it is what it is. I definitely get that Trudeau’s response includes “Pushes responsibility to provinces”.
Reporters are asking questions to both PM and DPM as a team. They get that these two are the Butch and Sundance, the Newman and Woodward, the Electra Woman and Dyna Girl of current Canadian federal politics. Pierre Poillievre and Erin O’Toole are, of course, the Laurel and Hardy. Maxime Bernier and Ezra Levant are the Burke and Hare. I’m probably being metaphorical here, but who knows? It’s 2020. Anything is possible (also, has anyone searched their basements? It’s a fair question!).
Interesting, the differences between the way Canada and the US are handling voting during the pandemic. Looks like we’re going to avoid a federal election, but by-elections must continue. Nobody’s trying to shut down the post office or show up armed at the voting place to discourage people exercising their civil rights and their civil responsibility.
And I’m gonna call that a wrap, except to note that as the briefing goes on, Freeland is radiating paper. Literally. As the briefing continues, more and more paper emerges from behind her little “Protect your Neighbours” sign, and is now covering the entire width of the desk. That would be a pretty good square for the fifth gen card. And looking at the level of water in her glass she HAS had some of it. So mark the “Drinks water” square. And now she mentions a reporter by name, so mark that square too! She’s a high-value Covid briefing bingo briefer!