Here we are again, at the quite civilized hour of slightly after 4:30pm, and while I feel the Covidian ennui which shall forever scar this year in memory, I also feel seen. They finally moved the briefing to a time I won’t sleep through it. Although it doesn’t mean I feel less than zombie-like. It is 2020, after all. Vitality would be positively inappropriate!
Today’s briefing bingo is brought to you by the Bela Lugosi movie White Zombie, and it’s a cracking good ‘un! The very first Zombie movie ever, and still one of the best. The sound effects of the scene in the sugar mill alone will chill you to the core. The heroine is a complete dip, it must be admitted, and so is the hero for the first third of the film, But so were most people back then. The acting is very good indeed, with multiple memorable characters and the direction and script top notch.
And for those who are still playing, rather than merely reading these commentaries, here are your game cards:
And our zombie-less (unless you count jaded civil servants in the background) CPAC video, which YouTube tells me currently has 107 viewers staring haplessly at a desk, an empty chair, and a row of carefully arranged Canadian flags.
Shout-out to the reporter reading an actual, physical newspaper while waiting for the briefing. Way to fly the flag!
Good evening, kittens. We would have been here for you in the morning if only the government website had shown today’s briefing on Trudeau’s schedule at 4am, which it did not. We checked. We checked at 4am, we mean, not that the briefing was at 4am, although they all look like morning people to me. We wouldn’t put it past them.
We are trying, my friends, trying hard not to take it personally, and we’d like to thank the person in Hamilton who called a wrong number and woke us up in time to do the briefing, but as we did not know it was happening, we simply cursed Hamiltonians generally and went back to sleep.
But we are here, now, adequately caffeinated and with a cup of tea by our side (second person plural, singular side; we are all on the same side now, aren’t we?). Mango green tea, to be specific, because we have to be specific, because we have a word count to hit,
We are Professionals.
Today’s briefing is named after the 1918 Bela Lugosi film The Picture of Dorian Gray, a Hungarian adaptation of the original English. Oscar Wilde had only been dead 18 years at that point, which is rather mind-boggling if you think about it. That would put him at 2002 relative to right now. History is freaky, kittens. History, my friends, is a total mindfuck.
Bela played Arisztid Olt, who was Lord Henry Wotton in the original version, and a perfect character for a character actor like Bela.
Lord Henry is a man possessed of “wrong, fascinating, poisonous, delightful theories.” He is a charming talker, a famous wit, and a brilliant intellect. Given the seductive way in which he leads conversation, it is little wonder that Dorian falls under his spell so completely. Lord Henry’s theories are radical; they aim to shock and purposefully attempt to topple established, untested, or conventional notions of truth. In the end, however, they prove naïve, and Lord Henry himself fails to realize the implications of most of what he says.
And here is your Full Text of the Remarks (not including the questions from the press). Every now and then I think I could just transcribe it but A) then I wouldn’t be able to livetweet it B) the PMO staff eventually get it online within a calendar day or so C) I’m lazy af.