William H.A. Willbond MSM, CD
IZE DE BYE AN I CAN BUY
Go out now lads an drill for more
deres de big bucks being made off shore
And if at all youse lads possibley can
Please drill for oil up dere opposite han
Sing it lads, ize de bye dat drills for oil
An ize de bye dat pumps her
ize de bye dat sells de crude
Jus watch doze dough byes jumps sir
Ontario use to laff an giggle at us
dey sed dat we're goofie
Now dey makes a grate big fuss
wanting oil money like a newfie!
©Copyright November 22, 2008 by William H.A. Willbond MSM, CD
Author’s Note: I am certain you lads can add to this start, and make up a great song to be sung on the drill rigs, in bunkers of Afghanistan and in pubs from the rock to hog town to the left coast.
For those not in the know DOUGH BOYS are Americans. I learned the language young, and as a soldier I lived in fox holes, slit trenches, and bunkers and I sat around camp fires sang songs and told stories with my comrades from the rock and I know that they will enjoy their newfound (pun) land errr... off shore wealth!!
My poem and comments were inspired by a Ottawa Citizen article sent by Bob Budgell – reproduced below
THE NEW NEWFOUNDLAND
If the haves are have-nots, and the other way around, the question for Ontario becomes, ‘How can we be more like Newfoundland?’
Bruce Deachman, The Ottawa Citizen
Published: Sunday, November 09, 2008
They’re coming up the St. Lawrence as we speak – ferry loads of rich Newfoundland tourists (“torists,” they call themselves), the pockets of their heavy trousers bursting with offshore oil riches. The boats will slow as they pass the mothballed auto plants – as big as icebergs – in Oshawa, allowing the Newfies to take photos to show their friends back home.
“Oh, dem Ontarians is right friendly, bye, but hard to unnerstan’ a ting dere sayin’” they would later tell their disbelieving kin back home. “But it shore was fun – we’d trow quarters inta da lake dere and watch da natives in dere tree-piece suits dive fer em.”
This is how it is now. Ontario is a have-not province. Newfoundland is a have. The lakes have turned upside-down. David has slain Goliath.
Why, it seems like only yesterday that a waist-coated Mike Harris burped his way down Bay Street like Monopoly’s Rich Uncle Pennybags, poking his walking stick at the homeless and telling them all to get a job or move to Calgary or just bugger off somewhere.
Today, we’re knocking on the doors of homes in St. John’s, cap in hand, looking for a little something to tide us over until next Wednesday when the pogie cheques come in.
Just how Ontario (once as sturdy as your grandfather’s house) got laid so low is best left for speculation by historians and economists. At issue now is how to pull up our bootstraps and get back in the black. How can we reverse this fiscal decay and become a major player again? In short, how can we be more like Newfoundland and Labrador?
Dildo or Coldwater?
Consider some of the place names that might attract visitors to each province. Ontario has Pickle Lake, while Newfoundland has Tickle Beach. We have Pickering and Ajax; they have Noggin Cove, Witless Bay and Hooping Harbour. In Ontario, you can visit Grimsby, Coldwater, Thornhill and Tweed. In Newfoundland, it’s Happy Adventure, Heart’s Desire, Come By Chance and Dildo.
If we want to attract visitors, would it hurt to have some places that might pique their interest? Instead of Bracebridge, let’s call it Brace Yourself. Eganville? You’re now Eagerville. And Beaverton, well, don’t you change a thing.
Ontario could also use some of those quaint and picturesque villages that litter Newfoundland like puffins. Oh, sure, we have our own beautiful Bellevilles and Brockvilles and Perths, but in Newfoundland they’ve got these cute and colourful houses sliding down cliffs into the ocean. Where can we get those? Do we need to downgrade the Ontario Building Code?
What’s that, Lassie?
In the garden?
Ontario’s provincial flower is the white trillium, a beautiful if unspectacular addition to any deciduous forest floor.
Newfoundland’s floral emblem, meanwhile, is the insect-eating pitcher plant, chosen by Queen Victoria in an uncharacteristically bemused but very cool moment.
With all due respect, let’s ditch the trillium and instead adopt the Greater Bladderwort, an aquatic plant that sucks in and eats small fish. Either that or some kind of dinosaur – if you want to sell the merchandise, you gotta have something the kids want to wear.
In Newfoundland, they fished until the cod were all gone. Then they looked around and wondered what to do next.
They still had their boats, though, so they took them out and drilled for oil. Now they’re rich.
OK, this illustration has been simplified, but you get the point. We have all these empty factories lining industrial stretches of the 401.
At the same time, people in quiet suburbs such as Barrhaven and Etobicoke hate discovering that their next-door neighbours have been running a grow-op for the past two years. You put it together (Hint: think medicinal – it’s legal).
Coming to a Screeching Halt
Newfoundland’s official narcotic is Screech, a rum so potent that it took the province until 1949 to get around to mailing in their Confederation membership application forms. In Ontario, the official narcotic is the hangover that remains from years of puritanical prohibition.
Both are mind-numbing, but the former is far more social. C’mon, Ontario – lighten up and adopt a vice. Upper Canadian Club and ginger, maybe?
Culture, Part 1:
While Quebec has used legislation and the courts to ensure the survival of its language, Newfoundlandese has endured by virtue of it being fun to listen to, more fun to make fun of, and super-fun to try to decipher, kind of like a verbal Sudoku.
Ontarians should have our own language, too. Perhaps if we adopt Jack Daniels or Novocain as our official beverage…
Culture, Part 2:
How They Got So Great and Big
On the surface, Great Big Sea and The Tragically Hip are similar in that they’re both decent bar bands that rose to huge national prominence. Yet while most fans haven’t the first clue the Hip are from Kingston, everyone knows that Great Big Sea are from St. John’s. Why? Because Great Big Sea performs music identifiable to their region while the Hip comes from a region that ISN’T identifiable by any particular music. You think musicians moved to Seattle for the coffee or weather? No, they went there for grunge. We need less diversity in Ontario and more branding opportunities. Anything will do; just pick something and stick with it. Hey, the vacuum in tambourine world caused by Linda McCartney’s death still hasn’t been filled. Or is it too early to make jokes about that?
Newfoundlanders have clung to their heritage like a newborn baby to a bottle of gripe water, and are finally reaping the attendant financial rewards. You know those folk-art wood carvings of old fisherman in their tam-o’-shanters, smoking pipes? Well, they sell like hot cakes at the St. John’s International Airport gift shop, despite the fact that Newfoundland hasn’t has anything resembling a fishing industry in years. Perhaps we could steal this one from their play book, and start making wood carvings of assembly-line workers installing right front fenders on GMC Yukons.
Stay Ahead of the Crowd
More from the branding department. Ever notice how many mentions Newfoundland gets on radio and television simply by being half an hour off everyone else’s time? “Tune in Thursday at nine,” an announcer will say. “Nine-thirty in Newfoundland.”
You can’t buy that kind of advertising (well, you can, but Ontario can’t afford it). So let’s come up with our own time zone. I recommend being five or 10 minutes ahead of others, so it seems like we’re more on the ball. Remember, you read it here first.