Ross Murray's Border Report
Ross Murray
is a freelance writer living in Stanstead, Quebec. You can reach him at
Posted 08.10.16
Stanstead, Quebec


Welcome to your personal day

Good morning! I hope you enjoyed that extra 10 minutes of sleep. And not the cruel joke "snooze button" extra sleep but the kind from which you awaken gently, dreaming of a multi-handed masseuse singing The Carpenters' greatest hits, in a non-gooey, freshly re-evaluated way.

This is your personal day. Everyone's getting one this year, and today is yours, all yours. Your personal day begins with a cup of coffee all ready for you, the perfect temperature, just the right amount of cream. You prefer hazelnut-flavoured cream? Go ahead, because today no one in your house is going to complain that that stuff smells like perfumed diesel. It's your day! Ruin your coffee any way you like.

Driving to work, you have a lane to yourself, and all the lights are green, and only your favourite songs are on the radio. When they go to commercial, you can change the channel and find that for once all the other stations aren't on commercial break at the same time but are instead playing more of your favourite songs. People in the surrounding cars give you thumbs-up signs as you air-drum "Rock You Like a Hurricane." Rock on!

Your hair looks perfect today, by the way.

Did you forget to bring your dog to work? You did? Look in the back seat. No, you didn't! There she is! Your dog can come to work today because it's your personal day! Everyone loves your dog, even the people who don't like dogs. Even the people who don't like people!

Look: someone's brought muffins to work! The good kind, without raisins. Basically cake. And today, only for you, they have no calories. "I can eat anything I want and I never gain weight," you crow, and none of your co-workers wish upon you a terrible, fattening disease.

It's your personal day!

Your work is fulfilling in a deeply spiritual way today, so much so that, halfway through the morning, your co-workers offer to do it for you, which you agree to because you are a giver who gives and feels good about giving. Give yourself a hug!

Now you are free to spend the rest of the morning playing whatever mobile app is currently trendy, and in no way do you feel you are squandering precious hours of your finite existence on frivolous pursuits. You decide that a good rhyme for "frivolous" is "plivelris," and because on your personal day you get to revive long-abandoned dreams of being an avant-garde poet, it is!

And so, sitting in an extremely comfortable chair that actually increases longevity despite your sedentary lifestyle, you post this haiku on Facebook:

    Cherry tree blossoms
    Or dessert dunes swept by wind
    Which Windows desktop?
It goes viral! Everyone goes viral on their personal day, and today is your day. All your exes read the poem and get in touch with you, expressing their regret for letting you go. Their loss! And they are all still beautiful, which makes you feel satisfied about your good taste, but there is also a sadness behind their eyes that is also very satisfying.

It's your personal day!

All the politicians align themselves with your core beliefs today. "I've made mistakes, yuuuge mistakes, really the best mistakes," they say. "To be honest, I'm just going to quit right now and start singing. One, two, three, four! 'Here I am... Rock you like a hurricane...!'"

You get the afternoon off. For the parade, of course! There's Sigourney Weaver serving as the grand marshal, looking spry. She waves you onto the float, which is a giant but flattering bust of you! Taking Sigourney's hand, you and your dog settle into the seat of honour on your giant head, with Sigourney at your right. To your left is the ghost of Otis Redding! "I've been riding you too long to stop now," he croons, and you laugh and laugh, and the parade rolls through the packed streets, and everyone cheers and claps and shouts your name over and over. "Woof!" barks your dog.

Finally, the parade comes to a halt before your house, where you dismount your giant head. You wave goodbye to the adoring throng and Sigourney and Otis. You enter your house to find your favourite meal prepared by your loving spouse whose tender embrace foretells sweet, sweet loving anon. It has been the best possible personal day, you think, as you head to bed.

Don't forget tomorrow's garbage day.