Ross Murray's Border Report
Ross Murray
is a freelance writer living in Stanstead, Quebec. You can reach him at
Posted 03.03.08
Stanstead, Quebec


The in-and-out year

STANSTEAD, QC | March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. Science is at a loss to explain this phenomenon, given that the two animals are from entirely different species (lion being of the species Panthera leo and lamb being of the species Ovis cuddlius). The transformation from vicious predator to infant ruminant in the space of thirty-one days defies evolutionary logic, not to mention chronology. Promoters of intelligent design point to this swift mammalian shift as evidence of God and/or Steven Spielberg.

April comes in like a fish and goes out like a chartered accountant.

May comes in like the first four bars of Nicolai Popyourtoppoff's "Symphony for Violent Manifesto and Strings in B Flat Modular" (first performed in St. Petersburg in 1907 where it was interrupted by an audience member noisily answering his portable telegraph, resulting in the enraged composer lighting fire to the vestibule, several days of subsequent rioting, and a protracted lawsuit for damages on the part of the vestibule), and goes out like Cyndi Lauper's "She Bop."

June comes in like one of those magic tricks, you know, the one where the magician pulls a handkerchief out his pocket and it's knotted to another coloured handkerchief and it just keeps going and going and going... Actually, I may have been inadvertently sexist there; I portrayed the magician as a "he." There's no reason it couldn't be a "she." Yeah, and the assistant doing that hand and arm-gesture thing could be a guy. That would be a good twist. I'd pay to see that. Anyway, June goes out like a frog. It's a bit of a let-down, actually.

July comes in like Jessica Lange in "My Overbite, My Love" (1987), a made-for-TV movie that earned her an Emmy nomination for her portrayal of a dentally challenged single mother-slash-ventriloquist who is chronically addicted to making grand entrances. "A tour-de-force," declared TV Guide. "Dig them choppers," enthused Dental Care Monthly. July, oddly, doesn't go out.

August comes in like a very low ham radio signal from Thailand and goes out, appropriately enough, like a ham.

September comes in with shiny new shoes, crisp pants, a new backpack with Scooby-Doo on it, a lunchbox with Velcro like everywhere! and the fresh hopes of a new school year, new friends and new possibilities. September goes out like a wedgie.

October comes in like Kramer from "Seinfeld" and goes out like Imelda Marcos, wearing all her shoes at once - positively spectacular!

November comes in like a train and goes out like a train - a very consistent month.

December comes in like a bottle of Clos de Roche, Rousseau 1989 and goes out like one of those hangovers that you used to recover from quickly but now takes you all day to even start feeling okay and actually a few days before you're back to your old self.

January comes in like a new government's promise of a fresh start and goes out with a corporatist, neo-conservative agenda that sees January privatized and purchased up by MensuCorp, a wholly owned subsidiary of Halliburton Inc., which immediately downsizes January to twenty-one days.

February comes in like an ingenious idea to create life by manipulating the very fabric of DNA and goes out like a scientific experiment gone horribly, horribly wrong - which goes a long way to explaining where that lion-lamb mutant comes from.