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Rick Blue's Other Life
Ricky Blue
Rick Blue
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is a Montreal-based humorist, singer, and writer. He and partner George Bowser are the famous Bowser and Blue comedy act. Here's his bio from their Bowser and Blue website.

Rick Blue was born in Liverpool, England, but raised in Maine, New Jersey, and Toronto. He has an MA in English from Concordia University. He has been involved in bands and media music in Montreal for over twenty years. In 1981 he won an international 'Clio' award for excellence in advertising.

He once appeared on television naked.

His life had no real meaning, however, until he began to play with Bowser and Blue. Rick plays guitar, mandolin, and harmonica, and sings in a rather pleasant baritone when George will let him.

He is also a columnist for Montreal's outstanding West Island Gazette..

His LCC columns are archived here

Posted 03.16.15

RICK BLUE

It does take a village to raise a child

MONTREAL | It started as an "Aw" moment. I received a text out of the blue that said simply: "I love you, Dad."

After a few more texts, I found out that my son had been moved by actor J.K. Simmons, who won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in the movie Whiplash. During his acceptance speech at the Oscars Simmons said that if you are lucky enough to have a parent still living, be sure to tell them that you love them.

I think that we did a pretty good job raising my son. Although he has a dark sense of humour (I wonder where he gets that), his personality is based on life-affirming values. As his reaction to that Oscar speech reveals.

But before I became too vain about my parenting skills another wise saying sprang to my mind. It was Hillary Clinton's famous "It takes a village to raise a child."

A lot of what my son learned as he grew up was imparted to him by the sports programs he took part in. He played hockey and baseball in the West Island. And he, like many other children, learned the timeless life lessons of sport. How to win and how to lose. And how to be part of a team.

In my business as an entertainer, I am called upon to travel and be away whenever there is a gig. And jobs for me are always in the evenings and on the weekends, when most sports programs take place.

So not only did I miss many birthdays, graduations and holidays with my family, but I was also unable to step up to the plate whenever I was asked to be a coach or an assistant coach for one of my son's teams.

I simply could not commit. It would be the night of the championship game and parents would be asking: "Where's the coach?"

"He's in Stettler, Alberta," would be the reply. "Being satirical."

So it was other parents, those coaches, those ordinary dads and moms of the West Island, who got involved in the sports programs and gave up so much of their time and energy to shepherd a team through a season who helped instil those timeless values in the soul of my son.

Which reminds me of another saying. When the Dalai Lama was asked what the meaning of life was, he said: "To be a good person." I have always liked that. It is so simple and clear. And so unexpected coming from the leader of such a mystical religion.

Well, if my son does live his life as a good person, it will be due in no small part to the many West Island dads and moms who took part in the sports programs that were important in his life as he grew up. So when I do bump into the odd one as I trip around the suburbs, I will always thank them for it.

And maybe I should say: "I love you guys."

To read Rick Blue's complete column on the West Island Gazette, click here Rick Blue in the West Island Gazette
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