Ross Murray's Border Report
Ross Murray
is a freelance writer living in Stanstead, Quebec. You can reach him at
Posted 09.15.16
Stanstead, Quebec


Book Launch Emergency Measures

QUEBEC'S EASTERN TOWSHIPS | This Saturday Sept. 17 at Townshippers' Day, I will officially launch my debut novel, A Hole in the Ground. Set in the fictional town of Beaverly, the plot hinges on a local disaster. And turtles. I can verify there are stampeding beavers. But mostly the disaster.

At any rate, the disaster calls into play various emergency response measures. In celebration of the launch, I am wearing a party hat and have draped myself in streamers -- that's it. What can I say, that's how I celebrate. But also in celebration, here are some other emergency measures you should be aware of.

What to do in the event you have to remember what to do in the event you meet a bear

    1. Remain calm.
    2. Try to recall that poster you saw at a state park that one time after a few beers and you made that 'beers/bears' joke that seemed hilarious at the time but not so much now.
    3. Make yourself as big as possible and shout loudly.
    4. Or maybe it's make yourself as small as possible and remain quiet.
    5. No, wait, make yourself into a medium-sized person and whimper cluelessly.
    6. Do not make eye contact with the bear. Or maybe do. Whichever one works, keep doing that.
    7. What was the name of the girl you were with at that state park?
    8 Now's not the time!
    9. If you have any on you, fling beer at bear.
    10. In retrospect, this may be what to do in the event you meet a cougar.
    11. Seek medical attention.
What to do in the event you crash-land in the Andes with a plane load of vegetarians
    1. Remain calm.
    2. Seek shelter.
    3. Keep remaining calm.
    4. Really, you have nothing to worry about.
    5. Don't bother rationing food.
    6. Enjoy the irony.
What to do in the event of fire at a meditation retreat
    1. Remain a little less calm.
    2. Seek within yourself the answer to the true nature of fire, whether it is mere energy beyond our earthbound notions of good or evil or whether it is consuming the drapes beside the Tibetan singing bowls.
    3. Remember the The Four Noble Truths: the truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering and the truth of the path that leads to the nearest emergency exit.
    4. Move from the cross-legged sitting position to the standing fleeing position.
    5. Be mindful of the moment, especially as the flames are at the moment very nearly singeing that robe you're wearing.
    6. Be one with 9-1-1.
What to do in the event you're at the grocery checkout with your husband-to-be, and the clerk asks how many corn-on-the-cob you have, and you answer, 'Seven,' and your fiancé sings out loud, 'Seven cobs a-swimming...!'
    1. Remain calm.
    2. Do not make eye contact with the clerk.
    3. Do not worry, because she is not making eye contact with you either.
    4. Slowly exit the store.
    5. Find the nearest telephone.
    6. Carefully phone the caterer and the band to see if you can get your deposit back.
    7. Silently resign yourself to a single life where you can never again look at a cob of corn.
What to do in the event you meet an author launching a book at Townshippers' Day
    1. Remain calm. 3. Do not engage in social media with the author.
    4. Do not for one minute believe the author when he says he doesn't care how many copies he sells as long as even just one person enjoys it.
    5. Do not startle the author by making sudden movements or saying he looks like Terry Fallis.
    6. Do not be Terry Fallis.
    7. Slowly reach into your pocket to retrieve a 20-dollar bill.
    8. Wave the bill in the air to distract the author.
    9. While the author is busy rationalizing the virtues of self-publishing, retrieve a book from the over-optimistically tall pile of books for sale.
    10. Make yourself as big as possible by standing on the book.
    11. Slowly back away as the author ponders whether this might be a metaphor for something. What to do in the event you wake up and you're a mollusk
      Remain clam.
    To order Ross Murray's Hole in the ground