Ricky Blue's Other Life
Ricky Blue
Ricky Blue
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.

Ricky 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.

His columns are archived here

Posted 09.16.02


Dreams of grandeur, both ridiculous

It seems all but inevitable that the Expos will be moved in the next few years to Washington D.C., where people will actually attend the games and be able to watch them on TV.

So the next big question will be: What should we do with the Big O? Especially now that it has lost the auto show and the Salon d'Habitation, and just about every other source of revenue it had.

When people see the Olympic Stadium for the first time they usually say: "My God!" Followed by: "What the hell is that?" The stadium inspires both religious awe and confusion. Coincidentally, that is also what the idea of Quebec separatism inspires: religious adulation from its believers and confusion from most detached observers. Like: "What the heck would you want to do that for? You say you're oppressed by - Canada?"

The Olympic Stadium opened in 1976. The Parti Québécois came to power for the first time in 1976. Coincidence? Like the PQ's separatist platform, the Big Owe was beautiful but ultimately a failure. As 30 years passed and more money was poured into both, it became more obvious to those with eyes that neither was workable.

With the stadium - apart from the millions spent on a roof that never worked - although it has already cost us $2.6 billion, we still owe more now than we did when it was built. With the PQ's separatist obsession, we have spent millions for two referendums, spent millions duplicating most of Canada's civil service in an attempt to set up a parallel 'nation,' and lost hundreds of thousands of educated taxpaying citizens who fled in dismay and disgust.

The Olympic Stadium and the PQ's separatist option are twin relics from the crazy 1970s, that decade of disco music and shirts with collars so big you could hang glide with them.

Imagine what could have been done with all the money they poured into trying to foist separation on Quebecers and fighting Ottawa. Into a similar hole went all the money that was thrown into the Big Owe. Millions that could have been used for health care, education or even roads. Or how about, God forbid, reducing taxes and allowing citizens to decide what to do with their own money?

Some pundits are now saying that separatism is dead. Well, if that is so, we will need a tomb. What better place to bury that most fanatical part of Quebec's recent history than in a sports stadium? Where it is always: root, root, root for the home team. And where stupidity and mismanagement eventually turned off so many people that everyone simply stopped caring. The PQ now acts like a Jeffrey Loria with their dictatorial governing from on high. Like much of professional baseball they have lost touch with the people who were their most loyal supporters.

The Big Owe is certainly in the separatist section of town. There are probably many still living there that hold onto the dream of independence and still see it as beautiful. Perhaps it looks something like the Olympic Stadium. The stadium is like the separatist dream. It is attractive but it doesn't work, and now no one wants it. And it still costs us a lot of money. It is a unique and beautiful monument to incompetence, stupidity and waste. Let's make the Olympic Stadium the grave of Quebec separatism.