Monday, September 28, 2009

Use it, or lose it

Living in Ontario, we are blessed with so many opportunities for recreation, entertainment, spiritual fulfillment, fine dining - you name it. Last week I drove to Stratford and thoroughly enjoyed "West Side Story". What energy and talent erupted on the stage in this incredible performance. And yet, Stratford has not had a great year - crowds have been down, once again, due to the "economy". I don't think I've been to Stratford since high school, when I believe we went to see Romeo and Juliet. Walking into the theatre brought on a strange and distant deja vu kind of feeling for me. Until I read my program, I didn't realize that West Side Story was an interpretation of Romeo and Juliet. Somehow, I had it mixed up in my mind with Midnight Cowboy - go figure! Over the past several months, as I've followed a small group of runners to various marathons from Picton, to Belleville, to Toronto, and Peterborough, I've also had an opportunity to witness incredible feats of athletic achievement, and to be in cities and towns bursting with pride at their growth and creativity. And yet, crowds are down, due to the "economy". In my travels, I've also visited several different churches, St. Michael's Cathedral in Toronto, St. Gregory the Great in Picton, St. Peter in Chains in Peterborough, St. Michael's the Archangel in Belleville, and again, crowds are down, but perhaps not as a result of the economy. After 2,000 years the Catholic Church risks losing it's relevance with followers, but who is to blame for that? It seems to me that we Ontarians have a tendency to become complacent, to take what we have for granted. If we want to continue to have great opportunities for recreation, entertainment, spiritual fulfillment, fine dining, and you name it, we have to speak up, vote with our feet, enthusiastically support, encourage and engage ourselves in these aspects of society that define us. Take your TV remote control and toss it. Get up off the couch and get involved - make a difference.

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