Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Culture Wars in Canada's Boomerland

A few years ago I joined Canada's imitation AARP, suitably called CARP, and for a few years enjoyed getting their monthly magazine featuring various life insurance policies , supposedly (but not really) discounted car insurance offers, and endless articles on medical problems.
About a year ago, entirely unanticipated by me, I started getting some new form of magazine, from CARP - though I had to do some detective work to figure it out, featuring highly active and high-profile old coots like me! Well, not like me, because they were all so cool. The reinvisioned CARP magazine was Zoomer!
When I learned that Moses Znaimer had taken a key role in CARP it was pretty obvious what had happened; this guy has such been a great creative force in Canada. He created the CITY TV network, one of the most delightful things ever to happen in Canadian media; and with it an incredible infusion of new immigrants into the roles of key faces on Toronto TV screens. Though he no longer has control of most of this media, his influence shows through every minute watching his old stations and it is lovely.
He was the builder of some of the best multicultural aspects of Canadian Life. (And there are lots of crappy ones, but none I currently attribute to him - mostly to various government people.)
So what does Zoomer get from the National Post? A peevish complaint!?
Well, I kind of understand the point - it is a lot of pressure to feel you should be out jogging and bicycling and all that, oh and walking in high heels, and taking exciting vacations, and all that. But in my early 60s I welcome the small pressure it puts on to keep my on the treadmill and the bike and out jogging.
I think Moses, who is one of the great creative geniuses of my generation, or maybe just before it, who deserves the last word:
Zoomer is comprehensive, not "schizophrenic." Is a women's magazine schizophrenic because it offers recipes as well as stories about violence against women in the Congo? The very concept of what it means to age is now being redefined by all demographics within the larger 45+ cohort. How one responds to aging is a deeply personal choice and Zoomer offers its readers the option to embrace the challenges and changes aging brings without feeling pressured into any one mould. As Ms. Silcoff's mother seems to share this view, I am happy to offer her a complimentary subscription to our magazine.
And, as we are not ageist, the offer stands for Ms. Silcoff as well.
The smartest guys in the room often stand out easily.


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