From My Bookshelf: Final Report

By Lynn Willoughby

Final Report ~ Rick Mercer

This book is a winner!  I always watched the Rick Mercer Report on CBC and enjoyed his take on politics, fashions, elections, how fortunate we are as Canadians and whatever else was in the news of the week.  Not only does this book have many of his well known rants, but many pages of what went on behind the scenes.

Mercer talks about his fifteen years in a van with his producer, associate producer and camera man.  And while they spent so much time together over these years – they never had a major blow up!  Oh yes, occasionally someone had to go for a walk, or take a time out or go for a drink at the nearest bar, but next morning, on the road again, they were friends and colleagues.

There are photos, there are pages of Mercer talking about production logistics – such as finding weed for Pierre Berton as he was teaching Canadians how to properly roll a joint.  And setting up for Shirley Douglas as she “grabbed the booster cables and taught the nation”…how to boost a car battery.

Not only is Mercer a great ranter – and he walked 42 kilometres in that alley over the years, he is a great writer.

“It has always struck me that the laziest ‘intellectual argument’ ever made is “It doesn’t matter who I vote for; they are all the same.”  I would argue it is so lazy it stretches the definition of both argument and intellectual….I have never in all my years seen an election for any position, whether it was class president or prime minster, where this was remotely true.”

I loved this book and will read it again.  It is personal, it is poignant, it is funny, it is important.  And I have a line up of people who want to borrow it from me.

Who Knew?

Satirist – a way of criticizing people or ideas in a humorous way, especially in order to make a political point.