Voting Season
by Emma
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.



[Emma Healey is the creator and curator of The Incongruous Quarterly. She is a very gifted writer, gifted with vision and voice. But in the sense that what we work extremely hard for can seem like gifts to those just meeting us for the first time. Please enjoy, I certainly am.]

CBC - "National Research Council Time Signal"

In the end we elected our friend Jeff prime minister. To be honest we were just all so tired, so bored with the fucking around, and Jeff seemed like the best option, it was April. Could you blame us? (Answer: No you could not.) Things were desparate, in those days. The smell of everything reminded us of hair gel, even cats, and the skin around our eyes was pool-deeper and gradient. We undertipped constantly and were stealing our neighbours' wireless without guilt or apology. Our faces gave off this pale, sickly glow and in motion in groups we looked like a school of dying squid, but resigned more. You could tell time by us and not the good kind. The steady lurching. We felt stuck under glass, there were other things in our lives that needed looking after; our boyfriends sent us ellipsis-heavy text messages asking when we thought we'd be home and our wives were DVRing shows we had never even heard of. The season was coming, outside, even in our shoulders you could feel it, and Jeff had the best jeans and interpersonal skills of any of us. It seems obvious, now. When we had dreams they were anxious and posture-mangling: podiums, compact fluorescents, reasonably paced train crashings, all achingly lucid and bilingual. Coffee - coffee - was no longer a thing that we liked but a thing where even the name of it made us throw up, totally instantly, regardless. When we kissed (if we kissed) it made sounds like the CBC and we tasted like press release, our parents were quietly worried, if you say the word rhetoric ten times fast it sounds imperative. Jeff has an excellent record collection. Jeff had helped us move three times and once burned all five seasons of The Wire for us, and he didn't correct other people when they mispronounced the names of foreign countries, even though he always knew.

Probably we came on a little strong, our voices pitched maybe too keen but in the end it still worked, we could see it even then, that first day in the kitchen with all our materials spread out across the table and Jeff nodding, Jeff-like, into the afternoon. We come prepared, always. We felt clean all the way to our nerve endings. Hope had renewed us. We wanted to sing. Even when we went into his room to count his sweaters we already knew, while he stood in the doorway with his arms crossed, his eyebrows a little bit raised that way he has, watching us. We felt around in the closet but already we were imagining what it would be like to hold hands with girls we didn't even really know, to teach our children to skateboard, to sleep in until 11, to make nachos for dinner and enact policy reform with a swift, stunning grace, to wear good shoes again. Jeff pushed into the doorframe a bit and asked us if we wanted coffee. We politely declined. When Jeff speaks you feel comforted but also like you're ready for something you weren't previously ready for. Outside, spring was petitioning the neighbourhood. We lost count and it didn't even matter. We'd already won.

Sonny and the Sunsets - "Too Young to Burn"

(image by Caroline)

Posted by Emma at April 19, 2011 10:42 AM

very refreshing your guest writers...

Posted by petr at April 20, 2011 4:55 PM

Nice post.

Posted by Jon at April 21, 2011 1:00 PM

This was excellent.

Posted by Karin S. at April 21, 2011 4:01 PM

Have you been writing my life?

Posted by anon at April 22, 2011 1:02 PM

...this is fabulous.

Posted by ellen at April 24, 2011 4:13 PM

Post a comment

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about said the gramophone
This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

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"And I shall watch the ferry-boats / and they'll get high on a bluer ocean / against tomorrow's sky / and I will never grow so old again."
about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

Jeff Miller is a Montreal-based writer and zinemaker. He is the author of Ghost Pine: All Stories True and a bunch of other stories. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Say hello on Twitter or email.

Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

Site design and header typography by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet. The header graphic is randomized: this one is by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet.
Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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