Buttering Up Mayor Ford
The Canadian National Exhibition opened in Toronto this past week. One of the perennial exhibitsis the large butter sculpture. In years past it has been of a cow or a moose or some such critter, as I remember. This year is a sculpture of Toronto's controversial low brow mayor. (I am not a fan. The great city of Toronto deserves better. Calgary elected an outstanding mayor. . .why, Toronto!)
Toronto's Mayor Ford in Butter
I think this sculpture is perfect. It is his Honour resting his elbow on a steering wheel, with his cell phone pressed to his ear while reading a book by Margaret Atwood. While the mayor is more of a margarine kind of guy, always looking to do something on the cheap, the challenge was to depict him in butter. It is perhaps not totally in appropriate, the mayor is slimness challenged. One of the few things I admired him for doing was to publicly try to lose weight. I know how hard this is. He had a weekly weigh in for the press outside his office. Initially he made progress but as he failed to slim down there were excuses to miss the weigh in. Of course, he was publicly caught cheating on his diet coming out of a fast food joint. ( we do live in the age where everyone has a camera) In the end, he did not reach his goal of losing 50 pounds. I hope he tries again.
I have refrained from referring to him as Toronto's butter ball mayor (that would be cruel)
These days he is most talked about because of his driving his own car,. He has been caught on camera by citizens talking on his cell phone while driving and reading papers at 70 miles an hour on the expressway. He makes no apology but declaring, "I am a busy guy". The police and his brother, Doug, the city counselor, and the other half of this Ford political tag team, want him to have a driver. This is too upscale for the mayor, always looking to save the taxpayer's money.
It was Doug who claimed he had never heard of Margaret Atwood during the struggle to stop the money saving closing of some of the 100 branch libraries in Toronto. Margaret Atwood, Canada's best known writing and resident of Toronto, spoke up in defense of the libraries, which are well used, particularly by the new immigrant communities. As a result of this controversy there was an informal "Atwood for Mayor" campaign. How appropriate it is that the car driving, phone chatting mayor should be reading up on Margaret Atwood as part of his busy day.
I am sure this sculpture will be enjoyed by those visiting the CNE who have some knowledge of the political events in the city.