I am the champion – my friends
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And I kept on fighting – till the end –
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I am the champion –
I am the champion
No time for losers
‘Cause Mr. Cheap is the champion – of the blogosphere -
After my post on Tuesday, Mike promptly left a couple of comments to the effect that he “didn’t buy it”. Never one to agree-to-disagree, I proposed a wager, and after we hammered out the details I set about winning it. It’s been said that academic politics are particularly vicious because the stakes are so small. With the the stakes being a beer in this case, I set out to be as vicious as possible.
While I was confident truth, justice and the Canadian way were on my side, I did realize that I needed to reach a critical mass of readers to allow the necessary comment to be made (and truth emerge). Much like Commissioner Gordon flashing the bat signal into the sky, I raised the alarm, e-mailing numerous PF bloggers from Canada and abroad that they were needed! Telling them:
“If you have done something like this, please comment! If you know someone who has done something like this, please forward this to them! If you can publicize this in any way (tweet, blog post, forum post, whatever), please do!”
Sensing the desperation of a situation where Mr. Cheap may have to buy a beer for Mike, our community sprang into action! (it brings a tear to my eye just thinking of it). Reactions ranged from polite neutrality to questioning whether arguing about this was really the best use of our limited time on this planet (for the record, yes it is). Unbelievably, one particularly blogger had the GALL (note correct spelling ) to throw his support behind Mike. MIKE!!! I shake my fist in the general direction of Ottawa. I even sent a message off to Mrs. Pillars, trying to convince her to turn on her husband (wisely, she ignored me).
By 5:49 pm a calm settled onto the electronic battlefield. I now know what veterans describe where, in the chaos of combat a hush falls. I had at no point doubted myself (NEVER!) but the thought had crossed my mind that the needed comment might not arrive in time. If it arrived at 10:01 am, all would be lost and I’d be out a beer. I refused to lose faith in our community, which clearly needed to make the right choice and agree with me. All that was needed was for one person to arrive and say “yes, ye gods, Mr. Cheap is right!” And cutting through the electrons of our virtual community such a person arrived.
I’m not saying she came on a winged horse or carried a spear. It’s certainly not my assertion that the shimmering haze rescinded a little as she appeared into the chaos, bringing a shining light of truth. Maybe she wasn’t there to decide which warrior was to die, or to carry anyone off to their eternal reward in the afterlife. There certainly was the aura of an epic hero about Melanie however. With her title,the reformed spender, she is upfront that in her past hasn’t always been as noble as she is today. Maybe, like Yin and Yang she needs her past failings to be the unwavering beacon of good she is today. Regardless of where she came from, or where she was going, she surveyed the carnage and pronounced:
In the area where I currently live, this is fairly common, though the goal is not usually to make money and the process is anything but fast.
Most people in my area work in another province for part of the year and live here (in NL) the rest of the time. When they are “home” for the season, they work on the house (if it’s their first house, they typically stay with their parents until it is completed, which can take years.) Then they move in and eventually see how they could have done things differently, or run out of space, or for whatever reason decide they want to build another one. Since they have no mortgage (and never did, since it’s built using income from working away), they just start over again and sell the “old” house.
What is throwing a wrench in this strategy is the fact that building materials are becoming more and more expensive and professional installation is becoming mandatory for many things (septic and foundation work, for example.)
With that she departed and Mike yielded. Perhaps she went back to Newfoundland, perhaps back to the halls of the Valkyrie, perhaps we’ll never know. Wherever you are Melanie, know that I’ll be thinking of you as I sip every extra-sweet sip of my beer of victory…
For those who read through this post and are thinking “geez, Mr. Cheap is an unpleasant winner”, it should be noted that I’m a pretty sore loser too.