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Endings- Happy and Bittersweet - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
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Endings- Happy and Bittersweet
Saturday night was an international celebration with Kingston, Ontario at the hub of it.  The Tragically Hip concluded their 2016 tour with a show in that city of their origin, with the entire nation virtually ground to a halt, the CBC's Olympic coverage put on hold, and pockets of their fans at the Rio games and also here in Buffalo joining in.

All of it was- is- for Gord- their lead singer, lauded on the broadcast as being "Canada's Shakespeare," who revealed inoperable brain cancer a mere few months ago but who was determined to press on with at least one more tour within his home and native land, which ended Saturday night.

I cannot imagine the profit-crazy suits at NBC giving anyone or anything even a two-minute breakaway from their nonstop USA! USA! coverage. Not if it were Springsteen, not if Sinatra rose from the dead for one last encore. Canada's athletes and broadcasters set aside over two hours, and CBC opened its hearts and its digital rights for that time. They not only broadcast it nationwide on over-air television (which we, in Buffalo, are among the few United Statesians blessed to get on cable), but streamed it on CBC2 radio and over their internet channels around the world.

Thousands more joined in public venues for simulcasts on big-screen televisions. I thought about going to the one in the Recently Hip section of Buffalo known as Larkinville; in the end, I was glad I didn't, since the transmission was gorked and many left unhappy.  Fuck unhappy. The man on the screens is dying, and is still playing his lungs and heart out in a tinfoil suit and a Jaws t-shirt-



We got about an hour through it last night, and will finish in time. All still pray for the best and that this will not be what no one wants to call "the last Hip show." But if it is, Gord gave us a lifetime's worth of good memories in a relatively short set.

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Last night then brought two other endings. Reversing the order for artistic purposes:

PBS ended its 33-episode run of the Inspector Lewis series, sequeling Inspector Morse's run of the exact same number of shows. Although I saw all of the originals and have since caught all the Endeavour prequels, Lewis just never clicked with me the same way. Maybe it was the way they introduced him at the start of the run- newly divorced, rather down, still not over the loss of his mentor. Yet anytime I did watch, I liked how they did the stories, and loved how Kevin Whately continued to evolve the character. (The only Yuletide story I ever did was a short Lewis piece inspired by then-recent real-life events that mirrored a prior ep of theirs.)

While I was out, apparently: Lewis struggled with redundancy, slowed his gait, but did get the girl, or at least A girl, and a damn fine one at that.  He and Hathaway also went out with a bang- several of them, in fact. With a list of potential suspects longer than the Honours List at Christmas.  Yet they, their boss (new guy- like him), their Sergeant (also an excellent addition) and even Lewis's best girl all do their parts to rule everyone out except the one wot did it.

As for The End, and whether/how it connects to "The Remorseful Day," I will spoil only that the M-word only comes up once that I noticed- and that it did not make me cry as the final scene of the Endeavour pilot did.  Suffice it that Lewis proved to be his own man and came to An End in a way that suited him and he was damned entitled to.

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As for the third ending of the weekend: it was of a brief rainstorm we got right before dusk last night. It was still pouring maybe three houses away, but as I pointed the phone in the other sunnier direction, we ended our full weekend with this sight:

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