This week’s blog topic: our vacation in Mexico

That’s the plan anyway, if I can get the time free to write (even though I swore I was done with book reviews, I’m finishing a review of Steven Wurtzler’s Electric Sounds for Cinema Journal). In the meantime, I would like to briefly comment on two things only loosely vacation-related:

1. The Orlando airport is not a true international airport. From the customs forms one fills out to the layout and arrangement of the place, the hundreds, perhaps thousands of people involved in designing the traveler’s experience of the airport clearly never contemplated that someone might arrive in that airport from another country and depart on the way to another country. The expectation is that you’re coming into the U.S. to be in the U.S., and if you’re not, you’d better have a loooong layover. This is one of those things that now that I live in Canada, strikes me as “annoyingly American.” I say this, knowing that I probably sometimes strike my friends here as “annoyingly American.”

2. I came home to learn that the Harper government (that’s the governing Conservative party, non-Canadian readers) wants to retroactively revoke funding (in the form of tax credits) for films they don’t like. Now, this is a very Canadian form of conservatism: you can still get a federal grant to make a movie (or TV show or form a rock band) but if Stockwell Day is offended, they might ask for their money back. I worry that it’s a prelude to cutting the programs altogether, but Canadian nationalism has for 80-odd years underwritten all sorts of Canadian media policy, so I doubt it’s going to stop now. The thing is that there’s a whole level of hypocrisy to it. You know that they’re not going to subject the American film industry to that sort of insanity when they’re doling out the tax breaks for crews to film in Vancouver.

3. Sunburned lips. Ouch.