Sunday, May 30, 2010

As American As Alan W. Davidson

For the next two weeks Life on the Muskoka River will be taking on a distinctive red, white and blue hue for the celebration of American Weeks. Come back to read thoughtful, well-told stories by some of the best American fiction writers you will see online. Show them some love in your comments and visit their blogs often. You won't be disappointed.

St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada

Unfortunately, I have a little unfinished business before I can begin American Weeks in earnest. You see that guy? That's Alan Davidson of Newfoundland. He's been like salt cod in a festering wound since I first called for American stories. I keep telling him he's a Canadian, that this showcase is for American writers, but he keeps screeching about beer and guns and ample bosom fondling and I just can't deal with him anymore.
To show you how far he's taken this, I post this letter he e-mailed me a few days ago.
I do solemnly swear to bring you a real American writer tomorrow.
In the meantime, I do believe you will get a giggle or two from Uncle Alan who, I must say, looks dashing in red, white and blue.

Dear Ms. Olliffe:

This open letter is a rebuttal to your flagrant rejection of my essay I am Alan and I am American for the upcoming ‘All-American’ week at your blog. I took great offense to your e-mail “outing me” as a Canadian and labeling me a ‘spineless traitor’ and a ‘Newfie panty-waist.’

The fact that I was not born in the U.S.A. is no reason to trash a fairly well-crafted essay. I should remind you that I was not born in Canada either, yet my essay Canada and America: The Great Divide was published on Michael J. Solender’s blog during his recent ‘All-Canadian week’. 

I present you with my ten reasons proving I am truly American at heart:

1. Hemingway and Steinbeck are my favorite writers and my dog-eared copy of To Kill a Mockingbird is almost unreadable due to maple syrup fingerprints and donut filling stains. When I write, I eschew traditional British/Canadian spellings in favor of the more streamline American spellings. Words such as: favorite, donut, color, neighbor and nite are more sensible spelled as such.

2. I don’t like hockey or Molson’s products and prefer to watch baseball while drinking American brands of beer and eating TV dinners.

3. Being American will allow me to openly cheer for a country that will win more than two medals at the summer Olympics in London in 2012.

4. While standing during the playing of God Save the Queen at Canadian sporting events, I secretly hear the words to My Country, ‘Tis of Thee echoing in my head. Or perhaps the voices have again returned…

5. As with Scottish bagpipe music, I would tear up when listening to the late Kate Smith sing God Bless America prior to Philadelphia Flyer playoff games.

6. In Canada we don’t have the tradition of placing our right hand across our heart during the playing of the Star Spangled Banner. This saddens me because the noble tradition shows tremendous respect and, at the same time, allows me to have a short and secret grope of my ample left breast.

7. I have traveled America from Saginaw, Michigan to Disneyland and from the Sea Lion Caves in Oregon to the Boston Gardens. I’ll have you know that I’ve even been to Graceland. Elvis had left the building. I have been to more U.S. locations than many Americans and feel that I should be afforded honorary status.

8. When I wrap myself up in the Canadian flag the solid red and white bars make my ass look big. I prefer the slimming effect of the red and white stripes...and the blue brings out the color of my eyes.

9. Many years ago, while touring a weapons factory in the Northwest frontier region of Pakistan, I was able to fire rounds from a Beretta 92 semi-automatic pistol and a Kalashnikov assault rifle. Once the smell of gunpowder reached my flared nostrils, and the feeling returned to my arm, I knew that I was hooked. Sadly, these are not hunting weapons and can not be purchased in Canada (however they are readily available in select locations around the US).

10. My dear friend of 35 years is an immigration lawyer in a major metropolitan center in America and has me one step away from Whistling Dixie…

In conclusion, Ms. Olliffe, I hope the points listed above have you reconsidering your narrow-minded, BIFFO opinions regarding my national status. In short, I ask you to please reconsider publishing my essay “I am Alan and I am American” as part of your ‘All-American” week.

Your Humble Servant,
Alan W. Davidson
Head Honcho at Conversations From Land’s Edge

Alan W. Davidson is not, and likely never will be, a pest. He is one of the true gentlemen of the blogging world, a favourite amongst other writers from all over the world. He is also an amazing writer. He doesn't write #fridayflash often but, when he does, you owe it to yourself to give him a read.
I hope to meet Alan and his family this summer when Dave and I honeymoon in Newfoundland.
Thanks for writing this intro, Alan.
You're a real pal.


  1. Alan gave ten excellent reasons why he was perfect to kick off American Weed for you, Cathy. A hilariously fun read!

  2. Love the post; love your new banner and Alan is a trip... I dig the whole thing. Gonna enjoy America week over here, Cathy!

  3. Nice start to American week, IMHO...

    This Davidson guy sounds like a bit of an ass...

    That's an amazing photo. It looks so real. I'm starting to look like Santa, 'cept with less red.

    That was nice things you said about me at the end, missus. Getting all verklempt *sniffs*

    So...are you gonna run my essay this week?

  4. This was a great kick-off to the week. I knew by the picture that I'd better set my coffee down far away for fear I accidentally take a sip while reading and spray my desk.

    Looking forward to some American goodness this week.

  5. I have the papers ready to sign adopting Alan and officially making him an American. He'll fit right in at the NASCAR races, the Mall and all our other uniquely apple pie kinds of things, c'mon down Alan, you can even bring that hat and be all our honorary Uncle's.

  6. Cut the guy some slack, Cathy. I started to warm up to him with the mere mention of beer, guns and boobs. But anyone who loves donuts (especially jelly filled ones, especially the bright red kind) enough to respect the spelling of the word as much as he does is American enough for me.

  7. Lmao! Oh good gravy I needed that laugh!

    Alan you rock. In fact, you're so flipping cool that you're welcome to rock it at my next BBQ. I'll supply the beer and roadkill. You wear the typical American male black socks that go half way up your calves with sandals. ;)

  8. Oh, good lord, way too funny! Alan's so handsome in that picture. I vote for him as our new Uncle Sam.

    Hilarious from start to finish. Hey, Alan, the 4th of July is coming. You can bring the (mostly illegal) fireworks and wear that stylin' top hat, and we'll barbecue the pig. We'll have plenty of Miller Lite on hand, too. :-D

  9. Wait, Alan said "verklempt"? Wow! He's absolutely almost a New Yorker!

    C'mon, Cathy, let Alan keep the red, white, and blueness of his china pattern....

    All I can say is that YOU are Alan, and you ARE an American!

    Psst. Though a true American does not know all the lyrics to the bloody Star Spangle Banner.

  10. Fabulous and hilarious -- I salute you both, Cathy and Alan! peace...

  11. My God, wonder Cathy used you as the intro...your exuberance and enthusiasm for the 'ole U S of A makes me want to drive up to Canada...and step over the border, just so I can smile and step back in again.

    Cathy: Alan may not be a pain...but ya gotta give him major points for tenacity.

  12. Yea, Alan! (and I always thought you looked a little like Uncle Sam)

  13. LOL! My first impression was Anthony Hopkins. No? Yes? Simply marvelous...I'm still giggling as I search for my american flag pajamas.

  14. Golly Alan-- I dislike guns intensely and look terrible wrapped in the flag. Maybe you ARE American. Maybe they'll deport me to Newfoundland! OH NO!

    Haha that was awesome. The picture set me up for something brilliant, and you delivered :D

  15. That picture is awesome, as awesome as Alan himself. He has many witty things to say on his blog apart from #fridayflash.
    Personally, I don't think he knows where he belongs, poor dear. After abandoning his kilt and having photos circulated of him in various costumes (including a yellow rain hat) he's bound to be confused...


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