Ladies and gentleman , allow me to introduce you to the world’s most expensive gazebo. This monument was refurbished in honour of Montreal native and literary giant Mordecai Richler. Ironically, if Richler was alive today he’d probably write a novel on the fiasco that has plagued this idea from it’s inception. Stats: Five years, four mayors,and a price tag of more than $700,000 (initial cost was supposed to be $300,000). Now I know what you’re thinking, only in Montreal can such a simple idea degenerate into such a collosal cluster fuck.
If we’re being honest with each other we shouldn’t be surprised. Stop me once again if you’ve heard this song before. Since the beginning this project has been plagued with long delays, spiralling costs, and cynicism among Montrealers who believed that the author of The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz deserved a more prominent tribute-not to mention our asshole mayor Coderre promising that he’d paint the gazebo himself if the work continued to lag.
Perhaps all of this could have been avoided if his last name was Richer instead of Richler. Richler’s son Jacob hinted that the idea of naming a street after him in the Plateau neighbourhood he grew up in might have been squashed by a lack of political will – in part because of some of his writings in the 1990s that insulted Quebec nationalists. Another example of petty politics in this godforsaken province. Somebody please tell me what the fuck did Rene Levesque do for this province to have a street named after him ?? Please tell me what the fuck did the racist and xenophobic Parizeau do to deserve renaming Vimy park ?? Shame on any politician that has allowed politics to skew the decision for a proper tribute that this Montreal giant deserves.
As the years pass us by , the more ludicrous this province and city becomes.No one in their right mind can justify reburshing a gazebo for $700,000. But in typical Montreal fashion, it somehow feels normal. Yes, we’ve gotten to the point that any foolish or unreasonable idea becomes normal in Montreal. The new Montreal normal.