Upgrading our Cable Coverage

So long as we have had our Vancouver cottage, we’ve had basic TV cable on our television. Some have lamented that fact; others have said that “it doesn’t matter. You can stream what you want on the internet.” For the Brexit vote, that is exactly what I did, all night live on BBC News.

It appears, however, that there is no live streaming of TSN unless one is a TSN subscriber on cable. Since I wanted to watch Milos Raonic live from Wimbledon last Sunday morning, I phoned Telus to get the sports coverage. By the time we’d finished our short conversation, I had a comprehensive new package which gave us most of those channels previously marked “not available.” The nice Telus lady assured me that this was a short-term upgrade and, as a friend had said, I could cancel when we left the apartment.

Wasn’t last Sunday’s sports coverage special? Seeing Milos Raonic battling it out with Britain’s Andy Murray in the Men’s Final at Wimbledon was a real thrill. They say that Raonic wasn’t playing his best game, but, tennis illiterate that I am, I thought he was impressive. I wasn’t even upset that the Brit won. Good news for Britain has been all too rare recently, and they need a break.

And then there was coverage of Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov, only 16 years old, who won the Wimbledon Boys Championship. I had never heard of him, nor of the Canadian junior doubles team of Montreal’s Felix Auger-Aliassime and Benjamin Sigouin from Vancouver who also won their championship game. According to the Globe and Mail, these three are ranked in the top 15 of the world’s players under 18, and there is no other country with so many players in the top 20. Apparently Canada is regarded as “a serious emerging tennis country, if not one of the leading tennis countries now” because of a decision Tennis Canada made in 2007 to invest in player development and not pay down the debt on the new tennis stadium in Toronto.

Later in the day was live coverage of the 2016 Euro Cup from Paris. I have been resolutely avoiding following the Euro Cup up until now. But as a resident of Little Italy in Toronto, excitement about the final game of any international soccer competition resonates. Now that I know the proprietors of Ralph’s Hardware who give so much to the football festivities on College Street, I would not miss the Euro Cup Final for the world.

Given the terrorist attacks last fall and the considerable time we have spent in France over the years, my husband and I were initially cheering for the French. A home team victory would be nice. But then the Portuguese team lost their key player, and the game went on, and on, and on, and the Portuguese goal-keeper prevented so many French goals, and it seemed as if the Portuguese were determined not to give up. Then, in the second half of extra time, Eder scored his goal, and the underdogs prevailed. We knew that our Portuguese friends and neighbours on College Street would be ecstatic. We were happy to share the excitement with them, if only from the west coast.

Having access to CNN this week has been more than sobering. First, there was live coverage of President Obama’s speech on Tuesday during the memorial service for the five police officers slain in Dallas. Yet another moving speech from a gifted orator who appeals to the best of the nation and of the world. Thursday, it was the horrific attack on those celebrating Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice. Developing coverage non-stop all day long. Watching becomes compulsive and is probably not healthy. Like the attack at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, and another in The Pulse nightclub in Orlando, this strikes all too close to home and is heart-breaking. And then yesterday, the attempted military coup in Turkey…. Not so long ago, we visited that glorious country with such pleasure. Now, we watch history in the making, live as it happens. And the future of Turkey is frightful to contemplate. 

Next week is the Republican Convention from Cleveland and, the week after that, the Democrats will be meeting in Philadelphia. Since the likely results from both events are known, watching the conventions is probably unnecessary. But Andrew Coyne has described next week’s convention as “shaping up to be one of the greatest political disasters since the fall of Rome,” and no political junkie will miss it. So we will likely feel compelled to watch all the CNN coverage. We could always press “mute.”

***** For those of you interested in our son’s response to my recent post on the Trudeau government, check out the extended comments from “Bob” you will find there. Clearly, assessing the achievements of the new Canadian government will be a continuing debate.

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  1. 17larry

    “Yet another moving speech from a gifted orator who appeals to the best of the nation and of the world.” Not in my opinion! Without his teleprompter, he stumbles and fumbles – means to me that he’s reading a speech someone else has written for him to read. Doesn’t come from his heart but from his speech writers!


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