So we need a new Metro Centre?

Alright, let's look around the globe at the greatest and most famous venues in the world. The kinds of places that make cultural history. We want the biggest and the best.

Near home there's Toronto, those pricks, 5.5 million in the Greater Toronto Area---they can afford anything. They have the Roy Thompson Hall with seating for millions...well actually 2,630. Oh well, they also have Massey must be Massey-ive...oh, 2,752 butts maximum.

Well, they just don't do it like they do in New York City, the centre of the world. We all know how to get to Carnegie Hall---practice. But how many can go there? 2,800. Are you kidding? It's the most famous hall in the world! And NYC has over nine million people. Well, the great masses can always slum it over at Lincoln Center where the Metropolitan Opera house can hold...3,900? It must be all the crowding on that little island they bought from the First Peoples. It's not like that in the great open spaces in Australia. Their famous opera house can hold...2,670. What? I've seen that picture a thousand times. I thought it was huge. Must be concert hall envy.

Those colonists. They just can't do it like back in the old country. London has the only venue really worth crowing about, or singing about, like The Beatles did in "A Day in the Life." I don't know the answer to the musical question "how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall" but surprisingly it only takes 5,544 bums to fill all the seats.

If the pattern to all this is still elusive, 2,442 of us could go on down to the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, DC for a symposium on what makes a great cultural venue. Or maybe we could go all the way to Tokyo, but it's so crowded there that only 1,999 of us could fit in their concert hall. They've got nothing on Beijing, with the Olympics coming up the Chinese are going all out. The National Centre for the Performing Arts in China can hold a seething mass of 2,017 people.

And as the tiny squeaking voice of reason is just barely audible over the flatulent sound of old boys clearing their throats to sing one more chorus of "build it and they will come," we all realize that what we need, what would be nice to see, what we should have, what we want and what we can afford are so different than what they want to sell us that they all start to look like drooling Homer Simpsons with glazed-over eyes, repeating over and over "ummm steak" as they stare off into an imaginary place where they are at the head of a giant banquet table surrounded by sycophants and cronies while an endless supply of convention-centre style meals roll along a conveyer belt powered entirely by their own monstrous sense of self satisfaction and they dine on the public dime for ever and ever and ever.

But just as the public rouses from their slumber and begins to wonder what the heck is going on, the drooling Homers pull the emergency alarm and someone yells, "Monorail!!!"

Well, sir, there's nothing on earth like a genuine, bona fide, electrified, six-car, monorail!

What'd I say? Monorail!

By John Wesley Chisholm

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