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Subway to the Stars

Volume 31, Issue 7,8 & 9, September 21, 2017
By

David Jure, Victoria

     I think one of the reasons I get so bored in Oak Bay is that I know it like the back of my hand, stemming back to days when I used to walk these streets on my way to and from UVic in 1970. Now I often can be found in Subway on Fort Street trying in my own way to snare the spot light with these perdurable figures and characters that come and go at the mental institution, the EMI where I was once an unwilling patient.
     I nurse a senior’s coffee and give thanks that for once I am at liberty. It’s bucolic enough. Perhaps too bucolic – not what you’d like a mad house to be on a sunny day in late August.
     But I could tell you chilling winter tales of horror that would make the average Game of Thrones fan clench his jaw. Enough! For now it’s a game of scones.
     The Pirates of the Caribbean are the two dozen schizophrenics who call the stolid bunker the Caribbean Apartments home. I lived there once back in the nineties. Johnny Depp, the chief pirate is King Geoffrey, tall gaunt, bearded with looks like a leading character out of an Italian opera in his grey suit and pointed shoes. He can usually be found dogging the Starbucks across the street, on an eternal hunt for a cigarette, rings on every long finger.
     The Eric Martin building itself with its many long, oblong windows could be an airport somewhere, anywhere, as many personal flights have crashed there, and many careers such as mine have taken off there.
     I return to these grounds time after time out of mute desperation to look for mute altered Paul, sardonic Michael, sarcastic Steve, passive Don Stone in an effort to tell myself I am still the director of The Winter Tale and these are Royal Shakespearean Victoria players. I can hear myself think there.
     Better than the other morning downtown where I was rudely pushed out of the way by a youth who did not know me from Adam. After all the world should pay more attention to me. I feel between sets at Save on Foods because history is being made there once a week in the form of Movie Monday, Bruce Saunders cinematic enterprise.
     I come and go there, just good old Dave. Put on the empire or vision, the free movies, cheap popcorn, and colourful crowd every Monday.
     Movies at a madhouse, why not? Push the envelope and mingle with the severely depressed denizens of the EMI area. I double dare you. Bruce and I co-founded the space that became Movie Monday in 1989 and as we speak I am sitting at the smoking bench with Ken and Dan discussing fentanyl, life and death, apple cider vinegar, natural remedies and self-love.
     Today I have come full circle, and I won’t worry about being bored for the notice. Up to a point. The rest is up to me to cure myself of addictive behaviour and move on and show my own movies at Movie Monday for a change.