Wednesday, September 29, 2010


“If you really want to piss off the
people of Quebec you’ve got to
say these things in French,”

Mark Critch
22 Minutes

Premier Williams  joined the comedy crew at 22 Minutes last evening.

The premier is a familiar face on the CBC comedy show that is caulker blocked with Newfoundland talent.  The last time we saw Mark Critch and Williams together, the premier was recovering from his heart surgery and he was attempting to teach Critch how to part his hair to the side.

This time Critch talks to the premier about his ongoing battle for equity over power production and distribution from the Churchill River. Critch suggests that Williams needs to deliver his comments in french in order for them to have any real impact in Quebec.

Unlike Jane Taber, I found the skit funny. The Premiers ability to use deprecating/ depreciating   humor is one of the things that has earned him so much respect and support in Newfoundland and in Labrador. I particularly got a chuckle when the Premier complains that the crayons on his side of the class are smaller and older than the ones found in the other side of the class. Classic political satire. I'll tell you what I think is cringe-worthy, the PQ's belief that NHL hockey players should have to be francophones.

Seriously, in what universe is this episode not pee-your-pants hilarious?

Williams, still feeling like he is 35,  has turned down an offer to join the show on a full time basis. Frankly, he is enjoying the job of Premier too much and intends to lead his party into the October 2011 election. He is donating his pay from the show to his charity.


Anonymous said...

Hate to rain on your danny is god parade but when did the old man find time to film this segment? In between carefully scripted helicopter tours of the devastation.

Is it possible that the man of the people was filming this skit while thousands of his residents were without power, food, water and roads?

WJM said...

Mark Critch is notoriously unfunny.

That said, the "hairstyling" skit he did with Danny in Florida last winter, was funny... mainly because of Danny. He can actually ham it up pretty good.

This one, though... for once I'm with Taber.

Anonymous said...

I guess I wondered if the laughs were at the expense of the kids? Is that the attitude we want to teach them? I thought schools ascribed to higher standards than using a classroom of little kids so that a politician could be in the limelight and a show with falling ratings could get a cheap laugh.

Peter L. Whittle said...

I was expecting some criticism of the "suck hole" and "shaft" comments before a bunch of kids.

I think the kids will only remember that they were on TV with Danny Williams.

I thought the crayon part was really good.

Anonymous said...

Williams is making himself out to be a clown, re-enforcing stereotypes about goofy newfies and exposing himself as a shallow populist.

Instead of boosting his ego you might want to remember that this stupid skit was taped while most people in this province were trying to get over the worst natural disaster ever.

He is a clown and your all clowns who praises up his foolish behavior.

Mark said...

Peter, I agree with you on his "depreciating" humour.

What an apt description.

Anonymous said...

At least he didn’t use the word ”defecated” Hmmm, maybe that would have been more fitting.

Peter L. Whittle said...

You might be interested in the following from Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day:

deprecate; depreciate.

The first of these has increasingly encroached on the figurative senses of the second, while the second has retreated into financial contexts. ”Deprecate” means ”to disapprove earnestly” — e.g.: ”There must be a proper balance between urban and rural, industrial and agricultural development. And a spirit of excessive tolerance is to be deprecated.” Jonathan Romney, ”Apollo 13,” New Statesman & Society, 22 Sept. 1995, at 29.

”Depreciate,” transitively, means ”to belittle, disparage”; and intransitively, ”to fall in value” (used in reference to assets or investments). The phrase ”self-deprecating” is, literally speaking, a virtual impossibility, except perhaps for those suffering from extreme neuroses. Thus ”self-depreciating,” with ”depreciate” in its transitive sense, has historically been viewed as the correct phrase — e.g.: ”Sadly, Grizzard did not have the self-depreciating humor of a Jeff Foxworthy, the self-proclaimed redneck comedian.” Bill McClellan, ”If Southern Writer Were Judging the Games, What Would His Verdict Be?” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 25 July 1996, at B1.

Unfortunately, though, the form ”self-deprecating” — despite its mistaken origins — is now 50 times as common in print as ”self-depreciating.” Speakers of American English routinely use ”self-deprecating.” However grudgingly, we must accord to it the status of standard English — e.g.:”Milken doesn’t drive himself much anymore, but he has a self-deprecating explanation for why that’s the case: He says he used to do so many things while driving that he kept having collisions.” Jeanie Russell Kasindorf, ”What to Make of Mike,” Fortune, 30 Sept. 1996, at 86.

BTW, Garner’s Modern American Usage is a handy book to have within arm’s reach.

Anonymous said...

They mean essentially the same thing. If anything depreciated is closer in meaning to the current usage. Honestly, has anyone every been confused by using one or then other almost identical word?

WJM said...

I was expecting some criticism of the "suck hole" and "shaft" comments before a bunch of kids.

Really, though.

At least Roger dropped his f-bomb in front of adults.

Mark said...

" except perhaps for those suffering from extreme neuroses"

That's two apt descriptions in one day.

Please, keep going.

Edward Hollett said...

Do politicians get paid for these appearances?

Peter L. Whittle said...

No, no, that was my attempt at satire.

Anonymous said...

A five spot says Peter doesn't publish this one!...

Mark Critch got it right at the end of the sketch when he called the Premier "arsehole" at the principals office, and in a previous sketch at the hair salon when he also dropped the bomb on Danny.

Question now is" Miss!...Miss!...How do you tell the people of Bonavista and Burin Peninsula's to "Start swimming"?


Commencer a nager!

Edward Hollett said...

The whole piece was satire or just that paragraph with the reference to the obviously sensitive age issue and the money in it?

Anonymous said...

For the record, the piece wasfilmedtwo weeks ago, well before Igor.

My nephew was in the class

WJM said...

Seriously, in what universe is this episode not pee-your-pants hilarious?

If it was pee-your-pants funny, you may want to see a urologist.

If you can find one.

Jay L said...

You lose the bet, Anon 240.

Why not send the five spot to the VOCM/Salvation Army campaign for hurricane relief. Every little bit helps.

Verification word: ingrati.

Greg said...

The Government of Quebec will probably demand an apology from the CBC (like the Maclean's cover story).

I don't find much on THH22M to be funny. Stopped watching it when Mercer and Walsh left.