Did you partake in 74 in the 70’s? 74 was an inexpensive port wine very popular with financially challenged high school students. It was cheap, but it got the job done. Another favourite was the cost-effective jug of Golden Glow apple cider. We would chip in on a bottle of Golden Glow and use the dregs to fill the bottom of our water pipe. If we were on a spending spree, then we would splurge on a bottle of Cracklin Rose. A bottle of Cracklin Rose was considered classy because it had a non-screw-off cap. Legend has it that Neil Diamond’s Cracklin Rosie was not a love song but inspired by a bunch of winos drinking the bubbly around a campfire. Those were the days of wine and roses.
Drinking cheap wine was not without complications. If you gave a novice a few slugs of cheap port, then they would follow you anywhere or do just about anything you asked. This, of course, was a good thing if you happened to be the one controlling the port. If on the other hand, you were the one getting fed the cheap port,then all you ended up getting was screwed (non-figuratively of course).
My mind is a bit fussy when it comes to the 70’s, but I believe the euphemism “getting caught with your pants down” represents what those in control of the port managed to do to those they coerced into feeding off the buzz of the port. Coincidently, this was at the same time we were introduced to “non-disclosure agreements”. I would love to tell you the truth behind some of the stories of the day, but I am sworn to secrecy. You will just need to take my word for it, but believe me when I say that I have your best interests at heart. Now take another drink from my glass, bend over and brace yourself.
Fast forward to present day Cape Breton. Unfortunately, we are still being force fed cheep cheep port files. Yes, it’s the latest buzz, but secrecy and non-disclosure agreements continue to keep us in the dark. If you want to be a member of the CBRM team, then you need to drink the port. Otherwise, you are branded as a whiner taking a cheap shot from the cheap seats.
It appears that the only thing that has changed in CBRM since the 70’s are the names of the people in control of the port file. At least with Cape Breton’s new coal mine, we know there is a shaft involved.
If you want more buzz on all things current in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, then check out The Cape Breton Spectator.