I have been watching a lot of television in Vancouver. Not because thats the most fun thing to do in Vancouver: it isnt, by a very long way. Vancouver is lovely, and filled with cultural things and interesting people and incredible food. But I am here to work, and doing mainly that, sandwiched between sleeping and eating. And watching television. And so end up seeing more adverts and trailers for local attractions and headlines for local news than I have seen in years.
Of course, local news is pretty much the same everywhere – it is about bringing small local stories and making them important enough to sit next to the global news stories, and about making the global news stories as local as possible.
That doesnt, however, always work. Todays trailer for the eleven oclock news had me giggling for half the evening. It was the epitome of taking a big, global story, and making it just slightly too local.
Were you feeling a little crowded out there today? Well, that might be because today, the global population hit seven billion. We ask a local city planner what thats going to mean for the Lower Mainland…
Now, I didnt watch the news item in question, but Im going to guess not much.
The population of the ENTIRE WORLD has increased arbitrarily and theyre going to ask a bloke from the council what measures theyre taking to counter this in the Greater Vancouver area? And what are they expecting?
Well, since that 7 BILLIONTH person was born, weve decided to add a new cycle lane.
Were increasing the bus frequency during peak commuting hours. Just in case those SEVEN BILLION PEOPLE decide to go to work downtown at the some time.
Were building some new condos. Not quite SEVEN BILLION, but about 30, so, yknow, were on the way.
It is my favourite localnewsism this week.
And thats even in the face of the one about the local family whose house burnt down (this was sad) and who couldnt find their pet ferrets anymore.
They werent sure if they were dead.
They just couldnt find them.
(It was a very sad story, but there may have been slightly too much emphasis on the ferret detail, given that they lost EVERYTHING).
I will miss the local news of Canada.
I will miss Canada as a whole. But I will miss the local news possibly most of all.
It is a little like my ferret.