Being schooled by the masters

By Kyle Siler

I learned a great deal from many esteemed, honourable members of Parliament over the past few weeks. They prove the ability of democracy to invariably place the most qualified, deserving individuals in positions of power. So, I have proudly applied the principles and morals recently practiced in the House of Commons to student life. If they’re worthy of Canada’s ultimate legislative body, they must be good enough for surviving a semester at the U of C.

From MP Rahim "Matthew Johnston" Jaffer, I learned how to effectively negotiate a scheduling conflict between drinking Kokanee on my couch and a final exam. I simply got a friend to show up and write the exam for me. Since those pictures on U of C ID cards are pretty blurry, and even though my pal is a black woman and I’m a white male, the prof shouldn’t be able to tell the difference. Besides, if questioned, she can always say that "I" had just spent the last few weeks doing field research in Guyana, forgot my SPF 30, got a really nice tan and developed a hankering for the deliciously sweet hormones in birth control pills.

When posed with a history project that I hadn’t the time, desire or ability to research, like Multiculturalism Minister Hedy Fry, I knew that simply making things up would do just fine. So I wrote my paper on: flaming crosses in the lost city of Atlantis, Kobe Beef using beef products that meet pet-food quality standards and tuition freezes in the past decade. Unfortunately, my pretentious prof let their PhD go to their head and told me I’m not allowed to make up stuff that doesn’t really exist. What an outrage! Why can religion get away with it for centuries, and I can’t?

From Joe Clark, I learned that one can fail important exams in university and still ascend to the rank of Prime Minister. Of course, as Joe taught us in 1980, a PM must know how to count to 130 or so, or at least find someone who does so you don’t lose those pesky non-confidence votes and become a nine-month footnote in history. The Liberal caucus taught me that one need not ever show up for work, because if you don’t, your counterparts will just call off the day altogether–so you’re effectively not skipping anything at all! Hence, I vow to skip more classes in their honour. In fact, I’ll apply that excuse retroactively over my entire scholastic career and exonerate my guilty, truant conscience. Finally, the NDP taught me how to be a loveable loser and that winning isn’t everything.

Anyhow, I found myself in the Dean’s office, and it looks like I’m out of here faster than that armed, disgruntled engineer at the U of A (funny how engineers appear to have the same disposition for drinking and "going postal" as postal workers do). When I could withstand no more of his diatribe on "scholarly misconduct", I stood up, screamed a whole lot about nothing, demanded the Dean’s resignation and–still unable to fathom the concept of ever being remotely wrong myself–proclaimed that I have bigger fish to fry. Preston Manning’s seat will soon be vacant, and it’s obvious that I have what it takes to fit in perfectly in Parliament. Ottawa better watch out for me like a Russian diplomat driving home in a hurry after Happy Hour.

And what did I learn from Rob Anders? Sweet F.A.

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