Ever watch one of those shows that make fun of Americans and what they think of Canadians? I mean, ha ha, they think we all live in igloos, or ha ha, they think we all drive snowmobiles in July. Except I find I am not doing much ha-ha-ing when I realize that my fellow Canadians - and Albertans - know so little about my region. I find myself saying not "ha ha" but rather "what the hell?"
It's gotten to the point where people in this region are wary of journalists. I've had some visiting journalists comment to me that they were surprised at how reluctant people have been to speak to them, how they have expressed alarm at the idea of speaking to a journalist from the outside media. And my only response is "Well, if somebody came to your house, visited you, ate dinner with you, laughed with you, talked with you, and then went away and wrote a story about how filthy your house is would you throw open the doors to speak to them again?"