Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hero Worship

Me with Michele Landsberg, a personal hero.
Last night I went to a showing of Miss Representation here in Toronto that was hosted by and Fresh Restaurants. In a curious twist of the universe and its gazillions of electrons, one of my own personal lifelong heroes attended as well. I am beaming with her in the above picture.

If any of you know her then you will not be surprised at her lofty status in my own story. She is a feminist. She was the only feminist in any mainstream Canadian media throughout my childhood. Her weekend columns were shared ritualistically and often aloud at the dining room table by my mother with a pot of coffee on lazy weekend mornings in our pyjamas. My mother often vocally cheered for her. She also often remarked on what a pioneer this woman was. My young fertile ears soaked this in.

I blame my mother, and Michele Landsberg, for my 16 yo daughter coming home one late night last summer and saying: "Thanks Mum, you've made me a feminist and boy am I angry." She was upset by the contradictory manner her male friends treated the females in her larger social group. I knew that my most compelling role as a parent had been fulfilled at that moment. Thanks Mum. Thanks Michele.

A couple of years ago I added Michele as a friend on facebook. My political connections on facebook had grown to the point that her name kept being suggested as a friend. I sent her a message informing her of her pivotal role in my formative years and how honoured I was to be connected virtually with her. She wrote back and thanked me, THANKED ME !?, for giving her the inspiration to keep plodding away finishing her latest book (Writing the Revolution, which is now on my to read shelf).

That message from her impressed me even further. Michele has a long road behind her of inspiring and serving the voices that are misrepresented in our culture. And last night, she shared with me her views on this awareness raising film in a manner that continues to reflect her absolute dedication to humanity: "Everyone needs to see this film."

Namaste Michele. I pledge to light my torch with your flames and soldier on towards the day when we can all stand up and say: WE Represent.


  1. Hey look at you, Orla, with wonderful Michele. Both of you beaming in a really great photo.

    Congrats on your special meeting up. That must have been a thrill ;-)

    1. A total thrill Ursula :) And check out my mum's blog...she left the next comment!

  2. OMG! I am drooling with envy, but I think birthing you and then you meeting Michele has fulfilled my life's purpose.

  3. On my facebook wall Michele pointed out how easy it is to arrange your own showing of this film. The licencing fee is $750 (I think)...there is a button their website that you can email to make inquiries. She really does want everyone to see it and I agree :)


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