OK, so the Bombers are having another nightmare season, the Jets may not play for months and the stories out of city hall are depressing, even to the people who are writing them.
It's tough being a Winnipegger in September, when the nights get cooler, the mood grows sombre and what little that remains of patio time winds up being full of pathos. But this particular September seems gloomier than usual, given recent events in this town, starting with last week's Ruination In Regina, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' 52-0 loss in the Labour Day not-so-Classic.
Yeah, a blowout on a football field should not affect anyone's life. But there's no denying the Bombers' woes, both on and off the field this year, are having some effect on the psyche of the entire city.
With that in mind, I'm going do the only thing I know how to do when I get a little down -- use cheap humour to create emotional distance.
It's a terrible coping mechanism, to be sure. But I have no other excuse for creating another pointless quiz -- albeit one that can net you a Really Lame Prize, should you choose to play along:
What is Giveaway Weekend?
A) Any Saturday or Sunday with a CFL game featuring the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, who've given up a league-leading 26 turnovers this season (as of Saturday).
B) The primary vector for the proliferation of bedbugs in the city of Winnipeg.
C) An opportunity for homeowners to leave unwanted items at the curb.
D) An opportunity for Bomber fans to leave general manager Joe Mack at the curb.
What is the official mission statement for the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service?
A) "To serve and safeguard the community by protecting life, property and the environment through prevention, education, medical and fire services."
B) "To serve and safeguard the community through the timely negotiation of real estate transactions."
C) There is no motto -- only a verbal agreement at this stage.
What is the preferred alignment for the completion of the Southwest Transitway?
A) Straight down Pembina Highway, winding up at at the University of Manitoba.
B) An L-shaped dogleg through Fort Garry residential neighbourhoods, winding up at the U of M.
C) Due west to the new IKEA at the Seasons of Tuxedo development, then north to the new Target at Polo Park.
D) It doesn't matter, as long as there are stops in Ogdenville, North Haverbrook and Brockway. Monorail!
What will Winnipeg Jets fans do if the 2012-13 National Hockey League season is delayed by a lockout?
A) Buy diesel generators, stock up on canned goods and ensure the steel doors on their survival shelters can withstand the mass of rioters who will roam streets during the ensuing apocalypse.
B) Attend Blue Bomber home games just to practise shouting "True North" during the national anthem. If you don't do it every few days, it's easy to forget.
C) Subscribe to HC Dinamo Minsk TV, a specialty cable channel that allows viewers to follow the KHL adventures of former Jet forward Tim Stapleton, now based in Belarus. Only nine rubles a month!
D) Somehow manage the unfathomable prospect of having no NHL team to follow.
Which of the following productions would you be most likely to see next year at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival?
A) Unconventional, starring Clint Eastwood and a random piece of furniture.
B) Honey, I Closed The Iranian Embassy!, starring Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and a ring of weapons-grade plutonium.
C) The Cheque Is In The Mail, starring provincial Health Minister Theresa Oswald and an idle ambulance.
D) The Kids In The Fire Hall, starring Winnipeg chief administrative officer Phil Sheegl and a length of rubber hose.
Which baseball team will the Winnipeg Goldeyes face in the final series of the American Association playoffs?
A) The Wichita Wingnuts, who defeated the Laredo Lemurs in the semifinal.
B) The Topeka Peek Freans, who defeated the El Paso Possums in the semifinal.
C) The Nebraska Nutters, who defeated the Austin Powers in the semifinal.
D) The Kansas City Kooks, who defeated the Brownsville Brown Bats in the semifinal.
E) None of these is a genuine name of a baseball team.
How far will the University of Winnipeg's downtown campus eventually spread?
A) From Memorial Boulevard to Sherbrook Street.
B) From the Red River to Polo Park.
C) Until the shadow of Mordor spreads across all the lands of Middle Earth.
D) To the Horsehead Nebula, approximately 1,500 light years away.
What can the Winnipeg Parking Authority do with the empty, shuttered and structurally sketchy Civic Centre Parkade?
A) Use it to relocate live performances slated for the empty, shackled Cube stage in Old Market Square.
B) Repurpose it as a theme park: Crumbling Infrastructure World!
C) Stage a haunted-house-style reality series, where motorists who spend an entire season inside the structure are rewarded with cash and prizes -- if they can avoid being struck on the head by falling concrete.
Here's how to play
The most creative answer to this quiz will win another Really Lame Prize, which I can assure is something to cherish for entire minutes, if not seconds. Feel free to write in your own answers.
The catch is, you must email me the correct entry and leave contact information. Responses posted in the comments section will be ignored, though feel free to tell me you can't believe they pay me to write this column. That never gets old!
The deadline for entries is whenever the Banjo Bowl seems out of reach for the Bombers. So if you're reading this five minutes after kickoff, my apologies.
Best of luck -- to both you and the Bombers.