The CN Tower Needs You
The CBC is currently in the middle of another attempt to unite this geographically sprawling, culturally diverse nation with a common thread, this time through a search for the Seven Wonders of Canada. Although these attempts sometimes come across as forced and a bit hokey, this seems like a pretty decent effort, with 52 nominees from coast to coast competing for the honour.
The list of nominees contains a relatively balanced collection of inventions, natural landscapes, and built structures. Ontario, with seven entries, has the most of any province, although British Columbia and Quebec are tied for second with six each.
Two of the entries are in Toronto: Mum's House in Scarborough, a metaphor for Canada as a promised land for immigrants and the hard-working nature we like to think of as one of our national traits, and our soon-to-be-demoted tallest free-standing structure in the world, the CN Tower. Like any good Torontonian, I included the tower in my vote, not just because it's the sentimental choice, but because I really do think it's a fantastic symbol of Toronto and of Canada.
Like one of the people who wrote to the CBC, I always smile when I look up at the tower. The other week, when I got turned around in High Park trying to find the Cherry Blossom party, I used it as a compass to get my bearings, finding the crowd a few minutes later. And despite the stick-of-concrete criticism with which people often assault it, I think it's one of the more inspiring and beautiful structures in the city. This blend of form, function, and utility is a rare combination, certainly one worthy of "Wonder" status.
The fact that the CN Tower has stood as the tallest building in the world for over thirty years is an accomplishment in itself; records, after all, are meant to be broken. When I voted, the CN Tower was in a four-way tie for the 7th, so if you have love for that great phallic symbol by the lake, head on over the CBC help it out by giving it your vote.
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