No. 493: "Opposites (and Topless Showgirls) Attract"
This spring something atypical will happen in Las Vegas. "It is an important step forward in the evolution of the city," says Robert Goldstein, president of the Venetian Hotel. "It will be a monumental attraction. If it isn't, then something is wrong." What is this new attraction?
Send your answer by 6 p.m. ET Thursday to email@example.com.
Wednesday's Question (No. 492)—"Mountain Pique":
A Globe and Mail poll shows that 64 percent of Canadians oppose Prime Minister Jean Chrétien's decision to rename Mount Logan, the nation's tallest, without consulting the federal names board or the region's Yukon Indians. What new name did Chrétien give the mountain?
"Mount Hitler."—Tim Carvell
"Owing to the sale of surrounding 'quality view' land, unemployed Canadian workers are now lifting the letters T, R, U, M, and P toward the peak."—Peter Lerangis
"Mount I Blow My Nose in Your General Direction, English-Speaking Pigs! Actually the Indians are OK with it, but the names board doesn't want to foot the bill for the new signs."—Steven Davis
"I don't know, but Chrétien answered his critics by saying, 'If my opponent is insinuating that I don't care about mountains, he is wrong.' "—Francis Heaney
"Who cares! The Yankees are in the Series! Bring on the Mets! Subway Series, baby! New Yorkers can now totally navel-gaze without even worrying about the rest of the country, forget about … Canada?"—Anthony Wright
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So you're thinking of climbing Mount Logan, or whatever it's currently called. Before setting out, read some entries in the Mount Logan Summit Log, a feature of an online mountaineering site.
They don't vouch for the accuracy of these entries, but I can assure you that they've been tampered with, probably by me.
"Mark Klassen, Carey Healy, and I had a fantastic trip up the East Ridge. After waiting a miserable 7 days at Kluane Lake, Andy finally got the weather to get us in, and Carey persuaded the Mounty to drop the charges. (It helped that she returned his hat. And car.) It was worth the wait, we had 12 days of fantastic weather with sightlines of which you can only dream. In fact, I'd like to tell you about this really disturbing dream I had just last night. But Carey thinks I shouldn't and she's still got that Mounty's pistol."—B. E. Toronto, Ontario, Canada
"When I was a 'youngster' of 68, I had the privilege of climbing Logan via the King Trench with the youngest Canadian to summit, Jessica Aulik, then 7. We do not agree with the name change ... it will be forever Mt. Logan to us. Nor do we support Canada's reactionary marriage laws. You can't put an age limit on love."—M.W. & J.A. (forever!) Canmore, Alberta, Canada
"First solo of this magnificent mountain. When the media asked me for my thoughts on the trip, I called it the 'endless pig of misery,' now its the fondest memory of my life. Funny how that goes. Then I called the reporter 'a prying fat-faced son of a bitch,' but now I realize that he's stirred something within me I never thought I could feel. I'm kind of sorry I punched him. But like I told the judge, I was pretty oxygen deprived. Then I punched him, too."—D.S., Port Moody, British Columbia, Canada
"I think that Mt. Logan is a beautiful place despite of all the snow that makes it dangerous to climb. And some kind of giant escalator would help, too."—A.C., Ottawa, Canada
"Please tell the Prime Minister of Canada to leave the name of this Mountain alone. It is Mount Logan NOT Mount Trudeau!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've got plenty more exclamation points stockpiled here, and I'm not afraid to use them."—G.F. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Pierre Elliott Trudeau Mountain.
But the prime minister may be backing down. Heritage Minister Sheila Copps said: "Certainly the message that has been sent by Canadians is that we have to make sure that in respecting Mr. Trudeau's memory we do not cause any difficulty for the history of Mount Logan. I hope that we can work together with interested parties to ensure that any move to change any name is respectful of all of the parties involved and does not disrespect the history or the name of any pioneer of Canada."
The mountain in Yukon's Kluane National Park was named in 1890 after Sir William Logan, one of Canada's most esteemed scientists and the founder of the Geological Survey of Canada. Mount Logan is 19,850 feet high. Pierre Trudeau stood about 5 feet 10 inches.
Read more about it here.
Andy Aaron's G.W. Debate Favorites Extra
"If I'm the president, we're going to have emergency room care, we're going to have gag orders …" (???)
"It's one thing about insurance, that's a Washington term." (???)
Randy Cohen used to write Slate's "News Quiz." His most recent book—oh, like you don't know.