Friday, August 23, 2013

A public apology to Eddie Izzard

Dear Eddie Izzard,

During one of your May 2010 shows at Massey Hall in Toronto, you asked the audience who or what Massey Hall was named after.  Various people shouted out various things, and, to our utter delight, you picked up on our answer of "Vincent Massey."  You asked who he was, we replied "Governor General", you asked what that was, we replied "Queen's representative", and then you segued neatly into your thoughts on the monarchy, pausing only to remark that some guy on the other side of the audience kept randomly shouting out "Tractors!"

I've only just learned we gave you completely incorrect information.  Vincent Massey was in fact Governor General of Canada, but in the 1950s.  Massey Hall was built in the 1890s, before Vincent Massey was even born. Its construction was funded by Hart Massey, Vincent Massey's grandfather, with a family fortune made by, among other things, manufacturing tractors.

I apologize unreservedly for giving you incorrect information and causing you to repeat it publicly as though it were fact.  All I can say is that it simply never occurred to us that Massey Hall might not be named after the most famous Massey, after whom so many other things are named.   Obviously I should have been more careful.  When we see you again in November, if you should choose to pose any questions to the audience, I promise to only answer if I'm certain, not if I just think I have a logical extrapolation from common knowledge.

I would also like to apologize profusely to the people who were saying "tractors".  You were completely right and we were completely wrong, and yet we stole your moment from you and made your Eddie Izzard experience less perfect. I truly do hope you'll be able to get your own moment in November.  Maybe Eddie will ask the same question again (it seems like the sort of thing that might be part of a standard show-opening arsenal), and you can give your answer and we'll all get a different choose your own adventure.

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