An encounter with a federal cabinet minister

After my mom, dad and I had finished dropping my sister off at the Kelowna International Airport so that she could catch her flight back to Calgary, AB, where she is studying business at the University of Calgary‘s Haskayne School of Business, we went to Costco to buy a few household staples and food stuffs. While waiting near the big box wholesale store’s entrance for Dad to return with the shopping cart, Mom and I walked up and down one of the aisles in the consumer electronics section, looking at flat-panel high-definition plasma, LCD, and DLP television sets. In the midst of comparing notes amongst the two of us on one brand of TV versus another, Mom quietly pointed out to me someone of some national prominence in the next row. I looked over and immediately recognized this person as Stockwell Day, a senior Conservative federal cabinet minister within the 28th Canadian Ministry headed up Prime Minister Stephen Harper. (Day is Minister of Public Safety, the minister with political responsibility for the federal Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada, Canada Border Services Agency, CSIS, the RCMP, and several other ancillary committees and agencies within the department’s mandate.)

Although I don’t like Day’s politics, I couldn’t help but being a bit “star struck” (even though he is also the member of Parliament for the federal electoral district in which I reside) at the moment I noticed him shopping in Costco, with someone who appeared to be a family relative. It’s not every day you run into a federal cabinet minister, even if they are also your area’s MP. It’s especially remarkable since we were shopping at the Costco store on Highway 33 in Kelowna, part of the Kelowna-Lake Country electoral district whereas both Day and I reside across the bridge in the Okanagan-Coquihalla electoral district – and in two separate cities (Penticton and Westbank, respectively) to boot!

It was an interesting experience and one of personal satisfaction for me, even if I do think he’s too inexperienced and poorly suited to the position in cabinet that he holds. A more junior position like National Revenue or Western Economic Diversification would be better suited to Day’s educational background (or lack thereof) and experience.

Have you had an encounter with a federal cabinet minister or someone famous in general? Share your experience(s) below by leaving a comment. Or, write to me at dmehus [at] gmail [dot] com (replace [at] and [dot] with the appropriate symbols in the text entry field of your favourite e-mail client).

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4 thoughts on “An encounter with a federal cabinet minister

  1. What hit me as I read your blog, was that this high-profile citizen is still a regular human being–he shops at Costco for things he needs. We may not always agree with politicians, but we have to give them credit for taking on what is generally a thankless job. I would have felt the same way, Doug.

  2. Old Swell Day and I have always had strong differences of opinion, but have always been fairly polite on the surface in person – except for one day perhaps last fall when we were both waiting to make a left turn on Gordon, facing each other in our vehicles. That was a glaring match and a half until the light turned. Funny, no sense of being star struck.

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