For non-Canadians, this quick Newfie Primer may prove valuable. The Newfie is a proud citizen of Canada’s maritime playground – Newfoundland – also known as The Rock. This coastal, craggy island is the size of Montana but with half the people (500,000) and you’ll need to swap the cowboy hat for a pair of rubber boots. Since John Cabot landed on the shores of Cape Bonavista in 1497, the Newfie has been the fisher of cod. Until 1992 that is, when cod stocks hit rock bottom and a government moratorium on the little flipper took every net out of the water. It was like telling a fish he couldn’t swim. Out of tragedy comes comedy however, and the Newfie is blessed with perhaps the best sense of humor in the country. They stand out with their infectious laugh and dialect, a combination of Bristol English, Cork Irish and a Scottish kilt flapping in the wind. This is the backdrop for the gullible, happy-go-lucky hero of our tale, Gord McDougall. “Newfie, Come Home!” is a fun-filled, fictional walk down a very short plank to the splash of laughter.Gord visits his father in the hospital after the elder McDougall decided to end it all with a shot of Skreech and a handful of pills, including Flintstone vitamins. But Gord’s dad survives and sees the error of his ways. He tells Gord that he should live life large and go out big. Gord misunderstands his father’s advice, thinking that in order to be somebody … he must kill himself. What follows is a series of misadventures where Gord’s quest for suicide inevitably finds him inside a terrorist cell. International incidents abound with Gord standing front row center. Is it time for this Newfie to finally come home?
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David Belisle is a novelist and screenwriter in search of the next Great Guffaw. Like getting splashed with a bucket of Gatorade, it’s a good time that sticks with you. A Scrabble-playing, fantasy sports buff, the Calgary-based Belisle has sharpened his pencils in New York, Nebraska and the always fun to pronounce Flin Flon, Manitoba.