Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 27 > Page 23 - Rita MacNeil of Big Pond

Page 23 - Rita MacNeil of Big Pond

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1980/12/1 (1281 reads)
 

(So there was a part of your life when you had that kind of doubt, and you didn't have Rita MacNeil's songs to give you strength--how did you handle that?) I didn't handle it very well, I didn't at all, I was terrible, I would cry all the time, I would be just terribly, terribly sobbed out, and just blown away by the things that were expected of women--and I always have been--but didn't know where to put it and thought. Well, that's how it is. So I'll just follow along and try to fit in. (What did you think was expected of a wom? an, that so blew you away?) Well, maybe you knew different types of women from me-- so I can only speak for myself, and a mil? lion others. You were expected to get mar? ried- -I think that was the key thing. You get married. You have children. You try and settle down and be a housewife, which is wonderful if that's what you want to do--but if you have a gnawing in the back of your mind that you're not satisfied with just this.... I mean, I was years trying to put my mind at rest and settle down to that. And you can take courses, you can do this, you can do that--but there's something there. Before I was mar? ried, it was worse. I think you fall into the trap, the pressures of society on you to look a certain way, to be a certain way, to act a certain way. It's how I lived. I moved away to Toronto. I was always buying clothes--that, I think, was very important to me. I worked at Eaton's for seven years in an office of all women. I would say the most important thing was what you had on the next day and how you looked. Impres? sing other people. (So you weren't in Tor? onto for your singing career?) Oh,' no, no, no. I wanted to go out and have fun, par? ties and clothes and follow all the com? mercials and all the magazines--yes, that's the type I was at the time. But I knew something was wrong. This can't be it. The women's movement gave me my first kick. I had a very good friend in Toronto, Chris? tina- -a very aware woman. And I used to love to sit and listen to her. I was going through very bad times, and one of the points she brought up was, maybe you'd better look outside of this and find out what the problem is, and I think if you would join a women's group you would find that you're not alone, and you will be able to work with your problems a lot more easily and you'll have a lot more support. And that you haven't found, developed what you can do yourself, and that working in the marriage framework was good, but there's also something for Rita. I was al? ways dissatisfied. Because I knew I wasn't giving or getting--just something there. So I did join the women's group in Toronto, terrified as I was, but I went anyway. (You were terrified...?) Oh yeah, bunch of wom? en getting together. The only thing I'd been together for, for women, was showers and hen parties or whatever--and I had no idea they were meeting on another level. I went an3rway, and that's when I was blown away. ("Blown away" is a little vague....) Well, yes, it is vague--blovm away. Okay. When I went in, I walked upstairs, on Ad- ' elaide Street, and it was a dingy, dingy, dark building, and,I went to the top floor Joe's V ferehouse Tlie Food Emporium Cape Breton's Newest and Largest Restaurant SPECIALIZING IN AGED PRIME CUTS OF ROAST BEEF AND STEAK & Smooth Herman's Lounge You will be surrounded by a collection of some of Cape Breton's finest antiques. Live Entertainment Nigiitly| 424 Charlotte Street 539-6686 539-0408 RESTAURANT LOUNGE BANQUET FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE Hockey - Fishing - Hunting - Baseball 4 Plus All Sports Ltd. Port Hawkesbury 625-3744 Mon, Tue, Wed, Sat 9-5; Thur, Fri 9-9 Bernie Warner (Owner) ' % CAMEO CARDS GIFT SHOP Collect the many treasures of the work Explore Cameo and you'll discover . . . Wicker from China, crystal from Czechoslovakia, cane chairs from Italy figurines from Germany, Bone China from England and much more. VISIT OUR SECOND FLOOR ART GALLERY CAMEO Card& Gift Shop Z38 Charlotte St., Sydney, 539-4718 "Walk around the corner - Shop around the world'' (23)
Cape Breton's Magazine
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