The Agenda guest Smudge Swann

Smudge & James

I know Smudge Swann as a talented singer-songwriter and composer of film/tv music here in Toronto. At one point or another, all of us creative music types eventually meet here in Toronto. But what I’ve also learned recently is that she has a Ph.D in Economics, and most importantly she has dedicated a huge part of her life to being an advocate for a safe blood supply.

Smudge talked about her advocacy in length on a recent episode of the Agenda with Steve Paiken. It’s over 20 years now since Canada suffered one of its worst health crisis’ ever – the tainted blood scandal. Smudge’s husband, James, was one of the many victims of this terrible tragedy. This episode of the Agenda brilliantly discusses all of this…I strongly urge you to watch it…

As is revealed in the Agenda broadcast, Smudge and the rest of the world lost James on May 14, 2009. Over breakfast, Lisa and I just happened to be watching this episode on May 14, 2015. As Smudge pointed out this anniversary, Lisa and I collectively felt a lump in our throats as we realized what day it was.

I spent last week writing a blog post about wanting to die at the same time as Lisa in our old age. This week, I feel like that’s a fairy tale and that we will all go when fate, or the incompetence and cruelty around us will want us to go.

The odds of us leaving this life at the same time is highly unlikely. So I’ve decided to use Smudge & James as my role models. I will encourage Lisa to go on and do everything she feels passion for in case I go first. If Lisa goes first, then I will do everything in my power to continue on the fine things Lisa and I started together with great zeal.

After getting to know Smudge these past bunch of months and watching this episode of the Agenda, I now know that James’ fine work will continue to live on thanks to Smudge.

Smudge, thank you for reminding us about what love can accomplish!

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