DREAMSCAPES Fall/Winter 2017
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CELEBRITY TRAVEL CORNER - RICK MERCER
 
(2011 - Spring Issue)

Writer: Josephine Matyas



“My mother has the password for my Aeroplan account,” quips Canada’s best-known comedian, political satirist and host of the very successful Rick Mercer Reporton CBC television. “She can avail herself of those points. That’s one of the great benefits of my job—I get to keep my mom happy.”

Mercer is no slouch when it comes to doing his own share of time on the road. “I travel so much that I would say in the last eight years we’ve been doing the Rick Mercer ReportI haven’t unpacked my luggage once. I travel half the year with the Mercer Reportand the other half I do live performances around the country. I am at well over 150 flights a year.”

Life on the Road

With all that time in transit, and living from a suitcase (well, actually, it’s a duffel bag), Mercer knows what works to make life on the road bearable.

“I always have a BlackBerry with me—I can’t imagine what would happen if I didn’t have it with me. That’s the number one thing I don’t leave home without,” he says, nervous at the very thought. “And my iPod—loaded with music and podcasts. I always have something in the bag in case I’m stuck in transit.”

The satirist in him has a voracious appetite for political and current events. Mercer consumes both fiction and non-fiction, especially during long flights and waits in the airport.

“Quite often, I’m working on planes,” he says. “I read on the plane—both books and magazines. I’ve always had a shiny paper addiction and airports don’t help. And I read anything political I can find.”

Travelling with a crew of three for the Rick Mercer Reportmeans schlepping around a ton of equipment. Not least of which is a wardrobe attuned to Canada’s sometimes-unpredictable weather. Mercer admits that he usually packs too much, but rationalizes, “you need serious boots and serious pants for our climate.

“When I go into a hotel room the first thing I do is unpack. I try to be organized. I travel with these giant duffel bags and everything, allmy winter clothing is black. The boots are black, the parkas are black, the pants are black. It’s a sea of black—so I have to find the most well-lit part of the hotel room and lay out all my clothes to choose for the upcoming adventure.”

Time Out

With a calendar that’s jam-packed with coast-to-coast travel, it’s no surprise that Mercer chooses home on his time off.

“I’m an ocean guy and a water guy, and in Canada my favourite destination is still St. John’s, because that’s the city I grew up in. I grew up with the ocean down the street and I grew up on a pond. In Newfoundland it’s all about water. I always like getting home—there’s no other place in the country that speaks to me that way. It’s in my bones.”

 
 
 
 
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