ZOOMER Magazine

From the Editor-inChief & Publisher

- Suzanne Boyd

Ifirst saw my favourite photograph of Diana on one of the countless Instagram accounts dedicated to her life and style. It is of unknown provenance and copyright so am unable to include it in this special issue to mark her legacy, on what would have been her 60th birthday. The image is of a teenaged Lady Di, dressed up in a strapless evening gown, sitting on a couch alone in a majestic, gilded living room. Her head, with its familiar feathered haircut, is bowed over a magazine that she is intently reading, with a newspaper folded neatly on the floor beside her.

The image has an effect on me: I assume it is at Althorp, the Spencer family seat, and fantasize that the sound of grand guests enjoying after-dinner drinks in another room is just a whisper. That the woman who would never be Queen left the party too soon. And that before her face was on the tea towels and the outside world came roaring in, Diana could never have imagined just how many column inches her journey would engulf. Her life was abruptly ended, but its complete mediatizat­ion before and after that horrific 1997 August night, changed the monarchy and the world.

The force of Diana’s personalit­y and purpose moved social mores around stigma, and affected geopolitic­s by leading the charge to eliminate a lasting scourge of war. She’s memorializ­ed in one of the largest murals of its kind in the world, commission­ed by a Surrey, B.C. business to mark the millennium. “The faces chosen are representa­tive of legends and heroes with longevity,” said the artist Paul Ygartua, who placed Diana in the work among a pantheon of other historic luminaries who defined the last century. Some by their actions modeled an unassailab­le moral authority, others exemplifie­d deep wells of humanity, but, as Leanne Delap writes in her tour de force cover story, “Princess of Heart,” Diana represente­d both and remains ever relevant – a beacon and a lesson.

I hope you can find inspiratio­n in Diana’s trajectory – of always reaching for meaning and happiness despite the sometimes debilitati­ng struggles along the way. As we as a country fight our way back to some sort of normalcy, investigat­ive journalist Alex Roslin returns to our pages with an overview of Ontario’s Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission Final Report, “Too Little, Too Late,” and, heartbreak­ingly, the title of the story says it all. Older Asian Canadians must still contend with a rise in xenophobic and racist attacks, misguidedl­y fuelled by the pandemic, as lifestyle journalist and actor Pay Chen powerfully recounts in “The Burden of Hate.”

But, good things will come. Perhaps you’ll be able to hang out unfettered with those grandchild­ren, enjoying the type of visits Jay Teitel reminisces about in “No Greater Love.” Make it a point to maximize summer’s simple pleasures. In “Keep on Truckin,’” it’s the open road; in “Northern Lights,” it’s good food, hopefully enjoyed outdoors and, in “Here Comes The Sun,” it’s basking in the light, albeit safely. For, as the song says, “It seems like years since it’s been here.”

 ??  ?? Clockwise from above: Ygartua’s mural; Diana’s iconic walk through a minefield in Angola, 1997; her 1987 handshake with an AIDS patient in London was seismic
Clockwise from above: Ygartua’s mural; Diana’s iconic walk through a minefield in Angola, 1997; her 1987 handshake with an AIDS patient in London was seismic
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