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A Room Full of Can Do!

Any time I can have supper at Mercado is a super treat. The bistro in Mission – and its sister up on the West Hill – distill Italian fare at the highest standard true to tradition.

Carlo Belluschi and Brian Peterson started a men’s dinner there back in 2005. They invited 16 in their contact list.
All 16 showed up.

Dominic, the owner manager, conspired to lay on some superb wine [acquired through Carlo’s Vendemmia] and bisteca fiorentina. There was no agenda – this was not “consciousness raising” of the male gender. Just free-form talk.

The volume increased as the courses came and the vino flowed.

Last night was the latest installment. As the golden light on 4th street floods in the west window of the street corner establishment, the invitees pull on the heavy door, shuck their cloaks, check in at the podium, prise a glass of Prosecco and get into the mix.

What a crew! Drawing initially on contacts from Brian’s merchant capital biz and Carlo’s wide ranging friends through his exotic food and wine brokerage plus exemplary work with the Calgary Health Trust, the list has pushed out to encompass a fair cut of the entrepreneurial class of the city. 50 biz hotshots + convivial setting + wine + stellar food = one bin full of energy.

Even with the dire state of Calgary’s economy. Don Braid – the Herald’s perceptive commentator – said of a morning that leaders of 3 major National parties are dedicated to the destruction of the Calgary oil patch.

This bunch are bearing the brunt of that attack.

They are bowed but not broken. The spirit of this city is resilient – it’s a can-do vortex: we’re used to taking on the imposing, even the impossible.

Canada needs this bunch. The current election highlights how much the collective drive underpins this country and how much it has been taken for granted – even blunted – by the climate rescuers. When I go to BC, I’m staggered by how many people have been commuting to Fort McMurray for remunerative work. Then they come home and save the Pine beetled wastes of central BC at the expense of transporting what they have extracted. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you!

This night? I meet:

  • a disciplined insurance broker, runner of marathons, battling cyber interruption for his clients
  • Young leaders of a new consortium of companies tying in pipelines to move condensate from the NW Alberta gas fields to market
  • merchant bankers like Brian struggling to field investment capital for growing companies in a domain deserted by former sources of funding
  • and Carlo! Seizing his podium for a moment: pumping the crowd for more sponsors of his beloved Calgary Health Trust

Can this pluck endure another national government nakedly bent on their demise? Based on the charge in that room, I’d say so….because that’s what they do!

  • persevere
  • outlast
  • overcome…

and most importantly, get the needed energy of this country where people can use it.


Doug Bouey
Catalyst Strategic Consultants Ltd.

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What’s Our Business?

Bringing out the best in you, your company and your people.

Doug Bouey, President
Catalyst Strategic Consultants Ltd.

Calgary, AB // Phone: 403.777.1144


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