Thursday, August 21, 2008

for digby

This is the greatest minute of video I've ever seen. I have just watched it six times in a row. Please. Please watch this. Please do this for me.

And...there. I just watched it again.

Monday, August 18, 2008

wish you didn't have to go, no no no no

My sincerest apologies to anyone reading this*.

*This, this summer, has been a four month long drought of creativity for me. I haven't been updating frequently (or writing at all for that matter), but not because I have been too busy for it. The opposite, actually. It's been four months of stasis, repetition, the same, the same, wait, something different?, no, actually, the same again, circles, circles and circles, circles without cracks. And it hasn't exactly made for the juiciest material.

I could put down in words my opinions on the Olympics (opinions including but not limited to: Michael Phelps' obnoxious dolled-up mother, the laughable coverage on NBC, dislocated elbows, etc), but nobody cares.

Or I could tell you all about these tv shows I've been watching with intense dedication (Skins, Mad Men), usually running through a single season in a single day, but everybody's already seen them.

Or I could brag about all the books I've devoured this summer during all my time off, but (surprise!) I've barely read any. Instead I go to the Goodwill by my house at least twice a week and search through its impressive book section, usually coming out with about three or four titles each time for $2 a piece, and then I take them home and stack them precariously on the dresser in my bedroom.

So that's my nutshell summer. My summer has been a stack of dirty used books that is always just on the brink of toppling.

Any second now.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

ontario's --pit--.

I've visited countless cities (mostly east, never west), lived in about four (faux-London being the latest map dot), and only ever dreamed of one (my big British fantasy). Toronto doesn't count in my calculations. Toronto never counts. It's always been the city that's a short patch of highway and a subway ride away from me; sufficiently far enough away that it doesn't qualify as home, and yet close enough nearby that it doesn't hold any appeal as a foreign object. I love travelling to cities on vacation solely for the pleasure of throwing myself into an unfamiliar map and quickly untangling my way through it-- I had the New York City subway memorized in half an hour. It's taken me 22 years to figure out the TTC, and even then I still have absolutely no idea what goes on east of Yonge Street.

Toronto was never my city, my vision. Funny, then, that I find myself now about to fully commit to this civic space for the next two years (at least). I just handed over the rent deposit today. I've just adopted this place.

I spent about two months scouring craigslist ads, peering for annoyingly bright orange rental signs in windows, and calling landlords who were quick to give me rehearsed dismissals. Apartments were seen and discounted, apartments were frantically applied for and just as quickly given to other (better?) applicants (families with children, young professionals, junior architects and the lot). The process of apartment hunting in downtown Toronto--bearing in mind that my preferred area to live in is a relatively small rectangular boundary (there's no way I can live north of Bloor! I'll get stabbed if I'm south of Dundas! The world just drops off west of little italy!)-- proved to be harder than most. It was easier to get into grad school than it was to secure a suitable place to live in the city: ultimately, success at this task came down to a mix of being both "good on paper" and personable in person, and neither is particularly easy. We looked, and found, and tried, and lost, over and over again. Desperation dug its hooks into us. But then, we finally lucked out--very deep into the eleventh hour, I might add-- with an apartment that almost seems a little too west but will likely turn out to be perfect.

So a room, an apartment, a new home, an entire new city is now mine-- all it took was a few months worth of searching, and a lifetime of getting over my obstinance resistance to the T dot.