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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Observations on a city

I've spent the better part of my life ragging all over the city of Toronto. About eight months ago I decided to stop all of that. or at least try to subdue it. Sure it's kind of ugly, they have highways running through the city and its waterfront -emulating one of the ugliest city planning ideas to come out of the US- and their hockey team sucks but I had never been there, most of my friends seemed to really enjoy it and I was starting to wonder if all this negativity was just jealousie or envy.

I wanted to see for myself.
The following is a list of my observations:

  • Where are all the Tim Horton's I had been led to believe lined the streets? I didn't see one.
  • It really isn't that cold, except when you get blasts of wind in your face.
  • THERE IS NO WAY TO ORIENT YOURSELF IN THE CITY!!!! I am normally very good at getting around and gathering my bearings in a new city but this was next to impossible. A friend tried to be helpful, "it's easy, you just look up and wherever you are you can see the CN Tower and you know that that is South." This statement is a whole lot of bullshit. There are plenty of times when you get out of the subway and look around and there is no CN Tower. North, South, East, West I just couldn't figure it out- I tried, I tried very hard....
  • There is NO street sign a Young and Yorkville but at Bay and Yorkville there are 4. WTF?!
  • MTV, a Masonic temple and changing coloured accent lights just shouldn't be in combination.
  • No one really walks. Public transit is excellent, but no one seems to take the time to walk around and really appreciate their surroundings. Asking for directions inevitably lead to the nearest streetcar or subway and if you insist of walking you get the "ok, this person is crazy" look.
  • From atop the CN Tower Toronto reminded me of Paris. Flat city as far as the eye can see.
  • For a large city it feels like a small community.
  • Philosopher's walk is really quite pretty
  • The people who work at the Union Station Go train ticket booth are unfriendly and unhelpful and the ticket doesn't tell you jack-shit. Horrible customer service.
  • Eliot's Book Shop on Young st. is awesome
  • Only seniors and students go to free classical music concerts. Get there early if you want a seat; old people are punctual
  • There is a lot of interesting free/cheap stuff to do/see
  • Why was I led to believe that there are lots of hot men in this city? There aren't. (unless you want to put a qualifier inbetween hot and men, like, there are lots of hot black men in this city. This statement would be true.)
  • There aren't a lot of hot women in this city either, most of them are either hiding or originally from Vancouver or Montreal.
  • In general the guys dress better than the girls
  • A rich suburb is a rich suburb- no matter where you go in Canada (and probably the states). It's like standardized housing.
  • The NFB has $2 unlimitied movie watching. If you are in the city and have nothing to do or need a place to hide out take advantage of this
  • The chum city building is a lot smaller than I thought it would be
  • People are, for the most part, really friendly

Being in Toronto made me appreciate the natural beauty of Vancouver. However, there is just so much more to do. Being there was very comfortable. I think it may be time to turn over a new leaf. to come.....


Negin said...

In response to your observations:

1. It is WINTER. Although you may have not felt the bitter cold as badly as you anticipated, Winter is hibernation month in Toronto. Be here in the summer, you will see the hotties.

2. YES, the men are better dressed than the women. As a woman, that is a good thing.

3. OPEN YOUR EYES WOMAN. From your walk from my house to Yonge and Queen there are at least 3 Tim Hortons on the street that I can think of.

4. There are PLENTY of ways to orient yourself in the city, but it's a big city so you have to get to know it to get oriented.

5. People walk, and bike, in the spring, summer and fall. And they do so alot.

6. It is -14 outside right now, -24 with the wind chill. Don't tell me it ain't cold woman.


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