You’re not in Vancouver any more

If you are one of the people who does not like to hear me complain about Toronto and sing the praises of Vancouver, you may want to skip this entry. The entry below this one is a lovely summary of my trip, in cheesy number format… perhaps you would enjoy that?

OK, I am only kidding about that. This entry won’t *only* make fun T.O… I will point out a couple of things I like about the place too. I just happened to notice, while I was there, a few notable differences between the T dot and Vancity. But first, a quotation:

“One of the extraordinary things about life is the sort of places it’s prepared to put up with living.”

I read this in Mostly Harmless* and my immediate reaction was “that’s kind of how I feel about Toronto!” Much to my amusement, the passage goes onto to discuss the inhospitable nature of living in New York, with much the same reasons as I had for thinking this was related to Toronto. But it’s not just in that you have to “wrap [yourself] up in lots of other animals at one point in your planet’s orbit, and then find, half an orbit later, that your skin’s bubbling” that Toronto differs from Vancouver. I also noticed the following things about T.O.:

  • you only see 3 other joggers on a 40 minute run (unlike Van’s current rate of 35 jpm**)
  • the Skytrain is underground for some reason- what’s up with that?
  • similarly, this underground Skytrain goes to places that people might want to go, like the colleges and universities in the city… weird!
  • no one knows what you are talking about when you say “hey, it’s 4:20!”
  • they hardly have Sleeman on tap anywhere
  • air comes in either gritty or chunky (or, on especially bad days, gritty with chunks in it)
  • I can get Air Miles when I buy booze. Air Miles!
  • no mountais or ocean makes navigation much more tricky
  • if you smile at a hot guy on the subway, he will ask you out on a date! right there on the subway platform!
  • someone there calls me Aunt Beth and it is the cutest freaking thing I’ve ever heard

*Jorge, I know you recommended avoiding this book, but I just feel the need to read the complete “trilogy.”

**jpm = joggers per minute

Comments |6|

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  • Um.
    You obviously didn’t go jogging in my neighbourhood, where the rate is 40 jpm.

    Toronto looked that much better while you were here, though.

    The best was when you kept telling me about the Skytrain stop where your cousin lives. And I was like..WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?


  • Actually, I did notice that your neighbourhood had A LOT more joggers than anywhere else I went in T.O. And I mentioned that to your wife, who had herself just come home from a run!

    If by “kept telling you” you mean “the one time I said that” and by my “cousin” you mean “my sister”, then yes, that was pretty funny. =P


  • Gritty vs. Chunky air – heh. Last time I was in Toronto, and someone found out I live in Sudbury, they asked how I was enjoying the clean air in T.O. I felt like saying, “Dude – our air is WAAAY cleaner (because our smoke stacks are taller than yours ;)”

    Welcome home! How did the ARM research go?


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