Wednesday, February 19, 2014


Endless shovelling from Romain Laurent's series of animated portraits.

Recently someone had posted a little used word to their Twitter feed; apricity, pertaining to the sun's warmth on a cold winter day (you may experience apricity while standing on the sunny side of the street waiting for the bus in January). Of course, you could only experience this if you could see the sun. The problem with winter in Toronto is that, no matter what the temperature or precipitation, it is always grey. The sky is seemingly constantly a dirty unbroken off-white dull sheet over your head. This makes it difficult at times to distinguish the horizon line which is also a dirty off-white unbroken sheet of grey. That makes for a most depressing season. A season I prefer to hibernate. This winter I have miraculously avoided colds and/or flus, probably due to the immunity I built up from getting every possible cold and/or flu last year. Also, I had my shots. Despite that checkmark in the plus column, this season can only be described as unrelenting in every possible sense. What is amazing to me, is just how hunkered down I've become. I haven't gone to see any interesting films in the theatre since January 1. I've missed Cycle TO events or community meetings and exhibitions all because it just seemed like too much trouble to overlay the winter fleeces, vests, jackets and tripled-up socks on my tired, overweight body. Not to mention harness up the dogs to sled across town only to arrive cold, wet and grumpy. This hunkering has led to some chunkifying. Now I'm so fat, I feel retarded in my movements and embarrassingly, overflowing in my jeans.

If I did commit myself to two things this year it was to find a) a home of my own and b) a winter coat. On this front I trumpet great success. The house hunt was a dedicated and patient affair which resulted in a what I hope to be a great home base for years to come. After a few weeks of committed and focused explorations, the house was found, right under my nose in a nearby and unexpected place. Close to markets, coffee shops, stores, bike lanes and swimming lanes. An unbelievably lucky triangulation of parameters, I would say. Then, soon after, a winter coat was procured! After weeks of wading through piles of discarded nylon shells and down-filled cotton of no significance, a single coveted jacket, the last of its progeny in this hemisphere apparently, became known to me and we were united by the emptying of my wallet.

What's the message in all of this? Things are finally going my way. “Yes! Things are finally going my way!” says well-educated, well-employed white man. Sometimes you can't see the forest for all the roses that are blooming, which is why when a gift horse comes your way, just shut up, climb aboard and count your blessings as you ride off into the sunset.

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