Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Toronto Manifesto: All You Need is Love

1. I love that all the judgeybears who hate this city don’t live here. I’m grateful that they’re in charge of all the pocket towns that white Torontonians drive through in summertime. Thank you for your lakes, galleries, flea markets, cheap bistros, parks, little theatres, and ‘ye olde’ shoppes. On behalf of our wallets, you’re welcome!

2. To friends living in utilitarian communities – the names of which we can’t think of right now…or even locate on a map – sorry! – you’ve had your minute with the conch and what we’re hearing is that you hate us. We appreciate this open communication. It can’t be easy toiling in a one-trick town, running factories or drills, your only pleasure being visits to Costco. Going forward, let’s compromise: you come visit us for the first time in your life and we’ll… – we’ll let you.

3. While you’re visiting this superior place, you might feel a little xenophobic at first. That’s normal. Toronto is used to blowing small minds with its cultural diversity. Observe your fears, then let them float by like clouds. After all, jealousy does not inspire enlightenment.

4. I talked to the gunman who made headlines. I convinced him to turn himself in to police. I also helped him write the following statement for the media: “On behalf of all Scarborough residents, I am deeply sorry to the good people of Toronto. I didn’t intend to sully your national reputation through my malevolent act of violence.”

5. After extensive surveys of the city’s popular nightlife areas, I’ve concluded that drinking establishments are largely frequented by people living outside of Toronto. Please, as our very special guests, do continue to enjoy yourselves here! Your visits inspire us to find new neighbourhoods to party in, until we’re ferreted out again. It’s like a neverending game of hide and seek, and you’re always ‘it’! Fun!

6. You once criticized Toronto because of its homelessness problem. Ten bucks says you were walking in the theatre district on a Saturday evening and you felt intimidated by the slew of panhandlers you passed? Panhandlers, who aren’t necessarily homeless, congregate in areas where tourists will be, which can make the problem look worse than it is. And frankly, the fact that people live on Toronto’s streets might have to do with the fact that there’s a lack of social services in the towns they’re originally from. And we have purer crack than all y'all.

7. Or perhaps you were walking in the financial district, and were intimidated by the people in suits because you can only dream of having that much money. That’s OK Sudbury, we’ll give you some. Cause we love to share. And you know what – here’s some extra cash, from my own little stash, that I want you to give to the lovely employees at your CRA tax office. Thank you all so much for everything you’ve done for me. Great work, guys!!

8. You say it’s expensive to own spacious property here…that’s generally true. Yeah, maybe you HAVE solved the riddle by buying a big, cheap, house in...Orangeville, is it? (Doesn’t sound like a real place, but whatever you say, bud). Now you can be first in line at all the world-class cultural events like the…uh…well I guess there’s the annual maple syrup festival. And you can get sauced on Coors Light at the shack-sized beer tent and drive home in your SUV with your kids in the back.

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