chance the rapper-the be encouraged tour

“my mom says in arabic that when it’s raining and sunny, rats are getting married”

chance got finer.

it started innocently enough-i noticed that the show got rescheduled to the day that my season boo was coming to my home for the first time, and casually texted her about it, though she was just coming off of seeing him at the palace of auburn hills (yes, i am sad that i’ll prolly never see the pistons play there).

we had a lovely day of making soup and working on projects, separately and together, napping and watching many monsoons from my window. we made references to going to the show all day, but we both had things to do and, well.

around 5pm, we were called by carbs, and since she’s a vegan who hasn’t yet experienced doomie‘s (propagandistic comics and all), we decided to walk between showers the two now lovely-scented parkdale streets that separate me and the resto. we paid our respects to the lovely guard dog with a fierce underbite in the bougie flower shop, and settled into one of the window booths. i did a double-take in time and space when a pianist that i knew almost a decade ago in montreal walked past and we caught up for a minute before i just accepted that my hair would be smelling like fried.

but delicious mac and cheese (with mushrooms) and deep fried oreos later, we were full and happy and ready to make our way towards a very ominous cloud to see this guy. considering that it was a reschedule, it was pretty breezy to get a ticket.

the bag check should’ve been foreshadowing, but we were high and happy and made it through lightning and humidity and the dj’s name was oreo and there numbers and signs everywhere.

and the rapper was perfect-he was sounding right and looking right and his energy is amazing, if a bit too religious in that way that american artists get that make it a bit uncomfortable to sing along to sometimes. the special effects blended right in with mother nature’s downpour, and even though we were standing in sponges (i have yet to check on the canvas shoes that i left outside, but if someone took them-good riddance), it was beauty-full to be dancing in the rain.

the subsequent push to get to bags that was longer than the concert by a duration of 1.5 x? not so fun. but i suppose this is what happens when you throw 3000+ bags onto the floor and expect people to wait in line and retrieve them when it’s been pouring rain all night.

but it was hilarious to be amongst the high school kids budging the line and that one dood who “had to tutor french at 9am” and was feeling all the feelings over it. it was extra hilarious because he butt into the line, and then was lamenting this, and figured out 25 minutes later that it was the bag line and not the line to leave.

and canadians are hella polite, yo. i’m surprised that there was no riots, especially with all those bored white people excited about a “hype” rap show ready to fight garbage cans and shit.

based on the “blessings” that came down, i’m not sure what “praises” went up, but congrats to all the rats that celebrated their nuptials yesterday-it was an honour to be in your presence.

here’s to a decade…

“i was out of the country, but came back just for this”

if you got any extra financial energy that you’d like to see invested, do it.

i got the love for manifesTO because they’ve got all the love for me and mines. put that on everything.

dineen coffee company

i love discovering new special places in the city.

i’ve passed cafe dineen before, but today-i decided to stop in because i was so full of indian buffet that i couldn’t walk all the way to king street to get the streetcar home to take a nap. besides, it’s very humid, and i wanted to spend some more time away from home.

writing sundays continue, if only for letters and crosswords these days, and i was seduced by the salmon banquette and the chandelier. i got an iced americano and tucked into a corner, not quite eavesdropping as the ladies that were in the corner next to me were speaking very loudly. but, crawling on my hands and knees helping them find a thimble or whatever, i found a toonie, so my coffee was 2/3 paid for-woot!

i told a guy reading charlie leduff’s detroit through the window that it was awesome, and while i am looking forward to coming back, i will definitely bring headphones next time. the intimate nature of the seating led to me being flanked by the bratty kids of a family at some point, and just as i was about to escape, i noticed a secret elevated back bench with green library lamps and everything-score! i was able to finish my letter to zahra and the girl who was charging her phone (yea, outlets!) told me that she also comes to write cards there.

the bathrooms are non-gendered and wheelchair accessible, but as one of the loud talkers pointed out, no one in a wheelchair would be able to get around the large pillar that’s in front of the door to the washroom. but, bigups for not having an “employees must wash hands before returning to work” sticker-it’s a classy joint like that. also, i was reminded of my sticker campaign, and to check the sticker makers on the next block-yesss.

cafe dineen-the perfect place to pass a quick monsoon and escape for a minute on my day off.

finished: the sixth and final season of oz. (single tear)

duolingo status: portuguese level 24, portuguese skill tree, 3271 lingots

latest gift from a customer: trampoline!

she of the mountains-vivek shraya

“He loved seeing her toothbrush leaning on his, like miniature figurines of themselves with clear, bristled faces. It pleased him to know that, from nine to five, while their physical bodies were functioning in distant cubicles, acquiring money to pay their bills, their toothbrushes stayed still and close in that steel cup. It didn’t matter that the cup itself was filthy at the bottom from the dried up water because they were in it together.” (98-99)

this is my favourite image in this book. it comes at a very high point of possibility for love, when boundaries are broken and the anarchist spirit is strong (freedom of choice forever). i can relate to the perhaps unintended consequences of gays preserving the same social order that they allegedly rally against-they are, in a lot of ways, more gatekeeper than the gatekeepers. if you don’t believe me, step into any women’s centre on any university campus or just whisper the words “michigan womyn’s music festival” any summer-i dare you.

“But even more than this-he hadn’t known how to trust love because he had always had to work for it….
And when they said I love you, he wanted to respond: You should. And then walk away.” (69)

and what a feeling that is, to actually feel secure in being with someone who helps you feel the best you.

“Although a chapter of their relationship had ended, one year later, he found that there was still no period to their sentence. Their sentence kept finding a way, because they kept finding a way to make room for a comma and another comma and another conjunction, because there was still so much more to share, still so much more to say.” (145)

and the bittersweet one that comes with the chapter ends, but you know you’re still writing the book. forever. how sometimes, you have to go back in order to go forward:

“Sundar had grown up in a home in which his mother was solely responsible for the food. Even though their servants were allowed to help by acquiring and grating and cutting and chopping and rinsing, the actual act of cooking belonged to her. This was more than just a sense of duty or birthright. In the kitchen, she could transform her love into something edible and sustaining for her six children. In the kitchen her love was tangible and alive….Her smile receded as Sundar got older and his body expanded, mirroring her own enormity. Looking at him, she saw an animal, an elephant made of her own flesh, reflecting her own weight. She began to resent his constant need for nourishment and chastised him when he looked for food between meals. This only increased his hunger.

Sundar could taste the absence of his mother’s love in the food. The roti was bitter, the pilau dry, and, no matter how hot the food was when served, the warmth and the taste of the sun was gone. But he kept eating, hoping to find her love once more.” (58-9)

gotta love a toronto writer, especially one with a babyface tribute album.

homelessness by jack layton

“The simple fact is that criminalizing homelessness is expensive (and it doesn’t end homelessness). A Montreal study of a municipal bylaw that bans homeless people from sleeping in parks found the number of tickets issued by police grew fourfold from 1994 to 2004 for a total of 22,685. In 72 percent of the cases, the person convicted was sent to jail because he or she couldn’t pay the fine. I happen to know the exact costs in Toronto: the average cost to taxpayers for a month in jail is $4333. The average cost for a month of social housing is $199.92.” (110)

these are 2006 numbers, but i’m sure the figures have exacerbated to scale. i had the conversation again over easter dinner over the fact that resources (or lack thereof) are not the real problem, but the distribution of wealth, food, and other resources are the true issue. this was one recommended by a customer, and it’s something to read jack’s voice speaking of someone’s influence in the way that we now speak of his. it’s a pretty basic observation to point out that criminalizing the basic human need to sleep, just because people must do it outside, is perverse. but it’s always the simple things that are so brilliant.

“Like a bright light drawing moth, Toronto glows. It attracts impoverished immigrants from around the world, tantalizing them with glittering images of riches and freedom. And it pulls the dispossessed from the North with its warmth, colour and the sense that somehow life will be sweeter and kinder. For too many, it’s not. At least 47 percent of hostel users in the city over the past 10 years have come from outside Toronto.” (161)

oh, the big smoke, the screwface, t.dot-oh.

you really can’t go home again.

the bookworm manifesto

-like fight club without the blood (verbal punches only)

-like a book club without someone telling you what to read (and nobody to spank you for not reading your chapter or whatever)

-sharing beauty-full passages from whatever you are reading (so you MUST be reading something)

-NOT networking-please don’t bring stuff that you’ve written, etc.

-free wifi, so you can just sit and read in the presence of those who will be sharing passages

-access to a bar, so you can read with a glass of wine (and a dopeass slice of carrot cake) by the fireplace and tweet about the amazing space you are in

-support the tranzac, a community hub of greatness

-this event is on sunday because there are limited hours at the library (and they don’t have a liquor license-not that you have to drink, but we here at the metro_textual empire like to offer people options)

-happy twenty-pen.