Weekly Photo Challenge: Summer

Weekly Photo Challenge: Summer.

I’m sure that I’ve posted one from this same series before, but this is summer. Sunset at the beach, at the cottage.

Sunset on the beach in Tiny

Sunset on the beach in Tiny


East End Boys and West End Girls

Somehow this conversation has come up twice over the last few days and I figured I needed to ask some more people. ThanksĀ  to @BuzzBuzzHome and their meetup this evening at the Pour House on Dupont Street for giving me a forum to chat about it this evening. I believe they will be posting on their forum soon about this topic too.

You ask almost anyone living in Toronto, they will tell you that there are “East Enders” and “West Enders”. Once you are born into one or the other, you’re sold. It may not be as pronounced nowadays, but it did when I moved here and you can still feel it in the air.

I moved to Toronto when I was 11 and we moved into the Beach. When my parents split up, my mom moved just north of Kingston Road to the Upper Beach and my father moved to Riverdale. I joined him and my brother there about a year later. When I graduated a year after that, I made my first move “across Yonge Street” to Yonge and Eglinton, a few blocks west of Yonge Street. I was there for 8 months, then moved back to Riverdale where I got an apartment and then bought a house. That was seven years.

My mother and I bought a condo from my father’s project in the Bloor West Village and stayed for about a year. Then moved to East York for another three years and got another condo at Landsdowne and Dupont. A year later, I moved to my father’s for school (which was in Corktown) and my mother moved to the Beach again.

My latest move has me in Forest Hill and though most of my life is in the south east quadrant of the city, I still went north west. This is the first voluntary move that I’ve made “West of Yonge” since Yonge & Eglinton. The other two were to purchase condos in my father’s projects.

My point is that even though I moved to the west end, I am still an east ender at heart. My local pub is in the Beach, and most of my family and friends are around Riverdale or in Scarborough. Torontonians that leave the city for even years return and tend to move back to the same side of the city, though not necessarily the same neighbourhood. Another question that this raises is: Do “North-Enders” exist?

The only thing that I couldn’t quite put my finger on is: What characteristics (if any) discern East from West? Thoughts?

Dealing With My Bully – My Other Prom Story

As we approach the prom season, I feel that I must share yet another prom story. This one, I’ve told many times, but now, I want to share it with everyone.

I met “JM” in Grade 6 after I moved to Toronto from Burlington. He was in a different class but we all moved up to junior high together.

In Grade 8, one of my friends tells me that he has a crush on me. Now, understand two things:

  1. I was not a popular kid at school…he was.
  2. Anyone who knows me knows that I am very approachable, so if he really was interested, he could come to me directly

He acted shy though I could smell a rat…or a trap…or a rat trap! We finally set up a date to go to the movies at the local movie house. Thank goodness I took my two friends with me as a back up because, as predicted, he stood me up.

A short time later, at Halloween, he and his buddies were outside of Lick’s, a busy spot in the Beach. As we walked away, they followed us squirting our asses with water guns. After we got across the street, I handed my candy bag to one of my friends, went back across the street and asked him to step aside with me so I could talk to him. Then I turned around and slapped him. I walked away before I could see him recover, but I didn’t hit him very hard. His friend chased after me and told me “You hurt my friend!” I replied (and my friends have never let me live it down) “Well, he hurt me emotionally!” We kept our distance after that…until Grade 9.

We ended up in the same math class and had to sit alphabetically by last name. I sat right behind him. I could have tortured him all year, but I took the higher ground and offered a truce. I figured we were stuck here for the rest of the year and had better make the best of it. He accepted and it lasted all the time in high school…until Prom.

I was setting up a shot of a couple of friends with my dad’s SLR camera. As I looked through the viewfinder, I saw someone jump into frame. I pulled to camera away from my face to see none other than JM standing in front of me and though I didn’t look down, I knew he was “all out”. I looked to my left to see my entire graduating class watching.

You know when you’re in a moment like this and you look back years later and wish you’d had the perfect line? This was not one of those moments. Almost instantly I said: “This is a telephoto lens, not a microscope. Put it away.” He turned red, put it away and everyone else laughed.

I still see him every now and then in my local pub. But everytime that happens, he leaves very soon after that.

I’ve recently read: “The best revenge is a vow to never be like the one who hurt you.” I believe that.