The Daily

Posts Tagged ‘Toronto’

The Official Resort of the Third Reich, and Other News

February 6, 2014 | by

prora nazi beach resort

Photo: m.a.r.c., via Creative Commons

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Introducing the Biblio-Mat!

November 15, 2012 | by

The Monkey’s Paw dubs itself “Toronto’s most idiosyncratic secondhand bookshop,” a mix of antiquarian treasures, oddities, art installations, and eccentricities of all kinds. Their latest innovation? The Biblio-mat, a vending machine that  dispenses random used books. As owner Stephen Fowler told Quill & Quire, “The books in the machine are two dollars each—that’s not enough to make any profit, but the nature of the secondhand book business is that I end up with a lot of books that are interesting and worth keeping and disseminating, but have no practical retail value.”

For more on why we love this place, check out this 2010 short film:

 

 

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Harvard and Class

July 11, 2011 | by

As told to Sheila Heti.

I grew up in Montreal and went to an upper-middle-class Jewish day school where kids had parents who maybe owned a carpet store or maybe were dentists. And then I went to Harvard for college. And it was pretty weird.

When I applied, I thought it would be great because I would get to meet lots of smart people. Those were the kinds of people I liked to be friends with, and I thought there would be more of them there. That was the main reason I thought it would be a fun place to be. I don’t think I was super ambitious or professional minded or even a very good student.

The thing I figured out soon after I applied was that, on Gilligan’s Island, it wasn’t the Professor who went to Harvard, it was Mr. Howell, the rich man. That was something of a revelation.

It’s funny, because what a lot of people talk about when they talk about going to Harvard is being really intimidated by the place when they arrive. I wasn’t at all intimidated by the place when I arrived—but I was really intimidated after graduating.

I arrived at Harvard from Montreal, which is a pretty fucking hip place to be an eighteen-year-old. I’d been going to bars for a while, and I was in a political theater company that did shows in lofts with homeless people and South American activists. And we went to pubs and got old gay men to buy us drinks. It was a pretty cool, fun, and exciting life for a kid in Montreal. It was a very vibrant place, and young people were really part of the life of the city.

Then when I went to Harvard, the place was full of these nominally smart, interesting people, all of whom at the age of eighteen seemed perfectly happy to live in dormitories and be on a meal plan and live a fully institutional life. And that was completely maddening! This was the opposite of everything I’d hoped for from the environment I’d be in.

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