Hello Canada, I Miss You

I’m not really sure how to blog anymore. It seems like perhaps I’ve never really known. Blogging confounds many literary writers I know, rightly, I think, because it is something that is written casually, and then it lasts forever. It’s counterintuitive. I still think of it sort of like writing letters to the world that I leave on the roof where people flying overhead can read them, if they look down.

Looking through my blog stats tonight, I found a new referrer, a very sweet guy who lives in Toronto and works with Katimavik. In his posts, he does this thing I’m going to take up in this post, by way of welcoming him, using “-ings” to create posts about what he’s up to, over at Katima-what?, his blog.

I should mention, I’ve been missing Toronto desperately of late. The Beguiling, The Drake, Bloor St., Queen St. West, Little India. For my new friend, who’s in Montreal tonight, I hope he has a Boreale Blonde and thinks of me.


Spent today on the new novel.

I’d slept in after a night of drinking with some friends who are senior faculty here. Sometimes when I go to their houses, I think, Yes, martinis, I could have four, just like you, plus, wine. And then I wake up, remembering I am not like them. Hangovers are good for writing fiction, though, because you’re too weak to resist your best instincts. Though this may be part of why you have the hangover.


I went to the gym and did an hour of cardio.


While I did that, I read Us Weekly and New York Magazine. People are talking about New York a lot in the last year. For a while, it was a bit grudging, but I think people are over that now. I really enjoyed the Heath Ledger article, but even more, the profile of Carine Roitfeld, the editor of Paris Vogue, who’s more or less what you’d want the editor of Paris Vogue to be: completely out there, fearless, skinny, pretty and with a vicious streak that makes it all kind of come together. There’s an amazing moment in the profile, where she mentions that she has a scale in her office.

“A scale. So people always say that I weigh my staff, and it is totally wrong. All my girls are very skinny and very chic and very beautiful. And if they are not beautiful, well, then they are very charming. So people always say that I weigh them, but no. I don’t weigh my girls.”

The profile writer didn’t bring it up, though. She did. So interesting.


Not really a gerund. But! An -ing. I’m very interested in the work of Antonio Viego. My friend Jorge just described for me going to hear him speak at NYU, on his idea that identity politics has reduced us all to identity as a function. His book is called Dead Subjects. This is from the book’s description:

Antonio Viego argues that Lacanian theory has the potential to begin rectifying the deeply flawed way that ethnic and racialized subjects have been conceptualized in North America since the mid-twentieth century. Viego contends that the accounts of human subjectivity that dominate the humanities and social sciences and influence U.S. legal thought derive from American ego psychology. Examining ego psychology in the United States during its formative years following World War II, Viego shows how its distinctly American misinterpretation of Freudian theory was driven by a faith in the possibility of rendering the human subject whole, complete, and transparent. Viego traces how this theory of the subject gained traction in the United States, passing into most forms of North American psychology, law, civil rights discourse, ethnic studies, and the broader culture.

So, I’m going to get my Lacan on and read it.


In my hungover state, I went to McDonald’s and got a Big Mac. I was recently at a McDonald’s where they had no Big Macs, and feared it wouldn’t be there. As I ate it, it felt like I was consuming something endangered. Like in a year, next year’s freshman class won’t know what a Big Mac is.


Keane’s “A Bad Dream”. Under the Iron Sea is the album. It’s… amazing.


Hello, Toronto. I miss you very much.


  1. This is what I want to hear from you on a daily basis, because I crush you, I suppose, but, honestly, it’s awesome to read about you and your cardio and the Big Mac and everything else.

    My new story is called “I Heart You.” It’s not about you, but I suppose it could be.

  2. I’m still kind of thrilled about putting “Big Macs” and “Paris Vogue” in the same tag line.

    RJ: Haha! Now I must read that story no matter what. Also, you’re putting a pool in the ground? Why are there so many cool people down in Austin?

    Lance: I will totally win that race.

  3. I love how you described blogging: “sort of like writing letters to the world that I leave on the roof where people flying overhead can read them, if they look down.”

    Perfect. It really does feel like that some days.

    And random: I want to visit Toronto. Getting a feeling I’d love it there.

  4. Nova: Yeah. I loved it right away.

    Toronto is one of the most culturally diverse cities in North America, and in a really fun way. I feel very at home there.

  5. I found this book at the library right after Bush 2 was reelected, and after loving the title, I checked it out and considered using it as a future life guide:

    Not yet Canada, but perhaps someday.

  6. Thanks for welcoming me into your blog. I feel so honoured.

    I love the multi-culturalism of TO. I can walk down Queen St. and hear 4 different languages being spoken in a block. Every culture has a sector in the city, and everyone can appreciate what each area has to offer.

    In my first rotation during Katimavik, I was stationed in Ingersoll, ON (an hour west of TO). My first thought when I was living there was, “Why is everyone white?” It was like a home-coming when I got to Montréal and saw diversity again.

    Thanks for mentioning me in your fantastic blog. You are welcome in Toronto at any time. I raise my frosty glass of Boreale Blonde to you.

  7. You’re welcome, Edward. And thank you. I think what you’re doing is amazing, and I really admire the spirit you bring to it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s