“HANDBAGS AT DAWN”

Spacing is a miraculous thrice-yearly magazine, generally well designed and presented in landscape format, about the urban psychogeography of Toronto – a terminology all but coined and certainly promoted by Spacing and its acolytes. Those acolytes, however, are typical young Toronto leftists who think the entire city comes to a screeching halt, falling off a cliff like the town on the asteroid in Dark City, once you hit some nebulous easterly border, like Spadina Ave. or St. George St. (“Street George Saint”).

These Annex and Parkdale snobs are insufferable and massively dominate every single form of “alternative” media coverage in the city. Really, if they aren’t within walking distance of Dooney’s (which, they will repeatedly remind you, they just barely saved from conversion into a Starbucks) or of Bar Italia, well, they’re just too far away from everything, aren’t they?

I thought I would put this theory to the test. I looked over every issue – including the new one, launching tomorrow – and classified them as discussing the west end (west of Yonge), the east end, Yonge St. and downtown per se, or the suburbs. Articles about history or other cities or suchlike were deemed unclassified. Every sidebar, if it had a byline, was deemed an article, but tiny slugs and footers weren’t. Nor were photo-essays.

The results? They spend vastly more time talking about the city as a whole (90 articles) than anything else. But they talk about downtown and geography-nonspecific topics more often than they discuss the east end, which is covered about half as often as the west end.

Neighbourhood Issue number Total
1 2 3 4 5
City-wide 10 15 32 17 16 90
West 6 10 10 8 8 42
Unclassified 4 3 8 10 14 39
East 1 7 2 7 5 23
Yonge St. 6 3 2 9 1 21
Suburban 0 9 0 3 2 14

I know you couldn’t stand to live way the hell over here, but we like it, OK? It’s still Toronto once you cross the Don River.

Have you read my goddamned articles or what? And where do you think I’m taking all these pictures?

The foregoing posting appeared on Joe Clark’s personal Weblog on 2005.11.23 17:37. This presentation was designed for printing and omits components that make sense only onscreen. (If you are seeing this on a screen, then the page stylesheet was not loaded or not loaded properly.) The permanent link is:
https://blog.fawny.org/2005/11/23/spacing/

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