Sunday, February 26, 2006

An Evening with Shackelton

I departed for Toronto today, battling snow and whiteouts in London, cruising through windy, dry brown landscape afterwards and traffic jams in Oakville and approaching Spadina.

I managed to get settled into The Grand Hotel, which lived up to its name, before conducting Sarah and Chris's wedding rehearsal. Their ceremony will take place at Prefix Institute for Contemporary Art which is housed in a former tin factory, lending a metropolitan vibe to the proceedings.

The after-rehearsal-night-before-wedding dinner was at Indian Rice Factory where I went off-menu (à la Urs) and had a Lamb Dhansak prepared.

It was nice to engage in conversation with people that didn't focus on Dora the Explorer. We talked about agribusiness and the implications of genetically modified seeds, Monsanto and Cargill's ownership of the world's seed patents, the diminishing role of the small family farm, the literary genius of Doug Coupland, the immense art of Claes Oldenburg, and on and on...

I could not, however, outrun the Explorer thread. Instead of Dora, it was the exploits of Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton which were engagingly recounted, naturally putting me in mind of The Weakerthan's "Our Retired Explorer (Dinner with Michel Foucault, Paris 1961)".

A snapshot of big city Gen-X life: a highbrow evening made possible through the generosity of friends and their parents.

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