Tuesday, November 22, 2005

In Toronto for the week. Alex has spent the last 3 Canadian Thanksgivings (early October) in Chicago so I'm spending one in Toronto.
They spend a lot of money here on public service advertisements. In the subway there are beautifully art-directed signs encouraging me to visit an elderly person, discouraging me from spanking a child, and challenging me to find an alternative to pesticides for my lawn.
I may have blogged about this topic before but whatever. You know how Americans often advertise gasoline prices not by saying "Gas," but with the word "Unleaded"? Even though you couldn't find any leaded gas if you wanted some. Well, in Toronto they do a similar thing with milk; they refer to the fact that it is homogonized even though, as long as I've been alive, all milk is homogonized.
The thing is, they abbreviate it when they are advertising the price. So convenience stores boast, "$2 Homo!"
We saw the new Harry Potter movie last night with Alex's cousin. There is a Burger King as one of the movie theater's concessions. The B.K. serves a Canadian snack favorite, Poutine, which is french fries covered in beef gravy and sprinkled with cheese curds. I didn't have any Poutine but Alex and his cousin seemed to enjoy theirs.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

In studying journalism I've learned this: to write about a trend, you need three examples and an expert to talk about it. Thusfar I only have two examples and no expert but this is a blog and not real journalism anyway.

Here's my observation: Words that begin with "Metro-" and end in "-al" are bad news. After "Metrosexual" I have now come across "Metrospiritual."

A definition:

Metrospirituality is the mainstreaming of Taoist, Buddhist, and Hindu values, among others, into an easily digestible, buyable form.

I'm hoping, based on the passage below, that the writer is ultimately snickering at Metrospirituality rather than embracing it.

One of the first things to catch the eye is a waist-high white Buddha-like sculpture. Not knowing quite what it was, I asked a sales associate, who didn’t immediately know the answer, but was extremely pleasant about it. We consulted a book on Buddhas, and when that didn’t help, asked another associate, who proclaimed it Ganesh, the elephant god, being held by his mother. Whether or not this is ultimately right, does it matter? It’s Indian, it’s expensive, and a lot of people have believed in it for a very long time, probably with very good reason.