Green with Envy

In a rather lengthy article in the Toronto Star's Sunday Edition, the author treks across our great nation to ask one thing: What do you think about Toronto?

Being a cross-country trekker myself, many who have found out that I was from Toronto simply ask me: What the heck are you doing here?

That was the question asked by a male model on a magazine fashion shoot while I was on a business trip to Vancouver.

Vancouver was the first Canadian city I visited solo and I was incredibly aware of the negative thoughts the rest of the country had against my fair city. It was my mission to prove them wrong as a Torontonian.

Unfortunately, changing people's perception was far more challenging than I thought. What I thought was showing initiative, they felt, I was being pushy. When I went above and beyond the call of duty, they sat skeptical about my intentions. When I worked hard on my end of the country, solo, I might add, and told them about what I was doing, they turned a deaf ear.

I therefore concluded that the rest of the country is jealous.

That's right, you heard me J-E-A-L-O-U-S. The rest of the country is so green with envy of our concrete lining they can't see past their white picket fence. Let me tell you something about Toronto that the rest of the country doesn't think about.

As we're in the Eastern standard time zone, we're the first up before everyone on the West coast even sets foot outside their bed. Not only that, we're arguably the last people in the office as well. Torontonians are a bunch of workaholics with marital problems going above and beyond what the company wants from us ... which is just right.

But separate us from the thought that Toronto wants to be New York. We don't want that, it's a myth. Have you ever been to New York? The city is constantly on the move whether or not the sun goes up or down. I became very claustrophobic and had trouble catching my breath, even in the Sunnyside suburb. Like Vancouver, New York is nice to visit ... but for this proud Torontonian, I wouldn't live there ... I couldn't.

I suspect that Toronto's workplace standard is higher than everyone elses'. Lord knows working with people from Montreal is equivalent to pulling teeth in a dentist's office and Vancouver seems to be constantly on siesta. They sit and talk about alot of things, but is anything done about it? *enter crickets chirping in the background*

Now don't get me wrong, I'm dating a Vancouverite, now living in Mississauga. I get into it with him all the time about the differences between our two warring cities. The big thing I tell him is that other cities shouldn't complain about Toronto being the centre of the universe. "The fact is, you guys put us there, and so we've embraced it. Stop whining and quit complaining."

The biggest misconception that Toronto has to overcome: the army shovelling our roads. Exactly where do you put 50 cm of overnight snow that the city has never had to deal with before?

From our uptight attitude to our Americanized ways ... The proverbial cherry on top was my experience in the Vancouver airport leaving to Toronto. Mass chaos, obscenely long lines and no one around to tell you where you should go. I risked getting out of an outstretched line to find my way to electronically pick up my ticket. Then by chance I hopped out of line to jump people to get my bags checked. People were still waiting patiently as their flights left them grounded.

I couldn't wait to get back home ... where everything was at my pace and things got done. Where things were organized, methotically planned out and executed. Where I could have to option of both working and breathing. While the rest of the country hates it ... I relish in the fact knowing the rest of the country is insecure.

They're not strong enough, they're just jealous.


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