When I moved to Toronto last summer, one of my first "welcomes" to the city occured on the Queen streetcar one morning, when at the University stop I gazed out the window at a well-muscled shirtless fella in nothing but shorts, a towel sarong, and a Santa hat. He saw me and smiled, and whipped open his towel revealing a sign tacked to his shorts that said "THE PARTY STARTS HERE!". Being from San Francisco, I wasn't phased by this and shot a huge smile back at him. He pumped his fists in the air & went into a serious of flexes & poses.
Zanta, my Toronto welcome wagon.
Zanta can be seen regularly on the subways, especially in the vicinity of Yonge & Bloor, usually flexing, doing push-ups (known as "sweet sets"), and/or chanting YESYESYES!! This week he was apparantly invited onstage at a show at the El Mocambo, and did a full display of his signature moves. If you've lived in a cave the past few years and are not familiar with Zanta, here's a primer:
Zanta is an arguably "valuable" addition to all that Toronto is. Love him or hate him (me, I'm in the former camp) - he's an undeniable unique and quirky character, that adds texture to our landscape.
Sweet sets forever, Zanta. Sweet sets forever.
(awesome photo by spiritedaway).
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