BBC Toronto cool

The BBC wonders "when did Toronto get so cool?"

Defining what constitutes cool is about as uncool of an activity as one could imagine, but compliments are compliments, so when the BBC calls you cool it's worth noting, even if just by shrugging your shoulders and nodding. While Toronto might not feel so cool at 2:00 a.m. (compared to, say, Montreal), we're probably our own worst critics when it comes to the vibe of our city. But, hey, maybe that's a key to the whole thing.

"...The definitive, if circular logic of coolness is that cool things don't need to convince anyone. They don't even care. Because they're cool... That's why Toronto is cool: it has been for a long time, and since it doesn't feel the need to advertise the fact, most of the world doesn't even know. Canada in general is understated in this way; it's not very Canadian to point out one's own awesomeness. Toronto is so cool, it might not even know it is."

If I were back in grad school, I'd buy a bottle of wine and spend the night pointing out how bankrupt this argument is coming from a travelling journalist with no intimate knowledge of the city. But because I'm older and wiser now, I can acknowledge that 1) that wouldn't be a cool way to spend a night, 2) it's better not to put too much stock into articles like this, and 3) I just don't like to try that hard anymore.

Philosophical arguments aside, this isn't the worst travel article ever penned. Sure, many of the spots the writer hits up are predictable -- is a place that tries as hard as The Drake Hotel compatible with this coolness argument? -- but it's not all tourist traps (The Monkey's Paw is about as interesting as bookstores get). And, hey, when all you've been talking about for the last two days is your crack-smoking and slur-dropping mayor, it's nice to hear that the view from the other side is still glowing. Cool.


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