Here are some of Toronto's most ridiculous convenience store names
The mom-and-pop convenience store is representative of so many Canadian success stories, even gaining international fame as the subject of hit sitcom Kim's Convenience. Every neighbourhood has at least one, but a handful of these convenience stores stand out with some odd and, at times, uncomfortable names.
Artist, writer, and cartographer Daniel Rotsztain has crowdsourced a list with some of the most outlandish and humorous convenience store names, inspired by a local spot on Dupont Street in his own Junction Triangle neighbourhood.
"I live near Ample Habitat Convenience, and the name speaks for itself," says Rotsztain, who was inspired by its "beautiful, poetic name."
He explains that he's "always had a love of Toronto's convenience stores," adding that "like many of its other institutions, the convenience store is a cornerstone of the city's social infrastructure, often a mom-and-pop shop — small businesses — gateways to finding settlement in Canada."
Knowing there were other gems hiding among the urban fabric, Rotsztain reached out to his Instagram following, crowdsourcing notable convenience store names. And the results range from delightful to random to downright upsetting.
Over on Instagram, I asked my followers if anything beats “Ample Habitat”as the best convenience store name in Toronto (and beyond). Here are some of the results: pic.twitter.com/3yKBWh18co— Daniel Rotsztain (@theurbangeog) March 22, 2022
Rotsztain explains how these stores are "anchors of personality and familiarity" in the hoods they represent, and it's evident in the ways owners flex their individuality through some very unconventional names.
MILK MILK MILK; OJJJ (the extra J is for JJJ); a minor inconvenience; SPISH SPASH pic.twitter.com/REyPSFS3Rf— Daniel Rotsztain (@theurbangeog) March 22, 2022
A "gross, but compelling, subgenre" of convenience store names could make one wonder about the source of the milk sold in these establishments.
Who’s Milk? Another gross, but compelling, subgenre pic.twitter.com/4Zm5QESptP— Daniel Rotsztain (@theurbangeog) March 22, 2022
And then there's the not-PG-rated 'jug' subgenre of convenience stores, with names like 'Jug Town' and 'Royal Jug City' that seem like they would be just as fitting for some kind of dated, misogynistic amusement park for dudebros.
The JUG subgenre pic.twitter.com/KVbBwOqdkX— Daniel Rotsztain (@theurbangeog) March 22, 2022
One store stood out with its curious sign, which quite literally offers as many questions as it does answers.
Where is Tony? Is he with Fred? pic.twitter.com/M2sc6MYvaz— Daniel Rotsztain (@theurbangeog) March 22, 2022
This really only scratches the surface, and there are many more questionably or curiously named convenience stores scattered around the city just waiting to be roasted on social media.
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