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Toronto, Antiseptic City

Yesterday’s post was an ode to cart food, and so is today’s. The humourless Royal Ontario Museum wants to shoo hot dog vendors away from its spiffy, angular new facade. Again I ask: why does a clean and beautiful city have to be a whitewashed, antiseptic city?

Though the new ROM is an architectural gem, let’s face facts: the act of plopping a giant crystal in the heart of the city is goofy and carnivalesque, so no one should be surprised when carnival-style acts (buskers) and vendors (hot dogs) are drawn into its orbit. They ought to be embraced, but the ROM, so enamoured of its own dramatic and pristine beauty, wants to erase any trace of playfulness from its doorstep. Not to mention any trace of proletarian welcome, which is a true shame. But I guess this is fair warning from the ROM: don’t stand in front of the crystal unless you look like you just stepped right out of an architectural drawing.

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