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Weekend in Toronto

I forgot to report on my annual weekend in Toronto. Charles and I go up more than once a year, but this is the only time we schedule every year, to attend TCAF - Toronto Comic Arts Festival.

On the way there, we finally, after many years of passing by, decided to stop at IKEA - our first experience with the Swedish Super Store. Charles was blown away by the prices, because he thought they were all posh, upscale, and expensive, while I was blown away by the sheer volume of awesome shit. We picked up a few totally random items, and spent two hours perusing the showrooms before finishing the journey to Toronto.

We checked into the hotel and then drove over to our usual first-night haunt Sneaky Dee's for dinner. Charles threw a childish fit because we didn't get a booth seat, and I yelled at him for a good 10 minutes about that. The plates of food there are gigantic, and I felt stuffed when we left.

I didn't get a photo of my haul at TCAF, but I have a few pictures and links. My first order of business was to get upstairs to where the more popular artists booth (not totally true, one of the most popular artists was downstairs among the small-press last year). I came for Nicholas Gurewich (of The PBF), Jeph Jacques (of Questionable Content), and just to see who else might be housed up around the Topatoco tables.

Neither Jeph or Nick were around, for HOURS.

Isn't it silly? Nick lives around the corner from me, and the only time I get to see him is on a chance encounter at Java's or the Dryden, and at TCAF. I did get to see him the next day, and got a print from him for free (the Rochester Friends discount - and my friend Robin got the Friend of Fawn discount).

At least Jeph had scheduled time to be around, and tweeted where he was (his last tweet before getting upstairs was that he was caught in the line to the stairs - I can't believe the line for the stairs was so ferocious, when usually, there's a line for the room upstairs. I got stuck on the stairs at the beginning of the day.

When I got my chance to see him, I asked if he was doing sketches - Indeed he was! I said I couldn't decide; Last year, I got Clinton, and this year I was going to ask for his sister Claire, but then we met Barry, and I felt torn. He drew me both.


After TCAF, I went over to The Only Cafe on Danforth to meet with Robin, Torontoist beer writer and Thirsty Wench. We chatted for a bit while she set up a beer-festival table to sell her new book The Ontario Craft Beer Guide, which I bought and had them sign, and then I went around to the other brewers' tables to sample their wares (my favourite being the Bourbon stout from the Great Lakes Brewery). I also finally got to give her a FreakAngels bag that I wanted her to have. Loved that bag, but it just wasn't working for me anymore, and I wanted to keep it in the Whitechapel family. She loved it!

Robin and her co-author Jordan


After 9 drinks, I quickly realized I should probably eat some food, and stumbled my way a few blocks to Robin's suggestion: Messini's - an authentic Greek restaurant, to try their Greek fries. In the states, feta cheese is almost pure salt, so I was so so pleasantly surprised by the food here. The fries were amazing, the feta was creamy and sweet, and they had octopus tentacles.


Robin and I met up at TCAF the next day and we got to talk more. She gave me a Sawdust City stout (Skinny Dippin' Oatmeal Stout), which sadly didn't live up to my taste, but still wasn't bad. We each picked up a copy of Beyond, a scifi/fantasy queer anthology, and I got a couple of autographs in my Food Porn anthology I'd picked up the day before (the selling point: there are recipes).

When we parted with Robin for the last time, we went around to some usual spots around town: Black Bull for food, and the Kensington Market, briefly. I even got to put up some bunny fliers.

Then home, which almost didn't happen, because the Gardiner expressway was closed for maintenance til the next day, and we had a really hard time finding an alternate route to the QEW.

Here's a few of the #rattycompanion pictures I took during the trip

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
pax_athena
May. 27th, 2016 01:22 am (UTC)
Oh, so that was the place that converted you to feta? :D I wondered on the other online place about it.

Octopus tentacles are the best!

And yeah, I have to admit I love Ikea. They do have more expensive stuff but also a ton good quality (for my budget) cheap stuff that look good and is extremely useful. Well, it looks the same as every second student and academic apartment (isn't it sad that I still live like a student?), but who cares? I have to hold myself back from buying too much of their small stuff :P I never fully manage to, but I try.
diello
Jun. 2nd, 2016 01:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the feta there was great! You could really taste the goat cheese. I like it in the states, but it's just SO salty here. I didn't realize it's not supposed to be that salty. Now I'm on the hunt for the good stuff :D

I was ready to spend all of my comic book money at Ikea, but then remembered THAT'S COMIC BOOK MONEY!!
aliens
May. 29th, 2016 11:43 am (UTC)
*faints* i have a morbid fear of octopi

that rattycompanion is the cutest
diello
Jun. 2nd, 2016 01:52 pm (UTC)
It's super chewy, like a balloon (unless you cook it JUST right).
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )