Since you’re all expecting it, here I go with the official Jeff’s Rundown of the Trip to Toronto. It all started on a warm Friday morning at about 8:00 AM. We all met at the school and waited until everyone was there. Then we got into the vans – Mr. G driving the Grade 11-12s, and Mrs. DuBleick and Mr. Bussen driving the Grade 9-10s in two more vans. It’s sad that our whole school can fit in three vans, but whatever. We headed up to Toronto, and the day was off!
The first stop was World Vision. We got into the building and put on our ID badges that we had to wear for some reason. Then Paul Brauen gave us a little tour of the building – which mostly consists of cubicles and storage areas. That’s about it. It really wasn’t that exciting, since they’re just cubicles. I mean, come on, cubicles, people, cubicles! But anyways, after that, we went into the boardroom they have (very nice, I might add) and the guy there – I forget his name, something like Vanderspect, I think – showed us some movies and advertisements they produced. We talked about it a bit afterwards, but it really wasn’t that interesting. I’ve never really liked places like World Vision and their strategies. I mean, I know that they have the right motives at heart, and what they’re doing is very good, but the way they try to sucker money out of people is kind of annoying sometimes. I suppose it seems to work on some people, but definitely not on me. They try to play on people’s emotions by saying things like “Children are dying every day.” Of course, the rest of the population is dying as well, but you never hear as much about them as you do about the children. They know where their money-makers are, and they make sure to play it up on them as much as possible. That bugs me – a lot.
Anyways, I suppose even with their slightly underhanded marketing techniques, they still are a good organization doing good things for people that truly need their help. They’re trying to pressure the G8 meeting this year (the meeting for the eight industrialized countries) to bring up the topic of world poverty, something that’s now been promised by Tony Blair, the chairperson of the meeting, to be discussed. It could definitely be a shift in attitudes if things work out right that could bring about change by people that can definitely produce that change. I mean, individual people donating money is great, but what if the Liberals spent more time donating that surplus they had in the budget to people that need it rather than spending it on scandals? It’d do more good than thousands of people donating what they have.
But anyways, I’m going to just end that discussion there. We had lunch at World Vision in their cafeteria, and then headed off to downtown Toronto. We got to the Minsk Synagogue for the Jewish walking tour and waited out on the steps for Mr. G to park the car. After what seemed like an hour later, he finally came back and we started the tour. It was supposed to be a tour of Jewish sites in downtown Toronto. It ended up being more of a tour of former Jewish sites in downtown Toronto. Most of the buildings the tour guide pointed out had been torn down to make some new building or no longer were Jewish. Most of them were Chinese, in fact. A couple buildings had cornerstones written in Hebrew or Yiddish or something, but that was about it. The first part of the tour was the best part, because we actually went into a synagogue – and the building actually was still used as a synagogue. That part was pretty interesting, with the balcony for the women and children and the main level for the men, and the decorative mural on the wall and such. I didn’t think it looked all that great – kind of gaudy actually – but I suppose it was made a while ago. The whole building was pretty run down, actually, with cracks in the walls and such, but there was some sort of fundraising to help restore it.
After the tour, we all went to this place the tour guide suggested that apparently “had the best ice cream she’d ever had.” Well, we all went to check it out. We got in there and had about six seconds to look over ice cream before the guy behind the counter went into a huge spiel about how his ice cream was made organically and how his vanilla used real vanilla instead of a synthetically made vanillin like the store-bought brands we’ve had before – apparently we’re being taught to eat fake food; who knew? Then he started talking about how other brands were about 60% air, whereas his brand was only 30-50% air, so it was denser and more fattening, etc. etc. I could give you this guy’s whole speech, but then he started talking about his flavours of ice cream. On top of vanilla and dutch chocolate, he also had strawberry – made with real strawberries, green tea, rose-petal vanilla, dutch chocolate with cayan pepper and something-or-other swirl, and a few other ones. Once he started rhyming off his flavours, I began to doubt this guy’s sanity. I mean, green tea ice cream? Who the heck wants to eat green tea ice cream? I suppose Bethany and Meagan did, because they got it. They said it was really good, too. I tried a bite, and I would have to differ on their opinion. It had like bits of leaves in it or something, and it was really gross. I just stuck to plain old dutch chocolate, which is really good, but no better than I’ve had before. I’ve tasted the same sort of thing at places like Baskin & Robbins and Willy’s Ice Cream.
This guy was a real fruitcake anyway. He was most likely really into the whole tree-hugging environmental movement and everything. I mean, the environment is important, but that doesn’t mean you have to create a business making organic ice cream for goodness sakes. He also said he was selling water, and we could have as much as we wanted as long as we made a donation to the Suzuki Foundation – another tree-hugger that I’d like to avoid if ever I met him on the street. But I don’t think even David Suzuki had anything on this guy. I mean, he might as well have been putting tree bark and roots in his ice cream and calling it organic. Some people would probably still buy it if he told them that you were helping to protect the environment and reduce smog pollution. I’m not quite sure how ice cream does that, but some people would believe him, for sure. I mean, he said we had been taught to eat fake food, but who cares if it tastes good? I mean, it’s friggin’ ice cream – you don’t eat that stuff for the nutrients, you know. It’s not exactly nutritious. If he wanted to create a restaurant making entirely organic foods, not using genetically modified tomatoes for their ketchup and no steroids for the cows that they get their hamburger beef from, that’s one thing – at least I could see why you would want all-natural food. I mean, synthetically created foods don’t have the same nutritional content as organically grown foods, so eating a meal that’s all synthetically made wouldn’t be as good for you. But ice cream? Who cares about freakin’ ice cream? You eat it for the taste, not the nutrition. And I don’t think it tasted any better than anything else I’ve had. I mean, it was good, but I’ve had better. Anyways, I wish the best for him and everything, because if he has to go and rhyme off that whole ten-minute speech every time someone comes into the store, he’s going to lose his voice permanently by age 30.
After that, we drove over to the Spaghetti Factory. It was only like 4:00 or something, so no one was really hungry. Mr. G just told us to go walk around for half an hour or something, so we did. We went into the Hotel Novotel or No-tell Motel or something, and just walked into their nice lobby. It was pretty shnazzy. Then we left and went into some convenient store for no particular reason. I saw something really cool, though – they had those little cereal boxes that I always loved as a kid, but then they also had these plastic bowls with cereal in them, kind of like in Mr. Noodles containers. It was really cool – I mean, I wish I had those as a kid. I’d never stop eating cereal. Anyways, we went into some strange African jewellery store or something as well, and all the girls were amazed at this table full of beads that you could make your own earrings with or something. Everything in there looked absolutely ugly, though – there were massive necklaces with huge beads and a giant metal thing on the end of it, so you’d look like some African gangster with your bling on. And the girls were like, “Ooh, that looks so cool!” I came up to it and said, “Ooh, that will make me look like an indigenous African – how awesome! Just because I’m white, doesn’t mean I can’t put bones through my nose and drink cow’s blood.”
But anyways, we went back to the Spaghetti Factory and got a nice big table for everyone. Everything there was really expensive, and I wasn’t that hungry, so I just ordered a $7.99 Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad. Some other people ordered a $10.99 plate of spaghetti. It was really strange, though. My salad was larger than the spaghetti plate, and it was less expensive. I didn’t even get through the entire thing, because it was just so much salad. I mean, I’m not a big fan of salad in the first place, but if I had known that I could get less spaghetti, I would have ordered that instead. Whatever. The salad was good anyways, and they brought us free sourdough bread with garlic butter, which was amazingly good. After waiting for people for about half an hour to figure out how much tip to give (okay, it wasn’t half an hour, but it sure seemed like it), we left there and headed off to the Skydome, now horrendously known as the Rogers Centre. I will refer to it as the Skydome anyways, just to spite Rogers and their horrible name choice. I mean, they could at least have called it the Rogers Skydome or something, jeez.
We got there and met up with the Grade 9-10s outside while Mr. G went and got our tickets. We then went up that massive ramp that takes forever to go up, and headed up to the 500 section where noses bleed and birds fly. Wait, sorry, birds fly slightly lower than that – my mistake. The hawks mistook it for a cliff and made their nesting places right on our seats, so we had to throw the eggs onto the field to get them away. Okay, that whole thing about the hawks is a lie, but it was just a creative story to explain how high up we were. We were actually right at the front of the 500 section, so it wasn’t too bad. We sat down in the section we were in, and then Mrs. Houtman tried arguing with me about sitting in the seat my ticket listed. I argued back that since we had the whole section, we could just trade tickets and everything would be fine. Besides, Wes was sitting in my seat, so I couldn’t move unless he did, and then someone else would probably have to move so he could sit in his seat, etc. etc. She just said, “Well I’m just telling you what the official person told me. I’m just following what he said.” I just kind of laughed, because it really, really, really, really, really doesn’t matter, especially in the 500 section. I mean, if someone came up to me and showed me their ticket saying I was in their seat, I would certainly move. But Mr. Bussen had that ticket, so it really didn’t matter. Besides, the 500 section was almost entirely empty. Anyone wanting their own seat could sit in just about any other seat and probably have a better view.
So we got settled, and then Jon and I went off to the bathroom to get ready for the game. He had brought some water-based paint – blue, white, and red – and we painted ourselves up. We both had half our hair blue and half white, and then two red lines underneath our eyes. We pretty much looked like freaks, but whatever. It was fun. We went back to our seats, the game started, and things were off. The game was pretty much horrible. The Jays ended up losing 7-2, and all the runs were in the first 2 or 3 innings, so the last 6 or 7 were so boring. We could have just stayed for the first three and then left, and not missed anything. Anyways, I pretty much set myself up for annoyance – I had Bethany and Melissa on my left and Steph on my right. Most of the game was alright, and they weren’t too annoying, but then near the end, they wanted nachos. And who did they look to for the money? I think it’s pretty obvious. I held my ground, though. I’m not going to give into every little thing they want. The Skydome prices are so expensive, and I didn’t want to spend my money on it. So anyways, I argued with them a little while – or rather, they argued with me and I just said no. Then they saw it was a fruitless endeavour, and started looking around for someone else they could annoy. They saw Zack and moved in for the kill. Since he’s kind of a pansy when it comes to the ladies, he gave in and bought them nachos. I was just glad he did it and not me. They were happy, I got a few nachos out of it whenever I could reach in and grab one, and more importantly, I didn’t have to pay a cent.
Anyways, after that, we all walked back to the parking lot where the vans were parked. Zac (the other one) was taking pictures of random people and random things. I got Best of Me by The Starting Line stuck in my head for no particular reason, and I was trying to figure out the lyrics so I could at least sing it, even though I don’t like it anyway. Melissa was busy trying not to get raped or something and holding onto Steph’s arm, since she’s pretty manly and could definitely protect her from harm. Later on she started walking by me instead, since I guess it’s Toronto and people might start dragging them into parades or something. Besides, I’m pretty much a professional bodyguard and know kung fu. I could protect her better, no matter how manly Steph is. Plus, Steph would be more likely to just run away in the face of danger, since she seems to do that when I look at her – I guess that’s more the face of insanity, though.
We all piled into our respective vans and headed back home. There were some strange guys in the parking lot that I think were drunk. I mean, one of them got Mr. G to give them a high-five out the window as he drove away. If that’s not a sign of drunkenness, I don’t know what is. My eyes were pretty tired, so I just laid my head back and closed them. I mean, I wasn’t really “tired,” but whenever I’m outside a lot, my eyes get really tired. They’ve always been really sensitive to light. It was a pretty boring trip back home, then we got to the school, I called my parents, got my hoodie back from Melissa who didn’t want to give it up because Bethany was wearing hers because Bethany’s was wet. It was crazy, but I got it back anyway. My dad took me home, I took a shower to get the paint out of my hair, and that was that. I headed to bed after a long, fun day.
That’s the entire day in a nutshell. Believe me, I could go into much more detail with it, but I’ve restrained myself. I figure you don’t want a book about every day, although I tend to write one anyways. Oh well. These are my thoughts, and I tend to think quite a bit throughout the day – not about what I’m supposed to be thinking about, but still thinking nonetheless. But anyways, I think that’s all I’m going to say. I don’t have any plans for tonight, but that could change. I really don’t know. I’m not too concerned about it; I might get someone and go see a movie, but the only movie that really looks good right now is Star Wars Episode III. I wouldn’t mind spending the money to see it again, but I’m not sure whether I want to. I suppose it depends who I’m with. Whatever. We’ll see how things go.