Prattle on
Tuesday, June 28, 2005

So, there is this woman who GRC and I used to see all the time around the neighbourhood. Correction, we would see her and her skid/partner/husband whatever you want to call him. It is strange because we started seeing her all the time at The Universal Grill. GRC and I used to go there for brunch on the weekends as we only lived around the corner from the place. The strange woman and her skid would also go there for brunch. Always when we were there and they’d sit totally silent. A couple’s silence. They’d read the paper and sometimes sneer at us because for me, brunch exists for friends to get together and laugh and eat and talk about our weeks, weekends, friends, boyfriends what have you. Anyway, behind their respective pages they’d sit looking like they hadn’t seen the inside of their own bathroom in WEEKS. Looking like they were supposed to be fighting over the ‘Books’ section of the Globe and Mail as their kind often does, in public for the world to see. He in an old blazer and wet hair, she in some floppy skirt she must have found on the corner. She’d jitter – perhaps with the excitement of something new - when she got up to use the bathroom, which was clearly a luxury in her world. She’d get up and he’d stretch backward, sometimes rubbing the yellow shirt stretched over his pot belly, and look around the restaurant, often with a bit of egg clinging to the corner of his mouth.

Anyway, GRC, and I moved to a new neighbourhood and soon there after discovered a new brunch place. We’d go almost every weekend and feed our faces to the delight of the owner and the not-gay-yet manager. On Saturday September 18th I flung the restaurant door open only to recoil in horror as my eyes immediately fell on the “Books” section of the Globe resting safely in the hands of a skid. There they were. WHY?! Things only got worse when I noticed a pale skinny lurking figure jitter her way toward the change rooms at the YMCA. Now she was everywhere and her skid could not be far behind. At brunch the sneering began anew and finally, I have to say, their creepyness won out in the end, I started eating brunch elsewhere.

One fine Thursday afternoon this spring I picked up the Now or Eye, I forget which and almost screamed. Skidless on the cover was this mystery creepy woman with a name. A name and apparently a book deal. Sheila Heti or something like that. And she wrote a book called Trove or Trubador or Trooper or something like that, I don’t know what it’s about but the newspaper cover called her the “Darling of the Toronto Literary Scene.” I guess you have to look like you do all your shopping at garage sales and that you can’t afford soap if you want to be taken seriously as a writer.

GRC read the article and told me that she is moving for her writing and keeping her location a secret. However, all reports say that she will be in Montreal. Lord help me. If I go to my local brunch place only to find her sliming in the corner behind the “Arts and Life” section of the Gazette I may actually vomit.


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