It was a month ago when I saw these witty little puppets made by Ottawa artist Gabe Thirlwall (Fish on Fridays) at the Queen West Art Crawl. Way back then, the weather was fairer, the leaves hadn’t yet changed colour, Rossi and, heck, even Sarah Thomson were still contenders in this crazy race, and the Toronto Mayoral Debate did seem a lot like the “Political Circus” Gabe had created in her show tent.
Now, with less than a week ‘til election day, it seems a little closer to a stampede. Or a spook house. Or something else that would warrant me waking up in cold sweats every morning this week.
I realize that admitting this solidifies my complete nerd status (beyond my gluten allergy and unicorn obsession combined) but I have actually woken up panic-stricken over this election on more than one recent occasion.
I’ve obviously taken this municipal election to heart (hovering over newspapers, stalking candidates websites… cursing in front of my Grandmother in one particular rant). So I’m surprised when I hear that friends of mine — many of them educated, socially-aware, environmentally-concerned, creative and generally “progressive” young folk— don’t plan to vote.
But only surprised for a minute. Because then I think about the whirlwind of information out there, a lot of which is difficult to digest. Or believe. And trying to can leave us feeling frustrated. Or… nauseous. And therefore uninformed.
And the number one reason these decided non-voters give for non-voting is “I just don’t know enough about it.”
Well, this is when it comes in handy to have a nerd friend like me around (this and in the circumstance that you need a unicorn fact verified – yes, they are magical).
I am going to give you two (magical) links that will provide you with simple, straightforward information on:
Issues that matter to you:
OneToronto has put together a short list of links to Mayoral Report Cards from groups like Artsvote, the Toronto Environmental Alliance and the Public Transit Coalition, grading top candidates on their plans for (you guessed it) arts, the environment, and transit.
Check out the grades and simple summary of their views here.
How and where to vote:
Find out what ward you live (and vote) in here.
If you have yet to register, fear not, you can still vote. Show up (to the place the last link told you to) on Monday with a piece of ID with your name, signature and Toronto address on it. If you don’t have one of those, you can make it happen with two pieces: bring one piece of ID with your name and signature on it, as well as something that shows you live in Toronto – a utility bill or bank statement with your name on it will do just fine. For a complete list of valid ID check here.
Monday October 25th. Do it.
We are at risk of abandoning plans for funding for art and lanes for bikes and food security for our neighbours and accessible, affordable transit.
It isn’t okay for us to sit back while the crew that will vote based on things like cuts to their property taxes… votes. And determines the direction of this city for the next four years for us.
And it definitely isn’t okay for a twenty-something female to be waking up sweaty because of anything to do with Rob Ford.
So I am begging you, Vote.
And once you do, come celebrate at our election party at Insomnia. I will personally buy you a drink. Actually.
A few more photos from the Queen West Art Crawl
Marvelous artist/ illustrator Jay Dart with a piece we really enjoyed called
Our pal and art crush, Danielle Hession
Loving this new, darker work from Danielle
More of Gabe in the Fish on Fridays Political Circus
Her fuzzy wolves. Love!
Wish I'd bought one. I have a strong feeling they ward off election-mares