Sunday, November 27, 2022

"It's okay to raise kids in apartments" : Toronto Star op-ed

This article is in the Star today. It's a subject that matters deeply to me, as we battle the dinosaur premier and his henchmen, a pack which now unfortunately seems to include our mayor.

My friend in Vancouver tells me the new B.C. premier started moving instantly on housing; he has proposed a city-provincial partnership to buy old hotels and turn them into housing for marginalized people. Brilliant! He also wants to create a safe space for people who are too mentally ill to be abandoned to the streets. That's the kind of positive, progressive thinking we need. Instead, we in Ontario have: let's turn farmland into expensive houses and make our developer friends, who by the sheerest coincidence have bought those particular plots of land, even richer. 

(Oh, and let's send a $200 cheque as a bribe to families with children, to show them how much we care. My daughter, who could use the bucks, sent her kids to school with the cash to give to their teachers for supplies in the classroom.) 

An assistant Star editor got in touch about the piece. I thought I recognized his name, and we ascertained that his mother once took my course at Ryerson. Feeling old much, Beth? 

Gave myself a Covid test yesterday; it's negative, just a cold and not even much of one. But I cancelled seeing The Fabelmans with Ken and am masking more diligently than usual. Yesterday, riding my bike to the market in the sun, the snow gone, such pleasure. Monique came over to sit by the fire and toast Dad's hundredth birthday with me, Chateauneuf-du-Pape in $1 Rosenthal crystal. Today, the skilful Kingston editor Ellie Barton whom I hire to edit all my work, including this essay, and whom I've never met, comes for coffee, and later, Anna and the boys are here for dinner, to celebrate their great-grandfather who died decades before they were born.

So much of writing is sitting alone with the words, struggling to get them right, then trying to find a place where others can see them too. Especially with books, it's a tortuous process that can take years, and sometimes result in nothing, closed doors, no readers, no outside eyes. I'm grateful another short piece has found its way out into the world. 

And to blog subscribers: this new way of emailing the blog, I now see, means ads are attached. I dislike that but am not sure there's a way to avoid it. We'll try. Thanks for coming along for the ride.


  1. Great article in the TO star, Beth. My siblings and I were raised in a two bedroom apartment. Granted we enjoyed unsupervised play, a lot of it, and not in TO. But it can be done and the ability to walk everywhere would be wonderful. Pearl

    1. Thank you, Pearl. I believe fervently that we need a new way to think of housing, since our cities are now among the big cities of the world. And more sprawl that destroys farmland is the last thing we need.