Dear Hal,

Thirteen Ways to Measure the Passage of Time: 

1) I'm hungry

2) my tires are flat

3) my pants are threadbare

4) I have dandruff

5) I'm aroused easily

6) my facial hair is itchy

7) my frame is flecked with rust

8) strangers ask me for directions in neighbourhoods where, ten years ago, I would have 

9) I identify with people who even three years ago I would have thought were really old

10) it's time to do my taxes again

11) my cup's almost empty

12) the house is quiet

13) patios, balconies, courtyards and backyards are opening for the season

Ever notice that Wallace Stevens' 'Thirteen Ways to Look at a Blackbird' is basically just a listicle?



A few things have changed in the last year and half--not just your facial hair. For one, the way you say street names has changed. For another, I'm no longer scared shitless by our website. And then, I suppose, there's the seasons, which are constantly changing but somehow always the same, which seems to be a recurring theme with us. I guess that about segues into my letter, which I couldn't write on the day of, but which I made sure to remember so I could write it later. So here goes: a typical Monday in the life of Sal Walker.


The Spring Equinox in Toronto as Narrated by our daring hero Sal Walker, to his far-off friend, Henry the Half-Back Kid

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Good evening friend,
I am walking along the western edge of Central Park. It’s 7:30 in the evening, cool but not cold, on a Monday night. It’s the spring equinox. 
I can’t say why I picked this particular part of the city to walk, other than I hoped that the park might be inspiring. I’ve been searching for inspiration all day, my friends, but alas so far nothing. 
As always the city is alive and pulsing. There are cars and people everywhere, and the gathering darkness is already full of lights. There are square window lights, headlights, flashing emergency lights, lamp lights, streetlights—every light you can dream of, except starlight. Starlight is the price we pay to live here. Starlight is what we give up for all the other lights in the world. 
You know, I feel rather like a poet just now. That was a particularly poetical turn a phrase, you gotta admit. And besides, wondering for New York City in the gathering twilight on a high holy Pagan holiday—how much more poetical does it get? 

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Almost exactly a year ago I wrote you about the view from a Starbucks window in spring. This is my follow-up to that letter. A year later.

I’m trying to remember what we talked about… croissants and buttered-noodles? Does that sound familiar? It was something like that… I remember you had eaten something gross, but the specific details of what that gross-thing was is escaping me at the moment.

Anyway, here is my now: I’m sat at a round marble-top café table sipping a small cup of very burnt coffee. Black t-shirt, black jeans—almost the exact same as how I was dressed a year ago, that much hasn’t changed—but my hair is shorter

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