When he is not finishing marathons in sixth place
or, conversely, riding around enjoying American Spirits, Malibu and "North Enders" from Fazzo's takeout window with me, my friend Gareth is writing. Mostly iPhone apps, but also articles like the one that was published in the latest Summer of The Uniter
. It deflates the flawed logic of the neighborhood saviors who moonlight as anti-gentrification crusaders (before buzzing off to the hipster quarters of real cities, that is).
It should be understood that there is a very real correlation between improvements at street level and the economic value of the property and the neighborhood. And so the best way to prevent gentrification is to quit cutting the grass and put off painting the picket fence. Don't plant a garden in a vacant lot, or apply for a fix-up grant, or think of joining a residents association. Start wearing more EXCO gear and less stylish Goodwill finds. Rottweilers running wild instead of pugs on leashes. Stolen mountain bikes instead of fixies. Or, better yet, just stay in the suburbs. Please--before a place that sells books [literacy promotion] or healthy food [chronic disease prevention] opens up north of Portage Avenue.
Speaking of displacement, here is another article in the The Uniter
, an historical account of the ill-fated Lord Selkirk Park
neighborhood, put together by yours truely.