So who are we, anyway?
Our names are Jenn and Natalie and we’ve got some pretty big ideas about sharing. The two of us met in the summer of 2010 when we were working in the breakfast cafe of a travelers’ hostel in downtown Toronto. It didn’t take long for us to uncover mutual affinities for Canadian indie pop, coffee (no big surprise as shifts started at 6a.m.), Frank O’Hara, Eastern European food (likely caused by genetic predispositions), and puns.
We each took an interest in the other’s additional hobbies as well. Jenn spent her time cooking in community kitchens, cycling around town, and explaining that there is more to studying geography than looking at maps. Natalie polished her French skills, serenaded listeners on the piano, and captured snippets of reality in cartoon form. Since 2010, many of our interests have merged. Jenn switched her focus from learning German back to learning French (tut mir leid, Deutschfreunden). Natalie started to volunteer at Harvest Noon Cafe with Jenn and other cooperative members. Natalie performed a haunting Pixies cover on a rogue street piano at midnight in the heart of the city, and Jenn was there to wax poetic about urban transit design and public art.
What we’re trying to tell you is that we are basically a single web-based super-person now.
Well, not quite. Like most people, we have a series of projects in their infancy that we optimistically believe will be complete one day. Back when we first met, we hatched a plan to cartoon our way through the alphabet by pairing vegetables and fruit with alliterative adjectives, starting with L for Leaping Leeks. While the plan for Chapter 2: P for Punchy Persimmons is in the works, we decided to focus our efforts on a more diverse project – enter blogging and food swapping. That said, keep your eyes peeled for the next 25 cartoons. We haven’t given up yet.
A Little Bit More About Us
Hello! I’m Natalie and I’m a student at U of T studying English and Sociology. If you’re ever unable to find me, the first place you should look is in a cafe — I’ve been working in them since I can remember. There’s something about working with people, food, coffee and the greater community that I can’t get enough of. My favourite thing to talk about is a great memorable meal and having that conversation over coffee makes it so much better. Apart from makin’ lattes and writing essays, I’m also into baking and cooking (surprise, surprise) as well as the occasional marmalade, pickle or jam-making session. I also love exploring the city (on foot or bike) and making use of public spaces and community events. The world may be our oyster, but I think Toronto is most definitely the pearl.
I’m Jenn, a recent graduate of the University of Toronto, where I studied human geography, history, and cinema studies, with some writing courses squeezed in here and there. Over the past few years, I’ve been finding new ways to stay engaged with travel and food while keeping my environmental impact in check – without becoming a Debbie Downer. During my time at U of T, I volunteered with the Hot Yam!, a vegan cooking collective run out of the Centre for International Experience, and helped set up Harvest Noon Cafe, a thriving project I am still involved with. Upon graduation, I went to France to volunteer on farms (via WWOOF France), where doors opened to learning about cheese-making, permacultural lifestyles, and foraging for herbs and greens. Currently, I am the communications coordinator at Sustain Ontario, an exciting forum for connecting groups and individuals to develop ‘good food’ ideas.
To make a long story short, I am doing what I can to live purposefully by taking the good I come by and sharing it with people whenever possible. I want Tennyson’s words to ring true for me too: “I am a part of all that I have met.”
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org .