Honest Education, pt.1

Posted on January 29th, 2010 4 great comments. Room for one more!

I had a city-sized epiphany yesterday, and if you’ll grant me a moment of your time, dear reader, I’d like to share it with you. In a few parts. Okay, it was a bit of a tipsy revelation, also part of the reason I’m writing about it today.

It all began with my trip to Honest Ed’s.

honest ed's store, bloor street west, bathurst street, mirvish village, retail, street corner, intersection, toronto, city, life

Actually, it’d begun earlier in the day when I’d met a long-ago co-worker suddenly turned neighbour — a conversation that self-destructed after we’d conducted it ;) ;) – and ended with drinks and friends somewhere on the west end. Well, technically it ended with me flipping through sickeningly unsteady photos, but that’s neither here nor there.

But I’m pretty sure Honest Ed Mirvish’s disturbed vision had a big role to play in the tone of my thoughts, and so contributed to the epiphany I was about to have in a very big way.

I’m not even sure how to begin describing the place. To try is like trying to squeeze one of those morbidly obese guys — the ones with cowboy hats and aviator glasses and locomoting about on struggling motor scooters — into a standard-size kitchen disposal bag. Ba-tam! Can’t be done.

So this won’t be easy, and definitely not complete, but it’s a start.

Well, I guess the most obvious feature is that Ed’s is the granddaddy of all cheapie stores.

honest ed's, bargains, discount store, clothes, piles, shop, mirvish village, toronto, city, life

The prices are really really good. And, considering how much you’re plunking down for a set of PJs, you can usually expect pretty good value for the money. Better than disposable, one-use sleeping attire, were I forced to quantify it.

However, that “cheap” tag is really wholly inadequate. I trust that if you’ve been, dear reader, you’d agree. For starters, each and every sign is hand-painted. That’s quite a feat considering the amount of product they carry.

Then there’s the wall-to-wall kitsch.

honest ed's, discount store, mirvish village, shop, chandelier, bargains, toronto, city, life

Most of it is actually left over from the multitudes of productions that the Mirvish family have lavished on Toronto over the years. Most of those are equally kitschy, for-the-masses spectacles. Not my flavour, but maybe I haven’t given them a fair shake. Lots of people swear by them. That’s entertainment!

actors, actresses, portraits, gallery, retail, honest ed's, discount store, productions, shows, musicals, mirvish village, toronto, city, life

The walls of the double-jointed store (the alley between is integral to the experience), are littered with the famous names that have been in a Mirvish show, or that have personally shaken Ed’s hand. I couldn’t tell you who a lot of the people are, but they seem like a generally classy lot. Lotsa Brylcreem going on there, seems respectably dandy.

However, if that was all to this store, I really don’t think I’d be able to recommend bringing the kids along. Or a heist crew.

Please allow me to elaborate, dear reader.

Continued in next part…

4 Comments on “ Honest Education, pt.1 ”

  • RE - Entrepod
    January 30th, 2010 5:39 am

    wow you are talking about going to Honest Ed’s… wowww, how I remember that place. do you still need to wash your hands when you come out from the dust ? they must have stuff in there from whenever that place opened back in the 1800’s. (wink*wink) I loved to go there on saturday afternoons when the area was packed and the store was bustling.


    Read more from RE – Entrepod at: http://pod313.com/
  • Patrick
    February 1st, 2010 7:13 pm

    You bet you still need to wash your hands, BadGal :) The place is as wonderful as ever!


  • Kato
    January 31st, 2010 9:34 pm

    I LOVED going there when I was a kid. So many good memories :)


    Read more from Kato at: http://www.pandorahsbox.blogspot.com
  • Patrick
    February 1st, 2010 7:13 pm

    "LOVED"? Why keep that in the past, Kato?


What's on your mind?