With Thaddeus Borowitz
Thaddeus Borowitz, The Mike Columnist
Jason Childress and I met outside of Jimmy’s Coffee on McCaul on Monday morning. He was wearing dark wash skinny jeans, a white tee, and had on a pair of Blundstones. He waved to me and we went in and he ordered a small decaf. Walking toward campus on McCaul, he explained to me that he had recently given up coffee but upon giving it up he realized how much he missed the ceremony of coffee. As it turned out, for him the act of getting it was just as important as the actual caffeine. Taking off the bright yellow lid he inhaled deeply the smell of the decaf. “Ah, that’s the stuff,” and gave me a wink. I asked him where our next stop of the day would be and he said it would be a surprise.
Mr. Childress is a native son of Toronto. He announces to me that this is his home and will always be. I ask him about the ubiquitous “HOME IS TORONTO” T-shirts we see around. He laughs. He doesn’t need a T-shirt to tell people he is from here. And it is true: he doesn’t. Everywhere we go for the rest of the day he announces to the people that we meet that he is from Toronto. Most people just nod their heads in exasperation. It is only the second week of school and Mr. Childress has tired out his peers.
The second stop of the day for us is Robarts. He is meeting an ex-girlfriend outside the southeast steps so she can return the books he let her read. While we stand there he explains, through sips of decaf, that she had never read any Kurt Vonnegut. That was a big deal to him. She arrives a few minutes after their designated meeting time. Mr. Childress goes in for a hug, she brushes him off and takes the three Vonnegut books out of her bag. His eyes light up. She introduces herself to me and Mr. Childress says that I am writing a piece on him because he is an interesting student. I nod my head.
Walking across campus with Mr. Childress he points out to me all the places that are important to him. The quad where he made out with an ex, the building where he made out with an ex, the food truck he made out with an ex against. This campus was imbued with a sense of meaning for him and his many exes. We walk to his class in Old Vic, and he whispers to me walking into the room that he hasn’t done the readings but that he got the gist of the class from the syllabus. Mr. Childress then slept the entire class. My editor told me I could not interfere on the daily happenings of my subject so we sat there for another two hours while Mr. Childress slept. I wish that he had done anything interesting during that three hour stretch.
When a third-year semiotics class began to file into the room, Mr. Childress awoke suddenly and said that he was done for the day. He said I could leave but I told him I had to follow him at least to his house. He nodded his head and we went back to his house at Baldwin and McCaul. The last thing he said to me was that McCaul had a rat problem. Then he went into his house. It was 3:30 when our day ended.
This has been a Day in the Life with Thaddeus Borowitz. Check in next time to read about my next exciting campus personality.