The Leslieville Cheese Market is located at 541 Queen West, just west of Augusta; this is very far from Leslieville, for those unfamiliar with Toronto geography.

A locus of place names is often the only thing we have to orient ourselves in an urban vernacular that repeats itself throughout a city.

Every area has it’s own version of a pizza shop, a corner store, a green grocer, a coffee shop. It’s the ties of these places’ names to their location that affirms their unique geography, their relative spatiality, and by extension confirms our relative spatiality in an often disorienting world.

Yes, there is indeed a Leslieville Cheese Market in Leslieville, also on Queen Street, however many kilometres east. I think it funny that they retained their name in their expansion to a different neighbourhood — it contradicts the need for a place to be anchored by its location that I explored in a previous post.

Perhaps this was the intended affect, but it’s as if the Leslieville Cheese Market on Queen West is an outpost of Leslieville itself. When you enter this shop, you are on Leslieville soil, like some embassy in a distant country.

I dig the effect this geognative dissonance (geography-induced cognitive dissonance) has on the streetscapes. It jumbles my linear notion of place and my interrupts my expectations of the seemingly inevitable connection between a place and its unique coordinates.

I suppose this can happen in other circumstances: visiting a North American style shopping plaza in Europe, or being in another’s home that has the exact same blueprint as your own.

Indeed, supposedly objective, relative space is less linear than it appears.