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photoTO: The Continuing Love Story of Morgan and Alison.

Morgan and Alison are in L--
Sometimes, even if it isn’t pretty, Toronto’s graffiti can really be beautiful. After a long time in darkness, the Bloor subway comes outside between Dundas West and Runnymede stations. If you’re heading westbound, this crude piece of graffiti on the very top of the back of an auto shop – “MORGAN AND ALISON ARE IN L” – is the one that you might notice first as you leave Dundas West.
For some reason, something about the abrupt end of it got me and still gets me. It’s sad and funny at the same time: someone’s gone to all this effort to show the entire city how much they love someone, only to see the key word (LOVE, of course) painted over. When I was a kid, I always wondered how Morgan and Alison were doing. I wondered why they didn’t come back to reclaim their love. I didn’t understand, at the time, that they may not have felt the same way anymore.
When I went to take photos of the tag, I didn’t even realize that all along the bottom of the building (which also happens to be beside the TTC’s Keele Metropass parking lot) was much more detailed and elaborate graffiti, some really beautiful stuff. I’ve probably gone by the wall a thousand times, at least, but I’d never noticed – I was always busy looking for Morgan and Alison.
I thought I was the only one who ever noticed the line but almost everyone I’ve showed this photo to knows what I’m talking about. That’s Toronto for you; just when you think you’ve found something that’s yours, you find out everyone else knows about it. At least Morgan and Alison can still lay claim to it.

Comments

  • Karen

    The most notable graffiti in my noble hometown of Whitby was on a railway bridge near Brock and Garden. It said in huge letters, “CAN’T FIND MY SON”.
    “Can’t find my son”? I wondered about it for years. Someone who legitimately couldn’t find their son, a practical joke (funny?) or a grunge band?
    Like your tale of Morgan and Alison, my questions still go unanswered.

  • http://digitalmud.blogspot.com Christopher

    Was just thinkinga about this particular stretch of wall today. Some really beautiful work there.

  • p

    I love the white graphitti people I see in the High Park/Runnymede area
    see here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/karmagirl/89905787/in/set-72057594079995054/
    and here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/karmagirl/65432020/in/set-72057594079995054
    After moving to this neighbourhood, I started seeing them everyone although there seems to be a different artists who do these because the styles aren’t exactly the same.
    The same building in your photograph has these little guys painted on the heating vents on the roof of the building that I only suddenly noticed one day last month.
    And if you’re riding westward and sitting on the righthand side of the subway car, you’ll see two more little guys painted by the tunnel entrance of Runneymede station.
    Anyone know who the artist is or if this artist has their little guys elsewhere around the city?

  • Morgan

    Alison and I have been happily living in our cosy L-shaped home for years. Thanks for caring!

  • http://416style.blogspot.com/2005/08/great-graf-debate.html sookie

    Many of the artists on this wall have been friends of mine. If you’re into a bit more history check out the story on my blog: http://416style.blogspot.com/2005/08/great-graf-debate.html, though I’ll admit I don’t know what happened to Morgan and Alison either.
    sookie

  • Paddy

    Whoever wrote the “We’re happy in our L-shaped home”…thanks! Just sprayed my monitor with coffee laughing.