How Not to Smuggle Weed-Killer Into Canada
When carcinogenic lawn sprays were outlawed in Ontario, my father’s lawn obsession had me dallying in cross-border smuggling—and confronting my lifelong anxiety.
Illustration by Marco Gallo
I’m in my therapist’s office in Downtown Toronto, and all I can talk about is weed killer, the magical elixir of pesticides and other carcinogenic wonders that transform brown rotten grass into velvety green carpets. Everything else that’s bothering me – my confusing love life, fruitless apartment hunt, an impossible job search – it can all wait. For whatever reason, it’s weed killer that’s on my mind, because it’s what makes me feel like there’s a rock lodged in my throat obstructing my ability to breathe.
I try to explain all of this to my therapist, a middle-aged man with a kind demeanor and a hippy-ish “let you be you” philosophy, when he asks the obvious stock-in-trade therapist question: “But why does weed killer make you feel this way?” And I didn’t know the answer.