issue 1

(published online on 20/05/2020)

View issue 1 as a PDF (we recommend it) [click here]

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May 20, 2020.

Note from the Editors:

Hello readers,

Whoever you are, wherever you’re from, however you found us, we want to thank you for your interest in the first issue of Social Distanziner.

It’s been about two months since the COVID-19 lockdown was first announced and as we were quarantining ourselves, we decided to create the Distanziner, a zine (quaranzine, if you will). The pandemic has affected all of us in different ways and we’ve come across so many unique thoughts, feelings, and stories worth sharing. We wanted to give members of our extended communities a platform for creative expression. Here, you’ll find reflections from the past few months, some pieces of quarantine-era creativity to look back on, and a little sliver of our contributors’ lives during this moment in history.

Distanziner started off as a small project that was just going to be a simple Google Slide showcasing some of our friends’ creative pursuits, and our own little hobbies. We never planned to have anyone outside of our friend group see it, and we sure did not expect to have a whole team of dedicated, creative individuals making amazing pieces and helping us put it all together. Without you, this zine would have stayed as a Google Slide that would have only reached the eyes of 10 people. Thank you for making this all happen.

This issue of the zine is dedicated to all the health professionals, delivery workers, cashiers, transit employees, teachers, chefs and restaurant owners, and so many more people who keep the world going in this difficult time. We also want to thank you and everyone else for abiding by lockdown rules to keep our families and friends safe, and for caring for each other in this time of need.

Please enjoy the first ever issue of the Distanziner. We hope you have the opportunity to look through each of the wonderful pieces in the magazine, taking a peek of the world through another person’s eyes.

Thank you,
Virginia and Angela


Virginia Ling
Angela Gu


Annecy Pang


Arash Ghafoori


Irfan Hakim
Michelle Khuu
Emerald L.

by Arash Ghafoori

Toronto, ON

by Terese Mason Pierre
Toronto, ON

Now where is the fresh store, the stash of colour
under tarp, the rainy-day treasure inspired

by hardship, the dry paint and papercuts
under fingernails. Here, it is difficult

to breathe warm air into a page; between
the lines lie the dead, the invisible pricks

in the lungs where song once gestated.
How to resurrect that which was once

love, now a task, corporeally produced
and spread over the eyes of the world—

one day at a time is the mantra, it will
come back, the wings, the beating energy

against the back of our necks,
the desire to run, to change

Social Distanziner - Toronto, ON