LAURIER // CLAY NIKIFORUK
Quartier: Plateau-Mont-Royal || Intersections: Laurier, St. Joseph, Gilford
Mise en service: 1966 || Architecte: Jean P. Pothier
Autobus: 17, 27, 30, 46, 47, 51, 427
Clay Nikiforuk, 24
Raised in the Okanagan and having completed most of her degree in Vancouver, Clay landed in Montréal in February of 2013. Once here, she wrote more in 6 days than she had in 6 months and saw this as a sign that she may want to call Montréal home for a while. Presently writing her first book (Open-Source to boot) on exploring and critiquing the sociology of sexual assault, Clay is also a semi-regular contributor on rabble.ca where she hosts Love 2.0 — It’s complicated; a non-traditional advice column with a particular polyamory bend. This past April, Clay chose to share her story of being detained, harassed and intimidated by border officials for travelling with condoms, lingerie, and a dismaying gamut of miscellaneous misogynistic hogwash. The post went viral, sparking massive indignation and bringing other women to share their stories of sexism at the border.
Having lived in Northern India and travelled through Israel, South Africa, Guatemala, and most of Europe, Clay deeply values moving houses or cities and how the uncertainty of new experiences, places, jobs, and friends forces you to stay attentive, interested, and truly notice your surroundings. Time goes slower and she believes it forces you to learn fast, make new starts, and break out of your comfort zone. .
Though friends tell her that she “seems like she has it all figured out”, Clay lives with often paralysing anxiety. She talks about it openly to fight the stigmatization and otherizing of people coping and living with mental health issues. She grounds herself by remembering that she “can, has and will” trust herself, and in reminding herself to check her biases, assumptions, and expectations and realize that they come from her “limited standpoint which is influenced by [my] upbringing and, often, privilege”. She’s kind of made of awesome.