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That Walking Guy wanders the 613 and offers Twitter commentary

By Bruce Burwell on May 4, 2022

Back in January, everything had shut down again and I was doing winter walks around parts of Ottawa that I found interesting and walkable. I decided to write a series for Apt613 called Urban Retail Walks. I did some Google research to see if anyone else was doing anything similar, and immediately found That Walking Guy (TWG). He had been walking around Ottawa and documenting his walks with tweets that included nice photos and a Facebook page that organized his walks. His Twitter profile says:

“Low-profile kind of walking guy. Coming soon to walk a neighborhood near you. In between, I watch Y&R and mostly “classic” television.”

And that’s a pretty accurate description of his Twitter feed. He walks all over Ottawa, keeps a low profile, and comments frequently on TV shows he likes. Despite his low profile, I was able to track him down. I gave TWG a call and asked him whether he was worried if an Apt613 piece would blow his cover and reveal his true identity. He said that he’s just a “regular government employee” and that some people actually do know who he is. He’s even had folks offer to buy him meals in their restaurants along his walks. Recently, I saw one Twitter follower offer him a beer when he noticed that TWG was walking through his neighbourhood. So perhaps he’s not as mysterious as I originally thought.

COVID changed a lot of things for all of us. TWG says he started documenting his walks just as the pandemic began. He takes pictures of the buildings that he is passing and occasionally makes acerbic comments about the modern architecture he sees. And don’t get him started on cars that park on sidewalks. After a long walk, he usually finds a place to eat and tweets about that too.

He says that his number of Twitter followers really took a big jump when he walked through the trucker convoy earlier this year. Today his follower count is around 2,300. For reference, Apt613’s follower count is around 6,500 and Justin Bieber is at 114 million.

He walks around different parts of the city at different times of the year and sometimes does themed walks. Recently, hockey legend Guy Lafleur passed away and TWG did a walk around Lafleur’s hometown of Thurso. He also makes other occasional walking trips outside the 613, most often to Montreal.

I asked TWG what areas of Ottawa are his favourites to walk through. He said that he prefers the downtown walks and avoids the newest suburbs that may not have sidewalks. His all-time favourite walk would be up Bank Street from Alta Vista all the way to Parliament Hill and back.

One of That Walking Guy’s route maps (Facebook).

Check out his Facebook page if you are interested in some ambitious walks around the city. There is always a route map and photos along the route. You may find that the low-profile TWG has already passed through your ’hood without you knowing it.


You can follow That Walking Guy as @mchkzn on Twitter and check out his walking archives on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ThatWalkingGuy.