Monthly Archive: March 2015

Top ten things about Toronto

Christopher Hume has written a piece in the Toronto Star listing the ten things he hates about Toronto. Who cares? Let’s celebrate our city. Here are the ten things I love. 1. The TTC. As a senior, I ride for half price. I take the car downtown rarely, less so with the Gardiner under construction. But I’m downtown three times a week on average. The service disruptions are infrequent and even then I always have plenty to read to while away the time.  2. The interior of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, North Tower. Formerly a branch, it now houses...

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Mon pays, c’est l’hiver

During a walk in the sunshine this afternoon, I saw my first robin of spring. He was sitting alone in the middle of a baseball field in my neighbourhood so he was unlikely a wintering robin, or he would have been surrounded by a flock. He sat for the longest time, hoping to find a worm, but finally flew away, empty-beaked. Maybe he will fill up on berries before nightfall. This has been the winter of our discontent. February was the coldest month ever in Toronto with an average temperature of –12.6C. As a boy growing up in Guelph, the...

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The Agenda

No journalist in Canada knows more about politics – and a lot of other topics – than Steve Paikin, host of The Agenda on TVOntario. In addition to being an excellent broadcaster, Paikin has written several books including Public Triumph, Private Tragedy on John Robarts and Paikin and the Premiers, a personal reflection on the last 50 years of Ontario politics. He is currently working on a biography of Bill Davis, Ontario Premier from 1971-1984. So it was a pleasure and a privilege for me to be asked by Paikin to come into the TVO studios to talk about my...

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Oh, Canada

For years I’ve been struggling to understand why Americans are so much better at so many aspects of life than Canadians. After all, we have drawn on the same pool of immigrants and we are both democracies with excellent education systems. Canadians even have a few advantages such as a universal health care system and a safer environment.  To be sure, we both have problems. The U.S. has a racial divide. We have native Canadians who are routinely ignored even when they’re murdered by the hundreds. But we should also have the same opportunities as Americans do to grow, invent...

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House of Cards

Plot spoiler – I’m at Episode Ten of Season Three of House of Cards, so stop reading now if you don’t want to learn about the disappointments ahead. The first thing that went wrong was that Frank Underwood all but disappeared in the first two episodes. Rather than command the screen for 85 percent of the time (or whatever the exact number was) he went absent for long stretches. Doug Stamper, his henchman in the two earlier seasons, dominates airtime as he fights his way back to health after we thought he’d been murdered. I don’t care that much about...

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