Category Archives: Diversions

The 2018 Ontario Provincial Election

I’ve asked my friends on FB why they’re voting for the PCs under Ford. A couple were amazing enough to answer but I still can’t seem to shake my intense “flight” response.

I don’t always read NOW Magazine but I stumbled across this article.

There’s so much I want to say but don’t really know how. I’ve crossed paths with Doug (and I mean literally, I was going in one direction, him another, across NPS plus other general public in-the-same-place-at-the-same-time kind of thing that happens in a major city) and even just crossing paths in downtown Toronto was one of the very few times in my life that I felt physically unsafe. And the interaction, if you can even call it that, was fleeting.

Toby was saying that maybe I should try and put myself in someone else’s shoes and see that they remembered how the last NDP government was SO VERY BAD for the economy and Horwath is not personable. And basically that Horwath and Doug are both incompetent.

Okay, first, the NDP was in power in 1990 to 1995. 23 years ago. That is almost exactly half my lifetime ago. WTF?!? Harris was in power from 1999-2002 and I’m bitched at for going that far back to complain about off loading of public transit and public housing to the city? The economic problems of the 1990s started long before Rae took power, he was just the effing premier who got the shaft for them.

Second, assume A and B are both equally incompetent AND everything else is exactly the same.  And now assume A is racist. And homophobic. And almost never showed up for work. Which would you pick? B right?

But now you’re told everything is the same as above BUT A is male and B is female. Hmmm. Did you change your answer? Well, there’s a whole other issue to work on then.

And others are saying the NDPs will run too many deficits! But all of the media – including the right wing Toronto SUN! – say the PCs platform, such as it is without details or costing etc, will actually cost the most and run the highest deficits. $1 beer sure sounds good until it’s balanced across from closing hospitals and libraries, homes for people with autism, and increasing racist and homophobic police practises.

What’s the last thing you remember about the Fords that came out in the press/media and was later found to be false? I’ll wait. Seriously. Let me know okay?

Before the Ontario PCs even take power we have:

  • a lawsuit from his sister-in-law calling into question his business dealings (and acumen)
  • a data theft investigation regarding the 407
  • a candidate under investigation for immigration fraud (misleading new immigrants)
  • at least one candidate under investigation for professional misconduct by his professional body (and he’s a freaking police officer! who allegedly threatened a constituent)

And then we have reports of PC signs being put on lawns without permission; a PC platform without any costing information at all. A man who, as a city counsellor, referred to female journalists as “little bitches,” and responded to going against two women opponents for the PC leadership with “I live with five women at home.” Think about that. How is that any different than “what?! I have a gay friend?” “I’m not racist, I work with a black guy.” I can “handle” them.  Oh and that woman with two masters degrees? “nice smile.” FFS! Oh and he’ll get back to us on whether he’ll attend Pride.

Everyone has examples it seems of candidates they’ve never met or seen. “The NDP candidate is a no show in my riding” “I don’t even know who it is?”  Maybe they missed them? My door has only been knocked on once. At 2:30 on a day I happened to be working from home. No flyers or calls or anything from anyone else at all. BUT I called the others to ask about their platforms, what they stood for. The PCs never called back. The Libs answered when I called and we had a nice chat. The NDP? They were the ones who came to my door. Otherwise for formal debates over 20 PC candidates didn’t bother. Including many Ford didn’t attend.

We’ve lost manufacturing jobs – but don’t lie (as Trump has done) and say “we’re going to get them back.” Bring in something better. Some manufacturing is never gonna come back.

How are taxes going to fall by 20% and yet services NOT get cut? Maybe he’ll just print it up? at his barely functioning company?  Instead, what I fear, is that public services – from help for the elderly, disability support, child care – will all be hollowed out. Carding will come back, anti-immigrant sentiment will rise, “fear of the other” will lead to greater and greater insulation.

Someone told me this is all just “fear mongering.”

I said no, it was just fear.

C is for March

I seem to have run out of steam a little in March. No reading to speak of – although I did catch up on my newspapers and magazines (mostly The Atlantic). I had a trial subscription to Texture that was going to expire at the end of March so I did a fair bit of poking around on there and then concluded I wasn’t going to miss it when the trial was over so that was good to know.

There was lego of course! The Curiosity Rover 🙂 it fits nicely with my Saturn V rocket.

Oh and Chicago too:

mostly sorted…

And I finished up a cross-stitch that I have to put some final touches on and then send out to a good friend’s daughter to remind her that there is always an adventure to be had:

adventure awaits

And if I really want to stretch it, I got a hair cut 😉

less hair; more grey

Q fell asleep while waiting…

B is for Beer

So like I said in the Main B post I went outside my comfort zone and bought a new beer: a limited edition release barrel aged kriek from Big Rock brewery. Which is basically a cherry sour beer. I shared the first bottle with our friend who was kind enough to make a pit-stop that day to pick them up.

enjoyed at the Hotel Cavell

An amazing colour. A wonderful smell. Not something I could drink. So one of the bottles made it to our best friends and another to our piano teacher. Which leaves the fourth. Which randomly ended up having the same number as our house. I’m holding on to that one!

Then there was a pint (another barrel aged) and the Big Sleep before our dinner out at the Fifth.

at the bar hop bar on Peter Street

And the new-to-me brewery Muddy York – an old nickname for Toronto.  And yes, while they have a few IPAs (my favourite style), they also make porters, lagers, and stouts and more!

The website lists 19 current beers (and 5 retired ones!) although not all the current ones are available right now. In any event, they list:

  • 6 pale ales
  • 3 IPAs
  • 2 lagers
  • 2 porters
  • 1 amber ale
  • 1 bitter
  • 1 double IPA
  • 1 hefeweizen
  • 1 hoppy wheat
  • 1 stout

I’ve had two IPAs, a bitter, the hefeweizen (which is one of my new favourites!), a pale ale and a lager. And one smoked beer they don’t currently list on the website (drinking something that tastes like smoke is a little weird for me). I’m likely only to have a taste of the porters and stouts, or maybe I’ll head to the brewery for tastes of them. But I’d love to work my way through them all. Hmmmm I wonder if they do flights in the bar! I’m trying to do low carb now for a bit again so it’ll all have to wait.

February – B

Well, the alphabet continues 🙂

No movies were watched actually, for the very good reason that I have a HUGE winter Olympics obsession.

from the CBC

We’re pretty multi-cultural in our house – well, mostly within Europe in any event. While Q and I were born in Canada, Toby and his dad were born in Great Britain, my mother-in-law is from Denmark, my maternal grandmother was born in Poland and my maternal grandfather was born in Latvia. Heck, there was even a Maltese skier this time! Also, that’s a HECK of a lot of red and white (and some purple and some blue):

There was some reading though: Bellweather Rhapsody (mostly thanks to reading a months’ old NYT book review Dear Match Book article) and also the Big Sleep – the first Philip Marlowe book by Raymond Chandler; which would have been a great movie to try and watch but such was not to be.  And a translation of Beowulf (which I wrote about a bit here).

And of course, there was some LEGO: Buckingham Palace, and Berlin and the Brick Bank! Lots more pictures will be posted here: [insert February LEGO post] but first I have to take them!

And beer! First, trying something completely new and out of my comfort zone, I bought four bottles of a barrel aged kriek beer from Big Rock brewery. And was introduced to another Brewery closer to home: Muddy York Brewing. You can read more about the beer part here.

 

 

 

Beowulf, or that time I was proven right by Anglo-Saxon poetry

One of the books I read starting with B for February was Beowulf. It was suggested by my boss. It turns out the Toronto Public Library has a bilingual edition: Anglo-Saxon to modern English. The introduction was fascinating. It set out how Seamus Heaney approached the task of translating this ages-old poem. Which lead me to some unexpected support…

One of the things I have always done that apparently drives Toby a little batty is change topics of conversation, either immediately or after a lull, by using the interjection “so.” Toby considers “so” as more a conclusion indicator word as opposed to a new topic indicator. This has bothered him for some time. 😉

What does this have to do with Beowulf? Well, Mr. Heaney writes about the voice of some “relatives of my father’s, people whom I had once described in a poem as “big voiced Scullions.” He explains they were big-voiced as everything they said came out more like a declaration as opposed to a statement. “A simple sentence such as “we cut the cord to-day” took on immense dignity when one of the Scullions spoke it.” and that was how he wanted Beowulf to sound.

The first lines read:

Usually, hwaet is translated in a literary fashion as “lo” or “hark” or “behold.” But in “Scullionspeak, the particle “so” came naturally to the rescue, because in that idiom, “so” operates as an expression which obliterates all previous discourse and narrative, and at the same time functions as an exclamation calling for immediate attention. So, “so” it was.”

Two letters. Occasional snarky remarks. All put to rest by a thousand-year-old poem.