March 2013 Archives

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Ontario Logo: 3 Guys Chilling in a Hot Tub

Ontario Logo: 3 Guys Chilling in a Hot TubThe Ontario logo is supposed to depict our provincial symbol, the trillium. But thanks to Reddit, all I can see now is three guys chilling in a hot tub.

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And now, that's all you'll ever see, too.

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Go Leafs Go!

MC355-Edit

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Peter Kormos, Dead at 60

In MemoriumPeter Kormos was 60. He was the Ontario NDP MPP first elected to the legislature in 1988 who joined the NDP cabinet when the party came to power under Bob Rae in 1990.

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Ralph Klein, Dead at 70

In MemoriumRalph Klein was 70. He was Mayor of Calgary for nine years and then Premier of Alberta for fourteen, presiding over four consecutive majority governments.

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Long Weekend Open Mike

Open MikeI want to know what you're thinking. Tell me what's on your mind.

And enjoy the long weekend!

Print

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Richard Griffiths, Dead at 65

In MemoriumRichard Griffiths was 65. He was the versatile British actor who played the boy wizard's unsympathetic Uncle Vernon in the "Harry Potter" movies.

Older folks will know him best as Monty in Withnail & I, Brits will know him as Henry Crabbe in Pie in the Sky, and I remember him fondly as Dr. Albert S. Meinheimer and Earl Hacker in The Naked Gun 2 1/2.

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5 of My Favourite Things

5 of My Favourite ThingsFor no particular reason, and in no particular order, here are five of my favourite things these days. And no, these things aren't better than my kids or my lady friend or my family or anything like that, these are just five things I thoroughly enjoy.

The New Digg

This isn't the old Digg that got stomped by Reddit, this is the new Digg. The front page of Digg is now loaded with super interesting articles. I subscribe to the RSS feed for the front page of the new Digg and it adds interesting reading to each and every day.

CBC Radio

Terrestrial radio really does suck these days, with one exception. The programming on CBC Radio One, for the most part, is awesome. It's typically smart, interesting, balanced and entertaining. It's far and away the best radio I get in my '99 Mazda.

60 Minutes

I've been watching 60 Minutes for decades, and it's still great. If you haven't tuned in in a while, you might want to revisit this staple of Sunday night television.

Larry David

I laugh out loud at everything Larry David touches. From Seinfeld to Curb Your Enthusiasm and beyond, he tickles my funny bone.

Live Sports

I found a stream of the end of last night's Heat ~ Bulls game, because I wanted to see if the streak would end. It did. I can't wait to watch the Leafs game with the kids tonight as we strive toward our first playoff appearance in my daughter's lifetime. I also can't wait to see if Florida Gulf Coast can win again, if Tiger can win the Masters and how Iggy does with the Pens. I absolutely love live sports.

What are your favourite things?

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I Never Liked Kinder Eggs

I Never Liked Kinder EggsEaster is coming, and that means kids everywhere will be receiving Kinder Surprise Eggs. Well, not kids everywhere. I understand they're still illegal in the United States.

I must confess that I never did like Kinder Eggs. The toy inside was always a worthless piece of crap and the chocolate was minimal and underwhelming. I'm no fan of the Easter treat.

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Does anyone out there enjoy Kinder Eggs?

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Does Anyone Else Like Mike Wilner?

Mike WilnerI like Mike Wilner. I follow him on Twitter and always enjoy his appearances on The FAN 590. He knows his baseball, particularly Blue Jays baseball, and I appreciate his lack of tolerance for ignorance and nonsense.

Some people find this attitude disrespectful and rude. I had some Twitter conversations yesterday with people who outright dislike him.

Does anyone else like Mike Wilner? What do you think of him as a Blue Jays analyst?

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The Problem With Rob Ford and His Camp: Kevin Donovan Speaks

The Problem With Rob Ford and His Camp: Kevin Donovan SpeaksKevin Donovan is an investigative reporter at the Toronto Star. He has won three Canadian Association of Journalists Awards, one Michener Award and three National Newspaper Awards and you might know him as the guy who broke the ORNGE story.

Kevin Donovan co-wrote the Star story that Rob Ford was asked to leave a gala event celebrating the Canadian armed forces last month, because organizers were concerned he was impaired.

It’s an open secret at city hall that the mayor has battled alcohol abuse. Those closest to him are concerned for his health and the impact it has on his job as mayor of Canada’s largest city. Current and former staff have told the Star of repeated attempts to persuade the mayor to get help for more than two years and as recently as November. All attempts have been rebuffed.

Kevin Donovan appeared on Humble and Fred's podcast this morning. Listen to what he had to say and then meet me after the jump.

In response to this story, Rob Ford has called it "an outright lie". His brother and unofficial spokesperson, Doug Ford, has also denied the allegations. Doug and Rob both believe the Toronto Star is out to get them and anything the Star writes that puts Rob Ford in a negative light is a lie.

Make no mistake, I don't take delight in the fact our mayor has a substance abuse problem. I sincerely hope he gets help, and my issues have always been with his flawed logic and regressive approach to city planning. He's a leader who won't raise a flag for the Pride Parade, but won't miss a photo opportunity with the pandas. He's a leader who will scream "subways, subways, subways" but won't tell you how we'll pay for the subways. And when an investigative journalist presents overwhelming evidence about our mayor being asked to leave a gala event, even confirming it with councillor Paul Ainslie, chair of the government management committee and a strong ally of Ford, Rob Ford, his brother and his camp stick with plan A: deny, deny, deny.

In this instance, it's a true shame. Rob Ford needs help, and step one is acknowledging he has a problem. Until Rob Ford accomplishes that, my fear is this will only get worse.

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These Doggy Boots Humiliate Us Both, Rudy

These Doggy Boots Humiliate Us Both, RudyFor a couple of days last week, I was doggy sitting for a very nice dog named Rudy. In addition to a leash and dog food, I was left these four doggy boots for him to wear on his walks.

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I could never bring myself to use these boots. I'd look at Rudy, look at the boots, and look back at Rudy saying aloud "these doggy boots humiliate us both".

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When the Guy Living Upstairs Has Unprotected Wifi

[via Reddit]

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Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 29: Documentaries

Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 29In this 29th episode, we chat about our favourite documentaries, my home ownership dilemma, breast reduction surgery and the future of watches. This episode is exactly 36:30.

You can listen to this episode in a variety of ways:

Mike's Doc list:

  • Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father
  • The Imposter
  • Searching for Sugarman
  • Exit Through the Gift Shop
  • Jiro Dreams of Sushi
  • Man on Wire
  • Capturing the Friedmans
  • Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
  • Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse
  • Gimme Shelter
  • Hoop Dreams
  • Crumb

Rosie's Doc list

  • Lake of Fire
  • Page One: Inside The New York Times
  • No Direction Home
  • When the Levees Broke
  • Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage
  • Roger & Me
  • Spellbound
  • An Inconvenient Truth
  • Bowling For Columbine

Catch up on all episodes of Toronto Mike'd at http://www.torontomike.com/podcast/.

Toronto Mike'd Podcast

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Important Survey

Important SurveyWould you rather go a week without your phone or a week without your toothbrush?

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Open Mike Madness

Open MikeIt's time for some Open Mike Madness!

How's it goin', eh?

Print

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Why I'm Rooting For Gonzaga (And You Should Too)

March Madness - NCAAWithout a doubt, I'm rooting for Gonzaga to win this year's NCAA's March Madness tournament. If you're fellow Canadian, you should be too, for two good reasons: Kelly Olynyk and Kevin Pangos.

Olynyk, a seven-foot forward from Kamloops and Pangos, a point guard from Holland Landing, Ontario, have led Gonzaga to a stellar 31-2 record. Quite possibly the best team in the United States is being powered by two Canadians and that's pretty sweet.

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So it's Go Gonzago Go in this household, but I'll also be cheering for Michigan and UNLV. Mississauga's own Nik Stauskas plays for the Michigan Wolverines and is one of the best three point shooters in the NCAA. UNLV's Anthony Bennett hails from Brampton and is a projected top-five NBA draft pick.

Lots of Cancon in this year's tourney, which gets underway in less than an hour. If you want to hear my brother and his buddy pick the winners, listen to episode 5 of Fantasy Sports Hookup.

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This Systematic Elimination of Maple Leaf Mikes Has to Stop

Leafs Systematic Mike EliminationGuys, I'm worried about what's happening this month with my Leafs.

First, Mike Brown was shipped to Edmonton for a fourth-round pick in the 2014 draft.

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And yesterday, Mike Komisarek was waived by the Maple Leafs. When he clears, he'll be sent down to the Marlies.

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Now that I think of it, hasn't Michael Kostka been a healthy scratch lately? And wasn't Mikhail Grabovski left on the bench during that lengthy shootout with the Jets?

This systematic elimination of Maple Leaf Mikes has to stop.

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The Problem With Texting

The Problem With TextingMy brother likes to text. I'm far more likely to get a text from him than an email or instant message, and there's no fear of getting a tweet or Facebook message from him, as he outright rejects social media. He texts me.

I'm not a big fan of texting. I use several devices throughout the day, including a PC, laptop, tablet and smart phone, and an email or Google Chat gets to all of them immediately. A text only goes to one of them.

So email me or Gchat me if you need something. Got that, broseph?

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Geeks and Beats: A New Podcast From Alan Cross and Michael Hainsworth

Geeks and Beats: A New Podcast From Alan Cross and Michael HainsworthThere's a new podcast on the block, and I have high hopes for it. It's from Alan Cross and Michael Hainsworth and they call it Geeks and Beats.

It's an intermingling of technology and music, two topics I'm quite interested in. I'm just sorry they're not recording at my home podcasting recording studio.

Here's a taste of what we can expect:

Subscribe to Geeks and Beats here.

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ROCK OF AGES at the Sony Centre

Rock of Ages at the Sony CentreI honestly knew almost nothing about ROCK OF AGES before I saw the musical last night at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts. I had read somewhere that Tom Cruise sang Guns N' Roses in the movie, but that wasn't enough to get me to watch it. I just knew there'd be singing.

It was great fun. As a child of the 80s, it was awesome reliving tunes from Poison, Warrant, Whitesnake, REO Speedwagon and more.

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So if you like fun, you'll dig ROCK OF AGES. But you likely already know that because you've likely seen it already. I'm apparently the only one who was missing out.

ROCK OF AGES is here through March 24. Ticket prices range from $25-$90 and can be purchased in person at the Sony Centre Box Office, 1 Front Street East, Toronto, over the phone at 1-855-872-SONY (7669) or online at www.sonycentre.ca.

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Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 28: Welcome Back Rosie

Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 28In this 28th episode, we chat about Rosie's walking pneumonia, the new pope, Rob Ford, The Simpsons and list our favourite comedies. This episode is exactly 38:14.

You can listen to this episode in a variety of ways:

Catch up on all episodes of Toronto Mike'd at http://www.torontomike.com/podcast/.

Toronto Mike'd Podcast

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In Praise of Terry O'Reilly's Under the Influence

In Praise of Terry O'Reilly's Under the InfluenceOne of my favourite podcasts is Terry O'Reilly's Under the Influence. I listen to it as a podcast, but you can also catch it on CBC Radio One Saturdays at 11:30 am and again on Mondays at 11:30 am.

If you don't listen to Terry O'Reilly's spin on the world of marketing, you're missing out. Last week's episode on customer service was inspiring, and next week he's focusing on companies that promote products that have turned out to be incredibly unsafe. We're talking Asbestos and DDT here...

To subscribe, all the pertinent links are here. If you want to sample the wares first, here's the MP3 for that episode on customer service I mentioned.

O'Reilly

It's a consistently interesting series that makes me want to be a better podcaster.

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Google Search Keeps Getting Better

Google Search Keeps Getting BetterI just Googled 'leafs'. Here's the top half page of the results.

Screen shot 2013-03-18 at 5.16.18 PM

Probably the top 10 questions are answered without requiring any further clicking. There's details of the last game, the next game, the current standings, the championship seasons, current news and more, all served up before we even get to the organic site ranking.

Google may be cancelling their awesome RSS Reader and unsure exactly how to slay Facebook with Google+, but they sure have search figured out.

Do any of you use a search engine other than Google by default?

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Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Softball Team Jinx

Guest Blog SubmissionIn Homer at the Bat, a gem of an episode from season three of The Simpsons, Mr. Burns assembled ringers for the company softball team.

In real life, many members of this All-Star team also suffered bizarre incidents which hampered their effectiveness after the 1992 season. Here are the ringers for the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Team and how they were cursed.

POS NAME FATE ON SIMPSONS FATE IN REAL LIFE
C Mike Scoscia Radiation poisoning from plant accident Injured, missed all of '93 season. Retired.
1B Don Mattingly Kicked off team for refusing to cut sideburns Numerous injuries, decline in power
2B Steve Sax Arrested on suspicion by Springfield Police Dept. Lost job, became .230-hitting role player
SS Ozzie Smith Enters Springfield Mystery Spot and disappears Slow decline in fielding skills
3B Wade Boggs Beaten up by Barney in Moe's Tavern brawl Average fell to .259. Signed with Yankees
LF Jose Canseco Busy rescuing furniture from burning house Arm & back injuries curtail career. Drugs, violence, disgrace
CF Ken Griffey Jr Mr Burns' nerve tonic causes gigantism Injuries, injuries, injuries
RF Darryl Strawberry Pinch-hit for by Homer Simpson Drugs, alcohol, guns, disgrace
P Roger Clemens Hypnosis convinces him he's a chicken PEDs, adultery, disgrace

Admittedly, the Ozzie one is a bit of a stretch, but you must admit the others all encountered some tough luck (self-imposed in some instances) after this episode aired. Still a fantastic episode, though.

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A Tale of Two Games: When We Tied the Heat

A Tale of Two Games: When We Tied the HeatI was at the Heat game this afternoon. It really was a tale of two games.

Early in the fourth quarter, after battling back, the Raptors managed to tie the Miami Heat. The ACC went nuts. Seriously, it felt like a playoff game. The Raps were going to end Miami's winning streak at 21!

Ready for tipoff #raptors

Then, in what seemed like a blink of the eye, we were down by 20. It all fell apart so quickly... Miami has now won 22 in a row.

We were at the game thanks to Dove Men+Care who wanted to demonstrate their Ultimate Gameday Change Table. It was a souped-up change table for sporty dads. There's a timer, emergency lullaby button and even rankings of the fastest changers.

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Just got a demo of Dove For Men's #ultimatechangetable and it's every father's dream

P.S. Amir Johnson rules. That is all.

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Dropkick Murphys - Fields of Athenry



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Irish Celebration



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Me In A Tuxedo

Me In A TuxedoI've got a pretty big event coming up in June, so today I got fitted for the tux I'm renting.

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Fun Fact: This will be the very first time I've ever worn a tuxedo.

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Ides of March Open Mike

Open MikeBeware the Ides of March!

And share what's on your mind!

Print

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50 Common Misconceptions

50 Common MisconceptionsIn this rapid fire video, John Green of Mental Floss debunks 50 common misconceptions in science, history, pop culture, and elsewhere.


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My Thoughts on the NHL Realignment

My Thoughts on the NHL RealignmentThe NHL's board of governors have approved NHL realignment for next season. The new format will feature two eight-team divisions in the Eastern Conference and two seven-team divisions in the West.

As a Leafs fan, I'm going to look at this with my blue and white eyes. Our new division is identical to our old division, with a few new teams added: Detroit, Florida and Tampa Bay.

realignment

I grew up with the Leafs in the Norris division where we had a great rivalry with Detroit. I'm looking forward to enjoying that rivalry again, and always felt the Red Wings belonged in our division. So I'm loving the fact we keep our rivalries with the Sens, Habs, Bruins and Sabres, but we get to add Detroit to the mix.

I'm fairly indifferent to Florida and Tampa Bay joining the party, but I suppose it makes good sense geographically. What do you think of the NHL's realignment?

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Google Reader Alternatives

Google Reader AlternativesGoogle is shutting down Google Reader, their RSS reader I use several times a day. I'm sure I'm not alone. Just about every blog, news service and site I follow has an RSS feed I subscribe to in Google Reader.

As a power user and super fan, this decision by Google is disappointing. I've got four months to find a solid Google Reader alternative.

I've already started test driving The Old Reader and feedly. I've got to get used to the differences, but both look like viable alternatives to Google Reader.

If you know of a good RSS reader I should try, please let me know in the comments. Google Reader will be missed.

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Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 27: Meet Brother Ryan

Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 27In this 27th episode, Rosie calls in sick and my brother Ryan fills in. He and I reminisce about my pot stirring days (it's quite revealing, and therapeutic for my little brother), talk about the Pope, Stompin' Tom, hockey songs and a bunch of other stuff. This episode is exactly 46:28.

You can listen to this episode in a variety of ways:

Catch up on all episodes of Toronto Mike'd at http://www.torontomike.com/podcast/.

Toronto Mike'd Podcast

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My Thoughts on Pope Francis

PopeI'm not a fan of the over-the-top press this week's papal conclave has garnered. Like so much baggage, it's overdone pomp and circumstance for a bunch of old men to elect another old man to lead the Catholic church, a man-made institution designed to control and oppress. No thanks, I'm not interested.

Pope Francis, however, does now wield a great deal of influence over millions of people on this little planet we share, so I can't ignore this as a historical event. I just hope he makes a few significant adjustments to the status quo:

  • Permit Catholics to use birth control
  • Give Catholic women the same rights as Catholic men
  • Accept homosexuality and stop stigmatizing it as sinful
  • Properly deal with the vast sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests throughout the world

I may think it's all bullshit, but ignoring the power of the church does nothing to help over 1-billion members who have drank the kool-aid. Pope Francis needs to drag this church kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

Here's hoping he's up to the challenge.

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A Visit to Second Harvest

A Visit to Second HarvestI took the kids to Second Harvest today at 1450 Lodestar Road. I wanted the kids to appreciate the logistics involved when working with grocery retailers, food manufacturers, food distributors, the Ontario Food Terminal, St. Lawrence Market, event planners, hotels and restaurants to prevent good food from going to waste.

It's amazing what they do with limited space and resources. They run 8 trucks every day of the week ensuring the primarily perishable food is delivered to a network of more than 215 social service agencies across the city. They are food banks, meal programs, children’s breakfast programs, community centers, drop-in centers, summer camps, women’s shelters, homeless shelters and centers for addiction and mental health treatment.

The food Second Harvest rescues is perfectly good food that has been donated because it is close to expiry and likely won’t sell, overstock, mislabeled, discontinued, discounted or has damaged packaging. If you're a potential food donor, please go here.

truckshot

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A big thanks for Second Harvest for opening their doors to me and my kids and for the great tour. Support Second Harvest by running a Lunch Money Days fundraiser. Click here to find out how.

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The Night DeAndre Jordan Murdered Brandon Knight

The Night DeAndre Jordan Murdered Brandon KnightIf you're an NBA fan, you've already seen it a dozen times. Last night, during the Clippers / Pistons game, DeAndre Jordan posterized Brandon Knight with an alley-oop slam that... well... you've got to see it to appreciate it.

Over on Reddit, they're having fun with it.

There's the aftermath:

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The reactions:

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murder3

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And finally, the artist's rendering of the murder itself.

murder1

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Bringing Meaning Back to the March Break

Bringing Meaning Back to the March BreakAs a kid, the March Break was the best. A whole week in the middle of winter without school? Score!

When you leave high school for University, as I did way back in '93, the March Break ceases to exist. It's replaced by a spring break earlier in the year. And once you start working full-time, you make your own breaks with the wonderful two weeks of vacation they give you that first year. The March Break becomes a distant memory.

That's how it remained until my youngest child entered grade one and my ex-wife went back to working full-time. That's when the March Break started to mean something again. For the past three years, I've been taking the March Break off to hang with the kids, and I love it.

I'm March Breaking right now. I slept in today, just enjoyed a great swim with the kids, and we're planning the rest of the week. The March Break rules again!

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Why I Hate The Latest Rob Ford Scandal Most Of All

Why I Hate The Latest Rob Ford Scandal Most Of AllAs a proud Torontonian, I've had to endure several Rob Ford scandals since he was elected to city council. Here's a list of Rob Ford controversies if you require a refresher. Of all the Rob Ford controversies, the one that's disturbed me the most is this latest one involving Sarah Thomson.

The news broke Friday morning and I refused to rush to judgement. I watched the story unfold, listened to all sides and stayed quiet until now. I hate how many Rob Ford supporters, many I consider friends, have politicized Sarah Thomson's claims and have painted Ford as the victim once more. Earlier today, Ford even used his 1010 radio show to wonder aloud if Thomson is "playing with a full deck". A comment on this very blog seconds ago gloated "from all the media response this weekend it is fairly clear that the story is a hoax".

Whenever Rob Ford is called out for something he's guilty of, his first move is to lie to us. He's a notorious and proven liar. Remember that Leafs game when an inebriated Rob Ford went off on that Durham couple? He denied that ever happened until the evidence was so overwhelming he had to come clean.

Remember when Rob Ford was asked if he was arrested for pot possession in Florida? He denied that ever happened until the evidence was so overwhelming he had to come clean.

The man has absolutely no integrity, and when a woman came forward on Friday to accuse him of inappropriate behavior, instead of supporting her people seem to exert great energy dismissing and discrediting her. I agree 100% with Sarah Thomson's statement below.

I am not the kind of woman who sees chauvinism everywhere or believes in reckless denunciations. But Mayor Ford was behaving inappropriately, and there was clearly something wrong with him during the CJPAC event.

He must be discouraged from over indulging to the point where he is groping or making lewd comments, and women should not put up with it when it happens. The Mayor was outrageous, he acted horribly, and I won't be intimidated by the whitewashing he has tried so hard to generate.

Decades ago powerful men who sexually assaulted women would call them "hysterical," or "crazy" to debase their credibility. It pushed many assaulted women into silence. Today Mayor Ford stated that he wondered if I was "playing with a full deck" try to discredit me. He will not push me into silence and I hope his accusations do not re-ignite the old fears that once silenced women.

We need an ongoing dialogue to ensure respect for women in the workplace and to create an inclusive and safe society for all.

Feel free to dismiss my opinion as well, because I've had many issues with our mayor over the years. This is undeniably true. I don't trust Rob Ford, I don't agree with his politics, I don't like his personality and I wouldn't want him leading my condo board, let alone my beloved city. When I see people labeling Thompson as a whack job and sympathizing with Rob Ford over this issue, it angers me.

In fact, I hate it.

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Ed the Sock on his Feud with Humble Howard and his Return to MUCH

Ed the Sock on his Feud with Humble Howard and his Return to MUCHI spoke with Steven Kerzner today. Steven is the voice and creator of Ed the Sock, whose last show on CITY-TV was way back in 2008.

I used to watch Ed the Sock on Cable 10 before CITY-TV picked up the broadcast rights. At the time, it was co-hosted by Harland Williams and we thought he was pretty damn funny. A couple of hosts later, on CITY-TV, my good friend Humble Howard Glassman co-hosted with Ed.

In an interview I did with Humble Howard a couple of years ago I asked him about working with Ed the Sock. Here's what he had to say about Ed.

Q: I hear things didn't end well with you and the sock on Ed's Night Party? Care to dish the deets?

A: I don't want to say anything about ED or the midget that has his hand up his ass that hasn't already been said by just about everyone that's met him.

Today, I asked Steven Kerzner about his feud with Humble Howard Glassman.

I really didn't have a problem with Howard, in fact I liked him. There were some tensions in the first season because we were adapting the show from cable to broadcast TV at the same time as Howard and I had never worked together before and so the show's previous rhythms needed evolving. I don't see that as any failing of Howard's, in fact he did his best to roll with the punches and grow in his role.

He was replaced as host only because Citytv had been running reruns of the series for 18 months, causing massive tune-out, and when we got the go-ahead to come back, it was decided we needed to make some very noticeable changes in the show so that people flipping by would know these were new episodes. Part of that was changing the direction of the show. It was never anything personal, though I think it was depicted as being so by others and communicated that way to Howard.

When Howard started up his internet show, I sent him a message wishing him well and he replied in kind, and I am very glad for his success.

So, really, no mud to sling from my direction toward Howard. His career speaks for itself as an example of talent and smart decisions.

I also asked Ed the Sock about why he left MuchMusic back in 2007 and why he was coming back now. Here's what Ed had to say.

Why I left Muchmusic in 07 is kind of irrelevant, by which I mean - none of anyone's business. When I left, Fromage was still scoring them big numbers, to the point where they ran 4 hour marathons of it long before A&E did the same for Storage Wars, and I was still their top VJ (buzz off Rick, you know it's true). Sometimes good to leave before people want you to leave. Remember this next time you're at a party at my house.

I've been doing my new series with Liana K, 'I Hate Hollywood', on CHCH since the fall, and before that did 'This Movie Sucks' for CH as well. But all I hear, day after day, is "when are you going back to Much?" "I miss Fromage, bring it back" etc. Thanks to Facebook and Twitter, I am able to hear these sentiments several times each day, at all hours of the day. Thank you, Al Gore.

I have been feeling that, in leaving, I have denied new generations of viewers the chance to enjoy watching me expose the BS behind the PR spin and image-making of their favourite music stars. VJs speak to viewers, I speak for them. Much viewers don't have an avatar of their cynicism, underestimated intelligence and BS filter anymore...so, here I am.

How it happened that I am popping back up on Much? A simple conversation. Wish it were more exciting, but this is Canada and we don't do that.

I've got both Steven and Ed to agree to appear on the Humble and Fred podcast. We're going to make this happen.

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Target-Free Open Mike

Open MikeConfession Time: I don't care at all about Target coming to Canada. I'm not even a little curious to visit one and I'm not sure I understand all the hype. It's just another Walmart, right?

There, now I feel better. What's on your mind?

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Toronto Radio Ratings: PPM Top-line Radio Statistics

radio ratings in TorontoI don't pretend to be a radio ratings expert. I understand what PPM is and how it works, but I don't know who's wearing these devices and how they source the survey participants. Do you need a landline to be considered? Do you need to nominate yourself? It would be interesting to know who these people are that drive the intriguing numbers below.

I can tell you these are the ratings for Toronto radio stations during the period of November 26, 2012 - February 24, 2013 and Cume (000) is the total number of people who were exposed to the stations for at least one minute during the analyzed period. Click to enlarge.

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CHFI was the big winner followed by CHUM-FM and CBC Radio One. On the sports radio front, The FAN 590 pummelled TSN by a score of 3.4 to 0.8. And our old favourite, Edge 102, scored a 3.2 but they'll only care how they did with their target demo of young men. I can't imagine a lot of young men would wear the PPM devices.

What are your thoughts on this? Are you as surprised as I am by how well CHFI does with that holiday music crap?

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TTC Skidaddler



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Reebok Is Outfitting My Volleyball Games

volleyballI wanted to give a big thanks to Reebok for outfitting my volleyball games this season with gear from their new men’s Reebok Training apparel and footwear collection.

My Reebok gear has arrived!

For the past six years, I've been buying the same pair of Asics over and over again, so I was worried how things would go with the Reeboks. These new shoes are so damn light I actually feel faster. I'm not suggesting Reebok deserves all the credit, but we in Hooray For Everything were pretty mediocre before I changed shoes, and now we're half decent. True story.

If you're interested in Reebok's new men's Training collection, which I really am digging, the marketing spiel is below.

Reebok’s new men’s Training collection has been specifically designed for athletes of all levels to provide superior performance and comfort during training. It is available at Sport Chek and Sports Experts locations across Canada.

The current roster of athletes promoting Reebok's Training collection: John Tavares, Matt Duchene, Maxime Talbot and Toronto Mike.

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Drake ~ 5AM In Toronto



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Stompin' Tom Connors, Dead at 77

In MemoriumStompin' Tom Connors was 77. He was one of Canada's most prolific and well-known country and folk singers best known for "Bud the Spud", "Big Joe Mufferaw", "The Black Donnellys", "The Martin Hartwell Story", "Reesor Crossing Tragedy", "Sudbury Saturday Night" and "The Hockey Song".

I was lucky enough to see Connors perform "The Hockey Song" live when I saw Conan O'Brien back in 2004.

Where players dash with skates aflash the home team trails behind
But they grab the puck and go bursting up and they're down across the line
They storm the crease like bumble bees they travel like a burning flame
We see them slide the puck inside - it's a 1-1 hockey game!

In lieu of flowers, the Connors family has asked that donations be made to your local food bank or homeless shelters, in memory of Stompin’ Tom.

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Windows Restaurant Is Gone

Windows Restaurant No MoreI'm not sure how I missed this news, but they've torn down the windows at the Windows restaurant at the diamond formerly known as Skydome. This season, it will be an open porch that all fans can walk through.

Here's a pic I found on Reddit of how it looks today.

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This is going to take a little time to get used to, but I think it's a nice change. I had never visited Windows restaurant. Did you?

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Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 26: Hey Mister

Toronto Mike'd Podcast Episode 26In this 26th episode, Rosie and I talk about my trip to Frankfurt, the story of Custom, Toronto one-hit wonders, musical guilty pleasures and the Oscars. This episode is exactly 37:20.

You can listen to this episode in a variety of ways:

Catch up on all episodes of Toronto Mike'd at http://www.torontomike.com/podcast/.

Toronto Mike'd Podcast

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Paul Bearer, Dead at 58

In MemoriumPaul Bearer was 58. He was a professional wrestling manager and former wrestler best known for his time in World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) and the World Wrestling Federation (WWF—later WWE).

Although I was no longer following the WWF when Paul Bearer and The Undertaker were huge, I did do a pretty good Paul Bearer impersonation.


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Hugo Chávez, Dead at 58

In MemoriumHugo Chávez was 58. He's been President of Venezuela since 1999 and focused on implementing socialist reforms in the country as a part of a social project known as the Bolivarian Revolution.

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Not the Top 10 One-Hit Wonder Bands from Toronto

Not the Top 10 One-Hit Wonder Bands from TorontoPerusing Twitter, I caught this tweet from my buddy Marc.

I had to click over to the blogto.com article to see for myself. Here's their list of the top 10 one-hit wonder bands from Toronto.

  1. Len - "Steal My Sunshine"
  2. Snow - "Informer"
  3. Alannah Myles - "Black Velvet"
  4. jackSOUL - "Can't Stop"
  5. Choclair - "Let's Ride"
  6. Love Inc. - "You're A Superstar"
  7. Toronto - "Your Daddy Don't Know"
  8. The Pursuit of Happiness - "I'm An Adult Now"
  9. Platinum Blonde - "Crying Over You"
  10. Boys Brigade - "Melody"

Right off the bat, having listened to radio in this city for over 30 years, I can tell you this is an awful list. Many of these artists are not one-hit wonders by any definition, and as we've discussed, the standards for one-hit wonders keep dropping.

Just off the top of my head, from my 680 CFTR days and Q107 Top Ten At Ten days, I can tell you Platinum Blonde had several big hits in Canada, The Pursuit of Happiness had a handful and Allannah Myles was all over the radio with "Love Is" before she even released her biggest hit "Black Velvet".

As I scratch my temple, I remember Snow making a comeback with the hit single "Everybody Wants to Be Like You". That means, just off the top of my head, I can confirm four of this top ten list had multiple hits in Canada.

What say you?

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Love Padlocks

Love PadlocksLove padlock are a custom by which padlocks are affixed to a fence, gate, bridge or similar public fixture by sweethearts at an increasing number of locations in the world to symbolize their everlasting love.

Last week, I saw love padlocks blossoming on the Eiserner Steg bridge.

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The most love padlocks I've ever seen were affixed to the Pont des Arts, Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor and the Pont de l'Archevêché bridges in Paris.

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Here in Toronto, love padlocks were removed from the Humber Bridge due to concerns over aesthetics and structural concerns if the bridge were to become a love padlock destination.

Heaven forbid.

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Of Stålberg, Steen and Tlustý

Of Stalberg, Steen and TlustyPrior to boarding a flight from Frankfurt to London, I was given a complimentary copy of USA Today's International Edition. I shot straight to the hockey section to see how USA Today covers hockey.

There was one article about the dominating Chicago Blackhawks and their replenished depth. It specifically applauded the trade for Viktor Stålberg. Stålberg, as you'll recall, was traded by the Leafs to Chicago in the deal that brought us Kris Versteeg.

There was another article about the Staal brothers and their success together. Both Eric and Jordan Staal are on pace for personal highs in terms of points-per-game, and part of the reason Eric Staal is having his best season is the presence of Jiří Tlustý on his line. Tlustý, of course, was traded by the Leafs to Carolina in exchange for Philippe Paradis.

Another article mentioned the St. Louis Blues, already left in the Central Division dust by Chicago. The article referenced the Blues' leading scorer, Alex Steen. Steen was traded by the Leafs to St. Louis with Carlo Colaiacovo for Lee Stempniak.

Stålberg, Steen and Tlustý are all blossoming young NHL stars and all were recently Toronto Maple Leafs. These assets were practically given away and my Leafs have little to show for it.

I now suspect Mike Brown will lead the Oilers in scoring.

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Best Buzzer Beater I've Ever Seen

Best Buzzer Beater I've Ever SeenThe New York Section I Class AA boys basketball championship game between New Rochelle (N.Y.) High and Mt. Vernon (N.Y.) High. took place yesterday. You won't believe how it ended.

Khalil Edney FTW. Wow.

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Sightseeing in Frankfurt: Meine Fotos

Sightseeing in FrankfurtSaturday was a sunny 6° in Frankfurt, and I spent the bulk of the day walking the city.

Frankfurt was bombed heavily during WWII, and most historical buildings were destroyed. Still, I found some pretty spectacular sights.

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If you'd like to see more of my pictures of Frankfurt, I have a Flickr photoset right here.

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Mike Atom from 105.9 The Region is Mike Wixson from Redfish and Pod Almighty

Mike Wixson is Mike Atom from 105.9 The Region. He changed his name for radio: fun fact

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Bonnie Franklin, Dead at 69

In MemoriumBonnie Franklin was 69. She was the actress best known for her portrayal of divorced mother Ms. Ann Romano on One Day at a Time.

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It's March Open Mike

Open MikeIt's March. Really. You can look it up.

What's on your mind?

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