Canada Day Long Weekend Open Mike

Open MikeI love a long weekend, especially the Canada Day long weekend.

Nothing says Canada Day like uncensored on-line communication. I stand by my record: 41316 comments and only two deletions.


You know the drill, discuss anything you want in this space. And if you have a question, I'll drop by throughout the day to answer you.

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Looking forward to your pro-Italia entry, Mike.

Forza Italia?


June 29, 2012 @ 9:52 AM

Ryan G

Did you know that there are small meat castles inside a camel's mouth? It's true!

(discovered on reddit)

June 29, 2012 @ 10:13 AM

Jason from Sudbury

So what do you guys think of Sid the kid signing a 12 year contract worth 104 million bucks? I just hope he can bounce back.

June 29, 2012 @ 10:22 AM


The state of “big” concert tickets sales on established rock acts:

Do you enjoy going to concerts? I absolutely cannot get enough going to live shows. I am going to date myself here, but I don’t give a shit; my first concert was The Monks (remember the song “ Drugs in my Pocket “) at the Centre in the Square in 1981 in Kitchener. I was 12. Since then I have been hooked. Over the years, I have steadily gone to concerts. I have always purchase my tickets at Ticketmaster, Live Nation or the old BASS outlets. In the 1980’s the average ticket price for a big concert at the Gardens was roughly $25.00. Minimum wage in 1987 in Ontario was $4.55/hr. Fast forward to the mid 1990’s where I decide to buy tickets to the REM “ Monster “ concert at the Molson Amphitheatre. I pay $55.00 for 300’s section and I remember thinking at that time, holy crap that’s a really high ticket price just to hope I hear “ Fall On Me “. In 1995 the minimum wage was $6.85/hr.

Fast forward to the last couple of years; I paid $185 to watch Van Halen and David Lee Roth’s garbage voice in section 121 ( the back ) at the Air Canada Centre. I recently paid $168 for section 108 at the Air Canada Centre to watch Aerosmith, and $170 to watch ACDC at the Skydome ( I refuse to call it Rogers Centre even though I just did, DAMN). I was in the 100 levels of the dome, and I still felt that I was so far away, I would have had to pay long-distance charges to call the stage or set the clocks ahead an hour or whatever. Peter Gabriel at Molson Amphitheatre a year or so ago was $220 through Live Nation for section 200’s. U2 was even more then that and were not even talking scalper prices. A couple of years ago I paid $50.00 to be member of the Metallica fanclub so I could access a special “password “that would allow me to buy and secure tickets to a show that I know would sell out. Add that $50.00 to the price of the ticket and I am back up to $200.00 a ticket.

Between Live Nation/Ticketmaster/Venue/AMEX/fanclub presales the costs for tickets keeps rising well above the cost of living. Minimum wage is now $10.25. I understand supply and demand and I won’t even touch on how ridiculous Toronto Maple Leaf ticket prices are, however I don’t need to be a mathematician to say F – ME have ticket prices soared well beyond inflation? I get that music sales are down due to piracy or due to some of the big bands not putting out good new material so that their profits come directly from ticket sales now as opposed to album sales, but let’s be reasonable. For myself I will not be attending anymore “big “concerts and reserve my monies for smaller bands in smaller venues, whether that’s Sloan playing on top of a local mall or Bootsauce in my backyard.


June 29, 2012 @ 11:03 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Jason from Sudbury

Firstly, it's an amazing sign of faith from the Penguins. Sid is a hit away from retirement, but the Pens are on the hook for 12 years. Wow...

From Sid's perspective, it's amazing how numerology has come into play. He was born on 8/7/87 and wears 87. Now, he's signed a contract to average 8.7M a season. He could have signed for much more.

I hope Sid the Kid has another great 12 years. I love how he plays and root for him.

June 29, 2012 @ 11:05 AM

Mississauga Phil

@ Corinne - Ticket Prices are stupid. I was born in 81 so the idea of a $25 ticket to a big show is just a dream for me. In the late 90's early 2000's I spent the majority of the money I made going to concerts, but I tended to avoid the ACC/Skydome shows as they were always overpriced (the exception being when I saw Moist and Matthew good band play the ACC in 2002). My favorite spot for a concert was either the Molson Amphetheatre ore the Warehouse (now the Kool Haus).

Nowadays I go top much fewer concerts. THe only Band I HAVE to see when they come to town is Dave matthews Band - even if you're not a fan I reccomend going to a live show, you will be a fan by the time you leave.

June 29, 2012 @ 11:13 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


The mark-up on Ticketmaster tix is outrageous. Louis C.K. is currently selling tickets for his tour direct to fans at $45 a pop and so far that's going well. I'm hoping other artists follow suit, but there are some venues that won't work that way.

I'm good for one or two concerts a year now, because they're so pricey. This year, I've held tickets to see Radiohead and Neil Young. Radiohead was cancelled, and Neil Young is in November. I have to really like an act to pay that kind of money to see them.

On that note, I almost picked up tickets to see Tragically Hip with Deathcab for Cutie and the New Pornographers in Barrie, but the logistics didn't work out. That's a show I'd pay to see.

June 29, 2012 @ 11:16 AM

Sam in Pickering

Happy Canada Day everyone!

June 29, 2012 @ 11:30 AM


Rob Ford's refusal to take 10 steps from his office for a Pride week flag raising is embarrassing.

June 29, 2012 @ 11:44 AM

Mississauga Phil

@ Rosie - This is a post about Canada Day...pretty ignorant to post an Italian flag.....

June 29, 2012 @ 12:46 PM


@Mississauga Phil

June 29, 2012 @ 12:56 PM

Mississauga Phil

@ Rosie - Much Better...Thanks :)

June 29, 2012 @ 1:04 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Brace yourselves... the Italian entry is coming.

June 29, 2012 @ 1:16 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

This one is my favourite:

June 29, 2012 @ 1:30 PM

519 Rob

I'm curious about the 2 comments you have deleted.
I'm sure you don't want to go into too much detail, but what was the reason(s) why you deleted them?

June 29, 2012 @ 1:30 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@519 Rob

I honestly can't remember... but they must have crossed a line.

Maybe something unfit for public consumption or a personal detail about someone they wouldn't want on the web.

I've never, however, deleted a comment because I disagreed with the stand. I may not agree with your opinion, but I'll host it!

June 29, 2012 @ 1:33 PM

Mississauga Phil

@ Mike - Here's a question. What was the date you started this blog? What was the subject of your 1st post?

(Okay I guess technically that's 2 questions)

June 29, 2012 @ 1:35 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Mississauga Phil

Easy one!

November 2002. Here it is:

I wrote about the early 90s acts surging on the 102.1 Thursday 30.

Prior to November 2002, this was a "home page" and updates were posted but then deleted. The site was always begging to be a blog, so in November 2002 I made the switch.

June 29, 2012 @ 1:46 PM


Even though the celebration is for the 2010 Olympic hockey gold, I posted this video last year on Canada Day.The spontaneous anthem at the end gets me everytime.

June 29, 2012 @ 1:49 PM

Mississauga Phil

Thanks Mike!

@ Corey - Very touching, I was running around the streets of TO that day/night. It was awesome, no one I saw was fighting or breking shit (Vancouver I'm looking at you!!!). I was not present for the spontaious Oh Canada, but it was still great time for Toronto, and Canada in general!


June 29, 2012 @ 1:55 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Love it.

Lest we forget, we owned the podium in Vancouver:

June 29, 2012 @ 1:56 PM


Don Grady (Agrati) died two days ago of cancer. He's remembered as one of the brothers from the 1960s sitcom, My Three Sons.
The over-the-air channel MeTV is already promoting an upcoming 3-hour marathon of dedicated programming for this very Sunday; My Three Sons isn't even one of their regular programs.
That's the way Americans hustle(!), just like Sam Slick.
Now... 67-hour musical Canada Day, anyone? (5 p.m. until July 2nd at noon)

June 29, 2012 @ 2:55 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

As this video spreads, he's going to become the most hated man in Canada:

It's UBC Hornets coach Martin Tremblay tripping a Richmond Steel player during the post-game handshake.

What an asshole!

June 29, 2012 @ 3:05 PM

519 Rob

Totally agree.

I'll say the kid sounds like a bit of a jerk, flipping off the others teams bench. But there is NO excuse for doing that to a kid.

June 29, 2012 @ 3:48 PM


Sid the kid is overrated. As for concerts, they're expensive. I also find that music is too loud. They overdo the speakers and make music so loud it's deafening. I care about my hearing and don't want to lose it. Anyway, they overdo speakers no matter what and this is my opinion, so not worth paying all that money.

June 29, 2012 @ 4:43 PM


Can we please note that Canada Day is not like Independence Day in the U.S. We're governed by a foreign monarch.

June 29, 2012 @ 4:45 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I agree, the constitutional monarchy is a relic of the past we need to eliminate, but it's import we note that it's meaningless from a political perspective.

Here's a good write up about it:

The Queen and her representatives do not make political decisions; they simply ensure that the elected members in the House of Commons and the legislatures are allowed to make those decisions.

June 29, 2012 @ 4:54 PM


The fate of our parliament and government was recently decided by an un-elected official representative of the Queen, so yes, they do.

June 29, 2012 @ 5:45 PM

twins from bolton

Lots of patriotic flags in Bolton the last few days EXCEPT there all for Italy with CANADA DAY July 1st, the same day as Italy faces Spain in the final.

I can understand a persons allegiances to history, but we live in "The True North Strong & Free" not the BOOT. If you want to promote your heritage thats great, but ALSO fly a Canadian flag on your cars.

Has anybody been to the U.S. during July 4th?? Talk about patriotism. I've been there twice during Independence Day & over 50% of households are flying the Stars & Stripes on their property.

Yes, I used to fly a Cdn. flag on my property for July 1st, until someone stole it years ago.

"OH CANADA WE STAND ON GUARD FOR THEE" Have a great Canada Day everyone.

June 29, 2012 @ 6:08 PM


It's Canada Day and the Jays are playing at 3:07...let's not forget this classic from 1996 when the Jays sang on Canada Day!

June 29, 2012 @ 9:46 PM


@ Phil - I like to believe if the Leafs ever did win the Cup again, there would be no rioting, looting, or violence - but the way things have been going in T.O. lately, I wouldn't feel confident guaranteeing it.

June 29, 2012 @ 10:55 PM


Minimum wage was 2.15 or 2.25 when I paid $17 to see the ELO Out Of The Blue tour (with Meatloaf and Bob Segarini) at Exhibition Stadium with 72,000 other people (a record size crowd then), almost died in a general admission gate rush.
A case of beer was somewhere between $7.10 and $8.00 back then. If a case of beer is 4x that now, and minimum wage is 4-5x that now, a ticket for a big concert should be around $85 bucks.
On the other hand, you could argue that concert tickets were underpriced back then, an exceptional value. I don't remember price being a factor. Transportation logistics was the main factor.
I saw the Monks too on that '81 tour ($6 I think)- they had the best end of a show I have ever seen.
Paid $30 to see Great Lake Swimmers a few weeks ago at the Concert Hall. They had the best return from a break I have ever seen, it reminded me of the Monks concert ending, in reverse.

June 30, 2012 @ 12:51 AM

4x4 Time

I will not pay to see washed up bands charging huge ticket prices, but I go to a lot of cheaper and free shows with great bands. The summer is full of free festivals full of great music. For example Leon Russell is at Festival of Friends in August (Ancaster). His band is incredible, and Leon still the voice and piano chops, and of course is a musical legend.
The Dinner Belles, Gentlemen Husbands, Monster Truck, The Sheepdogs, whatever you like, lot's of excellent Canadian talent out there. Support live Canadian music, you will have a blast...

June 30, 2012 @ 9:28 AM


Anyone Win Those INDY Tickets From Ferrari?

June 30, 2012 @ 10:58 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I'll write Ferrari now...

June 30, 2012 @ 1:14 PM


The Leafs won't win the cup any time soon. It's guaranteed. My Habs will win another cup before the Leafs do. Anyway, just a few more months until hockey starts. Bring it on. Also why did they put the line God keep our land in Oh Canada. I remember for years that line wasn't in there and it was a lot better without it in there.

June 30, 2012 @ 5:47 PM


@ Cheryl

Probably "God Keep Our Land" was God's way of Praying for the HabNots.

June 30, 2012 @ 8:48 PM


Haven't seen blackberry_ry here in forever! I miss his rants about how the evil Canadian citizen forced his company to make repeatedly moronic choices, and how unpatriotic we were to watch them stagnate. BB10 was their saviour, but where is he now? Too afraid to come here and admit we were all right?

Don't worry Ryan, there are some awesome Canadian history blogs out there who will pay tribute to RIM, speaking of which here are two great history of Toronto blogs. (the first link even has a few pieces on Captain Johns)

July 1, 2012 @ 10:34 AM


Well, Oh Canada was a lot better without God Keep our land in there. In it's place it used to be another oh Canada. Why change it. I remember it as an oh Canada and another stand on guard instead of far and wide.

July 1, 2012 @ 12:30 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I noticed Blackberry Ry's been quiet. I just hope his job is safe. I hate hearing about Canadian tech companies laying off 1/3rd of their global workforce.

July 1, 2012 @ 1:07 PM


I noticed the Blackberry Ry's twitter no longer exists. I don't know if it has to do with him losing his job. Like Mike mentioned I hope that his job is safe.

July 1, 2012 @ 2:37 PM


@ Cheryl - not sure where you're getting this "changing the anthem" from. I'm in my mid-40s and it's been "God keep our land.." for as long as I've been alive. I can't find anything anywhere about them ever changing the lyrics after about 1920-something.

July 1, 2012 @ 9:11 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Ferrari contest winners will be getting an email from Ferrari this afternoon. Originally I said 10 of you would win, but it looks like more than that will win - over 20!

July 2, 2012 @ 11:58 AM

Jason Patterson


July 2, 2012 @ 7:38 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Jason Patterson

That Scientology is some scary shit.

July 2, 2012 @ 9:44 PM

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