Friday Open Mike

Open MikeWelcome to today's Open Mike. I'm Mike and I'll be your master of ceremonies for the day.

Feel free to use this space to vent, rant, share a story and/or ask a question of the hivemind.

Open Mike on Toronto Mike

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Jason from Sudbury


January 31, 2014 @ 7:48 AM

Lyle Lanley

What a week Toronto!

Rob Ford lawsuit!

Justin Bieber arrested!

Two winning pro teams!

Toronto Mike - Alan Cross - Humble and Fred controversy!

January 31, 2014 @ 7:58 AM


Back to regular clothing weather! I was rocking flannel-lined pants for the last week. Blame the unreliable 501.

January 31, 2014 @ 8:16 AM

Jason from Sudbury

Re: Toronto Mike - Alan Cross - Humble and Fred controversy:
I think people are making an issue out of nothing. H&F have known Alan Cross for ages and have him on their show quite often. I'm thinking this is simply a coincidence. H&F and Mike are also friends, so highly doubt H&F would go out of their way to wreck Mike's show or do anything malicious. So yes people are reading too much into this imo.

January 31, 2014 @ 8:33 AM


why does it take 4 years to put real grass at Rogers Centre?

It think it was Paul Beeston this week who said that the Jays will have real grass by 2018.

Why not this year or 2015?

January 31, 2014 @ 8:49 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

I was driving my kids to school this morning and my daughter wanted to hear some 92.5. I put it on and they're not playing their typical top 40 songs but instead they're playing a big fat megamix by DJ Clamaxx (not sure I'm spelling that right - I need to Google this guy to get it right).

It's the top 40 hits you'd expect from 92.5, Katy Perry, Kesha, Rihanna, Miley, etc., but just the fun parts and in brief spurts with old school tunes and a lot of 90s rap. It was actually pretty fun.

And when they're mixing Rihanna with Cyndi Lauper, I get to do a little history lesson...

So it got me thinking... why not do the mixes all the time? You get the catchy Miley refrain, then some Biggie mixed with the latest Kesha hit... With these pop songs, you don't need the entire 3.5 minutes... just throw the one verse and chorus in the mix!

That is all. I'm sure 92.5 has been doing this every Friday forever but I rarely tune in, even though my son and I sat with Roz Weston at a Leafs game once.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:03 AM

Hamish Grant

Blundell's talking about 102.1's ratings taking a 50% hit after his ouster. The exodus to 88.1 continues unabated. The little radio station that could announced a travel contest starting monday, seems like Blundell being tossed was the best thing that ever happened to alternative radio in Toronto. Hoist Corus on their petard and give a boost to an upstart in the process.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:15 AM



Because the Argo's have a lease with the Roger's Centre until 2017(I think?) and Paul Beeston is a big supporter of the CFL. The Argos don't have another facility to play at in the city so Rogers is letting the team play there until the end of the lease.

Also, from my understanding, it will take a lot of renovations to put grass into the Rogers centre. They'll have to rip up the concrete undernear and put in a drainage system, plus renovate the exterior of the building to insert an air flow system. Just leaving the roof open won't allow enough air to reach the grass.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:26 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Hamish Grant

I'm glad someone brought up the story making the rounds that the 102.1 morning show ratings have plummeted since Dean Blundell left.

Here it is in the Post:

Those numbers are being circulated by a PR firm called Devon Group, owned by Bob Richardson, a friend of Dean Blundell's. Here they are on NYE... with John Baird, of all people.

1. It's absurd to argue that a 50% decline is bad when it's surprising it isn't 90%.

2. The Devon Group - Dean Blundell alliance is also very interesting for reasons I choose not to publish. It's a very curious marriage...

January 31, 2014 @ 9:27 AM


@ Jason
I agree the H&F/Cross thing is much ado about nothing, but I'm not sure this idea that Cross is a regular on the show is accurate. I've read that a couple times now, but by my count this week's appearance would be the third time he's been on. The podcast has been running for over 2 years now - does that really make Cross a "frequent guest"?

January 31, 2014 @ 9:30 AM

Ryan G

@TO Mike

What you listened to this morning was likely a descendant of Shep's old live to air Saturday night shows, a topic that came up on your 'cast with Alan Cross.

Just as cfny was a radio innovator back then, Chris Sheppard may have been the first to create a live dj mix show, first from the studio and then from clubs. That paved the way for Streek at places like Whisky Saigon and various other joints. There was a certain notoriety to it too. In the early 90's I used to go to a hole in the wall place on a lonely stretch of Markham Road north of Finch called The Cotton Club.

It was suburban-goth heaven, and their main dj (Craig something or other) used to first spin Chris Sheppard's Saturday night pre-show live from cfny called Warmin Up the house. Then he'd head over to the Cotton Club where you'd hear bands like Skinny Puppy, Sisters of Mercy, Smiths and Cabaret Voltaire. It was great for the kids who wanted the experience of Nuts N Bolts without having to go down to Victoria and Dundas. Because he spun live on Shep's pre show, this guy became municipally famous so to speak.

So this sort of thing has a bit of a legacy connected back to cfny in my mind. I believe Boom 97.3 does a Friday retro mix show and Indie just launched their Velvet underground Thursday nights with Lori-Ann - if they go live to air with it, I'd totally listen in.

Chris Sheppard's radio shows and cfny's music overall was what inspired me to learn to DJ myself. (well..that and girls). There's something captivating about a live dj that creates a fun atmosphere, whether it's at a club or on the radio during a Friday morning commute with your kids.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:50 AM

Al The Royal Pain

My band is playing a Valentine's Day gig in the city. If anyone is interested, here are the details:

I'll buy a drink for any readers/commenters on this blog who shows up and introduces themselves. Let's call it the Toronto Mike special.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:54 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Ryan G

Yes! Exactly like Shep's live DJ mix show! I used to record that...

Two Chris Shepperd references in two days. Go figure.

January 31, 2014 @ 9:56 AM


@Corey, I'm reasonably sure it's at least the fourth time, probably fifth, not that it's a huge amount more. I remember the previous time he was on though they'd commented that he'd been on more than anyone else.

I just remember he's been their go-to guy when other guests have bailed.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:05 AM


@ Mike

That’s not fair! You can’t just say you know something and then say, “But I am not telling you!” That’s just a mean tease.


On another Friday note, it gets tiresome arguing about Rob Ford but the man does keep causing his own problems.

On a TV note, I need the next great show. I don’t watch a lot of TV anymore but nothing has been able to fill my Breaking Bad/Wire gap. I’ve tried Homeland and really enjoy it (but I am only on Season 1) and I love to watch Sherlock (but that’s not a lot of episodes). Something has got to be another show that grabs me.

And finally….divorce sucks.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:06 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


One day I'll write about my divorce.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:07 AM

A Friend

Prior to yesterday morning, Alan Cross's last appearance on Humble and Fred was Jun 18, 2013.

7 months later, on the same day Alan Cross was making his first appearance on Mike's podcast, they call him up.

Coincidence? Really?

January 31, 2014 @ 10:12 AM



Give "True Detective" a try, it's an 8'part series starring Woody Harrelson and Mathew McConaughey and airs on Sunday nights at 9.00 on HBO Canada. You have missed 2 episodes and doesn't air this week I don't think due to Super Bowl.
It's a great show if not a little dark, but two great actors.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:19 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

I hear excellent things about True Detective from my Wire-loving friends.

I can't ride to conquer cancer unless I hit the minimum $2500 in donations, so if you haven't yet pledged my ride, please do so here:

January 31, 2014 @ 10:28 AM


Come on guys lets get Mike to $2500.00 . 100 of Mikes readers @$20.00 a piece is $2000.00.
Let's show him we appreciate his blog and his fight against cancer for not only his buddy but for every one of us who has been touched by this horrendous disease.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:34 AM

519 Rob

I love Person of Interest. Its on season 3, so you have some catching up to do.
I happen to catch The Goldbergs the other night. Im not a huge sitcom fan anymore, but this was pretty funny. Worth checking out.
I'd love to check out True Detective, but Im cheap and have a shitty cable package.

Yes, Divorce (or just separation if you didn't 'put a ring on it') sucks. 15 years, down the shitter.

I'll get you a donation soon, but with the aforementioned separation, gotta watch my dollars and cents a bit more now than I did 6 months ago.

January 31, 2014 @ 10:41 AM


Sorry you're not at your target yet, Mike. I donated as much as I could. It's not much, but I don't have much money. I'm not made of money.

Well, how about those Habs last night. Good game, wasn't it. Nice that Briere finally scored a goal. Too bad the Leafs had to win. My Suns won but my Coyotes lost. The Sabres beat my Coyotes. The Sabres suck, but they go and beat my Coyotes.

January 31, 2014 @ 11:02 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


That's okay, I didn't expect to be at my target yet. I really appreciate you and anyone who gives what they can.

There are some people reading who can hardly afford to part with $20 and others who wouldn't miss $2000. I'm happy to have donations from both parties. :)

January 31, 2014 @ 11:04 AM

Ryan G

@TO Mike

True Detective uses a tired old premise and makes it riveting through beautiful production design, solid character development , great acting and fantastic writing. I highly recommend it.

From what I understand, McConaughey and Harrelson are only signed up for the first season since it was a self-contained storyline in case it didn't get renewed. It just got a season two, so it may shift gears to a new town, new detectives,etc, but I'm not certain - so if anyone knows tell.

January 31, 2014 @ 11:10 AM


I think I'll steer clear of True Detectives just based on the two lines of dialogue that I've heard in the promos:

"We got a rabid dog out there somewhere. We gotta put him down."


"Something deep and dark, detectives. Something deep...and..dark"

Sounds a little too cliched to me. Who really talks like that?

January 31, 2014 @ 11:17 AM



Apparently new stars each season, so this story ends after the eighth episode.

January 31, 2014 @ 11:30 AM


Sorry that last post was for Ryan G

January 31, 2014 @ 11:31 AM

this guest

possibly an
ironic take
on noir

January 31, 2014 @ 11:54 AM


Anti-Nafta demonstration outside my work at 12:30.

Sheesh, why waste your time?! With the falling dollar NAFTA will help us!

January 31, 2014 @ 12:08 PM


@this guest -

Probably, but I think I'd just find it distracting.

On a similar topic, I saw Captain Philips. I thought it was pretty well done, but Tom Hanks' Nee England accent bugged me. In a film like this, which apparently wasn't that historically accurate, why couldn't the filmmakers just decide that the Capt. Philips in their movie comes from California, and lose the requirement for the accent?

January 31, 2014 @ 12:24 PM


I saw Saving Mr. Banks and I found that Tom Hanks struggled with Walt Disney's Midwestern/California accent as well.
To be fair, it seems like an almost impossible accent to keep up.

January 31, 2014 @ 12:53 PM


I've watched two episodes of True Detective.

I love the acting and characters. The story hasn't completely sold me yet but I am loving the performances.

And note to Mike......Lester Freamon and Brother Mouzone are both in it!

January 31, 2014 @ 12:53 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Get outside, Toronto! It's currently 0° C out there.

I biked 15km at lunch and it felt balmy.

January 31, 2014 @ 2:21 PM


Where's Argie?

January 31, 2014 @ 4:31 PM

Blind Dave

Crikey! According to Accu-Weather's long term winter forecast, the Prairies will be in the deep minus for the month of February. That's minus teens and twenties for the daytime high. Enough already.

Ok, I said a couple of weeks ago that the Leafs had kissed their playoff spot goodbye and wouldn't get it back. Good for them for getting back in. The trick is for them to stay there but they still play too sloppy and that will kill them in the playoffs again if they make it that far. For as much as I root for James Reimer and feel he didn't get that extra push, I have to say I do like Johnathon Bernier. And did anyone see the highlights of Ben Scrivens in EDM the other night? Wow!

Is anyone else going to ignore the Olympics?

January 31, 2014 @ 9:19 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Blind Dave

I love the Olympics. I installed the CBC Olympics app on my phone just today. I'm ready!

January 31, 2014 @ 9:29 PM

Rick C in Oakville

I just read the Orlando Franklin (of the Denver Bronco's)story in the Star this morning,very inspiring given the odds of him going down the wrong path and getting caught up in the gang lifestyle in Scarborough. Hats off to his mom for being able to bring a young teenage man through this, and have him achieve this goal. Unfortunately I couldn't find an on line link to the story. It just piqued my interest enough to watch the Super Bowl Sunday.

February 1, 2014 @ 7:14 AM


Sherlock is an awesome show. So different from what we're fed from the US.

Since you like that one you might like "Lewis" (it's called Inspector Lewis in the US). It's well written, interesting plots and like Sherlock, some humour thrown in.

Of course there's also Wallaner starring the great Kenneth Branaugh.

February 1, 2014 @ 7:22 AM


Well, we're supposed to get snow and freezing rain today so when it warms up, it snows. Tomorrow is groundhog day, but don't believe in any of that crap. It's a bunch of hogwash.

Anyway, Howard is not in first place in the Provincials, Bice is. I hope that will stand. I want anyone but Howard to win it.

As for the Olympics, if I can get broadcasts of the hockey games, that will be the only thing I will follow. PK Subban and Carey Price are on Team Canada, but I don't know how I'll be able to get broadcasts of the games. If I can't get them, then I'm going to suffer hockey withdrawal for a couple weeks. Oh well, not as bad as last year with the lockout. Now let's lock out baseball for a couple years. Baseball is going to get even slower with play reviews. I wouldn't be surprised if your average game lasted five or six hours.

February 1, 2014 @ 7:52 AM

Blind Dave


It looks like TSN will broadcast the men's olympic hockey both live and then as an encore presentation in prime time.

February 1, 2014 @ 12:30 PM


I live in Caledon & it has been snowing all day & getting heavier by the hour. I have nowhere to pile the snow as drifts over 6ft.

To everyone:

We all should consider to donate to Mike for him to reach his goal for Cancer Bike Ride & at least get him $2500 to ride. I
know times are tough for a lot of us as this site provides a LOT of "blog entertainment" for all of us.

Do it for Mike & especially Mike Kic who's having a tough time now.

February 1, 2014 @ 3:00 PM


What is the big deal with H & F? Listened to them once & that was more than enough. That broad just chimes in so that she can say she is part of the show & her laugh is so phony. All this is, is a show about nothing.....sound familiar? Except the Jerry is much, much funnier.

U don't need these 2 Mike.

February 1, 2014 @ 3:17 PM

Liz The Official Cheerleader Of Toronto Mike


You, my friend, are a good and nice person. You're right - if everyone just fired over a twenty spot to Boon's account, he'd reach the main goal which is participation.


Is there a deadline to sponsor, Mike?


February 1, 2014 @ 6:20 PM


Hey 'What?' - your use of the word "broad" shows your lack of intelligence, tact and credibility on any subject. Go crawl back under your rock.

February 1, 2014 @ 8:01 PM

Rick C in Oakville

@What? Just as Sushi is an acquired taste (for me anyways) stick with H & F and the magnificent Eileen and you will understand. Just like Seinfeld, being about nothing can be a winner.

February 1, 2014 @ 10:34 PM


Well, my Habs lost last night and the Leafs won. Not good. Well, how about those Coyotes. They won over Pittsburgh. That's great they shut down Crosby. My Suns also won last night as well. Is there any way I can get an Olympic hockey schedule?

February 2, 2014 @ 7:46 AM


Finally saw the wolf of wall street. It was a great movie. DiCaprio is one of my favourite actors, always does a great job.

I'll echo what Liz, Dale etc have said. Lets get Mike to 4000 and then some!

February 2, 2014 @ 6:27 PM


My Habs lost. That was not a good game. Poor Carey Price stood on his head, but they didn't win for him. Sucks. Oh well, they were napping. Team Canada will win a gold medal with PK Subban scoring and Carey Price making lots of saves. Too bad Sidney Crosby has to be on that team. I don't like him.

Howard lost the final today. I'm so happy about that. Bice will go to the Brier, not Howard. Good. It's about time. Well, would have been better if my trainer's team made it, but they didn't and I don't know if my trainer's team will play next year. It's very possible they may not.

February 2, 2014 @ 8:31 PM

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