Friday Open Mike

Welcome to this week's Friday 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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James Edgar

TGIF It has seemed like an awfully long week this week for some reason. I'm very much looking forward to a little brain disconnect in front on a computer or Tv of the next couple of days.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:01 AM

Al The Royal Pain

RIP Radioshack. Even though they haven't been in Canada for years now, any time an institution like theirs ceases to exist, it's a little sad.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:18 AM


City hall seems so normal now. Remember how chaotic the previous four years were?

That level of crazy will never happen in municipal politics in this city again.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:19 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Radioshack became The Source here, which I believe is owned by Bell now. I know this because my Bell-employed brother gets a discount there.

I was actually surprised Radioshack still existed in the USA.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:22 AM


Welp. Went to grab my bike from my condo's lock-up to ride to a buddy's show last night, and found ... this:

I assure you I didn't leave it upside down with the wheels missing.

Not only that, they stripped all the accessories + extra mounts, and bent the frame. So it's junk.

My "good" bike's seat got taken. A bunch of other people lost seats, and I noticed two people lost their handlebars. No one else appears to have had their bike utterly destroyed though.

I'd have been less pissed off if they'd just taken the fucking bike, instead of leaving its broken carcass for me to find.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:28 AM

Al The Royal Pain


You're right, bell bought-out the Radioshack operations in Canada (probably one of the reasons Radioshack was able to continue a little longer down south). I applied for a job at The Source head office this past summer up in Barrie. I was one of 3 finalists for the position but ultimately lost out which was a huge bummer. I would have shaved an hour off my commute AND I really liked the vibe at the headquarters.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:30 AM

Al The Royal Pain


Man that really sucks! I guess there were no cameras there to catch the idiot(s) who did it.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:32 AM


I'll find out today hopefully. There are cameras in the garage, but it looks like if they parked next to the bike storage, they wouldn't be spotted.

What is it with this city and bikes? I think we're still the bike-theft capital of the world after Kenk got locked up.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:34 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


That sucks, man. This is why I'm afraid to upgrade from my $500 hybrid. I still need to lock it up here and there.

Toronto is the bike theft capital of the world. So sad....

February 6, 2015 @ 9:39 AM


@mark: wtf! Make sure you get them to pull the camera footage before it get overwritten (if they're on a 2 or 3 days footage cycle).

What the city needs is a way of eliminating the stolen bike & accessories market. No idea how that'd work, but it's something to think about.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:45 AM



No idea what the cycle is, and unfortunately this could have happened up to two weeks ago. No one else in my building seems to ride at all in the winter.

Also I'm pretty sure there's no camera. If the thief was smart, they would have parked right next to the bike storage and nothing would have been captured.

@Toronto Mike,

Yeah, you get a second bike :)

This was my "lock outside" one, but it was still pretty nice. Ran great, barely had a scratch on it after riding through two winters with it. The thief/thieves totally trashed it getting at the wheels.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:59 AM

Al The Royal Pain

Is there bike insurance that you can get? It seems that bikes are so expensive these days that it might be a worthwhile thing to have.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:05 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I hear ya... how much was that 2nd bike?

February 6, 2015 @ 10:18 AM


@ Al
Yes, you can increase the bike insurance line on your homeowners insurance if your bike is worth enough to make it worthwhile.
Bicycles are usually automatically covered under your homeowners insurance, but my understanding is that there is generally a limit of $500 or so, and you still need to pay a deductible of a couple hundred bucks.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:19 AM


Go to Twitter! Re-Tweet at Ricky Gervais and get Mike his biggest guest ever!

It's a longshot but anything can happen! Or EVERYTHING IS HAPPENING!

February 6, 2015 @ 10:30 AM


RedBox, the DVD rental kiosk company is also leaving Canada along with Target. The company says Canadians just don't rent as much physical media as Americans.

Are there ANY retail outlets renting DVDs in Canada?

I can't think of one.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:34 AM

Ben V

@ Glen: No not really. Outside of convenience stores and some small foodlands up in cottage country. There isn't a realy physical rental system left.

Who needs one when you have on demand everything or apps like popcorn time where you can stream movies that are new releases or just on their way out of theatres.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:37 AM


Years ago I rode a Trek 9000 bike when I lived in the GTA. The bike was worth several thousand dollars & I was always afraid it would be stolen. I recall buying 2 bike locks at the time. They were extremely expensive (about 100 bucks each) but they were guaranteed "unbreakable". In fact, there was a form you could fill out and they'd replace the bike if it was stolen. Krypton? Kryptonite? The name was something like that.

I always took the seat with me too. Maybe it was good luck but no one ever stole the bike or any parts of it.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:40 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Do you really think Ricky Gervais is bigger than Hebsy?

February 6, 2015 @ 10:53 AM


@ Mike

Good point. Ricky has only won seven BAFTA Awards, five British Comedy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards and two Emmy Awards.

Hebsy hands out the Hebsy Awards. So I guess that's a wash.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:55 AM


Is Popcorn Time free? Can you access movies that haven't hit the DVD/BRay market yet?

February 6, 2015 @ 11:28 AM

Ryan G /

"Willy Wonka is usually a very pleasant (albeit eccentric) chocolate tycoon. But when Charlie Bucket and Grandpa Joe steal the fizzy lifting drinks, he succumbs to a maniacal fit of rage and informs them that they get NOTHING!"

February 6, 2015 @ 11:29 AM


Why would someone steal parts of your bike and not the whole bike. This does not make sense. I hope you get it fixed. My Coyotes and Suns both lost last night. Kean won last night as well beating MacAulay. They are 6 and 2 now with 2 more games left. 2:00 this afternoon is the showdown between Kean and Epping. That's pretty scary. I think Kean will win and I'll get my tuny though. Heggestad beat Balsdon last night though. Heggestad actually won a game. The poor guy who has them is going to lose for sure. Anyway, Frans also lost which is wonderful. Anyway, Kean will beat Epping and then really clobber Heggestad to end the round robin and then playoffs start tomorrow. Kean is going to the Brier, guys. They'll make it. Currie is not doing well in Northern Ontario. I don't think they will make it. There's talk about a Brier pool though. I think I will join it.

February 6, 2015 @ 11:30 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


They sell the parts.

And because of the lock, the thief couldn't / didn't grab the whole bike.

February 6, 2015 @ 11:36 AM

Ben V

@Argie: Popcorn time is free. Just an app you download onto your computer or Iphone or android.

Everyone I've told about this loves it. It's not just Movies either, it's TV shows too. You aren't downloading the movies and it works as a group stream. Searching for the best possible torrents all over the net, but without having to worry about viruses on torrents. Marjority of things available are 1080P quality.

I watched St Vincent, the drop, boyhood, equalizer and a tonne more over the holidays. You aren't getting brand new theatre releases on there, that's the only thing, but if it's on it's last legs in the theatre chances are it'll end up on popcorn time.

Give it a whirl, you won't be disappointed.

February 6, 2015 @ 11:42 AM


Thanks, I'll check it out this weekend.

February 6, 2015 @ 11:49 AM


My HardDrive on my laptop failed on me and I had pics of my daughter's birth that I never backed up.... I'm hoping my IT guy can recover my encrypted HDD:(

February 6, 2015 @ 12:25 PM



Kean's going to win this afternoon? You've gotta be Epping kidding me! Kean couldn't hit the broadside of a barn by throwing stones at it - let alone a house. His rink will lose and I'll be keen to see it happen.

February 6, 2015 @ 12:39 PM

Al The Royal Pain


THat really sucks man. I had a similar thing happen to me with an external drive. Luckily I had all my family pictures and home movies backed up to the cloud, but I did lose my extensive music collection. It took me a long time to rip all my CDs and accumlate all that music. Now I've got to start all over.

Hopefully your IT guy can help. If not there are other (more expensive options) that you can try as long as there is no physical damage to the actual disk itself. Unfortunately it involves shipping the drive to someone somewere an trusting you'll get it back.

February 6, 2015 @ 12:44 PM



Was this on Windows? What encryption method did you use to encrypt the photos? Was it Bitlocker (full drive) or was it "EFS" which is the option to encrypt files in Windows.

When you say the drive died, what do you mean? Will the system even start or does the hard drive make loud noises (clicks, etc).

Give Dropbox or One Drive a look. Both have free options but they don't store much space.

February 6, 2015 @ 12:51 PM

Al The Royal Pain

Today was a momentous occasion for Canada's supreme court:

"Feb. 6, 2015 — Supreme Court unanimously strikes down ban on providing a doctor-assisted death to mentally competent but suffering and “irremediable” patients, saying it infringes on all three of the life, liberty and security of person provisions in Section 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Parliament is given 12 months to draft new legislation."

Bravo Canada! This is a huge decision and in my opinion, the right one.

February 6, 2015 @ 12:55 PM



The laptop was working fine all day yesterday, but in the evening I went to turn it on and windows went into 'Repair Mode' trying to repair a problem and it was unable to find a fix. Tried booting in safe mode, same thing... ran diagnostics on the HD from the bios and the HD passed all the tests... but I can't get it to boot. I believe the encryption software used was called Truecrypt...

February 6, 2015 @ 12:56 PM



TrueCrypt is an open source encryption package which lets you encrypt entire hard-drives or portions of the disk. The encrypted part is called the "hidden volume" (if you just encrypted a portion). A while ago development had stopped on the package for reasons I can't remember (I think the feds cracked it or something).

There is a program called PhotoRec that can be used to recover lost files from HD's, CD's etc. It's open source. Have your IT guy try that or try it yourself.

Honestly I'd recommend not using encryption for simple files, etc unless you're protecting sensitive data. Much of it is certificate based and if you lose the cert you're toasted. You can rip the platters apart in a white room but it's big $$. Typically that's only done for forensic reasons (criminal, etc).

February 6, 2015 @ 1:22 PM



Thanks for the feedback! I'll let him know...

February 6, 2015 @ 1:40 PM

Ben V

@ Al: I'm with you on this decision. I truly believe it's an important step forward in compassion for quality of life.

February 6, 2015 @ 1:48 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

It's amazing how Tiger Woods drove me to watch golf on TV.

I didn't watch any golf on TV before Tiger, and I haven't watched any since his decline.

But for a period of time, when Tiger was winning Majors, I'd tune into golf events to see if he would win.

February 6, 2015 @ 3:28 PM

Mike from Lowville

@ Glen, theres a Family Video located on the Guelph Line in Burlington. They took over the Blockbuster lease. They are an American company.........can't see it lasting much longer here though.

February 6, 2015 @ 3:35 PM

Al The Royal Pain

There is a video store just around the corner from my house still. Plus there is still one in my hometown of Bradford called Videoquest, they recently celebrated 25 years of business.

February 6, 2015 @ 3:49 PM


Former National Post columnist Charles Lewis offers the other view of "dying with dignity."

February 6, 2015 @ 4:06 PM

Mike from Lowville

@ Mike.....I stopped watching golf on TV when Tiger was playing well. NOW, I watch golf on TV when Tiger is playing and losing! Funny as a avid golfer I heard people saying Tiger elevated golf to new hights. Millions of people took up the game world wide. What I saw were, pact courses full of over dressed hackers who could not hit a fairway of the proper hole. Hacked up the Tees and Greens and slowed down play that I stopped golfing for about 3 years. Now that Tiger is a has been I actually enjoy playing the game again! The ONLY people who benefited from the Tiger era were the equipment, ball and clothing manufacturers. Good riddance Tiger!

February 6, 2015 @ 4:09 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Mike from Lowville

Don't forget the television networks. I'm sure the ratings with a competitive Tiger and the ratings without a competitive Tiger are very, very different.

February 6, 2015 @ 4:11 PM


@Mike from Lowville
We finally agree - 100%!

February 6, 2015 @ 4:16 PM

Al The Royal Pain


Re: Dying vs living with dignity

At least now, there is the option. That's got to be a good thing, no?

February 6, 2015 @ 4:21 PM


Kean just beat Epping 6 to 2. It's a final. I just won a tuny. I called the guy to tell him Kean won. Nobody home so I left a voice mail. I told you Kean can beat Epping and they did. One more game tonight versus Heggestad. Kean will win handily. Then it's playoffs on the weekend and I'm going to win $20.00 because Kean will be going to the Brier to represent Ontario. I know this.

February 6, 2015 @ 4:24 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Exactly. We just want the option.

February 6, 2015 @ 4:27 PM


My wife hates Tiger to the point of cheering when he misses a shot usual reasons cheater, low life, scumbag etc...
Extremely talented golfer in years past and was also entertaining to watch. He has definitely lost his "cachet" for me though. Way too much exposure of his woes when there are tons of talented people playing the game I would rather see make great golf shots. Give me a big Kutcher smile rather than Tiger's grimace.

February 6, 2015 @ 4:32 PM

Ben V

@Argie: Not sure whether that article was a religious sermen or an actual opinion piece. I'm surprised he didn't liken his situation to need to bare a cross on his back.

February 6, 2015 @ 4:59 PM

Drunk Johnny Fever

Nice to see the Bully/Troublemaker has finally been "outed" on the SOWNY board.

Too bad so many people left and probably won't return.

February 6, 2015 @ 5:25 PM


Ron Hawkins (lead vocalist and guitarist for Lowest of the Low) has a new album out this week called "Garden Songs".

That just made my day.

February 6, 2015 @ 5:58 PM


@mike from Lowville

Amen to that. Good riddance.

February 6, 2015 @ 7:42 PM


Leafs gonna break a team record tonight with 11 losses in a row.

Losing 3-0 to a terrible team also.
They're like Kindergarten kids playing with University boys.

Now what??

OH wait McDavid is knocking at my door now.

February 6, 2015 @ 8:28 PM



Actually Mike Cleaver outed him on the RadioWest board about two weeks ago (Jan 23rd I think). He sort of gave himself away last year (for anyone paying attention). He is a morning man for a radio station east of the GTA.

But I have a question for you and all those so interested in "outing" him. Why? Is this some witch hunt? Is the M.O to "out" anyone that has an opinion that you disagree with? When anonymous posters attacked Bruce Marshall at SOWNY I didn't see a call to out them. Years ago when I was the resident troll I didn't see anyone saying that to my attackers. So is the name of the 'outing' game just people you dislike?

Free speech isn't just about speech you agree with.

February 6, 2015 @ 9:03 PM



I hear you about watching golf on TV. Is it safe to say that your curling watching habits have been influenced similarly by Kean's current domination of the sport?

I hear a similar knock at my door, too. Thing is, there's only a 20% chance that McDavid is on the other side.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:11 PM


@ Irvine
I don't believe that Ziggy's identity should be outed, but I do believe the moderator of the SOWNY board should remind him that replying with tiresome, repetitive, unfunny, negative comments drive people away from comment sites and stifle true, interesting conversation.

Let me give you full credit where it's due: I often agree with you, but in past incarnations on SOWNY, Toronto Mike and elsewhere, I often wished you would stop being so "troll-like". Since you've come back to Toronto Mike recently, you have shown that you are intelligent, interesting & reasonable. You add an edge to this site without being caustic.

I think Ziggy has the potential to be the same type of commenter over at SOWNY. He is often correct, but he states his opinions in such a loathsome manner that it drives me away from that board.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:19 PM

Rick C in Oakville

Just to inject a little bit of politics: The Liberals get caught on tape trying to serve up some inducements to have a candidate step aside, but still win the the Bi-election in Sudbury?

February 6, 2015 @ 10:19 PM

Rick C in Oakville

@Broni: Have to agree about your comments on Irv, have found him to be a knowledgeable and interesting contributor since he has come back.

February 6, 2015 @ 10:22 PM



The ugly truth is the past few moderators at SOWNY have did a poor job. They've all to often supported those who had influence over their lives or were friends. The current moderator is different. He is "stand offish" and seems to let free speech take it's course even if it's rather ugly at times. Is Ziggy nasty and detrimental to SOWNY? Yes, he is. But so are the 15 regular posters on that forum. Could you imagine if someone who was 18 years old posted their feelings on radio & modern music? They'd be torn to bits like a hungry wolf on a rabbit.

The new moderator of SOWNY does a great job. He's hands off. He doesn't "kiss the ass" of people. He's not influenced by anyone but his OWN perspective on things. That's a first too. Just it's 10 years too late.

February 6, 2015 @ 11:23 PM


Blowing up Edmonton. And its good

February 6, 2015 @ 11:36 PM


My Suns and Nets both won and the Leafs lost. It's all good except the Raptors won. Kean just barely beat Heggestad. I expected them to beat them handily but they didn't, but they won anyway. Another Kean versus Epping tonight. Yes, Kean will win. Oh, I called that guy again who has Epping. He forgot all about the bet. He isn't following. Interesting, he is in the pool, but he's not following anything and he couldn't remember he owed me a tuny and then said he doesn't have it. Anyway, so I don't get my tuny, but I will get my $20.00. Kean is going to win the whole thing. All the way to the Brier for Kean. I'm so excited. As for golf, it's boring. It's like listening to paint dry. I kind of like Phil Mikelson though because that's my trainer's favourite, but I would never watch golf. My dad likes that stuff. I don't.

February 7, 2015 @ 8:17 AM


@ Cheryl

You listen to paint dry?
I usually watch the radio!!

February 7, 2015 @ 9:55 AM


Not sure if you know but Ziggy only lasted on that that community station for a few short months. He's no longer there but he used to talk like he was in the majors and bragged about working with people like Dick Smythe. IIMHO he fits the classic definition of a troll.

Now that his true ID is becoming better known he may be slowing down his posts. Basically he had 25 % of the total volume on the board. He's been quiet for a day or two now for the first time in ages. Karma ?

I almost feel sorry for the guy now b/c he obviously did not have much else to do with his time except to post to the board. He was ready to pounce on every 2nd post. People on the board have started to taunt him now as a failed community broadcaster. Ironically before his outing he was continually putting down community broadcasters as morons or some such. You can search on the board and see that.

February 7, 2015 @ 11:06 AM


Full Time Developer Wanted. The company I work for is looking to hire. Web development in .Net highly recommended (though I'll take a good coder who can learn any day). Navision experience an asset. Markham. If that's you, tell me how to contact you, and we can go from there.

February 7, 2015 @ 6:29 PM


Clarkson benched . Finally!

February 7, 2015 @ 9:08 PM


Kean just got clobbered 8 to 3. That sucks. Epping clobbered them. It sucks. I am so mad. First I lose the tuny I should have won. The guy said he didn't have it. Well, he wasn't even paying attention. I don't know why he joined the pool in the first place and then he asked me for a little bet. Anyway, his Epping won. That's no good, but Kean still has another chance, it's a different kind of playoffs so they can still win it but they have to win two games tomorrow. Anyway, I want my money. At least I want my $20.00. I need Kean to win. My Habs did win though, but so did the Leafs and my Nets lost and my Coyotes are losing. It's all sucking except my Habs. At least they're good. Why did Epping have to clobber Kean anyway.

February 7, 2015 @ 10:00 PM



I honestly don't read SOWNY that much even if I have commented on it. SOWNY hasn't had any content I'd be interested in reading in years. Most of what I get about radio comes from that @airchecker twitter account and I only check that once a week.

February 7, 2015 @ 10:02 PM



That's Epping fantastic! Glad to see that Kean is human and not some sort of curling machine. Maybe your friend could e-transfer your $2 to you, as it would likely cost him more in gas to deliver your winnings to you than the actual bet was worth. You are a persistent person, so you will come out on top.

February 8, 2015 @ 7:43 AM


My Coyotes lost last night. That sucks as well. Oh well, my Habs will win tonight. PK Subban is awesome. He had so many assists last night. Well, the guy I had the little bet with lives in this building. All the guys in the pool live here. They don't have to drive anywhere. Anyway, I need Kean to win two games today. That's the only way they'll get to the Brier. The first game is in a half hour.

February 8, 2015 @ 8:05 AM


Woohoo. Kean just beat Corner 8 to 4. That's awesome. Now I need them to beat Epping again. Please play Epping like you did on Friday and not like last night. I need Kean to win this thing so I get my money. Well, I did get my tuny finally. The guy said he couldn't remember making any bet with me, but said because I insist, here's the tuny so I got my tuny. Now I need my $20.00 so go Kean.

February 8, 2015 @ 11:25 AM

Ed Werenich

I have no Epping idea.Howard is not there but i see he sent his son.I would not know Kean or Epping if either of them pulled a spin-O-rama and beat me five hole with their last rock.
Now that that is off my chest I hope Epping wins and gets a shutout.

February 8, 2015 @ 12:03 PM


Guess what. Epping did not win. Kean won. It was very close. They won 7 to 6. Kean is going to the Brier. You said you don't know Kean so why do you hate them. This makes me like them even more. Anyway, Kean represents Ontario in the Brier. I am going to get my $20.00. I'll get it tomorrow some time, but I am going to get my $20.00. I need the money. Now for the Brier pool. I'm icking Kean in the Brier pool as well. To tell you the truth, the only time I wouldn't pick them would be if my trainer was playing. Anyway, now bring on the Brier.

February 8, 2015 @ 3:58 PM


Habs won last night. That's great. Kean and my Habs both made me happy. My Suns lost though and the Raptors won yet again. Basketball isn't going well. Anyway, I got my $20.00. I just got it, nice. I said I'm picking Kean in the Brier pool and I have the first pick because nobody else picked so I have Kean. Maybe they'll be Team Canada in Worlds.

February 9, 2015 @ 10:51 AM


Wifey having day surgery tomorrow regarding her Chrones disease. It will be a long day & hope everything is positive.
She is taking pre-op meds now & is "being cleaned out" as only 2 of 3 toilets in the house are in use now.

February 9, 2015 @ 8:26 PM

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