Canadians safe, captain taken into custody

There were about a dozen Canadians on the ill-fated Costa Concordia holiday cruiser and it appears they have all escaped today’s shipping catastrophe. There were 3,200 passengers aboard the ship when it sailed smack into a rocky shoal off the coast of Italy, not  far from Rome. According to reporters for Channel Four News (UK) the Costa Concordia was four miles off course when it hit the rocks. It was a passage that the ship had taken many times, well travelled by other cruise ships. The ship’s position at the time of the sinking speaks of something very wrong in the wheelhouse.  A handful of people are reported dead — perhaps three or four. Many others are still missing but the figure of 70 missing has been lowered to perhaps 40 or 50. The captain of the Costa Concordia has been taken into custody. He is said to have left the ship before the passengers were off. Then there will be the need for some sort of accounting for what happened to put the ship so far off course.

Apple displays, boutiques are new Target plan

Target in the U.S. has confirmed that it will shortly open a series of made-for-Target shops selling everything from candy to clothing. And another retail flash, the vast discount chain will soon begin selling Apple goods in “expanded displays”. (Target hesitates to call them shops just yet). Christmas sales were not great at Target so its announcement that it will test the Apple concept at  25 of its retail locations this year is a strategic move to jump start sales. Apple already has small stores within Best Buy locations, but enlarging its presence at Target would make the computer, phone and music brand more accessible to everyday shoppers who are not necessarily looking for electronics. Target already sells some Apple products, like iPads and iPods, but it does not sell Macintosh computers. 

News of Yogurty’s and Groms

Openings and closings in our area. Yogurty’s Frozen Yogurt shop is now open in the Sunnybrook Plaza.  And Groms on South Bayview is having a whopper of sale, offering two for one on pretty much everything in the store. 

15% off signature lines at 371 Eglinton W

As the Homefront plan for consolidation continues, our shop at 1579 Bayview will be in clearance sale for the next few months. Homefront at 371 Eglinton Avenue West will be offering 15 % off all regular and new in stock merchandise to our customers. You will know that this is a very unusual event for us, as we never markdown Emma Bridgewater, Simon Pearce, Michael Aram, Julia Knight or Sabre. If you are collecting these lines here is a perfect opportunity to fill in your collection. We have a very good selection in these lines and it will be first come first serve and it will end in two weeks. We also have 20% off on glass, table linens, adult blankets and some door mats. We are open every M-F 10 until 6 pm.., Sunday noon to 5 pm. (416) 488-3189 Trish Stuebing, President .

Electoral law grew old with Western maturity

The federal government will do away the law that prevents TV networks from broadcasting election results from any time zone where the polls are still open.  The 1938 law has become less and less enforceable for all the digital reasons we know. Even before the insidious tweet, email had made a joke of this stricture. The intent was to prevent the completed results in the east from influencing western voters. That power, if it ever existed, seems to be long gone. This is especially so following the growth and maturity of the west since the time of Pierre Trudeau. Once one hits the Manitoba border, he’s dealing with people who know what they want based largely on their position on the Pacific flank of the nation.       

Snapshots from January 13, 2012

So it’s here. Along South Bayview and all through the area, we kept on going.  The snapshots above show (left to right) a tiny Fiat Cinquecento which braved the roads and found a parking spot outside Rosie’s, a pile of  Safe-T-Salt at Tremblett’s Valu Mart (sales were brisk) a real hero of the street clearing the sidewalk outside The Elegant Garage Sale and an 11 Bayview bus, running a little late. We’re looking okay for tomorrow but it will be cold. The City has issued an alert and will swing into action to prevent street people from losing their lives in the minus 20 temperature which is expected.

St. Anselm scene of Lisa Lebitka service

Services were held today for Lisa Lebitka at St. Anselm Catholic Church on Millwood Road. Toronto Star

The resilient gentleman from Toronto-Centre

He’s the honourable gentleman from Toronto-Centre (Rosedale and points south). He’s led a very eventful life of 69 years (so far) and it’s not presumptuous to say he wants to cap his career  by becoming prime minister. And while that seems unlikely to us, it seems equally probable that Robert Keith (Bob) Rae will indeed be the next leader of the Liberal Party. Some might say, who else have they got?  More than that, however, the rankest of the Liberal rank and file, have been well punished for their “anybody but Rae” antics at the last two leadership conventions.  Even if a fresh face appears before the convention, ordinary Liberals will be wary of falling in love the way they did with Mr. Ignatieff.  Of course, if he assumes the leadership it’s just possible Mr. Rae will beat Stephen Harper at the next election. But that seems like quite a long shot. The Conservatives will wage a  withering campaign against the fomer Premier of Ontario, recalling his profligate spending of the early 90s.  In the next federal election, the challenge for the Liberals will be regaining the role of Official Opposition.   

About 20 at budget meeting: InsideToronto

Some 20 people attended Councillor Parker’s budget information meeting held Tuesday night at the Ontario Federation of Labour building. Another such meeting is scheduled for tonight at Leaside Gardens. Start time is 7 pm. Here is an account of Tuesday’s meeting in InsideToronto.com. A note: the letters VRT in the story stand for Vehicle Registration Tax.

The case for riding bikes on the sidewalk

A cyclist makes the case for riding on the sidewalk carefully. He says it has doubtlessly saved his life to stay off the roadway of the well known north-south thoroughfares (Don Mills, Bayview). His main point is that responsible cyclists are no threats to pedestrians. But those he calls “scumbags” are.   National Post

Complaint about an 11 Bayview driver

The driver of an 11 Bayview bus apparently took a break for a burger at the McDonald’s at Bayview and Eglinton. The stop, which occurred after rush hour at about 7.30 pm., angered one passenger. George Perry complained to the TTC which has promised to investigate. As quoted in the Toronto Sun, TTC spokesman Brad Ross said it was okay for drivers to leave the vehicle from time to time, especially for a bathroom break.  He said it depended on the time of the day and the number of people on the bus. Mr. Perry said the driver just abandoned the bus. But there is no indication of just how long the bus was stopped at the intersection.

Israel ‘not shedding a tear’ over nuke scientist

An Iranian scientist involved in purchasing equipment for the Islamic Republic’s main uranium-enrichment facility was assassinated Wednesday when a magnetic bomb attached to his car exploded in morning rush-hour traffic, Iranian media reported. Iranian officials accused the United States and Israel of orchestrating the attack, which also killed the scientist’s driver.  National Post