Updates from December, 2019 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 19:25 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    The metro will be running all night to shuttle New Year’s revellers around. Some other new year party notes from CTV.

     
  • Kate 13:29 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Flex your Spanish here, my pretties: El uso de la bicicleta en invierno from Spain’s El País, via Bartek Komorowski on Twitter. (Still, the one person I saw with a bike this morning was only pushing it.)

     
    • Bartek Komorowski 15:41 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      Hi Kate, it is harder to ride a bicycle immediately after a big snow dump. It’s also harder to walk and to drive. However, there are rarely more than 5 major snow events per winter. The rest of the time, as the article points out, we’re riding on bare asphalt.

    • Kate 17:31 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      Indeed. Thank you.

    • Blork 11:54 on 2020-01-01 Permalink

      One thing that’s really opening up winter biking for some people is the new “fat bike.” Those are bicycles with insanely fat tires. They sort of came out of nowhere a couple of years ago and now I see them around a lot, especially in winter. Every sports store in town has one in its window these days.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatbike

    • Michael Black 12:03 on 2020-01-01 Permalink

      But how fat are the tires?

      Once mountain bikes became a mass produced item in the eighties, tye tires certainly seemed “big enough”.

      And Heinlein had bicycles on the moon for prospectors in 1952. So the idea has long been out there.

      Michael

    • Kate 12:51 on 2020-01-01 Permalink

      I thought it was more or less regular wheels with studded tires that worked best, or would it depend on the kind of surface?

      Even when I cycled, I didn’t winter-cycle, so I haven’t studied the subject closely.

    • Blork 13:00 on 2020-01-01 Permalink

      I don’t know what the actual dimensions of fat bike tires are, but you can see they are extreme in the photos on this site: https://fatbikes.ca/

      They’re not just for winter. I saw people riding them all year round. You can take them on beaches, sand, rough paths, and of course on regular streets. Obviously there’s an issue of rolling resistance, but that doesn’t seem to bother people who seem to like them just because they are so odd and a bit of a fad at the moment.

      BTW, I also see a lot of folding fat bikes with much smaller diameter wheels (about 20 inches I think). These are often folding electric fat bikes. Even full sized fat bikes are available as electric bikes.

      I recently had a dream that I was riding a fat bike and now I really want one!

    • Kevin 01:01 on 2020-01-02 Permalink

      I tried out a fatbike last winter and they worked really well on snow.

      I’m told by those who ride them often that they work well on pavement too. No reason they shouldn’t as long as they’re inflated hard…

      The tires are about as wide as my hand, and the rubber sells for $2-300 depending on if you want studs or not

    • Raymond Lutz 09:37 on 2020-01-02 Permalink

      Ah! Je reviens tout juste de quatre jours en yourte au Parc du Bic (près de Rimouski) et j’avais apporté les deux fatbikes de mes fils! We had a blast! Le parc maintient quelques pistes accessibles aux Fatbikes (le long des rives magnifiques du fleuve). L’été dernier j’ai électrifié un des vélo avec un kit de chez Grin Tech (https://www.ebikes.ca/shop/electric-bicycle-kits/fatbike/rear-fatbike-ready-to-roll-kit.html). Le torque du moteur essieu est incroyable: je tirais les deux ados en traineaux dans la neige! Trivia: you can deflate a fatbike tire as you need, mine go as low as 4 PSI (for best winter grip) and inflate to a max of 20 for summer riding.

  • Kate 13:11 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Toula Drimonis summarizes the year in Montreal. CTV has the year in politics.

     
  • Kate 09:38 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    This account of a woman who narrowly escaped a murderous attack by her ex-husband in mid-December passed me by without getting blogged. Now the ex, who tried to hang himself at the time, has died. The ex-wife speaks here of using every legal means possible to keep him away from her – unsuccessfully – and also how the lack of support for men in emotional distress is dangerous.

     
  • Kate 09:27 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    It’s the last day for the working horse in the city of Montreal – except for police horses. Le Devoir tells us how horses were brought to New France and were crucial in the life of the city for centuries.

     
    • JaneyB 10:23 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      This makes me think the Cavendish Extension might be possible after all!

      Seriously, how many days before a reprieve is issued or a new and better caleche business is re-created. Maybe something on the mountain instead of Old Montreal, perhaps Lachine, Vieux Longueuil, somewhere though.

  • Kate 09:23 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Although three city YMCA locations are to close at the end of the year, some users are holding out hope they can be revived. The loss of the Guy-Favreau site in particular is seen as a blow to the Chinese community that remains around that part of town.

     
  • Kate 09:19 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    As she prepares to close her 16 years as the first and, so far, only ombudsman of the city, Johanne Savard considers the evolution of the role.

     
  • Kate 09:16 on 2019-12-31 Permalink | Reply  

    In the wee hours of Tuesday a man was stabbed at Guy and Ste-Catherine and two suspects fled, leaving him in critical condition.

    Update: the man has died, giving us homicide #25 of 2019.

     
  • Kate 21:09 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    Here’s a list of what’s open and closed over New Year’s. Aussi en anglais.

     
    • EmilyG 13:50 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      I went to a Royal Bank today (31st) and it was open. It just closes earlier today (at 3 PM.)

    • Kate 14:41 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      Things were open around my neighbourhood this morning, but they tend to close early on special eves. It was nice – everywhere I went, everyone was wishing each other a happy new year.

  • Kate 21:07 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    I tend to suspect the official weather service has a imbibed a bit of the old clickbait philosophy, because after all those warnings and cancelled flights and recommendations to stay home, it’s actually pretty nothing out there. We may get a little more snow overnight but this is hardly the major storm which we were promised.

     
    • Ian 13:14 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      CBC is saying by the end of day tomorrow we should have 20 cm on the ground. Enough to have to shovel out your steps but hardly a snowpocalypse, especially with the 2 days of rain above zero forecast for Friday and Saturday.

  • Kate 21:03 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    OK, the holidays are usually a slow news season, but all the anglo media have pieces about a West Island snow removal contractor which has gone out of business, and also gone off with a fair bit of cash from customers who had paid up front.

    But is this not an opportunity for somebody? If I owned a pickup truck I’d be slinging on a plow and going around knocking on doors. “That name again is Madam Plow!”

     
    • dwgs 09:17 on 2019-12-31 Permalink

      That name again is Madame Plow!

  • Kate 10:08 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    The Journal tells us about the silliest attempted crimes of the year in and around Montreal.

     
  • Kate 10:04 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    Bit of good news: the prevalence of fentanyl as a recreational drug is down around here, overdoses are down and there’s been no sign of the drug turning up in police raids this year.

     
  • Kate 09:57 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    Jean Drapeau’s archive is still producing news stories: in his first term, Drapeau tried to prevent trouble by telling Clarence Campbell to stay away from the Forum, but Campbell ignored him, and his presence at the Canadiens-Red Wings match sparked the memorable Richard Riot of 1955. Campbell had just suspended Maurice Richard for the remaining games of the season and the playoffs, and fans were not happy.

     
  • Kate 09:34 on 2019-12-30 Permalink | Reply  

    Nary a flake has yet fallen, but flights are being cancelled at Trudeau as the impending storm comes inexorably to town.

    Dusting this off:

    Minutes after posting this, I started hearing freezing rain tapping at the window.

    The scraping has begun!

     
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