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  • Kate 17:52 on 2020-11-23 Permalink | Reply  

    Eight months after the start of a pandemic, Airbnb is shutting down rentals that have been used as party houses.

    • Ephraim 22:50 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      But doing NOTHING about the fact that a licence number must be posted on all listings in Quebec….

  • Kate 11:01 on 2020-11-23 Permalink | Reply  

    Drivers holding illicit car parties around town have been fined for illegal gatherings for various infractions. A party of people who held a maskless dance party in a mall in Rosemere were sent on their way without tickets, although mention is made of fines to be levied later.

    • Bert 11:14 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Kate, the article does not mention fines for illegal gatherings but rather speeding, DWI, dangerous driving, etc. It does mention that this sort of activity often happens at such gatherings.

    • Kate 11:50 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Thank you, Bert.

    • Ephraim 22:52 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      TBT I don’t think stores or malls in Quebec are taking this seriously. And I wonder if the government has decided that they no longer need to tell us about exposure. Even the schools… which should be opening the windows in every classroom ever 30 to 60 minutes… is still allowing classes in schools where the windows don’t open.

  • Kate 10:40 on 2020-11-23 Permalink | Reply  

    A woman was stabbed during the robbery of a dépanneur Sunday evening in Pointe-aux-Trembles. Two men were seen fleeing on foot but there have been no arrests.

  • Kate 10:37 on 2020-11-23 Permalink | Reply  

    The new rector at St Joseph’s Oratory is an American and, presumably, an anglophone.

    • Blork 10:41 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Anglo AF. From Global’s piece on the story:

      The priest said he has taken up French classes to be able to better communicate in the language. “The most important thing that I’ve been trying to do is dedicate myself to the French language and to use it as best and often as possible,” he said.

    • Kate 10:44 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Here’s the Global piece, which I was going to add in, but Blork was too quick for me.

      At least DeLaney isn’t a hockey coach.

  • Kate 02:16 on 2020-11-23 Permalink | Reply  

    An OQLF study warns that French is declining even faster in Montreal than predicted, creating tension and anxiety. Chapleau’s editorial cartoon of people lining up to hit Emmanuelle Lambropoulous has been criticized in a climate where women politicians face a constant torrent of abuse.

    • DeWolf 02:21 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      It’s always a bit ridiculous when people freak out that the proportion of francophones in Montreal has slipped below 50%. What do you expect in a city where population growth is fuelled almost entirely by immigration? According to the 2016 census, 49.6% of Montreal Island residents are francophone. The same census also showed that just 50.8% of people in the CIty of Toronto are anglophone. Same cause, same effect. Any indignation based on these statistics is pure sophistry.

    • DeWolf 02:26 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      I should add that people who get bent out of shape over these statistics are saying that unless your mother tongue is French, you don’t count. You can go to school in French, work in French, lead a social life in French, but if you speak Arabic or Spanish or Vietnamese with your parents, you’re destroying Montreal’s status as a francophone city. It’s ridiculous.

    • JaneyB 09:31 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Yes, and it presumes Allophones who grew up here never socialize outside their families – and for generations! These studies make me think the researchers have never met or spoken with anybody not named Tremblay.

    • Ephraim 10:05 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Too many baby boomers still working as journalists. How many years until they are all over 65? 8 more years?

    • Kevin 10:21 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      It’s several generations of No True Scotsman arguments, and it’s so embedded in the psyche that they don’t realize it’s a fallacy.

      The fact that this is *always* presented as the decline of the French language instead of the physical movement of an ethnic group is the tell.

    • Chris 14:30 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      >According to the 2016 census…

      And what fraction of those new Toronto residents learn (or already know) English as a second language? And what fraction of those new Montreal residents learn (or already know) French as a second language? I’d bet the former is substantially larger than the latter.

    • Azrhey 15:57 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      This issues enrages me particularly. I have a very Portuguese name. I hold a Portuguese passport. I’ve lived in Montreal since 1988, and regularly, still, I get comments on how good my french is. I’ve done the last 15 of my 17 years of school In french. I studied French linguistics and French translation. My dad, all Portuguese that he is moved to France when he was 11 and speaks much better French than Portuguese, but he is still asked regularly if he needs a translator by the idiot pure-laine next door. I am entirely fed up with the whole francophone = native french speaker ( insert rant about native language having no actual scientific meaning , and it’s just a shortcut to put people in boxes ) … bahhh… It;s idiots all the way down.
      Thank you for coming to my soap box

    • DeWolf 18:29 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      Chris, the answer is in the census. 12.6% of Montreal’s population is unable to speak French. 5% of Toronto’s population is unable to speak English.

    • Chris 19:01 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      DeWolf, that’s of all residents, or of the new residents? If, as you said, “population growth is fuelled almost entirely by immigration”, then that 12.6% vs 5% gap will presumably grow with time too.

      Also, which do you figure is harder: getting by in Toronto without English, or getting by in Montreal without French? ie is the pressure/need to learn the main language the same?

      I think there are lots of potential vicious circles for French in Montreal. The less you *need* it -> the less it will be learnt -> the less it will be spoken -> the less it’s needed, etc. Not saying this is the case now, but such a future is not implausible.

  • Kate 22:12 on 2020-11-22 Permalink | Reply  

    It’s been a quiet news weekend.

    Two items on public art pieces: a new mural was created at Jean-Talon and 9e Avenue by artists Bosny and Myshel Sicre. Somewhat annoyingly, there’s no image of the finished piece here, although Googling finds many pieces done by the artists individually.

    An epidemiologist and an artist have collaborated on a tile piece visualizing the first 50 days of the Covid outbreak in Montreal. It’s outside CEGEP du Vieux-Montréal.

  • Kate 11:07 on 2020-11-22 Permalink | Reply  

    The Journal looks at how the Chinese community in Montreal has been the target of racist acts since Covid. The decline of Chinatown is only part of the fallout.

    • YUL514 11:56 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      I don’t doubt that the Chinese community has been a target from ignorant fools the past few months but the decline of Chinatown has more to do with the fact that it has so many restaurants which have been closed for a good chunk of the pandemic. It’s a destination area just like Old Montreal which along with a bunch of other sections of the city have seen a decline. I was in Old Montreal in the summer and I had never seen it so quiet for a sunny summer day.

    • Kate 12:24 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      It’s true that Chinatown is part of downtown, and with few office workers and students around, people are not stopping off in Chinatown for a quick bite or takeout, as they once would’ve done. But there’s bound to be an element of people also shunning the area out of an association with Covid.

      Remember during SARS, some businesses in our Chinatown had signs out saying there was no SARS here, which was true. But there was so much reportage about the SARS outbreaks in Toronto and elsewhere that they needed to emphasize it, because people were staying away.

  • Kate 10:44 on 2020-11-22 Permalink | Reply  

    The tent city on Notre-Dame East is preparing for winter.

  • Kate 10:23 on 2020-11-22 Permalink | Reply  

    Several schools are holding in-person exams after a term of remote learning, to circumvent “cheating”, and students are not happy about it.

    I’m wondering about the concept of cheating in the 21st century. Does it really mean anything now to force students to memorize and disgorge material for exams?

    When I was briefly teaching in the graphic design program at the EMSB, I gave tests and allowed the students to use the internet because that is how their lives will be lived. I remember telling a crabby older teacher that these students would not be looking for work in the 20th century, because she seemed to think that was the norm. It isn’t now and it won’t be again.

    Everyone in a real job consults Google if they run up against something they don’t know, or don’t remember, or if they need instructions for a technique they haven’t used before. Exams on the old basis are a 20th-century idea that should be waved off.

    Update: Anglo media are reporting that 2000 Dawson students are demanding online exams.

    • JIm 10:56 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      It’s very important to be able to memorize study material, even with Google around. Google or internet resources are not around all the time, and can’t always be trusted. When mastering a language or medical and engineering skills, students need to be able they have the knowledge on hand. I agree that an exam at Polytechnique during a pandemic is not the right place to prove that point though.

    • Robert 11:27 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      I agree in part, and the school where I teach will be giving exams online, often open book and “open Internet”. But here’s the thing: it’s not just Google or Wikipedia. There are websites that allow you to upload a math or science question and have someone else work out a solution for you in less than an hour. This brings cheating to an entirely new level. We know some students have used this during midterms, and we don’t have a good way to selectively stop this. So many teachers would prefer to go to in-person exams if they could be held safely.

    • JS 13:21 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      “Nurse, please take a picture of this, this uh thing right here, inside there, see? Wait lemme just.. there. Lemme see… okay good. Now google image search it. I’m pretty sure it’s either some kind of fistular abcess, but it kinda also looks like a thrombosed hemorrhoid, no?”

    • Ephraim 13:24 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Are we testing their understanding of the material or their ability to memorize it? A pilot still has access to a manual while flying the airplane.

    • JP 14:36 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Honestly, there are some fundamentals at the primary, secondary, cegep, and university levels that simply need to be memorized and known. Having a certain baseline memorized then allows you to problem solve and be creative…if you’re going to be “Googling” the basics, you’re wasting time.

      As a medical writer/editor, there are certain things I just know. Yes, some of it is experience, but a lot of it is due to the fact that I had to do spelling tests, vocabulary tests, and all sorts of tests throughout school, in addition to all of the biology and biochemistry classes, which involved memorizing material, If I’m constantly having to look up grammar rules and medical terminology, I’m not being efficient. I’m grateful for having experienced what I consider to be a decent public school education.

      All that to say, not all subjects require rote memorization and not everyone needs to be an expert in everything (we’re not all going to become mathematicians or editors), but fair, adequate testing is important. Perhaps, there can and should be some exceptions during Covid but I don’t blame schools for wanting in-house examination. I observed cheating at school by other students…it would be difficult to get rid of it altogether but there are ways to reduce it.

    • david812 15:40 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Testing is generally evaluating a person for minimum competence in a subject matter. Grades provide a rough approximation of a given person’s level of subject mastery. If a person feels the need to google something on an exam, it means that person doesn’t have the requisite level of subject mastery to successfully respond – if this is a basic question, it means they’re not minimally competent; if it’s an obscure question, it means they haven’t achieved the highest level of mastery.

      If we move into some new pedagogical phase where evaluation of a person’s subject mastery is no longer an important part of awarding a degree or whatever, it’s just inevitable that some percentage of people will turn in projects they did not complete, obtain degrees they did not deserve, and get jobs for which they’re not qualified.

      To me, that seems like an inferior system.

  • Kate 23:49 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    In the short life of the Autostade, it saw a variety of sports matches, as recounted here, although the writer doesn’t mention the many concerts which were also staged in the odd structure.

  • Kate 19:19 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    About a year ago, the Museum of Fine Arts announced plans for a new wing dedicated to the work of Jean-Paul Riopelle, but it’s giving up the plan. It’s not long since Quebec pulled the plug on the funding.

    • dmdiem 23:13 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      I found “la joute” by accident. It was one of the most magical moments of my life.

    • Kate 23:55 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Was it steaming when you saw it?

    • dmdiem 06:16 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      I had just moved to old Montreal and was exploring the neighbourhood. I found what I thought was a nice little park and took a seat on a bench. A few minutes later the mist started. I looked around and no one was freaking out so I thought, “ok… lets see where this goes”. A few minutes after that, the entire park was shrouded in fog and a few minutes after that, the fountain water caught fire.

      It was a magical experience. I had no idea it was an art installation. I honestly thought it was just a nice little park. It felt like I had accidentally stumbled upon the train to Hogwarts.

    • Kate 11:52 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      So cool to get the experience unexpectedly like that!

      Riopelle was primarily a painter – in fact, if what I’ve read is correct, La Joute was pretty much his only major sculpture. For a long time it was kept in the Olympic park, and you could see it from one of the entrances to Pie-IX metro. Then Ville-Marie yoinked it from Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, which was regarded as a dubious move at the time. But undoubtedly the piece is now seen by more people, and the mist-and-fire effects were put into effect in the square, which they hadn’t been able to do when it was parked down by the stadium.

  • Kate 18:47 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    A small climate march was held downtown Saturday to emphasize that the climate is as much an emergency as the pandemic.

  • Kate 11:09 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    It must be interesting working for the magic mushroom clinic. Everyone I know online who’s doing mushroom microdosing is in California. No idea who’s branché here.

    • EmilyG 12:46 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      There’s been a lot of psychology/therapy-related research into magic mushrooms and other entheogens recently. I think they can be psychologically beneficial.

      Microdosing is not the same thing as taking enough of the drug to feel the effects.

    • Kate 13:36 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      I guess not. I’ve heard microdosing feels like an extra twinkle of creativity at the edge of the mind. Might be nice, but I don’t trust myself, the way I chop up garlic in the kitchen.

    • Tee Owe 14:38 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      Kate – you might be hanging that out for dupes like me to respond to- but, how did psilocybin as an adjunct to psychotherapy segue to chopping garlic? – I also chop garlic, I need to understand

    • Kate 16:11 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      I don’t have a light hand with garlic, or hot peppers, or other culinary flavouring elements. I would probably not so much microdose, as dose.

    • dwgs 20:23 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      @Kate You say that like it’s a bad thing.

    • Kate 20:55 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      dwgs, depends what else you need to do that day.

    • dwgs 22:29 on 2020-11-21 Permalink

      Good point. Also, I too cook like a peasant, it’s way more fun.

    • Raymond Lutz 07:37 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Don’t have time to dig further to find out what Health Canada newly allowed here but they forced Gabor Maté to stop using DMT in his psychoterapy practice (The Star, nov 2011). Harper days?

      NB: G. Maté is a treasure: watch his talks and interviews on YT.

    • Tee Owe 17:53 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Thanks for the clarification!

    • Mark Côté 10:02 on 2020-11-23 Permalink

      With legal cannabis not causing society to come crashing down as some feared, I hope psychedelic research takes off and their therapeutic use starts to become more normalized.

      One of the episodes of the (very interesting) Netflix documentary The Business of Drugs is about this topic.

  • Kate 11:07 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    Four-season cycling is growing in popularity here, according to Radio-Canada.

    Some cyclists are pressing the federal government to clear snow from the Lachine Canal bike path.

    • Blork 18:06 on 2020-11-22 Permalink

      Not to be confused with four season total cycling.

  • Kate 11:04 on 2020-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    Shots were fired overnight on a residential street in St-Léonard, but there were apparently no victims.

    As I occasionally point out, we’re fortunate to live in a town where this is the only news of note on a Saturday morning.

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