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  • Kate 12:26 on 2020-07-10 Permalink | Reply  

    The forecast is for a 36° high Friday afternoon – not a humidex, an actual thermometer reading. Thursday, the CBC radio host kept saying we’d narrowly avoided a thunderstorm, yadda yadda. Lady, I was praying for a thunderstorm. I’m praying for a thunderstorm this afternoon.

    • Kevin 13:00 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      A thunderstorm ain’t gonna help. Tropical storm Fay (it’ll be a depression at that point) rolls over us Saturday afternoon.

      I can’t take this. The heat is murder on my nerve damage.

    • Kate 13:10 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Tomorrow’s high is 25°. I’m practically getting out the snow boots.

    • EmilyG 13:23 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Was that the CBC radio morning guest host on this week? She tends to be a bit, uh, naive about weather conditions.

    • Kate 14:03 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I think so, Emily.

    • EmilyG 19:39 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      She drives a car to work, and is quite well-off. I don’t think she needs to worry much about the weather if she can presumably stay inside comfortable-temperature spaces most of the time.

  • Kate 12:20 on 2020-07-10 Permalink | Reply  

    Some weekend traffic notes from CTV.

  • Kate 09:24 on 2020-07-10 Permalink | Reply  

    The local real estate market, which cooled briefly faced with the pandemic, is returning to the boil and prices continue to rise. Where are people getting money for houses in this economy? Beats me.

    • Uatu 10:33 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Unfortunately, maybe from a recent inheritance

    • Mark 11:30 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Real estate is a global asset class. Despite any local woes, foreign investors see Canadian housing stock as a strong, stable bet. Also, tech is minting millionaires. Shopify alone has added a thousand wealthy buyers into the Toronto/Montreal/Ottawa real-estate pool.

    • Myles 12:12 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Once you’ve got a certain amount of money, you can always find some exotic investment tool to make even more off any catastrophe.

    • Joey 12:15 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Prices are up because inventory is down… so for the last six weeks or so, buyers have outnumbered sellers. Anecdotally in Mile-End it seems everything that’s for sale has sold quickly and often above asking. Presumably many of those buyers “overpaid” because they had tight timelines, e.g., if they had sold their home and had to be out by a certain date. Maybe some took advantage of the excess AirBnB stock for the short-term, but I’m guessing these folks would prefer to move once, even if it meant paying more than they had anticipated. I would imagine that things will even out soon enough as more prospective sellers find themselves eager to cash in, though it’s a bit of a gamble – as great as it may seem to sell in a hot market like this, there’s not much value if you quickly become a buyer as well. Kind of an ideal moment to sell your Plateau apartment and move to the suburbs or the country…

    • Ephraim 12:37 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Wonder how many realize that they won’t be able to put them on AirBnB without a permit and the city is only issuing permits for certain streets? (And I have noticed that places that were on AirBnB are going back to the condo market. But agents are still not properly disclosing the new realities… which opens them to lawsuits.) In any case, I have noticed that the Plateau is SIGNIFICANTLY up. There are three duplexes right near Prince Arthur for over $1.1M each. Not that I should complain…. The current estimate for my place means that I’m up more than 2.5X in 10+ years. Values are up about 25%. But it also depends on if you are condo, single ownership or coproperty, with coproperty still having the lowest values.

    • JP 12:52 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I’m not sure where anyone is getting the money either, but then I remember what I do for a living…and some of the crappy education and career decisions I’ve made, so that I’ll probably never own anything, unless/until I inherit.

      Friends who are professionals with good careers (i.e., they make above-average salaries) and have a substantial amount for a down payment have lost more than one bid…apparently to people willing to pay $600,000-$800,000 cash from the get-go. I suspect this could be due to the reasons outlined by others above, and quite frankly, money from people moving from elsewhere to Canada, which is a stable place to live and park money, if you have it.

    • Kevin 13:08 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I suspect this is the last gasp of the hot real estate market.
      Pre-approved mortgages with few properties on the market led to a spike in prices.

      If the pandemic really does produce a change in work and lifestyles, I suspect a lot of people are going to permanently move out of the city. Who wants to live *and work* in a 3 1/2?

    • Mr.Chinaski 13:35 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Other side of the medal, condos aren’t selling great in some neighborhoods, airbnb has flooded the market and inventory is going up :

    • JP 15:17 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      “If the pandemic really does produce a change in work and lifestyles, I suspect a lot of people are going to permanently move out of the city. Who wants to live *and work* in a 3 1/2?”

      So true.

    • Blork 16:49 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Not just out of the city, but *away* from the city. Even before the pandemic I was reading about smaller cities and towns getting a bit of a rebirth from young people getting out of Dodge and moving to smaller towns where life is more affordable and (from some points of view) more pleasant. Remote working enables this hugely, but many of the people making the move are also artists who no longer feel the need to have physical proximity with their various agents, galleries, etc.

      Most of the articles I saw were from the US, where they would talk about people moving from San Francisco or New York to places in Minnesota or Iowa or whatever. But I’ve also seen similar articles about people moving to small towns in Southern Ontario or Manitoba and whatnot.

      Certainly for 2020 my life would be no different if I lived in Drummondville, Rimouski, or Métabetchouan–Lac-à-la-Croix instead of Longueuil. Or not much different. I’ve only been to three restaurants since mid-March (for take-out only), have done zero cultural activities outside of the house, and have only done one face-to-face visit with a friend. I could have done all that from anywhere. That said, I will be really really really happy when it’s no big deal to go to the Jean-Talon Market and so on; places which have no equivalent in those other towns.

      More on-topic, I will attest that my five year suburban experiment (started in 2003 and still on-going) has never felt better. There are only two humans living in this house, but we both like a lot of space and both want our own home offices. We are both done with tripping over the other person and trying to work by plunking a laptop down on the dryer in the back and calling it a desk. No. She gets a room of her own and I get a room of my own and that’s how we stay civilized. Also, a back yard with garden boxes. A workshop in the basement (that we actually use). Space for all those book shelves AND a huge TV. A treadmill and exercise area. Etc. etc. No way we could afford that in the city, at least not in the parts of the city where we’d want to live.

      For reference: I saw a place for sale in Villeray yesterday that looked really nice. It was the right size (four bedrooms – or two bedrooms and two offices) and had a spectacular kitchen in terms of the workspace and whatnot. It was thoroughly renovated, which means there’s no way it’s anywhere near what I could afford, but I kept looking anyway. The renovations were tasteful and allowed the place to keep its original charm (not a total do-over like some of those highly designery places we’ve been seeing). All in all what I’d call a dream house in Villeray. I figured it would be around $800,000, which is way above my budget. Then I checked -> $1.5 million. FFS! $1.5 million for what is basically a regular house but on the nice side, not even a posh Westmount duplex. So Longueuil it is.

    • Kate 19:24 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Who wants to live *and work* in a 3 1/2?

      I don’t mind it. My landlady calls my place a 4½ but it’s laid out so you couldn’t easily share it with someone else. I’d say I have a kitchen, a bathroom and a double room which is half bedroom, half office/workroom. There’s a sort of salle des pas perdus between the front and back of the flat, which I suppose the landlady counts as a room, but I don’t know what room it would be. Certainly nobody could use it as a bedroom.

      Mind you, in summer I also have a tiny back porch and yard, which is nearly a whole extra room, conceptually. But I’ve lived and worked in here through winters and it’s been fine.

    • Ephraim 19:37 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I don’t want to live in a small town…. sorry, just not for me. When the big activity in town is going to the mall… no, not for me. Where you can’t walk because there is no sidewalk, not for me. When the best restaurant in town isn’t in town, not for me. When you ask for a half sour pickle and they look at you as if you fell off a turnip truck, not for me. I’m a city boy. I want to walk to a corner store. I want to walk to a restaurant. I want to live among others.

    • EmilyG 19:40 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I’m currently living and working in a 3 1/2, now made bearable by air conditioning.

    • Kate 20:22 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Ephraim: likewise. I have only ever lived in a city. The country and small towns make me antsy even though I know why: I can’t drive, so I’m always there at someone else’s sufferance, and can’t just leave when I please.

    • Kate 11:59 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      EmilyG, I know you’re a musician, and I don’t know how that works out in a 3½. The loudest my work gets is occasional passionate keyboarding.

    • EmilyG 18:00 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      I had to negotiate clarinet practice time with my landlord.

      Though most of my paid music work is in the music arrangements I write on my computer. The landlord hates it when I type on my computer too late at night or early in the morning but isn’t bothered by the typing during the day.

    • Kate 18:16 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      Hates it when you type? Good lord. Are you writing on a Smith-Corona?

    • EmilyG 18:27 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      The landlord lives below me and sound goes through the floor easily. I type on a computer that’s on a table that’s on the floor.
      He says it makes as much noise as a family of five.

    • JaneyB 19:30 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      @Emily G – there’s got to be a way around this eg: some kind of floor sponge or insulation. There are new materials being developed all the time. That’s a very crazy situation.

    • EmilyG 21:08 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      But he’s a light sleeper.*sigh* And I have to try to go to bed around 10 PM or else I’ll make too much noise walking around on the floors.
      Though a solution is to just put my laptop on my lap while typing, if it’s too early or late in the day. But yeah, the situation sucks.

    • Ephraim 11:00 on 2020-07-12 Permalink

      I can’t even manage the ‘burbs… mall culture. With a 20 minute walk, I can be at dozens of restaurants, 4 pharmacies, 2 large supermarkets, a multi-cinema, 2 SAQ stores, 2 bakeries, 5 parks, a concert hall, etc. And I can walk from here to the Eaton Centre…. but yet I have only been there once in ten years and that was for dinner at the Time Out place.

      @EmilyG Your landlord should have taken the TOP apartment rather than the bottom.. But there are a number of ways to mitigate the noise, in particular a rubber mat and a carpet on top of it. And when they renovate, fire/sound proofing in the ceiling. Caulking all the cracks also helps.

    • Bryan 13:12 on 2020-07-12 Permalink

      @EmilyG I feel your pain. I once had a neighbour call the police on me because of my piano practice. On a digital piano. Which I played using headphones.

      If you’re ever interested in playing the Brahms or Beethoven clarinet trios, let me know! I have a cellist I work regularly with.

  • Kate 08:51 on 2020-07-10 Permalink | Reply  

    La Presse reports on two instances where SPVM police used immigration questions and threats on two Black Montrealers (I blogged a less complete story about Lamine Nkouendji a couple of days ago). Is it normal that when police stop you for clipping a yellow light they begin by asking you about your immigration status?

    • Alex 08:59 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Is it normal that police even stop you for clipping a yellow in this province? Judging by the way that almost everyone drives I thought it was an accepted practice to blast through until the light is red

    • Kate 09:34 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      If you’re white it’s probably no big deal.

    • dwgs 10:27 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      They must have forgotten to beep their horn. That seems to be the accepted practice here, go through way too late but tap the horn once or twice. /s

    • Ephraim 12:42 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Maybe it’s time for the government to require the police to read people their rights immediately. Nothing shuts up a policeman faster than “What are my rights? Am I being arrested? I want a lawyer. ” At that point, they have to make a decision.

      Incidentally, we also need to make a rule regarding police arrests and stops near the end of their duty cycle. Making a stupid arrest near the end of their cycle is a great way for them to request overtime pay. If we require a superior officer to authorize the overtime and that pay is conditional on the actual prosecution, they will likely stop that practice. It’s a known loophole in policing for earning extra overtime pay.

  • Kate 08:40 on 2020-07-10 Permalink | Reply  

    Excellent piece by CBC’s Verity Stevenson looks at one reason our cops started doing intensive street checks on Black youths: a series of lurid newspaper articles in the 1980s reporting on street gang crime that didn’t exist. But this reportage became a “fact” used to ramp up police funding over time.

    • Uatu 10:39 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Yeah, black gangs = crackdown on any black teens. Meanwhile Mom Boucher showed up at a hockey game, was introduced to the crowd and got a huge round of applause. Sure, no systematic racism in Quebec.

  • Kate 15:26 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    My phone just made some new noises and I got an Amber Alert about two kids in Lévis. Never had an Amber Alert before – anyone else?

    Just glad it’s not aliens or explody things.

    • Marky 15:42 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Gave me a heart attack! First I’ve experienced with these alerts, even the ‘test’ alerts they ran last year never made it to my device, but glad to see it’s working.

    • Nicole 15:46 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      At least it wasn’t 3am. Apparently it cannot be disabled (at least for iOS)

    • Michael Black 16:06 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      I was watching tv via an internet gizmo, and the screen went red and a message in text, maybe voice too, I can’t remember. I pressed the wrong button and it went back to the movie. I meant to switch channels to see if it happened on others.

      I have no cellphone, so this is the fjrst amber alert I’ve seen directly.

    • Sprocket 16:51 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      I was having a nap (as one does) and my cell phone went bonkers and.the show I fell asleep on playing on the PVR had a red screen about it too.

    • Nick D 17:08 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Yes — and it seemed to kick me out of my facetime call automatically.

    • GC 20:36 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Yes! I received some SMS alerts last year, but this seemed to pop up out of the OS. It was bilingual in text and then the text-to-speech automatically kicked in and read it. Really butchered the French version…basically the same voice Google Maps uses to give directions.

    • Kate 21:26 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      I wonder why some phones read aloud but others (incl mine) did not. iphone here. Old SE.

    • Chris 00:06 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      >Gave me a heart attack!

      You joke, but these things happen. My ER doc friends have told me many stories about that blazing sound startling people to fall off ladders, slip on the gas/brake peddle, fall off their bike, etc., etc.

      Of course if you argue that amber alerts should be toned down, you get called a child hater, but I’ll say it anyway: they should be toned down. They could start as a regular buzz/beep like any text message, which many many people love to look at instantaneously anyway. It could progress to being louder if not acknowledged after some time, etc. They could also geographically constrain them better. Do they still go to the entire province? It’s probably not even physically possible for the abductor to be more than x km away, so blasting it to the whole province is not so useful either (if still done).

    • Kevin 07:51 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      The kids went missing Wednesday evening. By the time the Alert went out they could be in Thunder Bay…

    • Kate 09:59 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I did wonder about that, Kevin. I thought the main point of Amber Alert was to be called within an hour or two of a kidnapping.

    • Chris 10:03 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Kevin, ok, so in this particular case whole-province notification could be justified, but I recall previous cases where it was the opposite.

      Kate, you don’t always know within an hour or two, and have to do some due diligence before sending the alert, otherwise you risk false positives and ‘boy who cried wolf’, and thus people ignoring the things.

    • Bert 07:30 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      I seem to remember an alter a year or two ago. I see to remember 5 kids. I wonder if there is some sort of historical registry of these somewhere.

      One of the criteria for issuing and AMBER alert is that it be done in a timely manner…

    • Mark Côté 16:35 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      The story is looking grim. 🙁

  • Kate 14:44 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    The usual advice is being given out about how to cope with the heat wave. Thursday’s high is supposedly going to be 35° (later in the afternoon) and Friday’s 36°.

    My cat is lurking in the shadows under the back porch. I’m half tempted to crawl under there and join her.

    Update: A redditor who follows weather (/u/YOW-Weather-Records) says: “Today is Montreal’s 3rd ≥34°C day this year which raises 2020 from 5th to 2nd place for the most in any year since records began.”

  • Kate 14:41 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    The mayor has ordained the removal of Cabot Square benches with hostile armrests and suggested time limits. These were installed recently, I gather, although designed and planned during the previous administration.

    Valérie Plante must know that, once the Children’s project is complete, she will forced to do something about Cabot Square. But for the time being, this is the right thing to do.

  • Kate 14:39 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    There isn’t much detail here, but Lafarge says it has fired someone after a noose was found near the car of a Black employee.

  • Kate 14:37 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    So there’s to be no dancing at bars and last call at midnight and doors locked at 1 a.m., and their maximum capacity is halved. These rules take effect as of Friday.

    • Blork 14:57 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      It’s like everyone in Montreal turned 50 overnight.

    • Bert 15:12 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      No one puts Montreal in the corner!

    • Kevin 15:32 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      There’s going to be a massive increase in the number of people fighting when the bars close.

    • Kate 15:44 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Yes. They’ll be two hours less tired and spoiling for a rumble.

    • Jack 16:26 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Disagree, the 3 am fights will always be king, three hours more of boozing, dancing, rejection and drug taking. On top of it you’ve just paid the club tab and you got the bottle charge…someone is getting hit.

    • Chris 19:59 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      They’ll just start drinking 3 hours earlier.

    • Paul 00:37 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      We can dance if we want to

    • Kevin 07:53 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      I speak from experience of living in a place with an early closing time.

      At midnight people are still alert. At 3 am most people have already gone home because they are tired.

    • dwgs 10:33 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Paul, don’t listen to Kevin, we can go where we want to a place where they will never find.

    • Raymond Lutz 11:14 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      As long as we abuse it, never gonna lose it, Everything’ll work out right!

    • Jack 11:45 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Well they’re are no friends of mine.

    • Kevin 13:10 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Whoops. I meant Jack, not Paul.
      But at least you’re all amusing 🙂

    • Jack 16:07 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      No worries Kevin and I appreciate the Irish euphemism for being drunk…..tired and emotional.

    • GC 20:30 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      The thing about kicking people out at three is the crowd naturally thins out because you have people choosing to leave at any time between 12 and 3. Also, some people really do cut out of there to make sure they catch the last metro or bus or whatever. Push people out at 1 is going to mean a bigger crowd. Yes, they might be less drunk but there will be more of them and they’ll also have more energy.

    • MarcG 08:26 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      Wow, betting on fights is so deeply rooted even the intellectuals can’t resist! 🙂

    • Ian 11:07 on 2020-07-11 Permalink

      Early closing times have been a well-known contributing factor in the UK’s bar fight culture. People start drinking heavily earlier in the day and pound back as much as possible knowing they have a small window to get shitfaced in.

  • Kate 11:53 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    The city has plans to create a new waterside park in Lachine by gradual conversion of its marina. It will be open to the public next year.

  • Kate 11:00 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    An STM bus driver posted on Facebook that Covid is a false pandemic and that he doesn’t disinfect his bus because the pandemic is a hoax to control people. (CTV helpfully adds here “There is no evidence to support the driver’s claim that the COVID-19 pandemic is ‘false.’ “)

    This driver also said he’s “against” wearing masks. Here, the item reminds us that François Legault says it will be “up to bus drivers to refuse entry to passengers who aren’t wearing masks” which made me blink. Right now, bus drivers don’t even see their passengers. I rode the bus for some time the other day and at least 1/3 of the passengers were not in masks – mostly young people and intransigent-looking older men. The driver only drove the bus and didn’t concern himself (or herself) with how passengers were behaving. (If Legault said this, it’s because he doesn’t take transit, doesn’t realize that passengers don’t even go past the driver right now.)

    Footnote: the CTV item is illustrated with a photo of the 24 bus on Sherbrooke Street, but there’s no indication in the text which routes the covidiot driver has been covering.

    • walkerp 11:57 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      A big problem with the internet is that actually not everybody needs a voice. We would all be better off if this covidiot (nice in passing use of the term, btw, Kate) kept his thoughts to himself.

    • Jack 13:17 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      I was on the 55 Sunday afternoon and I’d say about half of the riders were not wearing masks. It is obvious that the bus drivers will not enforce this rule.
      Does anyone here have a strategy ?
      As a passenger can I say “Hey you are not wearing a mask, get off the bus.” or ” Move to the States you’ll be happier there.” etc.etc.

    • Kate 13:48 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      This is the thing, isn’t it. Nobody wants to be the person who takes it on themselves to order other people around. We’ve all seen the videos where people get aggressive if reprimanded.

      Plus, now if you sit alone on a double seat with no mask on, it ups the odds nobody will sit next to you.

    • Kevin 13:49 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      My daughter wanted to take the bus to see a friend in the Mile End on the weekend. I drove her instead and made sure she was wearing a mask when she stepped out of the car.

      That’s my strategy.

    • Tee Owe 14:50 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Masks protect others from you way better than they protect you from others. So, the queston to a mask non-wearer should be, ‘when did you get your coronoavirus-negative test result?’ Should make them think about what it means (and maybe get tested), and think about wearing a mask as long as they don’t have that result

    • Chris 20:02 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Jack: strategy advice: you do your thing, and let them be them.

    • MarcG 20:11 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      This is a philosophical can of worms but if someone “being themselves” is going to cause me to get a potentially deadly illness I’m not sure how much of a hippy I am in that situation.

    • Kate 22:32 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Your freedom to “do your thing” is limited by the risk “your thing” is causing to others. Do we have to explain this to you, Chris?

    • Chris 23:59 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      >Your freedom to “do your thing” is limited by the risk “your thing” is causing to others.


      And what is that risk? The non-mask wearer would have to be 1) infectious 2) manage to transmit it to you and 3) you’d have to catch it. Otherwise, they’ve done you no harm. It’s a very low risk.

      And people are constantly doing things that are detrimental to others, yet socially acceptable. You drive your car and you are responsible for your portion of the millions that die from air pollution each and every year. To say nothing of the countless more who get asthma or other reduced quality of life. The probability of doing harm is 100%. Yet car driving is not just socially acceptable, it’s encouraged. You wash your polyester clothes and you contribute micro-plastics everywhere in our food chain and water supplies. You eat meat and you’re contributing to zoonotic viruses that jump to humans. There are a million other examples.

      So in my books, if you want to be a mask-shamer, then I hope you’re also shaming drivers as you walk past their open windows, shaming people as they’re hanging out their laundry, shaming picnickers, etc.

      Perhaps everyone is allotted a small amount of harm it’s ok to do unto others? If someone has forgone owning a car, and is taking public transport, perhaps it’s ok for his allotment of harm to be from not wearing a mask during a heat wave?

    • dwgs 07:02 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      “Come down off the cross, we can use the wood”

    • Kevin 09:06 on 2020-07-10 Permalink


      You went straight up Chinese Communist Party-style malevolence with your last comment.

      Skip encouraging evil and read about Typhoid Mary.

    • Chris 10:19 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Kevin, “CCP-style”?! Encouraging evil”?! What are you on about?! To borrow another Christian phrase, I’m saying “Let he who is without sin can cast the first stone”. I’m not saying don’t wear a mask. I’m saying everyone is harming and/or putting his fellow man at risk everyday. Don’t get your knickers in a knot about it wrt masks but not every other thing.

    • dwgs 10:35 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      That wasn’t a Christian phrase, it was Tom Waits. And nobody likes a scold.

    • MarcG 10:39 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Damn I was hoping I could go vegan, make my own clothes, ride my bike everywhere and then cash in my “harm to others” chips on something big. Seriously, though, Chris, in your attempts to be anti-car you end up being pro-car by saying “people drive and it’s bad and nobody cares so nobody should care about anything else”.

    • Raymond Lutz 10:52 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Two words (and a link): excess mortality. Sure, people die of car usage. But it’s DIFFICULT in our society (at least in a city without adequate public transit system) to go without a car and it’s EASY to wear a mask. False equivalence… COVID-19 deaths were (and are) easily preventable simply wearing a mask. Japan didn’t even had a complete lock down and fared very well «the government launched a nationwide campaign warning people to avoid the “Three Cs”: Enclosed spaces with poor ventilation; Crowded places with many people and Close contact settings such as face-to-face conversations » (BBC article).

    • Kevin 13:26 on 2020-07-10 Permalink


      If you don’t understand what I was talking about, then I suggest you read about the CCP and China’s Social Credit score.

      Or you could watch The Good Place and reflect upon its flawed judgment system.

      Either way, what you proposed was straight-up evil: a ranking system of indulgences and sins to permit people to behave badly in order to risk the health of others during a global pandemic.

      You’re highly concerned about climate change. I get that. But you don’t get permission to become Typhoid Mary because you’re vegan or whatnot.

  • Kate 10:15 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    Media are saying that Quebec is going to make bars close at midnight. This and other new rules for bars should be announced Thursday afternoon.

  • Kate 10:10 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    Le Devoir has the scuttle on strife at the Fine Arts museum, where there’s a power struggle involving the flamboyant director, Nathalie Bondil. Bondil has been in that job since 2007 with a contract ending next year. I get a sense that with ventures like this, the top people always wear out their welcome after a point – it’s almost inevitable that there will be factions fomenting discontent, sometimes building to the point where they’re forced out.

    • Su 12:36 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      So it would seem that Mary-Dailey Desmarais has had a special position created just for her within the museum administration? Even though she came 4th in a qualification round. And Nathalie Bondel, a person qualified to be a Louvre administrator in 2013 has agreed to this posting.
      Or did I not understand the article?

    • Kate 12:46 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      You did. A little googling finds that Mary Dailey Desmarais is married into the Desmarais clan which means big money and power in this town.

    • Su 13:33 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Hmmm. So how much taxpayer subsidy is given to this Museum I wonder. And how does Mary the new co curator decide which private art collections are showcased?
      So many unanswered questions in these situations.

    • Patrick 14:24 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Interesting this emerges just as the Signac exhibition (which looks fabulous) is getting a lot of press. On the MBAM website, it’s Bondil who “presents” the show, but I’ve seen several other sites where the focus is on Desmarais, the curator. I’ll be interested to see who’s left standing at the end of the day.

    • Su 14:54 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      The MMFA is an nonprofit, and does not receive public funds. I was surprised by this fact.
      So goodluck to them …no concern of mine.

    • Orr 15:20 on 2020-07-10 Permalink

      Tax deductions for museum donations are “public funds.”

      I found this an interesting commentary on the superrich taking charge of art institutions. There is a whiff of this here.

  • Kate 09:55 on 2020-07-09 Permalink | Reply  

    Two men were stabbed in the Plateau (obv joke “That’s gotta hurt!”) overnight, one found in a bar, the other some blocks away on the street. Nobody’s dead.

    I’ve noticed that while media often simply write “a bar” or “a restaurant” in the text, TVA usually gets around this by showing a photo, as they’ve done here.

    • walkerp 11:56 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      I’ve never encountered the term “à l’arme blanche” before. It just means hand-held weapon (or melee weapon in D&D terms)? Anybody know the etymology?

    • Bert 12:37 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Every time I hear the expression I say to myself “what is that” then 5 seconds later “oh, yeah” According to the link below it relates to old French terms for the types of metal and-or the final look of the metal.

      You have the related ferblantier which is a tinsmith . You often see the term used for those who do rain gutter and metal railing work.

    • Kate 12:49 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Arme blanche = a knife. I can’t find the history, presumably in contrast to firearms which use black gunpowder?

    • walkerp 13:34 on 2020-07-09 Permalink

      Very cool. Thanks!

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