Updates from November, 2019 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 18:26 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    William Shatner was given the Order of Canada on Thursday morning.

    • EmilyG 20:59 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      He’s something of a homophobe, he supports a problematic autism charity, and he’s nasty to people online who disagree with him. He’s a jerk.

    • Kate 21:35 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      He’s also one of the city’s most famous sons, EmilyG.

    • Ephraim 22:13 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      EmilyG, there are lots of jerks… though I have to say that James Doohan was an absolute gentleman when I met him.

    • EmilyG 23:21 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      I know where he’s from. Just because he’s from Montreal doesn’t mean he’s not a jerk, or that he deserves the Order of Canada.
      Though it is nice to read about the other people receiving it.

    • Michael Black 23:44 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      Donald Sutherland is in. I see no immediate connection to my Sutherland ancestors. Alanis Obomsawin the filmmaker is in, her huge portrait is on a building just off Atwater below Sherbrooke. Kathy Reichs gets an honorary membership, good old “Bones”.

      Speaking of film, Mira’s film “Wintopia”, about her father Peter Wintonick (well it uses footage he filmed but never got around to putting together as a film) premiered tonight in Amsterdam at the film festival. He died six years ago this week. She didn’t say anything about when it will be seen in Montreal, but that’s likely to happen soon.


    • Kate 08:40 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

      EmilyG, if Shatner had been a creeper or a Nazi I’d say he’d disqualified himself, but if everyone who’s ever expressed an opinion we don’t like is ruled out of any accolade for their achievements, then we might as well roll up all the systems for honours and go home. Especially nowadays with so many systems available for expressing opinions openly.

      In the case of Shatner, the man is 88 years old. I don’t think it’s realistic to expect him to hold the opinions of a “woke” man in his 20s.

      Michael Black, I didn’t mention Sutherland because he’s not from Montreal, but it’s nice that he also got the honour, also Alanis Obomsawin. I thought Kathy Reichs had only lived here briefly, but I don’t know more than that about her.

    • EmilyG 11:00 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

      Yeah. I was looking at Shatner’s Twitter and actually, his recent tweets aren’t so bad.

    • Clément 14:38 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

      “… but if everyone who’s ever expressed an opinion we don’t like is ruled out of any accolade for their achievements, then we might as well roll up all the systems for honours and go home …”

      Does that apply to Bernard Landry as well?

    • Kate 20:58 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

      Clément, I don’t think the situations are the same. One guy is an actor whose opinions are a minor footnote to the reasons society might want to give him an accolade. The other, a politician, in a sense is chiefly mostly about his opinions, and making them have an impact on society. There’s nothing else about Landry to look at except his opinions, and either one liked them or one did not.

  • Kate 13:46 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    An independent study by IRIS (L’Institut de recherche et d’informations socio-économiques) finds that there would be few economic benefits in abolishing school boards, as planned in Bill 40, suggesting instead better communication to the public about what it is they do.

    • Jack 18:36 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

      Ask Michael Cohen at the EMSB. He and his 6 cohorts in the Communication Department would be happy too. Ask them this question also, ” How does what you do benefit students and parents in the schools ?” https://www.emsb.qc.ca/emsb/community/media/press.
      I have a lot of respect for the IRIS in a lot of spaces, but my experience with these institutions is they serve themselves first.

  • Kate 13:29 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

    La Presse reports on a dig on St-Paul Street, between St-Laurent and Place Jacques-Cartier, that started in spring 2018 and has never come to an end.

    • Kate 13:27 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

      Police are looking for identification or information on these two jokers shown on surveillance video, trying to burn out a downtown restaurant.

      Couple of things strike me. I’m amused that the genius splashing the gasoline around has a cigarette in his mouth. He’s lucky the fumes didn’t ignite around his face.

      Also, this incident happened last April 1. I’ve noticed before that police often put out video feelers for identification months after an incident. Is there some legal reason for the delay? Wouldn’t people be more likely to clue into a situation if they saw the video sooner? Or is it just that cops only do this when other investigative avenues have failed?

      • dwgs 14:13 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

        Worst. Arsonists. Ever. That looked like about a half litre of fuel poured on what looks like a concrete and glass front entrance. What did they think would happen?

      • Blork 15:05 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

        Could be just a warning message.

      • Kevin 18:35 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

        At the time, damage was estimated at several thousand dollars.

      • jeather 10:21 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

        I’ve never heard updates about the giant fire on my block from this summer, as three of the buildings are slowly dissolving in the snow.

    • Kate 13:21 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

      The STM is promising a rise of 5% in bus service next year, as well as a boost in metro passages.

      Note to anyone from the STM: the 55 route desperately needs a few more departures during morning and evening rush hour. People are jammed in so tight on some of the buses that it’s completely unsanitary, especially during flu season. Can the public health department get involved here? Anyone?

      • JP 19:42 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

        Agreed. It’s the same with the 179 S route too. They need more departures between 7:30 and 9 am…
        The STM keeps saying service is improving…but quite honestly, I don’t feel it.

      • DeWolf 15:47 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

        When I moved back last year I was shocked at how much worse the bus services are than when I left in 2008. Coderre’s cuts really did a number of the system. The 80 used to be super frequent, like every five minutes in the afternoon and every couple of minutes at rush hour. Now it comes every 10 minutes at most, often much less in the evenings. It’s no wonder ridership has fallen off a cliff.

      • Kate 21:57 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

        DeWolf, I think that’s a valuable observation, because those of us who’ve been here all along had got used to it, like the proverbial lobster in the pot.

    • Kate 13:17 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

      Once a familiar name in local media on several counts – football player, MNA, judge – George Springate hasn’t been in the news for a long time. It takes an obituary.

      • Kate 11:32 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

        Lufa Farms is adding another rooftop farm, possibly the biggest urban farm in the world, this one in St-Laurent.

        • Meezly 16:55 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          It’s great that they’re expanding, but the reliability of their delivery service never seems to improve.

        • MarcG 17:06 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          I signed up a few weeks ago. What do you mean by “reliability”? I noticed that it’s been slightly delayed the past 2 weeks (dropped off around 6:15pm instead of 5pm) – is that common?

        • Meezly 17:29 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          Yes, delays are the norm, punctual deliveries are the exception. If you have a valid complaint, they’re usually good about giving you a credit for the next order. They past two weeks, they switched the usual pickup point to a farther location, and add to that the usual delay…that has been annoying. Bit despite their flaws, I still like Lufa. It’s great as a supplement to your regular groceries. But I wouldn’t rely on it for same day meal planning!

        • Kate 17:55 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          Meezly, that’s odd. If anything, our boxes are dropped off at the pickup point in Villeray a little too early. I’m aware my stuff is sitting there from 11:30 till I can come by after 5:30, so I don’t order things like mussels (and they have very good mussels) unless I have the day free and can pick them up pretty quick.

          My problem’s been that over the last few weeks I’ve found items missing from my order. I know they said they were working out the bugs in a new system of order picking, and they’re good about giving refunds for missing things, but it’s annoying if you’ve ordered stuff for a specific purpose and then it doesn’t turn up.

        • Meezly 20:32 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          That is odd, Kate! In Mile End south, drop-off window is SUPPOSED to be between 3:30-5:30, which would be great for dayworkers on the way home, but the drop-off rarely arrives within that time frame — it’s usually closer to 6 or 6:30.

          Sometimes in the summer, the delivery may arrive before 3pm, but it’s so uncommon. This would never happen in winter — it’s always delayed, even with the ‘new system’ they implemented some weeks ago, which I think was really a way to lower overhead, as this new system is evidently NOT making their workflow more efficient. And your missing items only reinforces my theory!

          Tonight, the drop-off ETA is 8pm at the temporary, farther away location.

          I’m not sure which I would rather prefer too early or too late? And I wonder if there is a neighbourhood that has that sweet spot – not too early, and not too late…???

        • Jo Walton 21:15 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          I’ve had Lufa for a year now, with home delivery, and they’ve only been problematically late once. Maybe I’m just lucky, but my experience has been really great.

        • Meezly 21:39 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

          Perhaps home delivery is the way to go!

        • Kate 11:06 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

          Lufa are currently listing 2 kinds of caviar! $70 for 30 g. But get this advice: “Any unused caviar should be stored in the container that it comes in…”

          Unused caviar, what a concept.

        • jeather 13:07 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

          I eventually found I didn’t need a weekly delivery and they couldn’t do anything but tell me to cancel in time. It never came late, but I did more than once get Very Expired food or wrong stuff. I’m sad it’s not any better.

        • Kate 13:57 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

          jeather, I’ve never had expired food from Lufa. I wouldn’t keep using them if the results weren’t good. My only complaint is the omissions, which are fairly recent and which they yet may sort out.

          Obviously things could get weird as they get bigger, but I’ve been with them more than a year and am continuing. A minimum $20 order a week is not hard to sustain even if one isn’t wealthy.

        • jeather 16:26 on 2019-11-22 Permalink

          I stopped 3-4 years ago, so that’s good that it’s improved. I had a lot of wrong stuff and a few examples of expired food. They credited me, but it was just not convenient to have it auto-order weekly. I’d try to see if I’m interested again but I can’t even look at the marketplace without an account and, meh.

        • Francesco 03:02 on 2019-11-25 Permalink

          Mostly due to constraints arising from my work schedule, in July I suspended my deliveries indefinitely (well, until late December). Lately I had only been using Lufa for Chagnon (né Cult) 5% Jersey/Guernsey milk and yogurt which are impossible to get in the West Island. On the whole, the produce is on the pricy side and the quantities – particularly the Lufa-sourced greens – were underwhelming. But I do still order and can’t wait to get the heirloom tomatoes again.

      • Kate 09:08 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

        The head of the STM maintenance union wants the public to know that the shortage of functioning buses is not because of any action on the union’s part but because of disarray in the STM’s management of repairs.

        • Kate 09:01 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

          Converting the city bus fleet to electric doesn’t only mean buying expensive vehicles, but refitting the STM’s bus garages at great expense to look after them.

          I was thinking when posting the recent story about the new fleet of electric bendy buses coming for the Pie-IX bus lane that these new slow-recharging vehicles would also need a garage on or near the line. Pie-IX is not specifically mentioned in Thursday’s billion-dollar story, though it may be implied in the mention of a new garage in Hochelaga.

          • Kate 08:54 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

            A real estate bozo is kindly warning us that we should adjust ourselves to expect smaller, more expensive living spaces so he and his predatory brotherhood can continue to profit by the “impressive” rise in rents here.

            • Tim S. 09:28 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              In NDG, I’m noticing more and more apartments and duplexes rentals being advertised by real estate agents rather than by the owner. So now renters have to support their incomes as well.

            • Chris 10:43 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              “have to”? Are renters being forced somehow?

            • JaneyB 10:49 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              The commission that agents make off rentals is trifling. They only take those listings to create goodwill with owners for potential future sales of houses or other holdings. If there are more agents in rentals than in the past, it’s either because there are owners getting into renting in a big way (many units) or because there are too many agents and they’ll take 500$ instead of waiting forever to get a $5K commission on a sale. It doesn’t make sense otherwise.

            • Kevin 11:09 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              The last apartment I rented (in 2006) was handled by an agent.
              In this particular case, it was because the owners of the building lived in Sherbrooke and didn’t want to drive into town every time someone wanted to look at the place.

              It’s also easier for out-of-towners to find rental spots if an agent has a listing.

            • MarcG 11:42 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              @Chris Are you suggesting that renters have the luxury of boycotting apartments rented through agents?

            • Ephraim 12:26 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              More people do it today than ever before. It’s easier to let someone be the intermediary and pre-screen applicants with no bias. My parents had a duplex with a bachelor… so many people skipped out on the rent on that bachelor apartment….

            • Blork 13:43 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              I rented a place on Hotel-de-ville for four years back in the 90s and everything was done through a property manager (not quite the same as a real estate agent). It was a lower duplex and the owners were off living in the US for a few years. It was great, because the property manager was really good. Whenever I had a problem she took care of it immediately. It was nice to deal with someone who had a sense of professional integrity and job responsibility as opposed to an owner who doesn’t give AF about nagging tenants.

              I had some doozy problems too. One winter the pipes froze and burst, causing a flood in the crawlspace under the house. Another time the upstairs neighbour’s water heater burst causing a flood that caused my kitchen ceiling to crash to the floor. In both cases the problem was solved quickly and efficiently with no “evil eye” or owner trying to blame me or whatever.

            • Chris 13:51 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              MarcG, oh I see what Tim means now, I think I read it too fast.

            • Tim S. 14:53 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              I’ve had good experiences with property mangers and agents too (though mostly in other, more expensive cities). 500$ to save yourself the trip in from Sherbrooke 3 times a month sounds reasonable. Yet, I can’t shake the feeling that the single act of posting a Sotheby’s sign outside a perfectly ordinary duplex raises the price a fair bit.

            • Kevin 18:38 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              @Tim S.
              Perhaps, but ReMax and other run-of-the-mill companies also handle rentals

            • david10000 19:44 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              Problem: The zoning-created artificial land shortage driving rents up.
              Reaction: Blame the real estate agents who profit.

          • Kate 08:51 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

            It was with an unprintable vocal response that I saw this story Wednesday morning about the head of Canada’s Olympic committee wanting Montreal to bid for another instalment of the Games. I didn’t blog it. Bad dream, I thought later. But the story is back Thursday morning in La Presse.

            This La Presse columnist is more or less in agreement with me. He seems to think we could stage a winter games here, but that the public would never accept the expense of another Olympics.

            • david10000 19:57 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              I’d love for Montreal to host the Olympics. We’d not have to build many facilities and, without question, we’d get some great new infrastructure. I rolled over to the Vancouver winter Olympics and spent the entire month there and, of course, they fucked it up. About as ugly as you can get – chain link fencing everywhere, pedestrian areas created by moving in temporary concrete medians, the works. The red rag was draped over everything. But they got some pretty great infrastructure improvements – new metro line, new plazas, new facilities. We’re talking federal government and the province opening their wallets both, for a lot of stuff the’d otherwise not pay for.

              The last one was run by a bunch of megalomaniacal bozos, the next one would probably be done – like the Vancouver one – by Board of Trade types with a tight budget. It would be annoying for a couple weeks, and all the good restaurants would be booked, but we could get, say, the pink line out of it. Worth it!

            • Michael Black 20:49 on 2019-11-21 Permalink

              The Velodrome is gone, nobody likes the Stadium, the Olympic Vilage is housing. I think some of the rowing basin is gone. There were some things in Kingston, I think more than Equestrian and that may not be there. The Old Forum was used, I can’t remember for what, but one afternoon I saw the Queen drive in in a limousine.

              So I’m not sure how much remains, aside from whether it is too old.

              The mountain is still tnere – it was used for some bike racea, but maybe not the Olympics. I remember seeing Eddie Merckx on tv, but a recent search indicates he wasn’t here for the 1976 Olympics, so maybe it was later.


          • Kate 08:47 on 2019-11-21 Permalink | Reply  

            An STM bus burst into flame Wednesday afternoon in RDP. Luckily it was not in service, the driver was unhurt, and the fire was put out by city firefighters.

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