Updates from February, 2020 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 19:53 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

    A group of protesters blocked Sherbrooke Street Monday afternoon in front of the Roddick Gates in support of Wet’suwet’en.

    • Kate 13:23 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      BBC has an interesting piece on Montreal researcher Dr Alain Brunet who’s working on a technique for reducing the psychological impact of painful experiences or memories. I don’t know whether there’s also a philosophical inquiry into the implications. Some people might benefit from removing or softening memories of a traumatic incident, but when it comes to romance, often we learn from surmounting the bad experiences.

      • Tee Owe 16:29 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        Not sure I get why romance should feature more than other experience – trauma is trauma, learning is learning, no?

      • Kate 16:47 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I haven’t taped this out completely, but supposing someone is present for a random violent event. They’re in a bar when someone gets shot, say, or they witness a car crash. Nothing to do with them, but traumatic. That’s one thing, and there’s not much to be learned by it. On the other hand, you get into a relationship by choice, the relationship progresses to some extent, but you do things that offend each other, or the relationship falls apart for other subtler reasons, external pressures, incompatibility of intentions, fault lines in your mutual understanding. Painful, but you have learned something about people, about yourself, about the pitfalls of romance.

      • Tee Owe 16:54 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        So, can we choose which romantic experiences to delete – the ones we learned nothing from? Can get complicated – I’m on the side of retaining everything, on the off-chance that we might one day learn from it

      • Blork 16:59 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        You guys know you’re rehashing “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” right? https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0338013/

      • Kate 17:03 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        The movie’s mentioned in the article, Blork. I haven’t seen it.

        Tee Owe: I think my painful experiences are part of “me” and although not fun at the time, would I be me now if I had been able to edit them as I went along? I don’t think so.

        But then I can say this as someone not prone to depression. I’ve seen two people I knew moderately well die of broken hearts, and I feel I’m lucky not to be so disposed.

      • Tee Owe 17:07 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        We are the sum of our experience – it’s not always easy. Some do better than others – sorry to hear of your friends. No more from me on this.

      • Kevin 13:37 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Damn. That’s an oversight. Eternal Sunshine is one of the best movies of this century.

      • Kate 12:16 on 2020-02-19 Permalink

        I know what it is. I can’t stand Jim Carrey so I didn’t see the movie. I’m sure he’s talented, etc. etc., but there are some performers whose faces I just cringe away from watching and he is one of them.

    • Kate 13:17 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      We’ll be getting some snow on Tuesday – Environment Canada says 5 to 10 cm.

      • Blork 17:03 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        And rain Tuesday night. Shovel your roofs before it’s too late!

      • Ian 17:36 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I’m hoping it’s like crème brulee and not a thick layer of sponge-toffee-like ice encrusted to everything.

        Yes I am comparing ice and snow to caramelized confectionaries, what of it.

      • Kate 13:35 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        I was sort of going for a light meringue.

    • Kate 13:13 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      The city is establishing a right of first refusal on land for social housing in seven boroughs, but this list may change over time.

      • Spi 14:51 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I understand that it’s a relatively new policy, but we’ve seen examples in the past where the city was outbid for parcels of lands (like on beaumont). Until we actually see the city use the right of first refusal, it’s just an option that won’t be exercised because they don’t have the money. It’s a pointless exercise of political theatre. It also opens the door to some potentially corrupt practices, (fictitious buyer agrees to buy land coveted by the city at an inflated price, so the city is forced to match the inflated price)

      • Jonathan 22:47 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I think this fictitious buyer is example is a little bogus. I mean, the first refusal mechanism is used after the purchase agreement is made. The risk of actually having to pay the price or the penalty is too high. What bank or finance institution would back up a fictitious buyer?

        Either way, the tool can be used for negotiation. That’s what the city did with Molson. Rather than the city buy the site entirely, Molson agreed to cede part of the land in order for the city to back down. This is a great use of the tool and definitely one of its intended purposes.

    • Kate 08:57 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      As happened during SARS – which never manifested itself in Quebec at all – businesses in Chinatown are enduring a lean period presumably from fears of COVID-19. People returning from visits to China are voluntarily staying home for two weeks, and the general public is staying away, although we’ve had no cases of the coronavirus yet here either.

      • Ian 09:10 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I’ve still been going for meals a couple of times a week and it has been surprisingly empty, I even see people walking around with masks. At least I can always get a seat at my favourite dumpling places regardless of the time of day… I feel bad for them though, Chinese New Year is supposed to be the busiest time of year especially for restaurants.

      • jeather 11:12 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        I went for dumplings last week and it didn’t seem exceptionally empty. I have immunocompromised family members and I am sure my regular metro use is much more dangerous for them than the off chance of an employee in a Chinese restaurant having recently enough been in China that they’re still asymptomatic but also ill.

      • Kevin 12:08 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        People are amazingly unable to accurately calculate risk.

        The CDC estimates there have been at least 26 MILLION flu cases, and 14,000 deaths this season in the United States.

        Canada’s gotten off remarkably lightly: only 46 deaths, when normal estimates are 3,000 dead.

      • Tee Owe 16:35 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        With Kevin on this one – the numbers are overwhelmingly that flu is a bigger killer but we are way more scared of covid-19. Time will tell I suppose.

      • Kate 09:03 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Flu numbers are a known factor, but COVID-19 is so new, and is apparently so contagious, that it’s a scary unknown. People are also aware that at some point a new disease could manifest that really would cut a swath through the world population, so new diseases like SARS and COVID-19 are bound to seize the spotlight.

      • jeather 10:48 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Also, there is a flu vaccine, and we’ve been mostly lucky about pandemics since 1918.

        But mostly the flu seems common and familiar — it’s a bit like why people are refusing to vaccinate over common and familiar sounding diseases like measles. And of course we call lots of small illnesses a “flu”; if you’ve ever really had a flu you will know it’s nothing like a 2 day fever.

      • dwgs 11:01 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        The best possible thing for the planet would be a massive pandemic that significantly culls the human population. Sad but true.

      • Kate 11:36 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        dwgs, grim but true.

      • Tim S. 12:07 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Call me specist, but I would prioritize human survival over abstract ideas like “the planet.” The literal planet is a chunk of rock that will be fine no matter what.
        If you’re concerned about humans thriving on the planet, there are different solutions. Birth rates are declining as it is. The worst thing for population growth might actually be a pandemic that makes it possible for survivors to have more children, as happened in Europe after the Black Death. Keep people alive, keep urban property prices high, make suburban life more difficult, and the population will probably stabilize and start to decline quite quickly.

      • dwgs 16:01 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Sorry Tim, substitute ‘biosphere’ for planet. And I didn’t advocate removing all humans, just a good number of us. Although if you did completely remove us it would probably be beneficial for most other living things.

      • Blork 19:13 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        Regarding depopulation, there was an excellent TV series a few years ago called “The Leftovers” (based on a novel of the same name by Tom Perrotta) in which two percent of the world’s population instantly vanishes. Over the course of the series (three seasons) we learn a lot about grief, which was the underlying theme.

        SPOILER ALERT: it turns out that the two percent had just shifted to another dimension. In that other dimension, 98 percent of the world’s population had vanished, which was greatly devastating for those left behind.

        This got me thinking about what a powerful win-win-win tool this would be for (a) good people, (b) awful people, (c) the planet.

        Imagine if all the awful people in the world just vanished. This includes populists, fascists, MAGA hat wearers, dictators and their lackeys, Internet trolls, and people who just won’t listen. They all vanish to another dimension, where from their perspective it’s all us nice, thoughtful, Oxford comma using, and otherwise excellent people who have vanished.

        Our world is free of them, and suddenly there’s no housing shortage. Something like 60% of the population has vanished and we don’t miss them one bit. Over there they barely notice that 40% of the population is gone because they never listened to us anyway and they’re too busy cleaning their guns and running each other over with their SUVs.

        And the planet wins too, at least in our dimension.

      • Mark Côté 22:56 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        The biosphere has survived several mass-extinction events. Perhaps this one is different given that we (or at least some of us) appear to understand the consequences of our actions and *may* be alone in possessing morality and ethics, but I imagine life of some sort would survive whatever we manage to do to the planet.

        In terms of culling the human population, anyone thinking that’s probably best for humanity or the planet or whatever should understand that the billions who would die in such circumstances would very likely be mainly in the poorer parts of the planet. Such “grim” thinking is a lot easier when you and yours have a statistically (much) lower chance of being on the direct receiving end of an apocalyptic event.

    • Kate 08:50 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      Rosemont borough wants to make a lot of parking spaces metered but the central city has to study and approve the plan.

      • Ian 09:06 on 2020-02-18 Permalink

        So I know most people here are simply against parking spaces n principle but for real, does anyone have any insight as to advantages over metered vs sticker parking? Besides the obvious, which is that metered parking removes it from the pool of resident’s parking, and if there is no sticker parking to go along with metered parking then non-residents will simply park on non-metered residential streets.

        only ask because I’m curious why the city would balk at more metered parking at all.

    • Kate 08:48 on 2020-02-17 Permalink | Reply  

      TMR residents have voted in favour of building a new sports complex currently valued at $48.7 million. I’m going to guess that it’ll cost closer to $75 million by the time it’s done.

      • Ian 08:54 on 2020-02-17 Permalink

        Considering Royalmount is expected to generate 45 million a year in tax revenues that’s still not much in the big picture. Better to get shovels in the ground while the political will is still there.

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