Updates from July, 2021 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 23:18 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

    The Canadiens won Monday night’s match. There’s yelling and honking up here in quiet Villeray that I’d expect if they won the Cup, not just managed to stay alive by the skin of their teeth in overtime.

    • Meezly 09:16 on 2021-07-06 Permalink

      We live near a gas station and I had the door open – there must have been a big semi pulling out as I heard a loud, thunderous honk as it drove off. Then a bunch of smaller answering honks from surrounding cars. Thankfully didn’t wake the sleeping kid!

  • Kate 21:02 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

    Two floors of Verdun’s Ethel Street parking structure, seldom used any more for parking, will be turned into a cultural venue – including the roof.

    • MarcG 21:05 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

      They’ve been doing test runs over the past few years, little shows here and there, I guess they were a success. I was worried when I started reading that you were going to say it collapsed.

    • Raymond Lutz 08:01 on 2021-07-06 Permalink

      ah ah! same.

  • Kate 19:53 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

    In a first for the Quebec National Assembly, two sitting MNAs are going to get married. Both are from the PLQ, Marwah Rizqy representing Saint‑Laurent and Gregory Kelley Jacques-Cartier, the West Island riding previously held by his father for more than 20 years.

    • PatrickC 01:42 on 2021-07-06 Permalink

      Cute, but why is Mr. Kelley called a “fiancée” ?

    • Daisy 06:46 on 2021-07-06 Permalink

      CTV seems to be staffed by semi-illiterates. The other day I saw the word “descimate” on their website.

  • Kate 15:21 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

    Ali Ngarukiye, the man accused of attacking and disarming policeman Sanjay Vig in Park Ex last winter, then of killing his cellmate in Rivière-des-Prairies prison last month, has been transferred to the Pinel Institute and put on suicide watch.

    • Kate 12:32 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

      Covid numbers continue to drop here, but it’s no thanks to the Covid Alert app, which cost $20 million but has never helped much. It wasn’t that the app was broken, but rather that not enough people installed it, so that the basic premise that it could help in tracing contacts was never going to work.

      • Chris 13:13 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        $20m is basically 0 compared to the total spent on covid, so, from the government’s perspective, it was probably well spent vs the risk of not spending it and missing a chance to do something that could have helped.

      • Blork 13:16 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I agree with Chris. There’s no hindsight when you start a project like that or enter into a pandemic, so you need to take some risks. In a parallel universe everyone used the app and we’re now cheering about how it was money well spent.

        Also, it’s not like they just flushed the money down the drain. That $20M represents a lot of jobs, and possibly research that might come in handy elsewhere.

      • Daniel 13:25 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I never understood why it didn’t take off more than it did. I will say I was waiting in a hospital in November (for a non-emergency appointment) and was surprised to see that there was not a mention of it on any of the screens or signage. Lots of stuff about covid, no mention of the app. And that seems like an ideal location/audience.

        It does seem like the publicity push could have been better. I’m still glad they tried it.

      • Chris 13:36 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        >I never understood why it didn’t take off more than it did

        Anecdotally, people I know didn’t want Apple/Google/government tracking them even more closely than they already do.

      • Tim S. 14:10 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        That”s too bad Chris. I’m normally one of those people, and I looked into the App as carefully as I could, being a non-tech person, and it seemed pretty secure. I had no problems installing it.
        I suspect part of the problem is that our world during COVID was/is divided between those of us who could stay home and follow the news, and those who had to go out to work and maybe didn’t have the time to follow the latest developments as obsessively. The best use for it, as far as I can tell, would have been for those working in essential workplaces, and not me sitting at home.

      • James 14:25 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I tried to install it but I only have an iPhone 6 so it never worked. Suspect a lot of people outside the 15-30 crowd had similar problems.
        It was a good concept that respected privacy concerns.

      • John B 14:42 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        Well, the Quebec government initially refused to allow it, and some prominent provincial politicians, including Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, came out pretty strongly against it.

        I don’t know if the BC or Alberta governments ever adopted it.

        Disinformation and flip-flopping on the part of provincial authorities can’t have helped.

      • Marco 15:38 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I installed it about a year ago and forgot about it. I just uninstalled it last week.
        As a tech person I can say that there were no privacy concerns but I was baffled as to why Legault opted out when it was released last July. He waited until the October before he sent out a plea for Quebecers to use it after casting doubt on it for two months.

      • Bert 16:03 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        But it was optional. Look at places (i.e. countries) that required it for certain activities (e.g restaurants, shopping, etc.) Yes, personal liberties etc. I am not saying that either way is right or wrong. I never considered installing it, partly because I would not want to use it and was not required to.

      • Blork 16:26 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I have a feeling the lack of overall pickup on that app was a combination of things, including:

        (a) Overblown worries about “tracking” (which were overblown because most people don’t even understand what that means or how it works).

        (b) Standard across-the-board confusion about pretty much everything to do with the pandemic, and this was just one more confusing thing, so it was easy to ignore.

        (c) Overall lack of understanding about how mobile phones and telecommunications work, which is a much wider problem than you can even imagine. (Sure, almost everyone has a mobile phone, but aside from the basic apps like social media, messaging, and games, many people are utterly in the dark with regard to apps and networking, so things like the contact tracing app don’t even show up on their radar.)

      • dhomas 16:42 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        @James The iPhone 6 was eventually added to the compatibility list.
        The app does not track location in any way. It doesn’t even have access to location data.
        In simple terms, it uses Bluetooth and a unique identifier to detect if any two devices were in proximity of each other for a period of time. If one of those unique identifiers declares that they were infected, it notifies any other device that has been in contact with that device.
        Google/Apple already know a tremendous amount about you. I think the worry here was that it’s government now “tracking” you. Many people I know were worried shadowy figures would crack down on them for minor infractions to the rules/laws on “rassemblements”.
        The problem was definitely one of marketing and/or educating people about how it all worked, plus government officials being dumb.

      • CE 17:30 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        For the first few months that the app was available, I had an iPhone 6 so couldn’t install it. Eventually I had to upgrade the phone and installed it but half the time when I leave the house, I don’t bring my phone so it really wasn’t much use to me.

      • DeWolf 17:31 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        I’ve heard mixed things about how well it worked. In the winter I had a distanced outdoor meeting with somebody who turned out to have Covid. They reported their positive test through the app, and either we were really good at respecting the 2m distance or it just didn’t work. (I tested negative for what it’s worth.)

      • DeWolf 17:31 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

        Sorry, I should clarify that I never got a notification through the app, and neither did any of that person’s other contacts.

    • Kate 12:03 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

      Ted Rutland asks on La Presse whether we really have a firearms crisis. It’s a short piece, where he makes the point that the last special cop squad, the Quiétude squad, registered a disproportionate number of stops to people of colour. Is the firearms panic a counterweight to public pressure for police to stop racial profiling?

      Update: Same item in English on Ricochet.

      • Kate 08:51 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

        A Black man who stopped to watch police interrogating another Black man, Saturday in the Village, found himself handcuffed and his possessions searched. Prodil Hoaunhou, who’s originally from Benin, is going to bring a complaint.

        If the authorities don’t make our police shape up, the public will. A Black lawyer is also bringing a case about racial profiling because police didn’t like the look of him at the wheel of a white Mercedes.

        • Ephraim 10:09 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Recent sighting on Reddit of Montreal cop wearing the “thin blue line” badge. It’s essentially a step away from being the mafia.

        • GC 21:00 on 2021-07-06 Permalink

          For a reflector? It’s at least encouraging that other passers-by also filmed it and checked on him after the police were done abusing their power.

      • Kate 08:43 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

        An armed gang has been targeting cellphone stores around town since April, specifically stealing iPhones. The tricky thing is that each phone has a unique IMEI number which can’t be changed, which can make the phone useless if it’s entered on the blacklist: people who buy hot phones are likely to find they’ve got an expensive little music player that won’t work with any telephone network. Item includes an explanation how to check if a phone’s IMEI is on the list.

        • david147 13:55 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          There’s this: Dans d’autres cas, ils seraient envoyés à l’étranger, dans des pays d’Afrique, d’Asie ou du Moyen-Orient, où la liste noire nationale canadienne n’a pas de portée. Beaucoup d’appareils auraient notamment été frauduleusement détournés vers Dubaï, aux Émirats arabes unis, ces derniers mois, affirme notre source.

          Plus many of the criminals they’re arresting for these crimes have African and Middle-Eastern names, which tends to indicate that they’ve got a pipeline back to their home countries, where they could I guess be reactivated. This happens to stolen cars too, among other things: https://www.motorious.com/articles/news/40-stolen-cars-canada/

        • Chris 18:52 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Indeed, one would expect such gangs to not be so clueless as to not know about IMEI blacklists. If you’re going to take on the risk of armed robbery, you probably know a little about how to sell your merch.

      • Kate 08:33 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

        Two thousand police are scheduled to keep an eye on downtown during and after Monday evening’s hockey match. If the Canadiens lose, the police can probably go home – it’s only if the team wins that the crowd may go a bit nuts.

        Police have shut down a viewing of the game in NDG Park. Police said there was no permit and therefore would be “no tolerance” of such events. Sue Montgomery is trying to fight them, but have cops ranged themselves with the borough bureaucracy?

        Update: On CBC radio news at 3:30, they gave a somewhat different story – that the borough director shut down power to the park chalet on Friday and still hasn’t turned it back on. If I’m not mistaken, this is the man Montgomery has been feuding with since the beginning. No mention was made of police or of infringement of broadcast rights.

        • YUL514 10:35 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Sue means well but she’s got nothing done the past 2 years, only personal battles. I get it she doesn’t like the game played at the borough hall but you also have to work with a-holes like the borough director as opposed to trying to suspend him a handful of times. If she were to be re-elected which I don’t think she will the citizens of CDN/NDG can kiss another 4 years good bye as nothing will happen.

        • Chris 13:06 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          The city can’t give a permit to violate federal copyright law, so what is Montgomery on about?

        • Tim S. 14:12 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          How many different people does Montgomery have to fall out with before we start to wonder if maybe everybody else isn’t the problem?

        • Kate 15:42 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Tim S., check out my update above. It’s not a new feud, it’s the same old feud.

        • Mark Côté 22:17 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Montgomery posted to Facebook that it was indeed the police not issuing a permit because supposedly there wasn’t enough time, and that one was needed at some point when the event looked like it was going to be big.

      • Kate 08:22 on 2021-07-05 Permalink | Reply  

        Facing accrued debt from a year of closure, limits on numbers of diners, difficulty finding staff, and rising costs of supplies, many restaurants are struggling to stay open.

        • Benoit 09:35 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Over the weekend I was talking to a restaurant owner while waiting for my take-out order. His restaurant has a vast dining hall which is still closed, so I asked him when he was going to reopen it. His answer surprised me : it might never reopen. He pointed to his 10 ipads and screens behind him, all connected to various delivery services (UberEats, FuanTuan, Doordash etc) and explained that they are now doing so well with the deliveries and take-outs that it’s not worth the hassle to reopen the dining room. He has a very hard time finding staff, so it’s just not possible to reopen at the moment anyway. His menu went from 140 items to only 35 (“the best and most popular”, he said) to simplify operations. He is now considering moving his operations to a kitchen / pick-up counter instead of paying rent for a full restaurant. I found that conversation interesting.

        • Meezly 09:39 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          Also been hearing about the number of no-shows for reservations. How lame can someone be to not show up for a reservation they made at a restaurant, especially in the post-pandemic age of mobile phones?

        • Raymond Lutz 12:42 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          «they are now doing so well» Until the delivery apps are all bought by one or two players… He’ll see then, if he’ll do well. It’s chickenization in progress. Next time, NFC or BLE beam him this link: Delivery Apps and Ghost Kitchens Are Killing Our Local Restaurants.

        • Blork 12:56 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          If the pandemic has taught us anything it’s that you cannot predict what will happen in an unprecedented crisis. In the case of restaurants, some are really suffering, many have closed permanently, and some are thriving. Many different factors involved, so you can’t just throw them all into one category and say “restaurants this” or “restaurants that.”

        • david147 14:29 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          It could happen, but I’m very skeptical that people will want to be eating food delivery at anything like this volume once they’re allowed to eat out. Delivery is an inferior product in terms of food quality, it’s wasteful, and you’re just mostly just eating at home, which is convenient but boring. In US areas that have reopened, restaurants have roared back to life, with limitations imposed by code or labor shortages rather than demand. With permanent outdoor dining, and the government free money ending, and in person in 2021 could be the biggest year on record. It’ll vary for different joints, of course, but these are shaping up to be halcyon days for restaurants.

          At the same time, restaurants are about to start facing real competition in the form of ghost or cloud kitchens.
          These are food preparation spaces that host a number of different food delivery brands/concepts. The model is already into a 2.0 version, operating as follows: a person/entity will license a new or existing concept to a cloud kitchen operator, where the cloud kitchens cooks will prepare to order. So, you can order a Momofuku fried chicken sandwich with a half sour pickle from Schwartz and maybe a desert from some new African concept, and they’re prepared in the same facility by the same person, and delivered to your door. The economies with this model are such that it could vacuum up much of the delivery business – can compete on both cost (far lower overhead and staffing costs) and quality (because it’s focused on speed) – and restaurants with valuable brands could outsource their delivery there.

        • Blork 16:18 on 2021-07-05 Permalink

          The economic effects will be felt for a long time to come. Who would have predicted that housing prices would go up, and that it would fuel a run on housing? Also, who would have predicted that many people would have MORE money to spare than before the pandemic? (After years of dire warnings that Canadians weren’t saving enough, apparently we saved gobs of money during the pandemic — largely from not eating/drinking out and not paying for live entertainment or snappy clothes.)

          Those two things are related I think: people snapping up overpriced houses because suddenly they feel flush and they want to shift to a bigger place that has room for a home office, or they realize they needn’t pay the “urban tax” of higher rents/mortgages for the sake of urban conveniences that they no longer use (public transit, restaurants, cinemas, etc.) so they move to the suburbs or the country. But that cocooning will get old fast for some people, and they will want to start going out and spending money again, except now they have higher rent/mortgages. That’s going to lead to some kind of a crunch.

          I agree that the food delivery business will start to contract from its recent heights. I suspect the return to sit-down dining will come back pretty quickly, but there will be a lot of changes. Lots of new players, and many long-standing places gone kaput.

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