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Newsstand: May 3, 2012

Thursday doesn't care if Nutella doesn't count as a part of a healthful breakfast anymore, it's still gonna eat it all the time, so there. In the hazlenutty news: the mayor charges at a reporter in a park and then calls the cops on him, food trucks in parking lots, a new Whole Foods planned, closing the Allen Expressway, pushing through the anti-bullying legislation, and one about Occupy.

It all started with this fairly benign story: Mayor Rob Ford and his wife want to buy a small tract of publicly-owned land behind their house in order to build a better fence and, as Ford wrote in his request to buy the land, “enhance the safety of our children.” Alright. But when Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale went to the small tract of land to check it out, things got weird. According to Dale, the mayor confronted him and charged with fists cocked. Dale says he was so fearful for his safety that he dropped his cell phone and tape recorder and fled. Then the mayor called 9-1-1, as he is wont to do, and claimed Dale had been leering over his back fence, taking photographs. So that’s where we’re at, guys.

Adam Vaughan (Ward 20, Trinity-Spadina) has a solution for the city’s food truck woes: let trucks rent space from commercial parking lots. Vaughan envisions the trucks set up on the edges of the lots, facing out onto the sidewalks. He’ll put forth a motion to end the current restrictions against vending from a parking lot at city council next week. Adam Vaughan, tacos salute you.

Speaking of the food sitch, Whole Foods is planning a new location for Bayview and Eglinton. Quinoa and kale with goat cheese and a dash of lemon salutes that.

Metrolinx will decide in the next few weeks if they hate everyone and everything and want to make it suffer will close the northbound Allen Expressway to accommodate construction of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT. The closure could last up to a year.

Dalton McGuinty and his Liberals plan to take extreme measures in order to get the “anti-bullying” legislation Bill 13 passed before the summer break. Now, bear in mind that provincial legislative bodies have a different definition of “extreme measures” than, say, the guys who invent Red Bull sports. But, still. McGuinty is using a standing order that caps debate for each party at 40 minutes, then sends the bill right off to committee. This will, he hopes, prevent the Progressive Conservatives from delaying the bill, as they have been doing so far. The bill, if passed, will increase punishment for bullies and pave the way for any kids to set up GSAs at any school, even Catholic school.

Two priests and a minister try to set up a tent—stop us if you’ve heard this one. No? Okay, so what happened was two priests and a minister tried to set up a “chapel tent” in Simcoe Park, where the Occupy protests have flared up again. But instead the three were issued tickets. Ba-dum cha!


  • Anonymous

    Ford sure calls 911 a lot. Is he slowing the response time for real emergencies?

  • Anonymous

    I had this happen to me a few years ago. A stranger was taking picture of my house from the road. My responses wasn’t to run out waving my fists and screaming at them. It was to calmly approach him and ask, why the pictures? Turns out he was taking them for an MLS data base. Didn’t like that I wasn’t notified before hand, but issue resolved.

    Ford doesn’t have the brain parts to do things calmly. Someone feeling threatened or concerned about their safely, wouldn’t cross their yard and angrily confront an intruder. They may shout from a safe distance, what are you doing? If the intruder, runs, then you know they were up to something. If they don’t and try to answer you, a normal reaction wouldn’t be to threaten them.

    Ford is an angry man. With a temper he has yet to master.

    • Anonymous

      Just so you know, there’s no law against “A stranger taking picture of my house from the road.”

      If there was, Google would be in jail.

      • Anonymous

        I know. That’s the beauty of public spaces. They’re public. Still, curious to know why someone would want a picture of my house.

        • Vampchick21

          As the daughter of a committed genealogist, I can tell you that sometimes people want to get a modern day picture of a house their ancestors lived in. I have sat in the car on many an occassion while my father took various pictures around the west end of the city of houses built by my great grandfather and other houses lived in by my grandfather, great uncles/aunts, etc. He takes them from the sidewalk or across the street, and puts them in a family album next to vintage pictures of the same property. He’s not been approached yet, but hopefully when he is (mid-60′s, Parkinsons) it’s by someone more reasonable and calm than our friendly neighbourhood mayor!

        • Anonymous

          Does someone want a picture of your house?

          • Anonymous

            The person taking pictures of my house was doing it for the MLS files. It was a few years ago. I found it odd in that 1) I wasn’t selling my home. 2) That the MLS would want to have a picture of every home in the city for their files.

  • Anonymous

    I wouldn’t wave my fists and scream at my neighbour if they took pictures of my backyard. In this case, the neighbour is a park. I would be more worried about the coyotes who may roam in the park, especially if they are carrying a smartphone or camera.

  • Anonymous

    Can someone please ask Mayor Ford how he plans to build a security fence around a property he claims is “a football field away” from his house? Is the parkland Ford wants to buy adjacent to his property or not?

    And while Ford admits he did block the reporter on public property “like a cornered rat,” are we are supposed to believe that Daniel Dale had no reason to feel threatened? Did Ford really demand Dale’s cell phone and tape recorder, or are we supposed to believe that Dale handed them over for no reason at all after being asked simply to leave?

    Anyway, Happy Press Freedom Day!

    • Anonymous

      By all accounts it appears Dale was singularly unprepared for the assignment.

      Having said that, it is Ford who should be charged. I suppose since he all ready paid off the cops, he feels perfectly safe.

      He shouldn’t, nor should his handlers: the man is a ticking time bomb.

  • Anonymous

    Why are Tim Hudak and the “Progressive” Conservatives pro-bullying?

    • Anonymous

      their only line of defense is violence. intellectually they cannot win. In their twisted mind they think your opinion of them will change if they physically beat you.

    • Anonymous

      Bullying plays well to their power base: they’re completely fed up, and they’ve utterly no patience for dialogue or consensus-building. It’s their way or the highway. You’re with them or against them. Get the hell outta their way. Do you feel lucky, punk? [ad nauseum]

      (subtext: their little garden of eden has gone to hell in a handbasket, thanks to the global financial meltdown. They’re cowering in their suburban basements, and they’ve no idea what to do except mean-mouth the neighbors)