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Newsstand: January 21, 2013

I'm gonna pretend I didn't even see what the temperature is going down to tonight. In the news: Ford says you want casinos, folks; Thundersnow would be a great name for a band; Chris Spence's troubles, somehow, increase; the Leafs throw some money around; and a scary landing at Pearson is fortunately not injurious.

Mayor Rob Ford knows what the people of Toronto want, and they want a casino. “How can people say no to this?” Ford asked on Sunday on his weekly radio show. Despite the mayor’s incredulity, some people can and are saying just that: many such people were at the Toronto Reference Library on Saturday at the last of the city’s public consultations on the matter, though some Torontonians who support a casino were also in attendance. Citizens have until Friday to give their input online, and council makes a decision about a casino on April 3.

Toronto got some weird weather overnight on Saturday as a rare thundersnow system passed through the area. Wind gusts reached 90 km/h and trees and traffic lights were knocked over as Mother Nature got busy with a mix of heavy wind, rain, snow, and lightning. Power lines were down, closing Rosedale Valley Road overnight between Bayview Avenue and Park Road, and pockets of the city experienced blackouts. Thundersnow: it sounds awesome but it actually kind of sucks.

Disgraced former Toronto District School Board director Chris Spence can add another line item to his growing list of woes. After Spence’s admission of plagiarism in a Toronto Star piece, and allegations of the same in several other works, Pembroke Publishers said they’ll look into allegations of lifted passages in his 2009 book Leading with Passion and Purpose.

The Leafs started their shortened NHL season with a win against the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night, and they celebrated on Sunday by signing winger Joffrey Lupul to a five-year, $26.25 million contract extension. Lupul—named one of the team’s alternate captains on Saturday—got 25 goals and 42 assists during the 2011-12 season, and four shots on goal but no points in Saturday night’s game.

And passengers on an Air Canada Jazz flight got a scare on Sunday when a wheel fell off their plane after it landed at Toronto Pearson Airport. Fortunately none of the 72 passengers or crew on the flight, from North Bay, were hurt.

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