toronto gardening

Morning Brew: Diet Soda at Schools, Row over ROW, Darwinian Stunt

Photo: "ground broken!" by Flo's Diner, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

What's happening in the GTA (and sometimes beyond):

I live just south of St.Clair Avenue, and I must admit it - I've been avoiding the retail areas undergoing unsightly and disruptive TTC streetcar lane construction for a while now. And I'm surely not the only one who's doing this. Do merchants who are seeking compensation in the form of class action lawsuit stand a chance against the city? I mean, the project is almost 4 years behind schedule, and some business are reporting 40% drops in business. I wonder how much of their loses are due to the recession alone.

The Toronto District School Board is mulling over the idea of either removing all soda pop machines from their schools, or replacing all the high-calorie (i.e. liquid candy) sodas with artificially sweetened products. Aspartame tastes disgusting, but the more disturbing issue is that the TDSB stands to lose $0.5million if they break a contract they hold with Pepsi.

Two oil paintings that were donated to Goodwill in Etobicoke last year turned out to be 1895 classics by Peruvian-European painter Federico del Campo - and sold for a combined $160,000 at auction yesterday. The surprise cash windfall, to be donated to a good cause, is great!

Liberal MP Bob Rae, due his outspoken views on the Sri Lankan civil war (but despite being granted a visa to visit), was given the red light when he tried to enter Sri Lanka last night. I guess Rae gets to experience the notion that freedom of speech doesn't have equal meaning everywhere.

A Darwinian stunt in a parking lot, involving a car, a homemade sled, and a rope unfortunately also involved a tree and a teen in critical condition. It's amazing how far thrill-seeking can take people.

And according to the Global Liveability Survey published by the Economist Intelligence Unit, Canadian and Australian cities dominate the list of "most liveable" (whatever that means) cities in the world. Toronto ranked 4th, behind Vancouver, Vienna, and Melbourne.


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