Morning Brew: H1N1 Shot Available to All, TTC Raises Fare & Ire of Riders, Drug Lab Found in Swank Duplex, $25,000 in Fines for Chandra's Takeout Restaurant, Coming Soon: Commute from Niagara?

Photo: "Colour Me In" by a_mandolin, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

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

Step right up, get your shot! Starting today, Toronto Public Health will be happy to stick a needle full of H1N1 vaccine into anybody who wants it. Rob Roberts visited a flu clinic and found that with 20 needle stations only 8 were in use, so it's not surprising everybody can go now. But with so few deaths related to H1N1 (198 across Canada at last count), will all that many people bother?

The TTC isn't winning any friends lately, not after the commission passed fare hikes to start January 3rd, even though those hikes were less than anticipated. Cash fares and tokens (if, that is, you can actually get tokens) will go up 25 cents (making a cash fare $3) and the monthly pass will jump from $109 to an astounding $121 (Jerrold's got all the details). Todd Harrison has a way of getting $100 Metropasses, but advises it may already be too late. Given yesterday's comments (here and here), I'm thinking more complaining will, understandably, be the order of the day.

Have police sniffed out a drug lab in a fancy Woburn Ave duplex, near Avenue Rd and Lawrence Ave? Neighbours reported an odd smell last night and drug squad officers have found "suspicious chemicals." Maybe the really swanky duplexes have better ventilation.

Strange story for former Mississauga resident Jordan Wimmer. She's suing her very rich and very ex-boss, London banker Mark Lowe, for sex discrimination. A lot of missing information, "he said, she said," but an overall not pretty picture of Lowe. Maybe the lesson here is if you're successful and you want to stay successful, don't joke around in the office about "lady boys" in Thailand, compare women to dogs or make graphic sexual references. Just a thought.

Chandra's Takeout Restaurant may have thought its troubles with Toronto Public Health were over when it reopened in August after TPH shut them down, but now they've been slapped with $25,000 in fines. I think I've been naive about the cleanliness of Toronto restaurants; right after returning from her mat leave, restaurant critic Amy Pataki urged the use of the Dine Safe website. It's amazing how many violations are found... at places I trust(ed?).

The mere thought of it makes me sort of shudder, but apparently enough Niagara residents are interested in working in Toronto to have GO Transit consider adding the commuter rail service. Weekdays around tall buildings and weekends amongst wineries may have a certain appeal, but certainly the 2 hour (each way) train ride would lessen the appeal, right?

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