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Morning Brew: Machine Gun Sting, Condo Queue Fight, MLSE Ad Cleanup Ultimatum, Toronto Island Waiting List Lottery, Grizzly's Near Escape

Photo: "The Big Man" by vwsluk, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

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

The TTC is now saying that riders can pay just $2.25 (the discounted bulk token price) if collector booths have run out of temporary tickets to sell. Finally, they're playing fair on fares!

Three men in Mississauga have been arrested after allegedly selling undercover police officers a machine gun and 100 rounds of ammo. How much it was sold for hasn't been disclosed, but I'm willing to bet that these three figured it was worth the risk. Life changes quickly for these guys.

Real estate agents who'd formed two queues dueled over who had first crack at pre-sale units in a 44-storey luxury condo at Jarvis and Charles, set for occupancy in 2013. Anger was spewing after those who'd waited just 10 hours got ahead of others who'd waited 10 days. Like their tempers, the market appears to remain hot, hot, hot enough!

In pro sports, spirit is not everything - winning is. But it appears that Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment have set themselves up for losing off the ice (while their team is abysmal on the ice). MLSE are going to have to act quickly on a City ultimatum to clear our sidewalks of their spray painted illegal ad campaign within 24h or get the bill when the City hires someone to do it for them. In related news, fans also think that MLSE are being unfair by charging too much to watch such a poorly performing team.

It's been about a month since the hand-held device while driving ban came into effect, and the OPP have issued 1,109 warnings and 22 actual tickets for the infraction (despite having previously announced a three-month grace period on ticketing). Some believe that the law has made things more dangerous in some instances, because those who continue to tap away on their phones are now doing it with their devices hidden from view in their laps. Are you still texting while driving?

People hoping to one day live on the Toronto Islands, vying for a chance to be added to the end of a waiting list 500 names long, have applied for a lottery. 31 spots at the end of the waiting list are open, hundreds will apply for the lottery to be put on the list, and then they'll likely never get onto the island during their lifetime because only one or two properties usually get sold in a given year. That $110 fee for the lottery application would be better spent on visiting via ferry rides.

And Samson the grizzly bear nearly got out of his confines at the Toronto Zoo. Staff are insisting that his 35-year old cage be replaced, and are threatening to refuse to work if it's not. Maybe they should spend less money trying to woo the pandas and more on properly keeping bears that already call the zoo home.


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