Monday, February 15, 2010

"Family" day

Choking back the bile on the way to work this morning. Not just because it's a holiday and I have to go to work, but because I'm reading about Smitherman adopting a baby. After kicking Giambrone while he's down and asking him to resign as TTC chair, this just seems yet another way that Smitherman's life adds up to perfection that none of us can achieve.

One hopes that if his house of cards comes down, let's say he gets divorced, his parents die, something like that, Smitherman follows his own advice and steps down as mayor instantly.

The day after the Giambrone scandal broke, Smitherman said:

"“It is clear that Mr. Giambrone is not in a position to commit that degree of focus nor provide the leadership that is necessary to get the job done for riders, workers or taxpayers. With those interests in mind, he should step down..."

So the day after his divorce, parent's death, or family illness, I'll be expecting Smitherman, who presumably at that point won't be able to commit that degree of focus, to step down.

And now I'm left wondering whom I can vote for as mayor who is not a bullying hypocrite.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Leaf GM's son killed in U.S. car crash

Brendan Burke, 21, who broke homophobic barriers in hockey, dies in accident in Indiana

Brendan Burke – the youngest son of Leaf general manager Brian Burke – has been killed in a car accident in Indiana.

"We are saddened to report that Brendan Burke, the youngest son of Leafs president and general manager Brian Burke, succumbed to injuries he suffered in an auto accident ...," the Leafs said in a statement Friday night.

"The family asks for privacy at this difficult time."

Brendan Burke, 21, and Mark A. Reedy, 18, of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., died at the scene of a two-vehicle accident in Wayne County, Ind., around 2:50 p.m. Friday. Heavy snow was falling at the time.

Investigators said Burke was driving eastbound on U.S. Highway 35 in a 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee when, according to witnesses, the vehicle slid sideways into an oncoming 1997 Ford truck driven by Michael Moreland, 24, of Lynn, Ind. Moreland was not hurt.

Wayne County is close to the Indiana-Ohio border, about 100 kilometres northwest of Cincinnati.

The father-son relationship made headlines throughout Canada and the North American sporting culture in November when Brian Burke revealed to the media that his son was gay.

The public admission of homosexuality by Brendan Burke, a former goalie working with a top-ranked university hockey program, was widely credited with nudging hockey toward overcoming its sometimes homophobic culture.

The younger Burke told the Star at the time he was overwhelmed with the positive feedback he'd received from the public, heralding the support from his father and the hockey world.

"The reaction from the press and fans and everyone has been overwhelmingly positive," Brendan Burke told

Brendan Burke was a student manager of the Miami (Ohio) University hockey team, and had come out to his team and his father more than two years ago.

The Burkes went public after a reporter, who had been a friend of the family, told them he planned to write about it.

Brendan told his father he was gay in 2007 and while Brian admitted in November he was surprised by the news, he was supportive.

"I said, `It won't change anything Brendan,'" Brian Burke said at the time. "`It doesn't change our view. We love you and we're proud of you. It doesn't change anything in my mind and it never will.'"

Brian Burke has received widespread praise for supporting his son, both within hockey and outside. He told reporters he hoped his story will give others the confidence to come forward.

"I think it's important my story is told to people because there are a lot of gay athletes out there and gay people working in pro sports that deserve to know there are safe environments where people are supportive regardless of your sexual orientation," he said.

Brendan Burke analyzed video and kept stats for the top-ranked Miami team. The team's coach, Enrico Blasi, and the rest of the team first learned of Brendan's orientation after the Frozen Four tournament last spring.

"I think having Brendan as part of our program has been a blessing," Blasi told

"We are much more aware of what you say and how you say it."

A tribute to Brendan appeared on a website for Miami fans.

"As most of you know, Brendan was a part of `The Brotherhood,' working with the Miami hockey program as a student manager," it said. "No matter your point of view on things, please keep the Burke family in your thoughts."

In a statement MLSE president and CEO Richard Peddie said: "On behalf of the entire Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment family, we extend our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Brian Burke. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Burke family during this extremely difficult time."

Friday, February 5, 2010

Theatre Queen - Spring preview

Well, I'm back in Toronto and what keeps me going while not on vacation is going to the theatre.
I saw a production of "The Diary of Anne Frank" last night. Acting very spotty but excellent story of course.
I was able to download a copy of Avatar, still probably won't watch it. Not with such exciting theatre upcoming!

Wed Feb 10 - No Sweetheart Required. An anti-Valentine's day cabaret show with David Hein, the smiling guy from My Mother's Jewish Lesbian Wiccan Wedding.

Sun Feb 14 - Kids on TV play the Wavelength Festival.

Wed Feb 17 - Going to see Gentleman Reg's month-long residency at the Drake.

Thurs Feb 25 - Grimm too. An alternate take on Grimm Brothers fairy tales.

Fri Feb 26 - Communion as part of my Tarragon subscription.

Sat Mar 6 - My Mother's Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding - with my mother!

Sat Mar 20 - Rent in flipping Richmond Hill, but still Rent.

Sun Mar 21 - Me and 10,000 screaming girls at High School Musical 2.

Thurs Apr 8 - Owen Pallett/Final Fantasy show

Mon Apr 12 - Blue Jays Home Opener

Fri Apr 16 - If We Were Birds, the last of my Tarragon subscription shows.

Thurs Apr 29 - This is What Happens Next at Canstage. I bought this ticket about 4 months ago already!

Thurs Aug 12 - South Pacific

Tues Aug 24 - What the Butler Saw, another Joe Orton show from Soulpepper.

C'est tout!

New trip - Ptown

Well I just got back from vacation so it's time to plan the next one!
Going to Provincetown August 14-22. Carnival is on August 19th.

Some great info and a brochure are here.

Thinking of staying here, $169 a night for 2 beds, right on the waterfront in the heart of the action, although it looks like a college dorm:

I'll need to fly to Boston and then take a 1.5 hour ferry to Provincetown.

Rather than rushing home on the Sunday, I was thinking of staying in Boston on the Saturday night. There's a Blue Jays/Red Sox game at Fenway. Fenway was my favourite ball park thus far so that should be awesome.

I was able to move my South Pacific ticket to opening night.
Update: this room, with a view of the garden, is an extra $10 a night. I think it's worth it!