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  • This U>long-form CBC article looking at Ken Pagan, the man who became infamous through his beer can toss, has insight.

  • I like Christopher Hume's article describing changes of zoning around apartment highrises, to allow shops.

  • John Lorinc's suggestion that taxes collected from foreign buyers be put towards social housing is provocative.

  • Robert Zunke is the man, sometime construction worker, assembling shrines on the Leslie Street spit.

  • Torontoist describes Blockobana, the queer black space at this year's Toronto Caribbean Festival.

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  • I liked this Vice article on a study of the prevalence of ambivalence on the Internet. How will we learn to care?

  • Global News reports that the National Museum of Chinese Writing is willing to pay people who can decipher oracle bones three thousand years old.

  • CBC reports on an organization of LGBTQ farmers in Québec, Fierté Agricole.

  • Alex Needham writes at The Guardian about the life and work of Touko Laaksonen, "Tom of Finland."

  • VICE's take on Cecilia Aldonrondo's documentary about the life of her dead gay uncle is touching.

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  • Spacing hosts Cheryl Thompson's article examining Toronto's Caribbean festival as a Bakhtinian organized chaos.

  • VICE examines how social housing in Canada will be hard-hit by climate change, including rising temperatures.

  • Torontoist shares a sponsored guide to attractions in the Ontario Greenbelt.

  • Laura Howells at the Toronto Star notes that if garlic mustard has to be an invasive plant in the forests of Ontario, at least it helps that it is a tasty invader.

  • Julien Gignac reports on the mystery of who the artist building shrines at Leslie Spit actually is.

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  • James Dubro highlights at Torontoist the disappearing queer men of Toronto. Is a serial killer at work?

  • At the Toronto Star, Paul Hunter reports on how the Toronto Islands have been reopened starting today.

  • John Lorinc's investigation of high-rise safety in Toronto is alarming, and ends here and here.

  • Scott Wheeler looks at the controversial mounted cow sculpture of Cathedraltown, in Markham.

  • Victoria Gibson reports on the $150 million a year spent by the federal government at Pickering on property never used to build an airport.

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  • Crooked Timber's John Quiggin considers imaginable ways to get carbon dioxide in the atmosphere down to 350 ppm by 2100.

  • Karen Sternheimer at the Everyday Sociology Blog considers the tenuous nature of the upper-middle class in America. How is downwards mobility to be avoided, even here?

  • Imageo shows the growth of a sunspot larger than the Earth.

  • Language Hat shares the story of how Manchu script came to be.

  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes that the working poor need protection from arbitrary and always-changing work schedules.

  • The LRB Blog notes the geopolitical scramble at the Horn of Africa, starting with bases in Djibouti.

  • The NYR Daily engages with an intriguing exhibition about the relationship between Henry James and paintings, and painting.

  • Personal Reflections' Jim Belshaw engages with the classic 1937 Australian film, Lovers and Luggers.

  • Noel Maurer at The Power and the Money notes that one benefit of the trend towards greater informality in fashion is that time has been freed up, especially for women.

  • Peter Rukavina writes about his new Instagram account, hosting his various sketches.

  • Unicorn Booty notes the continuing problems with Germany's adoption laws for same-sex couples.

  • The Volokh Conspiracy looks at how the Polish president saved the independence of Poland's courts with his veto.

  • Window on Eurasia suggests Russia is trying to mobilize the ethnic Russians of Lithuania, finally.

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  • Johann Hari writes for Open Democracy about what may be the beginning of the end of the drug war in Germany.

  • I am not in agreement with Joseph Couture's argument in NOW Toronto that the Internet has ended gay communities. (Convince me.)

  • Samantha Edwards reports in NOW Toronto controversy regarding the Parkdale feminist street art event. Was it really intersectional?

  • James Cooray Smith wonders--or "wonders"--why some Doctor Who fans are so upset with a woman portraying the Doctor.

  • In MacLean's, chief Perry Bellegarde argues that more Canadians should be concerned with the too-many deaths of young First Nations people in Thunder Bay.

  • The National Post tells the story of how Australian senator Larissa Walters had to unexpectedly resign her position on account of her Canadian birth.

  • Via James Nicoll, a paper claiming evidence of human presence in northern Australia, in Madjedbebe, 65k years ago.

  • National Geographic tells of the peculiar way some Gulf of Mexico dolphins prepare their catfish. Is it cultural, culinary even?

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  • Steve Munro shares photos of the ongoing reconstruction of Dundas and Victoria, on the 505 Dundas streetcar route.

  • blogTO notes that the steady increase in rental prices in Toronto came to a halt this month.

  • John Lorinc at Spacing starts a series speculating on the safety of Toronto hi-rises for seniors.

  • Torontoist reports on the achievements and the controversy of a feminist street art event in Parkdale.

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Community, by Kirk Newman (2001)


Kirk Newman's 2001 sculpture "Community" stands on the lawn of Manulife Financial's headquarters on Bloor Street East.
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  • Global News reports on Jackson's Burger, driven from Yonge Street by high rent.

  • blogTO shares this man's collection of TTC vehicles done in Lego. It is truly impressive.

  • Steve Munro reports on the cost of renovating the Bloor-Danforth subway.

  • The Toronto Star reports on the private nudist swimming resorts in the GTA. There are no legal public nude beaches without Hanlan's.

  • The Globe and Mail's Dave Leblanc <a href="https://www.theglobeandmail.com/real-estate/toronto/neglected-islands-along-torontos-university-avenue-deserveattention/article35663168/?cmpid=rss1'><U>reports</u></a> on the embattled traffic islands of University Avenue.</li> </ul>
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  • What will happen to the legal records of those convicted of marijuana-related charges once legalization comes? The Toronto Star considers.

  • NOW Toronto reviews a new exhibit of First Nations-oriented work at the AGO.

  • NOW Toronto features an article showing how Toronto startup Wattpad is making celebrity fanfic (among other things) economically lucrative for writers.

  • Torontoist considers the idea of laneway suites as a way to deal with the city's housing crisis.

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I was alerted earlier this week by the likes of blogTO to the fact that renovations in Toronto's Grange Park had been completed. Walking over there with a friend after catching the Monday night performance of The Seat Next To The King, we concluded that the work was a success. This marvelous green space in the heart of Toronto, with the Art Gallery of Ontario and its Georgian Grange Manor and Frank Gehry wing of glass blue titanium to the north and OCAD University with its simple stunning Sharp Centre for Design to the east, the refurbished Grange is a relaxing friendly place for people to walk and recharge. The Henry Moore sculptures, Two Large Forms, relocated here from their former location at Dundas and McCaul amid some controversy last year, belong here--indeed, surrounded by organic forms of all sizes and scales, they arguably look better than they did directly on the street.

Entering the Grange Park


Tower


Along the promenade


Tower through trees


Towards the AGO


Playground


Playing amid fountains


Benches


Play


Grange and stairs


Stairs above


Playing on the green grass


Henry Moore, Two Large Forms


Beneath tall trees
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Three Star Variety (1)


Three Star Variety (2)


Three Star Variety (3)


Three Star Variety (621 Bathurst Street) caught my eye as I was passing by with the building's colourful graffiti-style painted walls.
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  • The Broadside Blog's Caitlin Kelly considers the various challenges of being an independent person.

  • Centauri Dreams considers the possibility of a Mars-mass planet in the Kuiper belt.

  • Dangerous Minds notes how the 5Pointz warehouse of NYC, once a graffiti hotspot, has been turned into a condo complex that at best evokes that artistic past.

  • Language Log explores the etymology of "sang", a descriptor of a Chinese subculture of dispirited youths.

  • The LRB Blog reports on a Border Patrol raid on the No More Deaths encampment in Arizona, a camp that helps save migrant lives in the desert.

  • The Strange Company blogs about the mysterious 1829 disappearance of Judge John Ten Eyck Lansing from New York City.

  • Unicorn Booty describes three gay Muslim immigrants terrified of the implications of President Trump.

  • The Volokh Conspiracy considers pros and cons to the idea of religious arbitration.

  • Window on Eurasia suggests that the Qatar crisis is worsening Sunni/Shia tensions among the Muslims of Russia.

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Colour on wall


This pattern painted on the brick wall by Michael's Barber Shop is part of a wider mural painted on the south-facing side of the large brick building on the northwest corner of Church and Wellesley.
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Locks @ $C10


Locks to affix to the "LOVE" sculpture on Tank House Lane in the Distillery District can be bought for ten dollars each.
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Lori Blondeau, Asiniy Iskwew


Cree/Métis/Salteaux artist Lori Blondeau's Asiniy Iskwew, part of the Scotiabank Contact Festival, is on display in Devonian Square in the heart of Ryerson University's downtown campus.

Asiniy Iskwew (2016)—whose Cree words translate to “Rock Woman”—continues the artist’s interest in rocks connected to Indigenous traditions, such as petroforms (large stones or boulders outlining anthropomorphic, zoomorphic, or geometric forms), and rock art (paintings on or carvings into rock surfaces). In this series of photographs, Blondeau celebrates and gives homage to Plains Indigenous rock formations, significant ancient sites created for sacred and rite-of-passage ceremonies, and for recording battles and histories. She draws from oral histories of Mistaseni—a 400-tonne sacred boulder marking an important Indigenous gathering place that the Saskatchewan government dynamited in 1966 to make room for a man-made lake. Capturing performative interventions in the landscape, the images depict the artist standing statuesquely atop glacial boulders, draped in blood-red velvet cloth. Strong and solemn, her figure reflects the resilience of Indigenous cultures.

Situated in Devonian Square, a meeting place with a man-made pond in the centre of Ryerson’s campus, the photographs are seamlessly adhered to the contemporary site’s two-billion-year-old boulders imported from the Canadian Shield. The location resonates with its complex connections to the ancient sites of Blondeau’s research, as the Square serves as a gathering area, but one that is artificially constructed for an urban environment. This divergence points to issues of displacement and environmental preservation, offering a potent reminder of Toronto’s pre-colonial history and the controversial treaties that renounced Indigenous rights to ancestral lands. Here, Blondeau occupies the site—as if summoning its spirits—and proclaims (her) Indigenous history and irrefutable connection to the land.


Asiniy Iskwew in the background
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"For Monty"


This touching Croft Street mural and poem remembers neighbourhood cat Monty.
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  • blogTO looks at eleven recent Toronto-themed books, from fiction to children's literature.

  • Centauri Dreams considers the idea of using waste heat to detect extraterrestrial civilizations.

  • Far Outliers reports on how German East Africa substituted for foreign imports during the blockade of the First World War.

  • Marginal Revolution suggests that the fall of Rome may have been due to the failure to reconquer North Africa.

  • The NYRB Daily looks at the exuberant art of Jazz Age Florence Stettheimer.

  • The Planetary Society Blog shares a stunning portrait of Jupiter from the New Horizons probe.

  • Window on Eurasia considers the idea of containment in the post-Cold War world.

  • Yorkshire Ranter Alex Harrowell looks at the British election.

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One special highlight Jane's Walk tour of the eastern side of Harbord Village was the abundance of street art--often bright in colour, sometimes quite ingenious, never unattractive--on the garages and walls of the back alleys of the neighbourhood.

David French Lane, named after the late Canadian playwright, had its fair share.

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Croft Street is particularly rich in this density.

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