I loved your archive of old-school signs worth holding on to (NOW, July 5-11), but I'm surprised the historic 1050 CHUM sign at St.Clair and Yonge didn't make your list.
1050 CHUM was one of the first rock 'n' roll stations in North America, daring to play Jerry Lee Lewis in a day when rock was still considered the Devil's music by some.
Terrorized by phone calls and petitions, late-night DJ Bob Laine was even accused of being the source of all teen crime in Toronto.
Before there was MuchMusic, 1050 CHUM regularily shut down Yonge as fans clamoured outside to catch a glimpse of the Beatles fleeing the building.
The fact that the MuchMusic sign, which has done little more than promote drinking and tit-ogling, is deemed heritage-worthy over one that played a significant role in Toronto's musical history and made us an important destination for international music acts, is sad. At least just a little.
I was very interested in sign language. I've also drawn up a list of neon signs that I think should be preserved. I've found about a dozen businesses still using the old signs, but some of them are no longer in working order.
The Newbigging Funeral Home at 733 Mount Pleasant has a sign that is still working. There are two on Eglinton, a Chinese restaurant west of Bathurst and the Eglinton Theatre, and two more on Bathurst worth looking up, Stork's Dry Cleaning at 3860 and a very nice Chinese restaurant sign at 3645.
The Fran's Restaurant's sign on College is in great working order.
When one of these signs burns out, a little piece of Toronto's past goes with it. I think it would be great to see them rescued and put in a museum dedicated to the history of Toronto.
Yeah, we Goofed
How could you leave the goof out of your feature on neon signs?
As if struggling to compete with 140 companies in this year's Fringe weren't enough, NOW's coverage of the festival (NOW, July 5-11) is an added slap in the face. Is the rest of your staff too busy interviewing Avril Lavigne to bother with independent theatre?
a performer you haven't reviewed
Miller won't cave to lefties
I'm against the war in Afghanistan, but leaving those decals on the city's emergency vehicles (NOW, July 5-11) was a great move by Mayor Miller.
They should stay on until the mission is over and every one of Canada's soldiers is home. Thank god Miller didn't cave to all the lefties. Saying the decals support the war in Afghanistan is preposterous.
Lansdowne's Dundas cue
Letter-writer Jeff White (NOW, July 5-11) complains that NOW fails to explain why narrower streets calm traffic. White smells a rat.
He should stop holding his nose and look at what happened when Dundas between Broadview and Kingston Road became a single lane in both directions, with bike lanes.
Prior to the narrowing, Dundas was often the scene of speeding, weaving vehicles anxious to avoid parked cars and beat each other to the next stoplight.
Despite local councillor Case Ootes's ridiculous forecast of "traffic chaos," Dundas is now both slower and smoother. And that, Mr. White, is why it is calmer.
Why religion fears LSD
Letter-writer Leroy Casterline is right about LSD not being addictive (NOW, July 5-11).
For a mature person with an inquisitive mind who wishes to get an adventurous new perspective, LSD can provide life-changing insights.
Native people had no qualms about finding higher planes of enlightenment with different substances. Only our modern religions are fearful of competing experiences.
Takes me back to the cape
When I opened an issue of NOW and read about the Red Shoe Pub in Mabou (NOW, June 28-July 4), I immediately forgot where I was.
I was raised outside Halifax and spent a good two months of every year in Cape Breton. My family is there. It's my home.
Reading your article really brought me back and made me a little homesick. Thanks for a good read.
Stink over methane
Ecoholic refers to methane as "the stinkiest of the GHGs" (NOW, July 5-11), but the fact is that methane has no odour.
Ecoholic also says methane "is the most climate-changing gas there is," when it's more than 20 times better at trapping heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.
The fact is, water vapour and carbon dioxide contribute more to global warming because of their huge quantities. Also, CO2 has a half-life in the atmosphere of several decades.
It may take 20,000 years for sea-bottom sediments to release the calcium ions necessary to remove all the carbon dioxide produced today.
Occupying shaky territory
In the review of Aroma Therapy, a new Israeli coffee shop (NOW, June 28-July 4), the author notes its placement in a part of Toronto already known for coffee, and asks, "always with the Occupied Territory?"
It strikes me as journalistically irresponsible to throw a random and inflammatory comment about Middle East politics into a restaurant review.
Aroma is a coffee company that happens to be based in Israel. It's doing the same thing any other capitalist organization would do, which is to open in a location where it believes it can make a profit.
It's not trying to make a political statement, and it doesn't deserve to have one painted on it.
This is not to say that there are no wider issues. As one who participates in certain boycotts, I recognize that companies do not operate in a political vacuum and certainly not in a moral vacuum.
But that's a bigger discussion, and it deserves a lot more press than an offhand one-liner in a restaurant review.
Divided Israel loyalties
Letter-writer Shlomo Schwartzberg believes it's good to see Jews "go out of their way to support Israel" (NOW, June 28-July 4).
Well, I am one who is sick and tired of it. Too often we have seen people of Jewish background go out of their way to serve a foreign nation over Canada - planting trees in Israel, not Canada; joining the Israeli, not the Canadian, army; verbally attacking critics of Israel, not Canada, etc. Gerry Schwartz and Heather Reisman shamefully add to this disloyalty by using Canadian profits to help new Israelis instead of new Canadians!
It's time for Jews to stop having divided loyalties and start showing love for the nations that have accepted them.
A big fat thank you for the First Nation's issue (NOW, June 28-July 5)!
As a newcomer to Canada, here nine months, I was highly disappointed by the reports about the recent road and rail blockades by Canadian native peoples in most of the mainstream media.
I got the impression that all critics of the natives worry about is the inconvenience during their daily commute to work.
Reading NOW's issue gave me some basic information to understand what this Aboriginal Day of Action is about.