Despite the Kimbo Slice fixed fight fiasco, MMA will live to brawl another day.
Roncesvalles of the absurd
We know hip consumer marketing will go to any lengths to avoid being lumped in with the gentry, but Andrew Sardone's reference to Roncesvalles's "luck in avoiding the flash of fad gentrification" (NOW, October 16-22) is exceptionally absurd, as anyone who has watched the neighbourhood's transformation over the last 20 years will know.
Sardone runs the risk of confusing a large contingent of his Toronto-savvy readers by alluding to Roncesvalles's "long-established neighbours" without making a single explicit reference to their working-class East European immigrant background. (The mention of post-makeover Inter Steer is a dubious exception).
A number of Polish businesses still operate in the area, and one would think a reporter so eager to maintain his anti-gentrification stance would not so hastily overlook them in favour of the latest crop of high-priced boutiques and espresso joints.
Perhaps readers have become inured to NOW's faux-conscientious lifestyle journalism. It's another demonstration of the dissonance of NOW's editorial stance, comically exemplified in this case by an article selling downtown bohemia with the help of a photo spread that looks like it belongs in a Martha Stewart magazine.
Kimbo a no-no
Please, if you're going to write a story on the Kimbo Slice controversy (NOW, October 23-29), find someone who actually knows something about mixed martial arts (MMA). Your writer says the "blood sport" (yes, people do bleed in MMA and hockey and boxing and...) is in jeopardy because Kimbo's opponent, Seth Petruzelli, "made comments on the Internet suggesting he was asked to throw the fight." Almost everything about that "reporting" is incorrect.
The comment in question was made in a radio interview, not on the Internet. What Petruzelli actually implied was that the promoters offered him more money to stand and trade strikes with Kimbo, not throw the fight. Petruzelli changed his story to say it was a KO bonus offer.
Anyone who follows MMA knows it's not in any jeopardy; it's just that all the organizations that try to compete with the UFC bleed money (more bleeding) and fall by the wayside. I could go on, but come on.
Smoking out herbs
When someone writes to an advice column that they think they might have obsessive-compulsive disorder (NOW, October 23-29), the correct response would be to tell him or her to see a doctor and get a referral to a specialist. Instead, we are told to use St. John's wort (NOW, October 23-29).
While it's true that it has shown some promise in treating depression, it also has side effects such as dizziness, confusion, sedation, tiredness and gastrointestinal problems.
More importantly, it can inhibit transport of drugs from the gut to the bloodstream and thereby inhibit the activity of prescribed medicines including oral contraceptives, anti-HIV and anti-cancer drugs and the anti-rejection drugs used after surgery.
Failing to mention these side effects perpetuates the myth that herbs are harmless and puts your readers at risk.
This Sugar not so sweet
How does brown sugar (Queen West), which serves months-ago-ground, vacuum-sealed, mass-produced Seattle's Best coffee even get a listing (NOW, October 16-22)? You left out Addis Ababa down the street, an Ethiopian coffee house that roasts each coffee to order - a 10-minute ceremony that solidifies its reputation as the freshest in Toronto.
In the same neighbourhood you list Salvador Darling, admitting that it's more of a cocktail lounge, while not mentioning Taste.
As every single restaurant in the city serves coffee, to mention any that serves "basic" large-scale industrial coffee is shameful. Your writer is showing a bias for his fave hang-outs.
Jack of all tirades
I love when lefty elitists tell the public that they've chosen wrong (NOW, October 23-29) - as if Jack Layton's economic ideas would do us more good, but we're all too stupid to realize it.
I live in Parkdale-High Park. I'd like to know what it was in your estimation that made Peggy Nash a good representative? All I ever saw from her were top-down proposals for large bureaucracies stuffed with high-priced union employees like the one she proposed for inspecting Chinese toys, and another one she proposed for inspecting pet foods.
Nash has shown a distinct lack of interest in serving anyone but her party and its union supporters.
It's now nearly four years since Layton cost us an urban strategy, a national transit strategy and a national daycare program and [ended] 13 years of prudent fiscal leadership under Paul Martin. Who is bad for Toronto?
Letter writer Bogos Kalemkiar rails against the "greedy white motherfuckers" who typically vote in our leaders (NOW, October 16-22). If he dislikes the majority of the leaders in this land "who happen to be white," I'm sure there's a nice bloody patch in Mugabe's land of fun and freedom waiting. Geesh.
Kennedy's easy pieces
I think you might have accidentally failed to print the entire article Andrew Cash wrote about Gerard Kennedy's win last Tuesday (NOW, October 16-22). I saw no interview with Kennedy or Kennedy supporters and no mention of any top organizers who worked with Kennedy closely on his last leadership run.
I'm sure before Cash felt comfortable declaring that Kennedy would be distracted by the upcoming leadership race, he at least asked if he had any intention of running.
Farewell to Kings
Remind me again why objectivity is important in journalism? Bryan Borzykowski's biased review of the new Kings of Leon album (NOW, October 16-22) is more of a declaration of his distaste for the band than an honest review of the album itself.
Putting aside his inability to properly ponder Kings of Leon's sound in a post-Skynyrd Southern rock scene, he attributes it to many different bands at once (Strokes, Lynyrd Skynyrd, U2, INXS). It's ridiculous. Does he think he's Lou Reed? He calls Because Of The
Times an experimental album but fails to bring Aha Shake Heartbreak into the dialogue.
It's clear Borzykowski has little understanding of where the Kings are coming from or where they're going, but feels qualified to trash them and their "high school talent show" sound.
New wave in Kensington
Yes, Kensington Market is the epitome of inclusivity and opportunity (NOW, October 16-22), but that fact can exist in its future, not only its past.
A new wave of talent and drive in this area embodies the creative/information age.
These businesses (Model Citizen, F13) stand up on an international level, as foreign visitors to my shop delight in exclaiming daily. Before, this area was defined by where people came from. The new generation is distinctly Toronto.
The Rage, Toronto