“Me, a simple, humble worker in the vineyard of the Lord.”
No longer God's Rottweiler, the Iron Cardinal or plain ol' Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI puts on a happy face and elicits shudders from women, health advocates and progressives worldwide.
When a local Hell's Angel was accused of wounding North York mom Louise Russo, the misunderstood cycling club, desperate for an image rehabilitation, issued an apology and statement of concern. Other efforts by the Ballin' Angels to win over the public include participation in a variety of charities, among them the Red Cross ("Give blood or we'll take it from ya"), the Girl Guides ('Nice house you got there. Shame if somethin' happened to it. Now buy some goddamn cookies") and the Heart and Stroke Foundation walkathon ("I said start walkin' - otherwise you'll get a nice stroke wit dis pool cue").
Teachers union should get detention
Toronto's elementary school teachers' union (ETT) is displaying a grade-A ability to ram its head up its own ass by telling teachers not to participate in Mayor David Miller's 20-minute make-over, a feel-good exercise to clean up the city that teaches kids good citizenship. Claiming that participating in the litter pickup will jeopardize the local school janitors' work-to-rule campaign, the out-of-touch organizers should get an F for community relations.
Star food critic canned?
The brief, bumbling career of Toronto Star restaurant reviewer Andy Murdoch has ended. Like a busboy's armload of dishes dropped on the floor, Murdoch's dining detritus was swept away this weekend. In the space where Canada's Largest Newspaper© usually features Dining Out reviews, readers were instead greeted by a collection of corrections covering two weeks' stories. The clumsy chronicler often confessed to his lack of knowledge of the Toronto scene, and his reviews proved it. Star staff are as tight-lipped as secret sauce sources about the scribe's departure.
Cover makes us grind our teeth
News flash from lipo magalogue Toronto Life: nice people sell drugs. In a sensationalist cover story that might have been news 20 years ago, the glossy mag for glossy people tut-tuts that someone from "a good family" with a university degree who lives in the suburbs would sell blow. So who have they been buying their drugs from, street-corner crack dealers? In Portrait Of An Unlikely Coke Dealer, the shameless mag pretends to be aghast at the decadence, but the four fat lines on the cover will have readers slamming their noses into the shiny paper.