Weston man in Canada’s Got Talent semifinals

Scott Jackson, a young man from Weston, is in the semifinals of Canada’s Got Talent, on CityTV. He’s in the running for a very nice car and $100,000.

Jackson is a beatboxer; you can view a video of him here. His fate lies at least in part in the hands of viewers, but it seems that the current voting window just closed.

Your humble correspondent has an awful confession: I hardly get any TV, and I don’t yet have the guts to get on top of my house to fix the antenna. (It’s really high up!) Could someone tell me when Scott is due for another appearance? We should be voting like crazy.

Thanks to Brigitte for the tip!

West John St may be renamed Peter the Barber street

On April 17th, Etobicoke York Community Council will debate a proposal to rename part of John Street.

Councillor Nunziata says in her email circular that “A petition with over one thousand signatures was presented to my office in support of renaming the section of John Street from Weston Road to the railway tracks to “Peter the Barber Boulevard” in honour of the late Peter Kalamaris who, in 1961, opened Peter’s Barber Shop located at 4 John Street.”

My guess (based no evidence at all) is that John Street was named after John Graves Simcoe, the founder of Toronto, the first Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, fearsome military leader, and the man who abolished slavery in Upper Canada. The other John Street in Toronto is named after him.

You can weigh in by emailing [email protected]

The Grid names Weston one of Toronto’s most underrated neighbourhoods

The Grid, Toronto’s other alt-weekly, says that Weston would be a great place for yuppies to colonize. I couldn’t agree more.

In the historic Village of Weston, you’ll find similar raw material [to the Junction]. On Weston Road around Lawrence Avenue, you can feel the history contained in the stone and brick prewar architecture and the old-school penny-farthing bicycle sculptures hanging from lampposts. Landmark libraries, churches and a host of local history and community groups trumpet the area’s legacy as a strong, independent industrial town.


Thanks to Chris for the tip.

Wakame Sushi is the best sushi joint in Weston

I love Weston; I really do. But in some ways, it’s the worst of two worlds: it has all the traffic of Toronto and all the soulkill of the suburbs. This, though, is starting to change. Since moving here, I have had four dreams: an Indian, Thai, and Japanese restaurant–and a decent coffee shop. And, while a good cuppa remains a hope deferred, Wakame Sushi at the Crossroads Plaza has brought Weston into the 21st century.

I get my Indian from Rajdhani, which is just up the street in Rexdale. They know me by name, and it’s all vegetarian and cheap as chips; $7 will give you a stomach ache and a heart attack. Triple Thai, on Jane, has been getting great reviews. I haven’t been, to my shame, because my wife is anti-Thai.

This weekend, flush with cash from Craigslist, we went to Wakame Sushi. The place is attractive, the equal of any cheap sushi joint in the 416, and far prettier than most of the other utilitarian places around our hood. The room is long and divided down the middle; the wait staff thoughtfully seated my rather loud and messy family away from the people on dates.

The food was good. The fish sushi was fine; the vegetable sushi better. The tempura was great–though why every single sushi place has to use the same lousy shrimp, I’ll never know. (I think they must get tempura kits premade that they fry up.) Speaking of which, anyone over 6 years old should skip the yakatori skewers, which were clearly prepackaged and nuked. Gross.

Still, all in all, totally good–and better when you get the bill. We fed two and two halves for $42, decent tip included.


Nunziata votes to sell public housing

Frances Nunziata voted with Council to sell public housing to raise money for other TCHC repairs. 56 vacant homes will be sold.

The Toronto Community Housing Corporation is in a tough spot. It needs $750 million for repairs to its properties. Funding from other levels of government has been hard to come by.

According to CityTV

“We need to do something now,” she said.

Nunziata, who sits on the TCHC board, said that the organization doesn’t have the money, a situation exacerbated by the downloading of public housing properties by the provincial government.

“We need the provincial government to give us funding,” she said. “But there’s no money.”

“In the meantime, we cannot keep deferring or try other options when we have tenants living in our housing in conditions that are just unbearable.”

The city is looking to unload the rest of its portfolio of standalone homes and move residents into apartment buildings. This would lower costs and raise enough money to pay off a significant fraction of the repairs.

None of the homes to be sold is in Weston.

Library may not have hours cut

A late-found pot of money means that library hours will probably not be cut While Frances Nunziata was predicting that library hours would have to be trimmed, Rob Ford’s allies on the powerful executive committee voted in the end to soften the tough 2012 budget and preserve library services.

Nunziata earlier told Correire Canadese that

cuts to the library system will not lead to closures… but rather to “the reduction of a few hours of operation.” She emphasizes that “taxpayers cannot pay out-of-pocket.”

In the end, however, City Council will be asked to cut the library budget by $3.9 million, instead of $7 million. According to the Star, library hours will probably not have to be reduced. Council will vote next week on the budget.

The extra money came from a $8.8 million surplus from higher-than-expected property tax revenues in 2011.

Man shot by police at Crossroads Plaza

A man was shot by Police at the Crossroads Plaza according to downtown media.

Police and the SIU are investigating after a man suffered multiple gunshot wounds at a North York plaza during a shooting involving Toronto police.

The incident took place Friday afternoon at Crossroads Power Centre, a commercial plaza on Weston Rd. just south of Hwy. 401.

Const. Wendy Drummond said police were called after reports of a person with a knife around 12:30 p.m. But no other details were available from police as the provincial Special Investigations Unit is now involved.