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Chad Rubel
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Given the last 2 British Columbia elections, the pandemic election turned out to be relatively boring. The results are leaning in a direction but there are at least 500,000 mail-in ballots still to count and that won't happen soon. The New Democratic Party was leading or elected in 55 of the BC ridings to 29 for the Liberals and 3 for the Green Party. If this pace continues after the full count, Premier John Horgan becomes the only 2-time NDP premier and the party gets its first majority government since 1996. The NDP won seats in the Lower Mainland (Vancouver and suburbs) away from the Liberals on election night, based on the current results. The party only needed 44 seats for a majority. Continue reading
Posted 14 hours ago at Canadian Crossing
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The results of the British Columbia provincial election Saturday and the Saskatchewan election on Monday are expected to run into delays in getting results. There were more than 700,000 requests for mail-in ballots in British Columbia for this election compared to about 6,500 requests in 2017. The province has 3.4 million registered voters. Elections BC CEO Anton Boegman said the agency would have been ready with electronic voter books and tabulation machines to count the mail-in ballots in October 2021, the original date of the next election. Under current legislation, counting can't start until 13 days after the election, which is Saturday. For those voting Saturday in British Columbia, polls are open from 8 am to 8 pm, Pacific Daylight Time. Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Canadian Crossing
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0 score and 4 years ago, the Garden Collective released a compilation of videos from actual Canadians explaining why the United States is already great. This played off the "Make America Great Again" slogan. Now, Canadians love Americans, not so much "America" right now. The anger and intensity from the angry toddler against Canada. Damaging tariffs and a one-sided trade "deal" not by negotiation but by threats. A border where casual travel is banned and Canada not being eager to change the status quo. The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has showcased what was great about cross-border travel between the countries and how important that was to each country's economy. Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Canadian Crossing
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If you read the late Anthony Bourdain, you would gather that the cooking areas in restaurants are toxic environments. Nose to Tail gives us that world perhaps only slightly exaggerated. Daniel (Aaron Abrams) oozes toxic. Daniel has toxic reactions to everything and everyone. Chloe (Lara Jean Chorostecki), Daniel’s part-time girlfriend/front of the house, staggers back and forth between confronting him and holding back. Nose to Tail takes place over about 24 hours where several elements fall into place to make Daniel as angry and toxic as he has been. He is worried about the potential investors coming by the restaurant on a day where things slowly go wrong around him. How far will Daniel go with his anger and toxicity. Daniel is afraid of technology aka blogs as well as food trucks. He considered himself old-school but not in the ways of presenting food with his ultra-tiny portions. The restaurant is full every night yet the place is losing money. The restaurant has been around for 10 years, longer than a lot of restaurants, yet no one would put up with his crap for longer than 6 weeks. Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Canadian Crossing
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The U.S. coverage of the NHL will change significantly with the retirement of Mike "Doc" Emrick. Known to a generation for his work on NBC and NBCSN, Emrick's career took him to CBS, ABC, and Fox among other outlets. Emrick liked Canada, something a certain NBCSN announcer (John Forslund) can't say himself. He had an appreciation for old-time hockey. Emrick cut back his workload in the last couple of years. When the NHL All-Star Game was in Ottawa in 2012, Emrick noted the 126-mile length of the Ottawa Canal and pointed out that the canal was open for skating until the thaw. Emrick's style was about the small things but making them seem big. That will be missed. Chris Cuthbert would have been on a list of possible replacements. Cuthbert specifically noted wanting to call the Stanley Cup for a Canadian broadcaster. Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Canadian Crossing
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The last time the CBC logo was on Saturday Night Live, host Sandra Oh was wearing a CBC T-shirt while hosting the show about 18 months ago. Saturday Night Live came up with a skit over the weekend about a morning news show called Bonjour Hi from Montréal. Bowen Yang and Kate MacKinnon were Jean-Lawrence (John-Larry) and Anne-Marie, the bubbly hosts. Jean-Lawrence asked Anne-Marie about her weekend. She suffered an injury after having sex with a Cirque de Soleil performer. She pointed out her surgery was free. Her traffic report mentioned Jacque Cartier as many times as was feasible. SNL host Issa Rae hosted a Drake Watch segment where she spoke of near sightings of the Toronto rapper. She thought she saw Drake in a wheelchair but realised that Drake was only in a wheelchair on Degrassi. Rae was nominated for Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for Insecure, but lost out to Catherine O'Hara for Schitt's Creek. Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Canadian Crossing
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We did joke back in March that the worldwide pandemic would be tough, but at least Canada had legal marijuana. Today is the second anniversary of Canada making marijuana legal. While U.S. states made edibles legal when they made marijuana legal, Canadians had to wait to get legal edibles in the marketplace in mid-December 2019. As late as that was, the timing was good before the pandemic started. Edibles were crucial for renters since they can't generally smoke in their apartments. Going outside and smoking wasn't a handy option in the pandemic, plus smoking makes mask wearing difficult. Edibles are more convenient but Canadians had to be aware of consuming them in public, which is illegal. Being encouraged to stay at home may have increased sales. Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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About a year ago, we were excited about the Heritage Classic with the Calgary Flames and Winnipeg Jets at Mosaic Stadium in Regina. Saturday nights in the autumn are now for Canadian films on CBC instead of Hockey Night in Canada. As we noted earlier, CBC will run Canadian film doubleheaders at 9 pm and 11 pm local time (add 30 minutes in most of Newfoundland) until the NHL season starts up again. October 17 9p American Woman (2019) 11p Mean Dreams (2016) October 24 9p Red Snow (2019) 11p Unclaimed (2016) Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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The 2020 farmers market season is just about done. The weather is getting colder. Normally, markets move indoors where weather is a concern. Anecdotally, some of the local markets are staying longer outdoors as a transition. The concern is that some vendors won't have product and other vendors made plans that don't include a few more weeks outdoors. The 3 extra weeks look good but the weather will determine their viability. Our major indoor winter market ran great numbers in November and December. The transition from 6-7 indoor markets to 3 uncertain outdoor markets spells financial concerns. A lack of viable indoor spaces means lost income for months during the winter. Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2020 at Balance of Food
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Canadian snowbirds: retirees who spend the summer in Canada but go south to the United States to have a warmer winter than if they spent the same time in Canada. Not to be confused with Snowbird, written by Gene MacLellan and famously sung by Anne Murray. The snowbirds were able to return to Canada at the start of the pandemic. Given where we are in the pandemic, some snowbirds will be stuck in Canada during the upcoming winter. Canadians can fly to the United States, even with the border being closed. Driving is not an option either way and Americans can't fly into Canada. So Canadian snowbirds can fly south. While some states have potential quarantines, the states where snowbirds reside won't have that as an issue. The NFL had an issue with Kenny Albert being in Canada but snowbirds should be fine. The problem is that snowbirds generally travel by car or their home to their southern destination. A trailer or RV needs to cross a land border. Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Everyone thinks you are part of the perfect couple in your group. You decide you aren't in love with your partner anymore. Oh, and you just found out you are pregnant. Parsley Days features Kate (Megan Dunlop) who has dated Ollie (Michael Leblanc) for 5 years. Everyone loves Ollie: her best friend Lila (Marla McLean), her friend Chloe (Marcia Connolly) and Chloe's partner Pauline (Shannon Cunningham), her sister Jane (Tara Doyle) and her children. Kate doesn't want to tell Ollie that she is pregnant. Getting an abortion in Nova Scotia wasn't that easy in 2000. Chloe suggests Kate consume a lot of parsley to bring on menses. The group lives in Halifax and gets around on bikes. Ollie points out that he doesn't even have a bike, getting around on the back of Kate's bike. Kate teaches a bike repair class. Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Canadian television and film actor Kaniehtiio Horn taught us earlier this year how to pronounce her name. Horn pointed out the respect to know how to pronounce a name properly. Fox News host Tucker Carlson hasn't much for respect for Canada. Carlson went out of his way to mispronounce the capital of Canada, putting the emphasis on the second syllable instead of the first syllable. Carlson was going after Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), the Democratic vice presidential nominee, for spending part of her childhood in Montréal. Carlson said that Harris "didn't grow up in this country" meaning the United States. As much as Canada would like to claim Harris, being born in the United States and living there until age 12 is growing up in the United States. Right-wing pundits also went after Barack Obama for spending a few years in Indonesia as a child. Both Obama and Harris were being raised alone by their mothers. Children generally don't get a say in where families live. Harris' mother was doing cancer research in Montréal and teaching at McGill University. Carlson said Harris "could probably tell you the capital of Canada." The difference is that Harris could tell you the proper pronunciation of the capital of Canada, a mere 200 km from Montréal. Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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There had been a gathering of expats for Canadian Thanksgiving where I live. We started small but grew to about 100 people. The spot we found was really ideal: they already served a turkey dinner on Sunday nights. That restaurant closed in the spring of 2018. The story is familiar: the landlord raised the rent. The spot is still empty today. You might notice in the picture above that the food is not a turkey dinner. They had the best fried chicken. What was I to do? We couldn't find an alternative place in 2018 and 2019. Finding a spot in 2020 was fruitless since we wouldn't be able to do Thanksgiving anyway. I miss the food at that place but the gathering of people was more special. I am thankful for those memories but wish I could make more memories. Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Tammy's Always Dying has an intriguing premise. A mother-daughter scenario where the antics of the mother dominate the daughter to the point where she feels like her mother is ruining her life. The antics include threatening to jump from a bridge on a regular basis, lots of drinking especially at the end of the month, and a lot of dependence. Felicity Huffman plays Tammy (the mother) and Anastasia Phillips plays Catherine (the daughter). Doug (Clark Johnson) is this unbelievable family friend who watches over Tammy and Catherine in a seemingly innocent fashion. Doug's character reminds us of gay characters in years past whose sole purpose was to take care of everyone else without having a life. The mother and daughter struggle but would be so much worse off without Doug. Doug and Catherine go away to the big city (Toronto) from where they live (Hamilton) on Sunday nights. They go to this swanky hotel bar and pretend to be extravagant characters in escape mode served by the bartender (Kristian Bruun). The bartender went to the same prince school as Doug. Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Toronto lawyer Annamie Paul has been elected as the new federal Green Party leader in Canada in the first election in 14 years. While Paul replaces Jo-Ann Roberts, who served as interim leader for 11 months, she essentially replaces Elizabeth May as the party leader. May will continue to serve as parliamentary leader. The race had 8 candidates but came down to Paul, considered to be relatively moderate, and Dimitri Lascaris, who was in more of the "eco-socialist" category. Paul won in the 8th round with 12,090 votes versus 10,081 votes for Lascaris. Green Party officials said there were 23,877 votes cast, a 69 percent turnout. Paul, who is Black and Jewish, is the first Black permanent leader of a major federal party. She is only the second Jewish person in that role; former NDP leader David Lewis also had that role. "The other parties are simply out of ideas. They are intellectually exhausted. This is a moment that demands daring, courageous leadership and this is something that we simply didn't see in the last speech from the throne," she said. "I only heard empty words." Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Saturday nights in the autumn mean Hockey Night in Canada. NHL doubleheaders with Canadian teams. Not right now. So CBC is back with more Canadian films on Saturday nights. As we noted on Wednesday, CBC will run Canadian film doubleheaders at 9 pm and 11 pm local time (add 30 minutes in most of Newfoundland) until the NHL season starts up again. CBC television jumped in once the NHL shut down in March to show Canadian films in lieu of hockey. The run of Canadian films was "interrupted" when the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs started up in August. A recap of CBC Saturday night Canadian films in spring and summer 2020 October 3 9p Disappearance at Clifton Hill (2019) 11p I'll Follow You Down (2013) October 10 9p Clara (2018) 11p The Animal Project (2013) Continue reading
Posted Oct 2, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Just because the calendar has turned into October, the weather is still relatively nice. Most schools have been going for a few weeks. A lot of schools start in August, which seemed to be a huge mistake, especially in 2020. Outdoor learning is considered safer during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. Students can spread out and learn in a safer environment. Learning about seeds and growing plants would be a great exercise. A garden would be helpful but most schools don't have gardens. Farmers markets would be a good way to learn about food. Farmers can't be as participatory as they would be outside the pandemic. Students can't touch the food. You could have virtual field trips with students in the classroom doing a video conference with a farm where students can see the process and then ask questions. Continue reading
Posted Oct 2, 2020 at Balance of Food
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Boy that was quick. The Toronto Blue Jays couldn't generate much offence in the 2-game sweep for Tampa Bay. The Blue Jays couldn't generate a hit until the 6th inning of Game 1. Charlie Montoyo went with the "controversial" call to start Matt Shoemaker. Some criticised that Shoemaker only went 3 innings. Both calls seemed fine, especially with the inability to generate offence in Game 1. Alejandro Kirk had a single to right field to break up the no-hitter. The only issue is that Taijuan Walker didn't get used. Hyun-Jin Ryu got 5 outs and gave up 7 runs in Game 2. Only 3 of those runs were earned thanks to the second error of the afternoon for Bo Bichette. Danny Jansen did hit 2 solo home runs for Toronto. Nate Pearson struck out 5 of the 6 hitters he faced in 2 innings in Game 2. Blue Jays went 0-for-13 with runners in scoring position in the series. Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Not sure how Jonny Harris and Still Standing managed to shoot Season 6 this summer during a pandemic. The opening episode will focus on Pelee Island, ON. The CBC television fall lineup is missing the heavyweights but those shows are filming new episodes. Those heavyweights include Murdoch Mysteries, Frankie Drake Mysteries, and Heartland. One pleasant surprise is a TV version of Because News, the weekly radio panel series hosted by Gavin Crawford. CBC will run 6 episodes in the 7 pm Sunday slot starting October 18. 2020 CBC television upfront preview Orangeville Prep has been delayed and is not on the fall lineup. Landscape Artist of the Year Canada will split the late slot on Friday nights with The Nature of Things. Canadian films will pinch hit on Saturday nights at 9 pm and 11 pm for Hockey Night in Canada. We know this time of the year is the Pavlov's dog response to Saturday nights for hockey. The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has thrown us off a lot. CBC will run Short Film Face Off in the early timeslot at 7 pm until Halloween when Absolutely Canadian takes over. Hockey Night in Canada will return when the NHL returns. Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Manitoba, Saskatchewan's eastern neighbour, decided to have its provincial election a year early in 2019. Saskatchewan was the only scheduled province to have a provincial election in 2020. New Brunswick and British Columbia will end up with provincial elections before the October 26 election in Saskatchewan. Scott Moe has been premier for more than 2½ years since February 2, 2018 yet didn't call an early election after taking over for Brad Wall, who was premier from 2007-2018. The Saskatchewan Party is theoretically a mix of former Progressive Conservatives and Liberals. The party definitely is centre-right against the opposition New Democratic Party. Moe currently has 46 seats in the 61-seat legislature, down from 51 seats in the 2016 election. Ryan Meili leads the NDP has 13 seats, up from 10. There are 2 vacant seats in the legislature in Regina. Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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The 2020 Toronto Blue Jays spent the last 10 days hovering in the #8 seed like limbo in the 2020 playoffs. Couldn't catch teams in front of them; couldn't be caught by teams from behind. The team had a chance on Sunday to jump up to the #5 seed and play Cleveland but couldn't get past Baltimore in Buffalo. The reward for the 2020 Blue Jays is 2 or 3 games in St. Petersburg in the worst MLB stadium against the Tampa Bay Rays. By drawing the Rays, Toronto is in the Petco Park section of the bracket. If Toronto can somehow get past Tampa Bay, the Blue Jays will travel to San Diego against Cleveland or the New York Yankees. The San Diego park will also host the AL Championship Series. Toronto hasn't been west of Atlanta since the MLB return. The Blue Jays went 4-6 against the Rays in 2020: 1-2 in Buffalo and 3-4 in Tampa. Those games were early in the season. This feels like a different Blue Jays team right now. Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Andrew Zimmern and MSNBC proved to be a good combination on the What's Eating America series that ran earlier this year. Zimmern took us through how food connects to the issues in American society. The impact on food and issues such as immigration and climate change was covered rather well in depth, especially for television. MSNBC has shown the episodes here and there. Zimmern has also appeared on various shows on MSNBC. Zimmern teamed up with Joy Reid to host Food and the Pandemic: Recipe for Disaster. The show put the ongoing food issues and how the pandemic has heightened these concerns. People waiting in lines for food distribution, often in long lines of cars. Those waiting in their cars in San Antonio for as many as 18 hours before the food bank opened. A lot of those people thought this wouldn't happen to them. Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2020 at Balance of Food
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Forge FC dominated the 2020 Canadian Premier League soccer championship with a solid 2-0 win over HFX Wanderers. The late goal was a fluke but did bring insurance. The Canadian Premier League championship game in Charlottetown was even on Fox Sports 2 in the United States, simulcasting the One network coverage. Recognised Andi Petrillo as part of the studio coverage. Hamilton won't likely have a parade for the winning Forge FC team. Halifax isn't likely to have welcomed the Wanderers with thousands waiting for the plane to land. Like the other sports, the Canadian Premier League set up a bubble, branded as The Island Games at the University of Prince Edward Island in Charlottetown over a 5-week stretch from mid-August to mid-September. The NFL is off and playing, though the league blew off the preseason. College football has been hit and miss, mostly miss so far. The CFL is on the sidelines, choosing not to play. Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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If you are excited about this Canadian TV show called Schitt's Creek, which won 9 Emmys in 2020, you have more options for catching up on the show in the United States. Netflix has the first 5 seasons of Schitt's Creek and will have Season 6 available on October 7. The Canadian TV comedy has a syndication deal starting Monday. Check your local listings. Comedy Central, corporate sibling to Pop TV, will run 5 Schitt's Creek episodes in a row on Fridays, starting October 2. The episodes start at 8 pm Eastern. Pop TV, which has episodes available via its app, will run Season 6 of Schitt's Creek on Sunday starting at Noon Eastern. The documentary runs at 7 pm Eastern. The CW Seed site also has Seasons 1-5 with Season 6 coming to the service on October 7. Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2020 at Canadian Crossing
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Minority governments aren't meant to last but if any minority government was going to last the whole 4 years, the NDP-Greens combo in British Columbia was that government. So why mess with that success and call an early election? Blaine Higgs in New Brunswick had to call an election because his party was in danger of losing control. John Horgan in British Columbia was in good shape with his NDP working well with the Green Party. The BC election will be October 24. "We can either delay that decision and create uncertainty and instability over the 12 months … or we can do what I believe is always the right thing and ask British Columbians what they think," said Premier John Horgan. The British Columbia election would have happened in 2021. The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic is the "reason" why BC is moving up a year. Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2020 at Canadian Crossing