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By a casual count, there are at least 19 items in the TPL catalogue with the title “Catherine the Great.” Why revisit this subject so often? She’s fascinating, is why. Catherine and her reign sit at the nexus of East and West, of profoundly religious and Enlightenment thinking, of rule... Continue reading
Posted Mar 3, 2020 at Toronto Reference Library Blog
What is human resilience? The term keeps coming up in different contexts - mental health, climate change, social welfare. In fact Toronto has its own resilience office. It isn't always easy to predict the qualities that guarantee resilience. How do you build it into a human being, a city, a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2019 at Toronto Reference Library Blog
Daniel comes to North York Central Library's Creation Loft several times a week to work on sewing projects. He might mention that he's working on a costume, but it's a piece here, a piece there. So when he offered to bring one of his costumes in the following week, we... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2018 at North York Central Library Blog
Maybe you've heard the Great Lake Swimmers song "Your Rocky Spine" — a kind of haunting love story about land, water and the glacier-scraped Canadian Shield: Floating over your rocky spine The glaciers made you, and now you're mine... For some of us, making or even reading maps holds a... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
There was a dark side to the story of John James Audubon. To draw the beautiful birds that he was obsessed with painting and cataloguing, he killed many of the birds. Sometimes he killed more than one of the same species to be able to capture the detail that he... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2018 at Local History & Genealogy
I was reading Willa Cather’s wonderful novel, O Pioneers!, and musing about a world that I have no direct experience of . . . farming. Without such prompts, city folk like me perhaps don’t think much about farming. I fall into lazy notions of a bucolic world where adorable cows... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2017 at North York Central Library Blog
Tim Falconer, who is among the statistically tiny percentage of people who are completely tone deaf, loves music. This puts him into an even tinier percentage of that tiny group. One of the things that sets Falconer apart, again, is that he's chosen to address his musical shortcomings by trying... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2016 at North York Central Library Blog
"I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me -- like food or water." -... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2016 at North York Central Library Blog
Let’s grapple for a moment with another of the universe’s eternal puzzles. Is there life elsewhere, besides here on earth? Neil deGrasse Tyson at NASA says that “most astrophysicists accept a high probability of there being life elsewhere in the universe, if not on other planets or on moons within... Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2016 at North York Central Library Blog
Mr. Stephen Biggs is a self-described fig pig. He seems to have been born to the role, suited as his name is to his vocation (at least if you like rhymes). But what is it that draws a man to a fruit tree with such passion and commitment? He isn't... Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2016 at North York Central Library Blog
Thanks for this Carolyn. A useful package of information for delightful small packages of joy.
Toggle Commented Apr 2, 2016 on My Grand Plans at North York Central Library Blog
1 reply
The Human Genome Project finished mapping the three billion-or-so chemical base pairs that make the how-to-build-a-human instructions code in 2003. It was a monumental step. But of course each human’s code is unique, and the difficulty of “reading” the genomic map means that in some sense this was just the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
Canada is a country that thrives on immigration. So there are systems in place to help immigrants move into their new lives in Canada as easily as possible. In fact, new changes in immigration processes (some of them controversial) allow skilled and highly educated immigrants to be “fast-tracked” into Canada... Continue reading
Posted Sep 8, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
Sometimes, it is just what you pay attention to. Ever wondered, for example, how people saw the constellations – shapes of bears, hunters, scorpions, while we see undifferentiated masses of stars? That is if we’re lucky enough, here in the well-lighted city, to see the stars at all? photo credit:... Continue reading
Posted Aug 21, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
As baby boomers approach old age, and as we’re living longer, topics like brain health and prevention of age-related cognitive decline are making headlines, but also a matter we come across in our personal lives. The brain is at the centre of everything we do, who we are, what we... Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
The happy appointment of William Robins to the Victoria University (UofT) presidency had me thinking about the value of storytelling in different kinds of settings. For Robins, storytelling and humanities are the subject of his medieval studies research, and how he sees his mandate as a champion of the cultural... Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
...whether intricately prepared or straight from the freezer, whether from the backyard garden or shiny supermarket. The dudes at my dog park talk pork recipes, my sister has inordinate pride in her pie crusts. Tomorrow (Feb. 12), is the last day of Winterlicious, the Toronto festival that allows us all... Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2015 at North York Central Library Blog
Thanks LC. In some sense, it appears they always were. Just that science is catching up with intuition?
1 reply
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Jan 6, 2011