WHEN IT COMES TO MEDICINE, THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO HAS AN IMPRESSIVE RECORD

  1. – Discovery of INSULIN
    2. – First electronic heart PACEMAKER
    3. – Discovery of STEM CELLS
    4. – First single-lung TRANSPLANT
    5. – T-CELL receptor gene
    6. – Discovery of genes responsible for the early onset of ALZHEIMERS
    <PHOTO ABOVE – St. George Campus, University of Toronto, in the foreground; Downtown Toronto in the background.>

RENTALS HAVE NOW TOPPED THE LISTINGS ACCORDING TO THE TORONTO REAL ESTATE BOARD

Rental listings in the city have more than doubled as Airbnb drops. The number of condos for rent has driven up the market numbers for units of all kinds and sizes. It’s nirvana for negotiators. Year-over-year rented condos increased by 30% – 14,036 new leases were signed, as opposed to 34,971 new condo rental listings.Rents for one-bedroom units have dropped more than 11% to $2,012 monthly, down from $2,262 in the summer of 2019. Rent prices for bachelors, two-bedroom and three-bedroom condos also fell. – Canadian Press, October 24/2020

THE ROYAL ONTARIO MUSEUM, WITH HELP FROM ALLAN & HELAINE SHIFF, FACES CLIMATE CHANGE

ALLAN SHIFF, 83, first focused on environmental causes in 2006. In 2020 the Shiffs donated $1.5-million to The ROM, Canada’s largest museum. Their goal was to create an endowed climate-change division, and that’s what’s happening. Environmental programming is already on the calendar, making this probably a world’s first among major museums. <above photo by Melissa Tait>Allan Shiff to Kathryn Blaze Baum of The Globe and Mail – “I was not interested in seeing an exhibition where people come and say, ‘Wasn’t that fascinating?’and then go home and forget about it. The project must involve citizen engagement. To do nothing is a very dangerous thing.” ‘The Cloth That Changed The World: Art and Fashion of Indian Chintz’ is already on, until September/2021.This exhibition highlights the worldwide impact of India’s textiles and the finely tuned techniques used to create luxurious pieces. They revolutionized art, fashion and science wherever they went around the globe, connecting cultures, inspiring imitation and, quite literally, changing the world.

BARRY MANILOW AND ME – WE’RE BOTH IN SELF-QUARANTINE & WE’RE BOTH SEVENTY-SEVEN

BARRY MANILOW is a singer, songwriter, actor and producer. I’m not any of those things, but we do have self-quarantine in common. Says Barry – “In the first couple of months I was OK with it. I’m in that 70-year-old world, so I won’t want to tempt fate. But as time has gone on, it’s been rattling all of us. Restaurants are closed, theatres are closed, movies are closed. There’s nowhere to go.”Barry continues – “I’m lucky that I don’t live in a one-room apartment. I used to when I was younger (Barry was in a Brooklyn slum; and your’s truly in a studio on Eglinton Avenue East in Toronto). I know that plenty of people are living in one room. After all these months it must be very difficult to play by the rules.” – Barry Manilow’s Bubble, NYT, October 18/2020.As for me, during this ongoing lockdown: both the city and the house have never looked so clean; ‘torontosavvy’ needs everyday attention; I’ve written two personal books; we spent 14 summer afternoons doing driveway talks with friends and neighbours. They supplied their own wine and we set out the tables and chairs; I made good use of Kanopy and its huge collection of free movies; got my haircut twice; exercised and walked often; had one of the best gardens ever; broke in my new camera; looked forward to reading ‘Toronto Life’, the Globe and Mail, and the Sunday NY Times; became a regular e-mail correspondent; and I kept up-to-date on what’s happening south of the border. (That would be enough for two quarantines). Indeed, there’s misery all around us, but look on the brightest side possible. As Barry Manilow puts it – “I suffered for all of you. None of you need to suffer anymore.” <PHOTO – Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto – Mirvish Productions>

TORONTONIANS WERE THEATRE-GOERS IN 1912 – THREE THEATRE PAINTINGS BY FREDERICK VICTOR POOLE

<FREDERICK VICTOR POOLE seems to have painted every significant building in TORONTO. These three begin with DEERING’S THEATRE, Front Street East at Scott Street, 1912><THEATRE ST. PATRICK’S STREET, north of Pullan Place, 1912 ><THEATRE ROYAL, King Street West, east of York Street, 1912.  All of these paintings are from The Baldwin Collection of Art, Toronto Public Library.>

HIDDEN TORONTO – SOME MEMORABLE SURPRISES YOU JUST MIGHT ENCOUNTER

Like many cities and towns TORONTO has its share of unique, hidden stuff well worth a look.  <ABOVE – An East End mural><The Terra Cotta House, 20 Jerome Street><The final resting place of famed pianist Glenn Gould in Mount Pleasant Cemetery. Mr. Gould was buried beside his parents.><The infinity swimming pool on top of the Thompson Hotel, 55 Wellington Street West><Highway 401 pedestrian overpass><Canada’s largest pipe organ, Metropolitan United Church, Queen East at Church Street><Ryerson University’s secret garden off Gould Street, close to Yonge><Interior of the Native Family Services Building on College Street><One of those unique TORONTO houses><And it’s a city near water – sometimes too much>

HER MAJESTY ENJOYED A RARE OUTING, AND DONALD TRUMP CONDUCTED A THOUGHTFUL ZOOM

QUEEN ELIZABETH II visited Porton Down on Thursday, October 15/2020, and surprisingly she wasn’t wearing a mask. I’m certain everyone in that room was checked for the virus before Her Majesty entered. Front Page – THE DAILY MAIL, October 16/2020.Donald Trump zoomed thoughtfully with his base . . . . editorial cartoon by AISLIN (aka Terry Mosher), The Gazette, MONTREAL, October 16/2020.

‘THE ONE’ IS THE NAME, AND IT ’S OCCUPYING ONE OF THE BEST LOCATIONS IN DOWNTOWN TORONTO

‘THE ONE’ is a skyscraper under construction, which will turn out to be the tallest building in Canada.Designed by the U.K.’s Foster + Partners, with developer Sam Muzrahi, the building will rise 1,014 feet (85 storeys), and occupy a large piece of prime real estate.The total cost for the property is reputed to be about $1-billion, and as of September/2020 75% of the apartments have already been sold.The first 18 storeys will include restaurants, event spaces, two major retailers and a luxury Hyatt hotel under the Andaz brand. The retail portion is scheduled to open in 2020. The residential section will have a total of 416 units. Four penthouses will be included, along with four storeys of parking underground. The structure will connect with the Bloor-Yonge subway station and the underground walkway system – a smaller version of TORONTO’s PATH network.<ABOVE – a rendering of how this building will dominate the Bloor-Yonge intersection.>