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Fairmount Park: Phase One isn’t over yet

Danica was over at the community centre yesterday and was surprised to see a water pooling on the newly regraded playing field.

The puddle was still there today, but smaller, after a breezy, sunny day.

“Yup,” said a community centre employee. “Exactly where it always was.”

Phase One of the park improvement included “new drainage lines, irrigation, regrade”. The pipes are under the new sod.

Women in the Walls

Danica and I missed some of this mural activity while we were away at Anna’s wedding. It’s catch-up time.

Neighbour Marietta Fox said hello while I was snapping the massive mural up the side of Udupi Restaurant. She showed me to the next one, down the lane, behind Eulalie’s.

There are many more new ones for me to find … all done by women. Monica Wickeler is leader of the pack. She opens the Youtube video below.

Corley construction updates

Rob and Josh appear to be right on schedule, building their house on Corley. October was to be stucco month and there it is, going on. [Blog history]

The other place on the street I’ve been following is the one I call the Corley Half House. It’s been nearly two years since occupants of both sides of the semi-detached homes had to be evacuated. A basement-lowering mishap on the missing side necessitated complete removal of that side. The other side remains standing, but still empty.

At last, there is evidence of activity on the site. Cleaning up the foundation will be interesting. Shortly after the initial collapse, a crew was called in to pour 4 feet of concrete through the basement windows, to stabilize things before the compromised side was completely torn down. Workers said everything in the basement … furnace, appliances, etc., would be encased. Now, I guess it all has to be dug out … carefully.

October diversity in the Bazaar

Owners of the new Indian Rasoi restaurant in the Gerrard Street Bazaar deserve recognition. We expect an Indian restaurant to celebrate Diwali, but they give Halloween a nod, too.

I laughed when I walked past the trick photo in the Rasoi window. Sweet innocence from one angle, traditional tacky Halloween horror from another. Count Dracula also hangs from the storefront sign light.

For some Bazaar reason, there was a small Gerrard Street Diwali celebration on Saturday night, October 14. A bit early, isn’t it? Never mind. Halloweeners jump the gun by weeks.

Several enthusiastic Diwali dancers didn’t let light rain stop them. Here they are, around 9:00 p.m. in the blocked-off street in front of the Ashdale Library,

What’s in a name?

We have this little etching by Gordon Kit Thorne hanging in our hall. It is called Siwash Rock and represents a landmark off Stanley Park in Vancouver.

I remember hearing that the name Siwash was derogatory, but never knew in what way until this week. Apparently siwash is a corruption of the French word sauvage (savage in English). Myth had it that the rock represented a figure on an Indigenous man. The name Siwash is clearly offensive, once you know what it means.

I’m not sure whether or not Siwash Rock has a new name today, but I came across the etymology when I was following up on a story about the Toronto District School Board’s removing the word chief from various TDSB job titles in deference to feelings of Indigenous people.

That the word chief could be offensive had never occurred to me. Its use predates European contact with First Nations people, but leaders of Indigenous groups have been called chiefs. I thought chief just meant head, as in Head of State. In Canada, that would be the Queen of England. Maybe if we called her the Chief of State, she wouldn’t like it.

Singular or plural?

The other day, I watched a policeman in a TV interview say that officers had searched a premise. Why did I think the word was premises?

I looked it up. Premises refers to a building and the land it stands on, hence two things. Plural.

There is a singular use for the word premise, of course. It is a proposition used as the basis for a conclusion or action.

Here’s my favourite definition of conclusion:
It is the point at which we decide to stop thinking.