Wednesday, June 23, 2010

minor shake up

So there's something else to finally talk about apart from all the G20 nonsense. There has been a noticeable increase in police presence around town, and today, there was a minor earthquake. Well, 5.5 isn't minor but by the time it travelled from Ottawa to us, it was fairly just a tremor, which I didn't even notice as I was out on the streets when it happened. And I had thought I had moved away from all worries about earthquakes!

Interesting that we were then sent information at the firm about the quake. I guess they were concerned that people may have panicked thinking that protesters had gotten out of control or something. That was followed by an email on what to do in an earthquake. I guess practicing for it is really not something that is done here... thank goodness it was a minor one. Most people probably really wouldn't know what to do if this had been a major event. But at least it made the front story of the news sites instead of stories about schools shutting down for the G20, or the G20 survival guide - what not to wear - Look too business-like and you might be paintbombed. Dress like a militant protester and you run the risk of being tear gassed. The city is already becoming a ghost'll be nice when things go back to normal.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

g20, gee whiz

If there hasn't been any criticism of how the government has been spending our tax dollars, it's coming out now. Thanks to the G20 being hosted in such a busy downtown core, half the city will be shut down, including my firm's office, which is on the perimeter of the 3 meter high fencing. The insane amount of money (pegged at $1.2 billion so far?) they are spending to host this summit just boggles the mind. I'm sure they could pay for a subway twice over, and there would be no need to put in place the HST.

In any case, as it is, the CN Tower is closing, as are the AGO, two theatres (Royal Alexandra and Princess of Wales), the Rogers Centre (the Jays game is being moved to the US), along with most major banks. They are shutting down the underground PATH, and even the University of Toronto and the legislature are closing due to fear of protests getting ugly. They have already begun erecting fencing 3 weeks in advance, and started removing garbage bins and taping large clear plastic bags to lamp posts instead. Classy.

If you're still interested, check out these very entertaining stories - it would be funny, if it wasn't so maddening. G20: Closed for Business and From Megacity to Ghost Town: Toronto Powers Down for G20 Really, what better way to show off the city? I particularly like the fact that are encouraging Torontonians to get out of the city that weekend.