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City, Food, Media

HumpDay Headlines - February 21, 2007

Posted by Cat / February 21, 2007

Simcha_Title_Pic_Lo.jpg(Photo from Ezra Soiferman's blog)

Welcome to Today's News - Ash Wednesday Special Edition. Today's theme? Ash. And bad segues.

In honour of Ash Wednesday, Environment Canada has issued a smog warning for the Montreal region. Possible causes of smog at this time of year? Wood stoves. And political hot air.

Plenty of that these days. As you read this, there is a good chance that Premier Jean Charest has already ashked the Lieutenant Governor to dissolve the National Ashembly and has called a provincial election. The Charest government presented a showy budget yesterday, but the real budget of consequence in this election will be that of the Feds'. Budgets, plus the personality-bashing between provincial party leaders, will likely define this election campaign. We ashk our readers: what issue do you think will define the coming provincial election? Or do you even give a rat's ash?

I bet you'll care about this, though. Chateauguay police have busted a major marijuana grow-op on the South Shore. The street value of the marijuana is estimated at $5 million and the equipment is worth at least $200,000. "It was a very professional installation," Detective-Sergeant Benoit Perron enthused between tokes. Hmmmm... smog warning, eh?

With, ahem, "supplies" in jeopardy, you may find yourself in need of a new addiction. Loto-Quebec wants to help. After pulling video lottery terminals (VLTs) from bars and restaurants, Loto-Quebec has decided to concentrate VLTs in so-called "gaming centres" at hippodromes, conveniently allowing those who play the ponies to effectively triple their chances of developing a gambling addiction. A report by the provincial Health Department says the detrimental effects of this decision could be ashtronomical.

Better to spend your hard-earned dollars at the local Rona hardware store and help them reach their fourth-quarter target profits. I use the term "hardware" loosely; you know what I mean if you have ever tried to shopping at the Rona at the corner of Parc and Bernard. Rona blames climate change as one of the reasons for falling short of Q4 targets, citing a slump in the sale of seasonal items such as snowman-emblazoned barbecue cozies, and assorted gauzy gew-gaws to bedeck your halls. Can I just get some hardware, please? I'm all set for ash-awful non-slip tub decals; if, however, I simply need some 1 1/8 inch drywall screws, I'm, well, ... yeah.

In Today's Food Section, learn about the culture and cuisine of the Gashpe coast as four chefs from the region bring their talents to the Montreal High Lights Festival. Taste Gaspesian seafood specialties at Le Castillon of the Montreal Hilton Bonaventure, this Thursday, Friday and Saturday. If you're more in the mood for some pashta and red sauce, immerse yourself in the NY Times Italian memoire, complete with meatball slideshow! Or perhaps local vegetables are more your dish. MP's John MacFarlane dishes up food for thought in The Gazette's six-part series on how Montrealers eat. Despite yesterday's suggestion to substitute pineapple for salmonella-tainted cantelope, MacFarlane says these might be out too. So's salami. Does this leave you in a pickle about what to eat? Work up an appetite at tomorrow's screening of "Posthumous Pickle Party" at the Rendezvous du cinema quebecoise festival. A celebration of Simcha's, Montreal's quirk, and all things pickle. Music by so-called. Screens Thursday, Feb. 22, at 7:15pm at Cinema ONF, 1564 Saint-Denis (metro Berri-UQAM).

Other Cities: Toronto