New York Region Braces for ‘Extreme’ Blizzard

New York Times 

Mattel Inc. boss resigns on falling Barbie sales

The head of toy maker Mattel Inc has resigned abruptly in the face of the continuing decline of sales of the firm's toys. The most critical problem has been the lack of interest girls are showing in the Barbie doll. Despite efforts to make Barbie relevant, sales are declining.  It will be up to Mattel board member Christopher Sinclair to serve as interim CEO. The company has launched a search for a permanent leader. The Wall Street Journal says that tattlers at Mattel attributed the slide to a growing focus on the numbers and overseas expansion at the expense of the company’s creative side. The company’s executives became entangled, it is said,  in a culture that valued endless meetings and long PowerPoint presentations. Meantime, Barbie incarnations as everything from a firefighter (right) to an architect did not increase her popularity. So sorry, Barbie 

Economy and terrorism on Commons agenda

Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivered a campaign-style speech near Ottawa yesterday in advance of the new Parliamentary session Monday (January 26, 2015). He told supporters the government’s planned anti-terror legislation would be introduced Friday and will include “a range of measures … to keep Canadians safe.” “These measures are designed to help authorities stop planned attacks, get threats off our streets, criminalize the promotion of terrorism and prevent terrorists from travelling and recruiting others.”  The PM also defended said he will proceed with balance the budget and bring in his vote appealing family tax benefit package announced last fall. His challenge will be be to do these things in the face of very changed conditions caused by the oil glut and falling dollar. 

Airlines cancel 4,360 flights in face of U.S. storm

Airlines have reacted to a major snowstorm that's expected to slam parts of the Northeast U.S. today and tomorrow by cancelling as many as 4,360 flights. It's expected that all major airports in this region will be closed Tuesday.

Anti-austerity Syriza party wins Greek election

It's hard to tell if any of  the tweets at hashtag Syriza are from along the Danforth or elsewhere in Canada. But they run a wide gamut of opinion in the wake of the victory of the anti-austerity Syriza party in Sunday's General Election. Mainstream reporting is fearing the worst. Greece will be a basket case in a Europe that is falling apart. Some Greek-Canadians interviewed by CP24 took a calmer view. They said Syriza's tough-talking leader Alexis Tsipras will never be able to legislate his way out of the fiscal requirements set by the EU. Syriza's standing with 78 percent of the votes counted is 149 parliamentary seats but 151 seats are needed for a  majority. Syriza has 38 percent of the popular vote. Yossi Gestetner ‏@YossiGestetner said Syriza can oppose austerity, "but if no one lends you money austerity it is." A number of tweets took the view that Greeks have nothing to lose. Rok Zavrtanik ‏@RokZavrtanik tweeted  "I can't stand media that keep talking about the radical left. Is it radical to care more about other ppl than about your pocket?"

Deflate Gate now defunct on YouTube

Saturday Night Live covered the soft football story. The video has now been taken down from YouTube which is the SNL practice

Tapped phone "proves" Kremlin did market attack


Old schedule for South Leaside bus in 1943

Click to enlarge
The amateur historical site on Twitter known as Toronto Transportation @transittoronto has published an enjoyable bit of printed material which it says records the first time buses ran along the South Leaside route. Take a look. It was not really the South Leaside route as it's been known since the subway was built but it may have been the first time the TTC used the name. In fact, many other buses ventured into Leaside during WWII to get workers to their jobs. The routing is fairly sensible but the printer may have missed a turn since he leaps from the "southbound Laird" to  "south-west on Sutherland." There was probably a brief block on McRae Dr. and then a left onto Sutherland. The buses ran every 15 minutes so the schedule was fairly leisurely. The TTC could probably do it with just two buses. It is interesting that a rider could get a transfer to take the Broadview bus, which we're guessing ran south on Laird and across the valley by whatever kind of bridge was there before turning south on Pape and east on O'Connor to find Broadview.  

Enjoy the sunshine but by golly bundle up

Stabbings this morning near Carlton and Church

Four people were attacked and three of them received stab wounds when a man in his 50s went on a rampage near the Mattamy Centre (MAC) Sunday morning about 8 a.m. Police say those stabbed are in hospital and will recover. The fourth person, a woman, was able to stave off the attack. The location is outside the former Maple Leaf Gardens at Church and Carlton Streets.
This helpful picture tweeted by Marielle Torrefranca shows the crime scene directly in front of the old MLG marquee. Ms Torrefranca just happened to be inside a walk-in clinic at this location when the attacks occurred.