A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Archive for December 2017

[PHOTO] Twelve photos of the last day of Eliot’s Bookshop (#eliotsbookshop)

Eliot’s Bookshop was a bit crowded on its final day of operation, all books going for $C 1 each. It is testament to the store’s inventory that it remained as full as it is now. With this store’s departure, a key node of Yonge Street will be gone for me and many others. After I paid for my last purchase, I made sure to thank the owner for his business’ many years of operation.

Last day at Eliot's (1) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (2) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (3) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (4) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (5) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (6) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (7) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (8) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (9) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (10) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (11) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Last day at Eliot's (12) #toronto #eliotsbookshop #bookstore #usedbooks #yongeandwellesley

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2017 at 11:00 am

[PHOTO] Rosedale, for Flickr’s Your Best Shot 2017

Rosedale #toronto #rosedale #ttc #subway

After due consideration, I selected the above photo–“Rosedale”, shared by me on my blog in August in the post “Rosedale in evening”–as my submission to Flickr’s Your Best Shot 2017. I liked the shot’s composition and the colour, and so did Flickr. So: here it is.

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2017 at 8:00 am

Posted in Photo, Toronto

Tagged with , , , , ,

[PHOTO] My best nine of 2017 (#2017bestnine)

My best nine of 2017 #2017bestnine #instagram #photos #toronto #montreal #montréal #shakespeare #cats

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2017 at 5:00 am

[CAT] Shakespeare, meowing in the morning

Shakespeare, meowing in the morning #toronto #dovercourtvillage #shakespeare #catsofinstagram #caturday #cats #catstagram

Written by Randy McDonald

December 30, 2017 at 10:30 am

Posted in Photo, Toronto

Tagged with , ,

[NEWS] Four space science links: Mars, RZ Piscium, Alpha Centauri


<li>Could it be, as one theory <a href=”https://www.universetoday.com/138117/maybe-mars-earth-didnt-form-close/”><U>suggests</u></a&gt;, that Mars did not form in the same area of the young solar system as Earth and Venus?</li>

<Li>RZ Piscium, a young star 500 light-years away, is eating its planets. CBC <a href=”http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/stars-eating-dead-planets-1.4462088″><U>reports</u></a&gt;.</li>

<li>Universe Today <a href=”https://www.universetoday.com/138120/astronomers-figure-new-way-search-planets-alpha-centauri/”><U>links</u></a&gt; to a paper indicating upper limits for planets at Alpha Centauri. Earth-like planets orbiting A and B are still possible.</li>

<Li>The kilonova behind GW170817, detected in galaxy NGC 4993 earlier this year, is thought to have produced a black hole based on X-ray emissions. Universe Today <a href=”https://www.universetoday.com/138101/kilonova-neutron-star-collision-probably-left-behind-black-hole/”><u>reports</u></a&gt;.</li>


Written by Randy McDonald

December 24, 2017 at 5:00 pm

Posted in Assorted

Tagged with

[URBAN NOTE] Five world cities: Madrid, São Paulo, New York City, Jakarta, Ottawa and Montréal

  • This is a nice study of the life of some Latin American migrant communities in Madrid, over at the Inter Press Society.
  • Gentrification has driven the techno music of São Paulo from its haunts. VICE’s Noisey reports.
  • This New York Times study examining some potential fixes for the New York City subway system is illuminating.
  • Jakarta is particularly vulnerable to flooding, as a city at sea level facing subsidence. National Geographic reports.
  • Are home prices in Ottawa and Montréal starting to ascend sharply in the manner of Toronto and Vancouver? GLobal News reports.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: June Rowlands, Sidewalk Labs, L Tower, race in schools, TTC

  • The Toronto Star pays respect to the late June Rowlands, Toronto’s first female mayor.
  • Google’s Sidewalk Labs project, intended to remake Quayside, is already resulting in jobs–in New York City? MacLean’s reports.
  • The flooding at the L Tower downtown sounds terrible. The Toronto Star reports.
  • Race, unsurprisingly, remains a significant divide in Toronto schools. NOW Toronto reports.
  • The TTC is increasing bus service on the Dundas and Carlton routes to compensate for Bombardier’s failure to deliver. CBC reports.

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • Anthro{dendum} examines the politics and the problems involved with accurately representing the history of Taiwan to the world.
  • Centauri Dreams notes a paper suggesting not only that it is possible for a pulsar to have a circumstellar habitable zone, but that the known worlds of PSR B1257+12 might well fall into this zone. (!) D-Brief also looks at the topic of pulsar planets and circumstellar habitable zones.
  • The Crux reports on how some students are making the case that robotic cricket farming could help feed the world.
  • Dangerous Minds shares some Carlo Farneti illustrations for an edition of Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal.
  • Cody Delistraty writes about the last days of a Paris store, Colette.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes that an infrared search for Planet Nine, using WISE and NEOWISE, has turned up nothing.
  • JSTOR Daily talks about how the spectre of “white slavery” was used a century ago, in the United States, to justify Progressive reformers.
  • Language Hat reports on a former diplomat’s efforts to translate the traditional poetry of Najd, in central Saudi Arabia.
  • Language Log takes a look at the ways in which zebra finches learn song, when raised in isolation and otherwise.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money argues in favour of putting up new monuments, to better people, in place of old Confederate memorials.
  • Marginal Revolution links to a paper suggesting that the food desert effect is limited, that if poor people choose not to eat healthy foods this relates to their choice not to a lack of options for buying said.
  • The Planetary Society Blog reports on China’s interest in a Mars sample return mission.
  • Seriously Science reports a paper claiming straight women tend to prefer to get dating advice from gay men to getting it from other women.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel makes the point that, without much more funding for NASA, there is going to be no American return to the Moon.
  • Window on Eurasia notes that Tatarstan will no longer be providing Tatar inserts for Russian passport users, a sign of Tatarstan’s drifting towards the Russian mainstream.

[URBAN NOTE] Six links about GTA transit: Bombardier, Line 1 expansion, Scarborough, York Region

  • As Bombardier announces further delays, Metrolinx announced it was halving the number of Bombardier cars it was planning to buy. The Toronto Star reports.
  • It’s a shame that the TTC didn’t figure out a way beforehand to deal with the potential for misuse of the new art installation at Pioneer Village station. The Toronto Star reports.
  • Might the NDP stop the feckless Scarborough subway expansion? One can hope. Martin Regg Cohn speculates in the Toronto Star.
  • I substantially agree with Christopher Hume’s argument in the Toronto Star that, though the Line 1 expansion is beautiful, it should not have been the first thing the TTC built. (Downtown Relief Line, say?)
  • Transit Toronto notes how York Region Transit is adapting to the Line 1 extension.
  • Tricia Wood at Torontoist takes another look at the exceptionally regional nature of commuting, with relatively few commuters crossing municipal boundaries.

[BLOG] Some Saturday links

  • Anthro{dendum] considers drifting on roads as an indicator of social dynamism, of creative reuse of road infrastructures by the young.
  • Bad Astronomer Phil Plait shares photos of the Christmas Tree Cluster, a portion of NGC 2264.
  • Centauri Dreams notes how the strange polar orbit of GJ 436b indicates the presence of a neighbouring exoplanet so far not detected directly.
  • Crooked Timber considers the import of perhaps racist codings in children’s literature.
  • D-Brief examines how NASA is trying to quietly break the sound barrier.
  • Bruce Dorminey suggests building a Mars-orbit space station makes sense for us as our next major move in space.
  • Hornet Stories shares the story of queer male Lebanese belly dancer Moe Khansa and his art.
  • Language Hat notes how one student made substantial progress of decoding the ancient khipus, knotted string records, of the Incan civilization.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money makes the obvious point that opioids actually do help people manage chronic pain effectively, that they have legitimate uses.
  • Allan Metcalf at Lingua Franca talks about some of the peculiarities of English as spoken in Utah.
  • Noah Smith at Noahpinion argues the disappearance of the positive impact of college on the wages who drop out before completing their program shows the importance of higher education as a generator of human capital, not as a simple sort of signal.
  • The NYR Daily looks at some particularly egregious instances of gerrymandering in the United States.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer examines the origins of street violence as a political force in modern Argentina.
  • Roads and Kingdoms looks at the Seoul neighbourhood of Haebangchon, “Little Pyongyang,” a district once populated by North Korean and Vietnamese refugees now becoming a cosmopolitan district for people from around the world.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel notes the origins of the atoms of our body in stellar catastrophes detectable from across the universe.
  • Strange Company notes the case of Catherine Packard, reported dead in 1929 but then found alive. Whose body wasit?
  • Towleroad reports a study suggesting same-sex relationships tend to be more satisfying for their participants than opposite-sex relationships are for theirs.
  • Window on Eurasia notes how a Russian Orthodox group is joining the fight against Tatarstan’s autonomy.