Doug Ford won’t take any paid sick days

But he still might end up on mute

Postponement of an Ontario PC fundraiser on Zoom with Doug Ford came just before the revelation that the premier was isolating after a staffer tested positive for COVID-19—but Ford himself tested negative. Meanwhile, criticism abounds over Queen’s Park rejecting a paid sick leave program, along with other dark tales from the Science Table.


Gym still huffing and puffing

The gym at the scene of a recently active standoff in which a woman went vigorously viral and a cop was suspended for hugging protesters has stayed open for business in Mississauga. Huf Gym is facing four charges for violating closure orders, while two patrons were ticketed. It was also one of the gyms caught exploiting a loophole allowing physical therapy for people with disabilities.


Generation X politicians are hunting for vaccines, just like everyone else. Evidently, there’s no particular privilege in Ottawa for party leaders aged 40 to 55 looking to show off their absence of boomer hubris when it comes to getting jabbed. The demographic vengeance has also coincided with the 30th anniversary of Douglas Coupland’s novel.


Oscars in a dangerous time

Viewership of the Academy Awards is expected to be dismal based on recent trends, but CTV will mostly exercise its Canadian coverage rights without leaving Toronto, given the diminished red carpet. A domestic angle comes from the Halifax filmmaker who co-directed the documentary short A Concerto Is a Conversation who says he’s excited to put on a collared shirt:


Lawrence Gowan is ready to be the first Canadian back on stage. Being a member of Styx comes with demand to play American states least likely to have restrictions in June. Gowan kept busy in his basement north of the border, where large summer concerts will probably take another year.


Finally, total eclipse of Meat

Jim Steinman, the American songwriter who died at age 73, got the first wide airplay for his work on Bat Out of Hell from Toronto radio station CHUM-FM in 1978: His first lyrics for a sequel were then stolen in the city. Bat Out of Hell II was finally recorded 15 years later by Meat Loaf, and Steinman took a rare turn onstage at Maple Leaf Gardens: