Justin Trudeau’s beard: not available for comment

Dispatches from the first day back

A shock of salt-and-pepper facial hair shared by Justin Trudeau’s official photographer, Adam Scotti, during the first day back at work after two weeks in Costa Rica, led the Canadian Press to ponder the new look as reflective of a “more businesslike approach.” But it’s really just speculation: the PMO didn’t respond to media inquiries about the scruff.


Pierre Poilievre is on the air

Who wants to be Conservative leader?” asked Paul Wells, just before the revelation that MP Pierre Poilievre would announce his bid, with John Baird as campaign chair. So, there’s no better time for an anonymous attack quote to be turned into a meme. The party will choose its new leader on June 27 during its convention in Toronto.


Vincenzo Guzzo is the new Kevin O’Leary. The current Dragons’ Den cast member, who built his fortune on the family cinema business in Quebec, reportedly plans to follow through on plans to run for federal Conservative leader. The last time this was tried by someone from the show, it led to a lawsuit over campaign financing rules.


Listeria can’t catch this cake

Given how the story of the boy who had no friends show up to share his Toronto Maple Leafs birthday cake worked out so well after it was shared by his dad, a bakery that apparently botched a request to make a “Maple Leaf” logo topper was bound to elicit over 1,500 shares on Facebook. The marketing of cold cuts never had it so good:


A nation whose news outlets report on a new breakfast cereal. Timbits will soon take the form of balls of sugar in a box, produced by Post. This spoonful of Tim Hortons journalism diverted attention from the news that its president Alex Macedo is stepping down in March, after fallout from the chain’s failure to sell many Beyond Meat burgers.


A real small-town bringdown

Just as the newspaper in Lancombe, Alberta, posted a scheduled tweet about how owner Postmedia closed its office last March in favour of remote work, its staffers were joining a conference call during which they were told that it’s all over now for its Globe:


CBC’s licence renewal is now being politicized. Conservative MPs are firing up attention to the CRTC’s invitation for public comments on proposals like shifting Canadian content obligations to digital platforms. (The scheduling aesthetic of CBC Television never got as much coverage as it did for a recent airing of Home Alone 2.)


Finally, a world beat goodbye

Ken Shaw anchored his final newscast for CTV Toronto—a one-off 2020 appearance that allowed him to claim six decades in that seat—before handing his job off to CP24 fixture Nathan Downer. The threat of “fake news” was lamented in Shaw’s farewell: