Poking the politicians who fled the country

Rod Phillips among others unmasked

Signs calling for the resignation of Rod Phillips accompanied his New Year’s Eve return from St. Barts and the end of his stint as Ontario’s finance minister, resulting in a quick swearing in for Peter Bethlenfalvy. But this quickly became just one of the tales of Canadian politicians leaving the country for trips after pushing pandemic precautions.


Together in their hype house

After Ontario MPP Gurratan Singh shared an Instagram video of him with brother Jagmeet, the NDP leader’s office explained that they now live together. But travelling to Greece resulted in stripped critic status for NDP MP Niki Ashton. Liberal MPs Kamal Khera and Sameer Zuberi resigned from roles due to their recent trips to the U.S.


Mike Harris has been appointed to the Order of Ontario. And the timing was met with reminders that the former premier is currently the chairman of Chartwell Retirement Residences, a recent fixture in reports about COVID-19 outbreaks. Harris’s legacy is also tied to the 1995 Ipperwash crisis. (Mike Jr. is a current Ontario PC MPP.)


The long tail of particular Arts

Art vs. Art was the name of the 1982 Toronto mayoral campaign of Deanne Taylor, whose Hummer Sisters performance art project was widely remembered following her death on December 15. Meanwhile, concurrent Vancouver counterculture has a date with the establishment whenever Art Bergmann picks up his Order of Canada at Rideau Hall:


Meet The Musician Turning Random Internet Drama Into TikTok Bops.” Montreal artist Lubalin was aspiring to get serious attention prior to a late December pivot to TikTok clips inspired by boomers fighting online. The move resulted in tens of millions of views for a clip on a house rental inquiry and more for one about broccoli casserole.


Finally, the longest last note

Toque is the Canadian rock cover band fronted by Todd Kerns, the veteran vocalist of multiple other acts, which so far has released two albums remaking familiar radio hits. The pandemic brought on the group doing video chats with some original performers, like Freddy Curci of the band Sheriff, to coincide with the Toque take: