Google in Toronto’s Streets, and a Focus on Food: Canada Letter

Google in Toronto’s Streets, and a Focus on Food: Canada Letter

R. Fishell from Toronto wrote, “I am a skeptic of Google, social media and the end of the separation of personal and public spaces,” but added, “I am in favor of letting the experiment proceed as well as encouraging all the public discourse with its resident messiness to evaluate what works and what doesn’t.”

While Sidewalk’s plan eclipses in scale and scope everything that came before it, the idea of using data collection and analysis common in the digital world to shape the physical world is not unique to the company or its sibling Google. The federal government is running a “smart cities” competition that will give out millions of dollars to local governments looking to reshape their communities through the “use of data and connected technology.”

Let’s continue the debate. Please send your thoughts about shaping cities by marrying the virtual and physical worlds to

Read: City of the Future? Humans, Not Technology, Are the Challenge in Toronto

Canada Dines

To begin the new year, The Times’s Food department will turn its collective gaze to Canada. Starting toward the end of next week, articles and recipes from Canada will appear online. The print version of the Food section on Jan. 17 will be devoted to Canada and will include a piece about butter tarts. (My great failing as a Canadian is that I have no taste for them.)


The Montreal restaurant owner David McMillan will join Sam Sifton, The Times’s food editor, in a discussion.

Yannick Grandmont for The New York Times

We’re also holding two related events. On Jan. 16, Sam Sifton, the food editor, will lead a public conversation in Montreal with David McMillan, the restaurant owner best known for Joe Beef. Last year Prime Minister Justin Trudeau dined with President Barack Obama at Mr. McMillan’s neighboring restaurant, Liverpool House.

Anyone who has read Mr. Sifton’s recipes, food stories or his Cooking newsletter knows that he has eclectic interests, strongly held views and a deep knowledge of cooking. Mr. McMillan, whom I interviewed last year, has all of that but delivers it at an even higher volume. It won’t be a dull evening.

The event is at 7 p.m. and will be across the street from Joe Beef, at the Corona Theatre. Go here to buy tickets and, at the prompt, enter the code NYTCooking. That will take $5 off the $25 price.

The previous evening, Jan. 15, will find Mr. Sifton at the University of Toronto’s Isabel Bader Theatre. There, he’ll be joined by David Sax, a Times food writer, and some of Toronto’s Syrian chefs and restaurateurs.

Their talk will the followed by a reception featuring Syrian food.

Tickets for the Toronto event can be purchased here. They are $30 but Canada Letter readers can chop off $10 with the code Cooking.

Workplace Abuse

Much of the reporting about workplace sexual harassment and the abuse of power by men has focused on the entertainment industry.


Albert Schultz stepped down at Toronto’s Soulpepper Theater after a lawsuit accused him of sexual misconduct.

Chris Young/The Canadian Press, via Associated Press

That was certainly the case this week in Canada. Albert Schultz resigned as the artistic director of Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre Company after four actors filed a lawsuit against him and the theater. Mr. Schultz has said that he intends to “vigorously” defend himself.

But most people have jobs in far less glamorous fields. And in the blue-collar world, women must often deal not only with supervisors but also with co-workers who are harassers.

Women who work at Ford Motor Company plants in Chicago told their stories to Susan Chira and Catrin Einhorn, herself a Chicago native. A powerful union and an employer with sophisticated human resources policies offered them little protection. Ford recently settled sexual and racial harassment cases at the two factories for $10 million.

Read: How Tough Is It to Change a Culture of Harassment? Ask Women at Ford

Read: The #MeToo Moment: Blue-Collar Women Ask, ‘What About Us?’

Read: Toronto Theater Company Leader Steps Aside Amid Harassment Suits

Read: Toronto Theater director Resigns Amid Sexual Misconduct Accusations


Watching’s recommendations for Netflix’s January offerings in Canada include “Carol,” an adaptation of a Patricia Highsmith novel starring Cate Blanchett, and “Cars 3,” a rare appearance of a Disney film on the streaming video service.

Read: The Best Movies and TV Shows New on Netflix Canada in January

Centre Ice

Johnny Bower, known for his wall-like abilities in goal, has died. Decades after his retirement, he remained one of the most popular members of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

—Ken Dryden, another former N.H.L. goalie, spoke with The Times about his crusade to change hockey’s approach to concussions.

Don Cherry, perhaps the most polarizing celebrity in Canadian hockey, says he’s evolved in his television commentary.

Trans Canada

—Dan Levin delved into Party World KTV, an outpost of an Asian karaoke chain that “looks as if a wedding-cake-inspired U.F.O. had just landed” in Richmond, British Columbia.

—Joshua Boyle, the Canadian who was held hostage along with his American wife in Afghanistan for five years, was arrested in Ottawa and faces 15 criminal charges.

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