Sunday, June 11, 2023

Sunday Salon (Toronto's Doors Open)


St. Lawrence Hall, Toronto


I finished Balzac's Cousin Bette. I should have a post up soon.

I also finished Vaclav Smil's Numbers Don't Lie. A friend strongly recommended this, and he was right. Smil was a Czech emigré (he got out after the 1968 invasion), got a Ph.D. in Geography, and is a professor in Environment at the University of Manitoba (now emeritus). The book is a collection of columns he wrote for Spectrum, the IEEE (engineering society) magazine. 

Pretty fascinating stuff, with both useful and surprising numerical observations. Useful: the thing we can do that's fastest and surest to help with global warming is improve insulation. Surprising: it's now the Spanish who east the most meat per capita in Europe. (Though after our trip to Spain a couple of years ago, maybe that doesn't surprise me all that much.)

Occasionally a little too contrarian, but fun, interesting, and a surprisingly easy read.

Doors Open

Toronto has a festival
Of things architectural
So I hopped upon my bicycle,
Prepared to travel cyclical...

First, formerly industrial,
Now with music experimental.
(Inside unphotographable...)

Array Space, now home for electronic music

Next up, a location nautical,
Watching the Lakes for the piratical! (well, not really...)

HMCS York, the Canadian Naval Reserve base in Toronto

The captain was there to show people around

It also was a location musical:
(Still rhyming? Surely it's not possible!)

Now it's on to the aeronautical:

For emergencies that are medical,
Ontario has helicopters Orangical
To rescue you from locations difficult.
(Plus mono-rhymes? C'est ridicule!)

Ornge [sic] emergency transport helicopter at Billy Bishop Airport

For emergencies that could be terrible,
(But won't be!) the airport has vehicles
Where you might wear head-gear protectorial:

The airport fire station. These would not actually fit me, but they were popular.

Skyline view from the airport, which is on an island in the harbour.

End of Saturday (calendrical).
Now Sunday (weather still unproblematical!)

First up, a reopened venue musical,
(A repeat rhyme! Error rhythmical!)
Once visited by a wife prime-ministerial,
Partying with a band diabolical.
Open again, after a renewal structural.


El Mocambo or El Mo. The sign looks like the original, but was remade.

The rebuilt stage. The old sign was saved, but moved inside.

Photo of the Rolling Stones at El Mo. El Mo's a bit touting their glory days, but don't we all...

And I may have spent some time there myself back in the day. Just not with Sir Mick...

And lastly, it's St. Lawrence Hall
(For picture of inside see above this all.)
A place for things oratorical,
Once talked at by a figure royal.

Done at last? Oui. C'erait la grande finale!

Anyhoo...Toronto has this event, Doors Open, where sites that aren't usually open to the general public are for one weekend. I go see several things pretty much every year. I should have written this post last weekend, but I've been a lazy blogger of late... 😉

How was your week?

Linking up Sunday Salon at Readerbuzz:


  1. I'm now on the wait list for Numbers Don't Lie, but it will be weeks before the book arrives.

    Thank you for opening some doors for those of us who couldn't actually stop in for Doors Open Ontario. On my only visit to Toronto, twenty years ago, I was delighted with the feeling of freshness and aliveness I saw in the city. Your rhyme is charming...thank you.

    1. Numbers Don't Lie is popular at my library, too, and I'll need to return it this week. But it's an interesting one.