Rob Ford Ill While Doug Ford Takes Over Mayoral Race: Does Toronto Lose Out?

Rob and Doug Ford.  Toronto City Council's "Bad Boys".

Rob and Doug Ford. Toronto City Council’s “Bad Boys”.

The Toronto Mayoral Race is in full gear though, Toronto Mayor, Rob Ford has dropped out of the running for the Mayoral position due to his declining health issues.

Ford was admitted to hospital last week with severe abdominal pain in the lower left quadrant.  Tests showed a large tumor in Ford’s abdomen.  After several tests at Toronto’s Humber River Regional River’s Church Street site, Ford was transferred mid-last week to Mt. Sinai Hospital in Downtown Toronto for more intensive care and further testings not possible to be done at HRRH.

Mt. Sinai has done extensive testing on Ford, including an MRI, biopsy of the tumor, lung biopsy while Ford is reportedly in pain, nauseous and vomiting.

Results of the tumor biopsy are reported to be available sometime Wednesday or Thursday of this week and further information will be made available to the public when or if it is deemed by Ford and his family to be appropriate to be released.

Media is camping out by Mt. Sinai Hospital, waiting for word and updates from family members as they enter or leave the hospital.  Most family members are being quoted as saying, Ford is in “ok spirits but, in pain.”

Celebrities have been publicly announcing their well-wishes for the controversial but, “likeable” mayor.  Jimmy Kimmel sent his regards and made an aired statement of best wishes for Ford.

Meanwhile, Ford’s bid for the Mayoral Seat in the upcoming October 27th elections was dropped in a last minute deadline last Thursday before 2 p.m..  This was the election deadline for candidates to officially either drop out of the race or, enter it.

In a twist of events, not surprisingly, Ford’s brother, Councillor Doug Ford, dropped Rob’s name from the Mayoral Race ballot and entered himself in his brother’s place. Doug then, entered Rob’s name in the running as councilor for Ward 2, Doug’s current riding and pushed nephew Michael Ford out of the councilor’s race for that ward. Michael Ford is now set to run as School Board Trustee in another ward.

Doug Ford was not running for the upcoming elections.  It was said that Doug had wanted out of politics to work in the business sector.  He stated in a news conference last Thursday night that it was Rob’s wishes that he run for mayor in his place and Doug followed his brother’s wishes.

While heart-wrenching to see a family in such pain, a mayor who has caused the city a lot of embarrassment world-wide with lies, illegal and distasteful actions, aided by his brother, Doug with cover-ups, everyone hopes that Ford will come through this and get well.  Most hope the Ford Family will stay by the ailing mayor’s side and help him get through this horrific time and to come through this with flying colors.

What is disturbing for Toronto residents are several points about the entire situation with one Ford wanting to drop out, the other wanting to stay but, being ill while another, tries to enter the Toronto Municipal political ring.

The Ford Family is well known for being extremely wealthy.  They are no slouches when it comes to business nor, money.  None of them are going without anything and have a lot of people and resources at their fingertips.  Money is not an object for either of these men nor, are jobs.  So, why is it that the brothers and family are so intent on getting a strong-hold on Toronto in the municipal political arena?

Doug Ford, by far, has much less experience in Toronto politics than his brother, Rob Ford.  With only 4 years under his belt, by comparison to his brother’s 13 or more years, Doug has the disadvantage.  However, it is said that a vote for Doug is a vote for Rob as one cannot separate the two brothers’ politics.  Doug is simply the one with the least scandal under his belt and is thought to be less contemptable than his younger brother, Rob.

However, while the Brothers Ford have claimed to have Toronto’s best interests at heart, a couple of things come to mind.

Firstly, Rob lied to Torontonians and the world, repeatedly about his drug and alcohol usage as well as his affiliation with drug dealers and dealings.  By mid last year, there was little that came out of Rob’s mouth that anyone could believe.  He was later, stripped of his Mayoral duties and left with the title of “Mayor” in name only.  Brother, Doug, backed Rob in all that he said and did, including the lies and, vehemently denied his brother had issues most of that time.  Doug also fought with anyone who said anything against his brother’s wrong-doings to the point of making a buffoon out of himself as well when truths would eventually surface.

Secondly, Doug had made it clear that he did not want to go back into the political ring and wanted out completely to enter the business world.  This fact makes him an “unwilling participant” in the ring as he has stated that he is doing this because his brother “asked him to do it.”  Not exactly the picture of someone who would have the best interests of one of Canada’s largest and most important cities in mind, is it?

Driving that point home is the fact that Doug has stated that his real interests are in his brother’s well being.  While natural, normal and expected by a brother who loves his younger brother, again it is showing that Doug’s heart is not in this race nor, does he seemingly have the drive or focus on being what the city needs most.

It’s obvious to everyone now that Rob is going to need a lot of time to recuperate or, to have treatments if the tumor turns out to be malignant, which is looking more likely by the moment.  Again, while everyone hopes and prays Rob will be ok and make it through this fine and healthfully, the reality is, no one knows yet and, with Rob being so ill, time and attention from Doug will naturally be devoted to his brother’s well being as well as that of his entire family.  How does one run an extremely large and difficult city’s politics and business when his mind, heart and soul aren’t into that role?

Both brothers have also stated that Toronto is where they want their focus to be but, with one sick and likely unable to do his job as even a city councilor for quite sometime to come and the other brother, worried about his brother’s well-being and perhaps, life…it is not likely that either of them will be able to fulfill either role successfully nor, with the amount of dedication it takes to do those jobs.  How fair is that to the city or themselves?  It appears more self-serving than anything else.

With their nephew, also now entering the Toronto political ring, it seems that the Fords are simply out for a monopoly in Toronto City Hall for their own agendas rather than what is best for the city, itself.

From my little corner of life, I think it would be best for all concerned, if both Rob and Doug were to sit this one out and wait to see what happens.  However, the saga continues with the focus still on the Ford Family’s business rather than on city politics. If nothing else can be said about the Ford Family brothers, it’s that they know how to draw attention to themselves and, that may be the shame for Torontonians in this Ford Circus.

Watching The News Can Make Our Lives Feel Worse

Have you ever been having a bad day, week, month or year and been watching the evening news, only to find yourself feeling even worse than you were already feeling?  Is it little wonder that it does that to us?

I mean, who needs to come home from a hard day’s work, feeling worn out, cruddy and tired, only to turn on the news and hear what else cruddy has happened in the city you live in or the world? 

What worse way can you end your day and go to bed with visions of disaster, leaping through your head?

Or, how about the idea that you already feel anxious or down and turn on the news to hear that there’s been a stabbing in one end of your city, a shooting in the other end, there’s a war going on in several countries simultaneously and by the way, your property taxes, utilities and the cost of your vehicle gas are all going up next month?  

Now, doesn’t that just want to send you off to a restful, peaceful sleep?

Is it any wonder why we all feel stressed in the first place with today’s fast paced world and all that happens in it?  Does it come as any big surprise that we are feeling more anxious, more depressed and that antidepressants are being prescribed by doctors like candy to many of the population, even though not many want to admit to taking them?  

One piece of advice is to avoid listening to or reading the news.  However, that’s not easily done when the talk around the water cooler the next day is about all that was heard in the news the day before or, you suddenly are faced with your boss who wants to know what you think about the most recent event on every news channel as light chatter and you have no clue what they’re talking about.  How foolish do you feel at shrugging your shoulders and saying, “I didn’t hear about that.” 

Maybe, I’m a dreamer and maybe, I’m not facing reality but, why is it that the news can’t contain good things, nice happenings just as much as the bad?  Is our world that bad that there isn’t any good happening in it?  Of course not.  

Good happens but, bad sells.  That’s the bottom line.  People tune into the news to hear the bad.  There seems to be a morbid fascination with hearing all of the ails of the world so, the media works fairly solely on that premise.  The more of it we watch, the further their ratings shoot up and the more they’re going to cover of it.  

What if people were to boycott the news?  Not that it will happen but, let’s suppose for just one moment that we were to all turn off the news channels, turn off the radio news stations, stop buying newspapers and start watching more Big Bang Theory or re-runs of Friends, instead of the news?  What if we were to turn off our radios the moment we heard the latest traffic news and listened to music instead?  What if we were to all do this for a period of time until new producers got the idea that the world isn’t all bad and good things happen all of the time too?  What if the sponsors of the news got the hint that they need to report a mixture of both the bad and good instead of the lopsided stories that they report on?  

Of course, there will always be those who will say, “but, I love the news before I go to bed and can’t go without it.  I don’t want to hear the good.  I want to hear reality.”  

Reality is, that there is good that happens in this world.  We just don’t seem to care about it as much as we do about the tragedies, fighting, negativity, death, murder and everything else that we listen to in each newscast.  

I, for one, have turned off the news more often now.  I still want to stay informed but, I also want to balance it out so that it’s not so negatively affecting my mind on even a subconscious level.  Instead, I turn the radio to music.  I turn the tv to some comedy.  I read the articles and commentaries in the newspaper that capture my interest with new revelations instead of the regular news reports in the papers.  I simply wish to balance it out a bit more. 

If we were all to start doing a bit more of that type of thing, the sponsors and news channels might get the idea that it’s not so appealing to not report the good that happens.  At the least, we will be more balanced within ourselves.  At least, that’s the way that I see things from my little corner of life.  I may be alone in that corner but, it’s my corner and I’m sticking to that. 


Infamous Toronto Mayor Rob Ford In Hospital With Abdominal Tumor

Rockin’ Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has been lambasted with several things in this past week.  The latest came today when Ford was hospitalized in Toronto’s Humber River Regional Hospital, having gone in for abdominal pain.  A CT scan has diagnosed a tumor in his abdomen, lower left quadrant.  A biopsy is to be done through a colonoscopy it’s been reported. No one knows for sure but it’s expected that the tumor is one of the colon.  It’s also unclear what size it is at this time.  

Doctors and Rob Ford’s brother, Councillor Doug Ford, have said that they don’t know whether it is malignant or, if it is, whether it has spread.  They will be doing tests to figure that out in the next couple of days.  It may be the end of this week before we know but, Ford is said to be in “good spirits”.   

The Ford Family has asked for their privacy while they await further diagnosis and figure out what needs to be done to treat it.  

Speculation about whether Ford will continue on with the re-election campaign is on hold until the outcome of these tests are found out.  

Late last week, Ford was subpoenaed to testify at the “Sandro” Lisi extortion trial that is coming up likely after the elections are done next month, possibly as late as next Spring.  

Lisi was Ford’s friend and an occassional driver for Ford.  Lisi was charged with extortion when he allegedly attempted to retrieve the videos that surfaced in May of 2013 of Ford smoking crack.

Up until this point, Ford has allegedly, refused to co-operate with police in answering questions about Lisi’s involvement in the extortion for the tapes, his interactions with the Dixon City Bloods and his involvement, if any, in trying to recover the crack video.

Something stinks in all of this but, it seems that Ford has bigger fish to handle before this legal matter becomes an issue. It seems that the last few days have been one hell of a ride for the tarnished and trouble-plagued Toronto Mayor.  

Whether one is a Ford Lover or a Ford Hater, we all wish him well.  No matter what else he may have done or not done, he deserves to be well and not ill.  At least, that’s the way that I see things from my little corner of life.  

Joan Rivers’ Passing Wasn’t Really A Big Surprise A Week After Her Cardiac Arrest At Age 81

Comedienne Joan Rivers and daughter, Melissa.

Comedienne Joan Rivers and daughter, Melissa.

In all reality, for those who had been closely following this story for a week, it came as no huge surprise that comedienne Joan Rivers had passed away at the age of 81 on Thursday September 4, 2014  at 1:17 p.m..  It was however, a shock on August 28th to hear that she had gone into cardiac arrest and had stopped breathing during what should have been a routine endoscopy/minor surgical procedure at a New York endoscopy clinic which resulted in her being put into a medically induced coma in hospital about a mile away from the clinic.  

With daughter, Melissa aged 46, only giving a few brief details of her mother’s status except to say that she was on Life Support and in a medically induced coma, thanking fans and the public for their prayers, it appeared to be showing that there were some really big concerns right from Day 1.  Doctors had speculated that Rivers likely had sustained some level of brain damage from the lack of oxygen and the amount of time that she may have been without it which would have led Rivers to be either in a vegetative state, neurologically impaired or, possibly not making it through this at all.  

As the days went by and the news was simply that she was still on Life Support and in a coma and daughter, Melissa kept saying only that her mother was in serious/critical condition then, thanking people for their prayers, it was becoming clearer that Rivers wasn’t likely to be able to go on living without Life Support.

Rumors abounded in the news with speculation fueling much of what had been printed and talked about in the media. There was talk of her being brought out of her coma during a 2 day process, the family suing the endoscopy clinic, assessing brain damage and, the inevitable…the decision that she might have to be disconnected from Life Support as she had made it clear that she didn’t want to live if she had any type of severe physical disability and couldn’t live life actively or independently.  

Then, came the news a day or so ago, from Melissa Rivers that her mom had been moved from ICU to a private hospital room but, was still in a coma and still on Life Support and was being “kept comfortable”.  Alarm bells were set off by that move and statement.  It told a lot of us, without saying it outright, that the comatose, ventilated comedienne had been moved to a private room so that the family and close friends could gather to say their “good-byes”.  

While no one has officially yet said that daughter, Melissa had made the very heart-wrenching and difficult decision to disconnect her mother from Life Support, one can only assume now that it had been the case.  

In looking back at the past week, it was likely that family and close friends were given the news that Rivers’ status was dire at the point of admittance to hospital.  It was likely within a couple of days that doctors had done their assessment of Rivers’ brain status and had determined that it was unlikely that Rivers could make a full or even remotely close to a near normal life again, if at all.  

While rumors swirled about Rivers being brought out of the medically induced coma then, put to rest by sources close to the family who had stated not to believe what was being said in the media, it is more plausible to believe that either doctors had attempted to lighten the level of coma she was in to assess her brain’s status or, that they had already assessed that there was little or no chance of her ever coming off of Life Support and surviving it.  It’s purely speculation but, it seems more apparent now that doctors had given Rivers no chance of a recovery as damage to her brain was simply far too great.  It may have hit that status as early as the first day or two of her having been hospitalized.  We don’t know at this moment for sure, one way or another.  

What is clear is that even through speculation only, Rivers couldn’t have lived on with any sort of life beyond simply an “existence”, if at all.  It appears more conceivable that Rivers change from being in ICU to a private hospital room was the final hours of the comedienne’s life.  She was likely already “gone” at that point in spite of some lower level brain activity that couldn’t have sustained her most primal bodily functions.  

Having gone through this with a couple of my own family members, it’s with great empathy that I write this piece.  I know the difficulty of having to make such a decision as we tend to want to cling onto hope for some miracle.  Our tendency is to deny what we are being told by doctors and hold onto that hope.  It is only after days of exhaustion and watching the mechanical movements of our loved one’s body’s chest through machinery that we slowly come to the conclusion, as difficult as it is to do, that we must allow them to go.  

I remember watching my brother’s chest, rising and falling with the machinery doing his breathing for his body.  His brain had long since ceased to be able to sustain breathing on its own.  He appeared to simply be sleeping, if you could overlook the machinery, tubing and other equipment that draped across his body.  Long after doctors had said that there was no hope, we had watched him as though he was simply asleep and would wake up at any moment to ask us what we were all doing, staring at him.  It was in the wee small hours of the moment and out of pure exhaustion that I finally came to the realization that everything we had known him to be, was no longer there within his body.  The only thing that gave that appearance was the ventilator that kept his chest animated as though breathing on his own.  He wasn’t breathing on his own.  His brain lacked any ability to keep him alive and going, let alone returning to any sort of life.  Life Support does a number on loved one’s minds, in spite of the doctors’ total certainty and assurance that he wasn’t really “there” anymore.  

As the tributes to Rivers pour in, clips are shown over and over again on every news channel and remembrances are given by other celebs as to their “deepest condolences on her loss”, we must remember that Rivers had lived a full and long life. Her passing was one that we all hope for.  She simply went to sleep under anesthesia and never knew another thing.  She was in no pain.  She didn’t suffer a horrid, agonizing death that some have had to endure.  She simply “went to sleep” and didn’t wake up for all intents and purposes.  

It’s hard to see the clips of an extremely young looking and energetic Rivers and fathom the fact that she was, in fact, 81 years of age.  What our eyes are seeing, just don’t compute in our brains to the fact that she was the age that she was. She looked better than a lot of 50 year olds.  However, let’s not forget that the myriad of plastic surgeries and cosmetic procedures she had done during her life, kept her “forever young”.  Had she not gone through the cosmetic surgeries and procedures, she might have looked much older than she did.  She may well have aged well and still looked younger than her chronological years but, we will never know.  Much like the psychological effects that the Life Support machine has upon our minds, Rivers’ plastic surgeries have also done a job on our psyche with her age.  In fact, Rivers had lived quite a long and active life.  For the most part, it is only made more sad because she was still so full of life and at a high point in her life’s career.  It was tragic in the sense that it didn’t have to happen.  It was an accident or a mistake or something gone terribly wrong in a routine procedure that has caused her death.  It wasn’t because she had been ailing for some time…at least, not that we know of at this point in time.  An autopsy may show differently if there is one to be done.  There has been no mention of that at the time of writing this piece.  

There is an investigation going on toward the endoscopy clinic in which Rivers had suffered the cardiac arrest and cessation of breathing.  Medical authorities and law require such an investigation be done.  What will come out of this is anyone’s guess at this point in time.  It is possible that nothing wrong was done and that Rivers had some underlying, un-diagnosed condition going on or, it could be that there was some sort of accident or negligence that had happened.  Only time will tell us the story behind this.  

As the world mourns her loss and sends their well-wishes or prayers for her family, there is one thing that I’m fairly certain of being true.  With Robin Williams and Joan Rivers both being gone from this earth, Heaven must be one hell of a funny place to be right now.  At least, that’s the way that I see things from my little corner of life right now.   



Joan Rivers Has Passed Away

News reports that comedienne, Joan Rivers has passed away “peacefully, surrounded by family and friends” this afternoon at 1:17 p.m..   

More to follow when details become available.  

Joan Rivers Still in Coma But Moved To Private Room From ICU

As a quick update, besides daughter, Melissa’s thanks for prayers for her mother again, the news seems to be that Rivers has been moved from her ICU room to a private room but, is still in a coma.  

The reasons have not been explained for this move but, reassurance that her mother is “resting comfortably” were given to the public by Rivers’ daughter, Melissa on Wednesday morning.  

Nothing further was said, leaving it wide open to more speculation from both media and the professionals they will hire or bring in to analyze this silly again and more rumors to be spread.

If I were a betting gal, I’d speculate that all that can be done, has been done and she is stable enough to have moved to a more private room, possibly in an ICU capacity with full time, one on one care but, I’m not a betting gal.  

From my little corner of life, this isn’t looking like a “good sign” but, then again…we don’t know right now what or whom to believe anymore.  It’s a “wait and see” type of situation.   


Justin Bieber Needs A Good Old Fashioned Spanking As A New Charge Is Placed On His Record

Twenty year old, Justin Bieber just can’t seem to stay out of trouble.  He’s been at it again this past weekend and now has 2 more charges, assault and dangerous driving.  

These latest charges came about as The Beebs was out on an ATV on Friday afternoon, reportedly with on and off again girlfriend, Selena Gomez riding the back saddle.  Reportedly, Bieber not only collided with a minivan but allegedly, assaulted the driver in the aftermath of an altercation between himself and the driver of the minivan. 

Justin Bieber riding ATV that collides with a minivan last Friday and leaves The Beebs with 2 more charges against him.

Justin Bieber riding ATV that collides with a minivan last Friday and leaves The Beebs with 2 more charges against him.

Though police were called on scene on Friday, Bieber was charged on Monday and turned himself in at a nearby police station near Stratford, Ontario and is said to be co-operating with police.  

The pop star is no stranger to legal issues.  This latest charge is just one of several, reports CBC News. 

  • In January, Bieber was charged with assault in Toronto in connection with an incident involving a limo driver at the end of last year. He turned himself in at a police station in downtown Toronto.
  • In July, Bieber pleaded no contest to misdemeanour vandalism and had to pay $80,900 in restitution to a neighbour whose house was egged in Calabasas, Calif. He was sentenced to two years’ probation.
  • Last month, a case was resolved in Florida, where Bieber had initially been accused of street racing. He pleaded guilty to lesser charges and was required to take an anger management course, make a $50,000 charitable contribution and to pay court fees.
  • Reports emerged this summer alleging Bieber had been involved in an altercation with actor Orlando Bloom at a restaurant in Ibiza, Spain.

What is clear is that Bieber is now coming dangerously close to being a threat to his own and perhaps, others’ lives now. His actions are no longer that of a teenager gone wild.  He is clearly at the point of being out of control with both his judgement and his temper and, could result in himself or someone else being killed.  It is no longer an eye-rolling, sighing situation whereby, we say, “there goes The Beebs again!”

Stars who became too famous, too wealthy and too free, too young can’t seem to handle the responsibility that comes with it.  Bieber is just one of a string of young celebs who have gotten out of control and are running foot-loose and fancy-free throughout North America, seemingly feeling as though they are above the laws or, that money can buy them the best lawyers and get them out of their jams.  This time, it involved a collision where both he and Gomez could have been killed. Worse than that, Bieber didn’t know who would leap from that minivan and what could ensue from Bieber’s temper tantrum.  

While Bieber has stated that he does have problems with paparazzi, he doesn’t want to end up like Princess Diana.  Yes, well, he’s slowly becoming dangerously close to that potential and if he isn’t somehow reigned in by his father or mother or someone in authority, we could see another Lindsay Lohan on the world’s hands.  One of them is going to get to the point where someone is going to get seriously injured or possibly even killed.  

From my little corner of life, it is seeming more and more like Bieber needs to be put over someone’s knee and spanked some sense into him.  Although he’s 20 years of age, this kid has gotten a little too big for his britches.  Someone needs to bring him back to earth before he or others get seriously hurt or killed.  Better Beibers behind than someone losing a life.