Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Spartacus: Gods of the Arena Starts Friday January 21st at 10pm on Starz

If you're like me, then you've been counting down the days until the Spartacus prequel, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena starts on Friday, January 21st at 10pm.

Here are some details about it from the official website on Starz.com:

The House of Batiatus is on the rise, basking in the glow of its infamous champion Gannicus, whose skill with a sword is matched only by his thirst for wine and women. These are the times a young Batiatus has been waiting for. Poised to overthrow his father and take control, he’ll freely betray anyone to ensure his gladiators are in the highest demand. And he’ll have his loyal and calculating wife Lucretia by his side for every underhanded scheme, drawing on the brazen talents of her seductive friend Gaia when it counts. Together, they will stop at nothing to deceive the masses, seize power, and bleed Capua dry in this audacious prequel to “Spartacus: Blood and Sand.”

Premiering, January 21 “Spartacus: Gods of the Arena,” the highly anticipated prequel to “Spartacus: Blood and Sand,” tells the story of the original Champion of the House of Batiatus. Joining returning stars, John Hannah (The Mummy, Four Weddings and A Funeral) as Batiatus, Lucy Lawless ("Xena: Warrior Princess") as Lucretia and Peter Mensah (300, The Incredible Hulk) as Oenomaus, will be additional cast members Dustin Clare (“Underbelly”) as Gannicus, Jaime Murray (“Hu$tle”) as Gaia and Marisa Ramirez (“General Hospital”) as Melitta.

Here's the official trailer #1 from the Starz YouTube Channel:

Spartacus Blood And Sand: Liam McIntyre Takes Over For Andy Whitfield

Nobody can truly replace Andy Whitfield as Spartacus. He has been entrenched in the minds of all hardcore Spartacus Blood and Sand fans as the true original Spartacus for the series. But given his recent medical issues (the return of his non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma), Andy has regretfully pulled out of the series, and now his successor has been chosen, and that successor is Aussie Actor Liam McIntyre.

I looked around to find anything done by McIntyre previously, and I found a couple of YouTube video clips/trailers with some of his previous work.

Here's one of them below for your viewing pleasure:

Scarborough's Pho 88 Offers "Pho Sate", The Best Soup in Toronto!

Scarborough's Bamburgh Circle hosts the best Pho restaurant in Toronto, Pho 88. There are other Pho 88 restaurants around in Toronto (like on Spadina and etc.), but if you are looking for absolute Pho perfection, the Pho 88 located at 325 Bamburgh Circle, Scarborough is your best bet.

Especially on bitter cold days like today, there is nothing more soothing and comforting than a large hot bowl of Pho Sate from Pho 88. Pho Sate, a spicy concoction of thinly sliced Beef, rice noodles and green onions in a spicy hot beef broth, is just so addictive, I find myself drawn to Pho 88 even on the hottest days of the summer!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Super Mayor Rob Ford Saves Toronto From 10-cent TTC Fare Hike!

When announcing the proposed 2011 Budget for Toronto, Mayor Rob Ford painfully acknowledged that the TTC would be raising its fares by 10-cents in order to fulfill its bugdetary requirements, but Ford promised to do everything he could to stop the hike.

Leftist rags like the Toronto Star crucified Ford, saying that he had removed a burden from Toronto Motorists and put that burden on the TTC ridership, essentially declaring a war on transit (SOURCE: Budget: Drivers’ gain is riders’ loss), not to mention completely dismissing his claims that he was absolutely against the fare hike.

Well, after 1 day, Rob Ford announced today that the proposed 10-cent TTC Fare Hike has been scrapped, as the City found the money it needed to avoid it.

Wow, what a difference between Super Mayor Rob Ford and Useless former Mayor David Miller. It truly is refreshing to have a Mayor who actually cares about the Toronto taxpayers and who actually gets results.


PS:  For those who are interested, the artwork of Super Mayor Rob Ford used above was taken from the following YouTube video:

Screenshot from YouTube Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8rVVPUuB8Q&feature=related by RobFordToronto

City Manager Pennachetti Smugly Jokes about 10-cent TTC Fare Hike?

Yesterday Mayor Rob Ford announced the proposed 2011 Toronto Budget which unfortunately for Toronto TTC riders included a 10-cent TTC fare hike (something that Ford is adamantly against).

But hey Torontonians, at least you can be happy to know that your City Manager, Joe Pennachetti, selected by your former Mayor David Miller and his leftist regime, feels smug enough to joke about your plight in being squeezed for yet another 10-cents per ride from Toronto's horribly incompetent TTC.

Here's the story from the Toronto Star:

Monday, January 10, 2011

TTC Union & Dalton McGuinty to Blame for 10-cent TTC Fare Hike!

Torontonians are upset, Mayor Rob Ford is upset, and even TTC Chair Karen Stintz is upset, and everyone is looking for someone to blame for this proposed 10-cent TTC fare increase that is slated to begin on Feb. 1st, 2011.

Well, before you TTC riders pull out your pitch forks and torches and march down to Mayor Ford's Office in City Hall, you should first look to the TTC Drivers, TTC Ticket Collectors and countless other over-paid (and mostly useless) TTC workers who are given salaries and benefits that compete with those of Doctors and Lawyers, and far surpass the salaries of far more important roles in our society like Teachers and Nurses.

You should also look to your Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and his Minister of Transportation Kathleen Wynne, who decided not to provide Toronto its desperately needed Provincial operational funding for the TTC (SOURCE: CBC.ca: No money for TTC this year: McGuinty).

You definitely have every right to be angry about the fare hike, but make sure that you direct your anger at the right people.

Mayor Rob Ford put a mandate out there to reduce City Department Budgets by 5% across the board, and instead of making the necessary sacrifices (just as Mayor Ford did with his expense budget, and City Council did with their Expense Budgets), TTC Staff decided instead to increase TTC fares by 10-cents. I'm not surprised... After 7 years of the former Mayor David Miller regime babying, spoon-feeding and hand-holding the TTC Staff and their Workers Union, how can they even begin to understand what words/phrases like budget, reduce, sacrifice and respect for taxpayers even mean?

Remember, Mayor Ford asked for them to cut their budgets -not increase TTC fares. That was proposed by the TTC Staff.

Here's the story from the Toronto Sun:

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Toronto Transit City Supporters Barely Gather 100 People For Protest...

Toronto City Councils' Leftist poster boys, Councillors Adam Vaughan and Gord Perks, pulled together all of the 100 people who support Transit City, and they had a cute little protest today at City Hall against Mayor Ford's subway plan.

Vaughan, who is fresh off his latest gravy run to the Netherlands for the Walk21 conference on pedestrians (with expenses sent to Toronto taxpayers of course. See: Toronto Councillors Vaughan & Carroll Continue To Reach For the Gravy...), and Perks, who I guess could care less about the situation his constituents in Roncesvalles are going through with their version of the St. Clair Streetcar Right-of-way disaster (see: Roncesvalles project drags on), apparently don't mind wasting time trying to gather people for a cause that no more than 100 people cared enough about to support on Sunday, not to mention defying the majority of Torontonians who voted for Rob Ford and therefore supported his plan kill Transit City in favour of subways.

Here's the story from the Toronto Sun:

Saturday, January 8, 2011

jackandcokewithalime Celebrates First Birthday!

One year ago on January 8th, 2010, jackandcokewithalime's First Post was published to the world. 12 months and 291 posts later, jackandcokewithalime now celebrates its first birthday after a very interesting year in Toronto and the world.

At the beginning, there was only a faint hope & dream that one day someone would read jackandcokewithalime (if you build it, they will come), and now jackandcokewithalime enjoys the readership of people across the world! From Canada and the United States, to the UK to France, Germany, Poland, Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland, Norway, Denmark and Italy, to Russia, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Japan, South Korea, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore, to New Zealand and Australia, to Greece, the UAE, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Cyprus and Egypt, to Brazil, Mexico, Chile, and Puerto Rico, to Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda, and it goes on and on. jackandcokewithalime has been honoured to host readers truly from all over the world.

Here are some interesting website stats from jackandcokewithalime's first year:

Councillor Minnan-Wong's Bike Lane Plan the Result of Power Madness?

Now that Rob Ford is the new Mayor of Toronto, he has finally allowed some of Council's more right-leaning Councillors opportunities to lead the various City Departments. And though that's a great thing for Toronto and Toronto taxpayers, sometimes you see some City Councillors do stupid things that can only be the result of them going mad from their new found power.

The Councillor I'm referring to in this article is Ward 34 Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, a Councillor that campaigned on stopping tax increases and ending the war on the car, but now proposes ignorant ideas for Bike Lanes that will cost Torontonians a fortune and only increase traffic congestion.

Here's the story from the Toronto Star:

Toronto Councillors Vaughan & Carroll Continue To Reach For the Gravy...

Former Toronto City Councillor Bill Saundercook, former Toronto Budget Chief and current City Councillor Shelley Carroll, and Toronto's left-wing council leader Adam Vaughan, all partied-it-up in the Netherlands on the Toronto taxpayers' dime, showing once again that they have no problem shamefully continuing to reach for the "gravy" after Torontonians expressed their anger at the gravy train in the last municipal election.

All 3 of these scumbag former and current Toronto left-wing politicians supposedly attended the Walk21 Conference in the Netherlands on Pedestrians (???), and had no problem submitting for reimbursement for expenses incurred from this outrageous and useless trip.

Here's the story from the Toronto Sun:

Baby Boomers Will Revolt Against McGuinty Liberals in 2011 Ontario Election

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty's irresponsible Green Energy policies have hurt all Ontarians, but Baby Boomers are one group that even Premier Dad shouldn't mess with, and sadly now for him (and luckily for all Ontarians), he will feel the Boomer revolt that is coming in the 2011 Provincial Election.

Here's the story from the Toronto Star:

Dalton McGuinty's Energy Policy Costs Ontario 1680% Extra for Electricity!

Ontario is living in an Energy Cost Nightmare thanks to Premier Dalton McGuinty and his Liberal Government.

McGuinty's green policies have put Ontario in agreements with foreign conglomerates like Samsung, where Ontario ends up paying 84 cents a kilowatt hour for energy when energy only costs 5 cents a kilowatt hour. That's 1,680% more for energy, folks! That is not a typo!!

Here's the story from the Toronto Sun:

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

TEA & Pembina Inst. LRT Reports Incorrectly Based on Unfunded Lines...

Earlier today, reports released by the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA Transit Map) and the Pembina Institute (Making Tracks to Torontonians) were going around Toronto blasting Mayor Rob Ford for pushing for subways as opposed to the planned Transit City LRTs, making outrageous claims about how the LRTs are better for Toronto, and how they will be far more efficient in terms of the number of riders they will serve, and all kinds of green-related benefits of the plan.

Well, news is now coming out that both the TEA and the Pembina Institute's numbers/figures were completely inflated, and included LRT lines that have not been funded by Metrolinx and Dalton McGuinty's Ontario Government, and in fact they have no plans whatsoever to fund those lines in the future.

Here's the story from the Globe and Mail:

Toronto Police Relax Taskless While Murder Clearance Rate Plummets?

If there is one thing that I disagree with Mayor Rob Ford about, it would be the usefulness and efficiency of the Toronto Police.  Rob Ford has always been a very strong advocate of the Toronto Police, and being the Mayor of Toronto, I can understand why that is so important. But in reality, the Toronto Police have many, many issues that need to be dealt with, and it is Toronto families and Toronto taxpayers who end up suffering while these issues remain.

The Toronto Star released a story today from former Toronto Mayor John Sewell in regards to the "gravy" in the Toronto Police budget, and he mentions many of the inefficiencies that exist that can be tackled for savings.

Here's the story from the Toronto Star:

Study: 5% of Canadians Expect to Retire On Lottery Winnings!

Scotiabank conducted an email survey of 1,011 Canadians from October 14th, 2010 to October 25th, 2010 regarding how people are planning for their retirement, and one interesting finding was that 5% of Canadians are expecting to have retirement money come from the lottery!

5% of Canadians!!

Can you believe that so many of us are depending on lottery winnings for our retirement?? Talk about just imagining, you know what I mean?! (I know, that was horrible...)

Here's the story from newswire.ca:

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Grooveshark.com's Free Online Music Streaming Service is Amazing!!

Grooveshark.com, a free online music repository and music streaming service, allows its users access from anywhere to almost all of the music available out there in the world (whether under Major Labels or Independents), and provides an interface for users to build their favorites and playlists, and also for Artists to upload their music to be discovered by the world.

One of our readers forwarded a link to Grooveshark to us today and suggested that if we liked it, we inform all jackandcokewithalime readers about it as it truly is gold. Well, I'm happy to report that we did try it, and we do love it, and we're happy to share this with all of our readers, though this really is one of those treasures that I would usually keep on the low... ;)

Metrolinx CEO Bruce McCuaig in Denial about Eglinton Crosstown LRT...

“Ladies and gentlemen, the war on the car stops today . . . Transit City is over,” Ford told reporters Wednesday. “We will not build any more rail tracks down the middle of our streets.” “The war on the car is over and, all new subway expansion is going underground,” Ford said. (SOURCE:
‘War on the car is over’: Ford moves transit underground

Oh Bruce, when will you understand that Rob Ford's vision for Transportation City means 0 km of above-ground transit lines? Remember, “Streets, are for cars, trucks and buses.” Rob Ford famously said when declaring Transit City dead (SOURCE: Hume: Ford to Transit City: Drop dead).

The Toronto Star released a story today discussing how Metrolinx CEO Bruce McCuaig delusionally believes that the proposed Eglinton Crosstown LRT does fall within Rob Ford's vision of completely underground transit for Toronto, because 11 km of the proposed 33 km Eglinton line (or 33%) is underground, leaving 66% above-ground to cause havoc on one of Toronto's busiest roads and key crosstown routes for cars.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Relax Toronto, Mayor Rob Ford Will Deal with Garbage & Water Soon...

For once, the residents of Toronto have come to expect extreme efficiency from their Municipal Government, and who can blame them, this isn't the same useless David Miller regime who got absolutely nothing done over 2 terms, didn't return any phone calls from Torontonians, spent taxpayer money recklessly and lined their own pockets via untendered contracts to their friends. No, this is the Rob Ford era here in Toronto, and that means the exact opposite: Projects get done on time and as per budget, phone calls always get returned, taxpayer money is watched closely with an eagle eye and untendered contracts are eliminated.

So given this massive 180 degree turnaround in Municipal responsibility, efficiency and accountibility, it's completely understandable why even though Mayor Rob Ford accomplished his following promises within 25 days in office:

1. Eliminated City Councillor Free Meals at Council Meetings
2. Eliminated the Personal Vehicle Tax
3. Chopped Councillor Expense Budgets from $50,000 to $30,000
4. Chopped the Mayor's Expense Budget
4. Got City Council to Approve Declaring the TTC an Essential Service (now pending approval from Dalton McGuinty)
5. Raised the prospect of Eliminating the 5-cent Toronto Plastic Bag Fee (not a promise, but still worth mentioning)

Torontonians are still upset and question why he hasn't done anything to stop the proposed Garbage Tax and Water Rate hikes coming to Toronto in 2011.

Relax Toronto, he's been on the job for 25 days and he's already done more for Torontonians than former Mayor David Miller did in his entire 2 terms as Mayor!  He even stayed by the phone during the Christmas and New Year's holidays answering taxpayer calls (imagine, that would have been the day to see David Miller, or Adam Giambrone or Adam Vaughan or Gord Perks, or Paula Fletcher or Sandra Bussin or Pam McConnell or Joe Mihevc or Shelley Carroll make that kind of sacrifice) for Toronto.

He will get to it, just give him the opportunity!

Here's the story from the Toronto Sun:

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Are Fireworks Bad For The Environment? Maybe...

With all of the wonderful fireworks displays that we saw this year across the world to celebrate the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011, the following question came to mind: Are fireworks bad for the environment?

I found the following great article on the subject at the Mother Nature Network:

Toronto Police's 2010 Murder Clearance/Solve Rate Hits Historic Low...

I hate to start off 2011 by going after the Toronto Police, but what can I do? Toronto Police continue to have their priorities all screwed up, and the Murder/Homicide Clearance Rate (or Murder Solve Rate) for 2010 reached a new historic low, leaving Toronto's shattered families as the victims in a Toronto Police policy travesty.

Here's the story from the Toronto Star:

Happy New Year & Best Wishes for 2011! --jackandcokewithalime

From all of us here at jackandcokewithalime, we wish you all a very Happy, Safe and Successful New Year for 2011!

Your readership in 2010 has been sincerely appreciated, and we look forward to continuing to bring you real commentary on the real world in 2011!



PS: I decided not to bore you with my New Year's resolutions for 2011, but I will mention one of them, and that's to try my best not to use the label "scumbag" as much this year... I'll at least "try"... ;)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bensonkua/3123617425/sizes/l/ by bensonkua on flickr