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T H E

Local Herald West

End’s

Do you know your local T a x M u s e ?

Vo l u m e 3 , I s s u e 4 ,

Community

Paper

February 24, 2012

Story and photos: Bram D. Eisenthal

Who is this lady and why is she smiling? If you drive a car, I'll tax the street. If you drive to city, I'll tax your seat. If you get too cold, I'll tax the heat. If you take a walk, I'll tax your feet. Taxman! * The Beatles The Beatles didn’t stay here long enough on the occasion of their sole Montreal concert September 8, 1964, or they surely would have added something about taxing the air you need to breathe. Quebecers know that if there is anything to tax, the government of the day will find a way to do it. So, as tax declaration season descends, we decided to feature a woman who has been helping taxpayers deal with the revenue people as far back as she can remember, West Ender Agi Lebovits.

: This issue

) Benlolo n io S ( m a ring S Remembe re f the Bizar o d r a B 's t Vermon Feature on i Bright on b b a R : s g eedlin Spiritual S of gossip s r e g n a d the

West Ender Lebovits is beginning her annual peak period, hence the smile… she loves what she does, helping people make heads or tails out of their paperwork at tax filing time and then assisting with their spending habits – and records of same – the balance of the year.

cont. p4


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As our so-called winter fades, the flowers of renewal start to grow

B r a m E i s e n t h a l - Th e Lo c a l S e e ke r

We are on the verge of renewal, as March 21 is officially the first day of spring. So, this issue marks the final issue of true winter, so to speak… because we really haven’t had much of one, have we? That suits me just fine – sorry, ski buffs – because there is absolutely nothing winning about winter as far as I am concerned… other than a chance to enhance the appreciation of our shorter summers. Spring doesn’t really exist anymore, nor does fall. Talk about the planet doing a number on us!

The concept of renewal is really embodied in the renewal of a historic piece of real estate in NDG, the Shaare Zedek Congregation on the corner of Rosedale and Chester. My family’s synagogue as I was growing up, located right across the street from my elementary school (then known as Sir Arthur Currie, a school operated by the then-PSBGM), the building meant a lot to me. I would attend services with my father on Saturdays and when the Yom Kippur War broke out in 1973 – Israel fighting for its very survival against Syria and Egypt - it was here that my dad and I learned the news, resulting in the greatest-possible concern. My mother was in Israel when it happened, taking care of some family business. I rushed home to sit by the radio, worried about my mom.

In 1982, this exact time of year 30 years ago, the Shaare Zedek was undergoing its last great renovation, involving mainly its lower event hall. This time, the renovations are much more involved and include the addition of some stunning new facilities including a state-of-the-art library, if the architectural drawings are any indication. Although not being done under the watchful eye of founding spiritual leader A. Bernard Leffell – whom I was extremely fond of and who has since passed on – current spiritual leader Rabbi Alan Bright (a valued contributor this issue), whom I am proud to call a friend, is certainly involved in making sure they do it right, as is executive director Irwin Horner. Gentlemen, I wish you all possible luck on your endeavour and Godspeed!

We are also ironically publishing a column by our yoga guru, Chantalle Kudsi, which seems to flow in the face of the concept of renewal. Chantalle brings us a pose that seasoned yoga practitioners perform as a way of preparing for death, but where the renewal comes in occurs at the culmination of the pose… popping up again is a fairly certain way of breaking the bonds of death, as far as I can see.

Finally, the opposite of renewal is actual termination and Gary Carter’s passing is certainly one of the sadder moments in recent memory and worth mentioning. The brief homage organized by the Habs prior to the New Jersey game at the Bell Centre last Sunday evening was beautifully done and even Youppi seemed to belong, back in his Expos duds, the first time he has appeared at the Bell Centre where it made any sense at all.

While I was sad to learn of Carter’s death, a more personal loss was that of Sam (Sion) Benlolo, a West End hair stylist who cut my hair for 37 years and whom I also considered a friend. I have therefore included a memorial to Sam inside this issue, featuring a photo I took of him several years ago and some fitting words from his brother, Cantor Danny Benlolo of Ottawa. No more sorrow, to both the Carter and Benlolo families.

The Local Herald, West End Montreal Edition Volume 3, Number 4, February 24, 2012 Founded by Julia Lucio and Mai-Liis Renaud 2010 Published by Local Seeker Media Group, Cornwall, Ontario The Local Herald does not accept responsibility for errors, misprints or inaccuracies published within. The opinions and statements of our columnists are not to be presumed as the statements and opinions of The Local Herald. Managing Editor: Bram Eisenthal

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Creative Design: Julia Lucio

FEB 24 (pg. 2)

Looking to compete with the Mad Inventor next door? Wanna unleash your inner science nerd? SparkFun, the hottest line of cyber/electronic components in the universe, will thrill you. Check out their website at www.sparkfun.com and you’ll be hooked, guaranteed. Buy SparkFun products at Montreal’s Abra Electronics, Canada’s main supplier of SparkFun … and so much more.

SparkFun – Let Your Geek Shine! Only at Abra Electronics 5580 Cote de Liesse (corner Devonshire) Montreal H4P 1A9 514-731-0117/1-800-361-5237 www.abra-electronics.com Watch for an upcoming feature on a brilliant Montreal teen who is making waves at school for her ingenuity using products from SparkFun and Arduino. Only in the pages of The Local Herald, the West End’s most unique periodical!

OUR CONTACT INFORMATION Free Classifieds and Advertising: 514-975-7745 EMAIL: bram@localheraldmontreal.com localheraldmontreal.com Mailing Address: 327 2nd Street E. Cornwall, On. K6H 1Y8 The Property Seeker A regular feature of The Local Herald West End Montreal Edition Professional Consultant - Anita Benabou Rozenblat

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Finds or Flops - Julia Lucio

Eggies Carrots, potatoes, apples, eggs -- whatever needs peeling, I despise. Yes, I'm one of these people who would stoop so low as to ! serving my family lo p f synthetic boxed mashed potatoes just to save myself the trouble of peeling. So when Safe TV Shop promised me to never have to peel an egg again, I was in. However, the Eggies are not at all what they are cracked up to be. Although it's a novel concept, it's not as simple as the ad, or the box, makes it look like. Each Eggie comes in four parts that you have to put together. That alone takes more time than peeling an egg would! Once assembled, oil the Eggie, (no, you can't use cooking spray!) then crack your egg, pour it in and boil it in water as you would do a regular egg. Simple, right? Wrong. What they do not tell you is that the threads on the plastic parts do not fit right making the top and bottom hard to screw together. When cooking, the cups do not float in a leveled position, so your nicely shaped egg, with the yolk in the middle, perfect to make your devilled eggs, is not so nicely shaped anymore. Some, if not most, of your egg white will seep through and leak into the boiling water, leaving you with a useless clump of a yolk. Cleaning is excessively difficult and requires a lot of scrubbing. Furthermore, the egg does not cook evenly, gets a funny rubbery texture and a plastic taste that really isn't enjoyable. All in all, not worth the money in our opinion. Great idea, but seriously needs to be reworked.

D O L L A R

THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg.3)

C I N E M A

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Who is this lady and why is she smiling?

Cover Stor y

(continued from cover)

Romanian-born, Lebovits came to Montreal at age 5 with her family, grew up in Snowdon and moved to Cote Saint-Luc at age 16. “There was only one way into CSL then, the underpass on Westminster,” she recalled. While some people would rather shoot themselves than work with figures all the time, Lebovits loves what she does because, for her, it’s a major way of helping people. “I know how stressed everyone gets at this time of year, so for me, it is very challenging and rewarding finding solutions to complex tax situations. Give me a tax problem and I delve into it like a private investigator seeking the perpetrator. It’s the ultimate whodunit.” Lebovits has a background in marketing, having sold advertising many years ago. “I learned about needs and how to obtain them for clients, as well as what works in the financial milieu” she said. “It takes hard work and time to build a client’s trust and

trust is everything in my business. My clients share a lot of personal information and they must believe that it’s safe with me.” So what type of individual seeks her help? “Basically, I want to hear from individuals who have not done their taxes in a long time. I want them not to feel intimidated with me, so that we can work together at ensuring they do the right thing so as not to get into trouble with Revenue Canada or Quebec.” Generally, people get into trouble for filing late returns or for filing no returns at all. “They do these things for two main reasons,” Lebovits stated: “They don’t know what is required of them or they simply feel intimidated by government. Small businesses do not realize what is involved in the process of filing a tax return, so it’s easier not to file at all. Same with people.

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They are not informed about the many rules or regulations and that can be overwhelming, so they don’t file, which is a huge mistake. “I cannot stress enough how essential it is to file your annual return, even if you do not owe anything. Not filing not only red flags you with the revenue people, making it more likely that you will be audited down the road, it leaves you out of the loop for all sorts of government rebates and other benefits, like GST refunds, the solidarity tax credit, single parent refunds and such.” Lebovits pointed out that the federal and Quebec governments have become much more demanding in recent years, due primarily to the large percentage of nonfilers. “We have brought this upon ourselves and there is no need for it, really,” she said. “Should the revenue agencies request the filing of a tax return, and none is remitted (same goes for GST/PST returns), then an assessment will be made based on the amount of income the they believe you have earned. The assessments can be quite large, can take up to one and a half years to untangle and all future refunds are held until that time.”

Her work not only targets individuals, but she helps small corporations, as well. “If not filed on time, corporate tax returns can become killers, certainly where happiness and private holdings are concerned,” Lebovits said. “Because the owner becomes personally responsible, even in an incorporated business. What often happens is that the owner receives a letter of demand from Revenue Quebec, ignores it (leading to assessments, which are not paid… and usually not owing) and before they know it, their house or other assets are seized. “When you receive that first letter, make an appointment to meet with me. I will help you determine what needs to be done and, in most cases, all they want is a reply. Then a plan of action can be arranged that is acceptable to both parties. It’s very simple and your worst fears almost never come to pass. Ignoring them, however, is the worst thing you can do.” As for H&R Block, what would you rather have, the rapt attention of a veteran who knows you, your situation and is constantly updated on the laws, or someone in a sterile office who ushers you into their cubicle when the receptionist shouts “Next!” As the first option, an Agi Lebovits can be one of the best allies you’ve ever had. That smile is pretty infectious, as you will quickly ascertain for yourself. Agi Lebovits is available to meet with you with a prior appointment only. Call 514-461-3006 or e-mail her at lebo@bell.net.

Lebovitz’s major strength is organizing people. “I can teach anyone what to save when it comes to key receipts and how to save them the easiest possible way. I have people coming in with shoe boxes full of receipts – I call this ‘shoebox accounting’ - and that’s fine, as long as you save what’s necessary.”

FEB 24 (pg. 4)

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In memory of Sam (Sion) Benlolo Right after our Valentine’s Day issue went to press, I received awful news. My hair stylist of 37 years, Sam Benlolo, owner of Le Profile Sam on Queen Mary Rd. in Snowdon, had suffered a massive heart attack in late January and died the next morning. In the last issue of this paper, my editorial made mention of Sam being on vacation – hence my going to a new place in NDG for a cut. Little did I know… little did I know… I was extremely fond of Sam. I was 17 when he started cutting my hair on the other side of the road, at Queen Mary’s Hair People, an establishment he owned. He was five years older than me and over the years he heard about all my highs and lows, the way a bartender listens to his or her clients. He’d laugh with me and, when the situation warranted, give me hell the way a good friend would. He actually yelled at me the last time he cut my hair about two months ago, taking me to task for my attitude regarding something that he disagreed with. Yeah, he could be blunt and irritating and, at those times, you wanted to punch him right in the kisser. He was quite short, however, so I probably would have missed. Sam came from a huge family and I got to know a few of his siblings over the years. One of the brothers I liked most is Danny Benlolo, the Cantor (Chazzan… the singer at Jewish services) at a synagogue in Ottawa. I contacted Danny for some words about Sam and he graciously supplied them:

But his life as a hairdresser didn’t stop on Queen Mary. Even after a long week of backbreaking work on his feet, he would volunteer and cut hair for seniors and the housebound. Money was no issue and neither was the distance. We often hear "he gave the shirt of his back," easier said than done. Not for Sam… he actually did, not once but countless of times in his short-but-fruitful 59-year stay in this world. He loved solitude, his house up north, his partner Fatia, his family and his friends. He loved peace and tranquility. And when he accumulated enough of it he would burst into a frenzy, see his family and friends and be the life of the party. I miss what he stood for, I miss his perfume, I miss his laughter, I miss his “F*** it and don’t worry” attitude. I miss the man, I miss the legend, I miss him. Well put, Danny and seconded by one who knew him and can concur. We will all miss you, Sammy. Rest well. Bram Eisenthal Publisher and Editor The Local Herald

THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 5)

Photo: Bram Eisenthal

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Sam was no ordinary kind of guy. He was his own man, marching to the sound of his own drum. He lived life as he saw fit. I appreciate that in a person. He talked the talk and he certainly walked the walk. I looked up to him, as did the thousands of souls who crossed his path. The fifth of 12 children, he was a born leader, a leader in his own, unassuming way. He seldom followed the "trend," but rather he did his own thing. When everyone gathered, he would agree to be there one minute and then he’d decide to stay home with his glass of Chivas Regal, spinning Pink Floyd classics on a 33 RPM LP record. That was Sam… don’t ever tell him what to do and when to do it. Family, young and old, brothers and sisters, kids and grandkids, loved him and looked up to him and it was definitely not his height they would look up at. You heard of the old TV show "King of Kensington"? The guy (played by late actor Al Waxman) knew everyone on the streets and everyone knew him. Well that was Sam on Queen Mary. Queen Mary will NEVER be the same.

STAR SALES REP WANTED

If this limited staff situation continues much longer, we’re gonna change our name to The Lonely Herald. We are looking for a sales rep, experience not required… just desire and a chance to make some cold, hard cash. No benefits, straight commission… but also no one looking over your shoulder, clocking your hours or stressing you out. This is a real opportunity to grow along with a growing paper, where your earning potential is limited only by your ability and desire. Male or female, all ages, any race or religion, bilingualism preferred but NOT required, although the ability to converse in English IS a must. If you are interested in giving us a hand, call us at 514-975-7745 and leave us a message if we do not answer. We are seeking a sales star-in-the-making. Is that you?

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Joseph A. Citro : Vermont’s preeminent Bard of the Bizarre by Bram D. Eisenthal

It was a sobering time when one of New England’s pre-eminent bards of the bizarre (don’t worry, Stephen King, you are also still on the list) met up with a Montreal writer and horror aficionado and showed him around a bit. Two weeks or so after the ‘Twin Towers’ tragedy and its ensuing deaths at the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania, in late September 2001, I met up with Joseph A. Citro and toured some of Vermont’s spookiest locations. Citro, then in his early fifties, knew a bit about creepy. Born in smalltown Vermont, he became fascinated with scary spots and spooky specters thanks to his dad, who “had an eye for the unusual, so he’d tell me all the local lore – ghosts, murders, haunted houses, whatever. The stories were great: I didn’t care whether they were true,” Citro insisted during a recent interview with The Local Herald. “For whatever reason, I liked the dark side. My brother, on the other hand, is the white sheep of the family.” Citro’s work is right up your alley if you enjoy mind-numbing horror that will leave you shaky and peering manically over your shoulder as the full-moon waxes and wanes outside. He’s a specialist in conveying non-fictional accounts of New England’s horrifying haunts and twisted personalities, although he has also had his fair share of fiction-based horror tomes published. Personally, my favourite is entitled Passing Strange, a book I have read many times, high on the adrenaline rush I get as my hackles raise and the goosebumps rise and fall on my arms and the back of my neck. It pains me to turn the light off in my bedroom after such a read and every creak of a floorboard evokes images of bogeymen that disturb even the notion of a good night’s slumber. If you like horror and aren’t yet familiar with Citro through his novels, his stints on Vermont Public Radio or, more recently, the movies produced based on his work, here’s an initial introduction: Despite his successes as a published author, none of Citro’s talent was derived through scholastic means… which is often the case, it seems, with talented scribes. “I’m self-educated as a writer,” he told me. “And I’m not really an academically-trained

THE LOCAL HERALD,

researcher, scientist, folklorist or historian, either. But then again, I think all education is selfeducation. You might say there’s only a ‘degree’ of difference.” Citro always wrote, even producing little comic books in grade school. “Before that, I was usually the one to come up with the plots for our Cowboys ‘n Indians or Space Invaders games. It wasn’t until the 1980s that I began writing with an eye toward publication, My first effort – a parody of our state magazine - was published around 1986 and my first novel came out in 1987. It was the first of five novels to come out over the next decade.”

Photo: Bram D. Eisenthal

Notable Neighbours

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of a few ebooks as I am dragged into the 21st century.” Infinitely more interesting would be Citro’s being dragged into the 20th century, but then again he’s done that before… the 19th, 18th and 17th as well, in some of his books.

It was while researching his fiction that Citro discovered the wealth of occult and otherwise creepy history permeating his home state. “I learned that Vermont and, by extension, all of New England, is full of wonderful examples of people getting wicked scared. Then, around 1994, after I had been doing commentary on public radio, it occurred to me that it might be fun to collect Vermont’s strange-buttrue, strange-but-maybe-true and, best of all, strange-but-hopefullynot-true stories. “

One important perk of his travels has been his close friendship with Vermont-based illustrator Stephen R. Bissette, whom comic book fans will likely know due to his work on titles such as the ground-breaking Taboo and Swamp Thing. “Steve and I met in the 1980s and hit it off immediately,” recalled Citro. “Since then, he has become one of my best friends in the world. We enjoy working together since our interests and temperaments overlap so much.”

Citro took a hiatus from his fictionwriting to produce collections of New England tales that may or may not have been fiction. Several collections followed, including the previously-mentioned Passing Strange and Citro’s contribution to the Weird (insert destination here) series of books that began with Weird New Jersey, Weird New England. I was with Citro when he stepped into Burlington’s Barnes & Noble book store and introduced himself to the manager, who fell over himself with delight to have the author there in person. There was a display table with tomes of Weird New England all over it. It was a fun moment.

And so, a great pairing came to be, in the same vein as Lennon and McCartney, Lewis and Clark, Abbott and Costello, Cain and Able (maybe that’s an extreme example) and such. Citro and Bissette worked together on Citro’s fiction novel, Deux-X: The Reality Conspiracy, which Bissette illustrated. The two were not amused when the illustrations were not included in the paperback version, but these have been restored in the new ebook from Crossroad Press. “We’ve also restored some of the deleted material, scenes and chapters that were cut by the Warner Brothers editor,” Citro revealed.

The author has also done a couple of audio books, recently had a story of his adapted to film and he is “looking forward to the publication

Asking him what his favourite Joseph A. Citro book of all time is, he’s quite demure on the matter. “That’s always a tough question… some writers say it’s like asking to

FEB 24 (pg. 6)

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pick the favourite of their children. Generally, my favourite is the one I’m working on at the time,” said Citro. “But I have an enduring fondness for my two first-born, the novel Shadow Child and my collection of weird Vermont stories called Green Mountains Ghosts, Ghouls and Unsolved Mysteries.” Citro has also collaborated on a book with Vermont writer, teacher and researcher Diane E. Foulds called Curious New England and another two with Bissette, The Vermont Ghost Guide and The Vermont Monster Guide. Yet, I keep coming back to Passing Strange, a book that caused me to visit several of the creepy locales covered by Citro, including a trip to the pinnacle of New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, to Tip Top House, said to be the home of The Presence, a centuries-old entity that is so evil that local Natives Americans avoid the area at all costs. “When I wrote Passing Strange, I set out to discover all the weirdest New England stories that had some claims on being true… I wanted to find the strangest, scariest stories in all New England. I can’t promise they are all swear-on-a-bible true, but if any of them are even partly as stated, it throws a real curve into what we think of as possible. “That notion scares me, so I can see why it might scare you… or anyone else.” Thanks, Joe. Now would you know a good Exorcist I can contact to help me get my hackles back down again?

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Fun with words

Yoga U - Chantalle Kudsi

Last Pose No, this column is not ending here. But there is a singular pose usually reserved for the end of a yoga class: Shavasana. In the West, it is often referred to as "final relaxation," when in fact the translation of Shavasana is "Dead Corpse Pose." In Shavasana, we lie on our back with our eyes closed. We rest perfectly still. We are as if dead, but for the softest breath moving in and out of the nostrils. In this pose, we are practicing a death, our death, but why? Rather than fall asleep, we remain highly conscious as we relax the entire body. Our awareness expands as we practice being "liberated" from the confines of our physical form. As the body mass becomes heavier and heavier, falling away into the floor, a lightness of being and a definite spaciousness emerges. We may experience ourselves to be millions of particles vibrating, consciousness no longer bound by form, time, or space. So we practice this "little death," to confront a most human experience that we will all face one day: Death. And we practice it willingly and with the purpose of entering without fear. If we are not able to "let go" in Shavasana, no doubt there is a resistance or fear holding us back. And what is it that we are still attached to, that we cannot let go of? What thoughts are binding us still to the material world, so that we cannot relax completely, cannot surrender? Corpse Pose gives us the opportunity, each time, to face our fear of death, our fear of the unknown. A fear of letting go of all of the things, ego or body, that we are attached to. And we are also given the opportunity to expand beyond it.

Across

Down

1. Guards 7. Part of a book 8. A Roman deity 10. Hold spellbound 12. Consumed food 13. Morning moisture 14. Bowel cleasing 15. Resort 17. Neckwear 20. Something that hinders or handicaps 23. A valuable metal 24. Website addresses 25. Sharpshooter25. Repose 26. 365 days

1. Breathe hard 2. Conforming to your own liking 3. Orange pekoe or Earl Grey 4. Frequently 5. Praiseworthy 6. Certain 7. ___ green 9. Recent 11. Skirt fold 15. Droop 16. Trudge 18. Part of an archipelago 19. S 21. American Dental Association 22. French for "Street"

Far from being sombre, Shavasana is a pose of deep relaxation and entry into a state of universal awareness and peace. It is well worth practicing. Shavasana Lie down with your back on the floor, legs and arms outstretched. Close your eyes. Let there be a space between your ankles and a space between your torso and each arm. Palms rest face up. You may wish to place a rolled towel under your neck and a rolled blanket under your knees for added comfort. Relax completely and remain still as you consciously drop every part of the body into the floor. Keep your awareness inward while you breathe a subtle breath through the nostrils. After five minutes or more, take deeper breaths and gently stretch before rolling to the side. Make your way to sitting forward and open your eyes. Chantalle Kudsi is a yoga and meditation teacher in the WestEnd. Sheteaches group and private classes and can be reached at chantsomething@yahoo.ca

THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 7)

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BUY or SELL your HOME in the

Property See ker

The We s t E n d real estate section The importance of the closer

Mortgage Matters

Many of you who w e r e Montreal E x p o s f a n s remember John Wetteland, the closer who pitched for us in the mid-1990's. When the Expos had a one run lead going to the bottom of the ninth inning, the game was virtually over. Wetteland would throw heat for about 7-10 minutes, while batters shook in their cleats, and the game was then soon over. A bad closer can drive a manager crazy at the end of a game.

most people Although underestimate the importance of an experienced notary since the deal is "virtually done"at that point, an inexperienced notary can give you migraines. I won't go into notarial blunders I've seen in the past, but it is important to use a notary you trust.

register a new lien according to TD's instructions. Afterwards, the title will show that you have a new mortgage registered with TD. If people have judgements for non-payment of property taxes or government tax arrears, the notary will also see those on title as well.

For those of you who don't know, one of the notary's main jobs is to research the title of a property to see what mortgages are registered on it, and to register new mortgages. This is standard practice when you buy a new home. If your new mortgage is with TD, the notary will radiate your existing Scotia lien and

A typical notary should cost you about $1050-1200 for a purchase, and $850-$1000 for a refinance. There might be other small fees depending on the transaction, but these amounts are usually accurate. While you are at the notary's, you may also want to ask a few questions about your last will and testament. Many

Issue 1

people don't worry about what will happen to their estate when they pass away, but a notary can often help give people unbiased advice on sensitive matters like this. All winning teams have a solid closer and as a mortgage broker that needs his transactions to finish successfully, I always keep a reliable notary in my bullpen!! In memory of Gary Carter (not a closer, per se, but a game winner we will remember forever) Jason Zuckerman www.mortgageratesmontreal.com Hypotheca Mortgage Brokers (514) 771-1352 /1-800- 206-1350 jzuckerman@hypotheca.ca

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THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 8)

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As she does periodically, Anita brings some levity to her highly-competitive industry… Enjoy! HOW’S YOUR BUSINESS DOING In a crowded elevator, one man asked another, "How's business?” “Last year, we sold 500,000 houses, 700,000 farms and 750,000 schools," came the reply. "This year we ought to do equally well and, in addition, sell 1,200,000 garages." As the elevator descended, there was heavy silence for a moment. Then someone spoke up indignantly. "Sir," he said, "I'm in real estate, and those figures are preposterous!" He didn't know that the man boasting about his business was the marketing director of a major toy company. THE MAIN ENTRANCE A broker was dismayed when a brand new real estate office, much like his own, opened up next door and erected a huge sign which read BEST AGENTS. He was horrified when another competitor opened up on his right and announced its arrival with an even larger sign, reading LOWEST COMMISSIONS. The broker panicked, until he got an idea. He put the biggest sign of all above his own real estate office. It read: MAIN ENTRANCE. A NEW BROKER IN TOWN A young broker had just started his own real estate office. He rented a beautiful office and had it furnished with antiques. Sitting there, he saw a man come into the outer office. Wishing to appear the hot shot, the broker picked up the phone and started to pretend he had a big deal working. He threw huge figures around and made giant commitments. Finally he hung up and asked the visitor, "Can I help you sir?" The man said, "Yeah, I've come to activate your phone lines." Do you have questions for Anita Rozenblat? E-mail your comments or questions to anitarozenblat@hotmail.com   

Single Family Homes

Townhouses Townhousses

Hot trends for spring home improvement projects

Home Sweet Home -

A n i t a B e n a b o u R o ze n b l a t

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THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 9)

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Photo Credit Bram

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Boxed advertising works! It really does! Get your ad in here today. Call 514-975-7745 words repeat themselves in our minds, heard over and over again, like a drumbeat causing distress and pain. Sometimes they rest just below the surface of our consciousness, resurrected now and then to mock and to taunt.

Spiritual Seedlings - Rabbi Alan Bright

Gossip not just the spreading of mere words Some years ago my dear wife purchased stickers similar to the “no smoking” stickers that we see all the time: The type that have a cigarette surrounded by a circle and a red line through it. These particular stickers, however, did not have the cigarette in the middle of the circle. In place of the cigarette was a thick pair of adult lips. The wording at the bottom did not read DO NOT SMOKE, but DON’T EVEN THINK OF TELLING ME LASHON HARAH. Lashon Harah is the Hebrew term for gossip, speaking ill of others. The little white sign not only warns the gossiper, but by implication it also admonishes anyone who allows themselves to listen to speech that speaks ill of others, even when the information is true. Gossip has the power to wreak havoc upon your life and the lives of others. The culture in which we live says that words are cheap. Judaism teaches that words are not cheap. They are holy! Words, once they are spoken, cannot be taken back. They have a propensity to take on a life of their own. Therapists’ offices are filled with people who are in anguish over words spoken about them. Sometimes the

THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 10)

Jewish law is strict not only about what goes into our mouths, but equally as strict as to what comes out of our mouths. Words are not real in and of themselves; however, they create reality. A parent who constantly calls his child a fool will discover the meaning of the term “a self-fulfilling prophecy.” A spouse who constantly verbally abuses his or her partner establishes a pattern, which can lead to tragic consequences. Acquaintances or friends who share your personal business with others can cause untold pain and hurt. The Talmud, the central text of mainstream Judaism (200 – 500CE) teaches that slander is worse than murder, because it kills three: “the teller, the listener… and the victim.” So the next time someone wants to share some juicy gossip with you, respond before they can speak: DON’T EVEN THINK OF TELLING ME LASHON HARAH. Remember that the evil gossip brings stains souls and hearts. Rabbi Alan Bright is the spiritual leader of NDG’s Shaare Zedek Congregation

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Letters From L a L a L and - Steven Goldmann

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A Hollywood director’s look at this year’s best films This is always a difficult time here in Hollywood. After the holiday vacations, everyone ramps up for the Sundance Film Festival, then a couple of weeks later it’s the Berlin Film Festival, and on top of that it is awards season...and then they are off to Cannes. You just feel either left out and behind or unable to get much work done because no one is in town. For me this is a difficult time for a a very personal reason. In 2008 I had a film premiering at a big festival - Slamdance - that takes place alongside Sundance right in Park City Utah. It is Sundance’s bratty little brother... and much less polite!

when my father took me to the cinema for the first time.I felt like he was there telling me “look, this is why the movies are the most wonderful art there is or ever will be!” It made me cry, it made me smile, it was the best film of the year -- for me. It focused me on the gift my father left me, rather then the season’s reminding me how much I missed him. With HUGO, I now have a film that is “my Dad” to me. A film that will always remind me of him and our love of the movies... add Spielberg’s A.I. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE for my Mom and I have one weepy double feature. I’m a softy.

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This was to be my big coming out and it kind of was, but sadly, just days before my big premier, I lost my father suddenly and the enjoyment of “my moment’ was really not to be. My love for the movies was definitely a gift handed down to me by my dad. He loved them and he made sure I did. He was also my biggest fan and supporter… besides my wife, of course. So when this time of year comes around I find it hard to get excited about award and I find myself a bit blue. I miss him. I miss talking movies with him, but this year - this year - I missed talking with him the most. Oh, how I wish I could talk to him about AFTER MIDNIGHT, THE ARTIST and MONEY BALL. He would have loved them all! He would have gone on and on about THE ARTIST and how it was just a pale imitation of the movies he grew up on , but he would have loved it nonetheless. MONEY BALL would have made him talk about why we lost the Expos, why the Canadiens will never win another Cup and how Montreal is now a small market town and that it better get used to losing. He would have loved to talk about the morals of Woody Allen’s AFTER MIDNIGHT: Despite the allure of nostalgia, it is better to accept the present for what it is... find happiness in the now. A very fine idea. But of all the films this year that he would have loved, I believe that no other film would have touched him as deeply as it did me: Martin Scorsese’s HUGO. He would have been enthralled by it, as I was. This film touched me in ways that are so deep and personal that it is very difficult to put into words. I am trying here. Watching HUGO, I felt like my father was there next to me. This film made me believe in magic, made me fall in love all over again with cinema. I felt like I did

THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 11)

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We hope you have enjoyed this issue of THE LOCAL HERALD We are working on next issue and it will be out March 16 , 2012 Deadline Friday, March 9 5pm. Don’t miss the next issue of

CORNWALL LL PEOPLE by for CORNWA the Senior Advisor n WALL PEOPLE Charlene MacLennathe SD&G about CORN Meet cts at Proje lopment Grants and Vol.

17, 2012 February 3, Issue 6

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THE LOCAL HERALD,

FEB 24 (pg. 12)

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Local Herald, Issue 4