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Local See ker

Vo l u m e 2 , I s s u e 9 , A p r i l 2 9 , 2 0 1 1 Like many people, I am occasionally afflicted with the scourge of insomnia. It’s better than it used to be, but there are still nights, let me tell you, where I so need a sleeping pill. On one such night several years ago, at around 3:30 a.m., I decided to switch radio stations, as I usually have music playing softly in the background while I slumber. I switched to CJAD and was instantly captivated by this particular radio personality I had not previously heard of. Sol Boxenbaum was his name and I liked him instantly, because he was intelligent, informed and not at all reluctant to tell it like it is, no matter how controversial the subject. He was a lot like me, though if I am half the man Sol is, I’m doing okay.

“Last Call Sol” still the source for honest, politicallyincorrect talk

Judging by the number of callers, they were smitten with Sol’s style, as well. I soon became a listener, regular which lasted until a little over a year ago, when CJAD cancelled Last Call with Sol, no notice given, so that they could air the syndicated Coastto-Coast - after it became available due to 940-AM’s premature demise. Don’t get me wrong, I like Coast-toCoast, the Art Bell-created show that has spooked untold numbers of listeners with talk of UFOs, Bigfoot and other unsolved mysteries (see my feature on the late Frank Edwards in this issue) and I said so in one of the regular Briefly Bram columns that I wrote for The Monitor and Westmount Examiner. I admit, though, that I have never before received such a shower of angry diatribe from readers as I did following that column. People were really upset that I appeared disloyal to the beloved and respected Sol.

Cont. p.4

Briefly Bram * Briefly Bram * Briefly Bram

Election inspection This is my third attempt at an editorial delineating which federal entity I believe should form the next government. As is surely the case with many of you, once I get past the old loyalties and determine which new ones I have gained, this election is as confusing as they come. First off, mark me down as supremely angry that an election was called at all. I’ve heard my share of flack for this, but I really don’t think Stephen Harper was a bad leader at all. In fact, he isn’t nearly as wishy-washy or pandering as any PM following the tenure of Pierre Elliott Trudeau, whom I consider the finest PM of my lifetime. I like Harper… a lot… mainly because he’s got the guts to choose a course and stick to it most of the time. And, so, I have no problem with the election of another Conservative government, of the minority or majority ilk. If it’s not Harper, I like Jack Layton as PM. Michael Ignatieff? Ughhh. What a disaster that would be. What this election really boils down to, however, more than any other time, are the men and women running in our various ridings. Looking at the West End, I’ll start with Outremont, whose base includes parts of the West End, primarily located in Cote des Neiges. Thomas Mulcair is, hands down, the finest politician in Quebec. He deserves another chance and if the NDP does in fact steal Quebec seats from the misfit, surreal Bloc Quebecois, he will prove to be an important Quebec lieutenant for Layton as the NDP looks to assume balance-of-power status. Martin Cauchon has experience, but old-guard Liberals make me nervous, mainly because they offer nothing new. Rodolphe Husny is an exuberant, hard-working young Conservative and Francois Pilon may be running Green, but I know absolutely nothing about him, so no comment. Along with the West End Bloc candidates, Liberal Marc Garneau in Westmount and Liberal Martin Cauchon here in Outremont, as well, Pilon didn’t respond to me last issue when I asked for material for my unique political feature. Mulcair had the decency to call me and offer a valid explanation why he wasn’t participating. He’s a real “mensch.” In Westmount, although, again, I know little about him other than his “stellar” background, I like Liberal Marc Garneau. Any man who endured the astronaut training program so successfully and represented Canadians so proudly in space deserves our support. At the very least, you’re guaranteed commitment and hard work. His main challenger may well be Conservative Neil Drabkin, whom I have more than a passing knowledge of. During Drabkin’s campaign to steal the seat from Mount Royal Liberal Sheila Finestone (this during the election where the Kim Campbell-led Conservatives steered her party to the worst loss in its history), I was his communications director. Drabkin refused to listen to his team and instead ran an angry campaign devoted to smearing the

The Local Seeker, West End Montreal Edition Volume 2, Number 9, April 29 2011 Founded by Julia Lucio and Mai-Liis Renaud 2010 Published by Local Seeker Media Group, Cornwall, Ontario Contents copyright 2011, The Local Seeker West End Montreal Edition Managing Editor - Bram Eisenthal • 514-975-7745 The Local Seeker 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 Seeker.


reputation of a respected leader of Montreal’s Jewish community prior to her elevation to the Senate. Here’s a little anecdote for those of you considering throwing your vote away on this citizenship lawyer and key Harper bureaucrat (and I personally witnessed the exchange): Elderly man walks into our campaign HQ, located in Cavendish Mall. He looks at us, waves his fist and shouts “I’m not voting for Mulroney,” forgetting completely that PM Brian Mulroney handed the keys to the sinking ship to Campbell rather than going down with it. Great debater and savvy human relations expert Drabkin seizes the moment to make a new friend and shouts back “Sir, get out of my office!” Drabkin not only failed to dislodge the highly-favoured Liberal from her seat, he placed FOURTH behind the Bloc Quebecois in a heavily federalist riding. Talk about a gross political embarrassment! He looks great in a suit, shakes hands really, really well and has a perpetual tan, but don’t let that fool you. The man offers a big fat zero when it comes to substance or humanity, so vote NDP (Joanne Corbeil) or Green (Andrew Carkner) in Westmount if Garneau is not your cup of tea. In NDG, as much as I like both her opponents (earnest, honest and highly-promising Jessica Gal for the Green Party – a party I will be paying much attention to in the future -Quebec-savvy Matthew Conway for the PCs and Isabelle Morin for the NDP), Marlene Jennings deserves to hold onto her seat. She is by far one of the hardest working MPs in Ottawa and represents the riding proudly. Saving the best for last, I come to my riding, Mount Royal, which may well be one of the hardest-fought this time around. Irwin Cotler has done an incredible job in a key riding, heavy with ethnic voters and primarily federalist. Still, I often wonder why he stays. The Liberal Party slapped him across the face twice, at least, first by constantly betraying his rigorous pro-Israel stance and, second, by dumping him as Justice Minister and tgen relegating him to the back banches. Cotler is a tremendous asset to the riding, but, frankly, if the Liberals aren’t running the country, his talents may be wasted here. Former municipal councilor Saulie Zajdel will give Cotler a tough race this time around, because Cotler’s main ace-in-the-hand is the Jewish vote… a vote I hear will go more Conservative (due to the religious Zajdel) than at any prior time. Being Jewish is not a reason to vote for either party, mind you, but in Mount Royal it doesn’t hurt. A dark horse candidate is Jeff Itcush, a Jewish community member with a background as an educator and teacher’s union leader. Running for the NDP, I predict that Itcush will steal votes from both aforementioned parties, although I really don’t see him winning here. I have to admit, though, that I am pulling for a massive upset. It’s time for change in Mount Royal… and wouldn’t this be the stunner of all time? As for the Bloc Quebecois in ANY riding, are people really this desperate, gullible and ignorant? ‘Nuff said. The NDP will certainly grab many seats from this irrelevant gaggle of anglophobes. In this election, I believe the “vote for the candidate, not the party” axiom rings very true, although you also have to consider which candidate will best blend with the party in power. I mentioned the Green Party earlier and it is my earnest belief that more and more people will consider voting Green in the future, as our traditional parties continue letting us down. It’s not a great time to place one’s faith in our veteran politicians, I’m afraid, and our future salvation may very well lie with the new breed of politicians and with something completely different. If the Conservatives wind up in power again, I’m fine with that, but I do think we have to change our traditional voting patterns if we are going to engineer a new age for the benefit of Canadians everywhere. Entities like the NDP and Green Party hold the key to that change.


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Last Call with Sol - Sol Boxenbaum

Where have all the manners gone? For a number of reasons, I have become a member of the population that, like it or not, is dependent on public transportation. This means I get to manoeuvre through the aisles filled with over-sized strollers, shopping carts, and people of all ages with backpacks. Many of these people have never been camping and probably never will, but apparently backpacks have become fashionable. Might a person remove it and carry it aboard the crowded vehicle? No, apparently it is much better to stand near the front of the bus creating an obstacle for those passengers getting on or off, or to walk along the aisle bopping the head of a seated passenger. On the subject of seated passengers, there are seats on the front of each bus which are designated for elderly or handicapped passengers. Most often these seats are taken by young people who have may have had “a hard day at the desk in their classroom” and find it difficult to walk further down the aisle. When someone boards the bus with much difficulty, instead of relinquishing the designated seat, the young person seated gets busy texting messages on the cell phone so as to appear unaware of the need to stand up. The same problem occurs on the rest of the bus as well. When I was a young man I was taught to be courteous and to volunteer to give my seat to a woman or to an older man. I no longer see this happening with our younger generation. Today, it is an exception, rather than a rule, when I am offered a seat by a young person. More often, it would be someone in their middle years making that offer. Truthfully, I almost always thank them for asking but I do not deprive them of their seat. It is not for my benefit that I raise this issue, but for those who are more fragile than I. And I can’t help remembering the words of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, “Teach your children well. . . . .” Too soon, it’s closing time. Comments or questions? Please visit To reach Sol, email him at or write to him at 80 Hillside Avenue, Suite 304, Westmount, Quebec H3Z 1V9.

Seek and you shall find... in our Classifieds SALE OF THE CENTURY Must sell quality items in order to save space: Antiques, decorating and cook books, very unique set of dishes and more. Indoors, Lachine. Call 514-637-6309. MOVING SALE Complete set of apartment furniture, like new. Must sell. Call 514-484-5339 day or night and leave a message. WORK SOUGHT Looking for a full or part-time job with the elderly, or office work of any kind. Call 514-481-8743. WANTED Seeking students aged 18 and up wishing to earn extra summer cash working in the great outdoors: Rate $10/hr. Also looking for students experienced in electrical work who can install air conditioners and electrical heaters, also at $10/hr. Students with knowledge of basic carpentry also sought. Call Mr. Patel at 514-862-0096.

Rules and Guidelines for FREE ads All free classifieds ads are to be called in or texted at 514-688-7888, put on our facebook group wall (The local seeker - West End Montreal Edition) or emailed at All ads must be 25 words or less. If they are longer, the local seeker can edit them as seen fit. Free ads must be for non-commercial, used and second hand items only. Garage sales are free.


Cover Stor y

“Last Call Sol” still the source for honest, politically-incorrect talk (continued from cover)

Well, to right that wrong, I recently asked Sol if he would write a regular column for this paper and he graciously agreed. I wanted to know more about the man behind the microphone, however, in order to tell you about his good work helping the public with his small business, Viva Consulting. Born and raised on Le Plateau, known back then as “the ghetto,” Sol was fortunate to spend summers in Val David with his mother and father, who joined them on weekends. “I enjoyed my childhood being the baby of the family, with a sister seven years older and brothers nine and 10 years older,” Sol told me. “The need to care about people was not due to my upbringing, however, but occurred much later in life. As we mature and realize we are not immortal, it also becomes apparent that what we take from this life are the things we are most remembered for. “I believe that most of us are takers, but there comes a time in life when we ought to start becoming givers.” For Sol, his penchant for giving really started to gel in 1999, after he returned to Montreal from Regina, Saskatchewan. “It was then that I met my partner, Brenda Thomas, who was completing her Masters in Psychology at McGill. She felt the same passion I did regarding the destruction of human lives through the growth of gambling opportunities. “Through Viva Consulting, we have made significant changes to the protection of minors through our appearances in Quebec’s National Assembly. And I have been and continue to be an expert

A Little bit of Political Humour...

witness in lawsuits against lottery corporations across Canada.” Sol then makes something abundantly clear: He is NOT against gambling per se. “In fact, I gamble myself,” he states. “But, by profession as a gambling critic, I am against government’s involvement in gambling. I resent the fact that they own, operate and regulate gambling… and I do not buy into the philosophy that it’s better they (be involved) than the Mob. It is ‘they’ who legitimize a most addictive risk-taking activity because ‘they’ are the ones endorsing it.” Sol’s biggest career high has been the settlements won on behalf of victims, while his low point was “when a law firm in Quebec City that had me act as their adviser and expert witness for eight years settled out of court with Loto-Quebec… and the lawyers received $2.75 million while the victims received nothing.” Though his time on CJAD has ended, he still enjoys working with the media. “My column with The Local Seeker will, I hope, be enjoyed by the masses and I plan an upcoming Internet podcast for those who have computers. Beyond that, who knows? I had five good years on air, loving every moment and hour… a surprise to me since the stations of the 1950s rejected my applications for a radio show.” Sol says his philosophy will always be “don’t ever give up five minutes before the miracle.” Whether we are gamblers or not, Last Call Sol is an inspiration to us all.

GET SEEN, NOT LOST in The Local Seeker Call today at 514-975-7745

Fun With Words

Dear Revenue Canada (or whatever your current name may be): Enclosed and/or attached, you will find my tax return showing that I owe $3,407.00 in taxes. Please note the attached article from the Toronto Globe and Mail; dated 12 November, wherein you will see the Canadian Department of National Defence is paying $171.50 per hammer and Fisheries and Oceans Canada has paid $600.00 per toilet seat for it's icebreakers. As payment, I am enclosing four (4) toilet seats (valued @ $2,400) and six (6) hammers valued @ $1,029), which I secured at Canadian Tire, bringing my total remittance to $3,429.00. Please apply the overpayment of $22.00 to the 'Help Stephan Dion Election Fund,' as noted on my return. You can do this inexpensively by sending them one (1) 1.5' Phillips Head screw (see aforementioned article from The Globe and Mail detailing how the Department of Public Works pays $22.00 each for 1.5' Phillips Head Screws). One Philips screw is enclosed for your convenience. It has been a pleasure to pay my tax bill this year, and I look forward to paying it again next year. God Bless Canada ! Sincerely, Tax Payer



Entertainment Entre Nous - Shlomo Schwartzberg

Superhero films not always successful, but Marvel gives us hope I’m anticipating the May 6 opening of Thor, the

latest film adaptation of a Marvel Comics superhero, with some trepidation. The Norse God was one of my favourite Marvel comic book characters when I was a teenager, so I have high hopes for this movie. The fact that it’s directed by Kenneth Branagh (Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet) is an encouraging sign, but if Hollywood’s uneven track record in this department is anything to go by, Thor may or may not translate successfully to the movie screen.

T he Adventures of Seeker C hikis

The release of Thor and, later this summer, Captain America: The First Avenger, is also a reminder that the stable of Marvel comic characters remains a rich well for filmmakers to draw on. The complex Marvel universe of superheroes was one that I, for one, always preferred to the DC Comics world. With the notable exception of the gritty, psychologically disturbed Batman, DC’s heroes and heroines, including Superman and Wonder Woman, always struck me as sanitized, duller versions of Marvel’s angst-ridden protagonists. Think Spider-Man/Peter Parker, simultaneously coping with a tumultuous love life, a stressful work environment and the responsibility of using his superpowers, received when he was bitten by a radioactive spider, for the greater good. That’s a lot more layered than anything Superman had to deal with, even in his Clark Kent incarnation. And Marvel’s arresting panoply of villains, ranging from Doctor Octopus to Red Skull to Green Goblin, with their fascinating back stories, had more impact than the cardboard cut-outs like Lex Luthor, who paled by comparison. You’d think that Marvel’s rich comics’ palette would ensure that the Marvel movies would be foolproof projects but, with the odd exception – the superb Spider-Man 2 – the films have either been outright duds (Daredevil, Fantastic Four) or disappointments (the XMen movies, Hulk, Iron Man). That’s partly because it’s not so easy to create cinematic worlds that are faithful to the comic books’ environments – containing, as they do, super-powered beings- and yet are still recognizable as facsimiles of our own universe. But it’s also a matter of putting together the right director, screenwriters and actors so it gels into one smart film. That’s hasn’t happened too often but if Thor fails, there are still promising films, such as  this summer’s X- Men prequel (X-Men: First Class) or next year’s Marvel adaptations (The Avengers, The Amazing Spider-Man) to look forward to. (ED. NOTE: It is no secret that lifelong friends Shlomo and I disagree about films and TV shows most of the time and this is no exception. I have enjoyed the majority of superhero films ever since the first Superman movie (1978) made both he and I believe a man could fly. He failed to mention the exceptional Wolverine film last year, and the first Green Lantern movie due out shortly, presenting the tale of one of my favourite comic-book superheroes of all time. “In brightest day, in blackest night,” Shlomo….).

You may remember C hikis the c at from our Halloween is s ue. Well, here's our favourite Seeker feline amply illus trating what s he thought of the televis ed leader's debate a c ouple of weeks ago... Hardly the c at's meow from the look of things .

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514-975-7745 THE LOCAL SEEKER (pg. 5)


Read On! - Andreas Kessaris

Talking Pretty while Engulfed in Flames I can remember the first time I ever heard of David Sedaris. It was several years ago when he was a guest on The Late Show with David Letterman. Most fans of NPR, like Letterman, knew Sedaris as a long-time contributor to This American Life. He sat down for a brief talk, and then read one of his essays entitled Jesus Saves. I enjoyed the story so much I bought a copy of Me Talk Pretty One Day, read the book in two days, and immediately became a fan. Sedaris has the rare ability to make the banal interesting, employing the sort of insight and observational humour usually reserved for stand-up comics like Jerry Seinfeld or George Carlin, but with a unique dead-pan literary style and sensibility. His subsequent releases, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim and When You Are Engulfed in Flames are also terrific reads, although Me Talk Pretty One Day (which was prominently featured in an iPad commercial) still remains, in my opinion, the definitive Sedaris.

Sardonic. Incisive. Funny-as-hell. Join best-selling author David Sedaris (Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk, Engulfed in Flames) as he provides his stunning, hilarious and always-relevant insight into everything that matters… and then some. Sedaris events are like Grateful Dead concerts: Groupies abound. The difference is he’s not dead yet… or is he? Come find out for yourself, at this one-night-only lecture, Q&A and book signing combined!

His most recent effort, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk, is a bit of a departure for Sedaris. The book is a series of fictional stories involving animals with human characteristics, not unlike an Aesop fable but with no clear moral, choosing instead to go for laughs with the same Sedaris traits his readers have come to expect. As good as reading Sedaris, there is nothing like seeing him live. I had that privilege last autumn as he made an appearance at The Paragraphe Bookstore in downtown Montreal. The event attracted over 400 people, some of whom arrived hours before the scheduled start in order to secure good seats. In all my life, I’ve never experienced a literary event like that before or since. The diminutive Sedaris brought with him two shopping bags full of props like sound-effect boxes that made fart noises and a large pencil case full of sharpies. And he spent several minutes engaging in conversation with each fan, asking for or telling jokes (mostly blue humour, although when there was an underage person before him, he switched to more juvenile gross-out jokes with words like “poo”). On top of that, he wrote unique messages in each book, sometimes drawing simple pictures of a cat or owl. The signing began at 6:00 p.m. and lasted well past midnight. No one left disappointed.

Ticket Office – 514-842-2112, or 866-842-2112

David Sedaris will be in concert at Montreal’s Place des Arts on Wednesday, May 4, with an autograph session to be held afterwards. Do yourself a favour and check it out.

If you want your book signed, be prepared… a joke or two are often required in exchange.

Read on!


Wednesday, May 4, 2011 – 7:30 p.m. Theatre Maisonneuve, Place des Arts

Don’t say we didn’t warn you!


Wedding Bells

Smart couples say 'I do' to value in wedding registries (ARA) - From custom cakes and invitations, to flowers, linens and finding the perfect dress, today's brides face a flurry of expenses tied to the big day. Couple those costs with a not-so-blushing economy and it's easy to see why many are paring down their platinum wedding plans and saying "I do" to more budget-friendly options. Whether it's trimming the guest list or cutting out couture for something more demure, happy couples in 2011 are finding smart ways to curb their dream wedding costs but still throw chic, personalized affairs that won't break the bank. This reasonable approach is perfect for piecing together the allimportant gift registry, too. These essentials will be what take you and your new mate well beyond the honeymoon, so it's important to cover all bases. But even this can get costly. According to bridal website The Knot, 88 percent of couples establish a gift registry with lists topping out, on average, at 151 items total. Remember, your guests are feeling the financial crunch, too. So when you're setting out to select your shiny-new registry finds, follow these helpful tips from Black & Decker. That way, you'll be sure to score great items without putting too much strain on your guests' pocketbooks. * Stay practical. Everyone loves a splurge. That's part of the fun. But for the majority of guests, pricey presents can quickly add up. Cash crunch or not, family and friends are forced to spend, on average, between $79 to $146 on wedding gifts. And for guests feeling the effects of a slumping economy, this can sometimes make for a significant financial hit. Scanner-happy brides and grooms should remember practical picks, too, keeping in mind that lower prices don't necessarily mean having to skimp on high style and function. So it's always thoughtful to choose useful items that don't break the budgets of your RSVPs. After all, guests just want to help you start your happily ever after off right. Help them help you ring in the matrimony by picking budget-friendly options that carry style and value across the threshold. * Kitchen essentials. Food for thought: Never ditch the kitchen. A whopping 90 percent of registered couples ask for kitchen appliances and electrics. After all, it's the heart of the home and the perfect place to stock up on go-to gadgets for culinary crusades with your new spouse. The toaster, for one, is a classic and coffeemakers are key to starting every morning off right. Space-saving starter homes can always use a countertop oven when cooking for two, while blenders are perfect for whipping up smoothies, milkshakes, salsas and dips. There's no telling what the future may hold. But with brand-new kitchen appliances, you'll at least be covered for breakfast, lunch and dinner for two-and any new additions that may come up along the way. * Newfound newlywed features. Marriage may not always be easy. But your new appliances can be. And since home is where the heart is with your better half, register for products touting the latest technology and features to at least help your cohabitation run smoothly. Irons, for one, are anything but flat these days as cord-reeling features make for easy storage and vertical steaming capabilities help you skip the ironing board and knock out wrinkles right off the hangar. Toasters have gone digital, blenders come with to-die-for die-cast stands and the latest coffeemakers, like those from Black & Decker, are touting Sneak-A-Cup technology (for quick cups on the go), plus the always-practical programmable brew settings for no-fuss his and hers cups so you can greet the dawn effortlessly each day. So tie the knot. Just let high-functioning features help free up your time together. Visit for more information on smart solutions for registry essentials.



Video Vegetable - by Carrot

Election 2011 by Bram D. Eisenthal

Scarcity of words offered to West End’s election candidates (We had such a flurry of positive feedback about this feature from last issue, we thought we would run it again…)

The Local Seeker believes that political campaigners already give us more than enough rhetoric, so we wanted to offer them all an opportunity during this campaign to lay it on the table, if you will, using as few words as possible. Each candidate was allowed just three words to dazzle us with personal traits we should admire most, as well as a 20-word platform.

The candidates from the major parties – Liberal, PC, NDP, BQ and Green Party - in each West End riding were all contacted. If they do not appear, it is because they were apparently not interested in contributing (or never saw the offer), although NDP incumbent Thomas Mulcair DID personally call to say that he is “simply not a 20-word sort of guy.” Fair enough.

We sincerely thank those candidates who did contribute. I should also point out that West End offices representing the Bloc Quebecois were emailed our request - in English - and that we naively assumed a federal election was exactly the venue for banter in either official language. For the record, we would gladly have published their candidates’ comments in their mother tongues, but none were forthcoming. This was apparently an intentional, concerted sleight. Mount Royal candidate Gabriel Dumais was emailed personally a second time and chose to ignore the attempt. Talk about petty politics. Outremont, which features some areas crossing over into our West End, was, surprisingly, the riding least interested in participating. Props to the PC’s Rudolphe Husny for breaking the shutout. We also invited the Green Party’s West End candidates to contribute quite close to deadline, both individually and via their national office, and three of the four candidates responded. NDG-Lachine’s Green Party candidate, Jessica Gal, was the most impressive of all in the succinct utilization of her platform word limit. Bottom line: Do words really matter? What do YOU think?

Notre Dame de Grace - Lachine Incumbent Trustworthy











Experienced Platform: Liberals understand the real needs of working Canadians and we are the only credible alternative to the Harper regime.

Platform: Protecting jobs and families along with keeping the community safe are my priorities. A strong voice for Montreal in government.

Marlene Jennings

Matthew Conway

Mount Royal

Platform: Isabelle's main interests are the environment and matters such as our healthcare system, public safety, public transit and government accountability.

Isabelle Morin

The candidate did not reply to our email

Gabrielle Ladouceur-Despins











Meadowbook protected; Turcot greened; Prévention NDG funded; green retrofits tax credited; Empress resurrected; housing subsidized; schools bilingualized; seniors, immigrants resourced.

Jessica Gal


Platform: Leader for 30 years, an accomplished Parliamentarian with a record of achievement for you. For Mount Royal. For Canada.

Irwin Cotler

Platform: Bring local experience to the national stage! The Conservatives lowered your taxes and made Canada the pride of the G7.

Saulie Zajdel











Platform: Increased healthcare funding (more doctors, shorter wait-times), jobcreating business incentives, green tax credits, humane immigration policies, fortifying seniors’ benefits.

The candidate did not reply to our email

Jeff Itcush

Gabriel Dumais

Platform: Stimulating Green Economics through taxing "bads" not "goods," while investing in Green industries, creating jobs, caring for health and environment. 


Brian Sarwer-Foner

Incumbent Declined











The candidate chose not to comment

Thomas Mulcair

The candidate did not reply to our email

Martin Cauchon

Platform: We aim to lighten the fiscal burden for average families, help the elderly, create jobs and growth, help small businesses.

Rodolphe Husny

The candidate did not reply to our email

Élise Daoust

Incumbent Did









The candidate did not reply to our email

Westmount Ville-Marie

The candidate did not reply to our email

Marc Garneau

Francois Pilon










Platform: You can count on me and Jack Layton to work with others to tackle the problems we face in Westmount-Ville-Marie.

The candidate did not reply to our email

Joanne Corbeil

Véronique Roy


Platform: Greens want: A competitive economy, efficient and innovative; vibrant communities and strong social programs; and a return to real democracy.

Andrew Carkner

Platform: Riding to be represented in government with commitment to the stability of the economy and the security of the nation.

Neil Drabkin

Why Should I Vote? The truth of the matter is simple: When you do not vote, you let others speak for you.




Yoga U - Chantalle Kudsi

An intro to a feel-good pursuit It seems like "everyone" is doing yoga. But what is it, and who is it for? From the outside, yoga looks like a popular form of exercise for women. In fact, yoga, which originated in India, was first developed and practiced primarily by men. It is also far more than a stretching regime -- it is an ancient, integrated system, for purifying both body and mind. At the heart of yoga is breath, that nebulous thing connecting our material self (our form) to our ethereal or spiritual being. Breath is also a great equalizer, connecting us to all life. In yoga, we cultivate awareness through breathing, and it is the breath, rather than the mind, that moves the body. The body stretches and opens, becoming the gateway to other aspects hidden within. We penetrate to deeper levels by shining the light of our awareness inwards and it is the breath that takes us there. As our state of being becomes more expansive, we become less attached to thoughts. Ego dissolves. Consciousness enters our organs, muscles, bones and tissues. At the same time, toxins are released and negativity – often stored in the body as tension, stress or illness – transforms. Enhanced well-being, restored vitality, and improved strength and flexibility are some of the rewards that can come from a dedicated yoga practice. People of all ages, backgrounds and levels of ability can practice yoga. The importance of finding the right teacher is paramount, especially for beginners. There is yoga for seniors, chair yoga, yoga for cancer survivors, yoga for pregnancy, and children’s yoga, to mention just a few. There are also yoga teachers who will design one-on-one or customized group classes in your home. While a good teacher will remind you to move gently and listen to your body’s signals, it is up to each and every person to practice yoga intelligently. By doing so, not only do we keep ourselves safe from injury, each posture becomes a manifestation of mind-body unity, as well as an expression of our truth as it is in the moment, with all of its physical limitations and imperfections. Finally, yoga is as quiet as it is powerful, as restorative as it is rigorous: It asks for surrender and effort in equal parts. It is the union of earth and sky, of two worlds, of seeming opposites. It can be spoken of, but mostly it is to be experienced. Yoga is the union of all aspects of ourselves, together as one. Chantalle Kudsi is a yoga and meditation teacher in the West End. For questions or comments, or to enquire about classes or workshops, contact her at

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Letters From L a L a L and - Steven Goldmann

felt uncomfortable and out of place, but I always was polite and thanked those who promised to pray for my soul once they found out that I was Jewish.

Seeing people for what they are, through a director’s eye

videos. I learned quickly that I had the ability to make wonderful music videos for music I really did not like and in a very short period of time I became one the very top directors in the field. Moving to the South as a NorthEastern Jew had me, well, apprehensive. As Canadians we learn about “The South” via Hollywood  images, through clichés.  I was so surprised to learn about the rich cultural heritage of Southern Jewry and I became an ardent student, soaking up this new culture.    Did you know that Southern Jews put up Christmas trees? I did not understand why. But eventually I would.

Thinking about Passover and Moses’s journey made me ponder how my life has been a bit of an unexpected journey, at least for a nice Jewish boy from Montreal.    I wanted to study film, so I went to New York - nothing surprising there.    My next move, one might have expected, would be to Hollywood, but for reasons too numerous to get into in this short Many of my music videos brought ended up me to small towns throughout the column, I in Nashville, Tennessee. United States, many right into the heart of what might be I was working in “The Biz,” pejoratively described as Redneck directing lots of country music Country. There were many times I

Now let’s be clear, my adopted home of Nashville had a very rich Jewish history and was a for the most part a welcoming and wonderful community. Throughout the South, I found places like The Pinch in Memphis  and the Spanish and Portuguese Jewish sections of Galveston, Texas. Even towns as far South as  Clarkdale,  Mississippi  – the “Crossroads of the Blues” surprised me regarding how integrated Jews were in their history.  I soaked this stuff up. So, in 1998, I learned I was one of only 72 Jews in the country music industry. I learned this because I was invited to take part in the SOUTHERN JEWISH HISTORICAL SOCIETY 23RD ANNUAL CONFERENCE, on a panel reflecting all aspects of Jewish participation in the country music business. Of course I said yes.    I shared the stage with 10% of those 72 Jews! We all talked about our experiences and our similar encounters with anti-Semitism, not so much in the business, but all around us. People using terms like “Jew me down” or “uppity Jew” were not uncommon. I think all of us in some way felt that hate was always just one degree of separation from us.  I spoke of how

reflexively and nervously I had once introduced myself with just my first name, dropping my last name without even thinking. While I was shooting in the town of Pulaski,  Tennessee, it was not lost on me that I was filming in the birthplace of the KKK. I was filming a video for a pretty huge star at the time and hundreds of people turned out to watch, including the Mayor.  And yes, it was before the Mayor of Pulaski that I suddenly decided that not unlike Southern Jews putting up Christmas trees, I would mask my Jewishness and  merely introduce myself as Steven, just Steven , like just Cher. "Steven What?" asked the Mayor. I stumbled. I stuttered. I caved. "Steven Goldmann."    The Mayor smiled large and said, “Goldmann, Goldmann, we had a Doctor Goldmann come through here a while back - nice fellow.”  And you know what? Nothing happened. He just wondered if I might be related because you know, "it is a small world".    Traveling across the  U.S.  taught me some important lessons about people and the stereotypes that go with them. Give other people a chance to teach you about their race, religion and culture and you will find good in everyone… well, most of the time… Steven Goldmann is a Montrealraised Hollywood director

Since the concentration camps were liberated and the Holocaust came to an end. Yet the Six Million Jews – and Four Million others – who perished in the worst massmurder in history, still cry out for justice.They must be remembered, till the end of time.

65 YEARS... This ad in memory of:

On Monday, May 2, 2011, Yom HaShoah – Holocaust Remembrance Day – will be marked in the State of Israel and worldwide. On the evening of May 1, Erev Yom HaShoah, members of Montreal’s Jewish community will light yellow memorial candles (yellow to signify the yellow Stars of David the Nazis forced Jews to wear in the Camps and Ghettos) in memory of the Six Million. We who live solemnly swear: Never Again!

The late Mina Eisenthal, survivor - The late Sofia Eisenthal, survivor The late Abraham Jacob Eisenthal, survivor Mali Eisenthal, died in Skazinitz labour camp, Transnistria, Roumania Bernhard Eisenthal, shot to death in Skazinitz labour camp, Transnistria, Roumania The Six Million who perished and all the courageous survivors who have passed on. May your memories eternally be for a blessing.

Shaare Zedek Congregation in NDG will be holding a special Holocaust Memorial Service on Sunday, May 1, after the regular service at 8:45 a.m. A breakfast, featuring a guest speaker, will follow. The program is sponsored by Shaare Zedek’s Men’s Club. Donations are accepted and appreciated. The synagogue is located at 5305 Rosedale, corner Chester.



Musical Musings - Paul Smith

I got into rock music at age 12, after hearing the Jesus Christ Superstar rock opera. I then turned on to Alice Cooper, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, etc., read Circus magazine and listened to CKGM-FM(CHOM). Fascinated by the assertiveness of the sound and message of seventies rock and driven by the hormones of adolescence, I wanted to be a rock star. I took a few years of classical piano lessons to get a feel for what music was - chords, scales, harmony but due to the nature of the music, the guitar became my passion and main performance instrument. I locked myself in my room for hours, picked up guitar riffs, learned to sing and eventually played in local bands at high school dances and club bands. During all this time I had often heard the term "equal temperament" but just assumed it was "equal" so that it was naturally the best or only musical system, i.e. "We tune a guitar to these pitches and this way because it's an equal tempered instrument." I'd asked what equal temperament was many times and never really got a clear answer. About 10 years ago, I finally decided to get my own answer. OK, so fine, what is equal temperament (ET)? What other choices are there? The answers to those questions opened up a whole new world of mysteries and insights. ET is the musical tuning system used in the West to tune pianos, guitars and such. It was introduced early in the 16th century with the invention of fretted-string instruments. It came into general use around 1854 in conjunction with the evolution of the modern piano. It was a compromise chosen to allow fixed note instruments to be able to change keys smoothly (without having to do the instantaneous unpractical retuning of pitches for a change of root). It sounds pretty good, but it is not considered to be the most "natural" harmonically-pleasing tuning system for the human ear.

Mariposa… le café

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Complex harmonies do not come across as sharp and distinct as they do in an alternative tuning system called "Just tuning" (JT). You won't hear JT on the radio (except maybe on CBC) because almost all Western music is piano/guitar-based in ET. In JT, intervals are pure harmonic, with more “natural" ratios. It is subtly more pleasing to hear. It can be performed on non-fixed note instruments, such as the violin, horn and the human voice. The distinct clarity and "justness" of ‘just harmony’ is most apparent in complex chord harmonies (such as 9ths and 11ths).

Thursday nights are "Blues n' Ribs" with acoustic open mic at 7:30pm Come see, taste and listen: Themed monthly dinners, specials from $12-$15 accompanying entertainment by local musicians.

The LA Jazz Choir sings acapella harmony in JT. I recommend that you give them a listen to experience - possibly for the first time - that Equal temperament is not Just!

Start your weekends with our nourishing breakfasts and terrific java.

Salads, sandwiches and beverages available all day. Terrific homebaked goods to eat in or take out anytime.

Guitar questions (send your replies to Bram at and, if you get ‘em all right, win one of three sets of strings generously donated by Paul Smith):

This month’s musicians include: April 29th "Di Nero", sax & guitar April 30th "Strawn & Moon" May musicians: Call for schedule.

Q: What fret does Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull capo on most for on Thick as a Brick? Q: Who was the first singer for Deep Purple? Q: What is the 9th of C?


Thursdays 3:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. - Fridays 3:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Saturdays 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. - Sundays 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Mariposa...le café..."Ndg's Best Kept Secret"...shhhh!



Paul attended high school at College de Montreal. He received his Electrical Engineering degree in 1985 from Concordia University. Paul has been playing guitar and singing since he was 12 and played in several local bands, while making a living in electronic component sales and marketing. Email: Find Paul on Facebook and Linked IN.


45 years after his hit book Flying Saucers Serious Business: by Bram D. Eisenthal

Remembering media pioneer Frank Edwards To those who don’t have enough of an imagination to imagine that there is life in our universe advanced enough to build starships capable of visiting Earth, I truly feel sorry for you. It’s quite easy to wave a hand and debunk something because it doesn’t fit your personal views, right? But there are certainly enough unexplained phenomena presented to the inhabitants of this tiny planet to make things interesting… to those who possess open minds, that is. Frank Edwards (1908 – 1967) was a reporter and print journalist who also happened to help pioneer radio when he debuted with Illinois’s KDKA-AM in the 1920s. Edwards also had a stint as a professional golfer and worked for the U.S. Treasury Department promoting war bond sales during WWII. It was as a bestselling author, however, that Edwards made his biggest impact, certainly on yours truly when I started reading him at age 12 or so. Edwards’s book on UFOs, entitled Flying Saucers: Serious Business, published under the Lyle Stuart imprint in 1966, remains one of the more captivating, well-researched and intelligent explorations of the subject written to date. Edwards wrote a sequel called Flying Saucers – Here and Now, published in 1967, the year of his death. Edwards was always fascinated by the subject of UFOs and he stayed on top of every reported sighting, from the seminal one in 1947 by fighter pilot Kenneth Arnold. Following WWII, Edwards was hired by the Mutual Broadcasting System to host a talk show sponsored by the American Federation of Labor. Increasingly interested in UFOs, Edwards began mentioning the phenomena more frequently on air, until he was fired for no specific reason in 1954, resulting in the writing of thousands of letters of protest. Undaunted, Edwards kept his radio career alive, creating and hosting a syndicated radio show called Stranger than Science (undoubtedly an influence on broadcaster Art Bell, who later hosted Dreamland – the nickname of the mysterious Area 51 – and Coast-to-Coast, which can still be heard on air today). In 1959, Edwards wrote a book with that title dealing with some of the odd and often eerie incidents he covered, such as ghosts, spontaneous human combustion, abominable snowmen, the Devil’s Footprints, living fossils, killer comets and such. Subjects like these have been covered by others, such as Rupert Furneaux, the recently-deceased Hans Holzer and Colin Wilson, but Edwards’s journalistic bent and wellhoned research made his writings all the more informative… without being needlessly sensational. Whether into UFOs or not you, may wish to check out the other books written by Edwards dealing with inexplicable occurrences of other sorts, in addition to Stranger Than Science: Strangest of All, Strange People and Strange World. Toward the premature end of his life – he was just 59 when he died of a heart attack – Edwards became a celebrity of sorts, as sales of Flying Saucers Serious Business skyrocketed. In October 1966, Edwards was invited to guest on an episode of The Tonight Show during the Johnny Carson era, though that particular show was hosted by the husband-and-wife team of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme. And, then, on June 23, 1967, came word that Edwards had died. Yet, this proved to be one of the most unusual of the mysteries involving Edwards, who passed away just before the stroke of midnight. Kenneth Arnold’s famous UFO sighting had occurred on June 24, 20 years earlier. The announcement of Edwards’s death was actually publicly made on the 24th, at the Congress of Scientific Ufologists in New York City, which linked the two events forevermore in the minds of his followers. Even more startling (some may deem it freaky… I certainly do) was the death of Edwards’s long-time friend and publisher, Lyle Stuart. The date of HIS death? June 24, 2006. Strange times, indeed. Frank Edwards’s books are available in re-print versions or on the secondary market. In 1977, Lyle Stuart published his final book featuring Edwards’s material, The Strange World of Frank Edwards, reprinting 46 of the author’s most unusual tales. They were chosen by the book’s editor, Rory Stuart, Lyle’s son, a career jazz musician who referred to Edwards as Uncle Frank when he was a child.



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I hope you have enjoyed this issue. We are working on our next issue of 2011, and it will be out May 13th

Bes t, Bra m

Deadline for next issue: Friday May 6 12:00 noon



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and (Duncan) Judy Loeu

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Local Seeker West End Issue 9  
Local Seeker West End Issue 9  

local seeker west end issue 9