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Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie talks about memory loss in CBC interview

The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Oct 14th, 2016

Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie says his memory is fading as he battles terminal brain cancer, but is keeping busy with projects that may include another record.

Downie spoke with anchor Peter Mansbridge in an exclusive interview for CBC’s “The National,” which aired Thursday night.

Downie told Mansbridge he “can’t remember hardly anything” and admitted he had to write “Peter” on his hand so he wouldn’t forget the name of the man interviewing him, whom he’s known for 25 years.

Downie also said he’s fighting his terminal illness and hopes he “can get more time.”

When Mansbridge asked if he’s “resigned to the direction this is heading,” Downie replied, “Yes, I am. I really am.”

A preview of Downie’s interview with Peter Mansbridge was released earlier Thursday

Downie revealed his cancer earlier this year. Over the summer, he and the Hip put on a 15-show tour that ended with an emotional live broadcast concert from his hometown of Kingston, Ont., that drew millions of viewers.

Next Tuesday, Downie is set to release “Secret Path,” a new solo album with an accompanying graphic novel inspired by the tragedy of Canada’s residential school system. He is also scheduled to perform at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa on Tuesday, and at Toronto’s Roy Thomson Hall on Oct. 21.

“Secret Path” tells the story of a 12-year-old First Nations boy in Ontario named Chanie Wenjack, who died in 1966 after running away from the Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School near Kenora, Ont.

An animated film on the story – accompanied by documentary footage of Downie tracing Chanie’s steps with the Wenjack family – will be broadcast on CBC on Oct. 23.

The full video of the song, “The Stranger,” is available below and at this link.

“This is what I want to do,” Downie said of the project. “Nothing else really matters to me.”

He also said the Tragically Hip are working on another record, adding that “just doing things” brings him peace.

The interview marked the first time he’s discussed his condition publicly. He said he feels lucky in a sense because he can still accomplish some things.

“It’s given me this long kind of way to do some of these things that I’ve always wanted to do,” Downie said.

Downie told Mansbridge one of the biggest effects of his illness is his memory that used to be his “forte.”

“And now I can’t remember hardly anything. I have ‘Peter’ written on my hand. I have a few things written on my hands. And I say that just to be up front, because I might call you Doug.”

He said he struggled with his memory during the summer tour and had to use six teleprompters to help with lyrics. Downie said before his illness he always had one teleprompter at his shows as a backup, but rarely needed it. He had difficulty remembering lyrics during the summer tour, he said.

“For some reason every line, I just couldn’t, it’s the worst kind of punishment,” he said.

“It was one savage kick in the pants, can’t remember people’s names and can’t remember lyrics.”

Police investigating after officer caught on camera appearing to be asleep

CityNews | posted Friday, Oct 14th, 2016


Toronto police have launched an investigation after a police officer was caught on video appearing to be asleep in his cruiser while on the job.

The viewer video appears to show a paid duty officer sleeping behind the wheel with the cruiser lights flashing.

The video was shot around 10 p.m. Wednesday night near the intersection of Yonge and Eglinton. It’s not clear what the officer was doing at the time the footage was taken or what happened before the camera started rolling.

Several construction signs can be seen near the intersection.

“I think he was putting everyone there at risk by sleeping and not doing his duty,” said the person who shot the video but asked not to use his name.

“He was beside us sleeping. We made the left and I yelled out to the other cop ‘your buddy is sleeping wake him up’, and we just drove off.”

Toronto police say the video is now the subject of a “professional standards investigation” which is an internal probe that looks at the conduct of police officers.

Asked if the officer may have suffered a medical episode, police told CityNews that would also be part of the investigation.

Blue Jays are feeling loose under post-season spotlight in Cleveland

Nail Davidson, The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Oct 14th, 2016


A loose bunch of Blue Jays wasted little time making some changes to their Progressive Field home away from home for the American League Championship Series with Cleveland.

With the clubhouse closed to the media during the post-season, it was up to centre-fielder Kevin Pillar to partially spill the beans.

“All of our name plates have been changed from our normal names,” Pillar said as the Toronto players met reporters in a stadium restaurant ahead of Game 1 Friday with [Cleveland]. “I wasn’t in there during it but someone’s given everyone nicknames already. Not the nicest of nicknames but that’s just how we are – we keep it loose, we keep it fun.

“No one is safe, whether you’re the MVP, a multiple-time all-star or the rookie sitting across. Everyone’s got free rein to say what they want and do what they want and that’s what makes the environment so fun.”

Could he reveal his nickname, Pillar was asked.

“No, no. I won’t,” he said quickly.

How about any nickname?

“No, not sharing them,” Pillar said, vigorously shaking his head.

Staying loose is nothing new for the Blue Jays, who are trying to make the most of the post-season moment after falling one game short of the World Series last season on a dramatic night in Kansas City.

“Enjoy (it),” veteran shortstop Troy Tulowitzki said Thursday. “That’s what I try to tell all these young guys on the team. It’s not easy to get here. For it to be our second year in a row speaks volumes about the guys on this team.”

Having recovered from a 3-9 start to September, they fought their way into the playoffs, survived the wild-card hurdle and swept Texas in the AL Division Series. The Jays are feeling pretty good about themselves.

“I’d say we’re looser,” Tulowitzki said. “Just because we know the group that we have and we’re at our best when we’re loose. Our backs have been up against the wall really for a good portion of the season if you look at it. We didn’t win our division. We never went on a huge huge run the whole season. We grinded the whole way through.”

“We feel like we’re just playing with house money a little bit,” he added. “And it’s really the way to go for us. We have fun with it. We play better like that. And we’re trying to stay the same.”

Manager John Gibbons says his players have succeeded in doing just that.

“They haven’t changed along the way one bit. Good times, bad times. I think that’s good for a team,” he said, leaning back in his chair in a spartan visiting manager’s office that could double as a home to a prison administrator.

“I haven’t noticed one difference, to be honest with you.”

Catcher Russell Martin does see a calmness and maturity growing out of the team’s experience in last year’s post-season. But he also sees a group having fun playing baseball.

“We like to make it seem bigger than what it is,” he said. “Really we’re playing the game we’ve been playing for I don’t know how long, most guys have been playing it since they were kids.”

Slugger Jose Bautista also detects excitement.

“I think everybody’s just eager to get going,” he said. “We showed up today after two days off, everybody’s giddy and excited to go out to batting practice, which is not necessarily the attitude in September when it comes to practice. I think our heads are in a good place.”

Related stories:

Blue Jays turn to Marco Estrada to start Game 1 of ALCS

Blue Jays broadcaster Jerry Howarth won’t say ‘Indians’ in ALCS

Toronto Blue Jays sweep American League Division Series

Cleveland presents a considerable challenge. The team (94-67) won the AL Central before sweeping the Boston Red Sox. Toronto (89-73) finished as the top wild card, defeating Baltimore in a one-off before dispatching Texas in three straight.

Cleveland can manufacture runs with their bats and speed, ranking fourth in the majors with 134 stolen bases (Toronto was 25th with 54). Andrew Miller and Cody Allen lead a more than capable bullpen.

Manager Terry Francona helps keep things ticking. “Seems like he does press those right buttons a lot,” said Tulowitzki.

The Jays swung for the fences, ranking fourth in the majors with 221 home runs (Cleveland was 18th with 185). Toronto’s starting rotation, meanwhile, led the AL in ERA (3.64) and opponents’ average (.236) among other categories.

In fact, the Jays were the only AL team whose starters’ ERA was under 4.00. (Cleveland was next at 4.08 despite September injuries to Danny Salazar and Carlos Carrasco).

The Jays confirmed a starting rotation of Marco Estrada, J.A. Happ, Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez.

“We feel good about any of them,” Gibbons said of his starters.

Estrada (9-0, 3.48 ERA) faces right-hander Corey Kluber (18-9, 3.41 ERA) to open the series.

Gibbons says second baseman Devon Travis, who has been nursing a sore knee, is feeling fine.

But Toronto has a decision to make on pitcher Francisco Liriano, who is eligible to return for Game 2 Saturday under Major League Baseball’s concussion protocol. The Jays cannot replace Liriano before then if they want to use him in the series, which means going with 24 Friday.

They planned further tests on Liriano before announcing their roster Friday morning.

“If all is well, he should be good to go,” said Gibbons.

Cleveland won four of the seven meetings between the two this season.

“They were incredible, incredible games,” said Jays president Mark Shapiro, who spent 24 seasons with [Cleveland] prior to joining Toronto. “Our series against them were tough, hard-fought, close battles. And so I guess if I have to guess, it’s going to be a tough series. Two very different but evenly matched teams.”

Both Cleveland and Toronto have won their last six games.

With files from Gregory Strong

Woman threw bucket of vomit at Guelph paramedics, police allege

The Canadian Press | posted Friday, Oct 14th, 2016


Police say paramedics in Guelph were allegedly assaulted by a woman armed with a bucket of vomit.

They allege a 22-year-old woman become upset with the paramedic crew and threw a bucket of vomit at them on Tuesday.

Investigators say it missed the crew but soaked some medical equipment, damaging it.

A Guelph woman was arrested at the scene and is charged with mischief over $5,000 and assault with a weapon.

Patricia Pegalo is to appear in court on Nov. 25.

Samsung Note 7 recall to cost at least $5.3 billion

Youkyung Lee, The Associated Press | posted Friday, Oct 14th, 2016

In this photo taken on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2016, a man touches the Samsung Electronics Galaxy Note 7 smartphone at its shop in Seoul, South Korea. Samsung Electronics Co. estimated its profit rose more than expected in the July-September quarter despite the unprecedented recall of its flagship smartphones. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

SEOUL, South Korea – Samsung Electronics said Friday that discontinuing the Galaxy Note 7 smartphone, which is prone to overheat and catch fire, will cost it about $3 billion in the current and coming quarters, raising total costs from the recalls to at least $5.3 billion.

The Note 7 discontinuation will cost in the mid-2 trillion won range during the October-December period and another 1 trillion won ($884 million) during the January-March quarter, the company said in a statement.

Samsung already slashed its third-quarter profit forecast by $2.6 billion earlier this week, an amount that could wipe out its entire mobile business profit. That did not include the cost of Samsung’s first recall, which analysts estimated at 1 trillion won to 2 trillion won.

Samsung has enough cash and other businesses to absorb the shock from the phone recall. It said it expected to generate 5.2 trillion won ($4.6 billion) in operating income during the third quarter after the recall cost. Analysts said most of the income will be generated by sales of advanced displays and semiconductors.

Samsung added that it will make significant changes in its quality assurance processes to improve product safety. It did not elaborate.

The company said it will expand sales of two other smartphones released in spring, the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge, quashing rumours that it may try to release updated versions of those devices. Samsung usually releases a new iteration of the Galaxy S series in spring, so the company may have to provide a strong incentive to sell the 6-month-old phones, such as lowering their prices.

More than 2.5 million Galaxy Note 7 smartphones were recalled due to the unexplained overheating problems before Samsung gave up the product earlier this week, just two months after its launch in August.

In the United States, 1.9 million Note 7 phones are subject to the two recalls. Samsung also recalled about 200,000 phones in China and about half a million phones in South Korea.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said there were 96 reports of batteries in Note 7 phones overheating in the country, including 23 new reports since the first recall announcement last month. The company received 13 reports of burns and 47 reports of property damage associated with the phones.

“Consumers should immediately stop using and power down all Galaxy Note 7 devices, including Note 7 devices received as replacements in the previous recall,” the agency said.

The botched recall raised questions about Samsung’s initial analysis of the Note 7 phone’s problems. At first, Samsung said a minor manufacturing error in the batteries for the Note 7 was causing the phones to overheat.

The problem with the replacements is still unclear. Experts say Samsung may have rushed to conclude the Note 7’s problem was a battery issue and it may take a long time to find the real cause.

Seeking to retain customers, Samsung is giving an incentive of a $100 credit to Note 7 owners who switch to another Samsung phone.

The Note 7 device was one of the most expensive smartphones in the market with all the latest technologies from Samsung, including the ability to unlock the phone by scanning a user’s iris. It was sold for between $850 and $890.


Follow Youkyung Lee on Twitter at twitter.com/YKLeeAP

Her work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/youkyung-lee

Gord Downie releases new music video on YouTube

CityNews | posted Thursday, Oct 13th, 2016

A screen capture from Gord Downie’s music video for “The Stranger.” Image via YouTube/Gord Downie.
Gord Downie has released first track from his upcoming project, “Secret Path.”

The full video of the song, “The Stranger,” is available below and at this link.

Downie’s new project tells the story of a 12-year-old First Nations boy in Ontario named Chanie Wenjack, who died in 1966 after running away from the Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School near Kenora, Ont.

In a statement released last month, Downie said he learned the story of Chanie, who was misnamed Charlie by his teachers, from a 1967 Maclean’s magazine article.

The “Secret Path” album and book will be released on Oct. 18 and the film will air on CBC on Oct. 23.

The CBC also released a preview of Downie’s interview with Peter Mansbridge, where The Tragically Hip frontman describes what it’s like living with cancer.

Downie has been diagnosed with glioblastoma, a terminal form of brain cancer.

Canadian customers can now return Galaxy Note 7 smartphones: Samsung

The Canadian Press | posted Thursday, Oct 13th, 2016

In this photo taken on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2016, a man touches the Samsung Electronics Galaxy Note 7 smartphone at its shop in Seoul, South Korea. Samsung Electronics Co. estimated its profit rose more than expected in the July-September quarter despite the unprecedented recall of its flagship smartphones. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

Samsung says Canadians with Galaxy Note 7 smartphones can start returning the devices Thursday as part of a global safety recall following reports of overheating batteries that pose a fire hazard.

Samsung Electronics Canada Inc. of Mississauga, Ont., has advised consumers to return the phones to the stores where they were bought.

Devices returned to retailers and carriers can be exchanged for a Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge phone, or customers can opt for a full refund for the recalled Note 7s and specific accessories.

Samsung.com customers are being offered a refund upon receipt of the Galaxy Note 7s.

Samsung Canada says it will contact customers who bought their smartphones through Samsung.com about the return process.

The South Korean electronics giant said Tuesday it would stop making and selling the Note 7s and advised owners to turn off and stop using the smartphones.

Related stories:

Samsung sends fire proof boxes for Galaxy Note 7 returns
Samsung halts sales of Galaxy Note 7; Canadian says he will keep using his phone
AT&T stops Samsung phone exchanges after new fire reports

Tractor-trailer fire partially closes Hwy. 401 at Whites Road

CityNews | posted Thursday, Oct 13th, 2016


A tractor-trailer fire partially closed Highway 401 in Pickering on Thursday morning.

The fire happened in the westbound express lanes approaching Whites Road around 4:15 a.m.

The westbound and eastbound express lanes at Rouge River are closed.

The truck driver wasn’t injured.

It appears the driver veered out of the lane and struck the concrete median, but it’s not yet known if that caused the fire.

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