1. Hosers in heaps: Canada’s population is the fastest-growing of all G8 nations. Census 2011 revealed a growth of two million over the last five years. The fastest-growing region is the West, which means, I guess, we have to brace ourselves for a lot more country music.
2. Off The Record: Michael Landsberg’s poignant documentary about depression aired on CTV this week. Darkness and Hope includes confessions from successful athletes who dispel the myths relating the illness to weakness or failure. Ironically, it depressed me a little, but I applaud all involved for the courage to bear their souls for the benefit of millions. Thanks, Michael.
3. Time out: For those contemplating a warm-weather getaway, one of the most popular new hot spots seems to be Panama City. Least popular? Damascus.
4. And speaking of Damascus: Vladimir Putin, the “hall monitor” of the Middle East, warned against outside forces meddling in Syria’s affairs. He says, “We must not behave like a bull in a china shop.” He’s right. Especially when the bull that’s already in there has broken most of the china himself.
5. Seeing is believing: Season 2 of The Voice premiered this week. It differs from other star-finder shows because judges choose without seeing contestants. There is nothing like the looks on their faces when they discover that they passed on someone beautiful or, worse, that they chose someone who looks like a female Perez Hilton.
6. One Love: Had he not left us too soon, this week would have been Bob Marley’s 67th birthday. Thousands took Monday off to celebrate, but returned to work the next day unable to elaborate.
7. Toughness test: Raptors star Andrea Bargnani will get paid $9 million this year in salary alone, but has missed 20 per cent of an already shortened season due to a strained calf. I know a guy who lost a testicle and got just one day off. To be fair, though, he sucks at basketball.
8. Freudian slip: True story: 15 years ago, at a Blur concert in London, two of the Spice Girls, Ginger and Sporty, joined the band onstage for a set, only to be thrown off by security guards who didn’t know who they were. Fortunately, the girls had learned how to break a fall earlier in their career after several incidents of being “accidentally” thrown off stage.
9. Valentine’s Day: This year, forget the dying plants and offer up some soul. Poetry is the potion, but if your repertoire is limited, simply choose some poignant song lyrics. This year, I’m going with LMFAO’s “I got passion in my pants and I ain’t afraid to show it…. I’m sexy and I know it.” Hey – high risk, high reward.
10. And the award goes to: Juno nominations were revealed this week and include Grammy nominees Bieber, Feist, Drake and Arcade Fire, as well as a bevy of future stars. To my American friends I say, “You’re welcome.”