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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Photo Image of SMS virus bug infecting iPhones

Regarding the SMS bug threat to Apple iPhones, here is the image that you are supposed to watch for, and if you see it, the advice is turn off your phone immediately:

According to cybersecurity researchers Charlie Miller and Collin Mulliner, they notified Apple of the bug a month ago but there has still been no patch released.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Top Canadian Rock Bands EVER!

Straight off the top of my aging vibrant head, here are some of the greatest Canadian rock bands ever. Feel free to post your own lists and additions in the Comments section.

Top Canadian Rock Bands All Time

The Guess Who
Our Lady Peace
The Band
Tragically Hip
Teenage Head
Billy Talent
April Wine

I will expand this list in coming days, so shoot me some ideas!!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I Let My Mind Go Wander; Luv Poem

A few words I found on a newspaper near my bedside, and though I was never physically gone, our minds do tend to wander sometimes, don't they?

Mind Go Wander

I'm such a fuckin idiot, I let my mind go wander
I love U more than U can know, U're in my world forever
I'm back and I'm knowing I need U more than ever
Come out to play, we're in this together

Even now it's so many years later
Yet we're dancing in the evening
By your side in the morning light
In Canada and the Caribbean
U have loved me more than any other human
U Know me and my soul and my love for rock'n'roll
I need U to grow stronger, each can help the other

I am just now realizing how wrong I can be
The one I was seeking lays right here beside me
I Love You Forever Heather let's dance again tonight
I'm loving your warmth and in your eye a spark of Light

Maybe I'll be better Jah knows how hard I've tried
Not easy to live with it yet U take it all in stride
Carry on for the youth the true blessings in our lives
I am honoured to have such a beautiful, loving wife

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Josephes work in progress, 2nd draft of first chapter

On my Solar-Intelligence Blog I am writing a novel live on the web, and here is the 2nd draft of the first chapter, comprised of slightly edited versions of the first few posts:

My Life, Legacy, and the Progress of Rome

The past century has been a tumultous time for Romans, yet if we do not understand how we got in such a mess, we will have little opportunity to build upon the progress of recent years. I envision a succession of quality Emperors who rise to their position not by virtue of the birth of their father, though some of Us have been blessed in this regard, but rather by the wisdom of their leadership and ability to handle governance.

I, your Emperor Nerva Josephes, have lived a long and fruitful life, and I have learned from the masters of this past century and our foreparents before Us; may I share some wisdom with you? I wrote out the history of my people for posterity, for a clear and positive view on the Chosen from the days of Egypt and Ethiopia, unto Babylon and Persia, Israel and Palestine, Greece and Rome. My versions were challenged publicly two decades later by my brother, who had more orthodox leanings than myself and had a clear axe to grind. I love Jeshua Justus Junior as much as anyone, but my brother can be emotional and anybody who feels it knows it.

Though my mother was among the earliest and strongest of the faithful, her teachings are already being obscured and women are not fully being credited for their contributions to the emerging Christian canon. In the coming pages I will take you back to Our upbringing in Galilee, schooling in Rome, Athens and Alexandria, and best of all, Our family trips to Briton! Further along, I will shed some light upon the origins of some of my father's teachings, re-describe some of the events I wrote about in Antiquities in a more personal way, and discuss the fall of Jerusalem and how Our family saved many thousands of lives with peace treaties, even though we were unable to save JeruSalem Herself.

I will write about the madness of growing up in Nero's era (I still love the fool but it's sad that he was corrupted by power before being able to grow into the man he could have become...), being favoured by Vespatian (the good uncle...) and then persecuted by Domitian (the difficult uncle). It may not be polite in Roman social circles to discuss our failures openly but we know everyone does it privately, so let's air it out and make Rome and the Empire into a truly just society, worthy of our noblest efforts and a joy for all her citizens. you may feel this is utopian, but even four hundred years ago Ashoka proved in India and Kushan that a powerful country could have a non-aggressive stance and enjoy prosperity through productivity and trade. The medicinal gardens and watering stations along public roadways did much to endear Ashoka to his own people and to international travellers.

Finally, this business of halakah, The Way, The Life. Many are embracing the newer version of The Way that has merged with many other people's and faiths (Mandeans, Theraputae, Essenes) to become what are now called Christians. Even among the hardcore orthodox brethren, many are accepting the victory of The Way over the Temple worship and other formalities of Palestinian Judaism, as the emerging Rabbinical traditions have grown out of Pharisaic perception while obliterating both Pharisee and Sadducee residue; the Chosen of the Torah are also reborn, and the emerging Talmud is explicit proof of that. I always felt good about helping bury those scrolls, as things had grown bitter and even as a teenager I knew it was time to find God and good in the world we live in.

The Way embodies the higher spirits of the Essenes, the Mandaeans, the Theraputae and carries the torch for the Children of the Light. The Perfection of the Way was influenced deeply by the rigorous yet peaceful Essenes, whose full members recited this oath after 3 years as an Initiate:

Essene Mantra

I shall love God and be just to my fellow man
I will not harm another, either of my own mind
Or at the command of another’s orders
I shall forever hate the unjust and will battle for the just
I will share my faith with all men, regardless of rank or origin
I shall accept responsibility proudly, never abusing the benefits of privilege
I will dress humbly, always loving truth, and exposing liars

It is undeniable that I was blessed with the opportunity to grow up in a family headed by Jeshua and Salome, my parents from Heaven. I know it is the fashion to be modest in one's writing, and I have attempted to do so with all my historical tomes, but at this late stage of my time on earth I will attempt to be as honest as is possible. My father Jeshua Mathias and my mom Salome Mariam were as well regarded as any royal couple in all of Middle Earth, and even in Gaul and Briton Our family is revered, beyond even what is known in Rome and Athens.

My dad learned Greek and Egyptian medicine and studied Eastern mysticism, and He knew the healing remedies from many lands, from Ethiopia to Egypt to Kushan and India, from Gaul and Germany to Spain and Rome, from the Brook of Kanah to the banks of the Ganjah River. He was more than a teacher; he was like a spirit doctor, a truly magical rejuvenator of life, and his incredible restorative powers work unto this day, as I try with the power of all my ancestors to muster up some of his massive generosity of spirit as I write out the scroll you are reading in your hands.

When my parents married they each thanked Our foreparents and Jah Above, and my father stated they both felt blessed beyond belief, and that "God is ever gracious", and that he and my mom "know and feel that they are meant to represent unity for millennia; Our love is just that strong." It was said and written that people were crying with joy, and the hills and the valleys lit up with much fanfare and celebration.

When I went through some difficult days as a young man, I remembered my father in Galilee and Chalcis. At the time my dad Ari had been feeling a lot of anger, at being away from his mom (my Grandma Mariamne who went to Rome after the divorce), and at the way people were treating one another. He was often displeased with his own father’s (my Grampa Herod of Challcis) unresponsiveness, a perceived reluctance to intervene in situations where the younger, bolder Ari Jesh thought my granddad could make a difference. His schooling and early business dealings in Alexandria and Athens had mellowed and matured him, and it was during those years that he had his last major problems with authority; this was long past his sometimes exaggerated battles with Pilate as a teen. Most of the accusers from his youth would later bow down before him, and he held no grudge or grievance against those who knew not the errors of their ways.

Among the Greeks my father is considered a magoi, a mejooseean, what the Persians term a moghan, and the Brits call a magician, but a dearly beloved magoi he is to them. Some in Athens even refer to him as Jah Zeus Chrystos, the Great God Anointed, even Alexander returned; Horus of Egypt, Hercules of Greece!

My mother wrote much of her work under the name of Johann, the title givem to Phillip II, her first husband and the natural father of my older brother Timothy Herod. She is considered a paragon of the faithful, Mariam of the Tower, the Scarlet thread by which my life has been a spiritual well of fortune, and her and my dad had many inspiring years together.

I believe I have chosen my parents well...

Most of my early life was spent in Chalcis and Galilee, with regular trips to Jerusalem and Rome. There was always a lot of fanfare around my older brother Herod Timothy because of his adoption by Agrippa the Younger, but my brother and I had our share of opportunity and blessings.

My first given name was Agrippa Josephus Aristobulus (often called Yuya by my folks); my little brother Jeshua Justus Aristobulus was the third son born to Ari and Salome, at least by the official story. The inner core let people believe that the first son was from Philip Jahn...few knew the full story.

It was customary for royal women of this era to have their first child out of wedlock or with an arranged husband, as this was one way to ensure a multiplicity of regal, in this case Herodian / Maccabean, bloodlines. Regardless, I was there; Herod Timothy was raised as if he were Ari’s own son, and he was my true brother unto his untimely death.

My dad had been adopted at a relatively young age, and he was a toddler when his mother married Prince Joseph Polli (later King Herod of Chalcis), so he knew how important family would be to Tim’s life and career. When my brother Timothy was appointed Crown Prince at nine years old by being officially adopted by Prince Agrippa, he still lived with Us and was generally treated no differently than Justus and myself and our sister Tamara.

To all observers and to themselves, Ari and Salome had three sons, and together with T we were a tight family for over two decades. My aunt Berenice often took Tim to Jerusalem, and sometimes myself or Justus got to go, with her or with mom and dad, or uncle James.

If you have read otherwise just disregard the nonsense for Tim was my brother and one of the most devout disciples of the Way, and carried on his father's teachings in a most respectable and straightforward manner. As much as anyone, Timothy’s allegiance was always to our dad Aristobulus, and later, to brothers James and Paul and the community that followed Jeshua's creed of healing, sharing, peace, freedom and equality.

Regarding my brother, Justus of Tiberias; don't you be acting so innocent, it's not like we didn't leave you lots of clues. Why do you think we argued over the royal jewels in Tiberias, during a time of great peril, and who else would have the foresight and wisdom to challenge my view of things? The only quibble I have with my brother is that I rarely saw him in the decade before his book came out, and most of the places where he contradicts my work are really in the eye of the beholder. While it's true that mom and I went more fully over to the Roman side than he did, the fanatics who killed our father were also destroying Jerusalem and the nation. Besides, our mediation, and negotiation of several key peace treaties, saved tens of thousands of lives and much livestock, acreage and orchards, and the remnants of Judea we helped preserve became the seeds of the settlements now flourishing in Samaria and Galilee.. Where the Romans found greatest resistance, they laid land to waste...

In the beginning my brother Jesh Justus Jr. and I were as close as could be, far closer to each other than to Tim. Justus looked up to me, and I always found him to be brilliant and funny, and a joy to be around. I remember the first time I took him to Briton, that summer was great fun and the fishing was splendid. Between family trips and individual excursions with dad, mom, myself, brother Tim and uncles Paul and James, Justus had seen much of the Empire before turning fifteen. Persia, Egypt, Greece, Rome, gaul, Germany and Briton were all places where we had welcoming relatives.

The fact that he shared my father's burden of being the designated Messiach was not something to be taken lightly, and I knew in the grander scheme of things that as the Joseph, I would be his tutor. Some may now believe that the pupil can give the master a lesson, and from a Judaic perspective my brother has been a pure beacon, respected by the Way, the Essenes, the Mandeans, the Saabans and most loved indeed by the Armenians and the Greeks, who also loved our dad so dearly. I am honoured that Justus worked hard to maintain a permanent Hebrew scripture school in Tiberias, in the first house he bought there, and the second has become a cherished holy place for prayer and meetings of The Way.

There was a time when people claimed that my father Aristobulus and my mother Salome would never attain power, but he became the true King of the Jews, as Agrippa was always a Roman puppet, and he and my mom were honoured for their peacemaking in many, many lands, Justus and I are fortunate to carry forth these traditions, and we govern Rome and Armenia with pureness of heart and gladness of soul.

Where the Empire may be abstract to some, this kingdom is my life, and my biggest fear is that our dream for a just society becomes a lament for wishes unfulfilled. For the Roman Empire I hope for a future of peace, prosperity and joyfulness in the lands. May the man most suitable to lead the people rise through his abilities to do so. May we follow the desires of our parents and not revert to greedy leadership that considers only the benefits for themselves and their relatives.

For my family and those of faith I hope that this rift between the Believers can be repaired and that the followers of Jeshua will stand side by side with the children of Moses and Allah to build a better world for all humanikind. Even before my parents were married, everyone knew that my mom deserved to be with dad and that he was the only Prince worthy of the Scarlet Princess. Though my father was grafted onto the line of Aristobulus through his adoption by Herod of Chalcis, my mother is a daughter of Herodias whose own father was indeed Aristobulus, son of Herod.

It is rightful that my grandmother will always be known as Sacred Mary, Mother of Our Lord, yet it is a true thing that my own mother's powerful greatness and abundance of writings are being separated into elements of Mary and the writings of Johan. Our parents were ahead of their time...

May Peace be with You All

Dad's Early Days; Mom and Jahn (by Josephus)

My father is Jeshuah Mathias, the first and the thirteenth, and though he is celebrated far and wide, his life was not a bed of roses and little is written of the years between his Bar Mitzvah and his ascendancy.

In dad's early teens, my grandfather Herod Polli Joseph divorced my grandmother to marry Princess Berniece, and this came as a big surprise to my father. In his mid-teen years, Mariamne was living in Rome with James and Ruth (Tamara stayed on with Jesh in Galilee), and the separation from his mother and younger siblings was excruciatingly painful for my dad.

He responded with a certain amount of rebelliousness, and his followers were legion in the Temple and on the streets, everywhere truth be sought my father's name was on people's lips. He was said to be the greatest Aristobulus of all time, and by many in The Way, even the Mesiach...

Pilate was in his final Jeru years in those days, and my dad and his sisters and brothers were around to keep things clean. On at least three occasions they had many people ready to lay down on the streets. One time they actually carried through with it, when Pilate was complicit in a ridiculous Roman blasphemy, and all of Jerusalem's major roadways were blocked by twelve thousand peaceful protesters.

Even before he left for the University of Alexandria, hopes and expectations of some in Galilee and Jerusalem were hugely unreachable. People were believing Aristobulus would unite all Judaic faithful and overthrow the Roman occupiers, but even at a young age my father was promoting Inity among all humanikind, not just among Jews and Romans.

Some Orthodox elements questioned his pedigree, while others celebrated it. Radicals challenged his passion, and conservatives thought him hot headed and self-righteous. His family was concerned about some of the blokes he was hanging with, and when people gathered to hear him teach, spies and Romans were never far away.

As his own arranged marriage to Princess Drusilla was never intended (by those in power, anyway) to be anything other than a preparation for later life, its rapid dissolution wouldn't have been so bothersome except for the fact that he was also despondent over my mom's first marriage, to the Baptist. The fateful hand of Rome and Jah would bring that to its course, but there was a time of agony and separation on both sides of the divide.

Take this social situation and internal pressure and dash in the highest of expectations for his own life, and you can see how my dad was truly purified by fire.

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Top Ten Classic Punk Bands of All Time

Here is a completely informal list of 10 of my favourite punk bands emphasizing those who have contributed immensely to the history and vitality of punk rock music globally:

#1 - The Sex Pistols

#2 - The Clash

#3 - The Ramones

#4 - Green Day

#5 - DOA

#6 - Iggy and The Stooges

#7 - The Dead Kennedys

#8 - Bad Brains

#9 - Rise Against

#10 - Bad Religion

Post your own Top 10 Punk Bands List in my comments section, go for it!!!

Nick Saul and Chris Brown feeding future Working Class Heros

Photo: Nick Saul by a wall; Carlos Osorio

Music-centric activists like I and I may focus on a Bob Marley, John Lennon, Bob Dylan, Bono or Perry Farrell, but every community in North America and throughout the world have rock star visionaries whose ideas and actions transform local lives and send ripples out through the spheres. Finding these people anywhere is a joy, so to find one (now two!) here in the Big Smoke is inspiring exaltation and transformation.

Rock On Nick and Chris!!!

Nick Saul: The man who built the foodie bank

A visionary uses taste buds – and a top chef – in the fight against poverty

The sun streams through the massive greenhouse windows onto rows and rows of sprouting sage, beets, lettuce and asparagus. Miniature orange and lemon trees already bear fruit.

A pile of bricks is destined to become a bake oven, to be located next to a garden where children will pick herbs and tomatoes for pizza. On the Market Walk, some 40 farmers and vendors sell homemade bread, fresh dairy goods and local produce on Saturday mornings.

In the state-of-the-art commercial kitchen, acclaimed chef Chris Brown will prepare monthly feasts, served under the stars as fundraisers. Eager foodies pay a bit more to join the kitchen crew. A taste of the first menu, slated for July 16: grilled bison over celery root purée, with a tomato compote, baco noir balsamic gel and crispy shallots.

Sound like any food bank you've ever heard of? "If someone called us a food bank, I'd feel like flipping this table," says Nick Saul, feigning anger as he sits in the Green Barn's light-filled classroom. "We are so much more than that."

Saul, 42, is the executive director of The Stop Community Food Centre. Its satellite operation, the Green Barn, a 10,000-square-foot food production and education centre, opened in April, part of the redevelopment of the old Wychwood TTC Car Barns east of Christie St. Over the past decade, community organizer Saul and his staff transformed The Stop on Davenport Rd. from a traditional food bank to what Saul calls "a nourishing hub."

Their new recipe meant adding client programs – cooking and growing food as well as civic engagement and advocacy – and they started an organic garden, sowing the seeds of the good food revolution among the less fortunate.

"We shouldn't have a two-tier food system, only the educated with money accessing healthy, clean food," insists Saul.

For extra punch, The Stop last month hired Brown from the recently closed haute cuisine restaurant Perigee, a casualty of the recession, to oversee catering, cooking classes and the new dinner series.

"I knew in every fibre of my body that food banks were not the answer," says Saul. "We've created a different model." He often speaks of the "social capital" of food, "the beautiful glue that binds us."

He is the son of academics whom he describes as "extraordinarily progressive." Next to his computer, Saul keeps a mid-1970s Toronto newspaper photo of his bearded father lying face down in a field, a policeman cuffing him, during an anti-apartheid protest.

Saul, winner of last year's Jane Jacobs Award for his community activism, comes across less as a radical and more as a social innovator.

"He's not a shake-a-fist-at-the-establishment type," says Michael Shapcott, housing activist and senior fellow at the Wellesley Institute, a policy think-tank. "He's an engaging, smiling person, fiercely committed, very smart and very strategic."

A lean, angular six-footer with close-cropped greying hair, Saul seems vaguely familiar. "I'm told I look like Lance Armstrong," he laughs. "And I get a bit of Anderson Cooper."

With traces of the new millennial man: He courted his wife with artichokes, not flowers, then cooked them himself.

He declines night meetings to be home with his two young boys, coaches one son's basketball team, and scoots around town on an electric bike. He gave up his regular bicycle because he arrived too sweaty for meetings with donors.

Any warts? "I like ice cream," he laughs.

Personal details aside, Saul is at heart an anti-poverty activist, currently part of the push for government to introduce a $100 healthy food supplement for the needy. That's just the first step, he explains. The current rates do not reflect the costs of living.

He cut his teeth in gritty front-line work, organizing tenants in Alexandra Park and helping men, many homeless in the Don Valley, make the transition to supportive housing at Dixon Hall.

Social idealism is embedded in his DNA.

Born in 1966, he spent his first six years in Tanzania, where his father, John, taught political and social science at the University of East Africa. Originally from Toronto, his parents moved back with the kids – he has a younger sister, Joanne – and settled in the Annex. John taught at York University. His mother, Pat, was a high school teacher in marginalized communities and eventually joined York's faculty of education.

"We didn't have the usual table talk," says Saul. "At our house it was about the wars of liberation in Africa and anti-apartheid."

"I'd like to say that from the cradle Nick was a militant against social inequality," says his father, John, with a laugh. "But he wasn't. He was a normal child, a sensitive kid."

In 1981, when Saul was 15, they moved for a year to Mozambique, where John taught at Universidade Eduardo Mondlane in Maputo and Pat developed school curricula. Recently independent, the country was under siege from South Africa, and shortages abounded.

"I'd turn on the tap and no water would come out," remembers Saul. "I'd go to the market but there wouldn't be food."

His chore was to line up for hours for rationed milk and bread. "It drove me crazy when foreigners would stomp to the front of the line demanding service."

Shortly before they left, South African anti-apartheid activist Ruth First, a family friend and host of their farewell party, was killed by a letter bomb.

John, running late, was just entering the building when it went off.

"That year politicized me in ways I'm still working out."

After graduating in history from the University of Toronto, where he was captain of the basketball team, Saul landed a job in Bob Rae's new NDP government, as assistant to David Reville, the premier's adviser. "I had an inside perch on the way decisions are made and government works," he recalls. "It was another defining year."

Ever consider going into politics?

Saul smiles. "The thought has crossed my mind, but politics is hard on your ... life with young kids. You never know in the future, though. I'm a political animal."

Saul, who holds a sociology master's from England's University of Warwick, which he attended on a Commonwealth scholarship, is married to writer Andrea Curtis. They were introduced by his sister, Joanne, now co-owner of Type Books, a trio of Toronto stores.

"It sounds kind of crazy," says Curtis, "but what attracted me was his passion for equity, his powerful values."

Their first son, Ben, now 10, was born two months premature. "I was terrified the child would die or suffer brain injury," remembers Curtis. "Nick was calm and positive. He has an innate optimism that pulled us through ... "

It might have been that optimism that prompted Saul, eager for a more senior position, to answer a Now ad in 1998 for the head spot at The Stop.

"I knew I didn't want to run a food bank," admits Saul. "But somehow it seemed a good opportunity."

When a parks employee suggested turning a nearby abandoned bocce court into a garden, Saul jumped at the chance.

Today the 8,000-square-foot garden in Earlscourt Park, tended by volunteers, yields 3,000 pounds of vegetables for The Stop yearly.

At The Stop's Davenport Rd. centre, breakfast is served four days a week and lunches two days, all for free. On other days, healthy small lunches – salads, sandwiches – are available at the drop-in.

Meals are served at the table. "It's my antipathy to lineups," says Saul.

Today the chalk menu reads: savoury beef strudel with brown rice, kale and mushrooms, or a vegetarian mushroom and kale strudel. The salad is Kawartha lettuce with radishes, strawberries and blueberries.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

4th annual MAMAYA festival on Saturday August 8 in Toronto

TAMALA (Toronto African Music and Living Arts) has announced the date of the big African Music and Culture Festival in Toronto's Distillery District.

Here is the press release for the event:

TAMALA (Toronto African Music and Living Arts), Toronto, July 10, 2009

TAMALA is proud to present the 4th annual MAMAYA festival on Saturday August 8, 2009 at the Distillery District from 2:00 – 10:00 pm.

MAMAYA is a traditional celebration of music and dance with origins from Kankan, the second largest city in Guinea, West Africa. In Guinea Mamaya is celebrated once a year, bringing everyone together to share the beautiful nature of culture. MAMAYA festival acknowledges and celebrates the diversity and unity of all people. The festival has spread to Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Cote D’Ivoire, New York and Toronto.

This year’s MAMAYA will feature traditional African music and dance performances, workshops and children’s activities. The festival is free for all ages and located in an outdoor setting to give it a traditional feeling and atmosphere. MAMAYA will take place at the Distillery District located at 55 Mill Street in Toronto.

Performers include Snow Griots with Katenen ‘Cheka’ Dioubaté, Balla tounkara, Canafric Theatre, Manding Foli Kan Don With Mohamed Diaby and Kassoum Diamoutene.

MAMAYA 2009 welcomes everyone to come to join in the celebration. The stage host Justine Gogoua will explain the history, tradition and significance of the event, the meaning behind the colours, the role of the griot, dancing and music. Special guests, ‘patrons’ and ‘paterie’ of the event will be introduced. The featured performers will invite the audience to participate in the celebration. Sky blue or ‘bakha’ as it is called in Guinea is the traditional color of MAMAYA.

The festival attendees wear the same sky blue coloured clothing to signify unity and equality. This shows that all people are the same: women or men, rich or poor. In our Canadian version people may choose to wear a sky blue dress, t-shirt or other article of clothing. This year MAMAYA will host a Festival Launch Party on Friday August 7th at 224 Parliament St. featuring Snow Griots with Cheka Katenen, Balla Tounkara and special guests, doors open at 8pm . concert at 9:00-10:00 pm. Tickets are $ 10 at the door. TAMALA presents MAMAYA Festival Launch Party Where: 224 Parliament St. TorontoWhen: Friday, August 7, 2009Time: 8:00-10:00 pm.

TAMALA presents MAMAYA Festival 2009
Where: Distillery District, 55 Mill St. Toronto
When: Saturday, August 8, 2009 Time: 2:00 – 10:00 pm.

For more information call 416 703 3451
or visit:



Thanks for the support of the Toronto Arts Council and Ontario Arts Council.

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