wmtc: the mysterious case of kars4kids: deceptive advertising for orthodox jewish proselytizing

When I watch baseball, I always watch the “away” feed — the Red Sox broadcast — and almost always choose local radio for the audio feed. (Hooray for MLB streaming on Roku!) And while I always mute the ads between innings, hundreds of ads are stuffed into the broadcast itself, so it’s impossible not to hear ...

wmtc: an open letter to loblaw: greed is not good — especially for public relations

Loblaw Companies Limited1 President’s Choice CircleBrampton, Ontario, L6Y 5S5Attention: LCL Customer Relations Centre Dear Loblaw Ltd.: I am a Loblaw customer and I was extremely disappointed by recent public statements made by Loblaw CEO Galen Weston, Jr., regarding the proposed raise of the minimum wage in Ontario. Mr. Weston claimed that the proposed wage hikes ...

wmtc: the great whole foods experiment of 2017

In our home, shopping at Whole Foods was once reserved for special dinners or used a stop-gap during an extremely busy week. Then slowly, over time, it became habit — and a big one. For a long time now, we’ve had two regular shopping days each week, one at Loblaws and one at Whole Foods. ...

wmtc: mighty leaf tea: green tea and greenwashing

I recently tried a new brand of tea. I’m always looking for almond tea, which is difficult or impossible to find (more on that below), and noticed Mighty Leaf had an Almond Spice. It’s green tea, and I prefer black, but I thought for the almond, I’d take a chance. The Mighty Leaf Tea box ...

wmtc: amman to cairo to home: in which things out work very nicely

EgyptAir, we love you! I’m writing this from an airport hotel, where I did not expect to be. After Ridiculous Breakfast #3, we did a little negotiating (see below), then packed up for the airport. On a tip from the concierge, we stopped at the beautiful Zalatimo Brothers for Sweets on the way. I was ...

wmtc: amman to cairo to home: in which things out work very nicely

EgyptAir, we love you! I’m writing this from an airport hotel, where I did not expect to be. After Ridiculous Breakfast #3, we did a little negotiating (see below), then packed up for the airport. On a tip from the concierge, we stopped at the beautiful Zalatimo Brothers for Sweets on the way. I was ...

wmtc: frustrations with technology, or, when upgrades are really downgrades, or, give me back a previous gmail app

I’ve really been enjoying my Nexus 7 tablet. I dislike that tablets have become the norm, and in a perfect world I’d use a desktop, a netbook, and a tablet. But in the real world, my netbook has been phased out, and I’m back to taking notes with pen and paper. But in general, I ...

wmtc: #walmartstrikers + international buy nothing day = don’t shop at walmart

I don’t know when people starting calling the day after US Thanksgiving “Black Friday,” but the expression has become synonymous with over-consumption, empty consumer culture, and the bizarre importance assigned to hunting for bargains. And what a bargain it is: a multibillion-dollar corporation sells a piece of crappy future landfill at an artificially low price ...

wmtc: towards a cruelty-free face: switching to products not tested on animals

I’ve begun changing my personal care products to cruelty-free: natural products from companies that are better for the environment and don’t test on animals. I’m not sure how far I’ll be able to go, but I’ve begun the process. After a lifetime of using conventional products, I was moved to think more about this by ...

wmtc: negative reviews and threats of lawsuits: let’s not give in to corporate bullying

There’s a new bully in town, and he’s not going after fat kids in the school cafeteria. He’s a corporate bully, and he’s gunning for you, his dissatisfied customer. An increasing number of companies are threatening lawsuits against customers who post negative online reviews about their products or services. At least one company has actually ...

wmtc: amazing but true: mlb does the right thing and increases fans’ access to the postseason

The biggest surprise of the 2014 baseball postseason isn’t the absence of both the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees. It isn’t the Baltimore Orioles, making the postseason for the first time since 1997, or the Kansas City Royals, playing baseball in October for the first time since 1985. The biggest surprise of ...

wmtc: sometimes knowing your rights is all it takes: in which we win our landlord battle

We won! And we won so easily, we’re left scratching our heads and asking, “What just happened?” As you’ll recall, our landlord asked for an illegal rent increase – 10.5% when the legal allowable is 0.8%! – and implied that he would resort to dirty tricks if we didn’t pay. We did our homework, checked ...

wmtc: know your rights, rental edition, part two

Just about one year ago today – July 8, 2013, to be exact – our area was hit with a massive flood that swamped homes, cars, highways, trains, and . . . our basement. The basement had been Allan’s office. The office in which he was working to meet a publishing deadline. Stressful? You could ...

wmtc: is the food movement elitist? michael pollan connects the dots between labour and our tables

In an excellent interview in Truthout, Michael Pollan responds to critics who accuse the food movement of being elitist. He very rightly credits Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation with explicitly drawing the connection between labour issues, animal issues, and our own food issues. And Pollan calls out the industrialized food industry that has been able ...

wmtc: in which i survive three days without internet, or how rogers (maybe) punishes former customers

Sometime late on Thursday night into Friday morning, our internet went down. This is the worst possible time for such an event, as internet is our lifeline to baseball, and the Boston Red Sox are on their way (I hope) (I believe) to winning the World Series. From the sound of things, there were problems ...

wmtc: in praise of freecycle

It’s been a while since I wrote about Freecycle – once as we were getting ready to move to Canada in 2005, then again when we moved from our first place in Port Credit to the Cooksville section of Mississauga. On this last move (Cooksville to Square One), I had no time to go through ...

wmtc: self-checkout is unpaid labour, gift cards are interest-free loans, and let’s stop using both

There are two current trends that I seriously dislike, and wish we would all organize to change: retail self-checkout and the use of gift cards as thank-yous and gifts. Neither practice will go away any time soon; indeed, I’m sure they only will become more ubiquitous. But both trends are in our power to stop, ...