Image: Two Windows

December 1, 2014


Changes On the Drive #40

December 1, 2014

What a glorious day today!   Cold and crisp and clear, with a bright blue sky giving the light a sharp edge; the temperature cool enough to keep you moving.  Wonderful.

Another month goes by with very little change on Commercial Drive.  Down at the south end, I noticed that Kingdom Beauty Supplies has closed the double storefront at 2247 they have occupied since 1986. They are now confined to 2277 Commercial.  The apartment upstairs at 2249 is also vacant.


In the Brandon Building at 1729 the J,N,Z meat store is still closed, a full month beyond their proposed return date.  Not sure what’s happening there.

At the intersection of Graveley & Commercial, the Home Hardware store’s roof is replete with Christmas trees once again.  The rich natural smell is worth the walk.


The Sake Maki restaurant at 1414 is open, with its new storefront.

Sake Maki

Other than that we have 1458, 1268, 1108, 1102 and 903 are still vacant. A Thai place will open at 903 in January, and we are still told of a coffee shop going into the old Florida site at 1102, though there is still no evidence.


Previous Changes on The Drive posts


December 1, 2014

“I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December
A magical thing
And sweet to remember.

‘We are nearer to Spring
Than we were in September,’
I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December.”

–   Oliver Herford, I Heard a Bird Sing

A Paean To The Big Mac

December 1, 2014

I am now more than 65 years old, and I have never yet eaten anything from McDonalds.  I always joke with the everloving that I’ll have a Big Mac on my 100th birthday — but not before.

I hasten to note that my aversion to McDonalds has little to do with healthy eating.  I’ll demolish an A&W Teen Burger, or a couple of BK’s bacon double cheeseburgers as quick as anyone.  No, the problem with McDonalds for me is the smell.  That special McDonalds smell spreads a block each way from every McDonalds store and lingers.  I hate that.


Still, McDonalds is incredibly popular and, from this review of the Big Mac from Fast Food Critic, you’d expect it to be.  Rarely can something so formulaic and manufactured have been honoured with such praise!

I’m happy to report the burger and overall experience was great. The special sauce was creamy, distributed evenly, and as intended was the perfect complimentary flavor without overpowering the other ingredients. I had forgotten how satisfying the Big Mac really is. Growing up, it was my staple burger. Once in a blue moon, I would attempt eating two of them (keep in mind I was just a kid and eating 2 would be quite an accomplishment), but I’d only be able to handle one. The Big Mac is still the same as when I was a kid, and most of you probably remember the ingredients by singing that famous old song that’s still floating around in your head… “Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.”

The bun of the Big Mac has 3 pieces, and the center bread splits the burger into two sections, each with it’s own beef patty and toppings. The top of the bun is coated with sesame seeds, and all the pieces are lightly toasted. It’s a good bun, and even though it has 3 parts you never feel overwhelmed by having too much bread …

With only 1 slice of cheese (American), you might think they skimped on this burger, but that’s not the case. It’s all part of the plan, and everything is in balance. Each ingredient makes a solid contribution, blending together to create a winning combination of flavors. There’s nothing to add or cut. Just order a Big Mac, and eat it the way it was intended. You won’t need extra cheese or anything else.

Now, doesn’t that make you want to put a peg on your nose and run right out to the neighbourhood McDonalds? I’ll be there myself in 35 years or so.