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January 2012 Archives

SUNDAY, January 29

0730 We all need a vacation from time to time. But just how important is that time away from work? The answer might surprise you. Toronto psychiatrist Irvin Wolkoff joined Mary to offer some thoughts on the subject.
Listen audio (runs 10:41)


0800 Personal finance journalist Alison Griffith's latest financial book is called Count On Yourself: Take Charge Of Your Money. She talked with Mary about the challenges we all face in making our money stretch farther.
Listen audio (runs 9:01)
Count On Yourself: Take Charge Of Your Money is published by Simon and Schuster in Canada.
Learn more at Alison's


0830 It's the sixth and final season for CBC Television's groundbreaking show, Little Mosque On The Prairie. Star Zaib Shaikh joined Mary to talk about the impact of the programme around the world...and how it's also changed his life.
Listen. audio (runs 12:13)
Little Mosque On The Prairie airs Monday nights at 8:30 pm on CBC Television.
Learn more about the show at the Little Mosque website.

What's On for January 29


Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

India Republic Day-Brampton

Global Jam
Carleton's Global Jam-Ottawa

Wiarton Willie


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on this What's On contact form to send her your event information.

Musician or photographer?

Emma-Lee is both. And she's very good at each of her vocations. But which came first? Emma-Lee will explain when she joins Mary Ito this coming weekend on Fresh Air. She'll also talk about her new album, Backseat Heroine.

SATURDAY, January 28

0730 Convenience stores are a fact of life in communities across Ontario. Many of them--especially in larger centres---are run by Korean-Canadians. How that happened is the underpinning for Kim's Convenience. It's a play by actor and playwright Ins Choi. It's currently on-stage at Soulpepper Theatre Company in Toronto. And Ins Choi joined Mary to talk about it.
Listen audio (runs 10:26)
Kim's Convenience runs through February 11th at Soulpepper Theatre Company and then returns to Soulpepper for another run in the spring.
All the details are on the Soulpepper website.


0800 8th Fire is a CBC documentary series that's shining the spotlight on a new generation of Aboriginals. People who are challenging stereotypes, and pushing hard for a better relationship with the rest of Canada. CBC reporter Waub Rice is doing that with words. He's the author of "Midnight Sweatlodge", and he's writing a blog about aboriginal literature for the 8th Fire project. Waub elaborated when he joined Mary.
Listen audio (runs 10:57)
You can see the last 8th Fire documentary this Thursday, February 2 at 9 pm on CBC-TV and on Friday, February 3 at 10 pm on CBC News Network
All the relevant info is on the 8th Fire website.


0830 It's the weekend...but thanks to technology, many people never stop working, even when the weekend arrives. Scott Schieman is studying the impact of that trend. Scott is a professor of sociology at the University of Toronto and he's leading a large Canadian study looking into this issue. He joined Mary to talk about what he's learned so far.
Listen audio (runs 14:55)
Learn more about Scott at his U of T webpage.
The audio for this item will be posted on the following Monday.


What's On for January 28


Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Polar Fest 2012

Polar Bear Plunge

Lunar New Year Celebrations-Toronto

Winterlicious-Toronto

Toronto Design Offsite Festival

Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on this What's On contact form to send her your event information.

Farewell Little Mosque...

It's the final season for CBC-TV's Little Mosque On The Prairie. Actor Zaib Shaikh has starred in the ground-breaking sit-com from Day One. Zaib will join Mary Ito this weekend to talk about the impact of the programme on viewers...as well as on his own career.

SUNDAY January 22


0730 The lunar new year begins on Monday, January 23. Arlene Chan is a Canadian of Chinese heritage. She joined Mary Ito to talk about the signifigance of The Year Of The Dragon.
Listen audio (runs 13:22)
Arlene is also an author---her most recent book is The Chinese in Toronto from 1878: From Outside to Inside the Circle.
Learn more at Arlene's website.

0800 Is the high cost of going to the movies getting you down? Help is on the way. And it comes from our consumer columnist. For details, visit
Citizen Talin's column.


0830 Take three chefs from three different countries...and put them in the same kitchen to prepare a special meal. The chefs are John Placko, Director of Culinary Excellence at Maple Leaf Foods in Mississauga ; Luke Hayes-Alexander of Luke's Gastronomy in Kingston, and Matt Kantor, co-founder of the Secret Pickle Dining Event and Little Kitchen catering company in Toronto. They're creating a tribute to Australian cuisine at The Cookbook Store in Toronto on Jan 24, 25 and 25.
Listen audio (runs 12:23) to their conversation with Mary.
Learn more about the three chefs at John's
Luke's and
Matt's websites.

At The Movies

Citizen Talin took Mary Ito "to the movies" to talk about the often-high costs of taking in a flick and how you can make the experience more affordable.
Listen audio (runs 9:18)

What's On for Sunday, Jan 22

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

The Canadian Arctic Expedition of 1913-1918

Banff Mountain Film Festival in Huntsville

The Muskoka Loppet


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Use the What's On contact form to contact her with your event information.

SATURDAY January 21


0730 Shannon Butcher knows a thing or two about late nights. She's a singer...so she's had a few of them. But lately her reason for staying up late has more to do with a new arrival in her home. Shannon joined Mary to talk about combining motherhood with jazz singing...and she even brought 6-month old Charlotte in for the conversation.
Listen audio (runs 10:03)
NOTE: Music clearance restrictions prohibit inclusion of music originally contained in this item.
Shannon will be in concert with her full backing band at the Mississauga Living Arts Centre on Friday, January 27th.
Get the details at the
Living Arts website.
And learn more about Shannon's latest CD, How Sweet It Is, at
Shannon's website.


0800 A certain Canadian coffee chain is about to make it extra large coffees even larger. That's prompting talk about the advisedness of making food portions bigger. Home economist and author, Mairlyn Smith, joined Mary to talk about this trend.
Listen audio (runs 10:52)
Mairlyn's latest book is called "Healthy Starts Here." It's published by Whitecap Books.
Check out Mairlyn's website for more info.


0830 Vivine Scarlet and Kevin Ormsby know about dance. Vivine is the founder and program director for Dance Immersion in Toronto. And Kevin is the founder and artistic director of Toronto's Kashedance company. And they're both involved with The International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference and Festival: Connecting our Disaporas through Dance , presented by Dance Immersion. It starts this coming Thursday (Jab 26) and and runs through Sunday (Jan 29) in Toronto. Both Vivine and Kevin joined Mary to talk about their experiences as dancers.
Listen audio (runs 14:48)
For more information, visit the Dance Immersion and
Kevin's websites.


What's On for Saturday, Jan 21

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

A Night with Robbie Burns in Fergus

Robbie Burns' Day in Toronto

LunarFest at Harbourfront

Sunfest COLORES DE LATINOAMERICA exhibit in London

Marcelo Suaznabar


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Use the What's On contact form to contact her with your event information.

Book Trends for 2012

There's rarely a dull moment in the world of books. And 2012 is already shaping up as an interesting, change-filled year on the literary front. With that in mind, Mary reconvened the Fresh Air book panel to do some crystal ball-gazing. Erin Balser is an associate producer with CBC Books online. Becky Toyne is a Toronto-based books columnist and editor.
Listen audio (runs 11:46) to what they had to say.
If you're a "bookish" person, you should really take the time to visit the
CBC Books and
Becky's websites.

Books Awards and Festivals

It's book awards season in Canada. And there are plenty to choose from. Ditto book festivals. But have we reached the saturation point? Fresh Air's new book panel---book columnist/editor Becky Toyne and CBC Books associate producer Erin Balser---tackled the topic with some help from Mary.
Listen audio (runs 12:42)
Get "booked" at the CBC Books website.
And learn more about Becky at her website.

SUNDAY January 15


0730 Host Mary Ito talked with a man who knows a lot about...snowflakes. Dr. Kenneth Libbrecht is a professor of physics at Caltech in Pasadena, California. The study of snowflakes is his specialty. He's also the author
of six books on snowflakes including his latest, a children's book called The Secret Life of a Snowflake. That's also the title of a lecture that he'll give at the Permeter Institute in Waterloo on February the 1st. Dr. Libbrecht talked with Mary by phone from his lab in California about his passion for these intricate ice crystals.
Listen audio (runs 8:02) to that conversation.
All the details of The Secret Life of a Snowflake lecture are at the Perimeter Institute website.
There's plenty of information about his snowflake research at Dr. Libbrecht's website.


0800 Sali Tagliamonte is a linguist with the University of Toronto.
She's conducting some very interesting research into English dialects in Ontario. And she's concentrating on four communities in the northern part of the province. Professor
Tagliamonte joined Mary to elaborate.
Listen audio (runs 10:03)
Sali is interested in hearing from Fresh Air listeners who might be able to help her with her research
You can e-mail Professor Tagliamonte at: sali.tagliamonte@utoronto.ca


0830 Fresh Air's Sunday Salon returned with three savvy speakers who were ready to talk extemperaneously about topics related to the new year. They were: psychiatrist David Goldbloom of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto; poet and English professor Priscila Uppal of York U; and Andy Orchard, professor of medieval studies and Provost of Trinity College at the U of Toronto.
Listen audio (runs 11:24) to what happened when they sat down with Mary.


What's On for Sunday, Jan 15


Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Textures Craftworks in Hamilton

WinterBites in Windsor

Next Stage Theatre Festival in Toronto

Motorcycle Show in Ottawa

Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Use the What's On contact form to contact her with your event information.

SATURDAY January 14


0700 Host Mary Ito offered a sneak audio-view of today's episode of The Debaters. You can catch host Steve Patterson and his comedian guests at one o'clock on CBC Radio One. Learn more at The Debaters website.

0730 There's rarely a dull moment in the world of books. And 2012 is already shaping up as an interesting, change-filled year on the literary front. With that in mind, Mary reconvened the Fresh Air book panel to do some crystal ball-gazing. Erin Balser is an associate producer with CBC Books online. Becky Toyne is a Toronto-based books columnist and editor.
Listen audio (runs 11:46) to what they had to say.
If you're a "bookish" person, you should really take the time to visit the
CBC Books and
Becky's websites.

0800 Fresh Air's own Your Health columnist, Dr. Mike Evans says it best with his new video-gone-virak on YouTube. 23 1/2 Hours makes clear the benefits of exercise in maintaining good health. And Dr. Steven Blair backs him up with his years of research. Dr. Blair is a professor of exercise science at the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina. Have a listen audio (runs 9:49) to his conversation with Mary.
Check out Dr. Mike's video by clicking on
23 1/2 Hours.

0830 Film critic Kevin Courrier joined Mary to talk about what he calls "the hall of mirrors" effect in American films. It's the basis for a series of lectures that he'll give in Toronto during the winter months.
Listen audio (runs 15:43) as Kevin and Mary discuss movies and their ability to reflect the existing state of U.S. politics.
Kevin's Reflections in the Hall of Mirrors: American Movies and the Politics of Idealism lectures take place at Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre in Toronto beginning January 16th.
All the details are on the MNJCC website.
You can read some of Kevin's film criticism at the
Critics At Large website.

What's On for SAT Jan 14


Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Art In Midland

Winter Fun at Blue Mountain Village

Twenty Valley Winter Wine Fest

Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Use the What's On contact form to contact her with your event information.

The Two Shannons

Fresh Air will welcome two Shannons to the show his coming weekend...but they'll tackle two entirely different topics. Singer Shannon Butcher will talk about balancing her music career with her new role as a mother. And architecture contributor Shannon Kyles will explore another aspect of Ontario's architectural heritage. That's on the January 21/22 editions of Fresh Air.

SUNDAY, January 8

0730 Music guy Mark Rheaume joined Mary Ito to take a look-back at his Top Four albums from Ontario musicians in 2011. You can check them out at Mark's column.


0800 Big congratulations to our food columnist Anita Stewart! She got an extra special Christmas present when she found out that she'd been appointed to the Order of Canada! Anita is fiercely passionate about our Canadian food producers. Normally she hates talking about herself, preferring to talk about the growers, fishers, cheesemakers, farmers, vitners etc., but today we turn the spotlight on her and find out how she became one of Canada's leading culinary activists.
Listen audio (runs 12:29) to their conversation.
Learn more about Anita at her website.


0830 Marcel Danesi is a professor of Semiotics and Anthropology at the University of Toronto. He's written something like 240 books. In other words, he's smart and he's deep. And he has a passion for puzzles. He writes a column for the Toronto Star called "That's Puzzling". Mary talked to Marcel about puzzles and why they're good for us. Marcel's latest book on puzzles is called Extreme Brain Workout: 500 Fun and Challenging Puzzles to Boost Your Brain Power. It's published by Harlequin.


Mark's Music for January, 2012

Links to artist websites will open in a new window.

Artist: Sara Thackray
Album: Odd
Song: Every Day
Website: Sara Thackray


Artist: Alex Ernewein
Album: Your Own Story
Song: Your Own Story
Website: Alex Ernewein


Artist: Ron Sexsmith
Album: Long Player, Late Bloomer
Song: Get In Line
Website: Ron Sexsmith


Artist: Ariana Gillis
Album: Forget Me Not
Song: Back On The Hill
Website: Ariana Gillis

SATURDAY, January 7


0730 Co-author of the cookbook "Flexitarian" and cooking teacher Nettie Cronish talks to Mary about how to sustain a healthier diet in 2012...as well as how to incorporate new tastes into your diet even if you're juggling a hectic schedule.
Here's Nettie's website if you'd like to know more.


And here's one of Nettie's healthy---and VERY tasty---recipes (which NOW appears in its entirety...our apologies for the intial PARTIAL posting!):


Lentil Mushroom Moussaka

Makes 4 veg + 2 meat servings

2 rimmed baking sheets, lightly oiled or lined with parchment paper
With so many fleshy and edible, 'meaty' types of mushrooms available, this is a very robust, multi-textured casserole. Use one variety or a combination of any of the mushrooms listed in the sidebar. It may seem like a lot of mushrooms, but you add them to the wok in batches and the key is to cook them until they are soft and reduced before adding the next batch.

9- x 13-inch (3.5 L) casserole dish, lightly oiled
preheat oven to 350° F (180° C)

2 medium eggplants, crosswise sliced ½-inch (1 cm) thick and peeled
1 cup (250 mL) lentils, rinsed
3 cups (750 mL) vegetable stock or water
2 Tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
4 medium cloves garlic, minced
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
12 cups (3 L) sliced mushrooms (see sidebar)
½ cup (125 mL) dry red wine or apple juice
1 can (5-1/2 oz/156 mL) tomato paste
1 Tbsp (15 mL) tamari or soy sauce
½ cup (125 mL) bread crumbs
¼ cup (60 mL) chopped fresh basil
¼ cup (60 mL) butter
¼ cup (60 mL) unbleached white flour
1-1/4 cups (310 mL) milk or plain soymilk
½ cup (125 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
½ tsp (2 mL) salt
¼ tsp (1 mL) freshly ground pepper
pinch nutmeg

1. Place eggplant slices on prepared baking sheets. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes or until browned. Let cool on a wire rack.

2. Combine lentils and stock in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes or until tender. Drain in a colander and set aside.

3. Heat oil in a large wok or saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onions and sauté for 5 minutes or until soft. Stir in mushrooms, 2 cups (500 mL) at a time. Cook, stirring constantly for 3 to 5 minutes or until soft before adding the next batch of mushrooms. Keep adding mushrooms, cooking and stirring until all of the mushrooms are in the wok. Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in wine, tomato paste, soy sauce, breadcrumbs and basil. Simmer, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes or until sauce thickens. Reserve 1 cup (250 mL) of the mushroom sauce for the baked salmon fillets.

4. Meanwhile, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook, whisking constantly for 2 minutes or until thickened. Gradually whisk in the milk. Cook, whisking constantly for 5 minutes or until thickened. Stir in cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Cook, stirring constantly for 1 or 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Set sauce aside.

5. Place eggplant over the bottom of the prepared casserole dish, layering the slices as necessary. Cover with mushroom sauce. Spread lentils evenly over mushrooms. Spread cheese sauce smoothly over all. Cover with foil and bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 15 minutes or until bubbling and golden. Add salmon to the oven when foil is removed from the vegetarian moussaka. Bake Salmon for 15 minutes or until the flesh turns from translucent to opaque and flakes easily with a fork.

Lentil Mushroom Moussaka with Baked Salmon

Serves 2
8-inch (20 cm) square baking pan, lightly oiled
preheat oven to 350° F (180° C)
Nettie's Moussaka is delicious and filling, making it a perfect meatless main dish. The mushrooms are rich and earthy and complement the nutty taste of the lentils. However, if staunch meat lovers still prefer to have their meat portion, I suggest serving salmon or trout, rubbed with a dry spice combination, smothered with some of the mushroom sauce from the moussaka and baked at the same time as the moussaka. I particularly like the toasted cumin combination, but you can use any of the seasonings found on pages xx as a dry rub for the fish (or omit it completely).

7 oz (200 g) salmon fillet
2 Tbsp (30 mL) Toasted Cumin Dry Rub (page xx)
1 Tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
1 cup (250 mL) reserved mushroom sauce (from above)

1. Rub both sides of the salmon with the cumin rub and let sit for 10 minutes. Brush oil over both sides of the salmon and place in prepared baking pan. Spread mushroom sauce over the fillet. Cover with foil and add to oven when the foil is removed from the moussaka in step 5. Bake for 15 minutes or until the flesh turns from translucent to opaque and flakes easily with a fork.


0800 2012 is an important year for Rudy Silvamer, originally from Mexico City. He graduates from neuroscience at the University of Toronto. His plan is to start working in research to fund his deepest passion, music. And he's already well on his way---in the past year he entered an EMI contest to score a record deal, auditioned for CBC's show Cover Me Canada, AND even wrote and directed his own film which picked up the Artistic Achievement Award at the University of Toronto Film Festival. That film--- Life is A Symphony ---will soon be screened at the Panzorean International Film Festival in Portugal


0830
It's a new year and that means 365 days full of possibilities. Or how about probabilities? What are the chances you'll win the lottery, meet someone you know on your next trip or get married and have children? Life is a game of odds and statistician Jeffrey Rosenthal came in to help Mary---and the rest of us---us figure it out