5 minutes — 5 questions

Two of our long-time employees – Sheila Blinoff and myself  – are retiring soon, and we thought it might be fun to ask the 5 Questions of two people who have spent their careers asking questions of others.

Sheila Blinoff recently celebrated 40 years as General Manager of Beach Metro. You have no doubt read her pieces on the history of this amazing community newspaper. But how well do you really know her?

1. What is your favourite place in the Beach? – “Walking around the point at Ashbridges Bay.”

2. Do you have a favourite piece of music? – “Normally I would say classical music, but lately I find I enjoy folk music. I recently saw Far From the Madding Crowd. The soundtrack includes British folk songs from the 18th and 19th centuries.”

3. What is your favourite movie? – “Topsy Turvy. It is the story of Gilbert & Sulivan and how they came to write The Mikado. I went to see it in the theatre five times. Now I have my own copy. It’s a great story with great music.”

4. What are you currently reading? – “Bury Your Dead, by Louise Penny. Her detective has come to Quebec City to recover from mental and physical injury, but gets involved in a murder of a historian looking for the grave of Samuel de Champlain.”

5. Do you mostly drive, walk, cycle or take the TTC? – “I walk, drive and take the TTC. Since my knee replacement surgery I try to get enough exercise walking.”


Your author Bill MacLean has covered the Arts and Entertainment beat for many years. He is looking forward to doing more entertaining himself in the future.

1. What is your favourite place in the Beach? – “As for a physical place, I’d have to echo so many others and say the boardwalk. Alan Fotheringham used to say that most of the people who live in Toronto don’t realize that they live on the shores of a great lake. People in the Beach do, and they celebrate and cherish it! Other favourite places include all the numerous art shows and studios I have attended over the years. You should see our art collection!”

2. Do you have a favourite piece of music? – “Classical: Bach’s Six Suites for Cello; pop: The Beatles’ Paperback Writer; folk: Lightfoot’s Canadian Railroad Trilogy; standard: Andy Williams’ version of Henry Mancini’s Dear Heart.”

3. What’s your favourite movie? – “Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid. It’s a perfect buddy movie with two classic movie stars, Paul Newman and Robert Redford. Another favourite is Payback with Mel Gibson, the theatre version, not the director’s cut.”

4. What are you currently reading? – “I just finished reading a wonderful first novel, Kintyre, by Beach writer Janet Dowler, and now I’m halfway through Homegrown: the Journey Home, by another Beach writer, Gena Macoretta. This is considered a self-empowering book, and perfect as I approach retirement. And I’m looking forward to Ed Finstein, a.k.a. The Wine Doctor’s first novel Pinot Envy. So many great Beach writers.”

5. Do you mostly drive, walk, cycle or take the TTC? – “I’m almost embarrassed to say that I still really prefer to drive. For several years we didn’t own a car and cycled back and forth downtown to work. Once our son came along, though, we really needed a car, especially when he got into hockey. It takes me 10 minutes to drive to Beach Metro News from home, 30 minutes to walk … and 45 minutes by TTC. What can I say?”

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