Rondi Adamson
Rondi Adamson is a writer, editor and teacher in Toronto. Her website is

Entries by Rondi Adamson

Si, Certo! Starbucks Could Actually Take Off In Italy

(0) Comments | Posted March 23, 2016 | 4:37 PM

Like bringing coal to Newcastle. That is what came to mind when I read that Starbucks was set to open its first Italian location in Milan in early 2017. Better off trying to introduce something they don't have much of in Italy and could really use -- screen...

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2016 Should Be The Year Canadians Get Over Ourselves

(7) Comments | Posted January 11, 2016 | 12:36 PM

The Canadian propensity for self-aggrandizement is in form these days. It started with the massive coverage of the arrival of Syrian refugees at Pearson International Airport in December.

While many were drowning in self-congratulations, all I could think about as I watched the new arrivals being forced...

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An Homage To Old Blue Eyes: Songs Only Frank Sinatra Could Have Sung

(8) Comments | Posted December 11, 2015 | 6:34 PM

A couple of years ago I attended a talk given by Bill Clinton's former defence secretary, William Cohen. It was held at a Toronto restaurant, and Cohen was introduced by Canada's former prime minister, Brian Mulroney. Among the topics discussed: free trade, China, Iran, nukes, Putin, climate change.

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Stop Worrying Which City's Tragedy Received More Attention

(2) Comments | Posted November 24, 2015 | 11:20 AM

It's helpful to have celebrities guide us through these troubled times, and now, thanks to Jared Leto's speech at the American Music Awards, we know that everyone matters. It's great to have a fuchsia-haired hipster actor/musician moralist explain this to us, because we might not have heard all...

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Progressive Politicians Need to Walk the Talk When it Comes to Animal Welfare

(39) Comments | Posted July 10, 2015 | 6:53 PM

This won't be a column trying to convince readers why calf-roping should be banned, because really, if you cannot figure out on your own why taking a young animal from its mother and slamming it onto the ground and tying a rope around its legs and causing it unimaginable terror...

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Why is 'Big Bang' Funny While Tim Hunt Isn't?

(18) Comments | Posted June 19, 2015 | 6:30 PM

Am I the only person who watches the The Big Bang Theory? Am I the only person who, when learning about Tim Hunt's comments regarding female scientists and co-ed labs, thought of Sheldon Cooper? I honestly don't know how anyone could bother to be upset with...

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Sympathy for Omar Khadr Is One Thing, Gushing Over Him Is Another

(40) Comments | Posted May 12, 2015 | 1:35 PM

I can understand having sympathy for Omar Khadr. I share some of that sympathy. From birth he was fed a steady diet of hatred and lies and probably had limited opportunities to escape that diet. I have often thought that locking his odious mother up with him would not have...

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Have You Seen These Two Overlooked Jewels in Perugia?

(2) Comments | Posted February 24, 2015 | 12:18 PM

On your next trip to Italy, what would you think about learning to make stained glass, or to weave on a 19th century loom? It represents a refreshing change from shoe shopping; certainly more edifying and probably less tiring.

Look no further than Perugia, a gem of...

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Though He's Guilty, the Costa Concordia's Captain Walks Free for Now

(2) Comments | Posted February 15, 2015 | 11:56 PM

The operative word is vergognoso -- shameful -- and my Italian friends have been using it repeatedly since the verdict in Francesco Schettino's trial was issued earlier this week in Grosseto, Italy.

Schettino was the captain of the Costa Concordia, which struck rocks off the island of...

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Why Cartoons Mocking the Holocaust Don't Challenge a Double Standard

(23) Comments | Posted February 5, 2015 | 12:57 PM

Two organizations in Iran -- Iran's House of Cartoon and the Sarcheshmeh Cultural Complex -- are organizing their second Holocaust denial cartoon contests. Cartoonists are being asked to submit works denying or trivializing the Holocaust. The contest winners will have their work displayed at Tehran's Palestine...

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When it Comes to the Charlie Hebdo Attacks, There Are No Shades of Grey

(18) Comments | Posted January 19, 2015 | 1:00 PM

Pope Francis has already made it clear that he doesn't understand economics. And now, he has made it clear he doesn't understand the nature of free speech or of a free press in the West. Really, I'm detecting some fallibility here, for with his comments about...

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The Pros and Cons of Studying Abroad As a Mature Student

(0) Comments | Posted December 16, 2014 | 5:25 PM

And yes, that would be me. No longer in my 20s. No longer in my 30s. And studying abroad (in Italy). Enjoying it but also finding challenges. Of course, there were plenty of those when I went off to university at the age of 18, but they were different than...

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Six Things About Italy that Might Surprise You

(13) Comments | Posted November 17, 2014 | 12:43 PM

At times, Italy can seem like a boot-shaped cliché: people gesticulating madly, yelling in what seems like a rage when in fact they are discussing last night's delicious lasagna; tiny pink towns on hilltops; toddlers who already know how to tie a natty scarf. And people talking (and...

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Canadians Abroad, It's Time for an Attitude Adjustment

(12) Comments | Posted October 6, 2014 | 1:53 PM

I'm Canadian, and feel lucky and pleased to be so. But that doesn't mean I don't think Canadians abroad couldn't stand to benefit from some attitude adjustments.

Just for starters, my fellow Canadians, it isn't a cause for outrage if someone thinks you're American. If you're from English-speaking Canada,...

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Call it a Funeral, Not a 'Celebration of Life'

(12) Comments | Posted May 12, 2014 | 6:25 PM

Mother's Day this year was my first without my mother and with her birthday falling later this week, it is a bittersweet season for me. She died on April 1, a date I am inclined to think she held out for in her decline, knowing her wry, Scandinavian sense of...

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Stop and Look at the Poignant History Right Under Your Nose

(0) Comments | Posted March 24, 2014 | 4:13 PM

Last November, in Rome, I unintentionally stumbled upon a plaque related to the terrible rappresaglia, or reprisal, of Fosse Ardeatine.

It was March 24, 1944 -- this week marks the 70th anniversary -- when 335 Italians were massacred at the Ardeatine caves as grisly revenge for the...

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Can Someone Tell Us What Happens to Animals in Movies?

(3) Comments | Posted February 28, 2014 | 10:26 AM

My better half says I should write a book called Bill Sikes' Dog.

The first time he suggested this was when we watched David Lean's 1948 version of Oliver Twist and I spent fifteen minutes after the credits had rolled saying (or screaming), "But what about Bill...

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There's Nothing Like Attending a Soccer Match in Italy

(1) Comments | Posted November 27, 2013 | 5:43 PM

I have just returned to Canada from over two months in Italy, where I managed to cross something off, if not my bucket list, then at least my "stuff I really want to do" list: attend a Serie A match.

I was in Florence in late October,...

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Rob Ford: Victim of the Media or of Himself?

(1) Comments | Posted November 21, 2013 | 12:51 PM

Depending on with whom you speak, the truth is a) Rob Ford is the victim of a media attack the likes of which has never been witnessed in Toronto, including unjustified intrusion on his private property, or b) Rob Ford is the author of all of his problems.


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Political Correctness: Too Much and Not Enough

(0) Comments | Posted November 6, 2013 | 12:39 PM

The lack of political correctness here in Italy -- when not offensive, and I'll get to that -- can be quite refreshing. On the first day of the Amanda Knox retrial, currently being held in Florence, the judge, when asked by a lawyer if there was time to present a...

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