Morning Brief: Canada's Most-Stolen Cars, Ottawa's Loony Laws & More

9 things you need to know for Wednesday, November 16.

Newsletter Editor
​A person unlocks a car door with a key. Right: Ottawa bylaw officer.

A person unlocks a car door with a key. Right: Ottawa bylaw officer.

Happy Hump Day — Andrew from Narcity here. ☕

Off The Top: For the first time, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos publicly revealed that he plans on donating the majority of his obscene wealth — an estimated $124.1 billion as of Monday — to charity endeavours during his lifetime, which seems like the conclusion you arrive at after an amusement park fortune teller magically transports your 25 years into the future.

In Case You Missed It

1. What You Need To Earn To Afford A Basic Quality Of Life In 13 Ontario Regions

Thanks to inflation, Ontario's $15.50 minimum wage is already a recipe for calamity. According to the Ontario Living Wage Network, Torontonians need to pull in $23.15 an hour to afford a basic quality of life in the city — but the trend also extends to less bustling corners of Canada's most populous province. As Patrick John Gilson writes, 13 regions in Ontario saw their living wage benchmarks increase by at least 10% from 2021 to 2022, with Sault St. Marie leading the pack with a 21.6% jump from $16.20 to $19.70 per hour.

  • Go Deeper: There are currently over 500 certified living wage employers in the province. About half of them received their stamp of approval since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

2. If Your Car Is Popular Among Canadians, It's Likely Also A Hit Among Criminals

On average, a car is stolen in Canada once every six minutes, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, making our country one of the more lucrative exporters in the global stolen vehicle trade. Of course, not all cars are stolen equally; generally speaking, no one is trying to lift that teal 2003 PT Cruiser out of your neighbour's driveway. The Équité Association released a list of the 10-most-stolen cars in Canada and it should be little surprise that some of the most popular models on the roads — like the Honda CR-V, Ford F-150 Series and Toyota Highlander — are also among the biggest targets, writes Katherine Caspersz.

  • My Take: Incidentally, it takes about six minutes for the average reader to finish this newsletter. All I can say is be ultra-vigilante while reading this — especially if you drive a Lexus RX Series.

3. One Of The World's Most Iconic Sushi Rolls Was Actually Created In Vancouver

Sushi lovers may be surprised to learn that the beloved California Roll — a fusion of rice, crab (or imitation crab) meat, avocado, fish roe and sesame seeds — actually traces its beginnings back to Vancouver, Canada. Ashley Harris recently caught up with Chef Hidekazu Tojo, who purportedly invented the roll back in the early 1970s to attract North American diners who were squeamish about consuming raw fish.

  • What's In A Name? It was actually Japanese media who dubbed it the "California Roll"; Chef Tojo had originally named his creation the "Inside Out Roll" because it effectively hid the dried seaweed on the inside of the roll rather than the outside. He also tried the "Tojo Maki" — but clearly the internationally renowned California Roll has had the staying power.

Potter's Peculiar Picks

QE Home Logo. Right: The Velveteen Fleece Throw blanket draped over a modern couch.
Courtesy of QE Home.


November is flying by and — sheeeeeesh — the end-of-year holiday season is basically here. Get ahead of the December shopping rush with some generously discounted home essentials from QE Home, like cozy throw blankets, quilted duvet covers and silky pillowcases. There's something for everyone — unless you dislike comfort. In which case, write in to the Morning Brief for some complimentary sandpaper. CHECK OUT THE ENTIRE GUIDE HERE.

Note: Simply clicking the above link helps support the production of the Canada Morning Brief.

What Else You Need To Know Today

Our Janice Rodrigues needs to know: is the universe punishing her — or her wallet, at least — for being single? With sky-high costs across the board, from housing to food, here are the eight things that are way more expensive when you're partner-less in Canada.

Did you know that it's technically illegal to park on a street in Ottawa if the forecast is calling for 7 centimetres of snow or more? And that it's also illegal to own more than five cats in the city? Contributor Sarah Crookall scoured the legal code for our nation's capital and found eight weird bylaws that simply beggar belief.

A pro tip from your friends at the Canada Morning Brief: if you come across the carcass of a dead raccoon, do not attempt to turn it into one of those old-timey frontiersman hats. Torontonians especially should be aware that there's actually a major distemper outbreak among the local trash panda population, Mira Nabulsi writes. Here's what you need to know to stay safe.

Cut your travel time to Prince Edward County's wine country dramatically by moving into this massive, renovated manor home in Grafton that traces its origins back to the 1860s. Madeline Forsyth gives us a virtual tour of this four-bedroom, six-bathroom abode, currently listed for sale at $939,900.

Love him or hate him, SNL alum Pete Davidson turns 29 years old today. Six-time NBA All-Star Amar'e Stoudemire turns 40. Canadian and former Olympic wrestling champ Carol Huynh is 42. Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal is 45. Denise Huxtable herself, Lisa Bonet, turns 55. Canadian ivory-tickler Diana Krall is 58. The late Rocky mentor Burgess Meredith was born on this day in 1907.

HEY YOU! You should sign up for the email version of this newsletter right here. It's better than this version. Trust me.

Thanks for reading Narcity'sCanada Morning Brief — do you know how many hours I spend training in a meat locker in order to land these hard-hitting remarks?

Have a question or comment about today's edition? Let me know at or hit me up on Twitter if you'd prefer at @andrewjoepotter.

Have a great day and I will see you back here tomorrow!

Andrew Joe Potter
Newsletter Editor
Andrew Joe Potter is a Newsletter Editor for Narcity Media Group and is based in Toronto, Ontario.
Recommended For You