I learned about the fire shortly after a neighbour across the street tweeted a couple photos around 6:30 p.m.:
Gladstone totally shut down pic.twitter.com/RgxeCq91Ok
— Upgrayedd (@DeportPanther) March 12, 2014
By the next day, the units on the west end of the row had been boarded up. The fire appeared to have been most severe in the commercial ground-floor unit at the west end, which contained an antique store, and previously a "Teleologist" (which a few years ago sparked a discussion, of which I can't find any record any more):
This wasn't the first close call for this building. In January 2007, a rather nasty (though, I understand, non-fatal) collision at this corner tore a traffic signal pole right off its footing and just missed smashing the windows of the art classes.
At the east end of the row are an art class place and the Super Men's Hair Stylist & Barber Shop. I started going there a few years ago after my previous barber on Bank Street kept jacking his prices up with decreasing customer service. These talented Iraqi men do it for much less, seven days a week (though the price has increased slightly since this photo was taken in November 2011):
Due to the smoke damage, the barbershop decided to move across the street, next to Fil's Furniture. It's a much larger space which will allow one of the barbers to move his art studio into the back:
His website is www.FirebySaba.com; an unfortunate name given the circumstances, but arising from his technique. His thickly-covered canvasses are a "controlled riot of colour" (according to the website description), and I'd say some of them are even astral. The first time I met Sabah, he had been in Canada for just two months and had never experienced a real winter. He's easily one of the most interesting and passionate people I've met.
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