From worst to first…

The St. Louis Blues win the Stanley Cup, President Trump asserts executive privilege and a Spice Girls movie is on its way.

From worst to first…

The St. Louis Blues win the Stanley Cup, President Trump asserts executive privilege and a Spice Girls movie is on its way.

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Good morning! Today is Thursday, June 13, 2019, and at least someone is acting Canadian.


• The Background

For the first time in franchise history, the St. Louis Blues are Stanley Cup champions. (We think it may have something to do with this good luck charm.) The Blues were massive underdogs going into the series (the team was in last place in January), but they somehow beat the Boston Bruins 4–1 last night to claim the title. Scoring two quick goals early in the first period, St. Louis took a commanding lead and just kept adding to it. TSN

• What Else You Need to Know

But it wasn’t just St. Louis’s win that was historic. Blues’ goaltender Jordan Binnington (who appropriately earned the nickname Jordan “Winnington” throughout the playoffs) became the first rookie goalie to win the required 16 games to take home the league’s top honour. Ryan O’Reilly was also a big winner last night, taking home the Conn Smythe Trophy for the most valuable player in the playoffs (voted by the Professional Hockey Writers Association). While nobody’s feeling too badly for Boston about the loss (the Bruins have done pretty well over the past few years), if they had won, the city would have become the first to land the much coveted “hat trick,” winning the World Series, the Super Bowl and the Stanley Cup in the same year. 

• What’s Next?

Next week, the NHL Awards will be held in Las Vegas and then the NHL Draftwill go down in Vancouver. Once those are wrapped up, players will have a few months off before training camp starts in the fall. 


• Tanker Trouble

Two oil tankers appear to have been attacked in the Gulf of Oman, near the Strait of Hormuz, on Thursday, leaving one on fire and adrift in the waters and sparking a rescue operation to bring more than 40 sailors to safety. The U.S. Navy received two distress calls, one after 6 a.m. local time, and a second at about 7 a.m. local time. The ships were holding “Japan-related cargo,” according to Japan’s Trade Ministry. At the time of the attacks, the country’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, was wrapping up a diplomatic trip to Iran amid heightened tensions between Iran and the United States. Last month, the U.S. accused Iran of using mines to attack four oil tankers off the Emirati port of Fujairah. While details of Thursday’s attacks aren’t yet clear, it appears explosions rocked both ships. CBC News


• Safe and Sound

Thanks to a daring rescue mission, the two Canadian women who were kidnapped in Ghana last week have been brought to safety. Five Ghanaians and three Nigerians are now under arrest for the abduction, after security forces raided a building outside Kumasi, where the women were being held captive. Victims Lauren Tilley, 19, and Bailey Chitty, 20, were volunteering at Youth Challenge International, a Toronto-based non-profit when they were taken. The organization said both women were physically unharmed in the traumatic incident, and they are receiving professional psychological aid as they travel home. After a recent surge in kidnappings, Ghana’s information minister is working hard to reassure the public that the country is still safe. CTV News


• Canada: Female Focus

In a historic appointment, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau named Jacqueline O’Neill Canada’s first-ever ambassador for women, peace and security. O’Neill, an Albertan and former president of the Institute for Inclusive Security, has previously advised the Canadian government on similar issues. According to the PM, “Ms. O’Neill will lead our country’s efforts to support women, help prevent and end conflict, and build a better and fairer world.” In her new role, O’Neill will be advising and implementing Canada’s plan on women, peace and security, facilitating events, consulting with stakeholders about relevant causes, and advising several ministers (among other things). Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland called O’Neill a “champion of gender equality.” CTV News

• U.S.: Privilege Problems

The president of the United States is entitled to something known as “executive privilege” — which means he (or she 🙏🏼) can resist certain subpoenas in order to protect sensitive, government-related information. Yesterday, President Trump asserted his executive privilege over a suite of 2020 U.S. Census-related documents, sought by Democrats. Coincidentally (or not), the House Oversight Committee then voted to hold Attorney General William Barr and Treasury Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress for failing to disclose said documents. The sensitive material relates to a decision made by Ross and the Justice Department to insert a citizenship question into the 2020 Census, which Democrats fear will reduce participation among minority communities — something that would likely benefit Republicans in future elections. CNN


“Let’s complete the unfinished business of universal health care. That can be our promise, and our legacy, to each other and to all future generations.”

Dr. Eric Hoskins, chair of the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare, on the council’s highly anticipated final report, which was released yesterday. According to the council, Canada needs to establish a single-payer program for prescription drugs as early as 2022, which will save the government $1.2 billion per year. iPolitics


• Beyond Your Typical Breakfast

Vegan friends, this one’s for you. Tim Hortons just announced an exciting new partnership with Beyond Meat, one of the top companies in the growing world of plant-based meat alternatives. Effective immediately, the popular coffee chain is rolling out its Beyond Meat breakfast sandwiches across Canada, which feature a sausage-like breakfast patty with an eerily similar taste, texture and protein profile. The deal comes just one month after Tim Hortons started testing the sandwiches in Toronto, and makes the coffee chain the second Canadian fast food company to offer Beyond Meat products, after A&W announced a similar deal last summer. Three varieties of the Beyond Meat patty are now available at all 4,000 Tims locations, including an English muffin with egg and cheese (for the flexitarians), a tortilla wrap with egg, cheese and other ingredients, or a 100% vegan meal with a patty on a baked biscuit with veggies. CBC News


• The Year 3000

Uber is reminding the world that the future is truly here, not just near. This week, the company’s hosting its Elevate Summit, where it announces the latest and greatest from its R&D Department. One of the most exciting innovations? Its new drone delivery program. Yep, Uber Eats is testing delivering food via drones in San Diego in order to decrease wait times. After workers load the food onto the drone, it’s tracked and guided by a state-of-the-art aerospace management system. The drone is then met by your standard Uber Eats driver who hand delivers it to the customer’s door. (No drone-direct delivery just yet.) Not only is Uber Eats innovating its business, but Uber is also in the midst of testing self-driving systems in Volvo XC90 SUVs. Yahoo! 


• Read

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Weiner (Sound familiar? She also wrote In Her Shoes and Good in Bed) explores the ups and downs of womanhood over the past 75 years in her new book, Mrs. Everything.

• Watch

Mindy Kaling is bringing her brand of funny back to Canadian screens tonight. Her new film Late Night (which she wrote and stars in!) is a twist on a classic rom-com, and co-stars Emma Thompson, John Lithgow and Hugh Dancy.

• Listen

As if the country isn’t amped up enough about the Raptors, MLSE just released a Toronto Raptors: Official Playlist on Apple Music, featuring 50 songs sure to get you even more hyped for tonight’s game. (Tune in at 9pm ET.)


• We Wannabe in 2020 Already

Get ready to spice up your lives (in 2020, that is) because an animated Spice Girls movie is on its way. All five spices — Melanie Brown (Scary), Emma Bunton (Baby), Melanie Chisholm (Sporty), Geri Halliwell (Ginger) and Victoria Beckham (Posh) — are on board and have been involved in the development of the film. And if that weren’t exciting enough, the movie will feature new music from the group along with a selection of the group’s classic hits. (Stop right now, thank you very much!) Simon Fuller will serve as producer and Karen McCullah and Kiwi Smith will write the screenplay. Hollywood Reporter 


• Toe-Tally Gross

The people of Dawson City, Yukon have taken an age-old good luck charm to a whole new level. The Whitehorse, a downtown hotel, just received a generous (and gruesome) donation: the frostbitten big toe of former British Marine Nick Griffiths (seriously), which will be added to the Sourtoe Cocktail collection. For those who don’t know about the collection, the Sourtoe Cocktail collection has been in existence since 1973 and places mummified toes into shots of whisky. (Thirsty yet?!) Griffiths joined the club when he drank a Sourtoe cocktail and then planned to donate three of his amputated toes to the cause. No word on when the other two will arrive. CTV News


• Let There Be Light

Today is Random Acts of Light Day, a movement organized by the Leukaemia and Lymphoma Society, with the goal of bringing light to those struggling with the darkness of cancer. The campaign also seeks to raise awareness of the need for new treatments and cures for blood cancer patients. 


• In a passionate speech, comedian Jon Stewart lashed out at Congress for neglecting to ensure a 9/11 victim’s compensation fund never runs out of money. He also scolded lawmakers for failing to attend the hearing. 

• The Cleveland Cavaliers are getting a new female(!) assistant coach. Lindsay Gottlieb will be joining the team, after spending eight years as the University of California, Berkeley women’s basketball coach. 

• The House of Commons voted unanimously to pass the first-ever parental leave program for members of parliament. 

• American comedian, Dave Chappelle is making his Broadway debut this summer, with a series of five stand-up shows. Tickets go on sale June 21.

• Top American runner (and inspiration to athletes everywhere), Gabriele Grunewald died at the age of 32 after a long battle with cancer. 


• Dancing Queen

This little lady is the definition of happy feet.

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