Thursday, 12 July 2007

Thank you Globe

Dick MacDougal, aka Dirty Dick.

So that was the name of the toothless, down-and-out alcoholic Ed Mirvish took under his wing soon after opening Honest Ed's in 1948.

It might have been reported elsewhere over the years, but the Globe and Mail's mention of the name of Honest Ed's well known mascot is the first we have seen in print since 1948.

As mentioned in a previous posting, a photo of Dick MacDougal greeted visitors to the store and identified Dick as Ed Mirvish.

We've also been told Ed used Dick's photo on the cover of his menus at Old Ed's restaurant.

Ed's helping hand in giving Dick the use of a basement cot in exchange for odd jobs around the store impressed a lot of people in the multicultural neighborhood.

His early, heart-felt feelings for people in the community earned him large numbers of faithful customers who continued to shop there after moving out of the neighborhood.

Speaking of Toronto front page media coverage of Ed's death:

The Toronto Star gets our nod for the full colour of a gleeful Ed standing on the street across from his neon shopping palace, a Reuters file photo circa 2001. Ed's "It's Showtime" pose in living colour is how Toronto residents will remember Ed.

The Globe and Mail used an undated and much earlier black and white photo of Ed in a similar pose with a long lineup outside his store, but the Honest Ed's sign is not visible. There is no photo credit.

The Toronto Sun had a colour photo of Ed's classic pose on the street in front of his store, taken by Ken Kerr in 1998, but used it on Page 3. The large black and white head and shoulders photo of Ed on the front page indicated a reflective, sombre mood.

Favourite line of the day goes to the Sun for "Death of a salesman."

The city, the media, theatre patrons, Honest Ed's customers, should celebrate his life with a posthumous 93rd birthday party on July 24.

Much like the final curtains for the many plays he hosted, we're sure Ed would rather leave 'em laughing.

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