Four things we learned from Uncontrollable, Mark Towhey’s book about Rob Ford
Uncontrollable, the aptly named tell-all by Mark Towhey, Rob Ford’s one-time chief of staff, went on sale on Tuesday. Even though some of the more, um, enlightening parts of the book have already been excerpted elsewhere, there are still plenty of previously unknown details for readers to discover. Here are the four we liked the best:
1. Towhey adds some colourful details to the story of Ford’s night at the Garrison Ball, first reported by the Toronto Star back in 2013. In Uncontrollable’s version, Ford arrived visibly intoxicated (looking “like shit on a stick,” in Towhey’s estimation) with his two children in tow. Towhey says Ford suggested that the two men and Renata “all party together”—festivities which would, according to Towhey’s recollection, have involved “get[ting] some whores.”
2. Towhey describes some wasteful behaviour by the mayor. Exhibit A: the daily “Sandwich Run,” a two-and-a-half hour task performed by staff that involved driving out to a sandwich shop in Etobicoke, buying a sub for Ford’s daughter Stephanie, and hand-delivering it to her elementary school. In one of the more memorable exchanges in the book, Towhey recalls asking Ford why he doesn’t buy the sandwich the night before and pack it for her. Ford’s answer: “It has to have tomatoes and they get soggy if it’s not freshly made.”
3. The famous “murder rant” video, in which Ford thrashes about in a violent rage while muttering death threats directed at an unknown person, has been a mystery since it first came to public attention two years ago. Towhey says his “sources” tell him that Ford was just engaging in an addled role-playing fantasy, in which he was fighting either Justin Trudeau, Mike Tyson or Hulk Hogan. The same night that video was filmed, Towhey says, Ford summoned his friend Bruno (presumably Bruno Bellissimo) to the house. When Bruno arrived, Ford punched him in the face so hard he (Bruno, that is) fell over.
4. According to Towhey, the ex-mayor often made things even more uncomfortable around the office by inventing slanderous stories about his employees. Some aides, Towhey says, were hired essentially to serve as moles for Doug Ford. Others took bets on how long their coworkers would last in their jobs. And, Towhey says, the whole office had a habit of joking about Ford’s “solid two-hour” workdays, which involved attending breakfast meetings as “a flyby on his way home” from whatever he was doing the night before.