The no-politics mayoral candidate questionnaire: Josh Matlow

The no-politics mayoral candidate questionnaire: Josh Matlow

“Obviously my celebrity doppelgänger is a younger Tom Cruise”

Long hours, combative colleagues and mean tweets for days: running Toronto is brutal work. The past two mayors left in ignominy. Why, then, is the slate of contenders longer than the line to eat at Alo? A record 102 candidates know that the city is on the verge of delivering huge, legacy-entrenching projects: thousands of affordable new homes, several new transit lines and the 2026 World Cup to cap it all off. If everything goes to plan, Toronto’s next mayor will get credit for lifting the city out of the pandemic and into a more hopeful future.

But, first, candidates have the daunting task of setting themselves apart from the crowd. For voters who can’t make up their minds based on hot-button issues like TTC safety, affordable housing and the future of Ontario Place, we present the ultimate tiebreaker: a questionnaire in which the front runners give answers on just about every topic other than politics—the theory being that, if their policies haven’t convinced voters, perhaps their personalities will.

Name: Josh Matlow

Age: 47

Neighbourhood: Midtown

Last job: Toronto city councillor

My most impressive trait: Compassion

My least impressive trait: Impatience

The last time I experienced joy: This morning, when my 10-year-old daughter, Molly, got out of bed, gave me a big hug and said, “I love you.” Then she convinced me to buy her some Robux, a video game currency.

More Candidate Questionnaires

My biggest vice: Coffee

My coffee order: Black

The fast food item I could survive on for the rest of my life: Fries

How much I usually tip: 20 per cent

The last book I read: The Tiny Perfect Mayor by Jon Caulfield

The last show I binged: The Wire, then Stranger Things. I don’t watch much TV, so I have a lot to catch up on.

The last concert I went to: Jay Douglas in Little Jamaica

A slightly embarrassing fact no one knows about me: My campaign team and my family have had to intervene when it comes to some of my fashion choices.

What a bad day looks like for me: When someone I care about is sad or unwell

My first job: I delivered the Toronto Star as a kid.

My biggest pet peeve: My pet peeve is being asked what my pet peeve is.

My celebrity doppelgänger: Obviously a younger Tom Cruise. But many people have suggested either Ben Stiller or Adam Sandler.

My favourite curse word: @#$%&!

My last splurge: AirPods

My biggest regret: I didn’t recognize how important it is to be fully present with family before my mom died and my father’s Alzheimer’s worsened years ago. Those experiences made me much more intentional about the time I have with my wife, our daughter and our friends.

What I’d like written on my tombstone: I’ll leave that to those who are more objective than I am. But I certainly hope to leave this world far better than I found it.

Car, bike or TTC: All three, but I walk a lot too

Raptors, Jays, Leafs, TFC or Argos: Yes!

My favourite watering hole: During an election, I cherish every second I get to spend at home.

The best view of the city: From the Toronto Islands

The Torontonian I’d most like to spend a day with: My wife and best friend, Melissa. I also love daddy-daughter adventures with Molly.

Where I would live if not Toronto: Somewhere surrounded by forests, lakes, a starry night sky and the sounds of nature