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Mayor Rob Ford wears a yellow and black Hamilton Tiger-Cats jersey in Oct. 24's city council meeting.

For a few brief moments this afternoon, Toronto's mayor was a changed man.

He was humble. He was embarrassed. He was wearing a Ti-Cats jersey.

Placed in the unfamiliar position of conceding defeat, he could barely find the words.

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"Ah, it's, you know, um, you win some and you lose some," he stammered on the council floor.

His unease had nothing to do with garbage collection or shark fins, the subject of much Council debate on Monday, but with something nearer and dearer to the mayor's heart: football.

In September, Mr. Ford and Hamilton Mayor Bob Bratina bet on their hometown teams to win the season series of three CFL games this year. The wager: the losing mayor would have to wear the rival team's jersey at their next city council meeting.

On Oct. 1, the Ti-Cats bested the woeful Argos 27-12, clinching the season series.

"I'm a diehard Argos fan and we're having a terrible season," said Mr. Ford of his beloved Argonauts, before pulling on a perfectly fitted Ti-Cats jersey bearing a 'Ford' nameplate on the back. "I'm a man of my word so I have to don the Hamilton jersey."

In return, Mr. Ford offered his Hamilton counterpart an Argos helmet and a Don Bosco Eagles jersey. Mayor Ford coaches the high school team, currently ranked number one in the city after blanking Richview last week 34-0.

"I'll be cheering for Hamilton to win the Grey Cup," Mr. Ford says. "But in turn...hopefully we can cheer for Don Bosco to win the Toronto Bowl."

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About the Author
National reporter

Patrick previously worked in the Globe's Winnipeg bureau, covering the Prairies and Nunavut, and at Toronto City Hall. He is a National Magazine Award recipient and author of the book Mountie In Mukluks. More

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