Archive for February, 2006

Metroblogging Nashville

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xIMG_3159, originally uploaded by ykitty.

Nashville joins the Metblogs family today [mbn]. From U2 in Metroblogging Dublin [mbd] to Dolly Parton and country music in Metroblogging Nashville is there a musical theme to these latest sites? Next up Metroblogging Andrew Llyod Webber.

My lame jokes aside head down south and check out our new sister site.

Strange Things A-Brew Down in Cloverdale

At work yesterday in Cloverdale, I was talking to a coworker when, out of the corner of my eye, I registered a woman pushing along a gurney, complete with a body, down the street. As my coworker and I finished our conversation, the woman had made it from the east end of the street to the end of the block.

“Hey, there’s someone wheeling a gurney down the street! Is there a hospital near here?”

“I don’t think so,” said my coworker, turning around to look out the window. “What the?! Now she’s taking the body into a back alley!”

Yeah, the new workplace, unlike the previous one, has no ghosts but plenty of live action.

We can pass for Seattle, why not?

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Vancouver is a master at passing as other cities. In the upcoming X-Men movie we’re playing at least San Fran, as I saw the SFPD cars while walking past their shooting on Burrard by the Paramount Theatres.

In The Cleaner [mbv], we are playing Seattle, which seems a more natural fit. There were SPD cars lined up outside the Bayshore this evening as I was coming home.

So Seattle [mbs], we’re so your stunt double.

Is The Province Bloodthirsty?

Standing in line today, I flipped open the nearest newspaper, our venerable pillar, The Province. On page three, under “Officials want a lane dedicated to Games traffic,” was “Only minor accidents along Hwy. 1 despite whiteout conditions.”

Is it just me or were the editors of The Province hoping for more gloom-and-doom to make it to page three? It sounds like they are disappointed. “Oh, damn, we had all this space to report highway fatalities. Sheesh, you’d think everyone on the Trans-Canada were Calgarians or something.”

The Vancouverites had more sense than to venture out during yesterday’s blizzard.

Unbelievable parking wonkery

Look, I can’t lie to you: what follows is one of the dullest posts ever. It’s about parking. It’s about a review of a 750-page book about parking. That’s boring, but considering how much we talk about parking here, I thought someone might care.

Well, one non-boring part: the author estimates that parking spaces are subsidized to the tune of at least $175 billion dollars per year in the U.S.
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Soccer Moms Gone Wild

Around 8:30pm Sunday night a police cruiser rockets eastward on Hastings St through Burnaby Heights.

Not far in front of it a navy blue minivan speeds along, paying no mind to the piercing siren and the flashing lights in its rear view mirror.

What was going on? No telling. I can’t wait to hear the news story on this one.

Let four years of mind-numbing hype begin

The 2006 Winter Olympics are over [cbc] and now Vancouver we can begin the official countdown to the date when we can sit disapointed in GM Place watching a team other than the Canucks let us down. Ha ha, who am I kidding, no local is going to be getting tickets to the hockey games. Maybe if we’re lucky we’ll get to watch Italy and Latvia in the first round.

Anyway if you thought the high, “Oh my God the Olympics are coming!” fever of the city was there now just you wait. Every day we march towards 2010 the volume will just be turned up one notch until after four years we’re all ready to move to Seattle [mbs] and spend our time muttering, “We used to have Nirvana.”

I’m of the opinion that maybe we should all book vacations for four years from now, so while the world’s trying to figure out how to drive from Vancouver to Whistler in the amount of time we claimed one can, we’ll be sipping whisky sours on a beach in Maui.

Pacific Passage

YVR Nice PassageHot on the heels of Matt’s YVR post, I finally uploaded my photos of the new diorama at the airport.

Created by downtown’s museum designers AldrichPears Associates and executed in part by Coquitlam’s Conceptron Associates, it’s proving to be tough finding the names of all the sculptors.

The most visible one is First Nations artist and Emily Carr grad Connie Watts, of Nuu-chah-nulth, Gitxsan, and Kwakwaka’wakw ancestry, created the Thunderbird, Hetux (daughter in Nuu-chah-nulth), erroneously referred to as a raven. Made from stained Baltic birch and powder coated aluminium, Watts drew inspiration from her grandmother:

In my lifetime my grandmother has been my mentor. Her determination, creativity and generosity have always set a precedent for me to follow. For these reasons, I have modeled this Thunderbird from the personality of my grandmother. And have respectfully named it after her: “Hetux”.

….The Thunderbird, together with all the other creatures, is my grandmother. The Thunderbird’s strength and boundless creative energy is dominant. The wolves (intensity and determination) on either side of the body are her stature. The male and female salmon on the belly reflect her generosity and prosperity. The hummingbird (joy and energy) and moon (intuition and perceptiveness) on the wing are her actions and interpretations. The sun (logic and power) on the tail is her guidance. The small wren (magic and fortuity) on the neck is ever present.

YVR DuckFrom there, I ran into problems. I had the names of the other artists (Tim Paul, Stephen Bruce, Lyle Wilson, and Stan Wamis) but no information matching sculptor to sculpture. I finally found out that Stephen Bruce made the seal, which I forgot to photograph in favour of the crabs, duck and canoe.
YVR BoatThe ocean sound effects here are motion sensored and turn off when no passengers pass through. There are speakers hidden all over the place.
YVR Crab 2The more I think about it, the more it kills me that I don’t know who the artist is. Unless I missed a commemorative plaque when I was in the Pacific Passage, it’s strange that artists are not credited for their work.
YVR CrabAs the City of Vancouver’s First Nations History site says, “Local elders like to say that when the tide was out, the table was set.”
YVR Musqueam WeavingsOn the other hand, the Musqueam weavings (1996) outside the Pacific Passage have names: sisters Debra Sparrow and Robyn Sparrow, Krista Point, Gina Grant and Helen Calbreath. Krista Point explains the dyes:

When we were in the weaving school, we learned how to dye using natural plants like lichen, stinging nettles, dandelions, horsetail, and onion skins. That was fun because we did a lot of experimenting. Some of the colors we’d come out with were just gorgeous. We recorded them on paper. I have kept a record of all the colors that I have used, right from when I first started. The first dye I did was on November 14, 1983. I used onion skins to make a yellow colour.

For yellow, the weavers use onion skins, dandelions (roots and flower), and goldenrod flowers; for green, stinging nettles, horsetail, and red onion skins; for red, red alder bark; and for a goldish beige colour, lichens.

YVR Spindle WhorlThe Spindle Whorl (1996), the world’s largest, is by Susan A. Point (with assistance from John Livingston and Jeff Cannell). Susan Point, aunt to Krista Point, lives on the Musqueam First Nation Reservation in Vancouver.

Movies? Blah

I think the excitment of having the movie industry use Vancovuer has started to fade. Sure it’s good for the economy, creates jobs and it’s always neat when you can spot something local in a good movie or a fun movie (Rumble in the Bronx, X-Men and X-Men 2). Still there’s days when you just can’t believe you’re being made to go out of your way to leave early for work so that they can film an action crime comedy movie [imdb] featuring Cedric the Entertainer and Lucy Liu.

If you’re interested in watching a movie being shot it sounds like they’re going to be having some sort of action scene with cop cars and the like down by the Bayshore Hotel. If you like stallking, and I hesitate to use the term celebreities here, celebreties then you can check it out.

Dubai

With all the politiking over the ports across North America, including Vancouver [mbv], being bought out by an Arab country and the concerns of terrorism that’s raising both across the political spectrum and across the world, it’s interesting to see a post from Metroblogging’s Dubai site that looks at Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, the nation whose government is buying P&O the port management company at the centre of the storm, as the next great world city [mbd].

I’ll spoon feed you two interesting quotes, though reading the entire post is recomended. The first is on why Dubai is poised to become so important:

Dubai sits on the all-important strategic routeway of the modern world: China, India, Middle East, Europe and the US. That is where the money is going to be. China has just become the third biggest economy in the world and it is the fastest growing. India is set for its own acceleration.

The next one is about the promise of Dubai, about how its citizens see the city and their nation in the future:

Is Dubai, in fact, the fulcrum of the future global trading and financial system? Is it, in embryo, what London was to the 19th century and Manhattan to the 20th? Not the modern centre of the Arab world but, more than that, the Arab centre of the modern world.

As you might be able to tell from the quotes the article is very well written, posted by Dan Q. It also has some fantastic photography to go along with it, and so please go check it out and visit the rest of their wonderful site too [mbv], being bought out by an Arab country and the concerns of terrorism that’s raising both across the political spectrum and across the world, it’s interesting to see a post from Metroblogging’s Dubai site that looks at Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, the nation whose government is buying P&O the port management company at the centre of the storm, as the next great world city [mdb].

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