Archive for December, 2006

Stormy Vancouver

I haven’t been outside of the office all day. I brought my own lunch today, sat in the kitchen and did a crossword. It’s not that I feared going outside. I can actually get half way across town through various passages and Pacific Centre Mall. I got back to my desk and opened up a browser winder. I have the webcam on my customized Google homepage and this is what I saw.


Laying down the law last week, a pollster called me up to ask how I would rate police services in Vancouver. I’m not really sure why I agreed to do it. Usually I just give them an excuse and hang up. This time, I took a few minutes to hear the questions.

I was a little upset that most of the questions lacked any nuance: for example, one question was whether I thought crime was increasing. Well, violent crime? Property crime? Aggressive panhandling? Lumping it all in together doesn’t seem to make sense.

Then there was a question near the end – would I be willing to pay an extra $100 on my taxes to support an increase in police services? That depends – what is the money going to pay for – more cops on the streets, or just higher salaries and new police cars? There was no context.

Metroblogging Poll: Possible Skytrain Strike

This week, many people may not be able to get to work on time. Some may jump into conspiracy theory mode saying that the hour-long “breakdown” last week and during the snow storm was all building up to this.

SkyTrain could be hit by a strike as early as the end of next week, the Canadian Union of Public Employees said today. CUPE Local 7000, which represents 516 SkyTrain attendants, control operators, skilled trades, maintenance and clerical staff, said its members voted 90 per cent in favour of strike action. [VancouverSun]

This brings us to our poll (a little experiment of mine on Metblogs Vancouver).

free poll How will you get around (out n’ about or to work) if there is a Skytrain strike?
I’ll have to drive (although all routes will turn into parking lots)
I’ll have to walk (using my own two legs like a sucker)
I’ll have to bus (although who’s to say they won’t do a sympathy strike)
I’ll shut myself in my home and not leave until it’s over
I dunno, I’ll just be SCREWED

Christmas Bureau Break-In

I found out about the break-in at the Surrey Christmas Bureau last night [ms604]. More details are now available this morning.

Thieves made off with 3 computers and a digital camera, which means the lists of who gave and who is supposed to receive, is now gone…

The humble offices aren’t exactly easy to find, and the Bureau’s Fran Shiles says that’s what makes this crime even harder to accept. She says they’re going to have to go back to the paper technology and track things differently. She says their donor records are also gone, which include receipts for tax purposes. Fortunately, all the donations were banked on Friday.

The bureau provides toys and hampers for people on income assistance in the city of Surrey. [News1130]

The Surrey Christmas Bureau’s ability to help 1,800 families in need is now hindered greatly. For information on the bureau and to find ways to help, visit their site.

The Surrey Christmas Bureau runs an Adopt-A-Family program, similar programs in Vancouver are run by the YWCA and the Salvation Army.

Food Bank Giving, Made Easy

If you’re looking for a way to help those less fortunate this season and have absolutely no idea about *how* to go about doing so, there are a lot of events organized and websites setup to make donating the easiest part of your holiday season.

FoodBank.jpgDonate Now!

Let’s start with the live-on-location radio station events. Since these are traveling around and chances are, there’s one in your neighbourhood. Stop by, meet your favourite on-air personalities and even have a chance to win some nice prizes.

No spitting on the skytrain

A sneering thug on the Skytrain works up a big loogy in his throat for a minute. In the interest of not spitting on his own shoes, he attempts to open the doors of the train while it is still in motion. After heavy exertion, the doors come apart a few inches and the train is halted automatically before its stop. The thug has sent his spit flying, but is now growling to no one in particular about the train not going forward – apparently unaware that he is the cause of it.

This is the story as told to me by some friends who were inconvenienced by the lout the other day. Of course, I’ve seen my fair share of odd behavior on our public transportation. Fortunately, I carpool to work, so I don’t have to deal with it on a daily basis.

While we have undoubtedly advanced as a civilization, more than a few individual human beings seem to have been left behind. To those who must put up with morons like this, I salute you.

The Amazing Hunt

The season finale of the Amazing Race 10 is tomorrow and all my fellow bloggers at our Amazing Race blog [AR10] are already gearing up for season 11. There have been a couple local editions of the Emmy winning race [mbv], but one that’s caught our attention the most is The Amazing Hunt.

The Amazing Hunt is holding a race on January 27 2007 on Granville Island.

Since 2004, The Amazing Hunt introduces this unique racing style, which incorporates a safe environment and presents participants with an opportunity to discover a city’s hidden treasure… its culture, landmarks, and history [AmazingHunt]

The race operates all over the Lower Mainland (North Shore, Surrey, Richmond, Burnaby, Vancouver) and even over on the Island in Victoria. There will also be a Family Edition in 2007.


View video footage of past races on You Tube and you can visit the official site to register for the upcoming race on January 28th. This will be a foot race so according to Executive Producer Bill Lin, you won’t need a vehicle to get around.

Towel Power

towelpower.jpgTowel Power [wiki] is as much a fixture of Canuck playoff dreams as the “Believe” sign and TSN/CBC personalities’ anti-Vancouver commentary.

The 2003-2004 season was the last time the Canucks made it to the playoffs. Unfortunately the run didn’t last long, thanks to stinkin bastards the Calgary Flames. Towels were handed out at games and those who still had them, waved their 1994 Cup-run souvenirs with pride.

This past week former Canuck, Peter Schaefer pulled a little Tower Power of his own, unfortunately, it cost him a nice chunk of change.

Schaefer took a page from legendary coach Roger Neilson, who during a 1982 playoff game against the Blackhawks felt his team was unfairly penalized. He took a white trainer’s towel and held it on a hockey stick, as if to wave a white flag. Three other Canucks players did the same thing, and all were ejected from the game [TSN]

Currently sitting at 14-13-1 and learning how to get our shots (that consistently out-number our opponents’) into the net, we face the Calgary Flames tonight for some Hockey Night in Canada action. Coming off our win last night over the current Cup champs, all those bandwagon jumpers will certainly be on board WHEN we win tonight. Not sure what was said in the locker room before yesterday’s game [CHB] but we’re all hoping this will start some upward momentum even with Pyatt, Salo, Rypien, Green, Fitzy and Santala all being injured.

Oh and speaking of Fitzy… you can now pick up your very own “Vote for Rory” [mbv] t-shirts at Authentix stores.

(Towel Power photo is a snapshot from the Roger Neilson tribute)

Happy Festivus, everyone! you’ve probably guessed from the David-Suzuki’s-nightmare-of-wasted-electricity displays everywhere, the holiday season is upon us.

Since it’s a little too early in the month to call it a Christmas/Chanukah party, tonight we’ll be celebrating Festivus – complete with the airing of grievances and the feats of strength. Since criticizing guests about the ways they’ve disappointed you over the past year makes for a lame party at best, our grievances will be directed at public figures, dead people and associates we mutually agree are jerks. As for the test of strength, I expect we’ll have a few sprained wrists and welts tomorrow from the arm wrestling matches and elastic band fights (full-on wrestling is not permitted in our apartment). I never did grab an aluminum pole, but our fan is pretty straight and plain-looking, so it should do.

Happy Festivus, everyone!

PS: Yes, I know the santa beer has nothing to do with Festivus, but it does make my fridge look cool.

Time to Bring Back the Clapper

shoutatthedevil.jpgWe know the wind’s been knocked out of our sails and although last night there was a glimmer of hope that we’re on the uprise we’re still the lowest scoring team in the league. At Vancouver Canucks games chants for the other team are now louder than those for our hometown club [YouAreABlog]. A lighter issue having to do with crowd participation, motivation and overall enjoyment was brought up this week surrounding the MUSIC played at GM Place.

“…going to a game should be an experience. When you go see a movie, the soundtrack is part of what makes the whole thing worthwhile. When the movie is tense, the music reflects it. When it’s a party scene, then the music takes on the vibe…” [audihertz]

Now I’m just going to throw it out there: From Welcome to the Jungle to Cotton Eye Joe, what do YOU want to hear at games, aside from the puck going in the net?

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