Archive for January, 2007

Finding an excuse to blog about Nelly Furtado


Originally uploaded by welovedonny.

I’m going to lose the last of the itty bitty street cred I might have with this post, but it’s not like indie cred is going to get me 10% off at Red Robin so I’ll roll with it. Basically for the last day or so I’ve been trying to find a way to blog about Nelly Furtado on Metroblogging Vancouver.

Maybe it’s the giant poster of her that glares down on Robson Street from the window of the HMV like a fifteen foot woman ready to jazzerzie Vancouver’s flabby butts, or the fact that her last album is much too catchy, or the fact that she’s turned into one of the five hottest women in the world but I’ve been looking for a place to blog about her here at Metroblogging Vancouver.

At first I thought I would have a free hand to blog about her however I want, thinking that she was from Vancouver. Gasp no, she’s from Victoria according to Wikipedia [wp] and while Victoria’s basically Vancouver’s little hippie sister it sadly was not a strong enough connection for me. Then I thought that maybe the giant poster would be enough, but I just couldn’t think of much to blog about it. Finally I decided the check to see if she’s coming to town on tour, and she is.

Huzzah. Put that in your Facebook!

She’ll be here March 22nd at GM Place [nf]. Now all that’s left to do is see if I can parlay my blogging position into a photo pass.

Where there’s smoke, there’s fire
I came across a smoking, bunt-out wreck of a car on the sidewalk outside the Vancouver Art Gallery the other day. It looked like one of those wrecks one often sees on news about war zones far from our placid shores. While gawkers like myself looked at it and tried to figure out where exactly the smoke was coming from, a little black and white television inside (presumably a better one would have ended up missing fairly quick) blared news reports of SUVs’ impact on the environment.

The installation was the creation of L’Action Terroriste Socialement Acceptable, a provocative art group sniping at the war-for-oil strategy of the United States government and society’s out-of control consumption.

For the benifit of Mr. Couch


Originally uploaded by phoneyman.

Via our suggest a story [mbv].

Typically we don’t do event listings type things here at Metroblogging Vancouver. Each author only blogs about what they tend to like themselves, so if I’m not interested in a concert I’m not going to write about it. The story behind this Saturday’s show at the Cobalt was worth a mention though. To quote the submitted story, “Some friends have offered to donate their time, energy, and talents to help raise some cash to pay the evil bastards who are holding my things for ransom.”

Ah yes the old, “Our friends’ furniture is being held by the moving company, let’s have a benifit concert!” angle. Clever. The benifit concert is of course how we ended poverty, world hunger and vampireism. The line up of the bands at the show below. Don’t worry I haven’t heard of any of them either.


3 Lanes for Bridge of Death?

killercurve.jpgIt seems that I’ve started a series, posting about the Pattullo Bridge in all its glory [1][2]. Whether it be another accident, the talk of adding a median or ripping up the asbestos-ridden deck, this is one sad excuse for a major thoroughfare.

As I flipped through the Vancouver Sun looking for the daily crossword to enjoy and concur on my lunch break I noticed something on the front page of the Westcoast section. Well, well, if it isn’t my deadly little nemesis.

The regional transportation authority, which has been trying for more than two years to figure out what to do with the 70-year-old bridge, has commissioned a feasibility study on a three-lane system with a counterflow lane like the one on the Lions Gate Bridge [VancouverSun]

Bob Behnke from The John Heida Project chimes in:

“If there’s no median, you haven’t fixed the problem,” he said. “You’ve made it a little safer because the lanes will be wider. But you haven’t fixed the problem that took my friend’s life. The killer on the Pattullo Bridge is that curve.

Putting a barrier between northbound and southbound traffic would prevent the deadly head-on collisions that occur when drivers take the curve too fast and drift into opposing lanes. Behnke said it’s about “idiot drivers going way too fast and losing it on the corner.”[VancouverSun]

Exactly. This is what we’ve been saying all along. By “we” I mean those who drive it often, who know what this bridge is actually like, and those who unfortunately lost loved ones over the years to its killer curve. Aside from that, 3 lanes could make traffic worse. How many more options are going to be tossed around every couple of years? To stay on top of Translink’s Pattullo ideas, you can read through their 2007 Transportation Plan on their website.

A dog in Vancouver

Fire Hydrant

Originally uploaded by Ryan Pears.

There’s a Dimitri Martin joke where he says that a person who owns a dog in the city is clearly saying that their need for companionship outweighs their dislike for picking up shit. That joke has been going through my head quite a bit over the last week or so as I’ve considered getting a dog.

The difference between getting a dog now, living downtown Vancouver in an apartment and when I was younger living in a house with a large yard in the rural area of Kelowna, is that apart from picking up poop it’s not as easy to care for a dog in the big city. Or as cheap.

My main concern is that I work eight hour shifts and can’t get away for lunch to walk the dog. Add the walk to work and back and the dog would be on its own for nine hours. Not a nice thing for either the dog or the smell of my apartment.

I know there are dog daycare services, as well as dog walkers. A quick trip through Google seems to suggest to me that it tends to cost $25+ a day for either of those services which might be a reasonable price but makes the dog ownership thing quite a bit more pricey.

Do you have a dog in the city? How do you take care of it? What’s a guy who lives on his own to do?

Bye Bye Plaza of Nations

It was my family’s main entry point to Expo 86 [wiki] every single weekend. The Plaza of Nations, one of the last remaining structures from the expo, a fixture of Vancouver festivals and cultural fairs, will not be around much longer.

A glass roof built for Vancouver’s Expo ’86 that was designed to last 10 months will finally be torn down. In a news release Thursday, the city said it had granted a demolition permit to the owners of the Plaza of Nations. [CBC]

Tenants have been told to pack their bags as it will all be coming down except for the former BC Pavilion from Expo, currently home to the Edgewater Casino [CKNW]. Apparently it’s to make way for a hotel complex although I’m unsure if the city or the development company has released official plans.

(Photo Credit: ExpoMuseum on Flickr)

Virgin Festival

virginfestival.jpgSound fun? Vancouver’s getting it’s very own Virgin Festival this coming May long weekend (May 20-21) at Thunderbird Stadium. My Chemical Romance, The Killers, AFI, Muse, Hot Hot Heat and Billy Talent will headline along with other acts announced closer to the date.

Just like the Toronto festival, Vancouver’s will include an interactive V-Village with vendors, food, hair stylists, tattoo artists and massage services…

…In the UK, where the V Festival has been an annual event since 1996, more than 130,000 fans flock to two locations. Similar festivals were added to several U.S. cities and to Toronto last year.

Tickets for Vancouver’s inaugural Virgin Festival go on sale Feb. 3 at 10:00 am at all Ticketmaster outlets. One-day passes are $39.93 plus $1.00 for the Virgin Unite charity and a $2.25 facility fee. []

If you are a Fox Rocks Club member, you get $10 off AND a pre-sale starting next week.

Although the festival circuit has its pros and cons, I’m most excited to see Muse. The ‘most exciting live act out of Britain today’ isn’t having the best luck with sales of the new album Black Holes and Revelations in Canada so maybe that’s why their participation on this tour is overshadowed by Billy Talent and the Killers. It’s a shame, but at least they’ll be coming to Vancouver this spring.

Who Wants to be an Amerikan

Congratulations to Vancouver Film School graduate Aaron Beckum for getting featured on Youtube’s homepage for his short film, Who Wants to be an Amerikan?

The film is a retro look at a fantasy Soviet-era game show where contestants compete to see who really deserves to get the big prize – a lifetime vacation in the land that begat Mark Twain, Thomas Edison and Britney Spears. Despite it’s short length, it is still a very compelling and surprisingly well-acted film.

Well done, comrade Beckum!

It’s National Student Press Week

The Canadian University Press (CUP) recently started its national convention in Vancouver [mbv]. It’s going on right now, right as your read these words (unless of course you read these words after the 27th).

One thing that CUP has done recently is declare a National Student Press week a few years ago [wp]. Granted I don’t know the legality of a non-government organization declaring a national week of anything, but Prince George and Cape Breton have jumped on board with the week. So since the national student press conference is in Vancouver this year, and local sales of Granville Island and other local brewers have most likely shot through the roof, I’d like to call upon City Council to join with PG and CB and declare National Student Press Week.

Edit: If you want an insiders view of the conference then check out The Imprint‘s blog [imp] detailing their time in Vancouver for the Nash (national conference). The Imprint is a student paper out of the University of Waterloo.

Out Vancouver Meal #3: Bistro Pastis

Every Year Tourism Vancouver puts on Dine Out Vancouver [tv] which provides an oppertunity for locals and tourists alike to try some of Vancouver’s best resturants at a reasonable price. The event runs from January 19th through to February 4th. On Tuesday night my girlfriend Lydia and I went to Bistro Pastis [bp].

Bistro Pastis
2153 W 4th
Tel 604 731 5020

Two blocks from a comic book store, keeping the trend going, and on the trendy West 4th we found Bistro Pastis. After the less than stellar meal at The Hamilton Street Grill [mbv] I was getting a bit shirty about the whole Dine Out Vancouver experiance. When you add in wine the meals aren’t exactly cheap, and if they weren’t going to be better than I could get at a Milestones or a Red Robin then what was the point.

Bistro Pastis got me excited about Dine Out Vancouver again. The meal was fantastic. For the main course I ordered the pork tenderloin (pictured) after having started with the roasted butternut soup. I ended with the crème caramel. It was, very good.

The pork tenderloin was a perfect example of how meat can be wonderfully tasting without being doused in sauce. It was, as suggested by it’s name, tender and juicy. The soup and the dessert were both excellent, though neither were what really put Bistro Pastis over the top. No, what put it over the top was the french fries. Errr… pomme des frites.

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