Archive for December, 2007

The Joys of Metblogging

ttn-button.jpgSo Jeffery recently noted that once again, we’re looking for some new writers to replace the deadwood enhance and renew our ongoing commitment to excellence in localblogging. I thought I’d tell you some of the wonderful things you can get out of being part of the angry ball of snakes that is your hardworking and loyal gang of humble servants here. And yes, I do explain the non-sequitur logo just to my right! But after the jump.
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The Province has blogs and is people too


The Province Headquarters

Originally uploaded by paradigm4.

While checking out our incoming links yesterday I noticed one from The Province [vp] which linked to my Spice Girls review [mbv]. My parents read The Province so I tend to read it second hand whenever I go over to their place, but after trashing their web efforts last year [mbv] I figured that I should give some credit to them for venturing a little more onto the web.

One of the things I really like about their blogging effort [vp] is that it seems they’re going for a behind the scenes view of the paper instead of just using it to promote their product (the print version of the newspaper). One of the problems that people have with journalism that it’s often like they seem to be speaking as the voice of authority and objective truth, when that’s often not the case. People feel that The Province believes this, or thinks that, when really it’s a collection of people who believe all sorts of other things.

Remember USA Today is the only hive-mind newspaper in North America right now. (I know the scary office building pictured is throwing you off but trust me, they’re most likely real people).

So pulling that curtain back is really an excellent use of blogs at a publication like The Province. The allure of “citizen journalism” or whatever you want to call it, versus the mainstream media, is that a blogger is someone you can say “Hey that person is just like me”. Journalists are people to, though if my experience is any indication they tend to drink more and own shittier cars than you do.

Vancouver’s Apple Store confirmed for Pacific Centre


Regent House Apple Store

Originally uploaded by Jeffery Simpson.

I’ve been on the job hunt for a long time [jks] with no luck whatsoever. I keep checking every jobs site there is, and send my resume off like it’s a letter to a forgetful Santa, but alas there’s no reply. Tonight though I’ll be submitting my resume all night long as I try to score myself an interview at the newly confirmed Apple Store at Pacific Centre.

As an Apple Store stalker, meaning I stalk Apple Stores not stock them, I’ve been in a few. Any city I go to that has one I’m required to browse their rows of iPod cases (because you can never have too many iPod cases), drool on the shiny new iMacs and lust after a job working for the only brand I’ve managed to stay loyal to. (My brief affair with Nike and its Air Jordan’s only lasted three years).

I might be making the most foolish mistake of all time by telling the readers about this, because you know the more people who apply the less chance I have, but my damn journalistic integrity compels me to point out that there are jobs posted for the store right now on the Canadian Apple site [ac]. Meanwhile the Unofficial Apple Weblog [tuaw] is still reporting this as a rumour, but since they’re actively hiring I’d say it’s confirmed.

If any of you are Steve Jobs, or Fake Steve Jobs even, give me a call. I’ll disco for nickels. And if any of you readers get a job thanks to this link and I don’t, then I want a friends and family discount on an iPod case if you see me in the store.

Sam Sullivan’s kinda a tool isn’t he?

I always enjoy it when politicians take a page from Stephen Colbert, and so a recent survey on Mayor Sam Sullivan’s webpage tickled my fancy [ms] because it nicely follows Colbert’s often asked question “George W. Bush great President or greatest President?”.

Sample question on the survey:

Why do you support the Millennium Line completion? Check any that apply

To protect the environment by increasing transit ridership

Improve access to UBC

Increase access to health services at in and around Vancouver Hospital

Increase access to central Broadway business district

Increase access to connecting transit routes

Other

In the spirit of the Mayor’s survey we’ve got one of our own:

Mayor Sam Sullivan is: (Check all that apply)

Vancouver’s worst mayor

Canada’s worst mayor

Vancouver Radio Food Bank Love

It’s that time of year again when local radio stations decide to broadcast remotely from various locations around the Lower Mainland in hopes that area folks will stop by and open their hearts and wallets to donate to a good cause.

Here’s a roundup of broadcast locations and charities:

Station: 95 Crave – Nat & Drew’s Food Bank Fill Up
When: December 11 – 14, 2007
Location: Various Safeways
* VANCOUVER: 990 West 25th King Edward (King Edward and Oak Street)
* SURREY: 7450 – 120th Street (Scott Road North of 72nd Avenue)
* TRI-CITIES: 3025 Lougheed Hwy, Coquitlam (Just east of Coquitlam Centre)
* RICHMOND: 6140 Blundell Road (No. 2)
Cause: Food Banks in Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey and the Tri-Cities region

Station: 99.3 The Fox – Santa Fox Food Drive
When: December 11-14, 2007
Location: Superstore on Renfrew
Cause: Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society

Station: 94.5 The Beat – The Beat Cares
When: Friday, December 7, 2007
Location: Costco Downtown (on Expo Blvd across from GM Place)
Cause: The Salvation Army, The Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau and The Greater Vancouver Food Bank.

I just have to say though, kudos to 95 Crave for actually supporting the Food Bank of the community in which they will be broadcasting. Stations used to move around to various cities but it seems to be a trend now to stake out one location for an entire week. The point of moving was to get support for that particular city’s Food Bank, then move onto the next. Not sure about the reasoning there but don’t forget your local Food Banks folks, ie. Surrey, and the Tri-Cities.

The Spice Girls in Vancouver: review


IMG_0104.JPG

Originally uploaded by Jeffery Simpson.

There is a certain philosophy of music criticism that would argue that reviewing a Spice Girls concert is sort of like doing a foodie review of McDonald’s, that the product on display is so pre-packaged, manufactured and predictable that it would be a pointless exercise. Having gone to the girls’ tour kick-off last night at GM Place I figured it was for the best that I did, and allowed the review to act either as an apocalyptic warning driving some away from future tour dates, or for some or a siren’s call for others enticing them towards the shallows to catch the last gasp of the 1990s’.

Think of the things we have now that did not exist at the height of the Spice Girls popularity, before their long breakup that their record label struggled against following the departure of Geri Halliwell. We have iPods, Wikipedia, The War In Iraq II, September 11th, lol cats, cellular telephones with tiny cameras in them, the word “blog” and Paris Hilton. The Spice Girls meanwhile have been frozen in carbonite, ready to be unleashed again when the moment is right.

Or maybe not frozen in carbonite, though career wise they might as well have been. Instead they’ve been having babies, sleeping with Eddie Murphy, marrying footballers, “acting”, helping the United Nations, releasing solo albums and engaging in ridiculous reality television shows. It’s hard out there for a C-list celebrity, especially when as a group they attract A-list crowds and sell out stadiums with the sort of regularity as an act with eight times their back catalogue.

Which brings us to last night, the first show on their reunion tour at Vancouver’s GM Place and the night where tens of thousands of screaming girls went to see their former heroes (without their parents this time). The thirteen year olds for whom “Girl Power” had been more than a slogan on posters had grown ten years and largely seemed to have embraced the new girl power of Paris Hilton and her ilk.

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TiVo comes to Canada

Link props to Metroblogging Montreal [mbm]:

TiVo is coming to Canada [cbc]! TiVo which even before we lusted after the iPhone seemed forbidden to Canadians. We had to listen to it dropped in pop culture conversation in our favorite shows, on our favorite podcasts and pretty much every where we turned while we made do with crippled DVRs from the cable companies.

Now if we could only get the Zune. (Kidding).

Vancouver feels the affects of the Hollywood’s strike


Old skool cylon … too old

Originally uploaded by Erwin Boogert.

One of the least talked about aspects of the current writer’s strike in Hollywood is how that’s affecting the local film industry. Already hard hit by the rising Canadian dollar, which makes filming in Vancouver less appealing than it used to be, now productions are shutting down as they run out of scripts to film [cdc].

Thousands of Vancouverites either work on these shows or in a production capacity around the shows, so there’s a lot of people who are going to be out of work for the next few months. That could be even longer if the actors follow this strike up with one of their own, and if the networks just decide to skip this television series and we all spend the next year watching America’s Next Top Dancing Celebrity Fourth Grader.

Smallville is probably going to be the last to shutdown around the end of January with Bionic Woman, Battlestar Galactica and a good chunk of Vancouver’s other shows have already shut down. I guess this puts on hold my dream to be Edward James Olmos’ stunt double.

Note: Yes I know the photo is from Toronto, but it seemed to fit.

Spice Girls + Vancouver = me?


The Fucking Spice Girls.

Originally uploaded by TabascoKid.

Any sort of music cred that I might have been able to claim [mbv] is about to vanish in a big ball of glitzy and choreographed dance moves as I head to GM Place this evening to watch the Spice Girls [wp]. I may not have bought the tickets, that was my girlfriend who found some on Ticketmaster this morning, but in the spirit of complete honesty and full disclosure I am going along willingly. I mean it’s either that or the corporate Christmas party for the job I’ve been trying to escape for the past six months [mbv].

I guess/hope that the Spice Girls audience has grown up since the height of their popularity because if I’m going to be stuck in the midst of some sort of A Hard Day’s Night screaming girl festival I might go bonkers. I will argue that I’m going for post-modern reasons, their movie was actually fairly enjoyable and one of the better acting turns for Elvis Costello. It’s ironic right? Right?

Right?

Update: I forgot to mention that this show is kicking off their reunion tour [cbc]. It should be an epic event in the history of the Spice Girls. It’s still ironic right?

Social rocking :: Last.fm’s Vancouver group

U2 live in Vancouver

I really dig last.fm [lf] because I’m a statistic nerd with iTunes anyway, and last.fm builds on that and allows me to be even dorkier. It’s also a good way to listen to the music I like on the stripped down Windows legacy machines that I have to deal with at work that we’re lucky that we can get to run a web browser.

It’s also a great way to find new music based on the rythm of its logic, and the suggestions of those people who enjoy the same sort of music I do. There’s even a group for users based in Vancouver [lf] that locals can join. If you’re on last.fm and want to friend me you can hit my profile up here [lf] and laugh at my complete lack of indie cred.

If you’re a Vancouverite on last.fm and want to let people you here know what you’re profile is feel free to post it below, and don’t forget to join the Vancouver users group [lf].

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