Archive for the ‘Vancouver Blogs’ Category

Indie I Do post-event report

Senses and Style was at the previously mentioned Indie I Do and reported on it, complete with some great pictures. If you weren’t able to make it, or if you were and want to share with others, check out their post!

Some January culinary ideas. A person’s gotta eat, right?

The gang at Sense and Styles has some excellent suggestions for yummy things to do this month. Here are the short versions;

The titular Long Table

The titular Long Table

The Irish Heather’s Long Table Series

Running every evening between January 11th and  February 11th, come sit at one big long table with a few dozen other food-minded people at the Irish Heather. Depending on what night you come, there is a different excellent meal, complete with a matched drink, for a mere $15 (plus tax and tip.) For example;

Monday, 11th of January, House Made Beef Meat Balls, Tomato Sauce served with Hand Made Spaghetti, w/ 5oz – Glass of Sandhill Syrah.M $15 plus tax & service

Click here for each day’s offering!

“Just Like Dinner at Nona’s House”

Similar to The Irish Heather, but exclusive to three Tuesday nights only – January 12th, 19th, and 26th – enjoy a hearty plate of food paired with R&B beer for $19. Plus, be there at 6 for the wine bar!

The Main Event – East Meets West

Technically Main isn’t where East Van meets West Van, but that’s the kind of thing that gets me punched in the arm. And pedantry aside, this is an awesome event. Running from January 18th to 24th, a number of Main street restaurants will be offering three-course tasting menus for set prices of $25, $35 and $45. And a portion of those sales will go to The Greater Vancouver Food Bank. So, it will be one of the rare times you can eat AND help others do the same.

I’m particularly looking forward to this, as it is an excellent excuse to try more of the restaurants in my neighbourhood. Click here for a list of participating restaurants.

Eee up to Senses and Styles – I will be keeping an eye on them and you should too!

Vancouver embraces Twitter

I joined twitter a little over a year ago as part of some school research in emerging technology trends. For several months, I only had three followers: my professor, a classmate and a good friend of mine – not bad considering the huge Facebook craze at the time.

For some reason, I thought, “Hey why not see if good ol’ (or god-awful, depending on your point of view) Gordon Campbell is on Twitter.” Sure enough, he was. What about good ol’ (or god-awful, depending on your point of view) Carole James? She’s there too!

I added Gordon Campbell (@g_campbell) to my list… and within two hours he added me to his. Still waiting for Ms. James (@carolejames) to add me to hers. But considering that she’s not following anyone at the moment, I don’t think she’ll be inviting me to her list anytime soon. Granted, they’re both probably written by party staffers anyway.

Buzz Bishop (@buzzbishop) of 95.3 FM Virigin Radio fame tweets quite a bit, and I find his them to be a great source of what’s going on in Vancouver… and a great source for good eats! Local Vancouver Sun writer Gillian Shaw (@gilliamshaw) is a great read as well… She taught me a lot about how Twitter works on her recent Twitter article. For you Vancouver talk radio junkies, CKNW (@cknw) and News1130 (@news1130) are on it as well.

I’m sure that there are a more Vancouver twitter accounts out there. If you know of any good ones that we can follow, please leave a comment… Bonus points for you if you could find one that covers Vancouver’s food scene. I’m looking for more great places to eat!

Vancouver comic blog Between Staples shuts down

Iron Man figures

Comic books and the internet seem to go hand and hand.  In fact apart from debating who was the best captain of the USS Enterprise it’s almost as if the net’s primary directive is to bring people together to argue about Grant Morrison.  Pretty much everyone who reads comics has a comics blog, even I had one for a short bit before I realized that even less people read it than my personal blog.

However despite my combined love of comics and interest in blogs I have never really pimped one of Vancouver’s better blogs and certainly one of the top local comic book blogs.  Truthfully it’s the only local one I’ve read but if I’m missing one let me know in the comments.  Sadly maybe it was my lack of link love that lead to this month’s shutting down of Between the Staples [bts].  Or maybe not.

Either way Between the Staples is one of a number of interest specific blogs around Vancouver that never quite get the attention that they deserve.  I’m as guilty of this as anyone, as a few select blogs tend to sort of talk in an echo chamber about themselves and kind of ignore that there’s thousands of other people writing around Vancouver. 

I have to go now, some idiot in this chat-room keeps insisting that Janeway was the best.

Wishing it away: Matthew Good, a biography and Wikipedia

Matthew Good

Part of being a public figure is that sooner or later people are going to say things about you that you don’t agree with.  It comes with the territory, and the longer you’re going to be in the spotlight the more that’s going to happen.  Hell these days just having a blog seems to be enough for people to give you their opinion on every facet of your life, and that’s fair because if you choose to share it then you’re inviting comments.

The quickly written unauthorized biography is a staple of the music world.  Collecting previously published interviews and then hammering those into some sort of narrative structure to capitalize on someone else’s success.  Want to find out the real story of Trent Reznor, that unauthorized biography of him that I bought certainly did not tell it.  Though to be honest official biographies, or autobiographies, are rarely any more interesting or accurate.

It’s understandable that having an un-official biography written about you would be annoying.  However it’s free speech and anyone is allowed to say almost anything verbally or in print, no matter how badly written or poorly researched.  Matthew Good was never going to be happy about Eric Blair’s Ghosts in the Machine [am], but having his fans remove all mention of its existence from Wikipedia was disappointing [mg].


Vancouver’s new and old media face-off online

The Vancouver Sun [vs] has recently launched a new website, and in the world of city blogs Scout Magazine [sm] has arrived trying to bring the world yet another online magazine.  Is the Sun’s face lift just more rearranging deck chairs on the Hindenburg?  Is Scout Magazine just a blog with more obtrusive advertisements?  With the economy going the way it’s going, does it matter?


Vancouver blog news

IMG_2171.JPG, originally uploaded by Jeffery Simpson.

There’s been quite a bit of activity on the Vancouver blog scene the last week or so, and since I’ve been busy the way I’m going to cover it is to throw it all online in a big’ol roundup of news. It’s like a Morning Brew [br] of slightly outdated Vancouver blog news.

– Morning Brew: the best MB title ever [br].

– Best of 604: we tried to do a best of Vancouver blogs thing here during the summer, but everything just sort of got overwhelming and I couldn’t hack it. Rebecca’s a professional blogger unlike me, so she’ll avoid making a complete hash of it [b604].

– Canadian Blog Awards: Apparently there’s a Canadian Blog Awards. I’m not sure if they’re any more reputable than the awards that were around in thet late ’90s when I won first place for design for my hidiously garish Matthew Good Band fansite that I made with Angelfire, but hey they’ve got a beaver logo. Lots of local blogs got nominated including the previously mentioned Rebecca and Raul who is always worth a vote [h604].

– Northern Voice 2009: I went to Northern Voice in 2006 and pulled a muscle from constantly having to roll my eyes [mbv]. I sort of fell between the target audiances of people who were super new to blogs and the internet and the type of people who wanted to spend an hour arguing about comment moderation software. Having said that it sounds like in recent years the conference has been stellar and I’m most likely going to be giving it another go this year. The conference is in late Febuary, and right now has an open call for speakers.

The Georgia Straight: I’ve been freelancing for the tech section of The Georgia Straight for the last few months, and now they’ve launched a dedicated tech blog [tgs]. On a related note if this roundup of local blogging news has gotten you freshly interested in blogs, it’s worth checking out my article on local bloggers that ran a few issues ago [tgs].

There’s always something left out

Iron Man Mighty Mug

Anytime anyone tries to do a definitive list of whose the best, most important, or drunkest, bloggers in Vancouver it always falls short.  It’s the nature of the beast, if you mention x number of people person x+1 will feel left out, and if you mention everyone then really you’re just doing a roll call.

It’s a trap that I tried to avoid when writing an article on the Vancouver blog scene in this week’s Georgia Straight [tgs].  I’m glad to have gotten a few people who don’t really get the coverage they deserve, at least not locally, involved in the article.  It’s worth a read, though since I wrote it I may be heavily biased.

Those who do read it might notice that I left out any mention of Metroblogging Vancouver.  I might have mentioned it briefly in relation to Beyond Robson [br], who’s Sean Orr I interviewed, but it took up quite a bit of words explaining what it was, what my role in it was and how it related to Beyond Robson and other Vancouver group blogs.

So if you were left out of the article and feel aggrieved, well so was I so suck it up.

Once again I’d like to thank everyone who agreed to be interviewed for the article.

Matthew Good Live At Massey Hall: Review

Matthew Good

“Hello Time Bomb” was at the top of MuchMusic’s charts when I tried to request it during a phone in request hour back in Kelowna.  I was working an extra long shift at the Uptown Cinema Centre, and wanted to hear the new Matthew Good Band track.  The DJ at The Lizard, which at that point was what passed for the alternative rock station, had never heard of the song.  He offered to play “Crash” by The Dave Matthews Band.

The Matthew Good Band was fast becoming one of my favorite bands, and since they toured British Columbia a lot more than U2 and charged a lot less for tickets I ended up going to a lot of shows.  At that point I’d already seen them at EdgeFest in Edmonton and since then I’ve seen the band and Matthew Good solo nearly twenty times.  My first time at the Commodore Ballroom was to see one of the band’s five shows that they played over the holidays between the release of Beautiful Midnight and The Audio of Being.  I’ve been to Kamloops and Penticton far more than I’d like simply to catch a show.

So Tuesday’s release of Matthew Good’s Live At Massey Hall album was an obvious buy for me.


Vancouver online in 2001


to celebrate their ten year birthday Google has put their oldest available search index online. Now for a limited time you can search their database that was active in 2001 [g01] as well as my hilariously ugly Matthew Good Band fansite and various student paper stuff [g01]. What will you find if you do? Well for starters you’ll find one of my first blogs [g01] as well as the fact that that other Jeffrey Simpson (a senior writer at The Globe and Mail) had a slightly larger web presence than I did, even though I kind of figure that he had no idea what the internet was at that point.

Give the search a try, and see what comes up. In 2001 for example there was no iPod. What a backwards age that must have been.

Vancouver comes up with not one of the very popular blogs that dot our digital landscape now, at least not on the first page. Who does show up? Well the Vancouver Grizzlies [g01]. The closest thing to the social networking sort of sites that we all laud now [mbv] is a now defunct page for the local chapter of IndyMedia.

These days you can’t throw a rock into the air without hitting someone trying to sell their SEO (search engine optimization) skills or a blogger fretting about Page Rank. 2001 seems so quaint and unspoiled, like an episode of Road to Avonlea.

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